Connect with us


‘Pam & Tommy’: The story of the first viral sex tape | Culture

They were rich, famous, good-looking and they lived life in the fast lane. Actress Pamela Anderson and rock star Tommy Lee met on New Year’s Eve, 1994, and Lee became obsessed with Anderson, a global superstar and sex symbol due to her role on the hit television show Baywatch. Lee followed her, without her permission, on a trip to Cancun and three days later they were married. But a leaked sex tape turned everything upside down. The love story between Anderson and Lee was big business. The tabloids fed on their ups and downs but it turned out that all that glittered was not gold; far from it in fact. The Disney+ show Pam & Tommy, the first three episodes of which aired this week, focuses its attention on the circumstances under which the most famous sex tape of the 1990s was recorded and leaked, and the consequences it had on everyone involved in the case.

Beyond the fascination of the recreation of the story, which was present in one way or another in the minds of everyone who was alive during those years, Pam & Tommy opens with a slightly surreal anecdote. A disgruntled electrician working on the renovation of the couple’s mansion orchestrated the robbery of the safe in their garage, in which unbeknown to him the famous tape was stored. And he did so while disguised as a dog. That is the version of events laid out in a 2014 Rolling Stone article by Amanda Chicago Lewis about the events surrounding the emergence of the tape, and which serves as an entry point for the series to ruminate on privacy, the media and social and personal responsibility in cases such as Anderson and Lee’s.

Craig Gillespie, the Australian director of the Oscar-winning biopic I, Tonya, had already employed a curious mixture of drama, black comedy and thriller tropes to tackle the real case of the US ice skater, which also dissected aspects of wider American society, and he used a similar tone behind the camera of the first three episodes of Pam & Tommy. “I liked the idea that we would all be going into this series with some preconceptions, some things that we know. You start to watch it and you think it’s all insane. But then you get hooked and you start to find layers. I think a lot of people will approach it with the feeling that it’s going to be something very shallow, just a bit of entertainment. But you really start to feel for the characters and you set off on an emotional journey with them,” he tells EL PAÍS in a video call.

Lily James during shooting on ‘Pam & Tommy.’
Lily James during shooting on ‘Pam & Tommy.’

To embark on this journey from madness to the emotional and reflective, it was necessary to find Pam and Tommy. An almost unrecognizable Lily James (Downton Abbey, Cinderella) and Sebastian Stan, best-known for his role as the Winter Soldier in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (and who was also cast in I, Tonya), were transformed by hair, make-up and prosthetic work into the star of Baywatch and the drummer from rock band Mötley Crüe. James spent a minimum of three hours a day being turned into Anderson. Stan had to have Lee’s tattoos repainted every few days, in sessions that would last up to four hours. “I hardly ever saw Lily out of make-up. I saw her at the end of the series and she had always been wearing the make-up, the prosthetics and the blond wig. It was an incredible transformation, you couldn’t see Lily underneath it all,” says Gillespie, who has nothing but praise for the actors.

When he joined the production, James had already been cast as Anderson. “They were looking for an actress who had the ability to completely transform herself and she has done an amazing job. There is a lot of prosthetics, but there is also body language and catching the accent, things she worked very hard on,” he says. Gillespie already knew Stan from I, Tonya. “He is a tremendously versatile actor; he nailed this mixture of comedy and drama that I do.” Gillespie also praised the work of Seth Rogen, who plays Rand Gauthier, the hired electrician who as a response to being belittled by Lee (who threatened him with a shotgun at one point) while working on his Malibu mansion, decided to empty the safe that contained the tape and then set about distributing it, firstly through home-made video copies and later, via the fledgling internet, where it became one of the very first viral sensations.

Seth Rogen and Nick Offerman in ‘Pam & Tommy.’
Seth Rogen and Nick Offerman in ‘Pam & Tommy.’

The insane part of the story that the director makes reference to reaches its climax in the second episode, which covers the beginning of the relationship. At one stage, in between sessions of wild sex, the drummer has a conversation with his own penis, which is voiced by actor Jason Mantzoukas. It is a scene inspired by a passage in Lee’s autobiography, Tommyland. For the shoot, an articulated penis controlled by four puppeteers was employed. “It was an incredibly complicated scene for an actor; it’s not easy to get the viewer to remain invested in the story after that. These kinds of scenes demand everything from you, but I knew that Sebastian would come into the scene with his emotional depth intact, and however weird it was to shoot it, he would do it in the most sensitive way possible,” says Gillespie.

Pam & Tommy has changed how Gillespie views what happened back then. “All of us at that time were aware of it, people were talking about whether they had something do with it… they were everywhere, in the press, on television, on the talk shows, but I never really gave it that much thought. When I started research for the scripts, it was incredible to see how victimized they had been, how they had become lost in the process and how the media took advantage of the story without any concern for their lives.” The director hopes that the change produced in him will extend to viewers as well. “It is a great opportunity to make a comment on complicity as a society, how we consume information, how we have all these media outlets that feed it and how we demand it at the same time.”

Neither Pamela Anderson nor Tommy Lee have been involved with the development of the series and its producers don’t know what Anderson thinks of it. Showrunner D.V. DeVincetis told Entertainment Weekly: “We particularly wanted to let Pamela Anderson know that this portrayal was very much a positive thing and that we cared a great deal about her and wanted her to know that the show loves her. We didn’t get a response.” Other US media have claimed that Anderson is not happy about a traumatic period of her life being dredged up. On the other hand, the show’s producers were not concerned about Lee’s lack of involvement in the show. “Tommy is a public figure and I think we treat him well enough,” DeVincentis told Entertainment Weekly. “And we’ve come to know that he’s excited about the show.”

Lily James and Sebastian Stan as Pamela Anderson and Tommy Lee.
Lily James and Sebastian Stan as Pamela Anderson and Tommy Lee.

For Gillespie, showing the most human side of the protagonists was important. “They lived a life of excess at that time, they fell in love in four days in Mexico… as much as possible, I wanted to keep things realistic, down to earth, so that we could understand the humanity and how much they loved each other. That had to come from a real place, even if some of the situations were crazy.”

In some way, the series appears to want to make amends for what Anderson went through and the most emotional part of the story is centered on her. As new episodes are aired in the coming weeks, the effect the leaked tape had on her personal and professional life will be brought to light. “I can’t imagine… I can’t speak for her, but we have tried to approach the subject with empathy. It seemed like this was a good time to take a look back at it,” says Gillespie.

Source link


Choco: Revolutionizing The FoodTech Industry With Innovation & Sustainability | EU20

By Clint Bailey

— In the rapidly evolving world of food technology, European startup Choco has emerged as a pioneering force. With its website,, this Berlin-based company is transforming the way food industry professionals operate by leveraging innovative digital solutions. By linking restaurants, distributors, suppliers, and producers on a single platform, Choco is streamlining the supply chain process while promoting sustainability.

Let’s explore the journey of and its impact on the overall foodtech industry.

  1. Company: Choco Technologies GmbH
  2. Website:
  3. Head Office: Berlin, Germany
  4. Year Established: 2018
  5. Founders: Choco was co-founded by Daniel Khachab, Julian Hammer, and Rogerio da Silva.
  6. Industry: Choco operates in the foodtech industry, specifically focusing on digitizing the supply chain for the food industry.
  7. Funding: Choco has secured significant funding rounds from investors, including Bessemer Venture Partners & Coatue Management.
  8. Market Presence: Choco has a strong presence in several European cities, including Berlin, Paris, London & Barcelona.
  9. Mission: Choco aims to revolutionize the food industry by leveraging technology to simplify supply chain management, promote sustainability, and reduce food waste.

Simplifying Supply Chain Management

One of the core focuses of Choco is to simplify supply chain management for food businesses. Traditionally, the procurement process in the food industry has been cumbersome and inefficient, with numerous intermediaries and manual processes. Choco’s digital platform replaces the traditional paper-based ordering system, allowing restaurants and suppliers to communicate and collaborate seamlessly.

Choco’s platform enables restaurants to place orders directly with suppliers, eliminating the need for phone calls, faxes, or emails. This not only saves time but also reduces the likelihood of errors and miscommunications.

By digitizing the ordering process, Choco improves transparency, making it easier for restaurants to compare prices, track deliveries, and manage inventory efficiently.

Streamlining Operations For Suppliers & Producers

Choco’s impact extends beyond restaurants. The platform also provides suppliers and producers with valuable tools to streamline their operations. By digitizing their product catalogs and integrating them into the Choco platform, suppliers can showcase their offerings to a wide network of potential buyers.

Suppliers benefit from increased visibility, enabling them to reach new customers and expand their market presence. Moreover, Choco’s platform helps suppliers manage their inventory, track orders, and plan deliveries effectively. These features enhance operational efficiency, reduce waste, and ultimately contribute to a more sustainable food system.
YouTube Channel

Promoting Sustainability & Reducing Food Waste

Choco recognizes the critical importance of sustainability in the food industry. According to the United Nations, approximately one-third of the world’s food production goes to waste each year. By digitizing the supply chain and enabling more efficient ordering and inventory management, Choco actively works to combat this issue.

Air France – Deals & Destinations

Choco’s platform facilitates data-driven decision-making for restaurants, suppliers, and producers. By analyzing purchasing patterns & demand, Choco helps businesses optimize their inventory levels, reducing overstocking and minimizing food waste. Additionally, Choco supports local sourcing, enabling businesses to connect with nearby suppliers & promote sustainable, community-based practices.

Expanding Reach & Impact

Since its founding in 2018, Choco has experienced rapid growth and expansion. The startup has successfully secured significant funding rounds, allowing it to scale its operations and establish a strong presence across Europe and other global markets. Today, Choco’s platform is used by thousands of restaurants and suppliers, revolutionizing the way they operate.

Choco’s impact extends beyond operational efficiency or sustainability. By connecting restaurants, suppliers & producers on a single platform, Choco fosters collaboration & encourages the exchange of ideas. This collaborative approach strengthens the overall foodtech ecosystem and creates a supportive community of like-minded aiming to drive positive change within the industry.

Future Of FoodTech

Choco’s rise to prominence in the foodtech industry exemplifies the reach of sustainability, innovation, and community. Through its user-friendly platform, Choco simplifies supply chain management, streamlines operations for restaurants & suppliers, and actively promotes sustainable practices. By harnessing the potential of digital, Choco is disrupting the future of the food industry, making it more efficient and transparent.

As Choco continues to expand its impact and reach, its transformative influence on the foodtech sector is set to inspiring, grow other startups, and established players to embrace technology for a better and more sustainable food system.

We Can’t Thank You Enough For Your Support!

— Compiled by Clint Bailey | Team ‘Voice of EU’
— For More Info. & News Submissions:
— For Anonymous News Submissions:

Continue Reading


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.

Continue Reading


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.

Thank You For Your Support!

— By Darren Wilson, Team

— For more information & news submissions:

— Anonymous news submissions:

Continue Reading


Subscribe To Our Newsletter

Join our mailing list to receive the latest news and updates 
directly on your inbox.

You have Successfully Subscribed!