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Annie Liebovitz Poses for Vuitton... Aaron Eckhart's Passion...

Louis Vuitton turned the tables on Annie Leibovitz, photographer of its “core values” ad campaigns, and asked her to appear in its next spots.

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STAR SYSTEM: Louis Vuitton turned the tables on Annie Leibovitz, photographer of its “core values” ad campaigns, and asked her to appear in its next spots, which will break in daily newspapers, magazines and online starting Feb. 1. She hesitated at first, but ultimately accepted — on the condition she use the fee to hire someone famous to pose with her. That flew in the face of Vuitton communication director Antoine Arnault’s intention: He had proposed the self-portrait project to Leibovitz as a gesture of support, given her widely publicized financial problems. “She’s a real, pure, 100 percent artist,” enthused Arnault, who insisted on ponying up for her chosen co-star, ballet legend Mikhail Baryshnikov. “We’ve always been very committed to her, to her talent.” Taken in Leibovitz’s New York studio, the photo depicts the dancer barefoot on a podium, and the photographer eying her subject, her own three-year-old monogram Neverfull bag next to her and stuffed with books. The tag line reads: “The journey of a star, captured in a flash.” Arnault said the image exemplifies the “moment of quiet and calm” Leibovitz achieves with her sitters. “She just gets in their souls,” he said. “This campaign has really become almost a saga.”

— Miles Socha

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