October 22, 2010 |
A middle-aged man in a neon orange polo shirt and baggy blue gym shorts sat at a conference table in West Hollywood one recent afternoon interviewing a prospective ghostwriter. "It's called 'Redemption,'" said Aaron Tonken, the man with the story to tell. "It's going to be big. " When Tonken was marched off to federal prison six years ago in a charity fraud scandal that embarrassed a slew of A-list celebrities, it was difficult to imagine him returning to Hollywood, let alone persuading a major literary agency to shop a book and movie deal about his life.
January 24, 2011 |
Walking through the doors of a crowded San Francisco bar, Kristin Curtin was all business. Her eyes moved from face to face before coming to rest on a pretty young woman chatting up a male patron. "You could just tell the way she was interacting with him that he was mesmerized. There were hundreds of people in that pub, but she just captured my attention," recalled Curtin, a freelance casting producer. She gave the woman her business card and a pitch about why she might want to try out for a new NBC reality show that combines love and adventure.
February 16, 2012 |
Even from a distance, the man catches your attention. Hovering close to the pool's edge, he stalks back and forth, throwing his arms into the air, thrusting his hips. Moments of intense silence - his eyes like pinpoints - give way to outbursts. "No, no," he hollers. "Is anyone listening to me?" Jovan Vavic is just warming up, just getting started with practice for the women's water polo team at USC. His players tread water, heads bobbing above the surface, listening to a voice that booms deep and thick with an Eastern European accent.
June 16, 2013 |
LAS VEGAS - He's the biggest nightclub owner in Los Angeles, the man whose Hyde Lounge and Shelter became prime hunting grounds for the paparazzi. He's been photographed cozying up with Paris Hilton, Kristin Cavallari and Sofia Vergara. When HBO's "Entourage" needed a club owner, he got the part - playing himself. Now Sam Nazarian is moving to shed his party boy image and become a Vegas mogul, hoping to parlay his success in L.A.'s fiercely competitive club scene into the cutthroat world of casinos.
January 27, 2012 |
Just off a rutted dirt road, a beach as white as flour pops into view from behind a wall of sea grape and rustling palms. Pelicans slice over turquoise waters, and not a single person stirs the quiet. The tableau, along a little-developed segment of Mexico's Caribbean coast, is a beachgoer's fantasy of unspoiled seaside splendor. Until you look down. For as far as the eye can see, the sand glitters with bits of bright color: fragments of trash, thousands and thousands of them, strung like a vast, foul necklace.
November 16, 2010 |
He built the largest stock brokerage in Los Angeles, and his name adorns one of the city's most distinctive high-rises. He's worth tens of millions of dollars. So why can't Edward Wedbush manage to fix his roof? The peeling shingles atop his one-story stucco house in Ladera Heights are covered in blue and black tarpaulin. The bandaged roof has been an eyesore for years in a neighborhood of carefully tended mid-century homes. Neighbors say they've written letters, passed along bids from contractors and even lined up buyers for the home, all to no avail.