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 The London-born hairdresser

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Join date : 2011-02-12

PostSubject: The London-born hairdresser    Mon Feb 14, 2011 9:53 am

Before Vidal Sassoon came along during the swinging '60s, women's hair was caught in a "Mad Men" world.

"Women were going to the salon three or four times a week. They had big hair. They were sleeping in rollers," says Craig Teper, director of the new biodoc "Vidal Sassoon: The Movie," which opens February 11 in New York and February 18 in Los Angeles.

The London-born hairdresser upended all of that. As the movie stylishly demonstrates, Sassoon can rightly be called a design revolutionary. The short, geometric hairstyles he invented were so low-maintenance as to be genuinely liberating.

"He actually helped create the social revolution of the '60s," Teper says. "Women no longer had to spend hours and hours a week on their hair, which allowed them to be more competitive with men."

Inspired by the clean lines of midcentury architecture, Sassoon took hair into the modern era. In 1967, he made headlines when he chopped off Mia Farrow's flowing "Peyton Place" locks to create the iconic, astoundingly cropped pixie cut she wore in "Rosemary's Baby."

His most famous design was the five-point cut, which was first modeled by Vogue fashion editor Grace Coddington, the scene-stealer of another recent fashion-world documentary, "The September Issue."

Today, the charming, spry Sassoon -- who also has a book, "Vidal: The Autobiography," coming out in April -- lives in a glass-box Neutra house in Bel-Air with his wife of 19 years, Ronnie.

THR spoke with him about the Hollywood highlights of a career that took him from a tiny third-floor London salon to an empire (since sold) of salons, haircutting schools and products -- marketed, of course, under the slogan, "If you don't look good, we don't look good."


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