This Week in Los Angeles: Bravo's Eye-Catching Stunt, Kid-Friendly Photo Ops, a Fan-Forward TV Premiere

West Coast bureau chief Claire Hoffman recaps the week's biggest event news.

By Claire Hoffman November 2, 2018, 10:05 AM EDT

To promote its new reality series Buying Blind, which premieres tonight and follows six couples who buy houses without actually seeing them, Bravo created a series of eye-catching stunts in Los Angeles (pictured), Chicago, and New York. Three existing homes in high-traffic areas were covered in colorful packaging that asked, “Would you buy this house sight unseen?” The wrapped houses, which are actually on sale, were also advertised on Zillow and Trulia. 360i and the Bait Shoppe worked on the promotion.

Photo: Courtesy of Bravo

Welcome to BizBash’s new Los Angeles-based column, where West Coast bureau chief Claire Hoffman recaps the week’s biggest local news. Got a tip? Get in touch!

In Case You Missed It
We looked inside Netflix's spooky Chilling Adventures of Sabrina premiere party, which took place in a full-scale, immersive house that was later opened to fans. 

In the News
After 18 years, Film Independent is ending the Los Angeles Film Festival. The organization will replace it with year-round events meant to build community and support for visual storytellers. Variety: “Josh Welsh, president of the nonprofit, admitted that the event had 'struggled to thrive.' … Film Independent assumed control of the festival in 2001 after it first started 24 years ago as the Los Angeles Independent Film Festival.”

U.C.L.A. has purchased the historic Crest Theater in Westwood and will convert it into a performing arts space. The Hollywood Reporter: “The new venue, which will undergo a renovation, will serve as a multi-disciplinary space for emerging contemporary artists and will be managed by U.C.L.A.’s Center for the Art of Performance."

Robert Egger’s L.A. Kitchen nonprofit, which has helped cater the Emmys Governors Ball for the last two years, temporarily ceased operations yesterday; no reopening date has been set. Eater Los Angeles: “It was unable to balance enough philanthropic contribution and income to meet its expenses. Egger brought his DC Kitchen concept to L.A. in 2013, which recycles excess prepared foods from restaurants and businesses primarily for the elderly, while offering kitchen training programs.”

Moves & Milestones
Abegail Cal is a new public relations manager at Wolfgang Puck. She previously served as senior account executive at Shadow, where she led the Los Angeles hospitality team.

Devin Gleason has been named director of sales and marketing at Lake Arrowhead Resort and Spa, a 162-room mountain resort in the San Bernardino National Forest.

Venue Buzz
Restaurateur Jeremy Fall’s newest space, Easy’s, opened inside the Beverly Center on October 26. The modern diner concept has a 20-seat counter plus a 90-seat adjacent dining room; floor-to-ceiling windows provide views of the city. The menu serves elevated diner fare, featuring items such as duck parmesan plus a fried chicken and funnel cake dish. One fun highlight: Each table has a vintage viewfinder that shows items from the menu.

“Black Lives Matter Arts & Culture uplifts artists who are staging cultural interventions and changing the world through their work.”

—Black Lives Matter's Los Angeles-based co-founder Patrisse Cullors, explaining the movement’s new art, culture, and fashion initiative. Intended as a showcase for emerging African-American designers, the platform will have a pop-up store at this weekend’s ComplexCon in Long Beach. All proceeds will benefit 32 local Black Lives Matter chapters.

On the Scene
On Sunday, we checked out the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation's A Time for Heroes family festival, which drew attendees including Olivia Munn, Ariel Winter, and Sarah and Erin Foster. The afternoon event, which included kid-friendly activities such as cookie-decorating, hula-hoop lessons, and fun photo booths, was produced by Simply Troy and held at Smashbox Studios.


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What's Next 
As mentioned above, ComplexCon takes over the Long Beach Convention Center this weekend, bringing retail booths from more than 200 brands such as Adidas and Urban Decay; art from the likes of Takashi Murakami and Hebru Brantley; panels from Lena Waithe, Jaden Smith, Tommy Hilfiger, and more; and music from guests including Future, Rae Sremmurd, and Vince Staples. The two-day event is produced by ReedPop and is expected to draw over 50,000 people.

Other weekend highlights include the Lacma 2018 Art & Film Gala, one of the city’s most heavy-hitting fund-raisers, on Saturday. The evening will feature a performance from Beck. Last year’s event drew 600 guests and raised more than $4.4 million.

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