Guess Who?

Nathalie Marciano, creative director of Charles David and Guess Footwear, is also a film producer.

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LOS ANGELES — As the creative director of Charles David and Guess Footwear, Nathalie Marciano has been hoofing around Hollywood for years. But now she’s a player. Her production company, 26 Films, has just wrapped its first feature, the romantic comedy “Something Borrowed,” starring Debra Messing and Dermot Mulroney. “It’s a little ‘Pretty Woman,’ a little ‘Four Weddings and a Funeral’ and a lot of fashion,” she says, occasionally sipping a mug of tea and patting her cat, Kiwi, in her Beverly Hills home.

Marciano developed the script with screenwriter Dana Fox for two years, then promptly cast Messing as the lead, an airline exec who hires a handsome escort to accompany her to her brother’s wedding in order to show up an ex. “I knew there was no one who could do this like Debra, and she also loved the script, so we got lucky,” says Marciano.

But not everything has been so easy in Hollywood. “I feel like a lot of people are waiting to see if I can do it,” she says. “I understand that being a shoe designer and a wife of, it’s a challenge.”

Marciano met her husband, Maurice, 17 years ago at her own brother’s wedding in Spain. They married two years later, but she’s shied away from playing the role of celebrity wife. “I have stayed out of the spotlight because it’s not something I choose for myself,” she says. “My husband’s family has gotten a lot of attention because of their success, but I don’t feel as though they seek it out, either. People are drawn to their story because it’s the American dream. It’s actually what inspired me to try movies, which I’ve wanted to make since I was 13.”

Although she took a few film classes in her native Montreal, Marciano initially chose the family shoe business over Hollywood, moving to California in 1987 to start Charles David with her father, Charles Malka, and his uncle, David. When she married Marciano, she began working in a new family business, Guess, which Maurice runs with his brother, Paul. She still conceptualizes the company’s print ads and approves designs. Still, the allure of film was too strong to resist, and last year, Marciano began devoting more time to 26 Films.
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