Halston (2021) s01e01 Episode Script

Episode 1

WOMAN: I just want to--
MAN: Just all day and all night,
you've been riding me.
- WOMAN: Don't get upset I--
- MAN: Don't get upset when you wake me--
- WOMAN: I don't like when you--
- MAN: I don't care who hears anything.
- MAN: Come here!
I made something for you.
REPORTER: People gather by the thousands
to witness the inauguration
of John Fitzgerald Kennedy.
As the motorcade makes its way
down Pennsylvania Avenue,
they hope to catch a glimpse
of First Lady Jackie Kennedy
in a dress by designer Oleg Cassini
and a simple yet elegant pillbox
by hatmaker Mr. Halston.
Did they just say your name?
Excuse me. Morning. Good morning.
SALESMAN: Elegance, if you will.
I think madam will be really pleased.
What the hell is going on?
What's going on?
Ah, so Jacqueline Kennedy
dropped your name for one.
We've sold 50 already,
and it's not even 10:00 a.m.
You're him, aren't you?
You're Mr. Halston.
God bless Jackie Kennedy.
HALSTON: Fuck Jackie Kennedy.
Halston! Why would you say that
after all she's been through?
She made you, Halston.
And then she killed me.
Stopped wearing hats so she wouldn't ruin
that awful gigantic hairdo of hers.
Do you have a moment?
I'm sorry.
As you can see, we're terribly busy.
MAN: Halston, the second-quarter report came in.
- It's not good.
- Mm-hmm.
Hat sales are down 30% from last quarter,
and the previous quarter down 40%.
- We're trending up, is what you're saying.
- No, that is not what I'm saying.
You know what they say. Numbers.
Who says that?
Oh, everybody. All the time.
People just don't wear hats anymore
is the problem.
Yes. As a milliner, Henry,
I'm well aware of that fact.
Well, what I mean is,
what are you going to do about it?
Well, I'm hard at work
making the sun brighter,
but until I get
my rainmaking machine working,
I don't know what I'll do, Henry.
Except maybe drink after this meeting.
From the gentleman at the end.
What would I give ♪
For just a few moments ♪
What would I give ♪
He sent it back.
Just to have you near ♪
Tell me you will try ♪
To slip away somehow ♪
What is it about an amaretto stone sour
that you don't like?
It's the stone, isn't it? Choking hazard.
I'll have the barman remove it.
No, thank you.
- Then let me buy you something else.
- No, thanks.
I don't accept drinks from strangers.
Then tell me your name.
We won't be strangers.
You go first.
- Eric.
- And what do you do, Eric?
I'm a falconer.
We're heroes, really, my falcon and I.
Keeping the rat population under control.
It's very fashionable, what we do.
That long leather glove,
that little cap I put over his head.
It's kinky.
Let me buy you a drink.
Can I ask what is it about me
that caught your eye?
How do you mean?
I mean, why are you trying to pick me up
and not anybody else?
I'm not like anybody else.
Just wouldn't have thought
I was your type.
And what's my type?
A white guy in a Brooks Brothers suit.
MAN: Mmm.
Or maybe you're just a size queen.
maybe I've been an outsider, too,
my whole life.
Getting sideways glances
from white guys in Brooks Brothers suits
for what I was and who I liked
or who I was and what I liked.
Till one day,
I just stopped giving a flying fuck.
Ed is my name.
Can you slip away? ♪
Slip away ♪
Slip away ♪
I need you so ♪
Hoping you'll slip away, baby ♪
I'd like to see you right now, darling ♪
Can you slip away now, baby ♪
'Cause I got to, I got to see ya ♪
I feel a big burning inside ♪
Nice meeting you, Eric.
Though Eric's not your real name, is it?
Though that's not my real name either.
I like people to call me Halston.
Get the fuck out.
The hat designer?
I've always wondered this.
How does somebody end up designing hats?
It's sculpture, really.
I've always done it.
I made hats to lift my mother's spirits.
Oh, honey.
You are far too special for this place.
HALSTON: I had a magical childhood.
But I left Indiana as soon as I could.
First to Chicago and then here.
Made myself out of nothing.
Whole cloth, as it were.
Men like us
come here from some faraway place
to invent ourselves.
Make something out of nothing.
I didn't come from as far.
Just crossed the river
from New Jersey, but
That version of me seems very far away.
So, what are you going to do now?
Women don't wear hats anymore.
Well, Ed, I have a plan.
Have you ever heard of Ralph Lifshitz?
ED: Who?
HALSTON: Recently, Ralph Lifshitz
walks into Bloomingdale's
with a line of ties one inch wider
than any other tie being sold
and a label that says "Polo."
They said,
"If you make them one inch narrower
and you swap your label for ours,
we'll sell them."
HALSTON: He said no.
And he walked out of there.
And then two weeks later,
Bloomingdale's, they come back to the table.
They say, "We made a mistake."
HALSTON: "We love your ties.
We're haunted by them."
"You can keep your label.
You can keep them one inch wider."
"And we want you to make shirts
to go with them."
I've been designing hats for Bergdorf's
since 1961.
I put that fucking place on the map.
I'm gonna do what Ralph Lifshitz did,
only bigger.
Why don't I know this name?
Because he changed his last name
to fucking Lauren.
I have a vision, Ed.
MAN: So, a store within a store?
HALSTON: See? Simple.
But to sell what?
I wanna be the first person
who's also a complete line.
Women will come to me,
and I will provide them a complete,
custom couture experience.
I'll put her in Halston, head to toe.
Dress, bra, panties, hose, shoes--
I don't know, Halston.
No one wants European knockoffs anymore.
What if Bergdorf Goodman
could house the first American couturier?
- You?
- No.
Which is me.
It's interesting.
Why don't you start
by making us some dresses?
Mm-hmm, yeah.
ED: Okay, so then what happened?
How many did you sell?
Well, you won't believe it.
It was an unmitigated disaster.
No sales. Total flop.
Oh my God. I'm so sorry. Are you okay?
I'm fine. What do you mean?
I was brilliant. They're the dummies.
Let me freshen you up.
- But what are you gonna do?
- Keep going.
The show didn't work. That's fine.
I know what I have to do.
And what is that?
I'm too big for that room.
I need to get out on my own.
You are fucking impressive, man.
ED: Mmm.
I mean, here's the thing though.
I know you love "yes" people.
And I got a lot more syllables
up my sleeve than just yes.
Try me.
Tell me something you think I won't like.
Okay, fine.
That collection you did for Bergdorf's?
Looked like cement.
That's why they didn't sell.
Nobody wanted 'em.
Nobody understood them.
You don't want to understand a dress.
You want to love it.
You want to be Balenciaga.
There's already a Balenciaga.
What we need is
to figure out your signature.
What's gonna make me
see some gorgeous woman
out in a supper club
wearing a fabulous ensemble
and say, "That's a Halston."
So, does that mean you're in?
Good evening.
I have to tell you
I have a problem sometimes.
And that's my name.
For instance, someone might come up to me
and say, "Hello, Lisa. How are you?"
And I'll say, "I'm fine, thank you,
but it's Liza. It has a 'Z' in it."
Or someone might say,
"Lisa, what a nice hat you have on."
And I'll say, "Thank you very much,
but my name is Liza."
- MAN: Liza!
- "And that's my hair."
It's Liza with a "Z"
Not Lisa with an "S" ♪
'Cause Lisa with an "S" goes "ssnozz" ♪
It's "Z" instead of "S"
"Lie" instead of "Lee" ♪
It's simple as can be, see, Liza ♪
I'll do it again.
It's Liza with a "Z"
Not Lisa with an "S" ♪
'Cause Lisa with an "S" goes "ssnozz" ♪
It's "Z" instead of "S"
"Lie" instead of "Lee" ♪
It's simple as can be, see, Liza ♪
Now, if my name were Ada ♪
I'd be Ada
Even backwards I'd be Ada ♪
Or if my name were Ruth ♪
Then I'd be Ruth
Because with Ruth what can you do? ♪
Or Sally, or Margaret
Or Ginger or Faye ♪
But when you're a Liza
You always have to say ♪
It's Liza with a "Z"
Not Lisa with an "S" ♪
'Cause Lisa with an "S" goes "ssnozz" ♪
It's "Z" instead of "S"
"Lie" instead of "Lee" ♪
It's simple as can be, see, Liza ♪
Ah, and that is only half of it ♪
There's another way
They treat me cruelly ♪
How often I remember someone saying ♪
"There she goes, Lisa Minooli" ♪
Or Minolli or Miniola
Or Minili Minnilii ♪
So is it a wonder? I very often cry ♪
It's M-I double N, then E double L-I ♪
You double up the N, that's not new ♪
Then E double up the L
End it with an I ♪
That's the way you say Minnelli ♪
Liza Minnelli, it's Italian ♪
Blame it on papa, what can I do? ♪
Every Sandra who's a Sa-andra ♪
Every Mary who's really Marie ♪
Every Joan who is a Joanne ♪
Has got to agree with me
When I've announced ♪
I don't mind being pummeled
Or trampled or trounced ♪
But it does drive you bats ♪
To be mis-mispronounced ♪
It's Liza with a "Z"
Not Lisa with an "S" ♪
'Cause Lisa with an "S" goes "ssnozz" ♪
It's "Z" instead of "S"
"Lie" instead of "Lee" ♪
It's simple as can be, see, Liza ♪
Then M-I double N, then E double L-I ♪
You double up the N, that's not new ♪
Then E double L, end it with an I ♪
That's the way you say Minnelli ♪
Liza Minnelli ♪
It's easy. It's easy ♪
It's lazy, no! ♪
Liza ♪
- Brava!
- WOMAN: Wonderful!
- Liza!
- LIZA: Hm?
Meet Halston.
Yeah, I saw you out there.
Everyone else is going berserk,
and you are sitting there
like you're in a Dutch Masters painting.
If I'm honest, I was a little distracted
by the Buster Brown getup.
I think you need a new look.
- I love him already. [CHUCKLES]
- I knew you would.
HALSTON: Exactly. The collection was a disaster,
and I knew it.
So I decided to throw it all away.
I left Bergdorf's
and destroyed my life, basically.
No. No, you can't think of it like that.
You didn't throw anything away.
You just gave yourself an enormous gift.
You left everything you knew behind,
which means
you are open to inspiration.
And inspiration is going to find you.
LIZA: Mmm.
You know what?
That pillbox hat that Jackie wore?
That is your Judy Garland.
You and me are living
under the shadow of something,
and we're both trying
to do the same thing.
We're walking away. Saying, "No.
I wanna be taken seriously on my own."
I don't wanna be just
Judy Garland's daughter.
Like you don't wanna just be
Jackie O's hatmaker.
Why are you dressing like a little girl?
Okay, see? Exactly. Why do I do that?
I mean, it's cute, sure,
but it's not you. I don't think.
You're a woman.
You should be dressed like one.
LIZA: Mmm.
And I suppose
you're just the fella to help.
Yes, I think I am.
Sunday morning ♪
Brings the dawning ♪
It's just a restless feeling ♪
By my side ♪
Early dawning ♪
Sunday morning ♪
It's just the wasted years ♪
So close behind ♪
Watch out, the world's behind you ♪
There's always someone around you
Who will call ♪
It's nothing at all ♪
Sunday morning ♪
And I'm falling ♪
I've got a feeling ♪
I don't want to know ♪
Early dawning ♪
Sunday morning ♪
It's all the streets you crossed ♪
Not so long ago ♪
Watch out, the world's behind you ♪
There's always someone around you ♪
Let's lose the bra and panties.
Halston, are you getting fresh with me?
- Hardly.
LIZA: Ooh!
Now, hold this. That's your neck there.
Watch out, the world's behind you ♪
There's always someone around you
Who will call ♪
- HALSTON: Ready?
- Mm-hmm.
It's nothing at all ♪
There, now.
That's a Halston.
Oh my God!
Oh! Halston, you're a genius.
Sunday morning ♪
Oh my.
HALSTON: This place will be your blank canvas.
Third floor is the sewing room.
All state of the art
like Balenciaga in Paris.
And this will be the lounge.
And in here will be the salon
where it's all really gonna happen.
I wanna create a new kind of experience.
I want women to come here
and feel like they've been transported
to a different world.
What sort of design are you picturing?
Well, you know, Halston,
rich, textural, cool.
Like Shangri-La on the Upper East Side.
Okay. Halston,
how long have we known one another?
I love you like family.
But what you're describing costs money,
and I happen to know you don't got any.
- Not true! Not true.
- Mmm.
In all of humanity,
you're the only one who can do this.
What you did with the Opera Club
at the Met
That cost a zillion dollars.
You're the only one who can do it.
You made fucking Key West fashionable,
Halston, you can't afford me.
Well, can't you do it at cost?
It's like your ears don't work.
Look, I'm giving you the opportunity
to have the cream of New York society
coming through these doors
and looking at this place going,
"Oh, it's spectacular. Who designed it?"
God as my witness, that's worth more
than whatever the Opera Club paid you.
- Do you mean that?
- Have I ever lied to you?
- Okay.
- Oh, my hero. My hero!
- Knock it off.
- So, what do you think?
Someone's in a good mood.
It's always been my dream
to have a showroom
with a workshop on another floor.
And I found it, and I rented it.
- Where?
- 68th and Madison.
Wait till you see it.
Literally wait to see it. It's a mess.
And I found my team.
Merry misfits, each and every one of them.
HALSTON: Joe Eula's gonna be my illustrator.
He's fantastic.
He drew collections for Vogue,
for Givenchy, for Coco Chanel.
Chic is hard to capture.
It's elusive, but he can do it.
Why do you need an illustrator?
I want to see a whole collection
laid out in front of me.
"Get rid of that. Lower that neckline."
It's a very intimate relationship
between a designer and his illustrator.
Joe's more of like a second brain,
but stop breaking my train of thought.
- Sorry.
- Elsa Peretti.
She's gonna be my fit model.
She's Italian.
Comes from money,
but she's left all that behind.
She's stunning.
You can't take your eyes off her.
Some models just wear clothes.
Elsa, she makes them her own.
- I thought Liza was your muse?
- Well, you can't have too many muses.
Don't be jealous, Ed.
Then there's this kid, Schumacher.
He does the windows at Paraphernalia.
He'll bring me that young attitude.
- Excuse me. Did you do this?
- Yes.
- Did you do this?
- Yes. I
HALSTON: The team's all in place.
Last thing I need to do is find the money.
Last? I'd have thought
that's the first thing you had to do.
I just need
a teensy-weensy million dollars.
A million dollars?
The idea was to go to the rich husbands
of my old clients at Bergdorf's
and ask them.
Arthur Vanderbilt, Charles Engelhard,
Baron de Rothschild.
And how did that work out?
Well, they didn't say no.
Anyway, I'm not worried.
Tomorrow I have a meeting
with Estelle Marsh.
She's the wife of a Texas oil baron.
Don't look at me like that.
I've got this sewn up.
HALSTON: Mrs. Marsh, when was the last time
anyone asked you,
really asked you
what you need?
When I was at Bergdorf's,
I'd have my ladies sit in my chair,
and I'd say, "Tell me your troubles.
What's bothering you? What do you need?"
Such a small question which would almost
without fail be met with, well,
at first, a little sorrow.
Because so few people in their lives,
especially the men,
ever thought to ask them that.
The way my ex-husband used to put it was,
"What the fuck do you want?"
Mrs. Marsh.
Did you ever visit Balenciaga in Paris
for Made to Order?
Balenciaga loves making women feel afraid.
When you climb the stairs to his atelier,
you're met by a very stern secretary
who makes you feel unimportant, even ugly.
That won't happen here.
This will be the lounge,
where you'll take a breath,
let go, tell us what you need,
be reminded of what you're capable of.
There'll be tea, champagne
Some of our younger staff
may even be able to get you marijuana.
This will be the salon.
I'll have my girls
model the latest collection.
Then you'll choose from those designs,
and then I'll build your choices
to your measurements.
Mrs. Marsh,
because women like Catherine Deneuve,
Jackie Kennedy,
you custom order your clothing here,
within five years,
Halston Limited will be picked up
by every reputable department store
in the United States.
I'm gonna change the face
of American fashion.
And it will all be because of you.
You could talk a leopard out of its spots.
How much, exactly, are you looking for?
A million dollars.
I'll give you 100,000.
Oh, and you're gonna hire my son, Michael.
He's handy.
He can do all sorts of work.
He could even model.
Thank you, Mrs. Marsh.
Thank you. Come. Let's have tea.
This is fucking terrible.
Who made this one?
I did.
Don't take this the wrong way,
but that's the worst fucking dress
I've ever seen.
Looks like a prom dress,
but for a Martian.
- WOMAN: Dai, Halston.
- Okay, Halston, easy.
Don't "easy" me, Joe.
We have a fucking show in two weeks.
These designs are shit.
I think if she had
a nice, big piece of chunky jewelry--
We're not selling jewelry, Elsa!
We're selling dresses to human women.
- Take it off.
- Maybe in the right color?
You do not get to talk.
Joel, these designs are not working.
You must be able to see that.
- Sorry.
- No, don't say sorry. Do better.
Halston, please! You're mad at yourself
and taking it out on the kid.
I cannot do this all on my own, everybody!
I didn't hire you
so that I could do all the work myself.
- That's what's happening!
- Why don't we take a break?
Because we haven't got time.
There's not one of these designs
I would put my name to. Not one.
The fucking embarrassment.
Where's the suede trench coat?
Uh Yeah, just one second.
What happened?
Um Well, this is stupid.
It was raining today.
Who wore it out in the rain?
It's a trench coat, Halston.
I I did.
Suede is not waterproof,
as it turns out, and it just
As you can see,
it's just not going to work.
Well, the cut's fantastic. Look at it.
It's just the wrong material,
but it's the right idea.
No, suede is not waterproof.
But it is the right idea.
No one else is doing that.
I wanted that. I wanted that
that sensation.
Everyone knows suede is not waterproof.
I know, Halston. I'm sorry.
you're a junior partner, right?
- That's your title.
- Yeah.
Do you think you're earning that title
as of now?
It's a simple yes or no question.
Are you earning the title
of junior partner
right now?
Oh fuck.
JOE: Halston.
JOEL: Jesus!
Sorry, thought I locked it. Sorry.
What are you doing?
I was just taking a second
to collect my thoughts.
HALSTON: No. What are you doing?
Is it heroin?
No. No, it's it's just speed.
How often do you do that?
Not-- I'm-- I don't know, every
Every day?
No, not always.
You shoot speed every day?
Yes, I do.
With all the work we're doing, it's
So, you started doing this
when you came to work for me?
No. No.
It's just a thing I do.
You know, it keeps me focused.
It's It's how I get into the groove.
Do I need to do something here?
Take you somewhere?
Do I need to be worried?
I I don't know.
I I don't belong here, do I?
I think we're
we're all a bit like
little ships lost at sea.
We've all been through a lot.
Left our families,
been rejected one way or another.
Bunch of queers and freaks
and girls who haven't grown up yet.
I think you belong here.
You're very talented, Joel,
but there's too much at stake here.
I think you can see that.
If you wanna keep working for me,
you gotta get clean.
I do. I mean, I will.
It's just--
When you bite my head off
about the designs--
If you stop shooting speed,
I'll stop biting your head off.
- Okay?
- Okay.
There's something I wanna show you.
I didn't show you
because I thought you'd get mad, but
it might be good.
How did you make it?
Uh, just in my kitchen.
- Boiling dyes on the stove.
- Oh, I love it.
No one's doing this.
So modern, sensual.
Here, help me find
the middle of the length.
Okay. Lay it down.
Scissors, someone.
Thank you, Joe.
Elsa, come.
Lose that.
There's something there.
Joel, just pin down this edge
and bring these two edges together
in a diagonal going right down.
Now, what about the lengths, Joe?
I'm thinking lower.
Maybe bring up the hem.
HALSTON: Yeah, let me see.
Che bello.
Something's not right.
It's the hair.
Et voilà.
Now. Walk.
HALSTON: Thank you.
Oh, they loved it! I think they loved it.
- Well, Halston, these are not bad.
- They're not good.
Yes, this one is.
Senti. "Effortless and elegant,
Halston is an exciting new voice
in women's fashion."
"The look they've assembled here
is thrown together or contrived."
Well, which is it, Bernadine Morris?
Thrown together or contrived?
This one says, "'You're either
young or old, ' says Halston."
Well, that's neither good nor bad.
That's just a quote.
He never ever gets to talk.
A collection isn't a success
until there are orders.
How many orders do we have, Joel?
Not many.
Correct. Zero. Which is, yes, not many.
Well, on to the next collection.
What? There won't be a next collection.
This was fucking it.
We're $200,000 in debt.
We haven't paid the rent.
In two weeks, they'll turn the lights out.
Well, if we're talking about money,
you could maybe spend less on orchids.
That is missing the thrust
of what I'm saying,
and orchids are part of my process.
Can't put a budget on inspiration.
I'll get it.
Pronto, Halston Limited.
Why does he always leave
when I raise my voice?
- Am I that abrasive?
- You want me to answer that question?
- ELSA: Halston.
- Who is it? Do they have any money?
Oh, hi.
You forgot to flush the toilet.
It's 'cause um
Come here.
We had a deal.
I'm under way too much pressure
to be having a junkie on my team.
It's so much stress.
I know. How how can you even handle it?
Because it only takes one person,
one socialite to change everything.
If I can get my designs
on the one right person,
I can get them on every woman in America.
It just takes one "yes"
from the most sophisticated socialite
in New York City,
and I just got off the phone with her.
Babe Paley just called,
and she wants to see our collection.
Babe Paley? Are you serious?
Yes. Now get your fucking shit together.
No, I didn't say that. No, no, no.
No, no. It's it's just my takeout.
I mean, I love Liza. You know I do.
But I don't think I can sit through
another Liza with a "Z."
I know. All right, honey. I'll let you go.
Ciao, ciao.
Can I ask you something?
What's going on here?
What do you mean?
The past few weeks,
I haven't seen you smile.
You dress different. You're
You're talking different, for God's sake.
I could be more to you.
Is this not working?
No, it's just that I
We see each other
two, three nights a week?
And I still don't feel
like I really know you.
That's all. I wanna know you.
I think you know me very well, Ed.
"I think you know me very well, Ed."
What is it with the voice?
- What voice?
- That one.
You're from Indiana.
It's like you're imitating somebody.
I am not.
I take offense to that.
I've always been this person.
If anyone in this room has changed,
it's you.
- Me?
- Yes, I make you insecure.
My ambition.
Didn't use to be the case,
but it obviously is now.
Looking for things to pick at.
My voice? Good Lord.
Well, all right.
I don't wanna argue.
I don't either.
I think I'll turn in.
I'd like to sleep alone.
Stunning, actually.
But I can't wear them every day.
- You're you're interested in every day?
- Mm-hmm.
Then let me show you
something I've been developing.
I call it Ultrasuede.
I was working a lot with suede,
which I adore.
But wear it in the rain and it's ruined.
So, it occurred to me,
I should create my own.
This is a new synthetic.
You can throw it in the wash.
You can dress it up.
You can wear it to lunch.
You can take the kids to school in it.
It's sexy. It's comfort.
It's freedom.
I'll take one in every color.
Everybody is a star ♪
Who would rain and chase the dust away ♪
Everybody wants to shine ♪
Who'll come out on a cloudy day ♪
Till the sun that loves you proud ♪
When the system tries
To bring you down ♪
Ever had to shine tonight ♪
You don't need darkness
To do what you think is right ♪
Ba, ba, ba, ba, ba
Ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, ba ♪
Ooh, ooh, ooh, ooh, ooh ♪
Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah ♪
Ba, ba, ba, ba, ba
Ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, ba ♪
Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah ♪
Ba, ba, ba, ba, ba ♪
Ooh, ooh, ooh, ooh, ooh ♪
Everybody is a star ♪
I can feel it when you shine on me ♪
I love you for who you are ♪
Not the one you feel you need to be ♪
Ever catch a falling star? ♪
Ain't no stopping
Till it's in the ground ♪
Everybody is a star ♪
One big circle goin' round and round ♪
Ba, ba, ba, ba, ba
Ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, ba ♪
Ooh, ooh, ooh, ooh, ooh ♪
Yeah ♪
Ba, ba, ba, ba, ba
Ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, ba ♪
Ooh, ooh, ooh, ooh, ooh ♪
Ba, ba, ba, ba, ba
Ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, ba ♪
Ooh, ooh, ooh, ooh, ooh ♪
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