The Documentary: Film Festival Nomination & Premiere

By Brenna Kehew Sculley

by Celia Cooksey

When ELYSIAN first conceived CatWalk FurBaby, a fashion show featuring iconic designers and benefiting animal welfare organizations across the country, there was no way to know how such a special event would come together. The show featured rescue animals adorned in trending animal fashion alongside models in top-tier designer wares, and created a buzzy moment during the global fashion extravaganza that is New York Fashion Week. The fun of celebrating fashion and the pets we love could not have turned out any better.

Now, CatWalk FurBaby has taken a new turn, as a documentary on the eponymous event that kicked off NYFW this past February. Such a unique event, the joie do vivre that transpired at the iconic Sony Hall was captured on film for us to enjoy again. Now, excitedly, the CatWalk FurBaby documentary has been selected as a finalist in this year’s New York City International Fashion Film Festival.

“There is a beautiful irony in an ‘underdog,’ headquartered in a small town in South Carolina, galvanizing trailblazing women from around the world… in fashion, philanthropy, business, and the environment…  to kick off New York Fashion Week in an unforgettable show benefiting animal welfare,” said ELYSIAN Publisher Karen Floyd, who served as the film’s executive producer.

“In a city used to heavy hitters like Vogue and MTV, it is an incredible privilege to be considered for such an amazing award. I’m so proud of our team, who spent countless hours of hard work putting the event and production of the documentary into the limelight. For me personally, it validates ELYSIAN’s ethos in connecting with more and more women across the globe… Women inspiring women.”

CatWalk FurBaby partnered with the BISSELL Pet Foundation to distribute grant money to the participating rescues. With nearly 6,000 shelter and rescue partners, this national foundation is committed to ending pet homelessness and finding a loving home for every pet, impacting 665,000 pets since its inception in 2011.

“With so many pets at risk in shelters across the country, BISSELL Pet Foundation was honored to partner with ELYSIAN on the inaugural CatWalk FurBaby event to bring awareness to our lifesaving work, as well as the incredible work of 10 deserving shelters,” said Cathy Bissell, founder of BISSELL Pet Foundation. “We are thrilled the documentary was selected as a finalist in this year’s New York City International Fashion Film Festival and hope it will do even more to spread the message that the best place to find your next pet is at your local animal shelter.”

DRC Ventures, headed by the multifaceted powerhouse Dr. Christina Rahm, was the event’s title sponsor. Rahm and her husband, Clayton Thomas, served as co-producers of the film.

Rahm walked the runway alongside her models during CatWalk FurBaby’s second half, unveiling the Enviremware line from Merci Dupre Clothiers. The ultimate in luxury eco-fashion and protection, this innovative nano-biotech skin-coating technology offers a barrier against hazardous toxins that could threaten your health without sacrificing style.

“For DRC Ventures and me personally, the mission is to lead the world to better solutions,” Rahm said. “Everyone’s talking about sustainability. That’s fine, but that’s not enough. Our higher potential is to help our species and the world evolve into greatness, letting go of fear, and instead leaving a meaningful legacy for future generations!”

The New York City International Fashion Film Festival will be held Sept. 6 and 7; winners will be announced at a gala on the 7th.

ELYSIAN is honored to be nominated and is looking forward to seeing where the CatWalk FurBaby journey goes next. We are already scheduled to return to New York Fashion Week in fall 2024, and this new documentary feature is but a feather in the cap of a successful philanthropic initiative.

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