Monday, April 18, 2011

VH1 Debuts New Reality Show About 'Mob Wives'

(L-R) are, Renee Graziano (daughter
of Anthony Graziano), Drita D’Avanzo
(wife of Lee D’Avanzo), Carla Facciolo
(wife of Joey Ferragamo) and Karen
Gravano (daughter of Sammy “Bull”
Gravano).
VH1 has picked up "Mob Wives," a new reality series created by Jennifer Graziano, a daughter of Bonanno capo Anthony (T.G.) Graziano (according to Reality Wives). This is Ms. Graziano's first producer/writer credit, according to IMDB.com.

The cast list, as indicated on Bourgy (a website that follows reality shows), is Renee Graziano (another daughter of Anthony Graziano?), Drita D’Avanzo (wife of Lee D’Avanzo), Carla Facciolo (wife of Joey Ferragamo) and Karen Gravano (daughter of Sammy “The Bull” Gravano).

So "Mob Wives & Daughters" would be a better title, no?
(A little nugget we dug up about one of the "mobsters," which, if true, should make for a bit more interesting show: The New York Daily News reported that Lee D’Avanzo was romantically linked to the daughter of Sammy "Bull" Gravano, who, along with her brother, pleaded guilty to their role in the operation set up by their father that peddled drugs to kids, from AmericanMafia.com.)

"The cameras will follow these four struggling "allegedly" associated women who have to pick up the pieces and carry on after their husbands or fathers face time in prison for Mob-related activities," according to ET online.

Monday, April 4, 2011

From Taxi Driver to Real Estate Mogul

From hack to mogul:
David Edelstein (not the film critic)
David Edelstein--the president of TriStar Capital LLC, a leading New York City-based real estate firm that supposedly recently purchased the Chelsea hotel, according to Curbed.com--started out as a Manhattan cab driver, according to this New York Daily News article.

An ex-cab driver who grew up in Bayside, Edelstein borrowed $15,000 in 1981 from a Queens bookie to buy his first building. He paid $75,000 for a five-story walk up on 85th St. and First Ave. owned by two older Italian ladies.

Taxi driving was a night job. He picked up the cab near Shea Stadium. Pocketing $120 per shift, Edelstein learned the city of the late 1970s cold. He watched Amsterdam Ave. from 70th to 80th St. go from drug den to 20-story residential buildings as the city used tax incentives to escape a recession some say was worse than now.

By day, he worked as a real estate canvasser for Nehring Brothers, a Washington Heights-based management company who bought and sold properties. He made $75 per week plus commission going door-to-door meeting building owners. His territory was 59th to 96th St. from Lexington Ave. to the East River
. ... READ REST

I love these stories that prove the American Dream is still alive and well.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Blue Bloods Is a 'Ratings Success Story' for CBS

The Reagan family--Blue Bloods, all of them.
I love this show--and I found an interesting interview with the show's creators on Jim Halterman's website.

Halterman, a freelance writer who focuses on the entertainment world, interviewed executive producers Robin Green (who created the series with husband Mitchell Burgess) and TV vet Leonard Goldberg on Blue Bloods last month:

Just when it seemed that there couldn’t possibly be room for another successful crime drama on the CBS prime time schedule, freshman series Blue Bloods premiered on low-rated Friday night last fall and viewers showed up. In fact, a recent tryout on Wednesday nights proved successful and while the series is now back on Fridays (to make room for “Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior”), a mid-week return isn’t out of the realm of possibilities down the line.

In the New York City-based one-hour drama, the lives of the Reagan family are intertwined while working in various areas of law enforcement – Danny (Donnie Wahlberg) is a detective, sister Erin (Bridget Moynahan) is an Assistant District Attorney, youngest brother Jamie (Will Estes) is a rookie police officer and father Frank (the always sturdy Tom Selleck) is the widowed Police Commissioner. That crime-fighting set-up aside, executive producers Robin Green (who created the series with husband Mitchell Burgess) and TV vet Leonard Goldberg insisted Blue Bloods is more character than procedural when they spoke recently to me. During their chat, Green and Goldberg talked about finding the middle ground between character and procedural, casting Selleck and if viewers can expect the show to get a little sexier in the future.


Jim Halterman: There’s seems to be something very traditional about ‘Blue Bloods.’ Is it wrong to call it a traditional drama?

Leonard Goldberg: Absolutely not! When I told Nina [Tassler, CBS Entertainment President] the very basic idea a year and a half ago. I said, ‘Do you know the show ‘Modern Family?’ and she said ‘Yes!’ I said, ‘This isn’t it! It’s a traditional family.’

JH: What are the challenges in making this a character drama as opposed to a full-on procedural like many of the CBS crime dramas on the air?

LG: We consider ourselves a character drama. We are not a pure procedural. We have a police story every…CLICK HERE TO CONTINUE