Its been amazing to have had a really good year – but this last month all that busyness has caught up with us! So have had to knuckle down and do some sorting, clearing and tidying up – paperwork, paperwork has been the name of the game. Plus a whole reorganisation of our ‘old fashioned hard copy filing system’ – still old fashioned but resplendent in new files on newly built shelves. This reorganisation has been ‘helped’ by the chaos of the Eurozone – what entertainment provider can possibly triumph in a returning market of doom and gloom – just in time for Christmas! Of course.
We have still been moderately busy, particularly with a Dubai exhibition job – which was excruciatingly difficult to organise every step of the way and, as always, we should have followed out gut instinct that there was something wrong from the beginning and not got involved. But that is now all water under the bridge – four Lookalikes (Colin as Captain Jack, Lina as Angelina, Lesley as Catherine Z. Jones and Jamie as Beckham) did the job – but never before have we been in a situation of sending artistes across the world where we were only given the absolute go-ahead 5 minutes before they had to leave for the airport. It has been yet another lesson, but only endorses what a tricky market Dubai was and is. Has anybody else had problems with them? We are still waiting for 50% of the money which should have been paid 100% up front but after weeks of work hundreds of emails and phone calls with the tickets booked (by them luckily I never will book air tickets) how do you pull out at that stage?
On the home front Alison Jackson has been as busy as ever – particularly as her latest book ‘Exposed’ has just been launched plus she continues with her weekly Sunday Times ‘Fake Take’, plus she has been involved in publicity for the ‘Bridesmaids’ DVD launch (of course involving Pippa – Sarah C). Alongside this Debenhams have been publicising their copy of Pippa’s bridesmaid’s dress – so there are still spin offs from the Royal Wedding, which have also included a few nice corporate gigs for the Royal couple. This year has propelled Wills and Kate into first place of Lookalike favourite couples pushing aside, for now anyway, Posh and Beckham and Brad and Angelina. We also had the whole Royal Family doing a twist on their family Christmas photoshoot for Take a Break Magazine.
Lina Sands (Angelina) finally made her trip to Casablanca in connection with the newly soon to open Candymall Shopping Centre – a job which has been on the cards for a year or so finally defying tension in the Middle East, floods etc. etc. She still has to go back again for the actual opening – no date set as yet! So it goes on.
Christmas is looming but its looking like a last minute Christmas for us. I have decided its no good fretting about it – in the good old days by now we would have over 100 contracted jobs for December – but the world has changed, nothing is certain and lead times get shorter and shorter. We just have to step up our game and deal with it as best we can and be grateful. So far Marilyn is still coming up tops for the festive season – will let you know the winner in January.
As far as other work that has been taking up our time recently very varied really which is good – Sid as C Lo Green did a great photoshoot for Chase and Status which was used as the background to their video, Michael O – Tiny Tempah was booked for the Brits in Glasgow, Lewis Hamilton (Wendal) and Jenson Button (Nick) visited Barton on Humber for a corporate Formula 1 event. Finally the Bond night in the Derby Assembly Rooms which was booked almost a year ahead, came to fruition headed up by Mark W as Pierce Brosnan (their chosen Bond a tricky choice these days), Laval as Odd Job and Gary as Jaws.
Tulisa (Esra) and Gary Barlow (Matt R) did an article for Closer and Faye B and Craig W as Katie and Peter for Heat. Ray T doubled for Heston Blumenthal in a Waitrose ad (spot the difference) for the first time, hopefully the first of many. Sam (Brad Pitt) did a Virgin Train job – advertising booking a whole train for yourself or in his case for him and his tribe. Tania (Cher) performed for a birthday celebration x 2 at The Box in Soho by the skin of her teeth as she had been cancelled the day before and then re-booked on the performance day itself – which was a Saturday and perhaps we are not so attentive when it comes to checking emails on a weekend – anyway well done her! Might not have turned out well – that one – not a good idea. Rachael White and Kirstie BG struggled to reach a big corporate event at Earls Court on the night of countrywide torrential downpours, causing the client and me to be close to having heart attacks. Same situation when Donald (Connery) had a gig in Majorca and when Dianne Lynn (the client) went to meet him off his flight on the morning of the event – he was not there! She rang me (out shopping in Wigmore St. another Saturday) and my heart dropped, I rang him immediately and my spirits just soared when the ring tone was abroad! The nightmares of an agent – not good for the blood pressure!
There’s no doubt it has been a good year and the 16th November was the anniversary of the start of our best year ever with the announcement of the Royal Engagement – I might have mentioned that before – but I can’t thank them enough. So now – bring on the Queen’s Jubilee and the Olympics – where are you all you sporting stars lookalikes – please get in touch now.