In sixth grade, my friend Amy Osborn’s parents took us to a screening of Annie Hall. The bedroom scenes with Carol Kane, Janet Margolin and Diane Keaton were chaste by today’s standards. The repartee was so beyond my frame of reference, it caused but little discomfort.[...]
Mother’s Day can elicit complicated emotions in the human animal. Not so Mother Hamster. While you were out to brunch, she was matter-of-factly devouring the runtiest of her litter. And not because he failed to present her with a bouquet and flowery card.[...]
George Carlin was more than a Class Clown. He was also a class act, as evidenced by this undated missive to comedy writer Sally Wade, with whom he shared the final decade of his life. The man who once parsed the Seven Words You Can Never Say on Television showered his “spouse without papers” with such notes daily.[...]
Great talents seem to embody their craft. It’s as if they invented the form and then broke the mold when they were finished with it.
One of the best modern examples of this virtuosity is Mel Blanc, voice of Bugs Bunny and nearly all of the Looney Tunes cartoon gang. Blanc, who voiced more than 1,000 characters, was famously hard-working.
A couple of days ago, Mick Fleetwood told NPR that a band’s greatest hits belong to its fans “to be reinterpreted and create a backdrop for parts of their lives.[...]
Sarah Palin didn’t like the 2013 White House Correspondents’ Dinner. In a cranky tweet, she wrote: “That #WHCD was pathetic. The rest of America is out there working our asses off while these DC assclowns throw themselves a #nerdprom.” But I have to disagree with America’s most distinguished half-term governor.[...]
Celebrities tire of giving interviews. I’ve learned this by spending most of my career conducting interviews myself, and thus desperately trying to master asking the questions that wake up a weary interviewee, getting them engaged enough to cast aside the boilerplate and speak like a conversing human being.[...]
There are certain legends surrounding Brian Wilson, the troubled genius behind the Beach Boys. One is that he hates going to the beach. He never went surfing, even though he wrote classic songs like “Surfer Girl,” “Surfin’ Safari,” and “Surfin’ USA.[...]
Remember that scene in Nashville, when Keith Carradine sings “I’m Easy,” and every woman in the club thinks he’s speaking directly to her?
Breaking the fourth wall—also known as direct address—can have the same effect on a filmgoing audience. The compilation video above makes it clear that actors love it too.