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15 items from 2008


Blind Governor Fumes At TV Sketch

15 December 2008 11:04 AM, PST | WENN | See recent WENN news »

A Saturday Night Live comedy sketch mocking New York's Governor David Paterson's blindness and past cocaine use has left the politician seething.

SNL star Fred Armisen impersonated the Democrat during Saturday's show, wandering lost around the studio and jokingly attempting to make a drug deal, unaware he was on camera.

And Paterson - who only took over the role this year when previous Governor Eliot Spitzer was found to having cheated on his wife with a prostitute - isn't happy.

He tells the New York Daily News, "I can take a joke. But only 37 per cent of disabled people are working and I'm afraid that that kind of third grade humour certainly adds to this atmosphere.

"Let's just say I don't think it helped." »

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TV: Holy Crap, John McCain Stabbed Palin in the Back on "SNL"

1 November 2008 11:29 PM, PDT | JustPressPlay.net | See recent JustPressPlay news »

As of writing, Saturday Light Live is still airing here in the West Coast, but NBC.com already has clips from the episode online. The show opened with a McCain appearance, unsurprisingly accompanied by Tina Fey doing Sarah Palin. What was surprising was how the Senator's sketch mercilessly made fun of Governor Palin. Either John McCain didn't get the jokes presented in the sketch (unlikely) or he knew that most of the jabs were aimed at his running mate and not him so he didn't care; whatever the case may be, it's hard to believe that his campaign allowed him to appear in this... unless this is McCain's staffers' way of hitting Palin back for "going rogue." With only 3 days left in this election, are we seeing the Republican ticket splintering?

»

- Arya Ponto

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Holy Crap, John McCain Stabbed Palin in the Back on "SNL"

1 November 2008 11:29 PM, PDT | JustPressPlay.net | See recent JustPressPlay news »

As of writing, Saturday Light Live is still airing here in the West Coast, but NBC.com already has clips from the episode online. The show opened with a McCain appearance, unsurprisingly accompanied by Tina Fey doing Sarah Palin. What was surprising was how the Senator's sketch mercilessly made fun of Governor Palin. Either John McCain didn't get the jokes presented in the sketch (unlikely) or he knew that most of the jabs were aimed at his running mate and not him so he didn't care; whatever the case may be, it's hard to believe that his campaign allowed him to appear in this... unless this is McCain's staffers' way of hitting Palin back for "going rogue." With only 3 days left in this election, are we seeing the Republican ticket splintering?

»

- Arya Ponto

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Saturday Night Live Episode Recap: "Jon Hamm Hosts, Coldplay Performs"

25 October 2008 10:44 PM, PDT | TVGuide - Breaking News | See recent TVGuide - Breaking News news »

Congrats to Amy Poehler who had her baby earlier on Saturday! While there wasn't an appearance by Tina Fey or Sarah Palin or Obama, we still had many a fun surprise this week. As previously reported, Maya Rudolph played Michelle Obama, and two Mad Men favorites appeared in a sketch as well. I have to admit, I thought this week was going to be a mess, but Jon Hamm really delivered! Now on to the show »

- Erin Fox

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Phelps Set For Entourage

28 August 2008 6:31 PM, PDT | WENN | See recent WENN news »

Olympic swimming champion Michael Phelps has landed a cameo on hit U.S. TV show Entourage.

The eight-time gold medal winner at the recent Beijing Games will appear as himself in the upcoming series, which debuts in America on 7 September.

Phelps has also agreed to host comedy show Saturday Night Live on 13 September and he'll be among the presenters at the MTV Video Music Awards on 7 September. »

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Industry Icon Bernie Brillstein Dies at 77

8 August 2008 11:16 AM, PDT | IMDb News

Bernie Brillstein, the prolific talent agent, manager, and producer who was a major force in the Hollywood industry, died Thursday night in Los Angeles of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease; he was 77. A man who lived the quintessential Hollywood success story, Brillstein started out in the mail room of the William Morris Agency back in 1956 and worked his way up the ladder, helping package numerous film and television deals and guiding the careers of a number of actors and other creative professionals. Among his early success stories were the launch of Saturday Night Live and the careers of many of its comedians, Jim Henson and The Muppet Show, the hit comedy Ghost Busters, and acclaimed 80s TV shows such as The Days and Nights of Molly Dodd and It's Garry Shandling's Show. With Brad Grey (who later became head of Paramount Pictures), Brillstein formed the powerful management company Brillstein-Grey, which was renamed Brillstein Enetertainment Partners in 2007. In 1999, Brillstein chronicled his adventures in Hollywood with the memoir Where Did I Go Right? -- You're No One in Hollywood Unless Someone Wants You Dead. He is survived by his wife, Carrie, three sons, and two daughters. »

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Hasselhoff vs. Anaconda This Saturday Night

25 July 2008 12:55 PM, PDT | DreadCentral.com | See recent Dread Central news »

Under normal circumstances an Anaconda sequel made for the Sci-Fi Channel would not elicit any degree of excitement of my part but when the sequel stars David Hasselhoff and the prospect of seeing "The Hoff" fight and possibly get eaten by a huge snake looms on the horizon, yeah, consider me officially interested.

Anaconda 3: The Offspring premieres this Saturday night on the Sci-Fi Channel (9/8 Central with the usual repeat four hours later) starring David Hasselhoff as a mercenary-for-hire who accepts a mission from a billionaire (John Rhys-Davies, a man's gotta eat) to capture a dangerous snake that could possibly help cure a terminal illness. Rounding out the cast are Crystal Allen, Patrick Regis, and Anthony Green in the prerequisite attractive female, token black, and handsome riverboat captain roles.

This installment in the Anaconda franchise is directed by Don E. FauntLeRoy. He knows something about dealing with coldblooded creatures having »

- Foywonder

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Cast ready to roll on 'Whip It!'

30 June 2008 | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

Marcia Gay Harden, Kristen Wiig, Juliette Lewis and Zoe Bell are mixing it up with Ellen Page and Drew Barrymore in the roller ring.

Barrymore will play Page's teammate in Mandate Pictures' roller derby comedy Whip it! then skate behind the camera between takes to make her feature directorial debut.

Harden plays an overbearing ex-beauty queen who would rather see her daughter, Bliss (Page), in pageants than skates. Wiig (Saturday Night Live) plays Bliss' rowdy mentor, Malice in Wonderland. Lewis is Dinah Might, the star of Austin's top team. Bell plays a medical technician moonlighting as derby star Bloody Holly.

The film begins shooting this summer in Michigan and Texas.

Harden is repped by CAA and Framework Entertainment. Wiig is repped by UTA and Odenkirk Talent Management. Lewis is repped by Don Buchwald and Associates, and Bell is repped by CAA and Drama 3/4.

Gregg Goldstein reported from New York; Borys Kit reported from Los Angeles. »

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George Carlin dies at 71

23 June 2008 | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

George Carlin, stand-up comedian, actor and author, died Sunday night of heart failure. He was 71.

Known for his irreverent attitude, particularly his satiric and caustic observations on religion and language, Carlin was a popular counterculture figure.

He first came to national attention during the 1960s on "Laugh In", where he created such persona as the hippie-dippie weatherman. Carlin never lost his hippie sensibilities as he retained his beard and ponytail.

Carlin, who had a history of heart trouble, went into St. John's Health Center in Santa Monica on Sunday afternoon complaining of chest pain and died later that evening, said his publicist, Jeff Abraham. He had performed as recently as last weekend at the Orleans Casino and Hotel in Las Vegas.

Carlin was inducted into the Comedy Hall of Fame in 1994.

In 2004, Carlin was voted the No. 2 "Greatest Stand-up Comedian of All Time" by Comedy Central, behind Richard Pryor. He was the first host of "Saturday Night Live", on Oct. 11, 1975. He also hosted "SNL" in 1984. Subsequently, he was the first host on "Fridays", an "SNL"-type comedy show.

Over the course of his career, Carlin also perfected what is perhaps his best-known routine, "Seven Words You Can Never Say on Television." It was a spoof of censorship, a pet topic of his throughout the years.

A lawsuit filed after his 1972 arrest for performing "Seven Words You Can Never Use on Television" led to a 1978 Supreme Court decision supporting the right of the FCC to regulate the broadcast of inappropriate language on television. »

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Sarah Silverman in for 'Match Game'

20 June 2008 | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

Is Sarah Silverman the new Brett Somers? Could Norm MacDonald be the next Richard Dawson?

The comedians have signed on to be on the panel for TBS' updated "Match Game" pilot, shot this week in Los Angeles. Also taking seats are Super Dave Osborne (Bob Einstein), Kids in the Hall trouper Scott Thompson, Rashida Jones ("The Office") and Niecy Nash ("Reno 911!").

Andrew Daly ("Semi-Pro") is serving as host for the pilot, which is being executive produced by Robert Smigel of "Saturday Night Live" and Triumph the Insult Comic Dog fame.

The project, from FremantleMedia North America, was announced in March as part of the network's development slate, with TBS saying that it marks the network's biggest foray into game shows.

The original, which debuted in 1962, has had several incarnations in daytime and in the evening as a weekly syndicated show. "Match Game", featuring contestants trying to match missing words in a given phrase with a panel of celebrity guests, reached its naughty heyday with the Gene Rayburn-hosted version in the 1970s -- once the questions were tweaked to allow for a generous amount of double-entendre humor. »

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'Dancing' gives ABC big boost

23 April 2008 | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

ABC's Dancing With the Stars results show matched its season high Tuesday night and gave the network its best performance in the 9 p.m. time period in five months.

Dancing (17.5 million viewers, 4.0 preliminary rating among adults 18-49 and a 10 share) had the third-best rating in the demo for the night and was up 11% week-to-week. ABC aired two According to Jim episodes as a lead-in (4.2 million, 1.4/4) and Boston Legal at 10 p.m. (10.5 million, 2.8/8).

ABC came in third overall for the night, with Fox once again besting all competitors with American Idol (24 million, 8.8/24) and Hell's Kitchen (11.6 million, 5.1/13).

Kitchen bounced a couple notches to win the 9 p.m. hour. The uptick has seemingly halted the reality show's post-premiere ratings drops and was impressive considering that lead-in Idol was flat this week.

In third, NBC aired the season premiere of Most Outrageous Moments (4.2 million, 1.3/4), which came in last place in the hour among the major networks. A repeat of a Saturday Night Live primetime special provided a weak lead-in (3.9 million, 1.6/4) for "Law & Order: SVU" (11.5 million, 4.0/11) which nonetheless handily won the 10 p.m. »

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UTA partners move to Endeavor

6 April 2008 | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

In one of the biggest agent migrations in years, UTA partners Nick Stevens, Lisa Hallerman and Sharon Sheinwold are going to Endeavor.

The trio represent some of UTA's top talent, including comedy A-listers Ben Stiller, Judd Apatow, Owen Wilson and Jack Black as well as Jonah Hill, Patrick Dempsey, Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Jason Schwartzman and many of the current cast members on Saturday Night Live. It is not clear yet which clients will follow them to Endeavor, though Stiller already has said that he'll make the move and Black is expected to do so quickly.

"I think Nick Stevens is a unique entity in this business: an agent with integrity, a point of view and most of all humanity," Stiller said. "He's Jerry Maguire at the end of the movie. I would be with him if he was working out of the Sunglass Hut at the Beverly Center."

The latest defections, coupled with several other recent losses, are a blow to UTA that might well ricochet throughout the delicately balanced agency world.

Stevens, who has been at UTA almost since its beginning in 1991 and who has headed its talent department since 1995, was instrumental in making the agency a comedy powerhouse. »

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'Baby' due date: Tribeca opening night

6 March 2008 | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

NEW YORK -- The Tribeca Film Festival has tapped "Baby Mama", the ensemble comedy about fertility and family from a cadre of "Saturday Night Live" vets, as its opening-night film.

Tina Fey, Amy Poehler and Greg Kinnear star in the Universal film, which is directed by fellow SNL alum Michael McCullers, who also wrote several movies in the "Austin Powers" franchise. The movie centers on an upper-middle-class woman (Fey) who enlists a working-class woman (Poehler) as a surrogate mother when she realizes she can't have a baby.

Tribeca tends to like New York-themed films for its opening night -- "United 93", for instance, was the debut pic two years ago -- and "Mama" has a strong Gotham component through its SNL connection and New York location. Show's Lorne Michaels also serves as a producer. Fest chief Jane Rosenthal also has a production deal with Universal; she is not involved specifically on "Mama".

Tribeca, which kicks off April 23, has yet to announce the rest of its slate, including its tentpole-driven centerpiece selection. »

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Candidates switch on support

6 March 2008 | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

Is it a coincidence that Hillary Clinton's first primary victories in more than a month happened after her buzzworthy appearances on "Saturday Night Live" and "The Daily Show With Jon Stewart"?

Clinton's presidential campaign was all but written off after 11 straight primary losses, but her brief appearances on both shows, along with "SNL"'s sharp criticism of the press corps as being too light on Obama, has helped turn her campaign around and led to a greater scrutiny of her opponent.

"I think 'Saturday Night Live' will come up as a factor, large or small," NBC News anchor Brian Williams said on MSNBC on Wednesday. While no one's willing to say that Clinton's "SNL" appearance led to Clinton's victories in Texas and Ohio, it's clear that it had some kind of impact.

"We know something happened in the last three days of the campaign that put her over the top," said CNN political analyst Bill Schneider, who credits the "SNL" factor as one plausible explanation. Joe Trippi, former John Edwards campaign manager and now an analyst for CBS News, said Clinton's "SNL" and "Daily Show" moments extended well beyond TV and into the minds of primary voters.

"It's not just the millions who watch the shows," Trippi said. »

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'SNL' has highest rating in two years

25 February 2008 | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

The post-strike return of NBC's Saturday Night Live scored the show's highest overnight rating in two years.

 

Hosted by former "SNL" cast member/head writer Tina Fey and featuring Carrie Underwood as the musical guest, the show delivered a 6.1 rating/15 share in metered-market households -- the highest average since a Feb. 4, 2006 episode hosted by Steve Martin. That's also up 36% from the show's pre-strike average this season.

 

During the show, Mike Huckabee spoofed his ongoing quest for the Republican primary nomination. Appearing on the Weekend Update segment, he was asked why he stayed in the race despite the "mathematical impossibility" of winning.

 

"I'm not a math guy, I'm more of a miracle guy," Huckabee said. "So at this point I'm gonna focus on the miracle part. But if that miracle doesn't happen, let me assure the American people that Mike Huckabee does not overstay his welcome. When it's time to go, I'll know. I'll exit out with class and grace."

 

Huckabee then ignored repeated cues to leave the Update news desk. »

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15 items from 2008


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