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(VIDEO) Howard Stern Marks 30th Anniversary of New York Debut at WNBC

Howard Stern was a personality that radio would not soon forget. But in 1982, listeners in the New York City area could only imagine what the hype was about.

And then August 30 happened.

Thirty years ago, Stern arrived in New York at WNBC Radio (clip below), complete with sidekick Robin Quivers, who first worked with Stern in Washington a year earlier. Of course, with his roots in rough and tumble Roosevelt, Long Island, this was Howard’s homecoming.

As characterized in his book and film, Private Parts, Stern dealt with internal clashes from day one at WNBC. Specifically, his verbal barrages with program director Kevin Metheny, not-so-affectionately called “Pig Vomit” in the film (“Pig Virus” in real life). Stern slightly altered the immortalized version of Metheny, changing his name to “Kenny Rushton,” played exquisitely by Paul Giamatti.

“The book and the script are fascinating, engaging, and entertaining,” Metheny tells FishbowlNY. “I think [there's] a fair and appropriate amount of artists’ liberties taken with factual elasticity in order to make a more interesting project.”

In one memorable scene, Giamatti’s Rushton attempts to teach Stern the key to success, announcing the call letters properly (W-N-N-N-N-B-C). (See clip after the jump)

“I’m certain that I was a pain in the tush with respect to putting the emphasis on the “N” in WNBC,” Metheny says.

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Sue Simmons Heading to Prime Time, Making Acting Debut on Law & Order

You can’t keep a good anchor down!

In Sue Simmons‘ case, the legendary TV newsperson is trying her hand at acting. She’s joining the cast of NBC’s Law & Order: SVU for the two-part season premiere, according to the New York Post.

Simmons shot the episode in late July, and plays, who else, Sue Simmons! As the fictional Simmons, she’s seen covering breaking news, live on the scene of a scandal encompassing the NYPD, the DA’s office, and two escort agencies.

The season opener continues the story arc from last season’s finale, in which Captain Cragen finds a dead hooker in his bed.

Executive producer Warren Leight tells the Post that when the decision was being made to hire an actor or real newscaster, “six of us thought of Sue at the same time.”

Leight adds, “She said yes immediately. She was thrilled and had a great time.”

He says she didn’t need much coaching, and actually helped with some script adjustments.

“Simmons objected to using the word ‘burgeoning’ to identify the scandal in the episode,” Leight tells the New York Post.

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New York Native, Composing Great Marvin Hamlisch Succumbs to Short Illness

He was one of this country’s most decorated composer. Marvin Hamlisch died suddenly yesterday after a brief illness. No other details are available. Hamlisch was 68.

Hamlisch is one of only a handful of people to win the “Big Four” awards–an Oscar, Grammy, Emmy, and Tony. The air gets even more rarefied when a Pulitzer Prize is included (Richard Rodgers is the other).

Hamlisch, according to wikipedia, grew up in New York City to Viennese Jewish parents. By five, the child prodigy began emulating the piano he heard on the radio.

In 1951, he was accepted by the Julliard School Pre-College Division. He was seven at the time.

His first job was as the rehearsal pianist at Funny Girl starring Barbra Streisand, which came to Broadway in 1964. The two would become life-long friends.

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Nicki Minaj Announces Free New York City Make-Up Concert

Queens native Nicki Minaj is finally giving fans what they want–a free concert. The August 14, New York City show is a make-up for bailing on Hot 97′s Summer Jam in June.

“We are excited to offer the first 1,500 fans the opportunity to attend the show,” a link from Minaj’s Twitter account stated on her Website. “You must line up at the venue no earlier than 12 noon at the secret location. The first 1,500 fans in line will receive wrist bands, that will guarantee access to the event.”

Fans are encouraged to fill out a modest form with their name, email address, age and state.

But Minaj isn’t just “talking” to fans. On her Website post, the rapper writes Hot 97, Power 105, Z100, 92.3 Now, and WBLI should “listen and win.”

During Summer Jam, Hot 97/WQHT morning personality Peter Rosenberg ripped Minaj’s new single Starships as too “pop” and not enough hip hop.

It didn’t take long for Minaj mentor, and head of her record label, L’il Wayne to pull her from the show.

At the time she tweeted, “I go above and beyond for my fans. But won’t ever go against wayne’s word. What  he says, goes.”

Photo credit: Billboard.com

Saying So Long to Sherman Hemsley, Whose Big Break Came on Broadway

Hemsley and Jeffersons co-star Isabel Sanford

Before he became part of sitcom lore, Sherman Hemsley was part of the Broadway scene.

Beginning in 1970, Hemsley was a member the musical Purlie. Although it was only a supporting role, it ultimately led to the role of lifetime.

Early in the show’s run, there was buzz backstage that a major Hollywood producer would visit the cast.

That producer was Norman Lear, who was on precipice of greatness with All in the Family set to debut the following January.

Lear’s appearance followed Melba Moore and Cleavon Little winning Tony Awards for Purlie on April 19.

As Hemsley told the Archive of American Television in 2003, he didn’t expect Lear would have any interest in the young actor.

“I was just sort of new, and happy to be there,” Hemsley recalled. “I figured he didn’t even notice me. I figured he noticed me, but he was coming to see them. I wasn’t as nervous as I guess I should have been.”

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WCBS-FM Culminates 40th with Free Concert

It was the perfect night for a concert at Eisenhower Park in East Meadow, Long Island.

Making the evening even more ideal was that the concert was free.

As one big thank you to fans for 40 years of loyalty, WCBS-FM hosted its Saturday in the Park with disco great KC and the Sunshine Band.

The on-air gang was there for hours, just like the throngs of listeners. “Broadway” Bill Lee did a later than usual Saturday show, as a live remote just feet from the stage. Fittingly, he stayed on the air until, “Brooklyn’s Own” Joe Causi (above) started his Saturday Night Seventies on scene. The air personalities, including Ron Parker, signed autographs from adoring fans.

Causi provided the “opening act” for KC and the Sunshine Band. Waiting for the sun to set, the classic disco band took the stage at 8:30.

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Remembering Screenwriter Nora Ephron, a New York Treasure

Meg Ryan "fakes it" for Billy Crystal at Katz's Deli in "When Harry Met Sally"

Nora Ephron was a screenwriter and director with New York in her blood. And it coursed through many of her films as well.

Perhaps her most famous piece of New York City movie making was When Harry Met Sally. Ephron wrote the script for the Rob Reiner classic Billy Crystal-Meg Ryan romantic comedy. The famous “orgasm” scene where Reiner’s mom says, “I’ll have what she’s having,” took place at Katz’s Deli on the Lower East Side.

The Big Apple proved a popular backdrop for the Tom Hanks/Meg Ryan vehicle — You’ve Got Mail. Ephron co-wrote and directed the movie, in which Ryan discovers that Hanks has been her secret crush all along when they meet at Riverside Park. The film uses numerous New York locales, including Zabar’s, Gray’s Papaya, and Cafe Lalo.

Of course, who could forget the duo meeting at the Empire State Building for the Sleepless in Seattle finale?

Part of her last major hit, Julie and Julia, was shot in Manhattan, featuring the blog to book to movie story of Julie Powell as she attempted every recipe in Julia Child’s “Mastering the Art of French Cooking.”

Ephron lived, during her college years, at 110 Sullivan Street, between Prince and Spring Streets.

She died yesterday in a Manhattan hospital of pneumonia brought on by acute myeloid leukemia. She was 71. Her son, Jacob Bernstein, a contributing writer at Newsweek Daily Beast, announced the news of his mother’s death to The New York Times last night.

Most Popular FishbowlNY Stories for the Week

Here’s a look at what FishbowlNY stories made the most buzz this week.

  1. WNBC is Quiet as Sue Simmons Delivers Final Newscast Tonight, June 15
  2. Sue Simmons Ends Historic Run at WNBC, Wants to Be ‘Employed Somewhere Else at Some Point,‘ June 16
  3. Writer Quits XOJane to Do More Drugs, June 14
  4. WLNY Morning Team for Live from the Couch, June 18
  5. Alec Baldwin Punches Daily News Photographer, References Trayvon Martin, June 19
  6. Jonah Lehrer‘s Situation Gets Worse [Update], June 20
  7. WNBC Names Shiba Russell as Sue Simmons‘ Replacement, June 18

Keep up-to-date with the latest FishbowlNY news. Click here to sign-up for the FishbowlNY daily newsletter, bringing you our articles each afternoon directly to your inbox.

New York Press Club Weighs In on Alec Baldwin Altercation with Daily News Photog

Alec Baldwin is back to giving himself a black eye in the media. As we reported Tuesday, Baldwin allegedly punched a New York Daily News photographer. Not so allegedly, Baldwin tweeted after the scuffle, “a ‘photographer almost hit me in the face with his camera this morning.” He went on the add the hashtag “all paparazzi should be waterboarded.”

Today, the New York Press Club is providing its thoughts on the matter.

“The New York Press Club protests the attack Tuesday by Alec Baldwin on a Daily News photographer.

Baldwin is a public figure. His activities – including in this case, the procurement of a marriage license – are legitimate subjects of media interest.

Baldwin’s subsequent attack today on a reporter for Inside Edition who was trying to ask questions about the previous day’s incident – Baldwin ran his bike over her foot – is deplorable.

Baldwin’s actions should not be tolerated. They should be exposed – and condemned.” Read more

Made in NY Honors for Robert De Niro and Meryl Streep

Some of the most famous people in the entertainment industry were given New York City awards.

The Made in NY Awards, in its seventh year, honor individuals and organizations that have made significant contributions to the City’s entertainment and digital media industries.

Mayor Bloomberg made the announcement at Gracie Mansion yesterday, along with the City’s media and entertainment commissioner Katherine Oliver.

“This has been a remarkable and record-breaking year for New York City’s entertainment and digital media industries, which are vital parts of our economic diversification strategy,” Bloomberg said. “More New Yorkers than ever before are taking advantage of the opportunities within these growing industries. Congratulations to all of the honorees, who are proof-positive that when you’re Made in NY, you can make it anywhere.”

This year’s recipients have six Academy Awards between them.

Robert De Niro burst on the scene with Martin Scorsese‘s Mean Streets in 1973. A year later, he was an Oscar winner for his portrayal of Don Corleone in The Godfather Part 2. His role was completely in Italian.

Hard to pick a signature performance, but Scorsese’s Raging Bull is always atop any list. De Niro won his second Oscar, and only Best Actor trophy for the gritty boxing drama.

In 2001, in the weeks following the 9/11 attacks, De Niro and business partner Jane Rosenthal, co-founded the Tribeca Film Festival.

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