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The Skinny on Ciggies and Old Men

April 25, 2009

Ciggies and Icons

Opening in France April 22

Opening in France April 22

In December 2007,  France approved a smoking ban in public places.   I  didn’t even know they had a ban! I guess I am a little shocked to hear this.  I mean…these are people who are literally born with cigarettes in their hands…okay, so maybe not literally, but there is something about Paris, and smoking in dimly lit cafes, drinking coffee while debating literature and politics.  If I were in Paris, I would probably just light one up just to feel like I’m in one of those old movies.  Well, if anyone would disagree, it would be the RATP, the French transit system. The transit company has banned movie posters for the upcoming Coco Chanel movie, titled Coco Avant Chanel, starring Audrey Tautou.  In the poster she is holding a cigarette while sitting upright in bed wearing her silk pjs.   Coco Chanel, for those who don’t know, smoked something like 50 cigarettes a day…a day!!  She was rarely seen in pictures without a cigarette.  The transit company, however, stand by their decision to have the posters either banned or to have the cigarette digitally removed.

‘Cigarettes are banned on our entire transport system, and there is no reason why we should be giving them free advertising through this film poster,’ said a spokesperson for the RATP.  Of course, any type of publicity is good for a film.  How can you hate anything that Audrey Tautou is in?  She is golden!  I can’t wait to see this movie.

Rarely seen without a cigarette

Smoked 50 cigs a day, but lived to 87 yrs old.

The movie looks fantastic.  No English subtitles in the trailer, but let’s hope it opens soon in North America.


Nick Lachey’s girlfriend Vanessa Minnillo has reportedly been caught cozying up to actor Matt Lanter from the new (and needless) 90210.  Reports are circulating that she was flirting and sitting on his lap at a recent party.  Not that anyone probably cares anymore — after all, this is a couple who is always on vacation.  I’m pretty sure that anytime I’ve seen a photo of the two of them together, they’ve been on a beach in the Bahamas.   Naturally, I fail to see them in anything that resembles a career.  If anyone remembers Vanessa, she was once a correspondent for Entertainment Tonight and for hosting MTV’s Total Request Live.  Right before her contract expired, pictures of her and Lindsay Lohan surfaced of the two of them in..uh..rather awkward positions.  Coincidentally, her contract was not renewed, although Minnillo stands by the fact that it was her decision not to return.  Um…yeah….and that was because she wanted to venture out onto her own, perhaps a new acting career-?  Well, she made it…..she starred in one of Nick Lachey’s videos.  Really?

On another note: Lindsay Lohan looks like she might need some help…this is actually just disturbing.  The pictures of her at the optometrist’s office are NOT flattering, and she just looks like crap in general. Check out to see the pics.  Sad.

Lohan and Vanessa (left): two friends goofing around or just plain dumb? Lohan this week (right) looking rather thin

Lohan and Vanessa (left): two friends goofing around or just plain dumb? Lohan this week (right) looking rather thin

Rant of the Week

I am behind in my music news, because I just realized that the New Kids on the Block are still on tour — did I hear that right, that they will be extending their tour to the end of  the spring?  I know a lot of people will be angry at me for saying this, but can someone explain to me why they are still around?  Okay, okay…we get the point…you boys hit 35 and you needed to secure easy retirement.  So, pop up, do a show or two, and then head back to real estate…but, please, for the love that is all teeny-bopper and pure.. disappear already would you???  I loved the New Kids…I loooved them —  I had their “Behind the Stage” video.  In 1989! When you are 35 and you are singing “Oh, it’s so crazy, she’s like Baby, I’m like Swayze,” I think that means it’s time to go. Who writes that crap?

The New Kids on The Block, way back when they were a credible band

The New Kids on The Block, way back when they were a credible band

Hate mail begin, but I’m sorry — bands, when they end, should just end…go away gracefully.  Come out with a best hits in 20 years, throw in one or two new songs.  But, a whole tour with bad boy-band dancing on the beach with shirts open and flowing in the wind, arms stretched out to the camera in unison…oh god..I have to stop, I’m going to puke.  End already!


This week the father of Rubina Ali, one of the Slumdog Millionaire child stars was accused of trying to sell his daughter to a wealthy couple from Dubai, who were really undercover journalists from the News of the World.  Rafiq Qureshi claims that he didn’t understand what the couple were saying because he doesn’t speak English very well.   The journalists are standing by their claim, saying that they even have footage, but the police have said that they have no evidence that any wrongdoing took place.

Rubina Ali plays the young Latika

Rubina Ali plays the young Latika

A good point was brought up recently in an article that I read: the real concern is how fame will impact these young people who were plucked from the slums to star in a big movie.  Flying across the world to Hollywood, fame and recognition can certainly make it difficult when you return home to the same place- a slum.  Questions among other families, “Why wasn’t our daughter or son picked?” can be accompanied with jealousy.   Producers and director Danny Boyle promised to set up trust funds for these kids in hopes of securing a better future for them.  Let’s hope they stick to that plan.

Another movie you might want to check out is the 2004 Best Oscar Documentary Born into Brothels.  This heart-wrenching documentary is about the children of prostitutes in Kolkata’s red light district.  Documentary photographer Zana Briski, who had intended to take pictures of the prostitutes, ended up befriending their children.  The children were given cameras and ultimately the chance to make their lives better.  The photographs taken by the kids were used for an exhibit and the proceeds put towards their education. The film, however, has fallen under some criticism as to whether or not the children’s lives actually improved.  To see the pictures and get info about the documentary, visit Kids with Cameras, a non-profit organization started by Briski.

Another reason to watch documentaries…

Coco Chanel Movie Poster images via Christian Simon Blogspot
Coco Chanel images via If You’ve got it Flaunt It
Lindsay Lohan and Vanessa Minnillo images via
Rubina Ali image via Associated Press.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Jordana permalink
    April 26, 2009 11:23 am

    Oh! I can’t wait to see the new Audrey Tautou! Any news on it’s N.American debut? I’m sad to say it’s not the first sad news I’ve read about the Slumdog child actors. Darn. Born into Brothels – it was a great documentary but it’s unfortunate if nothing positive has come out of it for these children.

  2. April 27, 2009 11:56 am

    I’m really surprised about the smoking ban in Paris. Are we really talking about Paris, as in the city, and not Paris as in the track-suit-loving blonde? I’m in shock. The movie looks fantastic, of course. Who doesn’t simply adore Audrey Tautou? She makes me want a Chanel suit even more!

    Lindsay really does look awful in those pics. Someone should feed her a cheeseburger or two.
    – Johanne

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