Friday, November 30, 2007
The Waiting Game - The Vince Vaughn Issue
(Allposters.com owns the rights to this picture of Vince Vaughn)
WAY BACK in the spring of 2007 I think, Sebastian Mansicalco, a Chicago native and comedian, decided to put a defaming, ugly, nasty, meaningless, and in my opinion cheap-shot YouTube online with damaging and potential hurtful statements and presentation of my dog Faith's image and reputation. He also defamed and/or damaged my reputation or my character, and I decided I wasn't going to allow it. I was going to get to the bottom of the situation and do the right thing by making this guy ante-up and either compensate us for said damages or (and) make him aware of the fact that there are legal ramifications when you release such material to the general public....enter the Vince Vaughn factor.
Turns out that Sebastian Maniscalco is a part of the well known, and sometimes funny show called the Vince Vaughn Wild West Comedy Tour or something very similar to that name. Vince is the producer/owner of the materials being presented and apparently decided to do a little film about a 30-day, 30-show event that more or less ended up being a documentary of the events that took place during the 30 days of filming. There were clips of the men who performed on stage; both backstage and on stage. There was the obligatory toilet shots, and the farting shots I think...you know, funny man stuff - and yes, there was the bit about a little handicapped dog named Faith that went around the world making people happy, showing off her courage, showing her strength...no wait, the clip didn't do that - it portrayed her as being really ugly, fearful, unattractive, unapproachable, and worse - useless. Mansicalco thought it was funny, and I guess Vince did too, he added it in the film I'm told, and was paid handsomely as well.
I contacted my attorney because I didn't want to sue anyone. I still don't want to sue anyone. I want the record set straight and other-than-A-listers have a hard time setting things straight in public. I want Faith's name, reputation, character, and mission to be uplifted not shot down. I want my work, my efforts, and my sacrifices in this endeavor to be reasonably understood, not misguided, and if big names like Vince Vaughn allow little people like me to be made fun of, or worse, to allow military and/or disabled dogs to be bullied on stage - well, I think my attorney (Debra Opri) should know about it. I called her. She and I agreed that no one should be sued. We're not out to make tons of money off of Vaughn, we could have made money from film offers which may or may not have been diminished from having seen or heard Maniscalco's bit. We won't know the damage or the extent of the damage - how could we?
Let me make it perfectly clear: I love Vince Vaughn's work. I think he's a very patriotic man, a very good actor, and a wonderful person at heart. That's why I was so surprised when he allowed Faith, because of her military work, to be made fun of for what, a laugh? Vince Vaughn performs for the USO!
What we want, what I want, is an apology for one thing; a recognition that you just don't use or sell low-brow, uncouth humor to bully anyone just to get a laugh. Would this man have stood on that stage and berated disabled children? Would he have openly and overtly said what he said about disabled soldiers returning from the war? Call me biased...but it wasn't funny. Any laugh from the audience was manufactured. They realized they were being filmed for a movie perhaps, so they laughed. Wouldn't you laugh if you were being prodded to do so by assistants with signs, reminding you that you're being filmed for a documentary film produced by Vince Vaughn...smile, laugh, clap! (I'm just sayin')
Faith is an honorary SGT in the United States Army. She was commissioned out of Ft. Lewis in 2006. She travels throughout the states and now the world, meeting and greeting troops who have been injured, and/or are returning from war. She meets and greets soldiers on base, at hospitals, at airports, etc. She's been recognized in more than 200 countries for her work, and she's been honored by more than 100 newspapers, trade papers and magazines with NOT ONE of them belittling her, downgrading her, bullying her, or making fun of her looks, moves, actions, or persona...that happened on Vince Vaughn's stage by a virtually unknown comedian who had flopped over and over again with comedy routines designed to cut others down to build himself up - we've watched more of his work and found this to be his gig, his deal. I get it, he can't fill the footsteps of my dog so he goes after her? (OK pardon me, that was a personal thing to say, but it's true. Faith is phenomenal)
The waiting game is this: I was told by the Vaughn camp through my attorney, that an apology was on the way, we'd be on air with Vince, he'd make it all right -- that was a few weeks ago, the very DAY the writer's strike occurred. We were unable to get on shows we were working on, and it ended up being a fiasco of attempts after that because Vaughn showed up on the Ellen Show without writers, this and that happened, we were put on the back burner, then the holidays - what next? We get buried in Christmas cheer, shopping, and what not? Maybe Fred Clause has the answer? Maybe we're not A-list enough to deserve the responsible treatment at this time. That's OK...I'm a Scorpio woman. I will wait. I will certainly wait. I won't forget mind you, not for a second, but I will wait.
Bottom line: I was called to do a job; train the puppy and tell the world her story of her courage, her strength, her abilities to overcome anything - and you know what...I'm going to do just that. I don't need the A-list to validate me or what I do. If it took that we would all be in trouble just waiting on the popular boys and girls to tell everyone else who's in and who's out. I think not.
Wave the Pyrate's flag my dear - - smile, and wait.