Deadline

Monday, October 27, 2003

I wish I had The Daily Show's PR person. Every year, around Emmy time, there's tons of press saying the Weekend Update rip off is the great thing since air.

It's really insane the great press they get. It's a funny show, with great writers and a Peabody Award. But Jeez!

Entertainment Weakling, the premiere fickle news sorce, just did a cover story on the overated host, Jon Stewart. Stewart is funny, the show is good, but enough already. Why not write about something new, like "Tough Crowd," or "Pardon the Interuption?"

The EW Droolictle*, talked of all the important things that the show brings. They even said that Stewart was so smart, but he's also not in your face about it. Yeah, like that douch Kissinger? The example they gave regarding his high inteligence is that he made an old TV reference. HUH? They took a stupid coment and found a way to make him sound smart. He's so smart, he makes retared references to cover it. That's how smart he is.

What pissed me off the most is where they say that he's the best thing in late night and that when his contract is up in two years, Conan, Stillborn, and Kimmel should look out.

Why this is the stupidest argument:

1) Stewart was up for all three late night shows and lost all three to the current hosts. Remember how bad Conan was when he started? Well, NBC chose to have that crap on over Stewart.

2) Conan's ratings are high and he books A list celebs. Is you don't believe me, just read EW a couple of weeks ago when they were drooling over him.

3) Kilburn, has good ratings and makes money for the network

3) Kimmel not only recently beat out Stewart in a head to competition for the spot, he has been picked up for a second year and beats Stillborn in only 7 months of being on the air.

4) Stewart HAD a late night talk show, and it bombed. They cancelled it and replaced it with Stephanie Miller! She sucks so bad, I challenge even EW to write something glowing about her.

Stewart is on cable and getting good ratings for cable. He's proven a million times that he can't carry a late night talk show. Why write that he can? Why not chose something else he can't do? "Stewart would be the greatest astronaut if they just fired those qualified guys and put in the short comic. While we're at it, the Lakers should fire Shaq and put in the funny man."

The next step for Stewart? I think he should stay there and take over for Larry King on CNN when he retires. Also, Comedy Central should take advantage of their sister syndication company, Paramount, and sell a weekend chat show version. NBCE made some good money with a syndicated Chris Mathews show.


F-EW. They'd write something nice about Sadam if he were promoting a new sitcom.

*An article that does nothing but praise the subject.

Wednesday, October 15, 2003

Home Movie on DVD

They say now with technology and such, anyone can make a movie. That's both a good and bad thing.

What I hate is this "I'm going to make an independat film! F Hollywood crap." Most films are independat. If I shoot a home movie of my cousin's baseball game, that's independant? Making an independant film is not nessarily a sign of something good. It's just a signal to the viewer that the movie is probly about two inept bank robbers, someone who wants in or out of the mafia, high school kids who become gangsters, and my favorite, a dead hooker and no one wants to go to the police.

It also means that the film doesn't has the burdon of profession top of the line, sound, lighting, acting, and editing. Say what you will about Sweat November, but I heard every world Keanue mumbled.

This age of digital is supposed ot be a big thing too. Just because a movie is shot on High 8 or DV, doesn't make it better than a film shot on film. Two movies that I think were great on comercial DV were the "Original Famous Rays King of Comedy" and "Bamboozeled," both by Spike Lee, who appearently is not crazy about the Jews. He might not be smart about biting the hand that feeds you, but he was smart enough to higher great camera people and lit the movies correctly.

I might be wong, but I think both times Lee chose video for finacial reasons. Not art. If he keeps blasting the Jews, he'll be shooting his next film with a pin hole camera.


At Yenta Hall I got a DVD for "Bar Fighter." The box looked like one of those Girls Gone Wild/Too hot For TV type things, so I quickly put it in my DVD player.
The Box is filled with quotes like, "Reality meets insanity," and "We guarantee that it's not the usual Fake Hollywood Bulls**t!"

Well it isn't, because it couldn't.

A camera guy, his buddy, Jack and Jack's girlfriend are desperate to make it as actors in Hollywood. As they point out the odds are very against them. So what they plan to do is say “F.U!” to those Hollywood jerks that won't let them be in their movies, let alone get an audition, by making their own movie.

So without the burden of a script, a director, or a boom, they decide to send Jack out to bars and pick fights with people. They think by filming this, it will get the attention of those Hollywood a**holes and make them famous.

The best thing they did was film everything and they got a lawyer who told them to get releases from everyone. That's on film too.

Along the way they meet a hot crazy lesbian who'll do anything, a dwarf who can magically pee on cue and on people, peeing and another cameramen who stated that this was the funniest movie he worked on all year. It's kind of a desperate Gen Y Wizard of Oz set in the Valley. By the way, the keep saying they are in LA, but I keep seeing the Valley. Represent the 818, yo.

I love the fight scenes. They are only aren't that many of them. But that's not what it's all about. It really s about people desparate to make. Not just our Jolly crew, but the people they meet. Most everyone they run into happens to be an actor. This is a great window in the other side of LA. The other side of LA. People who can't get an audition, but still dream of being famous. These are the dreamers.
In the end, things don't change like in a real Hollywood movie. NO F@#% that! We're rebels. We make a movie to become famous, but that won't happen!


When we first meet Jack, his girlfriend perks up when she sees the camera and starts to fix her hair and make up. Which is odd, since her boyfriend is discussing his plans to get his ass kicked.




She also has a great moment when she drunk and telling the cameraman what she's going to wear when Entertainment Weekly does their big article about her and Jack. Just then, Jack is thrown onto the car's windshield. Everyone runs in the car as the second cameraman is saying, "the cops are coming, let's get out of here. I can't believe I was in the bathroom and missed it."

That means Jack started a fight for the movie while no one was filming.

Another great moment is when Jack backs out of his first fights because the guy knows Karate. “I can’t fight him, he knows Karate, that’s not fair.”

The more I think of it, I love this movie. I mean every

The DVD also has a commentary track with all the main people. It's great because it only adds to the documentary and the story. They should've kept the running commentary in the actual film. In the commentary you learn Jack’s girlfriend dumped him, no sh**t.



Tuesday, October 14, 2003

To add what My brother wrote yesterday, see below, this is not only lazy chosing for Steve Martin, but for film makers too. How many times do we need to redo The Pink Panther? The First movie in was in 1964 and spawned three sequals. The came out after the star Peter sellers died and used out takes of him to make it look like he was still in the film.

Just like it's director, Blake Edwards, the movies were uneven. Either great and really funny, or a crass attemp to cash in.
In 1968, apparently, Alan Arkin played the inspector.In 1993, Edwards announced he was going to revieve the series with Roberto Benigi. I remember thinking this was an inspired choice. Benigi is a great physical actor. He's likable and fopish. The movie did so-so.

Now, for some reason there's a need to do the movie yet again. Why, I don't know. First Martin goes out ot prove he can fill Phil Silvers shoes, not Seller's? And Benigi's?

Actor Herbert Lom was in the original Panther films, and he was even in the 1993 version. I wonder if he's well enough for this last one. As by "well enough" I mean alive.

BTW, Barney Rumble is taking over the title role in the new Saturday morning show. I will be playing the ardvark.

Inspiring Pop Quiz
Which of these new movies do not have the tag-line "Inspired by a True Story"? Answers tomorrow!
Radio
Texas Chainsaw Massacre
The House of the Dead


- Media Yenta's Brother

Monday, October 13, 2003

Wild and Lazy Guy


MGM have just announced negotiations with Steve Martin to star in Ivan Reitman's Pink Panther remake. If Mr. Martin does sign up, this will be his sixth remake, following Cheaper by the Dozen, The Out-of-Towners, Sgt. Bilko, Father of the Bride, and Little Shop of Horrors. To be fair, we're not including his hosting duties in Fantasia 2000, FOTB sequel, the Cyrano de Bergerac-based Roxanne or even the Beatles-based Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band. Steve, we'll see you in whatever you’re in as long as it's not Bringing Down the House II.


Inspiring Quiz Answer


Both Radio and the Texas Chainsaw Massacre have the tagline "Inspired by a True Story" (The House of the Dead's tagline is "Based on the Video Game"). Didn't realize killing teens was so darned "inspiring."


- Media Yenta's Brother

Friday, October 10, 2003

What the FUCK?

Media Yenta:Universal just fucked up a possible great movie. Joel and Ethan Cohen are coming out with a new movie.

The inner movie geek: That's great! I love the Cohen Brothers! I love Barton Fink! OH, Brother I art happy!

Media Yenta: Have you seen the commercials?

The Inner Movie Geek: Yeah, it looks funny. He kisses her and she says, "I will have to report you to the bar." Boy, she's going to torture this guy.

Media Yenta:That was the trailer two weeks ago. now the new ones makes it look like a straight carbon copy bullshit crappy love story.

The Inner Movie Geek:But it's the Cohen Brothers, the movie has to be crazy and wacky and different.

Media Yenta:not according to the new ads. At first you think, that Universal would be excited to have two big stars to sell a wierd film. But they chose to take all the charm out of the pitch and sell it as a stupid carbon copy love story. The Cohen's name isn't even on the ad.

Now you have core Cohen Brother fans...

The Inner Movie Geek:Me and another guy.

Media Yenta:...and people who just like good movies, avoiding the film. Then you have people who "Just want to see soething mindless" walking out all pised off.

F them too.

Thursday, October 09, 2003

Boomtown, you are not my father!




NBC screwed themselves with their Friday night line up. About a year ago, they lead the non competitive night with “Providence,” “Dateline,” and “Law & Order: CSIish.” Then the star of the still popular and watched “Providence” got pregnant and the brass at NBC kick the show in the ass. I don’t know if the pregnancy had something to do with it, but it would mean shooting around the star’s new schedule. They could’ve put it as a midseason replacement like they are doing with “Crossing Jordan,” but instead they let it go. Now that show is gone.


"Remember me? I ruined M*A*S*H."


NBC put in “ED,” the not so watched, but continually renewed drama about a guy who bought a bowling alley in his hometown where his high school sweet heart lives. The plots for this show are endless. Oh wait, no they’re not.

Audiences gave a no to the show. In fact there were studies that people were so bored by the show, that they moved back to their hometowns and went bowling. (Ok, it’s not that funny.)

Now this season NBC moved “Law & Order: SUV” to the wounded animal that is their Tuesday night line up. That show is doing really well in the new slot, but Friday at ten is dying.

It reminds me when my father left my mother after he finished medical school for a younger woman. Even though my mother supported him throughout his studies, he decided things weren’t working out once his private practice started to take off.

He moved to a rich suburb, bought a big house and sent his new kids, Hunter and Tyler, to private school. Meanwhile, my mom needed to take on two jobs since the child support checks weren’t coming in, and we had to live in a two room apartment above my grandparents garage.

But now NBC has taken “Boomtown” off the sched, moved “Mismatched” to 9 PM and Dateline and sometimes “Queer Eye” to 8 PM. At 10 PM, are reruns of “Law & Order: MD.”

Reruns. Reruns! Not new episodes! But leftovers. Am I not good enough? This sucks. This is like the time my dad came back for two weeks when Julia kick him out. We didn’t get all his attention, but that was supposed to be ok. Well it’s not! This stinks. Either put “L&O: Railroad” back on Fridays or just go away. I’m very fragile.

(Ok, that’s not even anywhere near to being true about my dad. But you get the point.)
From Marc Berman at Mediaweek.com:

-NBC Rearranges Friday:
After dipping from a solid first to a distant third on Friday NBC will
make immediate programming changes. Effective this Friday, Oct. 10, Miss
Match will move into the 9 p.m. hour, leading out of a repeat of Bravo’s
Queer Eye For the Straight Guy and into a repeat of Law & Order: SVU at 10
p.m. One week later Dateline will kick off the night at 8 p.m. ET.
Although we were all wondering which new series would be the first
to go,
sophomore Boomtown gets that honor, with the critically acclaimed crime
drama sentenced to what NBC says is at least a three week hiatus.



Actually, this season’s “Boomtown” is a new show entirely. Last season, “Boomtown” was a great new cop show with a twist.

No, the policemen didn’t sing or dance!

One crime was told out of order through the perspective of different characters. Each sequence would start with the name of the person whose perspective we are watching.
One event could have three different meanings. Something could be revealed at the end of the episode that took place at the beginning of the crime.

Confused? Well NBC assumed the viewers were. I’d like to have faith in the viewers and think that they understood the show and just didn’t care.

NBC took the show off the air and sent it to a reform school called, “development.” It was sent to one of those camps where they beat the will out of you in order to make you a better person. Like those boot camps to get kids to stop doing drugs or yelling at their momma. You know, the one where rich kids and guests of the Ricki Lake Show are sent.

Well, after a few weeks in the reformatory, “Boomtown” came back, a little beat down. He learned to stop his terrible ways. He would now admit that challenging the audience was wrong, and he was sorry.

The show’s stories were all linear. No jumping back and forth in time. Each segment would have a name of a character, but the involvement was nothing more than the first couple lines or happen to move the scene. The only time they f’ed with a timeline was when someone was describing the crime, like on CSI or CSI: Miami, or the little known, CSI: Camden.

I guess the ratings for this reformed cop show were good enough to get a spot on the Friday night line up. This season the show returned even more beaten down. The plots are boring and nothing really happens. Even the names were removed from the top of the acct.

NBC should ship “Boomtown” to the Siberia that is Saturdays and burn off the episodes they shot. Then sell the whole deal to their sister station Court TV. Then To Their sister station BRAVO. Then to their sister station TR!O for “Brilliant but Cancelled.” (BTW- “Brilliant but Cancelled” is now a catchphrase/sound bite. People now predict, “This show is so good, but audiences won’t get it. It will be on Tr!o’s “Brilliant but Cancelled” in no time.” Every time you hear that, drink. Drink heavily.

So when you read that NBC cancelled a critically acclaimed cop show, think again. First they shook it and beat it’s will to live out of him.

Wednesday, October 08, 2003

Totally Recall'd!





The gubernatorial circus has left the fairgrounds, leaving us with garbage and elephant shit, but damned if we weren't entertained. When politics meet entertainment, Politainment if you will, it's free fun for everyone, not just for Californian voters but to the pundits of E! News Daily, Entertainment Tonight and other soft news sources. Here's the highlights:

* Election loser, Part 1: Jay Leno. Sorry, but the Chin-Man, in my opinion, really fucked up. He "opened" for Arnold, telling a few gags before bringing the governor-elect. Arnold announced his candidacy on Leno, so in a full circle way, it makes sense for the Collision Course costar to introduce Scwarzenegger. Still, Jay shouldn't had shown his political preference to the public, for credibility's sake, as well of the sake of any future monologue.

*Celebrity sightings at Arnold's bash: Rob Lowe, Gary Busey, Ivan Reitman, Uncle Frank (Jimmy Kimmel Live), American Pie's Thomas Ian Nicolas, Maria Schriver.

*Election loser, part 2: Tom Arnold. Bad enough he has eighteen million hours a day to prattle on about sports, but a lowlight to Tuesday's coverage was the ex-Mr. Barr yammering over the phone to FoxNews. "I wasn't allowed to talk about Arnold on my show," said Tom (I'm paraphrasing). "So I would ask Shaq or another guest, 'what do you think about Arnold?'" Memo to Tom: True Lies blew. Give it up.

*Election winner: Predator. The sci-fi flick now boasts two future governors: Arnold and talk-show host Jesse Ventura. Danny Glover, you're next.

*Election loser, part 3: Newspapers. Arnold's election got two rows of headlines in Wednesday's San Francisco Chronicle, not because it's colossal news, but because Schwarzenegger has 14 letters. Previously, the Chron as well as the LA Times referred to him in headlines as the five lettered moniker, "Actor." Like as in: "Actor Admits to Wrong-Doing" ("Actor" does sound less tabloidy than "Arnie"). Now that he's officially gov, newspapers can use his 14 letter last name, his 6 letter first name, his 5 letter nicknames ("Arnie", "Conan", "Fugly") or the best name submitted c/o Media Yenta. Best name will be posted here, and winner gets our vote next go-around.

- Media Yenta's Brother

Sunday, October 05, 2003

The Travel Channel has a new travel themed dating show. Why does the Travel Channel need a dating show? Why not show...Travel?

They said that once we had digital cable, the new channels will become more niche to people's interest. The Golf Channel, The Western Film Channel, and the People Named George Houtman Channel are all example of channels for a certain interest.

So why a dating show on network dedicated to travel? Why not just turn on the Dating Channel?

It seems that every channel need to have their own show from a popular genre.

It just seems that no matter what the concept of the channel is, they need to have shows with a certain format.

Here are the shows:

The semi celebrity reality show. (SSRS) Thanks to the success of the Osbornes every channel seems to follow someone who fits their genre and covers their wacky life.



Examples:
Game Show Network - They follow the life of game show host Chuck Woolery. What the? Who cares about a rich middle age white man on his second marriage.

ESPN - Bill Walden's life is documented. Wow, we get to watch him make a Coke can into a bong.

E! - Anna Nichole Smith. What's a drugged up widow to do? This show is just mean.

MTV - The Osbornes, The Newly Weds, Brandy's pregnancy.

ABC Family - The girl who played Sabrina the Teenage Witch had a reality series about her wedding. Then she dropped off the face of the earth.

ABC - Had a show about Rosanne Barr making a cancelled show, then ABC canned that show. Get it? They should've aired one more episode to show everyone getting canned. But no.



Comedy Central - "I'm with Busey" a forced show about force people acting forced to act like they are forced.


The who-wants -to be -a -star show. (WWTBASS) Modeled after American Idol and Survivor, shows give people a chance to show their talent.

ESPN - Who wants to be a sports host?

Animal Planet - "King of the Jungle." People go in the jungle to prove they could host an animal program. Why not just addition them on air and fire them when you get tired of them, like they do on the View.


Vh-1 combined both SSRS and WWTBASS with their Ted Nugent's look-at-my-crazy-world-and-compete-for-a-new-car. People are competing and talking to a camera and Ted's running around. Does anyone know why?


The appointment Television show that'll get people to watch at 11:00 (ATSTGPTWA11). Since Leaving the "Daily Show," Liz Winstead made a good living making copycats that fit the station's identification.

The make over room show (MORS)
It started with Trading Spaces. Now everyone needs a home inprovement, ambush show. Even TLC the people who started it all with Trading Spaces, has spun it off 8,00 times.

Vh-1 Thought out of the box with a show that featured Rock stars redoing a fan's room.

USA just aired one to terrible ratings.

The Health DIscovery Channel has a show where people redo other people's baby room. What this has to do with health, I don't know.

Court TV - The ill fated "Snap Judgement." Wacky daily round up of crazy court cases.

FX - back when it was a network for men and not a low rent HBO, they had a show with 4 guys that sat around being guys. If show really reflected being a guy, I would've cut my dick off out of boredom.

Vh-1 - Late world with Zack. Funny take off on talk shows, that was canned faster than you can say "Orlando Jones sh-sh-show."

Do you think people say, "What's our American Idol? What's our Daily Show?" Why not put on things that reflect your channel's identity and leave the copying to Showtime and FX?


Are there other Examples that I missed?

Wednesday, October 01, 2003




My brother Mike has a talent for liking really bad movies. When I saw the box for "50/50" for $2.95 at the video store, I knew this would make a great gift. HAPPY BIRTHDAY BRO!

Here's his review of the 80's classic.



"It's a good dish washing movie."

It's nothing you haven't see dubbed on Italian TV. It
is a Chuck Norris flick with Peter Weller as Chuck
Norris and Robert Hayes as Chuck Norris' beard. Takes
place in China, last scene is in Rome.

Charles Martin Smith costars and directs Fifty/Fifty.
You might recongize him from the cover of the American
Graffitti soundtrack; he played the baby faced guy
(don't remember if he was in the sequel but he was
also in Gary Busey's band in the Buddy Holly Story).
Another film he directed? How about "Boris and
Natasha," starring Dave Thomas and Sally Kellerman? It
was a live action take of Moose and Squirel's nemesis
from 1988 and is a bottom row staple of any video
store.

Best line from 50/50? "Snakes! I hate snakes!"