Thanks to my column in the Weekender, my affiliation with some of Tokyo’s hottest nightspots, coffee breaks in the Hilton’s Garden Cafe, a lot of travel and some really good friends, I really am into one of the greatest experiences life can offer: meeting a helluva lot of interesting people from all walks of life.
For me, it’s pretty much of a continuing thing, but the last few weeks have really been something else. Let’s start with the youngest personality… seven-year-old Drew Barrymore, the bright and polite little girl who stars in the phenomenal Spielberg film “E.T.,” in town to help promote that flick.
Maurice Bejart, who was here himself, is noted for choosing beautiful people for his ballet, and I not only got to meet the dancers at their reception and to see them per-form in two dynamic programs, but also got to know most of them at the Lex where they put on quite a show.
Other beautiful people out in Roppongi included the members of Queen and their crew (nice guys all), skyrocketing Daryl Hall and John Oates and the incomparable Stevie Wonder. Sports figures included pro tennis players Vince Van Patten, Vitas Gerulitus and a dozen or so more who were here for the Seiko Tournament —and most of the players from the New York Cosmos Soccer team.
Drew Barrymore in Tokyo for “E.T.”
November 1st was sorta meet-the-celebs day. It started out in the early afternoon at a press conference hosted by CIC to promote the film “E.T.” which opens here Dec. 4. Special guests at the press conference were child actress Drew Barrymore, a real scene-stealer in the flick, and Kathleen Kennedy, the co-producer of “E.T.” Drew showed up in a pink kimono with a stuffed “E.T.” doll under her arm.
The press people loved her from the start. She’s a very natural, unaffected child and answers to questions were spontaneous. One reporter asked her how she liked Spielberg; she answered, “He’s a real nice boy.” When asked if she was sorry to be missing Halloween, she told them that the trip here was more fun. She also said making the film was fun . . and nothing in it was hard to do and remarked that she enjoyed wearing the kimono, but “it’s kinda itchy in parts.”
Later that week, CIC group members with E.T. star Drew Barrymore, her mom and her tutor attended a LEX party. Drew, just 7, was done up in a pink dress, leg warmers and punk glasses. She would have boogied till midnight if her mom had let her. I should add that the management had agreed to let her in for a little while, just to see the place and the costumes. The New York Cosmos soccer players were there in full force celebrating their victories in Japan. It was a colorful, exciting evening with some of Tokyo’s most exciting people.
Kevin Hyson and his staff at CIC on the tremendous box office success of the film “E.T.” here. Customers were lined up at the theaters the night before the film opened, and “E.T.” is winning the hearts of the Japanese every bit as much as it has Americans. That same evening of a special showing of the film “E.T.” I couldn’t make it, but gave tickets to Joan Shepherd, Shakti and one of her friends. All agreed it was one of the best films they’ve ever seen.
Queen rock group welcome party at Clubhouse 33
Shin and Misa Watanabe were behind a welcome party for the British rock group Queen. The pace was the Watanabes’ (and Suntory’s) posh jazz club, Clubhouse 33. It was wall-to-wall people with Japanese showbiz personalities, some powerful business and government people and an interesting assortment of Shin and Misa’s other friends, a few autograph-hunting groupies that had the connections to get past the door and a mass (mess?) of the media.
Popular singer Mie Nakao was there and I swear that lady looks the same as she did some 15 years ago. I first met her when my brother Chris appeared as a guest star on her TV show. What a stage brother 1 was . . . “Sing out, Chris!” Diet member Michio Ochi and his wife told me now that their twin sons are growing up, they hope to get out a little more. Both love to dance.
Misa made a short welcome speech, there were kampai and one of Watanabe Productions’ young bands played two numbers. After that it was mingling, chatting and photo time. Almost everyone got to meet Queen members Freddie Mercury, Brian May, Roger Taylor and John Deacon and, believe me, there were some happy kids in the crowd. I caught the concert a few days later at Seibu Baseball Stadium . . . a great show. The group left for Hawaii for a week’s holiday and then it was back to London. Freddie told me they all plan a six-month break before any more recording or concerts.
At left: Top American tennis pro Vincent Van Patten, a personable young man, in town for the Seiko tournament. At right: Roger Taylor, drummer for the super rock group Queen, poses with Tokyo model Linda. Far right: David of the U.K. rock duo Dollar with Giza dancer Pam; David was in town for the Yamaha Music Festival.
At left: Our Disco Daddy Bill Hersey poses with tennis great Vitas Gerulaitis (left) and drummer for the Queen rock group Roger Taylor.
Lexington Queen party honors world’s top hairstylists
On the 19th, Takigawa & Co. cooperated with the Lexington Queen on a party for the hair-stylists and models here for the Beautrec Hair Festival 82. A close friend of my brother Chris, Bill Palmer from Bever-ly Hills, was one of the guests along with the Rizzo Brothers (Tony, Ricky and Ozzie) from London and Jacques Dessange from Paris.
There was also a very bizarre duo—Tick and Tock from London. They’re musicians with very far-out hair-styles. Tock went even further by gluing three Mona Lisa buttons on his scalp. Clairol provided some beautiful 35 mm slides of hairstyles and colors; Shakti with her down-to-the-ankles hair did a very exotic dance, and Florida dancer Willie Jackson did his thing. The place was wall-to-wall people with models, hairstylists, musicians and entertainment personalities really getting into the mood and enjoying the evening.
Hyatt Hotels Corporation gives huge Tokyo reception
On the 10th, I did get over to the Century Hyatt Hotel where Hyatt Hotels Corpora-tion was having a reception. People in town for the meet-ings and reception included the President of Hyatt Hotels Corporation, Pat Foley, and vice presidents and general managers from many of the hotels across the U.S. Chika Koga, the Hyatt’s very able man-in-Japan, had compiled the guest list and it was made up of the real movers in the travel and tourism business here. Koga-san was really on ) the move that night and made sure everyone got to meet everyone. There was a short slide presentation that showed how Hyatt has grown in a relatively short time. What a success story that is.