Fashion and Film Icon Tom Ford Opens Up in New Book

Thursday November 4, 2021

Tom Ford
Tom Ford  (Source:Associated Press)

Fashion designer and film director Tom Ford wants to add actor to his resume. He told the Hollywood Reporter this week in an interview to promote his new book, "Tom Ford 002" (out Nov. 10 from Rizzoli exclusively at Tom Ford boutiques and tomford.com, $135). The book is a sequel of sorts to his 2004 autobiography, in which he takes, as THR puts it, "an unabashed approach toward his current state of mind as he examines the past 15 years."

"I do get offered things a few times a year, but I have no desire to play a version of myself," Ford tells THR in a phone interview. "I said that as a bit of a toss-off [in the book], but it might be an interesting exercise. I did want to be an actor when I was young, but I didn't like putting myself out in the world like that. I'm much more secure now."

The past 15 years have been prolific for Ford. "Since departing his creative-director duties at Gucci and Yves Saint Laurent in 2004, Ford has enjoyed an intensely prolific period that included founding his eponymous label (with more than 100 stores worldwide); writing and directing 2009's 'A Single Man' and 2016's 'Nocturnal Animals'; and becoming a father at age 51, when he and husband Richard Buckley had a son via surrogate in 2012," writes THR.

The biggest headline from the book is how he overcame his addiction to cocaine and alcohol more than a decade ago. "I don't regret any of it, by the way, because everything in my life has added up to who I am today. It was out of control, and in order to continue life, to be creative and certainly to be a parent, I had to stop."

Julianne Moore in "A Single Man"
Julianne Moore in "A Single Man"  (Source: IMDb)

Among his observations is how living in L.A. is perfect for raising a child. "Los Angeles is built around life at friends' houses, around swimming pools, and when you're raising a 9-year-old, it's wonderful," he tells THR. "I drive him to school, we play tennis, go swimming. L.A. works for us."

Throughout the book, he also name-dropped the many celebrities, including Gwynneth Paltrow, Rihanna, Tom Brady, and Daniel Craig.

"There are more celebrities in this book than there were in the first," he says. "We live in a celebrity-driven culture, and they're the way we communicate so much these days. They're also some of my best customers — and paying customers — because my clothes are not quiet, they're somewhat daring."

As for fashion, he touched upon the need for a return to live fashion shows as pandemic restrictions ease. "Fashion shows tried all sorts of different ways [during the pandemic], but there's nothing like the power of a live show... The energy, the vibe, the music, it's all necessary. That feeling translates so easily to social media: I think Instagram, for all its evils, may actually save fashion. People dress for Instagram; they're costuming themselves for their own movie."

Ford devotes a good deal of space in "Tom Ford 02" to his films, "A Single Man" with many behind-the-scenes shots of stars Colin Firth and Julianne Moore for a good reason. "Other than having Jack and raising him, making 'A Single Man' is probably the single thing I'm most proud of because it was so incredibly personal," Ford says. "I loved the process. It was so enormously fulfilling. I wish I had time to make more films, but somehow I created this big business."

As for a new film, he demurred a bit.  "I've been working on a screenplay of a book I have the rights to, but I've been so busy — and during the pandemic, like a lot of people, I felt a bit shell-shocked and not remotely creative," he says. "But I'm not tired of the question. I just wish my answer could be, 'We start shooting in two months.'"