Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Carolla Mystery: Who is this woman?

Who is this woman? Is she alive... or dead?

That's the question people are asking the Tabloid Baby staff after we posted the above photo that appears on the new "Deaf Frat Guy" website, promoting and marketing a "character" featured on the Adam Carolla Radio Show, the grating broadcast that replaced Howard Stern in Los Angeles and other markets. The website is a ripoff of National Lampoon's Animal House and High School Yearbook parody from the Seventies.

The photo, which depicts a comatose or dead woman who has apparently been vomited and urinated upon, appears on a page marked "Buzz of the Week."

The photo caption reads: DFG NOTE: Moose tagged this chick at a family reunion and found out she was his cousin. 'Kin' I get me some of dat?

The site asks readers to send in additional witty captions for the photo. What's not known is the identiy of the woman, whether the picture was sent in by a fan of the Carolla show, whether she is dead or alive, or the reaction to the shocking photo from Teresa Strasser, the actress, TV host and Emmy-winning writer who joined the Carolla team as a newsreader and female foil around the time the site appeared.

If you have any information, Email us here.

Adam Carolla vomits on a coed

“…And when we come back, the Deaf Frat Guy will be here…”

Jesus Christ! It happened! Yesterday, around nine a.m. on morning radio in Los Angeles: Howard Stern’s replacement actually promoted one of his dead air “characters.” Going into a commercial break, he teased a “bit” that actively forces listeners to seek another station-- as if it’s something to look forward to.

Incredibly, the dunderheads behind the Adam Carolla Show think they've hit on a winner with their time-killing ridicule of the powerless (conveniently, this group can't hear the show). They've even launched a “Deaf Frat Guy” website that manages to rip off National Lampoon’s Animal House and classic High School yearbook simultaneously, while including photos like this:

A supposedly comatose young woman, splashed with vomit (and possibly urine), “tagged” by a fellow frat guy at a family reunion. A staged “gag” shot, or a photo sent in by a Carolla fan? It’s worth an investigation.

Howard Stern gave us strippers and lesbians. Adam Carolla vomits on a coed. This is Howard’s revenge for all the years of abuse at the hands of the FCC: the dull, droning loudmouth Adam Carolla and his slugs, including the grating “sportscaster” who beats to death a bubbling “fishtank”/American Idol Dog Pound joke, and a new news girl playing it straight and obedient, giving Carolla the set-up lines to launch his numbing “rants.”

Hey, we may have led the charge, but Tabloid Baby‘s not alone. Rabid entertainment columnist Nikki Finke has joined the cause, bemoaning “what we're stuck with now: Adam Carolla, that unwitty slow-talker who's not just a panderer but also a punishment to listeners.”

But Nikki has discouraging news: “We have ABC's lame late night talk-show host Jimmy Kimmel to damn for Carolla's presence: Mr. Smug is not just the show's creative consultant but he's also the ‘advisor’ -- and I use that term loosely -- to develop new talent and show ideas for Infinity (and make guest appearances on Carolla's program). So I'm told that, as long as Kimmel's contract is ironclad, Carolla stays put.”

Here’s an idea: Let’s give Johnny Wendell a shot.

Johnny is the Boston rocker turned L.A. hipster and music writer who suddenly turned up on L.A. radio one weekend and exploded like a smart bomb over Dullsville. Johnny’s the real blue collar sage, a talker with real wit and facts to back up his outrage. He knows radio, he knows pop culture, he's got real balls, and he doesn’t look down at his audience as a bunch of beer-swilling, belly-bearing yingyangs who denigrate women and foreigners. Johnny makes you laugh and encourages you to think. His monologues might sound like tirades, but they get listeners reaching for the telephone, not the dial. He speaks to listeners because he’s one of us. And he doesn’t wear undershirts in LA.

For the past seven weeks, Johnny has been talking up a storm afternoons on 106.9 Free FM in San Francisco—another station where the Kimmel/Carolla machine has its hooks into the morning hours—and he’s been doing it a whole different way.

Carolla and company are sucking morning radio into a big black hole. Until Howard Stern returns with a packaged, simulcast version of his satellite show, mornings will only get darker.

In New York, they saw the writing on the floor and yanked David Lee Roth when they realized he wasn’t working.

So howzabout giving Johnny Wendell seven weeks in the morning?

Give Carolla and crew the summer off to work up some new “bits” and some interviewing lessons so the show can attract some real guests.

In the meantime, we won’t have to be fumbling with the radio dial on the drive in to work. It's getting dangerous. Carolla could kill someone.

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Sexclusive! My First Time DVD vs. TV Land series!

The family-oriented TV Land network is in for the biggest embarrassment in its history. Tabloid Baby has learned exclusively that its upcoming series, My First Time, will have to compete with the DVD release of the acclaimed sexually-themed series of the same name!

We first reported earlier this month that the six-part TV Land series, premiering June 28, went through a name change from My Big Break to My First Time, despite the fact that My First Time is the name of the recent, racy, 26-part Showtime docudrama series that re-enacted women’s first sexual experiences (in explicit, flesh-baring detail). We also revealed that many of the actors featured in the Showtime series are major porn stars.

WPOE Entertainment plans to release the first My First Time DVD the last week in June. That means consumers will be confronted simultaneously with two very distinct My First Time products and ad campaigns: a sexually-oriented, adults-only series that already has a history and fans; and a family-oriented show that “looks at the roles that changed the lives of Hollywood’s biggest names.”

“There will surely be confusion in the marketplace,” says one source close to the original series. “The original My First Time series got swift brand recognition when it first aired, and its legend and mystique have only increased as fans demanded that it be released on DVD. TV Land made a big mistake when it filched the name.”

The original My First Time series, subtitled “True Stories of Love & Sex,” features not only the first and only mainstream performances of top porn stars like Monique Alexander, Dru Berrymore, Rhiannon Bray, Katie Morgan, Buffy Sinclair, Lexington Steele and Justin Slayer and Lexington Steele, but the very first performances of future adult stars like Dick Smothers, Jr., Buffy Sinclair and Allison Whyte.

The My First Time DVD collection will also feature-- for the first time-- the never-seen pilot to the series, notable because it stars three women who would become top names in the adult entertainment field. Jessica Drake and Aurora Snow team up with TJ Cummings in one segment. Nicole Sheridan and her husband Voodoo show up—and show all— in another.

Will TV Land change channels, look back nostalgically and go back to the more apt title, My Big Break? Stay tuned…

Saturday, May 27, 2006

Our Man Elli hits a holiday home run

Our Man Elli in Israel sends us a piece of baseball history to enjoy over Memorial Day Weekend.

Just click here. Then, as Elli suggests, “enjoy it and have a great holiday weekend.”

You can read the story behind Elli's gift here.

And catch Our Man Elli by clicking here and then clicking ENGLISH TV NEWS. The veteran newsman from New York City is now in the hot zone as a TV news reporter for the Israel Broadcasting Authority.

But he still insists that Baseball Is Life. (And we were there this week to see the Royals blow a three-run lead and lose to the Tigers at home. The evening game in a classic ballpark, about 11 games into a 13-game losing streak, was another piece of baseball history. This weekend, they face Elli's Yankees-- and lost 15-4 today...)

Monday, May 22, 2006

South Central Farmers ready for a fight

Ross the Boss, our hip and politically astute filmmaking friend from House of Ross, tells us that the LAPD is going to boot the South Central Farmers Coalition from their garden spot near downtown L.A. tomorrow.
And things could get ugly.

To make a long story short, the 14 acres of property located at 41st and Alameda Streets in South Central, Los Angeles was originally bought by the city from a developer for a trash incinerator, but given to the community for a garden after the 1992 riots.

Divided into 360 plots, one of the largest urban gardens in the country, it's been a huge success, cutting crime in the area and giving people an opportunity to feed themselves and their neighbors. LA Times columnist Al Martinez today describes it as “a unique effort by industrious people to feed themselves, to help others and maybe make a few bucks by selling the stuff they've grown by the sweat of their brows... an unexpected garden that suddenly appears amid the calamity of commercial progress, an emerald island in a sea of industrial gray.”

So of course it can’t be left alone to thrive. The original owner of the property went to court to get his property back and the city sold it back in a private meeting in 2002. The fight’s been on ever since. The developer said the Regional Food Bank could buy it from him at triple the cost. The deadline’s at the end of the day. They’re $10 million short.

The city of LA, which last week found $100 million to attract an NFL team, can’t find the money. Glamourous folk like Leonardo DiCaprio have backed the farmer’s cause, but they’re not writing the big check today, either. So unless someone antes up, the developer gets to build his warehouse, and another dream is over.

Everyone’s expecting a police action tomorrow. Word from the farmers is that they shall not be moved.

Ross produced a very cool documentary on the farm. You can see it here.

And get the latest on tomorrow's activities here.

(Note: DiCaprio's quoted on his website saying: "The farm holds a remarkable array of biodiversity and, because of its size, functions as a carbon sink, a natural environment that stores more carbon than it releases into the atmosphere, and this helps reduce global warming. We have to start acknowledging that every action counts." Sounds pretty smart for a high school dropout. Then again, he did interview Bill Clinton for ABC News...)

Sunday, May 21, 2006

McCartney Crack-Up: More Impotent Rage

Paul McCartney’s website is going strong with its impotent attacks on media coverage of his marital failure, with evidence of his public breakdown mounting by the day.

John Lennon said “Imagine.”

Paul says “Don’t believe”:

One of the worst aspects of what Heather and I are currently going through is the malicious spreading of rumours and made up facts that is happening in some areas of the media.

The best help people can be to us is to not believe these stories and ignore the painful articles that we are having to endure. Our colleagues are doing their best to help us. We are all finding this aspect of these very difficult times most disturbing.

This morning, a new message, and Paul is apparently not even together enough to put his name to the statement:

Paul and Heather are really upset that the media continue to run stories and speculate on stories that are clearly invented. This is a difficult time and they have both respectively asked for some privacy to work through their difficulties.

It is not easy for them at the moment having to deal with all the gossip and hurtful things that are being said. We all hope that Heather and Paul can be given some space during this period and its not made even more stressful than it already is.

This makes six desperate messages since Wednesday. We do feel sympathy for the McCartneys, the intensely private couple who obviously have no experience living through media scrutiny or creating media frenzies of their own.

We’ve been reading the coverage. We can’t figure exactly what’s getting under McCartney’s skin: articles that chart the life story and deceptions of his bride? Stories spelling out some obvious problems in a marriage whose obvious stresses caused the marriage to end? That joke about the South African gold miner? These photos?

Or is it simply the inability to control the flow of information?

Paulie. Babe. It doesn’t matter. If you need a lesson on handling the press in a time of media frenzy, see a movie called A Hard Day's Night. Stop reading the papers. Or buy a paper of your own. You’ve got the money.

(Note: The name of McCartney's publicist appeared in this morning's web posting, probably to refute rumours that Macca has already rehired Geoff Baker, his longtime flak whom Heather reportedly caused him to jettison.)

Saturday, May 20, 2006

Hanks spends Da Vinci Weekend doing God's work

So how did Tom Hanks spend Saturday as his blasphemous blockbuster The Da Vinci Code raked in millions around the world in its second day of release?

Close to Jesus, of course.

Tom was out among the faithful, fulfilling his annual role as announcer and emcee at The St. Matthew's Town Fair in Pacific Palisades, California, raising money for the Episcopalian church and school. Then again, he did sport the Da Vinci Code hair and an ominous black t-shirt.

Last month, Tom shared the spotlight at the town's hunger run with Gavin Macleod. This time, he was relieved in the announcer's gazebo by Ted McGinley.

Humbling business, this God work.

Friday, May 19, 2006

McCartney Crack-Up: Heather tries to get a leg up

FICTION: "Heather has partied with and dated Arabs"
FACT: "Heather married Alfie Karmal in 1989, his father was Arabic, his mother was Greek, making him half Arabic. She has dated men of many nationalities, English, Italian, Arabic, Slovenian and so on, hardly a crime! They range from poverty stricken to exceptionally rich and back again. To make a big deal of this is only laughable. Is she only allowed to date caucasian men from the UK of average income ?!"

The Paul McCartney-Heather Mills separation and probable divorce is sad and hilariously entertaining-- and not for the obvious reasons. Unlike say, Charlie Sheen and Denise Richards, who trade vile accusations and lay out their briefs in the court of public opinion, this is a case of very powerful public people doing whatever they can to control the coverage, the spin and headlines (see Jared Paul Stern and Tabloid Baby), and freaking out when they fail.

McCartney is using his website to urge fans to “pay no attention to that man behind that curtain!” and ignore what they read in the papers.

Even funnier is a site that’s been floating out there for some time. The Heather Mills McCartney website is run by her sister Fiona. Most all of it is dedicated to correcting "misconceptions" about the nudie model divorcee who lost her leg in a traffic accident, sold her story to the tabloids from her hospital bed, then snagged the elderly, mourning, widowed McCartney and apparently nagged him to separation:

“I find it almost impossible to put into words for you all just how angry and hurt I am by the treatment Heather has received from so much of the media since she met and fell in love with Paul in 1999... Lots of people say to me, ‘Oh just ignore it Fiona, nobody believes it anyway.’… Certainly, it is easier to ignore the stupid little comments, such as ‘How much cellulite does she have?… But stop for just one minute and imagine how it would feel to have your family and loved ones sprawled across the front pages; put down by people they’ve never met 'She's a gold digger, a fantasist'; to read lies written by people who were paid to ‘spill the beans’ about a life you are part of and through which they may have passed just briefly; how it feels to know that your friends and family are being door-stepped and harassed by journalists simply because they know you…”

Sheesh. What are you journos doing in England? These people definitely feel harassed.

But the website’s a hoot. It hasn’t been updated to cover the separation, but does include a handy “Facts & Fiction” page that covers “some of the most common inaccuracies printed about Heather; the truth is written alongside each one.”

Remember, this gal’s got quite a history, so there are dozens, including:

FICTION: "Heather failed as a model and only did glamour modelling"
FACT: This is quite simply untrue. Heather did many modelling campaigns and catwalk work but reputable companies are not in the habit of selling photos to the press. This means that the only ones you get to see are photos from her brief stint as a glamour model when her ex-husband sent off a photo to a newspaper and got her involved as a teenager.

FICTION: "Heather is a publicity seeker"
FICTION: "Heather is a gold digger and married Paul for his money"
FICTION: "Heather lied that her Mother lost her leg at a young age also"
FICTION: "Heather is always clinging on to Paul"
FICTION: "Heather pushed Paul to reverse the song-writing credits on Lennon/McCartney songs to McCartney/Lennon”
FICTION: "Heather took over the Adopt A Minefield LA gala and made the audience uncomfortable"
FICTION: "Heather is heavily criticised for removing her prosthetic leg on CNN's Larry King Live"
FICTION: "Heather didn't enjoy herself at Stella's wedding and made Paul leave early"
FICTION: "Heather makes Paul go to the opening of an envelope"
FICTION: "Heather forces Paul to do 'Who Wants to be a Millionaire'"

Click here to read Heather’s sister’s side of the story.

And heck, click here to see those nudie “glamour shots.”

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Paul McCartney's Cracking Up

Step right this way! Watch Paul McCartney melt down online:

We have decided to go our separate ways…. We have found it increasingly difficult to maintain a normal relationship with constant intrusion into our private lives…

I’m really disappointed that… certain people in the media… are writing things about Heather that are just plain untrue…

In reading the media reports that are coming out, I would urge people not to believe them. Almost everything I’m reading is 100% untrue. I urge people not to read this stuff and support Heather and myself at this difficult time.

Seeing that so many inaccurate stories have been written at the moment about Heather and myself, all I can ask people to do is not believe them and understand that most of what is coming out is made up and entirely false. Thanks for your support.

One of the sadder and more hilarious spectacles on the Internet is Paul McCartney’s website, the platform used to announce he’s separated from his young bride— the former nudie model turned Bono/Diana wannabe, the woman who’s been using his fame to promote her causes, the stepmother his kids don’t get along with, the gal who made him dye his hair and quit smoking pot, the smartie who gave birth to an heiress of her own—and to blame the media for the breakup.

Poor old guy. He’s got a billion dollars, he’s in his sixties and Ram still holds up after 35 years, yet he feels the need to make puny pop records, run out on tour and compete with the youngsters, embarrassing himself at the Grammys and still trying to play The Cute One.

So he married too soon, to a one-legged fashion model who’s obviously got issues and ambition. And Poor Paul and his people try to make Yoko Onos of all us journos, blaming us for breaking up the Beatle’s marriage.

Where's the dignity for this billionaire? Today, he's still out there, pushing his Cabbage Patch mug into the spotlight by taunting the press on his website. Every few hours, someone in the McCartney corporation is posting statements urging fans to not believe what they read-- when as recently as last week, the “news” section of the Macca site wanted us to believe everything: PAUL ON LARRY KING LIVE TONIGHT… PM.COM MENTION IN THE TIMES (UK)… PARKINSON/CHAOS AND CREATION AT ABBEY ROAD…

Now they change their tune. Hmm... we read she made him fire his publicist. Maybe Paul should hire him back. Meanwhile, we can’t wait for the next posting!

We’ll keep you posted…

(Of course, Paul and his former bandmates are shown to be a major influence throughout Tabloid Baby. See Chapter 32, "Beat The Meatles"...)

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Gotcha! Tabloid is as tabloid does

“Yes, the twain have met, they’ve mated and Murrow’s legacy of idealism has exchanged fluids with Murdoch’s rules of cynicism. The mingling of the two in a more acceptable arena has led to the creation of something bigger, yet something less..."
--Tabloid Baby, page 481

"Tabloid television isn't dead. Shows such as A Current Affair and Hard Copy that thrived on news, gossip and scandal and brought the world dramatic reenactments and hidden-camera scoops were simply made redundant. Burt Kearns was a producer on both of those shows. To hear him tell it, tabloid TV simply morphed into network news magazines, syndicated talk shows, ceaseless cable 'news' coverage and those morning programs where the men all wear sweaters and the coffee is decaffeinated..."

Shortly after Tabloid Baby was published, the book was blacklisted by the mainstream television news media in an effort led by celebrities like Tom Brokaw and Diane Dimond and joined by self-professed “fans” like 20/20 executive producer Victor Neufeld, because they didn’t like the way we characterized their evolution into tabloid television imitators.

Finally, the establishment is catching on. Today, the New York Times (which still has not reviewed the book) boarded the Tabloid Baby train in its review of NBC’s Dateline newsmagazine and its recurring sweeps series in which they entrap Internet sex perverts:

“NBC ran into a little trouble over a series taped in Ohio last April when it was revealed that 'Dateline' had paid the group Perverted Justice $100,000 for assistance in that operation. 'Dateline' was accused of checkbook journalism, which technically would be correct if the cheesy magazine program actually rose to the level of journalism. At best, it's a tabloid-entertainment show with a muckraking streak…”

At a time when CNN’s news anchor is a Scissor Sisters-loving former host of The Mole and Dan Rather’s successor made her bones by literally sticking a camera up her arse, Tabloid Baby is looking like a regular Nostradamus.

Monday, May 15, 2006

Phil Hendrie's sitcom is canceled

NBC announced today it's canceling Teachers, the middling sitcom that features crazed radio genius Phil Hendrie in a supporting role.

It's sad news, because Hendrie sounded really excited about his big network break, and even brought his fellow cast members onto his radio show to gush about the cameraderie and magic on the crappy series. But amid the giddiness, he also announced he's giving up his radio show on June 23rd-- quitting radio-- to pursue a career in acting.

We can understand his enthusiasm, at his age, after so many false starts and decades working behind the glass in cramped radio stations for cramped executives and producing hours of bilious brilliance ain a medium that's beneath him.

But Hendrie on the radio is one of a kind. Maybe now that he's lost his new day job, makeup artist, trailer and caterer, he'll reconsider. Aagh... but he won't.

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Exclusive! Martin Sheen returns to White House as All The Presidents' Movies finally hits DVD!

Television viewers said goodbye to The West Wing and Martin Sheen as President Josiah Bartlet tonight, but Sheen will be back in The White House in time for the Fourth of July, as the acclaimed documentary, All The Presidents’ Movies, is finally released on DVD.

Movie buffs and historians alike have literally been clamoring to get their hands and eyes on the wildly entertaining three-hour look at Presidential movie tastes and influences, ever since it premiered on Bravo to kick off the network’s run of The West Wing. It hasn’t been seen in the USA since.

But now, in a star-spangled salute, WPOE Entertainment is releasing a deluxe DVD package of the Sheen-narrated film the week of July 4th, so folks all over America can top off their barbecues and fireworks by watching movies with the Presidents.

The long-delayed doco is cultural dynamite that blasts a new path of history. From the shocking first selection to the viewing habits of George W. Bush, the film goes inside the East Wing screening room and inside the hearts and minds of the most powerful men in the world.

At its heart is White House projectionist Paul Fischer, who screened movies at the White House and Camp David for seven Presidents-- from Dwight D. Eisenhower through Ronald Reagan—and from Day One, kept a written record of what they watched and who was there watching them. Those logs are revealed for the first time—and in conjunction with the DVD release, will be heading to an honored place in the Smithsonian.

The documentary is packed with movie clips, rare film and video, and lots of Presidential insides, including Presidential relatives Ron Reagan, Steve Ford and Ike’s granddaughter Susan Eisenhower; Presidential insiders, including Kennedy aide & Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Arthur Schlesinger Jr., Kennedy & Johnson aide George Stevens, Jr., Truman aide and former Congressman Ken Hechler, Johnson aide and former MPAA head Jack Valenti, Carter adviser Jerry Rafshoon, Nixon aide Herb Klein, Reagan aide and Bush appointee Linda Chavez; Hollywood stars like James Earl Jones and Academy Award winning actors Robert Duvall and Cliff Robertson; directors David O. Russell (Three Kings), Phil Alden Robinson (Field of Dreams), Lionel Chetwynd (9/11), Roger Donaldson (13 Days); producer and Reagan pal A.C. Lyles; and authorities like Pulitzer Prize-winning Reagan biographer (“Dutch”) Edmund Morris, and film historian and author Richard Schickel.

Amid rave reviews from critics and historians, The Hollywood Reporter said: “A fascinating three hour documentary that takes us inside the East Wing screening room and inside the hearts and minds of the most powerful men in the world…All the Presidents' Movies makes tremendous television, mainly because it skillfully blends bits of inconsequential but juicy trivia with powerful insight into the presidential psyche.

“Although three straight hours on commercial TV can be a challenging sit, the program is crammed with wonderful facts we never figured on caring about. And there are alternately touching and poignant moments that history buffs will cherish.

“There's also information that historians -- and maybe conspiracy theorists -- will find intriguing… Overall it's impossible to resist most of the nuggets presented in the show. Bill Clinton sums it up early on: ‘The best perk of the White House is the theater.’ After watching this, constituents might agree.”

The Frozen Pictures project was produced by Brett Hudson and Burt Kearns of Frozen Pictures (the team that brought you Cloud 9!), and co-produced by William Knoedelseder and Joachim Blunck.

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Larry Atteberry's place in Tabloid Television history

There’s a glorious tabloid chapter in the life of Larry Attebery, the award-winning Los Angeles broadcast journalist who died last week at 73.

Atteberry covered L.A. for more than three decades, including stints as anchor and news director at KTTV-TV Channel 11 and as a reporter for KCOP-TV Channel 13, where in 1994 he made his mark on the influential tabloid series, Premier Story.

Premier Story was the now-legendary late-night show that Peter Brennan and Burt Kearns started up after they turned A Current Affair and Hard Copy into tabloid television powerhouses. The “Tabloid Nightline,” hosted by the beautiful British import Alison Holloway, faced off against Ted Koppel’s show and was soon followed and imitated by the competition (and made international headlines as it led the coverage of the OJ Simpson case), despite its low budget and small staff.

Premier Story’s original office was in a corner of the KCOP building, tucked away upstairs from the KCOP-TV newsroom. Of all the telegenic young reporters and achormen there, it was hardened, experienced, no-frills and genial street reporter Larry Attaberry who filled in as host of Premier Story when Alison was on assignment.

Larry Atteberry hosted Premier Story!

Tabloidbaby Trivia:
Q: Who was the only other substitute host of Premier Story, filling in for a week when Alison returned to the UK to fulfill some television obligations?
A: David Lewis, the controversial New York City attorney who represented Fatal Attraction killer Carolyn Warmus and served as the television prototype for Survivor’s Rupert.

David Lewis & Rupert

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Wald v. Ford: Luke's lawyer wants you!

Never mind the Pelican.

Hollywood’s most bizarre and potentially important lawsuit has just gotten more bizarre. The defense lawyer in the case wants you to join his team.

Yeah. You.

Internet journalism pioneer and personality Luke Ford is being sued for defamation by notorious Hollywood agent, producer, manager and ex-husband of Helen Reddy (referred to only as “Number Two” in her recent autobiography) Jeff Wald, for posting items about Wald on his sites. Some of the material came from original interviews conducted by Luke. Other information was from existing articles and other material-- you know, the stuff you find on the Internet.

The case has been bouncing around the Los Angeles Superior Court system since last July. Now Luke’s new lawyer has put out a call for help in his defense. He’s not ringing Robert Shapiro or Bert Fields. And we guess he can’t hire Anthony Pellicano to dig up dirt on the other side. He's put out an open casting call for help at the defense table.

Justin Levine has posted this on the Southern California Law Blog:

“Welcome to the Open Source Legal Motion-- a groundbreaking experiment to harness the collective force of the Internet to help improve legal motions that will be filed in real cases...

“I will post a first rough draft of a motion that I am working on in the case of Wald v. Ford. You (or anyone else) can read it, comment on it, and give me feedback. Maybe you can rewrite some passages to make it better. Maybe you can come up with some theories, arguments, or legal authorities that I haven’t. Maybe you can provide the best counter-arguments on the other side...

“Anyone who ends up contributing an original improvement to the final product that is both tangible and identifiable will be given credit both on the pages of this blog as well as in either a footnote or page attachment on the court motion itself.

Tell your friends..."

Read Levine's entire posting, and lots of background on the case, here (and that means you, L.A. Times reporters-- though the New York Times will probably beat you to the punch on this historic Hollywood case, too).

Justin Levine? Luke tells us he’s taken the case pro bono. Either the guy’s a genius who’s really onto something or he’s in over his head.

In any case, it sounds like a movie. We’ll put in first bid for the rights. We’re already casting in our heads.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Exclusive! Porn stars reclaim TV Land series title

The folks at TV Land must be pretty embarrassed about their decision to rename a family-oriented TV series after the erotic-themed Showtime series My First Time, now that plans are in place to release the original, sexy episodes on DVD!

And meanwhile, the porn stars who performed in the original My First Time series (many of whom proudly claim the series as their big break and sole mainstream credit) have come forward to keep the tantalizing title in the sex world, where it belongs!

As we reported last week, the nostalgic TV Land network announced the debut of a six-part series looking at TV roles that changed the lives of Hollywood stars. The show’s being called “My First Time,” although it had the more apt title of “My Big Break” when it was ordered up last October.

Someone obviously thought that “My First Time” was a sexier title. Oh boy, were they right. Now Jim Belushi, Katey Segal and other stars profiled on the TV Land series may find some fans assuming they'd appeared on a very different show, indeed-- a series that featured performances by porn stars like Aurora Snow (right), Dru Berrymore, Lexington Steele, and Katie Morgan (above), who'd go on to be profiled and interviewed in the nude on the HBO special, A Porn Star Revealed.

The TV execs were caught with their, uh… pants down… when they realized My First Time (“True Stories of Love & Sex”) was the name of a very recent, but already legendary Showtime docudrama series in which ordinary women were interviewed, and gave explicit details about, the first time they had sex! Cited by Fleshbot, the influential porn and sex culture web magazine as “a fondly-remembered erotic program,” the series contained R-rated, filmed re-enactments of the women’s recollections.

Today, an enterprising Tabloid Baby reader has sent us a list of some of the X-rated actresses and actors who appeared in the series.

Now this is worth a TV series. For some of these actors, My First Time was their first time in front of the cameras. Others were porn veterans who showed up expecting to engage in hardcore action. Some were true underground stars who caused a buzz among the crew.

All were required to act.

And talk about TV Land— one actor was just beginning his foray into the adult entertainment industry. His hardcore exploits would cause a huge tabloid sensation, because he's the the son of a legendary network television comedian: Dick Smothers Jr.!

Here's a partial listing of the X-rated stars who got “Their Big Break” on “My First Time":

Summer Fields, Ann Marie, Ava Molina, Wendy Divine, Aria, Dru Berrymore, Ananda Saint James Goldie, Tina Tyler, Venus, Monique Alexander, Rhiannon Bray, Misty Mendez, Diana DeVoe, Dee, Alana Evans, Britney James, Dalny Marga, Katie Morgan, Buffy Sinclair, Aurora Snow, Allison Wyte, Melanie, Kelly Warner, Becca Bratt, Kara Caraballo and Mandy Roberts.

Male performers include Dick Smothers, Jr, Marty Romano (above, left), Chris Evans, Trevor Zen, Brett Wad, Barrett Blade, Julian St. Jox, Lexington Steele (right), Justin Slayer and Matt Bixel (and in a cameo, Legs McNeil, author of the porn history book, The Other Hollywood).

An apparent Tabloid Baby tribute site has managed to compile photos of the many of the women (the photos are Not Safe For The Office… but not hardcore).

Meanwhile, the TV Land series doesn’t debut until June 28th. There’s still time to change the name back to My Big Break. Imagine the confusion if the sexy DVDs hit stores during its run!