Giovanni Maria "Gianni" Versace was an Italian fashion designer and businessman. He was the founder of Versace, an international luxury-fashion house that produces accessories fragrances, make-up, home furnishings, and clothes. He was the most important Italian designer in the world and he also designed costumes for theatre and films. As a friend of Eric Clapton; Diana, Princess of Wales; Naomi Campbell; Kate Moss; Madonna; Elton John; Tupac Shakur and many other celebrities, he was one of the first designers to link fashion to the music world. He and his partner Antonio D'Amico were regulars on the international party scene. The place where he was born and raised, Reggio Calabria, has greatly influenced his career, bringing color and revolution upsetting the canons of those times.
On 15 July 1997, Versace was shot and killed outside his Miami Beach mansion, Casa Casuarina, at the age of 50 by spree killer Andrew Cunanan.