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Doggie Bag: Strikes Set Celebs Free for Charity
Claire Danes Ben Affleck Jennifer Garner
Claire Danes at event
Ben Affleck & Santa at Carier
Jennifer Garner urges flu shots
Paris Hilton Helen Gurley Borwn, Ahslee Simpson LeAnn Rimes
Paris HIlton at Rooseverlt Field Mall
Helen Gurley Brown & Ashlee Simpson at CosmoGirl! Born to Lead Awards
LeAnn Rimes at Chilren's Museum of Manhattan

New York, November 12-18, 2007 – A silver lining of the WGA and stagehands’ stirkes is that some celebrities had more free time to do good this week.  Jennifer Garner, currently appearing on Broadway in Cyrano de Bergerac, popped up at Gotham Hall on Monday to help the American Lung Association tout flu shots.  The Alias star didn’t take her shot at the event, and claimed that she’d previously been inoculated. 

Garner’s hubby, Ben Affleck, was not shopping for her gift at Cartier on Wednesday.   Affleck, Rachel Bilson and Santa Claus were at the luxe jeweler’s Fifth Avenue emporium to unveil holiday cards benefiting Art of Elysium. 

Claire Danes used her break from performing in Pygmalion on Broadway to pop into a midtown Manhattan high school to announce the national expansion of, a non-profit that provides school supplies to children in need.  That same day, we found country music star LeAnn Rimes at the Children’s Museum of Manhattan, teaching kids how to be friendlier to the environment. 

Ashlee Simpson and her man Pete Wentz, Raven Symone, Jordin Sparks and Eva Amurri were all at Hearst headquarters for the CosmoGirl! Born to Lead awards luncheon. 

Paris Hilton’s appearance at Macy’s in Garden City, New York was a benefit for the heiress’ bank account – she launched her new fragrance Can Can.

Doggie Bag: The Week's Leftovers
Ozzy Osbourne atop Hard Rock Cafe
R. Kelly at Trapped in the Closet premiere
One of R. Kelly's two diamond watches (he was still late)
Debra Messing cuts the ribbon at Saks' shoe department
Josh Lucas signs Level Vodka bottle at Rip the Runway for Darfur
Vanessa Minnillo stern at Kohl's

New York, August 11-17, 2007 – For a slow week in August, celebrities kept popping up in odd places all over the New York City area. Oddest, perhaps, was Ozzy Osbourne, who stunned Times Square tourists by showing up on top of the Hard Rock Café marquee, and performing. Ozzy was something of a surprise guest at the daylong launch of the Xbox 360 game “Madden NFL ’08”, which managed to also hit Times Square neighbors ESPN Zone, Toys “R” Us and even Reuters.

Legally challenged R&B great R. Kelly was over an hour late to the premiere of the latest installment of his Trapped in the Closet “hip-hopera”; in fact, by the time he arrived at the IFC Center, waiting journalists were threatening to walk out. Ironically, the singer wore two diamond-encrusted watches, one around his wrist and another hanging from his belt.

Russell Simmons, Josh Lucas and Rocco DiSpirito got an eyeful when one of the models had a wardrobe malfunction at designer Malcolm Harris’ Rip the Runway for Darfur benefit fashion show. The celebs all signed a bottle of Level Vodka - the evening’s sponsor - that will be auctioned off at a future Designers for Darfur event.

Do not mess with Vanessa Minnillo! When two photographers got into a shouting match at a Kohl’s department store in Jersey City, where the former MTV host launched her cosmetics line “Flirt”, Minnillo turned toward the noise, said “Whoa”, and shut them up with a stern glare.

You may think you love shoes, but Debra Messing loves them more – the actress showed up at Saks Fifth Avenue’s flagship at 9 A.M. on Friday morning to cut the ribbon on the fashion mecca’s new designer shoe floor, so big it has its own zip code.

Doggie Bag - The Week's Leftovers
Matt Damon carries his shirts at Letterman show
Reese Witherspoon, face of Avon
Studly Adam Sandler on film set
Juliette Lewis performs at Virgin Megastore
Jason Lee & Underdog
Dog The Bounty Hunter at book signing


Dog the Bounty Hunter photo: Andy Fossum/Startraks

July 29 – Aug. 4 – We ran into some pretty big stars behaving like regular Joes this week. Matt Damon carried his own shirts into and out of the David Letterman studios on Tuesday, when he stopped by to promote his new flick, The Bourne Ultimatum, which raked in $70 million in its opening weekend. Damon did hand off the shirts to a studio security guard – only to free up his hands so that he could sign autographs for fans waiting at the TV studio.

Adam Sandler, currently buning up movie screens as Kevin James’ same-sex spouse in Chuck & Larry, is now shooting a film in frat boy heaven, Manhattan’s Lower East Side. But he’s trading in the firefighter’s uniform for a blow dryer, playing a hair stylist in You Don’t Mess With the Zohan. Hopefully, Sandler will get to style Mariah Carey’s locks, since the singer is rumored to have a role in the film.

The dogs running around the Regal E-Walk Cinemas in Times Square at the premiere of Underdog on Monday mainly seemed confused, but we didn’t witness any accidents on the red carpet. Jason Lee, voice of Underdog, was overdressed for the summer heat in jacket and hat.

Duane Chapman, aka “Dog the Bounty Hunter”, was one happy fellow at a Borders bookstore in Hollywood on Friday, signing copies of his book titled You Can Run But You Can’t Hide. This marked his first appearance since a Mexican court dismissed charges against the reality show star. Dog was arrested in 2003 after he captured American cosmetics heir and convicted rapist Andrew Luster in Puerto Vallarta. Bounty hunting is illegal in Mexico.

Reese Witherspoon will lend her visage to cosmetics giant Avon, the company announced this week. The Oscar winner was late to a press conference at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel on Wednesday, so she rushed through a photo op to chat about this new gig. Witherspoon will also be the first-ever Avon Global Ambassador, helping to publicize the Avon Foundation’s charitable endeavors.

We found Juliette Lewis attempting to revive that quaint custom of buying records, performing with her band at a Manhattan Virgin Megastore on Thursday. So old school.

Doggie Bag - The Week's Leftovers: Survivor: Open Fly Edition
Michael Douglas & Catherine Zeta-Jones at Bayou Legend opening night
Kareem Abdul Jabar & Kobe Bryant at Miracle on 138th Street
Yul Kwon, Survivor: Cook Islands winner, had his fly open at the season finale
Classy Tara Reid at Black Xmas premiere

December 14-21, 2006 – Tara Reid wowed everybody with her chic look at the premiere of Black Christmas, a cheesy horror film. We’re not sure what she was doing there, as Tara does not appear in the movie, but nonetheless, she was sober, and looked stunning. We have the holiday spirit, and are happy to bring you this nice story about Tara, who, with her droopy dress was responsible for Open All Night’s most popular article ever.

But never fear, Survivor: Cook Islands winner Yul Kwan carried Tara’s torch this week: his fly was open during the entire season finale at CBS Television City on Sunday. The Yale Law school grad won $1 million.

Quite a few VIPs came out for the opening of The Bayou Legend, a theatrical piece directed and choreographed by Debbie Allen. We spotted Quincy Jones, Dave Meyers, legend Berry Gordy and Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones at UCLA’s Kaufman Hall on opening night.

L.A. Laker Kobe Bryant and other NBA stars, including Kareem Abdul Jabar and Stephon Marbury, joined Senator Hillary Clinton in Harlem on Thursday to distribute food to the needy, an operation dubbed “Miracle on 138th Street”.


Bayou Legend and Survivor photos: Andy Fossum/Startraks

Doggie Bag - The Week's Leftovers
Mary J. Blige at Sephora
Nick Cannon hustles at Planet Hollywood
Paris Hilton at TRL
Meet Daniel Powter, composer of American Idol's "Bad Day" song
Tom Brady at Movado store

New York, July 13-21, 2006 – That was no bumblebee in the Sephora store in Herald Square; it was Mary J. Blige, decked out in yellow and black stripes, there to promote the brand Carol's Daughter. We absolutely love this line, founded by Lisa Price, because it has A-list celebrity investors and spokespersons like Blige and Jada Pinkett Smith.

Nick Cannon was quite animated at Planet Hollywood in Times Square on Wednesday, where he dropped off some memorabilia from his new animated flick, Monster House. The phrase on the back of his shirt read: “Hustlers never sleep. We take naps.”

NFL star Tom Brady left his New England Patriots’ home turf for the Big Apple this week, and we found him at the Movado boutique in SoHo, starring in an ad campaign for the watchmaker’s new line of sports watches. Brady’s next stop will be more strenuous: football camp was due to start on Sunday.

Daniel Powter became an American Idol star without even having to endure Simon Cowell’s tongue lashings. Powter’s song, “Bad Day”, played as accompaniment to a weekly segment of AI, has caught on and become the U.S.’s most-downloaded single ever. While he was not very dynamic during his CBS Early Show concert, remaining stationary at his keyboards, Powter hammed it up offscreen.

Our week started with another musical anomaly, Paris Hilton, stopping by the MTV studios in Times Square for a TRL visit.


Doggie Bag - New York Times Ignores Dick Cheney

Vice President Dick Cheney at a Waldorf-Astoria fundraiser
Takeru Kobayashi doubles up on hot-dog consumption
Bill & Melinda Gates with Warren Buffett
Sarah Ferguson with daughter Eugenia at book signing

New York, June 26-July 4, 2006 – We were astounded to hear that Vice President Dick Cheney would be in New York City to officially close Gay Pride month, and so we ran over to the Waldorf-Astoria hotel on Friday to catch his speech. But it turned out that we were misinformed; George Bush’s elusive right-hand man was there to speak at a $1,000 per-plate fundraiser for New Jersey congressman Scott Garrett. Cheney delighted his audience with a tirade against The New York Times for reporting on a government program which tracks terrorists’ financial records. The Times seems to have turned its back on Cheney’s visit – we have not seen a story on this fundraiser in the newspaper as of July 5.

Apparently the right wing had no issues with Sarah Ferguson’s latest expose, code-named Little Red’s Summer Adventure. The Duchess of York was unchallenged at a Manhattan book signing.

It’s easy to make fun of the super-rich trying to outdo one another with over-the-top materialism, but we were kind of speechless last Monday at a Sheraton hotel when Warren Buffett gave away billions of dollars to charity in an attempt to one-up Bill and Melinda Gates.

While those rich folks spent their Independence Day holiday nibbling caviar, we hit the exclusive beach resort of Coney Island, where we took in the elegant annual hot-dog eating competition. Japan’s Takeru Kobayashi, the Lance Armstrong of hot-dog eating with six straight wins, set a record by devouring 54 hot-dogs in 12 minutes.

Doggie Bag - The Week's Leftovers
David Hasselhoff "Clicks" the remote at Planet Hollywood
Faith Hill & Tim McGraw at Four Seasons of Hope gala
Ty Murray with bull riding champions & Buckshot the bull at Javits Center
Superman Brandon Routh brings his helmet hair to Letterman show
Keane from left: Richard Hughes, frontman Tom Chaplin & Tim Rice-Oxley at Borders

New York, June 18-24, 2006 – Is it a coincidence that we kept running into sweaty cowboys in tight pants during Gay Pride week in New York? Ty Murray, president of the Professional Bull Riders Association, and boyfriend of singer Jewel, was at the Javits Center with some PBR champions, promoting an upcoming rodeo event at Madison Square Garden. It’s not until January, but this was the only time they could book Buckshot the bull.

And on Thursday, it was awfully hot on the red carpet at a Tavern on the Green benefit. “I have to get inside or my makeup is going to melt”, said country star Tim McGraw, who was with his wife, Faith Hill.

David Hasselhoff got out of control at Planet Hollywood in Times Square, and was dangerously shooting everyone in sight – with his remote control. The Hoff was promoting his new movie, Click.

Superman Returns star Brandon Routh brought his strange helmet-hair to the David Letterman studios. It never moved.

Shoppers and tourists strolling the stiff Time Warner Center mall got a cool treat on Friday afternoon when British rockers Keane did a set at Borders books, to promote their new album, Under the Iron Sea.

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