Friday, August 14, 2009

RESTAURANT TIDBITS, RUMORS & SPECULATION

The Spot moved from Juniper to make room for a parking garage and is now located at 12th & Chestnut. It's just opened for breakfast and lunch. It's quick, I wish they would clean their windows a little more, but it's a great place to sit and people watch especially... and now he has company

Zack's is opening right next door with a similar menu; brand spanking new tables & chairs with a lot more room to maneuver.
The Oceanaire Menu is still up at 7th & Walnut, will the Cheesecake Factory Menu replace it? I know it's just a rumor, but now that 3 people have told me does it make it fact? In Michael Klein's column this week, he says the CF folks say they are not coming into the City as there is not enough parking. I guess now that PhillyBlog.com no longer exists they haven't read the "their are too many parking garage complaint message board."
STOGIES ON EAST PASSYUNK LOOKS LIKE A HOLE IN THE WALL. I hear those are the best places to eat. I didn't get real close as I was running late to attend a function at Jimmy Style, but do they have electricity or do you eat by the sunlight? I loved how their chalkboard sign was about 5 feet from the curb into the street.Michelle Obama came to town last week. Someone had told me beforehand, but couldn't tell me the itinerary and I forgot to follow up with questions later in the week. Witness' say the motorcade was impressive and the last car had machine guns out of the trunk. Is that true? After stopping at The Betsy Ross House, Isaiah Zagar Mosaic Garden the trio stopped by Capogiro (she too was sworn to secrecy as the secret service stopped by about 30 minutes before the First Lady) for something refreshing. Michelle enjoyed a Chocolate Banana with Dark Chocolate Gelato, which is now the flavor of the week.
Across the street I'm waiting for Zavino's to begin their construction. I've seen the renderings and they are impressive, very woodsy, a very long bar, windows that open out on 13th street, similar scale as my fav place Varga Bar, outdoor seating that is inviting, glass awnings, swanky, classy, upscale with surprisingly a lot of seating inside too. I was surprised the Check Cashing place vacated as I had heard they had a loooonnnngggg term lease. Glad to see them go. They left a souvenir

and it's on the side of the building in case you want it for your dorm room.The new IHop @ Juniper & Walnut Streets. Please IHop can't you open before I go back on my restricted diet. Originally scheduled to open on August 15, IHop is now scheduled to open in 2 weeks on Friday 8/28, but will begin serving on August 25. In the theater world we call that the preview. OPENED ON 8/21
Have a safe great weekend.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

NICOLE MILLER PHILADELPHIA CELEBRATES KATY PERRY'S COSMOPOLITAN COVER

Last night I stopped by Mary Dougherty's Nicole Miller shop at the Bellevue to help celebrate Katy Perry landing the most coveted spot on Cosmo for the month of August, wearing a new Nicole Miller design.
***Interesting note a source told me that Nicole Miller does not make this dress in that shade of purple, the folks at Cosmo digitally changed the colored of the dress for the cover. Don't fret though, Nicole Miller is highly suggestible and agrees that this is a great color for the dress and is working on releasing a violet silk Dupioni version with the exposed front zipper in early October to meet the demands of girls that want the "Katy Perry" dress and just in time for the holiday parties. (Dupioni sometimes known as dupion or douppioni, silk dupioni is a shimmering silk that is created by weaving silk threads of two different vibrant colors into a weave that seems to change colors as the silk is moved around in different lights.)Recently I caught a Twitter by Katy Perry speaking about her cover shoot: "I was never allowed 2 buy this mag cuz the covers always showed 2much bubbie. Thank God I can now show mine to ur child that's not allowed 2 c it in the grocery store isle."

Mia Colona and Sarah Stapleton show off two variations of the dress in the original cobalt color, which I personally love as cobalt is my favorite color. These dresses retail between $420 & $500 available 8/31/09 same day as the Whitney Houston CD drops.Megan, Mary Dougherty and Jillian Dunn looking fashionably happy and why not the economy is picking up, and in a few short weeks they will be headed up to Bryant Park to catch the new Spring 2010 Nicole Miller NY Fashion Show line. I plan to hook up with them for a behind the scenes look at Nicole Miller's upcoming fashions and of course the show.
A nice crowd came out for the celebration, which continues tonight at Nicole Miller Manayunk - 4249 Main Street - 5-8pm; If you look closely, real closely you can catch the head of the City Paper's Meal Ticket's Drew Lazor, who stopped by with his girlfriend to check out the scene.Ellen Gregory and Sally Yuan. Alma de Cuba provided snacks for the guests. As for Reese Witherspoon all they would tell me is she's a repeat visitor and she gets the same dish repeatedly. Another guest told me that she's seen Owen riding her bike around Drexel's Campus, and last Tuesday rented out the stadium so he could ride it in peace without all the sports teams working out at the same time. She gave me the times and locations of repeated sightings, so I when I finally make it over to the film shoot I will have a goal in mind.
Stephanie Ragg and Leigh Ann Barnes. Stephanie is interning at Nicole Miller's this summer and will be graduating from U of P this year. Her major is communications and she's looking to get into the PR field, so all you PR firms she's looking for a job and she's a smarty.
Looks like another beauty will be wearing Nicole Miller this season.
Nicole Miller also has men's accesories, I own a beautiful Nicole Miller tie with camera's on it. I wore it to the party, and at a party I attended afterwards and everyone loved it and wanted to know where I got it.
Nicole Miller always has accesories for the ladies tooThere was a make-up artist to give you tips on applying your face as well as the best colors for you and your skin.Jamie Dranoff and Sarah Alford stopped by
as did the stylish Natasha Torrence and Asha Banks. Asha tells me she created her own fashion sense shopping at Burlington Coat Factory, and Nine West did the shoes.
ADRIAN HARDY of Gruve Diggers (he spins ALL over the city- Marmount, Ladder 15, Vango, Denim..
For you ladies that love Nicole Miller, but your budget just can't fit it in right now, don't fret I saw a Sale rack with dresses marked 50% - 75% off. What are you waiting for?
Tonight you can catch another Nicole Miller celebrates Katy Perry's cover at Mary Dougherty's other store in Manyunk 4249 Main Street - 5-8pm -NEVER BEFORE SEEN NEW YORK SHOWROOM SAMPLES!!!! HOT OFF THE RUNWAY & AVAILABLE TO BUY!!!
-ALL NEW MERCHANDISE: fall collection & accessories
-Makeup artist Michael Connor giving FREE makeup applications & tutorials
-Chance to win $100 GIFT CERTIFICATE to Nicole Miller Philadelphia
-GOODIE BAG featuring awesome deals and samples from Philadelphia's top salons, fitness centers, bars, restaurants, and more!
-cocktails & appetizers
-PARTNERS INCLUDE: absolut, alma de cuba, art + science, beans beauty, lush, mad river, makeup artist Michael Connor, Philly Style, Pierre & Carlo, Saxbys Coffee, Sweat Gym, Touchables Lingerie, Yoga Sutra, and Philadelphia's HOTTEST DJs - your favorite hot spot frequent ADRIAN HARDY of Gruve Diggers (he spins ALL over the city- Marmount, Ladder 15, Vango, Denim.. the list goes on..) and Kildare's DJ Kevin DeStefano!!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

HOLIDATE, CELEBRATE, IF WE TOOK A HOLIDAY

Don't Tell Gavin, but to celebrate the end of NBC10/Fusion Cross Training "Be a Ten in Ten Weeks" Mike and I went to Geno's for a Wiz Wit.
It seemed to be date night at Geno's (He's got a nice manicure, er pedicure I mean, but those shoes are beat)Holidate Night. Yes that "reality show"which has been filming at restaurant locations all over the City. It's based on the movie with Cameron Diaz and Kate Winslet where they switch locations to meet a man, in their case countries, in the case of the women on "Holidate" bi-coastal cities. Produced by Disney/ABC for SoapNet, Holidate is premiered last week on the cable network.
Holidate is a reality special that takes two women who are looking for love but having no luck with the suitors in their individual cities and transports them into each others lives. The women will temporarily trade homes, spend time in each other's cities and date the men in each other's lives. They'll be able to communicate with each other throughout the journey.A little instruction
and their off
Last month I attended the taping of an episode at Union Trust. Since I was there with Matthew Vlahos, PR for Union Trust, and Jimmy Contreras for my birthday dinner I didn't take many photos, but I did get to see how the shoot went and got a glimmer at the "dates" and the work that goes into a production such as this. (Thanks to the Pennsylvania film Office for those tax credits, even these productions benefit so they bring biz and dollars to you.)
Update: I've just been informed that this is a different girl, she likes cheesesteaks and is into this guy. but a new guy. (and much cuter I must add, personal opinion here that's why there's vanilla & chocolate)
Everything seemed normal at Geno's
and business was brisk without any mention of what they were filming, over and over and over again. At one point I heard her say to him that she loved her sandwich (I guess they weren't greasy), in which he replied I wish there were more hot peppers, and voila! for the next taping a PA had placed more peppers in his sandwhich.
life went on as usual around them as folks order wiz wits, and wiz wit outs and just wits; From what I overheard they were really into their date. Having just finished a "reality show", I can say you really do forget the camera, although I tried to measure my words, especially avoiding those curse words when doing pushups. At one point she offers him a bite of her sandwhich (I saw them both eat two during the taping, sounds like a benefit)
As the two walked off in the neon light of the Italian Market I thought to myself they've been to Union Trust, to The Waterworks, now to Geno's how about going to Franklin Square, having a square burger then a little miniture golf. Perhaps a walking tour of the Avenue of the Arts, or the Footsteps of Ben Franklin , any one of our museums, and then there's my favorite go to the top of City Hall Rm 121, get a timed ticked and check out the view of the City. Check out GPTMC for a list of fun things to do in the City or check out the off the beaten track sites.
Cut, that's a wrap.
Watch for the ABC/Soap Channel for upcoming episodes, or check them out here: http://www.yidio.com/show/holidate

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

REESE WITHERSPOON, Jake Gyllenhaal, PAUL RUDD, JACK NICHOLSON, Untitled James L. Brooks Project - Spoilers, oh & Owen Wilson

As the lone Philadelphia Paparazzi (Paparazzo) I really do pride myself on shooting the celebs that pass by our fair town and bringing them to you. It's always been a joke that Philly doesn't get real celebrities here, but since I started doing this 2 years ago it does seem like Philly is on their radar (Especially in regards to movies/videos being shot here because of the great work the GPFO & Pa Film Office does with the Tax Credits. This w/e I will be photographing a behind the scenes of a video shoot, again.)

A few weeks back the stars were literally aligned and the Untitled movie directed by James L Brooks about softball, love and three people, starring Reese Witherspoon, Paul Rudd, Jack Nicholson & Owen Wilson and rolled into town & set up shot in the building I work in. So every lunch break, and two 10 minute increments, as well as after work I would run outside to see if I could get a shot of something going on in the 4th floor windows.
Sometimes I got lucky, and once I got a shot of a lifetime, thanks Jack. (Tidbits: Jack does not like to pose for people in the ordinary way. In the 5 pictures I saw from 5 different people he was either doing the thumbs up, the joker smile, a two hand wave or smoking a cigar. He's an easy going guy and spent a lot of time chatting with the security guards manning the set. He likes to talk about sports, specifically his Lakers.)A few of the spoilers are coming up, so if you don't want to know, tune into tomorrow. In the lobby of my building they installed a "Directory". On the Monday they did it I really thought it was for the building and ignored it. Then that night I saw them set up for filming. Thankfully when I got in the next day it was still there and got this shot. Some of the names on the directory were "Steven Colbert", Martin L Luther, the Law Offices of Nixon & Johnson, who seemed to be on 7 of the floors.
The address of the building is 2050 K Street.

I think the reason they picked my building to film a week of scenes taking place in Paul Rudd's office, I can't figure out what he does for a living yet, but I think they picked the location as it's across from Philadelphia City Hall, which is a 2nd French Empire design the same style as the Old Executive Bldg in Washington DC where the movie is SET & filmed for a few months before arriving in Philly. (This is where the Vice President of the US has his office). Thanks again to the Pennsylvania Film Office Tax Credit, we were able to lure this production away from being filmed completely in D.C.This is pretty much the one scene they film from every conceivable angle.

It was of Katherine Hahn punching Paul Rudd in the face.By Thursday Katherine was filming the scene alone. It's then I noticed her character was pregnant; later I found out that she was also pregnant.

Over and over again throwing the punch and standing from a seated position.


And after a long day she was finished with a big hug to James L Brook of thanks. Most of these photos I took from two blocks away as the production assistants told me I would be in the shots if I photographed any closer. The following weekend she gave birth a month earlier. Officials say that it won't affect her role as she only had a few more scenes left to do. That evening the production moved to a night scene at 21st & Delancey. It was that evening that Reese Witherspoon finally arrived in town to begin her scenes. She wasn't at this location.
A week later I caught up with her at Alma de Cuba. Oy I made my presences known, I asked if I could take a picture and it was like that scene in alien with the person pointed out the human as Jake yelled "Photographer" and pointed. I continued to ask for a shot giving them the same offer I gave to Demi Moore, but to no avail. And since then many a twitter or FB friend has tipped me to sightings, but the stars have not aligned for me again. As they were exiting the restaurant I asked for a photo, Reese seemed surprise to see me as she was looking for their car which had disappeared. Jake said to her, "Photographer!!" and yanked her towards him and spun her around. It appears they then left through the back door. One lone photographer and they couldn't pose for a photo. Granted Jake looked like a shlub in his shorts and baseball cap as he exited the posh Alma de cuba, and Reese had flip flops on, but still. Yo guys I won't be asking next time. (Now don't say i don't respect them, I could shoot them at their house. I'm probably one of the few people who know where they are staying)

Reese & Jake, who I just photographed in NYC this past June, have alluded me here in Philadelphia. As I told Demi last year, sure I can find you with ease in NYC, but you're here in Philly, and Philadelphian's want to see u in their home town, so please Reese if you're reading this I'd really like a photo.

Maybe Reese remembers that it was me who broke the story of her big fight with Ryan @ The Flags of their Father's premiere after party in NYC. (midway down: http://www.confessionsofapaparazzi.com/2006/10/flags-of-our-fathers-special-new-york.html ) My blog was featured on MTV "Best Week Ever", in the NY Post, & Us Magazine. It was the story that got me noticed by my first agency. You know I don't like to diss people, but this sad event propelled me to where I am today.
That was not the case last Tuesday night. A FB friend texted me that Paul Rudd & Owen Wilson were at Parc eating dinner. I got there, and like so many people the first folks I asked got it all wrong and said that they had left. She even had a blurry photo as she was so excited to see him she gave out a little scream. So i hung out for a bit, and was going to do a bit on that, but a server came out, I asked them and they told me they were still inside. So I waited for 3 hrs. First Owen came out, but he was lightening fast, running to his car and in the same breath saying to Rudd's driver, we may have had a little too much fun tonight,
Finally Paul emerged. At first he wasn't looking at the camera, but I said Paul, you and Owen are turning this into the Waverly. He laughed because he knew I was right. The Waverly is the celebrity hangout in NYC. If you want to be photographed by the Paparazzi, that is where you go. Since Owen has been hanging out at Parc for the past week, it's well on it's way. A couple nights earlier I received two tips from friends about Owen being at Parc in his slippers. I was with a friend and I didn't want to leave her so I thought that shot will go unseen, but a pap I N F guerrilla agency who came down from NYC just to shoot the celebs in the movie was here (he was able to get photos of most of the cast because heck he does it for a living and has the time, but I am jealous - LOL). By the time he caught up with Owen, he was departing Franklin Mortgage & Company where he had gone for a drink. (he also stopped by last Friday (7/31/09) G Lounge, but only stayed about 20 mins.) Owen's also be spotted at Rouge, Parc, and the Four Season's lounge. I heard he was at Alma de Cuba on Friday, but my research tells me he had already flown the coup to Texas. So even though I get tipped off to things, sometimes the leads are useless. That's why I'm the only paparazzi in this town, nothings a sure thing, and there's a whole lotta wasted time. Thank God for my Blackberry and understanding partner Mike, 'cause I am not home much.

People always want to know how I know where they are? I do research on the internet reading message boards & twitter as people with sightings always want to share that with their friends, I get a lot of tips as generous friends/people, and occasionally from businesses as it's always a plus to have a high profile customer that will be written about, but it's better to have a picture to get that info national (ie Dusk/Cashman & Assocs. inviting me down a few weeks ago to shoot the red carpet with Kristin Cavalleri/Nick Lachay [those shots appeared in Us Magazine, 2xs and OK Magazine next week. As well as countless blogs).

Last week my friend Dennis Fee, owner of Tavern on Camac, sat in front of Reese & Jake @ the Elton John/Billy Joel concert. Ava (on left) is a spitting image of her mom. He's friendly with Elton John and has been to his house a few times, including the Tiera & Pearls party. He said that before the show Reese, Jake & family visited with Elton John, as after the show Elton flew immediately to Nice, Italy to begin his Holiday.

Here's the clan again, this weekend running in the Martha's Vineyard 5K http://bit.ly/NHRvdSo if you see Reese, Paul or Owen tip me off please @ email: " Buzz @ Philly Chit Chat.com "; I'd really appreciate it. Thanks Hughe Looking the staying power of the 1976 Rocky movie. This past weekend people even waited in line for a picture with the statue.