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Impact Of Hollywood Strikes On Glam Squads – Hair, Makeup, And Nail Stylists

Impact of Hollywood strikes on ‘Glam Squads’ continues..

In the glitzy world of film, television, and fashion, Kim Kimble’s name resonates as a veteran hair stylist who’s seen it all over her three decades in Hollywood. Through highs and lows, she never let go of her backup plan — until the pandemic swept it all away. Kimble’s story is a reflection of a larger reality: Hollywood’s cadre of makeup artists, hair stylists, and manicurists is grappling with the aftershocks of strikes, plummeting rates, and the ongoing recovery from the pandemic’s economic turmoil.

The entertainment industry is no stranger to turmoil, with writers and actors currently battling studios and streaming services in contract disputes. However, the impact of these strikes ripples far beyond the stars to the entire ecosystem of professionals, from production crews to support staff, who find themselves unemployed across the nation.

Linda Dowds, a seasoned Los Angeles-based makeup artist, describes the bleak reality. The writers strike began on May 2, followed by actors on July 14. Amidst an already challenging pay landscape, many professionals in the makeup, hair, wardrobe, and nails fields find themselves uncertain about their future.

Even if the Writers Guild of America and SAG-AFTRA reach agreements with studios and streamers in the near future, it will still take weeks for productions to regain momentum.

Dowds, who’s known for her Oscar-winning work on “The Eyes of Tammy Faye,” voices her anxiety over the strikes. Despite having managed her health insurance through the Make-Up Artists and Hair Stylists Guild, she recognizes that the situation is not sustainable for the long term. This sentiment is echoed by Kim Kimble, who has worked with luminaries like Beyoncé and Taraji P. Henson. For Kimble, whose career revolves around her passion for hair, there’s no clear Plan B, leaving her in a state of uncertainty.

The strike’s timing compounds the challenges, as the industry was already grappling with dwindling pay rates.

Makeup artist Matin Maulawizada, who globetrots to work with celebrities on television sets and red carpets, bemoans the drastic pay cuts over the years. What used to be lucrative endeavors now yield a fraction of the earnings, making him reconsider his career path.

Celebrity manicurist Julie Kandalec, accustomed to working with A-listers, faces a precarious situation despite her multifaceted income streams. She’s been teaching entrepreneurial skills for beauty professionals online, maintaining a network of contacts, and collaborating with brands. However, the ever-present concern of making rent and the uncertain fate of the entertainment industry casts a shadow over her stability.

As the strikes persist, the fate of these professionals hangs in the balance. Andrea Pezzillo, a celebrity stylist and men’s groomer based in Los Angeles, exemplifies the struggle to adapt. With salon clients dwindling due to the industry’s halted productions, Pezzillo has turned to house calls and online teaching as an alternative. The very essence of their careers is challenged, as their roles as beauty artisans are eclipsed by the digital age’s fascination with influencers.

In this multifaceted crisis, professionals like Matin Maulawizada are attempting to innovate and adapt. Maulawizada’s efforts to secure brand sponsorships for professional makeup artists showcase his determination to weather the storm. This creative approach aims to redirect funds towards industry veterans, leveraging their expertise in contrast to the transient allure of social media influencers.

As the strikes continues, the broader entertainment community watches and waits. Whitney Anne Adams, a costume designer whose work spans feature films, echoes the pervasive uncertainty. Adams, along with professionals across the spectrum, is rallying for unity among the various unions under the International Alliance of Theatrical and Stage Employees and Motion Picture Technicians, Artists, and Allied Crafts. The solidarity forged now, during these trying times, may serve as a beacon of hope when negotiations for contracts arise.

Amidst the glitz and glamour of Hollywood’s red carpets and dazzling screens lies a less glamorous reality. The professionals who shape the faces and styles that captivate audiences are caught in the crossfire of strikes and evolving industry dynamics, struggling to keep their livelihoods afloat while hoping for a fair resolution to the ongoing disputes.

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Welcome back, Samuel Beckett | Culture

The 20th century brought us Stalin, Mao, two world wars, the Holocaust, atomic bombs and a couple more carnages that I would rather not recall. Several million people died as a result, according to the most conservative calculations. Logically, the soul of Europeans was shaken, and it is admirable that we have survived as a species. A Martian would have expected us to commit suicide once and for all with a big nuclear bash.

The battered world conscience led to several new outcomes in terms of human representation. Living with the constant threat of extinction affected artists, who are the ones that truly represent us and not politicians. So the artists began to represent us as they saw us: strange, deformed, shapeless, anomalous, invisible, crippled, stuttering, or simply mute.

We have been more temperate for several years now, and it seems that we are now able to analyze that past, which was called “the avant-garde,” with some calm. Not everywhere, of course, but it is possible in a West that is fading, but which is no longer massacring its slaves. And the effect that this awareness of destruction had on literature was the emergence of a group of immense writers who could no longer represent humans in a luminous and heroic way, so to speak. However, it would be a very bad idea to leave them for dead. Joyce, Proust, Kafka, Faulkner, Bernhard, Manganelli, Benet, Rulfo — throughout the West, a literature took shape during the 20th century in which only the bare form remained with a capacity to simply be. And one of its main writers was Samuel Beckett.

It is a source of joy that this difficult, harsh, dark, but wise literature’s ability to fascinate, moralize and illuminate us has not run dry. And reading these artists is a very convenient way to understand that everything could go dark at any moment. I am currently celebrating the release of a new Spanish translation of Watt, Beckett’s last novel in English, by an affordable publishing house that can reach many students (Cátedra).

The story behind this novel is another novel in itself, well told by the translator José Francisco Fernández in his extensive foreword to the new Spanish version. Beckett wrote it while fleeing from one hideout to another as a member of the Resistance, pursued by the Nazis who were occupying France. In those absurd conditions, Beckett carried his notebooks, in which he was writing and annotating what would finally become the novel Watt, which is the name of the main character, who is as non-existent as Godot, the most famous of Beckett’s characters. Watt has a partner, Mr. Knott, whom he serves in a parody of the old novels of masters and servants that have been immortalized thanks to television series like Upstairs, Downstairs.

Rejected by the publishing world

Although he finished it in 1945, Watt was not published until 1953 after being rejected by almost all English and American publishers, who were very reluctant to recognize that this convulsive and sarcastic prose was a faithful portrait of 20th-century civilization. And once it was published it barely made an impact. It was not until 1968 (what a year!), when it was published in French by the Minuit publishing house, in the author’s version and with the help of the Janvier couple, that enthusiasm for the novel would begin to get some traction. The French powers-that-be recognized themselves in the portrait of the warped, disintegrated human race, described with a lacerating irony that the Irishman created out of nothing.

There were other effects that fascinated those who dominated literary opinion at the time. One of them was the obvious caricature of Descartes, a philosopher whom Beckett always counted among his favorites, and the reference to whom was immediately picked up by the masters of structuralism and deconstruction.

Welcome back, then, to our Beckett, a precise portraitist of terrifying years that could return at any moment.

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The Hat Worn By Napoleon Bonaparte Sold For $2.1 Million At The Auction

A faded felt bicorne hat worn by Napoleon Bonaparte sold for $2.1 million at an auction on of the French emperor’s belongings.

Yes, that’s $2.1 million!!

The signature broad, black hat, one of a handful still in existence that Napoleon wore when he ruled 19th-century France and waged war in Europe, was initially valued at 600,000 to 800,000 euros ($650,000-870,000). It was the centerpiece of Sunday’s auction collected by a French industrialist who died last year.

The Hat Worn By Napoleon Bonaparte Sold For $2.1 Million At The Auction

But the bidding quickly jumped higher and higher until Jean Pierre Osenat, president of the Osenat auction house, designated the winner.

‘’We are at 1.5 million (Euros) for Napoleon’s hat … for this major symbol of the Napoleonic epoch,” he said, as applause rang out in the auction hall. The buyer, whose identity was not released, must pay 28.8% in commissions according to Osenat, bringing the overall cost to 1.9 million euros ($2.1 million).

While other officers customarily wore their bicorne hats with the wings facing front to back, Napoleon wore his with the ends pointing toward his shoulders. The style, known as “en bataille,” or in battle, made it easier for his troops to spot their leader in combat.

The hat on sale was first recovered by Col. Pierre Baillon, a quartermaster under Napoleon, according to the auctioneers. The hat then passed through many hands before industrialist Jean-Louis Noisiez acquired it.

The entrepreneur spent more than a half-century assembling his collection of Napoleonic memorabilia, firearms, swords and coins before his death in 2022.

The sale came days before the release of Ridley Scott’s film Napoleon with Joaquin Phoenix, which is rekindling interest in the controversial French ruler.

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The Call for AI Regulation in Creative Industries

THE VOICE OF EU | Widespread concerns have surged among artists and creatives in various domains – country singers, authors, television showrunners, and musicians – voicing apprehension about the disruptive impact of artificial intelligence (AI) on their professions.

These worries have prompted an urgent plea to the U.S. government for regulatory action to protect their livelihoods from the encroaching threat posed by AI technology.

The Artists’ Plea

A notable rise in appeals to regulate AI has emerged, drawing attention to the potential risks AI poses to creative industries.

Thousands of letters, including those from renowned personalities like Justine Bateman and Lilla Zuckerman, underscore the peril AI models represent to the traditional structure of entertainment businesses.

The alarm extends to the music industry, expressed by acclaimed songwriter Marc Beeson, highlighting AI’s potential to both enhance and jeopardize an essential facet of American artistry.

The Call for AI Regulation in Creative Industries

Copyright Infringement Concerns

The primary contention arises from the unsanctioned use of copyrighted human works as fodder to train AI systems. The concerns about AI ingesting content from the internet without permission or compensation have sparked significant distress among artists and their representative entities.

While copyright laws explicitly protect works of human authorship, the influx of AI-generated content questions the boundaries of human contribution and authorship in an AI-influenced creative process.

The Fair Use Debate

Leading technology entities like Google, Microsoft, and Meta Platforms argue that their utilization of copyrighted materials in AI training aligns with the “fair use” doctrine—a limited use of copyrighted material for transformative purposes.

They claim that AI training isn’t aimed at reproducing individual works but rather discerning patterns across a vast corpus of content, citing precedents like Google’s legal victories in the digitization of books.

The Conflict and Seeking Resolution

Despite court rulings favoring tech companies in interpreting copyright laws regarding AI, voices like Heidi Bond, a former law professor and author, critique this comparison, emphasizing that AI developers often obtain content through unauthorized means.

Shira Perlmutter, the U.S. Register of Copyrights, acknowledges the Copyright Office’s pivotal role in navigating this complex landscape and determining the legitimacy of the fair use defense in the AI context.

The Road Ahead

The outpouring of concern from creative professionals and industry stakeholders emphasizes the urgency for regulatory frameworks to safeguard creative works while acknowledging the evolving role of AI in content creation.

The Copyright Office’s meticulous review of over 9,700 public comments seeks to strike a balance between innovation and the protection of creative rights in an AI-driven era. As the discussion continues, the convergence of legal precedents and ethical considerations remains a focal point for shaping the future landscape of AI in creative industries.

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