Deadline

Friday, October 25, 2002

ABC's 'Joe' brings up baby alone
Oct. 25, 2002 (Hollywood Reporter)

In the original concept, Touchstone TV's " Regular Joe" was to center on a soon-to-be empty nester (Daniel Stern) and his wife, who wind up raising their 18-year-old daughter's baby. When the pilot was picked up in July, network brass decided to recast the role of the wife, originally played by Lisa Ann Walter. After an extensive search for Mrs. Right, ABC's casting gurus came up empty-handed, so the producers decided to change the concept and make Stern a widower. (Nellie Andreeva)


What sense does that make? Is it really that hard to find someone to play his wife? Is he that good of an actor? The only TV success he’s had is doing voice-overs for "Wonder Years" and "Dilbert." He’s had two failed series -- one never made the air on UPN, and the other one was canned by CBS during the second commercial on the first episode. If anyone knows how it ended, let me know.

Lisa Ann Walter was so bad that she killed the character. They'd rather not have anyone than her. Was Ruth Buzzi not available?
I think they’re not hiring a wife because they know the show will be off the air really quickly and they want to save money on actors. They should light the show with office lamps and candles.

That’s what ABC needs, another show about a wacky father. Besides Ritter, Lopez, Belushi, and Wayans, they don’t have any.

"ABC: Our fathers love their kids, does yours?"

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CBS's Morning show debuts with four hosts on Monday.
'Early' rises to challenge Oct. 25, 2002
NEW YORK -- Although it remains a distant third in the national morning show derby behind NBC's "Today" and ABC's "Good Morning America," CBS' "Early" is a money-maker for the network. But many news executives -- inside and out of CBS -- feel that the launch of the new format Monday could be the division's last chance to save the show before CBS brass decide to give up and hand the weekday 7-9 a.m. slot back to its O&O and affiliate stations. The stakes are huge. Even after being buried in third place for more than 20 years, the show is estimated to earn $20 million-$40 million a year, which helps finance much of the news department's activities. (Andrew Grossman)


If the show is making money, then who cares? The 7-9 slot will just become a graveyard of syndicated talk shows and Matlock re-runs. But the stations themselves will get the money.

Although I applaud them for trying something different in the morning, why would adding more hosts help? Craig Kilborn said: "That’s what a sinking ship needs, four anchors." (Did I just quote Kilborn? Call a doctor.)

But why 4 anchors? Why do shows, when they are dying, add more hosts? If the audience hates two hosts, they’re gonna hate four just as much.
Plus, there's more hosts, but are they any good? One great person who people want to see can replace 100 shitty guys.

Why are they copying a low-rated show like "The View?" The show barely gets a million viewers. Their days are numbered as well. What can they do to boost the ratings? They can fire another host. Or fire Debbie again? Like David Lee Roth. That helped them last time. The whole host search was a real ratings grabber. But after they found a host, the ratings fell.

You can’t say it’s because the audience just wants a stunt.
When "Live! With Regis" looked for a new host, the ratings spiked up. When Kelly Ripa joined, the ratings climbed even more.

Maybe "The View" should add more hosts. Lisa Ann Walter is available.
As of 10/25/02 at 3:30 pm, the term "Jump the Shark" has jumped the shark.

Wednesday, October 23, 2002

Headlines:

The almost unseen TRIO channel bought the old Dave Letterman show.
That show was groundbreaking. It makes Letterman's new show seem as boring as Charlie Rose on mute (or not on mute).
You can ask almost anyone working in TV or comedy today and they will tell you that "Late Night with David Letterman" influenced them.

For me, of course, it was "Thicke of the Night" and "Rick Dees." Whatever happened to Johnny B? Stephanie Miller?
They are all rerun on the Bad Idea Network (BIN).
Reruns of "Joe Franklin" can be seen on the Paint Drying Channel (PDC).

E! re-ran the Letterman show a few years ago. It didn't work. But I think people are now pining for the great show. And TRIO is seen in, like, 2 homes, so how much ratings can they need for a show to be a hit?

Nothing has come close to that show, except for maybe "Late World with Zack" on VH1. Maybe TRIO should buy "Zack" too. VH1 has to be selling it cheap. VH1 could have a garage sale with all their failed shows from this year alone. If channels were department stores, VH1 would be the Costco -- failed TV shows for wholesale prices.

HBO picks up a second season of the "Wire."
What can they do now? That show's ending was pretty conclusive. Shit ended.
Same with (my favorite show) "The Shield." For whatever reason, they tied up the major story lines from that show as well. Both shows ran like great mini-series. It's like "V," but with better hair.

But if Jason and Michael Myers can get killed in every movie and still come back, then the drugs dealers can still evade the cops for another season.

Maybe next season they can add more women on both cop shows. Why was the only woman on "The Wire" a lesbian? If you suck cock, does it make you a bad cop?

Tuesday, October 22, 2002

Smoking Yenta. An actual letter from a Hollywood hot shot.

Gentlemen,

I've noticed a distinct lull in our brainstorming sessions for "UNTITLED MULTI-MILLION DOLLAR SUMMER BLOCKBUSTER".

I have Stanley Tucci's people calling daily looking for a script. I've kept them at bay, but it's only a matter of time before we are looking for another balding character actor to play our scientist with a heart of gold and a controversial belief (for the science world) in Christian Creationism. This character has debunked the Big Bang Theory and maintains his beliefs in miracles and other non-scientific Judeo-Christian ideologies. We haven't seen that character before -- have we?  I know it has all of Hollywood's Most Balding salivating -- Tony Shalhoub says he'll do it for scale. Dan Hedaya said he'll do it for his agent's fee. Gandolfini has lost 128 pounds for the role. Ed Harris said he'll do it for free under a pseudonym!

Ancient civilizations!  Globe-threatening plagues!  Action!  Adventure!  Romance!

I think we do need a monster of some sort -- an ugly one, too. Maybe it's one of these ancient guys brought back to life and he's all scaly and oozing and stuff? Nah. Maybe too "Mummy", or worse, "Mummy Returns", or even worse, "Scorpion King". Maybe we just stay high-brow? Everyone has an English accent!

Helena Bonham Carter is the love interest. The clean Helena Bonham, not the Fight Club version 3.ho.  Room with a View/Lady Jane-Helena. She still has to do a nude scene, though. Okay, maybe not a full nude scene -- implied nudity, we still want our PG ... okay, one quick boob flash and maybe a tushy peek while swimming in a lake in long shot -- PG-13s still do good box office (you show me a PG-13 movie not filled with 10- to 12-year-olds!).

Also, just for the record, JOEL SCHUMACHER is not allowed anywhere near this film!  He isn’t even allowed to see it in the theater when it is done!  If I see Schumacher near it, talking about it or even thinking about it -- me and Tucci are walking!

Now that that’s out of the way -- we have a hit on our hands, gents!  It’s smart, it’s scary, it could really happen and it has heart. On a serious tip (don’t tell Tucci or we’ll lose him), but Tucci isn’t our lead. The focus is on the two researchers played by real-life paramours Ryan Phillippe and Reese Witherspoon (that young lady could read a cereal box for five hours and I would watch it twice and two more times with DVD commentary). Phillippe (less annoying than DiCaprio and married to Reese Witherspoon) is still stuck in his snotty Connecticut (no offense Bethel) Fairfield WASP Cruel Intentions thing (kind of like the “Hoo-Hah!” Pacino), but a good director could break him of that.

And that director is soup du jour and Pacino tamer Christopher Nolan. Let’s make it spooky and smart without all the Hollywood glitz and Bruce Willis of M. Knight Shammalammadingdong. Plus Shamma… would put freaky kids in it -- what’s up with that dude and kids? He must have had his ass kicked on the playground?

Helena Bonham Carter as Tucci’s former wife and colleague (they have to be on the same government grant), Tucci in a career-defining Best Supporting Actor role and Witherspoon and Phillippe as young lovers with hot minds and hard bodies -- HIT!

You throw in gruff character actors like William DeVane, Brian Dennehy and John Savage as the (mix and match) angry general, concerned president or country-wise local sheriff.  Not to mention female scene-stealers Allison Janney and/or Christine Baranski as the bitch-on-wheels First Lady or tree-hugging environmentalist.

It’s gold.

So, let’s get cracking for real on this idea before the studios tap into the chip they've implanted in my brain at birth and suck out all the super cool ideas with their diabolical brain straw -- hmm, not a bad idea for a film.

Hugs and such,

The Cute One

(Found and submitted by FM DeMarco)
We are down until the weekend. I had to reboot the system.

We are also closed due to the loss of Arli$$ and Providence. It was too much for one Yenta to take.

Until then, check me out at www.unrealisticexpectations.com.
Yenta
tvtalk12@aol.com