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The following FAQ entries may contain spoilers. Only the biggest ones (if any) will be covered with spoiler tags. Spoiler tags have been used sparingly in order to make the page more readable.
Gabrielle 'Coco' Chanel [1883-1971] was a French fashion designer who rose from designing hats to running a successful fashion house in Paris to designing costumes for Hollywood movies. This movie is, essentially, a biopic of the early years of her life. Photos of Coco Chanel can be seen here (young) and here (old).
The story goes that, during her first years as a cabaret singer, she was named 'Coco' as a shortened form of 'coquette', the French word for a flirtatious woman.
The move presents the life of younger Chanel (Barbora Bobulova) as flashbacks framed by an elderly Chanel (Shirley MacLaine) attempting a comeback after a 17-year absence on the fashion design scene. The main details are accurate. For example, Chanel's mother died of tuberculosis and her father abandoned her to a Catholic orphanage. She was mistress to a rich French textile heir named Etienne Balsan and had an affair with English polo player 'Boy' Capel, who financed her first shop. Capel died in a car accident in December 1919, and Coco herself never married. However, the movie does not detail the years of her life when Coco was a Nazi intelligence operative during WWII and used her position to take control of the profitable 'Parfums Chanel', which was held by the Jewish Wertheimer brothers, Pierre and Paul, directors of the eminent perfume house Bourgeois. Nor does it mention her relationship with the Russian composer Igor Stravinsky.
No. Chanel lived her entire life in France and never lost her accent.
Yes. Prior to Coco Chanel, there was Chanel Solitaire (1981). In 2009, two movies about Coco Chanel were released: Coco avant Chanel (2009) and Coco Chanel & Igor Stravinsky (2009).
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