5 items from 2015
Anyone who has followed the Bill Cosby sexual-assault allegations must feel as if there’s not much more to learn, amid a steady drip of women who have come forward, culminating with the 35 featured in New York magazine. Still, it’s bracing to see the accusers — more than a dozen of them — calmly tell their stories on camera, as they do in the A&E special “Cosby: The Women Speak.” The one-hour production slowly builds a compelling case, as the women lay out details of what they say happened, without being flanked by attorney Gloria Allred or a bank of microphones.
Cosby’s defenders (seemingly a dwindling contingent) have often suggested that this is a money grab, directed at one of the world’s wealthiest entertainers. But that argument feels weakened by the weight of actually seeing so many women explain not only how they were victimized but why »
- Brian Lowry
As sexual-assault allegations regarding Bill Cosby have snowballed, admirers of his work have doubtless experienced hard-to-identify emotions. While those determined to defend the star at any cost appear increasingly foolish and tone-deaf, there should be room for sadness for those who grew up with Cosby now having those memories irrevocably tainted. That feeling of lost nostalgia has nothing to do with empathy for or sympathy toward the architect of all this seemingly horrid behavior.
Cosby is hardly the first public figure whose private behavior has cast clouds over his persona and career; indeed, he’s merely the latest celebrity to reveal the perils of blind hero worship. Still, even compared with, say, the many athletes accused of crimes and misdemeanors during or after their playing days, Cosby represents an unusually uncomfortable situation, thanks in part to the fact his standup act was moored in exaggerated recollections of childhood.
In those early Cosby routines, »
- Brian Lowry
Prolific television writer and producer Sam Simon has passed away, Deadline is reporting. Simon succumbed to the colorectal cancer that he had been fighting since 2012. He was 59.
Simon began his career in television working on animated features such as Fat Albert and the Cosby Kids as a storyboard artist. Having an interest in writing as well, Simon submitted a spec script for the television show Taxi, which subsequently led to the hiring of him as a writer and eventual showrunner for the series’ final season, where he first worked with James L. Brooks.
His path through television led him to the writing rooms of other luminary TV shows such as Cheers, Barney Miller, and It’s Garry Shandling’s Show, ultimately leading him to be a writer and producer on The Tracey Ullman Show, where he once again worked with Brooks.
- Deepayan Sengupta
Nine-time Emmy winner Sam Simon, who wrote episodes of “Taxi,” “Cheers” and “It’s Garry Shandling’s Show” before co-creating landmark animated series “The Simpsons” and eventually becoming a philanthropist, died Sunday of colorectal cancer at his home in Los Angeles, his reps confirmed. He was 59 and was diagnosed with terminal cancer in late 2012.
“Simpsons” showrunner Al Jean also confirmed the news with a tweet on Monday.
In 1989 he developed “The Simpsons” with Matt Groening and James L. Brooks, and he subsequently co-wrote nearly a dozen “Simpsons” episodes during his tenure on the animated comedy, also serving as co-showrunner, character designer, creative consultant, creative supervisor, developer, and writer. He left the show in 1993 while retaining an exec producer title.
The animated sitcom, he said, gave him more freedom than live action. “You »
- Carmel Dagan
Bill Cosby channeled Fat Albert in a new video to let fans know, “Hey, hey, hey, I’m far from finished.” While Cosby was happy to reference the character he voiced for six seasons on the “Fat Albert and the Cosby Kids” animated TV series, the scandal-plagued comedian avoided addressing the multitude of sexual assault allegations that have been leveled against him. Also Read: Bill Cosby Accuser Pens Powerful Piece: %u2018I Didn%u2019t Want to Let Black America Down%u2019 In the clip, Cosby is seen on the phone saying, “And you know I’ll be hilarious; can’t wait. »
- Tim Kenneally
5 items from 2015
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