DiCaprio, Rafaeli bring paparazzi out in force to usually peaceful Hod Hasharon
Hod Hasharon has never seemed so glamorous. Dozens of paparazzi have camped out since dawn yesterday at the family home of supermodel Bar Rafaeli, to catch a glimpse of a hair or two on the head of her partner, actor Leonardo DiCaprio, who arrived early yesterday with Rafaeli on a flight from Frankfurt.
A surprise awaited the couple on the Lufthansa flight - a group of 10 Israeli reporters returning from the musical "Mama Mia" in Dublin. "They came right into the lion's den," Nirit Weiss, the editor of the weekly entertainment guide Pnai Plus, said.
The paparazzi were out in force by the time the couple left the airport, and the focus moved to the Rafaeli family home, which was surrounded by local and foreign press.
"When a helicopter flew over Bar Rafaeli's house, I thought it would land in the yard and pick up Rafaeli and DiCaprio before I could get a picture," Barak Fachter, a photographer for the magazine Rating, said. "When I found out the helicopter had been sent by Guy Pines' program, I calmed down a little but I still stayed alert."
Fachter, who had been waiting since 3:30 AM by the Rafaeli home, managed to get a not-very-successful shot of the two.
DiCaprio and Rafaeli have been shut up in the house since then; even Guy Pines has not gotten a shot of them.
Weiss said Pnai Plus has had a hard day. "I have a mini-situation room here with three people working around the clock, calling every restaurant, hotel and place of entertainment they might visit."
The dailies have also been working overtime. "We've got a reinforced paparazzi alignment in place," a senior figure at Maariv said. "There's no dilemma here - it's the kind of photo everyone wants to see," he added. "It's a dry spell now. So if we can breathe in a little stardust, why not?"
The relationship between DiCaprio, 32, and Rafaeli, 21, which began last year, has had the media following their every move together, and has turned Rafaeli into a model in demand around the world.
DiCaprio rose to fame when he was nominated for an Oscar at age 19 for his role in "What's Eating Gilbert Grape." In recent years he has broken out of his glamor-boy persona to pursue more serious roles, including last year's "The Departed," which won its director, Martin Scorsese, his first Oscar, and "Blood Diamond."