Archive for October, 2007

Out on the Town

Monday, October 22nd, 2007

The Hollywood Film Festival Gala was crammed with celebrities, and mostly they were talking off-the-cuff. Brad Pitt made fun of Casey Affleck’s award for “male breakout star,” by listing a decade long list of Casey’s films (so much for Casey’s “breaking out” this year!). Ben Affeck had a heartbreaker speech. He won for best director, and shared a sweet, personal sentiment. He reflected that the last time Ben and Casey were on stage together accepting trophies, they’d won a little league tournament back in Boston. At that time, Ben (catcher) was 12 and Casey (shortstop) was 9. They never guessed they would win twin trophies again, much less at this level of professional acclaim.

Will Ferrell was a scream, Catherine Zeta Jones delivered a robotic Stepford Wife-like speech as she presented the award for musicals, and John Travolta is still gorgeous, and humble as he won a supporting actor award for getting into drag and playing a middle-aged woman in Hairspray. Janet Jackson looked fit and Kristie Ally looked large – but she has great arms.

Sorry for dishing, it’s what happens when you go Hollywood, even for a night. The awards were held where the Golden Globes are done, so kudos to the Hollywood Film Festival planners and the Beverly Hilton for giving us such a great program and a delicious dinner. Mary Hart from Entertainment Tonight (www.etonline.com) was endlessly energetic, proving she holds up way past her usual half-hour on television. Personal thanks to Chris Davies of Zinidoo and other cutting edge ventures, for being our host. Chris has a remarkable vision for bringing a festival to Los Angeles that knits together our diverse population – I can’t wait.

The most amazing surprise was spending serious one-on-one time with Cris Judd (www.imdb.com/name/nm1085698/) and really getting to know him. He’s handsome, earnest, smart and has a great story about the choices he’s made in his career and his life. I spent the better part of the after party with him and I can only say, this guy is the real deal.

Who have you met lately – and how have they impressed you?

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On Purpose

Monday, October 22nd, 2007

One of my life outcomes is to meet the world’s most interesting people in business, politics, labor and government. During the decade that I hosted International Business for public radio, it was easy to reach out and have personal discussions with these people, albeit with an audience around the world listening in to our chats. Same thing is true for my last stint on television, when I hosted NightCap.

But, if you have missed me: I went into hiding to write my new book: Speak Up! & Succeed: How to get everything you want in meetings, presentations and conversations. And with its launch on October 1, 2007, I have plunged back into life and am lucky to be catching up with some of the world’s most interesting, best, and otherwise well-known people in their fields.

Tonight I’m getting ready to go to the Hollywood Film Festival Gala (www.hollywoodawards.com), as a guest of one of the founders, Chris Davies (www.zinidoo.com) to meet filmmakers, actors, and producers – the incredibly talented people who represent the art and business of entertainment.

How are you spending your evening?

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About Work

Sunday, October 21st, 2007

Jon J. Weiss and I plan to enjoy some down time, but why not work when it’s on something you love? Jon’s putting together BioMechanix, his Strength and Conditioning Center. My agency is producing the branding and marketing materials. So after waffles, we drive to NAX Partners workspace (www.NaxPartners.com) to review copy for his new brochure. We get on Skype with NAX creative director Andre Machiaverni who is at home in Brazil this week. No one seems to watch the time, and when we leave: it’s midnight in one place and 3 AM in the other. Can’t remember which was where.

What keeps you up at night?

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Out on the Town

Saturday, October 20th, 2007

In the early evening, I headed to Robertson Boulevard in West Hollywood for a very good reason – if you love the best things in life: Fendi Casa is opening its home fashions showroom for a champagne reception.

Yuri Xavier, the very handsome Brazilian-French young man who coordinates all Fendi Casa LA’s goings-on (coming soon: www.fendicasa.com), plus makes independent films in his spare time, invited me and my business partner, Zeb Wallace to get a preview of what the very fabulous will soon be sitting on.

We raised several fluted glasses with artists, sound designers and hipsters, plus the people who furnish the homes of the people known as “high net worth individuals.”

Fendi Casa is awash in my favorite colors and non-colors (if you’re being technical). That would be red, black and white – with a bit of gold and silver (plus their signature branding).

The surprise of the night: the lovely artists’ representative Meredith Laing of Moodspace (showroom is in the Pacific Design Center). A long way from her famlly’s ranch in Texas, Meredith coordinated a photo shoot at Fendi Casa yesterday, featuring the work of designer-artist Arjuna Noor. His pieces aren’t just art, they are interactive LED lit experiences. Meredith will soon be heading out to Dubai to supervise the installation of Noor’s floor-length piece for a major hotel there. It’s been hard for the Moodspace to describe this artist’s invention of color and light and even harder to show it on the web, but you can visit www.moodspace.biz.

Zeb is meeting with them on Thursday to see if NAX Partners can help them with a powerful communications program – we are both wild about the talent of this artist and the incredible maturity of this young woman and her company.

How can you make art, music or another cultural experience a part of your working life?

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