new power brokers
Four storeys above a Vespa dealership in replica designer handbags SoHo, Allison Olesky is planning who will appear on the covers of Lucky, Harper’s Bazaar and L’Uomo Vogue this spring. She landed Scarlett Johansson for February’s Teen Vogue. And having secured Uma Thurman for Louis Vuitton’s spring 2005 print campaign, she’s hard at work with Marc Jacobs to cast the next one.
Olesky is not an editor or an replica louis vuitton handbags art director. She is one third of Starworks, the agency that specializes in celebrity casting for magazines and fashion labels. Want a direct line to Nicole Kidman? How about? She can replica louis vuitton bags get both. A former Harper’s Bazaar entertainment editor, Olesky has connections to A list Hollywood publicists who, in turn, trust her to place their clients with Cond Nast, Louis Vuitton and Burberry.
“When we started working with Lucky a year ago, Cond Nast hadn’t put a celebrity on its cover,” Olesky says. “Circulation was around 700,000. We were careful to pair personalities we believed fit the character of the magazine. Within a year dolabuy , circulation jumped to one million. Newsstand sales are up 20 per cent. Of course, not all of this can be attributed to celeb covers, but it has to be a contributing factor.”
As Lucky beauty editor Jean Godfrey notes, “I think that the right celebrity on your cover can attract readers who’ve never picked up your magazine before.”
Not any old face will do, of course. There are about eight celebrities at the moment who are guaranteed to sell to a wide audience. “And there are literally hundreds of magazines desperate to put them on their covers. It’s a rat race,” says Olesky.
Toby Fleischman, a former publicist of Kidman and Drew Barrymore at PMK in Los Angeles fake designer bags , agrees. “Editors are really, really aggressive. They’ll try anything. Magazines with a celebrity on the cover sell up to 30 per cent more copies. A few years ago, a fashion magazine would have put models on the cover 50 per cent of the time. Now, it’s one issue and it’s usually Gisele, who is more celebrity than model by dating Leonardo DiCaprio and starring in the film Taxi.”
The role of the celebrity caster will become even more valuable come Jan. 25, when the nominees are announced for the 2005 Academy Awards. “It’s a whole new ball game for an actor when he or she receives an Oscar nomination,” Starworks’s Sharon Ainsberg says.
“Suddenly, the public wants to know more about this person, especially if he or she isn’t particularly well known. And you can bet that magazines will race to secure them for covers. It’s almost as competitive as fashion designers vying to dress them for the red carpet.”
The rise of a handful of former Fake Louis Vuitton Replica Bags editors and publicists with a Rolodex of Hollywood connections marks an important change in fashion’s hierarchy. Ten years ago, there was the supermodel who could make or break a runway show. Then came the high profile stylist who directed the look of many collections. Then there was the muse who offered inspiration (and, more important, access to New York society). Now, the celebrity caster wields far greater power than some editors.
“I remember when editors handled all the details themselves when booking celebrity covers,” says Vince Lodato, a former creative director at GQ magazine. “Celebrity casters were only used with the very biggest stars and even then, editors had direct access to stars. Today, a magazine often has no contact with the celebrity prior to the photo shoot or event.”
Just what does a celebrity caster do? The job description reads something like this: Meet with an editor and talk about the personality high quality designer replica handbags wholesale of the magazine and what potential names would be a natural fit; then, start researching what films or projects a celebrity has scheduled in the next 12 months.
“If every celebrity we put on the cover sold, it would be an easy process 1:1 replica handbags ,” Olesky says. “But you never know how well someone is going to sell a magazine. Madonna is a good example. Sometimes she pulls really well and other times not so well. It’s all about high quality replica handbags china timing and luck.”
“When I worked with Nicole Kidman, we began by looking at her schedule for the next year,” Fleischman says. “How many projects did she have, and how could we space the campaigns? It was always about looking long term and what magazines best fit her upcoming films.”
But just as magazines are cluing in to the power of celebrity covers, actors are becoming aware replica louis vuitton of the dangers of overexposure. Britney Spears’s recent announcement that she will not appear on magazine covers for the foreseeable fake designer bags future just made the celebrity pool smaller.
When Vogue editor in chief Anna Wintour tried to buck the trend, opting for a group of relatively unknown models instead of a star on the all important September cover, fake designer bags insiders saw it as an attempt to curtail the increasing power that celebrities and their publicists wield in the fashion industry. But newsstand sales of that particular issue were reportedly dismal, and the magazine returned to the celebrity formula the next month.
“I don’t see the celebrity thing going away any time soon,” Olesky says. In fact, it seems to be intensifying, and Starworks has covers booked for the next 12 months.
Not everyone sees the trend as a positive thing.
“Our mass media system bombards us with these celebrities every day. I really think that the collapse of our traditional society has led to this virtual pop culture society.
“When you think Perfect Quality Louis Vuitton Replica of it, why do we care if bought a new stroller for her daughter?”
Dave Lackie is editor of Cosmetics magazine.
There are stars, and then there are superstars those whose faces sell magazines the most. “There are eight celebrities right now who appeal to the widest audience. They sell to women of all age categories, men, different ethnic groups,” says Allison Olesky, an agent who specializes in publicity placements. Besides Jennifer Lopez, who appears on the Discount Replica Louis Vuitton Bags cover of Vogue this month, the list includes:.