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Posts Tagged ‘Ashley Olsen’

Lunch At Michael’s: Lance Armstrong — For Governor?

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— DIANE CLEHANE

Remember a few weeks back when I promised Lunch readers a full report on the off chance we had our own encounter Lance Armstrong at 55th & Fifth? Well, here’s your early holiday treat. The Tour de France winner-turned-man about town was holding court at Table One today so I couldn’t resist chatting up the surprisingly shy guy. When I first spotted Lance in the power spot I was struck by how dashing (and slim) he looked in his power suit (accessorized, of course, with his own LiveStrong bracelet). All you gossipmongers out there will probably be disappointed to learn he wasn’t dining with his ex-Tory Burch or his one time canoodling partner Ashley Olsen. When I introduced myself to Lance as he got up to leave, he looked a bit nervous when he spotted me surreptitiously (or so I thought) taking notes. “What are you writing?” he asked nervously. That’s when I knew it wasn’t exactly the right time to ask about Tory or Ashley, so I told him I write this little column about who lunches at Michael’s on Wednesdays and asked him if he could tell me who he was with today. After giving the question a bit more time than one would think it warranted, he warmed up and answered. Turns out my new pal was dining with the head of his foundation, Doug Ulman and Kathy Giusti, founder of the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation. “She does an incredible job raising money for the prevention of that cancer,” he said. When asked why he chose to come to Michael’s (it’s his second visit in so many months), he said with a big smile, “Whenever I ask people where they want to have lunch they say, ‘Let’s go to Michael’s!” He told me he had another date planned but since he seemed a bit skittish about generating any press I promised him I’d keep mum on the specifics. In the meantime, ‘Mayor’ Joe Armstrong says fellow Texans are so impressed by Lance’s heroic fundraising efforts that there’s a movement afoot to draft him into running for governor of the Longhorn state. If Arnold can do it, why not?

Here’s the rundown on today’s crowd:

1. Lance Armstrong, Doug Ulman and Kathy Giusti.

2. Peter Brown.

3. ‘Mayor’ Joe Armstrong and Dorothy Kalins enjoying a long awaited “reunion lunch.” These good pals go way back to the days when Joe was founding publisher of Saveur and Dorothy was editor …

4. Would love loved to have been a fly on the wall for this one: Jim Dolan and Viacom’s Philippe Dauman.

5. Herb Siegal — congrats on your engagement! Ain’t love grand …

6. A group of gents we didn’t recognize …

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Trade Round-Up: August 30, 2007

Atonement Wows Venice Fest
keira.jpegA-list celebs and their filmmaker friends are causing a commotion in the canals right now at the Venice Film Festival, which kicked off its 75th anniversary yesterday with the premiere of Joe Wright’s war romancer Atonement. Variety gives complete coverage, calling the fest’s opening “an invigorating shot of youth.” The news story, by Nick Vivarelli and Ali Jaafar, says the pic received a positive reception, a rare occurrence in Venice. Reviewer Derek Elley agreed with the report in his own critical account of “Atonement,” writing “rarely has a book sprung to vividly to life” in a “smart, dazzling” film. He continues that its stars – Keira Knightley and James McAvoy – show “impressive star poise and physical elan.” Speaking of physical, the tabs are likely to have a field day with Knightley’s presence on the red carpet with early chatter criticizing on her gaunt appearance. Those starlets never seem to catch a break do they?

Easton Ellis Novel Headed to Big-Screen
Another Bret Easton Ellis novel is being prepped for the big-screen with the packaging of his The Informers almost fully formed thanks to the addition of cast-members Billy Bob Thornton, Kim Basinger and Brandon Routh, THR reports. Ashley Olsen, Jon Foster, Austin Nichols and Lou Taylor Pucci are also in the mix for the adaptation to be directed by Gregor Jordan. The story centers on seven stories taking course during a week in the life of a movie exec, his wife, his mistress, a rock star, a vampire and a kidnapper. Oh my!

Innovative Agents Show Fortitude
That interesting lawsuit sitch at Innovative Artists – two agents sued the firm’s partner to get out of allegedly unfair employment contracts – continues to play itself out with Michael McConnell and Ben Press announcing in THR today that they’ve launched their own fully-financed agent. The duo has formed a new shingle, fortitude, bringing a client list that includes Chevy Chase, Gina Gershon, Lara Flynn Boyle and Cybill Shepherd, among others. Rosters aside, Innovative honcho Scott Harris says in the story that his former employees’ claims are “disappointing.”

Zellweger Headed to Miami
renee.jpegIn casting news, Variety reports that Renee Zellweger will team up with Harry Connick Jr. in the fish-out-water comedy Chilled in Miami for Gold Circle Films. Pic will find the Oscar-winning actress starring as a Miami businesswoman who is transferred to Minnesota. Jonas Elmer is directing and funny enough, his last film was a Danish pic called Nynne which was often referred to as the Danish Bridget Jones.
- CHRIS GARDNER