June 16, 2005


      MICHAEL JACKSON MOONWALKED, ER ... WALKED OUT OF COURT

  1. . . . He was very staid. Hand extended with palm up in front of him - like the Supremes used to do when they performed Stop! In the Name of Love-- as if to say, "Stay away from me, I'm coming through."
  2. . . . So is this the end of it? Certainly not. Michael Jackson will still be fodder for the tabloids, but sorry sirs and madams, it's not just the tabs. All three of the major nets were on the air live for the verdict - not just the cables. So is celebrity news, news? Of course it is now. We're way past the days of Edward R. Murrow.
  3. READBACKS. The Jackson jury asked the judge for them while they were deliberating. That's a new term to me, not being brought up in the world of jurisprudence.
  4. Australian rock group INXS is always looking for a new lead singer since the death (suicide) of Michael Hutchence in 1997. Now they're doing it on CBS in a reality show, Rock Star: INXS, coming July 11. They're the group that did What You Need in 1986 plus many others between '83 and 97.
  5. BUSH LIKES BONO. The president said so at a joint press conference with British Prime Minister Tony Blair last Tuesday at the White House when his name came up. Well why not make him an honorary American? Maybe that'll make him shut up about everything.
  6. PARING DOWN. Brad Pitt told Diane Sawyer last week in The Interview on ABC's Primetime Live that he wanted to get rid of clutter. He wants to have everything he owns to be able to fit in one box - his house, everything. That's maybe a little extreme, huh?
  7. The government workers in Aruba were given a day off last week to search for missing teen Natalee Holloway. Why that? Were they forced to? Do they know her? I'm sure they had better things to do than to go out on a hunting expedition. Sounds cruel but what does she mean to them?
  8. NEW FACE: ERIC HORNG. He's been on TV for quite a while as one of the many reporters covering the Michael Jackson trial out in Santa Maria, Calif., and now it looks like ABC has hired him. He's a good reporter and did a lot of live pops for ABC's local TV stations during the run of the trial. (The r in his name is not pronounced - at least I haven't heard it.)
  9. Suze Orman was a guest on ABC's This Week last Sunday for a discussion on housing prices and when she talked she still sounded like she was doing an infomercial. For crissakes, tone it down.
  10. USA Today reported Monday that Megan Mullally (Will & Grace) "playfully fondled her friend's (Debra Messing) breasts when the two of them were introduced by Camryn Manheim at last Friday's Women in Film Crystal/Lucy Awards, named after Lucille Ball of I Love Lucy fame. Today writer William Keck pointed out that Ball and Vivian Vance (Ethel) "never would have dreamed of doing that." That's for sure.
  11. . . . This is an old question, I'm sure, but is Mullally's voice naturally as high as it sounds on Will & Grace? Good God.
  12. CINDERELLA MAN. Good flick. Russell Crowe is good as comeback fighter Jim Braddock during the Depression. Movie starts slow but builds up and the fight scenes - yes, we've seen many - are really well done and capture the excitement of the times (the 1930s) with still pictures flashing with the sound of old-fashioned bulbs crisping/cooking. Renee Zellweger plays his wife but her role is very secondary in the film. Braddock fights Max Baer, played by Craig Bierko and he's good too - tall, arrogant, swaggering. Check it out.
  13. . . . Real life Max Baer's son, Max Baer Jr., is angry at the way director Ron Howard depicts his father in the film, reports the New York Daily News's Rush & Molloy. "Dishonest," says Baer. "As bright as Ronny is, it shows his lack of ability."
  14. . . . And guess who Max Baer Jr. is? None other than Jethro Bodine of the Beverly Hillbillies. Well, I'll be derned. XXX
  15. . . . And did Russell Crowe's behavior in New York last week hurt the film? It dropped to number six this past weekend in box office receipts.
  16. Mike Tyson stripped down to his high hip-riding Versace briefs for the weigh-in before his fight with Irish champ Kevin McBride. McBride had his regular trunks on but Tyson showed off more.
  17. Somebody oughta get Howard Dean outta there (chairman of the Democratic National Committee). He's always saying something.
  18. BRAD PITT: "So much speculation. So much misinformation," he told Diane Sawyer on that Primetime Live broadcast in response to questions about him and Angelina Jolie and the breakup of his marriage. He's such a tortured soul.
  19. So will CNN stick to using The Situation Room for its new 3-hour block of Wolf Blitzer now that The Situation with Tucker Carlson (MSNBC) got on the air first? Won't it be confusing? Hmm.
  20. METH MOUTH. It's breaking out in the rural midwest and the South, reports The New York Times's Monica Davey. Methamphetamine use can turn the teeth grayish-brown, "twist and begin to fall out, and take on a peculiar texture less like that of hard enamel and more like that of a piece of ripened fruit." Yuck.
  21. Madonna's fifth children's book is called Lotsa de Casha. Title sounds demeaning.
  22. NEVER KNEW . . . That actress Anne Bancroft was 36 when she played Mrs. Robinson in The Graduate and Dustin Hoffman (Benjamin Braddock) was 30. He seemed so much younger.
  23. WONDERING. Could you see Evander Holyfield's ears on Dancing with the Stars the other night? He's the one Mike Tyson took a bite out of. Were there any close-ups? Did he have it fixed with plastic surgery?
  24. Hanalie, dog in the neighborhood, has a thyroid problem, according to owner Sally. The doctors say that's why she isn't losing any weight. (She needs to drop a few.) So they're gonna run some tests next week.
  25. So I guess Mike Tyson didn't "gut Kevin [McBride] like a fish" at last weekend's fight.
  26. That high voice of Chris Martin's (Coldplay) ain't gonna last forever. What's he gonna do when he's 40 and singing his greatest hits on some TV show? And does it get on his wife's (Gwyneth Paltrow) nerves when he walks around the house singing like that? Does daughter Apple like it?
  27. UH . . . One Bad Apple - The Osmonds, on MGM. 1971.


rocci@roccifisch.com

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