Beautiful People

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Madeleine Stowe.

The ABC series Revenge has a cast of beautiful people, but none is more stunning than Madeleine Stowe (The Last of the Mohicans) who plays the powerful matriarch Victoria Grayson and the Hamptons’ Grand Dame of dark secrets. It’s a delicious character whose past includes having an affair with a good man who she wrongly frames as a terrorist. He dies in jail, but Amanda (Emily VanCamp), the daughter of the man, seeks revenge on everyone connected with destroying her father’s life, especially the heinous witch who was most responsible.

Stowe is astonished at some of the shocking things her character does, but she loves it. “I think the idea that you are in a place that is sunny and bright (summertime in the Hamptons), and all of these dark undercurrents are going on. It makes for a really interesting story. I think that all villains have light and shadow and weird things about them, and they are conflicted,” she said, defending her role.

Revenge has found a loyal audience that loves the idea of crushing the rich and powerful, and Stowe is not surprised by that. “We are in a particular time in history where I think that the average American wants to see the takedown of the rich. I think to observe these over-privileged people who have everything at their fingertips but get pulled down and given a comeuppance, might be some sort of vicarious thrill for people,” she said. “This escapist fantasy is very satisfying.” Yes, indeed!

Emily VanCamp (previously seen on Brothers & Sisters) is the young leading lady setting the wheels of reprisal in motion. She reported that she does believe in revenge, “I guess, if it’s justified, although I’m more into the idea of forgiveness. But it’s a lot of fun to play. I can live all those feelings through the character. It’s really a challenge to tackle something like this.”

One thing that isn’t a challenge for VanCamp is looking great in the glamorous styles she gets to wear as she infiltrates the well-heeled crowd. She beamed, “My gorgeous wardrobe is a throw back to the old movie star fashions.”

A man who knows all about fabulous styles for the rich and famous is Fred Hayman, who celebrated the publication of his biography, Fred Hayman: The Extraordinary Difference, the Story of Rodeo Drive, Hollywood Glamour, and the Showman Who Sold It All, by Rose Apodaca. The book has more than 300 photographs to illustrate the life of the man who became an arbiter of style thanks to his iconic Giorgio Beverly Hills store. It’s certainly a book that the well-heeled crowd would enjoy.

Now let’s talk about the “Makeovers For Mutts” event, which had celebrities coming out to support the Much Love Animal Rescue organization. Health and wellness expert Jillian Michaels (Biggest Loser) was honored with the Much Love Animal Rescue’s Golden Heart Award for her dedication and work in rescuing animals. She proudly reports she has three rescues as part of her family, and was introduced to “Jillian,” the newest Much Love rescue who was named in Michaels’ honor.

The event was hosted by Dr. Davis B. Nguyen who has a tradition of sponsoring charity galas. Renowned for his transformative makeovers on humans, facial plastic surgeon Dr. Nguyen also has a passion for helping animals. The generous plastic surgeon contributed a cosmetic makeover to anyone contributing $1,000 or more, and that garnered $16,000 alone.

The red-carpet event was held at the Peninsula Hotel with Jillian Michaels and other pet-loving celebrities: Michael Weatherly (NCIS), Robert Wahl (Aril$$), Award-winning composer Diane Warren, Dancing with the Stars competitor and supermodel Joanna Krupa, Valerie Fitzgerald (host of HGTV’s Selling LA), and actress and animal activist Katie Cleary (Deal or No Deal). They were among more than 300 guests who gathered and an estimated $30,000 was raised via donations, raffles, and silent auctions. “The event exceeded our expectations,” says Stacy Bodell of Much Love Animal Rescue. Dr. Nguyen said he was proud to support the “worthy endeavor, an organization whose mission is to rescue abandoned and abused shelter animals, and help find them loving homes.” Kudos to all beautiful creatures great and small.

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