Slideshow April 2008

The Celebrity Hunters

David Samuels, the author of "Shooting Britney" in the April Atlantic, interviews Brandy and François-Regis Navarre of X17, Hollywood's biggest paparazzi agency, about a selection of recent celebrity photographs taken by X17's photographers on the streets of Los Angeles

Britney Spears—in Beverly Hills at the Beverly Glen Mini-mall

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Brandy Navarre, X17: “Viva Vesgo, the guy in the pink wig, is the Jay Leno of Brazil. He was wildly and crazily chasing Britney Spears around Los Angeles and trying to give her a gift, which is a regular stunt that he does on his show. In this shot she still does not accept the gift, and the gate slams in his face. The picture is interesting because it shows that there are Brazilians who are crazier than our Brazilian paparazzi. Brazilians all have a soft spot for Britney.”

Regis Navarre, X17: “She’s a zombie.”

Brandy: “She is definitely pretty drugged up. Right after she was released from UCLA she literally went off and headed off down Sunset and did her aimless driving around thing. Now she is out and around to the extent that her father allows her to be. She isn’t driving herself. She is always driven by a bodyguard. She’s a bit more focused when she leaves the house. We don’t have that feeling anymore that she’s on the verge of a breakdown because she’s already had a breakdown.”

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David Samuels is a regular contributor to The Atlantic.

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