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Coach Pre-Fall SS21 campaign
Photography Max Farago

Hari Nef stars in a road-tripping buddy comedy just waiting to happen

The model, author, and actress hits the open road alongside Dree Hemingway and Rickey Thompson in Coach’s sundrenched new campaign

Thought the most iconic, road-tripping pals were Thelma and Louise? Think again. Stealing their crowns are Hari Nef, Rickey Thompson, and Dree Hemingway, who jumped in a car and headed out to the Cali desert to shoot Coach’s latest campaign. The whole thing is inspired by the freedom that comes from hitting the open road – which plenty of us are dreaming about right now after spending approximately 3,478 years in lockdown. 

Dressed in looks from the label’s Pre-Fall 21 collection, the Coach faves are captured leaning back against the car – or otherwise sprawled across its roof – and joking around together in the heat, as part of a series captured by photographer Max Farago. “Rickey cracks me up, and Dree is a legend,” says Nef. “In case you hadn’t noticed, I’m smiling in pretty much every single photo, and you can’t fake the smiles I’m giving in these photos. It was a beautiful day in the sun.” 

As the series gets its debut, we catch up with the model, author, and actress to talk the moments she feels most free, her must-have roadtrip fashions, and which book she’s packing in her suitcase.

Hey Hari! So first off, what does your dream road trip look like? 

Hari Nef: I mean, I think you’re looking right at it. It would be me, Dree, and Rickey in a sexy old car, driving from East to West across the United States, New York to LA, seeing America. We’d stay at hotels, motels, and Holiday Inns, and we’d listen to a little Lana, a little Dolly, and definitely “Late Nite Tip” by Three 6 Mafia. If you know, you know – listen to the lyrics, or at least one lyric in particular. 

What are the three most essential things going in your suitcase? 

Hari Nef: Definitely a Coach bag, wouldn’t be caught dead without it. A toothbrush. And a good book. Right now I’m reading Trans Girl Suicide Museum, by Hannah Baer – it’s incredible.

You’re starring in a remake of what is widely considered the most iconic road trip movie of all time. Who are you playing, and who would star opposite you?  

Hari Nef: I feel like we did this – Dree and Rickey! I think I would probably be the Thelma to Dree’s Louise – I’m pretty sure her middle name is Louise, so there you go. We were saying on set that they just need to roll a camera on this and make a buddy comedy. It was combustible and delicious.

What was the shoot like? 

Hari Nef: In case you didn’t notice, I’m smiling in pretty much every single photo, and you can’t fake the smiles I’m giving in these photos. It was a beautiful day in the sun, Rickey cracks me up, Dree is a legend and a long-time style icon of mine, and Max shoots in a really sweet and disarming way, where he just kind of talks to you and asks you about your life and your plans and your vibes. I wasn’t really modelling – not the capital ‘M’ modelling – I was just sort of talking to Max and laughing with him, and it felt easy, and it was a pleasure. I think it shows. 

How do you define freedom? 

Hari Nef: With my gut instinct, and following through on it. That’s how I define my freedom. 

When do you feel the most free? 

Hari Nef: At night, with my friends, and also when the sun’s going down. 

How did you ‘escape’ while stuck in lockdown this last year? 

Hari Nef: I watched movies, they were my escape. I even watched a road movie or two, like Something Wild, by Jonathan Demme. It got me excited for the trips I would take, and the crazy times to come – because I knew they would, and here we are.

Take a look through the campaign in the gallery above.