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Over at the Los Angeles Times/Envelope 24 Frames blog, Nicole Sperling has a juicy exclusive regarding this year's Oscar telecast. It seems Brett Ratner and Don Mischer, producers of this year's show, have hired a unique crop of comedy writers to work alongside Eddie Murphy and shake things up a bit.
Scribes tapped include: Alec Berg and David Mandel, two of the writers on Larry David's successful HBO comedy series "Curb Your Enthusiasm"; Jeff Nathanson, who frequently works with Ratner ("Tower Heist" and the "Rush Hour" films); Ted Griffin, who was part of the team of writers on Steven Soderbergh's "Ocean's" franchise; and Barry Blaustein and David Sheffield, who worked with Murphy on the "Nutty Professor" series and "Saturday Night Live."
Jon Macks, who wrote on the last 14 Oscarcasts and has extensive experience with variety show writing, from the Emmys to the Country Music Awards to "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno," will also be on board.
A review of tonight's "Boardwalk Empire" coming up just as soon as I send you a book with a horse in it...
A review of tonight's "The Walking Dead" coming up just as soon as I bet on the snowball...
There was no event that took place during my vacation that equaled the impact of the screening I held for my sons Toshi and Allen of the final film in the "Star Wars" series, "Return of the Jedi."
And really, how could there be?
When we started this, I admit that I wasn't really thinking about it as a pivotal moment in their filmgoing lives. I had no idea what sort of impact the films would have on them, even though I knew what kind of impact the films had on me. One of the things I've tried to do as I've been sharing movies with my boys is be careful not to try to force them into liking the things I like. I've been very careful about the way the iconography of "Star Wars" was introduced into their lives, never placing it on a pedestal above everything else. There are certain little things around the house that have been there as long as they've been alive. A Yoda figure in one room. A Battle Droid on another shelf. An old toy lightsaber in their toy box. Toshi started asking me about seeing the "Star Wars" films about a year ago, and when the Blu-ray box set showed up, I finally decided to give it a try. Part of me thought I was doing it too soon, but I couldn't deny the interest was there, and that's been the big guiding light so far with this series. I make things available on an age-appropriate basis, and then they tell me what interests them.
I had heard murmurs about this year's secret screening at AFI Fesst being Steven Soderbergh's "Haywire," starring Gina Carano. The bummer is I have to moderate a Q&A this evening, so I'll be missing it.
But hey, if you're in Los Angeles, you can see the film if you want! Via the press release, "Admission to 'Haywire' is available to AFI Fest 2011 pass holders and free tickets for the screening can be obtained at the AT&T Box Office located in suite 219 at the Hollywood and Highland Center between 10:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. today. Tickets are available on a first-come, first-served basis. The Rush Line will begin forming at 8:30 p.m."
Soderbergh's "Contagion" is already in the marketplace (and has had a pretty solid box office run). Warner Bros. has been sniffing around a few awards prospects for that film, particularly Best Original Screenplay for writer Scott Z. Burns. I think Stephen Mirrione's film editing and the original score from Cliff Martinez deserve some consideration.
1) Coldplay: The British band warms up the charts with the third highest opening sales tally of 2011 as “Mylo Xyloto” sells 441,000. I still don’t know what a Mylo or a Xyloto is, although I suspect it’s Coldplay-eze for “Eat it, haters.”
2) Live Nation: It’s amazing what happens when you practice a little customer service. The mega-concert promoter is showing a $16.5 million profit for the first three quarters of 2011, compared with a $104 million loss in 2012. Part of the strategy to put more butts in the seats? Lower ticket prices and trim service fees.
3) Rihanna: She scores her 11th No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 with “We Found Love, soaring past Janet Jackson and Stevie Wonder. Wrap your head around this: 10 more No. 1s (which she could conceivably accomplish with her next two albums) and she will overtake the Beatles for the all-time leader. I love Rihanna, but that’s just not right.
4) Lady Gaga: Momma Monster gets the Thanksgiving music slot that Beyonce has gotten in the past. “A Very GaGa Thanksgiving,” which will be served complete with an interview conducted by Katie Couric, will air at 9:30 p.m. Thanksgiving night. We all need a little ham with our turkey.
[More after the jump...]
Welcome to Reality TV Roundup -- a quick look at some of the reality TV-centric stories that have recently popped up across the fine, old Interwebs. Click away, my couch potato friends. But before you do...
SPOILER ALERT! SPOILER ALERT! SPOILER ALERT! One more time: SPOILER ALERT. If you watch "The X Factor," "Survivor," "Dancing with the Stars," "Top Chef," "Project Accessory" or "America's Next Top Model," the latest elimination for each show is revealed in the text below. The hope is that, if you missed this week's program and would rather clear out your DVR than watch the episode, you can get a quick hit here. But don't come crying to me if you find out something you didn't want to know. You've been warned. Also note: lots of non-competition reality info lurks below, too.
The first thing I noticed upon my interview with Kristen Stewart for "The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn, Pt. 1" wasn't how stunning she looks with longer, dark hair, but the bandage/apparatus on her right hand. Having likely answered the same "what happened" inquiry all day long, Stewart kindly answered, "I hurt it a few weeks ago. I was scuffling with some dwarfs and I pulled a ligament in this thumb. I have bad luck with thumbs. I broke this thumb in 'Breaking Dawn' actually."