In 2009, foul-mouthed comedian Sarah Silverman and goofy late-night send-up Jimmy Kimmel publicly ended their six-year relationship. Before they split, the two seemed inseparable. They were the First Couple of Comedy, famous for their rolicking game of viral video one-upmanship, which involved singing about fucking Matt Damon and Ben Affleck, respectively. They appeared in Esquire together. Silverman was a frequent fixture on Kimmel’s couch. They even reunited or a short spell. So to see two people who seemed so right for each other fail to work things out was, in a word, heartbreaking.
For those of us already dreading the fast-approaching month of September, take advantage of the final weekends of summer on the East End with some fresh air and fresher fish. Bring sunscreen, ban any mention of Fashion Week, and savor the sunset as much as you do your lobster roll.
The Crow’s Nest Inn & Restaurant (Montauk) – Sean McPherson’s sceney revamp of this local favorite makes up for no reservation policy with fine dining and a damn fine lake view
Duryeas Lobster Deck (Montauk) – Dock-dining, no-frills BYOB with fresh fish and the best sunsets on the East End.
Gosman’s Topside (Montauk) – Seaside staple perched atop Gosman’s cafe has been serving up local catches and lobster rolls since 1947. (Pictured above)
Gurneys Inn (Montauk) – Montauk’s spin on the classic country club, where the beach is more impressive than the food, but the bartender boys keep those cocktails coming.
The Restaurant at the Surf Lodge (Montauk) – Well-thought out and unpretentious beach chic livens up Montauk on the hotel, dining and nightlife fronts all in one bundle.
Montauk Yacht Club (Montauk) – Yacht club with roaring ’20s roots set on 35 acres of water-front property brings back beachy luxe.
Clam Bar (Amagansett) – Roadside shack keeps it extra local on the desolate stretch between Amagansett and Montauk.
Joni’s (Montauk) – Healthy, fresh sandwiches and bites by the seashore. Eat in, or load up for the beach.
La Fondita (Amagansett) – Stylish taqueria with shrimp tacos good enough to make you forget you’re in The Hamptons.
Wall Street interns. Every summer they swarm the city, claiming everything from Tribeca sublets to Upper East Side dive bars as their own. But no matter how hard hipsters roll their eyes, there’s absolutely nothing we can do till Duke summons them back for pre-season. But it’s not all bad: no one has more fervent support for the monogramming industry, and in a few years it might be nice to visit their private islands, or at least their downtown lofts with outside space. So follow the smell of Axe to these spots to find a Bud Fox of your very own.
Dorrians Red Hand (Upper East Side) – Burger joint by day, fratastic by night.
Automatic Slim’s (West Village) – Freaky people dancing to a mélange of Blondie, blues, and rock ‘n’ roll.
Brass Monkey (Meatpacking District) – Irish hospitality amid MePa monkeyshines.
Brother Jimmy’s (Union Square) Citywide chain delivering weathered wood and BBQ. “Put some south in yo’ mouth.”
Brinkley’s (Nolita) – Gastropub heir to Bar Martignetti is more Christie than David.
Butter (Noho) – Celeb hang has surprising longevity of Monday night party. High-test hotties and much meticulously tousled hair.
230 Fifth (Union Square) – Hang in a garden chair on the roof deck with your favorite teeth-grinding I-banker. Viva the ’80s, baby!
Turtle Bay (Midtown East) – Relive your college years in Midtown; keg stands not included.
Joshua Tree (Murray Hill) – Young Murrays reminiscing about the MTV they watched in their short-pants days.
The Windsor (West Village) – Gastropub ambitions at this posh, Brit-accented sports bar.
Beauty & Essex (Lower East Side) – More beauty than Essex, as former furniture shop draws a flock of pretty people.
“It is tits and ass, a little bit,” admits Antoine Verglas, describing his enviable career photographing the world’s most beautiful women wearing little more than a pout. “And I enjoy it.” Ah, the naked truth. The multitasking French photographer has had his hand in everything from Calypso to iPad apps, and just so happens to be the first to shoot Claudia Schiffer sans Miracle Bra. Here, he discusses his background in Paris, his big break in New York, and the unique beauty of St. Barths.
BlackBook: Other than the obvious perk of being around beautiful women, why did you choose that type of photography?
I like the sensuality of the women. Everyone wants to do Vogue, Elle, Bazaar, so the competition was much harder in the women’s fashion magazine world than with men’s magazines. So it was a market, and there was less competition. I’d rather be a leader in one market than a follower in another.
I’ve been working for certain companies, like French lingerie brand Anti-Flirt and Victoria’s Secret, for years. My biggest regret is that I never did Guess. I thought I would be great for it. They picked up Carré Otis, Estelle, Laetitia, and Claudia Schiffer, which was their biggest get. I worked a lot with Claudia in the early ’90s. I was the first to undress Claudia, actually, for French Photo. I was young, you know.
Photo was well known because they were always doing great reportage on models, and they were always getting sexy pictures from photographers like Patrick Demarchelier and Steven Meisel.
You started on the other side of the camera.
I was born and raised in Paris. When I was studying at business school, I met a young girl who was the face of the ‘80s at the time and we started dating. Her name was Catherine Ahnell and she was a model with Ford. I was also occasionally working as a model, doing TV commercials, and ended up hosting a TV show called Cinq sur Cinq [Five on Five] for teenagers, presenting video clips and movie trailers and interviewing celebrities. I had Sharon Stone on, before her Basic Instinct days. I did that for almost a year.
I kind of liked TV, but I really liked the fashion world, so I started to take pictures of my girlfriend. She had to move to New York so I followed her there. I wanted to do a reportage on the top models of New York, with interviews that touched on their hobbies, beauty tips, astrological signs, and candid pictures of them in their bathrooms, bedrooms, and kitchens. The Elite agency helped me a lot, along with a famous French model named Estelle LeFébure.
So I did that story with Stephanie Seymour, Cindy Crawford, Linda Evangelista, Naomi Campbell, all the major girls. French Elle published it and it was featured in all the international editions of Elle. I started to work for different magazines in New York and became known for lingerie, sexy, sensual portraits of women. I did a lot of work for GQ and an assortment of ‘lad magazines’ like Maxim and FHM as that market exploded.
Of all the beautiful woman you have shot, who stands out?
Not that I want to be a patriot, but Estelle [LeFébure] was a gorgeous woman for many years, and Laetitia Casta.
What were your early days in New York like?
While I was enjoying life as a young French photographer in New York, I met Frederick Lesort, who asked me to partner with him to open Frederick’s restaurant. I was a partner at Frederick’s for a few good years, and at Buddha Bar on Varrick and Vandam as well.
I stopped being involved in the restaurant and nightlife industry when I met Christiane Celle in St. Barths on one of my many trips for photography. We had our first child pretty quickly. At the time she had a tiny shop in St. Barths called Calypso, and she decided to come to New York. In 1995 I helped her develop the concept of Calypso. We are no longer involved with Calypso, but started a new concept called Clic Gallery a year and a half ago.
What’s St. Barths like?
St. Barths is a very unique island. For me it’s like a mini St. Tropez in the Caribbean, and photographers love to go there. A lot of companies and brands go there, like David Yurman, and tons of magazines are going there. I think it’s the beauty of the island. It’s tiny, it’s easy to get around. Models love it, stylists love it, everybody’s very comfortable there. In order to take great pictures, it helps when everybody’s happy.
Maya’s is the classic restaurant in terms of good food, but I would be lying if I didn’t say I love Le Ti St Barth, because I love good music and I have a young son who is crazy about dancing on the tables. My younger son is worse than me. He has nightlife in him. He wants to DJ now, and he’s 13. I love Le Tamarin for lunch.
I’ve been visiting St. Barth’s since 1988. It’s always been trendy. It was high-end jet set in the late ‘50s, ‘60s, and ’70s, but then photographers came with famous models and it became much more popular and mainstream. The island has changed a little bit, but I think St. Barths will always be a jewel of nature. Unfortunately, the success of the island has made it so expensive that the young, artistic, good-looking crowd has a hard time affording it now.
Did you and Christiane get married in St Barths?
You know what? We never got married. I guess we like the idea of being engaged. We had a son, and then second one, and then Calypso. We never had time.
Tell me about your home in Napeague Dunes in the Hamptons.
I love the ocean. My biggest pleasure is to get up and walk on the beach in the morning and watch the sun rise. It’s really beautiful. I love the Napeague area because it’s so remote. It’s next to a nature reserve. You don’t see many houses, you’re in the middle of the nature, it’s very quiet, and I love that. I also love Montauk because it’s like an authentic fisherman village. My favorite place in Montauk is Joni’s, and in Amagansett it’s Mary’s Marvelous.
Now that you’ve undressed all the supermodels, what’s next?
I’m back working in photography, doing a lot of different projects, including working on an artistic book on bodies for the Clic Gallery. I opened a Burlesque club in Miami called “Le Fée Verte” [“The Green Fairy,” née absinthe] with a partner, which is a burlesque, cabaret club. It’s true I love burlesque. I did I series of pictures with masks…
And I developed an app for the iPad called FlexFolios which helps photographers, models, make-up artists, stylists, and even real estate brokers organize portfolios.
And finally, we opened Lafayette Espresso Bar + Marketplace at 189 Lafayette. It’s a juice bar, cafe, and sandwich shop.
Why do you guys have so many projects?
At 26, Le Bain Wednesday night resident DJ Alexander Dexter-Jones has already been on the DJ circuit for 10 years, seen Foreigner 500 times (“not by force!”), and has achieved the impossible: getting the ultra-cool Standard Hotel‘s 18th floor crowd (whatever it’s currently called) dancing.
Dexter-Jones impressively retains both his education from Salisbury School for Boys (he occasionally writes songs in Olde English), and his celebrity family: “There’s your truth, my truth, Page Six, and then there’s the truth.” Surprisingly candid, he has no qualms discussing his early years spent as a roadie for Dad, or support from Mum (Anne Dexter-Jones), who would have liked at least one nice Jewish doctor in the family.
For those who can’t get past Le Bain’s notorious door, Dexter-Jones is currently working on his first album, where he’ll do triple-duty as “composer, producer, and performer,” due out this spring from Paris label Record Makers. He explains: “it’s strongly influenced by the fact that I have a father [Foreigner
frontman founding member Mick Jones] who’s given me a large vernacular in music. I have a brother [September cover Mark Ronson] who’s done the same, and I really have a, not extraordinary in the arrogant sense, but an extra-ordinary taste and sense in music.”
He was playing drums at 5 and spinning at Bungalow 8 in its heyday at 16, and while he’s currently credited as the reason the beautiful people take a break from chain-smoking on the roof to get their dance on, he’s on a far more cerebral mission to “diversify your vernacular in music,” eager to share his expansive musical over-education. Just don’t request “Poker Face”.
I started DJ-ing when I was 16 yrs old in New York. I’ve DJ-ed in Miami, I’ve DJ-ed in LA, I’d DJ-ed all around the world. I started DJ-ing before Samantha, way after Mark. Samantha and Mark are seven and nine years older than me, respectively, and they got me my first gig. They got my foot in the door, and I wasn’t half bad at what I did. Mark was there for me, but Samantha was pivotal in inviting me to open up for her and things like that. She gained me a bit of respect because the music I play either makes you extremely happy or … “let’s go to 1OAK”.
On his upcoming first album:
I’m just in the middle of signing my first record contract, with Record Makers, in Paris. It’s the label that discovered the band Air, and they currently have Sébastien Tellier. They’re a small label, both members have come from larger labels and decided to be about the music. We’re just hashing through the contract now, so we’re hoping to have it out by spring 2011.
On Paris nightlife:
What I love about Paris is, I can go there, and I can play anything as a DJ, and people are incredibly open to it. Not only that, but people will start dancing at 10 o’clock at night. The dance floor will be filled at 10. There’s just much more of an understanding there for me. In Paris the women do not need to be drunk to dance. It startles American men.
On where he goes out in Paris:
Le Baron. Basically André Saraiva, who owns Le Baron, was part owner with Paul Sevigny in the Beatrice Inn. André is a classic character in the scene these days. He has the biggest nightclubs in Paris, as far as the less mainstream. I played there for Fashion Week. They have a club in Tokyo as well and I’m going to play a residency for a few weeks.
On the Manhattan club scene when he was 16:
I was working in a club called Veruka on Broome which no longer exists. Then I went and did a residency at Bungalow 8 a few years before it sort of petered out. I would do a one-off here or there, at Marquee, or birthday parties, but I really focused on private events and things like that.
On the music:
As a musician, and as a DJ as well, I became more geared towards playing the music that inspired me to write. And playing the Top 99 Jams of Hip Hop and Pop Music did not inspire me. If you see me behind a DJ booth you’ll see me dancing along with the music most nights, and another DJ came up to me one time and said: “How can you still do that?” Because I really love what I play. I try to get people interested by weaving less popular and deeper cuts into more commercial and acceptable music. It’s not like they’re going to say “Oh let’s call Richard Johnson [about it]”, but they might say: “That was different.” So it’s about finding that middle ground between whatever you listen to at the gym that gets you psyched and something slighter deeper and more dynamic that’s going to diversify your vernacular in music. By naturally having a Picasso in your art collection, you evolve by default.
On his current gig, Le Bain:
I choose to DJ at this place on a weekly basis because there’s something extraordinary about it. People don’t come downstairs [from the roof] for two hours, so until about 1 o’clock, no one’s down in the club, everyone’s up here smoking cigarettes, enjoying themselves. When people come downstairs it literally becomes like Le Baron in Paris. The co-owner and host of this club, Le Bain – which is inspired by Les Bain Douches, an old nightclub in Paris – Andre Saraiva and Andres Balazs, came together and said “let’s do something different.” And we have great DJs here. Mike Nouveau brings his own element, Rachel Chandler brings her own element, and I do my thing on Wednesday.
On his old gig, The Jane Hotel:
The Jane had some legal issues and they reopened. And I spun there for a while, but I had such a flighty schedule that I couldn’t keep a regular slot … but Matt Kliegman and Carlos Quirarte, who run the Jane along with Angelo Bianchi from the Beatrice do a fantastic job, and they are also very selective of who they have spin there and the crowd that they cultivate. You’ll have a very fun mix and they let their guard down. As far as I’m concerned this place and that place are the two of its kind that cater to that…liberal shabby chic.
On what he would refuse to play:
I’m gonna get myself in a bit of hot water here, but I was born in hot water. Lady Gaga, “Lady Gay-Guy.” She has perfect pitch, wonderful singer, creationist, ultimate. I love the idea of what she does. I wouldn’t have her at my son’s Bar Mitzvah.
On his early start:
I started playing drums when I was 5, I wrote my first song when I was 5. I was engulfed in that since I was a kid. I had no choice.
On support from his family:
All of us Ronson Dexter-Jones, there’s no conspiracy, we all just have a very shared, but individually specific idea of music, which has been thrust upon us by our parents, and the world that we grew up in. Although we share certain intimacies within music, we aren’t defined as a group. We’re not the Jacksons.
My mum comes from a long line of Jewish doctors. She’s more rock ‘n’ roll than my father. She wouldn’t have minded if I went into the medical profession. But she’s 110% behind all 5 of her children, no matter what they do.
On sisters Annabelle and Charlotte:
Annabelle’s a phenomenal actress. Watch out for her. She’s done a couple of short films. You’ll be seeing more of her in the near future. Charlotte has her “I heart Ronson” clothing line. She’s in the tents at Fashion Week, she’s one of the three [of us] that graduated college. She’s a superstar.
On Dad, Foreigner founding member Mick Jones:
My father, coming from the band that he created, is not Keith Richards in the public’s eye. My father, to me, is a legend. He’s played with Jimi Hendrix and the Beatles. He has an incredible background in music. He also is grouped into a genre with Journey and Boston and Chicago. Guys who didn’t leave Boston or Chicago, and never journeyed that much, until they got a record deal. My father came from England, from very humble beginnings. People don’t know him by name, as far as they know Keith Richards by name. And it’s a blessing, because I’ve had a chance to come forth as an individual, owing large amounts of respect and homage to what my father’s music has imparted on me. I’ve seen him play probably over 500 times. I’ve seen the Doobie Brothers 230 times. I’ve been to every state. I’ve worked as a roadie. And not by force. It blows me away every time. It’s very cool to be a fan of your father’s work, and not be overshadowed by being the “son of Mick Jones”.
On what’s to come:
I’ll be in Tokyo, in Miami at LIV around Art Basel, in New York I’ll be doing this as a residency, every Wednesday. I do a party at Le Souk on Tuesdays. Sometimes I do 1OAK. You’ll see me around Brooklyn Bowl, I’ll start playing live shows all over the place.
[image via Caroline Owens]
Now that summer’s finally on the fritz (sniffle) ’til next Memorial Day and Manhattanite weekend chatter is more catwalks than beachwalks, Julie Marcley, tireless first lady to Montauk’s longstanding standout Dave’s Grill, finally has time to take a breather, enjoy a Chocolate Bag, and answer our questions — from the Hamptonization of Montauk to her ‘Dirty Dancing’-esque forbidden summer romance with a young chef that took her from Weekender to gatekeeper. And after 22 years behind her hostess station, Mrs. Chef Dave is speaking her mind.
First thing’s first: how did Dave’s Grill come to be? Back in 1988, Dave was out surfing when a friend paddled up to him and mentioned that the property was available to lease, and that he ought to take a look at it. He did. I did. The rest is history.
You guys have been open over 20 years. How has Montauk and the people who spend the summers here changed since you opened your doors? We’ve managed to preserved 70% of Montauk as open space. That’s happened within the last 20 years. And thank goodness; it’s truly what most people adore about Montauk. As to the people? Mobility (Blackberries, faxes, wireless, etc.) has made Montauk accessible in a whole new way. It’s brought a young, vibrant, and sophisticated set along with families and fishermen and surfers as in the past. It’s a better mix now. I moved here before it was “fashionable,” and I can honestly say it’s moving in the right direction. I hope we can hold on to its charms.
How does the summer crowd who come to Dave’s differ from the “locals” in terms of how they dress or behave at a restaurant? The summer crowd is, well, a summer crowd … The locals are here when the weather turns cold and gray. We couldn’t survive without either.
Every single day at the stroke of 4:15, there’s a mad dash to call you for a reservation. Other than a talented kitchen and access to all the fish in the sea, what’s your secret to your unwavering popularity? All I can say is I wish I’d been this popular in college! I don’t really know what the answer to your question is. It’s a phenomenon, actually. Originally, Dave’s Grill took no reservations, but once the wait turned into two hours or more for a table, we thought it might be a good idea; so we started the day-of phone policy. It took off, and now we sell out every night, and it’s like one big party.
What does the busiest woman in Montauk do in her free time? What free time?
What’s the best part of owning your own restaurant? The worst? The best is having the winters off. The worst is having to work all summer, while everyone else is enjoying the beach.
I love that chocolate “bag.” Any story behind that dish? Many years ago, Dave had hired a Culinary Institute grad to chef with us for the season: Ed Lightcap — a local, by the way. He saw some segment on TV that inspired him. He melted some Belgian chocolate and proceeded to paint the inside of a coffee bag — the kind you fill with beans at the supermarket with a wax paper lining. It looked good so we put it on the menu. Bingo!!
How is it being in business with your husband? Who says Dave is my husband? Just kidding. Actually, it’s what cemented our relationship. You see, I met Dave while I was a senior in college. I was one of those “summer people,” all of 21 years old, out for a pre-senior season, working at Gurney’s Inn as a receptionist in the spa. Dave was a bartender at Gurney’s that summer. I flipped for him and informed my mother that I was not going back to Tulane University, but instead would remain a spa receptionist at Gurney’s. My mother informed me that I would be on the next plane back to New Orleans. And so I was. But I had fallen hard and kept coming back to visit Dave and Montauk, even after I graduated and spent ten years in Manhattan toiling away at an acting/singing career and then a public relations career. We were wary about the idea of working together, but with him running the kitchen and me on the floor, it has fallen into place for us. Good thing we don’t have an open kitchen … it could end the bliss.
Do you ever get to the city, and if so, where do you and Dave like to eat? We do love to go into the city. Dave proposed to me at Bouley. One of our favorite restaurants is Le Bernardin. We also love anything Danny Meyer is behind. He’s a master. Then of course, there’s our favorite “neighborhood” Italian, pizza place, Chinese and Indian restaurants, but I’m not telling.
We know who has the best seafood in Montauk. In your opinion, who has the best seafood in the city? Le Bernardin.
It’s 4:16 on Friday night and I can’t get through at Dave’s! Where are three other Hamptons spots worth trying? Hit redial. If you don’t get through by 4:45 p.m. then consider coming in to eat at the bar. If all else fails, go to the 1770 House in East Hampton, Della Femina or Il Capuccino in Sag Harbor — they have thee best veal parmigiana.
We recently ran an article about Montauk’s “Hamptonization” — growth in shopping, more tourists, etc. Is Montauk selling out, and is that necessarily a bad thing? Montauk will always be Montauk. Montauk is not the Hamptons, but a certain amount of change is productive for a community. Great beaches luring swimmers, surfers, great golf courses luring golfers; great trails luring hikers and bikers; and oh the fishing. The main thing is visitors and locals alike have to hold on to what makes Montauk so inviting. It’s not the shopping here; it’s the raw beauty of where we are. Remember, no matter how bustling summer is, it’s brutal out here in the winter; desolate and brutal. It’s not for everyone. Nature won’t allow her to be sold out. That’s why I’m here.
What’s the most important thing a weekender needs to check out in Montauk before Labor Day weekend? I’ve heard a lot of talk about that lighthouse … Yes, the Lighthouse — climb to the top and feast your eyes. Also the Montauket Hotel at Sunset, Camp Hero for a hike, and any beach — take your pick.
At most crazy-busy restaurants, the hostesses are so mean! Have you ever just wanted to snap at pushy customers? I have. And I do. The really pushy ones are at other restaurants making the hostesses so mean. The truth is, most people are good at heart, but people get cranky when they’re hungry, and they get disappointed when they can’t get in. I like people — all kinds of people. I don’t care for those who carry an air of entitlement.
West takes East (coast, that is) this week as the elegant Tudor-style walls of Montauk’s Sole East is overrun by breakout L.A. act ANIMAL. From August 12—18th, rock-star renegade chefs Jon Shook and Vinny Dotolo, formerly of Food Network’s “Two Dudes Catering” fame shove the Sole East backyard’s dainty arugula salad and seasonal fish dishes aside in favor of their trademark meat, meat, and well, more meat. Seven days out East, seven meaty delights.
Kick off with BBQ pork belly sliders, into melty-petit basque (sheep’s milk cheese) chorizo garlic bread. As for your veggie fix? Crispy lime hominy was corn, once upon a time, before it was boiled, breaded, and deep-fried into Michael Pollan’s worst nightmare, but Hungry Man’s dream come true.
Man-up for the main entrée: Loco Moco, an upscale spin on a local Montauk surfer’s fried egg atop a slab of spam on a burger. Class things up with quail egg, and what’s missing? Foie gras, naturally. While not on the suggested SPAM Blue Ribbon winners, anyone who can justify charging $35 for square meat in a can (it was pretty darn good) is welcome to come visit the Eastern Seaboard again anytime.
Tempting as the bacon chocolate crunch bar sounds, it’s probably wiser to round out your meal with a ten mile jog, or a Lipitor prescription. Macho meaty goodness, but not for the faint of heart. Literally.
Remember when hotels were the go-to choice for room service, day spas, and dirty pay-per-view? Thanks to Lori Traub’s MySpa2Go, that nostalgia will quickly fade (except for the dirty movie thing — but as far as the front desk knows, that was a total fluke with the remote while you were trying to order Ice Age 3: Dawn of the Dinosaurs). MySpa2Go offers full spa services from mani-pedi’s to waxing and everything in between. Post-natal massage, anyone? It’s tours for $130 in the comfort of your own home. Traub, a newbie to home delivery and a former fancy fashion exec, created the company last spring because, like so many New York career gals, she was overworked and underpolished. After desperately Googling at-home beauticians, she found them all to be crazy expensive, crazy far away, or just plain crazy.
Thus began the city’s her home spa service offering reasonable prices ($35 bikini waxes and $25 manicures), a team of license-toting cosmetologists, and a strictly A-list collection of Bidwell Botanicals oils and lotions. If you listen closely, somewhere you can hear Canyon Ranch crying. After an understandably quiet first month in recessionista-happy spring ’09, Traub and team caught a major break when the ever-powerful Daily Candy gave them some love. By 9am that day, Traub had 90 emails seeking reservations, and ever since it’s been sailing as smooth as a quick-dry top-coat.
We took it upon ourselves to sample the services recently, and while spa nuances like flickering lavender-scented candlelight and Japanese rock garden accent pieces were lost in favor of the hum of the dishwasher, all in all MySpa2Go is an accessible, useful find for New Yorkers too busy — or plain ole’ lazy — to book it to Bliss. Up next: Hamptons service through the season, including an InStyle booth at swanky Super Saturday, and plans to expand to new cities and new services. Now if they could only leave a mint on my pillow on the way out, Balazs would really be in trouble.
The morning after the premiere of the chick-flick-to-end-all-chick-flicks Bride Wars, co-screenwriter/Saturday Night Live new It-Girl Casey Wilson and her best friend and writing partner June Raphael do their best not to talk over each other while dishing on Long Island wedding factories, bedazzled cell phones, and what makes seemingly normal girls go bonkers.
Casey, everyone knows the SNL after party is one of the hottest late-night parties in the city. What are the best late-night spots in New York? Casey Wilson: People [from the cast of SNL] go to Waverly Inn, they go to Rose Bar. June Raphael: She doesn’t really know. CW: I just go to bed.
You started in LA doing improv. So you don’t like clubs, but is there a café you used to hang out in a lot? CW: This place called Formosa Café. Starbucks.
For Casey, what are some of your favorite restaurants/venues in the city, and how have they changed since you joined SNL last year? CW: Well, they’ve changed in that I can go to better places now. Used to be Starbucks, McDonald’s … I used to go to Veselka, or Café Orlin in the East Village JR: I went to Veselka this morning.
What was the coolest part of watching your script get turned into a film? JR: Oh man, it was amazing. I think hearing the lines that you’ve written and said to each other — and when we’re writing, we say them to each other — and improvising in the back of cafes … CW: In the back of the cafes that we won’t advertise. JR: [laughs] Yah, to see moments in the script that were not comedic moments turned funny by the actresses was so exciting. CW: When the 20th Century Fox logo came on at the premiere, the “duuuh duuh duh” was the best. We didn’t even know how to use Final Draft, the writing program, when we started writing, and we never had any money to do anything. But seeing the big Fox logo felt like it suddenly legitimized everything.
I’d imagine getting ready for a premiere makes girls almost as crazy as weddings. Any fighting over who got to wear what last night? CW: No, I don’t think so. June borrowed a very nice pair of my shoes but didn’t even wear them. JR: I’m deciding when to give those back. When Casey lends something, she says “Just the only thing about this is don’t ruin it.” CW: There was one incident …
June, you’re engaged. Do you think being part of the film will make you less of a bridezilla in your own wedding? JR: Absolutely. Actually, it was the absolute best timing. I feel like I’ve already had a wedding, and it’s called Bride Wars. CW: The premiere was like a combination of an adult prom and a wedding.
Between Anne Hathaway and Kate Hudson — who’d make a crazier bride? CW: Toss up. That’s a tough one. JR: I think that a lot of women who seem like normal, logical people go bonkers. So you have no clue what’s gonna happen. CW: Nobody’s safe. JR: Maybe I would say Anne actually, but only because she doesn’t seem like it.
For both Casey and June, who was the worst bridezilla you’ve ever had to deal with? CW: I had a girlfriend, she wasn’t so much a bridezilla, but things did get very strange. She was kind of yelling, walking down the aisle in kind of a cry-walk. People were thinking, “Oh, she’s crying because it was so beautiful,” but I knew really it was a pissed off-walk. One of the details must have gone very awry.
Are Kate Hudson and Anne Hathaway’s characters based on any girls you know, and if so do they know? CW: I don’t think so. If anything, it’s probably based on our friendship. JR: I think we have a lot of us in both characters. We’ve never gone through a wedding together, but it’s really not a movie about bridezillas, it’s about their friendship, and a mistake they go through and trying to fix it.
Are you two competitive? JR: I’m more scared to get into a fight with Casey than any other person in my life because she knows me better. She knows exactly what to say. I think we’re competitive with stuff. Phones and bags.
What’s the last think you fought over? JR: Casey got her Blackberry bedazzled after she saw Sex and the City, and I literally went that day to the store. Not only that, but Casey only got the front bedazzled, and I got both. I’ve been nervous Casey’s gonna get an iPhone because then I’ll have to get one.
According to you guys, the Plaza is obviously the best place for a wedding. What’s the worst? CW: Oh God, maybe a hospital. I gotta say I’m not into the crazy, “let’s go scuba diving” weddings. In a car, maybe? JR: I once worked in a wedding factory, in Long Island. In one Saturday in June, they could do 12 weddings in a day. I would greet the brides when they would arrive, and there’d be three brides in the lobby walking around together. That’s tough. You don’t want to see another bride on your wedding day, and you definitely don’t want to see two.
Casey, I read in another interview that you’re into Bravo. Speaking of crazy married ladies, if you had to move to one Real Housewives town, which would it be? CW: We can definitely answer this one. We are obsessed with The Real Housewives of Orange County. JR: Me too.
Which housewife is your favorite? CW: Jeana. JR: I know it’s controversial, but I have a real love for Vicki. I know people make judgments about her, but I think we should just look a bit closer. I’m worried about her. I think being on the show is not good for her. I’d like to sit her down and help her.
2008 has been a big year for you guys. What’s up next in ‘09? JR: We’re writing a movie for us to star in, so we’re working on that. It’s a fun comedy about girls in their 20s, it’s untitled as of yet. CW: June has The Year One with Jack Black and Michael Cera.
Casey, what’s something most people don’t know about SNL? CW: That I’m on it.