Monday, December 14, 2009

Nicole snaps

Nicole Kidman has ruffled the feathers of Sydney paparazzi Jamie Fawcett with her announcement that she cannot live in Sydney because of intrusive cameras.
Fawcett has responded calling Kidman a "hypocrite". It's a bit over 12 months since Fawcett faced the Supreme Court after suing the Sydney Morning Herald over alleged defamatory statements written by tSS friend and columnist Annette Sharp. Fawcett lost the case in spectacular fashion despite having an eminent libel barrister and QC on his team.
tSS attended court the day Nicole Kidman gave evidence in the case and our previous doubts about her acting abilities were swept aside as she gave the performance of a lifetime describing the terror of being followed in car chases by Fawcett. tSS has been with Fawcett on these chases and Kidman was correct to some degree but more often than not, the dramas could be avoided if over zealous minders didn't exacerbate the situation. Fawcett is probably one of the more professional snappers in town now that the place is crawling with kids who have purchased a digital camera and still dream of the riches they think can be made from pap snaps.
The problem is that prices for celebrity snaps are falling and the paparazzi -or the annoying bunch of louts that pass for them these days are becoming more obnoxious. Even worse are celebrity minders and PR's who have mistaken them for genuine media snappers who know the rules.
tSS has also worked for Nicole Kidman 3 times -once at her sister's birthday party were we played pool with then husband Tom Cruise for an hour. Leaving the party early to get some pre-arranged street snaps at Kidman's PR's request, we were suddenly abused by minders and nearly tossed beneath a passing car.
Nicole and husband Keith Urban have also encountered drama with the local council in the NSW Southern Highlands were they have been re-furbishing their magnificent country mansion. A bulldozed mound on their land alongside a main road on which they have planted thick foliage to defeat prying camera lens is now a matter of council debate about it's legality.
Nor are we fully convinced that Ms Kidman is that terrified of the snappers-or Fawcett for matter. As a passenger in Fawcett's car one day when the paparazzo spotted Tom & Nicole cruising through Sydney's Eastern Suburbs and Fawcett decided to follow, within 10 minutes Cruise pulled over , walked back and had an amiable chat with us, requesting that we may like to leave him and his wife alone for the day. We complied.
Unlike others who are intrusive, Fawcett is the photographer no-one really spots, except the cleverest like Kidman. As a former private eye for top gumshoe Frank Monte , Fawcett was noted for his discreet ability to wait for hours upon end to catch his target like errant businessman Alan Bond to plant a summons in their hand. He once travelled to Marbella in Spain hunting for Quintex boss Christopher Skase who was holed up in a luxury villa.

Fawcett correctly guessed that Skase would eventually venture into town and sat in a local cafe for a week until Skase finally walked in to be handed a sheaf of summons with his cappuccino.

Christopher Skase in wheelchair and oxygen mask for his extradition court case in Spain,


And the news you won't read in the tabloids yet and always in the Social Shuttle first... One of our favourite bars, Kit and Kaboodle in Kings Cross was raided last night by police with their dreaded sniffer dogs with the result, Home and Away star Todd Lasance has been charged with cocaine possession, nipping in the bud his plans to travel this week to Hollywood for a movie audition.