As a thank you to its 15 teenaged summer interns, music video and film production company Eye On It assembled cast members from the 1983 gangster flick “Scarface” for an Aug. 20 meet and greet event at the company’s office, down the hall from the Manhattan Times at 5030 Broadway in Inwood.
Actors from the Brian DePalma-directed, Oliver Stone-written film included Steven Bauer and Angel Salazar Jr. The event also featured hip-hop star Pablo Escobar Jr., who says he’s the son of the Colombian drug lord.
The celebs spoke to the young interns about their own lives and how the teenagers could achieve their life goals, according to event organizer and Eye On It director of new business development, Johnny Thurzday.
The interns tossed questions at the stars about everything from artistic plot decisions made in the film to the future of the actor’s careers. Initially many of the actors had trouble finding work after the film came out. Although it was a box office success, critics slammed its excessive violence, which attached a stigma to many of the actors, affecting their chances of landing future gigs.
“Who better to talk to these kids and send a positive message, than these guys,” Thurzday said.
Lower Heights photographer Neil Brett Suydam spent his June in Southeast Asia photographing locals. During his wanderings in Pattaya, Thailand, he encountered a mother and daughter selling birds for pets who agreed to pose for him.
He paid the mother and daughter 200 bhat, around $6, even though the birds only cost 120 bhat. "I didn't want [to buy] the bird, but I gave them the money for standing still," Suydam explained.
Suydam first visited the region in 1998 with a girlfriend and has returned on four other occasions to take photographs. In other photographs Suydam captures kids flashing Los Angeles gang signs and wearing gang colors. He explained that when people leave the region to work in the U.S. the gang culture is something they often bring back with them. Suydam's work is on display at the Bedford Stuyvesant Family Health Center in Brooklyn until Sept. 8.
Manhattan Times publisher Luis Miranda, father of “In the Heights” creator Lin-Manuel Miranda, got his own night in the spotlight on Wed., Aug. 19 when he had several walk-on roles in the 2008 Tony Award-winning musical. The elder Miranda portrayed an assistant bartender during the nightclub scene, waved a Mexican flag during Carnival and purchased a piragua. The roles required three costume changes – he had previously been fitted for the outfits – but he wore his own pair of “comfortable” shoes.
Miranda landed the roles when his son made a donation to Broadway Cares, which fundraises to fight AIDS. It was his first appearance on stage since playing the lead in “Rumpelstiltskin” when he was 19.
With 22 friends and family in the audience at the Richard Rogers Theater, there was a mini ovation every time Miranda set foot on stage, causing some curious looks in the rest of the house as to why a lowly extra merited such attention. The crowd was clued in to who the celebrity was during the curtain call when he was introduced as Lin-Manuel’s father.
The ambulance and stretcher at the corner of W. 172 Street and St. Nicholas Avenue garnered some attention from rubberneckers on Fri., Aug. 21. But they turned out to be props used during the filming of an upcoming episode of “Law and Order,” expected to air in the next few months. The episode, called “Great Satan,” is about a terrorist plot, whispered set workers.