Whoopi Goldberg

25 Years of Oscar Hosts, Ranked

The perceived success of Oscar night hinges on many factors — how dull the speeches are, how interminable the musical numbers are, whether Debbie Allen is involved, etc. — but no element, it seems, is more important than the host. A good Oscar host has to be something of a miracle worker: they keep the show moving, react spontaneously to whatever clusterfucks occur (and they always do), rib the royalty but only gently, and make the night edgy enough for home viewers, but not too edgy for the Cryptkeepers in the audience. Many have tried, but only a few have succeeded, so in anticipation of Ellen Degeneres’ second run at the job, we’ve ranked every Oscar host from the last 25 ceremonies (save 1989, which had no host). … Read More

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Roll With Whoopi in New Web Series

Have you ever had a mildly amusing conversation with friends, then, somewhere in the middle, worked out the formula “Wow,… Read More

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The 50 Funniest Stand-Up Specials of All Time

This Saturday night promises to be a big one for comedy geeks. First off, Comedy Central is airing Bill Cosby: Far From Finished, the legendary comedian and sitcom star’s first new comedy special in over 25 years. Meanwhile, over on HBO, Sarah Silverman is starring in her first special for the network, We Are Miracles. Though the two comedians couldn’t be more different, both specials feel like landmarks: innovative, intelligent, and brilliantly funny. To celebrate this big night for televised stand-up, here’s our definitive ranking of the 50 greatest comedy specials created for television, home video, or… Read More

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The Best and Worst of Tribeca Film Festival 2013

The 12th annual Tribeca Film Festival came to a close Saturday night with a rare, special screening of The King of Comedy, perhaps the most underrated collaboration between Martin Scorsese and festival co-founder Robert DeNiro. That event ended a week and a half of premieres, screenings, and events, and while your film editor was only able to sample a fraction of the dozens of movies at this year’s TFF, all of them made an impression — for good or ill. … Read More

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What’s On at Flavorwire: The Links That Made the Rounds at Our Office

Recognizing that there’s an overabundance of stuff on the Internet (and it’s not everyone’s job to keep up with it all), Flavorwire is curating the best of what we come across — and share with our coworkers — in our daily meanderings around the web. Below, check out both the big and the obscure stories you might have missed during your long day at the office. … Read More

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10 Unbelievable Movies That Actually Exist

Last summer’s box-office disappointment Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter hits DVD and Blu-ray today — just in time for the inevitable “Where’s the vampires?” jokes w/r/t the upcoming Spielberg Lincoln biopic (and seriously, you guys, just keep those coming). So we should probably take a moment to pause and reflect on the fact that they actually went and made Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, a film whose mere concept is so utterly insane that, yes, of course it’s a real thing. If you’re looking to catch up with AL:VH on home video, it might not be a bad idea to pair it up with some of the other films that, against all notions of good sense and taste, are real things that actually exist. We’ve got some suggestions after the jump. … Read More

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10 Movie Stars Who Bombed on TV

A couple of weeks back, while assembling our post on the shortest-running shows in TV history, we noticed a bit of a pattern: an awful lot of them were vehicles for movie stars, who keep getting TV shows even though their track record for success is surprisingly low. There are exceptions, of course, but more often than not, it seems that TV executives value the built-in recognition factor of a big star over quality writing and the kind of ensemble work that the best television thrives on. As a result, an audience may tune in for the first week or two, but if they don’t see big-screen quality right away, they tune out. We thought of this pattern again when we noticed the single season of ABC’s canceled Missing among today’s DVD releases — a show starring Ashley Judd, who was headlining very big movies just a few short years ago. Ms. Judd can take solace, however, in the fact that many a movie star before her has flopped on the tube; after the jump, we’ve collected ten of the most notable examples. … Read More

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The Morning’s Top 5 Pop Culture Stories

1. Thank god Jimmy Fallon decided to do another installment of his hilarious Downton Abbey parody “Downton Sixbey” — and this time we have Whoopi Goldberg playing Questlove’s mother. [via Vulture]

2. The critical consensus to the premiere of Kanye’s 26-minute “sensory experience” at the Cannes Film Festival seems to be that… Read More

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Video Essay: “And Introducing… Famous Faces in Their Film Debuts”

This week’s must-see DVD for film fans is Corman’s World: Exploits of a Hollywood Rebel, Alex Stapleton’s wickedly enjoyable documentary profile of Roger Corman, the B-movie master whose exploitation movies launched half the moviemakers and movie stars of the ’70s. One of the film’s highlights is Jack Nicholson’s remembrances of his first movie roles, including his debut performance in The Little Shop of Horrors (which Corman shot in all of two days). Nicholson’s story got us thinking about other stars and their first movie roles, so we put together this quick video essay with a peek at some other famous film debuts. Check out our latest video essay after the jump. … Read More

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The Westboro Baptist Church's Most Hilarious Cultural Critiques

As much as we’re all disgusted by the hate-mongering, attention-seeking antics of Fred Phelps and his entire Westboro Baptist Church gang, we have to admit that occasionally we’re very amused by their opinions on popular culture. Seriously, whoever they get to write their press releases and offensive biographies of celebrities can get deliciously catty at times, to the point where if they ever get disowned by the church, they could probably get a very cushy job writing for E!’s Fashion Police.

Don’t think you have to sift through all the repulsive rhetoric on their websites to find these gems of critical insight, however — we’ve rounded up the best ones for you! Normally, we’d ask for suggestions of what we’ve missed in the comments, but really, don’t. We’re already sick of them as it is. … Read More

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