In this week's Nightranger, we toddle around Hollywood's newest super-club, Playhouse, a gorgeous mega-production-geared space opened by club impresarios Elie Samaha and Rob Vinokur.
Samaha, also a movie big-wig, is best known for famed '90's hotspot The Roxbury nightclub on the Sunset Strip, and during a chat with him at Playhouse, he revealed that a sequel to the 1998 club-themed classic, Night at the Roxbury, is in the works. Inspired by "The Roxbury Guys," the beloved head-bobbing Saturday Night Live skit starring Chris Kattan and Will Farrell (before he became a box office giant), the film told the story of the Butabi brothers, two nightlife-loving fellas on a quest to get past the velvet ropes of Samaha's venue. It seems funnier than ever, probably because the ubiquitousness of upscale club culture means everyone's in on the joke these days (even if the joke's on you, 'cause ya cant get in).
A Youtube fan clip from the flick (set to the beat of that techno-flavored Haddaway track, "What is Love, "of course). The club they do get into, Billboard Live, is now The Key Club.
The Roxbury definitely foreshadowed LA's current obsession with over-the-top nightlife environs and A-list exclusivity. It was arguably the closest LA's ever came to the legendary Studio 54, in terms of a treacherous door and enduring star power, counting everyone from Cher to John Travolta to Shannen Doherty (whose bad-girl brawls there got national attention), as regulars. Nightlife fixture Brent Bolthouse, who had been doing more hipster-packed happenings previously, even solidified himself as a A list-magnet with his nights at the legendary, now-shuttered club (where Miyagi's sushi restaurant stands today).
Samaha says the film will be minus Farrell, who is "too expensive now," but we're sure Kattan's available. Los Angeles is the main character anyway. Hopefully, the writers will make this one more of a bodacious satire. We need a Spinal Tap for the clubworld! There is no shortage of material to cull from when it comes to Hollywood dance club douchery, after all, especially with the rise of bozo bottle service culture, the everyone's-a-DJ mentality, the "paid-to-party" celebutard phenomenon, The Hills and the endless tabloid coverage of what goes on inside (camera phones) and out (stalkarazzi). Of course, the come-ons and bad moves of the Euro-trashily togged protagonists still get laughs.
As for Playhouse, it is deservedly (décor, sound and all-around atmosphere-wise), the venue of the moment, so expect to be hearing about it for while. No doubt, the party palace will remain the room of choice for big bashes to come for some time. We've already got one on our calendar: The BPM/Vapors mag shindig, which tops our fave fete list every year, where ever it's held. See flyer below for a chance to get on the coveted club guest list for the night.