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Tuesday, October 07, 2014

Media-Whore D'Oeuvres



'Eyes Wide Shut'


"On this day in 1968, the Motion Picture Association of America adopted its film ratings system. Since then, films that have received ratings more towards the R or NC-17 side of the spectrum have either fought back, or created controversy over the MPAA's bonkers decisions. To celebrate this birthday, we've compiled the 15 times that the MPAA got it oh so wrong." (INDIEWIRE)


NBC in crisis mode after ABC wins news ratings war


"NBC is holding crisis meetings over the future of 'Nightly News With Brian Williams' after rival ABC’s 'World News Tonight with David Muir' scored a historic ratings win. For the week of Sept. 29, ABC’s newscast scored an across-the-board win in total viewers — 8.4 million — as well as the golden demos, adults 25 to 54 and adults aged 18 to 49. NBC’s 'Nightly News' trailed with 8.2 million viewers. Sources tell us that after the release of the figures Tuesday, 'the NBC News morning call was very somber. A meeting was held with the ‘Nightly News’ executive producer to try to motivate the staff. There will be further crisis meetings.' To make matters worse, we’re told that Brian Williams and NBC News president Deborah Turness — whose next mission is to halt the show’s declining ratings — don’t exactly see eye to eye. One insider described their relationship as 'icy.'" (P6)


Ian Barford and Alex Sharp.


"Last night’s performance  was attended by a few hundred  attending the 'gala' (the theater holds a little more than 1000).  Hugh Jackman and his wife Debora-Lee Furness were there. Anna Wintour and Michael Kors, were co-hosts with Rufus Norris (National Theatre Director Designate), Stuart Thompson (Curious Incident producer), and actors Ruth Wilson, Benedict Cumberbatch, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Damian Lewis and Dominic West. Funds raised from the Gala will support the work of the National Theatre in the U.K. and the U.S. There was a cocktail reception and dinner after the show at another of those private clubs that are so famous they’re in every architectural history book as well as many other books and yet one is told not to mention its name in Print. Quaint remnants of WASPdom. Nevertheless, although I wasn’t there to witness, I’m sure it was a wonderful evening (I’ve been to events there in the past). And particularly a wonderful evening for the guests who had just come from the Ethel Barrymore Theater where they saw this riveting, extraordinary play performed by brilliant actors. That sounds like a lot, I know. And it was." (NYSD)



Not a Bad Place to Die



"This is about life up high. A Brit rapscallion and mischief-maker gossip columnist, Peter McKay, recently diverted from type and wrote about how great it is to pilot a plane. (He’s taking lessons and has flown solo.) I’ve always been told that piloting a motorcycle and a plane is about the same, and the rascal is a motorcyclist. His build, looks, and accent are far more suited to riding on two wheels than piloting an airplane—that role is more consistent for a Cary Grant type—but I am being snobby and writing like McKay, cattily ... I took my first flying lesson at the University of Virginia in the year 1955. I did not follow up, but 25 years later the Crawley brothers came down to stay with me at Bruern Abbey, and suggested we learn to fly. There was an air base nearby, and a flying instructor. Andrew Crawley was a natural, as was Randall, little me bringing up the rear; but the stuff that had prevented me from getting a license back at Virginia—instruments and navigational skills—reared its ugly head yet again. In September 1987 the brothers rang me and asked if I could call Gianni Agnelli in Turin (I was in an Athens hospital, having suffered a heart attack) for an appointment in order to show him some paintings they were selling. I never got through, the boys didn’t wait around, and as they took off from one of the worst airports in Europe they crashed and burned alive. I see their children now and then and we talk about the brothers, two great athletes, incidentally." (Taki)





Gigi Benson, who made sure we all got there to see Harry's work.

Liz Smith with Jackie Weld Drake.


"After lunch I went over to the Verdura salon at 745 Fifth where they’d just finished setting up for a press preview late in the afternoon of 'The Power of Style: Verdura at 75,' an exhibition of 216 original pieces of Verdura’s jewelry celebrating the 75th anniversary of his going into business in New York. Carolina Herrera, who curated the collection, was coming in about 4:30 to give members of the press a tour of the exhibit. Today, Reinaldo – who knew Fulco Verdura – and Patricia and Carolina Herrera will host the official opening with a guestlist of Verdura owners, clients, and friends. I’m not a jewelry collector nor even an aficionado. I discovered Fulco’s works when I was working on a biographical project in the late '80s, and he represents a creative time in the mid-20th century America. His milieu was the rich, the privileged, the stars of stage and screen, and the tycoons. He came to this country in 1934 after working for Coco Chanel in Paris, to whom he’d been introduced by Cole and Linda Porter. He worked in Hollywood for another jewelry designer Paul Flato, introduced by Diana Vreeland who said of him: 'Everything he did was wonderful.' He was a great artist, like someone from the Renaissance," and then in 1939, backed by the Porters, he opened his own salon on the second floor at 712 Fifth Avenue where Henri Bendel is today. By then his clientele was already bluebook, Social Register, CafĂ© Society and Who’s Who. It wasn’t a household name but famous among the famous. I first learned about him through the late Dorothy Hirshon, who was one of Fulco’s first and biggest customers going all the way back when he worked for Flato in his Sunset Boulevard office." (NYSD)

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