It's not as if hairstylist Allen Edwards didn't know what it felt like to get strokes for cutting famous people's hair. Goodness, he had designed the 1970s "Charlie's Angels" mane of Farrah Fawcett and created the famous "frump" cut for Diane Keaton in the movie "Annie Hall."
But then came Marcia Clark.
The shorter, straighter shag Edwards worked on Clark's hair six months ago--a rather routine cut and style, he thought--drew an outburst of curiosity that surpassed anything he had done.
"I never thought the press would care," he said. "She's a lawyer, not a movie star. Then boom!"
The day Clark made her debut in court with the shorter, straighter shag, Edwards received several dozen requests for interviews. In the months that followed, he was quoted in more than 200 articles--including front page stories in newspapers across the country. He appeared on 40 TV shows. ("It made it possible to get on 'Oprah!' " he said.)
He even realized a longtime dream: The E! Entertainment cable channel gave him a regular spot providing gossipy insights on celebrity hairstyles.
Although Edwards has been long accustomed to creating some of Hollywood's most buzzed-about styles, this "was the biggest thing ever."
"With Farrah, [the reaction] was more like, 'Give me that hairstyle,' " said Edwards, who runs several salons in the Los Angeles area. "This wasn't like that. It was: 'Make me over like you did Marcia. Marcia looks unbelievable, make me look unbelievable.' "
Edwards' salons have been inundated with appointments. "We did hundreds of make-overs," said the stylist, who charged Clark $150 to cut and dye her hair a shade of auburn.
Realizing his newfound influence, Edwards became mindful of making even the slightest change to Clark's appearance. As Clark started the rebuttal phase of the trial, Edwards noticed that her hair was looking a little limp.
"Maybe a body wave would help," he said. "I would also like to throw in a few highlights. We'll see if she's open to it. I don't think Marcia would want hair press right now. So I have to be careful."