Recall the last memorable performance you've seen. Say, Parasite, this year's highly acclaimed film at the Academy Awards. Was it attributed to the director's and producer's keen eye for details or did the cast's acting blow your socks off? Neither can be compromised as they are both important elements that contributed to the film's success.
Similarly, an unforgettable fragrance depends on its perfumer, chemistry among its ingredients, and the narrative it evokes upon contact. Dior upholds this by gathering the best talents and elements for its newest Dior Homme fragrance, Dior Homme Eau de Toilette.
Reinterpreted by Dior's Perfumer-Creator François Demachy, Dior Homme Eau de Toilette leaves a bold scent trail with a sensual imprint. But this is just one part of the Dior Homme Eau de Toilette experience. Because what is Dior Homme without Robert Pattinson, the face of the series since 2013?
Assuming the lead on Dior Homme Eau de Toilette's corresponding visual campaign, 'I'm Your Man', Pattison embodies the fragrance's masculine properties and interpreted them through film and a photoshoot.
In an exclusive interview below, Pattinson tells us what makes a Dior Homme man and his thoughts on the new Eau de Toilette scent.
On the new Dior Homme campaign: 'I’m Your Man'
What do you like most about this new Dior Homme campaign?
Robert Pattinson: It’s always a fantastic experience shooting these advertisements. I’d always loved the Blaze videos, and it was fascinating to see how they create such a vibrant and kinetic energy in their work.
To what extent does it differ from the previous Dior Homme communications?
Robert Pattinson: I think it may be a bit more emotional than the previous one. Still very cool but it feels slightly more mature.
The claim of the new campaign is “I’m your man”. What does it stand for? Does it mean anything personal/particular for you?
Robert Pattinson: I’ve always loved Leonard Cohen and the song is so beautiful, so I think that comes to mind first. Leonard Cohen is my man.
What image of masculinity would you like to put forward through this campaign?
Robert Pattinson: That you should be as free as you want to be.
How close do you feel to the man on camera?
Robert Pattinson: To some extent quite similar because I felt very comfortable with the people involved in making it. I always feel I have to leap a little way out of myself to do any kind of performance though.
How was it to shoot with Guillaume and Jonathan Alric, also known as The Blaze? Could you tell us more about the creative relationship that you shared?
Robert Pattinson: They’re awesome. I met them at Cannes in 2017. Always thought their videos showed exciting potential. I think they could make a great feature film one day. They’re incredibly fun to work with. Having them demonstrating dance moves in the club scene was one of the funniest things I’ve ever seen directors do. We talked about the concept a few times in London before we shot but really it was so organized by the time I arrived in New York I felt comfortable just jumping right in.
If you had to share one memorable moment/anecdote from the shoot, what would it be?
Robert Pattinson: Probably dancing on my own in front of 200 dancers. Definitely the first and probably last time that will ever happen. [laughs]
How did you prepare yourself physically and mentally before shooting the film? Any particular diet?
Robert Pattinson: Basically, having a couple of shots of tequila before the dancing!
Did you look at some movies to prepare (Scorsese, Ferrara, De Palma…), iconic masculinity figures such as Brando, or other cultural references for inspiration?
Robert Pattinson: The Fat Boy Slim video with Christopher Walken.
What about shooting with Mikael Jansson? Did you know him from a previous project or did you meet him on this occasion?
Robert Pattinson: I hadn’t shot with him before but always loved his work. He’s also incredibly easy to work with and an amazingly talented artist.
What do you think it means to be someone’s man today?
Robert Pattinson: I think that really depends on who’s the man you’re trying to be. You have to be flexible!
New York almost plays its own role in this film. What are your feelings towards this city, since you are an English man in New York? Does it inspire you?
Robert Pattinson: The energy of NYC is always inspiring to everybody, I think. I get very charged when I’m there. But I don’t think I can ever stay for that long. I think I move at a little slower pace than the city does.
On the relationship between Robert Pattinson and Dior + The Dior Homme franchise
Could you tell us more about how you relate to the Dior brand?
Robert Pattinson: Before I started working with Dior, the house always seemed like such an untouchable icon of style, but over the years of being involved with the company I’ve seen that the people who work there have such a warmth. Everyone has always been so approachable and friendly and leaves such a great impression when you visit. That’s probably why it has accrued such an illustrious history.
Do you remember the first time Dior approached you?
Robert Pattinson: Absolutely! In Los Angeles 7 years ago. And I still see the colleagues I met then all the time.
What do you enjoy most about working with Dior? What is the creative process like?
Robert Pattinson: It’s always such a pleasure. So relaxed. Beautiful clothes that no one is too fussy about. You can roll around in them and no one admonishes you. Everyone at the company is incredibly fun. The parties at the end of a shoot are always a highlight.
You have been the face of Dior Homme for quite a while now (since 2013). What does it mean to you? Do you enjoy this role?
Robert Pattinson: Absolutely. I was initially worried about working with a brand, but I don’t think Dior is a typical company in any way. I’ve been able to see such incredible craftsmanship first hand from expert couturiers to Francois Demachy, the genius “nose” behind all the Dior fragrances. I've always felt so at home whenever I’ve done any project with the company.
Do you feel like being the face of this fragrance has had an impact on your personal development?
Robert Pattinson: For sure. It's allowed me access to a world that very few people have seen. From having access to behind the scenes of fragrance creation with a renowned creator like François Demachy, to becoming friends with some of the top designers in the world like Kris Van Ache, Kim Jones and of course Karl Lagerfeld. It also allowed me to see that behind such an iconic brand there is actually a very tight-knit family of great people working to make it work. It’s really nice to see that a large company can still be run on the basis of creating absolute quality first and not compromising for corporate interests.
Has working with Dior influenced your style? And the way you use fragrance?
Robert Pattinson: I definitely look sharper when I’m doing premieres than I used to. With fragrance, I think working with Dior made me realize that fragrance can be used in a more casual context. Subtly. It doesn’t have to be a huge deal. And when you use it, people really notice and love it.
Why are you the perfect fit for Dior Homme?
Robert Pattinson: I know working with [the Dior Homme team] has always felt very natural and been such a pleasure.
To you, who is the 'Dior' man?
Robert Pattinson: Being a Dior man, is conveying several things at once. It is true luxury and modernity; it is an elegance that is both in the details and very simple, very obvious. It is a look, a way of being timeless and avant-garde at the same time. A Dior silhouette, and a perfume to go with it. A scent which allows you to reveal your personality without being too much. It is a statement of masculinity and what it means today, with all its nuances.
What do you think of the evolution of Dior Homme? Has the male character changed over the years in your mind?
Robert Pattinson: I feel lucky to embody a fragrance like Dior Homme, to me, it is a long term and meaningful story. My relationship with Dior is not a shallow one; with each film, they capture something of me, like a reflection that mirrors my evolution as a man, even if it’s sometimes in the smallest details. Dior Homme is a fragrance that has evolved, matured with time, just like I have. This parallel is a key element.
Is the fragrance Dior Homme made for every man?
Robert Pattinson: The new Dior Homme is a statement of masculinity, it is straightforward and intensely woody. These woody accords speak out loud, they address men from the very start. They bring forward virility, but also tenderness and sensuality. There is something that feels very “clean” about this creation, which makes it universal and easy to love. This subtle freshness makes it a scent that stays on and envelops you, but that is not heavy. It’s like clothes that you wear, but that make you feel weightless.
Do you have a favourite Dior Homme scent?
Robert Pattinson: I must say I really like this new version of Dior Homme. It’s all about sensuality, but a masculine one. This perfume gives itself to you immediately, but keeps something mysterious, as though all the woods were talking to one another.
3 words to describe the new Dior Homme Eau de Toilette?
Robert Pattinson: Virility, sensuality, and tenderness.
How does this new fragrance make you feel?
Robert Pattinson: It gives you confidence. This new Dior Homme conveys masculinity that is both obvious and seductive. It is a luminous sensuality, which makes it very modern.
Would you say that it is an everyday scent? Why?
Robert Pattinson: It’s easy to wear because it’s not about over sophistication for an elite. It is neither powdery nor sweet. It avoids all the clichés that come to mind when you think about sensuality. It is charming without trying too hard, and it keeps a woody fresh feeling that you crave at any time of day.
Robert Pattinson on fragrance
At what time of the day do you apply your fragrance? And where?
Robert Pattinson: I’m more used to wearing perfume at night when I have plans to go out. I usually apply it on the neck and wrists.
What do you love in a scent?
Robert Pattinson: I want a perfume to be there, like a signature, but never shouting. I like that it leaves a trail behind, but a subtle one.
Some say that a smell can take you places. Where does Dior Homme take you?
Robert Pattinson: Definitely New York. Whether it takes me back to running on a roof in Rockaway Beach, or in a beautiful penthouse looking over Manhattan… It’s been an adventure when you think about it! To me, New York is a character of the story almost as much as the man I embody.
If you were asked to say the first thing that comes to mind, what should a man smell like?
Robert Pattinson: I feel like a man’s taste in perfume is a tricky thing. It needs to be comforting, enveloping and not threatening. But at the same time, you wear perfume to claim your difference, you want that little surprising thing that’s going to make you stand out.
What role does perfume play in seduction?
Robert Pattinson: Perfume plays a key role in seduction. It’s the intimacy of the moment that you share, it’s the scent that you leave behind like a trail to follow once you’re gone…it’s very sensual.
Catching up with Robert Pattinson
What was the most challenging project you have ever done?
Robert Pattinson: Probably a movie I worked on called The Lighthouse. A very creatively satisfying project but the conditions made it pretty tough. Extreme weather almost every day…
What are your plans in the near future? Will you be taking on any new acting roles?
Robert Pattinson: I’m working on Christopher Nolan’s new movie Tenet right now, and I will start The Batman this year.
What have you learnt from the characters you have played? Is there anything you took on?
Robert Pattinson: I think you take on little parts of every character you play. Sometimes in your everyday life and sometimes just in technical terms for the next movie you do. I think I try and choose parts that will force me to explore an area that I’m interested in anyway and so doing the job expands your understanding of yourself.
In what ways did your life change in the last 5 years and what are you expecting for the following years?
Robert Pattinson: Over the last five years, working with incredible directors has really broadened my expectations of where I would want to go professionally. I think every time you work with someone special, like Claire Denis, for instance, you just want to keep having experiences like that.
You seem to be effortlessly camera-ready. Do people often tell you how photogenic you are?
Robert Pattinson: That’s working with really great photographers!
What is a normal day in Robert Pattinson’s life?
Robert Pattinson: There’s never a normal day! [laughs]
What is your morning routine?
Robert Pattinson: Don’t really have a morning routine but I’m not functioning before I have breakfast and a shower.
Do you practice any sport or go to the gym?
Robert Pattinson: I run and do jiu-jitsu.
Who are your music icons?
Robert Pattinson: D’Angelo and Ohio Players.
What is your vision of the film industry nowadays?
Robert Pattinson: There are always amazing movies at festivals throughout the world. I just wish there was a way to get larger audiences to see these smaller movies. But seeing more and more festivals popping up internationally with increasingly large audiences always makes me happy.
Could you tell us more about your passions? What do you fight for in life?
Robert Pattinson: To not be forced into thinking in a prescribed way in the confusing world we live in.
What drives you to wake up every morning?
Robert Pattinson: Not having enough time to do what I want to do.
Dior Homme Eau de Toilette is now available at all Dior Beauty Boutiques and Dior counters islandwide in Singapore.