Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Hollywood Execs: They're Worth Every Penny

Big news in the corridors of TLC yesterday as Jon and Kate Plus 8 become simply Kate Plus 8. We all know they've filed for divorce. Turns out Jon and his Ed Hardy t-shirts were having an affair while Kate was busy trying to parlay her over-active birth canal into a talk show with Paula Deen.

Of course you can't have a show called Jon and Kate Plus 8 if there is no Jon AND Kate. So TLC retooled the show as network president Eileen O'Neill so eloquently explained:
"Given the recent changes in the family dynamics, it only makes sense for us to refresh and recalibrate the program to keep pace with the family."
But today's posting isn't about who cheated on who. Nor is it about what PR person wrote the worst statement in the history of television. ("Recalibrate?!" Please fire who ever came up with this gibberish.) I just have a simple question for Ms. O'Neill, "If Kate had a different first name like...say...Wanda and Jon's name was Nathaniel 'Nate' Gosselin, who gets sacked from the show?"

Mnemonic devices are very handy tools in remembering what show to watch -- especially when they rhyme. Perhaps Jon will move to Nantucket?

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

"Yom Kippur" is Hebrew for "Hollywood Is Closed" (Answers)


1. Atone
2. Pray
3. Temple
4. Forgive
5. Resolve
6. Fast
7. Break
8. Jewish
9. Shabbat
10. Hebrew
11. Reflect
12. Vows

Monday, September 28, 2009

"Yom Kippur" is Hebrew for "Hollywood Is Closed"

I'm not working today. And for once, I don't have to thank the economy. Today I will thank my Hebrew brethren for Yom Kippur -- the day when I go from feeling "guilty" to feeling "super guilty." ¿מה נשתנה, הלילה הזה מכל הלילות?*

But not all of Hollywood is Jewish, meaning there are people who aren't working today or skipping temple. These days can be quite dull. Luckily the kind folks at have created a Yom Kippur word scramble to occupy at least part of your day.

Enjoy. The Temp Diaries will return tomorrow with all-new, non-religious episodes.

*Yes, I know that's from Passover. It's part of the joke.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Disney News: From the Anonymous Tip line

Well, here's some good gossip that came across the Anonymous Tip line. And don't be shy, you can offer gossip too. It's fun.
Rich Ross, President of Disney Channel Worldwide, is replacing Dick Cook! Don't ask me how I know, but I do. I hope you scoop Nikki the Fink with this!
I know Nikki is reporting that he's "being fitted with the glass slipper." But I'll take this as a confirmation that it fits. Let's see if I'm right.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

2012 can't come soon enough

The Mayans assure me that the world is going to come to an end in just a few short years. To that I say, "Bring it on!" I'm actually hoping that due to some miscalculation (i.e., not accounting for Leap Year, abacus problems) will push that date forward to -- oh maybe -- tomorrow?

Now you're probably wondering what has Temp X worked up to the point that he's rooting for the end of the world as we know it. To that I have three simple words -- Barbie the Movie.

That's right. Everyone's favorite 36-18-33, mathematically-impaired, Corvette-driving role model for young girls everywhere will soon have her own live-action movie! And I, for one, will not stand idly by as Universal Studios attempts to sully her reputation.

Laurence Mark, who will produce the film, attempted to quell the uprising from people like me when he told Variety that Barbie “has always been a wonderfully aspirational figure, so we must do her proud." But I'm not convinced. This is the same man who produced Glitter (#91 on IMDB's worst 100 movies ever) and Cutthroat Island (Guinness Book of World Records "winner" for Largest Box Office Loss). Sure another one of his projects -- Dreamgirls -- was nominated for eight Oscars, but you can't deny the law of averages. Remember what happened when we put a C-student in the White House? It started off fine but ended up with chaos.

And who could possibly step into the role and adequately play the diva herself? Some might say a post-pubescent Dakota Fanning. Others have been suggesting Teen Queen Miley Cyrus. And still a few more might propose writer Michael Musto. I say none of them are worthy of donning her tiara or living in her Dream House®. In fact there is no one person who can deliver the natural grace, elegance and that certain je ne sais quoi Barbie offers.

Finally, what could possibly be the story line? Barbie already has everything she could ever want. So it's not like she's gonna start off slinging hash at Norm's while pursuing her dream of getting her GED. And what kind of sick person would write a script where Barbie has to play detective after everything from her Bob Mackie gown to her Star Trek uniform are stolen?

My point is that Barbie is already perfect. Anything a movie could offer would simply damage her pristine image. And I don't want to live in a world with a substandard Barbie. No one should.

But go right ahead with the "Snuff film" you're working on for Ken. He's useless.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Great Moments In Product Placement History

There ain't a whole lotta work to be had these days. Sometimes this leaves me struggling for content to entertain you workin' folk. Today is one of those days.

I know I've discussed my distaste for product placements before. But as the economics of entertainment change, these will be the rule rather than the exception. Executives need to subsidize production costs and/or their own salaries. Product placement (or as I like to call it "in-movie sponsorship") offers that quick, easy solution Hollywood executives desperately seek. It's not a particularly desirable reality, but it's the one we're stuck with.

I present to you the first of many "Great Moments In Product Placement History" -- fight scene between Superman and Zod (from Superman 2).

Can you believe they did this all for £20,000 or today's equivalent of $120,000? Amateurs.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

TOLDJA! Of course everyone knew this was gonna happen, so it hardly counts...

Heather Locklear is back on Melrose Place. And being the best psychic this side of the Amazing Kreskin, I divulged this information a few weeks ago. Oh, and the sun will also rise in the East tomorrow.

More crap that might be coming soon to a theater near you...

[Sorry for the delay on this posting. Apparently I started this back in April but never got around to putting it on the site. Because my schedule is so busy.]

Hollywood is a very good at being a "me-too" town. If a certain type of project achieves success, there are immediately imitators hoping to cash in on the fad. I've covered this before with all the Superbad knock-offs running around town. And then there's the vampire overkill we're in the midst of.* This brings us to the next genre that we can look forward to seeing ad nauseum -- platonic friends who develop feelings for each other.

This type of movie has been around for years, perhaps most famously with When Harry Met Sally. But that was 20 years ago -- or the typical length of the "popular idea-market saturation-consumer backlash-dormant phase-kitschy nostalgia" life cycle of Hollywood movie development. The new twist is giving the movie a risque title (at least until the studio heads get involved) and casting someone better looking than Billy Crystal. This thinking delivered us The Ugly Truth and Zack and Miri Make a Porno. And now for some projects in development that all sound eerily similar...

Logline: Two best friends move into the same house and realize it's much harder to just be friends and roommates than they ever anticipated.
Not so surprising factoid: The male character is a womanizer and the female character is a real estate agent.

Logline: A guy and a girl struggle to have an exclusively sexual relationship as they both come to realize they want much more.
Not so surprising factoid: The original title of Fuckbuddies was scrapped in favor of something the marketing people could do something with.

Logline: Two best friends struggle with falling in love without ruining the bond between them.
Not so surprising factoid: The title offers a double meanings (either "friends" or the dirty "f-word"). This is a trick often employed in movie (e.g., Free Willy, The Jerk, Deep Impact)

Logline: After their best friends get engaged, a dedicated bachelor and a high-strung lawyer team up to help each other get dates by giving revealing insights into the opposite sex, but complications ensue when they fall for each other.
Not so surprising factoid: Cameron Diaz and Zac Braff are in discussions to star.

*At one of my recent gigs, a certain high-powered movie studio exec was actively considering another vampire movie. Mercifully his senses got the better of him and the project appears to be dead...for now.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

The Preview of the Emmy Preview

Well kids, the Emmy Awards are this Sunday. And chances are you'll come up with something better to do like spend time with your family, read a book or fill out your unemployment form. But I have good news! For the second year in a row, The Hollywood Temp Diaries has secured portions of the actual script from Entertainment Tonight's pre-Emmy red carpet program. Lucky for me it's virtually unchanged since last year.


Blah blah blah from the Nokia Theatre in downtown Los Angeles blah blah blah Lara Spencer. Blah blah blah the big night for the small screen blah blah blah back and better than ever. Blah blah blah the little cable networks continue to beat up on their big network brothers blah blah blah.

Blah blah blah Neil Patrick Harris blah blah blah Doogie Howser is all grown up. Blah blah blah for the first time blah blah blah Family Guy blah blah blah. I wonder if Stewie will blah blah blah?

Blah blah blah blah Two and a Half Men's Angus T. Jones has grown up before our eyes blah blah blah soon have to call it Three Men blah blah blah. Blah blah blah new comer Jim Parsons blah blah blah socially-awkward physicist blah blah upset. Blah blah Seinfeld reunion on Curb Your Enthusiasm blah blah blah blah.

Blah blah blah similarities between George Costanza and Larry David blah blah blah other than being bald and follically-challenged? Ha ha ha blah blah blah.

Blah blah blah blah the usual suspects Glenn Close, Sally Fields and Kyra Sedgwick are back blah blah blah blah. Blah blah blah everyone's favorite serial killer Michael C. Hall and his sister on the show but real-world wife blah blah blah. Blah blah will Dancing with the Stars waltz off blah blah blah or will Top Chef cook up a blah blah blah.

Blah blah a toss up between The Daily Show and The Colbert Report [Pronounced "Col-bear Re-pour"] blah blah blah blah blah blah blah. Blah blah blah the big winners should be the cigarette-peddling Mad Men blah blah blah blah blah Tina Fey and the cast of 30 Rock blah blah and the always blah blah blah Dr. House.

Let's throw it to blah blah blah blah inside the Nokia blah blah who is with blah blah. Blah blah blah you look beautiful tonight blah blah blah.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Why we're all screwed

Before you spend months writing the next great script...
Before you enroll in improv classes, acting school or voice lessons...
Before you drop $80,000 to get your MFA...
Before you decide to forgo eating in favor of self-financing a 20-minute short...
Before you mail 500 headshots to every agent in town...
Before you spend four years temping and slowly get nowhere...
Before you suck up to people you can't stand...
Before you go to any boring mixer, alumni event or networking function...
Before you have repeated anxiety attacks...
Before you consider working only for a reel and credit...
Before you start a blog...
Before you spend any money registering an idea with the WGA...
Before you compromise your principles...
Before you get your hopes up...
Before you move to Hollywood...
Before you do any of these things to break through consider this...

The video below has 14.7 million hits on YouTube. The only thing people want to see is dancing bananas. So go get yourself a costume and hit the big time.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Here's what you employed people missed out on

If math serves me properly, seven out of every eight people reading this blog are employed. That's the "glass-mostly-full" view of California's 12.1 percent unemployment rate. So while you're off making money, hanging around the water cooler and talking about how you hope to have a job next week, I'm testing out unemployment for you. Here's what you missed out on...

  • Nothing happened on Monday. My pimps didn't call me.
  • I didn't have quarters to do laundry. But since I didn't make any money, I suppose that's a good thing.
  • Stage 15 of the Vuelta a Espana was a blow out. Even I can't waste two hours watching a bike race when the lead is 20 minutes.
  • I went to Starbucks and screwed around for an hour or so. It was packed.
  • I found out the place I interviewed at two weeks ago sacked the person who interviewed me. So that's a dead deal.
  • I ate too many Butterfinger mini candy bars. Damn you Halloween displays and your evil temptations.
  • Olbermann is on vacation this week, so we're stuck with the über-paranoid David Shuster. I think Howard Fineman hates him.
  • Fox moved The Simpsons reruns from 6 to 6:30. Now I have to decide between watching the national news and Bart, Lisa, Homer, Marge and Maggie. Guess who won?
  • My desk chair broke almost hurtling me into orbit (ok, perhaps that was needlessly dramatic, but it is busted).
  • I flipped on the tube figuring prime time has to offer something. And the only new episode was of America's Got Talent. So instead I watched a re-run of House where Hugh Laurie goes through the DTs. Did I just spend an hour watching someone fake puke?
  • I still don't care about Kanye West or Taylor Dayne or Taylor Hicks or whatever her name is. May I be completely conspiratorial and suggest Jay Leno/NBC paid Kanye to act the fool to bolster opening night show ratings.
  • I thought about applying for work and realized that my resume is gonna be at the bottom of a stack of thousands, so I skipped that.
I promise to do better tomorrow. If I get work, that'll help. Then I can bitch about the work I have as opposed to now where I bitch about the work I don't have.

Monday, September 14, 2009

The Vamp X and Donnie show

So I was thinking there aren't nearly enough vampire-related entertainment options these days. Sure there's Twilight, True Blood, The Vampire Diaries, the Buffy the Vampire Slayer remake, The Vampire's Assistant, The Vampire Chronicles, Daybreakers, Let the Right One In, Priest, Blood: The Last Vampire, Lesbian Vampire Killers, Castlevania, Minion and, of course, Glenn Beck. But does that really satisfy your need for dentally-impaired weirdos causing trouble after dark? (Sounds like an episode of COPS, huh?)

You might think you're stuck with only these 14 options until VH-1 starts developing Vampire Celebrity Rehab or Bravo greenlights the Real Vampires of Orange County, but you'd be wrong. For the folks at the Hollywood Temp Diaries are hip to developing "me too" projects.

So it is with great pride I roll out my concept for the next great unnecessary vampire entertainment spectacle...The Vamp X and Donnie show. Here's the pitch for the three-camera sitcom...

Vamp X was an emerging star in the fanged subculture. But out of control medical expenses resulting from a peat moss allergy necessitated a move from the sweaty, tawdry Louisiana bayous to the snowy, dreary South Side of Milwaukee. It is here that Vamp X takes a job working third shift at the Briggs & Stratton lawnmower assembly plant while seeking treatment for his condition.

He's on the mend and plotting his move to the other vampire outpost of the Pacific Northwest when real trouble strikes. His half-wit brother Donnie shows up on his doorstep.

Donnie (think Lennie from Of Mice and Men but 100 lbs. heavier and sweatier) has recently been fired from his parking lot attendant job after it's revealed he's keyed "Donnie wuz here" on the sides of at least 50 cars. And then there gambling debts from betting on professional wrestling.

Vamp X now finds himself taking care of his unemployable, couch-jockey brother, paying off these massive debts and putting up with Donnie's other shenanigans. Can he balance this with his need to keep his vampiring skills sharp? Think Perfect Strangers meets the Odd Couple but with fangs.

Kristen Bell stars as their unlucky-in-love neighbor.

I've already developed the ad campaign. Now all I need is a little financing.

Saturday, September 12, 2009


As the most important person in Hollywood, I believe I deserve tickets (1 + guest) to an Emmy after party. As of yet, no one has sent me my invite. I figure one of you is connected enough to get me into one next weekend's shindigs, right? My email is

If you are unable to fulfill my request, a 12-pack of Miller High Life and a burger from Tommy's (no pickles) will suffice. Please leave them outside my door.

Friday, September 11, 2009

I Will Not Get Your Fucking Coffee

Some jerkoff named Josh Olson went off the other day because someone he barely knew asked him to read a script. Rather than just let it be, Mr. Olson decided to write an article for the Village Voice (and probably make a couple bucks) about such a violation of his person. The more I read the article, the more annoyed it made me. So please allow me to speak on behalf of all the assistants and aspiring Hollywooders who saw this diatribe and wanted to punch him in the head...

I will not get your fucking coffee.

That's simple enough, isn't it? "I WILL NOT GET YOUR FUCKING COFFEE." What's not clear about that? There's nothing personal about it, nothing complicated. I just have no interest in getting your coffee. None whatsoever.

I will also not get your lunch, your dry cleaning or your cocaine. I won't lie to your significant other about where you are or who you're with. If you want your car detailed, you can take it yourself. Oh and while we're on the subject, I'm not gonna print out your phone sheet or your weekend read for you because you can just as easily do it from your computer.

This isn't anything personal. I have nothing against you. I'm sure you and your movies (which I haven't seen) are perfectly wonderful pieces of art and will end up in the pantheon of cinematic brilliance alongside Citizen Kane, The Godfather 1 & 2, Apocalypse Now and Not Another Teen Movie (really, I think it's a way underrated comedy). But go get your own fucking coffee.

You're a perfectly able-bodied person from what I can tell. The fact of the matter is I am here to make movies, just like you. It's what I went to school for. It's my passion. So let me go to the set. Give me scripts to read. Let me review dailies. Involve me in the creative process. If I wanted to sling coffee for a living, I'd get a job at Starbucks and probably make more per hour. But USC Film School didn't teach me how to prepare your coffee with three Splendas. In fact, there wasn't even a class on it, so I'm as clueless as you are on the matter.

And yes. You are a dick. A phallus that would make Ron Jeremy envious. For only a asshole like you would publicly take someone to task over this matter when you should have just politely declined and left it alone. Did it really merit an article in the Village Voice? Is a public flogging of such a random person really necessary? Have you considered anger management classes?

Listen you self-absorbed twit. I'm gonna guess that about 15 years ago, someone you barely knew took a chance on you and set you on your way. That is unless you're related to someone famous, in which case you only got your break because of your last name. But if someone did take a chance on you, how about a little pay it forward? It's assholes like you that make this town unbearable for people like us who hope for the best in people only to routinely see the worst.

Oh, and if you think you're comparable to Picasso, think again. People study Picasso. His works hang in the great museums around the globe. I'm gonna go out on a limb and say that no film history class is ever going to deconstruct your 2002 feature Infested -- a horror tale about insects who devour their victims from the inside out. It's just not comparable to Picasso's Blue Period or any of his other Periods. Sorry to break the news.

And I'd love a decaf while you're in there.


I mentioned Dean Eberling a year ago, but it wasn't until today that I found out exactly what he did on Sept. 11, 2001. Dean, you're a hero. While we never formally met, I admired your work and your professionalism. And today (as it should every day) your strength and selflessness is an example for all to follow. I wish we could have gone mountain biking together, although I'm pretty sure you would have kicked my ass.

[From the New York Times]
Dean P. Eberling: New Jersey Mountain Biker
Published: Sunday, March 9, 2003

The woods of northwest New Jersey may seem an odd setting for a memorial to a Wall Street stock analyst. But Dean P. Eberling's friends say that riding his bike through the mud was one of Mr. Eberling's true passions.

No matter how much success he had in Manhattan's world of high finance, they said, he remained a grounded New Jersey guy. He was born, raised and educated in New Jersey. He married a Jersey girl and had a house at the Jersey Shore.

"He seemed as focused and sophisticated as anybody else, but he made no pretense," said Gary Terpening, who teamed with Mr. Eberling in a 24-hour mountain bike race in Allamuchy Mountain State Park in August 2001. "He knew what he liked to do. With Dean, it was O.K. to be a kid."

In the summer of 2002, a group of fellow riders hauled a half-ton chunk of granite to a spot along a trail in Allamuchy. Beneath a likeness of Mr. Eberling bounding downhill, it reads, "Ride like Dean."

Squeezing joy out of life was one of Mr. Eberling's specialties, said his wife, Amy, who had known him since 1978 and been married to him for 19 years. An analyst at Keefe, Bruyette & Woods, he helped two women at the firm escape from an elevator in the World Trade Center minutes before he was killed. He was 44.

In his last few years, his wife said, he had been trying to spend more time with his daughters, Cori, now 15, and Lauren, who turned 10 on the day of the terrorist attack. If he was at one of their ballgames, it was no secret, his wife said. "He was a heckler."

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Hollywood Dictionary: Volume 14

I supposed I shouldn't be surprised so many terms in the Hollywood vernacular are essentially slightly modified sex terms. This is the town that invented the "casting couch" after all. But I'd wish people would try massaging the English language with a little more care -- maybe do it a little slower, be more delicate and recognize the sensitive areas. This way we can ultimately come together rather than just go off half-cocked and leave the others unsatisfied with the results.

Does anyone else here need a cigarette?

And with that, I offer the latest from the Hollywood Dictionary -- the Dr. Ruth Westheimer Edition.

Tentpole: To the general public, these are probably better known as "Blockbusters" or "Dammit Louise, you know I hate standing in line for a movie!" But in the finance department of WB, Uni Studios, Paramount and others, these movies are called Tentpoles because they prop up the company's annual revenues by bringing in hundreds of millions of dollars in ticket sales, merchandising and DVD sales to offset all the movies that made no money. Some studios do get excited too early about a Tentpole and they're stuck with a mess they need to clean up. These are called "Premature Tentpoles" (e.g., Speed Racer, Land of the Lost).
[Temp Diaries Alternative Term: The movie that saves Jeff Robinov's job every year.]

Business Affairs: Once an agent finishes negotiating their client's deal in principle with the producers, it gets passed off to Business Affairs to make sure they don't get sued (or if they get sued, they win). These people are lawyers who decided to avoid the stress and money that comes along with working at a law firm, and simply fill out Mad Lib-style contract from 9-6 and make $150k/year.
[Temp Diaries Alternative Term: Law-talkin' guys.]

First Position: Some actors (and periodically producers or writers) are in such high demand that they will work on two different projects at the same time. But unless you're so advanced that you can defy the space-time continuum and be in two places at the same time, one production has to win out for scheduling purposes. This is called First Position. So when Katherine Heigl tells Chandra Rimes that she just accepted a part as the lead in Zyzzyx Road: The Return to Nowhere, Chandra says, "Fine, but Grey's Anatomy is still in first position because we need you to be here while we slowly kill off your character."
[Temp Diaries Alternative Term: How about just taking one job so the rest of us can get a little work too?]

Wednesday, September 9, 2009


I have all the fashion sense of a bat, but this photo of Charlotte Rampling at the Venice Film Festival caused even me to wonder. (Yes Virginia, that is her armpit.)

And thus concludes the only fashion-related posting you will ever see on the Hollywood Temp Diaries. Now go nominate your Most-Liked and Least-Liked Hollywood Exec for the 2009 Brown List.

Copyright Infringement Theatre

Courtesy of

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Call for Entries: The 2009 Brown List

Today marks the start of the Call for Entries for the 2009 BROWN LIST. Huzzah!

Similar to the annual BLACK LIST of most-liked scripts, the BROWN LIST is a compilation of people's MOST-LIKED and LEAST-LIKED entertainment industry executives. When finished, the BROWN LIST will be a resource for your job search and might just answer the question "Do I really want to work for [Hollywood Executive]?" And if it shames certain executives into cleaning up their act, all the better.

Please fill out the form below indicating your choices for MOST-LIKED and LEAST-LIKED exec and hit SUBMIT. Then sit back and eagerly await the results. Enter as many people as you'd like for either category. Also please list the person's employer if it's not common knowledge. ALL ENTRIES ARE COMPLETELY ANONYMOUS. [See for more info.]

The deadline for entries is October 8, 2009. Thanks for participating.

Monday, September 7, 2009

35 > 15 > 2...Unless You're Nikki Finke

The Dodo bird has been extinct since the 17th century. But there is mounting evidence that the little known Dodo Nikki still exists, and thrives on the Internet. Here's the latest proof...

[8/30/09 -- Darling Nikki reports that WME will sack somewhere between 15-18 employees.]

[9/4/09 -- Darling Nikki reports that WME sacks a paltry two people, which is way lower than the number reported on those nefarious, evil and unreliable tracking boards -- or what she reported just a few days before.]

[9/5/09 -- Darling Nikki changes course again and reports that WME will sack 15-35 people at various offices in the coming weeks.]

When Nikki finds out that Nikki reported this, she is gonna be so pissed!

Friday, September 4, 2009

Prufread #2

Darling Nikki's new site launched today, and it's been renamed Why Because she plans to focus not just on Hollywood, but on London, Paris, Mumbai, Hong Kong and Sydney. Huzzah!

Only one problem, someone forgot to tell corporate about the change. [Former Marketing Exec says: In a product name change, consistency is everything.]

(Click the bottom one to make it bigger...that's what she said.)

Fall TV Preview: NBC

Well, we made it. I kept to my plan to add filler content to the site during a week no one is paying attention. And based on your feedback, you agree. I promise next week will be more fun.

I recognize it's only a half-day today. So being sensitive to your time, I decided to focus today on a half of a network - NBC. [Random Thought: How is it that a network that did so poorly has so few new shows? I know Jay occupies five slots...but still.]

TRAUMA: ER on the road. Or Third Watch during the day. Either way it'll hang around.

THE JAY LENO SHOW: We all know his bland brand of comedy. The question is, "When the economy recovers and ad rates go back up, will Jay Leno have a job?" And one more question, "When all the newspapers go out of business, what will he do instead of 'Headlines'?"

MERCY: Nurse Jackie with a better looking lead character and neutered content. Or is it Hawthorne with a taller lead character and neutered content. Quelle snoozé!

COMMUNITY: Joel McHale is my sister's hero/secret boyfriend. And as she designs all the logos for this site, I can speak no ill of him. Can a TV show win an Oscar?

In exactly 160 days NBC can look forward to a couple of great ratings books before returning to sucking wind. The Winter Olympics is coming!

Thursday, September 3, 2009

R.I.P. Sasha Fierce

For those of you keeping track of such things, my car was officially deemed "totaled" today at 4:12 p.m. This follows an unfortunate run I had last week with a poor driver who made an illegal turn. Temp X is fine (as is the jerk who hit me), but Sasha Fierce X isn't. She and her 37 mpg (freeway) will be missed.

Let us take a moment to reflect on the good times we shared: the traffic jams at the Hollywood Bowl, the traffic jams on Santa Monica and, of course, the time I drove Maya Angelou to the Pleasure Chest.

Fold up your pant leg, pour a 40 on your foot and remember Sasha the way she was -- a bland, functioning automobile.

[Note: Wear your seat belt. They seem to work.]

Fall TV Preview: ABC

ABC has a whole pile of new shows. I don't feel like writing a Summary/Analysis/Prediction for all of them, so instead I'll give you the briefest of comments. Enjoy.

THE FORGOTTEN: Summary makes it sound like Cold Case/Without a Trace/CSI/NCIS. Don't we have enough of these on TV already? Prediction is built into the title.

THE MIDDLE: Three-camera comedy with a bad title about an average family. Stars Patricia Heaton (the only person I know without a belly button). I smell a cancellation before Thanksgiving.

MODERN FAMILY: Single-camera comedy with a bad title about three average families. Stars Ed O'Neill (Al Bundy) as an older and grumpier version of Al Bundy minus any references to "hooters." I smell a cancellation before Thanksgiving.

HANK:Three-camera comedy with a bad title about a family. Stars Kelsey Grammer playing the same pompous character Kelsey Grammer always plays (Fraiser, Sideshow Bob). I'm starting to wonder if it's not acting. This might just make it past Thanksgiving.

COUGAR TOWN: Following the successful Desperate Housewives marketing philosophy, ABC has Courtney Cox wearing very few clothes in their promos. So that should give it good enough ratings to merit a full-season order. Their big problem is the three shows leading in could easily be described as "Cash for Clunkers." Hey-o!

EASTWICK: Witches will not be the new Vampires. Oh, and if you're gonna do a TV adaptation of a movie, it's probably better to no wait 22 years. Public awareness has a tendency to fade during five presidential administrations. Out of deference to the late John Updike, they'll give it at least 13 episodes before giving the show a "creative retooling."

FLASH FORWARD: Finally! A good show. Sure, it's basically LOST with a bit of a twist. But who cares? A good show is a good show. Don't call me at 8 p.m. on Thursday as I'll be watching this and won't answer the phone.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Celebs: They're just like us, only better looking and dumber

Demi Moore apparently had the part of her brain removed that allows her to remember all the plastic surgery she's had. She recently told French Marie Claire that all the rumors of her being inflated, injected and pulled back are "completely false - I've never had it done."

I can think of two reasons why I don't believe you.

Fall TV Preview: FOX

Day Three of the Fall TV Preview...

SUMMARY: Three-camera sitcom with ex-football player Michael Strahan playing an ex-football player. Wow. It's like method acting in reverse. [Tip to aspiring actors: Don't go to drama school, work in community theater, take bit parts in low-budget films if you want to be on a TV show. Just play in the NFL.]
ANALYSIS: The promos indicate the show is simply a series of jokes about the gap between Michael Strahan's front teeth. If this is their plan for success, may I also suggest casting Lauren Hutton, David Letterman and Madonna. [Breaking News: Just saw that Lisa Lampanelli is on the show. There's a joke in there somewhere, but this is a PG-rated website.]
PREDICTION: It got the less-than-coveted Friday night at 8 p.m. spot. The vultures are already circling.

SUMMARY: Family Guy to put this in terms that won't risk getting bounced out of Hollywood altogether...the same basic characters. Yes, I said it. Seth MacFarlane is ripping himself off again (see American Dad).
ANALYSIS: The main joke is the five-year old is essentially John Shaft in training diapers. Oh, and did I mention they're gonna merchandise the hell out of it?
PREDICTION: It'll be one of those shows that'll never go away. And just wait until Rallo comes up with some annoying catch phrase like, "What is that of which you speak Willis?"

FOX also has a couple mid-season dramas that I'll look at when the time comes. But if press releases are any indication, Human Target will be "a full-throttle, action-packed thrill ride" and Past Life will be "a fast-paced emotional thriller." Oh wait, those were quotes from the press release. [Former Marketing Exec says: The more adjectives used to describe a product, the worse it usually is. See Example A.]

Tuesday, September 1, 2009


These jokes write themselves. Darling Nikki poops all over NBC for their lack of diversity (true) but neglects to review the material she copies and pastes from Nikki seems to think Katie Couric still works for NBC (false).

Katie left NBC in 2006. SCOOPEDJA?

To Scoop or Not To Scoop?

I heard a rumor that four agents from a certain high-profile agency were let go today. I even have names. But I'll just hold off on listing the names until Nikki runs a "SCOOPEDJA" and claims she heard about the whole thing first.

Fall TV Preview: The CW

And now, more from the Hollywood Temp Diaries Fall TV preview...

The CW

SUMMARY: Semi-naked twenty-somethings (playing high school freshmen) biting each other.
ANALYSIS: Vampires are all the rage (True Blood, Twilight, Glenn Beck). Diaries are hip too (Nanny Diaries, Julie and Julia Expect lots of mood lighting, pale skin and tight clothes. Are these people vampires or heroin addicts?
PREDICTION: The "me too" programming that is the cornerstone of CW's philosophy means this show will last until a year after the last Twilight movie is released. So I give the Vampire Diaries three to four years. Plus, what else is the CW gonna air? America's Next Top Model and its reruns already constitute one-fifth of their schedule.

SUMMARY: A clown in a Nazi death camp as a TV show? Oh, wait. It's a show about the "tortured lives" of models from with Ashton Kutcher serving as executive producer. Same basic idea.
ANALYSIS: Are we being Punk'd? I can offer a semi-informed opinion of this show as I heard -- but didn't see -- part of it yesterday. It sounded awful. Elle McPherson (as much I would like to be her boy toy, house husband, fling, etc.) can't act. But neither can anyone else on the show. I'm actually convinced most of the cast can't even read.
PREDICTION: Remember Models Inc.? That's ok because I do. It lasted a full season before getting the Manolo Blahnik. TBL won't make it that long. On the plus side, that means Elle's schedule is gonna be wide open. (Call me.)

SUMMARY: Blah blah blah sexy neighbors date blah blah Michael schemes blah blah blah will Heather Locklear return?
: I'm pretty certain that the marketing budget for MP: 2009 exceeds their production budget. One the one-mile stretch of Melrose Ave. between La Brea and Fairfax, I counted at least 17 billboard-sized ads for the show. I also counted five "knock-off" ads for some realtor who sells places in the area.
: I blew it on the 90210: 2008 prediction last year. Well there's an old saying in Tennessee — I know it's in Texas, probably in Tennessee — that says, fool me once, shame on — shame on you. Fool me — you can't get fooled again. At least three seasons...and Heather Locklear will return.