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"Club Paris" and Paris Hilton - What Happened To Club Paris?



If you do a search on Paris Hilton, one result that comes up is a reference to something called "Club Paris." What that is -- or was -- or kind of is, I guess, is a set of nightclubs, the first of which opened in Orlando in 2004 and then in Jacksonville and just around the time that city was hosting the Super Bowl.

But then both closed in 2007. Why?

Well from my peering around, it seems that Club Paris' death was due to a disagreement between a club entrepreneur named Fereidoun "Fred" Khalilian and Paris Hilton. Reportedly, Hilton was paid seven-figures for Fereidoun "Fred" Khalilian to gain the right to place her name on what was to be a string of night clubs starting in -- of all places -- Orlando. (The photo shows Paris and Fred in happier times.)



I mean, nice try there, but let's face it, Orlando's not the first city anyone associates with Paris Hilton or nightlife. I guess catching the resort / Disney World crowd was the idea, but then why not try to negotiate with the Disney people? Oh well.

The first Club Paris opened in Orlando in 2004, but I can tell from the press release (see the link before this sentence) that there would be trouble simply because even though Paris is mentioned extensively, there's no -- not one direct quote from her. There's one from her lawyer, but not her.

So it's no wonder Hilton failed to show up on time for the grand opening. For that, Paris said she was "skiing in the Swiss Alps and got caught at the airport with holiday travel." A reasonable excuse in my view, but then I'm a Paris Hilton fan. (Why? Because she has a head for business -- she's an entrepreneur and a great one at that. She's not living off family money and has done well making her own cash, yet is not recognized for that, which is a total shame.)

That behavior and subsequent episodes where Hilton did not show up to planned Club Paris events was the straw that broke the camels back for Fereidoun "Fred" Khalilian. Accord to an agreement contract, Hilton was to come to the club twice a month..

Look out Orlando , the 2005 New Year’s Eve Party to attend is the grand opening of "Club Paris," the first of a handful of clubs worldwide to be named after socialite Paris Hilton.

Seems like Paris Hilton knows something about nightclubs, so it makes sense the hotel heiress is the latest inspiration for a series of clubs that will bear her signature name.

Club Paris, named after "The Simple Life" star, plans to open on New Year’s Eve in Orlando. Local businessman Fereidoun "Fred" Khalilian hopes to open other Club Paris nightclubs locations include Las Vegas, New York City, Miami Beach, London and Paris.

Rumors leaked stated that Hilton will earn a "seven-figure" signing bonus for lending her name to the club. In return, she is contractually obligated to appear at the club at least twice a month. Hilton also helped select the interior design and is scheduled to attend the opening.


It opened and lasted for one year, then closed. Some point to the fallout between Paris and "Fred" as the reason for the closure, but I think it was more than that. The Club has a $20,000 back-rent debt and Consolidated Investment and Capital Corp., which loaned the money to Club Paris LLC to acquire the liquor licenses, is still owed $526,240.65 on a liguor license that was up for sale in February of this year.

On top of all that, Fred was arrested twice -- once for sexual assault, then for an old warrant of assault on a law enforcement official. The details aside, its clear that Fred's pissed off a number of women in that area, as more than one have complained of his boorish behavior. In fact, the anger is such that someone made a MySpace page devoted just to his sexual assault problems.

But it seems that the rape charges were indeed questionable. Khalilian was released from jail after two witnesses, a a guard and a cab driver cast doubt on a rape allegation, according to his lawyer, Mark NeJame. The Florida attorney's website reports that "Both men said the woman appeared happy and content after spending 70 minutes in the nightclub owner's home. And a text message she sent afterward to Khalilian's cell phone asked him to send her some clothing and thanked him, NeJame said.
Khalilian was required while on bail to wear a GPS tracking device, abstain from drinking alcohol, and stay out of his nightclub between 10 p.m. and 8 a.m., NeJame said.


Whatever the case, it's clear someone does not like Khalilian.

Meanwhile, Paris presses on.

A year after her celebrated DUI problems, the heirress still finds herself near the top of Internet searches and was the star attraction in South Africa recently for the My Coke Fest Rock Festival. Also, her singing album, started with Scott Storch, who Paris met through Khalilian, is still available.

NY Upper East Side Interior Designer Christine Smith Featured By NY Post



Christine Smith Interior Design Blessed By NY Post's Cindy Adams



Taking a break from politics, Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and John Mcain, we look at Cindy Adams who "brings you the juiciest celeb gossip and celebrity news" according to the New York Post, her employer. Well, if that's the case, then Cindy's just blessed Christine Smith as a celebrity. Cindy took note of the growing presence of Smith's workers around the Upper East Side, and gushed ..

"GUYS are around hauling demolition, filling dump trucks, wearing black T-shirts that read "Christine Smith." So who's Christine Smith? A stunning, skinny, befurred, 6-foot blonde with silver buckles on her jeans and waist-length hair. And why's anyone hauling fixtures wearing her shirts? She's this season's contractor du jour. Looking like a model, this lady is demolishing johns, pulling out sinks, building walls and redoing kitchens all over the Upper East Side."



Wow.

Not only is Christine a model, but the work of her and the crew of people she employs is as well. Here is but one of the examples of the work of Christine Smith, who it can now be said rules the Upper East Side of New York. Visit her website at http://www.christinesmithassoc.com

Shootin Lucy | Punk Rock Band | Stork Club Oakland



This is a music video shot impromptu at a place called The Stork Club on 2330 Telegraph Ave. I just happened to have my camera and they were cool with it. Here's the result!

CNN / YouTube Debates - My Message To Steve Grove and Dave Bohrman

This video and post present my message to Steve Grove, the News and Politics editor for CNN, and to Dave Bohrman, the Executive Producer of the CNN / YouTube Debates for CNN.



My take is that CNN/YouTube was lucky to realize the ratings record that was set for the debate, and this was achieved for two reasons: 1) the time of year -- it's the fall holiday season, and 2) the fact that all of the Republican Presidential Candidates were there, which is no small feat.

Still, CNN/YouTube handled this debate differently than the Democratic Debate. First, the level of promotion of the event was dramatically scaled back compared to the first. Second, there were fewer questions picked out of the 5,200 that were submitted : 34 questions versus 43 for the first debate. Third, there was an annoying tendency to pick Blacks who submitted questions about Black issues, when there were videos from people who were not Black, but did ask questions about Blacks and the Republican Party.

(As a momentary aside, I think that practice shows an America that does not exist. It shows an America where only Blacks care about Black or minority issues, and not the real America, where a diverse set of people care about all Americans, and will ask questions regarding how Blacks are treated. To not show this -- the real America -- is criminal and paints America as far more racist than it really is. This country has come a long way and is better than it's ever been.)

CNN/YouTube also didn't handle its video talent properly. In the video I present myself as an example. In the begining I was -- and still am -- part of the sample video for the CNN/YouTube Debates. I'm also on the YTDebates channel, at least as of this writing and you can see my photo on the channel here in this blog post. So when I learned that YouTubers were being flown out by Google to the debates, I thought -- rightfully -- that somone would call.

Nope. Didn't happen.

I also sent an inquiry to determine if this was the case, and didn't get an answer from Steve Grove.

So it makes one wonder -- in this case, me -- what's going on over at CNN / YouTube and why they treat people in this way - or at least me. But given the thousands of people who have made and submitted videos, and the other talent that was promoted, I can't believe it's just me that had the problem.

CNN itself showed little regard for my time when they contact me for the first debate. Three show producers contacted me separately and in one case I thought I was to get on a flight. Then didn't get a call back. Then was essentially made to wait for a few days, then got a call saying I wasn't being flown out, only to get a call from another show flying me to New York.

Nuts.

What bothered me this time around was not that I was not called, but Steve didn't answer my emails attempting to learn what he and YouTube were going to do. If they'd said "Zennie, we don't need you this time", or "Hey CNN thinks you're an Obama supporter, and they've got a problem with that" then I'd be fine. I just wanted communication. I didn't get it.

As for the debate itself there were a lot of problems in addtion to the ones I discussed above. Not a single video question on Health Care was presented, leaving one to think the Republican Party doens't care about it. Is that CNN's call or the Republican Party? One has to assume they were working together. But in eliminating that series of questions, CNN / YouTube and the Republican Party pissed off a country.

Plus, CNN / YouTube did't tell video submitters they were going to do this, and the video makers -- given the Democratic Debate with YouTube, had full reason to think they would do so. Moreover, CNN / YouTube didn't tell anyone what they were going to do -- I learned it from CNN's David Bohrman being quoted in the New York Times.

That's not good.

In closing, I think CNN / YouTube owes YouTubers an appology and I'm also disappointed with how Steve Grove handled things this time around. I have high standards for him and I expect that -- givent the historic nature of what he's doing with YouTube and CNN that he will reach and maintain them. It's not personal -- I like Steve -- just professional.

I don't know Dave Bohrman, but I expect that he's a fine and upstanding person who will take these crticisms to heart and act on them. I think all of us want to see the CNN / YouTube system reach its potential.

D.O.A. - Dead Or Alive - Movie Trailer

Facebookers Launch Official Petition Against Hillary Clinton's Insult

In The Politico.com , it was reported that On Saturday, November 10th, Clinton advisers told reporters this about Barack Obama's voters:

“Our people look like caucus-goers,” Grunwald said, “and his people look like they are 18. Penn said they look like Facebook.”

Penn added, “Only a few of their people look like they could vote in any state.”

This was reported by Roger Simon in his column today and the well-reported quip angered more than a few Facebook users. It was one of the dumbest errors commited by the Clinton campaign, and could serve as another nail in the coffin of her Presidential campaign.

The Clinton camp's way too arrogant, and comments like those of Gruwald and Penn prove it.

The anger of Facebook users has materialized into a petition against Hillary Clinton, which you can see and respond to with a click here.

Dr Donda West, Kanye West's Mom, Passes After Surgery

Kanye's mother dies after surgery

Kanye West often spoke about his close relationship with his mother

The mother of rap star Kanye West has died at the age of 58 after cosmetic surgery developed complications.
Dr Donda West, who managed the star's businesses and educational foundation and was the subject of his song Hey Mama, died in Los Angeles on Saturday.

Her publicist Patricia Green said she passed away "as the result of complications from a cosmetic surgical procedure", but gave no more details.

West's spokesman said the family "asks for privacy during this time of grief".

The 30-year-old often spoke publicly of his close relationship with his mother. She raised him alone after her husband left when West was three.

'Inspirational'

In Hey Mama, on West's 2005 album Late Registration, he sang: "Hey Mama, I wanna scream so loud for you, cuz I'm so proud of you. I appreciate what you allowed for me, I just want you to be proud of me."

In May, she published the book Raising Kanye: Life Lessons from the Mother of a Hip-Hop Star, in which she paid homage to her famous son.

She was chairwoman of the Kanye West Foundation, a non-profit organisation that aims to improve literacy and stop people dropping out of school.

Ms Green said: "May Donda's work and deeds be an inspiration to each of us, may we start each day knowing that support of family and community are central to purpose."

Heroes On Hulu - Watch The Entire Episode "Out Of Time" Here, Now Live!



Click on the arrow to watch the entire Heroes episode "Out of Time."

Hulu is NBC's new website system that allows one to see HD-quality online versions of shows from NBC, CBS, and other providers. I don't see it as a YouTube replacement for reasons I state over at Zennie's Zeitgeist, but it's a fun system, none the less.

Bionic Woman On Comcast On Demand - Saw It

I just saw Bionic Woman on Comcast OnDemand. Click on this -- Bionic Woman -- to read my review of the pilot episode.

San Francisco Macy's Passport Video Features Bauer's Limosine



This is a video that promotes Macy's Passport -- the fashion show to end all shows -- at Fort Mason, September 19th, 2007. The short message contains images of the Lexus 400h Hybrid Car, the rage for those going green, and can be rented at the page for Macy's Passport

Jersey Boys' Drew Gehling and My Mom @ REAF Benefit in S.F.



Tickets at SBSTickets.com

Everyone Likes CNN's Paula Zahn - Even The Limo Drivers!



I'm still in New York City, having appeared on CNN's Roland Martin Debates to talk about the CNN / YouTube Debates program and its impact on society. But during this trip, what impressed me was the impact CNN's now departed Paula Zahn had on everyone around her.

People love her.

This was made clear to me by the limo driver who picked me up at JFK. He said "Paula, she was great. Most people (CNN anchors and contributors) just get in (the car) and don't say much. Paula, she asks you about your family, and how you're doing."

This view was echoed by yet another driver with the firm that holds the CNN livery account. And it speaks to the character of the person that will be replaced by Cambell Brown. She's a truly good person, and the best way to know that is when other people say so.

"SF Limo Service Tour | Bauer's Limo Video" - Too Short's Song Is Key

If there's one rap song of the modern era that has an "old school" feel to it, it's Too Short's "Blow The Whistle." Released in 2006, this make-you-get-up-and-dance tune is popular at clubs around the World. But what's not known is that it makes a great back drop for a commericial video. Take this one I made to promote Bauer's Limousines:

William Shatner On Kirk's Death In Star Trek: Generations - Video

I just found a site called " Bring Back Kirk.com " which calls for Paramount to bring Star Trek's Captain Kirk back from the dead, where he was left after Star Trek: Generations. As part of this effort, they have this video where Shatner's talking about his objection to the plan to have Kirk killed. It's an insight into the kind of thinking that Shatner says Paramount had in making their decision.

Bonnie Piesse Is "Aunt Beru" From Star Wars Episode II and Episode III



Actress Bonnie Piesse appeared at WonderCon in San Francisco and was kind enough to listen to my stupid question regarding her time playing "Aunt Beru" in Star Wars Episode II and Star Wars Episode III. In our conversation Bonnie explains that the baby she held was in fact not real, but was made to feel like a real baby.



She also offered that George Lucas, who directed and produced the movies, was relaxed and easy to work with. Finally, Bonnie talks about her music and her album which is set to debut in late 2007.

Michael Buble - Why Are People Writing About Him?

I've got to admit, I've never heard of Michael Buble until now, and that's due to Technorati and the people blogging about him. But why are they blogging about him? Well, here's a video of him singing. If you want concert tickets, just click on the title of this post.

Don LaFontaine, John Leader, Al Chalk, Mark Elliot, and Nick Tate - Video

Wow. Check out this video featuring the greatest movie voices of the modern age of movies.

It features Don LaFontaine, John Leader, Al Chalk, Mark Elliot, and Nick Tate, all off to the Key Awards.

"300" Movie Set To Make Over $60 Million - Largest March Opening



According to Nikki Finke , the CGI-based epic "300" is set to earn a record $60 million, the largest ever take for a movie opening in March. I can say that the movie is a hit with teenage boys, who flock to see this in large groups, as I observed at the Sony Metrion in San Francisco. Or rather, I heard some screeming "300 tickets!" as I got off the BART train.

I can't remember a movie that's really connected with this set since Spiderman. But this is more primal and that's due to the story and approach. It's a violent male-oriented movie, period.

Here's a video:

Ellen DeGeneres Gives Martin Scorsese A Script At The Academy Awards

This is absolutely funny. I don't know if it was staged or spontaineous, but it made me laugh out loud.

Paris Hilton Smoking Crack? - ParisExposed Website Is Shut Down?



I thought the ParisExposed website was shut down, but I find ParisExposed.tv, so I guess the party migrated, or something. As you may know, Paris Hilton's trying to get the website -- which has free videos of her doing "stuff" and picts of her smoking a crack pipe shown here -- shut down.