Kiwi director Pietra Brettkelly’s film, which will premiere in New Zealand at next month’s NZ International Film Festival, follows the world of Chinese fashion designer Guo Pei and her quest to join the ranks of the haute couture.
Ms Brettkelly began Yellow is Forbidden three years ago, and speaks to Carly Flynn about her inspiration for the film and the personality of Guo Pei.
She gained interest after reading an article about the Chinese designer being unaware of who pop star Rihanna was, after Rihanna had contacted Pei in a bid to design her 2015 Met Gala dress.
The documentary is described as ‘beautiful and colourful’ and melds the two cultures of China and the Western World.
Ms Brettkelly says she is “drawn to complex characters”, and discovered that designer Guo Pei is quite shy and quiet.
She explained to Pei they would be filming her journey through both the highs and lows, and she agreed - 350 hours of filming was brought down to just 90 minutes for the final film.
Yellow is Forbidden tells the amazing back story of Peis life and how she became a designer.
Ms Brettkelly warns when you watch the documentary “you will be in tears.”
Check out all the Film Festival details here.
Listen to the full audio with Pietra Brettkelly above.