At age seventeen, Gia Carangi was working the counter at her fathers Philadelphia luncheonette, Hoagie City. Within a year, Gia was one of the top models of the late 1970s, gracing the covers of Cosmopolitan and Vogue, partying at New Yorks Studio 54 and the Mudd Club, and redefining the industrys standard of beauty. She was the darling of moguls and movie stars, royalty and rockers.
Gia was also a girl in pain, desperate for her mothers approvaland a drug addict on a tragic slide toward oblivion, who started going directly from 10,000-a-day fashion shoots to the heroin shooting galleries on New Yorks Lower East Side. Finally blackballed from modeling, Gia entered a vastly different world on the streets of New york and Atlantic City, and later in a rehab clinic. At twenty-six, she became on of the first women in America to die of AIDS, a hospital welfare case visited only by rehab friends and what remained of her family.
Drawing on hundreds of interviews with Gias gamily, lovers, friends, and colleagues, Thing of Beauty creates a poignant portrait of an unforgettable characterand a powerful narrative about beauty and sexuality, fame and objectification, mothers and daughters, love and death.