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Ridley Scott Responded To The Gucci Family's Statement Where They Criticized "The House Of Gucci" And The Cast Who Portrayed Them

"How could they be better represented than by Al Pacino? Excuse me! You probably have the best actors in the world, you should be so fucking lucky."

Posted on December 1, 2021, at 11:16 a.m. ET

The ongoing back-and-forth between the cast and crew of House of Gucci and the family on which the movie is based appears to be far from over, with both sides offering further statements following the project's release.

Karwai Tang / WireImage

House of Gucci finally hit theaters last week, banking a successful box office in both the US and UK territories.

Vittorio Zunino Celotto / Getty Images

In an encouraging sign that movies are returning to their prepandemic success, the Lady Gaga–led project earned $20 million in the US during its first days of release, coming second to Disney's Encanto. In the UK, it topped the box office with a total of £2.4 million, ahead of the likes of Ghostbusters and Eternals.

However, following the release, the Gucci family released a scathing statement condemning the movie and taking a swipe at its accuracy and its portrayals of them onscreen.

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In a statement obtained and translated by Variety, they said: "The Gucci family takes note of the release of the film House of Gucci and is a bit disconcerted because, although the work claims to want to tell the 'true story' of the family, the fears raised by the trailers and interviews released so far, are confirmed: the film carries a narrative that is far from accurate."

"The production of the film did not bother to consult the heirs before describing Aldo Gucci — president of the company for 30 years — and the members of the Gucci family as thugs, ignorant and insensitive to the world around them, attributing to the protagonists, events, a tone and an attitude that never belonged to them," the statement continued. "This is extremely painful from a human point of view and an insult to the legacy on which the brand is built today."

The statement also slammed Lady Gaga's portrayal of Patrizia Reggiani — who was convicted of hiring an assassin to murder her husband Maurizio Gucci — accusing the movie and cast of painting her "as a victim who was trying to survive in a masculine and macho corporate culture."

Mondadori Portfolio / Mondadori Portfolio via Getty Images

The Gucci family denied that this was the case, noting that "women were in several top positions" at the fashion house during the time the movie took place.

"Gucci is a family that lives honoring the work of its ancestors, whose memory does not deserve to be disturbed to stage a film that is not true and that does not do justice to its protagonists," the statement finished. "The members of the Gucci family reserves every right to protect the name, image and the dignity of their loved ones."

This isn't the first time the Gucci family have voiced their criticism — earlier this year, Patrizia Gucci accused the people working on the movie of "stealing the identity of a family to make a profit" while also denouncing the portrayal of her father and grandfather based on pictures taken on set.

Ernesto Ruscio / GC Images

"My grandfather was a very handsome man, like all the Guccis, and very tall, blue eyes and very elegant," Patrizia told AP. "He is being played by Al Pacino, who is not very tall already, and this photo shows him as fat, short, with sideburns, really ugly."

"Shameful, because he doesn't resemble him at all," she added.

She went on to call Jared Leto's appearance as her father "horrible," saying: "I still feel offended."

Now, in a new interview with Total Film, the director for House of Gucci, Ridley Scott, has defended the movie, explaining that he tried to be as faithful to the true story as possible.

Michael Ostuni / Patrick McMullan via Getty Images

"I tried to be as respectful as possible by being as factual as possible, and as factual as we can possibly imagine," he said. "Time and space sometimes has to jump because of the nature of the length of the film."

In response to the comments from the Gucci family about their portrayal, Ridley didn't hold back, claiming that the family "should be so fucking lucky" to have the likes of Al Pacino and Jared Leto playing them.

Dimitrios Kambouris / Getty Images

"The people that were writing from the family to us at the onset were alarmingly insulting, saying that Al Pacino did not represent physically Aldo Gucci in any shape or form," he said. "And yet, frankly, how could they be better represented than by Al Pacino? Excuse me! You probably have the best actors in the world, you should be so fucking lucky."

The director went on to explain that elements of the movie were satire, including aspects of Jared Leto's character, for whom they couldn't source much information during their research.

Tristan Fewings / Getty Images for Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios and Universal Pictures

"The story, in a funny kind of way, it's a satire," Ridley said. "And therefore, satire is really a posh way of saying it's a comedy. And I think a lot of it is comedic. Certainly for the first two acts."

"Jared Leto, there's not a lot of information about [his character] Paolo, but there are pictures of Paolo and that's exactly what Paolo looks like," he went on. "We found the pictures and Jared did what he did and dressed the way Paolo dressed. There's not a lot of Paolo on camera talking. And so that had to be, to a certain extent, imagined, but clearly Paolo was a very colorful and flamboyant man."

Ridley finished: "The flamboyance of Paolo was quite nicely captured. And how could that be offensive? We paid attention to not getting too overt if we can avoid it."

You can read the full transcript of the interview here.

A BuzzFeed News investigation, in partnership with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, based on thousands of documents the government didn't want you to see.