The actress joins forces with Oscar-winning director Jonathan Glazer to celebrate the newest iteration of the Italian brand’s signature satchel

Any new iteration of Prada’s iconic Galleria handbag—named after Milan’s sumptuous Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II, the birthplace of Mario Prada’s eponymous brand—merits a fittingly gorgeous campaign. Tasked with dreaming up new promotional material, Italian creative director Ferdinando Verderi found just the duo to execute his vision: Oscar-nominated actress and Prada brand ambassador Scarlett Johansson, and recent Oscar-winning filmmaker Jonathan Glazer.

Compared to the kaleidoscope of pastel-colored pastiche from Johansson’s 2023 Galleria campaign, imagined by visual artist Alex Da Corte, this new release is its inverse: a piece of cool-eyed cinema vérité, deconstructing Scarlett Johansson (actress) to reveal Scarlett Johansson (woman). In an austere monochrome palette redolent of Ingmar Bergman’s Persona, Johansson stands before us in close-up, reciting lines from two of Shakespeare’s most multi-faceted female leads, Lady Macbeth and Cleopatra. Each line she reads in a range of moods and voices, the camera similarly restless, capturing her every angle. Her day-job ends, and with it the unrealities of acting. Johansson strolls out into the New York streets, at last herself, a beige Galleria bag tucked deftly under her elbow.

Clear structure, elegant austerity and strong sensation are descriptors equally applicable to Prada’s famed bag as to Glazer’s work. Johansson is an ideal focal point: the campaign plays on what the press release calls “the magnetic draw of the movie star” whose “constant shifting of identity […] emblematizes both film and fashion.” Glazer’s camera obsesses over its lead talent, whose technical sophistication is matched only by her sheer no-fuss watchability. Just as Johansson contains multitudes, so does the handbag, composed of over 80 separate pieces hand-fabricated into three compartments, an accessory of refinement and adaptability to any and all occasions. “As with Johansson,” the press release continues, “its persona can transform; as with acting, it is a symbol of excellence in craft.” The actress, the Galleria, and so too this new campaign, which you can treat yourself to viewing here.