Tag Archives: George Clooney

Oscars 2012 – Who SHOULD Co-Host? (Five Suggestions)

(It occurred to me, while I was doing research for this post — which, mind you, I had been planning to write since LAST NIGHT — that everybody and their mother already beat me to this idea.  There go my delusions of “originality!  But, am I going to let that stop me from reinventing the wheel?  HECK NO!)

Unless you’ve been living under a rock this past week, you are probably already aware of the following: (1) the 83rd Annual Academy Awards aired this past Sunday; (2) Anne Hathaway and James Franco co-hosted the show; (3) for their efforts, they received HORRIBLE  humiliatingly bad  resoundingly negative  not very good mixed reviews.

ANNE:  “Lay off, OK?!  It wasn’t my fault!  James was stoned off his ass, and sleeping backstage, the ENTIRE TIME!  You think I kept saying ‘WOOOOOHOOO!’ for every presenter, because I’m just some a dorky fangirl, who can’t keep her sh*t together?  NO!  I was trying to WAKE THAT MOTHERF&*KER UP!”

JAMES: “Yo, Anne could you quiet down!  I can’t concentrate on my tweeting, with you yelling like that . . .That and I’m SERIOUSLY hungover!”

While the execution may have been flawed, I still believe that the Academy’s idea of choosing two fresh, yet familiar, faces to host the year’s most prestigious award show this year, was an inspired one.  For this reason, I have tasked myself with coming up with five celebrity pairings, each of whom, I believe, would be well-suited for the admittedly formidable challenge of Oscar Hosting.  So, without further adieu, here are my selections (in no particular order):

(1) Sandra Bullock and Robert Downey Jr.

Americans love a good survival story.  And there are no two bigger survivors in Hollywood than Sandra Bullock and Robert Downey Jr.  She endured a painful divorce from a TOTAL wanker (who cheated on her with some tatted-up Nazi skank uggo) won an Oscar, and adopted a baby boy, all in the SAME YEAR!  He battled drug and alcohol addiction throughout the first thirty or so years of his life.  He then spent four years rotating in and out of jail on drug charges, only to become clean in 2001.  Since then, Robert Downey Jr.’s career experienced a remarkable resurgence – one which made available to him a treasure trove of roles any actor would sell their soul for.

But none of this would matter, if Sandra and Robert weren’t the kind of people we could stand to watch on television for three hours straight, without getting nauseous.  Fortunately, both celebrities possess inherent charm, poise, intelligence, dry wit, and my personal favorite, matching self-depracating senses of humor.  All of the aforementioned qualities, in my opinion are ESSENTIAL for a good Oscar host.  But don’t take my word for it.  See for yourself!

Did I mention Robert Downey Jr. looks wicked HOT in a tux? 😉

(2) George Clooney and Matt Damon

Nobody does Hollywood Royalty, like George Clooney and Matt Damon.  Having starred in four movies together, and having endured countless hours of interviews and press junkets, sitting side-by-side with one another, these two seriously sexy men, have a bromance that is simply unparallelled in the movie industry (well . . . except for, perhaps, the bromance between Matt Damon and Ben Affleck).   

Everybody loves Matt and George.  And they love eachother.  The wry barbs, adorable smirks, witty banter, and mild to moderately homoerotic ass slaps that would inevitably result, if these two were to host the Oscars together, would certainly be worth enduring a few lame acceptance speeches and stale musical performances for, right?

Oh, and if they could do a reprise of the “I’m F*&king Matt Damon” song, so much the better.  (I’m sure the censors would just LOVE that!)

(3) Tina Fey and Jon Hamm

To succeed as an Oscar host, it is not enough to simply be likeable, or funny, or charming, you also have to have good material.  And solid material requires GOOD WRITING.  So, what better person to host the Oscars than one of the best comedic writers in the industry?  Having spent years, writing for Saturday Night Live, and now 30 Rock, Tina Fey definitely has what it takes to write a solid Oscar monologue.  Plus, her stand-up comedic experience has made her a whiz at ad-libbing.  Of course, this is a crucial skill to have on Oscar night, when the teleprompter goes down, or the microphone stops working, or Melissa Leo drops the F-bomb . . .

As for Jon Hamm,  well the man is gorgeous, for one thing . . . and surprisingly modest, especially considering just how gorgeous he is.  Jon is also a real stand-up guy — one who’s not afraid to be goofy, or make a bit of an ass of himself.  He even knows how to DANCE (sort of).    Being able to boogie certainly can’t hurt, especially if you are an Oscar host saddled with a ridiculously cheesy musical number . . .

Hamm demonstrated both his comedic timing, and his chemistry with Tina Fey, during the actor’s guest stint on 30 Rock.  But it is the couple’s adorable debut as 2009 Emmy Presenters that really convinces me that these two have what it takes to be amazing 2012 Oscar hosts.

(4) Nathan Lane and Jane Lynch

The Oscars are nothing if not theatrical.  And my next two celebrities have theatricality up to their expertly plucked eyebrows!  Nathan Lane is comedic actor, who got his start on Broadway, and has brought his larger-than-life persona and musical talents to films ranging from The Bird Cage to The Lion King to The Producers.  You can’t help but laugh, everytime Nathan Lane is working his magic on the stage or screen.  He also looks pretty amazing in drag . . . which is a HUGE PLUS, during the Awards season.

Jane Lynch has also had a long-standing comedic film career that began on the stage.  Of course, now, we know her best as the prickly and unabashedly evil cheerleading coach, Sue Sylvester, on Glee.  Can you just imagine all the delightfully evil barbs targeted against Hollywood’s A-listers, Jane could get away with at the Oscars, if they were spoken in the context of an “As Sue Sees It” News Broadcast?

(Oh, and if Nathan and Jane could, at some point, during the ceremony belt out a duet to my favorite Disney tune “Hakuna Matata,” I would be a VERY HAPPY CAMPER!)

(5) Rico Rodriguez and Sofia Vergara

You want YOUNG Oscars, Academy?  Well, it doesn’t get much younger than Rico Rodriguez!  This pint-sized tot from Modern Family has already earned his stripes, both hosting Red Carpet Events, and tackling press junkets and interviews like a champ. 

See what I mean?  Dude brings the funny!  And he brings it HARD!  Book him NOW, before puberty hits!

It should be noted that Rico has fantastic chemistry with his TV mommy — the smokin sexy, Sofia Vergara.  Vergara’s sassy sensibility and adorable accent make absolutely everything she says hilarious.  Case in point:

Oscar telecasts, as we all know, have a tendency to get a bit long and dry, particularly during their final hours.   What better way to spice things up a bit, than with a little sultry Latin Flavor?

And, hey, even if things DON’T go well for these two as hosts, you could probably get at least an hour’s worth of material out of jokes about Rico’s age and height, and one about Sofia’s accent and bountiful . . . busom.  You can’t say that about Steve Martin or Billy Crystal!

So, there you have it, my top five picks to host the 2012 Oscars.  What are YOURS?

[www.juliekushner.com]

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So, Who’s on YOUR Celebrity Freebie List?

Last night, on HBO’s new critically acclaimed series, Treme . . .

 . . . two characters, currently in a romantic relationship with one another, were discussing the concept of “Monogamy with Exceptions.”

NO!  Not YOUR type of “exceptions!”  Nice try, Tiger!

The “exceptions” to which this couple was referring were “celebrity exceptions.”  Namely, the couple agreed that each of them could choose three famous individuals that, if given the opportunity, they could proposition for sex, without being considered to have “cheated” by the other person.  Their discussion was highly intriguing (for me, anyway).  And, while watching it, I couldn’t help but be reminded of ANOTHER show, where a television couple entered into a similar sort of “agreement.”

(Click the internal link to view this fun clip from the Friends episode entitled “The One with Frank Jr.”)

So, obviously, this got me thinking about which five celebrities I would include on my “Freebie list.” (I decided on FIVE celebrities, like in the Friends version, as opposed to THREE, like in the Treme version, because . . . well . . . because I’m greedy, that’s why!)  Now, fortunately (or unfortunately, depending on whether you are a glass half-full or half-empty type person), I am currently single.  Thus, the creation of such a list for me is really a moot point.  After all, without a boyfriend to prevent me from doing so, I can sleep with ANY CELEBRITY I WANT!

Assuming they’d be willing to sleep with me . . .

Darn  . . . I forgot about that part . . .

However, I recognize that there may come a time, in the future, when I do have a significant other.  And said significant other may not, in fact, be willing to permit me to sleep with “any celebrity I want.” (MEANIE!)  Therefore, I realize that it might be wise for me to have my “freebie list” pre-prepared, and ready to be “whipped out,” at a moment’s notice.  And, I have to say, when it came down to creating my list, I had a lot more in common with Ross from Friends, than the characters from Treme.

Yeah, YOU!  Don’t look so excited . . .

Specifically, I had A LOT of trouble narrowing down my list to ONLY FIVE celebrities.  If you’ve visited this blog before, you know that (1) it is FILLED with pictures of shirtless celebrities; and, (2) I want to SLEEP WITH ALL OF THEM!

I decided I needed to have some guiding principle by which to narrow down my choices.  So, I excluded from my list any celebrity that was married, engaged, or in a serious long-standing relationship.  My rationale for doing this should be fairly obvious.  Basically, if I’m going to be limited to only FIVE “Get Out of Adultery Free” Cards, I’d really like to make them count.  And “making them count” requires that there be at least a small chance (no matter how infintesimal) that, were I actually to proposition my celebrities of choice, they would ACTUALLY SAY YES! 

 Granted, in this day in age, “marriage” and “monogamy,” in celebrity world, are not necessarily synonyous with one another.

 

And yet, those two terms are still synonyous in MY WORLD, even in the hypothetical context of this “list.”  Therefore, the following celebrities, each of whom would have LIKELY made this list, were excluded, do to their respective current relationship statuses:

Joshua Jackson

(Currently in a long-standing relationship with Diane Kruger)

John Krasinski

(Currently engaged to Emily Blunt)

Thanks to Best Week Ever for the above pic.  I am neither clever enough, nor sufficiently adept at Photoshop, to come up with something like this .  . .

Josh Holloway

(Currently married to Yessica Kumala)

And Matt Damon

(Currently married to Luciana Bozan Borroso)

I am happy to report that I have sufficiently narrowed down my choices, using the above-referenced principle.  Below are (in no particular order), the five male celebrities that comprise my Freebie List:

1) George Clooney

As far as I am concerned, any female who doesn’t put Clooney on their Freebie List is missing out on an EXCELLENT opportunity.  After all, I’m pretty sure this guy isn’t settling down any time soon.  (Would YOU?  If you were HIM?) Seriously, he is gorgeous, cut, majorly sexy, smart, and funny.  Plus, Mr. Clooney has been known to have a thing for younger ladies of the non-celebrity persuasion, JUST LIKE ME!  (OK . . . perhaps, a little bit hotter than me . . . but still . . .). 

2) Ian Somerhalder

Why Ian, you ask?  Just watch ONE episode of The Vampire Diaries, and you will know why this guy HAS to be on my list!  Better yet, check this out!

3) Ryan Kwanten

Why Ryan?  Did you LOOK at the above-picture?  If that hasn’t sold you, this fan-made video should do the trick (assuming you are a heterosexual female . . . and you have a pulse).

4) Bryan Greenberg

I don’t know what it is about this guy, but I REALLY LIKE HIM.  There’s just something very relatable about him.  Maybe it’s his self-depracating charm, or the fact that he can SING, as well as act.  Or, perhaps, it’s the fact that, even though he is “all famous and stuff” now, he’s still not above posting quirky, refreshingly awkward, videos of himself on YouTube.

(I seriously want to reach through the screen and pinch those cheeks!)

5) Vincent Kartheiser

You’re all going to think I am REALLY bizarre for this.  But I have a thing for Pete Campbell on Mad Men!   A BIG ONE!  Yes, I know!  He’s smarmy, and self-centered, weasely, and a wee-bit square.  But . . . he’s just so . . . PETE!  I don’t know.  Maybe I just have a weakness for the bad boys.  But Pete showed some real vulnerability in Season 3 of Mad Men!  Plus, he has a real soft spot for Peggy.  Check out this video if you don’t believe me . . .

So . . . there you have it:  My Freebie List.  Who’s on YOURS?

 

 

 

 

 

 

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It Was Not Your Mother’s Golden Globes . . . (But It Might Have Been Your Dad’s)

For all you guys out there who complain that award shows — with their pretty dresses, teary-eyed acceptance speeches, and penchant for period piece films — are the primetime equivalent of a “chick flick,” the 67th Annual Golden Globes ceremony seemed determined to prove you wrong.  In fact, this year, it actually may have been the women viewers who felt a bit neglected and unloved by the festivities . . .

This boys’ club atmosphere began on the red carpet, where it just so happened to be heavily raining.  This undoubtedly put a literal damper on the female actresses’ dreams of having their painstakingly coiffed hairstyles gushed over by Joan Rivers and her minions.  The lucky ones stood under umbrellas that obscured most of their features during the interview portion of the evening.  As for the others . . . well, needless to say, the “wet look” will surely be making a comeback this year.

And yet, wet or dry, the women were not the ones who the fashion pundits were focused on during this particular awards ceremony.  Rather, all eyes were on the stylings of the men, or rather, the lack thereof.  After all, who could forget Paul McCartney’s sparkly vest, which made him look like an amalgamation of a waiter at TGI Fridays, a boy scout, and a “Rhinestone Cowboy?” 

Perhaps you may also have noticed the unusual abundance of facial hair at these awards?  This year’s “Razor Haters” included: the typically impeccably groomed George Clooney and Jon Hamm, Hamm’s Mad Men costar Vincent Kartheiser (Pete Campbell would not have been pleased), Jeff Bridges (who will forever in my mind be The Dude from The Big Lebowski, and, today, looked the part), William Hurt, and Golden Globe host Ricky Gervais, who, in true frat boy fashion, spent most of his time on stage swigging from a tall mug of beer.

Even the award winners themselves were a decidedly masculine bunch.  First, there was the aforementioned Dude, Jeff Bridges, beating out the Clark Gable-esque Clooney and Mr. Darcy himself (Colin Firth) for Best Actor in a Drama Film.  Next came, Robert Downey Jr., who was awarded Best Comedy Film Actor for his turn as the hard-drinking, slightly slovenly, always ass-kicking Sherlock Holmes, in the male buddy comedy of the same name.  The Best Supporting Film Actor award went (quite appropriately, in my opinion) to Christopher Waltz for his turn as Colonel Hans Landa in Quentin Tarantino’s World War II-themed Inglourious Basterds

Kevin Bacon earned nods for his performance in the also war-themed Taking Chances.  The serial killer drama Dexter swept the television drama actor categories.  To top things off, the geeked-out 3D sci-fi fantasy Avatar beat out the somewhat romantic coming of middle-age tale, Up in the Air in both the Best Director and Best Drama categories. 

But perhaps most shocking of all was the award for Best Comedy Film, which went to, of all films, The Hangover, a buddy film about a bunch of guys who get so wasted at their friend’s bachelor party they end up spending the whole night drinking, screwing, getting beat up, and hanging out with Mike Tyson, although not necessarily in that order.  (For those of you who haven’t seen it, I sincerely apologize for spoiling the ending for you.)

Heck, the Cecile B. Demile Lifetime Achievement Award went to Martin Scorcese tonight!  And, seriously, could there be a more masculine director out there than Marty?  (Tarantino is a contender for this category as well.  But I think he probably takes a close second.)  I mean, this is the guy who directed Raging Bull, Goodfellas, Gangs of New York, Casino, and The Departed for crying out loud!

In addition to being a night that celebrated men, masculinity, and over-abundant facial hair, this was also a night of appreciation for new talent:  with the outstanding freshman ensemble cast of Glee winning Best Television Comedy, and Julianna Margulies, of the new series The Good Wife, picking up the award for Best Actress in a Television Drama.  And yet, while this year’s Golden Globes definitely appreciated new talent, it showed a certain impatience for talent of the non-celebrity variety.  While the producers of the awards allowed some of their A-list actors to drone on endlessly during their acceptance speeches, those same producers often rudely silenced screenplay and song writers with orchestral music, just seconds after these equally-deserving individuals found their way to the stage.

Although not without it faults, one thing could be said about the 67th Annual Golden Globes ceremony, it was certainly not predictable.  And when it comes to an institution that often gets bogged down with pomp and circumstance, it is unpredictability that keeps viewers coming back year after year . . .

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Are you feeling lucky? 67th Annual Golden Globes Predictions

It’s award season again!  The time has come for your favorite actors and actresses to get all gussied up in tuxedos, dresses, shoes, and jewels, all of which cost more than the Average American’s annual salary, and strut the Red Carpet.  It’s time for entertainment journalists and fashion pundits to gush over said actors’ and actresses’ appearances during interviews, only to badmouth and backstab them moments later behind the scenes.  The time has come for the nominees to prepare long-winded speeches, and practice reading them really fast so the orchestra doesn’t shoo them off stage before they get to thank their husbands and wives.   And just in case they lose, it’s also time for those same nominees to practice their fake smiles and golf claps for the camera when someone else wins, in order to avoid the awful fate that Faith Hill suffered a few years back at the Grammy’s.

For the rest of us, the time has come to fluff up the cushions on our couches, pour a glass of cheap wine, and plop in front of the tube for an evening of vicarious thrills and glamour.  And for some of us (myself included), an awards night like this would not be complete without a trusty homemade ballot sheet sitting nearby on the sofa, just waiting to be x’ed out with red pen . . .

So, with that in mind, this year, I am going to do something very brave — something that may adversely effect the little credibility I have built up as an “Expert Television Recapper.”  This, year, I have decided to share my 67th Annual Golden Globe Predictions with you, the reader. 

Just in case you feel like playing along, under my predictions, I have left a blank for “Your Pick.”  Feel free to print out and use this blog entry as a makeshift ballot.  This will give you the unique opportunity to join me in my embarrassment as I make apparent to the whole world the reason I don’t gamble . . .

So, without further adieu . . . THE BALLOT!

Film Awards:

*Best Drama Nominees: Up in the Air, Avatar, The Hurt Locker, Inglourious Bastards, Precious

My Pick: Up in the Air

Your Pick?:

*Best Comedy or Musical Nominees: Nine, 500 Days of Summer, The Hangover, It’s Complicated, Julie and Julia

My Pick: 500 Days of Summer

Your Pick?:

*Best Drama Actor Nominees: George Clooney (Up in the Air), Jeff Bridges (Crazy at Heart), Colin Firth (A Single Man), Morgan Freeman (Invictus), Tobey Maguire (Brothers)

My Pick: George Clooney (Up in the Air)

Your Pick?:

*Best Drama Actress Nominees: Sandra Bullock (The Blind Side), Emily Blunt (The Young Victoria), Helen Mirren (The Last Station), Carey Mulligan (An Education), Gabourey Sidibe (Precious)

My Pick: Carey Mulligan (An Education)

Your Pick?:

*Best Comedy Actor Nominees: Matt Damon (The Informant), Daniel Day Lewis (Nine), Robert Downey Jr. (Sherlock Holmes), Joseph Gordon Levitt (500 Days of Summer), Michael Stuhlbarg (A Serious Man)

My Pick: Matt Damon (The Informant)

Your Pick?:

*Best Comedy Actress Nominees: Sandra Bullock (The Proposal), Marion Cotillard (Nine), Julia Roberts (Duplicity), Meryl Streep (Julie and Julia), Meryl Streep (It’s Complicated)

My Pick: Meryl Streep (Julie and Julia)

Your Pick?:

*Best Supporting Actor Nominees: Matt Damon (Invictus), Woody Harrelson (The Messenger), Christopher Waltz (Inglourious Bastards), Stanley Tucci (The Lovely Bones), Christopher Plummer (The Last Station)

My Pick: Christopher Waltz (Inglourious Bastards)

Your Pick?:

*Supporting Actress Nominees: Penelope Cruz (Nine), Vera Farmiga (Up in the Air), Anna Kendrick (Up in the Air), Mo’Nique (Precious), Julianne Moore (A Single Man)

My Pick: Mo’Nique (Precious)

Your Pick?:

*Best Director Nominees: Kathryn Bigelow (The Hurt Locker), James Cameron (Avatar), Clint Eastwood (Invictus), Jason Reitman (Up in the Air), Quentin Tarantino (Inglorious Bastards)

My Pick: James Cameron (Avatar)

Your Pick: ?

*Best Foreign Language Film Nominees: Baarie, Broken Embraces, The Maid, A Prophet, The White Ribbon

My Pick: Broken Embraces

Your Pick?:

*Best Animated Film Nominees: Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, Coraline, Fantastic Mr. Fox, The Princess and The Frog, Up

My Pick: Up

Your Pick?:

*Best Screenplay Nominees: District 9, The Hurt Locker, It’s Complicated, Up in the Air, Inglourious Bastards

My Pick: Up in the Air

Your Pick?:

*Best Original Score Nominees: Up, The Informant, Avatar, The Single Man, Where the Wild Things Are

My Pick: Avatar

Your Pick?:

*Best Original Song Nominees: Cinema Italiano (Nine), I Want to Come Home (Everybody’s Fine), I Will See You (Avatar), The Weary Kind (Crazy Heart), Winter (Brothers)

My Pick: The Weary Kind (Crazy Heart)

Your Pick?:

Television Awards

*Best Drama Nominees: Big Love, Mad Men, Dexter, House, True Blood

My Pick: Mad Men

Your Pick?:

Best Comedy or Musical Nominees: 30 Rock, Glee, Entourage, The Modern Family, The Office

My Pick: Glee

Your Pick?:

*Best Drama Actor Nominees:  Simon Baker (The Mentalist), Jon Hamm (Mad Men), Michael C. Hall (Dexter), Hugh Lurie (House), Bill Paxton (Big Love)

My Pick: Jon Hamm (Mad Men)

Your Pick?:

*Best Actress Drama: Glenn Close (Damages), January Jones (Mad Men), Julianna Margulies (The Good Wife), Anna Paquin (True Blood), Kyra Sedgwick (The Closer)

My Pick: Julianna Margulies (The Good Wife)

Your Pick?:

*Best Comedy Actor Nominees: Alec Baldwin (30 Rock), Steve Carell (The Office), David Duchovny (Californication), Thomas Jane (Hung), Matthew Morrison (Glee)

My Pick: Alec Baldwin (30 Rock)

Your Pick?:

*Best Comedy Actress Nominees: Toni Collette (United States of Tara), Courtney Cox (Cougar Town), Edie Falco (Nurse Jackie), Tina Fey (30 Rock), Lea Michelle (Glee)

My Pick: Edie Falco (Nurse Jackie)

Your Pick?:

*Best Supporting Actor Nominees: Michael Emerson (Lost), Neil Patrick Harris (How I Met Your Mother), William Hurt (Damages), John Lithgow (Dexter), Jeremy Piven (Entourage)

My Pick: Neil Patrick Harris (How I Met Your Mother)

Your Pick?:

*Best Supporting Actress Nominees: Jane Adams (Hung), Rose Byrne (Damages), Jane Lynch (Glee), Janet McTeer (Into the Storm), Chloe Sevigny (Big Love)

My Pick: Jane Lynch (Glee)

Your Pick?:

*Best Miniseries Actor Nominees: Kevin Bacon (Taking Chances), Kenneth Branaugh (Wallender), Chiwetel Ejiofor (Endgame), Brendan Gleeson (Into the Storm), Jeremy Irons (Georgia O’Keefe)

My Pick: Kevin Bacon (Taking Chances)

Your Pick?:

*Best Miniseries Actress Nominees: Joan Allen (Georgia O’Keefe), Drew Barrymore (Grey Gardens), Jessica Lange (Grey Gardens), Anna Paquin (The Courageous Heart of Irena Sendler), Sigourney Weaver (Prayers for Bobby)

My Pick: Drew Barrymore (Grey Gardens)

Your Pick?:

Best Miniseries Nominees: Grey Gardens, Little Dorrit, Taking Chances, Georgia O’Keefe, Into the Storm

My Pick: Grey Gardens

Your Pick?:

(Wow, my fingers sure are numb from typing all of this!  I wonder how many bloggers suffer from carpal tunnel syndrome . . .)

Best of luck on your ballots, and I will see YOU at the Awards!

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