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Archive for September, 2009

‘House,’ ‘Dancing With the Stars’ dominate local TV ratings; Mario, Shinedown hot on Atlanta radio

Hugh Laurie stars in Fox's top-rated fall show "House."

The special two-hour “House” debut Sept. 21 in which Dr. House spent the time trying to get out of a psych ward drew the most Atlantans last week during primetime, with 539,000 viewers. Nationally, the show drew 17 million (and fourth place overall), down from past years but still potent.

ABC’s “Dancing with the Stars” season debut week is way down from a year ago, too, but all three shows sashayed into the top 6 in Atlanta and top 10 natoinally.

The top show nationally, CBS’s sturdy drama “NCIS,” which broke 20.6 million, came in 11th in Atlanta. Most CBS shows tend to underperform in Atlanta vs. the national average (while Fox and ABC shows tend to do better.) Nationally, CBS’s “The Big Bang Theory,” moved to 9:30 p.m. from 8 p.m. on Mondays last season, brought home a series record in viewers with 13 million viewers and is proving to be a huge comedy hit for the network.

Of new shows, “The Cleveland Show” on Fox, CBS’s “The Good Wife” and ABC’s “Modern Family,” “Cougar …

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Rossin talks about Sheree Whitfield and that mondo portrait

Rossin sheree

Rossin goes by a single name only. Like Madonna. And Cher. Or Michelangelo.

The 45-year-old Atlanta portrait artist isn’t as famous as those icons. But he did get a few minutes in the spotlight of the “Housewives of Atlanta” last Thursday when he did a monstrous 6 foot by 5 foot painting of Sheree Whitfield’s face.

He did that painting for free for the publicity. Normal fee is about $35,000. A smaller, more traditional portrait starts at a mere $18,000. He does 30 to 40 a year. That’s not bad money.

Rossin was happy the way he was edited. “The editors didn’t do much,” he said. “It was very real.”

His publicist helped reach out to Sheree and the show producers. He embraced the challenge and truly liked Sheree, as he burbled quite a bit on the show itself.

“She’s way much more interesting than people see her,” he said. “She has a depth and a very kind, genuine personality she doesn’t show all the time given the dynamics of the show. She was very humble and quiet and …

Continue reading Rossin talks about Sheree Whitfield and that mondo portrait »

Who was booted from ‘Dancing With the Stars’ week two?

Are you happy with the latest departure?

  • No! Kathy may not have been a great dancer but she was pretty to watch
  • Yes. She was a snooze.

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Being a supermodel certainly didn’t make Kathy Ireland a super dancer.

She lacked passion and just came across stiff and boring both weeks.

The bottom three were Kathy, Louie Vito and Debi Mazar. Both of them showed more verve, if not necessarily quality technique.

Of the 14 couples, the judges clustered 11 of them between 18 to 21 points. Tom DeLay clearly has a fan base. He was arguably the weakest of the lot but stuck around.

The three top couples Monday night are very likely going to be the final three: Donny Osmond, Mya and Aaron Carter.

Continue reading Who was booted from ‘Dancing With the Stars’ week two? »

At the Mo’Nique BET talk show taping in Atlanta

Mo'Nique is all energy during a taping of her show Sept. 22

Mo'Nique is all energy during a taping of her show Sept. 22

BET has effectively turned Atlanta into its secondary headquarters. The network has taped several reality shows here, its hip-hop awards and now a nightly talk show starring larger-than-life comedienne Mo’Nique.

I attended the 11th taping of the show, which has been shot at Turner Studios the past couple of weeks. They are doing 150 episodes this year at a pace of six a week (and saving them up down the road)

The show I was invited to will the first one to air at 11 p.m. October 5 on BET and has a “Welcome to Atlanta” theme. Guests included her friend and Atlanta-based star Steve Harvey, Atlanta R&B singer Monica (who has a reality show coming up on BET), Atlanta mayor Shirley Franklin and singer Jeremih (’Birthday Sex,” “I’m a Star”)

Former Dekalb CEO Vernon Jones was spotted in the audience as well.

The set is impressive. It includes a sizable stage for singers with a large screen behind it on the left, another area …

Continue reading At the Mo’Nique BET talk show taping in Atlanta »

Interview with former Atlantan Donald Glover on NBC’s new ‘Community’ with Joel McHale, Chevy Chase

Donald glover

Donald Glover is not related to legendary actor Danny Glover.

“People ask me if I’m Danny Glover’s son,” said the former Atlantan who plays former high school star Troy in the new NBC sitcom “Community,” which features Joel McHale (”The Soup”) and Chevy Chase (”Vacation,” “Fletch”) “I wish he was! He could pay off my student loans! They are hefty!”

Glover got a big break writing for Emmy winning sitcom “30 Rock” for three years right out of college. He decided to leave earlier this year with no new job on the line. “I was scared I was leaving this great show,” he said. “I felt like I was stepping off the bullet train as it was leaving the station… It was a lot like camp, a camp that paid you.”

But his charmed life in entertainment led quickly to a gig on “Community.” He said he has to resist telling Chevy that he grew up with him. As for Joel McHale, “he’s like the nicest guy ever. First time I met him, I said I love his Pumas. ‘You want these?’ he said. I said, oh no. He …

Continue reading Interview with former Atlantan Donald Glover on NBC’s new ‘Community’ with Joel McHale, Chevy Chase »

‘Jon & Kate Plus 8′ becomes just ‘Kate Plus 8′ on TLC

jon_and_kate_gosselin_tlc

TLC today announced that Jon Gosselin is no longer going to be a regular on the TV show starting Nov.  2. Thus, the show “Jon & Kate Plus 8″ becomes “Kate Plus 8.”

The reality show, after peaking at more than 10 million viewers after the divorce, has seen its audience dwindle to 1.7 million last week. Although the tabs keep them in the headlines, there is clearly “Jon & Kate” fatigue.

Here’s a bit from the press release:

The program will continue to capture the incredible lives of the eight Gosselin children and their family but will now include a deeper focus on Kate’s role in the family and her journey as a single mother building the next chapter in her life. TLC will continue its exclusive relationship with Jon Gosselin and he will continue to appear on the show, but on a less regular basis.

Continue reading ‘Jon & Kate Plus 8′ becomes just ‘Kate Plus 8′ on TLC »

Confirmed: Randy Cook rejoins Spiff Carner, this time at True Oldies 106.7 October 12

Spiff Carner and Randy Cook

Spiff Carner and Randy Cook

In what was not exactly a secret in the radio business, Randy Cook is rejoining Spiff Carner, this time at True Oldies 106.7. Start date: Oct. 12. Fred Brooks, who has been doing mornings with Spiff, will move to afternoons.

Spiff has been at True Oldies since August 2008. Randy had been a morning host at news/talk WGST-AM until July. With Randy’s three-month, non-compete lapsing Oct. 10, he will be able to get back on the air that following Monday.

“I’m looking forward to taking some of the skills I learned form news/talk and transferring it over to a new way of doing our show,” Cook told me this morning. He admitted it was not exactly a secret since he telegraphed what was going to happen to me in July when he left WGST.

Randy & Spiff reuniting

  • It’s about time! I missed them?
  • Their time has long passed.
  • Who?

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Throughout the 1990s, Randy & Spiff were the kings of oldies radio at Fox 97.1, garnering …

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TV best bets with return of ‘Private Practice,’ ‘Lie To Me,’ ‘The Hills,’ and season end of ‘Entourage’

Which new or returning series are you looking forward to most?

  • ABC’s “Private Practice”
  • Syfy’s “Stargate Universe”
  • ABC’s “Hank” (Kelsey Grammer)
  • ABC’s “The Middle” (Patricia Heaton)
  • Fox’s “Til Death”
  • NBC’s ‘Trauma”
  • Fox’s “Lie To Me”
  • MTV’s’ “The Hills”
  • Something else

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Most new fall shows have debuted but the networks are trickling a few out late, including ABC’s “Private Practice” Thursday, Fox’s “Lie to Me” Monday and Fox’s “Til Death” Friday.

A handful of new shows arrive, too, including the promising “The Middle” with Patricia Heaton Wednesday on ABC and the not-so-promising NBC drama “Trauma” Monday.

And if you’re hankering for a reunion of the “Seinfeld” crew, check out the fictional version on HBO’s “Curb Your Enthusiasm” Sunday. It’s well worth a look.

MONDAY
“Dancing With the Stars” 8 p.m. ABC — Ratings are sagging over last year. Is anyone going to miss Macy Gray’s goofy faces?
“How I Met …

Continue reading TV best bets with return of ‘Private Practice,’ ‘Lie To Me,’ ‘The Hills,’ and season end of ‘Entourage’ »

Former Atlantan Kenan Thompson interview to promote upcoming ‘Saturday Night Live’ season

kenan-thompson-defends-chris-brown

Former Atlantan Kenan Thompson said when he joined “Saturday Night Live” six years ago, he never imagined he’d still be around in 2009 starting his seventh season.

But his versatility aping everyone from Bill Cosby to Colin Powell to RNC’s Michael Steele has kept him viable. He also does the occasional woman, such as Serena Williams.

“This job is weird,” he said. “It fits some people and really doesn’t for others. It does fit for me.”

He also has a few notable original characers including the “fix it” expert and the “scared straight” dude. He said it’s tough to come up with good original black characters nowadays. “Post-Chappelle, every character seems like it’s been done,” he noted.

Kenan said he didn’t feel remotely comfortable until he was partway through season two. And even now, he doesn’t feel like a big star. “It’s tough to have that kind of ego,” he said, “especially on a show that has spawned so many success stories. I don’t have that.”

The only time TMZ has chased …

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Project Runway recap: Sublime or a hot mess?

By Q. McElroy

Programming note: Faith is taking a break, so I’m playing “guest judge” this week. Hope you have as much fun as I do.

When in L.A. do as the L.A.liens do – but only if you conjure up a scene-stealing Ice Queen. “Lights, Camera, Sew,” put the remaining 11 designers in Scoresese’s seat. They each had to pick a movie genre and create a character.

Nicolas's Ice Queen reigned during the movie challenge on Project Runway. Photo by Lifetime Network

Nicolas's Ice Queen reigned during the movie challenge on Project Runway. Photo by Lifetime Network

It seemed most of the show tried to generate some actual drama among the ranks. With anxious stares and frantic scurries across the workroom, they continually noted how “cranky” everyone was because of mounting pressure. Unfortunately, this crew’s personality still fell flat. Never thought I’d say this but I miss Christian from last season and even Season 3 winner Jeffrey (hush my mouth!). Now on to the runway…

THE GOOD

White Witch: Nicolas won this challenge with his Ice Queen villain for the Sci-fi …

Continue reading Project Runway recap: Sublime or a hot mess? »