Brand: Perry Ellis
Year: Spring/Summer 1999
Model: Eric Watson
Ph: Bruce Weber
The Perry Ellis ads, shot by Bruce Weber and art-directed by Sam Shahid, feature relative newcomer Eric Watson of the Notorious agency in Los Angeles.
Weber found the 23-year-old California native with a shaved head four days before the shoot. Susan Malinowski, senior vice- president of marketing at Perry Ellis International, says that Watson "has a stopping power and a memorability. He's unusual-looking in a great way. He's strong and masculine and he connects very well with the audience."
Malinowski adds that when Perry Ellis unveiled the campaign for its licensees, "it was a little bit of a shock to them." Now, though, "they think he's terrific." Shahid says that finding Watson was essential in "trying to break through the clutter" of images in the marketplace.