July 30, 2007

Britney Bodyguard Thumps Photog

According to a press release issued by the Las Vegas P.D. and obtained by TMZ, "Britney also filed a crime report on behalf of her minor child." In the report, Britney claims the photog "battered both Mr. Camera and Ms. Spears' child, who was at that time being held by the security officer."

The Wynn also issued a release stating Spears "elected to leave the resort on Thursday afternoon, July 26, of her own accord." The had no comment beyond that.

Las Vegas police cited Britney's bodyguard last night in Las Vegas, for putting the smackdown on a photographer from Flynet agency.

The bodyguard, Julio Camera, nicknamed J.C., allegedly attacked the photog from behind after the lensman accidentally bumped Brit's older son, Sean. J.C. is accused of laying the beating on him while he was on the ground, as Wynn Hotel personnel rushed to pull the overzealous hire-a-thug off the lensman.

The photog was treated for his injuries and charges will likely be filed.

July 27, 2007

Britney's son gets hit in Las Vegas brawl with photographer...

Britney Spears' son was hit last night during a Las Vegas brawl between her bodyguard and a photographer.

The troubled pop star told police that one of her two sons - who has not been named - was assaulted during a scuffle between the snapper and her security.

Pop princess Brit had been at the Wynn Hotel and Casino for less then 24-hours with her children when the fight broke out.

Police did not immediately file charges against the photographer but Britney's bodyguard was cited for misdemeanor battery.

Police said the star's bodyguard, Julio Camera, hit the snapper who was trying get pics of the singer as she made her way though the hotel.

In response Britney filed a crime report on behalf of one of her sons saying a second photographer had battered her son and her bodyguard in an earlier clash.

The fight could not have come at a worse time for Spears who was already under fire for her parenting and for taking her kids away to Sin City amid concerns from her family about her recent erratic behavior.

The 'Toxic' hitmaker and her brother Bryan flew to Vegas in a private jet on Wednesday afternoon with her sons Sean Preston, 22 months, and Jayden James, 10 months.

It is not clear which of the boys was caught up and hit in the fight.

Las Vegas cops said that they were alerted to a disturbance at the Wynn Hotel and Casino just before midday.

A police spokesman said: "Responding officers determined that a private security officer, later identified as Julio Camera, was escorting Britney Spears through the Wynn property when an altercation occurred between Mr Camera and a photographer who was attempting to take pictures of Ms. Spears.

"It was alleged that during the altercation the photographer was battered by Mr. Camera. Detectives from the violent crimes section responded and, following their investigation, Mr Camera was issued a citation for misdemeanor battery.

"The photographer received minor abrasions during the incident.

"A second Crime Report was also filed by Ms Spears on behalf of her minor child. In that report it was alleged that prior to the above incident a second photographer, identified as Kyle Henderson, battered both Mr. Camera and Ms. Spears' child , who was at that time being held by the security officer."

Both incidents are still under investigation by police.

The trip could cause the star problems in her custody battle with ex-husband Kevin Federline.

Under California law, neither parent is allowed to take a child out of state without written permission from the other - or by obtaining a court order. According to a source close to Federline, Spears failed to notify her ex or his attorney, Mark Vincent Kaplan, that she was taking the children to Las Vegas.

A lawyer for Spears did not respond to calls for comment.

July 26, 2007

David Beckham thinks the LA paparazzi are too intense

Bleating little cry baby David Beckham has been whinging about the paparazzi attention he and his stick-thin wife have been receiving now they're living in California.

"In London, if we'd go out to dinner, there would be four or five cars following us. The other night we had 47. No joke. I get nervous. They run red lights and you're just waiting for accidents to happen," said Beckham, clearly ignorant of the fact that if you tell all the media agencies exactly where you're going to be and when you're going to be there, the press might actually act on the information supplied.

Anyone would think he and Victoria had fled to that notoriously quiet rural backwater of Los Angeles to escape from the attention, rather than continue to fill the media with inconsequential information about their lives. Maybe he and the Vick-Stick are just not that media savvy?


Actress MISCHA BARTON has forged a friendship with the paparazzi after finding it impossible to lead a normal life in the public eye.

The former O.C. star was forced to learn how to deal with stardom after her television show became an overnight success when it was first aired in 2003. But Barton admits she's now on good terms with photographers, who often lend a hand with chores unloading shopping from her car.

She says, "I don't think people realise how crazy it is. The day after the show first aired, someone recognised me in the street. I thought, 'Oh no! What if it takes off?' And it did. So I went with it. I had to do so much press. I've only just learned to drive, because I couldn't do it under the eyes of the paparazzi; I hate driving when they're following me. "It's irritating, but I've learned to smile it off and forge a quasi-friendship with them. They'll do things like help you put groceries in your car to get on your good side, or untangle your dog leash."

July 24, 2007

Most Expensive Celebrity Pictures

Forbes Magazine has released a list of the 10 most expensive celebrity
pictures. Not surprisingly Brangelina dominated the list with 4 sets of
photos. I'm sure they donate all that cash to charity, right? Anna Nicole
isn't far behind with 3 sets. Here's the list:

1. Shiloh Pitt's first photos - People - June '06 - $4.1 Million
2. Demi and Ashton's wedding - OK! - Oct '05- $3 Million
3. Eva Longoria's wedding - OK! - July '07 - $2 Million
3. Larry Birkhead with Danielynn - Ok! - April '07 - $2 Million
3. Pax Thien's adoption photos - People - March '07 - $2 Million
6. Anna Nicole's wedding to Howard Stern- People - Sept '06 - $1 Million
7. Sean Preston Federline's first photos - People - Nov '05 - $500,000
7. Brangelina's first photos as a couple - Us Weekly - April '05 - $500,000
7. Angelina Jolie's first pregnant photos - People - Jan '06 - $500,000
10. Daniel Smith hours before his death - InTouch - Sept '06 - $400,000

July 17, 2007

HAIRSPRAY Can't Keep The Fur From Flying

Ziegfeld Theater, 7pm

PR made this a wonderful mess for everyone.

The said you had to be on their list, others complained they never received confirmations, and then the rest of the crew with NYPD press passes, ready to work.

Some were taken inside, some were placed in the 'A List' area, and the rest were placed first n the red carpet. Did anyone else notice a top level, all access 'A LIST' shooter shooting second row....hhhmmmm.

And yet with all of this commotion, things ran quite smoothly. Their was plenty of space for us to shoot, and we barely went two rows deep.

All the talent posedwere all cooperative; Travolta/Preston, Amanda Bynes,Michelle Pfeiffer;

As the event came to what seemed the end, a large portion of shooters left. Unfortunately for them, more talent arrived until 7:30pm, which included Liza Minelli, Paula Abdul and Katie Holmes.

July 12, 2007

Photog Brutally Attacked Outside ESPY Afterparty

A celeb photographer suffered three cracked ribs, a dislocated shoulder, and a concussion after two friends of Rumer Willis brutally attacked him when he had the audacity to take Willis' picture as she was leaving the ESPY Awards after party. TMZ reports:

...According to witnesses on scene, one of the men allegedly tripped a photographer who was attempting to take pix of the star. As the stunned shutterbug got up and tried to identify the culprit, we're told another friend of the wannabe-bodyguards grabbed the photog by the head and slammed him to the ground head first, knocking him out and causing convulsions."

Rumer Willis looks a like male Demi Moore impersonator, so you'd think she'd wet her panties if somebody willingly pointed a camera at her. But not only does she not like it, apparently it's reason enough to make some poor guy flop around on the pavement like a cat just hit by car. Although I appreciate her friends' enthusiasm, maybe somebody should mention to them that they're walking down the street with Rumer Willis. They might as well go out in public with the Loch Ness monster. At least people would recognize who they're with.

Update: A quick note... TMZ is reporting these guys are not actually friends with Rumer and they're just random assholes.

Watch the video HERE.

July 6, 2007

Paparazzi business being redefined

Biz about volume, feeding ever-expanding market

When Paris Hilton stepped out of the Los Angeles County Jail just after midnight on June 26, the glam ex-con strutted as if she were on the red carpet.

She might as well have been.

In the crowd that greeted her were the predictable camera-toting Hiltonheads trying to snap a shot -- along with legitimate news orgs, wire services and photo agencies.

The term "paparazzi" used to refer to a scattered group of independent shooters hoping to sell to a glossy tabloid. But as celebrity-based journalism flourishes via fan magazines and, especially, the Internet, the business has become all about volume and feeding an ever-expanding market.

In theory, the paparazzi biz should be flourishing. Instead, it's being redefined.

More photographers are entering the field and prices have flattened. The business of the paparazzi has become the well-organized domain of photo agencies like Splash News, Flynet Pictures, X17 and many others.

In other words, paparazzi are going mainstream. It's a big business now, and the independent lensers are working hard to maintain their place in the market.

To be a freelancer now means connecting with one of these photo services. For red-carpet and event shots, magazines pay roughly $200 for a quarter page and up to $500 for a full page. In terms of paparazzi material, the once-common bidding wars are far fewer, as are the exclusive images that engendered them.

Which is not to say that anybody's going hungry.

"There's still good money in paparazzi," says Gary Morgan, CEO of Splash News. "But the more people that do it, the less money there is. We are going from what was a highly specialized method of shooting a few years ago to something that's being commoditized and is all about volume."

A unique, one-off shot of a pregnant celebrity that once went for $17,000 "would never happen today," says one industry professional. "When someone's about to pop, they're followed everywhere. There's so many photographers."

"Paparazzi style is almost becoming a red-carpet situation, where everyone's yelling for Paris to look here, look here, where it used to be a much more covert thing," says Us Weekly photo editor Peter Grossman, who peruses some 80,000 images per week.

" 'Paparazzi' is a bit of a misnomer now," says Splash's Morgan. "Originally, paparazzi was a select group specializing in a specific kind of celebrity shooting. Now AP, Reuters -- everybody's doing it."

Paparazzi may have indeed gone pro, but are the pros going paparazzi?

On the other side of the photo fence are the long-established, red carpet-sanctioned agencies.

The acknowledged leader, Getty Images, recently spent $200 million to purchase MediaVast, owner of strictly non-paparazzi agencies Contour, FilmMagic and WireImage (with which Variety has an ongoing deal), consolidating that side of the biz. Though those companies insist they won't stoop to celebrity-chasing, some wonder whether they'll be able to resist.

"Most of those big agencies have dabbled in it but haven't wholeheartedly gone into it yet," says Morgan. "We'll see if Getty and others want to get full-blown into the paparazzi world. Certainly, Getty's trying to buy everything up, by the looks of it."

Not likely, according to the bullish big dog.

"The reason Getty made the acquisition is to become the No. 1 photo agency in the world," says Mark Kuschner, Getty's global VP of entertainment. "We're never going to get into the business of the long lens, hiding in the bushes, hunting people down. Our business is based around relationships with celebrities and publicists and publications. The way we shoot is we're invited. Paparazzi business is getting more play, but that's also a very cyclical business."

Perhaps. But that cycle shows no signs of slowing.

"If it were the stock market, I would definitely be taking my money out of event photography and putting it into paparazzi for a couple of reasons," Grossman says. "One, everybody's using paparazzi pictures now, not just tabloids. They're finding their way into Time and Newsweek and monthly magazines. It's just more accepted than it was a couple of years ago. It's part of pop culture now; there's no sense that we can't touch those pictures anymore."

Getty insists that it only covers events to which it's been invited, but there's no denying that the public also wants to see celebs in less formal, unstaged situations.

"It's crazy, it's exploding," admits Kuschner. "People cannot get enough information, especially when it comes to entertainment. On their mobile phones, on the Internet, in newspapers and magazines, TV shows, you name it. And it's a massive global trend.

More and more, individual photogs connected with existing companies are branching off and forming their own concerns. And there are plenty of non-photographers turning pro: ex-gang members, valets, waiters, dog walkers, even the homeless are working for agencies, bringing their own particular skills and vantage points.

Another upstart player in the photo game are the MOPS, industry jargon for Members of the Public. With cheap, user-friendly digital units and cell phone cameras, a money-making snap can potentially be captured by almost anyone.

"A day doesn't go buy that a MOP doesn't contact me," says Grossman. "The general public has become more aware of what used to be inside knowledge. It's rare, but in some ways, a MOP is more likely to get a magic moment, because it happens when celebs think they're not being watched."

The Internet has certainly amped up the volume, both as a means to transport images around the globe instantly and as an outlet for material. And that includes the MOPs.

The Splash agency offers peoplepaparazzi.com, directly appealing to the "more than 2 billion phones in the world today with cameras. The age of the Citizen Journalist, the People Paparazzi is here," as its website states.

The site offers cell shooters 60% of every sale.

Francois Navarre, who owns X17 with his wife Brandy, says the Web has transformed his business.

"The main change for us came a year ago when we started the website X17online.com," says Navarre of the site, which is in the TMZ.com mold. "Suddenly we were not only producing images but editing and publishing images. We could see if we had traffic or not and see what was popular, and choose the stories and be much more of a player instead of an observer."

The yin to that yang for many in the industry has been notorious bloggerazzi star Perez Hilton. For close to three years, his popular site has featured celebrity images, many of them allegedly stolen: Hilton (whose real name is Mario Lavandeira) contends he's using the images for satire, thus making them fair game. But he's being sued by eight agencies in four separate lawsuits for copyright infringement.

"For our agency, it's like five or six pictures a day," claims Navarre, who filed a $10 million suit against Hilton in November. "I'm losing an average of $20,000 to $50,000 a day because of him." (In June, Hilton filed a countersuit against Navarre, alleging that he is seeking to "redress the illegal and unethical business practices of X17.")

The legal heat mounting against him recently induced Hilton's main Web server, the Oz-based Crucial Paradigm, to drop his site, the first blow to the blogger's empire.

As court battles play out -- and technology offers new ways to observe the famous being human -- the business continues to reinvent itself.

And the public gets what the public wants.

"Everyone knows where Paris lives and everyone knows what Britney does, and you have all these people working on it," says Grossman. "And as long as the pictures continue to sell, they're all going to be out there doing it."

Spears says umbrella attack was acting, not anger

NEW YORK (Reuters) - When all else fails in Hollywood, blame it on "method acting." Pop star Britney Spears on Thursday explained why she furiously attacked a car with an umbrella -- she was rehearsing for a movie role. As the former pop princess reinvents her career after a failed marriage, a stint in rehabilitation and panty-less pictures taken in public, Spears posted a note on her Web site, www.britneyspears.com, apologizing to the paparazzi for the umbrella-bashing incident, calling it a "stunt."

July 5, 2007

Lindsay Lohan is Out of Rehab, In Her Bikini, and Joining the Paparazzi

and look who's in the backround....

Paris Hilton Tipping Off Paparazzi

Paris Hilton returned to her everyday routine in her Hawaiian home: shopping, walks and parties. Interesting enough, Paris was rejected at two hotels before she got settled in the third one, her very own Hilton Grand Wailea Resort, popcrunch website reports.

She first tried at the Four Seasons, but was turned down. One of the hotel guests said that after she was rejected, she turned to the Fairmont Kea Lani hotel, but she was also refused there. One of the Hilton hotels was her third choice, where, of course, they did not try to turn her down.

A hotel clerk confessed that the rich girl had good relations with the paparazzi:- The paparazzi told us that Paris contacted them herself- said the hotel receptionist.

-We love her. She always tips us off where she will be so that we could have best photos possible- sad a paparazzo that is following the heiress.