Tag Archives: Hollywood

Apple of my eye

As Hollywood couples go, Kristen Bell and Dax Shephard are the coolest.

Both are really funny on-screen, and if you follow them on Twitter, you get a feeling they crack each up other at home as well.

‘Cause they don’t take themselves too seriously.  Appear to live fairly simply.  Love their daughter and their dogs.

Then they go and make this commercial —

They’re not in the Apple cult!

I love them so much right now.

Mini celebs

I’ve been big on awards shows since I was a little thing.

Had an acceptance speech ready. Practiced it in the bathroom mirror. Updated it each year as people made (and fell off) the list.

But there was never something like Toddlewood around…

I might have lost my mind.

GG 2014

Toddlewood allows little kids to dress up — in exquisite detail — as their favorite Hollywood celebs. New York photographer Tricia Messeroux began turning small fry into celebrity look-a-likes in 2008, and now her portfolio numbers over 100.

The red carpet shots and movie posters that she has recreated with little kids totally creep me out. But when I think of how excited I would have been at that age…

I’m confident my mom would have said NO.

Call back

If you’ve auditioned for anything in New York City — and I have — you’ve met your fair share of casting directors. Their personalities and policies vary, but their power is undeniable.

Or it is today.

casting byThe 2012 HBO documentary Casting By, which I caught OnDemand earlier this week, was an eye-opener on the history of the director/casting director relationship in Hollywood.

The credits for casting directors that you have probably grown used to seeing on movies were extremely hard earned, and were greatly debated on films past.

And have you noticed there is no Oscar for Best Casting…although the Academy gives awards for other director-approved elements like Editing and Cinematography?

Whichever side you land on in the debate, the film will get you thinking…and no doubt respect even more the work casting directors do.

Most Annoying Celebrity Rag

You know how some TV show plot lines are ‘ripped from the headlines?’ I’ve decided People magazine rips theirs from any handy movie premiere calendar.

Easier than workin.’

people gwynethTake their latest World’s Most Beautiful Woman issue featuring Gwyneth Paltrow.

Gwyneth is lovely — I’ll give you that.  But the most beautiful woman in the world?  Of all the choices in Hollywood and around the globe?

In the words of Jerry Seinfeld — speaking to his young son outside my brownstone one Saturday afternoon —

“Probably not.”

But it is far simpler — isn’t it People editorial staff — to crown Ms. Paltrow?   She has Iron Man 3 coming out in a theatre near you…plus, your rival Star magazine just named her Most Hated Celebrity (which is probably more accurate).

Your advertisers are happy!  Moms her age are happy!  And Star has been put in its place.

Who cares if it isn’t true?

My boys

Over drinks in Dallas last night, my friend Karen asked who were my favorite young actors in Hollywood.  Easy question for a girl who spends most weekends at the theatre, right?

I drew a blank.

I mean, I could name one or two…but a Top Ten?  That required more sober consideration.

So now I present — in no particular order (because that makes my brain hurt) — my Young-ish Actors Hall of Fame;

  • Ryan Gosling
  • James McAvoy
  • Michael Fassbender
  • Ryan Reynolds
  • Paul Rudd
  • Adam Scott
  • Daniel Radcliffe
  • Robert Pattinson
  • Joseph Gordon-Levitt
  • Hugh Dancy

Actually, now that I look at it, the first three on the list — Gosling, Fassbender and McAvoy — would be my Top Three.  As in I will see them in anything they do.  And am rarely disappointed.

So, there you go, Karen.

Next question?

Rocked

I saw a movie yesterday in the theater and didn’t have snacks.

Blasphemy, I know.

But 127 Hours didn’t seem like a nachos kinda film.  So much has been written about the gross-out factor of Danny Boyle’s latest effort.  It may have been nominated for six Academy Awards including Best Picture, but much of the media attention has focused on the audience reaction.

People passing out in their seats.  Vomiting in the aisles.  Staggering out of the cineplex, mentally scarred for life.

Popcorn didn’t seem prudent.

Nevertheless, I bravely walked into the theater, a super-sized Diet Coke my only comfort, and watched the film.  When it was over, I wished I could take off a few arms myself — of the folks who wrote those misleading, alarmist statements!

The bloodshed in 127 Hours is no worse than what you’ve seen in any number of Hollywood action films, and it lasts about 90 seconds.  Tarentino fans no doubt will find it lame.  It was harder for me to watch James Franco’s face as he made the agonizing decision to cut off his own arm as his only means of survival.

Sure, it’s a bit gutty, but you can always turn away if need be.  But that one scene does not set the tone for the entire film.

127 Hours is spiritual and inspiring — the soul searching exploration of a man wrestling between the acceptance of a certain death and his will to survive.

I almost didn’t see 127 Hours because I thought it would make me sick.  If someone else misses it for the same reason, I would feel even worse.

Uh huh

Dakota Fanning was crowned Homecoming Queen at Campbell Hall in North Hollywood on Saturday.

Isn’t that sweet?

The child star of “I Am Sam” and “Man on Fire,” who now plays vampire killer Jane in the “Twilight” saga, is keeping it real by attending regular high school, cheerleading, and making homecoming court for the second year in a row, this time as queen.

Or, at least, that’s how the media is trying to spin it.

I don’t mean to be cynical.  But put yourself in the place of the other girls in the running for Homecoming Queen at her school.

Do we seriously think Dakota’s acting career has no impact on her popularity in high school?  That her repeat appearance on the court isn’t the teeniest bit a function of her celebrity?

Granted, it could go both ways.  Some people might vote for her simply because she’s an actor.  Others might vote against her.  But I would guess, combined with the votes of her real friends, she would normally come out on top.

It is a lovely idea, though.  The child actor, returning home, living a ‘normal’ life between movies.  But the Internet and television and magazines are everywhere.  Dakota can’t ever truly hide from her fame.  And goodness knows the public can’t, even when we try.

So when the media itself tries to sell the fairy tale, it lands with an especially loud thud.

Red handed

What does the color red mean to you?

If you look it up, red is associated with “energy, war, danger, strength, power, determination as well as passion, desire, and love.”

That’s a whole lotta meaning.

I like the way the color red pops.  You can put it against any other color, and it takes center stage.  That’s why it’s all over my apartment.  (I’m sure someone could psychoanalyze that to death.)

Well, today the color red is in the news, because celebrity jailbird Lindsay Lohan has returned to her original red hair now that she is out of rehab.  Her PR team has recommended the move to help signal to Hollywood that she is back and serious about her career.

Really?  All that from red hair?  I think that’s kinda hilarious.  Sure, red is a power color, and I think Lindsay looks good as a red head.  (I could be a bit biased in that area.)

But is Lindsay’s hair really the problem here?  Was being a platinum blond the driving force behind her bad behavior on and off the set?

I think we need to do a study on this.  It could be big.  It could change the entire landscape of the hair color industry.  Heck, if would mean some colors — like red — could rise to the top, and others fall away forever.

Just like Lindsay’s career.

Big wind

So, I’ve been perusing the celebrity gossip sites today (so you don’t have to), and there’s a new breeze blowing across the land.

Remember how you had to be thin to make it in Hollywood?

Now, you’re pretty much hated if you are.

Take Sarah Jessica Parker.  She’s sporting these muscle-only arms of late…and folks are having a field day.  Not admiring the lack of flab or anything like that.

They are pretty much grossed out.

And then there’s Tina Fey.  She’s been everywhere of late.  “30 Rock” is the sitcom of the moment.  Her movie “Date Night” with Steve Carell won the weekend box office.  She hosted a hilarious episode of “Saturday Night Live.”

She’s also been sexing it up on all her magazine covers and even the photo bumps in Saturday’s SNL.  But people want the frumpy Tina back…not this new, thin, mega-styled, air-brushed version.

Part of me applauds this grassroots call for real women to have real bodies.  Whether or not Hollywood will respond is another thing altogether.

But I have to wonder: would any of these people calling for normalcy — if placed in the same position — be able to resist becoming a bit plastic themselves?

Heck, if I achieved stardom — if money was no object — I’m pretty sure I would find it hard to resist a bit of de-frumping.

Who am I kidding?  I wouldn’t even put up a fight.

Imitation nation

Imitation is the most sincere form of flattery.

And in Hollywood, it’s the best way to make a buck.

Alcon Entertainment was as surprised as anyone by the enormous box office success of “The Blind Side,” which has raked in over $210 million to date.  Add to that Golden Globe and Screen Actors Guild Award nominations for Sandra Bullock as Best Actress.

Not too shabby.

No doubt studio executives and their minions are scrambling to find scripts or, indeed, any projects they might already have in the can that would strike a similar chord with the audience.

The winner to the starting gate?  CBS Films with the January 22nd release of “Extraordinary Measures,” starring Brendan Fraser and Harrison Ford.

Let’s see how it stacks up.

True story?  √

Involves children in crisis?  Even more so.  This film has two children…and they are dying of an incurable disease.  √ √

Happy ending?  If you are going to put us through a story about dying children, there had better be.  √

Big stars?  Harrison Ford big enough for you?  √

I think we have a winner!

Note — “Extraordinary Measures” was one of the first CBS Films placed in production after it was established in 2007.  Try as I might, I couldn’t find out when it was actually completed, though.  Who knows?  The success of “The Blind Side” may have given it new life.

Isn’t that (sniff) the most amazing (sniff sniff) story ever??