Beverly Hills, CA (LA ELEMENTS) 9/21/2016 – “It’s the newest category offered by the TV Academy called Short Form,” says Patrika Darbo, Emmy Award winner for Outstanding Actress in a Short Form Comedy or Drama for her role in Acting Dead. “Short Form for the actor and actress, Short Form for the show, I think there’s also Short Form for the Director as well. It just opened up a whole new category and it’s so fabulous because it lets young filmmakers who just want to get in there, whether in front of the camera or behind the camera, create all new things. Television is now going to be on your phone, so this is a whole new wonderful and I’m so blessed to be the first actress to win in this category. I’m very lucky and I’m looking forward to doing more.”
Reflecting on the challenge of starring in an independent production as opposed to one backed by a studio Darbo says, “Hopefully we’re going to get some financing to do our second season and it’s just wonderful. And we were the only indie, meaning we were turning in our pop bottles, anything to raise money. I worked deferred so my paycheck was that Emmy. I’m very blessed.”
Was the payoff worth the risk?
“Yes. Three-fold honey, ten fold, a hundred fold. It’s so great!”
We caught up with Darbo on day two of the 2016 GBK Emmy Awards Gifting Lounge, which was held on September 16th, and 17th at L’Hermitage Hotel in Beverly Hills. Luxury travel, spa services and intricate, handcrafted jewelry were just a few of the gifts bestowed upon the VIP attendees of this invitation only event.
Celebrities in attendance included Emmy winners, Margo Martindale, (Outstanding Guest Actress In A Drama Series, The Americans), RuPaul, (Outstanding Host For A Reality Or Reality Competition Program, RuPaul’s Drag Race), Kathryn Burns,( Outstanding Choreography, My Crazy Ex- Girlfriend), Emmy Nominees, Anthony Anderson,( Outstanding Lead Actor In A Comedy Series, Black-ish), David Schwimmer, (Outstanding Supporting Actor In A Limited Series Or A Movie, The People VS. OJ Simpson: American Crime Story), Michael Kelly, (Outstanding Supporting Actor In A Drama Series, House Of Cards), Melora Hardin, (Outstanding Guest Actress In A Comedy Series, Transparent) Titus Burgess, (Outstanding Supporting Actor in A Comedy Series, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt), Jane Lynch, (Outstanding Host For A Reality Or Reality Competition Program, Hollywood Game Night,) Allan Cumming, (Outstanding Special Class Program, The 69th Annual Tony Awards), talent from nominated shows, Holly Taylor and Allison Wright from Outstanding Drama Series nominee The Americans, Alexandra Billings, from Outstanding Comedy Series nominee Transparent, Jenna Willis, from Outstanding Limited Series, The People VS. OJ Simpson: American Crime Story, as well as stars from acclaimed indie films such as Skylan Brooks, star of Inevitable Defeat of Mister and Pete, and film and TV favorite, Laura Harring, (Mulholland Drive, Chasing Life)
“We have a new product that we’re testing out, ‘The Ageless’, which is a whole new kind of gel ink pen,” says Ariann Langsam, representative for Title Sponsor, Pilot Pen. “It has this really elegant double twist design reminiscent of high-end beauty products or lipstick. Kind of like your everyday gel pen dressed up in an Emmy gown. Great for taking notes on your script, signing autographs, or writing your next screenplay.”
Pilot Pen invited the celebrities attending the GBK Emmy gift lounge to participate in their social media campaign, Pilot Purpose. VIP guests were invited to share the mantra that helped them to achieve success as well as the name of their favorite charity on their personal social media pages, using the hashtag #PilotPurpose. The celebrity with the most social media engagements won $5,000 for their favorite charity. Using the mantra “Stay In Your Lane, Take Control Of Your Success”, Game of Thrones star Maise Williams won the competition and Pilot Pen donated $5,000 to the Dolphin Project.
The holiday season came early for attendees who were gifted Panettone created by Mauro Scaglia of IL Palato Italiano, an international club dedicated to raising awareness of Italian culinary arts. Guests also walked away with yet another wonderful gift from II Palato Italiano, a certificate for an Italian fine dining experience for up to 15 people in the comfort of their own homes,
Hand crafted cocktails were provided courtesy of Voo Vodka. “Voo Vodka is made in the United States right outside of Detroit Michigan, making us a homegrown product,” says Jamecia Stoudermire. “With Voo Vodka, the cool thing is that we’re eight times distilled. Vodka drinkers in general are normally used to vodka that’s five times distilled, such as your Ciroc, your Grey Gooses, even your Belvederes are five times distilled. We’re distilled three times more than that. Distilled means filtered; we’ve actually strained it through a system three more times than those companies, making our vodka smoother than theirs. Actually our motto is, ‘A chaser is optional’ because it’s that smooth! Voo Vodka is quality made and at a price point of $80.00. The only vodka closest to ours is Ciroc Ten, which is, filtered seven times, one less than ours. Do you know what the price point of that is? $250! The more it’s filtered, the more pure it is so it’s a better product, better for your body, it’s better all around.”
Celebrity guests had the chance to receive an exclusive offer from Voo Vodka to cater the drinks for up to 50 guests at their next party.
Other food and beverage sponsors were Ike’s Place, offering their award winning sandwiches, Bread Basket Cake Company, gifting certificates for custom made cakes and William Selyem, gifting their 2013 Russian River Valley Pinot Noir.
A coveted luxury getaway was offered courtesy of Belmond La Samanna. “Belmond has 40 plus stunning luxurious hotels, resorts, luxury trains and river cruises,” says Rowena Tucker, Director of Leisure Sales. Belmond generously gifted stars with a three-night stay in one of their luxurious ocean front suites on Baie Longue Beach on the beautiful island of St. Martin.
There was no shortage of luxury spa and beauty treatments at the GBK Emmy lounge. Burke Williams gifted products from their exclusive H2V skincare line, and spa passes to their Hollywood location, which just opened on September 12th. Viva Youth, a consulting firm that refers clients to a directory of plastic surgeons, gifted $1000 certificates good towards any cosmetic surgery services. Beauty Kitchen by Heather Marianna gifted attendees with their newest skincare offering; Cashmere Glow Skin Polish. All natural and organic, notes of vanilla, French pear and cashmere musk give this skin polish an exotic appeal.
The variety and quality of gift sponsors offered at this lounge made an impression on attendees.
“It’s my first experience doing this and it’s nice to get to meet so many business owners who are really passionate about their products,” says Emmy nominee (Outstanding Actress in a Short Form Comedy or Drama Series for Fear The Walking Dead: Flight 462) Michelle Ang. “I feel really lucky that they are willing to share their hard work with me.”
With their selections of handcrafted jewelry, bath products and even cosmetics, The Artisan Group never fails to be a highlight of any GBK gift lounge. This year’s gift bag from The Artisan Group came filled with over $1,000 worth of products.
Philanthropy always has a place at a GBK event and there were several wonderful charities on hand to educate attendees about their cause.
American Friends of Magen David Adom raises funds for Israel’s national emergency medical response agency and Red Cross affiliate.
“We educate the kids about all the violence that’s happening in the world right now, from Orlando to Paris,” says Jim Sampson, the composer of “Why” and representative for Unite4Good. “We have a hundred kids on this song that we recorded. Unite For Good is also Unite for Humanity and we’ve teamed up with Variety who is sponsoring us.The song is with a hundred kids and Kendrick Lamar is supporting the kids along with Christina Aguilera and other celebrities, but the kids are our stars. They are the stars of the whole project because it is really the kids asking the grownups, ‘Why can’t we all get together? Why must we fight forever? Why oh why, let’s give peace a chance.’ We’re hoping that this song will hit the airwaves in November because of the holidays and with the positive message.”
Other outstanding sponsors included Canada Bliss Hat Company, Allocacoc, Zoan Ash and Hastens Los Angeles.
Cover photo of David Schwimmer, Cheff Filippo Sinisgalli and Zoe Buckman
All photography courtesy of Maury Phillips/Getty Images for GBK Productions unless otherwise stated.
For more information on the sponsors listed in this article please visit their sites.
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