NO PEOPLE LIKE SHOW PEOPLE: She was mentored by Margaret Atwood, and talent clearly runs in her family. So I guess we shouldn’t be surprised that it was standing room only last week at the Gladstone when
HATHAWAY: on Broadway
Lauren Kirshner launched her first novel, Where We Have To Go. Her big sister, actress Mia Kirshner, was on hand to lead the cheers… your CBC boyfriend George Stroumboulopoulos spent Sunday chilling with Angelo Tsarouchas at the Greek Film Festival at the Egyptian Theatre in L.A., then followed up with a Mexican-Indian fusion feast at Cowboys & Turbans (seriously!) with Russell Peters … count Kirstie Alley as a major non-fan of headline-grabbing cyber-gossip Perez Hilton. “HEY PEREZ,” she tweets, “I hear you filed a $25,000 lawsuit against the guy who bopped you. I’ll pay you 30 grand if you let me pop you in the other eye! “ … latest conquest for skyrocketing screen siren Anne Hathaway: Broadway. She’s currently on stage winning raves with four-time Tony winner Audra McDonald and gifted matinee idol Raul Esparza in Daniel Sullivan’s new production of
CARD: renaissance man
Twelfth Night … and add Rick Mercer to Bruce Dow’s burgeoning list of fans. Mercer caught Dow lighting up the stage at Stratford last week in A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Forum and laughed myself sick. He is one funny guy. Brilliant!”
WILD CARD: Actor-writer Liam Card is currently experiencing a one-man renaissance and enjoying every minute of it. He’s currently working with his literary agent Chris Bucci on his first novel, Paradise, Mich., a wonderfully quirky premise that I won’t give away here. But he’s even more excited about his first screenplay, Textuality, which is tentatively scheduled to shoot this fall under the Strident Films production banner he co-founded with producer Marc Rigaux. In Card’s screen scenario Jason Lewis, better known to millions of women as
LEWIS: textually challenged?
Kim Cattrall’s boy toy Smith in Sex And The City, will co-star with Carly Pope (so good in Young People Fucking) as a guy who gets romantically detoured by his own text messages. Card has also written a nice supporting part for himself, as Lewis’ best friend. Set to direct is another Card player, Warren Sonoda, who made a splash last September at TIFF with Cooper’s Camera and who also directed Card in Puck Hogs, a new comedy scheduled to open later this year.
Stay tuned. There’s bound to be more to come.
BORAT WAS SO 20006: Yes, that’s the tagline on ads for Bruno, the new ‘reality comedy’ created and relentlessly promoted by Sacha Baron Cohen. Publicity generated by his outlandish premieres in London, Paris and Madrid and the stunningly stunned bogus ‘photo shoot’ candids has been truly eye-catching and, strategically speaking, among the best we’ve ever witnessed. The new comedy should have a huge July 10 opening weekend, but it will be interesting to see how it fares after that. Especially when many of us thought we’d already seen Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson do this act in Zoolander. (Hey, I’m just sayin’…) Meanwhile, opening the film in Europe first has provided a big box office cushion for Bruno, just in case the make-believe gay supermodel ends up needing one. And yes, you’re right, I shouldn’t take liberties with the film by abbreviating its title. The film’s full name — in Europe, at least – is Bruno: Delicious Journeys Through America for the Purpose of Making Heterosexual Males Visibly Uncomfortable in the Presence of a Gay Foreigner in a Mesh T-Shirt. To see the Approved trailer, click here. To see the Restricted trailer – yes, there really is a Restricted trailer for Mature Audiences Only – click here. But be warned: If you thought Borat was outrageous, you ain’t seen nothin’ yet!
COLOR ME PLAID: Remember when Toronto audiences fell in love with Forever Plaid? Prepare to swoon again, and soon. The critically acclaimed off-Broadway musical will return for one night only at select Cineplex cinemas on Thursday July 9, and Cineplex is making a night of it with a LIVE red carpet appearance, an introduction by the original cast with special celebrity guests, and a pre-taped 20th Anniversary performance of the musical, starring members of the original Off-Broadway cast. The event will conclude with a LIVE performance by The Plaids who will perform numbers never before sung in the show, a mix of swinging standards and more contemporary songs. Can you imagine How Much Is That Doggie In The Window? juxtaposed with Who Let the Dogs Out? Me neither. And there’s even a bouncing ball sing-a-long in the works.
Should be quite a night!
Posted in Actors, Authors, BOOKS, Gossip, Movies, Music, SHOW BUSINESS, Showbuzz, Stars, Television, Theatre
Tagged A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Forum, Angelo Tsarouchas, Anne Hathaway, Audra McDonald, BEN STILLER, Borat, Bruce Dow, Bruno, CARLY POPE, CHRIS BUCCI, Cineplex, Cooper's Camera, Daniel Sullivan, Egyptian Theatre, Forever Plaid, GEORGE STROUMBOULOPOULOS, Greek Film Festival, How Much Is That Doggie In The Window?, Jason Lewis, Kim Cattrall, KIRSTIE ALLEY, Lauren Kirshner, LIAM CARD, Los Angeles, Marc Rigaux, MARGARET ATWOOD, Mich., OWEN WILSON, Paradise, PEREZ HILTON, Puck Hogs, Raul Esparza, RICK MERCER, RUSSELL PETERS, Sacha Baron Cohen, Sex And The City, Stratford Festival, Strident Films, Textuality, The Plaids, TIFF, Twelfth Night, Warren Sonoda, Where We Have To Go., Who Let the Dogs Out?, Young People Fucking, Zoolander
Here’s some good news — Ken Finkleman is brushing off his Smith-Corona again. The creator of The Newsroom, Foolish Hearts and so many of my
FINKLEMAN: first novel
favourite series has signed a deal with Harper Canada for his first novel, Noah’s Crime, about the murder of a literary rival by an unemployed TV writer. Ken’s literary agent Chris Bucci of Anne McDermid Associates describes the novel as “a darkly comic cross between Martin Amis’ The Information and Dostoyevsky’s Crime And Punishment.” Sounds like pure Finkleman to me. Hope he kept the movie rights for himself. Meanwhile, his legions of television aficionados can rest easy – Ken also has a new TV series in the works, this time for TMN … always-innovative superChef Jamie Kennedy has a new treat in store for Friday night diners at his Gardiner Museum oasis. He’s pairing some spectacular new dishes with spectacularly smooth Balvenie scotch
STEWART: dining out
whiskey. Among the VIPs sampling both at a by-invitation-only soiree this week were Newfoundland scotch connoisseurs Rick Mercer, Seamus O’Regan and Gordon Pinsent … guess that verbal dust-up with Billy Bob whatzisname didn’t do him any harm, because my spies tell me Jian Ghomeshi’s daily show Q is currently earning the highest ratings of any show in the history of CBC Radio … Kirstie Alley wonders when TV “got so degraded.” She remembers when Cheers and Seinfeld were ‘cutting edge.’ “Now the edge is a talentless tongue!”… and Martha Stewart reports from New York that the once-vibrant Plaza Hotel is coming back to life. “Great stores on lower level, lots of tourists,” she told her tweeple earlier this week. Martha tried out the hotel’s new Oak Room restaurant, recently redesigned by Annabelle Selldorf, and said her dinner was very good. “The desserts,” she added, “were extra good!” A devoted shopper herself, La Stewart spent yesterday shooting all-star commercials for Macy’s with Mariah Carey, Usher, Queen Latifah, Tommy Hilfiger and Donald Trump, to name more than a few.
GOING DIGITAL FOR A SONG: “Our patrons are passionate and loyal, and we wanted to make sure we delivered on their expectation and with every interaction they have with the COC.”
GHOMESHI: making history
So says Alexander Neef, General Director of the Canadian Opera Company, which has now launched its new and improved website where visitors “can expect the same quality from our digital experience that we demonstrate with our productions in our beautiful opera house.” New features include a behind-the-scenes look at the making of the COC’s production of Madama Butterfly; an historical timeline highlighting company milestones with commemorative photos, posters, interviews and audio and video excerpts; COC podcasts featuring musical excerpts and video highlights of select operas and exclusive artist interviews; and a blog by Neef himself, who shares his thoughts on COC productions and artists and encourages visitors to ask questions. To see for yourself, click here.
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY: “You can’t get mad at weather because weather’s not about you. Apply that lesson to most other aspects of life.”
The speaker? National treasure Doug Coupland, sharing wise words on twitter.
NO BUSINESS LIKE SHOW BUSINESS: They tried it last year for the first time and it was a hit. So the Just For Laughs Comedy Conference (July 23 – 25) is back. For more info click here … only in Canada, you say? Only in Montreal, we
RIVERS: salute to Ed
say. Just For Laughs veterans Mike Ward, Max Martin and Derek Seguin are “taking da henglish to da west hiland for Canada Day.” Yes, the fearless trio of comics are set to perform their acquired-tasteful French Comedy Bastards act on July 1 at Bourbon Street West … after 14 seasons with the National Ballet of Canada, resident Lighting Designer Christopher Dennis will join the Metropolitan Opera in New York City next month … 300 lay-offs at My Space, plus the collapse of Quebec’s top TV format company Distraction, reminds us that it’s still tough sledding out there … curious about the new story-based Captain Eyeliner podcasts produced and hosted by Nobu Adilman? To find out more, click here … and Joan Rivers paid tribute to Ed McMahon on The View yesterday. When Johnny Carson refused to speak to her after she left The Tonight Show to try her luck at Fox, and instructed everyone connected with his show not to speak to or fraternize with her, Ed McMahon would spot her in a restaurant and come over to say hello. “He was always, always a gentleman.”
Now that’s class.
Posted in Actors, Authors, Ballet, BOOKS, Gossip, Movies, Music, Opera, SHOW BUSINESS, Showbuzz, Stars, Television
Tagged ALEXANDER NEEF, ANNABELLE SELLDORF, Anne McDermid Associates, BILLY BOB THORNTON, Canadian Opera Company, Captain Eyeliner, CBC Radio, Cheers, CHRIS BUCCI, CHRISTOPHER DENNIS, Crime And Punishment, DEREK SEGUIN, Distraction, DONALD TRUMP, DOSTOYEVSKY, DOUGLAS COUPLAND, ED McMAHON, French Comedy Bastards, GORDON PINSENT, Harper Canada., JAMIE KENNEDY, Jamie Kennedy @ The Gardiner, JIAN GHOMESHI, JOAN RIVERS, JOHNNY CARSON, Just For Laughs, KEN FINKEMAN, KIRSTIE ALLEY, Macy's, Madama Butterfly, MARIAH CAREY, MARTHA STEWART, MARTIN AMIS, MAX MARTIN, Metropolitan Opera, MIKE WARD, My Space, National Ballet Of Canada, New York, New York City, Noah's Crime, NOBU ADILMAN, Plaza Hotel, Q, QUEEN LATIFAH, RICK MERCER, SEAMUS O'REGAN, Seinfeld, The Balvenie, The Information, TMN, TOMMY HILFIGER, USHER
TUBE TALK: Bravo! is making the most of Canadian celebs next season with two new original weekly series. Mamma Mia and Les Miz showstopper Louise Pitre is hosting Star Portraits, which combines portrait-painting with
biography. And The Great Canadian Bio-Series promises in-depth individual biographies of Canadians who have made a difference, including Glenn Gould, Yousuf Karsh, Ian Tyson and Gordon Pinsent … P. Diddy comes to MuchMusic with two new reality series, Making His Band and Starmaker, while Diddy’s predecessor, MC Hammer, joins the MuchMoreMusic line-up with Hammertime … new series for Family Channel include a half-hour comedy series from Temple Street Productions. Created by former Dead Troll In A Baggie troupe member Frank van Keeken, Angel on Campus is a live-action comedy series about a devil-may-care16-year-old Angel-In-Training who hopes to get his wings by turning the class loser into the most popular kid at school … and CP24 is going all out to give their predecessor, citytv’s Breakfast Television, a run for its ratings, with original BT host Ann Rohmer anchoring the news channel’s daily 3½ hour morning show.
QUOTABLE QUOTES: “I’ve been listening to Taylor Swift. I think she knows more about life than I do. She certainly knows more about having rad hair.”
The speaker? Oscar winning screenwriter Diablo Cody (Juno,) on Twitter.
SORRY, WRONG NUMBER: They measure TV, so why not cell phones? And the results are in: 21
21 percent of Canadian mobile consumers using their mobile phones to browse the Web and access their e-mail accounts, according to Nielsen Online, a division of The Nielsen Company. Windows Live Mail was the No. 1 website accessed on a mobile phone in Q1 2009, with 1.4 million unique visitors. Google Search (850,000), Facebook (784,000), The Weather Network (674,000) and Yahoo! Mail (652,000) rounded out the top five. The Weather Network was the only Canadian broadcast or specialty service website listed in the Top Ten.
Nielsen is the first third party audience measurement company to release findings specific to the Canadian mobile market.
HOUSE CALLS FOR KIRSTIE: The unsinkable Kirstie Alley still works with a trainer who makes house calls. And when she twitters to her more than 40,000 Tweet Peas (her phrase, not mine,) she clearly prefers stream-of-consciousness to regular new-fashioned streaming.
“I need to work on technique … I love weight training … HELL, I AM SUCH A LIAR …thus, I need (a) helper … I DO love water training. Heated up my pool and am going to put on two sets of sweats and run in the pool … tremendous resistance … no impact … I actually do love weights … I trained with them daily from age 8 to 16 … then off and on … love to work arms… ”
She pauses to mention that she will be eating lunch in half-hour with a “really hot Italian guy … too young for me … anyone want him?”
Caring and sharing. That’s our Ms Alley.
Posted in Actors, Gossip, Music, SHOW BUSINESS, Showbuzz, Stars, Television
Tagged Angel On Campus, ANN ROHMER, Breakfast Tewlevision, citytv, CP24, DIABLO CODY, Facebook, FRANK VAN KEEKEN, GLENN GOULD, Google Search, GORDON PINSENT, Hammertime, IAN TYSON, Juno, KIRSTIE ALLEY, Les Miz, LOUISE PITRE, Making His Band, Mamma Mia, MC HAMMER, Nielsen Online, P. DIDDY, Star Portraits, Starmaker, TAYLOR SWIFT, The Great Canadian Bio-Series, The Weather Network, Three Dead Trolls In A Baggie, TWITTER, Windows Live Mail, Yahoo! Mail, YOUSUF KARSH
I’VE GOT A CRUSH ON YOU: Twitterbug Kirstie Alley admittedly gets crushes like crazy. Two weeks ago it was Jamie Foxx. Her new swoon? Violinist David Garrett. “Mr. Foxx is on the back burner today,” she confided last week
GARRETT: Kirstie crush
to her more than 40,000 Twitter followers. “Hottie violin player on front burner … boiling …” But she’s also an ardent admirer one of television’s true Golden Girls, Mary Tyler Moore alumnus Betty White. “I want to be Betty White when I grow up,” Kirstie insists. “I love her!” … which reminds me, Sandra Bullock and Ryan Reynolds clearly had a lot of fun shooting their new romantic comedy The Proposal, and it shows. The plot involves a transplanted Canadian boss who forces an American underling into a marriage to avoid being deported from the U.S. The inside joke is, Hollywood screen queen Bullock plays the Canadian boss and Canadian heartthrob Reynolds plays her harassed American assistant. Funnier still is the ‘secret’ out-take they manufactured to promote the movie on Will Ferrell’s
WHITE: friction causer?
Funny Or Die website, in which they both royally send themselves up as spoiled movie stars. Why did Kirstie’s crush on Betty White remind me of Sandra & Ryan? Because Betty is the cause of the fictitious friction between the two stars on the set in their sly rehearsed romp for Ferrell fanatics. To see for yourself, just click here.
GUESS YOU HAD TO BE THERE: Okay, last night was not the Tony’s finest hour. Granted all the stars gathered at Radio City Music Hall seemed to love that overblown musical opener, but despite Elton, Dolly and Liza it was mostly a train wreck on television. Camera direction was disastrous most of the night, as were persistent audio problems. New musicals were well represented but new dramas were given alarmningly short shrift
What was good about it? The Tony win for David Alvarez, Trent Kowalik and Kiril Kulish, who continue to make Billy Elliot, The Musical the ongoing talk of the town. And, as predicted here Friday, Tony host Neil Patrick Harris’ clever closing number was almost worth wading through the three (!!!) hours preceding it, which he so masterfully sent up. And despite this flawed smorgasbord showcase, I can’t wait to get back to Broadway to see some of these great shows. George & Ira Gershwin wrote, I like New York in June / how about you? Over the years I’ve been there every month of the calendar year, and still can’t find a time or a season when I don’t love New York. So take a few days to lick your wounds, Tony TV producers, and then go back to the drawing board and fix it. And in just case you’ve forgotten: Yes You Can.
NO PEOPLE LIKE SHOW PEOPLE: Gorgeous Natalie Portman makes her directorial and writing debut behind the camera directing Lauren Bacall, Olivia Thirlby and Ben Gazzara in Eve, one of the ‘hot tickets’ for the Canadian Film Centre’s upcoming Worldwide Short Film Festival June 16-21. For more info on the WSSS line-up, click here … Tragically Hip icon Gord Downie narrates Mongrel Media’s dazzling new doc, Waterlife, about the future of the Great Lakes, a gift enjoyed by 35 million North Americans that may not be able to continue giving if we don’t change our corporate ways. Want a sneak preview? Click here … Maggie Cassella’s much-anticipated new series The Vent premieres June 28 on Out TV and on the web at http://www.getoutthevent.com. La Cassella will host a Vent launch party – an
RIVERS: stand up
official Gay Pride event — on Sunday June 21 at Buddies in Bad Times Theatre and will preview the series’ first episode, Celebutantes, at the party. Sounds like fun … and speaking of Pride, Joan Rivers, who championed AIDS victims and fund-raised for research long before it became fashionable to do so, is set to do two shows on Thursday June 25 at off-Broadway’s Gramercy Theater, at East 23rd Street and Lexington Avenue, timed to coincide with New York City’s annual Gay Pride Week. The historic venue had been transformed into an intimate nightclub for Rivers’ show, with cabaret tables in the orchestra section, a full bar and waiter service. Her opening act? Rising indie drag band She-Dick. (And no, I’m not making that up.) Tickets are $25-$125 with net proceeds going to Rivers’ favorite charities: God’s Love We Deliver and Guide Dogs for the Blind.
TOMORROW: Catching up with Anne Murray.
Posted in Actors, Gossip, Movies, Music, SHOW BUSINESS, Showbuzz, Stars, Television, Theatre
Tagged 2009 Tony Awards, BEN GAZZARA, BETTY WHITE, BROADWAY, Buddies In Bad Times, Canadian Film Centre, Celebutantes, DOLLY PARTON, Elton John, Eve, Gay Pride, God's Love We Deliver, GORD DOWNIE, Gramercy Theater, Guide Dogs for the Blind., JAMIE FOXX, JOAN RIVERS, KIRSTIE ALLEY, LAUREN BACALL, Liza Minnelli, MAGGIE CASSELLA, MARY TYLER MOORE, Mongrel Media, NATALIE PORTMAN, NEIL PATRICK HARRIS, OLIVIA THIRLBY, RYAN REYNOLDS, SANDRA BULLOCK, SHE-DICK, The Proposal, The Vent, Tragically Hip, Waterlife, Worldwide Short Film Festival