“Glee” Star Matthew Morrison Says He Hopes There’s No Britney Episode. After reports that Britney Spears is in talks for an episode of her own on “Glee,” Mr. Schuester himself says he hopes it’s not true. Matthew Morrison doesn’t want to see the pop princess join the “Glee” club. ”That’s a rumor her manager started,” Morrison said when asked about it at the White House Correspondent’s Association Dinner red carpet. “I hope our show doesn’t go along that route.” Creator Ryan Murphy had already discussed the possibilities of a Britney episode following the success of the recent “The Power of Madonna” episode, which earned a #1 soundtrack and over 13 million viewers. “I’m interested in the Britney Spears idea,” Murphy told Entertainment Weekly. “I’ve always loved her. I’m entertaining it. I think young kids would like that.” Even cast members were getting in on the act of showing Britney love, with cast member Jenna Ushkowitz, who plays Tina on the show, calling Spears her “idol.” “Britney was my idol when I was growing up,” she said. “I have been waiting for a Britney song. I would die.” Meanwhile on the show, Morrison’s character Mr. Schuester still has yet to divorce wife Terri, made out with the coach of Vocal Adrenaline, shared his bed with Kristin Chenoweth’s April, and all while dating and nearly bedding guidance counselor Emma. We think Britney’s “Womanizer” would be a perfect choice for the girls to sing.
Tonight, an “American Idol” first, I believe: An onscreen arrest of a contestant. But is “Idol” still worth getting arrested over? Or having your old arrests be dragged out into the sunlight? I mean, let’s have some perspective: Guest judge Kristin Chenoweth couldn’t even be bothered to stick around for day 2 of the Orlando auditions, though all she missed was a teenage felon.
1. How long before TMZ or the Smoking Gun unearth Matt Lawrence’s presumably sealed criminal record?
2. How necessary is this article? There’s nothing particularly surprising or infuriating in it, but it’s important to have the show’s fabrication laid bare. (Also, kudos to Jackie Tohn, “Idol” Deep Throat.) (Actually, I completely take it back.)
3. Alleged finalist Janell Wheeler is no stranger to the news: Like that, Tim Tim? That Heisman getting lonely?
4. Have you heard Kristin Chenoweth’s Christmas album? Recommended.
5. Between Charity Vance and the Desimone sisters, what is it with home salons this season?
6. How excited will I be to see Jay Stone get eliminated in the first round of Hollywood week? The answer is: Extremely. If he makes the top 24, I’ll buy a (used) copy of “Heartbreak on Vinyl” and eat it.
7. (And apparently Blake Lewis taught Michelle Obama how to beatbox? So much worse than the Salahis.)
8. You want “Pants on the Ground”? Cornelius Edwards will give you pants on the ground.
9. Is it supposed to be meaningful to watch a dozen consecutive clips of rejected contestants crying when we never see why they’re upset?
Paula’s gone. Ellen’s coming. Is Simon going? (There’s singing, too!) American Idol enters its ninth season Tuesday (Fox, 8 ET/PT) with more focus on the musical-chairs judging panel than on the auditioners aspiring to pop stardom. Even if it temporarily distracts attention from the show’s hoped-for stars, all the chatter about judges — and that includes eight celebrity guest arbiters during the auditions — has created early and perhaps helpful buzz for a long-running series that has suffered some audience losses while remaining TV’s dominant ratings power. The departure of original judge Paula Abdul and the upcoming arrival of her successor, talk-show host and comedian Ellen DeGeneres, is Idol’s biggest change. Abdul, who tweeted goodbye last summer, will be replaced during the first four weeks of audition shows by celeb guests. The audition period opens in Boston on Tuesday with guest judge Victoria Beckham, followed by Atlanta on Wednesday with Mary J. Blige (8 p.m. ET/PT). Viewers will have to wait until Feb. 9 to see DeGeneres, who will join Simon Cowell, Randy Jackson and Kara DioGuardi during Idol’s Hollywood round. It’s more than a comedic part, DeGeneres says.”If there’s something funny, I think I’ll add humor to it. If it’s not funny, I’ll just talk about what I liked or didn’t like,” she says. “I’m going to be honest, and I’m going to be looking for somebody that’s special and hope people try to set themselves apart.” It could take longer to learn whether Idol will have to go on next year without the show’s biggest attraction: Cowell, whose deal expires after this season. Cowell was non-committal in an interview, although it sounds like he’s not done with the States regardless of his Idol future. In a podcast, his brother Tony said Cowell would leave Idol after this season to concentrate on bringing his British talent show, The X Factor, to the USA.Says Cowell, “I’ve had conversations — as you know, there’s been speculation for months and months. We are continuing to talk to Fox, but right now the focus is just about this (season), and we’ll see where we end up.”Whether I’m on it or off it, I promise you — and I really mean it — I think the show will flourish without me. I genuinely do,” he says. “I’m very grateful. I’ve had the best experience in my life since I’ve been on this show. I hadn’t spent that much time in America. I really like working in America. I like the American people, so I feel very at home there.”Abdul ‘was the heart’ The Abdul-DeGeneres judging change could refresh the show, especially if DeGeneres turns out to be a good sparring partner for Cowell, says Shari Anne Brill of media agency Carat. “I really don’t see (Abdul’s absence) impacting the show, as long as the judge dynamic is good,” she says. “Next year, if Simon isn’t there … then you’ll see a real decline in the show.” The departure of Abdul, who has been on Idol with Cowell, Jackson and host Ryan Seacrest from the start, marks the biggest change yet to a formula that has resulted in the decade’s most popular series. Judges and producers say Abdul, known for her unfailing empathy and wildly unpredictable nature, will be missed.”I look across the table and go, ‘Where’s my girl at?’ ” Jackson says. “You miss your good friend, but she’s off doing her thing.” DioGuardi, who joined last season, says she took on some of Abdul’s supportive role during the auditions, trying to buffer the blow for some of the poorer performers. The guest judges helped, too. The roster includes Beckham, Blige, Kristin Chenoweth, Neil Patrick Harris, Joe Jonas, Avril Lavigne, Katy Perry and Shania Twain. Abdul is “very nurturing,” DioGuardi says. “She was the heart, and I think I was very aware of that during the auditions. There were times when someone would get upset, and I wanted to make sure that was represented.”"It’s a different show without her,” Cowell says. “I’ve gone on record saying how close I am to Paula, even though w used to fight. I have to respect her decision, and then I have to get on with the job, but I missed her (during auditions). But, like we say, the show goes on.” That it does. And it will go on with DeGeneres, a proven comic performer and music lover who arrives with first-name familiarity and strong connections to the show. She hosted the 2007 fundraiser Idol Gives Back and frequently discusses the show and features Idol judges and performers on her weekday program. Jackson calls his fellow Louisianan “a pro and a cool, cool girl” and promises “we’ll sauce it up.” DioGuardi, who had to get used to being in Idol’s bright spotlight, says an established star like DeGeneres should have an easier adjustment. “I think she’s such a strong character,” DioGuardi says. “When you lose someone like Paula, you have to replace her with someone who’s loved, who’s respected, someone who’s been through so much in their life and come back only to conquer it all.” The chemistry of the panel, which has added new members in each of the past two seasons, remains to be seen, but DeGeneres is confident the quartet and Seacrest will make it work. “I’m a talk-show host, so I know how to make things comfortable and I can feel what chemistry is going on or the lack thereof. I think I’ll fit in. I know these people. It’s not like I never met them,” she says. “I think Kara is really more serious about it because she’s a songwriter. She takes it really seriously and comes from a different place. And Randy is Randy. He’s got his opinions. … I sometimes disagree with Randy a little bit more, but I like Randy. I think you kind of want us all to disagree, don’t you? The good news is we all like each other.” And Cowell? “Simon and I respect each other,” DeGeneres says. “He likes me, I like him. He’s really a genuinely sweet guy, (but) I think sometimes he does things maybe for shock value, and sometimes he’s a little insensitive. I’m going to call him on that, which I’ve done all along. I’ve said that on the air on my show and said it to his face.” About the singers Fan Clarke Brown of Anchorage thinks that DeGeneres will add a lot but that the show’s fortunes ultimately come down to the singers. “The stars of American Idol are not necessarily the people sitting behind that desk. The stars of American Idol are the kids who give their all every week. That’s what I like about it. I like helping make a star,” Brown says. Oh, yes, the singers. Judges promise the traditional mix of good, bad and ugly as thousands of auditioners hope to follow last year’s Kris Allen to victory — or perhaps runner-up Adam Lambert to controversial stardom.”There definitely were a few people that came in, and I never would have imagined they sounded like that. I was pleasantly surprised,” DioGuardi says. “When you look at someone like Adam, he has the personality, the presence, and that’s exactly what you got. Some people came in and shocked me — in a good way.”Jackson says he expected more Broadway-style singers this year after Lambert’s success.There’s one potential difference from the pasttwo years, in which guys took the top two spots. The women seem likely to pose more of a challenge this year. “We need a girl. Where the girls at? C’mon, girls, show up,” Jackson says. “There are some strong boys, but I think we’ve got some really strong girls. Hopefully a girl is going to show up and knock our socks off.” “So far, and these things change, it feels more like a girls’ year,” says executive producer Cecile Frot-Coutaz. She notes another interesting factor: younger singers who can barely remember a time without Idol. “A lot of them are 16-year-olds who have been watching since they were 8. They have been dying to come to audition.” As for the bad singers? “Inevitably, there were a ton of people who thought they were good and obviously weren’t and end up arguing with me, but that’s par for the course,” Cowell says. Structurally, the big change will take place in the semifinal round, where Idol will abandon last year’s 36-semifinalist format, which featured wild-card picks by the judges. The show will return to 24 semifinalists, 12 males and 12 females, to be determined solely by viewer votes. “The good thing about 36, it gives America a chance to vote on more people,” Frot-Coutaz says. “The downside is 36 is a lot of people to get to know. Due to the emotional engagement, you lose a little bit by doing 36. Where we came down on balance is we’re going to go with the emotional connection.” Cowell, not surprisingly, disagrees with the change. “I prefer the wild-card pick.” On a smaller matter, Frot-Coutaz says Fox plans to expand a couple of one-hour finalist shows to avoid a problem that occurred last year when there wasn’t enough time for each judge to critique each singer adequately. Idol remains TV’s most-watched show, with the Wednesday and Tuesday editions (26.9 million and 26.3 million, respectively) ranking first and second last season by a wide margin. But its combined average (26.6 million) was down 6% from Season 7, the third consecutive ratings drop since Season 5′s peak of 30.8 million. “It’s natural to lose viewers each year as a show ages,” Brill says. “Even though the numbers are down, they’re still the highest-rated shows. Even if it lost 2 million viewers, it’s going to still beat everyone up.” The show’s audience has grown older, too, with the median age of viewers rising 12 years since its inception, says Brad Adgate of Horizon Media. That means a comparatively greater loss of the younger viewers desired by advertisers. Even with viewer loss and talent changes, Idol remains that rare big-tent TV hit and is likely to endure, Jackson says.”Me, Simon, Ryan and Paula started the journey together, and you want the people whostarted the journey to complete it, but sometimes things don’t work out that way. But I think it’s going to be fine,” he says. “A show like this can go on for a long time. It may not go in the same iteration or may not be quite the same strength as always, but I think it can go on for a long time because it’s the best of these shows ever.” Cowell credits the talent pool. “America is one of those countries where you have a never-ending supply of talented people. So for that reason, the show could run literally for decades,” he says. “People only get bored when useless people show up, and I don’t think you’re going to have that problem in the States
Monday night FOX aired “American Idol” winner Carrie Underwood’s All-Star Holiday Special. The opening was Carrie’s current hit “Cowboy Casanova.” That’s fine because it’s her big hit right now. But Carrie was wearing a Sandy-from-Grease outfit (seriously, they probably had to sew her into it) and she was surrounded by all these beautifull male back-up dancers. My boyfriend remarked, “Is this Christmas in Heaven?” After the opening performances of “Cowboy Casanova” and “Before He Cheats,” Continue reading →
A little more than a month after Paula Abdul tendered her high-profile Twitter resignation as a judge on “American Idol,” Fox announced Wednesday that she was being replaced by one of the show’s biggest fans, comedian and talk-show host Ellen DeGeneres. The network’s five-year deal with DeGeneres puts to rest a major challenge facing Fox as the aging singing competition enters its ninth season in January: filling the shoes of the judge considered by many to be the heart of the show. DeGeneres, who has hosted the Oscars and the Emmys and was recently a guest judge on Fox’s “So You Think You Can Dance,” broke the news to her audience during a taping of “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” on Continue reading →
The 63rd Annual Tony Awards On the stage at New York City’s Radio City Music Hall. The three-hour ceremony will be broadcast live (ET/PT time delay) on the CBS Television Network from 8:00 – 11:00 p.m. Additional performances for the 63rd Annual Tony Awards® Telecast were announced today. Dolly Parton along with the cast of 9 to 5: The Musical; Elton John with the cast of Billy Elliot, The Musical; Liza Minnelli; Stockard Channing; and the band Poison along with the cast of Rock of Ages, will be taking the stage, joining previously announced performances by this year’s Tony-nominated Best Musicals and Best Musical Revivals, including: Billy Elliot, The Musical; Guys and Dolls; HAIR; Next to Normal; Pal Joey; Rock of Ages; Shrek the Musical; and West Side Story. Celebrating Broadway across America – this year’s Tony Telecast will also feature some of Broadway’s favorites who are currently touring cities across the United States – Jersey Boys, Legally Blonde The Musical and Mamma Mia! Becky Gulsvig, who is on tour as Elle Woods in Legally Blonde, The Musical, will perform a number from the hit show. The Jersey Boys performance will feature five current actors who are currently playing the role of Frankie Valli, in various performances – Joseph Leo Bwarie, representing the Toronto company; Rick Faugno, representing the Las Vegas company, Courter Simmons, representing the national tour and Dominic Scaglione, Jr. representing the Chicago company, will perform a number together from the show. Michelle Dawson, Kittra Wynn Coomer and Rachel Tyler, currently on stage, as the Three Dynamos at the Pioneer Center in Reno, Nevada will perform a number from Mamma Mia! Presenters for the 63rd Annual Tony Awards include, Lucie Arnaz, Kate Burton, Kristin Chenoweth, Jeff Daniels, Hope Davis, Edie Falco, Will Ferrell, Carrie Fisher, Jane Fonda, Hallie Foote, James Gandolfini, Lauren Graham, Colin Hanks, Marcia Gay Harden, Nicole Kidman, Anne Hathaway, Jessica Lange, Frank Langella, Angela Lansbury, Samantha Mathis, Audra McDonald, Lin-Manuel Miranda, David Hyde Pierce, Piper Perabo, Oliver Platt, Susan Sarandon, Kevin Spacey, John Stamos and Chandra Wilson. Hosted by Neil Patrick Harris, The Tony Awards will be broadcast live in HD, from Radio City Music Hall on CBS, Sunday, June 7th, 8:00 – 11:00 p.m. (ET/PT time delay). The 2009 Tony Awards are presented by the Broadway League and the American Theatre Wing. To view the live Tony Awards pre-telecast, featuring the Creative Arts Awards, please log onto www.TonyAwards.com at 7:00 p.m. (EST) on Sunday, June 7th. For the first time ever, fans in the New York area are invited to watch the Tony Awards simulcast in Times Square. Live from Radio City Music Hall, the Tony Awards will be simulcast on the Clearchannel Spectacolor HD Screen, from 7:00 p.m. – 11:00 p.m. and will feature the pre-telecast Creative Arts Awards and the Tony Awards broadcast. Seating will be provided in Duffy Square.
About Tony Awards
The 2009 Tonys are presented by The Broadway League and the American Theatre Wing. At The Broadway League, Nina Lannan is Chairman and Charlotte St. Martin is Executive Director. At the American Theatre Wing, Theodore S. Chapin is Chairman and Howard Sherman is Executive Director. For Tony Award Productions, Alan Wasser and Allan Williams of Alan Wasser Associates are the General Managers.
Ricky Kirshner and Glenn Weiss/White Cherry Entertainment are Executive Producers of the 2009 Tony Awards. Mr. Weiss will also serve as Director of the 2009 Tony Awards.
The official partners of the Tony Awards are Visa, the exclusive card accepted at
the Tony Awards; and IBM, which develops, designs, and hosts the official Tony Awards web site, www.TonyAwards.com.
The official supporters of the Tony Awards are Continental Airlines, the official airline of the Tony Awards; and Sprint, the official communications provider of the Tony Awards. The presenting sponsor of the Tony Awards Red Carpet is Audemars Piguet.
Promotional and media partners for the 2009 Tony Awards include USA Today, Van Wagner Communications, Clear Channel Spectacolor, Macy’s, TheaterMania.com, and BWYNOW (299669) The Mobile Way to Broadway.
The dancer-turned-actress Jennifer Morrison made her film debut in the movie “Intersection.” She has also starred in “Urban legends Final Cut” and “Mr. and Mrs. Smith,” but she currently has a role on the Fox drama “House.” The actress was born August 19, 1979, in Chicago and has dated co-star Jesses Spencer. An actress who first earned her critical laurels (and reeled in a substantial television fanbase) as Dr. Alison Cameron on the blockbuster medical drama House (2004), Jennifer Morrison grew up well outside the realm of Hollywood, in a middle-class family in the Chicago suburb of Arlington Heights, Illinois. As a preteen and teenager, Morrison entered showbusiness via modeling, appearing in innumerable print campaigns and gracing the cover of Sports Illustrated for Kids at one point; after wrapping up high school, she attended Loyola University as a theater major (reportedly graduating in only three years) and subsequently trained with the legendary Steppenwolf theatrical ensemble, onetime home to such stars as John Malkovich, Gary Sinise, and Glenne Headly. From there, Hollywood fame was merely a short leap away; by the time of her Loyola graduation, Morrison had already officially debuted onscreen, with a small part as the daughter of Richard Gere and Sharon Stone in the psychological drama Intersection (1994) and a more significant role as a missing girl who psychically haunts Kevin Bacon in the supernatural thriller Stir of Echoes (1999). Morrison signed for her first lead with a role that many felt unworthy of her talents and intelligence: that of Amy Mayfield, a young film student who gets in way over her head amid a thesis project on urban legends, in John Ottman’s slasher outing Urban Legends: The Final Cut (2000). Subsequent projects included Michael Davis’s teen-oriented romantic comedy 100 Women (2002), Casey La Scala’s teen comedy Grind (2003), and — as something of a nadir — the critically despised holiday gross-out fest Surviving Christmas (2004), in which she played Ben Affleck’s snotty girlfriend. As indicated, House represented Morrison’s breakthrough and the role that finally brought her public attention. The long-running Fox drama told of Dr. Gregory House (Hugh Laurie), a diagnostician with an astounding degree of medical knowledge and an absolute dearth of social skills. As Dr. Cameron (an immunologist with a not-so-secret crush on the physician), Morrison brought a much-needed dose of warmth and vulnerability to the series. Morrison subsequently made headlines in 2007, when she was tapped to appear as Winona Kirk, James T. Kirk’s mother, in J.J. Abrams’s much-anticipated 11th installment of the Star Trek series.
Take your pick and let us know below. Who is your favorite and why.
Alyssa Milano, Amanda Bynes, Angelina Jolie, AnnaLynne McCord, Anne Hathaway, April Bowlby, Ashley Tisdale, Britney Spears, Brooke Burke , Carmen Electra, Carrie Underwood, Catherine Bell, Charlize Theron, Christina Aguilera, Eva Larue,
Eva Longoria, Fergie, Gina Gershon, Hayden Panettiere, Heather Locklear, Heidi Montag, Helen Flanagan, Hilary Duff, Jane Krakowski,
Jennifer Aniston, Jennifer Love Hewitt, Jennifer Tilly, Jessica Alba, Jessica Beil, Jessica Simpson, Joanna Levesque, Julianne Hough,
Kaley Cuoco, Kate Beckinsale, Katharine McPhee, Katherine Heigl, Kelly Brook, Kim Kardashian, Kirsten Dunst, Kristen Bell, Kristin Cavallari, Kristin Chenoweth, Lindsay Lohan, Lisa Rinna, Lucy Pinder, Mariah Carey, Marisa Tomei, Megan Fox, Miley Cyrus, Minka Kelly,
Miranda Kerr, Monica Bellucci, Nadine Coyle, Pamela Anderson, Paris Hilton, Paula Abdul, Raquel Welch, Rose McGowan, Salma Hayek,
Sarah Palin, Scarlett Johansson, Shauna Sands, Shawn Johnson, Summer Glau, Tara Reid, Tina Fey, Tricia Helfer, Aishwarya Rai,
Ali Larter, Angelina Jolie, Cheryl Ladd, Christina Applegate, Courtney Thorne Smith, Danica Patrick, Farrah Fawcett, Gina Gershon,
Jaclyn Smith, Jaime Pressly, Jami Gertz, Jane Seymour, Jennifer Love Hewitt, Jennifer Morrison, Jennifer Tilly, Jessica Alba,
Joanna Garcia, Julia Louis Dreyfus, Kari Byron, Katie Couric, Lisa Rinna, Marin Hinkle, Michelle Ryan, Minka Kelly, Penelope Cruz ,
Salma Hayek, Valerie Bertinelli.
Any other suggestions? Let us know!