How the Kardashians Made $65 Million Last Year
Twitter, endorsements, paid appearances, fragrances: the new issue of the Hollywood Reporter magazine goes in depth with mom and manager Kris Jenner about the inventive – and controversial – ways she’s monetized reality fame for her family.
A DAY IN THE LIFE OF KRIS: She Shares Her Calendar From One Day: Feb. 9
- 3:30 a.m. Satellite media tour with Khloe for T-Mobile.
- 7-8 a.m. Workout with Gunnar Peterson.
- 8-8:30 a.m. Return East Coast business phone calls from the car.
- 8:30-9 a.m. Shower and dress.
- 9-9:30 a.m. E-mail correspondence from office.
- 10 a.m. Meeting with Leonard Armato about filming an upcoming Skechers commercial with Kim.
- 10:30 a.m. Phoner with Seventeen magazine about Kendall and Kylie.
- 10:45 a.m. Phone interview with writer for Redbook magazine article.
- 11 a.m. Meeting with QVC about new Kris Jenner clothing line.
- Noon Lunch with Lighthouse Beauty regarding fragrance launch for Khloe and Lamar’s Unbreakable for Valentine’s Day at the Beverly Hills Hotel.
- 1 p.m. Phoner with Keith Frankel to review spring ads for QuickTrim line.
- 1:30 p.m. Meeting with Jupi and Sears for creative approvals for new Kardashian Collection.
- 3 p.m. Creative meeting with Ryan Seacrest Productions at E! about new series.
- 5 p.m. Drop by Khloe and Kourtney’s Kardashian Konfidential book signing at Barnes and Noble in Santa Monica.
- 6 p.m. Finalize and approve photos for Robert’s new OP campaign.
- 7 p.m. Dinner at home with Bruce, Kendall and Kylie, Scott, Kourtney and Mason.
- 8 p.m. Watch American Idol.
So what does Kris ever say no to? Recently, a sex toy company hoped to sign Khloe and Odom. “The company wanted to know why I was turning them down,” Kris laugh says with a laugh. “I said, ‘It’s just not the look we’re going for at this moment, but thank you.’ They said, ‘It’s not hardcore, just vibrating panties, nipple rings and vibrators.’ I was like, ‘Hell to the no!’”
To outsiders, Kris is both brilliant and walking a fine line. “If I fault her for anything, it’s doing too much too soon,” says Darren Bettencourt, a manager for reality stars including The Real Housewives of New York’s Jill Zarin. “If you saturate the market, you confuse the consumer. What do the Kardashians stand for? You can’t be an expert in everything.”
Indeed, Bettencourt cites the litigation surrounding the Kardashian Kard, a prepaid credit card the sisters launched in November with financial service company Mobile Research Card. Under the contract, the Kardashians would have received $3 for every card activated or sold, 25 percent of fees, a $75,000 advance on royalties and a $37,000 signing bonus. But when then-Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal castigated the card for its predatory hidden fees (of which the family, as stated by the contract, would receive a percentage), Kris attempted to quietly terminate the agreement. The card’s issuer is suing the family for $75 million.
“It’s the sort of thing which shows how careful you have to be,” Bettencourt says. “It’s easy to lose the fans’ goodwill.”
So far, though, America continues to line up for the Kardashian buffet. The most recent spinoff, Kourtney & Kim Take New York, attrached more than 3 million total viewers.
As the brood gears up for Season 6 of Keeping Up With the Kardashians, Kris sees no end for the series, even teasing the possibility of a reality series starring the little ones, Kendall and Kylie.
“My fantasy is to have Keeping Up With Kardashians, Season 26,” Kris says. “Who knew it would be this profitable? I should have had more kids.”
Still, she knows that this moment — no matter how long it’s already been extended — might not be forever. “We definitely worry about overexposure. We never want to get to a place where people are thinking, ‘Enough is enough.’ ”
-- Additional reporting by Bryan Alexander and Marisa Guthrie