WWE Superstars The New Day, Mandy Rose & Sonya Deville, Shinsuke Nakamura, and The IIconics show their love for “The Heartbreak Kid” Shawn Michaels in a Valentine’s Day photo shoot! This feature was a little glimpse into HBK’s style and career; from the infamous Barber Shop Incident to his iconic partners Diesel and Sensational Sherri to the classic 90s Kid. The Heartbreakers feature was so much fun to produce and direct! Who doesn’t love a good throwback, especially with someone as legendary and flamboyant as HBK.
Lauryn Conrad recreated the Barber Shop set and Melanie Sutton styled all the props. They nailed all the little details that made this special. We were at the Talking Stick Arena for 2 days in a row so we had a day to coordinate getting the set built and lit in advance. (Normally this all has to happen in 3hrs before the Superstars arrive.) There wasn’t much backstage space at the arena so we had to set up on the Suns’ practice court. We covered half the court with ram board to protect it and had to lower the set pieces over the stadium seating just to get it in place. It was all hands on deck to make this happen. I am very lucky to have such collaborative crews and support from the road crew and arena to help make things like this happen.
Brainstorming with my Executive Editorial Director, Ryan Murphy on who each Superstar would portray all fell into place so easily. We had the most perfect cast for every idea we had. I hired Anna Katsanis to style the wardrobe. She pulled new and vintage clothes as well as had a tailor custom make several pieces. She knows WWE history well so she dove deep into the history of HBK’s style to add fine details that truly put this over the top. Like noticing in some old, pixilated footage that HBK wore cowboy boot earrings during the Barber Shop scene. I love that kind of attention to detail and enthusiasm. She nailed Mandy Rose as HBK with Sonya Deville as Senational Sherri. Sonya was so excited to be Sherri and get to do something completely different with her look. Billie Kay as the fringed-leather wearing Diesel with her tag partner Peyton Royce as HBK. Shinsuke Nakamura embodies 90s HBK now so it was awesome to see the crossover between the two of them. And The New Day, well, they never disappoint. They rocked recreating the Barber Shop Incident for our shoot and for a video. Big E in the Brutus “The Barber” Beefcake attire was hilarious. Everyone was discussing how the hell did that look ever come together to begin with?!
The photo feature, videos and Instagram post and story went live on Valentine’s Day. What a great way to honor a holiday within the theme of WWE. Gina LeVay and her crew hustled to help bring together this set and lighting. It was our last day of 3 long shoot days and everyone stayed on their game. See the gallery HERE.
Photography by Gina LeVay Creative Production & Photo Direction by Christine Reilly Digital Tech Katie Hawthorne Photo Assistant Jeff Kavanaugh Set Design by Lauryn Conrad Prop Styling by Melanie Sutton Wardrobe Styling by Anna Katsanis Hair/Makeup by WWE Glam Squad Videos by Giancarlo Dittamo