JEAN PAUL GAULTIER

Besides his men's and womenswear lines and the haute couture collection he launched (to great reviews) in January 1997, Gaultier has introduced JPG, a younger and sportier line for both sexes, and a range of eponymous fragrances, starring in some of the campaigns himself. In July 1999, Hermès invested $15 million in his business as part of a deal which Gaultier described as "a dream marriage". In return, he awarded the company 35 per cent of all his future royalties, plus "preferential rights" over many of his new designs.As a designer and an entertainer, Gaultier is tirelessly talented. In 1989, he released a record, Aow Tou Dou Zat (or "How To Do That") in collaboration with Tony Mansfield, though fortunately he did not give up the day job. He has also designed the costumes for many films including Peter Greenaway's The Cook, The Thief, his Wife and her Lover (1989), Pedro Almodóvar's Kika (1994) and Luc Besson's The Fifth Element (1997). He also won the chance to play himself in the French film version of the TV series Absolutely Fabulous (Absolument Fabuleux), alongside Jennifer Saunders and Catherine Deneuve, in 2001.