SPRING TRAINING: Canali has turned to New York Yankees’ star closer Mariano Rivera for its spring advertising campaign. This is the first time the luxury Italian men’s wear brand has used a celebrity in its ads, but Elisabetta Canali, global communication director, said it stems from the company’s “long-standing relationship” with Rivera. “He is a very positive person, with a great attitude and style,” she said. “He represents excellence in his field and it comes natural for us to look at him as an ambassador of those values we both share.” She said using a celebrity allows the company to “immediately capture everyone’s attention.” The same will hold true if Rivera makes any appearances on behalf of the brand. Canali said that “depending upon his availability, he will be involved in store events.” The ads featuring Rivera will run in the March issues of major national newspapers and magazines, Canali said.
— Jean E. Palmieri
This story first appeared in the January 28, 2010 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
THE RACE BEGINS: Now that Apple on Wednesday finally unveiled its not-much-of-a-secret iPad, magazine and newspaper publishers are rushing to launch on the platform. The New York Times on Wednesday revealed plans to launch on the device, while Condé Nast Publications will introduce three titles when the iPad makes its debut in March — Vanity Fair, GQ and Wired. During the past few months, Condé Nast has talked openly about its development work for a digital version of Wired and GQ has already launched an iPhone platform; the January GQ app has surpassed more than 14,000 in digital sales. “We are at the start of a company-wide initiative: we see all of our magazines available on this kind of platform eventually,” said Sarah Chubb, president of Condé Nast Digital, who was on hand for Apple’s introduction in San Francisco.
Time Inc. is working on versions for all its U.S. titles for the iPad and, at Hearst Magazines, a spokesman said the company will have a presence, but it’s undetermined with which titles at this time. Similarly, Rodale plans to offer digital versions of its magazines on the iPad in March. Meredith Corp. has yet to reveal plans to launch its titles on any specific e-readers.
— Amy Wicks
AND THE NOMINEES ARE: Speaking of GQ, the magazine will reveal today the finalists in its third annual Best New Menswear Designer in America competition, which is conducted in collaboration with the CFDA, Levi’s and Bloomingdale’s. The nominees this year are Richard Chai, Billy Reid, Eunice Lee of Unis, Doug and Ben Burkman of Burkman Bros., Vincent Flumiani of Caulfield Preparatory and Frank Muytjens, head of men’s design at J. Crew. The J. Crew nomination is a first, as all previous finalists in the competition have been designers of their own independent labels.
“There is so much fresh talent out there right now it’s more than encouraging — it’s become a challenge to narrow the field to a select few,” said Jim Nelson, editor in chief of GQ. “I believe we can begin to speak of a New Wave of American fashion.”
The designers will present their fall collections at a GQ-hosted event in New York on Feb. 11. The winner will be unveiled the following day by a judging panel that includes Nelson, GQ creative director Jim Moore, CFDA executive director Steven Kolb, Levi’s senior vice president of merchandising and design Erik Joule, Bloomingdale’s vice president of men’s fashion direction Kevin Harter and Calvin Klein Collection men’s creative director Italo Zucchelli.
The winner will receive $50,000 and the opportunity to create a cobranded capsule collection with Levi’s, which will be sold at Bloomingdale’s in the fall. Past winners of the competition were Robert Geller and Engineered Garments.
— David Lipke
SONG OF HIMSELF: How will a man know for sure that he’s comfortable with himself? The answer could lie in “Manthem,” Dove Men+Care’s new 45-second TV commercial to air Feb. 7 during Super Bowl XLIV. The spot will feature one man’s journey to comfort, via unsung moments from birth to fatherhood, in a montage of scenes set to Rossini’s “William Tell Overture.”
“Manthem,” created by Ogilvy & Mather, portrays the expectations and societal pressures placed on boys, young adults and men, according to Dove parent Unilever. The commercial casts a humorous eye on men’s efforts to take life’s challenges in stride, to realize their own definition of success — and to feel their skin is comfortable, with an assist from the new line of Dove Men+Care products.
— Valerie Seckler
THE BECKHAMS, SQUARED: David and Victoria Beckham are clearly happy sharing the limelight. Victoria appears on the cover of 10 Magazine’s spring issue and David features on the cover of the title’s male edition, 10 Men, both of which will hit newsstands on Friday.
The titles kick off the magazine’s 10th anniversary year, and each features the Beckhams in a 40-page fashion editorial, styled by 10’s founder and editor in chief, Sophia Neophitou-Apostolou, and shot by Cedric Buchet.
In an accompanying interview for 10 Magazine, Victoria discusses her fashion collection, saying she plans to be designing it in “10, 15, 20 years’ time,” while in 10 Men, David plugs his own fashion collection for Adidas, O by O, and confesses that he “still [feels] quite shy,” when faced with images of his past underwear campaigns.
Meanwhile, in other Beckham news, rumors are swirling in London that Victoria is branching into interior design. According to a story in the Daily Mirror earlier this week, she is in talks to design a hotel on Dubai’s Isla Moda, the same development for which Karl Lagerfeld is designing homes. A spokeswoman for Beckham declined to confirm the story, but said, “Victoria is always keen to hear other people’s ideas and explore business opportunities. For now, she is very much focused on her family and her fashion collections.”
— Nina Jones
CORRECTION: Olivier Nicklaus directed the documentary “The Red Carpet Issue.” This was incorrect in a Memo Pad item on page 12, Wednesday, due to misinformation from Sundance Channel.