Toronto based filmmaker Claire Edmondson put together a special video birthday card for Marc Jacobs and Hugh Hefner, two pretty important guys who happen to be born on the same day that she was. That day is today! Claire filmed some sexy ladies rolling around in bunny outfits and Louis Vuitton for this video homage to Jacobs and Hefner and their shared undying appreciation for the female form. I contacted Claire to talk birthdays, Me, Marc, and Hugh and her feelings on pornography.
What's your worst birthday memory of all-time?
I remember waking up on my seventh birthday, I had hay fever so bad while I was sleeping that enough snot-like sleep had accumulated in my eyes to basically glue all my eyelashes together. I couldn't open my eyes. This had never happened before. So, when I woke up I didn't know what was going on. I thought I had gone blind. It was terrifying.
If you believe in that astrology crap, Aries is a sign known for being competitive, aggressive, impulsive, spontaneous, and self-reliant. Do you think that's true of you, Hugh, and Marc?
I am very spontaneous and self-reliant. I'm not really competitive with other people, but I do push myself, too hard at times. Aries is a very ambitious sign so I'd say these qualities must be true of Marc and Hugh, given what they have accomplished in their lifetimes.
Hugh Hefner is 86 today! Do you think he's still having sex?
Well, my guess is as good as yours. Since Viagra exists, maybe one can assume so.
What do you admire about Hugh?
I admire that Hugh had a vision, stayed trued to that vision, and in the process created his dream life.
Why did you want to make this video?
"Me, Marc, and Hugh" is an art project that just sort of came to me a few years ago, when I was looking at a “famous people who share your birthday” list. Marc Jacobs and Hugh Hefner were the two I identified with on that list and thought it would be fun to turn it into a humorous art project of sorts; a merging of worlds and aesthetics brought together because we we share the same birth date. But besides the April 9th birth date, I see a common thread in our interests, work ethics, and ambitions. I forgot about the idea for a while and then remembered about a month ago and thought it would be a fun project to release as a "birthday card" for the three of us.
Are you artistically inspired by Playboy?
Vintage Playboy and modern-day French Playboy are beautiful. I really like that French Playboy gets Ellen Von Unwerth to shoot a lot of their editorials. It's shot by a woman and you get a real sense of that when you look at the images. It's more about having fun with femininity than "hot shots" for men to get off on. It's something for everyone. I had an all-female crew when shooting this project—for the majority of my projects, my crew is all female.
What message are you trying to send about womanhood with your work?
It's not about taking some weird, "women in film" stance, it's about creating a comfortable environment where we can express ourselves freely. There are many misconceptions about women in pornography or erotica. Of course there is a dark side to it and of course some girls fall into it for the wrong reasons or they feel like they have no other choice. But you can find the dark side to almost anything. All the girls in this film were very excited to be there and were all interested in exploring that side of their femininity. For me, true feminism is about equality. This is a women's take on something a man started.
Do you watch a lot of porn?
Do I watch a lot of porn? It depends on what you consider porn. Generally speaking, no. But I do appreciate the nude human body when presented in an artful manner.
How do you feel about porn as industry?
I think more women should be making porn or erotica for women. The porn industry isn't going to go away, so I think the next logical step is to have more women making porn from a female perspective. There is a gross inequality within the porn industry and because of that inequality, it is understandably seen as degrading to women. Sometimes that is a misconception, but a lot of the time it is just straight up degrading. Maybe if more women were producing it, it would create a creative equality. That's clearly not going to solve all of the problems within pornography, but it feels like a positive step.
Would you call this video fashion porn?
No, I'd categorize this under "dream humor."
Photos by Maya Fuhr