Later today, Atlanta-based mogul Tyler Perry will share what he describes as the most “in-depth and revelatory interview” he has ever done, providing details of early childhood sexual abuse at the hands of several men and one woman. But the setting for this tearful conversation is not the pages of Vanity Fair, the light bulb map backdrop of Larry King Live or the punchy paragraph scroll of TMZ.com.
Rather, it is today’s episode of Oprah, where host Oprah Winfrey, in her 25th and final season, continues to lead the way with substantive film and TV industry related coverage. Even a recent episode with Love Story co-stars Ali McGraw and Ryan O’Neal, their first on-camera reunion in 20 years, was more revelatory and satisfying than most of what passes for west coast breaking entertainment news. Especially intriguing were repeat examinations by the pair of the seminal 1970 movie’s signature line, ‘Love means never having to say you’re sorry.’ O’Neal, a regular target of the tabloids, also spoke movingly about his relationship with the late Farrah Fawcett.
Contrast all this, along with another great recent Oprah episode during which former “It” girls Cybill Shepherd and Linda Evans deconstructed the fame bubble together with Desperate Housewives co-star Teri Hatcher, with the latest coverage of Oprah in L.A. Her recent camping trip with long-time pal Gayle King elicited headlines such as Oprah and Gayle: Pajama Jammy in the Woods and EXCLUSIVE DETAILS like the fact that the duo apparently stopped at a store in Fresno beforehand to pick up supplies.
Once in a while, as per for example Michael Douglas‘ solemn recent appearance on The Late Show, substantive Hollywood coverage breaks through the sheen of talk, gossip and prurient headlines. But for the most part, the best place to find it, at least for one more year, is still Harpo Studios in Chicago.
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