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Will Smith in Trinidad as he pops in for Anya's Carnival section launching in Tribe

CELEBRITY HEAVYWEIGHTS: American actor Will Smith, left, poses with Project Runway winner and fashion designer Anya Ayoung Chee and Tribe's bandleader Dean Ackin at Tribe Presents Anya Ayoung Chee's "The Runway" launch in St Clair on Friday night. —Photo: STEPHEN DOOBAY

Hollywood actor and multi-platinum rapper Will Smith popped in to Trinidad last night and surprised patrons at Anya Ayoung Chee's Carnival section launch when he showed up toward the end of the event.

Smith was said to have had dinner at a Port of Spain restaurant and missed the actual costume presentation, but was greeted warmly as he walked around the venue meeting and taking pictures with fans. 

Asked about his reason for being in the country at this time, Smith said:

"I have a friend who grew up here... So we just popped in... I'm taking him to Philly next week."

Smith's appearance put the proverbial icing on the cake after Ayoung Chee's exclusive section with popular mas band, Tribe titled "The Runway" was shown to a couple hundred specially invited guests.

"I can't believe he's here!" said a stunned Ayoung Chee. "I'm such a huge fan, so I feel honoured and blessed to be alive at this moment."

Asked about her Carnival section, she said: "Ok, let me focus on your questions. Fashion plays such an integral part in Carnival so as a designer I wanted to make a costume that wasn't just about the beads and feathers – although the beads and feathers are sexy, don't get me wrong, but I tried to add a lil extra magic and I hope that will go a long way in making this a truly beautiful and memorable experience for all our masqueraders."  

Tribe bandleader Dean Ackin referred to the collaboration as a "win-win partnership that was long in the making", and described Ayoung Chee as a "proud national talent with international acclaim".

He said: "Long before Anya's win on the hit television series, Project Runway, she had approached us about the possibility of a collaboration and this particular discussion actually began in 2010. Tribe is proud to be the first and only Carnival band to feature an Anya Ayoung Chee original as part of their offering for Carnival 2012. This world premiere of Anya's design is – we hope, the beginning of a long and successful partnership."

Ayoung Chee's designs were received well by guests with some committing themselves to play in the special section. Photographer and graphic artist Laura Ferreira described the costumes as "chic and sexy".

She said: "I think the colours she chose really give it an extra classy look and the patterns she added also give it some flair and pizzazz. Overall, it's a hot costume that any woman would love and enjoy playing mas in. It will definitely photograph well and should look fabulous on the road come Monday and Tuesday."

Among the models who showed off the costume were three former Miss T&T delegates- Gabrielle Walcott, Valene Maharaj and Jenna-Marie Andre.

Guests at the launch included Minister of Trade and Industry, Stephen Cadiz, sporting icons Brian Lara, Dwight Yorke and Russell Latapy and businessman Richard Sabga.

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Comment by Baku on December 9, 2011 at 4:51pm
Once again this showss that we got some frowsy pumpum chiney in the Caribbean
Comment by Nicole Marcelle on December 2, 2011 at 5:59am

@ Baku....I am still trying to see what caused you to make such ah rude and tasteless remark. The girl has a past yes but nothing in this article promted your response. My mother always say " when yuh have nothing to say hush yuh f.!#ing mouth. SMH.

Comment by Baku on December 1, 2011 at 11:54am

I wonder if Will got some of that nasty chiney pumpum?  I heard chiney pumpum is horizontal.....

Comment by alicia p legall on November 30, 2011 at 2:57pm
Way to go Girl:) Go Trinidad & Tobago:)
Comment by N.Deane on November 30, 2011 at 11:41am


Comment by sonia Kewley on November 29, 2011 at 7:58pm

very proud of u girl

Comment by Baje009 on November 29, 2011 at 3:27pm

good look for Anya. she rolling with the big dogs now, this may end up with Jada wearing an Ayoung Chee original on the red carpet next Oscar/Emmy awards.

although i think Jada saw her 'tape' and sent Will on a seek and secure mission. LOL


Comment by One Love on November 29, 2011 at 1:22am
Nice job kid. Keep Trinidad popular.
Comment by Lady Simone Lord on November 28, 2011 at 9:22pm
Nice job Anya. I think Will is in love with Anya. Who can resist sweet Trini women?
Comment by Jane Doe on November 28, 2011 at 8:45pm
Pretty cool

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