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Mary Tyler Moore, ground-breaking actress and diabetes campaigner, dies aged 80


NEWS  by Jack Yan/January 26, 2017/0.38




The two Camelots: the Petries’ living room was the hippest fictional place to be in the early 1960s, with Dick van Dyke and Mary Tyler Moore as Rob and Laura Petrie in The Dick Van Dyke Show. Ed Asner with Moore in the pilot episode of The Mary Tyler Moore Show—not the first take. The original first-season cast of The Mary Tyler Moore Show, clockwise from top left: Valerie Harper, Ed Asner, Cloris Leachman, Ted Baxter, Mary Tyler Moore, and Gavin MacLeod.

Mary Tyler Moore, the multi-Emmy-winning star and Oscar-nominated actress, died aged 80 on Wednesday in Greenwich, Connecticut.
   Publicist Mara Buxbaum issued the following statement: ‘Today, beloved icon, Mary Tyler Moore, passed away at the age of 80 in the company of friends and her loving husband of over 33 years, Dr S. Robert Levine. A ground-breaking actress, producer, and passionate advocate for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, Mary will be remembered as a fearless visionary who turned the world on with her smile.’
   Moore was born in Brooklyn, New York, on December 29, 1936. At 17, she wanted to be a dancer, with her dance training evident in one of the first roles that brought her national attention: the Happy Hotpoint elf, who danced across the screen as the mascot for Hotpoint appliances. She had a small role in Richard Diamond, Private Detective, and she guest-starred in numerous other TV shows.
   However, in 1961, Moore hit the big time when Carl Reiner cast her in The Dick Van Dyke Show. Moore saw herself as an aspiring dramatic actress, but found herself one of the most gifted comedic artists of her generation. It was Reiner’s second attempt at making the series (which he originally wrote for himself to star in), produced by Danny Thomas’s company. Thomas himself remembered Moore from an earlier role and recommended her to play opposite star Dick van Dyke as his screen wife.
   Despite an age gap between herself and van Dyke of 11 years, the two actors hit it off, and both have said since that they had crushes on each other. Her role was meant to have been a smaller one—effectively the straight man to van Dyke’s Rob Petrie character when he came home from the office—but recognizing her talents, her role began to expand.
   After a rocky first season that saw producer Sheldon Leonard approach sponsors to save the show, The Dick Van Dyke Show took off for its second season in 1962, and never looked back.
   The show was regarded as ground-breaking for showing a modern, white American couple in the suburbs, and Moore herself—as a young mother—wore capri pants as Laura Petrie, which brought her much attention, as well as complaints from less tolerant viewers. Moore’s catchphrase, ‘Ooh, Rob,’ became linked to her. She won two Emmys for her role as Laura Petrie, from three nominations.
   Van Dyke shared the clip below via Twitter on hearing of Moore’s death.

   Many of the key people on the show wanted to do other things—van Dyke had the beginnings of a movie career—and The Dick Van Dyke Show ended its run in 1966, on a high. Moore had numerous smaller roles, including one as a nun in the Elvis Presley starrer Change of Habit, but audiences still associated her with the Laura Petrie character. After appearing on a one-off van Dyke TV special, Moore and second husband Grant Tinker pitched a new sitcom to CBS.
   CBS effectively approved the sitcom based on Moore’s star power, though there were many road blocks in getting The Mary Tyler Moore Show made, as recounted in 2013 by Jennifer Keishin Armstrong in her book, Mary and Lou and Rhoda and Ted and All the Brilliant Minds Who Made The Mary Tyler Moore Show a Classic. The network had expected the show to be a flop, an early cut of the pilot didn’t find favour, and even co-star Ed Asner almost didn’t get his Lou Grant role, one that he is best known for. However, Moore, Tinker, and the team persisted, and The Mary Tyler Moore Show was one of the 1970s’ most acclaimed sitcoms, earning Moore four Emmy wins from eight nominations.
   The Mary Tyler Moore Show was, on the surface, an urban show that marked the dawn of the 1970s, after an era of rural-themed sitcoms such as The Beverly Hillbillies. But it was unheard of to show a young, single woman in her 30s forging a career and her own path in life. The show still stands up to scrutiny today for its writing and pace. Producers James L. Brooks and Allan Burns were committed to show a slice of reality—Moore could be seen repeating outfits during a season as a real working woman would—and to get a woman’s point of view, the show wound up hiring numerous female writers. It was implied in one episode that the fictional Mary Richards had stayed over a boyfriend’s, and another that she was on the Pill—both elicited viewer complaints at the time. The Mary Tyler Moore Show tapped into the US’s conscience, with the growing women’s movement. It also spawned imitators, including the short-lived sitcom Diana, with Diana Rigg, and the similarly short-lived Bewitched sequel, Tabitha. Behind all seven seasons were Moore and Tinker, who had formed their own production company, MTM Productions, Inc. MTM went on to produce numerous other shows, including spin-offs Rhoda, Phyllis and Lou Grant, as well as The Bob Newhart Show, WKRP in Cincinnati, Hill Street Blues, St Elsewhere, Remington Steele and The Pretender.
   Moore considered herself lucky to have been involved in ‘two Camelots’: two series that had broken ground in their respective times. While continuing to remain active on stage and screen, few projects were as well connected to Moore in the public mind. Moore did receive an Oscar nomination for her role in Ordinary People (1980) as a mother grieving the death of one of her sons—a situation that had a tragic parallel that year as Moore’s son, Richie, by her first husband Richard Meeker, accidentally shot himself in an accident.
   Moore and Tinker divorced in 1981, and she married her third husband, Dr S. Robert Levine, in 1983.
   Later projects included telemovie sequels to both The Mary Tyler Moore Show (Mary and Rhoda, released in 2000—and never had the spark of the original) and The Dick Van Dyke Show (2004, written by creator Carl Reiner and called its 159th episode). As covered in Lucire in 2012, van Dyke presented her with a SAG lifetime achievement award.
   Moore was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes in her 30s and was an active campaigner for the JDRF, formerly the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. She was also an animal rights’ activist and a vegetarian.—Jack Yan, Publisher, with Nathalia Archila


John Shearer/WireImage

Above: Mary Tyler Moore receives a lifetime achievement award from former co-star Dick van Dyke.

La La Land gets 14 nominations for 2017 Oscars, including leads Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling


NEWS  by Nathalia Archila/January 24, 2017/23.10

The lists of nominees for the 89th Academy Awards were announced on the morning of January 24 in a live stream that took place in six cities around the world, rather than at its traditional home of the Samuel Goldwyn Theater in Beverly Hills. La La Land surprised with 14 nominations including Best Picture, Best Director for Damien Chazelle, leads Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone, and two in one category, Best Song. The Oscars will be awarded on February 26 in a ceremony at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood, hosted by Jimmy Kimmel.
   Surprises included the absence of Amy Adams for her work in Arrival, Annette Bening for 20th Century Women, and Emily Blunt for The Girl on the Train (though she had scored a BAFTA nomination). Mel Gibson’s name is among the nominees, for Best Director of Hacksaw Ridge, showing that Hollywood had moved on after the actor’s infamous tirade under the influence over a decade ago.
   The nominees include the following.—Nathalia Archila


Lionsgate

Best Picture
Arrival
Fences
Hacksaw Ridge
Hell or High Water
Hidden Figures
La La Land
Lion
Manchester by the Sea
Moonlight

Best Actor
Casey Affleck, Manchester by the Sea
Andrew Garfield, Hacksaw Ridge
Ryan Gosling, La La Land
Viggo Mortensen, Captain Fantastic
Denzel Washington, Fences

Best Actress
Isabelle Huppert, Elle
Ruth Negga, Loving
Natalie Portman, Jackie
Emma Stone, La La Land
Meryl Streep, Florence Foster Jenkins

Best Supporting Actor
Mahershala Ali, Moonlight
Jeff Bridges, Hell or High Water
Lucas Hedges, Manchester by the Sea
Dev Patel, Lion
Michael Shannon, Nocturnal Animals

Best Supporting Actress
Viola Davis, Fences
Naomie Harris, Moonlight
Nicole Kidman, Lion
Octavia Spencer, Hidden Figures
Michelle Williams, Manchester by the Sea

Best Director
Arrival, Denis Villeneuve
Hacksaw Ridge, Mel Gibson
La La Land, Damien Chazelle
Manchester by the Sea, Kenneth Lonergan
Moonlight, Barry Jenkins

Best Original Screenplay
Hell or High Water, Taylor Sheridan
La La Land, Damien Chazelle
The Lobster, Yorgos Lanthimos, Efthimis Filippou
Manchester by the Sea, Kenneth Lonergan
20th Century Women, Mike Mills

Best Adapted Screenplay
Arrival
Fences
Hidden Figures
Lion
Moonlight

Best Foreign Language Film
Under sandet (Land of Mine)
En man som heter Ove (A Man Called Ove)
Forushande (The Salesman)
Tanna
Toni Erdmann

Best Cinematography:
Arrival
La La Land
Lion
Moonlight
Silence

Best Costume Design
Allied
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
Florence Foster Jenkins
Jackie
La La Land

Best Make-up and Hairstyling
En man som heter Ove (A Man Called Ove)
Star Trek Beyond
Suicide Squad

Best Original Score
Jackie, Mica Levi
La La Land, Justin Hurwitz
Lion, Dustin O’Halloran and Hauschka
Moonlight, Nicholas Britell
Passengers, Thomas Newman

Best Animated Feature Film
Kubo and the Two Strings
Moana
My Life as a Zucchini
The Red Turtle
Zootopia

Best Animated Short Film
Blind Vaysha
Borrowed Time
Pear Cider and Cigarettes
Pearl
Piper

Best Documentary Feature
Fire at Sea
I Am Not Your Negro
Life Animated
O. J.: Made in America
13th

Best Documentary, Short Subject
Extremis
4·1 Miles
Joe’s Violin
Watani: My Homeland
The White Helmets

Best Film Editing
Arrival
Hacksaw Ridge
Hell or High Water
La La Land
Moonlight

Best Original Song
‘Audition (The Fools Who Dream)’ from La La Land
‘Can’t Stop the Feeling’ from Trolls
‘City of Stars’ from La La Land
‘The Empty Chair’ from Jim: the James Foley Story
‘How Far I’ll Go’ from Moana

Best Production Design
Arrival
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
Hail, Caesar!
La La Land
Passengers

Best Live Action Short Film
Ennemis interieurs
La femme et le TGV
Silent Nights
Sing
Timecode

Best Sound Editing
Arrival
Deepwater Horizon
Hacksaw Ridge
La La Land
Sully

Best Sound Mixing:
Arrival
Hacksaw Ridge
La La Land
Rogue One: a Star Wars Story
13 Hours: the Secret Soldiers of Benghazi

Best Visual Effects
Deepwater Horizon
Doctor Strange
The Jungle Book
Kubo and the Two Strings
Rogue One: a Star Wars Story


La La Land leads 2017 Oscar awards

Royal New Zealand Ballet’s ’17 line-up: triple Academy Award winner James Acheson designs for Romeo and Juliet


NEWS  by Lucire staff/October 17, 2016/0.01



Ross Brown

Top: The Royal New Zealand Ballet’s Carmen, premièring on February 16, 2017. Above: A new version of Romeo and Juliet, premièring on August 16.

Royal New Zealand Ballet artistic director Francesco Ventriglia has announced his second full season for the company, kicking off 2017 with Two Ballets by Roland Petit: Carmen with L’Arlésienne, premièring in Christchurch. Both have scores by Georges Bizet: Carmen was composed for the opéra comique in 1875 before Petit adapted it into a ballet in 1949; Petit created the ballet for L’Arlésienne in 1974, using the score originally composed for the play. They have been performed internationally, though not in New Zealand till the RNZB performances running from February 16 to April 1 in eight centres.
   The RNZB will perform three of Alexander Ekman’s works—Cacti, Tuplet and Episode 31—in a full programme from May 17 to June 15, in Wellington, Auckland, Napier, Christchurch, and Dunedin. For Cacti, the RNZB will be joined by the New Zealand String Quartet.
   The pièce de résistance for 2017 will be the Ryman Healthcare Season of Romeo and Juliet, in a new version by Ventriglia. Using the score by Sergei Prokofiev from 1935, the new work features set and costume design by three-time Academy Award winner James Acheson (The Last Emperor, Dangerous Liaisons, Restoration) working on his first ballet. Working with Auckland Live, the RNZB will offer a live audio description of this ballet for blind and visually impaired patrons on September 3. The season kicks off August 16 and runs till September 24, reaching nine centres.
   Ventriglia said in a release, ‘Not only does this bold programme celebrate international talents like France’s greatest-ever choreographer Roland Petit and the contemporary genius of Alexander Ekman, it’s also about creating great art here in New Zealand with a new version of Romeo and Juliet. The talented dancers of the RNZB and I look forward to bringing you another year of world class productions. See you at the theatre.’
   Executive director Frances Turner added, ‘It’s a big and beautiful year which will take the incredible artists of the RNZB around New Zealand for 70 performances in 16 cities and towns. We are proud to be taking the highest quality art to the widest possible audience.’
   The RNZB will help the New Zealand School of Dance, its official school, celebrate its 50th anniversary with a season in Wellington on November 24–5, while Tutus on Tour with Ballet in a Box return to the regions through the year.
   More information can be found at the RNZB website.

Oscars’ video highlights: from red carpet to Leonardo DiCaprio’s and Brie Larson’s acceptance speeches


NEWS  by Lucire staff/February 29, 2016/8.52



Leonardo DiCaprio has won his first Best Actor Oscar gong for The Revenant at the 88th Academy Awards last night, while Brit Brie Larson won Best Actress for the kidnap drama Room. The Revenant director Alejandro González Iñárritu won Best Director for the second year in a row, though his film was beaten by Spotlight for Best Picture.
   Alicia Vikander, who is having a very high-profile 12 months, won Best Supporting Actress for her role in The Danish Girl, over favourite Kate Winslet. Mark Rylance won Best Supporting Actor for Bridge of Spies.
   Inside Out was named the best animated feature film.
   Other notable winners of the evening were The Revenant for cinematography; The Big Short for Best Adapted Screenplay; Spotlight for Best Original Screenplay; Bear Story won for best animated short film while Stutterer won for live action; Mad Max: Fury Road won for costume design; Amy was Best Feature Documentary; A Girl in the River: the Price of Forgiveness was the best short-subject documentary. Mad Max: Fury Road also won for editing, make-up and hairstyling, production design, sound editing, and sound mixing; Son of Saul was Best Foreign-Language Film; The Hateful Eight for Best Original Score; Sam Smith’s ‘Writing’s on the Wall’ (the theme from the James Bond film Spectre) won Best Original Song; and Ex Machina for Best Visual Effects.
   On the red carpet, Lucire fashion editor Sopheak Seng named Cate Blanchett in Armani, Margot Robbie on Tom Ford, and Rooney Mara in Givenchy haute couture as his stand-outs. Our video below shows Alicia Vikander, Saoirse Ronan, Eddie Redmayne, Rooney Mara, Cate Blanchett, Sacha Baron Cohen, Lady Gaga and Jennifer Lawrence as they walk the red carpet this year, along with highlights of the day, with comments from Whoopi Goldberg and Kerry Washington (who directly address this year’s Oscars’ diversity row) and Sacha Baron Cohen, plus plenty of support from his peers for Leonardo DiCaprio. Winners’ speeches that we feature include those from Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy, director of A Girl in the River: the Price of Forgiveness, who collected her second Oscar, Rylance, Smith (who thanked the LGBT community), DiCaprio, and Larson.

Best Actress nominee Saoirse Ronan is suffering after breaking her finger

Whoopi Goldberg on the Oscars diversity row

International film stars from Hungary, Colombia and Kosovo arrive on the Oscars red carpet and speak about their films

Kerry Washington, a presenter tonight for the 88th Annual Academy Awards, decided to attend the award show despite several actors boycotting

Alicia Vikander, Saoirse Ronan, Eddie Redmayne, Rooney Mara, Cate Blanchett, Sacha Baron Cohen, Lady Gaga and Jennifer Lawrence at the Oscars

Sacha Baron Cohen goes all serious for a change

Oscar nominees excited and nervous on the red carpet

Stars arrive on the red carpet for the 88th Oscars

Gowns, glitz and plenty of love for Leonardo DiCaprio on the Oscars red carpet

Fashion expert Nick Verreos sees green, white and purple as the Oscars’ big color trends on a stylish but safe Oscars red carpet

Mark Rylance wins supporting actor Oscar for Bridge of Spies

Pakistani film wins Oscar for best short documentary

Sam Smith thanks LGBT community following Oscar win

Best Actor winner Leonardo DiCaprio used his Oscars acceptance speech to highlight the issue of climate change

Brie Larson wins the Best Actress Oscar for her performance as a kidnapped woman in drama Room

Spotlight wins best picture Oscar

Doris Bergman’s Style Lounge and Party: style and substance before the Oscars


NEWS  by Leyla Messian//7.42



Felix Salzman

While the presence of an ultra high-tech Maserati Ghibli and a customized McLaren 570S Coupe make a strong first impression, I was more interested in finding out what Doris Bergman had in store for VIP celebrities and talent involved in the 2016 Academy Awards. I was looking for items that would appeal to as many people as possible, especially with all of this year’s focus on making the Oscars more diverse.
   Doris always supports a charity that’s all inclusive. Wednesday’s Child is showcased in a weekly segment by Los Angeles news presenter Christine Devine. Wednesday’s Child assists harder-to-place children in the LA County foster care system. True to form, Doris once again hosted two foster teens in need of adoptive families. They received the VIP treatment, receiving wonderful products from the sponsors as well.
   If one is looking for colours other than white, Single Dress and Kaya de Koko deliver dresses and tops in a multitude of Technicolor jewel tones and prints reminiscent of vintage 1950s fabrics. No LBDs here. Instead, there’s a garden of pink, gold and red butterflies and blossoms scattered across waves of aqua fabric. I was pleasantly surprised to find plus sizes next to the familiar petites. Designer Galina Sobolev is focused on dressing real women. The same holds true for Samiah, whose 18th century-inspired custom coats can be tailored to fit men and women of all sizes and shapes. As this event was staged a few days after Valentine’s Day, I could not imagine anything more romantic than being bundled up in red satin-lined black brocade. Antique buttons grace every coat, while faux fur embellishes dramatic hoods and collars.
   I felt ready to go out to the forest and gather herbs, but Pura d’Or and the 2-Minute Club had already done that for me. Their 20 per cent vitamin C anti-ageing oil is made from alœ vera, jelly mushroom, witch hazel bark and argan oil—a forest in a bottle that smooths fine lines and regenerates the skin. Their 100 per cent argan oil is an all-purpose beauty serum that hydrates the body, face and hair. It accentuates curls, prevents hair loss, protects the skin against the ravages of dry climates, reduces under-eye puffiness, and softens cuticles.
   Also rooted in nature is Ascend Cleanse, a pair of mind-body detox teas. Guayusa, the major ingredient of the Awaken tea, is prized by shamans throughout the Amazon. The dream-inducing guayusa is one of the world’s few caffeinated holly trees. Indigenous people say that one sip will bring you back to the Amazonian rainforest (while reducing bloating and other digestive issues). The Dreams tea, true to its name, uses catnip, chamomile and mugwort to evoke prophetic dreams and stimulate mental clarity.
   Twisted Silver, which unites the mined with the manmade, brought the rugged beauty of the southwest to Hollywood. Scraps of Victorian copper mesh becomes a double wrap bracelet or gothic choker. Chards of gypsum crystal from a St George, Utah mine dangle from bronze lariats and earrings. Geometric bracelets made from the leftover bronze button holes of Michael Jackson’s concert jackets were a hit with celebrities.
   I ended the day with a double dose of pre-Oscar fun. First, I enjoyed a sip of Rekorderlig cider in the passionfruit flavour, which was refreshing and slightly sweet. The reps told me the line is very popular in New Zealand. South Island Kiwis facing a cold winter can look forward to their recently launched spiced apple cider, which can be served hot with a slice of orange. Next, I sampled a savoury and sour cucumber margarita, compliments of Azul Imperial Tequila.
   Romantic, yet real, Doris Bergman once again pleased press and celebrities alike with an afternoon of post-Valentine’s pleasure.—Leyla Messian, Los Angeles Correspondent


Victor Leung









The Secret Room 2016 Oscar suite: the suite where everybody matters


NEWS  by Leyla Messian//5.06



There is something about W Hollywood Hotel that makes every VIP feel special, from the sweeping entrance to the red carpets that lead the way to the ballrooms and other public areas. How everybody else feels once they get to their destination is another matter, especially when it comes to pre-Oscar events. I am happy to report that the vendors appearing at the Secret Room’s Oscar “show” brightened my busy week with their unique and useful products.
   Fake Bake presented their new facial self-tan lotion that imparts anti-ageing properties, along with a golden glow. Fruit stem cells plus other botanicals preserve and repair skin cells that have been abused by the bright lights of flash photography. Cailyn Cosmetics introduced Pure Lust Matte Tint for lips in a variety of waterproof reds, fuchsias and natural hues that enable women to sip cocktails without leaving embarrassing lip marks on the glass.
   It would take damn good soap to wash off this long-wearing lip tint. Dam Good Soap, a hand-made Canadian skin-care-in-a-bar collection, is made from organic olive oil enhanced with raw cocoa butter, honey and pure essential plant essences. Each bar of soap can last up to three months. Wouldn’t you prefer to wash your face with Thai lemongrass, Breakfast in Paris, or pomegranate instead of the aroma of sodium laurel sulphate or petroleum? I know I would!
   Two medical-grade skin care lines shared the stage with another research-based anti-wrinkle fighting system. Dermesse introduced celebrities to their Facelift in a Bottle, a 99 per cent natural collagen serum. Those desiring to stimulate collagen production can try L-ascorbic acid serum, while others concerned with acne or sun damage can strengthen their skin with hyaluronic acid cream. Dermesse also complements their scientific product line with a simple, natural sugar scrub.
   Airelle showcased a hydrating masque made with pure New Zealand manuka honey, as well as a facial serum that delivers more hyaluronic acid to prevent fine lines. Ageoff 90 Second Facelift recommended a two-step fight against wrinkles. Ageoff Glow caplets deliver a 65 per cent increase in collagen levels after 60 days, while Ageoff Instant Serum hides wrinkles immediately for those of us desiring to look our best in a matter of seconds.
   Label M, a professional hair and skin care line, brought their official London Fashion Week hair care products to Hollywood. Gents can prep their hair for the big night with Label Men, which contains New Zealand tea tree oil and Indian sandalwood. Its clean, masculine scent would appeal to ladies as well! Curly girls can enhance their tresses with Label M’s Curl Cream, which contains jojoba extract and an Enviroshield complex that protects sensitive hair against heat and sun. For the finishing touch, Label.M also offers a Diamond Dust Body Lotion that allows you to shimmer in the lights, thanks to black and white diamond and pearl dust in a rose petal oil base.
   Chicago jewellery designer Jan Payser gifted celebrities and press with mixed-metal Crystal Glow necklaces. Her higher-end pieces are inspired by elements of nature—tropical birds and exotic orchids forged in sterling silver and embellished with pastel-coloured pearls. These works of wearable art have a one-of-a-kind feel.
   Amy James, from Grand Prairie, Texas, showed off her Amy’s Social Butterfly greeting cards. Each intricate card is hand made by the company’s owner. She uses tiny scissors and swivel blades to create peacocks, Oscar statues and the Hollywood sign. From a distance, her three-dimensional cards looked like whimsical cake toppers and party favours.
   Representatives from two Australian companies were on hand to introduce taste-makers and trendsetters to something comfortable for everybody. Rashoodz Swimwear keeps babies and toddlers safe from the sun’s harmful rays. They even have a line of sunnies for image-conscious tykes. Kathy Sheeran of Island Trading Co. showed off her set of cotton pillow cases and sheets that assure a good night’s sleep after a night of revelry.
   No Secret Room Style Lounge would be complete without something special for the four-legged fans of Young Hollywood. The Petzi Treat Cam allows pet parents to interact with their furry child from anywhere at any time. By downloading the Petzi app, you can summon your cat or dog in a language they understand (baby talk), dispense a treat, and watch them go wild with delight from the comfort of your own computer or smart phone. The Petzi even lets you photograph your salivating, excited pet and share it on your favourite social media site. Pavlov would be proud.
   During a season when it seems as if only the lives of the rich and famous matter, the Pocket People were there to remind all of us that everyone matters. The Pocket People’s ultimate goal is to spread their message of love, comfort and empathy through their doll collection. Each hand-crafted doll is just a little bit different; their World of Pocketopia “community” is one that truly values diversity.—Leyla Messian, LA Correspondent






















Top of the world and top of the Beverly Hilton: the TMG luxury suite


NEWS  by Elyse Glickman/March 7, 2015/12.20


After we experienced TMG’s 11th Annual Beauty & Style Destination Pre-Oscar Lounge it was no surprise that the polite, professional but exacting young ladies standing at various hotel check points wanted to be sure guests were on the list for this primp-and-prep focused suite. This hot invitation not only promised the select group of celebs and press a variety of wonderful services, interesting new beauty products and great views of Los Angeles, but also fantastic company. The people administering brow services, manicures, massages and hair styling were absolutely delightful.
   Skinny Girl provided the snacks and libations (loved the Thai-spiced tortilla chips!), while Shapes, a Southern California brown threading salon chain had the main stage. Their artistry with brow shaping and make-up touch ups were fantastic (we are regular paying customers at their Sherman Oaks branch and can attest to their consistently excellent work), but the roll-out of their new Reema make-up line really got our attention, not only with their lovely colours but easy-on-just-threaded-skin formulas. The collection includes eye shadows and liners (naturally!) along with lipsticks, blushes, glosses and other necessities. IT Hair Care’s rep, meanwhile, was distributing the multi-tasking twelve-in-one styling solution, while we had our tresses tamed with other products in the line.
   On the new age-y end of things, guests could try a mini-stress reduction treatment with Miracle Wands. On the practical (and just plain cool) end, we were impressed with ExoFab, a protective case for Iphone 6 and Samsung smartphones that also sticks to mirrors and other surfaces, making selfies a breeze and more discreet to boot. Children lucky enough to attend with their A-list parents could be the first among their friends to receive the new 35th aAnniversary edition of Strawberry Shortcake and her friends, their cutesy ’80s rag doll æsthetic replaced with a more glamorous (but age-appropriate) face and fashion sense. Celebrity babies, meanwhile, could luxuriate in a crib bedecked with Horse & Dragon organic baby linens (as the founder’s son did in his compelling test drive of the products).
   If you had the patience to keep moving from one suite to another, you would be treated to a marvellous display of Onirikka’s striking and stunning silver, gold and semi-precious stone laden fine jewellery crafted in New York with influences from El Salvador artists and a wonderfully fragrant spa offering treatments and takeaways from Matis Paris and Academie Paris Skin Care along with very conscientious practitioners providing thorough instructions on how to use those products correctly.
   Celebrities on hand for this very “suite” afternoon of beauty and friendly faces included Grace Gealey and Katie Doubleday from the Fox series Empire, Sherry Saum (The Fosters), Neil Jackson (Sleepy Hollow), Oscar nominee Dennis Liddiards (best hair and make-up, Foxcatcher), Steven Bauer (Scarface), Naomi Grossman (American Horror Story), Rosi Blasi, and Frances Hannon (Oscar nominee and winner for best hair and make-up in The Grand Budapest Hotel).—Elyse Glickman, US West Coast Editor, and Leyla Messian, Correspondent









Truly, madly and deeply WOWed at the Luxe Hotel


NEWS  by Elyse Glickman/March 5, 2015/10.21



When we arrived at the WOW Creations Celebrity Gifting Suite at the Luxe Hotel Beverly Hills and checked in (and handed a particularly delicious box of chocolates), Matthew and Mark Harris took particular pride in telling us that they do their suites just a bit differently from their competitors. It’s as much about the friendly, relaxed tone they set as it is about the right mix of sponsors and innovative products.
   We have to say the real stars of the show, as the intrepid twin impresarios promised, were the entrepreneurs and inventors. As we sipped on Five Wives Vodka’s decadent vanilla custard flavour and Donkey Piss Tequila (don’t let the name fool you—it’s premium stuff and makes a solid margarita) and snacked on Pop chips, Confetti sweets, new flavours of Cottage Kitchen crackers and Sarah’s Skinny Sweets, we found ourselves very inspired about the products we were surrounded with. We were looking forward to trying out the Ponderosa coffee, whose aroma alone gave us a welcome jolt of energy, as well as dried fruits and preserves from Burkhart Organics. It was also nice to receive several boxed of Daily Body Restore Probiotics, created by a woman-owned company.
   Inspyered Creations does a most timely and accessible spin on the steampunk æsthetic, upcycling the remains of watches and other elements in to impressively graceful cufflinks, necklaces, rings and earrings. Manitoba-born artist Meagan Brown’s designs are informed by her 100-year-old childhood home, which imbued her with a reverence for antiques and a desire to create a line where no two pieces are the same.
   Beverly Hills-based Gem Mountain Studios, meanwhile, bridges the gap between fine jewellery and wearable wire-wrapping style. In the hands of designing brothers Isaac and Baruch Kaufman, rare coins, minerals, stones and precious gems are shaped into sterling silver and 14 ct gold musically inspired shapes. Fans include Jack Black, Geena Davis, Jason Alexander, EDM DJ and producer Paul Oakenfold, Jason Isaacs, and Kiwi Daniel Logan. The collection, exclusively made in-house, run the gamut from everyday pieces to investment estate pieces and can be found at their Beverly Hills boutique and website.
   Beautiful and environmentally friendly accents for the home included deliciously plush hand towel sets from Grande Maison Linens, richly aromatic candles and long-lasting wax from Rosalinde Blake, to Bedol Water Clocks’ candy-coloured table and wall clocks whose digital mechanisms are powered by water (via ionization). Artist Sonya Paz added a wonderful swath of colour to the day with watches and business card cases emblazoned with her lively prints. IndieExhibit, an independent collective of artists and creators, was back with a new assortment of artistic creations running the gamut from jewellery and art prints to kitchen hand towels with zany cat prints and decorative ceramics.
   Innovative skin care abounded, and we were introduced to RX Clinical, Pure Premium Karite Butter, Under the Sun Shampoo, and EMK Beverly Hills plant placenta-based skin care. The best beauty tip of the Oscar season was dispensed by the rep from Rx Clinical while discussing their new cleanser: always wash off your make-up, as one night of sleeping in it ages you seven days.
   With swimwear season around the corner in southern California, Neha Assar provided charming and tasteful temporary body art ideas for those who dare to take their fashion statements beyond jewellery. We love their tag line (‘Life is too short not to wear gold’), and think these will look very good paired with tanned skin and a pearl bracelet, or a lightweight button-down shirt and faded jeans. While a gel called Non F Monster by McCoy promises to reduce the appearance of cellulite as well as alleviate stressed muscles, the fact that it is first Japanese company to be featured at the Cannes Film Festival is pretty interesting.—Elyse Glickman, US West Coast Editor, and Leyla Messian, Correspondent



















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