Proving the old adage that instead of sitting quietly letting everyone think you are an idiot one should speak up and prove it, funnyman John Cleese and Kung Fu action star Jackie Chan recently did some talking that they should probably have avoided. Apparently unaware that they've left office, Cleese unloaded on George W. Bush and Dick Cheney and seemed to say U.S. Marines weren't very sophisticated at a recent visit to Cornell University. For his part, Jackie Chan announced to the world that Chinese people "needed controlling" because all that darn democracy is just too "chaotic" for them. One wonders where Jackie thinks all his many millions of dollars have come from: communism or democracy?
Chan's comments were so ridiculous that even the communist Chinese government thought they were foolish enough to denounce in the Chinese press.
The 9/11 terrorist attacks were part of “a massive neo-conservative government effort” to enable “American global domination,” a character on FX's "Rescue Me" argued on Tuesday night's episode. In the drama about firefighters in New York City, firefighter “Franco Rivera,” played by actor Daniel Sunjata, a real-life 9/11 “truther,” laid out his theory for a French journalist interviewing firefighters for a book on 9/11 first-responders. As noted in a February NewsBusters post, in a New York Times story about the then-upcoming storyline, Brian Stelter reported the ludicrous theory “may represent the first fictional presentation of 9/11 conspiracy theories by a mainstream media company (FX is operated by the News Corporation).”
During the episode, “Franco” outlined the four-point plan by the Project for a New American Century, starting with how Bush-Cheney “came to power with plans already made to attack Afghanistan and Iraq.” Second, “we have to make huge technological advances with our armed forces, that for some reason include the capability to fight wars from outer space.” Third, “huge increases in military spending” to the neglect of “sick and dying first-responders, 9/11's heroes, who can't even pay their light bill let alone their medical bills.” Fourth, “we changed the definition of pre-emptive attack so we can unilaterally bomb the shit out of, invade and occupy countries even if they pose no credible threat or had nothing to do with 9/11.” Finally:
How you going to put it into action? I mean, the American people are never going to go for shit like that, right? You're damn straight. No, what you need is an event, an event that gets everyone's heads turned around the right way. What you need is a new Pearl Harbor.
In a case of entertainment imitating entertainment, Arron Sorkin -- maker of the faux president series West Wing -- has hinted that he is soon to start development of another one of those behind-the-scenes TV shows, this one to be the goings on with a TV pundit show ala Keith Olbermann's Count Down spectacle on MSNBC. So says Entertainment Weekly this week at least.
So, what are we going to be subjected to? Another ponderous show where a lefty bleeding-heart host that is soooo "concerned" with the whole wide world? A salute to the "seriousness" of an Olbermann type? Or are we going to see the tale of a nearly insane, egomaniacal freak that terrorizes everyone with whom he works? If they are going for fantasy probably the former. Reality... who knows?
OK, now by that headline you are most likely assuming that I am calling del Toro, Carrey and Penn Hollywood stooges and making fun of them. Of course, we already know that Penn and del Toro are stooges on the "useful idiot" level, but you may wonder why I am slapping Carrey? Well, I mean it in the strictest sense -- that Hollywood is casting for a new 3 Stooges team and these are the three Nyucks under consideration. It is del Toro as the new Moe, Carrey as the next Curly and Penn as our favorite nebbish, Larry.
But leave it to Hollywood to take the funniest threesome in Hollywood history and make a muck of it. This isn't really the 3 Stooges at all. See, it is a "new" one, set in modern day, where three guys sortta, kinda like the 3 Stooges find each other in an orphanage and start a comedy team bringing them fame and fortune.
The self-aggrandizing denizens of Hollywood constantly scold Americans over a lack of national healthcare. It is the biggest failure of American society ever that there is no cradle to the grave program for free health care, they constantly tell us. And now, in keeping with these nearly universal Hollywood "principles," to prove how Hollywood is far more moral than we lowly citizens of flyover country, and to show that they are better than the great unwashed in the backwaters of America... Hollywood is closing its nearly 90-year-old Motion Picture Fund hospital and accompanying long-term living facilities for aging actors.
Yep, dumping it. Walking away from the facilities for free healthcare for actors. Fuggedaboutit.
If you thought you couldn't care less about tonight's Academy Awards you're not alone for many of Hollywood's top stars are refusing to participate in Sunday's festivities other than just being in the audience.
So wrote Deadline Hollywood Daily's Nikki Finke Saturday:
With so much populist outrage at bankers and other corporate types these days, Hollywood is predictably trying to capitalize on it (TNT's "Leverage" is just one example.) "The International," from Relativity Media was just the latest to hit theaters with its Feb. 13 opening.
In the slow-moving thriller "The International," the executives of the fictional International Bank of Business and Credit (IBBC) aren't just crooked, they willingly hire assassins - the executives call them "consultants" - to get rid of anyone about to expose their crimes. The protagonists are Louis Salinger, an Interpol agent played by Clive Owen, and Eleanor Whitman, a Manhattan District Attorney played by Naomi Watts.
Owen made the morning talk show rounds hitting CBS "Early Show" Feb. 11 and ABC's "The View" on Feb. 13. In both cases, the hosts sought to find out if this story was grounded in reality.
"This is based roughly on a true story," CBS's Harry Smith queried. Owen replied that the script was "well-researched" and "well-informed." Owen's comments on "The View" were similar, but at least on ABC the actor admitted that the script was in fact "fictional."
"Now this movie, it really shows you that banks are terrorists in many ways, you know. I mean they do the same things to people in this movie that real terrorists groups like al-Qaida would do. Is this based on fact?" Joy Behar asked Owen.
“A coming episode of the acclaimed FX drama Rescue Me will tackle what may sound like a far-fetched plot line: that the attacks of Sept. 11 were an 'inside job,'” Brian Stelter reported in the New York Times, noting the ludicrous plot “may represent the first fictional presentation of 9/11 conspiracy theories by a mainstream media company (FX is operated by the News Corporation).” Actor Daniel Sunjata (IMDB page), who plays New York City firefighter “Franco Rivera” -- and who in a photo with the Times story sported a shirt emblazoned “INVESTIGATE 9/11” -- “predicted that the episode would be 'socio-politically provocative.'”
In the episode, the second in the new season starting in April, “Mr. Sunjata’s character delivers a two-minute monologue for a French journalist describing a 'neoconservative government effort' to control the world’s oil, drastically increase military spending and 'change the definition of pre-emptive attack.' To put it into action, he continues, 'what you need is a new Pearl Harbor. That’s what they said they needed.'” Now that's some crazy paranoia.
The message has made it everywhere else - Hannah Montana songs, every night on the news, in books and cartoons, so why not video games? If you want a preview of tactics that could be on the way in the name of curbing global warming, take a look across the pond at what they're doing in Europe.
"Serious games based upon real-life geography should be vital tools in our fight against climate change," said Lord Puttnam in a statement. "Educating people about the impact of prolonged changes to our climate in an accessible way is the best catalyst for action I know."
British politicians have been actively promoting various ways to curb the effects of so-called anthropogenic global warming. On Feb. 4, Lord Turner, the British climate czar, told the U.K. Environmental Audit committee that climate laws may be needed to restrict airplane flights and reduce carbon emissions.
Hollywood filmmakers are ruminating about taking on the 2008 political season. Towering personalities, scintillating stories, and epic clashes abound. The stories of the 2008 political campaign are pretty stimulating. We had the aging Democratic establishment in the form of the Clintons taking on the fresh young face in Obama, not to mention the first black candidate of note. We also had a close fought Democratic primary that went to a nail biting finish. On the GOP side we had the amazing emergence of the hockey mom from Alaska. Heartwarming family woman, popular governor, tender mother of a special needs child. A self-made woman from humble beginnings. Seems like some stories that could make for some compelling movies, eh?
So, how is Hollywood looking to treat these incredible stories? Would you be surprised that the Clintons and Obama stories are set for high drama, earnestly told... and Palin's is for comedy and satire? Would it shock you that only Sarah Palin is to be ripped, attacked, made fun of and satirized? I didn't think you would.
Brian Williams revealed Wednesday afternoon that in a question he didn't get to with President Obama the day before, he wanted to ask Obama if he is “ever tempted” to start over again with the stimulus bill “and give a stemwinder combination fireside chat/speech to the nation,” just as did Michael Douglas on "the crime bill” in The American President movie, “and just say, 'look, here's what we got to do. I went wrong. It got loaded up. Now we're going to do the real thing?'”
In that 1995 film (IMDb page), in which Douglas played Democratic President “Andrew Shepherd,” after compromising with Congress, he returns to his left-wing sensibilities and, in the climatic point of the movie cheered by liberal film-goers, walks to the press room where he delivers an impassioned lecture -- which earns affirmative nods from the journalists -- praising the ACLU, pushing for extreme action on global warming and promises, in the portion Williams admired, “to get the guns.” President Shepherd:
The other piece of legislation is the crime bill. As of today it no longer exists. I’m throwing it. I’m throwing it out and writing a law that makes sense. You cannot address crime prevention without getting rid of assault weapons and handguns. I consider them a threat to national security and I will go door-to-door if I have to but I’m going convince Americans that I’m right and I’m going to get the guns.
The Washington Times reported Friday that NBC rejected for the Super Bowl an ad from the Fidelis Center for Law & Policy's CatholicVote.com (video of the ad) showing a baby in the womb identified as Barack Obama -- which reminded me of how in January two years ago another network, CBS's Showtime cable channel, featured in one of its prime time series a mannequin “art” piece of Barbara Bush aborting George W. Bush. NewsBusters reported on January 29, 2007:
Sunday's episode of the L word, Showtime's drama series about lesbians in Los Angeles, featured the “Unauthorized Abortion of W,” a sculpture of a woman's body with an exposed womb displaying George W. Bush's adult face with each of his hands holding onto a rocket labeled “U.S. Air Force.” The rockets were angled to suggest they represent forceps. The figure was made to look just like Barbara Bush, with an American flag blindfold, and with the suction end of a vacuum cleaner just below her crotch.
On Thursday's Late Show, actress Renee Zellweger recounted her “emotional” experience seeing Barack Obama's inauguration, but Obama isn't the only liberal politician she idolizes. Zellweger, who stars in a new movie that apparently ridicules small town America and Christians, told USA Today: “I have a crush on Jimmy Carter. I admit it. He has an extraordinary mind. He's an exceptional human being. And he writes poetry, for crying out loud. He's all good things.”
In a Friday “Life” section profile, “A low-key Renee Zellweger loves to hide in plain sight,” reporter Donna Freydkin relayed: “So wowed was Zellweger that she waited in the blistering Manhattan cold for 2 1/2 hours on Monday to have the 39th President sign her copy of his latest book, We Can Have Peace in the Holy Land: A Plan That Will Work.”
Humorously, three pages later, USA Today film reviewer Claudia Puig trashed Zellweger's movie which opened Friday, The New Town, as not only “the worst movie of this fledgling year,” but as “one of the worst movies of any year.” Puig condemned it: “Not content to be merely inane and predictable, it is downright insulting, humorlessly deriding those who choose to live in rural America, labor in factories or have a strong Christian faith.”
Sing it.... "I'd like to teach the world to sing in perfect harmony, I feel Obama in the air he makes us all friendly, he's the real thing" .... OK, maybe that wonderful sentiment can't last. But, as Andrew Breitbart reports, this emotional high has only lasted the Obamagassed Ashton Kutcher a mere 10 days. 10 measly days was all the love-your-neighbor that Mr. Demi Moore could take.
Not long ago, Kutcher was involved in a video of sycophantic Obamaists from Hollyweird where he "pledged" his fealty to a politician. He also pledged to be a more civil fellow saying that he would "always represent my country with pride, dignity and honesty." I'd suggest that this young man should go look some of those words up in a dictionary somewhere because with the uncivil tirade he spewed out against his neighbor for early morning construction noise Ashie was being neither neighborly nor dignified.
In a 7:43AM commercial break during Monday’s CBS Early Show, the network aired a promo for a new episode of the show ‘Two And A Half Men,’ that used an Obama campaign slogan: "Can CBS show you the funny side of families?...Yes we can." The words appeared on screen in red, white, and blue, soon followed by a flash of the CBS logo in the same colors, looking very similar to Obama’s campaign logo.
At the end of the promo, the screen displayed the cast of the show in red and blue, similar to a famous Obama portrait, with the show title and time. The bottom of the screen declared: "Yes We Can Monday."
I've collated the list of people and groups -- those scheduled to perform, appear at an event or ball or listed on a host committee (many will participate in more than one event) -- from a bunch sources, starting with the AP's Thursday article, “Hollywood on the Potomac: Where the stars will be.” I supplemented that with the WashingtonPost.com's “Party Central” and its The Sleuth blog, USAToday.com's entertainment blog and MSNBC.com's The Scoop blog. Those with an * are taking part in the Lincoln Memorial event, the rights to which HBO paid the inaugural committee $2.5 million.
Jessica Alba Marc Anthony Patricia Arquette Joan Baez Angela Bassett
“I'm so happy my children havea real hero to look up to” in “a truly scholarly man” who will make an “intelligent, constitutionally brilliant President” at a time when “people are so ready to rejoice and celebrate what is hopefully the return of the foundation of the United States” so “my eyes well up just thinking about” Barack Obama being sworn in since “I'm calm for the first time in eight years,” knowing “somebody is in charge that has such intelligence and grace and is so thoughtful.”
That's some of the giddy excitement expressed by a few of the many celebrities swarming to Washington, DC this weekend for Obama's inauguration which were collected by USA Today for articles in Thursday's and Friday's “Life” section:
Actress Gloria Reuben (IMDb page), now in TNT's Raising the Bar and formerly on NBC's ER, will be on hand Tuesday “to watch the magic moment happen” since she yearns for an end to the “hell” of the Bush years. (Screen capture is from Reuben on ABC's This Week in 2006 when she was promoting a play in which she played Condoleezza Rice):
It's a once-in-a-lifetime situation. The last eight years have been such hell. We're all so excited about the hope of things to come. I really think that's part of it. People are so ready to rejoice and celebrate what is hopefully the return of the foundation of the United States.
On Wednesday's episode of Bravo's Top Chef: New York reality show, “cheftestant” Stefan Richter could be seen wearing a red T-shirt with a gold hammer & sickle -- the emblem of Soviet totalitarianism which oppressed hundreds of millions and murdered tens of millions -- inside a gold-outlined Red Army star, matching the colors and symbols on the Soviet flag. In the scene on the NBC-owned Bravo cable channel, Richter, owner of Stefan's European Catering in Santa Monica, California, was lighting up a cigarette as he argued with some other chefs in his contestant group over the elements of a meal menu.
This isn't the first time an NBC show has featured someone sporting the pro-Soviet communist shirt. Back in April of 2006, an entertainment reporter wore the very same shirt over two nights on the NBC-produced Access Hollywood.
"If U Seek Amy." If you repeat that phrase a few times, it will sound like an all-too familiar reference to sex. This clever little phrase is the title of Britney Spears' new hit, and it's stirring up some controversy.
In case you're still a little lost, it clearly sounds like she is saying, "F**K me," and in the event you still think the song is about a girl named Amy, observe how the phrase makes no sense in the context:
Love me hate me Say what you want about me But all of the boys and all of the girls are beggin’ to, If U Seek Amy
Love me hate me But can’t you see what I see All of the boys and all of the girls are beggin’ to, If U Seek Amy
The Internet is abuzz Monday morning over the excessive vulgarity at Sunday's Golden Globes.
From middle-fingers to testicular and homosexual references, Hollywood's annual lovefest was almost as bad as accidentally entering the comments section at a liberal blog.
As the Los Angeles Times' Rachel Abramowitz reported, the lowlight was Mickey Rourke who gave one of the "most profane acceptance speeches in recent history" (video embedded below the fold, obvious vulgarity alert, photo courtesy AP):
In short USA Today “dossiers” on fresh characters in the new season of Fox's 24 set to debut tonight (Sunday), two of the four profiled actors/actresses used the space to espouse their personal disgust with the U.S. government for using “torture,” which has been employed by lead character “Jack Bauer.” Left-wing activist/actress Janeane Garofalo, who plays “FBI analyst Janis Gold,” called the use of torture “reprehensible” and rued: “That our own administration borrowed ideas from 24 is such a tragedy.” USA Today explained: “A former Army interrogator has said that soldiers mimic interrogation tactics seen on the show.”
Garofalo conceded she “was initially very reticent to do it, because I heard about the right-wing nature of Joel's [24 co-creator Joel Surnow] politics and the torture-heavy scripts.” But, she quipped: “And then I thought, 'I'm unemployed!'" So much for standing up for principle.
Cherry Jones, who handles the role of “President Allison Taylor,” lamented “it's too bad this season's topic is not Wall Street. The torture thing is very unfortunate; I have trouble with it. Fortunately,” however, “my President,” meaning the character she plays, “is opposed to it."
One celebrates movies that people actually watch and the other celebrates movies that critics think people should watch.
“Milk,” the biopic starring Sean Penn about Harvey Milk, California’s first openly gay elected official, perfectly illustrated the divide between “the people” and “the critics.”
Critics loved the movie, as evidenced by a 92 percent favorable rating on the aggregate film review site Rottentomatoes.com and the eight nominations “Milk” received from the Broadcast Film Critics Association. Sean Penn received the Best Actor award for his portrayal of Milk, and the entire cast garnered the Best Acting Ensemble at last night’s Critics Choice Awards ceremony.
Queen Latifah, host of last night's 35th annual People's Choice Awards ceremony on CBS, kicked things off by telling the audience "This past year we have all seen what the power of the people can do...I have one important question for these good people up front. And just so you know, the correct answer tonight is yes, we can! Say it with me now everybody!"
It's awards season, when Hollywood pats itself on the back while championing liberal causes under the guise of acceptance speeches, so Latifah's enthusiasm for president-elect Barack Obama's campaign phrase shouldn't come as much of a surprise. In light of the fact that none of the winners or even the nominees contained overtly political themes, other celebrities, including Ellen DeGeneres who has been outspoken in her opposition to California's Proposition 8, managed to avoid mentioning politics and controversial issues.
But Latifah and British actor Hugh Laurie just couldn't help themselves.
Updated below: In late 2001, "Punisher" storyline had threat against President Bush's life.
Spider-Man will swing to the rescue at the Obama inauguration in the Marvel comics universe, USA Today's David Colton reported in a January 8 story for the newspaper's Life section. Colton's story sought to portray the move not merely as a money-maker for Marvel but part of a storied tradition of graphic novel artists of including the commander-in-chief in comic book cameos:
In a growing world of Barack Obama collectibles, one item soon may be swinging above the rest.
On Jan. 14, Marvel Comics is releasing a special issue of Amazing Spider-Man #583 with Obama depicted on the cover. Inside are five pages of the two teaming up and even a fist-bump between Spidey and the new president.
Reuters.com is syndicating a January 7 Hollywood Reporter story informing the world that "HBO lands rights to inaugural ceremony," but this raises the question; why are parts of the inauguration being auctioned to the highest bidder for exclusive coverage? Shouldn't all of the inaugural festivities be available to every American and not relegated just for the TV network that has the most cash? Why is this vaunted man of the people allowing exclusive coverage of his big day to go to a station not available to all Americans equally?
It makes one wonder if the Democrat's claims of being interested in equality and fairness is all but hot air when the money is hitting the table?
HBO is claiming that they will offer the program for free, not pay-per-view, and that it will be broadcast to folks without the HBO channel on their cable service. But it will still be just on cable. Naturally, for those without cable at all, well, these people are out of luck. So much for Obama's big day being for ALL the people. I guess it's only for those with cable.
Today marks the launch of Big Hollywood, a new blog launched by Andrew Breitbart designed to give voice to the previously voiceless center-right crowd in the entertainment industry.
Besides featuring blogging on pop culture and politics, it will also feature box office results analysis. Expect to see a lot more from the site in the future. You may see a few posts here and there from yours truly as well.
Big Hollywood is an idea whose time should have come a long time ago. Kudos to Andrew for his great efforts in putting it together.
Celebrity breakdowns and comebacks, love triangles and teen pregnancy were the most covered entertainment stories. What does it say about the state of American culture when unmarried mothers, troubled pop stars and celebrity divorces are dubbed the “hottest” stories of the year?
USA Todaydesignated Britney Spears this year’s top celebrity after she earned the number one spot on its weekly Celebrity Heat Index 11 times during 2008 - a year in which she suffered a public breakdown, sought psychiatric help on two separate occasions, and still managed to release her new album, Circus. Britney also got the top spot in 2007.
"Saturday Night Live" has always made politicians’ policies and missteps the butt of jokes, but the popular NBC show stooped too far on Dec.13, when it made fun of a governor’s disability.
On Saturday, Seth Meyers’ “Weekend Update” bit featured a sketch with Fred Armisen playing New York’s Democratic Governor David Paterson. Armisen played the role of the mostly blind Paterson with one eye half closed, and was shown needing help finding the desk right in front of him.
Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin (R) is intimidated by Oprah Winfrey's intellect and political acumen, writer Joanna Douglas hinted in her December 5 article for Shine.Yahoo.com entitled "Sarah Palin blows off Oprah Winfrey."
While Douglas conceded that the Obama-endorsing daytime talk host refused to book Palin during the campaign, she neglected to mention that the decision at the time offended many a Republican Oprah fan, not to mention reports that roughly half her own staff disagreed with Winfrey's pre-election Palin blackout.
Instead Douglas portrayed Winfrey as the aggrieved party, "snubbed" by a vindictive Palin. Douglas went as far as to suggest that Palin may be avoiding an Oprah appearance because she's "intimidated" by Winfrey: