Pop Culture
Pop Culture: Articles for the Scripps Howard News Service & "Seen, Heard, Said"

Why the top-365-songs list isn't a stupid idea

Actors sink their teeth into vampire roles

Gregory Corso: My encounter with a Beat legend

Golden Globes: Sleazy and proud of it

In the offing, Clinton continent looms

"NYPD Blue" opener: The misery continues

 New movie genre: Reclusive authors anonymous

"West Wing," "Ally," et al.: Words, words, words

When TV shows outstay their welcome

Film critics dig their own graves with "Angels" review

Great Robert Altman films you never
heard of

Famous folk, next week in the arts, show business briefs

"Time regained": Proust in the multiplex

Glitterati is dead, long live Popfocus

Carl Barks: The man who put the ducks in Duckburg

"Almost Famous": Lester Bangs rises from the dead

Liz Hurley wins in war of words with Jane mag

Douglas poses with Zeta-Jones, and baby-makes three

Weddings that aren't: Douglas, Zeta-Jones, Madonna, Ritchie

The Emmy War: A half-century of coast-to-coast feuding

Jennifer Love Hewitt plays the Iglesias odds

It's raining books by and about Trumps

What's in a mane? Blond woman in the news

Liz Hurley denies dissing ex-beau

Rock Hall of Infamy: Anti-heroes from Elvis to Eminem

Barbra tix bankrupt fans

Laurels for Kathie Lee to rest on

Hillary "In bed" with De Niro, Cruise, Kidman

How "Sopranos," "West Wing" will divvy up awards

This just in: Donald Trump is not a dope

Walter Matthau: A rumpled old dog in the heart of the city

Sampras to take a stroke at wedding bells

Who wants to host "Monday Night Football"?

Queen rewards Tina Brown for demoralizing American readers

How the Korean War cane to TV land 20 years late

Ivanka Trump: From catwalk to commencement line

Lester Bangs: The troublesome punk who wouldn't die

Rags clash over Ted Turner "romance"

With straight face, Trump deems Marla's move "tacky"

"Friends" re-up for another season of top ratings, top money

Madonna in denial, and rightly so

"Suburbia": The continental subdivide

Howard Stern, Sly Stallone in bizarre, apocryphal triangle

Easter video viewing: "Spartacus" to "Harvey"

Billy’s in the news: Bob, Joel in love but not with other

"Charles's Angels" movie: Dispiriting news for old-time fans

Innovative career move for 'NYPD Blue' co-star

Top model: Why I gave oldish rocker husband the heave-ho

Unpleasantville: The awful truth about old-time TV families

Tina Brown held captive in desert by demanding children

Anybody's Oscar: Unusually suspenseful awards show looms

Oscar telecast: Looking for a few good hosts

"Lambs," "Beauty": Oscar's love affair with unacceptable behavior

Brad Pitt, Oscar to be in same room at same time

Letterman bites guest-host bullet: Andrew "Dice" Clay, call your agent

Seinfeld eyes East Hampton manse: Where's the welcome wagon?

"Mod Squad" Immortal dishes couple du jour

Brad Pitt's second thoughts about Oscar

Mike McCurry praises "West Wing": It's not entirely demeaning,,,"

Memo to "Hannibal" producers: Get Najimy while the getting's good

Don't Invite Gwyneth and Oscar to the same party

True or false: Douglas, Zeta-Jones don't even know each other

Ex-Clinton honcho linked to ex-"Cheers" costar

Third party cited in Trump-Knauss breakup

 Gossip queen goes to bat for Talk mag

20th century's No. 1 hit: "Satisfaction" hits the spot

Statement: Spice girl's marital problems insoluble

Charlie Brown, Pogo and me

From Howdy to Charlie Brown, we hate to say goodbye

The Beatle George: While his guitar gently weeps

Jodie Foster's people in mild tiff with CBS

A Peanuts trivia Q&A

Publicist: Boyle still joined at hip

There's video in your future and future in your video

"The future is now": Hit rewind

Whitney Houston presides over confluence of talent

Jim Carrey's flack earns A "D," Cher's A "B-minus"

Geraldo: bye-bye, doghouse

Michael Douglas does nothing much, reporters go wild

Ricky Martin on Menudo: Look back in anger

How to outsmart Halloween crowds at the video store

Tom Cruise puts himself in harm's way, only not really

1800-1900: Steaming towards revolution

1700-1800: Liberty, equality and bloodshed

1600-1700: The earth moves; North America is settled

Trump mulls travel plans, from altar to White House

"Faces of Impressionism" Time machine made of canvas, paint

Major quakes aren't personal unless they happen to you

Brad Pitt gracious about character assassination

Director insists Harrison Ford is not a brainless hulk

Costner, Willis, Douglas. Branagh, Sting_ in that order

Streisand: Color her ready to plug her new album

Julia and Benjamin's rings devoid of significance, flack says

Literary mud wrestling, featuring Geri and The Spice Girls

Urgent news: Ford to replace Gibson on "GMA" eventually

She married a monster from outer space

Never mind Godzilla VS. Mothra, Here's Trump VS. Cronkite

Spurned by Pitt, Redford pays court to Damon

Celebrity coyness is bustin' out all over

"Detroit Rock City": Kiss of death

Talk is cheap? Not with Tina Brown at the helm

The Beats: Remembered, Lionized and Unread

Real estate beat, starring Woody Allen and Donald Trump

Mood Music, or how we learned to stop worrying

Sex in the cinema: From "Last Tango" to "Eyes Wide Shut"

Two easy steps to looking exactly like Ricky Martin

Close encounters of the Muppet kind

Upcoming Brad Pitt movie not garbage, insiders say

Kathie Lee's eyewear excites Islanders' ire

Back to the future, continued

"Wild Wild West": Buck Rogers in the 19th century

Sculptures by Roy Lichtenstein: Fun, Fun, Fun

An expert's verdict:" Austin Powers" is pretty neat

Click here for pointless celebrity gossip

P. Dempsey Tabler of the jungle: The many faces of Tarzan

Kirk Douglas' Ex tells all about Errol Flynn fling

New twist in TV programming: Ax profitable shows

Private jet fees spell the end for another celebrity union

Killer serials: "Flash," "Buck" and a boy named George Lucas

Top nonfiction books: A message from two old men

Celebrity Dream dreams: Monica, Donald, Barbara, Georgette

Two divas, publicist form bizarre show-biz triangle

Johnny Cash tribute: Ring of fire, ring of friends

Streisand employee really upset about rumors

Grande Dame Eyes MGM Grand Gig

Secretive celebs? Not by a long shot

NBC honcho bristles at notion that Brokaw is not a saint

Barbara Walters not keen on daily dose of Monica

"Seen, Heard, Said"

David Letterman, Donald Trump, Eddie Murphy, Elton John

Madonna, Frank Sinatra, Prince Charles, Maj, Ronald Ferguson, Fergie, Miranda Richardson, Brad Pitt, Juliette Lewis, Axl Rose, Stephanie Seymour

March 14, 2000

Brad Pitt's second thoughts about Oscar

By ROGER ANDERSON Scripps Howard News Service

ACHILLES EMERGES FROM HIS TENT: First, Brad Pitt was going to skip this year's Oscar thing. Then he evidently thought better of it, issuing a statement to the New York Daily News attempting to clarify what had struck many observers as plain old surliness.

"Although the Oscars are still the Everest of awards for our industry," Brad told the rag via a spokeswoman, "there is now an oversaturation of these events. Every time you turn on the television, someone's getting an award. My wish is that it was still the golden days when there were only the Oscars - we'd all show up, acknowledge and support the year's work, and call it a day. But these days, you go where you're needed." Watch for him to parachute in.

INDIANA ON THE HORIZON: The folks over at the New York Post claim - and we believe them - that the studio audience at a taping of "Inside the Actors Studio" went "into a frenzy" when guest interviewee Harrison Ford happened to mention in passing that he and his colleagues actually are hoping to make another one of those "Indiana Jones" movies that did so well at the box office.

"I say that only because I want it to happen," Harrison says. "This is no announcement. We're waiting for a script everyone is happy with, and George is busy elsewhere. Very little progress has been made, but Steven and I are ready."

WHO, NOW? Those of you who have better uses for your brain cells than to retain information about the making of old movies should be advised that the persons to whom Harrison refers are, respectively, George Lucas and Steven Spielberg, both of whom have had their very large and talented fingers in all the previous "Indiana Jones" pies.

OSCAR, REVISITED: Then there's this thing where Tom Cruise has been nominated for a supporting-actor statuette by dint of his universally praised role in "Magnolia." Unhappiness rears its head as the aforenamed movie remains mired in red box-office ink, with its only chance for turning a profit being Tom's willingness to get out there on the hustings to promote the darn thing. But he won't.  
"Tom is not going to do anything in addition to what he's already done to promote 'Magnolia,'" says Pat Kingsley, who is employed by Tom to make such categorical statements on his behalf. "He’s done it. Anything more might be perceived as campaigning, and that he doesn't want to do." Actually, we've got a better idea.

CATTLE CALL: In light of what has come up in the column so far, it's interesting to note an item in USA Today saying that the VH1 music channel is looking for actors to portray Mickey, Davy, Peter and Mike in a made-for-cable Monkees movie. Who better to fill those roles, after all, than Brad, Harrison, Tom and - oops, we're short one, aren't we?

A STITCH IN TIME: "I just loved the way it was interwoven," Michael Douglas tells a reporter, talking about the plotline in his new pic, "Wonder Boys,” "this crazy weekend where all these different people were having crises or having to make a choice….”
Sounds original - not the least like "The Big Chill" or "Weekend at Bernie's."

"And most movies," Michael goes on, "you can watch and kind of predict, but this one you had no idea what direction it was going." (Not even if you read the script?)

Michael, five words: Hey, hey, we're the Monkees. . .

WHICH REMINDS US: Catherine Zeta-Jones, the wonderful actress who has gained heightened fame recently by becoming engaged to the Douglas fellow and becoming pregnant with his baby, is down to co-star in a movie titled 'Traffic," about drug violence. This news comes on the heels of earlier intelligence that she was backing out of an Oliver Stone movie because of her increasingly delicate biological condition. The difference, according to one report, is that her "Traffic" character will be pregnant. Not only that, Catherine gets to attend birthing classes between takes.

THE BUSINESS OF SHOW BUSINESS IS BUSINESS: Since we can't resist another opportunity to beat that Oscar equine, here's what industry analysts say about the awards show's chances of doing well with the Nielsen nation this year.

"The Oscar telecast does well when there are a couple of very big pictures that drive it," Young & Rubicam's Bob Igiel says sagely. "I think the numbers will be more toward average."

A daring prognostication, to be sure - but let's also see what TV Media analyst Steve Sternberg has to say.

"The fact that Billy Crystal is the host kind of offsets the fact that there's no blockbuster this year," Steve says, adding that "It might create interest because nobody knows who's going to win." Kind of like "Wonder Boys." 
FINALLY: Here's songwriter Don McLean getting all enthusiastic about Madonna's well-received (if somewhat truncated) cover of his epic, "American Pie."

"I have heard her version," Don tells a reporter, "and I think it is sensual and mystical. I have received many gifts from God, but this is the first time I have received a gift from a goddess."

Sorry, Don, but any effort you may be making to avoid laying it on too thick gets a C-minus from us.

Roger Anderson is arts and entertainment editor at Scripps Howard News Service.

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