SAG Award blog entry without a lame “SAG” pun

“Desperate Housewives”‘ Felicity Huffman won the SAG for Best Actress/Comedy; she also won the Emmy for same last September. (Mary Louise-Parker won the Globe in the same category, competing against four “Housewives” nominees; Huffman was the only housewife nominated here, thereby not dividing voters.) She said she’s happy she’s an actor because “I was never very good at math.” Last I checked, there are a lot of jobs out there that don’t require math skills, but maybe they’ve all been outsourced overseas.
Huh? Sean Hayes won his third Best Actor/Comedy for “Will & Grace,” which is quite reasonably calling it quits after this season. (Jason Lee, who probably should’ve won, was a no-show because he has chickenpox.) “I would like to thank Ang Lee for taking a chance on me,” Hayes says of “Brokeback Mountain’s” director. “Everyone in Hollywood knows it’s such a risk to play a gay character.”
Ensemble/Comedy Series goes, for the second time, to “Desperate Housewives.” The ensemble trophy is kind of like SAG’s Best Series award. You know, these acceptance speeches are kind of no more than mutual admiration societies — The award is saying, “Thank you for such sterling acting,” and the acceptance speech is, “No, thank YOU for honoring such sterling acting,” ad nauseum.

Spirits SAGging: So where’s the kitsch?

This is a kind of tasteful ceremony, which makes it kind of a drag to watch. The opening was a smidgen self-serving, but hardly over the top in the aggrandizement area.
For that, we need to go to the commercials: There’s one for a pay-per-view wrassling show, “The Royal Rumble.” Apparently, connoisseurs of the Thespian arts are big wrestling fans or the spot was egregiously placed.
Uh-oh, spoke to soon: William Shatner introduced a kind of half-hearted tribute to actors in TV commercials. The commercial performers are actually discussing their acting “choices.” “I feel lucky,” the actress concluding the bit says. And so do we, for experiencing that stirring time waster.

Continuing to SAG: “Lost” without a bigger teleprompter

Pulse-pounding update: Presenters Peter Graves and Barbara Bains cant read the teleprompter. But they rallied and presented the cast of Lost? with The Actor? for Best Ensemble/Drama. Terry OQuinn called his co-stars paranoid . . . grasping . . . losers and shmoozers.? But apparently they will have to divvy up a single trophy amongst themselves. Anyone got a buzzsaw to help them?
Rachel Weisz of The Constant Gardener? becomes the Oscar front-runner with her second big Best Supporting Actress win she also won the Golden Globe. Someone mustve pointed her to my blog entry complaining about how she appeared that night because she looks exponentially better tonight. Thanks for caring, Rachel.

SAG Awards: More trophies to distribute

The Screen Actors Guild Awards ceremony opened with a group of random actors whose names mustve on balls pulled out of a Lotto machine (Randy Quaid, Anne Hathaway, James Denton) telling their little stories of aspiration, followed by success, making it all seem so easy. They each end their spiel with My name is . . . and Im an actor.? Whichd be more impressive if they had really interesting tales and be saying Im a fireman? or Im a teacher.?
Winner are announced with the declaration, The Actor goes to Which sounds like something a sleazy producer with a casting couch and equally seedy friends would say.
Sandra Oh won Best Actress/Drama, after winning a Golden Globe for Best Supporting Actress. Shes still overly excited, thanking, among others, her stand-in; youd think shed get used to this sort of thing.
Kiefer Sutherland won his second SAG Award for Best Actor/Drama for 24.? He showed much restraint, refraining from shooting anyone in the thigh or stabbing anyone in the eye with some scissors.

Oscars: Predicting the Future for Dummies

Hmm, seems like only yesterday I was hearing from the so-called Oscar experts — rather insistently, as if a finger were being poked into my chest — that “Munich” and “Memoirs of a Geisha” were going to be the movies to beat in the Oscar race. Though both could still nab a nomination or two, they have receded far from the heated race, while the pundits, Nancy Grace-style, blithely ignore their errors and continue to blather away, their credibility unsmudged in their minds, about who’s gonna win NOW. And while I would bar no blogger from as much self-gratification as s/he can muster, it might be nice if they could write the occasional essay explaining why anyone should care about such pie-in-the-sky mooning. Analyzing and putting a social context on actual results is one thing (though I’d accept your argument that not everyone on the planet need be doing it), but just making it up as you go along just to hear your fingers clack on your keyboard is another altogether.

Confessions of a Red Carpet Escort

A few years ago, an alarming number of celebs starting “wearing Mom to the Oscars.” A sweet thought, but LA.COMfidential says the trend made the extravaganzas look about as glamorous as a Sunday brunch. Perhaps the reason for the family affair is that stars are incapable of finding bathrooms on their own, or introducing themselves to other celebs. Mommy did little things like that (publicists being too busy keeping press at bay). Well, where there’s need there’s opportunity: enter the celebrity escort. It’s not what you think it is, says Movieline’s Hollywood Life magazine.

…a celebrity escort is not, in fact, a hooker, but one of the best-kept secrets in Hollywood—the person assigned by the production to shadow a predetermined star at all times, from the red carpet to the after-party, and get them where they need to go.

Celeb escort Christopher Laslo, who has herded the likes of Carmen Electra, Rosie and Pamela Anderson to events, says the pay is low but there are unexpected perks—like the time a ’70s male pop star offered some extreme relief after a grueling night on the red carpet.


Stars can wave on their own, but they need help with everything else

Oscars: I’d like to thank…

Write that pretend acceptance speech and have the camera handy. Starting Feb. 10, this year’s Oscar statuettes — minus the winners’ names, of course — will be on display for three weeks in a free exhibition, “Meet the Oscars: The 50 Golden Statuettes.” Visitors at the Hollywood & Highland display will be allowed to hold a real Oscar. Then they can go down to a tourist trap shop on the boulevard and see just how cheesy those knockoffs are.

TV Critics’ Press Tour: Move along; nothing to see here

A mere two days have passed since the conclusion of the TV Critics Association’s winter press tour in Pasadena and already two much bigger TV stories have broken than any that occurred during the tour itself: Paula Kerger being named as president of the Public Broadcasting System and, of course, UPN and The WB merging into a new network, The CW. (NBC also announced “The Book of Daniel” had been canceled, but that hardly qualified as a surprise.) Only an idiot would believe these announcements werent ready to be made during the press tour itself, and only an idiot would not be able to figure out why they werent made before the collected group of journalists who are TV specialists. Why break these things to journalists who would know what questions to ask of the executives involved when you can do so later and get what essentially amounts to a free pass in subsequent reportage?
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“Bubble” bursts film distribution notions

Oscar-winning director Steven Soderbergh will challenge traditional assumptions of film distribution when his latest film, “Bubble,” a murder mystery set in a toy factory, opens in theaters, goes on sale on DVD and premieres on HDNet on Friday. This is the first of six films Soderbergh is making for Mark Cuban’s 2929 Entertainment. Cuban, who was a producer on a couple of 2005’s most interesting films, George Clooney’s “Good Night, and Good Luck.” and the documentary “Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room” (and, of course, is the Dallas Mavericks’ maverick owner), recently told me that the film only needs to make $500,000 theatrically and sell 50,000 DVDs to break even, which, given Soderbergh’s status as an auteur, seems easy enough to accomplish.
All well and good, but the big question is: Who should review “Bubble?” Film critics, DVD critics or TV critics? I say: Have all three do it. TV critics could say, “It demands to be seen on the big screen;” movie critics could write, “Wait for video;” and DVD critics could conclude, “Just catch it on cable.”