The legendary Gucci family, heirs to the Italian fashion house’s fortune, are outraged over their portrayals in the latest Ridley Scott film House of Gucci, including performances by Lady Gaga as Patrizia Reggiani and Adam Driver as Maurizio Gucci.
Releasing a statement about the film, the Gucci family revealed that they were not consulted in the making of the biopic and are deeply angry about how the film depicts Patrizia Reggiani’s character as a victim and not a convicted criminal.
Hiring the assassin who killed her husband, Maurizo Gucci–the former-head of the Gucci family and grandson of founder Guccio Gucci–Patrizia Reggiani was convicted in 1998. She served 18 years in prison before being released in 2016.
Ridley Scott’s film House of Gucci follows the events leading up to the assassination, but refuses to paint Reggiani’s motivation for the crime as what prosecutors described as a mixture of jealousy and control of the Gucci fortune.
Reggiani is “portrayed not just in the film, but also in statements from cast members, as a victim trying to survive in a male and male chauvinist corporate culture,” the statement from the Gucci family read.
“This couldn’t be further from the truth,” they said. “Gucci is a family that lives honoring the work of its ancestors, whose memory does not deserve to be disturbed to stage a spectacle that is untrue and which does not do justice to its protagonists… the members of the Gucci family reserve the right to take action to protect the name, image and dignity of themselves and their loved ones.”
According to previous reports about the film, Patrizia Reggiani was also upset about her portrayal, furious about how actress Lady Gaga never came to consult with her or even reach out to her by phone over the role.
“I am rather annoyed at the fact that Lady Gaga is playing me in the new Ridley Scott film without having had the consideration and sensibility to come and meet me,” Reggiani said back in March. “It is a question of good sense and respect.”
Lady Gaga responded months later in a winding statement that expressed how she “only felt that I could truly do this story justice if I approached it with the eye of a curious woman who was interested in possessing a journalistic spirit so that I could read between the lines of what was happening in the film’s scenes.”
“I didn’t want to meet her because I could tell very quickly that this woman wanted to be glorified for this murder, and she wanted to be remembered as this criminal,” Lady Gaga continued, which she and the film’s script decided would not be how Patrizia should be portrayed.
It wasn’t just Reggiani’s portrayal that angered the Gucci family however, but Al Pacino’s role as Aldo Gucci, the eldest son of Guccio Gucci, as well.
“The production of the film did not bother to consult the heirs before describing Aldo Gucci—president of the company for 30 years—and the members of the Gucci family as thugs, ignorant and insensitive to the world around them,” the statement continued.
House of Gucci depicts “a tone and an attitude to the protagonists of the well-known events that never belonged to them,” the Gucci family said. “This is extremely painful from a human point of view and an insult to the legacy on which the brand is built today.”
The Gucci family has yet to take any legal action against the film company, but stressed that their distaste for the film could lead to defamation charges.
“They are stealing the identity of a family to make a profit, to increase the income of the Hollywood system,” Aldo’s granddaughter Patrizia Gucci told Newsweek. “We are truly disappointed… Our family has an identity, privacy. We can talk about everything. But there is a borderline that cannot be crossed.”