Industry News

Vidal Sassoon The Movie, WOW!

Maggie Mulhern | July 10, 2011 | 9:59 PM

“Vidal Sassoon liberated me,” said my mother when I told her I had just seen the documentary Vidal Sassoon The Movie. “He liberated all of us.”

My mom was referring to women of her generation…. but her words could be echoed by hairdressers all over the world. Women now in their 70’s and 80’s (and 90’s) were locked in to weekly “standing appointments” for perms or roller sets followed by heavy teasing and stiff hairspray. Hairdressers were locked in to making that happen.

Vidal Sassoon changed all that.  He tossed the rollers and picked up his shears.  Instead of “weeklys”, Vidal gave his clients beautiful geometric cuts that just needed tweaking every six weeks. Clients were expected to shampoo and maintain their hair in between appointments. “Beauticians” in the "beauty parlor" were replaced by "artists" in the "salon".  Clients and stylists were no longer married to tight perms, hard bouffants and helmet hair.

 Vidal Sassoon The Movie, WOW!
  Vidal Sassoon
 Michael Gordon

Vidal Sassoon is kind of like Bill Gates. Bill Gates did not INVENT the computer, but he changed the world of computers for the world. Vidal Sassoon did not INVENT hairdressing, but his contributions changed the world of salon industry for both the stylist and the client. Granted, he did not invent the wheel…but I’m just saying……

Vidal Sassoon The Movie just premiered to standing room only audiences this week at the Tribeca Film Festival in New York City. I met with Michael Gordon, founder of bumble and bumble and producer of this film, after the viewing yesterday. Michael spent 3 years following Vidal, digging up information on him, interviewing dozens of the hairdressers that were fortunate enough to actually work with him and unearthing actual footage of the eras that influenced Vidal.  More importantly, there's oodles of clips from the eras that were impacted by Vidal.

Vidal Sassoon The Movie, WOW!
Michael Gordon, Producer of Vidal Sassoon The Movie with Maggie Mulhern, Modern Salon Media Beauty and Fashion Director

 â€œI feel I have been a caretaker of his life,” said Michael who appreciates the honor of creating this film. In 88 minutes we follow Vidal from his youth in an orphanage through World War II to the magical moment when he cut Mia Farrow’s hair for “Rosemary’s Baby”.  Included in this incredibly comprehensive documentary are clips of Vidal on his 1960’s television show right up to today as he meets some of the students in the Vidal Sassoon Santa Monica Academy.

Michael believes this film is a MUST SEE for anyone in our industry, and especially for beauty students and anyone who has “stalled”. “This film is a total recharge,” he said.

A surprising moment in the film came as the cameras followed Vidal to New Orleans where he went to help build homes after Hurricane Katrina. There, right before my eyes, WAS ME!!!!! It was for probably less than one second but was so unexpected!  I am honored and humbled to be included in such an important film.

I remember clearly the day I was unkowingly “captured” by Michael Gordon’s cameras. Sure…houses needed to be built, but sod needed to be laid. That’s where I came in.  I remember taking a break and interviewing Vidal that day in the 100 – ish degree, blistering heat. Vidal was cool, calm and collected as he shared his passion for helping those unfortunate souls. It spoke volumes about his true self. He is beautiful inside and out. We are so lucky to have a legend living among us and we are so fortunate that Michael Gordon decided to capture it all for the world. A documentary about this icon was inevitable. The good news is that it was done by one of our own.

Vidal is now 82 and living in California. Each day is filled with yoga, swimming and trying to make the world a better place through his various charities and philanthropic endeavors. As much as YOU may want to meet him…he wants to meet YOU more. He is simply an incredible guy, and may be perhaps the reason YOU became a hairdresser.

Vidal Sassoon The Movie, WOW! 
Creators of Vidal Sassoon The Movie: Craig Teper, Director, Jackie Gilbert-Bauer and Michael Gordon, Producers

This is a real “OOOHHH” and “AAAHHHHH” movie. Using an iconic Vidal word, this movie is m’ah’velous.

The Vidal Sassoon Interview: The Legend Talks About New Movie

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