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HARDLY WORTH BLOGGING ABOUT
Here's a fab list - the 20 worst toy makeovers. You'll hate to see what they've done to your childhood favorites.

On an otherwise hideous stretch of over commercialized boulevard sits a charming stone house that may have belonged to a silent era movie star. From the article in the Greensboro (NC) News & Record: "She says it’s not legend but fact that a former silent screen star lived there. She remembers the woman only by one name, Pagnotta or Pegnotta. An Internet search of those names turned up nothing." Any ideas? Pola Negri came to mind but she retired to Texas in the 1960s and died in 1987.

Speaking of small towns in North Carolina where obscure movie stars retired, this political film was shot in the place where I went to college. I think Salisbury, NC only had about 50,000 residents at the time of Sidney Blackmer's death in 1972. You may remember him as the coven leader in Rosemary's Baby, he had a distinguished career in motion pictures and on Broadway. The first McDonald's opened in Salisbury in the late-1970s!

The 8th Annual Stony Awards were handed out by High Times magazine (that's still around?) and the big winners were Spiderman's James Franco, and One Tree Hill's Danneel Harris who won the Stoner and Stonette of the Year titles. Pineapple Express won for Best Comedy, Weeds for Best TV Show (who would have guessed), The Wackness for Best Drama, and Super High Me won Best Documentary.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008 - 8:14am
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YOU TUBING CHER
Lily Tomlin as Ernestine gossips with Cher from the Cher show.

Cher takes questions from the audience on The Mike Douglas Show.

Monday, September 29, 2008 - 11:59am
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SUNDAY STUFF
Sorry for the light blogging - I've had nothing to say!

As expected, FOX has cancelled Do Not Disturb, the first fall fatality.

Barrack Hussein Obama (aka Bamm Bamm) came to my back yard yesterday. In that spirit, you must watch this important video before making your choice for president next month.

Bravo will be airing reruns of the critically acclaimed Swingtown.

Despite Universal's legal wrangling, a judge has ruled that Project Runway can not move from Bravo to Lifetime. Production is already ramping up for season 6.

From last night's SNL: Judy Grimes - She is totally just kidding...

Here's the skit everyone will be talking about:

Sunday, September 28, 2008 - 8:23am
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TV & DVD NEWS
Bonnie Hunt TV Show ContestToday Bonnie Hunt welcomes Diane Lane and Richard Gere from the new film, Nights in Rodanthe. Diane and Richard will talk about how it was working together for the first time in 24 years, and Bonnie will tell how you can win a trip to the Outer Banks of North Carolina where the film was shot. Just log on to www.bonniehunt.com and enter to win. Also enter the TVparty contest for a chance to win a fab Bonnie Hunt Show prize pack!

How I Met Your Mother Season Three arrives on DVD on October 7th from Fox Home Entertainment. With hilarious special guest appearances including pop star Britney Spears, supermodel Heidi Klum, Mandy Moore, Enrique Iglesias and Sarah Chalke (“Scrubs”), the three-disc DVD collection includes all 20 episodes from season three plus bonus features including an unrated gag reel, Lily & Marshall’s honeymoon videos, Robin Sparkles music video, cast favorites featurette & select episode commentaries by the cast & show creators and more.
Sandcastles in the Sand video (pt. 1) - Quicktime / Windows Media
Sandcastles in the Sand video (pt. 2) - Quicktime / Windows Media

Broadcast television will have 16 gay and bisexual regular characters in prime-time series this fall, more than double the seven of a year ago, a new study has found.

Robert Wagner has come forward with the story of his romance with Barbara Stanwyck.

The premiere episode of Heroes this fall was down a whopping 25% over last year's opener. Ratings are up 28% for The Daily Show over last year at this time.

Numbers for the daytime version of Deal or No Deal - a pretty good show by the way - are very strong, it's the highest-rated new syndicated show this fall.

Don Rickles answers questions backstage at the Emmy Awards.

Another radio / television legend returns to the big screen - Walt Disney Studios and Jerry Bruckheimer's production of The Lone Ranger will star Johnny Depp as Tonto. Personally, The Lone Ranger and Green Hornet never thrilled me, they're third tier characters producers turn to when the good superheroes are all taken. Who's next, The Shadow? Doc Savage?

AMC is giving viewers a chance to catch up on their critically-acclaimed original dramas with marathons of the acclaimed series Mad Men and Breaking Bad airing today, Thursday, September 25th and Wednesday, October 1st, respectively.

Enjoy Hole in the Wall on Fox? It probably won't be around much longer.

The CW has ordered a full season of Smallville.

My Name is Earl Season Three hits the streets September 30th, 5 days after the new season debuts on NBC. Season Three of the Emmy-award winning series follows Earl’s (Inmate 28307-016) adventures back in prison as he attempts to survive from the inside.
Earl Clip 1: Quicktime / Windows Media
Earl Clip 2: Quicktime / Windows Media
Earl Clip 3: Quicktime / Windows Media

This guy sounds a lot like the Letterman I used to watch:

Thursday, September 25, 2008 - 4:44am
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BLOG RERUN
I was going through some old stuff and ran across this ad illustrated by the legendary comic artist Neal Adams. He did a number of these clever ads for Popov in the mid-1970s. (Click on the image to see a larger version.)

Neal Adams Popov ad

I remember one day I was working at Seiniger Advertising in West Hollywood when an announcement came over the intercom - "Neal Adams, please call reception." I was floored! Neal Adams was here? I was a huge fan of his work growing up. Sure enough, there he was upstairs at a desk, drawing away for some movie poster idea or another.

I spoke with him briefly, the set about to school the art directors on just who Neal Adams was. He re-invented Batman, upended the entire comic book industry, Green Lantern / Green Arrow, National Lampoon comic parodies, on and on.

A couple of days later, he had a ton of work from our agency and was back working from his studio, with assistants. I remember he did some mind-blowing color sketches for Star Trek 5 - I am kicking myself for not keeping copies of those small, beautiful works of art. As I recall someone swiped the originals or they were lost, hopefully the artist got them back.

TV blogBut here's an amazing thing - take a look at this ad on the other side of the page:

You could actually get a full lunch for 99 cents in 1975! A rib eye lunch for $1.29? Talk about inflation... and as I recall, the food was pretty good at the Ponderosa.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008 - 11:34am
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DON'T MISS THIS

Hellboy 2 Director Guillermo Del Toro talks about Rod Serling and the classic series Night Gallery on the Internet radio show TV Time Machine hosted by TV historian Jim Benson.

On TV Time Machine, Guillermo Del Toro gives his most comprehensive interview ever about his lifelong passion for Rod Serling's Night Gallery and his admiration for the show's most prolific director, Jeannot Szwarc.

In the early 1970's while growing up in Mexico, the series had a profound impact on Del Toro. The Academy Award-nominated director reveals the fact on TV Time Machine that the series has served as an inspiration for his remarkable film career.

"Night Gallery is a seminal work in my life," says Del Toro. "If you look at the movies I do, there's always a little something of Night Gallery. I first started noticing filmic style watching the show. It has informed Pan's Labyrinth, The Devil's Backbone, and basically everything else. For my generation, it was more Night Gallery than The Twilight Zone."

On TV Time Machine, Guillermo Del Toro discusses his esteem for creator Rod Serling and his favorite Night Gallery episodes and moments. Del Toro also explores director Jeannot Szwarc's remarkable contribution to Rod Serling's Night Gallery. Mr. Szwarc directed many of the finest episodes of the series, including the classic segment, The Caterpillar-hailed by Stephen King as one of the most frightening TV episodes ever.

"At the time we had an idea that it was special," says Szwarc. "The amazing thing about Night Gallery is that because of the quality of the material, it attracted casts that were unbelievable. Laurence Harvey had never done television before and he said ‘yes' to doing The Caterpillar, based on the script. Geraldine Page agreed to do the episode Sins of the Fathers, because of the material."

Jeannot Szwarc helmed twenty-two episodes of Night Gallery, more than any other director. A veteran of forty years in the industry, his credits include such films as Jaws 2, Supergirl, and Somewhere in Time. Szwarc has also directed over one-hundred TV episodes for such shows as Columbo, Kojak, The Practice, Jag, Boston Legal, Smallville, Without a Trace, Cold Case, Bones and Heroes.

One of the entertainment industry's top talents, Guillermo Del Toro has directed, written and produced over a dozen films including Cronos, The Devil's Backbone, Hellboy, Hellboy 2, Blade II, and the Academy Award-winning Pan's Labyrinth. Del Toro is also slated to write and direct The Hobbit and The Hobbit 2 with writer/producer Peter Jackson, to be released in 2011 and 2012, respectively.

TV Time Machine host Jim Benson has interviewed a multitude of legendary TV celebrities, authors and experts of all stripes on his Internet radio program, covering shows ranging from Mr. Ed to Meet the Press and topics such as Technology on TV and TV's Turning Points. A TV historian for over twenty-five years, Mr. Benson has contributed to dozens of TV productions- including a recent appearance on Penn & Teller's Bullshit!, and is a Historical Consultant on Universal Studios' DVD release of Rod Serling's Night Gallery: Season Two. He is the co-author, with Scott Skelton, of the book Rod Serling's Night Gallery: An After-Hours Tour, published by Syracuse University Press.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008 - 9:34am
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