Kevin Mazur/AEG/Getty Images
Above are Kevin Mazurâs photographs of Michael Jacksonâs last rehearsal at Staples Center in Los Angeles, which should put paid to rumours suggesting the King of Pop had no intention to carry out his concerts.
Mazur, who had photographed Jackson on numerous occasions, says, âWhen he hit the stage at rehearsal, I was thrilled that the magical Michael Jackson was back! I felt the same adrenaline rush as when I photographed him the ﬁrst time moonwalking. I was so looking forward to shooting the O2 Arena performances with the amazing production that Kenny Ortega and AEG put together with Michael for his fans.â
AEG Live (UK) Ltd. has announced that full refunds will be available to fans who purchased tickets through authorized agents for any of the 50 Michael Jackson This Is It concerts which were to take place at the O2 Arena in London.
Filed under: celebrity, culture, entertainment, globalization, history, living, Los Angeles, media, photography, publishing, society, Zeitgeist
TMZ was the ﬁrst to report that pop star Michael Jackson had passed away after suffering cardiac arrest at his home. Presently, mainstream media outlets such as the Los Angeles Times are conﬁrming the news, based on their sources.
Jacksonâs death comes on the same day another icon, Farrah Fawcett, died after a long battle with cancer. Fawcett was 62, Jackson was 50.
From a fashion point-of-view, Fawcett was best known for her hairstyle in the 1970s, and was at one point the most famous pin-up in a poster by Pro Arts, photographed by Bruce McBroom. The poster sold millions of copies, buoyed by the actressâs subsequent success in Charlieâs Angels, a series for which she remained known for the remainder of her life.
Jackson, being a pop star, had numerous reinventions, from a stylish solo recording artist in the 1970s to being proclaimed âthe king of popâ by the following decade. He had been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame twice, and had won 13 Grammy Awards and had 13 number-one singles in his solo career.
His impact on the fashion world was evidenced by an auction of his property earlier in 2009. While his trademark is a single sequinned white glove, Jackson wore a series of elaborately beaded military jackets in the 1980s.
Itâs arguable whether people aped the Jackson style in the way many women borrowed Fawcettâs hairdo, but there is no doubt that both were cultural icons.
Filed under: beauty, celebrity, culture, entertainment, fashion, hair, history, living, Los Angeles, Lucire, media, modelling, Zeitgeist
Top: H&Mâs Margareta van den Bosch and Jimmy Chooâs Tamara Mellon. Centre: Van den Bosch and Mellon with a model wearing items from the Jimmy Choo for H&M range. Above: Shoes from the range.
After collaborating with Stella McCartney, Karl Lagerfeld, Viktor & Rolf, Roberto Cavalli, Comme des GarĂ§ons and Matthew Williamson, Hennes & Mauritz has announced that Jimmy Choo will be next to design a guest collection for the mass-market retailer.
H&M says its Jimmy Choo range will be launched in 200 stores on November 14.
Jimmy Choo founder and CEO, Tamara Mellon, says there will be designs for women and men in the collection.
Margareta van den Bosch, H&Mâs creative director, says in a statement, âWe adore Jimmy Chooâs shoes and bags. They are glamorous and sexy, and they add instant style to the simplest of outﬁts. I like the way we have worked with clothes to accessorize the shoes and bags rather than the other way around. This collaboration is particularly exciting because itâs our ﬁrst shoe designer collection. Itâs a joy to be able to offer top-end designer shoes and bags of excellent quality to our customers.â
[Cross-posted] I never expected this a few years ago, but a few weeks ago, it was becoming more likely: Koenigsegg will buy Saab, says The New York Times.
GM and Koenigsegg say there is now a memorandum of understanding, contingent on loans from the European Investment Bank, guaranteed by the Swedish government.
I am conﬁdent. Christian von Koenigsegg strikes me, in the conversation I had with him some years ago, as someone who is not afraid to answer questions directly. He is accessible, and he loves cars.
People also had doubts about how Jaguar and Land Rover would ﬁt with Tata, which made subcompact cars and heavy trucks in India. Yet, Tata has shown a readiness to push forward new models that Ford never had the guts to do. We need to look at the management style and the national culture.
I think we might see information on a bunch of products inside Saab that the company was never permitted to do under GM ownership, either because they were too risky or that the funds were going to other brands. Saab fell into a GM-division funk like Saturn did. But new ideas have been bubbling under there, and while $600 million is nowhere near what it will cost to get some of them outâgiven that the funds have to cover everything from salaries to plant upgradesâthe Swedish people are not short on ingenuity.
Sweden has shown us that a little country can have leadership or near-leadership positions in so many things, from cellphones to defence technology to music. Once upon a time, the Swedish state even owned Absolut Vodka.
I know the economies of scale are not looking that good for Saab: it sold fewer cars in more territories last year than MG Rover in its ﬁnal year (2004â5) before that fell into administration. However, could make the same argument about economies with many Swedish products before they took the rest of the world by storm.
And Christian has been thinking of a lot more than supercars. What the world seems to have ignored is that he showed a solar electric sportsâ saloon at GenĂ¨ve this year, designed by our mutual friend Joachim Nordwall.
Could it be released with the Koenigsegg brand? Probably not. As a Saab? Most deﬁnitely: it is a natural ﬁt for the brand.
GM, Honda and Toyota may have dabbled in solar energy but Koenigsegg may well outﬂank them all.
Most of us will agree that the GM ownership of Saab has not been that successful and the division has been starved of new product for years. GMâs great contributions have been a few Opel Vectra platforms, rejigging a Subaru Impreza for the US market and put Saab badges on it, and reworking a deleted Oldsmobile SUV.
When I was growing up, Saab was known for the Combi CoupĂŠ (a fastback, liftback coupĂŠânot particularly common in the 1970s) and the early Turbos, then a great UK campaign connecting the car maker to the aircraft manufacturer. Stefan Engeseth says the company could have done quite well with a retro-modern version of the ur-Saab, the original postwar model with aircraft technologies incorporated. I am not so sure about now, but I agree that during the years of the New Beetle and the last Ford Thunderbird, a limited-edition ur-Saab could have been chic.
Logic tells us that things are not sorted with the new ownership. The numbers do not add up, the new products are going to be expensive to get out, and how many of those forward-thinkers that Saab was once known for are still in the ﬁrm?
But logic also told us that it was impossible for Sweden to be putting out a supercar that would take the worldâs imagination. Christian has done that. Conventional thinking also says that a solarâelectric car is too left-ﬁeld. I beg to differ.
Saab quality with Koenigsegg innovation sounds like a pretty potent mix to me.
With hindsight, I wish I had made a few more calls then just so I could say I spoke to the boss of Saab, and show off that I do know a bit about automotive marketing strategy. I say with a lean R&D model, Christian can take the risks with innovative, world-beating Saabs that make a decent leap ahead of the rest of the industry.