Drew Barrymore and Anjelica Huston's publicist Eddie Michaels has lost his battle with cancer at the age of 49. The Hollywood representative passed away on Thursday (08Aug13) in Los Angeles after a long fight against brain cancer, according to his wife Lorin.
In a blog post on Thursday, she wrote, "Tonight after 7 years of various treatments, setbacks, hopes, dreams, successes, trials, perseverance, fight, commitment and love for the kids and me, Eddie finally laid down his sword and stopped the fight with the kids' and my blessing..."
Michaels began his career with his mentor, Joe Sutton, at Freeman & Sutton. In 1992, he founded Eddie Michaels & Associates and relaunched it as Insignia Public Relations in 2004.
Throughout his career, Michaels represented many of Hollywood's top stars, including Barrymore, Huston, Noah Wyle, Lou Diamond Phillips, Jeremy Piven, Marg Helgenberger, Mary Steenburgen, Patrick Dempsey, Jason Biggs and Dougray Scott, among many others.
A statement issued by former ER star Wyle reads: "Eddie was indeed of the old school but never became cynical. He was experienced but without being jaded. Above all, he was honest, sometimes painfully so, but that only made him more trustworthy. In an industry fueled by hyperbole, his candor was refreshing, his perspective invaluable."
A funeral is due to take place at Mount Sinai Memorial Park on Sunday (11Aug13). In lieu of flowers, family members have asked that donations be made in Michaels' honour to Wilshire Boulevard Temple or to the Johnnie Cochran Brain Institute.
Have you ever heard of hirudotherapy? It was this thing old medical practitioners used to do with leeches. Bloodletting. Anyway, tonight might've been Saturday Night Live's way of getting some old blood out of the way in favor of the new. Not that it was bad blood, just blood that needed to move on. The series often goes through periods of quality-level fluxuation, and necessary change has been a long time coming. Saturday night's finale episode of SNL marked the changing of the guard. Many of the show's current stalwarts are taking their final bows in 8H — Bill Hader, Fred Armisen, and (we're fairly certain) Jason Sudeikis — and to top it off, Seth Meyers is set to leave mid-season 39 for the Late Night desk. Times, they are a-changing. The 39th season sounds sure to bring many changes to the NBC sketch show.
Host Ben Affleck joined the Five Timers' Club with far less pomp and circumstance than recent inductee Justin Timberlake, and spent the majority of his monologue making a terrible joke about how marriages are hard. Har har har, right, wife/actress Jennifer Garner? The banter between the two winced its way to the finish line and mostly just made me feel like I should start calling him Grandpa Ben.
Because, man, grandpa humor was the name of the game tonight for a majority of the sketches. There were several sketches surrounding gay people (with varying levels of success as far as comedy goes). A video sketch "Xanax for Gay Summer Weddings" was a laugh, but Grandpa Ben was in full, cringeworthy glory during the "New Beginnings" camp sketch. Sure, we got that the point was admirable and a good premise for the ha-has (Look at how ridiculous those people who think you can convert gay people are!), but ultimately it fell flat with how one dimensionally (read: unfunnily) it played out. Its redeeming qualities were in short supply.
We'll tell you someone who's cup had runneth over Saturday: the mustache budget. Seriously: 'staches were in high demand for nearly any sketch Affleck seemed to be in. Slap on a bit o' them face hairs, Sally, and watch the funny fly!
"Weekend Update" proved to be a comedic sure thing of the night, even if it was a bit tired overall. Which was surprising, considering the show had to bid farewell to Stefon (Stefooooooooooon! Noooooooooo!) AND had the pleasure of Amy Poehler's company. Lord, I love a two-person "Update" desk. I do. I actually clapped and yelled "yay!" aloud in my room when I saw Amy — one of my favorite funny heroines — return to the desk that made me fall in like with her. And while the "Really?!?! With Seth and Amy" bit was not at all as punchy as once was (Again with these stale jokes! So many jokes tasted like communion wafers and those things are the worst), it ultimately didn't matter because Amy stayed for the rest of the segment! Hooray! Any time I can bask her hilarious glow, I'm game.
And without her, Seth might not have run after Stefon, resulting in the pay-off to what was perhaps the worst Stefon bit, ever. (I really wanted to like it, too! But it really just wasn't that funny.) It didn't matter though, because what came next was magical Stefon left "Weekend Update" to marry Anderson Cooper. And Seth, realizing that he loved Stefon, ran after him. Risking life and limb to the infamous AC360-spinkick? That love is true, y'all.
It was the perfect way to honor and send-off a character. At the nuptials there were dozens of Stefon's club friends (DJ Baby Bok Choy to the rescue!), past characters from Stefon segments, and Affleck himself (who appeared in the original Stefon sketch as his brother)! Ultimately, Stefon ran off into the sunset of studio 8H with Seth, where the happy couple were cheered on by several recurring "Weekend Update" characters. It was really quite lovely. I'll suffocate you in the folds of one of the Furkels. ...That's Fat Urkels. And you know what they say about those guys: "After you’ve been with one of those guys, you’ll ask yourself 'Did I do thaaaat?'"
The real clunkers of the night were the painful Funeral of Greg Pulino, and the Engagement Picnic sketch, which I will spare you the trouble of having to endure in printed word. Kate McKinnon once again proved that her physical comedy prowess is the thing to beat during her scene-saving moments during "Primadonna." The sketch was fine, I got what they were going for.
But the highlight sketch-wise was the return of the former pornstar/current aspiring salesgals duo that is Vanessa Bayer and Cecily Strong in the Hermés Handbags bit. Yeah, I know the sketch is a tad formulaic, but it's a damn good formula that makes me laugh every time. It surprises me how strong the recurring sketch is, but I'm into it: let them sell all of the things!
Kanye West debuted some new songs, and some very aggressive staging for two of his new songs: the pithily-named "Black Skinhead" and "New "Slaves." Well, Ye, tell us how you're really feeling these days, eh? That said, the production on the songs is amazing, but I kept wanting to apologize to Kanye for making him mad? Please don't yell at me, Kanye! I want to watch your little performance piece. Look, I even caught the Lou Reed stuff! But honestly, production value aside, I can't imagine any radio station's going to have an easy time playing these tunes. No wonder his new album is going to be titled Yeezus — you'd have to be.
Rounding out the evening was a performance by Ian Rubbish (a.k.a. Fred Armisen)'s band "The Bizarros," featuring all the leaving lads, and Taran Killam. A bevy of performers showed up, including Fred's Portlandia co-star Carrie Brownstein, Kim Gordon, Aimee Mann, Steve Jones: basically, it was impressive. And that's just the people I could name on sight! Adios, dear Fred. It was thoughtful and clearly meaningful to him — and a nice way of officially confirming his own departure. The tears at the end of the episode were hard-won for these three men who've spent so many years with Lorne Michaels' merry band of comedy misfits. The show will be very much changed without them.
Now, someone get me Lorne's number because someone needs to tell him to put SNL writer John Mulaney on that Weekend Update desk, stat!
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Easy A a teen sex comedy with no actual sex aims rather conspicuously to plumb the best bits of Diablo Cody and Alexander Payne in its upside-down self-consciously campy take on Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter. In the role of its high-school Hester Prynne is Emma Stone the sly husky heroine of last year’s surprise hit Zombieland. Tested by a film that is far less clever than its director Will Gluck or screenwriter Bert Royal would have us believe (and they desperately want us to believe) she passes with flying colors delivering a performance that should elevate her into the upper echelon of actresses possessing brains and beauty in equal measure.
Stone plays Olive the kind of quick-witted hyper-literate teen that our educational system produces in ever-diminishing numbers. (If it ever produced them to begin with.) More knowing and sophisticated than others her age she is nonetheless not immune to the pressure of peers and the dread of being labeled a loser. Under duress by a prying friend (Aly Michalka) to dish the details of her birthday weekend a rather mundane affair mainly spent jumping on her bed to the tune of Natasha Bedingfield’s pop monstrosity “Pocket Full of Sunshine ” she feels compelled to embellish a bit and concocts an entirely fictional account of losing her virginity (dubbed the “V-Card” by Royal trying too hard) to a boy from a junior college across town.
Word of Olive’s deflowering spreads with startling speed aided by the incessant rumor-mongering of a catty Evangelical eavesdropper (Amanda Bynes). Suddenly branded a tramp on account of a seemingly harmless little lie Olive opts to embrace her newly tarnished reputation and put it to good use. In a viciously stratified social environment where even the most awkward acne-plagued pariah can earn respect and even admiration from members of the upper castes for having gone All the Way Olive anoints herself the Mother Theresa of (fake) sluts bestowing her blessing upon downtrodden gents in need of a reputation boost. And she resolves to look the part too traipsing around in scandalous bustiers and affixing the letter “A” to her chest.
There are limits to Easy A’s Scarlet Letter conceit overly Glee-ful tone forced repartee and pop-culture references (John Hughes is invoked so many times he should get a producer credit). Which is why director Gluck must be grateful to have found Stone who handles the verbal calisthenics of Royal’s script with charm and verve and a certain effortless appeal that keeps us engaged even as the film wallows in contrived irony and heavy-handedness. Keep your eye on her.
The reigning Glam Metal rockers of the ‘80s—Bret Michaels, Vince Neil and Dee Snider—can now add another member of rock royalty to the list—Rainn Wilson.
Wilson sheds Dwight’s dweeby out-of-date hand-me-downs on The Office for a completely different fashion era—the 1980’s—the decade of decadence, hairspray, “guy liner,” leather pants and animal prints, to play a washed up heavy metal drummer holding on to his dream of making it big in The Rocker.
From his paper company desk job to rock n’ roll fame, Wilson takes on the role of a big, sweaty, out of control—and sometimes naked—Robert “Fish” Fishman who gets a second chance at rock superstardom. Hollywood.com recently sat down with Wilson to talk about living the rock star dream, kissing the hot girl, wearing Spandex, and of course his penchant for being naked.
Check out photos from the film!
Hollywood.com: What a change to finally see you in clothes after the MTV Movie Awards and your soon-to-be infamous naked drummer scene in The Rocker.
Rainn Wilson: I love to use my enormous pale flabby torso for comedic effect [laughs]. So any time when called upon I will expose myself for a laugh. It's been making women laugh for…well, the last at least 20 years [smiles].
HW: Speaking of clothes, or lack thereof, your character, Fish, in The Rocker sports some pretty awesome ‘80’s rocker gear like Spandex and leopard prints. Did you get into that look during the height of the hair metal era?
RW: No, not at all! In the early ‘80s I discovered punk and New Wave. I was kind of going down that road—totally into The Clash and Ska and then Black Flag and X and L.A. punk bands. And I completely missed it. But I will say that growing up I was a huge fan of classic metal. I love Ozzy, Judas Priest and Led Zeppelin and all that stuff.
HW: You looked like the real thing to me. Tommy Lee’s got nothing on Fish! Did you know how to bang the drums before you got on set?
RW: Oh, thanks! I had a musical background—I played some guitar and some other instruments, so I could read music, so I was learning the charts and stuff like that. And you know I got two or three weeks of drum lessons. I had a drum set in my trailer!
HW: Did you get to keep it?
RW: Yeah, I got to keep the flame drum set from the movie—the A.D.D. drum set.
HW: And I understand you were in a band in high school.
RW: Yeah, I was in a band in high school called Collected Moss—yeah, the rolling stone collects no moss. A really bad cover band. I was the lead singer. And the reason I knew that we were bad was that after a gig someone was like “Oh, your voice is really cool. It sounds like Lou Reed's.” And I was like “Oh, thanks.”
HW: Was there a specific drummer or rock star that you channeled to create the Fish character?
RW: Boy, that ‘80s stuff. I really loved Freddie Mercury growing up and then moved over in the late ‘80s to Kurt Cobain. So I missed that whole ‘80s thing…
HW: And the hair and makeup is so authentic. Was that your real hair?
RW: No, it was a wig. It was a great wig that they made. They went to one of the best wig makers and they spent a lot of money on the wig. We said No. 1, it's all about the hair.
HW: And black eyeliner of course.
RW: Yeah, I loved it! We called it guy-liner [laughs].
HW: Ever thought about growing your hair out ‘80s-style after playing Fish?
RW: My hair will not grow. My hair is ridiculous and it starts to just go up like it appeared Partridge family way…It starts to turn into a weird curly fro type of thing, so it's not like sexy long tresses.
HW: What attracted you to playing the role of a crazy rocker?
RW: Well, the thing was I was reading the script and I read all the comedy of it and the pit falls in the ridiculousness of situations.
HW: And the nakedness!
RW: And the nakedness, of course! But then you know I was really actually kind of moved by it. It's really heartfelt and I really loved the journey that he takes and you know it's got a lot of heart. He grows up and the kids grow up and learn something, but not in a maudlin way or a sentimental way. I was really attracted to that.
HW: And you got to kiss Christina Applegate. Not too bad.
RW: Not too bad. Got to smooch with Christina Applegate. What more can you ask for? [laughs]
HW: What was it like to work with her—the Kelly Bundy, who will always be known as the ‘80s hottie?
RW: She dated…god, some lead singer for a while… I think it's on her Wikipedia page. She dated a big heavy metal guy. She's part of that world, you know. She's great! I mean, she's been one of the funniest, greatest, comedic actresses for so long and at the same time she's just totally cool and mellow and a lot of fun to hang out with.
HW: Are you looking forward to going back to The Office? There’s a lot going on now with you and Angela rekindling the old flames.
RW: That's right. We'll see what happens. I have no idea how any of this is going to go down. At some point I'm going to go in and meet with the writers and talk about story ideas for next year. But I have no idea where they're taking this. But I trust them. They are the best writers in the business.
HW: Are you glad they're back together? I know the fans must be.
RW: Yeah, we’ll see. I mean, I don’t know that they're back. I think that they're just fulfilling the carnal side of their needs right now. I don't know that they’re like BACK!
HW: What do you think Amy Ryan added to the finale?
RW: She's fantastic and everyone is such a huge fan of hers on the show. I've known her for years back in New York and from her work on The Wire and stuff like that. I don't know, you know, I know that they want her on the show. I'm not sure if her movie schedule allows it, but she's just a great fresh presence.
HW: What’s up next for you?
RW: Well, I'm doing a couple days on Transformers 2. That should be fun. I'm playing a college professor. That's all I know. I hope that he gets to turn into either a car or a robot. I don't know if they're going to work that in… I had never seen a Michael Bay movie in my life and I really should start with Transformers 1 probably to get prepared, but I love the idea of doing just a giant big-budget movie like that and just doing a small part in it. You know, it's just basically a cameo and I enjoy doing that kind of thing. So, you know, I was like “What the hell.”
HW: Well, all of us can only dream of being a rock star and a Transformer and you now have done both.
RW: I know. Yeah! Nice! And then I'm writing a few projects and we'll see what happens next.
The Rocker opens in theaters Aug. 20, 2008