The Rake

PAUL FEIG'S MIXED BLESSING

Put yourself in the shoes of Wei Koh and me for a second. There is a global pandemic, and the pressure is on to create a magazine that reflects the reality of the times while also providing some much-needed escapism. The desire to feel uplifted and inspired has never been more profound, and we needed to encapsulate this on the cover with a man who not only embodies our values but who was also putting his energy and creativity into helping others as the world reached out for heroes.

Well, if you put yourself in our position, you’d be feeling rather relaxed, as this man was not, we must admit, hard to find. Paul Feig, the Hollywood director, producer, writer, actor and dandy of the first order, was really the only person who fit the bill. In the months in which we have been keeping ourselves away from each other, Paul has dedicated himself to uploading a daily online video in which he dispenses advice on cocktails, dances, keeps spirits high, and, most importantly, celebrates good causes to whom we can donate. In such challenging times, we knew we could turn to Paul to bring us a dose of positivity, an air of comfort, and his usual uncompromising stylishness.

Paul spent a large chunk of 2019 in London filming and editing , the festive hit starring Emilia Clarke, Dame Emma Thompson and Henry Golding. As much as it was a romantic tale of its own, the feature served as a love letter to London, specifically Mayfair and St. James’. Previous features of Paul’s have also referred to his spiritual home (his anglophilia gives Frasier Crane a run for his money) — for example, in , when Blake Lively’s character references how she learned to make a martini at Dukes Bar, which also happens to be one of Paul’s favourite haunts. This, however, was the first time he had to get locations he loves, like Wilton’s restaurant, in the back of shot. Those not in the know may view these Easter eggs as a Curtis-esque caricature of London’s quaintness, but for those of us who know better, it is a subtle display of Paul’s great taste. His personal style makes no such effort to hide allegiances. “I love traditional British tailoring, bowlers, umbrellas, morning suits,” he says. “My latest obsession is shooting outfits from

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