The attention-stealing Anna Nicole Smith continues to live on through her last living child, daughter Dannielynn Birkhead, as proven by the young girl’s appearance at the 2017 Kentucky Derby on Saturday.
E! News explained that the 10-year-old offspring of the late Guess Jeans model and actress, who passed away just five months after Dannielynn’s September, 2006, birth from a reported drug overdose at age 39, made her annual promenade across the red carpet of the sports event with her father, photographer Larry Birkhead.
“[Dannielynn] wore a white and pink floral over-the-knee dress with a flared skirt and a matching hat and sandals,” E! News writers noted, “[while] her father wore an eggshell suit with a pink plaid tie.”
Smith’s daughter’s appearance at the 2017 derby marks her eighth overall visit to the once-a-year equestrian celebration, which Larry, 40, initially began doing as a way to honor the memory of Dannielynn’s mom, whom he met at a pre-party for the event back in 2003.
Coincidentally, Birkhead took to Twitter early Saturday to share a sweet shot of himself and his daughter standing in the same room at the Brownstable-Brown Party where he says he first laid eyes on Anna Nicole.
“[Me and] Dannielynn [before] she raided the dessert room,” the father teased his Twitter posting with the hashtag, “#lifefullcircle.”
“She has stolen the show at Kentucky Derby every year since 2010,” E! News says of Smith’s daughter, Dannielynn.
“She and Larry have made it a memorable daddy-daughter day and he has never appeared happier or more proud in public than right there on the red carpet with his little girl.”
Incidentally, those who attended the kickoff to the 2013 Kentucky Derby saw the duo all dolled up as characters from the Disney classic, Mary Poppins, with Dannielynn as the titular nanny and Larry as Bert, the friendly chimney sweep.
In a rare TV interview with 20/20 from February of this year, Birkhead lightly alluded that Danni, as he calls her, may have had more of a hand in that specific look than anyone probably realized.
“She could work me like her mother could work people,” he admitted with a smile, as People transcribed.
“She [pretty much] gets what she wants.”
Four years prior to the 20/20 sit down, it appeared that what Danni most wanted, as least publicly, was to follow in her famous mother’s modelling footsteps.
As noted as in a Us Weekly report from November, 2012, Larry allowed Guess Jeans to sign Danni to a contract with the brand to become the face of its junior clothing line, Guess Kids.
“Dannielynn has always looked up to her mom’s image,” Larry explained of the promo push to Good Morning America in 2002, “[and] I think that this is kind of Dannielynn’s way of paying tribute to her mom in her own special way.”
Nonetheless, as it turned out, the contract with Guess was always meant to be temporary — at the behest of the young model herself, according to Danni’s dad, who says it was never in the cards for Anna Nicole’s daughter to be, “the new Anna Nicole Smith.”
“I’ve had companies call me since then to ask her to model,” Birkhead expressed to ABC News’ Cokie Roberts, “and I ask her, and she says ‘no.'”
“She doesn’t have any interest in [that life]. She’s just a regular kid. She’s into technology now and she’s into games and these YouTube videos.”
Nowadays, little Dannielynn, who is admittedly not so little anymore, seems to be more interested in Girl Scout badges, Snapchat, and fast food runs — Larry claims that french fries are a big fave of Danni’s — as well as the occasional showing-off at the annual Kentucky Derby in Louisville, the same place she’s called home since she was 5-months old.
“My goal for [Danni] is for her to be a child,” Birkhead said of his and Anna Nicole Smith’s daughter to Us Weekly, “and just do what all kids do.”
[Featured Image by Nicholas Hunt/Getty Images]