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Entertainment Attorney Nadia Davari Helped Avoid the Horrors of Showbiz at ScareLA With Actress Vida Ghaffari as a Moderator

On Sunday, Aug. 6 at 4 p.m. at the Education Stage of the Los Angeles Convention Center, Scare LA 2017 held the informative “The 7 Legal Pitfalls You Must Avoid Before Getting Into The Horror Entertainment Biz” with ScareLA’s own renowned entertainment attorney Nadia Davari and her client, noted actress and HPC’s own Vida G. (The Mindy Project, Holy Terror).

These ladies took the stage to guide attendees safely past the horror entertainment industry’s largest — and unexpected — pitfalls. Davari showed the attendees how to not get taken advantage of. To add a little practical spice, this seminar was moderated by Vida, who herself has dealt first-hand with many of these pitfalls in her career, but overcame them all with Nadia’s brilliant expertise. Many of the ladies educational and often humorous experiences and anecdotes were highlighted in this informative seminar.

Nadia gives great advice while Vida moderates. Photo courtesy of Fred Parvaneh/Kayhan Life

“It has truly been an honor to represent ScareLA and Lora, a young serial entrepreneur, and watch it evolve into such an informative and epic event,” said Nadia.

“I was so thrilled to be part of this panel with my wise attorney and a part of this wonderful convention that was started by a woman. It’s really great to be a part of the horror community with such knowledgeable and empowered women,” added Vida.

Nadia and Vida at ScareLA. Photo courtesy of Fred Parvaneh/Kayhan Life

“I created ScareLA with the vision of bringing the community together and celebrating our city’s diversity in its most unusual forms. Halloween has an amazing tradition of self-expression and creativity and we bring thousands of artists, haunt entertainment professionals, horror filmmakers and fans to celebrate it early. ScareLA was first to bring Halloween to the summer and we are thrilled with the amazing response to our show and creating Halloween’s first Comic-con,” said Ivanova.

Nadia with Lora Ivanova, the founder of ScareLA. Photo courtesy of Fred Parvaneh/Kayhan Life

“As an entrepreneur, it has been extremely important for me to have an A-class legal team to ensure our success and I could not be happier working with experts like Nadia Davari in this process. Her ability to look at the big picture and navigate the intricate landscape of show business has been key to our growth and I really enjoyed having her share her experience with our community at large at ScareLA this year,” added Ivanova.

About Scare LA:

ScareLA premiered in 2013 as the first fan convention dedicated to Halloween. Situated in the entertainment capital of the world, it combines LA’s top talent and unique setting with a twist! The weekend-long Halloween teaser celebrated California’s scariest faire with attraction unveils, workshops, classes, industry panels, haunt tours, screenings and activities. Share, inspire, play – ScareLA.

About Nadia Davari:

Nadia Davari is an experienced attorney whose practice bridges the diverse realms of entertainment, new media, technology, start-up companies, corporate and business law. Ms. Davari works with a wide range of clients including digital media companies, new business start-ups, production companies, movie studios, television networks, investors, and “talent” representation. Among her many areas of expertise, Nadia has an extensive record of accomplishment in the areas of entity formation, corporate maintenance, content acquisition, production, distribution (domestic and international), finance, the internet and new media issues ranging from capital structuring to intellectual property protection. Ms. Davari restructured international content licensing deals for MAVTV cable network and guided The Channel Factory and Planet Street through the process of establishing new media entities. At Taurus Entertainment and Dream Factory, she managed all aspects of “production legal.” While at Gigapix Studios, Ms. Davari negotiated and drafted scripted and unscripted television production, animation series, documentary and feature film, acquisition and financing agreements. At GVN Releasing she helped management launch GVN Releasing and negotiated domestic and international distribution agreements with content providers and sub-distributors.

This smart and savvy attorney has represented a number of prestigious companies including WR Films Entertainment, Je’Caryous Johnson Entertainment, Konwiser Brothers, Entertainment Treasures, Film Roman, Starz Entertainment, the popular Geekie Awards, and ScareLA. In the past, Ms. Davari practiced law as an associate with the law firms Rosen and Anderson as well as Barnes Morris. Nadia graduated from UCLA with a B.S. in molecular, cell and developmental biology and attended USC Law School where she participated in the Hale Moot Court Honors Program. Ms. Davari is also a guest lecturer at The University of Southern California School of Cinematic Arts. She recently guested as a legal expert on KCRW, KBEACH and LA Talk Radio and was profiled by popular blogs like Ms. In The Biz and the Hollywood Press Corps for her legal expertise.

More info about Nadia is at http://nadiadavari.com.

About Vida: 

Vida has been active on the Tinsel town scene as an award-winning actress and voiceover artist. This comedic powerhouse is best known for her appearances on the television comedies, The Mindy Project formerly on FOX, Jimmy Kimmel Live on ABC, and Mind of Mencia on Comedy Central. These projects cap off a number of successes for the versatile starlet. She just wrapped a supporting role in Nation’s Fire, which will be distributed by Universal opposite two-time Oscar nominee Bruce Dern, Emmy winner Gil Bellows, iconic action and horror film heroine Laurene Landon and UFC Champion Chuck Liddell. Her other film, the much buzzed-about Holy Terror, where she plays the pivotal role of Hayley, a very troubled young woman opposite legendary actors Mel Novak (Bruce Lee’s Game of Death, Black Belt Jones) and Kristine DeBell (Meatballs, The Big Brawl). Holy Terror is climbing up the charts and is #11 on Amazon Prime UK. This scream queen has gotten local, national and international press from this project and was billed as “the Persian Linda Blair” from her work in this role by noted journalist Maurice Dwayne Smith at this link: http://coldheatnews.com/archives/7401 and here’s Holy Terror’s trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CNjDmcCRAhY&t=3s

Vida also just shot Hybristophilia with Quinton Aaron (The Blind Side with Sandra Bullock). She will also be voicing a lead role in the three time Peabody award nominated The Suspense Show on XM satellite radio opposite Novak once again. In addition to voicing commercials, industrials, and audiobooks, Vida made her animation voice-over debut alongside Fred Willard, Lisa Kudrow, and Janeane Garofalo in Lovesick Fool, a film festival darling created by Emmy nominated director and animator Dominic Polcino (The Simpsons, Family Guy, King of the Hill).

As an award-winning journalist and blogger of her self-titled blog, www.soveryvida.com, she has also worked as a red carpet correspondent and has interviewed many celebs ranging from Oscar nominees and winners to Grammy winners. Vida recently received commendations from the City of Los Angeles and the West Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce for her journalism and acting endeavors as well as an Entrepreneur Award from the World Networks, an Excellence in Media Award from the Los Angeles Nollywood Film Association and a Media Appreciation Award. Ever the fashionista, Vida recently graced the cover of noted fashion magazine FVM Global Magazine twice, Shine on Hollywood Magazine, and 1st Class Magazine and was quoted about her knowledge of red carpet fashion for the Oscars by US News and World Report. She was also named a blogger to watch by On Trend Magazine.

More info about Vida at:

http://www.imdb.me/vidaghaffari

More info about this event at this link:

https://register.growtix.com/schedules/view/104877

More info about ScareLA: https://scarela.com

Dustin Brown

Dustin Brown

I am the Senior Editor at HollywoodPressCorps.com.

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Legendary actors and martial artists Aki Aleong and Mel Novak are inducted into the prestigious USA Martial Arts Hall of Fame

On Saturday, May 20th, legendary actors and martial artists Aki Aleong and Mel Novak were inducted into the prestigious USA Martial Arts Hall of Fame at their gala in Fullerton, CA. This Hall of Fame was founded by Grandmaster Jim Thomas, Ph.D./D.Sc./Ma.Dsc.

Inductees Aki Aleong and Mel Novak. Photo courtesy of John Cox/Polymedia Entertainment

Dr. Thomas is a 10th-degree grand master and is recognized as one of 20 worldwide. He has been active in the martial arts for over half a century. In addition to serving as the head coach for Team USA, he was inducted into 6 various martial arts ‘Hall of Fame’ institutions and listed in ‘Who’s Who’ in the world of Martial Arts. Grandmaster Thomas has won over 200 awards and trophies and served in the U.S. Air Force for 7 years during the Vietnam Evacuation Era. He was a former athlete for the USA World Class Competition Team and has appeared in over 8 Martial Arts Motions pictures.

Grandmaster Jim Thomas. Photo courtesy of John Cox /Polymedia Entertainment

The U.S.A. Martial Arts ‘Hall of Fame’ “Hall of Heroes” was originally created in 1976 by Grand Master Robert Trias, the first man to open a martial arts school in the U.S. In its beginning it was very small in nature and was done spontaneously at various Martial Arts functions. Grandmaster Thomas and Mike Day were called upon to orchestrate this function into what it is today. Even with the passing of Grandmaster Trias and Day, Thomas has kept this event alive himself and includes new exciting things each and every year.

Sifu Mark Hoadley. Photo courtesy of John Cox/Polymedia Entertainment

This event actually spanned three days from May 19th to May 21st, with seminars and classes and the gala being on the 20th. Celebrities in attendance at the gala were Kathy Long, Art Camacho and many more. Martial artist and stand-up comic Mark Hoadley emceed the gala with his unique style of stand-up comedy. Sifu Hoadley is a three-time Hall of Fame inductee and last year’s Alliance inductee. Mark frequently performs at The World Famous Comedy Store, The Ice House and the Clown House.

Grandmaster Jim Thomas and awardee Frank Paras Jr. Photo courtesy of Frank Paras Jr.

Frank Paras Jr. was also bestowed with an award. “I would like to thank God for everything, especially receiving my 2017 Hall of Fame for Black Belt of the Year Award. I would like to thank my two mentors, Grandmaster-Actor Trovador Ramos and my best friend late Master-Actor Robert Lee. I would like to thank for Soke Frederick Peterson Jr., my beloved wife Luz, Grandmaster-Dr. Jim Thomas and especially you, Publicist-Manager Joe Williamson,” said actor, martial artist and journalist Frank Paras Jr.

Iconic martial artist Aki Aleong has starred in over 50 feature films and 150 TV shows. He has starred in films opposite the likes of Frank Sinatra Jr., Nick Nolte, Christian Slater, Marlon Brando, Faye Dunaway, Joanne Woodward, Ben Kingsley, Ernest Borgnine, Martin Landau, Roger Moore, Peter Lawford, Olivia Hussey, and Pierce Brosnan. He has served on the National Board of the Screen Actors Guild, appointed National Chair of SAG’S EEOC and was a member of the President’s Diversity/Affirmative Action Task Force. Aki’s legendary career started on Broadway in “Teahouse of the August Moon” and “The Interview.” He is probably best known for portraying Senator Hidoshi during the first season of Babylon 5, as well as portraying Mr. Chiang, the aide to Nathan Bates in the weekly series of V: The Series. He also portrayed the character of Colonel Mitamura in Farewell to the King and starred in Missing in Action Part 3 opposite Chuck Norris and The Quest opposite Jean-Claude Van Damme and Roger Moore. Aleong recently starred opposite Jean-Claude Van Damme again in Pound of Flesh and just guest starred in an episode of the three-time Peabody-nominated Suspense show opposite Torohu Masamune (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles).

Martial arts legend Mel Novak is best known as the iconic Stick the Assassin in Bruce Lee’s final film Game of Death. He has starred in more than 60 feature films opposite the likes of icons such as Steve McQueen, Yul Brenner, Chuck Norris, David Carradine, Rosie O’Donnell, Dan Ackroyd and many others. He has been bestowed with numerous awards for his acting work as well as humanitarian awards. He has been volunteering on Skid Row for over 30 years and has counseled prisoners at the most dangerous prisons in the country and has also volunteered with the Special Olympics. More recently, he starred in Samurai Cop 2: Deadly Vengeance, #1 grossing indie martial arts action movie of 2015. Mel also starred in the recently released Sony Pictures’ Checkpoint, opposite William Forsythe, Bill Goldberg, Fred “The Hammer” Williamson and Kenny Johnson. Mel also starred in the much buzzed about Holy Terror opposite Kristine DeBell (Meatballs, The Big Brawl) and Vida Ghaffari (The Mindy Project, Jimmy Kimmel Live).

For more info, please go to http://www.usamartialartshalloffame.com/california-2017

Dustin Brown

Dustin Brown

I am the Senior Editor at HollywoodPressCorps.com.

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ONLINE AUCTION OF EXCLUSIVE ITEMS FROM PARIS HILTON, GENE SIMMONS, J SUTTA AND MORE

Los Angeles, Calif. February 15, 2017 – The Hollywood Press Corps announces a celebrity auction presented by Startuch.com. Startuch.com is an online platform where celebrities are raising funds for their preferred charities by donating pre-owned items to be auctioned online, announced today a new online celebrity auction that will go live on Wednesday, February 15th at 7.00am PT/10.00 ET at www.startuch.com. The auction will showcase exclusive memorabilia from influential pop culture artists like Paris Hilton, Gene Simmons, and J Sutta of The Pussycat Dolls. Startuch accepts a wide-range of items from celebrities including clothing, electronics, childrens’ items, music instruments, jewelry, art, signed or unsigned personal memorabilia, and much more. All of which will be auctioned off online, with proceeds going back to the celebrity’s charity of choice.

Paris Hilton’s Autographed SnowBoard

Paris Hilton’s Autographed SnowBoard

Hilton will be donating to Children’s Hospital in Los Angeles and Starlight Children’s Foundation, Gene Simmons will be donating to Mending Kids, and J Sutta will be donating to A League of Extraordinary Mutts. Speaking about his decision to donate and auction items at Startuch.com.

“All around the globe there’s children in need of urgent life-changing medical care and I believe in doing what I can to help. It’s great to see companies like Startuch.com offering a new way for people like myself to help our charities like Mendingkids.org, I hope others will also donate items and use this service to raise more money for their important causes,” said Gene Simmons.

Gene Simmons, Autographed KISS Custom Fighter Pilot Helmet

Gene Simmons, Autographed Helmet

J Sutta added, “Through auctioning these items on Startuch.com, I want to give something back to the fans and most importantly help raise more funds for dogs looking for a loving home at the League of Extraordinary Mutts.”

 

Paris Hilton also added, “I’m always looking for ways to help charities and good causes and when I heard about Startuch.com, I was immediately onboard to support their online auction to raise funds for charity. Through my Facebook donations I will support two charities that are important to me, Children’s Hospital in Los Angeles and The Starlight Children’s Foundation, both are wonderful causes that I’ve supported for many years. I encourage you to go online and place a bid and help support these good causes.”

J Sutta, Autographed “Pussy Cat Dolls” Hoodie from Wolrd Tour

J Sutta, “Pussy Cat Dolls” Hoodie from World Tour

Speaking about the new auction items and donations Startuch.com co-founder Evgenia Lorcy:

“It’s been our mission from the very beginning to always help those in need and I know there are so many celebrities and public figures who are always looking for more ways to give back. Startuch provides a simple and easy way for them to give back with very little required from them, except to donate some of their personal and performance items. We are extremely thankful to Gene, Paris and J Sutta for their wonderful participation and contribution to their causes, we know there will be many fans who will be excited about these exclusive items and we’re thrilled that they see the benefit and ease of working with us.”

Sample items going live on auction on Startuch.com on Wednesday, February 15th at 7.00am PT / 10.00 ET are as follows:

Paris Hilton Items:
Autographed “Roxy” Snowboard by Paris Hilton
Autographed, Crocodile Pattern Red Leather High Heels, from “Paris Hilton” Collection
Pattern dress with red bow
Paris Hilton cocktail mirror encrusted gold dress
Autographed Silver Grey Heels With Gold Bow, from “Paris Hilton” Collection
Paris Hilton pink ribbon cocktail dress
Cheetah Animal Print Satin Blazer with waist Tie Belt
Autographed Shoulder Tote Bag, from “Paris Hilton Rouge” Collection
Bangle Rhinestone Bracelet
Tiara
Autographed Tote Bag
Sequined Green Jacket
Red Leather Jacket
Autographed Purse with Paris Hilton Logo Embroidered
Black Bangle “LOVE” Bracelet

Gene Simmons Items:
Folds of Honor Foundation Helmet signed by Gene Simmons (one-of-a-kind)
Newborn baby KISS onesie signed by Gene Simmons
2 medium-sized women’s grey and glitter KISS crew sweatshirts signed by Gene Simmons
2 KISS Rocks Vegas DVD and CD pack signed by Gene Simmons
1 Gene Simmons Family Jewels Final Season DVD signed by Gene Simmons
1 KISS sign, signed by Gene Simmons

J Sutta Items:
J Sutta World Tour Pussycat Dolls Hoodie, with embroidered “Don’t Cha Wish Your Girlfriend Was Hot Like Me” and “PCD”
J Sutta World Tour Pussycat Doll T-Shirt

Others recent donors have included Terrell Owens (NFL), Lady Victoria Hervey (Model/Socialite), Vivica A. Fox (Empire/Independence Day: Resurgence), Matthew Rhys (The Americans), Adam Rodriguez (Empire), Lorenzo Lamas (The Celebrity Apprentice), and more. Startuch.com founder Evgenia Lorcy began her career as a model and fashion designer well known in New York and Paris fashion industry. While in New York, her high-end clothing brand EV&EL, was picked up by major stores across the U.S., including Nordstrom. At this time, Lorcy (formerly known as Gvozdetskaya) worked with and launched the careers of the then-unknown models Adriana Lima and Ivanka Trump. After winning numerous fashion awards, Lorcy also dressed celebrities such as Ivana Trump, Prince, Drew Barrymore, and Mariah Carey, and as a wardrobe supplier for the TV series “Melrose Place.” Lorcy later created her handbag and purse line “TsariTza” (meaning Queen in Russian), worn by socialites worldwide. In 2014, Lorcy and her husband, Patrick Lorcy co-founded Startuch.com as a way for celebrities and public figures to have a hassle-free way of giving back to their favorite charities.

Dustin Brown

Dustin Brown

I am the Senior Editor at HollywoodPressCorps.com.

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nonTransferable Transfers the Love in this Modern Internet Age

The rom-com nonTransferable held their red carpet launch event on Monday, February 13th at the kitschy Now Boarding in heart of West Hollywood. This film was almost entirely shot in Turkey, and it would take Iranian-American attorney Nadia Davari to bridge the gap between east and west as the legal counsel of this international film. Davari reps Lightening Entertainment, a noted production company and distributor of the film.

The film’s poster. Photo courtesy of nonTransferable

Interestingly enough, this film had an exclusive 4K Ultra HD Release of the Original Independent Film on UltraFlix before it hits theaters.  All of this is in conjunction with NanoTech Entertainment, who provides the innovative 4K experience to consumers and has a strategic partnership with SWIG MEDIA and Lightning Entertainment. UltraFlix has secured digital distribution rights to nonTransferable motion picture.  This partnership is helping to usher in the Company’s expansion of premiere film presentations and original programs on the UltraFlix network.

Still of the film. Photo courtesy of Davidson Vorhes

James Walker, President of Lightning Entertainment, and Forest Robin, Head of Digital Distribution lead the team working with the filmmakers spearheading this distribution deal.  Walker noted “The entertainment industry is looking increasingly at new models using the digital platforms to release and bring attention to films in ways other than through costly P&A.  Lightning Entertainment is positioned to leverage our relationship with SWIG Media’s next generation digital distribution capabilities and content partners to bring wonderful new movies like nonTransferable to the market in new and unique ways.”

Actors Brendan Bradley and Amin Joseph on the red carpet. Photo courtesy of Fred Parvaneh

As for the film, nonTransferable follows the adventures of Amy Tyler (Ashley Clements), a bleeding heart romantic who books a surprise vacation of a lifetime for her boyfriend Josh Merit (Christopher Nicholas Smith). When he abruptly breaks up with her on their anniversary, Amy is stuck with the non-transferable tickets in his name. Dealt with a difficult and time sensitive situation, Amy’s clever friends suggest that if she can’t change the tickets…why not change the guy? She comes across another Josh Merit (Brendan Bradley, who also wrote and directed the film) and the sparks fly.

This film also stars Amin Joseph, Shanna Malcolm, Katie Wee, Matthew Scott Montgomery, Sara Fletcher, Cem Baza, Monika Jolly, Daniel Vincent Gordh, Julia Cho, Joey Richter, Jessica Andres and Cigdem Önat.

In addition to the wonderful rom com story, this film is so intriguing on many levels. Produced by an American production, with a strong indie cast, but the the project was almost entirely filmed in Turkey. And during the geopolitical coup no less! Additionally, this film was also partially financed via Turkey’s tourism board and appropriately enough, the trailer screened on Turkish Airlines channel.

James Walker, President of Lightening Entertainment with his general counsel Nadia Davari
Brendan with Nadia

All in all it was a great event, with an open bar (yet I was too sick to enjoy much of anything) with an airline theme…how apropos for a film about travel and the food was catered by Prime Cutts. So let’s fly high with nonTransferable!

More info at http://nontransferablefilm.com/

Vida G.

Vida G.

Vida is an actress and journalist who lives in Los Angeles, California. She is the co-founder of the Hollywood Press Corps.

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New Exorcist Movie ‘Holy Terror’ Trailer Debuts

The riveting first official teaser trailer for the new supernatural horror film HOLY TERROR was just released. This film is in post production via Cineridge Entertainment from the award-winning team who previously brought us SAMURAI COP 2: DEADLY VENGEANCE.

Holy Terror poster

Written and directed by Rich Mallery (SOCIOPATHIA) and executive-produced by Gregory Hatanaka (who helmed SAMURAI COP 2 from a script co-written by Mallery), HOLY TERROR stars MEATBALLS’ Kristine DeBell, Bruce Lee’s GAME OF DEATH’s Mel Novak, Lisa London (H.O.T.S., PRIVATE RESORT), Kelly Reiter (The Z Virus), Jesse Hlubik (MAY, ALL CHEERLEADERS DIE), Nicole Olson, Scott Butler (WIENER DOG INTERNATIONALS), and HPC’s Vida G (THE MINDY PROJECT, JIMMY KIMMEL LIVE).

Still of Actress Vida Ghaffari. Photo courtesy of Guillermo Proano/PR Photos

Believing the strange disturbances in their home are their deceased son reaching out from the other side, Molly [Reiter] and Tom [Hlubik] ask a medium [London] to make contact. But instead of their child, the three accidentally invite a vengeful demon to cross over. After the demon violently possesses Molly’s younger sister [Olson], the couple enlists the help of a disgraced priest [Butler] and his mentor Sister Catherine [DeBell] to attempt a dangerous exorcism.

From left to right: actors Mel Novak and Scott Butler, writer-director -producer Rich Mallery, actresses Vida Ghaffari (seated), and Kristine DeBell. Photo courtesy of Guillermo Proano/PR Photos

“There has been a resurgence of exorcism/possession-type movies, so it’s a little challenging to give audiences something they haven’t seen before. But we have a few tricks up our sleeve that are going to make HOLY TERROR stand apart from the crowd. Plus, we’re going for a real late-’70s/early-’80s feel. Films like THE CHANGELING, THE AMITYVILLE HORROR and of course the original EXORCIST are huge influences on this project,” said Mallery.

Actress Nicole Olson. Photo courtesy of Cineridge Entertainment

“I’m really excited to be partnering with Gregory Hatanaka again; this is the fourth film we’ve worked on together,” Mallery continues. “It’s a little strange this time around, since usually he’s directing and I’m the writer/AD, and this time I’m directing and he’s the DP, but we’re totally in sync when it comes to the vision, so we’re like a well-oiled machine. We’ve brought back a lot of the cast of SAMURAI COP 2—Jesse Hlubik, Lisa London, Mel Novak, Kristine DeBell and Nicole Olson—and although this is a completely different type of film, it’s great to have a lot of familiar faces who are used to the way Gregory and I work. We’re both slightly insane, so it’s amazing to be surrounded by people who support our vision.”

“As Rich and I are both rabid fans of 70s AIP and New World horror pics,” Hatanaka adds, “it was only a matter of time before we teamed up to do a film in that tradition. HOLY TERROR works on deep psychological levels, and has an otherworldly, TWILIGHT ZONE-ish kind of feel.”

Holy Terror will be premiering this April on Amazon Prime.

More info at:
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt5924114/?ref_=fn_al_tt_2

Please join their facebook fan page for updates:
https://www.facebook.com/holyterrormovie/

Dustin Brown

Dustin Brown

I am the Senior Editor at HollywoodPressCorps.com.

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Casablanca Moroccan Style White Party By AMS Exclusive Luxury Events

 Here’s looking at you kid…I had a great time at the Casablanca Moroccan Style Launch Party of AMS Exclusive Luxury Events hosted by Alin Queen and Mark Sevier at a private estate. Sponsors for the event were Restoration 911, Kookoo Liqueur, and Patron Tequila. Alin Queen is also a noted chef and she prepared a very tasty and authentic Moroccan style dinner with 15 appetizers, 4 main courses, bread made from scratch, and amazing desserts! The hummus was the best I’ve ever had hands down…well maybe it’s a tie between Chef Alin and my mom. And Mark was a great host as well. 


There were also belly dancers, hookahs and live entertainment. All in all, it was a great event with amazing hosts and a wide variety of entertainment options and hookah of course! 
Photos courtesy of Mark Sevier
Vida G.

Vida G.

Vida is an actress and journalist who lives in Los Angeles, California. She is the co-founder of the Hollywood Press Corps.

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Don’t miss the premier of Animal Kingdom on TNT Tuesday, June 14th

Tuesday, June 14 is the premier of TNT’s Animal Kingdom, a bold new drama starring Emmy® and Tony® winner Ellen Barkin (Sea of Love, This Boy’s Life, Ocean’s Thirteen), Scott Speedman (The Strangers, The Vow), Shawn Hatosy (Southland, Reckless), Ben Robson (Vikings, Dracula: The Dark Prince), Jake Weary (Pretty Little Liars, It Follows), Finn Cole (Peaky Blinders, An Inspector Calls), Daniella Alonso (Revolution) and Molly Gordon (Love the Coopers, Ithaca).

Scott Speedman (Barry "Baz" Blackwell) and Daniella Alonzo (Catherine)
Scott Speedman (Barry “Baz” Blackwell) and Daniella Alonzo (Catherine)

The series centers on 17-year-old Joshua “J” Cody (Cole), who moves in with his freewheeling relatives in their Southern California beach town after his mother dies of a heroin overdose. Heading up the family is J’s estranged grandmother, Janine “Smurf” Cody (Barkin), whom he’s been shielded from for years. She is orbited by Baz (Speedman), her relatively level-headed right-hand man whom she adopted when he was a teenager; Smurf’s eldest son, the quietly menacing, mentally disturbed Pope (Hatosy), who has just gotten out of prison; her tough, hyperactive, recreational drug-using middle son, Craig (Robson); and the troubled and suspicious Deran (Weary), the “baby” of the family. Also prominent are Nicky Belmont (Gordon), J’s steady girlfriend, and Catherine Ortiz (Alonso), Baz’s de facto wife and the mother of their 4-year-old daughter, Lena.

Finn Cole (Joshua "J" Cody)
Finn Cole (Joshua “J” Cody)

On Wednesday, June 8th the show’s creators threw a screening bash that was equal to the party level the characters on the show are notorious for hosting.

Ben Robinson (Craig Cody)
Ben Robinson (Craig Cody)

The screening kicked off with a red carpet photo opportunity and was immediately followed up with a celebration at the The Rose Room in Venice Beach. Finger food, beer and wine were offered as Animal Kingdom played on the televisions throughout the restaurant as well as in a large screening room with plenty of seats for everyone to enjoy. The crowd was filled with actors, producers, friends and show contributors and sponsors.

Outside the screening
Outside the screening

After the screening, the party moved to a beautiful outdoor venue behind the restaurant. As you entered the party, you walked threw a room set up like a jewelry store that had been robbed. Glass cases were shattered and all but a few jewelry items were missing. Leather gloves were thrown askew throughout the room, a few biker helmets were left behind, and a true sense that a heist had just taken place was evident.

On the exterior, where the party took place, the DJ was backed up by a drummer, making for a rich musical experience. The bars packed with people who seemed more like long time friends as opposed to co-workers. Photo booths, photographers, mini movie makers and other fun and playful entertainment was sprinkled throughout the party. The center piece of the event was a life sized skate park with boarders and bikers wowing the crowd with their incredible stunts.

John Wells, Executive Producer
John Wells, Executive Producer

The production level and talent on this show is unequaled, and it is sure to be an instant hit. Cast and crew have put 110% into this one, and the comradery among the co-workers is a so apparent it makes the family aspect on the show completely believable. This is a show that will be on everyone’s watch list this summer.


Judy Hansen Pullos

Judy Hansen Pullos

Judy is a journalist and photographer. She lives in Southern California.

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Jackson Browne Rocks the House at Lucky Strike Live’s Soundcheck Live

The Lucky Strike Live, along with Soundcheck Live, have been knocking the rock-scene out of the park on Wednesday nights. This Wednesday evening was even more amazing than usual.  Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Legend, Jackson Browne, performed his top songs to a packed crowd of star-struck fans, including this writer/photographer herself!

Jackson Browne opening up with "That Girl Could Sing"
Jackson Browne opening up with “That Girl Could Sing” Photo courtesy of Judy Hansen Pullos

The night started off with some fabulous musicians singing the classics. While the bands rocked on, Jackson Browne walked in and out of the crowd, mingled with fans, even shook hands and signed memorabilia.  At 10:30pm, the crowd went wild when Jackson Browne performed his highly-anticipated guest curated set, which included 6 of his hit songs from “These Days” to “On The Boulevard” to “That Girl Could Sing” and “Somebody’s Baby“.

Jackson Browne singing "On the Boulevard" Photo courtesy of Judy Hansen Pullos
Jackson Browne singing “On the Boulevard”
Photo courtesy of Judy Hansen Pullos

The set ended with a rousing encore of “Lawyers, Guns and Money” and Running on Empty”. The happy crowd praised Brownes performance and continued to sing and dance along with the resident house band as they played a live set of songs from Rufus’s “Tell Me Something Good” to perfectly ending the night with Traveling Wilbur’s “Handle With Care”.

The Soundcheck Live House Band
The Soundcheck Live House Band

Jackson Browne has always been an incredible musician and an iconic song writer and singer, but this mind blowing, free concert was beyond everyone’s hopes and expectations. This Soundcheck Live night will be a tough act to follow!

 

 


Judy Hansen Pullos

Judy Hansen Pullos

Judy is a journalist and photographer. She lives in Southern California.

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The Cookie Kahuna is Back and Baking Up a Storm


The Cookie Kahuna and his new bride Carol are an inspiration to romantics everywhere. The Hollywood Press Corps was invited into their home to talk about love, life, and the resurgence of the perfect cookie.

Wally Amos and His Delicious Chocolate Chip Cookies
Wally Amos and His Delicious Chocolate Chip Cookies

You may remember Wally Amos from the 70’s when he became the “Famous Amos” cookie mogul. He was a warm, young, caring entrepreneur who conquered the world with his amazing little chocolate chip cookies. After taking a break from the world of baking, Wally Amos has decided to jump back into the kitchen with both feet and his original crunchy cookie recipe.

Wally Amos taking pride in his famous cookies
Wally Amos taking pride in his famous cookies

Amos prides himself with his all natural ingredients, including his high quality chocolate chips from Guittard Chocolates, and his vanilla bean extract. He proudly tells us that the very first ingredient in his chocolate chip cookies is “chocolate,” a statement very few cookie companies can make.

As we sat in his kitchen and got a first-hand lesson in “how to roll the perfect cookie”, we were entertained with the story of how the two love birds met and married. Carol recounted every detail down to a loving message left on her voicemail by Wally. He jokingly denied it ever happened so she grabbed her phone and played the message on speaker for all of us to hear. Wally’s eyes lit up and a giant smile grew on his face as he admitted he did, in fact, say those wonderful things.

Wally and Carol Amos rolling cookies together
Wally and Carol Amos rolling cookies together

They met in late January and were married by the end of February. When asked why they moved so quickly, their response was, “Why wait? We’re not getting any younger!” Wally will be 80 soon and Carol turned 70 this year. But when the two look into each other’s eyes, eternal youth seems from them.

As the cookies came out of the oven, Carol enticed us to enjoy at least 18, since she had already had that many before we arrived. She continued to eat them, and continued to up our target number as the meeting continued. Batch after batch came out of the oven and we each continued to toss dozens of the Cookie Kahuna’s masterpiece into our mouths.

A special batch of cookies made with love
A special batch of cookies made with love

We learned that Amos had been invited to go on “Shark Tank” to pitch his new cookie business to the team. He was going to pass on the idea but Carol convinced him that it was part of his destiny, so he decided to move forward.

After eating at least two or three dozen cookies a piece, and enjoying numerous stories of wedding bliss from our newlywed couple, it was time to go. The warmth of the Amos house didn’t come from the cookie oven, but from the cookie Kahuna and his new wife themselves. It was a true pleasure to meet them both and we can’t wait for the new brand of cookies to make their way to our grocery store shelves soon!

Check out the Cookie Kahuna website here;

http://www.cookiekahuna.com

Judy Hansen Pullos

Judy Hansen Pullos

Judy is a journalist and photographer. She lives in Southern California.

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Stalking LeVar Season 2 Premiere Party

Stalking LeVar (a Dweeb Darlings Production) held their Season 2 premiere at the Other Door in North Hollywood. Sponsored by GeekChic Promotions with giveaways from Her Universe, Espionage Cosmetics, 1138 Clothing and more! Photo booth by The Photo Baker. Karaoke from Sign Me Up Karaoke. Treats provided by KneadyBakery.com & Chipotle.


About Stalking LeVar:
The Crown Jewel of Dweeb Darlings, Stalking LeVar is a comedic web series about life, love, liberty and the pursuit of the ultimate friendship with LeVar Burton. At the end of Season 1 Heidi (Heidi Cox) was abandoned by best friend Megan (Megan Green) as she left for walk-about in Australia to find herself. Heidi was forced to continue her search for LeVar, while journeying on a quest to her own enlightenment with the help of her misplaced sidekick Susan (Stephanie Pressman).

Season 2 was completely funded by IndieGoGo backers and included help from sponsors such as Espionage Cosmetics, Hint Water, Chipotle, Her Universe, Yoga Design Labs, Castle Corsetry, Black Dog Yoga, and Fonco.

Stalking LeVar’s Second Season also features the work of a very talented list of Guest Stars and Co-Stars including:
Cas Anvar (The Expanse / Room),  Margot Rose (Star Trek Next Generation), Jonathan Root (Brooklyn Nine-Nine / Call of Duty: Ghosts), Jenny Lorenzo (Geekgasm / Buzzfeed), Bonnie Gordon (The Quest / Library Bards), Jesse Heiman (Neighbors / Chuck),
David Blue (SGU Stargate Universe / Ugly Betty), A Russell Andrews (Straight Outta Compton), Kristen Nedopak (The Skyrim Parodies / The Geekie Awards) and many others.

About Dweeb Darlings:
Founded in 2013 Dweeb Darlings is a Production Company created by Heidi Cox & Megan Green and shortly after were joined by Stephanie Pressman. The Double D’s seek to give opportunities to female creators and female fronted story lines through original content and social outreach. Their mission is to empower women (of all ages) by showing them that being a dweeb, geek, and/or nerd is not only being intelligent but also being powerful, creative, sexy, funny and real!Part of the Dweeb Darlings outreach program includes a touring panel, “#SPARK Your Creativity: A Call to Action!” where an amazing group of female creators discuss how to find your voice and drive more female created content into the world. The women of the “#SPARK” panel have appeared at San Diego Comic Con, Stan Lee’s Comikaze, and Wondercon and continue to grow their list of panelists and events.The Dweeb Darlings are currently in pre-production on a few more projects that keep fostering these ideals. More details coming soon.
More info about this project at
Photos courtesy of Albert L. Ortega/GettyImages and Bob Delgadillo
Dustin Brown

Dustin Brown

I am the Senior Editor at HollywoodPressCorps.com.

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