Philadelphia

Best of 2016 – Ten Hot Celebrity Sightings In Philly

Finally a best of column for 2016. It was a little sparse this year for celebrities, even with the DNC, although I did quite a few including Eva Longoria, who I am now following on Instagram stories and she gives it up on that platform. You’re there with her for the highs and lows, but mostly for the face masks, dinners and beach time. It’s fun. We can all be a fly on the wall now. These shots are in no particular order cause I have a killer headache after giving up sugar and diet coke on Sunday. For the next two days I’ll suffer the worse part of withdrawal so bare with me, I’d rather be under the covers.

Celebrity

This shot really takes me back to my days in NYC when I learned my craft of shooting celebrities either on the red carpet or as a paparazzi (o). This is Katy Perry and Orlando Bloom leaving Vedge restaurant. SO I got a text that Katy was eating with Orlando, Cory Booker, and M Night at Vedge around 1130PM the Saturday night after she was performed at the Mann as a fundraiser for Hillary; I was shooting a client job at Vie until midnight and couldn’t leave, biting my nails til the end. (This was the story of my life during the election this year, I missed a lot of celebrity encounters because I was on a client shoot.) I called two of my friends to cover the doors until I got there, and lucky for us we all got shots. I love that Katy is giving us good eye contact.1-4-2017-9-17-38-am-custom

But the photo that ran everywhere was this one as it showed her America flag bag much clearer. Mission accomplished, we got great celebrity shots and Vedge got great national coverage.

Celebrities

Speaking of M. Night, he’s Philly’s bonafide celebrity in residence.  He’s always out and about, dining, speaking and filming in our fair town. In October, the Philadelphia Film Society celebrated the opening night of the 25th Philadelphia Film Festival last night with a party at the AKA Washington Square, where they honored M. Night Shyamalan with the inaugural Lumiere Award. Bhavna Vaswani, J. Andrew Greenblatt, executive director of the Philadelphia Film Society, and M. Night Shyamalan. Last year M filmed Split which opens Jan. 20 in theaters (starring James McAvoy, who’s been around town lately as he’s dating M Night’s assistant.) Just announced “Labor of Love”, which he was scheduled to shoot in 2015, but I see now it’s being prepared now. Will Bruce Willis’ star as he was slated to in 2015? Stay tune….

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Another celebrity that calls Philly home – the beautiful Sheryl Lee Ralph, otherwise known as Mrs. Senator Vincent Hughes. Sheryl Lee is way back famous playing on Broadway in the original Dream Girls. She is known for her roles in Moesha (1996), Its A Living (1980), and Instant Mom (2013). Currently she is on Broadway starring in Wicked, through March. Next up a film with Morgan Freeman, Tommy Lee Jones, Rene Russo  called Villa Capri and it opens in August.  She and Sen Hughes were out and about during the DNC, where I shot this photo. This photo ran in HipHop Magazine.

Celebrities

Adopted son Jon Bon Jovi. He’s always contributing his name and money to organizations in Philly. For a bit of time he was part owner of the Philadelphia Soul Football team. He was in town in November at the Thomas Jefferson Gala to present his good friend Bill McDermott, CEO SAP the Award of Merit for his work with TJH.  They kinda look alike I think.Celebrities

Bethenny Frankel, star of the Real Housewives of New York, founder of Skinnygirl, author, chef, and fan favorite. Brought all the boys and the girls to her appearances this year. She signed Skinnygirl bottles at a liquor store on Chestnut Street, where she had her handlers delete a photo on my camera of a baby and mother posing with her. That was my money shot cause girl I need something else fun besides your skinny in my shot. Nice dress though, at least it’s not black.

Celebrities

Shane Victorino returned to town to be honored by a former Phillies’ great, Jamie Moyer. Here he is with the Middleton‘s who are majority owners of the Phillies. Did you know in the beginning of my career I was asked not to reveal who they were, and I obliged. Now it’s out in the open, they’re the owners of the Phillies. I don’t know why that was, maybe to give them peace. But I will tell you this, they are very philanthropic.  As for Shane, he and Melissa love Philly so much, they’ve kept their house here and visit at least twice a year to catch up with friends.

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The Bacon Brothers – Kevin and Michael, with their sisters Karin Bacon, Hilda Bacon (l) and longtime family friend Angie Foster at a fundraiser for the Rail Yard held at Union Transfer. They Give Back!!

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Every year this crew comes and does promos for Dining Out for Life, Ted Allen, Pam Grier, Daisy Martinez and Mondo Guerra. Love them. They’re at Hotel Monaco.

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Dr J and his wife Dorys at the 3rd annual Erving Ball at the Sofitel Hotel. Cashman & Assocs ran this red carpet like they’ve been doing Hollywood premieres for years. Very professional, everyone got the shots they needed, plus the girls had cue cards to ID the guests. That’s how it should be done if you want press for your event done properly.

 

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The best photo of the year. When I shot it I didn’t understand what it was Debra Messing meant by this shirt, which was Susan Sarandon saying she didn’t vote with her vagina so she was voting for Bernie, then for Jill Stein when Bernie lost the primary. This was a huge photo for me getting over 100ks impressions on Twitter and nearly as many on Instagram. I could have pulled the rest of my hair out when my flash didn’t go off and illuminate the scene, so it wasn’t picked up by the national media via my wireservice, but the message got out. Happy Wednesday. I’m off to my first meeting of the year…. until tomorrow peeps.