Heidi Klum (born June 1, 1973) is a German-American model, television host, businesswoman, fashion designer, television producer, and an occasional actress. In 2008, she became an American citizen while maintaining her native German citizenship.
Klum became internationally known for her appearances on the cover of the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue. In 1997 she became the first German model to become a Victoria's Secret Angel. Following a successful modeling career, Klum gained acclaim as the host and judge of the reality show Project Runway which earned her an Emmy nomination in 2008. She has worked as a spokesmodel for Dannon and H & M, and has appeared in numerous commercials for McDonald's, Volkswagen and others. In 2009, Klum became Barbie's official ambassador on Barbie's 50th anniversary. As an occasional actress, she had supporting roles in movies including Blow Dry (2001), Ella Enchanted (2004), and made cameo appearances on The Devil Wears Prada (2006) and Perfect Stranger (2007). She has also appeared on TV shows including Sex and the City and How I Met Your Mother.
In May 2011, Forbes magazine estimated Klum's total earnings for that year as $20 million. She is ranked second on Forbes' list of the "World's Top-Earning Models", behind Gisele Bündchen. Forbes noted that since ending her 13-year run as a Victoria's Secret Angel, Klum has become more of a businesswoman than a model. She was married to English singer Sealfrom 2005 until 2012.
Early life and discoveryEdit
Klum was born and raised in Bergisch Gladbach, a town outside Cologne. She is the daughter of Erna, a hairdresser, and Günther Klum, a cosmetics-company executive. A friend convinced her to enroll in a national modeling contest called "Model 92". Out of 25,000 contestants, Klum was voted the winner on April 29, 1992 and offered a modeling contract worth US$300,000 by Thomas Zeumer, CEO of Metropolitan Models New York. After winning, she appeared on the Gottschalk Late Night Show, a top German television show with host Thomas Gottschalk. She accepted the contract a few months later after graduating from school and decided not to try for an apprentice position at a fashion design school.
Acting and modelingEdit
Klum is the current host of Project Runway, filmed at the Parsons The New School for Design. She has been featured on the covers of Vogue, Elle, and Marie Claire, and became widely known after appearing on the cover of the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue and for her work with Victoria's Secret as an "Angel". Klum has hosted the 2002, 2006, 2007 and 2009 Victoria's Secret Fashion Shows. On October 1, 2010, the New York Post reported in its "Page Six" gossip column that Heidi Klum would be leaving Victoria's Secret, which was later confirmed by Klum.
Her other projects include dance and video games. She is featured in the 2006 James Bond video game Everything or Nothing, wherein she plays the villain Dr. Katya Nadanova.She has appeared in several music videos, including Jamiroquai's video "Love Foolosophy" from their album A Funk Odyssey, Kelis's "Young, Fresh n' New", off her second 2001 album Wanderland and, most recently, the second video for her husbandSeal's song "Secret" off his 2010 album Seal 6: Commitment. The latter video depicts the married couple sharing intimate moments while naked in bed; the concept was Klum's idea.In addition to working with well-known photographers on her first husband's Sports Illustrated shoots, she was the object and subject of Joanne Gair body painting works in several editions from 1997 to 2010. She wrote the foreword to Gair's book of body paint work, Body Painting, Masterpieces. She was a spokesmodel for McDonald's, Braun, Dannon, H & M, and Liz Claiborne, among others. She is currently a celebrity spokesmodel for Jordache and Volkswagen. In addition to modeling, she has appeared in several TV shows, including Spin City, Sex and the City, Yes, Dear, and How I Met Your Mother. She had a role as an ill-tempered hair model in the movie Blow Dry, played a giantess in the movie Ella Enchanted and was cast as Ursula Andress in The Life and Death of Peter Sellers. She had cameo appearances in The Devil Wears Prada and Perfect Stranger.
In July 2007, having earned $8 million in the previous 16 months, Klum was named by Forbes as third on the list of the World's 15 Top-Earning Supermodels. In 2008, Forbes estimated her income at $18 million, putting Klum in first place. For 2007, Forbes estimated her income at $16 million. Klum is signed to IMG Models in New York City.
In 2008, Klum was a featured guest on an American Volkswagen commercial, where she was interviewed by a black Beetle. When she commented that German engineering is so sexy, she caused the Beetle to blush and turn red. She has been a part of several commercials for Volkswagen and McDonald's on German television.
In November 2008, Klum appeared in two versions of a Guitar Hero World Tour commercial, wherein she did a take on Tom Cruise's iconic underwear dancing scene in Risky Business. In both versions, she lip-synced to Bob Seger's "Old Time Rock and Roll" while dancing around the living room with the wireless guitar controller.
In October 2009, Klum was the often-nude one-woman subject of Heidilicious, a photo book by photographer Ian Rankin. Klum ventured into web-based videos, starring in "SPIKED HEEL: Supermodels Battle the Forces of Evil". The web-series starred model Coco Rocha and was directed by fashion documentarian Doug Keeve. In the story, Klum aka 'The Kluminator,' and her stylish sidekick Coco "The Sassy Superhero" Rocha battle the evil Dr. Faux Pas who is plotting to destroy Fashion Week. The heroines employ everything from blow-dryer guns to fist fights, in order to thwart Dr. Faux Pas' dastardly plans. The Kluminator and Girl Wonder avoid a chain of fashion disasters to neutralize a death ray that threatens to vaporize the community of fashionistas gathered in Bryant Park.
In 2010, Klum became the new face and creative advisor for European cosmetics brand Astor, for which she sets artistic direction and designs new products and fashion forward color collections.
In October 2010, Klum parted ways with Victoria's Secret after 13 years of working with the brand. She provided a simple explanation in her official statement, stating: "All good things have to come to an end. I will always love Victoria and never tell her secret. It's been an absolute amazing time!"
It was reported in May 2011 that Klum trails far behind Gisele Bündchen at No. 2 with estimated earnings of $20 million on Forbes' list of the World's Top-Earning Models (2010-2011). Forbes noted that since ending her 13-year run as a Victoria's Secret Angel, Klum has become more of a businesswoman than a model. She's partnered with New Balance and Amazon.com to launch a clothing line and signed a 20-episode deal to host a new show on Lifetime, calledSeriously Funny Kids. In fact, some noted fashion designers have long been commenting on Klum's limited role as a fashion model. Karl Lagerfeld, for example, in 2009 agreed with German designer Wolfgang Joop, who called Klum after she had posed naked on the cover of the German edition of GQ magazine, "no runway model. She is simply too heavy and has too big a bust". Lagerfeld observed that neither he nor Claudia Schiffer knew Klum, as she has never worked in Paris and was insignificant in the world of fashion, being "more bling bling and glamorous than current fashion."Project Runway season three finalist Laura Bennett interviews Klum and Seal at the 59th Emmy Awards
In December 2004, Klum became the host, judge and executive producer of the reality show Project Runway on the U.S. cable television channel Bravo (airing on Lifetime television beginning in 2009), in which fashion designers compete for the opportunity to show their line at New York Fashion Week and receive money to launch their own fashion line. She received an Emmy Award nomination for the show for each of the first four seasons. In 2008, Klum and Project Runway received a Peabody Award, the first time a reality show won the award. Klum was nominated for an Emmy in 2008 for "outstanding host of a reality or reality-competition show" for Project Runway, the first year that category was recognized by the Emmys.
Klum has been the host, judge and co-producer of Germany's Next Topmodel, the German version of the internationally successful reality television show, since 2006. All seven seasons aired on the German TV station ProSieben.
Klum designed clothing lines (one for men), featured in the German mail-order catalog "Otto". She designed shoes for Birkenstock, jewelry for Mouawad, a clothing line for Jordache, and swimsuits – featured in the 2002 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue. She was one of the designers of the Victoria's Secret lingerie line "The Body", named after the nickname she received following her first Victoria's Secret Fashion Show appearance. Her Mouawad jewelry collection debuted on the cable shopping network QVC on September 14, 2006, and 14 of the 16 styles sold out after 36 minutes. Klum's clothing line for Jordache launched on April 30, 2008.
Klum has two fragrances, called "Heidi Klum" and "Me". She designed makeup for Victoria's Secret as part of their "Very Sexy Makeup Collection", titled "The Heidi Klum Collection". The first run debuted in Fall 2007. A second run was released in Fall 2008.
Klum was involved in the development of a namesake rose, the Heidi Klum rose, which is available in Germany.
For the 2008 US Open, Klum designed a screen print t-shirt which was sold at the US Open shop. It featured childlike butterfly pictures. Proceeds will go to a non-profit organization maintaining the park, which is home to the US Open.
Heidi became Barbie's official ambassador for the doll's 50th anniversary in 2009, even having made a Barbie doll out of herself. On April 1 that same year, she appeared on the CBS television special, I Get That a Lot, as a girl working at a pizza shop. That same year, she appeared in advertising for Dannon's Light & Fit brand.
Klum and husband Seal announced in June 2010 that they will be making a reality series on Lifetime titled Love's Divine (after Seal's song of the same name.)
In January 2010, Klum launched two lines of maternity wear: Lavish by Heidi Klum for A Pea in the Pod, and Loved by Heidi Klum for Motherhood Maternity. Klum stated, "I experienced fashion challenges during my four pregnancies and combined my knowledge of what works in terms of style, comfort and practicality to create these lines".
In October 2010, Klum with New Balance, HKNB, launched a line of active woman's wear fashion clothing on Amazon.com.
Klum is a "Real Celebrity" on the website Stardoll, where she has a line of virtual jewelry, and a virtual clothing line called Jordache. Users can go to Klum's suite (address) and interact with her by doing interviews, sending pending requests or dressing Klum's doll.
Klum is an artist, and had several of her paintings appear in various art magazines in the U.S. On September 27, 2002 she dedicated a sculpture she painted called "Dog with Butterflies" to commemorate the role of rescue dogs in the aftermath of September 11.
In 2004, Klum co-authored Heidi Klum's Body of Knowledge with Elle magazine editor Alexandra Postman. The book gives Klum's biography as well as her advice on becoming successful. Prior to that, Klum had been an occasional guest columnist for the German television network RTL's website. She wrote an essay for the German newspaper Die Zeit.
In November 2006, Klum released her debut single "Wonderland", written for a series of television advertisements for the German retailer "Douglas". Proceeds were given to a children's charity in her hometown of Bergisch Gladbach. She contributed to her husband Seal's 2007 album System, singing the duet "Wedding Day", a song that Seal wrote for their wedding.
In March 2013, it was announced that Klum will be joining America's Got Talent as the show's new fourth judge.