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Larry David Navigates Birthday, Relationship Wishes

AceHotelLALogoHa ha. Among those in attendance last night at the Ace Hotel in downtown Los Angeles for a special Citi cardholders event featuring David Steinberg interviewing Larry David was LA Weekly EIC Sarah Fenske. She notes that although David overall seemed to greatly enjoy the fan adulation, there was no shortage of embarrassing audience-member behavior:

David, a lovable curmudgeon playing a grudging good sport for the evening, gives three hugs. He accepts a letter from someone’s dad. He even says happy birthday to someone called Henry at the request of a young woman wielding the video function on her phone.

“What am I saying?” he asks. “Who’s Henry?” Told it’s the woman’s father, he yells, “Happy birthday Henry! Your daughter’s obnoxious!” The audience roars.

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Variety Shuffles Its EICs

Moving from editor-in-chief, television to managing editor, television is not exactly a promotion. So, reading between the lines of today’s Variety announcement, we’re assuming this shift was something Cynthia Littleton was willing to accept in exchange for relocating (earlier this year) from LA to New York.

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The PMC publication is still very much a west coast-driven concern. The move means Variety now has two rather than three EICs – Claudia Eller and Andrew Wallenstein.(pictured). A couple of other portions of today’s announcement caught our eye.

1) The PMC PR folks might have been a tad too effusive when they dropped this sentence in:

Variety continues to be the leading provider of entertainment news around the world.

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AP Editor Reminds: Prince is Still Cooler Than You

ARTOFFICIALAGECoverTo go along with a Paisely Park exclusive, AP global entertainment and lifestyles editor Nekesa Mumbi Moody has shared a journalist’s what-we-learned sidebar. She notes that Prince is an excellent ping pong player, no fan of plastic utensils and also – at age 56 – a guy who can still pull this off:

Prince is still cooler than you: He’s the only person who can pull off wearing a shirt with his image — and look epic doing it.

Moody hung out at the entertainer’s Chanhassen compound ahead of tomorrow’s release of Art Official Age and Plectrumelectrum (with 3rdeyegirl). Prince is definitely now partying like it’s 2014, back with Warner Bros. and in full ownership of his music catalog.

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Bill Gates is (Once Again) Forbes’ Richest Person in America

unnamedForbes has released its annual Richest Americans list, and for the 21st straight time, Bill Gates claims the number one spot with a net worth of $81 billion. Gates is followed by a bunch of other obscenely wealthy old white dudes (Warren Buffett, $67 billion; Larry Ellison, $50 billion; David and Charles Koch, $42 billion each).

There are some women on the Forbes 400 list — 47, to be exact. That’s down from 48 last year. The youngest woman on the list is Elizabeth Holmes (#110), founder of the medical technology company Theranos. The youngest male is Mark Zuckerberg (#11).

If you’re in the mood to applaud the .03 percent, check out the entire list.

The Origins of a Feminist Food Quarterly

Cosmopolitan senior political writer Jill Filipovic recently sat down with the principals responsible for new food and culture quarterly Render: founder and creative director Gabi de Leon; executive director Danielle Knott; and editor-in-chief Lisa Knisely.

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De Leon, who is based in the rising food mecca of Portland, Oregon, kicked off the conversation with some candid, personal information about the spark for the publication:

Render is the product of my four years spent confronting my disordered eating while attending Pacific Northwest College of Art (PNCA). I developed anorexia in my first semester and recovered before my second semester, but that didn’t mean that I was “better” or that I was eating like ‘normal.’”

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Remembering the Simple Pleasures of Skip E. Lowe

When Harry Shearer wrote about Public Access talk show host Skip E. Lowe in 1998 for the New York Times Magazine, he got just one thing wrong. That wasn’t Lowe in the show’s opening credits; it was Mickey Rooney from A Midsummer Night’s Dream (as Lowe later corrected on his website).

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Otherwise, Shearer’s piece is absolutely the best way to remember – or, acquaint yourself – with Lowe, who passed away this week after a three-and-half-decades bi-coastal TV run. From Shearer’s September 1998 essay:

Skip E. Lowe Looks at Hollywood doesn’t so much re-invent television as de-invent it, returning it to those glorious days before focus groups, when the tube was safe for eccentricity and obsession. Regular TV could allow for such vagaries when the commercial formulas had not yet been ascertained and codified.

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An SNL Writer’s Trick of the Trade: ‘KENAN REACTS’

KenanThompsonSNLIn some ways, social media has rendered Saturday Night Live bulletproof as it heads into its 40th anniversary season. Sketches that misfire and hosts who bomb typically now power a social discussion that is as robust as when everything clicks.

But there will be plenty of time for that soon. In the meantime, we have been enjoying Slate’s delivery of show writers talking about specific cast members. Today, in installment #2, co-head writer Bryan Tucker zeros in on Kenan Thompson:

Here’s a secret. If you’re a Saturday Night Live writer, and you want to get an extra laugh in your script, just add this line: “KENAN REACTS.” Sure, it’s sort of cheating. But we still do it sometimes. Because it works.

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#FreeSimmons Campaign Includes Original Folk Song

South Florida-based singer-songwriter James Rustad performs tonight at the Harbor Bar. And thanks to ESPN’s suspension of Bill Simmons, he’s got a new song in his repertoire.

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TheWrap’s Jeff Sneider Fires Back

JeffSneiderTwitterProfilePicHaving sparked and now read our earlier item featuring less-than-complimentary words from Deadline EIC Mike Fleming Jr., Jeff Sneider has some less-than-complimentary words of his own.

“Mike Fleming is a f*cking loser,” TheWrap senior film reporter tells FishbowlNY via telephone. “I used to look up to Mike Fleming. Now, I pity him.”

“Mike Fleming asks, ‘What purpose is served rebroadcasting news broken elsewhere?’” Sneider continues. “Well, that is called the news, Mike. You don’t own it. And not everyone in Hollywood thinks that this is the case. Not everyone reads Deadline, a fact reflected by its now sagging numbers. More people now read TheWrap and Jeff Sneider than Deadline and Mike Fleming.”

“Every story that goes on thewrap.com under my byline is independently confirmed. So we don’t need to copy stories from Mike Fleming, because I have my own sources. And I also credit Deadline for every one of the news breaks. You can look at our Toronto coverage and see.”

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Deadline EIC Responds to a Rival’s Accusations

On Twitter yesterday and today, TheWrap senior film reporter Jeff Sneider questioned the integrity of an item posted by Deadline EIC Mike Fleming Jr.

Initially, he mocked Fleming for labeling as exclusive some project news involving Michael Eisner‘s Tornante Company . Then, less forcefully, Sneider noted and wondered about the deletion of the Deadline item in question.

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