Sunday, July 23, 2017

Illusionist Criss Angel honored with star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame

By Karen Ostlund
Photo credit: Clinton H.Wallace@Photomundo

The Hollywood Chamber of Commerce announced that illusionist Criss Angel (born Christopher Nicholas Sarantakos) was honored with the 2,615th star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame last Thursday, July 20, 2017 at 11:30 a.m. PDT.
Criss star is located at 7018 Hollywood Boulevard next to the historic Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel and across the street from the star of Houdini!  
Angel began his career in New York City, before moving his base of operations to the Las Vegas Valley. He is known for starring in the television and stage show Criss Angel Mindfreak and his previous live performance illusion show Criss Angel Believe in collaboration with Cirque du Soleil at the Luxor casino in Las Vegas. The show generated $150 million in tourist revenue to Las Vegas in 2010, but has since been replaced by Mindfreak LIVE on 11 May 2016. 
He also starred in the television series Criss Angel BeLIEve on Spike TV, the reality-competition television show Phenomenon on NBC, and the 2014 stage show Criss Angel Magicjam.
 Criss Angel recently created and directed a music video for Latin pop princess Belinda and world-renowned DJ/Producer Steve Aoki which will be released this summer 2017.
(left) Actor Gary Oldman, Criss Angel and magician Lance Burton

“Hollywood is a magical place, and when we honor Criss Angel with his own star, the magic will continue to spread! We are very proud to include him on our famous Walk of Fame,” stated Walk of Fame Producer Ana Martinez.

Hollywood Chamber President/CEO Leron Gubler,was the emcee of the event to unveil the star with guest speakers Lance Burton, Randy Couture and Gary Oldman.

For more than a decade, Criss Angel has dominated the world of magic as the biggest name on the planet. From his role as star, creator, executive producer and director of the most successful magic television series of all time, Criss Angel MINDFREAK on A&E Network, to his No. 1 best-selling Las Vegas stage shows Criss Angel BeLIEve and Criss Angel MINDFREAK LIVE! (in partnership with Cirque du Soleil® and MGM Resorts), to countless critically-acclaimed television specials and series, best-selling books, top-grossing retail products, music CDs.

Illusionist Criss Angel infront of his Hollywood Walk of Fame Star infront of Roosevelt Hotel
Chris Angel 2017 YouTube Videos:

Angel’s book, Criss Angel MINDFREAK: Secret Revelations (Harper Collins) was a national bestseller and is now in multiple printings. Angel is also an accomplished musician, having produced and performed on five self-titled CDs, which accompany all his live performances and TV appearances.

Angel has received numerous awards throughout his career: “Magician of the Year” an unprecedented six times, including from The Magic Castle—far more than any other magician. He was the youngest magician inducted into the International Magicians Society Hall of Fame. Angel was also presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award, The World Magic Legacy Award “A Living Legend,” at The World of Magic Seminar in Las Vegas.
Additionally, Angel was recently named the first recipient of “Magician of the Decade,” as well as “Magician of the Century” and “Innovator of the Decade.” Angel received an International Magic Lifetime Achievement Award and was unanimously selected as the recipient of the 22nd Louie Award for Outstanding Achievement in the Art of Magic.

Angel is tireless in his ongoing efforts to help children through his charitable works. His Johnny Crisstopher Children’s Charitable Foundation, a JDS Foundation (formerly Believe Anything Is Possible), was renamed last year after his then two-year old son Johnny was diagnosed with leukemia. Angel has also received the Male Wish Granter of the Year Award and the Chris Greicius Celebrity Award for his work and dedication to the Make-A-Wish Foundation, having just granted his 50th wish.
The Hollywood Walk of Fame and the Hollywood Sign are registered trademarks of the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce. #hollywoodwalkoffame  

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Marvel Comics, Stan Lee put his hand & footprints at TCL Chinese Theatre IMAX

Photos by Karen Ostlund.
 The Ceremony was presented by Legion M, ICON: Celebrating Stan Lee, the first ever handprint-footprints ceremony in TCL history to be organized and hosted by the fans.
(Center) Stan Lee sitting among speakers in attendance to start ceremony at TCL Chinese Theatre IMAX,
 (Hollywood,CA) July 18, two days before San Diego Comic-Con Convention, the iconic creator and force behind Marvel Comics, Stan Lee, put his handprints and footprints in cement in the forecourt of the TCL Chinese Theatre IMAX in Hollywood, CA.
Sran Lee put his handprint at TCL Chinese Theatre IMAX in Hollywood

“Stan Lee gave us the heroes that fueled our imagination and aspirations” said Kevin Smith, Filmmaker, Actor, Writer, Comedian and Stan Lee Fan.

”Now, WE, the fans, are coming together to give this permanent monument and tribute to the man that gave us so much.”

Stan Lee, the chief creative force behind the rise of Marvel Comics, brought to life some of the world’s most famous heroes and infamous villains, including Spider-Man, The Hulk, X-Men, Fantastic Four, Iron Man, Thor, Daredevil, Dr. Strange, The Avengers, Loki, and Dr. Doom. His stories featured heroes and villains that were more psychologically complex than had ever been seen previously, inspiring legions of fans.

According to his autobiography, Excelsior, “Lee put the human in the superhuman.” Lee’s connection to fans immediately led him to Legion M’s unique model of being the first fan-owned entertainment company, and he has been supportive of Legion M since its launch in 2016. Legion M embodies the fan culture that Lee’s work launched, perpetuating a legacy that has impacted generations.
By organizing and rallying the fans, celebrities, companies and anyone who has been positively impacted by Lee’s work, Legion M is paying a heartfelt, historic and overdue tribute to one of the greatest storytellers of our time.
(left) Comic book artist Todd McFarlane, Marvel chief Kevin Feige, Stan Lee, writer/director Kevin Smith, ‘Black Panther’ film star Chadwick Boseman, and Clark Gregg

Stan Lee's hand & foot print with signature in cement, July 18

“On behalf of Stan Lee and Stan Lee Collectibles, we’re deeply moved and appreciative of the groundswell of fan support Stan has always enjoyed, and we’re grateful that his fans have united together with Legion M to give him this great honor,” said Stan Lee Collectibles CEO Max Anderson.
Stan Lee signs his name in cement at TCL Chinese Theatre IMAX
 As a producer, writer, editor, publisher, actor, host and executive, and idol to many, Stan ‘the Man’ Lee has left an indelible mark on the entertainment industry having created or co-created 90% of Marvel’s most recognized characters. These creations have spawned books, films, television series, video games, web series, Broadway shows and more offering a steady stream of box office.
In 2017, Stan will celebrate his 95th birthday and 70th wedding anniversary, along with the 78th anniversary of the day he first started as an assistant filling inkwells at Timely Comics – now Marvel Comics – which over a lifetime of work he helped turn into one of the biggest media brands in the world.
Group photos of Stan Lee, friends and speakers attending July 18 
Stan Lee with ‘Star Trek’ star Nichelle Nichols after ceremony was over
Myself inside SPIDER MAN photo booth for new movie HomeComing
Fans were invited to get involved, attend the event,and pay tribute to Stan, take home a piece of history and more by visiting

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

25-foot Wilmer Valderrama puppet revealed at Hollywood & Highland

Photos & story by Karen Ostlund

 Giant puppet revealed yesterday! In celebration of the today, July 11 premiere of the new original TV series, "The Hollywood Puppet Sh!tshow," Fuse TV and Wilmer Valderrama [Creator, Executive Producer, Host]  revealed a 25-foot Wilmer Valderrama puppet activation in the courtyard of Hollywood & Highland in Hollywood, CA. He said: " I am the only cast, but I use well-known performers on stage as my puppets in the show as: Lil Jon, Amber Rose, Terry Crews, Gina Rodriquez and Steve Aoki.

Big stars. Small puppets. Crazy stories. It's a comedy puppet show.
You can watch them all recount their true, untold wildest adventures reenacted by their very own doppelgänger marionette puppets, created exclusively for the FUSE TV series, premiering today Tuesday, July 11, 10:30PM.
Sneak preview:
Noon, July 10th at Hollywood & Highland, Wilmer Valderrama
Wilmer Valderrama revealed a 25-foot Wilmer Valderrama puppet

Monday, July 10, 2017

#ConcernFoundation 42nd Annual Block Party in Hollywood raised $ 1.8 milllion

Photos & story by Karen Ostlund (Hollywood, CA)
Entrance of "Kingdom of Concern" at Paramount

 Last Saturday, July 8th, The Concern Foundation for cancer research hosted its 42nd signature Block Party on the back lot of Paramount Pictures Studios in Hollywood.
July 8, The Concern Foundation Block Party at Paramount Back Lot

 The Block Party is the organization’s largest fundraiser and this year’s theme was “Kingdom of Concern; An Evening of Feasting, Revelry and Dance.” The food and entertainment focused event attracted close to 4,000 guests with a goal to raise funds in research, focused on immunology based methods to treat cancer.

  The Paramount Studios backlot streets were filled with over 75 food and beverage vendors under the direction of Nancy Eisenstadt, Megan Mulcahy and Whitney Carroll.
The Urban Oven Pizza

Notable restaurants were  Vibrato Grill Jazz, Ocean Prime, The Grill on the Alley, Fogo de Chao, Lawry’s The Prime Rib, The Urban Oven, The Palm and Pink’s Famous Hot Dogs among many.
Tom Nolan Band was main stage opening and closing performance
 Entertainment  included performances on multiple stages by the Tom Nolan Band, D’ City Sound featuring DJ Dwayne. The evening Master of Ceremonies was KNX1070 News radio’s Frank Mottek. A/V Masters donated all of the audio and visual components.

Musicians going on stage

One of the highlights of the evening was the silent and live auction under the direction of this year’s auction chairs Lynne Fox, Wendi Nogradi, Courtney Teller & Madeline Rose.  Live and silent auction items and packages include one-of-a-kind opportunities, concert and event tickets, restaurants and golf packages.
Pink's Hotdogs:  beef, turkey and vegan

Victorian Horse - theme of Kingdom of Concern

The night featured dancing, casino-style games, Brian Kramer Digital photography studio, Island Ink airbrush tattoos and salon and spa services.
Lawry’s The Prime Rib

For the 13th year Concern helped celebrate The Best of LA 2017® on Los Angeles magazine’s street which featured  lounges, photo booths, food stations, DJ dancing, Peerless Coffee and California wineries.
Sponsor car Infiniti QX 60 2017

2017 Concern Foundation Block Party theme – Kingdom of Concern - raised over $1.8 million.
 Bruce Singer, Kelly Stone & Sharon Stone (stage-photo by J.Barsky)

Each year, the Block Party honors individuals who are making significant impacts in our community. This year’s Spirit of Concern Humanitarians Award recipients were KELLY STONE, BRUCE SINGER and EDEN ALPERT.

Kelly Stone was born in Pennsylvania but moved to LA in the early 80’s to continue her work as a nurse. Six years later she ends up having 5 trauma surgeries and was in and out of wheel chairs for 4 years. After her downfall, she realized the most important thing to have in life is hope. She started getting involved in the homeless community and later in 1993 with the help of her sister and Sharon Stone, they founded a nonprofit organization called Plant Hope. Planet Hope provides job fairs, housing, summer camps for homeless, disabled and abused families.

Bruce Singer was born in Bronx New York and attended Long Island University and Harvard University for International Law and Foreign Service. After getting his law degree from Whitter College of Law he served as a law clerk for Criminal/Superior Courts in LA. He had many successful businesses but he really got not helping the less fortunate when he met Kelly. Together they have accomplished bigger projects to benefit the sick and homeless.

Eden Alpert has been a part of the Concern foundation since the beginning. Her and her daughter have actively participated in many fundraisings and events for the cause. She believes that being involved in this cause will make a big difference in the community. 
La Provence Cafe desserts

“Concern Foundation is proud to honor these exceptional people for their passion, commitment to philanthropy and involvement in the community,” said Derek Alpert, president of Concern Foundation. “They truly exemplify what Concern Foundation represents to the cancer community, locally and around the world. We recognize the most inspiring people in our community at our Block Party and we provide funding to only the best cancer research scientists that are making a difference in conquering cancer.”


Bar Hayama Sushi Rolls
Concern Foundation’s mission is to conquer cancer by providing essential funds to support the early yet critical stages of discovery. Since its inception in 1968, Concern has raised and awarded $59 million to over 750 gifted cancer scientists around the world.
For 49 years, Concern has pioneered the advancement of cancer immunology—the study of the relationship between the immune system and  cancer—a field that is now widely acknowledged to hold the most potential for discovering treatments and preventions for cancer.
With 90-95% of net proceeds going directly to research, Concern Foundation has made significant strides toward bridging a major gap in research funding by focusing its grants on young, innovative researchers with breakthrough ideas.
Myself in Concern Foundation's Photobooth 3DCheeze

 Kingdom of Concern was an evening of feasting, revelry and dance on the back lot of Paramount Pictures Studios in Hollywood. The event was led by event chair Lexy Carroll and a team of volunteers and designed once again by John Ferdenzi of Town and Country Event Rentals.#concernfoundation #teamconcern #concernblockparty


Saturday, July 1, 2017

Recap of DWELL on Design Outdoor 2017

Photos by Karen Ostlund
(Los Angeles, CA) Recap of DWELL on Design, June 23, 25th downtown LA Convention Center. Many booth came from West Hollywood Design District to show.

DWELL popular pavilion showcased a full-size prefab home from Method Homes and a tiny home from Kim Lewis Tiny Home. AutoCamp  hosted a special contest, and Happier Camper featured a photo booth and hosted a bar at the Opening Night Reception, June 23rd. 
Dwell on Design was excited to showcase the best in outdoor design with the return of Dwell Outdoor at 17,000 square feet space. Dwell Outdoor highlighted contemporary outdoor furnishings, a full-size modern prefab home, a custom-built tiny home, and design forward brands for the adventurous. This year’s homes, all available to tour, included the Kim Lewis Tiny Home and the Method Homes Prefab. The camping brand, AutoCamp, had their luxurious Airstreams on-site and the modular trailer company, Happier Camper. 
Kim Lewis Design House

Dwell Outdoor welcomed Kim Lewis, the "The Little Lady with Big Ideas", best known as the Lead Designer behind ABC's "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition" and founder of Kim Lewis Designs in Austin, Texas. Her latest design project, Kim Lewis Tiny Home, is a series of custom built small homes each designed around a specific theme and aesthetic. Her third Tiny Home, the Joshua Tree Tiny Home made its debut at Dwell on Design, and featured white ship-lap walls, copper pipe shelving, LaCantina sliding doors, and a 24-inch colored range from Blue Star, among many  great brands. 

Method Homes returned to Dwell Outdoor and showcased its new Annata Model. The Annata is designed by Chris Pardo Design: Elemental Architecture and comes in two and three module versions. Brands featured in the Annata include Daltile, European Home, Hästens, Sugatsune, and Mohawk Industries to name a few. It is designed with a focus on indoor/outdoor living and is ideal for the wine country and coastal areas of California. 
 Dwell Outdoor was also home to the Architecture and Design Film Festival (ADFF). Open Air Cinema provided screens for attendees to view a curated, highly anticipated group of short architecture and design films.
AutoCamp, the unique California Airstream lodging experience hosted their Adventure Experience Live at Dwell Outdoor. The experience  transported guests to an innovative outdoor setting which features their chic and contemporary Airstreams where camping meets modern luxury. 
Happier Camper
Happier Camper, the California-
based friendly camper brand
showcased their popular HC1
model on-site. Retro-modern at
heart, delivering affordable
adventure and ground-breaking
flexibility in an ultra-light
package, the HC1 is the result of a
lifetime of enthusiasm and years
of careful design. The AdaptivTM
modular interior features included
a huge rear hatch, wide entry
door, classic fenders, honeycomb
fiberglass floor and large panoramic windows.
About Dwell on Design
June 23- 25, 2017 / Los Angeles Convention Center
is a three full days of dynamic exhibitions, unparalleled educational opportunities, new home technologies, onstage panels, 40+ speakers, and more than 2,000 innovative modern furnishings and products, Dwell on Design is the largest modern design event on the west coast. In addition to featuring over 200 exhibiting brands, Dwell on Design encourages an ongoing design dialogue.
Dwell is a media and technology brand focused on design and architecture. Through an award-
winning magazine that has been published since 2000, and a sharing platform launched in 2016,
Dwell promotes an architecture that is optimistic and innovative. In December 2016 Dwell
launched a collection of products with Target called Modern by Dwell Magazine. Dwell, Dwell
Homes, Dwell Prefab, and Dwell on Design are registered trademarks of Dwell Media, LLC.
Dwell Media, LLC is a wholly owned subsidiary company of Dwell Life, Inc.