Archives: February 2012
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I got several emails last week when I was on vacation alerting me to John Legend‘s presence in the dining room. “You’re missing him!” texted one faithful “Lunch” reader. “Oh well,” I thought, “next time.” Imagine my surprise when the singer magically appeared in the dining room today and even shot me a big smile on the way to his corner table. How thoughtful of him to schedule a return engagement on a Wednesday!
I was joined today by uber publicist Judy Twersky and her agency’s account supervisor, Jennifer Bristol, who I met in this very dining room through our mutual friend, Diane Dimond. A little birdie told me that Judy knows just about everybody and has represented a very interesting mix of famous folks so I knew lunch would be fun. I wasn’t disappointed.
Judy, who once toiled as media director for Ogilvy & Mather, started her own firm in 1992 and has had an impressive roster of clients, including Maury Povich, Dr. Andrew Weil and none other than actor James Earl Jones. (No word on how he felt being banished to the bleachers at the Oscars while Kermit the Frog and Miss Piggy took to the stage). Judy, who tells me she gets most of her clients through word of mouth, specializes in authors but also handles her fair share of celebrities. Her current client list includes former CIA agent-turned-photographer Hank O’Neal, who has traveled the world chronicling street art. His new book, aptly titled XCIA’s Street Art Project (Siman Media Works), will debut in March along with a mobile app. None other than Tony Bennett praises Hank’s work as “one of the greatest contemporary works of art I have ever experienced.”
Judy also reps pianist Richard Glazier, whose PBS special, “From Ragtime to Reel Time: Richard Glazier in Concert” premieres on stations around the country next week. Judy first met Richard on a TCM cruise and was enthralled by his skills as a raconteur as he regaled the audience (who stayed up way past their bedtimes) with the stories behind the “Great American Songbook” and tales of his childhood friendship with Ira Gershwin. Richard is coming to New York next month to be feted by violinist Joshua Bell.
Speaking of great parties, Judy’s 60th birthday bash made “Page Six” recently with the news that Paul Shaffer wrote a song especially for her to mark the occasion. (Paul’s wife Cathy is Judy’s best friend, and Judy is now managing the couple’s 19-year-old daughter Victoria Shaffer who has aspirations to host her own talk show). Her good pals also arranged for The Naked Cowboy to come in and sweep her off her feet (literally). “You can book him for 15-minute sessions,” Judy told me with a laugh. “I couldn’t believe it.” Who needs birthday cake when you can be serenaded by a man in his underwear?
Here’s the rundown on today’s crowd:
1. Dan Rather and another important looking gent we didn’t recognize
2. Peter Brown
Davy Jones, the devil-may-care Monkee, died today of a massive heart attack in his Florida home. He was 66.
Riding the wave of the Beatles, the Monkees were born in 1966. Jones, a Brit, was placed in the Paul McCartney role. The Monkees were the creation of record producers Bob Rafelson and Bert Schneider. With a stable of songwriters like Neil Diamond, the Monkees became an overnight sensation with an NBC sitcom and their likeness everywhere else.
Jones sang lead on several chart-topping hits including I’m a Believer and Daydream Believer.
WCBS-FM morning man Dan Taylor was saddened to learn of Jones’ passing.
“[He was] always a great performer. I’ve interviewed him several times, and I always enjoyed his stories.” Taylor tells FishbowlNY. “Especially how he had a school chum named Daniel Taylor.”
News Corporation’s stock is enjoying a bit of an upswing that can probably be attributed to James Murdoch resigning. After the news went public, Poynter notes that News Corp. stock was trading slightly higher, and it still is.
Perhaps this is just a normal swing of the market, but we doubt it.
[Image via Yahoo!]
The Tribeca Film Festival returns for its 2012 edition this Spring.
Getting the honor of opening the festival, The Five-Year Engagement, a re-teaming of director/writer/producer Nicholas Stoller and writer/star Jason Segel of Forgetting Sarah Marshall. The irreverent comedy also stars Emily Blunt, Rhys Ifans, Chris Pratt, and Alison Brie.
The premiere takes place on Wednesday, April 18, and the Festival will run through April 29.
Beginning where most romantic comedies end, The Five-Year Engagement looks at what happens when an engaged couple, Segel and Blunt, keeps getting tripped up on the long walk down the aisle. The film is also produced by Judd Apatow (Knocked Up, The 40-Year-Old Virgin) and Rodney Rothman (Get Him to the Greek).
The film festival was founded by Robert De Niro, Jane Rosenthal, and Craig Hatkoff following the 9/11 attacks, to spur the economic and cultural revitalization of lower Manhattan through an annual celebration of film, music, and culture.
Since its inception, the Tribeca Film Festival has attracted an international audience of more than 3.7 million attendees and has generated an estimated $725 million in economic activity for New York City.
It is traditionally one of television’s biggest nights of the year. And despite the usual criticism, the Academy Awards was easily the most-viewed show of the week nationally, and in New York.
The Sunday night telecast, seen on WABC/Channel 7, had an estimated 4.2 million viewers with a bulging 21.7 rating, according to Nielsen. The Oscar Red Carpet special took the next three slots in 30-minute intervals, with the final portion ramping up to the actual event at number two (2.9 million/14.8).
After Hollywood’s annual pomp and circumstance came Fox’s own version. The two-day American Idol final judgment yielded a Top 5 and 6 performance. As the judges whittled the field down to the Top 25, 1.2 million fans tuned in for the two-hour presentation Wednesday (with a 6.0 rating), while another 1.1 million watched Thursday (1.1 million/5.7).
More from the Top 10 after the jump
Mike Catherwood is a 32-year old radio veteran, known to most people outside of New York as the co-host of the national syndicated Loveline with Dr. Drew. The show, though, is not heard in New York.
Catherwood, got his big exposure with the Big Apple when he was selected by Live with Regis and Kelly as part of the “Men of Radio Co-host for the Day” contest. By January of 2011, the native of Pasadena, California had a fill-in opportunity on the show opposite Kelly Ripa. That led to an appearance last season on Dancing With The Stars.
“It’s been insane. I’ve been lucky enough to have way more success in the radio industry than I could ever dream of. But the radio industry is an incredibly anonymous industry,” Catherwood says. “When you all of a sudden put your face out there on such a visible stage as the Regis and Kelly show, it was crazy to see people’s reactions.”
Click to read the complete interview with Catherwood.
The New York Times is feeling awfully nostalgic lately. On Monday it launched a Tumblr for its huge archive of ancient photographs, and today it has updated its Facebook page to include information all the way back to September 18, 1851, when the paper debuted. Known back then as The New-York Daily Times., it was available for one cent.
A few other highlights from the Times’ page:
- The first Sunday edition was published on April 21, 1861, because of the public’s desire for more news about the Civil War and an ongoing exposé that revealed the ponys used in the Pony Express were actually horses
- The hyphen was dropped from the paper’s name in 1896
- The price of a weekday Times skyrockets to two cents in 1918, sparking riots in all 27 streets across the nation
- In 1942, the first crossword puzzles began appearing. This is also the beginning of the now widely accepted practice of cursing at a newspaper
- The Times unveils its website in 1996 and doesn’t charge anyone for access, an error it still regrets so please subscribe dammit
Since its start as a trade magazine, GQ remains the sophisticated older brother of the lad mag genre. And although editors expect nothing short of poised perfection in all pitches, senior editor Will Welch said they welcome irreverence with no shortage of humor in their front-of-book sections.
“There’s always a need for coverage with a super distinct point of view and the right sense of humor,” Welch said. ”The most immediate thing is for freelancers to show familiarity with the skeleton of our magazine: what the sections are and what the tone of the writing is.”
For contact info for GQ editors and more details on what they consider a perfect pitch, read How To Pitch: GQ. [sub req'd]
The days of Bloomberg Businessweek magazine looking a hell of a lot better than its website are officially over. Businessweek.com used to be boring and complicated to navigate — basically the exact opposite of the print counterpart — but now it’s vibrant, clean and inviting. The new look is thanks to Richard Turley, Businessweek’s Creative Director, who routinely makes the magazine a must see.
We’re happy it has changed. We would routinely stay away from its site because of the clutter, but with a revamp, Josh Tyrangiel, the magazine’s Editor-in-Chief, said things are different now. “We’ve completely realigned the culture of Businessweek so it’s a digital news organization, he told Adweek. “People have turned on the juice.”
A Businessweek spokesperson wanted us to note that it wasn’t just Turley who is responsible for the new site; he worked on it along with a team of people. Now you know.
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