Should I feel sorry for Stacy Keibler now that she's split with George Clooney, or is she laughing all the way to the bank? — Denny I., Georgia
Well, put it this way: She's not exactly crying into her newly acquired couture, kid. In fact, thanks in no small part to her now-defunct romance with The Cloon, Keibler is poised to become something that she definitely was not just a few years ago: A bona fide TV star.
But let's start with some hard numbers, courtesy of the fabulous Jo Piazza, author of "Celebrity Inc.: How Famous People Make Money." She has proof that Keibler, whose most notable pre-Clooney credits included a stint as WWE wrestler (billed as "Super Stacy") and as a "Dancing With the Stars" also-ran, has benefited nicely from her time with the Oscar winner.
"Knowing what I know," Piazza tells me, "My ballpark estimate for her earnings increase is $10 million." Here's how she got there:
Appearance fees. Piazza estimates that Keibler's asking price for merely showing up at an event has increased from perhaps a high of $5,000 to a high of $40,000.
Paid Tweets. Piazza says Keibler may now command $6,000 per paid tweet, versus, say, $1,000.
Endorsement gigs. "Prior to to Clooney, it's unlikely that big-name brands would have approached her," Piazza says. “But now they might pay her $50,000 to $100,000." Jessica Nelson of the entertainment marketing company Davie Brown, tells me that corporate interest in Keibler has not necessarily increased because of Clooney. But, then again, the suits ain't mad at her, either. "We've had clients interested in her because she is brand relevant, but not necessarily because of her association with Clooney," Nelson says. "Keibler has a diverse fan base, and portrays females in a positive light, so in many cases she attracts certain brands for tailored initiatives."
Keibler's new deal to host Supermarket Superstar, the Lifetime competition reality show, may be garnering the 33-year-old a cool million bucks, Piazza says.
And then there are the clothes. A few years ago, Keibler likely "had to beg" to be dressed by top designers, Piazza says. Sure, she got decent outfits, and from ambitious labels such as Alice + Olivia. But just a few months after she started dating Clooney: Boom. Marchesa gown. On a red carpet. In Paris. And yes, that is a step up. Other top designers followed suit, such as Alaia, Lhullier and McQueen. (Yep, the fashion house that designed Kate Middleton’s wedding frock).
And if all that isn’t proof enough for you, consider: More people know Keibler now than ever before.
"Over the past two years, the most significant change we see is in her awareness level among females 18 years of age older," says Henry Schafer of the Q Scores Company. "It jumped from 23 percent familiarity up to 30 percent familiarity."
Think Keibler managed to achieve that just through her guest appearances on "Psych" and "Chuck"?
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