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Archive for the ‘Television’ Category

Bruce Vilanch To Appear On ‘Day of Disruption’ on National Coming Out Day (Tuesday, October 11)

Tuesday, October 11th, 2016

lgbtweekly.com
Logo to symbolically censor LGBT content with ‘Day of Disruption’ on National Coming Out Day
by Steve Lee, Editor
October 10th, 2016

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NEW YORK, NY — Logo today announced it will symbolically censor LGBT content on-air and online in a show of solidarity with international LGBT people who live in countries where positive LGBT media images are invisible or banned. The unprecedented ‘Day of Disruption,’ part of Logo’s international LGBT project, Global Ally, takes place on Tuesday, October 11 on National Coming Out Day, a day dedicated to celebrating coming out and living openly as LGBT. This year, Logo is flipping the script and providing a glimpse at what life could be like in countries where LGBT people can’t turn on the television, open the newspaper, or go to social media to see positive and relatable images. During a marathon of “RuPaul’s Drag Race” Season 8, Logo will symbolically censor LGBT content, display facts about international LGBT issues, and provide ways to stand in solidarity with LGBT people who cannot or do not feel safe to come out and live openly.

And a video of an activist originally from Iran on how lack of LGBT media images impacted his coming out:

Candis Cayne, Gus Kentworthy, Trace Lysette, Jason Collins, Geena Rocero, Billy Porter, Omar Sharif Jr., JD Samson, Alec Mapa and Bruce Vilanch will appear on Logo throughout the ‘Day of Disruption’ to speak out about the 72 countries where being LGBT is criminalized and the 10 countries where gay and lesbian relationships can be punishable by death. Logo will also release videos of activists from Russia, Iran, Singapore and more discussing how media censorship impacts their lives.

The ‘censored’ marathon of “RuPaul’s Drag Race” Season 8 starts at 6am ET/PT on Tuesday, October 11. During the marathon, openly LGBT contestants and guests will have their eyes blocked by a black bar, drag outfits will be pixelated, and audio bleeps will disrupt LGBT content. A static graphic will feature facts about LGBT criminalization laws, ways to take action at Logo’s GlobalAlly.org, as well as statistics from the ILGA-RIWI 2016 Global Attitudes Survey on LGBTI People. Content on LogoTV.com, NewNowNext.com, and Logo’s social media channels will also be disrupted and direct followers to take action in solidarity with the global LGBT community at http://globalally.org/censoryourself.

The all new and highly anticipated finale of “RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars” will air Thursday, Oct. 13 at 9pm ET/PT.

Logo’s ‘Day of Disruption’ is the latest initiative in Global Ally, an international LGBT storytelling project (http://globalally.org) featuring video profiles, first-of-its-kind research and the most robust and interactive site dedicated to global LGBT issues.

7 Reasons Why “Donny & Marie” Ruled the ’70s

Saturday, January 23rd, 2016

BIO
7 Reasons Why “Donny & Marie” Ruled the ’70s
The “Donny & Marie” show debuted on January 23, 1976. To celebrate its 40th anniversary this week, here’s a look back at the iconic 70s TV show and its show-stopping success.
KATIE MASSA KENNEDY JAN 20, 2016

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Family act Marie and Donny Osmond took primetime television by storm when “Donny & Marie” premiered on January 23, 1976. (Photo: ©ABC/Photofest)
Happy Anniversary, Donny & Marie! Can you believe it’s been 40 years since the variety program turned Friday nights into must-see-TV? Its debut in 1976 took primetime by storm, singing and dancing its way into television history with a jaw-dropping 14 million viewers a week.?? It may be hard to count all the ways Donny & Marie was such a show-stopping success – but here are our 7 Reasons ‘Donny and Marie’ Ruled the ’70s:

She Was a Little Bit Country, He Was a Little Bit Rock ‘n’ Roll?

Fourteen-year-old Marie Osmond reached the top of the charts with her country hit “Paper Roses” while Donny was busy rocking out with their brothers – and when the two co-hosted The Mike Douglas Show, their creative chemistry was so undeniable that execs at ABC gave them their own show. America tuned in each week to watch the charming siblings butt heads, trade lighthearted barbs and insults and needle each other as only brothers and sisters can do. Yeah, “A Little Bit Country, a Little Bit Rock ‘n’ Roll” wasn’t just the show’s opening song – it was a way of life for the duo.


Those Big Musical Numbers Were Electrifying

Huge musical productions were a hallmark of the hit variety show, with big brother and little sis helming some of the biggest and glitziest dance numbers on television. Joining the choreography team was 1960 Olympic Pairs Figure Skating Gold Medalist Robert Paul, who struck gold again with the show’s elaborate skating routines. Hey, it didn’t matter if you were too cool for school – there was just no denying that those ice-skating numbers were ice-HOT!


The Comedy Was Fun Schlock?

With comedy luminaries like Bruce Vilanch on the writing staff, is it any surprise that laughs ran rampant on the show? Sure, the sketches were jam-packed with groan-worthy puns and wholesome parodies (and was even described by critics as syrupy saccharine) – but it was all in good, family fun. Donny himself has admitted that the bits were corny, but added that when he watches it, “I catch myself smiling” and points out “That’s tacky, but I’m still smiling, you know?” Well, we all were, Donny!


The Costumes Were Out of Control

They say image is everything – and a big part of Donny & Marie was its flashy, flamboyant getups. In fact, the production recruited one of the biggest names in fashion, nine-time Emmy winner and three-time Oscar nominee Bob Mackie, who’s dressed entertainment legends such as Joan Rivers, Cher, RuPaul, and Diana Ross. With the way Mackie kept Marie sparkling in some of the most extravagant fashions of the day, it’s no wonder he earned the nickname “Sultan of Sequins”!

 

Everyone Who Was Anyone Was On the Show

With the huge ratings Donny & Marie was pulling in each week, every celeb of the day clamored to get on the hit show for maximum exposure – that’s why when audiences tuned in, they’d catch some of the decade’s biggest movers and bellbottom shakers! Just a handful of their superstar guests included comedians Bob Hope, George Burns, Lucille Ball, Milton Berle, Nipsey Russell; and musical guests Paul Anka, Tina Turner, Chubby Checker, Sonny and Cher, and Chuck Berry. If you were hot in the ’70s, you played onstage with Donny and Marie!


?Donny Was a Total Dreamboat

With a sizzling solo career under his belt and a hit network show with sister Marie, Donny Osmond catapulted to certifiable pop idol status. That’s right, long before #TeamEdward and #TeamJacob, the teen was competing with David Cassidy for the title of biggest heartthrob. So Donny-crazy was his female fan base, in fact, that some speculate that when Donny began dating his future wife Debbie, it spelled the beginning of the end for the show. Sorry, ladies, he’s still taken!

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THIS . . .

 

This Day in Television History – November 17th, 1978 – Star Wars Holiday Special Airs

Tuesday, November 17th, 2015

WTVY
This Day in Television History – November 17th, 1978 – Star Wars Holiday Special Airs
Nov 17, 2015
By: Sean Sporman

star+wars+holiday+special

Star Wars is a titan of the film industry. The first film was a massive success, and since then, the series has seen massive hits with movies, TV shows, books, video games and more. A new film is hitting theaters next month, one that is greatly anticipated by many.

However, one part of Star Wars that featured the original cast has never been officially released and is considered one of the most notorious television specials of all time—the Star Wars Holiday Special. It aired only once to this day, on CBS on November 17th, 1978.

The special featured Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher and Mark Hamill alongside 70s comedy staples like Bea Arthur and Harvey Korman. It was written by Pat Proft, Leonard Ripps, Bruce Vilanch, Rod Warren, and Mitzie Welch. Steve Binder was the director.

It featured a variety of loosely-connected segments and skits along with stock footage. Some examples of content in the special include the Bea Arthur character running the Cantina on Tattooine, an entire musical segment featuring Jefferson Starship, and Harvey Korman as a four-armed alien that sounds like Julia Child.

Notably, the popular character of the bounty hunter, Boba Fett, made his Star Wars debut in the special, before his appearances in later Star Wars films.

The special has never been officially released, but has gained a cult following as copies can be found online and in trading circuits.

Bruce Vilanch Attends The “Kingdom” Premiere

Wednesday, October 7th, 2015

The Hollywood Reporter
‘Kingdom’ Creator Celebrates His “Visceral Family Drama” at Second Season Screening
by Bill Higgins
10/7/2015

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Joking that the event was “a sucker punch into the belly of Hollywood,” AT&T’s SVP of original content Chris Long hosted a screening and after-party Oct. 6 at the Pacific Design Center celebrating the launch of Kingdom’s second season on DirecTV (since July the satellite broadcaster has been an AT&T subsidiary.)

The sucker punch image went along with Kingdom being based in the world of mixed martial arts. “The show is a snapshot into American life for blue collar have nots,” said Long. “You talk to any fighter who isn’t Floyd Mayweather and they say they fight to eat.”

After the screening, Bruce Vilanch joked that “not since Real Housewives of New Jersey have I seen such violence” but despite the show’s pugilistic setting the screening was civilized enough. (Though the PDC’s screening room could use more space between aisles. Being on a Spirit Airlines flight comes to mind.)

At the after-party, Kingdom creator Byron Balasco described his show as a “visceral family drama that extends into the fight world.” He added that world inside the ring is simple “it’s binary. You win or you lose. It’s outside the cage that things are complex.”

Bruce Vilanch Attends Premiere Of ‘The Comeback’

Friday, November 7th, 2014

Frontiers
‘The Comeback’ Comes Back from 9-Year Hiatus to the Delight of L.A.’s Power Gays
Posted on 11/6/2014 11:31:00 AM by Mike Ciriaco

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If you love something, set it free, and if it returns, it was meant to be.

Or have the execs at HBO cancel it, and if it returns, it was meant to be watched. Lisa Kudrow’s meta-comedy The Comeback, which was axed nine years ago, is going to be back on the air and is just as funny as ever.

Last night, Hollywood’s El Capitan Theater unfurled the red carpet in celebration of Kudrow’s reprisal of her role as the awkward, repressed, self-deluded Valerie Cherish. The artist formerly known as Phoebe Buffay was joined at the gala screening of the new season’s first two episodes by the show’s co-creator Michael Patrick King, as well as a cavalcade of returning co-stars including Laura Silverman, Lance Barber and Damian Young. The cast was bolstered by a roster of the town’s top power gays, including Andrew Rannells, Jane Lynch, Sara Gilbert, Dan Bucatinsky and queen of queer comedy Bruce Vilanch.

“I hope Mickey the makeup guy is in it,” said Vilanch, chatting about the new season before the screening. “I missed the end of the season, so I hope he didn’t die.”

Fans of Mickey, Valerie’s personal makeup artist/sassy gay sidekick, portrayed by Robert Michael Morris, can breathe a sigh of relief. The character survived his melanoma scare from the end of the previous season. And thank god, because Mickey is this series’ version of The Simpsons’ Ralph Wiggum. Every line out of his mouth is comic gold.

For those who were too cheap to spring for premium cable nearly a decade ago, here’s the CliffsNotes version of The Comeback. The mockumentary-style series is like one of those Russian nesting dolls. A reality TV show chronicles faded television star Valerie Cherish as she shoots a cheesy sitcom called Room and Bored in a desperate attempt at recapturing the spotlight. Its a show about a show about a show.

The new season is even more meta. Picking up nine years after the cancellation of the short-lived sitcom, Cherish’s career is flailing. Among her many missteps is self-sabotaging her chance at being one of Bravo’s Housewives of Beverly Hills several years prior, shown via pseudo-raw footage in a hilarious scene with Frontiers friend Lisa Vanderpump. Valerie discovers that Paulie G, the drug addict douchebag who wrote Room and Bored, has created a new show called Seeing Red, a derogatory dramedy (“its like a comedy without the laughs”) about his experience working with Cherish. When Val storms into a casting session to confront him, she ends up reading for—and accepting—the lead role, thus playing her own insulting caricature. For those at home keeping score, the series is now a show about a show capturing a show that’s rehashing what happened behind the scenes of a show that was framed by a reality TV show. Despite the thickly layered premise, the execution is clean and laugh-filled.

After the screening, the audience moseyed over to The Roosevelt for the after-party. Waitresses in red-headed Valerie Cherish wigs doled out wine and mini ahi steaks to HBO’s extended family. But the most popular gay lunch table was Bruce Villanch’s. As the adage goes, if you have nothing nice to say, go sit next to Bruce. In between the sass and the snark, the conversation touched upon the topic of Frontiers’ upcoming “L.A.’s Most Eligible Bachelors” issue.

“I’m one of you,” quipped Vilanch to the magazine’s collective readers. “I’m not young, I’m not nubile, but I’m a bachelor.”

Robert Michael Morris had a more specific notion of his perfect man. “Someone who cooks and cleans and never criticizes and thinks I’m the best thing since sliced bread,” he said.

Girls heartthrob Andrew Rannells happily played along, although he doesn’t currently qualify as a bachelor. “I have a boyfriend, so I already have the ideal mate,” the angel-faced actor beamed.

Well, Andrew, if you love him, let him go. If he returns to you, it was meant to be. If he doesn’t, the rest of us boys potentially have a shot at you once again.

Bruce Vilanch To Appear On RuPaul’s Drag Race April 7th 2014

Wednesday, April 2nd, 2014

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Pro tip, hunties: It’s not very elegant for a lady to spit… unless she’s spitting beats, that is.
On the next episode of RuPaul’s Drag Race, airing Monday night at 9 p.m. ET on Logo, the queens are tasked with reading while rapping, and they have some serious guest judges to impress. In an exclusive clip below, hip-hop divas Eve and Trina see one team of queens — including Adore Delano, whose experience under the American Idol spotlight fails her when it really counts — werk their way through the beat-dropping challenge.

But that’s not all! EW can exclusive reveal that Drag Race will be “Rupersized” on April 7, airing back-to-back episodes. Leah Remini and My Big Fat Greek Wedding‘s Lainie Kazan will guest-judge during the first episode of the night (starting at 9 p.m. ET), and the second hour will see panel appearances by Jaime Pressly and Bruce Vilanch. As they say, double the pleasure, double the tuck!