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City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
City & State or ZIP
City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
City & State or ZIP

Archive for April, 2012

May Day!

imagesI’m on vacation starting … now.

I’ll be back here May 1.

If pressing news warrants I’ll post essential updates, like who shows up to preen at STK next or what is filming where, on my Twitter account.

See you on May Day!

- Jennifer

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Taylor Schilling talks up “The Lucky One”

041212buzza_1359882c“I’m not good at this,” said actress Taylor Schilling, scooting onto her knees. “This is my first press junket.”

In town to promote “The Lucky One,” the romantic drama co-starring Zac Efron that opens in theaters Friday, Schilling was scheduled for a number of interviews. Before ours began, we agreed that the sterile hotel conference room we’d been assigned seemed more suitable for an autopsy or an IRS audit, so we moved into the lobby.

“I’d rather just sit and talk,” she said. “I hope that doesn’t sound too cheesy.”

(Not at all! Schilling couldn’t have been more charming.)

In the movie, based on the Nicholas Sparks book, Schilling’s character is bold and headstrong, fiercely loyal to her son and grandmother and passionate about the animals she cares for in her job as a dog groomer and trainer.

“I really connected to Beth,” she said. “I was really struck by how dynamic she is. She’s a full-time working single mom trying to do the best she can, even if that means putting her …

Continue reading Taylor Schilling talks up “The Lucky One” »

Hello from the set of “Steel Magnolias”

576064_3351518059358_1011078506_3094740_202104725_nThe remake of “Steel Magnolias” is filming today at a private residence beside the Fernbank Museum of Natural History, across the street from Druid Hills Golf Club.

The Lifetime project is being directed by Kenny Leon.

“It’s a very universal story,” he told us during a break in the action today. “Even though we honor the original women, somehow these women have made it worth doing again. It feels like a brand new film.”

The modern version stars Queen Latifah as M’Lynn, the role Sally Field played in the original film. Alfre Woodard plays Ouiser (as Shirley MacLaine did in the original), Phylicia Rashad of plays Clairee (Olympia Dukakis in the original film), Jill Scott as Truvy (Dolly Parton’s former role), Adepero Oduye as Annelle (Daryl Hannah in the original film) and Condola Rashad as Shelby (Julia Roberts in the original film).

“It’s great working with all these women,” Leon said. “It’s pretty special. If you took any one of these women out of this film, it would be …

Continue reading Hello from the set of “Steel Magnolias” »

Phylicia Rashad, Mekhi Phifer to star in stage production of “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner”

phylicia_headshotPhylicia Rashad, who is in Atlanta at the moment working on the remake of “Steel Magnolias,” will appear along with  Mekhi Phifer in a stage production of “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner,” from July 10 to 29 at Georgia State’s Rialto Center.

Both “Magnolias” and “Guess Who” are being directed by Kenny Leon. The play is a production of Leon’s True Colors Theatre Company. (Tickets and information: 877-725-8849 or http://ticketalternative.com/Venues/336.aspx).

Rashad is no stranger to Atlanta. She appeared in “For Colored Girls,” the film adaptation of the play by Ntozake Shange that Tyler Perry directed. The film was set in New York but was mostly shot here, at locations including the Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre, Gwinnett Medical Center’s Glancy Rehabilitation Center in Duluth and downtown Atlanta.

In “Magnolias,” Rashad plays the elegant Clairee (Olympia Dukakis’ role in the original), while her daughter Condola Rashad plays Shelby (Julia Roberts‘ role in the original). …

Continue reading Phylicia Rashad, Mekhi Phifer to star in stage production of “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner” »

Dick Clark dominates celebrity Twitter feeds; share your condolences

AP photo

AP photo

The death of Dick Clark, the “world’s oldest teenager,” has immediately reverberated amid social media users, with prominent tweeters rushing to post their condolences.

“I am deeply saddened by the loss of my dear friend Dick Clark,” his sometimes colleague and perhaps heir apparent Ryan Seacrest posted a moment ago on his Twitter feed. “He has truly been one of the greatest influences in my life. My thoughts and prayers are with his family.”

Clark, who died of a heart attack at age 82, is survived by wife Kari and his three children, RAC, Duane, and Cindy.

Here is a link to a gallery of photos throughout Clark’s career. Here is a link to an obituary posted by the Associated Press.

The “American Bandstand” icon and longtime host of New Year’s Eve festivities, Clark had been slowed in recent years after suffering a stroke.

Seacrest has since taken on that role, hosting the “Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve with Ryan Seacrest.”

The phrases “Dick Clark,” “American …

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Clark Howard to host $500-per-ticket soiree

528774_3329513829266_1011078506_3092476_1164475205_nAtlanta’s favorite penny pincher, Clark Howard, will host an April 28 event at his Buckhead home at which tickets will cost $500.

As the super-frugal Clark might exclaim, “Five HUNDRED dollars???”

But never fear, this is for a charitable cause. Proceeds from this event will support the Brain Tumor Foundation for Children’s Butterfly Fund, which provides emergency financial assistance for families whose children are being treated. The organization provides $350,000 per year for families in Georgia and the Southeast.

In addition to his syndicated radio show which broadcasts from AM750 and 95.5 FM News/Talk WSB in Atlanta and his HLN television show, Clark is active in charitable causes including Habitat for Humanity and his annual Christmas toy drive.

The event will honor Dr. Walter J. Curran Jr., executive director of the Winship Cancer Institute at Emory University, with the foundation’s Visionary Award in appreciation for his work at Emory and Winship, including his …

Continue reading Clark Howard to host $500-per-ticket soiree »

Wednesday round-up: Oprah Winfrey, Mariah Carey, Justin Timberlake and Clint Eastwood

AP reporter Dorie Turner posted this photo of Oprah Winfrey at the CNN Center

AP reporter Dorie Turner posted this photo of Oprah Winfrey at the CNN Center

Happy dreary Wednesday. Here’s a mid-week wrap-up to get you over the hump.

First, Oprah Winfrey is in town. Or she was yesterday, anyway. Both CNN Public Relations and the Associated Press’ Dorie Turner posted photos of her strolling through the CNN Center.

Winfrey was here not long ago to interview Whitney Houston’s daughter Bobbi Kristina for her OWN channel, and OWN has been casting in Atlanta for a reality show about families with strong-willed teenagers. And, her close friend Tyler Perry just wrapped a four-day stint at the Fox Theatre, performing his latest live production, “Madea Gets a Job.” I’ll see if I can find out if O was in the audience.

Mariah Carey’s here too, working with local music producers

A hard day's night in the studio

A hard day's night in the studio

Jermaine Dupri and Bryan-Michael Cox. They tweeted photos of themselves working hard in the studio.

Cameras have converged upon STK, the celebrity magnet …

Continue reading Wednesday round-up: Oprah Winfrey, Mariah Carey, Justin Timberlake and Clint Eastwood »

Gov. Nathan Deal talks movies, music tax breaks

Gov. Nathan Deal at the Atlanta Press Club. Photo by John Glenn

Gov. Nathan Deal at the Atlanta Press Club. Photo by John Glenn

Can the music industry expect tax credits like the ones people in the film and television industries enjoy?

A number of musicians, including Kristian Bush from Sugarland, have begun advocating for tax breaks for the music industry. Doesn’t sound like they should bank on it anytime soon.

“That’s something we will see some people exploring,” Gov. Nathan Deal said during remarks at Tuesday’s Atlanta Press Club luncheon at the Commerce Club downtown.

The governor’s remarks were a broad brush of the legislative session that just ended. It turns out that camera crews helped bring the session to a timely end.

“We had entered into a contract for a filming studio to film a TV series,” Deal said. “They literally moved in within hours of adjournment. Maybe we need to schedule those every year.”

The television project, called “Revolution,” is set in a post apocalyptic world where there are no more sources of energy. The …

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Win a date with “Housewife” Sheree Whitfield!

Want to win a date with Sheree Whitfield of Bravo’s “Real Housewives of Atlanta? You’re in luck.

The cast member known for her real estate aspirations (”Chateau by Sheree”) and erstwhile design aspirations (”She by Sheree”), her status with the reality show is unclear.  Read my colleague Rodney Ho’s blog for all the details you could possibly handle on the Housewives.

Anyway, Sheree is one of the Atlanta singles placing themselves on the block for a charity date auction.

A night on the town with Dolvett Quince of NBC’s “The Biggest Loser” is also among the offerings.

The auction, to benefit Bert’s Big Adventure, Captain Planet Foundation, Cystic Fibrosis Foundation and the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, starts at 6 p.m. Tuesday at Aja.

Christine Pullara of Atlanta & Company will host the event.

Bid early and often!

- Jennifer Brett/The Buzz/jbrett@ajc.com

Continue reading Win a date with “Housewife” Sheree Whitfield! »

Queen Latifah’s back in Atlanta for “Steel Magnolias” remake

AP photo

AP photo

Queen Latifah, who spent a good bit of time in metro Atlanta last year filming “Joyful Noise” with Dolly Parton, is here once again, this time working on the remake of  “Steel Magnolias.”

The Lifetime project being directed by Kenny Leon has been filming in the Druid Hills area, not far from Fernbank Museum of Natural History. Here’s a link to a video in which Latifah and other cast members discuss the remake.

As my colleague Rodney Ho reported a while back, the remake will star Queen Latifah as M’Lynn, the role Sally Field played in the original film. The rest of the cast includes Golden Globe and Emmy winner Alfre Woodard as Ouiser (Shirley MacClaine’s role), Phylicia Rashad of “Cosby” fame as Clairee (Olympia Dukakis in the film), Grammy winner Jill Scott as Truvy (Dolly Parton in the film), Adepero Oduye as Annelle (Daryl Hannah in the film) and Condola Rashad as Shelby (Julia Roberts in the film).

Queen Latifah is no stranger to Atlanta of course. She …

Continue reading Queen Latifah’s back in Atlanta for “Steel Magnolias” remake »