Category Archives: Awards Ceremony

Panorama City Chamber of Commerce day & Anniversary Held at the Platinum Banquet Hall

On Tuesday, April 2nd, 2019, The Panorama City Chamber of Commerce celebrated their 3rd Anniversary and the 1st Year of “The Panorama City Chamber of Commerce Business Day” at the Platinum Banquet Hall, located at 8704 Van Nuys Blvd., Panorama City CA. 91402.

Awardee Laura T. Sharpe and Artists For Trauma Ambassador Steve Bogna

This momentous date was declared by the California State Senate by a resolution granted by the Honorable CA. State Senator Bob Hertzberg on March 15th, 2018. The resolution was presented at the Grand Opening of the Panorama City Chamber of Commerce Business Center on April 2nd, 2018.

Awardee Suzi Khatami

In addition to a star studded red carpet and press interviews, this year’s celebration featured the North Valley Military Institute’s Color Guard, the National Anthem by Grammy Award Nominee Songwriting Shane, live performances, the awards ceremony and a dinner. They also honored the Officers, board members, and volunteers who made the Panorama City Chamber of Commerce such a rousing success during the past year. As a special recognition, they honored local celebrities that have truly made a difference in the San Fernando Valley and in Panorama City.

Awardee Dustin Ferguson with special guest, Celebrity Fashion Designer Vida Craddock of Designs by Vida

The Offices of U.S. Congressman Tony Cardenas, CA. State Senator Bob Hertzberg, CA. State Assemblymember Adrin Nazarian, Los Angeles County Supervisor Sheila Kuehl, Los Angeles City Mayor Eric Garcetti, and Los Angeles City Councilmember Nury Martinez attended.

Awardees Dawna Lee Heising, Vida Ghaffari and Amber Lynn
Chamber President Mejia with Awardee Dawna Lee Heising

Additional celebrities and VIPs in attendance were Saul Mejia (President of the Panorama City Chamber of Commerce and GlobalTech, Motivational Speaker & Book Author), Songwriting Shane (Grammy Nominee), Matias Meza (Grammy Winning Producer) Juan Ignacio (Pop Singer), Klaudia Lua (TV Host), Philanthropist Laura T. Sharpe (Founder and CEO, Artists For Trauma), TV Personality Suzi Khatami (“Our View” show on ATV), Filmmaker Dustin Ferguson (Nemesis 5: The New Model currently available on Redbox), Legendary Action Star Mel Novak (Quentin Tarantino favorite Game of Death), SAG/AFTRA Actress (Who’s Jenna?), Radio Personality, Rock’N’SeXXXyU show, LA Talk Radio, Red Carpet Correspondent, Walk Against MS, Amber Lynn, Actress Dawna Lee Heising (Robowoman) and Actress Vida Ghaffari (The Mindy Project), Vida Craddock (Designs by Vida Celebrity Designer), among others were in attendance.

Awardees with Chamber President Saul Mejia

“As a lifelong resident of Panorama City, it is with great pride that I am president of our Chamber of Commerce and I get to interact and help businesses prosper in our fair city and acknowledge the many people out here for all they do for this great town, said Chamber President Mejia.

About the Panorama City Chamber of Commerce:

The Panorama City Chamber of Commerce, which was incorporated in 2016, is composed of business professionals who are civic-minded citizens. Because of the Chamber’s volunteer work and financial support, Chamber membership gives members a blanket policy of community insurance. The Chamber’s mission is a collective effort to promote the welfare of our community and make it the best community in Los Angeles to shop, live,and to make a living in. The Chamber’s main aim is to maintain a proper balance of growth, shopping convenience, work, and recreation within our community. In addition, the Chamber strives to make Panorama City the most attractive community in the area through cleanups and beautification efforts. The Chamber is proud of our civic and service groups and is confident that through our combined efforts, we shall achieve our aims and remain “The Heart Of The Valley”.

About Saul Mejia:

Saul Mejia is a seasoned TV and Radio Host, an Executive, Business Leader, International Entrepreneur, and Elected Official in Panorama City with over 20 years of experience in Leadership, Business administration, and Public Speaking.

He has vast experience in the entertainment industry, politics, and the business world. He has worked for several companies and is currently a TV and Radio Host for the Spanish TV Show “Sentido Comun” con Klaudia Lua, Additionally, he is the President of the Panorama City Chamber of Commerce, the President for Global Tech, a Board Member of the United Chambers of Commerce of the San Fernando Valley, Member of the Valley Industry & Commerce Association (VICA), Member of BizFed (Los Angeles County Business Federation), Member of the Hispanic Chamber of E-Commerce and a former Elected Business Representative of the Panorama City Neighborhood Council (City of L.A.) where he also served as the Commerce Committee Chair. He has received several awards including 2 Special Congressional Recognitions and the Prestigious AMVETS Medal (American Veterans of Foreign Wars).

About Platinum Banquet Hall:

Platinum Banquet Hall has years of experience planning and staging world-class events, from weddings and large corporate parties to quinceañeras. Our dedication to making every event a moment to remember is what makes them one of the top event venues in Los Angeles.

Platinum Banquet Hall employs only the absolute finest events staff. Their event planners are professionals in the industry of planning weddings, quinceañeras, engagement parties, large corporate events, and any other event you may want to host. Each and every one of their staff brings a passion and dedication to the job that shines in everything they do. Their mission is to keep our clients happy from beginning to end.

More info about the event:
http://panoramachamber.com/

Photo courtesy of Bob Delgadillo and Dan Kennedy

Dustin Brown

Dustin Brown

I am the Senior Editor at HollywoodPressCorps.com.

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Karen Michelle Presents LYB 2019 Spring Awards Fashion, and Shopping Event

Los Angeles based show producer/ entrepreneur Karen Michelle in association with LYB Events, Destiny Candle by Karen Michelle, Mickey Fine Pharmacy and Grill, Softweb, Coco Taps, Searchlight Insurance, FabUPlus Magazine, My/Mo Mochi Ice Cream, Annipuf and LRM Publicity present the “LYB Spring 2019 Fashion Show and Shopping Event,” this Sunday, March 31, 2019 at the Luxe Sunset Bl. Hotel at 11461 Sunset Bl. Los Angeles. The press arrival is 1:15pm, Red Carpet is 1:30pm and the Fashion Show is at 3:30pm.

Karen Michelle

Confirmed celebrities include: Gloria Garayua (How to Get Away With Murder), Jax Malcolm (Jingle Trails), Connor Dean (9-1-1), Stacia Gates (Cookin it Up), Patti Negri (Ghost Adventures), Jordyn Curet (Life Hacks for Kids DreamworksTV), Chloe Noelle (True Blood), Mark LaBella (Chicago Fire), Alyssa deBoisblanc (Modern Family), Vida Ghaffari (The Mindy Project), Laura T. Sharpe (CEO Artists For Trauma & AFT Models), Samantha Gangal (OMG!), Brooklyn Robinson (Pineapple), Isabella Leon (The Good Church), Ainsley Ross (Should I do it?), Kacey Fifield (Game Shakers), Neil D’monte (Batman v. Superman), Lou Pizarro, (Producer/ Star Operation Repo, Repo Radio), Akin Asalu, (Creative Director Let Me Fly), Saúl Mejía (President of Global Tech/ Panorama City Chamber of Commerce) Nadia Davari (Entertainment Attorney), Melody Trice (The Melody Trice Show), and many more!

Laura T. Sharpe

The LYB 2019 Spring show will kick-off the Karen Michelle Heart Awards program. The first of its kind The Karen Michelle Heart Award is presented to a person or organization that exemplifies the true meaning of embracing everyone, while striving to make the community and world we live in a better place for all. Karen Michelle is proud to give inaugural Karen Michelle Heart Award to Laura T Sharpe the CEO of Artists for Trauma. Karen Michelle believes that all women are beautiful and has brought this event to life to give each and every one of them the confidence they need to achieve all that they dare to dream. #LYBevents Spring 2019 is a one-day beauty festival that includes: celebrity red carpet with full press line, fashion show, dessert party, raffle winners announced hourly, photo activations, hair bar with flower crowns, glitter lip bar, makeup makeovers, nail bar, cosmetic and beauty treatments offered on site. Featured designers include: Karen Michelle LA, More Rockin’, Modefywear, Shop Her Closet KM, Klara Designs, Elle n’ Dee, Forage Collection, Jinza Bridal, Dilee Inc, Moonlight Serenade and Designs by Lady Justice.

More info at this link https://karenmichelle.com/events

Dustin Brown

Dustin Brown

I am the Senior Editor at HollywoodPressCorps.com.

More Posts - Website

Panorama City Chamber of Commerce Day & Anniversary Awards Ceremony at the Platinum Banquet Hall

On Tuesday, April 2nd, 2019, The Panorama City Chamber of Commerce will be celebrating their 3rd Anniversary and the 1st Year of “The Panorama City Chamber of Commerce Business Day” at the Platinum Banquet Hall, 8704 Van Nuys Blvd., Panorama City CA. 91402. The red carpet will be from 5pm to 6pm with the awards ceremony and dinner from 6pm to 8pm.

Chamber President Saul Mejia

This momentous date was declared by the California State Senate by a resolution granted by the Honorable CA. State Senator Bob Hertzberg on March 15th, 2018. The resolution was presented at the Grand Opening of the Panorama City Chamber of Commerce Business Center on April 2nd, 2018.

Awardee Laura Sharpe

In addition to a red carpet chock full of celebrities and press interviews, this year’s celebration will feature the North Valley Military Institute’s Color Guard, the National Anthem by Grammy Award Nominee Songwriting Shane, live performances, the awards ceremony and a dinner. We will also be honoring the Officers, board members, and volunteers who made the Panorama City Chamber of Commerce such a rousing success during the past year. As a special recognition, we will be honoring local celebrities that have truly made a difference in the San Fernando Valley and in Panorama City.

Awardee Dustin Ferguson

The Offices of U.S. Congressman Tony Cardenas, CA. State Senator Bob Hertzberg, CA. State Assemblymember Adrin Nazarian, Los Angeles County Supervisor Sheila Kuehl, Los Angeles City Mayor Eric Garcetti, and Los Angeles City Councilmember Nury Martinez are expected to attend.

 

VIP guest Vida Craddock

Additional celebrities and VIPs in attendance are Saul Mejia (President of the Panorama City Chamber of Commerce and GlobalTech, Motivational Speaker & Book Author), Songwriting Shane (Grammy Nominee), Matias Meza (Grammy Winning Producer) Juan Ignacio (Pop Singer), Klaudia Lua (TV Host), Philanthropist Laura T. Sharpe (Founder and CEO, Artists For Trauma), TV Personality Suzi Khatami (“Our View” show on ATV), Filmmaker Dustin Ferguson (Nemesis 5: The New Model currently available on Redbox), Legendary Action Star Mel Novak (Quentin Tarantino favorite Game of Death), SAG/AFTRA Actress (Who’s Jenna?), Radio Personality, Rock’N’SeXXXyU show, LA Talk Radio, Red Carpet Correspondent, Walk Against MS, Amber Lynn, Actress Dawna Lee Heising (Robowoman) and Actress Vida Ghaffari (The Mindy Project), Vida Craddock (Designs by Vida Celebrity Designer), among others will be in attendance.

Awardee Amber Lynn

“As a lifelong resident of Panorama City, it is with great pride that I am president of our Chamber of Commerce and I get to interact and help businesses prosper in our fair city and acknowledge the many people out here for all they do for this great town, said Chamber President Mejia.

Awardee Suzi Khatami

 

Awardee Dawna Lee Heising

About the Panorama City Chamber of Commerce:

The Panorama City Chamber of Commerce, which was incorporated in 2016, is composed of business professionals who are civic-minded citizens. Because of the Chamber’s volunteer work and financial support, Chamber membership gives members a blanket policy of community insurance. The Chamber’s mission is a collective effort to promote the welfare of our community and make it the best community in Los Angeles to shop, live,and to make a living in. The Chamber’s main aim is to maintain a proper balance of growth, shopping convenience, work, and recreation within our community. In addition, the Chamber strives to make Panorama City the most attractive community in the area through cleanups and beautification efforts. The Chamber is proud of our civic and service groups and is confident that through our combined efforts, we shall achieve our aims and remain “The Heart Of The Valley”.

About Saul Mejia:

Saul Mejia is a seasoned TV and Radio Host, an Executive, Business Leader, International Entrepreneur, and Elected Official in Panorama City with over 20 years of experience in Leadership, Business administration, and Public Speaking.

He has vast experience in the entertainment industry, politics, and the business world. He has worked for several companies and is currently a TV and Radio Host for the Spanish TV Show “Sentido Comun” con Klaudia Lua, Additionally, he is the President of the Panorama City Chamber of Commerce, the President for Global Tech, a Board Member of the United Chambers of Commerce of the San Fernando Valley, Member of the Valley Industry & Commerce Association (VICA), Member of BizFed (Los Angeles County Business Federation), Member of the Hispanic Chamber of E-Commerce and a former Elected Business Representative of the Panorama City Neighborhood Council (City of L.A.) where he also served as the Commerce Committee Chair. He has received several awards including 2 Special Congressional Recognitions and the Prestigious AMVETS Medal (American Veterans of Foreign Wars).

About Platinum Banquet Hall:

Platinum Banquet Hall has years of experience planning and staging world-class events, from weddings and large corporate parties to quinceañeras. Our dedication to making every event a moment to remember is what makes them one of the top event venues in Los Angeles.

Platinum Banquet Hall employs only the absolute finest events staff. Their event planners are professionals in the industry of planning weddings, quinceañeras, engagement parties, large corporate events, and any other event you may want to host. Each and every one of their staff brings a passion and dedication to the job that shines in everything they do. Their mission is to keep our clients happy from beginning to end.

More info about the event:
http://panoramachamber.com/

Dustin Brown

Dustin Brown

I am the Senior Editor at HollywoodPressCorps.com.

More Posts - Website

Michigan Rocks Hollywood

Hollywood, CA- Multi award-winning filmmaker Harley Wallen and his team swept the film festival circuit with countless awards for Betrayed that had it’s much anticipated premiere last week at the TCL Chinese Theatre in the heart of Hollywood. I covered this premiere and it was truly the event to be at! With just a super short circuit run, this film has racked up an impressive amount of wins across the country.

Harley Wallen and his awards on the red carpet of the Lucky Strike Films Festival. Photo courtesy of Dan Kennedy

The International Independent Film Awards bestowed Diamond Winner awards to John Savage as a for Best Actor in a Leading Role as well as Kaizad Patel for Best Original Score. Platinum Winners were Best Narrative Feature, Harley Wallen for Best Director and Blanca Blanco for Best Actress in a Supporting Role.

It was a golden occasion at the Gold Movie Awards, where Betrayed won Best Feature Film and Harley Wallen won Best Producer and John Savage won Best Actor.

Lucky Strikes Films Festival brought much well deserved luck to both Wallens. Kaiti won Best Actress and Harley was awarded Best Director.

At the Top Indie Film Awards, Official Selections are Harley Wallen for Best Director, John Savage for Best Lead Actor, Aphrodite Nikolovski for Best Actress in addition to Kaizad Patel for Best Score.

If that wasn’t enough, Betrayed is also an Official Selection at the Great Lakes International Film Festival.

This action crime thriller deals with the gritty world of human trafficking. In an effort to control the city, the Mayor Don Alderman (John Savage, The Thin Red Line) lets the Russian mob into his city. After the Russians don’t follow his rules, he opens the city to the cartel to push them out. When the Russians find out, Mikhail (Harley Wallen, Bennett’s Song), the head of the Russian mafia, kidnap’s the Mayor’s daughter (Kaiti Wallen, Into A Dark Mind) and then the real games begin. Caught in the middle of an escalating crisis, Mayor Alderman hires Mike Wolf (Billy Wirth, The Lost Boys) and Alpha (TJ Storm, Punisher Warzone) to rescue his daughter before the cunning Mr. Stone (Richard Tyson, Black Hawk Down) puts her on the market to be trafficked.

Today is Betrayed’s release date for Blu Ray and DVD and VOD by Vision Films through its distribution deal with Sony Pictures Home Entertainment. Rabid fans will soon be appeased with his countless amazing movies!

Betrayed CABLE PROVIDERS:

Comcast VOD, Comcast EST, Verizon VOD, Verizon EST, Dish, Time  Warner, Cox, Charter, Frontier, Other VBQ

Betrayed DVD outlets:

Amazon DVD: https://www.amazon.com/Betrayed-John-Savage/dp/B07FRXG27N/

Shortened Link: http://bit.ly/B-Amazon

Walmart DVD: https://www.walmart.com/ip/Betrayed-DVD/357330876

Shortened Link: bit.ly/B-WalmartDVD

ONLINE RETAILERS:

iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/movie/betrayed/id1435660316

Shortened Link: http://bit.ly/B-iTunes

Amazon Video, Vudu, Microsoft, Google, Playstation

Fandango Now: https://www.fandangonow.com/details/movie/betrayed-2018/1MVc7b328d9570ec6c8a16dc0e0d31f9b88?ele=searchresult&elc=betrayed&eli=0&eci=movies

Shortened Link: bit.ly/B-FandangoNow

Betrayed Trailer: https://youtu.be/8M8oqY2ohvY

IMDB page:  https://www.imdb.com/title/tt7014430/?ref_=nm_flmg_act_8

ABOUT VISION FILMS:

Vision Films is an Independent Worldwide Distributor and VOD Aggregator of over 800 Feature Films, Documentaries and Music Programs from some of the most prolific independent film producers in the world. Led by Lise Romanoff, Managing Director/CEO Worldwide Distribution, Vision Films releases 2-4 films a month, across Theatrical, VOD, DVD, and television.  www.visionfilms.net

ABOUT HARLEY WALLEN:

Multi award-winning filmmaker and actor Harley Wallen has starred in over 40 feature films and TV shows with legendary stars such as Tom Sizemore, Tara Reed, John Savage and Richard Tyson among many others. He started his journey as a martial artist early with Judo at age 7 and is now a 5th degree black belt. Harley also spent time learning other forms of martial arts (Jiu-Jitsu, Tae Kwon – Do black belts as well) and Mixed Martial Arts. His other love at a young age was dance as he was an outstanding break dancer in his teen years. His sheer talent and skill is what landed him his first opportunity in acting as dance at the syndicated Swedish TV cult hit ‘Solstollarna’! Soon after, he was bitten by the acting bug. Harley then moved from Sweden to the United States to boldly pursue his dreams. After a short stint these plans got side-tracked by business opportunities as Harley climbed various career ladders. After returning to acting, it wasn’t long before the roles started coming and the growth he had experienced in the business world started happening to him in the acting world. After the film incentives ended in Michigan, he decided to start making films of his own. Not having a film school background with only limited experience, he decided to go online to further his education in filmmaking and took classes and seminars in acting. Finally, in 2016, Harley and his wife Kaiti formed the film production company ‘Painted Creek Productions‘. The one thing he really takes pride in is his commitment to the character he is playing regardless of the size of the role or the pay check. Harley is now writing, acting and directing and has found his life’s purpose!

Social Media: Facebook: @PaintedCreekProductions

Instagram: @PaintedCreekProductions

Twitter:  @PaintedCreekPro

Dustin Brown

Dustin Brown

I am the Senior Editor at HollywoodPressCorps.com.

More Posts - Website

Lucky Strike Film Festival Launches

Acclaimed and prolific production company Lucky Strike Films has just launched the much anticipated Lucky Strike Film Festival.  Besides giving filmmakers the opportunity to have their movies premiered before enthusiastic audiences, the Lucky Strike Film Festival will also host an awards show, complete with a snazzy red carpet event and after party! This epic event will take place on September 21st-23rd, with the awards ceremony on September 22nd at the Regency Valley Plaza 6 Theatre in North Hollywood.

Filmmaker, author, festival founder Romane Simon on the red carpet.

In addition to the exposure, the winners for Best Film will also receive a distribution deal through Lucky Strike Productions.

This is a wonderful opportunity for films of all genres and filmmakers of all backgrounds. This festival will truly be a home for indie filmmakers and a new voice for artists, which will allow for their talent to emerge.

This innovative festival was founded by multi award-winning filmmaker Romane Simon. Asked why he created his own festival in addition to writing, directing and producing countless films and being a highly regarded author, Simon said, “it feels really good knowing that I created a platform for creative fellow filmmakers to showcase their work for a broad audience.”

Simon, himself, has an interesting background. As the Grandson of Haiti’s Former President, he was born and raised in Haiti, where he began his filmmaking career. He moved many miles from home to the United States to continue and expand his dreams in the entertainment industry, by embarking upon several more projects. Simon currently works as a screenplay writer, actor, fight choreographer, stuntman, dancer, and even model. Simon is also a great MMA fighter with a record of 9-2-3. His most recent film Hybristophilia stars Quinton Aaron from the Blind Side, Sadie Katz from Wrong Turn 6, Jenna Willis from the People Vs. OJ Simpson: American Crime Story, Iyad Hajjaj from Madam Secretary and many others.

Honoree Quinton Aaron
Honoree and Emmy winner Patrika Darbo
Honoree Iyad Hajjaj

Fataneh Lafleur is the festival manager, Robyn Carmona is the festival coordinator, and Nicole Alexis is a board member. Honorees this year are actors Quinton Aaron (The Blind Side), Emmy winner Patrika Darbo (Days of Our Lives) , Iyad Hajjaj (Madam Secretary), Walter E. Jones,  Grammy nominated artist Stephanie Spruil and Emmy nominated artist Shane Sparks.

More info at https://www.luckystrikefilmsfestival.com/ and tickets can be purchased at this link https://www.eventbrite.com/e/lucky-strike-film-festival-tickets-36135409984

Dustin Brown

Dustin Brown

I am the Senior Editor at HollywoodPressCorps.com.

More Posts - Website

Legendary Actors and Martial Artists Aleong and Novak to Be Inducted Into the USA Martial Arts Hall of Fame

  On Saturday, May 20th, legendary actors and martial artists Aki Aleong and Mel Novak will be 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.

Grandmaster Jim Thomas and Loretta Hallmark

Dr. Thomas is a 10th degree grand master and is recognized as one of 20 worldwide. He has been active in the martial arts field 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.

Sifu Mark Hoadley

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! This event actually spans 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 are Kathy Long, Art Camacho, Olivier Gruner and many more. Martial Artist and stand-up comic Mark Hoadley will be opening the gala with his unique style of stand-up comedy. Sifu Hoadley is a 3 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.

Awardees Aki Aleong and Mel Novak. Photo courtesy of Sheri Determan/PR Photos

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).

Aki on set with Danny Trejo

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).

Mel on the set of Check Point with noted director Thomas J. Churchill and William Forsythe

For more info and to purchase tickets, please go to http://www.usamartialartshalloffame.com/california-2017 or call 714-922-1700

Dustin Brown

Dustin Brown

I am the Senior Editor at HollywoodPressCorps.com.

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Brain Mapping Foundation Conference and Gala

The Society for Brain Mapping and Therapeutics (“SBMT”), Brain Mapping Foundation (“BMF”), and the National Center for NanoBioElectonics (“NCNBE”) held their 14th Annual World Brain Mapping and Therapeutics Conference at the swanky Millennium Biltmore Hotel in downtown Los Angeles. SBMT was founded in 2004 to break boundaries in healthcare and to promote global interdisciplinary research to improve the diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of patients with central nervous system diseases and disorders. I was unable to attend, but was so impressed with the mission of this foundation that I was compelled to write a post and here it is.

“This year, there are 320 speakers and 12 keynote speakers who addressed state-of-the-art brain science and technology, and pioneering diagnostics therapeutics for Alzheimer’s Disease, Parkinson’s Disease, brain and spinal trauma, brain cancer, psychiatric disorders, the Autism spectrum, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (“PTSD”), as well as all other neurological disorders,” said Dr. Wes Ashford, Clinical Professor of Stanford University (affiliated), Director of The War Related Illness & Injury Study Center at the VA Palo Alto HCS and the 14th President of SBMT (2016-17). “This year, several sessions of the conference will focus on translation, integration and development of advanced diagnostics and therapeutics for soldiers, veterans and civilians with neurological disorders.”

Annually, the Society and the Brain Mapping Foundation recognizes pioneers in the field of brain mapping and therapeutics with distinguished awards. The Brain Mapping Foundation is holding its “Gathering for the Cure” black tie gala on Thursday, April 20th at the Millennium Biltmore Hotel to celebrate pioneering work of some of the world’s leading scientists, technologists, policymakers, and science advocates.

 

“We had a very competitive pool of applicants this year who are truly remarkable individuals as people and pioneers in their respective fields for which they were selected,” said Dr. Vicky Yamamoto, USC-Keck School of Medicine Cancer Scientist, Executive Director of SBMT, Member of the Board of Brain Mapping Foundation and Co-chair of the Award Committee. “We are truly delighted to recognize the contributions of these colleagues to the field of clinical neuroscience.”

 

The 2017 award recipients are as follows: Professors George Ojemann (Pioneer in epilepsy neurosurgery) and John Adler (inventor of Cyberknife) the recipients of the Pioneer in Medicine award; Congressman Jerry McNerney the recipient of Pioneer in Healthcare Policy Award, Professor Afsaneh Rabiei is recipient of the Pioneer in Technology Development; Travis Roy recipient of Beacon of Courage and Dedication; Golden Axon award for leadership is given to Drs. Wes Ashford (2016-17 President of SBMT), Michael Roy (2012-13 President of SBMT) and Drs. Nasser Kashou, Ajeet Kaushik, Alexander Stahn are the recipients of Young Investigator award.

Dr. Peter Diamandis, Chairman of XPrize, is the keynote speaker at the Brain Mapping Foundation “Gathering for Cure” gala who will be speaking about global innovation.

“SBMT and its science committee includes over 80 scientists that have built this program over the last 16 months”, said the 2018 President Elect of SBMT, Dr. Warren Boling, chairman of the Department of Neurosurgery at Loma Linda University (“LLU”). He added “LLU, City of Hope, and Cedars Sinai Medical Center co-sponsored this world class scientific program for its Continuing Medical education (“CME”) accreditation.”

This remarkable scientific program is supported by industry leaders including: Fiagon, Fulgent Diagnostics, Space Bio-Laboratories Co., Ltd, Siemens Healthcare, Medtronic, Codman, Stryker, KLS Martin, Ad-Tech, Zeiss, Anatom-e, Nordic Neuro Lab (“NNL”), Synaptive Medical, Integra , PMT Corporation, HarleQuin Recruiting, Med Valley Home Healthcare Inc, Jupiter 9 Production, CariCord,  Neurotrope BioScience, California Neurosurgical Institute, Nuvasive, the Law office of Nadia Davari, Planet Street Digital Marketing, Apex Photo Studios, Keri Ann Kimball of Kimball Entertainment, Joe Williamson of Williamson Management, SoVeryVida and Neuronavigation Dinamics.

The scientific program of 2017 SBMT annual meeting has 320 speakers and 12 keynote speakers including Congressman Jerry McNerney, Space Traveler and Engineer Anousheh Ansari, Drs. Gary Small (UCLA), Laligam Sekhar (UW), George Ojemann (UW), Mark Humayun (USC), Wes Ashford (Stanford/VA Palo Alto HCS), Warren Boling (LLU), Kyu Rhee (IBM Watson Health), Dean Yamaguchi (Department of Veterans Affair), and RADM Colin Chinn (Defense Health Agency).

“The Brain Mapping Foundation has been on the forefront of wounded warrior care for 14 years by bringing together world leading scientists” said Ret. Navy Commander Dr. Ken Green. “We have engaged NASA centers, NASA Human Health and Performance, National Labs, Departments of Energy, Commerce, State, Defense, Navy, Army, Air Force, and Defense Health Agency, in our G20 Global Brain Mapping Initiative (Neuroscience-20) aimed at rapidly introducing diagnostics and therapeutics in the field.”

Many Hollywood celebrities including:  Tim Kring, Jim Kwik, Matthew Rhodes, Charlie Corwin, James Hong, Kate Linder, Hank Garrett, Mel Novak, Aki Aleong, Navid Negahban, Ken Davitian, Eden Sassoon, Gary Graham, Jimmy Jean-Louis, James Kyson, Dru Mouser, Sophia Milos, Vida Ghaffari, Alison Arngrim, Jarrod Bunch, Max Amini, NFL player Alec Ogletree, Andrew Jang, Tony Denison, Rachel Sterling of Pussycat Dolls, Shanica Knowles, Sean Kanan, Apick Youssefian, Mary Apick, fashion designer Sue Wong, and entrepreneur and publisher Miguel R. Forbes were in attendance at the “Gathering for Cure” gala.

For more information about the “Gathering for Cure” gala registration and donation to the foundation please visit: www.BrainMappingFoundation.Org and for more information about the Society and convention registration for the 14th Annual World Brain Mapping Conference and Gala please visit: www.WorldBrainMapping.Org

All photos courtesy of Bob Delgadillo/PR Photos

Dustin Brown

Dustin Brown

I am the Senior Editor at HollywoodPressCorps.com.

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Unity at The Universe Multicultural Film Festival

It truly was a small world after all this past weekend, as the Universe Multicultural Film Festival united the diverse worlds of film, fashion and finance. The festival held their lavish red Carpet Awards Ceremony at the RHCC Community Center in Rolling Hills Estates.

Awardee Laurene Landon dazzles in a beautiful green gown

Celebrities in attendance from the event were Lynn Tang, Festival Founder and President, Awardees Aki Aleong (Babylon 5, Walker, Texas Ranger), Mel Novak (Bruce Lee’s Game of Death, Chuck Norris’ An Eye For An Eye), Laurene Landon (Maniac Cop, Sky, the #1 trending movie on Netflix opposite Norman Reedus) and presenter actor/filmmaker Thomas J. Churchill (Check Point, Lazarus: Day of the Dead). Aleong received the Lifetime Achievement Award, Landon received the Trailblazer Award, and Novak received the Living Legend Award.

Awardees Aki Aleong and Mel Novak

The Universe Multicultural Film Festival seeks to bring to the best of classic and contemporary filmmaking from the world and is committed to enlightening the public with a unique international film program, a forum for cultural understanding and enriching educational opportunities. The Festival focuses on showcasing diverse cultural and heritages films, supports the creation and advancement of innovative and artistic cinematic works of both emerging and seasoned filmmakers and proudly embraces the passion, independent spirit and vision of these talented artists. With the integration of the local community and educational institutions into all aspects of the Festival, this Festival stimulates an interest in the study and appreciation of film and encourages people of all ages and background to participate and share the harmony of the universe. In addition to the awards ceremony, this three day festival will have screenings, panels and a fashion show.

Presenter Thomas J. Churchill with awardees Laurene Landon and Mel Novak on the red carpet

This prominent festival was founded by Lynn Tang. Ms. Tang is a film and Broadway musical producer. She is the executive director of Universe Multicultural Film Festival; director of San Diego International Kids’ Film Festival; Founder of Epic ACG Fest; Chairwoman of Maeya Art Festival.

Laurene gives a wonderful and witty acceptance speech with fabulous presenter Thomas J. Churchill

As a film producer, her feature movie “Hiding Sword ” (in China and Hollywood) won the best actor & actress awards at the Los Angeles Nollywood Film Festival. Recently, she served as the executive producer of the Hollywood film “Senior Entourage” starring Hollywood Icons Ed Asner, Mark Rydell, Dick Van Dyke, Helen Reddy; Marion Ross and Charlie Robinson.

Awardees Aki Aleong and Mel Novak

As a Broadway musical producer, her production “Chen Ying Rescuers the Orphan “made to Dolby Theater (Oscar award Home theater) in October 2016. It become the first Broadway Musical to debut at in Dolby theater in history.

Mel’s motivational acceptance speech with Thomas J. Churchill and festival official

For the past 5 years in a row, she has been appointed as the film jury and international commissioner of Seoul Guro International Kids Film Festival ( Korea) and for two years in a row as the Asian Film Block director of the Broadway International Film Festival -Ensenada ( Mexico).

Awardees Mel Novak and Laurene Landon
Awardee Mel Novak and festival founder Lynn Tang
Awardee Laurene Landon and presenter Thomas J. Churchill

Before the entertainment industry, she was a Project Manager specializing in international business exchanges and has served as a management specialist for Fortune 500 companies. She is the Shanghai (China) Zhabei District Investment Advisor and currently serves as the vice chairwoman of the Maeya Culture Exchange Group. Given Ms. Tang’s background, This international festival will unite the worlds of film, fashion and finance. Bravo to Lynn and her team for putting this incredible festival together.

For more info, please go to http://umfilms.org/

All photos are courtesy of Sheri Determan/PR Photos

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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The Fourth Annual Nollywood Awards is a Great Success

The fourth annual Los Angeles Nollywood Film Association (LANFA)’s Nollywood Awards took place on Saturday August 6th at the James Bridges Theater at UCLA. This event recognized renowned international talents in the film, music and media industries within the African communities globally. LANFA has experienced tremendous growth since it’s inception and wanted to appreciate all those who have stayed the cause and also given back to their communities. King Bassey is the founder of the Nollywood awards and LANFA. Mark Sevier was the LA Coordinator of LANFA and Amelia Johnson was the head of marketing. Additionally Mark won a best actor award for the film “The Chosen One.”

Mistress of Ceremonies Denise O'Brien, Founder of the Nollywood awards King Bassey, awardee Vida Ghaffari and presenter Ford Austin
Mistress of Ceremonies Denise O’Brien, Founder of the Nollywood awards King Bassey, awardee Vida Ghaffari and presenter Ford Austin
Awardee Mark Sevier
Awardee and LA coordinator for the Nollywood Awards Mark Sevier
Beauty queen and model Amelia Johnson and Mark Sevier
Beauty queen and model Amelia Johnson and Mark Sevier

HPC’s own Vida G. , who is also an award-winning actress and fashion and beauty blogger, was presented with a prestigious Excellence in Media Award at this prestigious event. Celebrated actor Ford Austin presented Vida’s award to her.  Ford is Vida’s co-host on their popular Facebook live show, “Live with Ford and Vida.”  “Live with Ford and Vida” was also an official sponsor of this auspicious event. Entrepreneur Laverne Tillis also presented this award to Vida.

Awardee Vida with her award and presenters Ford Austin and Laverne Tillis
Awardee Vida with her award and presenters Ford Austin and Laverne Tillis. Ford and Vida are dressed in Sai Suman Couture
Romane 4th from left with actor Said Faraj (second from left) and all the other awardees.

Also in attendance was filmmaker and awardee Romane Simon, who is also a prolific author. Simon has an interesting background. Originating from Haiti, his grandfather was Antoine Simon, the president of Haiti.

Presenter and founder of the World Networks Lousine Karibian with awardees Said Faraj and Vida Ghaffari

More info at http://www.Lanfaa.com

Photos courtesy of Mark Sevier and Bob Delgadillo

Dustin Brown

Dustin Brown

I am the Senior Editor at HollywoodPressCorps.com.

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The Night of 100 Stars – 26th Annual Awards Night Gala – The Beverly Hilton

Blanca Blanco at the Night of 100 Stars. Photo courtesy BurrisAgency
Blanca Blanco at the Night of 100 Stars. Photo courtesy BurrisAgency

 

Actress and model Blanca Blanco arrived at the Night of 100 Stars and turned everyone’s head in a stunning and unique gown by Haute Couture designer Quynh Paris. The shimmering, romantic violet gown accentuated the beauty’s curves and offered a peek-a-boo view of her legs. The movement of the dress was captivating and the material combination of tulle and organza gave volume to the dress, making it appear as though the gown was floating around her.

Actress and model Blanca Blanco in a Quynh Paris design. Photo courtesy BurrisAgency
Actress and model Blanca Blanco in a Quynh Paris design. Photo courtesy BurrisAgency

The complexity of the gown was perfectly offset with simple teardrop diamond earrings and an elegant, side-swiped hairstyle. Blanco made a strong yet delicate statement on the red carpet on Sunday night and fans were blown away with her style and elegance.
Quynh Paris’s handmade gown was inspired by the starlight and she spent two months creating the perfect blend of couture and avant guard fashion.

Photographer and publisher Winston Burris with actress Blanca Blanco
Photographer and publisher Winston Burris with actress Blanca Blanco

Fabby Lifestyle was wowed by the decadent couture and the fabulously bold statement the star and the designer created together on the red carpet. We will be seeing much more from both of these extremely talented ladies in the future.

Actor John Savage at the Night of 100 Stars. Photo courtesy BurrisAgency
Actor John Savage at the Night of 100 Stars. Photo courtesy BurrisAgency
Swiss-born Italian/Greek actress Sofia Milos. Photo courtesy BurrisAgency
Swiss-born Italian/Greek actress Sofia Milos. Photo courtesy BurrisAgency
Judy Hansen Pullos

Judy Hansen Pullos

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

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