Who doesn’t love TCM’s Summer Under the Stars? A full month of daily tributes to your favorite stars each August? Sign me up. Throughout the 2019 schedule you’ll find several great fashion films, from The Philadelphia Story at 8 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 2nd, to Roberta on Friday, Aug. 23rd, starring Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers — set in a Paris fashion house, it’s on the schedule for the regrettable hour of 4 a.m. ET, so technically Saturday, Aug. 24th. Set your DVR, it’s definitely worth a viewing if you haven’t seen it, especially for the fashion show at the film’s end, which includes a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it moment with Lucille Ball, who has an uncredited role as a platinum-haired model in the fashion-show sequence toward the film’s end. (The other reason to enjoy Lucy’s appearance in Roberta is knowing that, 22 years after this appearance, Ball — by then hugely successful because of I Love Lucy — would buy RKO, the studio that made Roberta, and with husband Desi Arnaz would turn it into Desilu, home of such iconic television productions as The Dick Van Dyke Show, My Three Sons, The Andy Griffith Show, and Star Trek. From uncredited bit part to owner of the studio in 22 years — you gotta love Lucy.
But for the date not to miss, fashion-in-film fans should mark their calendars for Sunday, Aug. 18th, the day featuring 24 hours of Audrey Hepburn. All the great Hubert de Givenchy moments can be found within this tribute day, including Sabrina, Funny Face and Charade, as well as Paris When It Sizzles, Love in the Afternoon, and My Fair Lady.
I would have added How to Steal a Million — not only for the partnering of Audrey Hepburn with eternally charming Peter O’Toole, but also his great line, “Well, for one thing, it gives Givenchy a night off” — as well as, of course, Breakfast at Tiffany’s and Two for the Road, in which she not only stars with Albert Finney on a series of glamorous road trips throughout their characters’ relationship, but we also see her out of Givenchy and wearing pieces by Mary Quant and Paco Rabanne.
But that’s what DVRs, streaming and Blu rays are for these days, yes? Ultimately Audrey Hepburn’s film catalog is always going to be considered an embarrassment of riches, in both cinema and style. Enjoy!