Category Archive for Fims + Videos
A meditative moment at the beach? Not quite. I’m surrounded by TV crew cameras, and about to force a German man to stitch his mouth together with needle and thread.
I appeared on the popular TV show “Joko und Klaas” or “Circus HalliGalli,” which aired last week on Pro Sieben network. Our body modification episode got a lot of stunned tweets from viewers in Germany. What was so shocking about it?
Watch the “Joko in Kanada” video clip, featuring La Carmina, First Mate Naomi, and body mod artist Russ Foxx… if you dare.
For the shoot, I wore a Miho Matsuda plaid dress from Closet Child, a Danier leather jacket, and Demonia shoes. My hair color and crimped/rolled style is the work of Stephanie Hoy, at Avant Garde hair in Yaletown.
You may recall that we Pirates previously worked with Joko und Klaas, on a bagelhead forehead inflation challenge filmed in Tokyo, Japan. The episode was such a hit that they wanted to do another show with us.
Our TV production company pitched a few crazy ideas, and the one involving lip-sewing in Vancouver stuck. Naomi and I took charge of arranging, casting and coordinating the episode (as well as hosting it).
The night Naomi arrived, tragedy struck. Her hotel was set on fire, and my car window was smashed with a giant rock by a crazy random person. Nobody was hurt, but we were left with quite the shock. On the bright side: the Vancouver Global TV news team decided to interview me about my harrowing experience.
At least my life-long goal of being a hysterical eyewitness on the news has been fulfilled. How funny that I looked like this on camera.
We kicked off the German TV shoot at gorgeous Acadia Beach. (The filming took two days in June, in various Vancouver BC locations.)
The concept of “Duell um die Welt”: Joko and Klaas challenge each other to insane tasks around the world. Relaxing by the ocean, Joko thinks he’s off the hook.
But an Asian horror doll creeps up on him… in the video, you can see how I gave Joko a mighty scare!
Before each take, the director gave us a general idea of the narrative, but we improvised all the lines. The sound boom microphone went back and forth between us as we spoke. We did it a few times, from a few different angles, and then moved on.
With this landscape as our backdrop, it’s easy to make the shots look good.
The 8-person crew (plus Naomi and me) piled into the rental van, and we stopped by Granville Island. I showed Joko the beauty of the marina.
Gotta work the body to get the shot! (Photos in this post by First Mate Naomi.)
We hammed it up — ohohoh! Muahaha! So far, life is a laugh for Joko. He has no idea what’s coming for him…
Getting direction at the Gastown steam clock. You can tell I’m enjoying my TV presenting work.
It was fun to show Joko the tourist-y parts of my hometown. When the clock struck the hour, the steam blew and we danced around in joy.
In front of the Gassy Jack statue, there were inevitably gas jokes.
No, that’s not a stalker. It’s how we film walk-and-talk scenes, this time at Pan Pacific.
In all, this ended up being a good travel overview of Vancouver. We finished downtown, at Robson Street. Joko did a somersault in the crosswalk.
Everyone worked quickly and was easygoing — a nice change from the frantic attitude of some TV productions.
However, when night falls, I am not such a nice girl. We reunited with Naomi by the dumpster in a dark alley. She told him, Klaas sent her to deliver a challenge.
Can anything beat a bagelhead? I think we did. We sent Joko to the studio of Russ Foxx… to get lips stitched shut!
If you’ll recall from my HuffPost interview, Russ is a body modification artist based in Vancouver. He made a theatrical entrance that scared the daylights out of Joko.
Lip sewing is an extreme body mod that should only be done by an experienced artist like Russ. Why stitch your lips together? Some do it as a fetish, or to reflect and self-test, or for performance. I’ve seen people with sewn eyelids and mouths firsthand in Prague and Tokyo party scenes.
Russ Foxx made six stitches in total, without anesthetic. He used the utmost precision and sanitation measures, and walked Joko through each step.
The sewing hurts, as much as six lip piercings would. Here’s the finished result. (Wonder why my friend is suddenly speechless…)
For the final scene, we threw an impromptu underground party. None of this would have been possible without Isaac, master of Sin City Fetish night, who pulled together the venue and crowd in record time. Naomi made the poster above for “Spooky Saturday.”
I’m so grateful to everyone who came to The Waldorf to party with us, and be on German TV. Thank you for always supporting me.
DJ Evilyn got people dancing.
I felt bad because the TV shoot ran late, and we couldn’t get to the party until around 1am. Still, there was a grinding crowd and lots of latex outfits!
For the closing scene, we all sang the Crash Test Dummies song, “Mmm mmm mmm mmm.” With his Miffy-mouth, Joko was barely able to hum along.
That’s a wrap! Russ removed Joko’s stitches — you can only keep them in for a few hours — and all was well in the universe again.
Have you heard about the lip sewing body mod before? If you have opinion or questions about it, I invite you to leave a comment and we can discuss.
I hope you enjoyed our latest TV work! Please take a minute to watch it on Dailymotion, and let me know what you think. Thanks to all the German newspapers who wrote about our episode, including Focus, Bild, and News.de
PS: if you’re interested in working with La Carmina & The Pirates, we offer TV coordination, production, casting and hosting services, in Tokyo and worldwide. We’ve worked with National Geographic, Food Network, Travel Channel, Discovery, NHK and more (all clips and details here.)
PPS: Off to Japan soon! We’ve confirmed a new TV job, shooting in Tokyo this December. Stay tuned to my site for casting announcements; we’d love for you to join the fun.
Are you ready for my travel team’s newest video? You’re in luck: our Dubai and Abu Dhabi episode is published on Business Insider, one of the world’s most-visited news sites!
In this 4-minute webisode, I visit the world’s tallest tower (Burj Khalifa), largest shopping center (Dubai Mall), highest-rated hotel (Burl al Arab), and more. There’s even a dressing room montage scene, featuring glittery dresses… you don’t want to miss this!
Watch our video above and here on Business Insider.
We feel our story-telling is getting stronger each time, and want to thank you for supporting us over the years. Any share or comments on the article would be much appreciated.
Super happy with the cinematography in this episode. Major props to my LA-based filmmakers, Melissa Rundle and Eric Bergemann.
I’m glad to have them with me on my journeys to far-off places.
I hope our blog posts and videos give you a taste of wanderlust, and that you’ll witness these Arabian marvels someday.
In the second half of the video, we visit the famous Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque. The white minarets reminded me of hard-boiled eggs or scoops of ice cream!
Opened in 2007, the mosque is considered one of the most beautiful on the planet. Look at how the water reflects the graceful columns.
Let me warn you, there’s a dress code… Clothing should be loose and fully cover the arms and legs. Women must wear a veil.
I thought I dressed according to the rules — until filmmaker Eric pointed out that my long lace skirt was see-through! No need to fret: women and men go into separate lines at the entrance, and receive a long, flowing garment (abaya) to put over their clothes.
The men wear white, and the women wear black robes with hoods.
Gold and flowers everywhere. The mosaic courtyard is the biggest in the world.
Indescribable, the way the light reflects the curves of the arches and minarets.
Inside, the hall of worship glitters with stained glass and crystals.
There are seven chandeliers, and the main one is one of the largest ever made. The prayer hall is air conditioned, so the space feels as airy as it looks.
The 99 names of Allah are written on the wall in Kufic calligraphy.
Everyone takes off their shoes outside before stepping on the world’s largest carpet.
Thank you to my filmmakers, Melissa and Eric, for their hard work in bringing these travel videos to life!
We hope you enjoy the latest episode about the United Arab Emirates. Please take a minute to watch and share.
Are you awed by Abu Dhabi’s Sheikh Zayed Mosque? What were your favorite moments in the video?
Montreal’s best bagel, St Viateur or Fairmount? Festival Kinetik 2013 video: Daniel Graves, Aesthetic Perfection.
It’s the return of the bagelhead! Enjoy my spanking new travel video about the edgy, kooky attractions in Montreal, Quebec.
The episode features magic shops, pop art, and Daniel Graves — vocalist of Aesthetic Perfection, who performed at Kinetik Festival 2013!
For the full story, read my Huffington Post article. It gives an overview of Montreal’s best alternative fashion, clubs and more.
Please press play above, and thumb’s up below if you found my coverage useful. Merci beaucoup mes amis!
Montreal is famous for its bagels, and locals have strong opinions over which bakery does it best: Fairmount or St Viateur. Since the top two contenders were a short walk from Le Belmont (the venue for Kinetik Music Festival), Daniel and I put them to the test.
Fairmount (74 Avenue Fairmount Ouest) has a variety of flavors, and offers bagels with smoked salmon and cream cheese.
St Viateur (263 Rue Saint Viateur Ouest) has a frightful logo.
But the wall of accolades must mean something.
Which bagel did we like the most? You’ll have to view our fun video to find out!
PS: if you don’t get the “bagel head” joke, this Japanese forehead inflation article will fill you in.
Thanks to my friend Lauren for joining me on my French-Canadian journey, and to Tourism Montreal for making it possible.
What was your favorite moment in the travel episode? For more coverage of Montreal and Vancouver, browse the Alt Canada category of my blog.
Avast, Captain Carmina commands ye to walk the plank! Keep yer eyes on this post for a Piratical adventure, and the premiere of Yukiro’s glam-horror-diva movie, Sandless Days (I’m in it!).
My crew works hard, and we’ve successfully built a TV coordinating, hosting and consulting business together: La Carmina & The Pirates.
I treated them to a well-deserved lunch at a fitting Tokyo theme restaurant: King of the Pirates. (Address: 5F Aqua City Odaiba, 1-7-1 Daiba, Minato-ku)
Japan has many theme restaurants that range in size, concept, and craziness. The Pirates restaurant is a relatively new one, and it’s yo-ho-ho wonderful.
“King of the Pirates” is appropriately located over the water in Odaiba, the man-made island in Tokyo Bay. This is a hub of entertainment; there are game centers, theme parks, food and other slightly off-kilter attractions (like a cat petting zoo).
To get here, ride the subway to Odaiba’s Tokyo Teleport station, then follow the signs to Aqua City. You can’t miss the pirate decor that fills every nook.
Theme restaurants are not known for great food, but I enjoyed my black squid ink curry. The lunch set is a great deal, and came with salad and unlimited non-alcoholic “drink bar”.
You’re allowed to take photos and encouraged to goof around. Even the staff, dressed in swashbuckler gear, gets into the spirit.
There’s a rack of props and costumes to raid, and scurvy mannequins to pose with.
Pirate sword-fight to the death!
Who do you think conquered the treasure chest of gold doubloons?
Captain Jack Sparrow made a blood pact with Yukiro, and they bound me in metal chains.
But the ship erupted in mutiny, and we escaped overboard to Treasure Island. (Most of these photos were taken by Naomi.)
Inside the gilded ship’s cabin, filled with maps and books.
Forever grateful to have these two as me mateys.
Outside, First Mate Naomi takes the wheel, while we crouch to strike at our enemies.
This Pirate restaurant is huge, and has a deck with a seaside view of Tokyo. We’re impressed with the effort that went into the decoration.
“I swing my hair back and forth”…
Skull and crossbones top: Spider, Hong Kong
Steampunk pirate necklace, worn as a hair ornament: gifted by Ghostlove Jewelry
Compare this theme restaurant with the Pirate Pub in Vancouver, Canada.
Don’t forget my book, Crazy, Wacky Theme Restaurants: Tokyo, packed with photos and info on bizarre places to eat.
And now, we present… “The finest film of our generation. No! Wait! Of our times! No! Stop the presses! Of ALL TIME!”
Yukiro wrote and directed this masterpiece, starring the diva-licious Mommy Dearest, Sarah Devour. I’m in the last scene, as “Miss Sandy Sanchez.” We command you to watch Sandless Days — tell us what you think of our big-budget movie, and my acting skills! Ah, nothing beats doing these art projects with my friends…
How do you like King of the Pirates? Would you dare to dress up and duel? More photos from Odaiba coming up, including the Trick Museum.