Maximilian Davis Brings Ferragamo Back to Hollywood

When Maximilian Davis was first announced as the new creative head of the storied Italian fashion house Salvatore Ferragamo, excitement built among forward-thinking industry players while members of the establishment raised their eyebrows in suspicion. Davis, a 27-year-old black British designer with Caribbean heritage, cut his teeth under the tutelage of Wales Bonner and counts Rihanna as one of his many fans and supporters. His vision, rooted in underground culture (Davis counts the designer Mowalola as one of his close friends), positioned him as the man to “sex up” the otherwise traditional brand, as the New York Times put it.

And sex it up he did. At the Spring-Summer 2023 runway show, his inaugural collection for the 95-year-old Florentine house, the designer packed his front row with edgy, rebellious creatives like Skepta, Jordan Barett, Naomi Campbell, and Kelela. Each, in their own way, embodies the aesthetic Davis has brought to Ferragamo. In the 1920s and 1930s, Ferragamo famously designed made-to-measure shoes for silver screen sirens and powerful women like Judy Garland, Marilyn Monroe, and Eva Peron. Now, with his debut collection, Davis has put a contemporary spin on Ferragamo’s original muses, hearkening back to what he calls “new Hollywood,” with its “ease and sensuality, its sunset and sunrise,” as he mentioned in the show notes. In that same spirit, Davis has released a preview of the SS23 collection, “A New Dawn,” making a selection of pieces from his first Milan runway show available to purchase across select stores worldwide and online for one month only. The preview captures what we’ve come to expect from Davis: sparkle, edge, a sensual-yet-muted color palette, and fetish-y accents like harnesses and the bondage motifs found in the line’s shoes and accessories. In honor of Ferragamo’s Tinseltown-inspired collection, we compiled a few of our favorite films inspired by the Hollywood old and new: fame, excess, nihilism, and, of course fashion. As Madonna once said, “Everybody comes to Hollywood, they want to make it in the neighborhood.”


The Canyons, 2013



An erotic thriller set in L.A. directed by Paul Schrader and written by Bret Easton Ellis featuring Lindsay Lohan, James Deen, Nolan Funk, Amanda Brooks, and Gus Van Sant.


Chinatown, 1974


Roman Polanski’s outstanding film noir picture is a true cinema must-watch. Starring Jack Nicholson as an investigator and Faye Dunaway as a socialite trailing her husband’s affair, the movie stands the test of time as a Hollywood classic.


The Bling Ring, 2013


Inspired by Nancy Jo Sales’ Vanity Fair article “The Suspects Wore Louboutins,” Sofia Coppola brought to life the story of a few Beverly Hills teenagers who were so desperate to be part of the glitz and glamor circles,  that they planned robberies of celebrities’ homes atop the Hollywood hills. The film stars Emma Watson, Israel Broussard, Katie Chang, Claire Julien, Taissa Farmiga, and Paris Hilton.


Babylon, 2022


The obsession with Hollywood continues to fascinate film directors even today. Damien Chazelle’s upcoming film is set in 1920s Hollywood starring  Brad Pitt, Margot Robbie, and Mexican newcomer Diego Calva, following the era of decadence and depravity of Hollywood’s Golden Age.


Myra Breckinridge, 1970