At an E! Entertainment Television luncheon on January 7, 2012, at the TV Critics' Convention in Pasadena, Calif., Wetpaint Entertainment chatted exclusively with Fashion Police panelist Kelly Osbourne about her strong views on style; being hunted down for her harsh critiques; Courtney Love's false claims; and how she and co-stars Joan Rivers, Giuliana Rancic, and George Kotsiopoulos find all the funny in celebrity fashion.
Wetpaint Entertainment: You’re in an interesting position on the show, because you know a lot of the young starlets you’re critiquing. They’re your generation and your peers more than anyone else on the panel. Does that make it awkward?
Kelly Osbourne: There have been a couple of moments where I’ve called up my friend and said, “It’s just a joke, but heads up.”
Who did you have to give a heads-up to?
I’m not going into that. I’m not going to talk about my friends — come on! But what I have to remember is, I get the blame for whatever everyone says. I don’t know how it happens or why it happens. Like Giuliana called Courtney Love a crackhead, and then Courtney made an online video full of lies, saying she had to resuscitate me because I was OD’ing at her house several times.
And you weren’t even the one who said the original comment!
And I wasn’t even the one who said it. I get called a c— on twitter. Or people rant, “Why doesn’t Joan like Beyonce?” It’s a comedy show — it’s not real! It’s a comedy show with a fashion aspect to it. I will tell you this, though — it’s the D-listers who are lucky that we’re even talking about them at all who are the ones who get really pissed off. Whereas we’ll say something about Julia Roberts or real A-listers, and I’ll see them in the bathroom at an awards show, and they’ll say “Oh, my God, the show’s so funny. I loved it when Joan said…” They have a sense of humor about themselves, and it shows that you can’t be in this industry if you don’t have a sense of humor about yourself.
Shouldn’t they be flattered to be mentioned at all?
You would think so, but George and I get “f— you” emails all the time, and I’m like, “How did you get my email address? I don’t even know you.”
Why do they lash out at you?
I’m easier to get a hold of than Joan or Giuliana. And so no matter whatever anyone says, they see at as me, rather than George said that, or Joan said that.
Do you feel the need to respond?
It really depends. If it’s something that’s really harsh, and they say that I said something that I didn’t, that’s when I’ll get angry about it. Because I do say enough things that they don’t need to make stuff up. And I’ll get frustrated and think, “Why are you allowed to have your opinion and I’m not allowed to have mine?” Just because I didn’t like your idol’s dress — chill out! And we have started to notice that for certain celebrities, some of their fans are awful. They say the most awful things, and they think they’re being protective of the person who they idolize — but if that particular person ever saw the tweets they send to Fashion Police, they’d probably block them. Because it gets really hardcore. But now it’s funny. I find it funny.
Do you have a thick skin now?
I’ve always had a thick skin. It’s just now it’s gotten to a point where [I’m annoyed by] some kid from the middle of nowhere hiding behind their keyboard, trying to defend somebody they’ve never even met and never will meet.
What if Joan were to take your mom to task? How would you react to that on-air?
That would be the same as if I did something about Melissa. You don’t do it.
So if your mom went somewhere and Joan didn’t like what she was wearing, it wouldn’t end up on the show?
No. Joan wouldn’t be that disrespectful. She’s not like that. When Joan says we all still get along, it’s because we really do. We have so much fun at work. My dressing room is right next to Joan’s, and we go in and out of everyone’s rooms in the morning and find out what gossip is going on. We laugh from the minute we get to work to the minute we leave. It’s fun. I’m really lucky because of that. I’ve never had a job like that before.
How would you describe your own style? Today you’re wearing such a classic dress and upswept hairdo, combined with skull earrings and your own tattoos.
I have a lot of old-school, 1950s things that I love. I like to think of myself as a modern-day Golden Girl. Because they dressed so amazing. And their big grey hair, and different rinses. I love it!
Are you going to design your own line of clothing ever?
Eventually, yes. I’ve had every major company come to me and say, “Would you do a clothing line with us? We just need your name.” But then when we get down to it, and I think it seems like fun and I could do something with them, they show up and the last bit of the contract says that I don’t get final say. And if I don’t get final say, there’s no way I’m doing it. I’m not going to just attach my name to something that other people are going to design.
So you’d be very hands-on in designing anything you’re working on?
I’m like that. I style my dad, and whenever my mom does fittings, she asks me to come because I can look at it and say, “Add a shoulder pad and pull that in there and change it.”
Where do you think you got this talent from? Do you have tailors in the family tree?
I don’t know! But I can sew. I think because of home economics in school. From a young age, it’s one of the only things I was good at.
But a lot of kids from celebrity families don’t exactly take up practical skills.
I don’t know if it’s that they don’t feel that they have to do anything; I think it has a lot to do with their parents not driving them to do anything as well.
And yours did?
Yes. Mine said, “If you leave school, you have to get a job, or we’re having you arrested!” So that was it.
How is your brother, Jack, doing?
Amazing. I’m so excited. I was just on the phone with him a minute ago. He’s with his fiancée and my mom today.
Do you have input on your future sister-in-law’s wedding dress?
That’s not fair for me to even have judgment on that. It’s not my day.
But you’re good at it, a valuable resource.
I did take her to one of my friends to have it made, because she picked a designer who happened to be one of my friends. But other than that, no. I’m more into the baby shower than the wedding. I don’t want anything to do with the wedding.
How does it work if the designer is a friend of yours, and that designer’s piece ends up on the show?
A lot of the time, when it’s a really good designer, it’s not the actual dress but the way that they’ve worn it or put it together. So I make sure to put that in there. For example, Paula Abdul wore a couture prom dress to The Grove. And the dress would be cute on an 18-year old, but on her, in the middle of a shopping mall, it isn’t. So I’ve found a lot of ways to get around it without being insulting — but I’ve also found that a lot of my thoughts come out before I can really think about them.
Do you find that it’s hard to phrase things tactfully in the heat of the moment?
It’s not about saying things tactfully — it’s just that I’m saying what I really, really, really think. And a lot of the time, people don’t appreciate bluntness at all. They’re not good at it.
Is there a common mistake that young actresses make when they’re going to award shows in terms of dress?
I find that a lot of young, child actors who have been under a lock and key, where they’ve had contracts, “You can’t do this or you get fired,” and have been working for a really long time, they’ve aged beyond their actual years because of the amount of pressure and workload they’ve been dealing with for years. And they’ve been surrounded by adults for a long time, so they act a lot older. And because they act older, they dress older. And I say, “You’ve got all the time in the world to dress like that, but you’ve got less time to dress like this, so do it while you still can.” That’s what really bugs me — when you see young girls in women’s dresses. They don’t even have boobs to fill it out!
I remember when you were talking about Hailee Steinfeld from True Grit. She dressed appropriately for her age. But is that tough, when you’re nominated for an award at 14 — who makes appropriate dresses?
It’s really not hard. There’s a lot of simplicity in fashion, especially because of the recession. The amount of seams you have on a dress, it costs more to put it into product, because it takes longer, it’s more work, and more hours. So you’ll notice that a lot of the runway that’s coming out, they’re taking the shoulder pads out. There’s not as much clinging at the waist. A lot of stuff is baggier now, and simple. Because people are trying to cut back on cost so they can keep making money. For example, Miu Miu is always a great designer for young girls. Chris Benz, Alice & Olivia. There’s a load of designers out there who make dresses for young girls that are cute, but can also transfer into being women’s clothes as well.
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