With a No. 1 film comes top notch footwear. And in the box-office hit “The Help,” main character Eugenia “Skeeter” Phelan (played by Emma Stone) is not afraid to cross boundaries, even with her footwear choices. While Skeeter is criticized for her huaraches in several key scenes, she and her more-fashionable friends often sport heels throughout the film. “The Help” costume designer Sharen Davis chose 1960s period shoes, but admitted to “cheating” by shopping at DSW and even hand-making or altering shoes to match the dresses. “I sat every Saturday ordering from DSW [shoes that were] pointy and looked 1960s.” she said. “Then I used a lot of Stuart Weitzman because they have classic pumps and the correct look. And Nine West was killing it. They were right on target.” And Davis wasn’t afraid of color, either. “Sometimes we would get white [pumps] and just paint them or dye them so they’d be a nice complementary color to match the dress,” she said. “It was a little bit of a puzzle, but I thought that would be the best way to do it.” For the maids in the film, including those worn by Aibleen (Viola Davis) and Minny (Octavia Spencer), their work looks were actually a variety of nurse and dance shoes.
Brooke Burke is a master at multi-tasking. The actress and TV personality, who was hired for her first Skechers campaign at the young age of 20, will now continue her partnership through 2013, while juggling mommy time with her four children. “I’m always out with my kids, whether it’s in the park taking hikes or trips. We just came back from Europe and St. Barts,” she said. “It was really great family time.” And to add to her to-do list, Burke will resume her “Dancing With the Stars” host duties for the upcoming season, which airs later this month. Who would Burke like to see busting a move as a future cast member? Possibly Oscar de la Hoya or Khloé Kardashian. But at least for season 13, she’ll just have to keep up with brother Rob Kardashian, who is joining the dance crew, alongside Kristin Cavallari, Carson Kressley and many others.
Gaga for Lisa
Yeardley Smith, the voice of Lisa Simpson for more than two decades and the shoe designer behind Marchez-Vous YS, found that sometimes her two worlds are going to unavoidably overlap. Smith couldn’t attend FN Platform in Las Vegas last month, due to the demands of show business. Executives from “The Simpsons” asked her on short notice to head to the Fox studios to do some voiceover work for the never-aging, music-loving Lisa. The assignment: to sing alongside Lady Gaga. Spy couldn’t learn the plotline, but the episode is likely to air next year.
Tennis star Maria Sharapova loves standing tall, both on and off the court. Although Sharapova is 6 feet 2 inches, she doesn’t shy away from heels. “Women feel stronger and elegant in them. Even though I’m a tall gal, it gives me extra confidence,” Sharapova told Spy while fêting her fall collection with Cole Haan. And we might also see some heel power on Sharapova’s upcoming big day (the athlete is engaged to New Jersey Nets guard Sasha Vujacic). She’s creating her own bridal shoes. “I’ve had [designing] in mind,” she said. “I’m excited about it.”
Just call Pharrell Williams a jack of all trades, and now the singer, songwriter, music producer and fashion designer can add documentarian to his list of titles. Featured in Palladium’s latest short film, “Tokyo Rising,” the N.E.R.D. frontman and Ice Cream Footwear co-founder travels around Japan’s capital to uncover the city’s underground scene. “Tokyo is kind of like the New York of Asia,” Williams said during the Manhattan screening last week. A frequenter of Japan for the past 10 years, the artist said that working on the project two months after the devastating earthquake taught him a lot about the culture. “These people are really resilient,” Williams said. “After being there, you could feel it was business as usual again for them.”
Stephen Baldwin is switching teams. The actor is planning to take a break from the big screen to spend time behind the camera, directing his first film titled “Nothing but the Truth,” about the Grand Ole Opry radio program. Baldwin has already been in conversation with country singer Trace Adkins to join the cast, but he’s still hoping to snag his dream actor (and friend), Robert Downey Jr. “As a character, he would be intriguing,” Baldwin told Spy. But it’s not all directing for the actor. He also has big duties as father to 14-year-old Hailey Baldwin, who has been acting as a brand ambassador for Pastry (both appeared at FN Platform). So does Stephen Baldwin put any restrictions on footwear for his daughter? “For the right occasion, high heels [work],” he said. But Dad might not have to worry about her shoes much, as Hailey Baldwin is a self-proclaimed sneaker fanatic. “I don’t like wearing heels. They’re really uncomfortable,” she said.
You never know who is going to call into HSN’s on-air telecasts. Foot Petals founder Tina Aldatz heard from a high-profile fan on a recent 24-hour live segment — celebrity stylist Jessica Paster. “It was the best testimonial I could have asked for,” Aldatz said. Paster, who recently launched her own shoe line as chief stylist at Justfab.com, also tapped Aldatz as “chief sole specialist” for the website. Meanwhile, to celebrate 10 years in business this fall, Aldatz opted to give back, donating a $10,000 scholarship to one lucky student at the Two Ten WiFi event during FN Platform.