C.J.: Sholom turns to Kim, other K's for kitschy ad

  • Article by: C.J.
  • Star Tribune
  • October 24, 2012 - 9:44 PM

"Keeping Up with the Sholomians" was a small leap, creatively speaking, for commercial producer Shaun LaBelle.

LaBelle needed a concept for his next commercial for Sholom, the senior residence in St. Paul.

"How many more senior living commercials can we stand to watch about how meals will be served at 7, noon and 5 with bingo at 3?" asked LaBelle. "That really was my reason. Enough is enough. That style spot is played out for me."

And so a spoof of reality TV's "Keeping Up with the Kardashians" was on the storyboard. It stars Joan LaBelle as Kim, Rikki Stokes as Moishye (rhymes with Kanye); Toby Godes as Kris Jenner; Bernie Sherman as Bruce Jenner and Eva Krause as Khloe.

The 30-second spot was shot Monday and I was on set, video camera in hand for my video. I'll reveal the very clever plot of the commercial after it starts airing on various Comcast networks.

Oh, did Shaun LaBelle have fun getting that shot of an arriving jet. A pesky police officer shooed him away from one vantage point and briefly tailed him, but LaBelle lost the officer while tooling through one of the neighborhoods near Minneapolis-St. Paul International. He did get his harmless jet clip.

Not so harmless were some of the motivational lines LaBelle tossed around while trying to get good and timely performances from his cast members, some of whom were understandably pooped by day's end.

Mrs. LaBelle, a former KARE11 makeup artist, and Stokes, who was the makeup artist for the commercial, were shooting the scene of them arriving at Sholom as Kim and Moishye, in a limo driven by Airport Luxury Service's Masoud Najvan.

Najvan popped the trunk on his limo and then came around to open the door for Mrs. LaBelle and help her out.

I wouldn't dare ask Mrs. LaBelle's age because I enjoy breathing and I grew up in the Deep South, where spoken curiosity about ages is considered rude. Besides which, after hearing all the instructions Mrs. LaBelle and Ms. Godes were giving Shaun about what parts of their bodies shouldn't be shot, the boundaries were pretty obvious.

But when Mrs. LaBelle wasn't getting out of that limo quickly enough in take after take, Shaun snapped: "Mom, can you get out of the car faster? That looks really feeble."

There's a snapshot into why Shaun and I are such good friends: Bluntness is our buddy.

Sometimes Mrs. LaBelle groused at her son, and sometimes she gave it right back to him.

There were a couple of other uncomfortable moments, as in when Shaun was shooting individual shots of the cast doing dance moves in front of the blue screen.

"Shake it for your son," called out the wildly entertaining Ms. Godes. I told her that just didn't sound right.

Mrs. Krause was the shy one on the set, although she kept complaining, "I look like a witch."

Between a wig and earrings, Sherman was thoroughly Bruced up to play Jenner, the former Olympian and long-suffering husband of Kris Jenner.

Sherman thought the second hoop earring went a prop too far.

"My ears are going to hurt for a week," said the gentleman who told me he was an extra for "A Serious Man." Of course in the gift shop scene, Sherman was hamming it up, saying that all he wanted to shop for were earrings.

While Jamie Maddeaux, sales and marketing director for Sholom, attached the earrings to Sherman, she teased: "You are just so hot. I can't stand it!"

Asked what she thought of the concept for the commercial, Maddeaux said: "I thought it was pretty funny, and I certainly thought we would get a lot of publicity because of being so outside the box."

Sholom might get even more attention if the touch recommended by me winds up being in the spot. A recent photo of the real Kim and Kanye fresh on my mind, I suggested to Shaun that Stokes pat Mrs. LaBelle on the derriere during the scene of them walking into Sholom.

Justin time to spot a celeb

Word has it that Justin Bieber and his girlfriend, Selena Gomez, had a late night bite to eat at the Cheesecake Factory in Edina's Southdale after his Target Center performance.

I'm told he was trying to be low-key, despite rolling with big bodyguards. There was reportedly complaining from the Bieber party about fans taking pictures. Come on, Justin, pain-in-the-butt fans helped make you so popular.

@y0maddy posted on Twitter: "Just saw Justin Bieber and Selena Gomez at Cheesecake Factory kissing OMG."

How shocking!

"I can't give out information," Cheesecake manager Mike told me Wednesday, when asked to confirm the heart-throbbing sighting.

C.J. is at 612.332.TIPS or cj@startribune. com. E-mailers, please state a subject -- "Hello" doesn't count. Attachments are not opened, so don't even try. More of her attitude can be seen on Fox 9 Thursday mornings.

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