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Posts Tagged ‘Ellen DeGeneres’

Between the Morning and the Evening, Katie Couric Settles In to Her Comfort Zone

If today’s long-awaited debut of Katie Couric’s syndicated talk show resembled an infomercial for Weight Watchers, that’s because it was.

The first three segments of Couric’s Disney chatfest were devoted almost entirely to guest Jessica Simpson’s post-partum weight loss — thanks to Weight Watchers. There were so many rhapsodic plugs, I kept waiting for the 800 number and my free ginzu knife.

Simpson gushed about her new role as a Weight Watchers poster girl. Then came a sneak preview of her Weight Watchers ad, followed by a full segment joined by her Weight Watchers coach. The capper was a free two-week Weight Watchers membership, via ‘Katie’s’ website.

To be kind, Jessica Simpson was no Sarah Palin, but Couric appeared to be thoroughly enjoying the absence of heavy lifting. After her hellish tenure as anchor of ‘CBS Evening News,’ ‘Katie’ must feel like a fabulous, all-expenses paid vacation. Hey, if Anderson Cooper did it, why not Couric?

Call it ‘Today Extra Lite.’

As has become the fashion, ‘Katie’ opened with a cutesy taped bit. More than a little derivative, given that she did the same thing for her guest-hosting stint on ‘Good Morning America’ in April.

She wakes up from a weird dream and proceeds to tell it to a mystery person in the other twin bed. (An homage to ‘I Love Lucy?’) “I dreamed I left ‘Today’ to anchor the evening news, and I did it for five years, and then I dreamed I was going to be hosting my own daytime talk show!”

Peeling back the covers, a jammies-clad Matt Lauer says: “That wasn’t a dream, and the talk show starts right now!” Cue hilarity.

After almost a full half-hour of Jessica Simpson and Weight Watchers, however, I was reeling from estrogen-induced boredom. Thankfully, the next guest, Sheryl Crow, who composed ‘Katie’s’ up-tempo theme song and is a good friend of the host, had some interesting things to say.

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Les Moonves: ‘Partisanship is Very Much a Part of Journalism Now’

The LATimes writes up Pres. Obama’s LGBT fundraiser in Los Angeles last night attended by about 600 supporters including Ellen DeGeneres, Cher and her son Chaz Bono. Another boldface name in the crowd: CBS Corp. CEO and chairman Les Moonves and his wife, “The Talk” co-host Julie Chen, who, in the past, anchored CBS News’s “The Early Show.”

Before the event began, a long line of partygoers waited on the sidewalk outside the hotel to check in. CBS chief Les Moonves and his wife, Julie Chen, waited patiently for their wristbands. Obama, Moonves said, “has shown great leadership” on the issue of gay marriage.

Though he heads a news division, Moonves said, “ultimately journalism has changed … partisanship is very much a part of journalism now.”

He hastened to add that despite his presence, “I run a news division. I’ve given no money to any candidate.”

Wonder how this is going over in the CBS Newsroom. We’ve got a call in to find out.

Bill O’Reilly on Whitney Houston, Ellen DeGeneres and ‘What’s Up With That?’

Bill O’Reilly is on the West Coast, and after taping his show in LA yesterday, he dropped by “The Tonight Show.” O’Reilly and Jay Leno talked politics, including what might come up at tonight’s CNN debate: “CNN is definitely going to bear-bait him into this contraception thing, there’s no doubt,” said O’Reilly of Rick Santorum. And on whether Sarah Palin might jump into the race: “The governor is happy where she is, making a fortune on the Fox News Channel and shooting moose, or doing whatever she’s doing,” O’Reilly joked.

Leno and O’Reilly also talked about the coverage of the death of Whitney Houston, O’Reilly’s defense of Ellen DeGeneres and his appearance on “Saturday Night Live” during “What’s Up with That?” Watch:

Ellen DeGeneres Thanks Bill O’Reilly; ‘Modern Family’ Star Wants to Make Out With Him

Ellen DeGeneres gives a shout out to Bill O’Reilly on her show today, thanking him for standing up for her.

The other night, O’Reilly defended DeGeneres in the face of a call by the group Million Moms, which doesn’t like the idea that JCPenney has hired Ellen to be their spokesperson.

“This JCPenney thing is a witch hunt, and it shouldn’t happen,” said O’Reilly.

DeGeneres played the clip on her show today and thanked O’Reilly, adding, “You didn’t really make it clear if you were going to shop at JCPenney or not, but if you do, you can use my employee discount any time you want. That’s for you Bill. Thank you so much.”

Later on the show, actress Julie Bowen “Claire” on “Modern Family” showed her support to DeGeneres and gratefulness to O’Reilly: “I never thought that I would want to make out with Bill O’Reilly. It turns out today is the day.”

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Ellen Degeneres Pranks Meredith Vieira

Outgoing “Today” co-anchor Meredith Vieira is making the TV rounds as she prepares to leave the iconic NBC morning show. Monday she appeared on syndie program “The Ellen Degeneres Show,” where she was promptly pranked by Ellen, before explaining her decision to leave:

Ellen DeGeneres Creates Havoc in Local News Studio

If you ever wondered what it would look like if your local newscast was suddenly commandeered by Ellen DeGeneres… it looks like this.

Video from NBC O&O WMAQ-TV — with special weather — report below:

(via HuffPost)

Williams Anchors from Out of Town, Appears on ‘Ellen’

brianwwest_11-17.jpgLast night, NBC’s Brian Williams anchored “Nightly News” from the NBC News Los Angeles bureau while he spends some time on the west coast this week.

Williams will receive the Walter Cronkite Award for Excellence in Journalism at Arizona State University tomorrow. While he’s out of town, NBC set things up for him to anchor “Nightly” from LA last night and from Phoenix tonight.

During his time in California, Williams taped an interview with Ellen Degeneres yesterday, which is airing today (4pmET in NYC). He will also appear on “Extra” tonight. On “Ellen,” Williams discussed his recent trip to Afghanistan and showed Degeneres how to eat an MRE (Meal Ready to Eat), telling her, “I schlepped this, an Afghan word, all the way from Kabul.” Screen grabs below.

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CNBCers Around The Dial

Squawk Box co-anchor Becky Quick appeared last night on CBS’ Late Show with David Letterman (she explained what “Squawk Box” means to the talk show host):

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And today on the Ellen DeGeneres show, Maria Bartiromo was a guest:

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Matthews Returns, Dance-Free, To Ellen

MSNBC’s Chris Matthews‘ made his long-awaited return to The Ellen DeGeneres Show yesterday, and unlike last time, there was no inadvertent groping. Instead, Matthews’ was hands off and dance-free — until DeGeneres went in for the hug. “Thank you for being a good sport,” she said.



• As for the real interview, Matthews talked Sen. Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State, the Bush administration, and he and DeGeneres toasted to President-elect Barack Obama‘s victory.

The Ticker (video edition): Matthews, Cooper, Hannity…

> SNL got one final round of political sketches in last night, including a portrayal of MSNBC’s Chris Matthews with Sen. Barack Obama. Check out the video.

> CNN’s Anderson Cooper was interviewed on Ellen DeGeneres‘ talk show today, and he explained “The Ellen Factor.” Check out the clip.

> In honor of Election Day, Nas, who is not a fan of Fox News, released a new song, with a shot at Sean Hannity. Click here to listen.

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