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Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Media-Whore D'Oeuvres


"Chaz Ebert’s first Cannes Film Festival was 23 years ago, in 1990, when she was still a trial attorney and she and Roger Ebert had just started dating. This year’s Cannes marks another, much sadder, beginning: her first festival without Roger, who died in April at age 70 from the cancer that had already claimed part of his lower jaw and his ability to speak, but not the Chicago Sun-Times film critic’s ability to write enthusiastically about his love of movies. When they met, Roger was almost 50 and perpetually single; he’d refused to marry while his mother was alive, fearing her disapproval. But he skilfully wooed Chaz, eleven years his junior, by taking her to see Tosca at the Lyric Opera in Chicago and giving her volumes of Shakespeare, his favorite author. 'Roger was always very romantic,' says Chaz, as we sit on the beach near the American Pavilion, a festival hub visited often by Roger that now prominently displays his picture and hosted a tribute panel to him this afternoon. 'He always gave me flowers, but primarily books. He loved giving books.' Roger also loved taking Chaz to top restaurants along the French Riviera, and set aside one day each festival to rent a car and take a break from Cannes. In 1991, they drove to Monte Carlo for the Monaco Grand Prix, and Roger spontaneously decided to ask Chaz to marry him. 'He did not know that he was going to propose that day,' she says. 'He said just everything felt right.'" (Vulture)


"Privacy. In this week’s New Yorker in their 'Talk of the Town' section, there is a piece by Raffi Khatchadokurian on a photographic exhibition at the Julie Saul Gallery in Chelsea by photographer Arne Svenson. Mr. Svenson was given a Nikon telephoto lens by a bird-watching friend a few years ago, and in his effort to learn how to use it, he began taking photos of people in the building across the street from him. Soon it became an obsession. Svenson likened the experience to Alfred Hitchcock’s 'Rear Window' with Jimmy Stewart and Grace Kelly (and Raymond Burr as the villain). Anyone who has ever seen the film, will never forget it. Photographer Svenson ended up taking thousands of pictures of people – men, women, children, dogs in all kinds of private domestic situations. 'Only the dogs' noticed him, he recalls. After the exhibition was installed, it was written up in the Tribeca Citizen. Some of Mr. Svenson’s neighbors (and subjects), having heard about it through the article, were very upset (I’ll bet) ... Many years ago, my oldest childhood friend studied astrology on the side when he was in college. This was back in the late 60s, early 70s. He’d often talk about the wonder of his discoveries about 'the future.' One of his most incredible observations taken from the zodiacal activity of the world was that by the 1990s, early 2000s, there would be No Privacy in our world because of technology. The idea seemed absurd at the time. Not only absurd but impossible. But this was before the cell phone or the computer. Now we are living with that reality." (NYSocialDiary)


"Don’t call Tumblr mogul David Karp a 'hipster.' The 26-year-old, shaggy-haired CEO — who sold his site to Yahoo for $1.1 billion — scolded ABC’s George Stephanopoulos yesterday for branding him 'the original hipster CEO.' 'I don’t know about ‘hipster,’ ' Karp scoffed. 'I don’t know if I really appreciate that one.' Square Stephanopoulos asked, 'That doesn’t work for you?' Karp, a Bronx HS of Science dropout, rolled his eyes, shrugged and replied, 'I prefer not.'" (PageSix)


"Paul Allen and Denise Rich both hosted exclusive bashes on their yachts in Cannes Monday. But Alec Baldwin didn’t make it to his own movie’s after-party on Rich’s 'Lady Joy' so he could stay by the side of his pregnant wife Hilaria Thomas. A private dinner followed by a late-night blow-out was in celebration of Baldwin and James Toback’s 'Seduced and Abandoned,' and guests went through 100 cases of Perrier-Jouët Champagne, spies said. But Baldwin was MIA. Spies said he and Thomas’ flight to France was delayed and they’d had to race from the airport to the red carpet for the film’s debut. After that mad dash, pregnant Thomas wasn’t up for partying and Baldwin dutifully stayed with her. Aboard another yacht, Allen’s 'Tatoosh,' the billionaire hosted his annual Cannes party for guests including Goldie Hawn, Adrien Brody and Michael Douglas. The Microsoft mogul provided entertainment by jamming with his band, spies said." (P6)


"My sincerest apologies to anyone who bought these ‘books’. I know they are full of typos and formatting errors, all entirely my fault. Sadly my skill set is narrow, and I ought not to be in charge of anything beyond the writing. I should have nothing to do with editing or production or distribution. Therefore, I am offering refunds to anyone suitably disgruntled, equally I offer the solace of you being the owner of collectors items. Why collectors items? Well, because on my most recent, the third and final trip to NYC I encountered the greatest success of all. I settled on a powerful literary agent and a publisher and now all my books will be proofed, correctly formatted and reprinted (without photographs). I am thrilled about this. To cap it off, after a day of airports and missed connecting flights and the overall discomforts of modern travel, I made it home in time to shower and change into party attire and off I went to meet Henry Bisharat and John Hemingway, two new-yet-old friends first met on Facebook and now included, for all time, in my personal coterie. The party was for the launch of Papa’s Pilar, a new brand of rum, and the guest of honor was John Hemingway, grandson of one of the greatest writers of all time." (Christina Oxenberg)










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