Friday, June 29, 2007

Summer TV?

SO I was sitting at a news meeting yesterday and the station manager came over to talk about ratings and such. He said, "You guys aren't going to believe the top two shows on TV right now." He was right. I was anticipating one or more of the major networks to have at least one of top summer shows...I mean they dominate the fall months still. The number one show on TV right now: The Closer. The number two show: Hannah Montana. Hannah Montana also owns at least four more spots on the top 15 list. The networks don't make a dent in the lineups. Hell even movies aired on the Disney Channel beat out the big three. So I ask myself...and in turn it the programming, or the fact that in the summer the big kids go out to play living the little ones in charge of the TV? I know I don't watch nearly as much TV in the summer...but does that mean that programming has to suffer this much? I might watch if the top program wasn't "The Next Best Thing" or "So You Think You Can Dance?" That is my question/rant for the morning. I could go into more detail but I am busy watching the Today show...

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Lets "Spice" things up a bit

God I'm on a roll...sorry I have had the catchy title fever lately and I think it's contagious. So the Spice Girls are making a come back. They have announced a brief tour this November-December that will prove there are just some things that shouldn't come back in style. Seriously no one wants to see "Baby" Spice or "Sporty" Spice in those outfits again. I would prefer to just pop in one of their old records and relive the old days in my mind. Then again, maybe I shouldn't be so pessimistic...I mean I was thrilled when the Backstreet Boys made a comeback and put out "Never Gone". Then again I liked the BSB a whole heck of a lot better than I like the Spice Girls.

Before I go back to work...I would like to laugh out loud to the fact that NO BODY in Germany wants Tom Cruise to be the lead in his upcoming movie. The guy he is supposed to be portraying doesn't even like him. To me, that's funny. Maybe Tom can use some of his Scientology bull crap to send some voodoo on those people and make them like him. I doubt it.

Oooh...One more thing...I screened Live Free or Die Hard the other day. Bruce is still the man. It is exactly what audiences expect/want from a Die Hard film. Bruce hasn't lost his touch and audiences will still be thoroughly engrossed in the film. I'd use the signature line here but I'm pretty sure that it's not

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Bastille Day!!!

Paris is finally free!!! I've been SOO worried about the hotel heiress (NOT). It was wonderful to watch her run out to her mother's outstreched arms (nothing like a hug through a car window). So for the next week or so we'll get bombarded with the post-jail media hype...the Larry King live, Today show, Barbara Walters, interviews. Hopefully though, the cover of every magazine will no longer feature Paris' face. I'm ready for a change.

I've talked a lot about the summer blockbusters on this blog. It is easy to dish on the latest films to hit theatres and provide info about the celebs that star in them. I have failed to touch on my other favorite part of summer though...the new music mania!!! A number of new albums are hitting the charts and will be making waves. Until August there will be a juggle for who will be number one. And then, folks, I hate to tell you, but High School Music Mania will take over and the Disney machine will pump out enough cheesy pop melodies to keep the charts steadily in their possesion for the next few months.
In the meantime here is what has been making waves so far this summer...
Mandy Moore made her comeback with a surprisingly fresh and revamped sound when she released Wild Hope last week. Her first single, Extraordinary, has been making its way up the Top 40 charts and is a hit with the adult contemporary crowd.
Kelly Clarkson's much anticipated album My December is ready to hit stores. Her first single from the CD, Never Again, is a bonafide hit and the American Idol champ has been pushing the publicity tour hard.
Finally ( I have to get back to work) look for the Disney machine to pump out a hit BEFORE the HSM fanfare starts. Miley Cyrus is releasing a duel album featuring her first solo CD as well as a Hannah Montana season 2 release. I have a feeling tween nation will help sales skyrocket and push this one to the top. It comes out today so we'll certainly know soon enough.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Poor Miley...hell who am I kidding!

Hold on to your seats folks..I've got lots to gossip about today!!!

*SO the big story on and in this month's issue of People magazine is "Miley Cyrus: Keeping it Real". I read bits and pieces from the interview with Miley and her family and I just cringed. As a teen celebrity Miley Cyrus is already deprived a privacy that most 14 year old kids enjoy, but People took that to an extreme when they interviewed the folks. Come on...think about it. We are ALL embarassed by our parents at least once in a while. Imagine your folks telling a few milion people how they plan to "keep you grounded" and give away their methods of punishement when you do screw up. Friday, when People mag hits newstands, millions of readers will know that Miley gets her computer taken away when she gets in trouble, is bombarded with literature highlighting how her celebrity peers have messed up, and how her parents are working to keep her at home until she's 20. Ok, so the last few tidbits aren't that big a deal. Although you can totally tell Miley spends a lot of time on the road...otherwise her parents would be looking to get her out of the house before then :) Then again, maybe those are just my parents...
Either way I kind of feel bad for the young starlet. Now not only will her actions be under a microscope for the remainder of her career, she will even more closely scruntinized to ensure that she doesn't become the next Lindsay Lohan. At the same time, however, I give her parents some serious kudos. Putting their plan in public is a great way to keep their daughter in-line.

* Jessica Biel is still following hot hunk Justin Timberlake around Norway. I think they make a fantastic couple.

*Another 'People' story that caught my eye today was their spotlight on the Hanson boys. The brothers are now married with children. Two things: 1) I feel really old. 2) I am totally creeped out. I used to put posters of those boys on my bedroom walls. The thought of them married with children gives me the creeps. They can't possibly be that old!!!

I will continue this tirade at a later time. I am going to call it a night. Don't forget, if you are feeling as old as I am and want to dish about it you can shoot me an email!!!

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Rosie Don't Come on Down

I'm at the point where I'm begging. PLEASE CBS if anyone in your corporate structure has ANY braincells DO NOT hire Rosie O'Donnell to host The Price is Right. Honestly folks stop and think about it. Imagine an excited college kid coming up on stage trying to guess the price of a car. He throws out some random number and the next thing you know Rosie is all up in his grill pulling one of her famous..."there is no way you're right" tirades. After that she'll pick someone out of the audience just to start a political debate with them. She's too opinionated, too controversial, and not nearly jovial enough to take Bob Barkers place. If it were Ellen I would be thrilled, but Rosie...I can't say what I truly think on this blog.

There is more news today from the Paris camp. Apparently her neighbors aren't in any hurray for her to be released. The media racket surrounding her release will be loud and inconveinent for anyone living in Paris' neighborhood. I'm all for keeping the heiress behind bars...but they'll have to let her out eventually.

Sadly that's all I have for right now. I was pretty mild today. Sorry. I promise I will come back tomorrow bringing my A-game.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

"Wildly Hoping" someone reads this

Ok so once again my title reeks of cheese. I can't help myself. The subject of my column today is Mandy Moore's new solo album, titled "Wild Hope". Moore is on the publicity tour heavily promoted the release of the new album and the release of her upcoming feature film "Lisence to Wed" with Robin Williams. I have listened to a few of the songs on the album and I will say I am impressed with the starlets smooth transition out of cheesy teen pop and into sophisticated songwriting. Her first single, Extraordinary, is catchy, light, and the perfect opening for her new career door. Moore has been working to shed her teenybob image (Think back to her "Candy" days and "The Princess Diaries" movie) and instead surround herself with more adult talent (now think "Because I Said So" with Diane Keaton). While the other teen starlets of her era have found themselves lost now that they've reached their mid-twenties (Britney, Christina, Jessica...) Moore has continued to work hard to establish a solid career platform for herself. Whether or not it will work out remains to be seen. She hasn't gone off and become tabloid bait. She won't be getting out of limo minus her panties any time soon. She, hopefully, won't land herself in jail or rehab either. By flying under the radar, she hopes to soar above the competition. I wish her all the best.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Can the Super-sleuth make a comeback?

Here's the deal. Growing up I was a Nancy Drew/Hardy Boys addict. My mom had the original print versions of the 1950's Carolyn Keene novels and I was all over every copy. I scoured the shelves at my local library in hopes of uncovering a lost edition of my favorite mystery. So now, years later after all the books have long since dissappeared in the vastness of my shelves, I am bombarded with trailers for the the big-screen version of my favorite super-sleuth. And thus I ask myself...Can Nancy Drew make a comeback? Will she creep into the lives of the latest teen generation as she once did with me? I can say that her big screen debut promted me to dig up one of my old novels and give it another read. While it is severly dated (we no longer have luncheon or send telegrams) the basis for it's success has not changed much over the decades. We all love to see the intelligent, sophisticated, most often-underdog come out on top and nab the bad guys.
The big screen version of the book will star Emma Roberts, who thanks to some strong genetic material (you all know her aunt Julia) has been able to wow teen audiences in past roles with her vivacious charm. The writers of the film have been kind enough to keep many of the key elements from the novels---Ned Nickerson still serves as Nancy's love interest. Hannah Gruen still has a place as Nancy's housekeeper. And River Heights makes an albeit breif appearance as the former home of Mr. and Ms. Drew. I highly doubt I will head to theatres to see how my favorite super-sleuth solves the mystery...but you never know...someday, while I'm walking aimlessly through the aisles of my local video rental store, I may pick up the DVD copy and reminesce about the good old days.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

I feel old.

I consider myself well versed in the happenings of the entertainment industry. Until this past weekend I thought I was up-to-date on pretty much every major TV show, Movie, and music phenomena. I was wrong. Sunday I babysat for four girls under the age of 10. In the afternoon I decided to implement a babysitter's best friend (aka a movie). The girls begged me to put in their Hannah Montana DVD. I was flummoxed. I had never seen it. Hell, I had barely even heard of the Disney Channel series that has apparently taken tween America by storm. I knew that Billy Ray Cyrus was one of the stars thanks in large part to his role on Dancing With the Stars. I was in awe, though, as I watched the girls ooh and ahh over Miley Cyrus and sign along with Hannah Montana. I was so blown away I decided to do some research for this blog (that is saying a is the summer and I hate doing research ;). The 14 year old Miley Cyrus (real named Destiny Hope Cyrus) is the Hilary Duff/Lindsay Lohan of her generation. Her songs have propelled the Hannah Montana soundtrack to platinum status and have inspired a solo album due out this summer. Her TV show only falls to American Idol in the rankings for its time-slot and audience. If you Google her you will find videos and stories from interviews with every major news and entertainment show. After watching four back-to-back episodes I have a solid sense of what the show is all about. I'm impressed. The Disney machine is back at it. They took all the things that worked with Lizzie McGuire (you aren't too old for that one ;) and amplified them. For example, one of the episodes I watched was about Miley's best friend getting her first boyfriend and the complications that came with the new relationship. This same theme appeared in a classic Lizzie McGuire episode where Gordo got a girlfriend and Lizzie freaked out. This time around, however, Disney got smart. Instead of waiting until the show's 62 episodes were up to introduce their star's musical ability in a movie...the Ears have encorporated Miley's singing right into the show (actually her life is a pop star is the premise for the show and is a large part of every episode). Unlike Hilary Duff and Lizzie McGuire, though, Miley had a voice to begin with (thanks in part to her country crooner father-Billy Ray). Her acting ability is not nearly as important as her role as a pop star- although I admit she doesn a very good job for a 14 year old in a comedy. Just be on the look out for the Miley Cyrus clothing line, perfume, and MTV series to follow. She's got the talent, and the stage has been set, just don't be like me and almost miss the boat. Babysitters take note...Hannah Montana is THE in show for tween nation.

Here is a more adult note for you...according to IMDB The jeans are going around again...The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2 is in pre-production and the four stars...Alexis Bledel, Blake Lively, America Ferrera, and Amber Tamblyn are all set to come back. For you chick-flickers out there this is one to keep your eye on.

Thursday, June 7, 2007

Lindsay-rehab seems to be doing wonders...NOT

It's nice to see that rehab is working for Lindsay Lohan. Apparently the starlet will be getting out of rehab in time to celebrate her 21st birthday. I can't imagine there will be any alcohol consumed at the event (yeah right--earlier in the year it was rumored that a vodka company would be sponsering the event!). I rant about this because earlier this year I read an interesting article talking about the up-and-coming batch of young starlets and the career decision they will have to make. One of those decisions is whether or not they will join the party crowd. The next generation of hollywood starlets-Hayden Panettiere, Emma Roberts, etc. have to decide whethere they want to follow in the footsteps of Lindsay Lohan and take the underage drinking/partying route, or follow in the footsteps of Hilary Duff and take the goody-two-shoes route. If I were a member of young Hollywood I would take the Lindsay route too. Why? Lindsay's career has been boosted by her "extracurricular" activities. There is no doubt. The squeaky clean image hasn't done anything for Hilary Duff. Granted she has been succesful in movies and music, but she has admittedly had a difficult time crossing over that "Disney" line and into more serious acting roles because of her goody-two-shoes past. Lindsay, on the other hand, had no problem jumping ship from her Disney days thanks in part to her partying. Disney doesn't want the partying starlet attached to their projects and other companies love the fact that Lindsay is attaching herself to an older fan base. Let's also note the consequences of Lindsay's actions. Exhibit A) Rehab. Yeah that has been a blow to her publicity blitz-NOT. Landing on the Maxim top 100 list at number one was her reward for bad behavior. Exhibit B) A written repremand from her boss while working on Georgia Rule. She wasn't fired, and in the aftermath has still managed to maintain her role as one of HOllywood's most sought after youngsters. Yup that's punishment all right. So put yourself in Lindsay's shoes...what would YOU do? Yeah that's what I thought. I'd be throwing myself one hell of a 21st b-day party too.

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Brooks not Bad, Hilton finally behind bars

I'll start with the positive (hey I'm an optimistic gal...)... I went and saw Mr. Brooks last night. It was clever, original, intriguing, and suspensful. The acting was superb and lifted a so-so script to higher levels. Kevin Costner and Mel Brooks were phenominal. Dane Cook was alright, you could tell it killed him to have to play a serious role for once. The surprise of the show, for me anyways, was the performance of Danielle Panabaker. The young actress was really good, and underused. The plot line containing her was my favorite part of the movie and it begged to be expanded upon. It could almost be made into a killer sequel (pardon the pun). While Mr. Brooks won't get near as much attention as the other blockbusters of the season, if you are sick of Spidey and not a fan of Ocean's 13 than I suggest giving it a go.

Now for the nasty part of my column. Ok I'm not NASTY, I'm just honest. Paris Hilton is FINALLY in jail. Honestly I thought the whole thing was a joke, some publicity scam, I never thought she'd actually wind up in jail. I really just want the whole ordeal to be over with so entertainment reporters everywhere can go back to talking about things that actually matter. That wont' happen though, because joining Paris will soon be Lindsay Lohan who has once again checked into the celebrity hotel called rehab. I laugh when I talk about LL...people hyped her up to be the next big thing. And she is, she has the looks, the drama, the (dang I almost said talent)... People think that Lindsay has more talent and star potential than her former feud/squeaky clean tween queen Hilary Duff. Let's compare the two:
*Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen
-Is there anything positive to say about this Disney disaster?
*Herbie: Fully Loaded
- Wow she starred in a movie with a talking car...and it tanked
*Mean Girls
-I loved it...I think Rachel McAdams and the rest of the supporting cast were the reason for the movie's success but I'll give credit to Lohan for her spunk.
-one of the best films I've seen in a really long time. Lindsay had nothing to do with it's success though. Her role was small and overshadowed by the bigger names appearing in the movie.
*Prairie Home Companion
-Did you see it? I sure didn't. Maybe my grandma did though...
*Just My Luck
-I was lucky, until I spent money to see this movie. Bad just doesn't do it justice.
*Georgia Rule
-I want to see it...mostly due to the controversy surrounding Lohan's behavior while working on the film. I doubt it will win any awards though.
*I think she's had two albums. I don't know because after SPEAK things went downhill fast. Her song Rumors won over the club scene but there hasn't been much noise from her since. Although, I hear drinking ruins your vocal chords so she probably sounds like a horse now anyways.
I have to interject here because the female anchor at the station I am working at just came in yelling "Prince is on. Prince is on. He's my boyfriend. Look at him...he is one sexy MOFO". That was worth sharing. I don't think Prince and "sexy" have ever been used like that in a sentence before.

Hilary Duff:
*Agent Cody Banks
-the movie was the perfect tween film. Co-starring with Frankie Muniz was ingenious. The movie was bad, but in the best way possible-it banked big time.
*The Lizzie McGuire Movie
-If it ain't broke don't fix Disney didn't fix it, they made it better. They took the successful TV series and blew it up. Not only did Hilary get to act, she got to jumpstart her singing career using this 100+ million dollar earner.
*Cadet Kelly
-The Dinsey Channel original film brought in the most viewers EVER for a TV movie. It eventually made it to DVD where tweens everywhere could relive their favorite military moments.
*A Cinderella Story
-Let's take Red HOT Chad Michael Murray (the star of one very popular ONE TREE HILL) add the comedic talents of Jennifer Coolige and Regina King and you've got a winner. The Cinderella storyline is a proven winner, and the fact that Hilary Duff doesn't sing in the movie (only in the soundtrack to the film) is an added bonus.
*Raise Your Voice
-This movie cracks me up. It was all about the music, but it didn't have a soundtrack. Oliver James was cute, as was Jason Ritter (too bad he died within the first fifteen minutes of the film) but that wasn't enough to carry this tune. It fell flat in theatres but it did work, once again, to promote Hilary as a musical talent.
*Cheaper By the Dozen (1 and 2)
-here is a career move. Team up with Steve Martin, Bonnie Hunt, Tom Welling, Piper Perabo, Eugene Levy, Carmen Electra, and Ashton Kutcher and you will most certainly have a winner. Both of these movies raked it in at the box office. Hilary's parts were huge, but she showed how important a supporting role can be, and she brought in hords of tweens to theatres.
*Material Girls
-Flop doesn't even begin to describe this disaster. Even Anjelica Houston couldn't revive this death wish. The script was written for Mary Kate and Ashley Olson (you know how great their previous films have been) but instead went to Hilary and Haylie Duff. Madonna's Maverick films made the movie, but it almost didn't get to theatres. No one wanted to pick it up. Thank God they did because if not a couple thousand tweens wouldn't have been able to suffer through that horrific piece of film-making.
-this album truly was a change for the teen queen who had previously lent her voice to a number of feature film soundtracks. It went multi-platinum and launched her into an undeniable stardom. All that other junk was well..."So yesterday"
*Hilary Duff
-catchy title for the lady's second album (not included her little Christmas diddy) but it still launched into stores thanks to a catchy single (Fly) and the release of the movie in which three of the songs were featured (Raise Your Voice).
*Most Wanted
-When you are 18 and you have a greatest hits album that says something. This third CD went with her Most Wanted tour that sold out nation-wide. She only put three new tracks on the album that, once again, sold like mad.
-Hil spent some time on this last one. Two years after her last release she had suffered a major breakup, a severe self-image change, and some family drama the Duffster took charge of her career and co-wrote every song on the new album. It worked. Her first single, With Love, is on the Top-40 charts and has been re-mixed for clubs. It was the feature song for her new commercial where she introduces her new perfume (also titled WITH LOVE). The video is sexy, mature, and well beyond what most HD fans are used to.

So who has had the better career up to this point? At times it may be hard to tell. Had Hilary decided to go clubbing and end up in rehab you might say her...the press would have had a reason to be all over her, and her movies would have earned more money thanks to fans who love drama. She didn't, though, and as a result has had to work that much harder to get in the spotlight. When she does land on a magazine cover, or in the chair next to Kelly Ripa, you know it's because she did something big business wise, not because she bonged a beer the night before. Moms have applauded her squeaky clean image with allowing their kids to be a fan... Now, at a mere 19 years old, Hilary has to get the rest of the world onboard. Are you in? If so you'll have a chance to soon catch the much more mature Hilary starring along John Cusack in War, Inc.