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Thursday notebook

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 26, 2014

In today's Beacon Journal, you can find the mailbag and my chat with Gary Owen, the comedian and actor who has been seen in movies like "Think Like a Man, Too," and "Ride Along." The story focuses on Owen's comments about Cleveland and LeBron James, because that's a big story right now. But I could also have included his talking about his friendship with actor-comedian Kevin Hart, who is huge right now. So here, as a bonus quote, is Owen talking about Hart.

"I've known Kevin since '98. .. I remember a time when we could go to Starbucks and just get some lattes and nobody would bother us. Now we're on set, it's great, it's Kevin, but as soon as we walk off set and we try to go to Starbucks  .. (the reaction is so big) you can't get your latte," he said with a laugh. "In my mind, i'm like, it's just Kevin, why you guys trippin'? You know what I mean? I understand the picture taking and everything, but really, you're going to pass out? ...

"I tell you, I worked with Eddie Murphy on 'Daddy Day Care,' I worked with Jamie Foxx on 'Held Up,' and when I worked with those guys, in my mind they were already Eddie Murphy and Jamie Foxx. like I was, whoaaa. But Kevin, I still don't look at him like Kevin Hart, multi-whatever, a huge star. ... To me, he's still Kev."

By the way, myOwen story says he will be at the Improv through Sunday. He's there tonight through Saturday. You can get more ticket info here.

I have a phone interview today around the same time that USA-Germany starts. So I am already asking for forgiveness if my questions include an occasional "Yes!" "Get the ball out of there!" and "C'mon ref!"

Having pounded "Rising Star" last Sunday with an extra telecast of "America's Got Talent," NBC will attack the ABC show again this Sunday with a special "Last Comic Standing." That's a lot of work to take down "RS" when its premiere gave viewers no good reason to come back for more. OK, Ludacris was amusing. But that's not enough to watch two hours of so-so singing and noisy effects.

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