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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.
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.