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 16, 1999


By ROGER ANDERSON Scripps Howard News Service

MORNING TELEVISION (YAWN): Now that the ongoing question of how and by whom network TV morning shows will be staffed, formatted, promoted and broadcast has become the most important issue facing Western civilization, it's especially interesting to note that Tom Brokaw put a little bit of his foot in his mouth when he made a celebrity guest appearance on NBC's "Today" show not long ago.

Suffice it to say that the distinguished anchorfellow said something to the effect that he envies homeless people because they get to sleep more than he does.

No sooner did the remark go out over the airwaves than self-appointed moralists chimed in with a collective "Tsk, tsk, tsk." So someone at USA Today sought out "Today" producer Jeff Zucker for a comment. And we suggest that you pay special attention to his reply.

“Do you seriously think," Jeff asks, in what we can only assume is a rhetorical vein, "that Tom Brokaw would be insensitive to anyone less fortunate than he? I don't think so." (One keeps forgetting that media people who are paid Tom's kind of astronomical salary are exempt from the failings of human nature.)

MORNING TELEVISION (YAWN, STRETCH, YAWN); In related news, it was being bruited about recently that "Today" weather mascot Al Roker was looking to jump ship in favor of doing a morning show on CBS with Bryant Gumbel. But Al says such rumors are mere piffle.

"I'm happy at NBC," he tells the New York Daily News. "I'm sorry that all this speculation about me has come out in the papers. I didn't intend for that to happen.'

So why did it?

"Two factors," says Al, who is nothing if not methodical. "One, morning TV has become a very big deal, and two, I have 10 months to go on my contract. But I don't think I'm going anywhere." He seems to become less unequivocal about it as he goes on, doesn't he?

MORNING TELEVISION (ZZZZZZZZZ): Not only that, but speculation has been rife - or at least semi-rife - that drydocked newswoman Connie Chung would be tapped to take over from Diane Sawyer on ABC's "Good Morning America." However, Connie herself says it's not likely to happen, unless things are arranged so that she only has to report on "the big stories."

“It's the other stuff I don't want to do," she tells a print colleague, "like the cooking segments and the stories about toys at Christmas time. Maury has been doing those kinds of segments for 35 years." (Connie's reference, of course, is to Maury Povich, her broadcast-journalist husband.) "I don't need to be doing them, too."

CELEBRITY THANKLESSNESS: Here's an item that says Bill Sammeth, who served as Cher's business manager for no fewer than 22 years only to be righteously canned in the wake of her tune "Believe" becoming a No. 1 smasheroo, is suing the former Mrs. Sonny Bono on allegations that she has failed to pony up his share of the "Believe" moolah.

"I'm not a celebrity," Bill explains, "and I'm not looking for publicity."

Then what are you and what are you looking for?

"I'm a businessman. I'm looking for fairness." Well, best of luck.

ON THE SICK LIST: Unsophisticated people probably think that Marilyn Manson is the only giant of show business who has recently been sidelined as the result of sustaining an injury to his ankle, but really hip observers are aware that Bobby Zarem - a giant in the world of public- relations flackdom - has been holed up at Bellevue Hospital in New York as a consequence of breaking his.

CELEBRITY MEDIEVAL TORTURE: Once again, we are indebted to our role model Walter Scott at Parade magazine for answering a reader's query about "a new massage technique that uses hot rocks."

The same uninitiated people who don't understand the significance of Bobby Zarem's medical condition will imagine this is a reference to Swedish sauna, but the facts are far more Interesting.

According to Walter, the technique involves heating rocks and then rubbing them over aching muscles. He even happens to know that a Tucson, Ariz., therapist flew a mess of rocks to the set of "Lethal Weapon 4" for the express purpose of regaling Mel Gibson and director Richard Donner with a bit of this treatment. However, rumors that Mel then confessed to being in league with Satan appear exaggerated at the very least.

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

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