THE POPCORN REEL/EVENTS ONLINE
The "Atonement" Dress Online Auction: Green in Look,
with More of the Color to Come
Keira Knightley as Cecilia Tallis in "Atonement",
wearing the green dress that is being auctioned online today through March 1 by
the organization Clothes Off Our Back to raise money for Variety, the southern
California children's charity. "Atonement" has been nominated for seven
Academy Awards, including Jacqueline Durran's costume design, above right.
(Courtesy: Focus Features)
Omar P.L. Moore/The Popcorn Reel
February 1, 2008
One of the green dresses actually worn by Keira
Knightley during her role as Cecilia Tallis in the Oscar-nominated 2007 film
"Atonement" is being auctioned online beginning today through March 1, by the
organization Clothes Off Our Back, to benefit Variety, the Children's Charity.
Clothes Off Our Back was founded by Jane Kaczmarek and Bradley Whitford in 2002
"as a way for celebrities to give back in the easiest possible way," said the
organization's spokesperson Michel Schneider.
The organization generally holds auctions online and has reached millions in the
process. "In the media you see that there is a fascination with
celebrities and fashion. So [Kaczmarek and Whitford] wanted to take
advantage of that. And because none of these celebrities can wear an
outfit a second time, they decided to ask the actors to donate their red carpet
attire . . . give it to us and we would then auction it off and raise money for
various children's charities," Schneider said.
In the past six years since its inception
online auction with the Emmys in 2002, Clothes Off Our Back has raised more than
$2 million for various children's charities. Typically the auctions occur
monthly and get four million visitors per auction.
The auctioning of Ms. Knightley's "Atonement" costume marks the first time that
Clothes Off Our Back has auctioned Hollywood memorabilia, and the organization
plans to continue doing so.
Said Schneider: "It's very exciting.
Focus Features is a great studio. ("Atonement" is) also nominated for
costume and art direction, so to have such a beloved film, a popular film right
now, with such a popular actress -- to have someone be able to bid on this dress
-- is really a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Some of our gowns have sold
for tens of thousands of dollars, so we're hoping that this one reaches that, if
not becomes our highest-selling gown," Schneider added.
The green dress from "Atonement" was specially made for Miss Knightley and in
multiples because the dress was so fragile. Jacqueline Durran, who is
nominated for the film's costume design and authenticated the dress, said in a
statement released yesterday that the film's director Joe Wright, "wanted
something that would flow because Keira Knightley would have to move around in
it. We picked this specific shade of green for the backless dress, and
Keira was involved in the process, so it really was a collaboration."
The "Atonement" green dress auction is now online at
www.clothesoffourback.org, through March 1.
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