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Does Rihanna Get Paid to Watch Fashion Shows?

Katy Perry, Rihanna Eric Ryan/Getty Images

Do celebrities get paid to sit in the front row at fashion shows? I think I read that somewhere.
—ONoTheyDiddint, via the Answer B!tch inbox

Oh don't stop there. Take me as an example. If, say, Michael Kors would like me to appear at his show during New York's Fashion Week, which starts Thursday, I shall do so for the modest fee of $100,000.

But if he wants me to appear in his clothes, that's extra. And if he wants me to appear on the red carpet before the show, that's extra, too. And if he wants me to say nice things about his clothes in the press...You get the idea.

Among the stars recently seen at fashion shows—Kanye West, his Silly-String-clad girlfriend, Rihanna, Beyoncé, Anne Hathaway—at least a few of them charge the designers for the honor of their presence.

For example, take...

...Rihanna, who, according to reports, is among the highest-paid celebrity seat fillers at fashion shows, demanding at least $100,000 just to sit down.

Beyoncé, reportedly, is open to negotiation, commanding between $80,000 and $100,000 to be seen in a front row. And Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen—who are still famous, apparently—each fall into the $80,000 range as well.

But it doesn't end there. Like I indicated earlier, each little extra can set a designer back thousands of dollars.

"These are all separate deals," says veteran fashion publicist Kelly Cutrone, of the show Kell on Earth and the book If You Have to Cry Go Outside. "Some fashion houses buy a celebrity for a year. In the contract, it may outline five to seven things the star will do, like wear a designer to an awards show or premiere, or give the designer a nod in an interview.

"It's like dim sum," Cutrone says. "It makes it very easy, like, 'Are we gonna buy six things, or a one-off deal?' "

The average "one-off deal"?

Cutrone confirms the top star fees hover around six figures, some as high as $200,000. Smaller stars, or easier deals, may cost as little as $10,000.

All that said, not every star you'll see during New York's upcoming Fashion Week is a shill. Some stars really are just friends or fans of designers.

Or as fashion publicist Eileen Colavita of Spin Shoppe tells me, "A smaller designer, just starting to show, would not be paying and would likely still get B- and C-level people in to see the show."

"But," she adds, "no super A-list."

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Every week is Fashion Week in our Fashion Police gallery.

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