Memo Pad: More Diesel Fuel... Film Forum... Split Decision...

Diesel is in a spending mood, increasing its already substantial advertising budget from 5 percent of sales to 7 percent for 2008.

Meanwhile, Visionaire co-founder and makeup artist James Kaliardos was gearing up for his performance on Sunday at Lower East Side club The Box. He's singing as part of singer Adam Dugas' campy Christmas spectacular, "Chaos & Candy 6: Chicken in the Snow."
— Elisa Lipsky-Karasz

SPLIT DECISION: Portfolio's latest exit is former New York Observer media writer Gabriel Sherman, who is joining The New Republic to be a special correspondent. "He wanted to cover the presidential campaign," said a spokeswoman for the magazine. He'll stay on the Portfolio masthead as a contributing editor.
— Irin Carmon

SOLD AMERICAN: Several creative directors in the U.S. have complained that the fall ad campaigns this season were dull and lacked creativity, compared with those seen in Europe. But that's not stopping brands such as French Connection and Marithé & François Girbaud, which have tapped U.S.-based creative agencies for the first time for their spring campaigns. Marithé & François Girbaud's U.S. licensing partner, I.C. Isaacs & Co., has hired creative agency Menage a Trois in New York to lead marketing and creative direction. Industry sources estimate that the company is shelling out between $3 million to $4 million to relaunch the brand, which includes the debut of two denim collections and an ad campaign for Le Jean de Marithé & François Girbaud that is being shot in Paris. The campaign will appear in the March/April issues of Nylon, BlackBook, Paper and Complex, said a spokeswoman.
— Amy Wicks
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