When Pippa Middleton’s under the gun, it’s Harry to the rescue
By BILL ZWECKER
April 17, 2012 8:14PM
Prince Harry was one of the first to call Pippa Middleton about the headlines from her Paris trip.
Updated: May 19, 2012 8:12AM
While it appears highly unlikely that Prince William’s sister-in-law Pippa Middleton will face any legal problems in France over that faux gun-waving incident, it has caused a big ripple among the royals in London.
My best palace insider tells me the sister of Wills’ wife, Catherine, the Duchess of Cambridge, got an unexpected call from a member of the royal family who has faced his own troublesome headlines over the years: Prince Harry.
According to my BZ spy, Harry was just about the first person to phone Middleton, telling her not to worry too much but to quickly make a move to offset her current ugly press. Harry reportedly advised Pippa to avoid public events for awhile, but then be photographed at charity-oriented events where she’ll be seen doing “good works,” said the source.
† That said, the entire incident in Paris royally irked Queen Elizabeth II, who was said to be horrified by the photos of Middleton smirking while her driver brandished a toy gun.
† Along with the queen, Duchess Catherine was equally upset about the photo of her sister. It reportedly is adding to an increasing coolness between the once-inseparable siblings. Apparently, Prince William’s wife has been unhappy her sister has seemed to be taking undue advantage of her big royal connections.
BAR BIZ: Just got word that Rande Gerber — well-known national club and tavern owner (and husband of Cindy Crawford) — and his Chicago partner Fred Latsko have sold the Whiskey Bar in the Sutton Place Hotel to the hotel’s new ownership group that includes local mogul Neil Bluhm — a deal rumored to have been around $3 million.
The Whiskey Bar is expected to close at the end of the year and be part of a total revamp planned for the property.
ON HIS TOES: The big buzz at “Dancing With the Stars” is all about William Levy — far beyond his dancing talents. The handsome model and actor who first made his mark in Latin telenovelas — and then caught mainstream U.S. audiences’ attention with “The Real Housewives of Miami” and that sexy video with Jennifer Lopez — is being inundated with big offers.
Due to the popularity boost brought by “DWTS,” Levy is said to be swamped with TV and film offers and lucrative endorsement deals.
BRANGELINA BIT: According to a close Brad Pitt pal, the actor and fiancee Angelina Jolie will marry “when people least expect it. It will be totally private — no big, splashy wedding — and will only include their kids and immediate family. … It likely will happen in the most remote place they can think of, like Africa or Southeast Asia.”
† By the way, I understand when Jennifer Aniston heard her ex-husband was engaged to Jolie, she joked that the tabloids were sure to write how “devastated” she was by the news.
That’s so untrue. Aniston has long since moved on and is blissfully happy with beau
Justin Theroux, who several close friends believe she will soon marry.
LOCAL LIGHTS: The cameras will begin to roll here May 7 for “Underemployed,” the new scripted MTV series created by Craig Wright (“Dirty Sexy Money,” “Lost,” “Six Feet Under”). The show’s pilot, shot here about a year ago, is about five twentysomethings struggling to make it in our challenged economy. It stars relative newcomers Diego Boneta (“90210,” “Mean Girls 2” and the upcoming “Rock of Ages”), Sarah Habel (“Whip It”) and Bar Paly (“The Ruins”).
They’ll all be around for awhile, as MTV has committed to 11 episodes.
TV TALK: Both “Good Morning America” anchor Robin Roberts and Katie Couric are irked by all the stories alleging the two are “feuding” over Couric filling-in for Roberts’ recent vacation week. While the two women are not super-close, they are very friendly and Roberts was well aware the ex-Today anchor’s return to morning television was really an early boost to Couric’s upcoming daytime talk show, debuting in September.
SEEN ON THE SCENE: It wasn’t a “cheeseburger in paradise,” but a grilled cheese and tomato soup that music man Jimmy Buffett lunched on at RL Monday. … Steve’s Deli owner Seth Herkowitz has been busy with film crews lately — for both an AT&T web commercial and Bill Rancic taping for his Style Network reality series. … “Vampire Diaries” star Michael Trevino was seen by fans having drinks with pals at Board Room, where (separately) the Bulls’ Carlos Boozer also was making the scene. ... The cast of “Jersey Boys” was spied drinking at Tavern on Rush.
SPORTS SHORTS: The Hawks’ Sean O’Donnell dined at Quay. … Sox pitcher Jessie Crain elicited some “Awws” from fans who watched him enjoying dinner with his newborn son Caleb at Hub 51 — shortly before Cubs honcho Theo Epstein popped in for drinks with friends.
Bill Zwecker reports regularly on “Good Day Chicago” and “Fox Chicago News at 9” on WFLD-Channel 32.