To become the creative director of French luxury fashion house, Balmain, was a dream come true for the then-24-year-old Olivier Rousteing. Ten years on, the world renowned designer reveals his lesser known side in the new Netflix documentary, Wonder Boy, as it focuses in on the search for his biological parents, and the loneliness he’s felt on the journey.
Rousteing told People that he was nervous for the public to see this other side of his life.
“They see me with my friends and celebrities and [living] this incredible, glamorous life. Everything looks fabulous. But this documentary shows the loneliness of someone who’s looking for his parents and trying to understand his origins. I think people will be surprised to see me being vulnerable and fragile”.
The designer has had to work hard to be recognised for his talent in the fashion industry. “When I was born, there was a lot of racism,” he says. “There still is, but there was even more at the time… I had to fight to break boundaries and say, ‘I’m Black, but I want to be a successful fashion designer.'”
As creative director, Rousteing elevated Balmain to new sartorial heights. He harnessed not only the power of social media, but the power of the Kardashians and high-fashion party culture to hone a brand name which has become synonymous with IT girls and celebrities.
However, Rousteing notes a desire to show a deeper side to the brand, acknowledging that fashion can often feel unattainable. He told the publication, “I think people want to feel connected. Behind those $40,000 [Balmain] dresses, there is so much work, there is so much passion, there is love, there is pride, there are tears”.
Wonder Boy is available to stream on Netflix now, here.