BeansTalk Biz Newsletter

BeansTalk News: Daily news on fashion, beauty, film, television, books -- all media -- and anything else of relevant interest. (View the current month in its news entirety by clicking the date under Archives.)

Friday, July 29, 2005


Clay Aiken (AP Photo/Jeff Christensen)

Aiken Goes For Cole

Former 'American Idol' runner-up Clay Aiken performs on ABC's 'Good Morning America' summer concert series in New York's Bryant Park, Friday, July 29, 2005. He wears a jacket and shoes by Kenneth Cole New York. He performed in Kenneth Cole's light gray textured cotton two-button jacket and unique gray washed leather loafers.

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Paula Abdul

Abdul Goes to The Mart

Grammy award-winning recording artist Paula Abdul attended an event with Grammy winning musicians of AC Timba Jazz Project at L.A. Mart’s 4th Annual American Foundation for AIDS Research (amfAR) fundraiser during the July 2005 Gift & Home Furnishings Market™ “Takin’ it to the Beach,” last Saturday.

Abdul was escorted into the Caribbean-themed party by L.A. Mart vice president and general manager Gerry Seibel. Abdul signed autographs and posed for photos with guests.

Seibel introduced Abdul who applauded the crowd for their support of Gift for Life and amfAR. Addressing the rise in HIV and AIDS-related cases specifically among women, Abdul encouraged everyone to reach for their checkbooks, bid on the vast array of donated silent auction items and enjoy the party. Later in the evening, a dance with Abdul became a live auction item earning nearly $1,000 from Scott Rosenberg, principal, The Rosenberg Group, a Division of Filbert & Fig, who claimed the winning bid.

Awash in a spectrum of sunset-at-the-beach hues, the event radiated a high energy and festive mood contributing to the evening’s success, raising $37,000 and placing L.A. Mart’s total fundraising for Gift for Life in excess of $100,000, to date. The L.A. Mart was once again supported in its sponsorship by some of the best names in the gift and home furnishings industries, as well as numerous time-honored business partners and long-standing friends.

Abdul is seen in the above photo appreciating the gift basket given in thanks by the clients of Glam Entertainment PR. She received:

95° and Sunny Crystal Glass Nail File Set

Andrea Eye Qs Oil Free Eye Make-up removal pads

Andrea Eye Qs Refreshing Eye Mask

Andrea Eye Qs Under Eye Circle Complex

Andrea Face Spa Detoxifying Mud Masque

Andrea Face Spa Stress Release Deep Pore Steam facial

Andrea Foot Spa Lotion

Andrea Kiwi Peel Off Facial Masque

Andrea Micro Dermabrasion Complete Kit

Andrea Modlsh Black

Andrea Strawberry Peel Off Facial Masque

Angelscent Amber Body Oil Spray

Ardell Elegant Eyes Lashes - Romantic

Ardell Elegant Eyes Lashes - Sophisticated

Ardell Eyelash Adhesive

Ardell fashiojn lashes - Black

Ardell Fashion Lashes demi Black

Ardell Surgi Cream Brow Shaper

Beyond Skin Science Eternalis Skin Care kit

Body Drench Haze Bronzing Dust

Body Drench Moisrurizing Lotion

Body Drench Moisturizing Body Bath

Body Drench Sea Foam Body Scrub

Body Drench South Sea Body Wash

Body Drench Whipped Chocolate Self Tanning Mousse

China Glaze Down Under Polish Collection

China Glaze fast Forward Top Coat

China Glaze Holiday Hotties Polsi Collection

China Glaze Strengthening Base Coat

Correctionist Age revising Hand Treatment

Correctionist Cellulite Smoothing System

Correctionist Daily Intensive Serum

Correctionist Multi Benefit Eye Cream

Correctionist Nighttime resurrection Treatment

Correctionist Purifying Milky Cleanser

Correctionist Time Correcting Crème

That's Cool Inc., Down Under Topless Sandals & Foot Thong

Euroma Cucumber Melon Body Lotion

Euroma Vanilla Almond Hand & Body Lotion

Ez Flow Manicure Pedicure Elements Spa

Gena Feet To Go Pedicure System

Gena Pedi Sander

Gena Sweet Inspirations hand and Body Care

GiGi Hair Removal Strips for the Body

GiGi Hair removal Strips for the Face

Mr. Cecil's California Ribs T shirt

Mr. Cecil's BBQ Suace

Mr. Cecil's California Ribs Gift Certificate

Naked Glow Instant Glow

Naked Kiss Lip Spa

Naked Kiss Plump & Polish Lip Treatment

Naked Kiss Plump & Polish Lipstick

Naked Kiss Plump and Polish Lip Glosses

Quickie Cuticle Remover

Renew Body Crème

Rox Minneapolis Amythest Necklace and Earrings

The Sossi Collection Bracelet

Supernail Cuticle Velvet Cream

The Great Big Little Jewelry Cleaner


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Geena Davis REUTERS/Chris Pizzello



Geena Davis Chooses Kevan Hall

Geena Davis was on hand to promote her new ABC series Commander- in-Chief (she plays the president) at the ABC 2005 Summer Press Tour in clothes by Kevan Hall. For the All-Star Party, the Oscar-winning actress chose a tri-color silk-crepe twist-front dress. For Day 2, Davis chose a crisp white stretch-cotton tie-front signature blouse.


Geena Davis in a Kevan Hall blouse. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)
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In Other Fashion News

Kelly Preston stepped out to support More Magazine's Wilhemina 40+ Model Search as well as to promote her new film Sky High on The Late Show with David Letterman wearing a gown by Monique Lhuillier, a bohemian purple safari-print chiffon-halter gown.

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Desperate Housewives star Teri Hatcher celebrated Candace Bushnell's new book "Lipstick Jungle" in a cocktail dress by Monique Lhuillier, a champagne silk-chiffon strapless rusched mini-dress with asymmetrical ruffle-hem.

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Ming-Na wore A Pea in the Pod on the red carpet at the NBC All-Star Celebration. Ming-Na was there to support her new fall show titled Inconceivable. She selected A Pea in the Pod’s black mesh tunic top that ties around the neck with coordinating full-cut pants. Ming-Na and her husband have a 4-year old daughter, Michaela, and are expecting their second child this fall.

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Actress Julie Gonzalo attended the premiere of her new movie Must Love Dogs in a navy strapless matte and shiny satin paneled dress by Kenneth Cole New York. To complete her green carpet look, she selected Swarovski dark silver earrings with a jet-black crystal drop.

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UK fashion designer Roland Mouret and fine jeweller H. Stern dressed actress Pell James for the premiere of “Broken Flowers." James wore a midnight- blue Golden dress in graphite wool from Roland Mouret’s Autumn/Winter 2005 collection. James chose Rock Crystal earrings from the Diane Von Furstenberg by H. Stern collection: 2 quartz at 97.33 carats, set in 18K yellow gold with diamond accents, $3,900 to complete her red carpet look. James will soon be seen in her upcoming films “The King” and “Undiscovered.”

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Wedding Crashers' Jane Seymour strolled the red carpet at the premiere of The Dukes of Hazzard in a dress by Pamella Roland, a vibrant multi orange floral print taffeta cocktail dress from Pamella Roland's Resort 2006 Collection.

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Mary Elizabeth Winstead
wore Nicole Miller and Rodo to the Sky High premiere.
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Attention Gadget Heads!


www.landroller.com (women's model seen above, $249)


Feet Won't Fail Ya
The New Land Rollers


Winner of the 2005 Sports Product of the Year. Patented Angled Wheel Technology™ delivers performance superior to inlines. Radical design mounts large wheels while maintaining a low profile and short wheelbase. Skate-friendly dynamics with greater stability, a smoother chatter-free ride, better maneuverability and multi-surface capabilities.


LandRoller's radical wheel configuration outperforms inline skates on all surfaces with a smoother and more stable ride. "Size does matter! The basic physics of bigger wheels has clear advantages. For years, skate companies have tried to capitalize on those advantages by putting larger wheels on skates to improve versatility and achieve a smoother glide. Those attempts have failed because the skates were either dangerously high off the ground, as in the case of Rollerblades' Coyote skates, or unmaneuverable because of too long of a wheelbase, as with the GateSkate, TrailSkate and Crosskate," states LandRoller co-inventor Bert Lovitt.

Only with LandRoller's patented Angled Wheel Technology™ can large wheels be mounted on a skate while maintaining a low profile and a short wheelbase. Skating dynamics are maintained while delivering all of the advantages of large diameter wheels. These advantages include speed, smoothness and increased glide time.

People are astonished by the incredible STABILITY derived by the slightly 'out of line' wheel configuration of LandRoller skates.. Most people need to experience the ride to believe it . critics are amazed and become converts, even crusaders. It's astonishing!

The radical design of LandRoller's large, angled wheels grabs attention -- even from distance. It's confounding. How can something that looks so wrong, work so right?

Every element of the LandRoller design leads to a superior skating experience. Skaters are ready to overcome the limitations of inline skates. They're ready for LandRollers.

Get into LandRollers!

  • Join the LandRoller Skate Revolution - LandRoller is revitalizing skating with the most innovative and exciting skate product in years. Try them and you'll be convinced.
  • The LandRoller Advantage is clear for skaters of all levels - LandRoller delivers improved stability, a chatter-free ride, greater maneuverability, multi-surface capabilities and dramatic styling. Novices find them easier to learn on and world champions are embracing LandRollers for their superior performance.

LandRoller Skate's Advantages are numerous:

  • STABILITY over cracks, rough surfaces and other roadway impediments: LandRoller skates were on Steve Coogan's feet while he was skating over cobblestone in the recent Jackie Chan movie, "Around the World in 80 Days." You don't need to be a pro skater, aggressive skater or speed skater to benefit from the superior stability of a LandRoller skate, nor do you need to fear the rogue pebble that can send inline skaters flying off the path and into the brush. LandRollers are so forgiving and easy to learn on that beginners are only novices on their first day.
  • Better MANEUVERABILITY for situations that require quick decisions and reaction times: LandRollers enable skaters to navigate with more control and agility. Aggressive skaters and speed skate junkies - please remember to obey all speed limit signs! Once you master the subtle technique differences between inlines and LandRollers, you will find that you can turn sharper and spin more easily on LandRoller skates.
  • SKATE IN PLACES AND ON SURFACES never before imaginable: LandRollers were originally designed as all-terrain skates. However, the same features that make them excellent off-road skates (larger wheels on a short wheelbase with a low center of gravity) make them superior to inline skates and quad roller skates, on ALL surfaces. Claim your independence today. Put on a pair of LandRollers and - skate where you want and do what you want. For off-road skating, please use LandRoller's wider profile, air-ride tires - available soon.
  • RESPONSIVE BRAKING: Braking on the LandRoller skate is more effective than with inlines because the geometry of the two-wheel design makes it easier to use the drag brakes. Hand-activated disc brakes will be a feature on some future models.
  • SMOOTH, CHATTER-FREE RIDE: The large wheels provide an incredibly smooth ride - increasing the pleasure and comfort of skating. LandRollers are so comfortable that they have even been described as skate shoes. LandRoller eliminates the "routine" of a health and fitness regimen.
  • RADICAL STYLING: LandRollers are a social phenomenon. They are amazing attention grabbers and conversation starters. Be prepared for the pick-up lines. And prepare to get mobbed at skate parks or when just skating down the sidewalk. Skaters with Rollerblades, inlines, aggressive skates, quad skates and hockey skates will all ask you where you got your LandRollers. For stores, visit the website.


Pearly Whites in NYC

Who To See in NYC
(For Pearly Whites)


New York's cosmetic denist Dr. Brian Kantor is the starlet’s doc of choice. He just may be responsible for your favorite actress' pretty smile.

Kantor performs state of the art “smile makeovers” using porcelain veneers as well as bonding, bleaching, and porcelain fillings. In January, Kantor was featured in W Magazine as one of the country’s foremost up and coming cosmetic dentists. The dental practice of Lowenberg, Lituchy & Kantor has also recently been featured on Regis and Kelly, The View, and Oprah, as well as countless magazines such as People, In Style, and Allure.

Kantor graduated from the University of Pennsylvania with a BA degree in Biology. He graduated from New York University College of Dentistry and continued his training with an advanced education in General and Cosmetic Dentistry, also at New York University.

Dr. Brian Kantor D.D.S.
230
Central Park South, New York City
212-586-2890

Thursday, July 28, 2005


Lisa Kudrow as "Comeback's" Valerie Cherish

HBO's The Comeback
August Episodes


Episode #9: "Valerie Hangs with the Cool Kids"
Debut date: SUNDAY, AUG. 7 (10:30-11:00 p.m. ET/PT)
Other HBO playdates: Aug. 8 (9:00 p.m.), 10 (10:30 p.m.), 11 (11:30 p.m.), 12 (11:00 p.m.) and 25 (9:30 p.m.)
HBO2 playdates: Aug. 7 (3:15 a.m.) and 13 (11:00 p.m.)
At the insistence of the network, "Room and Bored" gets a makeover and adds two new cast members, Greg (Amir Talai) and Kaveen (Maulik Pancholy), spurring talk of a coup by the "original five." Meanwhile, Franchesca's (Vanessa Marano) new friend Kalla (Willa Holland) shakes up the status quo at home. Written by Michael Schur; directed by Clark Mathis.

Episode #10: "Valerie Gets a Magazine Cover"
Debut date: SUNDAY, AUG. 14 (10:30-11:00 p.m.)
Other HBO playdates: Aug. 15 (9:00 p.m.), 17 (10:30 p.m.), 18 (11:30 p.m.) and 25 (10:00 p.m.)
HBO2 playdates: Aug. 14 (3:15 a.m.) and 20 (11:00 p.m.)
With Juna (Malin Akerman) getting all the hype and most of the magazine covers, Valerie (Lisa Kudrow) enlists a new publicist, Billy Stanton (Dan Bucatinsky), to land a cover of her own. Billy obliges by scoring a shoot for Be Yoga magazine, forcing Valerie to remodel her fitness room and take a yoga crash course. Written by Amy B. Harris; directed by David Steinberg.

Episode #11: "Valerie Stands Out on the Red Carpet"
Debut date: SUNDAY, AUG. 21 (10:45-11:15 p.m.)
Other HBO playdates: Aug. 22 (9:00 p.m.), 24 (10:30 p.m.), and 25 (10:30 p.m.)
HBO2 playdates: Aug. 21 (2:55 a.m.) and 27 (11:00 p.m.)
Valerie gets a new dress and a new look for a familiar TV awards show.
Written and directed by Michael Patrick King.

Episode #12: "Valerie Shines Under Stress"
Debut date: SUNDAY, AUG. 28 (10:30-11:00 p.m.)
Other HBO playdates: Aug. 29 (9:00 p.m.) and 31 (10:30 p.m.), and Sept. 1 (11:45 p.m.)
HBO2 playdates: Aug. 28 (2:30 a.m.) and Sept. 3 (11:00 p.m.)
Jane (Laura Silverman) pulls rank on Tom (Robert Bagnell) and Paulie G (Lance Barber) to get Valerie more lines on "Room and Bored." A stalker threat forces extra security on the set, exposing Valerie's old back problems as she's prepping for a big pratfall scene. Written by Heather Morgan; directed by David Steinberg.

The Comeback is created by Michael Patrick King and Lisa Kudrow; executive produced by Michael Patrick King, Lisa Kudrow, John Melfi and Dan Bucatinsky; co-executive producer, Linda Wallem; co-executive producer, John Riggi; producer, Denis Biggs; producer, Amy Harris; casting, Liberman/Patton Casting. The Comeback is an HBO Entertainment Production in association with Working Class, Is Or Isn't Entertainment and Warner Bros. Television. Posted by Picasa


Entourage

Entourage in August


Episode #18: "The Bat Mitzvah"
Debut date: SUNDAY, AUG. 7 (10:00-10:30 p.m. ET/PT)
Other HBO playdates: Aug. 8 (9:30 p.m.), 10 (10:00 p.m.), 11 (12:30 a.m.), 12 (12:30 a.m.), 13 (12:10 a.m.) and 19 (9:00 p.m.)

HBO2 playdates: Aug. 7 (2:45 a.m.), 9 (8:30 p.m.) 16 (8:00 p.m.)
Vince (Adrian Grenier) gets up-front about his feelings for Aquagirl, sending everyone into a panic; Ari's (Jeremy Piven) partner Terrance (Malcolm McDowell) resurfaces; Eric (Kevin Connolly) splurges on an "investment" suit; and Drama (Kevin Dillon) and Turtle (Jerry Ferrara) have high hopes for Little Miss Ari's (Cassidy Lerhman) Bat Mitzvah. Written by Doug Ellin & Rob Weiss; directed by Julian Farino.

Episode # 19: "Blue Balls Lagoon"
Debut date: SUNDAY, AUG. 14 (10:00-10:30 p.m.)
Other HBO playdates: Aug. 15 (9:30 p.m.), 17 (10:00 p.m.), 18 (midnight), 19 (9:30 p.m.) and 20 (12:30 a.m.)
HBO2 playdates: Aug. 14 (2:45 a.m.), 16 (8:30 p.m.) and 23 (8:00 p.m.)
Vince receives courting lessons from Terrance and a valuable gift from Ari; Shauna (Debi Mazar) flips over a press leak; Eric gets attention - and ammo - from Terrance's daughter Sloan (Emmanuelle Chiriqui); Drama grows over-excited about a co-star; Turtle plays ambassador for Vince. Written by Brian Burns; directed by Dan Attias.

Episode #20: "Good Morning Saigon"
Debut date: SUNDAY, AUG. 21 (10:15-10:45 p.m.)
Other HBO playdates: Aug. 22 (9:30 p.m.), 24 (10:00 p.m.), 25 (midnight) and 27 (11:00 p.m.)
HBO2 playdates: Aug. 21 (2:25 a.m.), 23 (8:30 p.m.) and 30 (8:00 p.m.)
When Vince and his co-star act out of character, Ari and Eric must face a team of angry handlers, and each other; Drama and Turtle make a musical discovery while retrieving a stolen car. Written by Stephen Levinson & Rob Weiss; directed by Dan Attias.

Episode #21: "Exodus"
Debut date: SUNDAY, AUG. 28 (10:00-10:30 p.m.)
Other HBO playdates: Aug. 29 (9:30 p.m.) and 31 (10:00 p.m.), and Sept. 1 (12:15 a.m.) and 3 (9:30 p.m.)
HBO2 playdates: Aug. 28 (2:00 a.m.) and 30 (8:30 p.m.), and Sept. 6 (8:00 p.m.) and 14 (10:30 p.m.)
Vince is blinded by love, and Eric gets cozy with Sloan; Ari gets shot down in the war room; and Drama and Turtle use their paparazzi skills on an important spy mission. Written by Doug Ellin; directed by Julian Farino.

Entourage is created by Doug Ellin; executive produced by Mark Wahlberg, Doug Ellin, Stephen Levinson and Larry Charles; co-executive producer, Chris Henchy; producers, Wayne Carmona, Rob Weiss, Janace Tashjian; supervising producer, Julian Farino; co-producer, Brian Burns.
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Liz Phair

Liz Phair's Somebody's Miracle
Scheduled For October 4th Release

Liz Phair has a simple credo. "As an artist, there's nothing worse than getting a ho-hum reaction," she says. That's not likely to be a problem with her new album, Somebody's Miracle, which will be released on October 4, 2005 by Capitol Records. It's a bold, ambitious collection of songs that embraces elements of her previous work and more. Pop and indie, frank and witty, playful and serious, Phair takes everything she's done before and pushes farther.

Somebody's Miracle poetically traces an emotional journey through a sweeping thematic arc. "It starts off with my turmoils in life, then hits a stride with the upbeat life songs, then dips down with some harder stuff and comes out winning in the end," says Phair, noting that finding the exact combination and order of songs was a struggle in and of itself. The flow had to be perfect, not just in the lyrics, but in the music. And that was a tough job, as this album covers so much musical ground. "People get very uptight about staying in a certain genre or not breaking out of your expected style," she says. "If I like indie-rock, I can't like pop. Or if I'm a pop person, I have no credibility in rock. But for me, I just decided to go farther and take my aesthetic stand stronger. I like demos and I like high pop production and I like straight American rock and I like jazzy, minor trippy chords. I like it all."

Phair wrote eleven of the songs herself. She co-wrote the remaining three with (Sheryl Crow, Santana), who produced the album with John ShanksJohn Alagia (Dave Matthews Band, John Mayer). The first single will be "Everything To Me."

Throughout her acclaimed career, Phair's elicited strong reactions for her work. With her brash 1993 debut, Exile in Guyville, she took on one of the most cherished albums of all time, the Rolling Stones' Exile on Main Street, writing answer songs to each of the tracks from a female point of view - with notorious frankness that made her an instant indie icon. On 1994's Whipsmart she challenged her own status by moving into the major-label world. After a break, she returned with 1998's Whitechocolatespaceegg married and with a young child, injecting an adult orientation and distancing herself from her earlier works. And with 2003's Liz Phair, she truly polarized fans and critics alike by injecting mature wit into gloriously frothy pop settings, and vice versa - and scored her biggest radio hit with the Gold single "Why Can't I."

"My public persona has sort of been in a time warp. I think my image was branded in the public minds when I was angry and defiant and 25," she says. "I will always be a boundary pusher. It's what I do. But I'm hopeful and anyone who knows me personally knows I'm just a little kid. And I don't think that came across in my music before."

Phair is currently on an eight-city, sold-out acoustic tour that will include two nights at Joe's Pub in New York (August 1st and 2nd) and three nights at Los Angeles' legendary Troubadour (August 10th, 11th and 12th).

Track listing for Somebody's Miracle:

Leap Of Innocence

Wind In The Mountain

Stars And Planets

Somebody's Miracle

Got My Own Thing

Count On My Love

Lazy Dreamer

Everything To Me

Can't Get Out Of What I'm Into

Table For One

Why I Lie

Lost Tonight

Everything (Between Us)

Giving It All To You

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HBO's Rome

HBO’s Rome Debuts Aug. 28


Kevin McKidd, Ray Stevenson, Ciarán Hinds, Kenneth Cranham, Polly Walker, James Purefoy, Tobias Menzies, Lindsay Duncan, Indira Varma, Max Pirkis And Kerry Condon star


The year is 52 B.C. Four hundred years after the founding of the Republic, Rome is the wealthiest city in the world, a cosmopolitan metropolis of one million people; epicenter of a sprawling empire. The Republic was founded on principles of shared power and fierce personal competition, never allowing one man to seize absolute control. But now, those foundations are crumbling, eaten away by corruption and excess. The ruling class has become extravagantly wealthy, with a precipitous decline in the old values of Spartan discipline and social unity. There is now a great chasm between the classes. Legal and political systems have weakened, and power has increasingly shifted to the military.

After eight years of war, Gaius Julius Caesar has completed his masterful conquest of Gaul, and is returning to Rome. He brings with him legions of battle-hardened, loyal men, unimaginable riches in slaves, gold and plunder, and a populist agenda for radical social change. The aristocracy is terrified, and threatens to prosecute him for war crimes if he enters Rome. The delicate balance of power lies in the Senate with Caesar's old friend, partner and mentor, Pompey Magnus.

Such is the situation when two soldiers of Caesar's 13th Legion, Lucius Vorenus and Titus Pullo, are ordered into the wilds of Gaul to retrieve their legion's stolen standard, the unifying symbol of Caesar's Legion, setting off a chain of circumstances that will entwine them in pivotal events of ancient Rome. An intimate drama of love and betrayal, masters and slaves, and husbands and wives, Rome chronicles epic times that saw the fall of a Republic and the creation of an empire when it debuts Sunday, AUG. 28 (9:00-10:00 p.m. ET/PT), on HBO. The first season consists of 12 episodes, debuting on subsequent Sundays at the same time.

A co-production between HBO and the BBC, Rome began shooting in Rome in March 2004, with Michael Apted ("Coal Miner's Daughter," "The World Is Not Enough") directing the first three episodes. Additional directors include Allen Coulter (HBO's "The Sopranos"), Julian Farino (HBO's "Entourage"), Jeremy Podeswa (HBO's "Carnivàle"), Alan Poul (HBO's "Six Feet Under"), Mikael Salomon (HBO's "Band of Brothers"), Steve Shill (HBO's "The Wire"), Alan Taylor (HBO's "Deadwood") and Timothy Van Patten (HBO's "Sex and the City"). Production for the series is based at Rome's Cinecittà Studios, with additional locations throughout Italy.

Among the actors starring in the first season are Kevin McKidd ("Kingdom of Heaven") as Lucius Vorenus, Ray Stevenson ("King Arthur") as Titus Pullo, Ciarán Hinds ("Road to Perdition") as Gaius Julius Caesar, Kenneth Cranham ("Gangster No. 1") as Pompey Magnus, Polly Walker ("Patriot Games") as Atia of the Julii, James Purefoy ("Vanity Fair") as Mark Antony, Tobias Menzies ("Foyle's War") as Marcus Junius Brutus, Lindsay Duncan ("Under the Tuscan Sun") as Servilia of the Junii, Indira Varma ("Kama Sutra: A Tale of Love") as Niobe, Max Pirkis ("Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World") as Gaius Octavian and Kerry Condon ("Angela's Ashes") as Octavia of the Julii.

Rome is one of the largest co-production deals ever by the BBC for an American series, and marks the first series co-production of the two networks. HBO and the BBC previously partnered on the 2001 miniseries "Band of Brothers," which won six Emmy(r) Awards, including Outstanding Miniseries.


August's episode:

Episode #1: "The Stolen Eagle"
Debut date: Sunday, Aug. 28 (9:00-10:00 p.m. ET/PT)
Other HBO playdates: Aug. 30 (9:00 p.m.) and 31 (11:00 p.m.), and Sept. 1 (1:45 a.m.), 2 (10:00 p.m.), 3 (10:00 p.m.), 4 (8:00 p.m.) and 16 (8:00 p.m.).

HBO2 playdates: Aug. 28 (1:00 a.m.) and 29 (10:00 p.m.), and Sept. 5 (9:00 p.m.).


52 B.C.: Eager to return to Rome after eight long years of war, Gaius Julius Caesar (Ciarán Hinds) ends his campaign with a resounding triumph in Gaul - and news of a shattering personal loss at home. When his army's gold standard is stolen, Caesar's cousin and commander Mark Antony (James Purefoy) enlists two soldiers, Centurion Lucius Vorenus (Kevin McKidd) and Legionnaire Titus Pullo (Ray Stevenson), to track it down. Despite their differences, the two make a formidable duo, and elevate themselves by retrieving more than just the missing standard. In Rome, Caesar's old friend Pompey Magnus (Kenneth Cranham) is counseled by Cato (Karl Johnson), Cicero (David Bamber), Scipio (Paul Jesson) and other old-guard members of the Senate, who worry that Caesar's popularity among the masses will rattle the patrician status quo, along with their wealth and power. Pompey too has experienced a personal loss, which Caesar's niece, Atia (Polly Walker), looks to assuage though an offering of her already-married daughter Octavia (Kerry Condon). Careful to play both sides of an escalating power struggle, Atia sends Caesar a grand token of her esteem, hand-delivered after a perilous journey by her 11-year-old son Octavian (Max Pirkis). Written by Bruno Heller; directed by Michael Apted.


"You rarely see onscreen the complexity and color that was ancient Rome," says co-creator, executive producer and writer Bruno Heller. "It has more in common with places like Mexico City and Calcutta than quiet white marble. Rome was brightly colored, a place of vibrant cruelty, full of energy, dynamism and chaotic filth. It was a merciless existence, dog-eat-dog, with a very small elite, and masses of poverty. We see the same problems today - crime, unemployment, disease, and pressure to preserve your place in a precarious society. There's the potential for social mobility, if you're smart.

"Human nature never changes," continues Heller, "and the great thing about the Romans, from a dramatic perspective, is that they're a people with the fetters taken completely off. They had no prosaic God telling them right from wrong and how to behave. It was a strictly personal morality, and whether or not an action is wrong would depend on whether people more powerful than you would approve. You were allowed to murder your neighbor or covet his wife if it didn't piss off the wrong person. Mercy was a weakness, cruelty a virtue, and all that mattered was personal honor, loyalty to yourself and your family."

Rome portrays the historical events of ancient Rome through the experiences of two ordinary soldiers, focusing on a segment of Roman society that is rarely portrayed, but also intersects with the ruling class and historical figures. Explains Heller, "One of the overarching themes is that Vorenus is a loyal member of Caesar's 13th Legion, but he cherishes the old ways of the Republic. So he's forced to make a choice between personal loyalty to a powerful leader, who for all intents and purposes is destroying the Republic, or to follow his own deeply held political ideals.

"The other archetypal story is that these men have been away from home for eight long years. Vorenus is married with children who've grown up without him. His wife has been looking after herself. How do you reconnect with them? How do you go from war's brutalities to a civilized existence? When you're used to being in charge, how do you deal with ordinary human interactions when you can't kill someone who contradicts you?"

Working with the production team is historical consultant Jonathan Stamp, who formerly ran the archaeology department of the BBC. When the BBC came on as a co-production partner, Stamp began reviewing the scripts for historical authenticity on an occasional basis, which eventually became a full-time assignment.

Says Stamp, "We are doing everything we can to make these episodes historically authentic, which means researching and incorporating every kind of detail we can about the way our characters behave, the way they interact, how they dress and gesture, the kind of streets they walked down, the way they conducted their private and public lives. We are not, however, making a documentary. We're striving for authenticity because it enriches the experience of the drama for the viewer. For example, we know that Vorenus and Pullo are historical figures who were mentioned by name in Caesar's account of the Gallic wars. Bruno then invented the details of their lives."

While life among the aristocracy is fairly well documented, there are few direct sources for details about life among the poor and working class. "It's all about taking little clues and extrapolating from there. The three sources you have are archaeological, such as the ruins at Pompeii and Herculaneum, throwaway references in literature, and tomb inscriptions," says Stamp. "Tomb inscriptions are incredibly important because everyone had them, regardless of class. People saved money their entire lives so they could have a funeral. And although the inscriptions are brief, they're priceless, honest indications of the way things were. There's one for a 16-year-old boy that reads, 'Once a slave, now a son.' That speaks volumes about the nature of slavery, that it wasn't always shackles and cages, although that existed as well. So slavery was a diverse phenomenon - some were chattel, disposable, and some were absorbed into the emotional fabric of the family, and eventually freed.

"Rome of this time was a noisy and bustling metropolis," Stamp continues. "There's a description in literature where the author's complaining of not being able to sleep when in Rome, because in the daytime, he describes the noise from the nearby gyms and the street vendors, and then, instead of quieting at night, it gets worse because all the traffic starts. Large carts were banned during the day, and all started up at night."

Rome boasts the largest standing set in the world, comprising five acres of backlot and six soundstages at the legendary Cinecittà studios, and is the first English-language series to be shot entirely in a non-English-speaking country. Although this presented unique challenges, the producers agree it could not have been shot anywhere else. Says executive producer Anne Thomopoulos, "There is nothing like walking the same streets that your characters are walking down, seeing the same structures, feeling the continuum as people shop and work and carry out their lives as they would have in ancient Rome. And Rome boasts some of the best craftsmen in the world. The crew takes such pride in working on a project that is their ancestors' story, I don't think we could have done this series as successfully anywhere else in the world."

Living and working in Rome has been of benefit to the actors as well. "It's been one of the greatest challenges, but also a great reward to live here," says Ray Stevenson. "A challenge because you're relocating your life for such an extended time, but I can't think of better preparation for the role than spending time in true Roman bars and coffee shops, away from the tourists, observing and absorbing contemporary Roman life. Because Pullo is a contemporary character in his world, and it hasn't changed all that much as far as the way people interact, talk to each other and gesture."

"It's been fantastic living here," agrees Kevin McKidd. "It's a way of life that just rubs off on you and makes the performance that much more authentic. And it's been such a rewarding experience to work with this cast. Just by being here you become a better actor because everyone's raising the bar for everyone else."

Adds Heller, "This cast has been just amazing. They've had to work so hard for so long, and the performances are fantastic. We're asking them to both be themselves, and be ancient Romans, which is a very hard thing to pull off."

"One of the most remarkable moments I've had on set was watching a scene, and forgetting that I was in ancient Rome," adds executive producer Frank Doelger. "The character story was so immediate and wonderfully realized, it wasn't about the set dressing, props and costumes. And I saw then that we'd done exactly what we wanted to do, which is to take Rome out of the museum and make it as real and immediate and vital as if we were shooting a contemporary drama."

Rome is a co-production of HBO and the BBC; co-creators, John Milius and William J. Macdonald and Bruno Heller; executive producers, Bruno Heller, William J. Macdonald, John Milius, Anne Thomopoulos and Frank Doelger; co-executive producers, Jim Dyer and Eugene Kelly; produced by Marco Valerio Pugini; producer, Lucy Richer; consulting producer, Michael Apted; production designer, Joseph Bennett; costume designer, April Ferry; casting, Nina Gold, Nina Gold & Associates.

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Carlos Bernard returns as Tony Almeida in the fifth season of 24. Last year Bernard's character ended the season with Almeida and his on-screen wife, Michelle Dessler being reunited after saving the United States from a nuclear attack. Bernard just finished filming the mini-series 10.5 Apocalypse for NBC. 10.5 Apocalypse stars Kim Delaney, Beau Bridges and Frank Langella.
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Six Feet Under


Six Feet Under: Episode Guide
Through Series Finale August 21


Episode #61: "All Alone"
Debut date: SUNDAY, AUG. 7 (9:00-10:00 p.m. ET/PT)
Other HBO playdates: Aug. 8 (10:00 p.m.), 10 (11:00 p.m.) and 12 (10:00 p.m.)
HBO2 playdates: Aug. 9 (11:40 p.m.) and 13 (9:00 p.m.)
While David (Michael C. Hall) attends to family business, Keith (Matthew St. Patrick) makes an embarrassing self-discovery on the job; Brenda (Rachel Griffiths) is challenged by Nate (Peter Krause) and answers a hard question for Maya (Brenna Leigh Tosh/Brownwyn Anne Tosh); Maggie (Tina Holmes) gets a door shut in her face; Margaret (Joanna Cassidy) compares herself to her daughter; Ruth (Frances Conroy) lets Bettina (Kathy Bates) play nurse; Rico (Freddy Rodriguez) and Vanessa (Justina Machado) decide to protect their future; Claire (Lauren Ambrose) is comforted by Ted's (Chris Messina) squareness; and George (James Cromwell) makes a speech about love. Written by Kate Robin; directed by Adam Davidson.


Episode #62: "Static"

Debut date: SUNDAY, AUG. 14 (9:00-10:00 p.m.)
Other HBO playdates: Aug. 15 (10:00 p.m.), 17 (11:00 p.m.) and 19 (10:00 p.m.)
HBO2 playdates: Aug. 16 (12:05 a.m.) and 20 (9:00 p.m.)
As David's fears take over, Keith tries to protect him and the boys; Billy (Jeremy Sisto) attends to his sister; Claire goes on a drunken harassment spree and pushes Ted away; Rico pushes for a talk about the business; George tries to help Ruth with Maya; Nate urges Brenda to embrace a taboo; and Vanessa sees the future in a funeral home. Written by Craig Wright; directed by Michael Cuesta.


Episode #63: "Everyone's Waiting"
Debut date: SUNDAY, AUG. 21 (9:00-10:15 p.m.)
Other HBO playdates: Aug. 22 (10:00 p.m.), 24 (11:00 p.m.) and 26 (9:30 p.m.)
HBO2 playdates: Aug. 23 (10:00 p.m.) and 27 (8:45 p.m.)
In the series finale, David finally embraces a demon; Keith gives "tough love"; Nathaniel (Richard Jenkins) talks to his younger son; Brenda delivers early and fights Nate's negativity; Claire gets an exciting phone call; Ted inspires some sexy photos; Margaret is impressed to see Olivier's (Peter MacDissi) nurturing side; Rico and Vanessa celebrate an investment; Ruth finds consolation in the truth from Maggie; George's limitations eclipse his intentions; and Claire drives into her future. Written and directed by Alan Ball.


The executive producers of Six Feet Under are Alan Ball, Robert Greenblatt, David Janollari, Alan Poul, Bruce Eric Kaplan and Rick Cleveland; co-executive producers, Scott Buck and Jill Soloway; supervising producer, Kate Robin; producers, Lori Jo Nemhauser, Bob Del Valle and Craig Wright; co-producer, Nancy Oliver.
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Wednesday, July 27, 2005


Mia Bossi Diaper Bags

Luxury Diaper Bags

*Mia Bossi makes oversized, luxury Baby Diaper Bags with zipper-out inserts. The plastic insert can be cleaned or interchanged with Mia Bossi’s computer bag insert, or left out and worn as a bag after you are done changing diapers.

*Each Mia Bossi bag comes with a leopard or snow leopard washable changing pad for your baby.

*Mia Bossi bags have adjustable straps so that you can hang them over your shoulder or on the stroller.

With Mia Bossi’s sophisticated couture diaper bags “function meets fabulous” and urban mommies keep savvy style without losing practicality. Debuting in August 2005, Mia Bossi specializes in combining fashion with motherhood. The vision of high-quality and high-fashion diaper bags was a collaboration of three experienced retailers and designers.

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Close friends since high school, Angie and Janet decided to combine their extensive experience in both the retail and design areas.

Janet launched PeTote couture dog carriers in the spring of 2002 and since then she has designed a travel duffel and tote bag line to match the carriers that have just been named the exclusive pet carrier of American Airlines.

Angie has a degree in Visual Communications and has had great success working as a graphic designer. She has always loved the arts and all the aspects of design and when her and friend Janet met entrepreneur Carolina Fay, the idea of Mia Bossi was born.

Carolina has worked with Fortune 500 companies, as well as her own company, Urban Hund, which specializes in quality-crafted leather dog collars & leashes that are distinct, sophisticated and guaranteed to take every dog for a walk on the style side. She has received countless awards and recognition for her many marketing campaigns. Along with the winning combination of retail, design and entrepreneurial experience, each woman also brings their own sense of style allowing Mia Bossi to create something appealing for each and every mother.

The inspiration for this long overdue idea stemmed from the designers becoming tired of seeing the same ancient diaper bags that screamed “mommy” every time they stepped out of the house. The three creators were determined to manufacture a diaper bag that made it possible for mommies to feel as fashionable as possible and that would also seamlessly blend function and fashion. This unique line not only allows mommies to transport baby’s needs in style, but the Mia Bossi bag can be used long after baby’s first steps…The bag also doubles as a purse, a computer case and a carrier for all the other necessities a modern mother needs to take with her. These premium leather bags will set you apart not only at your Mommy and Me classes, but at the office and out on the town as well.

These handmade diaper bags are made from the finest quality Italian leathers and fabrics, and finished with exotic metal hardware and pliable leather straps. Each Italian inspired creation is made with a one of a kind design that reflects not only high-end Italian fashion, but your own personal sense of style. Making Mia Bossi handcrafted diaper bags the ultimate mommy must- have. For info, contact Kari Feinstein PR 213.624.6082
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Mia Bossi: Can you believe this is a DIAPER bag?? Posted by Picasa