The Modern Family Makes Some Friends: Since Star Wars news has been all the rage lately, most of you have probably been wondering, "But what about Billy Dee Williams?" Well, that question is about to be answered: Williams will guest star on an upcoming episode of Modern Family, playing himself. In another episode, Nathan Lane will return as Pepper, the flamboyant friend of Mitch and Cam. [EW]
Dylan Walsh Gets His Revenge: Watch out, Conrad Grayson! There's another wealthy hedge fund manager in town, and he comes in the form of former Nip/Tuck star Dylan Walsh. Walsh has booked a multi-episode arc in the series, as the stylish Jason Prosser. [EW]
Good Wife Nabs Another Good Guest: Paging Agent Cooper! Twin Peaks (and Sex and the City, and Desperate Housewives, and, um, Made in Jersey) alum Kyle MacLachlan has booked a multi-episode arc on CBS' hit drama The Good Wife, playing a character who will intersect with Alan Cumming's Eli Gold. [EW]
NBC Gets Presidential: He saves children, but not the British children! (Points for you if you get that joke.) Anyway, NBC has put in development George Washington, a drama series from Oscar-winning writer David Seidler (The King’s Speech), Barry Levinson, and Tom Fontana, about Abraham Lincoln. JK! It's about George Washington. [Deadline]
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’The Voice’ Top 12 Performance Show: 8 Things You Didn’t See On TV (Celebuzz)
S1E16: The theme this week on The X Factor was all about giving thanks in honor of the Thanksgiving holiday. So each act had to decide who they wanted to dedicate their performance to as a way to show just how grateful they are to have those particular people in their life. This was nice because it gave viewers the opportunity to really connect with each contestant and see them for who they really are, which could end up being quite beneficial to them during this week’s elimination process. And since two acts will be going home this week, they could use all the extra help they can get. So who were the best performances of the night? Did Astro redeem himself after last week’s debacle? Find out below!
First up was Rachel Crow who decided to dedicate tonight’s song to her family, thanking them for adopting her and bringing so much love into her life. Her performance was exactly how we all expected it to be – fantastic. She sang the song I Believe by Yolanda Adams, which was a perfect way to demonstrate just how strong her vocals really are. But not only that, she’s really grown as a performer, who can definitely make the crowd (and television viewers) fall in love with her during every performance. L.A. loved it and Paula called her an angel on earth. So, as usual, she rocked it!
The second performer was Marcus Canty and he dedicated the night’s performance to his number one fan – his mother, who has always worked hard to make sure he got a better life than the one she had. So tonight he fittingly sang A Song For Mama by Boyz II Men, which turned out to be an extremely moving performance since she actually right there in the audience. His voice was a little pitchy at times, but it was nice to see him sing without all the backup dancers and other theatrics that usually comes with his performances. It was a really touching performance and, not surprising, all of the judges concurred.
Up next was Melanie Amaro who dedicated her performance to God for all that he’s done for her and for never letting her down. She sang R. Kelly’s The World’s Greatest and there’s only one word to describe it – beautiful. The aesthetics provided by the stage coupled with her amazing voice was enough to make even non-believers want to check out a church if it meant getting to see her perform. All of it was just stunning and there wasn’t a dry seat in the house, even from the judges’ panel (well, except for Simon of course).
Then came Chris Rene who performed tonight in honor of his rehab counselor, Tim, who helped him get clean and sober. He sang a rap rendition of Let It Be, by The Beatles and it was alright, but I wasn’t overly impressed with the performance. Maybe it’s me and I just can’t handle such a classic being turned into a rap song, but this was one of my least favorite performances of the night. Don’t get me wrong, I think he’s an inspiration after everything he’s gone through, but we’re getting down to the top picks at this point and I’m just not sure how much longer he’ll be in the competition.
Lakoda Rayne came next and since they’re a group and it’s harder to choose one specific person, they each got to be thankful for someone. Two of the girls were thankful for their dads, another was thankful for her boyfriend, and the other was thankful for her grandmother. They decided to sing Taylor Swift’s You Belong With Me and it was a pretty decent performance. They’re doing much better at harmonizing with each other and actually did a great job of working the crowd throughout the entire performance. Plus they seemed to actually be having a really great time up there, which is important too – definitely their best performance so far. But will the final group be able to survive another week? We’ll just have to wait and see.
Up next was Leroy Bell and he dedicated the night’s performance to his mother because she always encouraged him to follow his dream of being a singer and truly believed in him. He chose to sing In The Arms of An Angel by Sara McLachlan and he did a really great job. Recently Leroy's received a lot of negative criticism from the judges, but tonight he proved he is in it to win it. The vocals were strong, the words were powerful, and he really delivered a solid performance. And while L.A. thought it was heartfelt, but not his very best, the rest of the judges disagreed and felt that they emotionally connected with him during the song.
Astro was next and his reel went into a big explanation as to why he acted like a stuck up teenager (because he is one) on the show. So as an apology, he dedicated his performance to his fans and sang Jay-Z’s Show Me What You Got. His attitude was certainly a lot better this week and afterward he even apologized for last week’s antics and promised his fans that he’d never let them down again. That’s definitely commendable, but I’m still having a hard time fully forgiving him for his childish antics. I know he is a child and so he should be given a break, but I don’t like the kind of person he becomes when he doesn’t get his way. I’ll be curious to find out what will happen if he makes it into the bottom slot yet again this week. Will he be able to maintain his positive attitude? Because then I’ll be impressed.
Drew decided to dedicate her performance to her best friend, Shelby, since she’s always supported her and encouraged her to be herself. Her song choice was Skyscraper by Demi Lovato and as always, she really made it her own, putting a completely different spin on the song and it sounded great. Of course, L.A. seems to have a problem with each of her performances since they apparently all tend to sound the same, which is funny since I could say the same thing about Astro (when does he not rap during a song?) But Simon came to Drew’s defense and snapped at L.A. for giving her ridiculous and unhelpful criticism, which I thought was appropriate. There’s no denying her natural talent and I’m fully confident she’s going to go all the way in this competition.
Josh Krajcik was the last performer of the night and he dedicated his performance to his daughter since she's the best thing in his life and has always inspired him to keep on singing. His rendition of Rolling Stone’s Wild Horses was both powerful and moving. Not only did he rock the same, scratchy vocals that we know and love, but he also gave a beautiful performance on the piano as well. He’s the real deal and all the judges know it (even Simon had nothing but positive things to say). There’s no doubt in my mind that he’s going to be in this competition til the very end.
Find out which two acts will be sent home Wednesday night at 8 p.m. on Fox!
Top Story: P. Diddy and J.Lo's Have a Date...in Court
Jury selection began today in a court case against Sean "P. Diddy" Combs, whose former chauffeur claims the rap mogul and a bodyguard forced him to speed away from the scene of a 1999 nightclub shooting, The Associated Press reports. Wardel Fenderson, 45, is suing Combs for $3 million. Combs' company, Bad Boy Entertainment, and Combs' bodyguard, Anthony Jones, who died in an unrelated shooting in Atlanta this past November, have also been named in the suit. Fenderson's lawyer, Lawrence Bernstein, told the Daily News for Monday's edition that his client "was afraid that if he stopped [the car], he was going to be hurt by somebody in the car, and if he didn't, he was going to be hurt by the police." A spokeswoman for Combs, however, said the lawsuit was an attempt to cash in on Combs' celebrity. New York City police arrested Combs in December 1999 after a nightclub shooting that left three people wounded. At the time, Combs was accused of illegal gun possession and bribery but was later acquitted of all charges. Combs and his former girlfriend, Jennifer Lopez, who was present during the shooting inside Club New York, have been subpoenaed to testify.
Judge OKs Limited Media Coverage in Blake Trial
Superior Court Judge Darlene Schempp ruled Friday that TV and still cameras will be allowed in the courtroom in the Robert Blake murder case during opening statements, closing arguments and the verdict, but not during testimony, the AP reports. But while the District Attorney's Office has already filed papers challenging the judge's decision, Blake's attorneys welcome the decision. "I think this will be a professionally conducted trial," Thomas Mesereau Jr., said. "And any time the public gets to see such a trial, the public benefits." Blake, who is free on $1.5 million bail, is charged with murdering his 44-year-old wife, Bonny Bakley, on May 4, 2001. She was found shot to death in their car outside a restaurant.
Barbara Walters Leaves 20/20
Famed broadcaster Barbara Walters is leaving her post as host of the ABC newsmagazine 20/20 this fall, the AP reports. The 74-year-old Walters, who has been an integral part of the show for more than 25 years, will do about six interview specials a year for ABC News, including her annual pre-Oscar show, and will remain executive producer and co-host of the daytime talk show The View. "Starting in September, I want to have more flexibility in my life without the responsibilities of a weekly newsmagazine," Walters said in a statement issued by ABC. 20/20 will likely to continue with co-host John Stossel, but with less emphasis on major interview subjects.
Doris Roberts Wants Raymond Spin-Off
Everybody Loves Raymond star Doris Roberts told AP Radio Monday that she hopes Ray Romano will keep the sitcom going for at least one more season but added that she would also be thrilled at the prospect of a spin-off about Robert's (Brad Garrett) new in-laws, played by Fred Willard, Georgia Engel and Chris Elliott. "Now you just have to leave it alone. You can push just so far and then you get to be annoying. I can't imagine how CBS would let it go. I understand from the writers' point of view. If they can't come up with good ideas and new ideas that are not repetitive, they don't want to go on with that. But they're far from that this year, so I keep my fingers crossed. I'm sure CBS will find a way to make it work," Roberts said.
Scott Weiland Ordered Back to Rehab
After leaving a live-in drug detoxification center in California after only a month, Stone Temple Pilots frontman Scott Weiland has been ordered to return, AP reports. The 36-year-old singer was ordered to report to the Pasadena center last October after pleading no contest to possession of heroin. But a Superior Court judge learned Friday that Weiland had either walked out or was discharged and ordered him to return. Weiland returned immediately and is eligible for release in July, providing he participates in a six-month follow-up program.
Songs Banned From American Idol
American Idol judges Randy Jackson, Paula Abdul and Simon Cowell won't have to worry about hearing karaoke-type renditions of Sarah McLachlan' s "Angel," Elton John's "Candle in the Wind," and Alicia Keys' "Fallin'" during the third season of the show, which premiered Jan. 19. According to Launch.com, those songs were banned from being performed at this year's auditions. Don't expect to hear anything by Bruce Springsteen, James Taylor, Mariah Carey, No Doubt, R. Kelly, Tom Petty, Korn, Linkin Park, Carly Simon, or John Mellencamp during the audition process, either, since those artists' songs were also nixed. No explanation was given as to why the tunes were discouraged.
Tonight, all eyes will indubitably take note of the presence -- or absence -- of singer Whitney Houston at the Arista Records' benefit concert at the Los Angeles' Shrine Auditorium. Houston -- who bowed out on the Oscars and skipped a couple of Grammy rehearsals -- is scheduled to perform at the bash, which is doubling as a 25th anniversary celebration of the Arista label. The appearance is to be her first since the blown Oscar gig and comes on the heels of an article in the new People magazine article in which the singer's alleged substance abuse problem is hinted at publicly.
So, to confirm Houston's itinerary tonight (and to be able to hold her to her words later), we placed a cursory call to her people.
"Yes, [Whitney Houston] is planning to perform [at the Arista party]," the assistant for the singer's publicist told Hollywood.com on Friday.
Besides Whitney Houston, the concert is also to features performances by: geriatric rocker Santana, rock mavens Annie Lennox and Patti Smith, elevator musicians Kenny G., Barry Manilow, Carly Simon, not to mention, Sarah McLachlan, Brooks & Dunn, Deborah Cox, Alan Jackson, LFO, Monica, Next, Puff Daddy and Westlife.
The bash, dubbed "25 Years Of #1 Hits: Arista Records' Anniversary Celebration," will air in convenient TV form on May 15 on NBC.
Tonight, all eyes were on the Los Angeles Shrine Auditorium to witness the presence -- or absence -- of Whitney Houston at the Arista Records' benefit concert. To cut to the chase: Yes, she showed. (Did a six-song, 20-minute set, even.)
Houston -- who bowed out on the Oscars and skipped a couple of Grammy rehearsals -- was indeed among the performers at the bash, which doubled as a 25th anniversary celebration of the Arista label.
In keeping with her M.O. at being, well, different, Houston bade her audience farewell with the curious: "The record's not over yet, remember."
The appearance was her first since the blown Oscar gig (also to be at the Shrine) and came on the heels of an article in the new People magazine in which the singer's alleged substance abuse problem was hinted at publicly.
In addition to Houston, the concert was to feature performances by geriatric rocker Santana, rock mavens Annie Lennox and Patti Smith, elevator musicians Kenny G., Barry Manilow, Carly Simon, not to mention Sarah McLachlan, Brooks & Dunn, Deborah Cox, Alan Jackson, LFO, Monica, Next, Puff Daddy and Westlife.
The bash, dubbed "25 Years Of #1 Hits: Arista Records' Anniversary Celebration," will air in convenient TV form May 15 on NBC.