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Happy New Year -- And Looking Ahead

By admin Published: December 31, 2011

I have, as should be obvious, taken a nice long holiday break. Will resume posting soon and have a number of things to talk about: Brian Kellow's biography of Pauline Kael, which was part of my holiday reading; Joan Didion's "Blue Nights," ditto; the movie "The Descendants," which I finally saw, and some odds and ends. I hope all of you have had a splendid late December and are ready for 2012.

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Talking to Russ Mitchell

By admin Published: December 21, 2011

Here's the story I wrote about the new WKYC anchor for tomorrow's Beacon Journal:

After close to 20 years at CBS News, anchor and reporter Russ Mitchell is going back to local TV.
Beginning Jan. 16, Mitchell will be managing editor for WKYC (Channel 3) and its lead anchor at 6 and 11 weeknights. He will do his last broadcast for CBS on Dec. 31.
Mitchell succeeds Romona Robinson, who ended a 14-year association with the Cleveland NBC affiliate earlier in December after she and the station could not agree on a new contract. But where Robinson had been a solo anchor in recent years, Mitchell will have an on-air partner to be named soon.
“I, for a while now, considered going back into local TV news,” said Mitchell by phone from a train bound from Washington, D.C., to his base in New York City. “I’ve been at the network for 20 years. It’s been a great ride, some incredible experiences, but I was ready to do something else.
“When I thought about local TV, I knew I wanted to go to a place that wanted to win, that had great people -- and it had to be in a community where I wanted to live, where I wanted my family to live.” He is married to Karina Mahtani-Mitchell, a freelance contributor of entertainment reports to CBS, who may also do some work for WKYC. They have four children, the oldest in college, the youngest age 4.
“I talked to a lot of local markets around the country, but when I talked to WKYC, it was clear to me, quite frankly, that it was a perfect fit for me,” Mitchell said.
He maintained that his move did not have to do with seeming declines in the importance of national broadcast news. “People have been talking about the decline of network news for years,” he said. “It’s still the big leagues. It’s still the place, in crisis, that people turn to. … This was a professional and personal decision for Russ Mitchell. …
“I was in local TV for 10 years before going to the network 20 years ago,” said Mitchell, who worked in his hometown of St. Louis, Dallas and Kansas City. “And over the years I’ve discovered that I’ve missed the buzz of a local newsroom. I was at WFAA (in Dallas) in the early ‘80s, which was a powerhouse operation, and that newsroom hummed.”
There will be off-camera adjustments. Mitchell said he had not settled on where to live. And his middle children, ages 16 and 13, will finish their school years in New York before coming west. And he faces the challenge of being managing editor of the WKYC news, which he said was already “a great product.”
He will be talking with news director Rita Andolsen and other staff “and see what direction they want to go in. I think, in talking to them, that they are committed to a solid news broadcast that is done in a professionally produced way, that gets the news right. And hopefully first, but right is more important.”
He will bring the experience of having learned from people he considers some of the best in the news business, such as Dan Rather and the late Ed Bradley. But he is also working in a changing news world, where social media like Facebook and Twitter are now part of the process.
“I am going to have to do more of that,” he said. “I’m on Facebook now. I have a personal page. I’ll probably get … a Facebook fan page that some people have. I’m on Twitter now. I don’t tweet very often. I’m gonna have to up my game as far as that goes. That’s very important. … I know that, going into a community and especially somebody like me who wants to become part of that community, I’m going to have to have an online presence.”
And there’s another challenge here: making news judgments, and talking about, a community where he has not lived.
“I think it’s going to be an organic process,” he said. “I’m still going to rely on the staff to help me out. And I’m going to study very hard to get to know the city of Cleveland. I think what that (managing editor) title says is that this guy is coming in and he’s going to be part of the editorial process. He’s not coming in just to read the news. He’s coming in to have a voice about our news product.
“I know that’s not easy, in terms of coming in and learning local pronunciations and those kinds of things,” he said. “I’m going to work very hard at that. I hope I don’t mangle too many of those. … And there’s a great staff there. I trust that they will keep me honest, and help me as well.”

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CBS's Russ Mitchell Joining WKYC

By admin Published: December 21, 2011

He will replace Romona Robinson.

Updated notes: Mitchell will have a co-anchor who is still in the process of being hired. Not clear if that co-anchor will be in place on Jan. 16, or if Mitchell will work with a fill-in or just go solo until the new co-anchor is in place.

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"To Kill a Mockingbird" 50th-Anniversary Video Set Coming 1/31

By admin Published: December 20, 2011

I love this movie (and the book). The official word:

To Kill a Mockingbird, one of the screen’s most beloved and critically acclaimed films, celebrates its 50thanniversary with a commemorative Limited Edition Collector’s Series Blu-ray™ Combo Pack as well as on Blu-ray™ Combo Pack and DVD from Universal Studios Home Entertainment on January 31, 2012. The powerful and poignant adaptation of Harper Lee’s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel hits the half-century mark, digitally remastered and fully restored from high resolution 35MM original film elements, plus more than three-and-a-half hours of bonus features chronicling the making of the cinematic masterpiece.

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Video: HeldenFiles Live!

By Dan Published: December 20, 2011

Pop culture writer Rich Heldenfels touts the latest in movies, books and home video releases

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Super Bowl, NBC Playoff Games to Stream Online and Verizon Phones

By admin Published: December 20, 2011

The official word: For the first time, Super Bowl, Pro Bowl and NBC’s Wild Card Saturday doubleheader will be available to fans on television, online and on select mobile phones, the NFL announced today. NBC’s postseason games will be broadcast on NBC as well as streamed live on NFL.com and NBCSports.com, and will be available on NFL Mobile only from Verizon. This marks the first time postseason games will be available in the U.S. via live online streaming and via a mobile app.

The live NFL.com and NBCSports.com coverage will come from NBC’s TV coverage of the games. Complementing that stream will be a number of extra features to enrich the viewing experience including additional camera angles, in-game highlights, live statistics and other interactive elements.

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"Martha Macy May Marlene" to Video 2/21/12

By admin Published: December 20, 2011

The official word: From 2011 Sundance Film Festival “Best Director” winner Sean Durkin, in his feature film debut, and featuring breakout star Elizabeth Olsen in her “Best Female Lead” Film Independent Spirit Award nominated role, MARTHA MARCY MAY MARLENE arrives on Blu-ray and DVD February 21 from Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment.

After escaping from a dangerous cult and the watchful eye of its charismatic leader, a young woman named Martha (Olsen) tries to reclaim a normal life with her family. But the haunting memories from Martha’s past trigger a chilling paranoia — and nowhere seems safe as the fragile line between her reality and delusions begin to blur.

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"High Road" With Helms, Caplan, Sanz to Video 3/6/12

By admin Published: December 20, 2011

The official word: Millennium Entertainment proudly announces the VOD, DVD and digital release of High Road, featuring an all-star cast and showcasing a totally improvised script. The comedy will be available on March 6th on VOD, DVD at an SRP of $28.99, Blu-ray at an SRP of $29.99, as well as digitally (iTunes).

Directed by Matt Walsh, a co-founding member of world-renowned comedy troupe Upright Citizens Brigade, High Road stars Lizzy Caplan (127 Hours, Hot Tub Time Machine, Mean Girls, "Party Down"), Abby Elliot (No Strings Attached, “Saturday Night Live”, “King of the Hill”), Ed Helms (The Hangover 1 & 2, Cedar Rapids, "The Office"), Rob Riggle (Going the Distance, The Other Guys, Killers, The Hangover), Horatio Sanz (Step Brothers, Year One, “Saturday Night Live”) and Zach Woods (The Other Guys, "The Office”). High Road is written by Walsh and Josh Weiner and produced by Kirk Roos, Matt Walsh and Inman Young. The film was executive produced by Jeff Schlossman and Erik Rommesmo.

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"Paranormal Activity 3" to Video 1/24/12

By admin Published: December 20, 2011

The official word: The record-breaking franchise that has terrified audiences around the world returns with the scariest story yet as PARANORMAL ACTIVITY 3 debuts on January 24, 2012 from Paramount Home Entertainment in a Blu-ray/DVD combo pack with UltraViolet™ and a Digital Copy. PARANORMAL ACTIVITY 3 will also be available On Demand. “Terrifying” (Time) with “heart-pounding scares” (BloodyDisgusting.com), PARANORMAL ACTIVITY 3 takes audiences back to where it all began with the masterminds behind the first two films returning to craft a hauntingly chilling follow up. Directed by Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman, the filmmakers who created the unsettling sensation Catfish, PARANORMAL ACTIVITY 3 achieved the biggest theatrical debut for a horror film ever, ultimately earning more than $200 million worldwide.

Arriving on January 24th, the PARANORMAL ACTIVITY 3 Blu-ray/DVD combo pack includes both the theatrical version of the film and an unrated version with footage not seen in theaters, as well as Lost Tapes that reveal more footage not seen in the film. In addition, all Blu-ray and DVD releases available for purchase will be enabled with UltraViolet, a new way to collect, access and enjoy movies. With UltraViolet, consumers can add movies to their digital collection in the cloud, and then stream or download them – safely and securely – to a variety of devices.

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Sunday Notebook

By admin Published: December 18, 2011

Good weekend so far. My younger son is home from Army training, giving us a chance to catch up after his being away nearly a year. Shopping efforts falling into place. More decorations around the house. And I had a few things for your amusement in today's Beacon Journal and on Ohio.com.

For starters, there's this meditation on how a younger generation is looking past vintage Christmas movies to adopt its own favorites.

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ABC Wraps "Home Edition" in January

By admin Published: December 15, 2011

The official word: The heart-tugging original feel-good series “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” concludes its 9th and final season on ABC with two episodes in January 2012, including its biggest-ever build -- the 200th episode, in which the team builds 7 homes in 7 days for tornado victims in Joplin, Missouri. The final two regularly scheduled episodes, ”Gibbs Family” and “Joplin, Missouri,” will air January 6 and January 13, respectively (8:00-10:00 p.m., ET), on the ABC Television Network. “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” will continue on ABC with specials after this season.

During its run, the quintessential feel-good reality show transformed the lives of thousands of deserving families and galvanized communities and businesses to help their neighbors in need. “EM:HE” also put a spotlight on causes that touched these families, ranging from the treatment of serious illnesses or accident victims and the importance of foster care and adoption, to helping veterans struggling with post-traumatic stress and the plight of the homeless, to campaigning against texting while driving and building coalitions to end bullying. Celebrities including First Lady Michelle Obama, Elton John, Robin Williams, Justin Bieber, Katy Perry, Keith Urban, Mariah Carey, Glenn Close, Tyler Perry, Mary J Blige, Carrie Underwood, David Duchovny, Kobe Bryant, Magic Johnson, Usher, KISS, Rihanna, Jessica Alba and Derek Jeter are among the many who “got on the bus” over the years to join the show. In addition, the series won multiple Emmys for Outstanding Reality Program, received six Emmy nominations, won two People’s Choice Awards and an NAACP Image Award, as well as many additional honors.

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And a Few Other Notes...

By admin Published: December 15, 2011

In case you missed it over at Ohio.com, here is my review of the new "Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows."

And here are some thoughts about the new "Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol." I saw this on an IMAX screen and it was very impressive. But writing about it, I felt compelled to explain what form I saw it in, since most people will not benefit from the fancier presentation (or will choose to avoid the premium price). That raises the old question here about explaining the field conditions under which movies are seen -- big theater, small, crowded, not, cold, hot, theater, DVD, streaming video, and so on. It does, after all, make a difference -- as the "Go Big or Go Home" movie-theater promos argue.

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'77-'78 "Logan's Run" to DVD 4/12

By admin Published: December 15, 2011

The official word: Experience a suspense-filled, futuristic run for survival – ‘70s style - as Warner Home Video (WHV) releases Logan’s Run: The Complete Series. Based on the original novel and popular film, the cult classic science-fiction television series comes to DVD for the first time on April 10, 2012. The 3-disc collector’s set includes all fourteen original episodes.

In the post-apocalyptic 24th century, the planet has been devastated by nuclear war and surviving communities exist in isolation. Citizens live in total bliss in the City of Domes until their 30th birthday, the date they are lured to an event called Carousel. They believe they might be renewed in a new form but instead they are executed. Not everyone accepts the propaganda and efforts to escape to Sanctuary, located outside of the city, are increasing. These “Runners” are hunted by Sandmen. Although he’s a Sandman, Logan begins to question if being renewed actually occurs and if the outside is truly uninhabitable. When Logan tries to capture Jessica, she fuels his doubts and he ultimately joins her in an attempt to find Sanctuary. When news spreads of Logan’s rebellion, Logan’s former partner is sent in pursuit of the pair as they make their way through an unfamiliar world.

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Strunk, White, Hip-Hop

By admin Published: December 15, 2011

All right, bad hip-hop. But you cannot imagine how much this made me smile:

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"Star Trek: TNG" Inches Toward Blu-ray

By admin Published: December 15, 2011

The official word: The beloved series “Star Trek: The Next Generation,” including all 178 episodes from the seven seasons, will be transferred to true high-definition for the first time ever on Blu-ray and eventual runs on television and digital platforms both domestically and internationally.

While the first full season won’t be available until later in 2012, CBS Home Entertainment is releasing “Star Trek: The Next Generation – The Next Level,” a single Blu-ray disc to give fans a taste of the series in HD, on January 31, 2012. The disc will include the feature-length pilot – “Encounter at Farpoint” – as well as two more “fan favorite” episodes, “The Inner Light” (Season 5) and “Sins of the Father” (Season 3). The single disc will be available for a suggested retail price of $21.99.

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Oh, NOW He Can Talk: "Cigarette Smoking Man" Has Memoir

By admin Published: December 15, 2011

"THE SMOKING MAN IS BACK WITH HIS MEMOIR!" said an email touting the book "Where There's Smoke" by William B. Davis, who played the Cigarette Smoking Man on "The X-Files." The book came out in October, but publicists never give up.

Added the note: "While the name William B. Davis may not be a household name, Davis certainly has a face that is instantly recognizable to millions of people worldwide as the Cigarette Smoking Man or 'Cancerman' in the hit television series The X-Files. His legions of fans worldwide continue to enjoy his guest appearances on shows such as Human Target, Capricia, and Supernatural. In his revealing memoir, WHERE THERE'S SMOKE: Musings of a Cigarette Smoking Man (December 2001, ECW), David details his life events leading up to his late in life success on THE X-Files and recounts how his character evolved over the course of the series of the show. He also provides plenty of humorous anecdotes and insider stories from the set, and dishes candidly about the show's famous co-stars Gillian Anderson and David Duchovny."

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FX Sets Russell Brand Late-Night Show

By admin Published: December 15, 2011

Aside from "Forgetting Sarah Marshall," I have not been amused by this guy. Oh, well. The official word: X has closed a deal with acclaimed actor/comedian Russell Brand for six half-hour installments of an unscripted late night series (untitled), which will debut in the spring of 2012, announced Nick Grad, Executive Vice President, Original Programming, FX.

These will feature Brand’s unvarnished, unfiltered take on current events, politics and pop culture. The six installments will be shot in front of a live audience and the format will draw heavily on interaction with that audience.

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Jerry Lewis "Jazz Singer" to DVD

By admin Published: December 15, 2011

The official word: Celebrating the extraordinary, 80-year career of an iconic show business legend, The Jazz Singer comes to DVD Feb. 7 from Inception Media Group. . . .

While the vast majority of Lewis’ extraordinary body of work is readily available, The Jazz Singer – a rare dramatic performance by Lewis, produced as a special for NBC’s Lincoln-Mercury Startime TV series – has never been rebroadcast or distributed in any home format since its original 1959 airing.

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More Awards Madness: Golden Globe Nominations

By admin Published: December 15, 2011

When I look at these lists, my head starts to explode. So I'll leave it at this: "Glee" but not "Community"?
The official list:

1. BEST MOTION PICTURE – DRAMA
a. THE DESCENDANTS
Ad Hominem Enterprises; Fox Searchlight Pictures
b. THE HELP
DreamWorks Pictures, Participant Media; Touchstone Pictures
c. HUGO
Paramount Pictures presents a GK Films Production; Paramount Pictures
d. THE IDES OF MARCH
Columbia Pictures, Cross Creek Pictures, Exclusive Media Group, Crystal City
Entertainment; Sony Pictures Releasing
e. MONEYBALL
Columbia Pictures; Sony Pictures Releasing International
f. WAR HORSE
DreamWorks Pictures; Touchstone Pictures

2. BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS IN A MOTION PICTURE – DRAMA
a. GLENN CLOSE ALBERT NOBBS
b. VIOLA DAVIS THE HELP
c. ROONEY MARA THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON
TATTOO
d. MERYL STREEP THE IRON LADY
e. TILDA SWINTON WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT KEVIN

3. BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR IN A MOTION PICTURE – DRAMA
a. GEORGE CLOONEY THE DESCENDANTS
b. LEONARDO DICAPRIO J. EDGAR
c. MICHAEL FASSBENDER SHAME
d. RYAN GOSLING THE IDES OF MARCH
e. BRAD PITT MONEYBALL

4. BEST MOTION PICTURE – COMEDY OR MUSICAL
a. 50/50
Summit Entertainment and Mandate Pictures; Summit Entertainment
b. THE ARTIST
a La Petite Reine – Studio 37 – La Classe Americaine – JD Prod- France3 Cinema -
Jouror Production-uFilms coproduction; The Weinstein Company
c. BRIDESMAIDS
Universal Pictures, Relativity Media, Apatow Productions; Universal Pictures
d. MIDNIGHT IN PARIS
A Mediapro, Versatil Cinema & Gravier Production; Sony Pictures Classics
e. MY WEEK WITH MARILYN
The Weinstein Company; The Weinstein Company

5. BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS IN A MOTION PICTURE – COMEDY OR
MUSICAL
a. JODIE FOSTER CARNAGE
b. CHARLIZE THERON YOUNG ADULT
c. KRISTEN WIIG BRIDESMAIDS
d. MICHELLE WILLIAMS MY WEEK WITH MARILYN
e. KATE WINSLET CARNAGE

6. BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR IN A MOTION PICTURE – COMEDY
OR MUSICAL
a. JEAN DUJARDIN THE ARTIST
b. BRENDAN GLEESON THE GUARD
c. JOSEPH GORDON-LEVITT 50/50
d. RYAN GOSLING CRAZY, STUPID, LOVE.
e. OWEN WILSON MIDNIGHT IN PARIS

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Cinematheque Sets Silent-Film Series

By admin Published: December 14, 2011

The official word: “Artists of the Silent Screen,” a film series showcasing some of the greatest talents of the silent era, will run from Jan. 7 through February 26 at the Cleveland Institute of Art Cinematheque, 11141 East Boulevard in University Circle. Among the 14 short and feature-length films to be shown are works directed by D.W. Griffith, Georges Méliès, Erich von Stroheim, Sergei Eisenstein, and Fritz Lang, and starring such luminaries as Charlie Chaplin, Buster Keaton, Gloria Swanson, John Gilbert, and Lillian Gish.

“Silent films are some of the greatest glories of world cinema,” says Cinematheque Director John Ewing. “With the new silent film THE ARTIST winning universal acclaim, the time seemed right to revive some of the authentic silent masterpieces from the first three decades of the last century.”

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SAG Awards Nominations

By admin Published: December 14, 2011

It's not that I dislike "Suits," but best actor in a drama series?
The awards air Jan. 29 on TNT.

The official list:
18th ANNUAL SCREEN ACTORS GUILD AWARDS® NOMINATIONS
THEATRICAL MOTION PICTURES

Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Leading Role
DEMIÁN BICHIR / Carlos Galindo - “A BETTER LIFE” (Summit Entertainment)
GEORGE CLOONEY / Matt King - "THE DESCENDANTS” (Fox Searchlight Pictures)
LEONARDO DiCAPRIO / J. Edgar Hoover - "J. EDGAR" (Warner Bros. Pictures)
JEAN DUJARDIN / George - "THE ARTIST" (The Weinstein Company)
BRAD PITT / Billy Beane - "MONEYBALL" (Columbia Pictures)

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"Dragon Tattoo" Opens 12/20

By admin Published: December 14, 2011

Local participating theaters include Regal Interstate Park 18, Cinemark Tinseltown and Regal Hudson.

The official word: Moviegoers will get a jump on one of the most highly-anticipated films of the season as The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo opens one day early beginning on December 20 at 7 p.m. nationwide, it was announced today by Jeff Blake, chairman, Worldwide Marketing and Distribution for Sony Pictures.

Commenting on the announcement, Blake said, “This is one of the busiest times of the year for moviegoing and we can't wait to share this outstanding thriller with audiences all over the world. We feel that by opening for night-time shows on December 20th, fans of the book will be given the perfect opportunity to get a jump start on the release of an exceptional film.”

In The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Academy Award®-nominated director David Fincher (The Social Network) uncoils the world of Stieg Larsson’s global blockbuster thriller on the screen. Within the story’s labyrinth lie murder, corruption, family secrets and the inner demons of the two unexpected partners chasing the truth of a 40-year-old mystery. Mikael Blomkvist (Daniel Craig) is a financial reporter determined to restore his honor after being convicted of libel. Engaged by one of Sweden’s wealthiest industrialists, Henrik Vanger (Academy Award® nominee Christopher Plummer), to get to the bottom of the long-ago disappearance of his beloved niece, Harriet – murdered, Vanger believes, by a member of his large family – the journalist heads to a remote island on the frozen Swedish coast, unaware of what awaits him. At the same time, Lisbeth Salander (Rooney Mara), an unusual but ingenious investigator with Milton Security, is hired to do a background check on Blomkvist, a job that ultimately leads to her joining Mikael in his investigation of who killed Harriet Vanger. Though Lisbeth shields herself from a world that has repeatedly betrayed her, her hacking skills and single-minded focus become invaluable. While Mikael goes face-to-face with the tight-lipped Vangers, Lisbeth plies the wired shadows. They begin to trace a chain of homicides from the past into the present, forging a fragile strand of trust even as they are pulled into the most savage currents of modern crime. The screenplay is by Steven Zaillian, based on the book by Stieg Larsson originally published by Norstedts. The producers are Scott Rudin, Ole Søndberg, Søren Stærmose, and Ceán Chaffin. The film is presented by Columbia Pictures and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures.

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Tracy McCool New Evening Anchor at WJW

By admin Published: December 13, 2011

She will succeed Stacey Bell on the 5 and 10 p.m. newscasts. McCool told me she takes the anchor chair on Jan. 2; she called the promotion "awesome." Full story for tomorrow's Beacon Journal.

No word on what will happen on the station's morning show, although Kristi Capel may add it to her duties. After the jump is an interview I did with McCool back in '05, covering her journey to WJW, away from it and back again.

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Chuck Lorre Talks Charlie Sheen in TV Guide 12/15

By admin Published: December 13, 2011

Highlights provided from the interview ...
On firing Charlie Sheen:
"The [studio and the network] chose to make a moral decision as opposed to a financial one. This was not a game. This was drug addiction writ large. This was big-time cocaine, and in his own words, an 'epic drug run' that could have ended with either his death or someone else's."

On giving Two and a Half Men an extreme makeover by bringing in a new star:
"I thought, why not find out if we can do it? If we failed, what have we failed at? Making a sitcom? Then it became exciting. We got to do something none of us ever dreamed of doing: We got to end a series and start a new series in 20 minutes."

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Doris Day Interview in Parade

By admin Published: December 13, 2011

The official word: Good morning,
The December 25 issue of PARADE features a rare interview with legendary singer and actress Doris Day, who recently released a new album, My Heart. ...

Here are some highlights:

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Friday Notebook

By admin Published: December 9, 2011

This and that:

Recommended: "Appropriate Adult" on Sundance on Saturday night. Dominic West and Emily Watson star in this drama based on a real-life serial killer played with horrifying skill by "The Wire's" West. Watson is an "appropriate adult" assigned to cases where the accused is believed to be limited mentally; she begins to focus more and more on getting the killer to confess all his crimes. But nothing in this case proves simple. Harrowing but constantly watchable. Should also appeal to fans of the "Red Riding" films. You can read more about the case and the controversy around the film here. But you may want to wait until after seeing the film to read about it, since some info may be a spoiler for the movie itself.

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Thursday Notebook: Channel 8's Football Schedule Juggle, Alec Baldwin, More

By admin Published: December 8, 2011

In case you missed it, WJW is carrying the Browns-Steelers game tonight, which means that "X Factor" and "Bones" will be delayed. "X Factor" will air immediately after the game ends, whenever that will be. More details on the station's plans are here.

I noted the passing of Dobie Gray here and in my latest video. Also in the news, the death of Howard Tate, another fine singer. (Janis Joplin covered his "Get It While You Can.") Here's some Tate for you:

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Harry Morgan, R.I.P.

By admin Published: December 7, 2011

The New York Times obit is here. Morgan was 96.

His major claim to fame was playing Sherman Potter on "MASH," but Morgan's career went long before (and after) that series. He was the sort of character actor who could do anything, was not demanding of screen time, but could steal just about any scene if he chose to.

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Music Notes: Rock Hall Inductions, Dobie Gray Passes

By admin Published: December 7, 2011

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame has announced its 2012 inductees for a ceremony to be held in Cleveland. The new members include Beastie Boys, Donovan, Guns 'N Roses, Laura Nyro, Red Hot Chili Peppers and the aggregate Small Faces/Faces as performers; Freddie King as an early influence, Don Kirshner as non-performer and, under the award for musical excellence, Tom Dowd, Glyn Johns and Cosimo Matassa. See the link above for more info and be aware that Tom Dowd, for one, is a god. Update: I have posted the Rock Hall's bios of the new inductees after the jump.

Some vintage Small Faces:

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For Your Video-Buying Information: "The Help"

By admin Published: December 6, 2011

Also on video today is "The Help," which I liked very much. If you are thinking about buying it, here's my review of the movie. From the Akron Beacon Journal, Aug. 10, 2011:

The Help is a powerful and intelligent drama about two women, maids in Jackson, Miss., in the early '60s. In fact, I wish it told us more of their stories, and less about the third major character, a young would-be writer in the same community.
In saying that, I know that I am entering the complicated racial territory surrounding Kathryn Stockett's novel, which is the basis for the movie. And I want to be clear that the movie is, overall, very good, the kind that will draw tears and laughs and even some cheers. But because the novel, like the movie, tells the story of African-American women at least partly through the filter of a white character, it runs the risk of being seen as yet another diminishing of the African-American experience in favor of the white point of view. And The Help on-screen suggests that once again Hollywood does not believe a mass audience will go to a movie without at least one key white character — in this case the writer Skeeter (played by Emma Stone).
But The Help does not entirely fall into that trap because the two African-Americans, Aibileen (Viola Davis) and Minny (Octavia Spencer), are powerful in their own right. Questioning the novel in Entertainment Weekly, novelist Martha Southgate said Minny and Aibileen "didn't need Skeeter to guide them to the light." The film very much understands that. The white characters are changed by the African-American ones far more than the other way around.

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For Your Video-Buying Information: A Look Back at "The Hangover Part II"

By admin Published: December 6, 2011

The sequel to "The Hangover" is on video today, so I am posting my review of the movie when it reached theaters. From the Akron Beacon Journal, May 26, 2011:

The Hangover Part II is a sluggish sequel of the comedy hit The Hangover, an attempt to recreate the magic of the 2009 comedy smash by basically making the same movie over again.

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Fox Sets Mid-Season Lineup

By admin Published: December 2, 2011

By the way, the network also noted that "I Hate My Teenage Daughter," "Bones" and "Glee" will be back in the spring.

The official word: FOX is announcing 2011-2012 midseason premiere dates for new and returning series, including the return of AMERICAN IDOL; the debuts of new dramas TOUCH, ALCATRAZ and THE FINDER; and the launch of new animated series NAPOLEON DYNAMITE.

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Black Keys Set Second Colbert Visit

By admin Published: December 2, 2011

The official word: Stephen Colbert and The Colbert Nation will be rockin' out to the infectious rhythms of The Black Keys when the band appears on "The Colbert Report" on Tuesday, December 6 at 11:30 p.m. ET/PT. The band will perform their newest single, "Lonely Boy," in support of the release of their latest album El Camino. In addition to "Lonely Boy," the band will perform a second song, "Gold on the Ceiling," that will be available for viewing exclusively at www.ColbertNation.com.

The Black Keys appearance on "The Colbert Report" coincides with the release of their newest album, El Camino, which is produced by Danger Mouse and The Black Keys and will be released nationwide by Nonesuch Records the same day as their appearance on COMEDY CENTRAL. In advance of the release, five tracks from the new album are currently streaming on The Black Keys Web site at www.theblackkeys.com.

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