Wednesday, June 29, 2011

My Day on Set of the New Fancy Feast "Storybook Wedding" Commercial: Part 1

(Click images to enlarge)
Catsparella and Sparklecat live on set in our surprise director's chairs!

I'm just a normal gal who loves cats, and started this blog a year ago as a way to creatively express myself and nurture my obsession with kitties, pop culture, and media. So, to have the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to travel across the country and participate in the Fancy Feast "Storybook Wedding" commercial shoot (the sequel to the ever popular "The Engagement" spot), was nothing short of a dream come true for me. The three days I spent in Los Angeles were a magical whirlwind, and it's no stretch of the imagination to say that Monday was one of the most perfect days I've ever experienced in my life!

I was up bright and early the day of the shoot, not only because to the 3-hour time difference between Princeton and Los Angeles, but also due to my irrepressible excitement about what the day ahead held in store.

I headed down to the lobby of my fabulous hotel at 7:45 in the morning to meet up with Lisa Bickler and Greg Eppich from the public relations firm that represents Fancy Feast, along with fellow cat blogger Janiss Garza of Sparklecat. I've been following Janiss online for awhile now, but had never met her in person, and was looking forward to having the chance to "talk cat" with her in the flesh.

At breakfast, I learned that the cast of the HBO show Entourage was filming at the restaurant in the lobby, and was taken with a sense of Hollywood fancy, that I was in LA now.. and anything could happen!

After an eventful car ride to the set (we literally passed a vehicle that was IN FLAMES on the side of the road), we arrived on-location at Brookfield Farms, a lush and sprawling private estate nestled in the hills of Thousand Oaks, California. Along with pitch perfect weather that couldn't have been scripted to be more amazing, we were greeted by soft mist-making machines that served to enhance the "Enchanted Forest" theme of the all-outdoor shoot.

Decked out in my pretty pink party dress, I felt as if I were about to attend a REAL storybook wedding as I walked past these beautifully appointed chairs, all set up to accommodate guests of Sean and Lisa's upcoming nuptials.

Colin Cowie signing my copy of "Colin Cowie Chic"!

After settling in to the "video village" where we were able to sit, tweet, and snack to our hearts content while watching close-ups of the action on small screens, I got the chance to meet lifestyle guru/celebrity wedding planner Colin Cowie, who was there to manage every detail of the dream affair. Colin was extremely gracious, and even signed a copy of his book, "Colin Cowie Chic" for us to take home as an unexpected treat!

One of the gorgeous silver shaded Dearheart Persian kittens used on the shoot

Of course, I was also beyond thrilled to meet Karen Thomas, the handler who trains all of the Fancy Feast cats. My heart started to pound with excitement when I heard the cats were approaching, and I could hardly contain myself at the first sight of the the two celebri-kitties: Fifteen-week-old silver shaded Dearheart Persians Angelina and Belissima (aka Felicia), who play the role of Sean and Lisa's growing kitten in the commercial.

A dream fulfilled!

While the kittens were getting used to their surroundings, Karen was incredibly sweet, and enthusiastically answered our many questions. Getting to hold and pet the kittens in person was such a thrill for me, and the experience did not disappoint! They were seriously the most precious little creatures I have seen in my life - Just so incredibly beautiful with their black kohl rimmed eyes, pink noses, and rabbity soft pristine white fur. Still babies, they're so small and delicate, and I felt so honored to get the chance to meet them.

Speaking with Karen, I also learned that she is the lucky owner of the "adult" Fancy Feast felines, who are played by two cats named Aladdin (2-years-old) and Phoebe (10-years-old). (Aladdin can be seen running down the stairs to greet Lisa in "The Engagement" commercial). You might also be surprised to know that while not working, the two are just "normal" house kitties who hold a treasured spot in her home as beloved pets. Can you imagine YOUR cats being the official Fancy Feast cats??

As the day progressed, I briefly got the chance to get up close to stars Sean and Lisa (real names: Jacob and Louise!), and was blown away by how incredibly attractive they are in real life. I mean they look amazing in the commercial, of course..but, wow! Lisa looked nothing short of stunning in the wedding gown that was chosen for her (Fancy Feast had fans vote on her gown, earrings, and bouquet), and watching the two film a scene where they shared a kiss after exchanging their vows was a very tender moment, that touched all of us on set. I felt like we were witnessing a real live wedding!

The rest day consisted of more unbelievable weather, breathtaking scenery, and plenty of surprises. In addition to Greg and Lisa, I also felt so fortunate to meet the wonderful Fancy Feast team, representatives from Avrett Free Ginsberg agency, and everyone else from the cast and crew who were nothing but warm and welcoming towards me.

I have so many more details to share, and thought it would be fun to really explain the whole "storybook" day to you, so I'm working on putting together an audio podcast where I will discuss my experience in more detail. You'll also get the chance to hear my exclusive interviews with Colin Cowie and Karen Thomas, so I hope you'll check back, and stay tuned!

In the meantime, mark you calendars because the Fancy Feast "Storybook Wedding" commercial is set to premiere exclusively on the Fancy Feast Facebook page (where they've also been posting even more exclusive pics from the set) on Friday, August 19th, followed by a television and YouTube premiere on August 22nd.

I know it's going to be something special, and I really can't wait to see the finished result!

Disclosure: Fancy Feast covered the cost of my travel and accommodations for this trip. All thoughts and opinions expressed in this post are my own.



Angie, Catladyland said...

How wonderful! Your entire experience is just as "storybook" as the wedding. I'm so excited for you and Janiss!

Tasha said...

I am so envious of you. What a great and magical experience and to top it off, you got to hold the Fancy Feast kitten. *swoons* So when does the commercial air; do you know? I'm so giddy for it... kinda like a real wedding happening and we're all invited.

Catsparella said...

@Tasha The Fancy Feast "Storybook Wedding" commercial is set to premiere exclusively on the Fancy Feast Facebook page (where they've also been posting even more exclusive pics from the set) on Friday, August 19th, followed by a television and YouTube premiere on August 22nd!

Clooney said...

Oh Wow Miss Catsparella,

Congratulations for being chosen to attend this and what a fascinating story! You and Sparkle's Human look fantastic in your personalized Director's chairs! How exciting this is! Look forward to more of the tail, I mean tale.

Sabrina, Sam and Simon said...

What a wonderful experience that must have been!!! Thanks for sharing :)
Jan, Momma to Sabrina, Sam and Simon

Tamago said...

Oh my goodness, it is so exciting!! How wonderful you participated in FF commercial shoot and met celebri-kitties! It is really a dream come magical!!

Cat and DOG Chat With Caren said...

I am sooo happy that you had a fabulous time and can feel the excitement conveyed through your post. Fantastic!
Both you and Janiss looked soooo pretty in your director chairs, did you get to keep them? Are they shipping them to you?
Your photos were just superb and I look forward to hearing more about your exciting experience!!!

Deb Barnes - Zee and Zoey said...

Oh my catness! A real Hollywood dream come true and you got to be part of it! Wow Stephanie - this will truly be a memory you will never forget! Thank you for sharing all the wonderful "behind the scenes" details so that all of us fans and lovers of the Fancy Feast kitties can feel like we are part of the experience too!

I especially love the photo with the mist added - absolutley gorgeous!

The Island Cats said...

What a great experience!! We can't wait to see the commercial...and say we know somebuddy that was there!!

cate said...

Oh gosh! I've been so excited for you- what an experience, it looked absolutely wonderful and how great to meet everyone and the kitties and oh how gorgeous are they! Can't wait to see the commercial and congratulations your visit was so well deserved!

Ann Dziemianowicz said...

What an incredible day... an incredible wedding... and incredible kitties! Everything looked perfect (loved your dress!). And it was really official with the director's chairs! :) Sending love!

Marcia said...

OH wow, now I can say I knew someone who got to hold and meet my most FAVORITE CELEBRITY KITTIES!! You have no idea! I told you I was the obsessed Fancy Feast Ornament Fanatic, because I love the Kitties so much!! Everyone who knows me, knows this!! So I am so glad you got to see and meet them, but jealous too! Now you can see they are real and how breathtaking Chinchilla Persians are!! Royalty! I am sure you felt like a Princess and I can only say I would have rather been there than the real Royal Wedding!! I cannot wait for the commercial. This is my Cat Soap Opera, and pretty much the only commercial I pay attention to! I hear that Fancy Feast music and go running! Thanks for covering this special event for us, experiencing the Kitties!! I would have had my heart pounding too as they were approaching!

Sparkle said...

I also heard from my human that it was an amazing day! Honestly? I'm just relieved she did not try to sneak one of those kittens home in her laptop bag. Now I just need to unglue her from the Dearheart Persians website...

Ellen Whyte said...

How nice. Have a good time!

Ginger said...

I'm so jealous I could hack up a hairball!!!

Can't wait for the next installment and to see the new video!!!

Lolcat Lisa said...

O!M!G! What an adventure!

Ingrid King said...

What an incredible experience - I'm so thrilled for you! You and Janiss look like movie stars!

leo811 (twitter) said...

very cool! glad you're bloggin' hobby awarded you with a special treat that meant something to you and that you can always treasure! thankx for takin' us step-by-step! kim (tiki)

Miss Elvira said...

What a very cool story, and wonderful pictures, especially seeing you & Sparkles Human together. ;-D

Esme said...

How very fun.

Anonymous said...

I just have to have more pics of the mother of the bride dress. I need one for my daughter's wedding and that one is PURRRFECT!

Catsparella said...

@Anonymous Good news! I found out some info about the dress - hope this helps!

The MOB dress was Adrianna Papell.
It was a silver stretch taffeta 2 PC with floor length skirt and separate pleated top. Gorgeous on her.
We purchased it at Nordstrom. Available online and in finer stores.

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