“I am John Oliver, and let’s just all acknowledge for a moment that this is weird.” And so began John Oliver’s eight-week stint of guest-hosting The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, as the eponymous host takes the summer off to make his feature directorial debut. Last night’s guest Fareed Zakaria congratulated him for pulling off “a brilliant slow-motion coup” — a notion that Oliver dismissed, while granting that “as an Indian, you know how suspicious British people are when they say ‘We’ll just be here for a bit!’” … Read More
1. Jon Stewart and Bill O’Reilly have announced plans to face off in “The Rumble in the Air-Conditioned Auditorium,” a 90-minute debate that will take place on October 6th at George Washington University and is set to be livestreamed online. “I’m excited to debate Mr. O’Reilly,” says Stewart. “I believe this will be a very… Read More
Forbes has just published its annual list of the year’s top earning authors, and the results, not unusually, are sure to make aspiring authors of serious literary fiction reconsider their craft. Yes, the big money in 2011 was in genre fiction, with authors of thrillers and YA novels attracting the bulk of the book buyers’ hard-earned dollars. But you already knew that.
In other notable developments, George R.R. Martin makes his debut on the list, thanks to the success of the HBO adaptation of Game of Thrones and the attendant skyrocketing book sales he’s been enjoying. We were surprised (though we shouldn’t have been) by just how much money The Diary of a Wimpy Kid franchise has made. J.K. Rowling, whose star had been waning a bit (as far as Forbes lists go, anyways), is back, thanks to Pottermore and her upcoming novel for adults, The Casual Vacancy, for which she received a reported $8 million advance. And while the race and age breakdowns haven’t changed much at all, female authors are slowly climbing the rankings. Click through to read the full list and our numerical breakdown. … Read More
You remember Bobcat Goldthwait. He became a comedy star in the 1980s thanks to what amounted to a gimmick: the persona of a sweaty, wired, Tab-swilling punk dude who screeched like a banshee. That character got him plenty of TV and movie work (he still seems, unfortunately enough, best known for his supporting roles in three Police Academy movies), but as with his contemporary Sam Kinison — with whom he was often compared — there was more to his comedy than volume. Behind the bellowing mad man was a wry and perceptive social commentator, which is why his new film, the bold and brilliant pitch-black comedy God Bless America, is, as he notes, “closest to the style of how I did stand-up.” It’s a scathing satire and plea for harmony, dressed up as a hyper-violent revenge thriller. … Read More
Over the weekend, we enjoyed some intra-News Corp drama when The Simpsons wished their Fox colleagues a happy 25th anniversary in a special title card at the end of the show — but made sure to clarify that “This doesn’t include Fox News.” Well, inevitably, Fox stalwart and continual source of Colbert Report inspiration Bill O’Reilly had a response to Matt Groening and co’s slight. In a 30-second segment on last night’s The O’Reilly Factor, he called The Simpsons‘ gag “dopey” and a “cheap shot,” pronouncing it “predictable.” That last accusation may be true, but is there anything more predictable than a conservative talk-show host overreacting to a cartoon? Watch the clip after the jump. … Read More
1. Last night Jon Stewart stopped by The Colbert Report to sign paperwork that legally makes him the head of Stephen Colbert’s super PAC — a move that will allow the late night host to pursue his “possible candidacy for the president of the United States of South Carolina.” [via Huffington Post]
1. Old Ideas, the lovely Leonard Cohen’s first studio album in seven years, isn’t due out until January, but you can already stream one of the tracks called “Show Me The Place” here.
2. Julie Delpy has signed on to direct The Right Profile, a biopic about Clash frontman Joe Strummer that will… Read More
1. “After leaving the governor’s office I told my wife about this event, which occurred over a decade ago. I understand and deserve the feelings of anger and disappointment among my friends and family. There are no excuses and I take full responsibility for the hurt I have caused. I have apologized to Maria, my… Read More
Just when we were about to surrender to supercut fatigue, the geniuses at Wonkette had to lure us in with this inspired edit of Bill O’Reilly’s pre-Super Bowl interview with President Obama. (Yes, folks, although you may have been too busy gulping beer and snarfing hot wings, this did indeed happen.) O’Reilly is known for undermining his more liberal guests, and while he didn’t go so far as to cut Obama’s mic, he did repeatedly interrupt the president. And by repeatedly, we mean 48 times. Watch the video after the jump. … Read More