Bright Lights In The Big Easy

New Orleans has long been a favorite setting for big name producers and newcomers hoping to make theirs big.  The city, the historic French Quarter as well as the surrounding bayou country has so much to offer a production company it is no wonder that some thirty odd movies are scheduled to be filmed here.

 It was awesome to happen on to the filming of the Canal Street car crash scene in the John Cena movie Twelve Rounds during one NOLA visit.  Thanks to a really cool production assistant, a group of us including my nieces and nephews were thrilled to be able to watch up close and personal.

While that was exciting it was even more so when I got an opportunity to actually participate in the new Kate Hudson movie, Earthbound, being filmed in and around the Crescent City.  It is a romantic comedy which includes other names like Gael Garcia Bernal, Alan Dale, Whoopi Goldberg, Kathy Bates and Treat Williams.  In the film Kate has cancer (she had to lose twenty pounds for the role) Whoopi is God, and Gael is the young doctor that Kate falls for. There is no word yet on when the Nicole Kassell directed flick will hit the theater.

Most young girls at some point entertain thoughts of being in a movie.  My three year old granddaughter wants to be a “moo-moo tar” herself!  I have to admit I was no different, but I had put that behind me a long time ago, probably about the same time I put up my Barbie dolls.  So when a friend who was involved in the project suggested that since I was always in New Orleans anyway I should get involved too. I thought “what the heck”,  never really believing it would happen.

What a surprise when I was contacted the same day to take part as an extra (called “background” in the biz) in a Gala Fund Raiser scene of New Orleans supposedly wealthiest patrons being shot at Oak Alley Plantation.  Oak Alley Plantation, a historic property located on the Mississippi River in Vacherie, Louisiana, is a National Historic Landmark.  For a history lover like me this was going to be way cool, but due to the weather the scene was moved at the last minute. We actually filmed the scene at Gallier Hall on St. Charles Avenue.  

The whole behind the scenes experience from wardrobe and make-up to Star orbit etiquette was a definite eye opener for me.  I will never look at movies or some “Stars” in the same way again. About the only familiar terminology to me was “first team” and “second team”.  I knew what it meant in basketball and sure enough it is the same in movies.  First team is the actual Stars and Second team is the Stand-ins (people who resemble the Stars). 

It will be really interesting to see the finished product and what actually makes it into the film. I think I have a fairly good shot since I was included in most of the shooting that day.  There is nothing like having the “clap board” snapped in front of your face. “Quiet on the set, Rolling, Sound, Background”  – and that was the cue for us extras to start our little pantomime party.

It was a hoot!  So much for my illusions of being transformed into a beautiful glamour goddess, the joke was on me.  Look for really big hair!  (because I’m supposedly really rich!  Who knew big hair and big money were synonymous?!)  It took a little while to get used to people coming up to me and messing with my hair and brushing stuff on my face all day.  Overall I met some really great people and heard some very entertaining stories from the veteran extras about past “background” roles. 

It was a fun new experience but an eighteen hour day in heels, with make-up caked on my face and a teased up ball of hair on my head is not my idea of the glamorous life.  Please don’t misunderstand though, even with the minor disillusionment, aching feet and contacts melted on my eyeballs (the lights are really hot and bright) I would gladly answer the call “background” again!

By Sharon Denise Talbot

Sabrina Sloan sings “Easy As Life” from AIDA

“Songs for a New Orleans”
a broadway benefit concert
Conceived, Directed, & Choreographed: Evan D’Angeles
Musical Direction: Rob Blaney
Artist: Sabrina Sloan
Song: “Easy as Life” from AIDA
Music & Lyrics: Elton John & Tim Rice

Duration : 0:4:24

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Down Swan Song Live

Down Swan Song Live

Duration : 0:3:35

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Lifes Different

Endlich. Life's Different auf eurem Computer. Tschuldigung dass es so lange gedauert hat. 3 Personen, 3 Charakteren, 3 Geschichten 1 FILM. So kann man LD am schnellsten beschreiben. Schaut es euch selbst an.

Duration : 54 min 10 sec

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If the Iberville housing development is ever razed, do you think they should rebuild Storyville?

Anyone who lives in the Nola area should know about Storyville. if not, look here:

There would be tremendous opposition from the existing downtown merchants to building a new "entertainment district" on the site of the Iberville, and particularly from the ones in the French Quarter. That doesn’t mean they want the Iberville to continue as it currently is, but wouldn’t want the direct competition.

Note that the city considered locating the Arena (the basketball dome next to the Superdome) on the site, but it ended up in its current location because construction costs were much less as the Superdome’s air-conditioning system could be co-used by the Arena.

The city also wanted to sell the Iberville to a developer in 1982. The complex would have been renovated and sold as condos. The city would have earned enough from the sale to make a "profit" after paying to relocate the residents. HUD said no because the city would not own the property "free & clear" until 1989 – 50 year bonds were used to build it in 1939. By 1989 the oil industry depression ended the interest in converting the property. There are reports the buildings are no longer salvageable, but I don’t actually know. Certainly they have not had a major renovation in the 60 years since they were built.

New Orleans Counts Down to 10th Anniversary Of Tales of the Cocktail®

New Orleans


Whew whee y’all!  New Orleans has really been rockin’ this month and we are not even halfway through!  Besides ringing in the New Year NOLA style, the Crescent City has hosted the Sugar Bowl, the BCS Championship game, our New Orleans Saints at home in the Dome and we are barely scratching the surface.  This is but a few of the spectacular events that will be going on in the Big Easy in 2012.  Another one to put in the calendar is fast approaching.  Don’t miss the kick off for Tales of Cocktail’s 10th Anniversary!  Cheers!

See you in NOLA!

Sharon Denise Talbot

Countdown to 10th Anniversary Of Tales of the Cocktail® Kicks Off at the

Newly Renovated Carousel Bar and Lounge In New Orleans


Media and cocktail lovers are invited to the grand re-opening of the Carousel Bar for a preview of what’s in store at Tales of the Cocktail® 2012.


WHO:             Tales of the Cocktail®, Hotel Monteleone, members of the media and cocktail enthusiasts.


WHAT:                 A joint event with Tales of the Cocktail® and the Hotel Monteleone to officially kick off the six-month countdown to the 10th Anniversary Tales of the Cocktail® in New Orleans and unveil the newly renovated and expanded Carousel Bar and Lounge.

This special event will include:

·   Carousel Bar and Lounge grand reopening and auction of memorabilia

·   Tales of the Cocktail® 2012 countdown event with a sneak peak of spirited events and special unveilings for the festival’s historic 10th Anniversary

·   Preview of the official 2012 poster by artist Robert Rodriguez

·   A look at the cocktail festival’s first book, Tales the Cocktail from A to Z

·   Display of the world record centerpiece, A Million Greetings From New Orleans, by bead artist Stephán Wanger

·   The unveiling of Tales of the Cocktail and Fleurty Girl’s newest Cocktail Collection t-shirt celebrating the Old Fashioned

·   Complimentary Old Fashioneds featuring Buffalo Trace Bourbon and Luxardo Cherries prepared by the Carousel Bar’s renowned bartending team


WHEN:                 Wednesday, January 25, 2012

1:30 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. – Carousel Bar and Lounge Grand Reopening

2:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. – Countdown to Tales of the Cocktail

3:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. – Performance by Robin Barnes


WHERE:               Carousel Bar and Lounge

Hotel Monteleone

214 Royal Street


WHY:                    Over the past decade, Tales of the Cocktail® has only gotten better with age. Now, just six months from its 10th Anniversary, Tales of the Cocktail® is ready to get the party started a little early at Countdown to Tales. This one-of-a-kind media event will give a sneak peak of the spirited events that will make this the biggest and best Tales of the Cocktail yet. Additionally, the Hotel Monteleone will celebrate the reopening of the famous Carousel Bar and Lounge.


HOW:                   This event is free and open to the public. Click here to reserve your spot today.

About Tales of the Cocktail®

Tales of the Cocktail® is the world’s premier cocktail festival, bringing together the most respected minds on mixology for five days of cocktails, cuisine and culture. Held annually in New Orleans, this international event has something for cocktail professionals and enthusiasts alike with a spirited schedule of seminars, dinners, competitions and tasting rooms where brands showcase their latest products. Tales of the Cocktail® returns in 2012 for a historic milestone—its 10th Anniversary of rocking the cocktail world. Join the celebration July 25-29, 2012 and see how Tales of the Cocktail® only gets better with age.


About the New Orleans Culinary and Cultural Preservation Society

The New Orleans Culinary and Cultural Preservation Society (NOCCPS) is a non-profit organization committed to preserving the unique culture of cocktails and cuisine in New Orleans and beyond. Since it’s founding in 2006 the NOCCPS has supported members of the hospitality industry through programs like the new Apprentice Aid Fund, providing financial assistance to former apprentices in times of medical need, the Cocktail Apprentice Scholarship Program and the Flo Woodward Memorial Scholarship as well as the production of events like Tales of the Cocktail®.

For more information on Tales of the Cocktail®, visit the website at or call 504-948-0511.


About Hotel Monteleone

Since 1886, the Hotel Monteleone,, has proudly stood as one of the first landmarks in the famous French Quarter. The hotel is the Quarter’s largest full-service hotel, featuring 600 comfortable, luxurious guestrooms and suites. Hotel Monteleone is within walking-distance of some of New Orleans most famous attractions and is conveniently located 11 miles from the Louis Armstrong International Airport. Hotel Monteleone is a member of the Preferred Hotels® & Resorts, a consecutive AAA Four Diamond award-winner, and has won the J.D. Power and Associates Upscale Hotel Award for “An Outstanding Guest Experience.”

 The New Orleans Hotel Monteleone is celebrated its 125th anniversary in 2011.


New Orleans

Where is a good place to find chicken and dumplings in the French Quarter’s or surrounding areas?

I’m not a tourist or anything but I have never really ate in the French Quarter’s and my husband and I will be attending a play this month at the Convention Center and we want somewhere nice to eat out. I have never had chicken and dumplings but always wanted to try it.
I am looking for a soul food restaurant but on the classy side. Please provide a link to the place or phone number. Thanks in advance.

Hog’s Breath
337 chartres street
Next to hog’s breath salon-New Orleans

The chicken and dumplings are like grandma’s used to make
in New Orleans….Check it out!!!!!!!!!!

New Orleans says goodbye to Popeye’s icon

Al Copeland passed away Easter Sunday 2008. His funeral was held a week later at Lake Lawn Cemetery in Metairie, LA.

Duration : 0:2:53

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[06] DOWN – Stone The Crow (Live @ Download Festival 2009) *Sync* HQ

Down – Stone the Crow (Live @ Download Festival 2009) *Sync* HQ

Live @ Download Festival 2009-06-15
Donington Park, UK

Phil Anselmo
Pepper Keenan
Kirk Windstein
Rex Brown
Jimmy Bower

Duration : 0:6:16

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New Orleans Allstars “Funkify Your Life”

New Orleans Allstars (George Porter Jr., Ivan Neville, Johnny Vidacovich, Theresa Andersson) at the 8th Annual Bayou Rendezvous – The Howlin’ Wolf – April 30, 2010

Duration : 0:7:55

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