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Posts Tagged ‘Ellen DeGeneres’

Charlie Sheen Gets a Comic Book

There’s not much left to laugh at when it comes to Charlie Sheen. Per tonight’s latest “Sheen’s Korner” Internet broadcast, the actor is still – albeit in a more scripted, Teleprompter form – desperately trying to channel the spirit of Hunter S. Thompson.

In lieu of accompanying illustrations from gonzo artist Ralph Steadman, Sheen fans can instead look forward to an upcoming graphic novel from Bluewater Productions. Other media stars given this treatment by the Vancouver, WA company include the much saner quartet of Oprah, Ellen DeGeneres, Barbara Walters, and Meredith Vieira, for the title Female Force: Women in Media.

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The Portia DeGeneres Show

A media brouhaha has been stirring in Australia this week over the gender-specific book publicity preferences of Ellen DeGeneres‘ significant other, Portia.

To promote her memoir Unbearable Lightness: A Story of Loss and Gain on the morning TV show Sunrise, via satellite from LA, Portia demanded that only the female half of the program’s co-hosting duo, Melinda Doyle, do the interviewing duties. Understandably, this did not sit well with Doyle’s colleague David Koch, who took to Twitter and ignited the ensuing firestorm.

Tweeted Koch:


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Forbes World’s 100 Most Powerful Women List Loaded With Media Figures

Last evening, Forbes released their annual ranking of the World’s 100 Most Powerful Women on their official website, Forbes.com.  The list included 18 media and publishing personalities and made it clear that the women controlling the industry have no shortage of creativity, wealth, and executive power.  Take a look at the major players that Forbes recognized this year:

Oprah Winfrey, talk show host and media mogul, #3
Arianna Huffington, editor and co-Founder, Huffington Post, #28
Anna Wintour, editor-in-chief, Vogue, #56
Tina Brown, The Daily Beast, #34
Cathleen Black, chair, Hearst Magazines, #67
Janet Robinson, CEO, The New York Times, #85
Nikki Finke, founder, Deadline Hollywood Daily, #79
Suze Orman, author, CNBC host, #61
Rachael Ray, talk show host and author, #78
Meredith Viera, co-anchor, The Today Show, #40
Ellen DeGeneres, talk show host,  #10
Christiane Amanpour, news anchor, ABC’s This Week, #73
Anne Sweeney, co-chair, Disney Media Networks; President,Disney/ABC TV Group #69
Katie Couric, anchor, CBS Evening News, #22
Diane Sawyer, news anchor, ABC’s World News, #46
Sarah Palin, television commentator, Fox News, #16
Rachel Maddow,  anchor, The Rachel Maddow Show, #50
Martha Stewart, talk show host, author, #99

The full list can be viewed in the Forbes October 25 issue, on newsstands today. 

’1 for All’ Launches Next Week

The initial funding for the “1 for All” campaign came from John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, Newseum, McCormick Foundation, American Society of News Editors, First Amendment Center and Gannett Foundation. Now over “1000 new organizations, religious groups and educational institutions” are supporting the campaign to educate the public about the First Amendment.

The campaign starts July 1st. And yes, LL Cool J actually signed on this time. The entire release is after the jump.

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Ellen Starts Record Label and Signs ‘Dude Who Sings Like a Lady Gaga’

The super adorable Ellen DeGeneres has started a record label and signed the super adorable YouTube phenom Greyson Chance.

What other comics are stepping out of their comfort zone? Will Jerry Seinfeld start his own cereal company? Carrot Top an organic market chain? Meh.

Lunch: Johnny Weir Is “Not From Mars,” Nate Berkus Readies Transformations

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— DIANE CLEHANE

You just never know who’s going to turn up at Michael’s, and I’ve learned to expect the unexpected during my weekly lunches. That’s just what I got when U.S Olympic figure skater Johnny Weir and his agent Tara Modlin showed up to join Rob Weisbach, uber agent and former president and CEO of Miramax Books, at Table One. I loved every minute of the drama on and off the ice at this year’s games, so I just had to go over and introduce myself to Johnny.

The usually flamboyant and outspoken star, who was wearing a red ruffled sweater, black pants and flat boots, was downright subdued as I offered my congratulations on his Olympic performance but perked up when I asked if the trio might be discussing a possible book. “Yes, I want to do a book. I write a blog for my Web site and I’d like to write about a lot of the things that happen behind the scenes in figure skating,” Johnny told me. “I’ve got a cool background. I’d like people to know I’m not from Mars.” I also asked the sixth place finisher to weigh in on silver medalist Yevgeny Plushenko‘s controversial remarks about Evan Lysacek winning the gold medal without doing a quadruple jump. “I’m good friends with Yevgeny and his comments were taken out of context,” says Johnny. “He’s Russian. English is his second language.” So there you have it; it was all just a simple misunderstanding.

Speaking of books, I was joined today by literary agent Fredi Friedman who helms her own agency and has an impressively diverse list of clients including hedge fund king (and former Morgan Stanley honcho) Barton Biggs, Pat Buchanan, Democratic pollster Celinda Lake, and her Republican counterpart Kellyanne Conway. “I go from one side of the aisle to the other!” says Fredi.

We were deep in conversation when Today show producer Marc Victor stopped by to introduce us to Oprah‘s favorite design guru, Nate Berkus. His new syndicated show, Nate Berkus (catchy title!) is set to premiere in September on NBC. Nate tells me he’s branching out from home makeovers. The show will air as a lead-in to Ellen DeGeneres‘ chatfest and will include a variety of different segments. “I’ll be doing some design, but I’ll also be doing interviews and focusing on the idea of transformations.” You might recall Oprah has sent Nate to several viewers’ homes for missions that go beyond a bathroom gone bad. One of my favorite recent episodes had Nate making over a woman who wanted him to glam her up and take her to her 25th high school reunion. “It’s tricky terrain when you’re picking out clothes for someone,” says Nate, who will also “have a presence” on Oprah’s OWN network when it launches. But he came through with flying colors and is now confident enough to give it a go on his own show. “We’re going to be focusing on transformations.”

Fredi, who is always thinking about new book ideas, told Nate he really had something there. “You should do a book!” she said. “Maybe I will,” Nate replied with a smile as he said his good-byes. “Thanks for the feedback!” At Michael’s, lunch is never just about lunch. But you knew that, didn’t you?

Here’s the rundown on today’s crowd:

1. Rob Weisbach, Johnny Weir, and Tara Modlin

2. Today show producer Marc Victor (long time, no See!), Nate Berkus, and Nate’s agent Kristen Giese

3. ‘Mayor’ Joe Armstrong, Ed Victor, and his gorgeous wife, Carol.

4. Jean Doumanian with two gents, including producer Jerry Frankel.

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New York Times Television Critic O’Connor Dies at 76

o'connor.jpgTelevision critic John J. O’Connor worked for The New York Times for over 25 years.

To put it in perspective, he was around to call David Frost‘s interview with Richard Nixon a program that raised “serious questions about the contemporary crafts of marketing and communication.” He was around to say that the television mini-series “Roots” was a giant step forward for popular entertainment. He debated the merits between the Simpson and Cosby families, and one of his last pieces for The Times involved Ellen DeGenerescoming out on national television, which O’Connor had mixed feelings about, calling it “a promotional tool” for what was once a “a delicate, if not traumatic, rite of passage” for gay men and women.

He died last night in his home, at age 76 of lung cancer, survived by his partner Seymour Barofsky. O’Connor may have left The Times in 1997, but as we discovered while searching for examples of his work, many of his reviews can still be found on the paper’s Web site, so you can take a moment to read back through some of his best works.

John J. O’Connor, a Times TV Critic in Years of Industry Upheaval, Dies at 76New York Times

(Photo courtesy of The New York Times)

Ellen DeGeneres to be New Idol Judge


We love Ellen DeGeneres. We just love her. However, American Idol is not comedian friendly. The last comic on that show was Brian Dunkleman, if anyone remembers. The first season had two hosts. One was the unknown local Star 98.7 chatty cathy Ryan Seacrest and the other was comedian Dunkleman who was (ahem) voted off. Never to be heard from again. No he didn’t go Jennifer Hudson and go on to better things. Nothing.

So American Idol has a horrible comedic track record and Ellen has a perfect one. Could be interesting. More likely not…

Oprah Tops ForbesWoman‘s List Of Media’s Most Powerful Women

proah.pngLong before Mediaite.com was just a twinkle in Dan Abrams‘ eye, Forbes was ranking the richest people in the world, the most powerful celebrities and just about anything worth ranking.

Today, the business magazine’s sister publication, ForbesWoman has put out its list of the 30 most influential women in the media world.

Not surprisingly, Oprah Winfrey tops the list, earning an unmatched $275 million last year. But earnings alone don’t translate to power, as the top five can contest. Joining Oprah are Diane Sawyer, Barbara Walters, Ellen DeGeneres (the number two earner with $35 million last year) and Tyra Banks — the third top earner on the list with $23 million banked (ha) last year. Television journalists Sawyer and Walters pushed ahead of the top-earning talk show hosts thanks to the massive audiences they reach with their regular hosting gigs and primetime specials.

The whole list is a nice mix of traditional media and online media personalities and bloggers, like Arianna Huffington (number 12), Tina Brown (25) and mommy blogger and dooce.com founder Heather Armstrong (26).

Related: Amy Poehler, Rachael Ray and MTV’s McGrath Headling Gracie Awards

(Photo via Oprah.com)

Forbes’ The Most Influential Women In Media

070614_oprah_vmed.jpgForbes released their Most Influential Women In Media list.

The whole list is here.

Spoiler alert: We are not on the list at all. Send booze quick!

Arianna Huffington is number 12 and Tina Brown ranks in at 25 this year. But a comic who never went to college, Ellen DeGeneres is number three. Think of that when your student loans are due. Suckers.

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