Fashion icons on film: the Louis Vuitton trunk

Bag watching in movies and television shows is a fun game for fashion fans, but luggage spotting is even better – especially when it comes to French luxury goods house Louis Vuitton.

Is there anything that symbolises the glamour of travel more than a Louis Vuitton steamer trunk?

On film, a quick glimpse of an LV monogram canvas Alzer lying on the bed, or a porter struggling to push a cumbersome pile of steamer trunks, or a single Keepall slung over a shoulder, all become part of a film’s narrative: to portray the glamour of a fashionable woman, to fulfil a Manhattan stereotype, to reveal royalty, to display a certain level of wealth… best of all is when a Vuitton piece of luggage becomes its own character in the story, so iconic are the pieces.

19 memorable Louis Vuitton luggage moments in movies

1. Nine (2009)

Penelope Cruz with Louis Vuitton luggage in Nine

In Nine, Penelope Cruz plays Carla, the fiery mistress of Italian filmmaker Guido (Daniel Day-Lewis).

 

2. Love In The Afternoon (1957)

Audrey Hepburn with monogram Louis Vuitton trunk in Love In The Afternoon 700

A Louis Vuitton trunk casually rests in the corridor outside Mr. Flannigan’s suite at the Ritz Hotel as Audrey Hepburn goes past.

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3. Sex and the City (2008)

Sex and the City Annie Liebovitz

Chris Noth and Sarah Jessica Parker as their Sex and the City alter egos Mr Big and Carrie Bradshaw in an Annie Leibovitz shoot for US Vogue magazine ahead of the SATC movie release.

 

4. Sex and the City (1998 to 2004)

Carrie Paris LV luggage

Six seasons of the popular SATC show provided Carrie and the gals with many, many opportunities to flaunt their LV items, but the best luggage moment was undoubtedly when Carrie goes to Paris in the series finale and takes her Vuitton and Vivienne Westwood cases with her.

 

5. The Talented Mr Ripley (1999)

Cate Blanchett Louis Vuitton luggage The Talented Mr Ripley

Heiress Cate Blanchett tries to play down her status while travelling to Italy, where she meets Matt Damon along the way.

 

6. Will and Grace (1998-2006)

Will and Grace Karen

Karen Walker was very well-travelled – and well-luggaged – thanks to her millionaire husband Stanley.

 

7. A View To A Kill (1985)

Bond Louis Vuitton Bond Louis Vuitton

When James Bond (Roger Moore) arrives to investigate a horse-racing scam, he brings a suite full of Vuitton with him, right down to the mini-accessory bags inside the suitcases that contain all his special gadgets.

 

8. Titanic (1997)

Molly Brown Titanic Louis Vuitton

The “unsinkable Molly Brown” (as played by Kathy Bates) is referred to as “new money” by Kate Winslet’s snobby mother in the film, evidenced by her arrival on the ship with piles of monogrammed cases.

 

9. Coming to America (1988)

Coming to America Louis Vuitton luggage

When Eddie Murphy arrives in America, he brings dozens of monogrammed LV trunks, as befitting his African royal status.

 

10. Charade (1963)

Audrey Hepburn Louis Vuitton luggage Charade

Wealthy socialite Audrey Hepburn returns home to Paris from a ski resort trip to find her apartment ransacked and learns her husband has been murdered.

 

11. Catch Me If You Can (2002)

Leonardo Dicaprio Catch Me If You Can

Con man Frank (Leonardo DiCaprio) must flee his own engagement party, but not before stuffing some cash into his Louis Vuitton Alzer cases.

 

12 & 13. New in Town (2009) and Sweet Home Alabama (2002)

 

New in Town Louis Vuitton trunk luggage

Sweet Home Alabama poster

A working girl stereotype? The poster for New In Town (2009) with Renee Zellweger seems to have directly borrowed this poster with Reese Witherspoon for Sweet Home Alabama (2002), where Witherspoon played a city slicker returning to her southern home town.

 

14. The Darjeeling Limited (2007)

The Darjeeling Limited Louis Vuitton suitcase, trunk and luggage

Darjeeling Limited suitcases

This leather Louis Vuitton set with custom safari print was made especially for Wes Anderson’s film. In the film, three brothers reunite to travel across the Indian subcontinent after the death of their father whose signature luggage they cart with them, signifying the emotional baggage they are struggling to shed.

 

15. Joe Versus the Volcano (1990)

Joe versus the Volcano steamer trunks

Joe Versus the Volcano Vuitton

When Joe (Tom Hanks) is told he must sacrifice his life to a volcano, at least the guy knows to travel in style. The steamer trunks he buys in New York later save his life when he is stranded at sea.

 

16. Leap Year (2010)

Leap Year Amy Adams Louis Vuitton suitcase luggage

Amy Adams refuses to part with her Louis Vuitton wheelie suitcase, a gift from her boyfriend in the film.

 

17. Three Kings (1999)

Three Kings Louis Vuitton bags

 

When George Clooney, Mark Wahlberg and Ice Cube steal the Kuwait gold bullion, they look to LV for some sturdy leather to carry it out of the country.

 

18. Hangover II (2011)

Louis Vuitton Hangover 2

This is a sticky one because Louis Vuitton actually sued Warner Bros for trademark dilution over the use of this counterfeit fake which Zach Galifianakis carries above during an airport scene. (Galifianakis’ character Alan admonishes Stew to be careful because “That is a Lewis Vuitton.” The name mispronunciation, and Alan’s ditzy nature, suggests to many fans that Alan is supposed to be carrying a fake anyway.) Regardless, the pile of LV trunks, suitcases and bags being pushed by a porter directly behind Alan appear to be authentic.

 

19. Blue Jasmine (2013)

Cate Blanchett Louis Vuitton trunks Blue Jasmine

Cate Blanchett Blue Jasmine Vuitton

Cate Blanchett Louis Vuitton trunks Blue Jasmine in apartment

Jasmine (Cate Blanchett) arrives in San Francisco desperate and in financial ruin, but refuses to give up the glamorous trappings of her former wealth: the Louis Vuitton luggage, her Chanel jacket and a Hermes birkin bag.

 

… and Film-Inspired Vuitton Ads (2006 & 2012)

Ok, these shots aren’t from any movies, but you’d be forgiven for thinking they were – the French house regularly references Hollywood in its advertising campaigns.

LV Hitchcock ad

A Louis Vuitton ad campaign in 2006 paid tribute to Alfred Hitchcock and his leading lady Tippi Hedren with a modern-day interpretation of the deserted railway station opening sequence of Marnie (1964).

Catherine Deneuve Louis Vuitton

For the Louis Vuitton “core values” ad campaigns, Annie Leibovitz focused her lens on iconic individuals, several of whom are screen greats; such as Catherine Deneuve, shot at the Paris train station above and looking as though she walked straight off a film set.

Louis Vuitton Michelle Williams

Michelle Williams models a recent campaign showing the wardrobe trunk today.

 

If you think of any other examples of real Louis Vuitton luggage used in movies that we can add to this resource, I would love to hear from you in the comments below.

* Special thanks to fashion sites Purse Blog and Bag Forum for their amazing forums and dedicated fans, some of whose suggestions made their way onto this list!

the author

Marie C

Feature writer by trade, movie maniac by night, Marie-Christine grew up watching films from the projection booth at the local drive-in and now she's lucky enough to write about them.

2 comments

  1. Well done, really love this seletion! I remember I’ve seen a Louis Vuitton trunk in Spike Lee’s ‘Oldboy too. For the Darjeeling Limited keepall, there’s a cool recreation at verytroubledchild.com.

    1. Thanks Olga! Great suggestion, I had forgotten about Oldboy. I only just found out about verytroubledchild.com too, and safe to say my mind was blown. Thank you!

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