French Twist Reunion 3 : Back Again

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Previously ...

This weekend follows the first two ʺ French Twist Reunion ʺ (FTR) organized by ALL Events.


April 9 & 10 2011 was signed the discovery of the event. Participants didn’t really know what lay ahead of them. Alex, the organizer was ready. Finally, strong feelings & surprises were present. The rapport was immediate between everyone and fans were marked by the actor’s humility and sympathy throughout the whole weekend. Of course the team DFAM was present : Vice team for Vice Fan team tells you more about it.


September 15 & 16 2012, following the success and popularity of FTR1, ALL Events present FTR2 The organizing team has been expanded. New participants are expected. The room is bigger, deco is worked as a support animation. This meeting was marked by the presence of two new guests : Olivia Brown and the Testarossa. We were all excited and haven’t been disappointed as it is shown by our two articles : Back to the 80’s and French Twist Reunion 2 by Zitek. Despite the success of these two agreements, there should be no further FTR because of budgetary reasons. It is with a heavy heart (very big) that we all left each other on this weekend. But against all odds, on the same day, Art Showbiz, a young merchandising company, is committed as sponsor and here we go again ! September 22nd 2012 ALL Events announces FTR3 in April 2013.


Back to the Radisson

For an editorial team as we are, we knew this weekend would be a wealth of information. For fans we are, we knew this weekend would simply be amazing.


Some peoples arrived a day before FTR3 others on the same day in the morning. Impatience gets us. We look forward to all meet each other again. Actors and fans, we are all one. Successful phenomenon has increases since FTR, especially via social networks. We are linked, follow, communicate on Vice and we discuss about everything and anything. Today this is it : we are all back IRL (In real life). The glass door of the Radisson Blu Hotel keeps rotating. Smiles and hugs are exchanged. This complicity may of course confuse more than one person, especially the ʺnew onesʺ, those who were not present in the previous years. Rejoice ourselves ! They have been quickly integrated.


While we all met with joy and good humor, a funny adventure was waiting John Diehl : after driving two hours from his home on the way to the airport, and while Michael Talbott was waiting quietly at the Departure Lounge, John realized he forgot his passport ! Ok, there will be a little delay (just a small one). No panic, while John Diehl is on the way back home, Michael Talbott is on the flight for Paris. At Radisson, organizers readjust the schedule and shift the Convention opening at 10.45am. At the bar, we talk and improvise.  


Saundra Santiago à la FTR 3 This time we are ready to take back our habits in the room Paris. Gold tickets would seat at the forefront, Silver and Bronze tickets right behind. No need to guide us anymore and new ones are helped by the elders. Even Saundra Santiago comes into the room at the same time as us, seats on a stool and starts the show alongside Kareen, our charming interpreter, replacing Alex gone at the airport to pick up John Diehl. Similarly as in 2011, the exchange is marked by a momentary interruption of program organized by the fans: ʺHappy Birthday to you! Happy Birthday to youuu!...ʺ. We are April 13th. The Birthday of Saundra Santiago. Participants offered her a colorful card carefully initialed by their own hand. If anyone told us 25 years ago we would celebrate with her Saundra Santiago’s Birthday…

Michael Talbott, Saundra Santiago et Kareen

Charles de Gaulle airport is only 15 minutes from Marne la Vallée except for John Diehl and Alex who left for railway adventures! There are days like this…Don’t worry, Michael Talbott, guided by Ella, naturally joined Saundra Santiago in the room. Let’s go for half an hour trading, replicas and humor.


La Vice-TV Since the booking was made at the restaurant for the Gold Tickets, the talk ends. The lucky participants gather at the entrance lobby. Other members of the group organized themselves. Alex has very kindly accepted our proposal for animation. This latency allows us to test The Vice –TV. Access to the server, choice of atmosphere, connection you tube, it’s all ok. Vice TV bursts in a few seconds onto the big screen. Some fans enjoy the show with widen eyes. After several explanations, videos are unchained and lunch begins.


At the restaurant, Gold tickets where little delayed. A small group of fans gather around the bar with few coffees and liquors until we can finally welcome in great fanfare Mr John Diehl ! Not so tired after almost 20 hours of travelling without any sleep, wearing a hat like James Ellroy, here he comes to greet us, recognizing some of us and introducing himself to the others. Good humor and simplicity reign once more at the Radisson. We move on towards the autograph room. One by one fans find themselves face to face with the actors, reaching out other a picture or a personal object. Participants who were present at the previous conventions have seen rewarded with highly personalized messages, to their great joy.  

John Diehl arrive à la FTR3Séance d'autographes

The exclusivity of FTR3 finally begins: Deweak’s concert. Accomplished musician citing Jan Hammer among his favorite composers, he says being under stress to play on front of fans of this TV series. We effectively know the music, but his concern evaporates quickly on the rhythms of chords : Deweak chained melodies, encourages us to guess the titles, manage freely from one keyboard to another. Coupled to Manu’s system audio, the sound of Jan Hammer exploded in the room. Fans mark the rhythm.  

Deweak Deweak

First day ended. We hesitate to disperse ourselves. Some fans leave the Radisson looking forward the next day. Others will stay to chat around a drink. A small group of diehard meets for dinner at the bar of the Radisson. They are joined in the evening by the actors who stayed late in the evening. What is said belongs to them…


The sun shines in Magny. While the majority of residents of the Ile de France under this first sunny Spring day, we are in room Paris, immersed in the dark to honor Ella’s work. Always in rhythm, videos and sound 100%. Miami Vice exploded on the big screen. On a rock tune, fans show cults appearances in English-French & Austrian. The most beautiful effects. Claude is treated on Evan. A tremendous work signed by a professional editing. Notice of DFAM : If Michael Mann considers Miami Vice season 6, he should reckon with Ella.  


Late in the morning, to remain the atmosphere, while the photo studio is installed, the Vice-TV restarted. Arrives Saundra Santiago, Michael Talbott and John Diehl. A great moment for the team DFAM and could see emerging actor’s shadow on the screen. The three heroes of Miami Vice face their own image 23 years later. Saundra Santiago, silent, looks up towards ʺGina Calabrese, Someone to watch over meʺ turned and look back at us with a huge smile. Michael Talbott browses the play list and says : ʺHey! I’ve suggested this songʺ.

27 ans plus tard Hey ! I've suggested this song

The official photo session starts under the professional eye of Fred. The fans are placed in the light alongside actors who naturally strike the pose. While the shots are enchained, some fans are joining the terrace enjoying the sun and many pictures are taken too. Lunch time arrives fast but we feel so well that we decided to stay outside. The Bartender at the Radisson let us the possibility to adjust our space and offers us excellent service. Ah la belle vie !  

Sous le soleil ... Service du Radisson Blu Hôtel

We are gradually joined by the Gold and Silver pass which digest their VIP cocktail. Around a coffee, Michael Talbott, Sandra Santiago and John Diehl join us under the sun. This friendly and informal moment is favorable to discussions and confidences. It’s time to ask questions that wonders since 25 years. Questions which we are too shy to ask while the talks. However they could be really interesting. ʺOh my God, you’re right! I was so upset about that ! ʺ, ʺOh ! That’s a good question…ʺ. We are so pleased. Michael Talbott reverse roles and starts a Vice Trivia…Ouch Ouch Ouch ! Quick we need an answer ! We hold out, a lot of brainwork. All shots are permitted : We pull out smart phones…Damn it, no network ! Help !  

En terrasse ...

We could have stayed for hours, but the last talk is approaching very fast. Saundra Santiago suggests doing it at the terrace. The idea is unanimous, but it’s impossible to move the audio-video material on the terrace…We avoid this one to Alex ! Back in the room, two surprise guests play the stars. Hey who’s there ? Mini Crockett and mini Tubbs of course ! Karin’s figurines are literally assaulted by a horde of paparazzi when actors play the game alongside their former partners miniaturized.  

John Diehl, mini-Crockett et mini-Tubbs Switek ! Miami Vice !
Cheese !
mini-crockett et mini-tubbs

Actors taking place for the last time on stools. Last but not least, John Diehl made his show : participants are watching with astonished eyes, he undid his belt while chatting, unbutton his pants down and let us discover the unexpected : the costume worn by Switek over the Rate Race in Phil The Shill ! Fans enjoy it. Michael Talbott is watching and he his surprised we are sitting so far. Propelled at the front of the stage in a few seconds, we are sitting in a circle close to the actors. Saundra Santiago, a glass of Chablis in her hand, asks us questions : ʺDo you remember the song (…)? I love this song, I have never found it…ʺ (nota: Karla Bonoff – Cold Winds Blows). We inform her with pleasure and explain why she never found this song. Formal ? Informal ?... How to say…  

L'inattendu Mémorabilia John Diehl fait son show

The day ended and the weekend is almost over. To conclude these discussions what is better than Michael Talbott’s spontaneity ? The actor launch the last question : What would it take to organize a fourth meeting ? Debate is open. One answers obviously : more participants. Time will tell…


On these dreams more or less avowed FTR4, goodbyes are reluctantly unchained reluctantly. New links are created and others are strengthened. ʺCome whenever you wantʺ expressed in all different languages. Michael Talbott proposes spontaneously : ʺAre you travelling next year to Florida? Call me; I’ll be your guideʺ. Even without conjunctivitis, eyes are red. The most emotional fans farewell is abbreviated. Difficult to say goodbye. However we know there’s an end for everything.

The after show

It should be an end for everything, but after all, why not ? …Why not a last drink ? Just one… Few fans... then Michael Talbott joigned us. He gives us one last chance, one last quiz : Big questions keep coming back. DFAM team is undermined. We’ll need to revise our classics even if the battle seems lost in advance against those who were closer to the series.  

The time lent itself so we couldn’t resist : Miami Vice season 6 ! Nervously we must admit, we describe him our vision. Two versions are confronted : The Austrian versus French. Michael Talbott is listening, once left, once right, smiles, slaps his forehead and starts laughing : ʺAnd what about the budget? Any ideas? ʺ Ah…yes of course, the budget…  

How to finish off a weekend like this ? For a great emotional moment for actors and fans : the jacket of John Nicolella. After the death of the Director, his wife Patty Kent Nicollela offers this collectible to Michael Talbott whom he was very close. This jacket means a lot for the actor : ʺIt’s John Nicolella’s soulʺ. It’s with a shaking voice and eyes moist he evokes the memory of his friend. This Sunday, April 14th, at the bar of the Radisson Blu Hotel, Michael Talbott lends us the precious jacket : ʺWear it you’re real fans ! He would be proud of that ! ʺ. We look at it timidly, we show it in front of the goal and then we pass it to each other. Michael stands up and handed us his badge. THE badge he used in Miami Vice, which is now engraved with his name. The range is complete…ʺFreeze ! Miami Viceʺ.  

Avec le blouson de John Nicolella La jeune génération avec le blouson de John Nicolella Freeze ! Miami Vice !

John Diehl
and Alex join us. It’s time to leave, to say goodbye. Hugs again and again, exchange looks which means a lot. As the song says : ʺIt’s a look I know I’ll never forgetʺ

Back to the real world

On the next day, posts are spreading fast on Facebook. Participants have sent each other messages ʺI came back wellʺ. This new day at work will be very difficult for many of us. The magic continues. Saundra plays extensions in Paris and publishes pictures on her page. John and Michael are still on their returning flight. And then news came : the attacks in Boston, injured and dead peoples … Back to the Real World.


A huge thank you to Saundra, Michael, John and all the ALL Events and Art Showbiz team for allowing us for this two unforgettable days of dreams and escape.


A special mention to John Diehl who defied fatigue to reach us. More than one would renounce such a long way in such a short time. Big Respect!


Goodbye the Artists ! See you soon !


A la mémoire de John Nicolella
In memory of John Nicolella
« Captain Chaos »
05/28/1945 – 02/21/1998



Many, many Thanks to Kareen and Claude for the translation

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