Eddie Murphy has decided to write a comedy called Jamal and Tyrell and Omar and Brick and Michael's Wack-Ass Weekend.
So, here's what I think happened. Eddie Murphy, in preparation for his Oscar hosting gig, sat down and watched a wide variety of movies. Those included: Brick, Michael, The Wackness, Jackass (or Kick-Ass...we're still in the midst of the investigation of his Netflix account) and Weekend, and was equally inspired by each of these films. Further study is needed to determine where the first thirty percent of the title came from.
In actuality, Murphy's idea stems from the early days of his upcoming movie Tower Heist, which was initially set to star Murphy alongside Chris Rock, Martin Lawrence, Tracy Morgan and Chris Tucker. Muphy wants to emulate the mood of the comedy presented by this era of the script in his new project. This developing story, JATAOABAMW-AW (no, that doesn't work...), will follow a quintet of friends preparing for an average weekend when they are abducted by alien invaders.
Murphy has really hit both extremes as a movie writer. He penned the stories for some of his classic films, including Coming to America and Beverly Hills Cop II, as well as on Saturday Night Live. Focusing on this, we can invest some hope in a revival of old creative strengths.
Tower Heist comes out this Friday, Nov. 4th.
Last night, Footloose star Julianne Hough appeared on The Tonight Show to talk about the heroic Tom Cruise coming to her rescue when she was injured, and how she accidentally let her dog run rampant on the set of Ellen DeGeneres' talk show.
Modern Family's Ty Burrell showed up on Conan to enjoy a catastrophic interview: cast members try to get in on the interview, the set falls apart... Once things start functioning, he talks about tricking his daughter into liking football, the experience of accidentally walking in on his parents sleeping together, his amazing mustache, and his very odd blinking habits.
Again on The Tonight Show, Aaron Eckhart stopped by to talk about his pretty interesting, and surprisingly weird life: he hunts Bigfoot with his parents, and flies cross-country for ten-minute blind dates (that he immediately cuts short if he doesn't feel the "kaboom").
Finally, Tracy Morgan paid a visit to The Late Show to issue one more apology and explanation about his much unappreciated comments this past summer. Watch how quickly he shifts from speaking like a cartoon character to a regular person.
It almost makes you wanna trip over an ottoman, just for the hell of it.
Today marks fifty years since the premiere of The Dick Van Dyke Show, one of the most iconic and influential sitcoms in television history. The Dick Van Dyke Show, starred (you probably don’t need us to tell you) Dick Van Dyke as Rob Petrie, a family man and comedy writer for a New York City-based variety TV show. TDVDS seems to have all the facets of your standard workplace comedy—tyrannical boss, wisecracking coworkers, put-upon errand boy -- but there’s something that differentiates this series from others of its type: it was the first of its kind.
In fact, TDVDS was a pioneer not just as a workplace comedy (seriously—name one that came before it), but also in its portrayal of woman and minorities. One of the main characters, Sally Rogers, was a brash, single woman and professional comedy writer. TDVDS was nearly unprecedented in its portrayal of a black family as economic and societal equals to the Petries. And finally, it was one of the first shows to include a number of Jewish characters.
But in addition to these important sociopolitical steps, it was also the foundation for several types of comedic characters that have stood the test of time. We may not realize this, but characters from our favorite sitcoms today—workplace, family, all genres—draw inspiration from the cast of The Dick Van Dyke Show.
Liz Lemon (Tina Fey on 30 Rock)
Liz Lemon is the hapless head writer of TGS with Tracy Jordan, a sketch comedy show on NBC. Since the series' start, Liz is illustrated as a career woman who has let her work addiction, and (often ironically counterproductive) measures to advance the depiction of women on television, stand in the way of her personal life. However, Liz's mission is to "have it all." She wants to meet a good man and start a family, but is in no way willing to give up her demanding job. Additionally, the scattered attempts Liz does make at finding love are always ill-fated, either by her own abrasive personality or by her attraction to terrible men.
Each and every one of these characteristics can be traced back to Rose Marie's character, Sally Rogers, on The Dick Van Dyke Show. Sally's lack of apparent femininity led her to often be jokingly referred to as "one of the guys" by coworkers Rob and Buddy. She was a markedly successful professional writer, but she often lamented her inability to find a husband. The few men that Sally was seen with over the course of the series never offered much promise: her on-off love interest Herman Glimscher was immature (much like Liz's recurring boyfriend, and the best character in the history of television, Dennis Duffy). Furthermore, Sally often drove men away due to her unbridled personality and sense of humor.
Tom Haverford (
Aziz Ansari on Parks and Recreation)
While he was employed at the Parks Department of Pawnee, Indiana, Tom Haverford was rarely seen contributing to anything but the office vibe. Tom is an incurable wiseass. At every waking opportunity, he goofs off and makes fun of his coworkers (specifically Jerry...and Leslie...and Ben...and Jerry). There have been many quick-witted slackers over the years, but Tom is one we are pleased to have with us today. And, of course, we might not have Tom if we never had Morey Amsterdam's character, Buddy Sorrell, on The Dick Van Dyke Show.
Although Buddy's work ethic was slightly more impressive than Tom's (after all, he was a comedy writer, so technically, making fun of the producer was part of the job...right?), he was not exactly a model employee. Buddy never let an opportunity to snark at producer Mel Cooley slip by, usually vying for the obvious target of his baldness. Like Tom, Buddy was shown to be a decent guy underneath his attitude -- still a jackass, but a decent jackass.
Dean Craig Pelton (Jim Rash on Community)
Every fan of Community (that I know) cheers whenever Greendale Community College's Dean Craig Pelton struts into the library to deliver what will inevitably be unappreciated, irrelevant, and annoying news to the study group. The dean is the biggest victim of the eightsome's constant barrage of mockery due to his overzealous embrace of everything that he has to say. Somehow, despite his laughable appearance and incredibly peculiar personality, Dean Pelton takes himself incredibly seriously, and takes great offense to anyone who insults him or his job.
In this case, there are as many physical similarities between Pelton and Richard Deacon's Dick Van Dyke character Mel Cooley as there are personal. The bald, bespectacled Mel cherished his position of authoirty over the fun-loving gang of writers. However, his authority was strictly in title; he rarely commanded any respect from the trio, especially Buddy. Mel was the victim of endless abuse from the wisecracking comedians. Still, he carried out his position with great pride, much like Dean Pelton does his. Of course, Mel was never shown to be a pansexual deviant...maybe Community got that from Leave it to Beaver.
Ryan Howard (B.J. Novak on The Office)
Ah, the horrible boss. Beyond every other staple in workplace comedy has this one pervaded. Now, one might find it curious that, in use of The Office, we wouldn't highlight the iconic Michael Scott as the 'bad boss.' The thing is, Michael, while bumbling, insecure, immature, and ill-equipped for his position, was actually a pretty decent guy...underneath it all, anyway. Ryan Howard, however, during his reign as Michael's superior at Dunder Mifflin Corporate, was very much the opposite. He embodied perfectly the 'evil boss.' He was seflish, egotistical, insensitive, and obsessed with own success over others' and the company's. He was not above belittling, berating or manipulating his employees if it meant getting what he wanted.
Over the years, there have been many, many terrible bosses. But they all date back to creator Carl Reiner's character Alan Brady, star of the in-universe Alan Brady Show for which Rob, Sally and Buddy were writers. Alan originated as a faceless character, much like the George Steinbrenner character we saw in Seinfeld. Once the show made a transition into depicting Brady as a full-fledged character, he got meaner, ruder, more narcissitic and less compassionate -- especially to his own brother-in-law, Mel.
Phil and Claire Dunphy (Ty Burrell and Julie Bowen on Modern Family)
Phil and Claire are a classic formula. Goofy husband, high-strung wife. Both good-hearted and devoted to one another. Unlike some other series of recent past, it is easy to see why Phil and Claire love each other. Their differences are not played to extremes in the interests of laughable chaos. We actually see plenty of their similarities, as well. While Phil's bumbling nature often causes Claire grief, and Claire's flusterability (just go with it) might upset Phil, we never doubt that they're right for each other.
And this is something we definitely find in Rob and Laura Petrie, played by Dick Van Dyke himself and the great Mary Tyler Moore. They started it all: the great married couple. Not perfect to the point of inhuman like the Cleavers. Not flawed to the point of "Well, why are they even married?" like the Barrones. Totally real. Totally lovable. Totally memorable. Like the show itself, a true legacy.
According to recent court documents filed by Tracy Barone, who divorced the star in 2007, Glaser failed to take responsibility for half of 13-year-old Zoe's education fees, amounting to $11,000 (£6,875)-a-year.
Her lawyer pointed out that the actor has spent $12,800 (£8,000) on his golfing hobby in the past six months and would have to pay his lawyer $7,000 (£4,375) to defend him in the child support battle.
And earlier this week (begs12Sep11), a judge sided with Barone - Glaser has been ordered to pay his half of the fees, as well as $3,500 (£2,187) in attorney fees, according to TMZ.
The actor, who played Detective David Starsky in the classic TV cop series, was sued by Tracy Barone earlier this year (May11) over claims he had failed to pay $3,224 (£2,015) in child support and $13,000 (£8,100) in spousal support.
And now Glaser is facing additional legal action from Barone, who he divorced in 2007, amid new accusations he's failing to cover 13-year-old Zoe's education fees.
According to court documents obtained by TMZ.com, Barone claims Glaser is not willing to take responsibility for half of the child's school fees, which amounts to an estimated $11,000 (£6,875)-a-year - while the 68-year-old actor has happily spent $12,800 (£8,000) on his golfing hobby in the past six months and would have to pay his lawyer $7,000 (£4,375) to defend him in the child support battle.
"Tracy (my wife) had a nice dinner party for me. (And) it was time for the cake to come out and Tony Bennett came out and sang Happy Birthday to me. Very cool. And I didn't graduate from high school... but my wife put together a yearbook for me, the yearbook I never had. And she got all these wonderful people (celebrities) to sign it." Michael J. Fox had a wonderful 50th birthday celebration this summer (11).
Last night, Kevin Smith visited The Tonight Show to thank Tiger Woods for taking the heat off of his airplane fiasco, and how his wife sexually blackmails him for roles in movies.
Heidi Klum also appeared on The Tonight Show... but was convinced the entire thing was just her dream (jet-lag will do that to you).
Finally, The Good Wife's Julianna Margulies talked to David Letterman about her young son's questions about "booboos."
Ever since he became a self-satirizing cartoon character at the inception of the wonder that is 30 Rock, many of us have developed an abiding love for Tracy Morgan. The actor and comedian's performances on Tina Fey's series, as well as his entertainingly incoherent talk show interviews, were the stuff of genius. But truth be told, this summer, he was a pretty big jackass. According to Fey herself, Morgan is sincerely apologetic for his remarks, and meant them without any degree of severity. So, if he does indeed mean to get back on the good side of the American public, what is the best way to do so?
Well, the world applauded Michael Richards after he owned up to his nightclub outburst on the penultimate episode of Curb Your Enthusiasm's previous season. And that might be the route Morgan is taking, too.
Fey says it is not at all beyond the scope of possibility to expect that a storyline involving Tracy Jordan (Morgan's self-based character) be derivative of his summer faux-pas. When you have an castmember like Morgan, you're not hard-pressed for inspiration; the series has, in the past, touched upon his diabetes, drinking problems, movie choices, parental abandonment and outlandish publicized behavior.
However, although the marvelous Fey has expressed a worthy distaste for Morgan's actions, she also has a loyal sympathy for her longtime friend and coworker, and hopes America can forgive him and move past this. Still, attacking the issue comedically might be more condusive to forgiveness than hoping it fades from the public conscious. It's really a toss-up, but it certainly would be in-character for the even crazier-than-his-real-life-counterpart Tracy Jordan to spout something nearly unforgivable, ruining his reputation and the fate of TGS (and have only Kenneth stand by his side).
Today is just filled with news about the possibility of hyperextending television series. I just finished reporting on one of my favorite shows that is in danger of going on past its due, and now I'm forced to bring up another: 30 Rock.
Lorne Michaels recently said that, although he "can't imagine the show going on without Alec Baldwin" he doesn't intend to end it anytime soon. Baldwin stated that he intends to leave the show after the upcoming sixth season, which many fans (and Baldwin himself) assumed would bring an end to the series entirely. Michaels feels no such way, however, and intends to continue 30 Rock for seasons to come.
30 Rock was, for its first three seasons, remarkably funny, interesting and well-written. Although I'd never jump off the bandwagon entirely, I will say that Seasons 4 and 5 did not live up to the quality in which the show once reveled. However, they were still acceptable, due in large to Jack Donaghy's (Baldwin) mammoth prominence, as well as his relationship with Tina Fey's Liz Lemon (which is the show's lifeblood). To continue the show without Jack would be to turn the show into something it is not. Since the first episode, the show was about Liz and Jack: we watched an antagonistic rivalry grow organically into a heartfelt, codependent friendship. So, without one component of this primary drive of the series, we've just got a lot of this. And don't get me wrong: that's hilarious. But is it enough to stay invested? Yeah, more or less. I know I'll keep watching. But that's not the point! Oh, what's the use. Do what you will, NBC. I'm forever a slave to your flash cuts and rapid-fire celebrity jabs.
Born Woodrick Tracy Harrelson, Woody is best known for his breakthrough role as a dim-witted bartender in TV hit Cheers. He's since gone on to tackle a host of quirky roles, playing a serial killer, a country singer, a bounty hunter and even a zombie slayer.
Away from Hollywood, Harrelson is a family man and dad to three daughters, as well as a strict vegan and devoted environmental activist.
To mark his 50th, WENN takes a look back at his life with 10 fascinating facts about Harrelson himself. Woody, we salute you!
- His dad, Charles Harrelson, was a professional hitman, who was sentenced to life behind bars for assassinating a federal judge. Harrelson, Sr. unsuccessfully tried to break out of prison on America's Independence Day (04Jul) in 1995 and died 12 years later (07) of heart disease.
- Woody turned vegan at 24 to cure his acne; he now eats only raw food.
- Born in Texas, he now calls Hawaii home and counts Kris Kristofferson and Owen Wilson as his neighbours. His house in Maui is completely solar-powered.
- During one madcap night in 1982, Harrelson was arrested for dancing in the middle of a street. He was charged with disorderly conduct and resisting arrest after running from cops.
- Harrelson met the love of his life, Laura Louie, in 1987 on the set of Cheers and made her his wife in 2008. Alanis Morissette and Willie Nelson performed at their nuptials.
- Beatles legend Sir Paul McCartney is a close friend - the pair bonded over their shared passion for animals rights.
- Despite critical acclaim and two Oscar nods, his performance in Indecent Proposal won him the Worst Supporting Actor trophy at the 1993 Golden Raspberry Awards.
- Harrelson has long championed the legalisation of marijuana and joined the advisory board for the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws in 2003.
- In a charity soccer game last year (10), Harrelson scored the winning goal in a sudden death shoot-out alongside teammates Robbie Williams, Mike Myers and Michael Sheen. After smashing the ball into the back of the net, the actor admitted the match in England was "the most terrifying thing I have ever experienced".
- He shares his birthday with Harry Potter star Daniel Radcliffe, rocker Slash and infamous White House intern Monica Lewinsky.