Alex Kurtzman, Elizabeth Banks, and Chris Pine at the premiere of People Like Us
As Fourth of July temperatures soared in Manhattan, rooftop fêtes and firework-viewing parties got underway. (A bikini-only “F the Hamptons” party is still to come this Saturday at Lavo.) However, Dispatches is stationed out East for a mini-vacation this holiday week.
Pool Party at The James and People Like Us
On Saturday last week, Ted Gushue hosted a pool fête on the roof at Jimmy at The James Hotel. How so many models fit into that smallish body of water is one of life’s many wonders.
And on Monday last week, Linda Wells, editor in chief of Allure magazine, and The Cinema Society debuted People like Uswith an afterparty on the breezy, modern roof of the Hôtel Americano. Allure cover star Elizabeth Banks, wearing a sparkling silver gown by Elie Saab, told Dispatches that she fell in love with the role. “She’s a broken little bird and a survivor,” said Banks of her character in the film.
“She’s incredibly intelligent,” co-star Chris Pine said of Banks. “Funny . . . and she doesn’t suffer fools.” In the film, Pine and Banks’ characters learn later in life that they both had the same father.
“I did meet my sister when I turned 30,” Alex Kurtzman, who directed the film and co-wrote the script, told Dispatches. “I went to a party, and a woman tapped me on the shoulder and said, ‘Hey, I’m your sister.'”
If viewers only know Pine as James Kirk in Star Trek, they'll discover a great actor. Banks also knocks it out of the park.
Taylor Kitsch, John Travolta, Blake Lively, and Oliver Stone at the premiere of Savages
On Wednesday, The Wall Street Journal debuted Savages. Why did director Oliver Stone cast bright-eyed Blake Lively? He noted her “smarts and beauty” on his way into the theater.
“She’s easy on the eyes,” Stone continued. “And I think she’s got a cool elegance, like Grace Kelly.” Lively wore turquoise earrings and a flowing yellow dress.
“I’d be tortured and beaten,” said Lively, who plays a captive during the film. “And I’d think, ‘Why am I enjoying going to work every day?’”
John Travolta, who plays a crooked cop, studiously avoided press. He appeared briefly for one group shot. And as he buttoned his blazer, Lively wrapped her arm around him. His hair, cut short, looked oddly glued down. Though embroiled in controversy (an alleged massage-gate), Travolta was a mensch to show up at the premiere.
Jenna Elfman, Glenn Close, and Rose Byrne at the season finale of Damages
Damages Season Finale
Then on Thursday, Direct TV debuted the final season of Damages on a sweltering red carpet in front of The Paris Theatre. Paul Shaffer mentioned that he is a neighbor of Glenn Close in Westchester. “We watch the show,” he said, “because we can’t believe that a person that nice could play someone that diabolical.”
A blimp circling midtown Manhattan flashed images of the cast. “I should take a photo for my mother,” said Rose Byrne, wearing Valentino. “It’s bittersweet,” she said, concerning the end of the series. “It changed my life.”
“Can we get a picture of that?” asked Glenn Close, as the blimp motored overhead.