By Joanna Langfield

Ewan McGregor does not look like Halston. But, thanks to his terrific performance here, I swear there were times when I thought he did.

McGregor plays the fashion icon in the miniseries drawn from Steven Gaines’s celebrated biography, “Simply Halston”. We see there is nothing simple about the man, whose elegant designs and maybe not so elegant personal life made him one of the most famous people of his generation. My mother loved her Halston Ultrasuede shirtdress, as did myriad other women who raced to the stores for one (or two) of their own. And when he created a scent? Those stores couldn’t keep it in stock, it flew off the shelves so quickly. But there were others far more interested in what Halston was doing off the runway. When he and his bestest friend Liza Minelli showed up at Studio 54 (just “Studio” to the cool kids), their pictures were splashed onto every gossip column, pre-Twitter. Halston, who was born Roy Halston Frowick in Des Moines, was at the heights of high society. And I do mean high.

Director Daniel Minaham and Ryan Murphy lead a creative team that brings polish and panache. Krysta Rodriquez has the unenviable task of playing Minelli, and she brings a true sweetness to each scene. There’s a huge supporting cast, my favorites of which include Bill Pullman, who makes everything he does look much easier than it is, and a completely delicious Kelly Bishop, who is downright hilarious as the legendary Eleanor Lambert. But the star of this quickly paced and ultimately, surprisingly, touching show is McGregor, who may be best known for Star Wars but has a much more artistically varied and accomplished career than that. And he’s great here, making us root for the dreamer and cry for the man who lost so much.