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Posts Tagged ‘Michelle Obama’

Prevention Features Michelle Obama As Pages Grow

prevention.jpgThe first lady will grace the cover of Prevention‘s upcoming November issue, on newsstands next week.

The issue features an exclusive interview with Michelle Obama, conducted by the magazine’s editor-in-chief, Liz Vaccariello. Keeping in line with the focus on the magazine, the interview is talks about health, exercise and well-being, with Obama revealing her number one health rule: give yourself permission to be happy. She also discusses her workout routine (she’s added in more stretching to help keep her flexible), her favorite and least favorite exercises, her skin care regimen and what it’s been like living with her mom.

She also gushes about her husband, the president:

“One of the things that attracted me to Barack was his emotional honesty. Right off the bat he said what he felt. There are no games with him — he is who he appears to be. I feel fortunate as a woman to have a husband who loves me and shows me in every way.”

And in addition to snagging a hugely coveted cover model, Prevention is also boasting an increase in pages in its November issue. The issue closed at 95 pages, a 1.4 percent increase from last year, publisher Mary Murcko said. This growth is certain to increase after the magazine beefed up its sales team last month.

Related: Prevention Expands Sales Team

Media Rivals Meet|Preliminary Mag Newsstand Sales Numbers Roll In|Another Look At Olbermann-O’Reilly Truce|Dan Rather Calls For Pres Commission On Media

TVNewser: Media rivals met at Columbia University to discuss the challenges of the industry.

WWD: Preliminary newsstand sales numbers are in for the first half of 2009 — and they’re not good. Just take a look at these women’s magazines numbers: In Style‘s single copy sales dropped 20 percent decline while Vogue reported a 2 percent decrease, although it got a lift for its March issue that featured Michelle Obama on the cover. Elle, Glamour and Marie Claire all dropped 12 percent Harper’s Bazaar and Vanity Fair saw decreases of 12.5 and 11 percent, respectively, Lucky is down 18 percent and Self dropped 9 percent. Official numbers from the Audit Bureau of Circulation will be out later this month.

New York Times: Brian Stelter revisits his story about the alleged truce between Keith Olbermann and Bill O’Reilly orchestrated by News Corp. and GE officials.

Washington Post: Dan Rather calls on President Barack Obama to form a commission to save the American news media. “This is a crisis that, with no exaggeration, threatens our democratic republic at its core,” Rather said. “But you won’t hear about it on your evening news, unless the message can be delivered in a way that corporate media have little choice but to report — such as, say, the findings of a presidential commission.

Video: Arianna Huffington makes a cameo appearance on the upcoming “Family Guy” spin-off “The Cleveland Show.”

Harper’s Brown Loves Making “A Fantastical Idea A Reality”

brown.png Harper’s Bazaar features and special projects director Laura Brown spoke with FishbowlNY contributor Diane Clehane for a “What Do You Do?” article on Mediabistro.com earlier this week.

The Australian editor and special judge on Bravo’s “Project Runway” spin-off “The Fashion Show” spoke about the challenges of her unique job including celebrity wrangling and conceptualizing the special features that get the magazine noticed, like last year’s photo feature with Tyra Banks as Michelle Obama.

Have favorite part of the job? “It’s basically being able to make what is seemingly an untenable idea or a fantastical idea a reality — to have a light bulb go on over your head like, ‘How about Tyra [Banks] as Michelle Obama?’ and then having that happen,” she said. “I feel like a little girl from Sydney when I do those things like, ‘Wow, look at that!’”

Getting into the details of how the Tyra/Michelle piece came about, Brown said:

“Obviously, the election was on everyone’s mind. I just said to [Tyra], ‘Why don’t we do this?’ We have one pop cultural icon who is paying homage to a woman who is about to become first lady and is clearly an icon herself.’ She got it straight away. She had no hesitation whatsoever. We shot this months before the election, and we imagined the White House with the family. If we get one point for prescience, we’ll take it…She was great. We got so much press. There were people who loved it — and then there were some people from Harvard who couldn’t believe we put a Harvard sweatshirt on Tyra and thought it was outrageous. I love doing that kind of stuff when you get a reaction from people. That’s the point — you don’t shoot stories to have them die.”

Read on for Brown’s take on which celebrities sell best today and some inspiring advice for magazine writers.

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The New Yorker on Bill Cunningham

2009_03_16_p154.jpgAs part of this week’s Style issue — featuring none other than Michelle Obama on the cover (David Brooks will no doubt be thrilled to note that the illustrated version of “thunder and and lightning” have been “put away”) — the New Yorker profiles the city’s original sartorialist Bill Cunningham, who is as much a staple of the Sunday Styles as the wedding announcements. (Also, this is sort of genius.)

The full article is only available to registered users (meaning! if you have a subscription you can access their digital reader online. Go here. Also, not that long ago we would have complained heartily about this, now it sort of just feels like practice). But here’s a taste…in case you were wondering how he decides on his colors.

A few summers ago, on upper Fifth Avenue, Bill Cunningham spotted a woman in her seventies, with a corona of laundry-detergent blue hair. Every day for a month after that, whenever he saw something cerulean or aqua or azure, he snapped a picture of it.

Lunch: Dishing on the Oscars & Obama

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— DIANE CLEHANE

As I’ve been reporting for weeks, it was SRO at Michael’s today as the movers and shakers, undeterred by the unsettling economic news, were out in full force plotting their next big move — or looking for a safe place to land. On the menu today: plenty of talk about President Barack Obama‘s speech last night and the Oscars. There was a strong consensus that one was a big winner, while the other got surprisingly mixed reviews. While everyone in the audience on Oscar night thought Hugh Jackman killed, plenty of folks here were less than impressed. “Movie people don’t like Broadway,” sniped one Hollywood insider. “And it was too Broadway.” Okay then…

Everyone I talked to about President Obama’s speech felt his oratory skills are nothing short of amazing and that he struck just the right tone where he basically told us its time to pay the piper and think of our children’s future. Personally, I was impressed at his unflappable ability to mix his formal and seemingly off-the-cuff remarks with ease — and he didn’t even blink when he forgot to follow protocol and let House Speaker Nancy Pelosi introduce him. She had to stop him mid-sentence, but he never faltered. Talk about cool under pressure. But here’s what wowed the women in the dining room — his affectionate introduction of the First Lady Michelle Obama and her mouthing, ‘I love you’ back to her smitten husband. “They’re marriage is obviously hot,” one divorcee told me. I’m telling you, no one wants to admit it, but that’s what people are really talking about.

As for the president’s remarks, “Inspirational but realistic,” is how one media summed things up. Others were scratching their heads asking why Wall Street wasn’t feeling the same way. More than one person said, “With everyone feeling a little bit hopeful, I don’t get why the market is down.” (It had dropped by more than 100 points by lunch). A question for the ages, no doubt.

On a much lighter note, I asked the always dapper Dr. Gerald Imber what he thought of the Botox-ed beauties on Oscar’s red carpet. But this plastic surgeon to the stars never cuts and tells — “I didn’t watch,” he confessed. He laughed when I asked him why he’d pass up the chance to admire his handiwork and did offer his assessment on why movie stars make better plastic surgery patients than mere mortals: “They come in with headshots saying, ‘I’ve changed a little here, I want to fix this here.’ They know what they want. There’s no whining.”

Here’s the rundown on today’s crowd:

1. The ‘Imber Gang’: Dr. Gerald Imber, Jerry Della Femina and Andy Bergman. Here’s a fun fact: A little birdie told me that Andy wrote the screenplay for Blazing Saddles. Now you know…

2. Hallmark honcho Henry Schleiff with two other well-dressed fellows

3. No one puts a lunch together like ‘The Mayor’: Joe Armstrong, Glamour editrix Cindi Leive, George Stevens and Kerry Kennedy. I was thrilled to meet George (who was sporting a very patriotic red, white and blue shirt and tie ensemble). He’s the man behind the television broadcast of the Kennedy Center Honors and the amazing broadcast of the concert on the Mall in celebration of President Obama’s inauguration. Kerry and I met once before at a lunch given by Henry Schleiff in this very dining room, where we talked about her then yet-to-published book, Being Catholic Now. I was so fascinated by her interviews with the likes of Bill Maher and Gabriel Byrne (who spoke about being abused by a priest) that I got through the terrific tome twice. Today the conversation was all about how stirring and inspirational the group found the president’s speech last night. “It made me proud to be an American,” Kerry told me. And we both totally melted over the young school girl who was seated next to the First Lady having written to the White House looking for aid for her school, which is in a serious state of disrepair. “I had tears in my eyes,” said Kerry. She wasn’t the only one…

4. An early-arriving Matt Blank who chatted with Joe and I before The New Yorker‘s David Remnick and Lisa Hughes joined Showtime’s head honcho for lunch. I was happy to reconnect with Lisa. Way back when, she was my sales rep at Self when I was the marketing honcho for a fashion company. I knew then that Lisa was destined for big things at Conde Nast, and she’s risen through the ranks like the pro she is. Well done and congrats!

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What’s In a Name! NPR Wants Off O’Reilly Factor

JuanMadman.jpgHow much does NPR not want anything to do with Fox’s O’Reilly Factor? They have apparently asked NPR correspondent Juan Williams to request that Fox remove his NPR identification whenever he appears on the show. Hard to be clearer than that!

Seems that NPR is tired of dealing with the angry emails Williams generates from his Fox appearances which land on their doorstep. To wit: Williams’ remark on the Factor a few weeks back about Michelle Obama channeling “Stokely Carmichael-in-a-designer-dress thing.” Says NPR ombudman Alicia C. Shepard:

To date, I’ve received 56 angry emails. For comparison, this year so far, listeners sent 13 emails about Steve Inskeep, 8 about Mara Liasson and 6 about Cokie Roberts — other NPR personalities who I often get emails about.

All of which makes us wonder: who’s complaining about Cokie Roberts!

Lunch: Andre Leon Talley — Media Star!

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— DIANE CLEHANE

We missed Blythe Danner by a day. Too bad, I would have loved to have asked her what she thinks of her daughter’s goofy — but strangely compelling — Web site, GOOP. It’s the gospel according to Gwyneth, where she holds forth on all things great and small — from how to wear a little black dress to how she got rid of her ‘Shar-Pei-like stomach’ after her pregnancies (I’m not kidding). No matter. The dining room was jam-packed, as it’s been for weeks on Wednesdays now. Even the bar was standing room only. I was happy to catch up with my pals ‘The Bar-ettes’ Kira Semler and Vi Huse (They had to cancel a few weeks back because of that dreadful storm). But today spring was in the air, and from the looks of things, everyone was feeling upbeat.

I was thrilled when my friend Andre Leon Talley asked me to join him and Linda Wachner for coffee. Looking dapper as can be, Vogue‘s main man was fresh off his appearance on Today this morning, where he chatted with Meredith Vieira (“She was so easy to talk to”) about his much-anticipated March cover story on Michelle Obama. “I’m really proud of it,” says Andre of his exclusive up close and personal profile of the First Lady. There had been plenty of speculation on whether Mrs. Obama would be gracing the cover of the fashion bible after her hairdresser (who is getting his own reality show) semi-spilled the beans, but Andre says everyone at Vogue was sworn to secrecy. Now that it’s official, he’s making the rounds to talk about what it was like to spend time with the First Lady for the piece. He taped a segment for NBC Nightly News this morning, and he was off to do a sit-down after lunch with Wolf Blitzer (and he’s going back to CNN for a second appearance tomorrow). With so much interest surrounding the story and accompanying images, I’m predicting the issue will be one of the magazine’s strongest sellers ever. “I think it’s going to be huge,” says Andre. It’s a pretty safe bet, I’d say …

Andre told me he was struck by the First Lady’s “focus and clarity” about her new life and, of course, was duly impressed by her fierce determination and commitment to give her girls as normal a life as possible. “She doesn’t want them to grow up in a bubble,” he reports. Andre saw the bond between mother and daughters firsthand as he made the seven-hour train ride with the Obamas as they journeyed from Philadelphia to Washington, D.C. to the inauguration. It was something to see, he said, when the girls threw their mom a surprise birthday party on the train, having spent two hours decorating the car in secret. Michelle was understandably thrilled, says Andre. “Her genuine warmth is amazing.” We both agree it’s high time interesting people who are actually doing something push the 11-pound, 11 year-old celebutantes who are famous for being famous from the spotlight. Could it be that ‘smart’ is the new cool? Here’s hoping…

Here’s the rundown on today’s crowd:

1. Kevin Huvane (who got hugs from the staff upon his arrival) and a mystery gent…

2. The Early shift: Dennis Basso and Marjorie Gubelman; Second seating: Bruce Wasserstein and his lovely daughter Pamela.

3. CNBC’s Jonathan Wald and Dan Abrams. When I stopped by to say hello, they told me the two “old friends” were having a “catch up” lunch. The Late Show: Lanky Luke Janklow and a distinguished gray-haired gal.

4. Jack Kliger

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Michelle Obama to Strike a Pose

michelleOO.pngFor only the second time ever a first lady will be gracing the cover of VogueHillary Clinton was the first. After months of trying to secure her Michelle Obama will appear on the cover of Vogue‘s big March issue. The feature spread inside includes an interview with Andre Leon Talley, a portion of which is available online.

She sees the White House as a national classroom. “We want to make sure that our young people remember and understand what classical music is, who some of the great American artists are,” she says, to give one example. And: “I am excited about the potential of the White House kitchen being a learning environment for the community. The current chef, Cristeta Comerford, is the only female chef in the history of the White House. She’s a young Filipina woman, a mother with a young child, and I am excited to get to know her and for her to know us as a family. If you think about all the kids interested in finding out about all of the inner workings of the White House — I’m hoping that we can build a team to reach out.”

The Obama Staff Ball…Like Prom With Booze…Free Booze

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Okay, first off – we saw our new stalker Christopher Hayes of The Nation at this ball too! We should never put up our schedule on the Internet. You never know who will randomly show up where you’re going to be.

Anyway, this was the Obama Staff Ball – the final official event put on by the Presidential Inauguration Committee. Arcade Fire and Jay-Z preformed. The actor Kal Penn, who everyone in the crowd knew as ‘Kumar’ took the stage. He was a surrogate for the campaign so he spent his time on stage outing by name all the staffers who ‘tried to kill him’ by texting while driving through snowbanks.

Vice-President Joe Biden and his wife Jill made an appearance and then President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama took the stage. The new president said something to the effect of,”You guys are great.” To which someone next to us said,”Hire me!” Hm. Seems to be a theme developing. Free beer dude.

Lunch: Special Post-Inauguration Edition

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— DIANE CLEHANE

The mood was festive at Michael’s today, with plenty of Obama buttons on display and lots of talk about the president’s stirring inaugural address. Jack Kliger told me, “I thought the whole thing was inspiring. His speech was terrific.” Jack had a good laugh about Barack Obama‘s heartfelt thanks to George W. Bush for his “years of service,” only to then turn around and basically rip the departing administration to shreds — in the nicest possible way. A speech for the ages, indeed.

While everyone agreed the president was near perfection in every possible way, the verdict was somewhat mixed on the First Lady’s fashion sense. A few media mavens told me they were less than thrilled with Michelle Obama‘s Isabel Toledo dress and coat (“A little dowdy,” sniped one stylista), but gave her higher marks for her Jason Wu ivory gown. I admit, I didn’t love the “lemongrass” lace daytime look at first, but by day’s end it had grown on me. I will say that Sasha and Malia looked darling in their custom J.Crew Crewcuts coats. When my good pal Fern Mallis, looking sleek and chic in her Tracy Reese Obama shirt, stopped at the bar for a chat, I asked her what she thought about Michelle’s fashion choices for the big day. “I’d give her a 10,” said Fern. “I could not think of a better ambassador for the fashion industry right now. She looked great.”

Today I was lunching with Lisa Silhanek and Justin Brown, CEO of First Global Xpress. Lisa, who knows everyone in the fashion biz, is working with Justin as his relationship manager, helping to broaden the business within the industry. Justin, whose clients include HBO, ICM and Conde Nast, has built an impressive business (that will be profiled in next month’s Business Week and the March issue of Inc.) by catering to companies that care about reducing their carbon footprint with smart shipping that lops off miles using direct flights. And, perhaps just as important, Justin says: “We deal with divas very well.” He’s shipped everything from a helicopter (New York to Eastern Europe) to Marilyn Monroe’s velvet headboard bought at auction by an adoring fan, so chances are he can handle whatever daunting task Seventh Avenue can serve up.

Here’s the rundown on today’s crowd:

1. The Imber Gang: Dr. Gerry Imber, Jeff Greenfield, Andy Bergman and Jerry Della Femina. I asked Jerry about the awful news about the demise of Full Frontal Fashion. His wife, the tireless Judy Licht, made the show a must-see for fashionistas and civilians alike with its wall-to-wall coverage of Fashion Week. (Truth be told, I’ve skipped a show or two knowing that I could watch the whole shebang from my living room without having to battle the crowds). “It’s true,” reports Jerry. “But Judy has a lot of things going and will be covering Fashion Week for The Huffington Post.” You heard it here first, folks. Smart move, Arianna.

2. Peggy Siegal dining with a mystery gal. Clever Peggy ordered her lunch in advance so as not to waste a minute.

3. ‘Mayor’ Joe Armstrong and uber-agent Ed Victor

4. Jack Kliger, Tom Donahue and a gent named Nick, so we’re told.

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