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Thursday, January 25, 2007

Barack Obama, Race and The Media

EVERY single article we have read about Senator Barack Obama includes the sentences below:

Born to a white mother and a black Kenyan father, reared in Hawaii by his white grandparents and for a few years in Indonesia with his Indonesian stepfather, Obama in many ways embodies the one American he often talks about.

Although Obama identifies himself as African American, the media seems to be insisting that he is who he is because of his white mother. That is, he is a successful black man because of his white blood and white cultural influences. We did not hear too much about Jesse Jackson's mother or Al Sharpton's mother. Surely The Media did not mention that they were black in every article. Sharpton and Jackson's mothers also raised very successful black men. The articles also usually note that Obama and his mother were abandoned by his father.

The message that blacks are getting from the white media is that "we accept him because he was raised by us, half his blood is from us and he has totally adopted our culture and point of view (in our opinion). There is no black community in America and even if there is, it should be ignored. The blacks should move over here with us even though most of us don't want them over here. "

Of course the interesting thing is that Obama knows all of this. The trick is how he handles it to gain the presidency. He knows he can't pull a Tiger Woods and deny his color. That means he will address 'black' issues head on. It also means that he will be seen as 'being black' by whites who want to make him white. Isn't race politics in America interesting? Stupid, but interesting.

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Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Oscar Nominations

Booker Rising says it all.
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Saturday, January 20, 2007

Extraordinarily Good Winter 2006-2007 Movie Season

The quality of the movies that are out right now is just astounding. Broad and deep. From the A List movies: Dreamgirls, The Pursuit of Happyness, Happy Feet, Babel, The Departed, Night At The Museaum, Stomp The Yard and the Interesting Quality Movies: Notes On A Scandal, The Last King of Scotland, The Queen,Venus and the Daring C List: Blood Diamond, Rocky Balboa and Alpha Dogs.

The quality out there is just amazing. It would be great to see them all. There is no spectacular blockbuster sci fi action adventure film out right now, but the depth of the talent and quality of the films make up for it. Hollywood is cranking out excellent product. And note that African Americans appear to be prospering in Tinseltown. And cranking out quality product. The days of the Blaxploitation films is over. Eddie Murphy, Will Smith and Forest Whitaker are really blossoming.
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Tuesday, January 16, 2007

64th Annual Golden Globe Awards

Winners by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association:
Picture, Drama: "Babel"
Actress, Drama: Helen Mirren, "The Queen"
Actor, Drama: Forest Whitaker, "The Last King of Scotland"
Picture, Musical or Comedy: "Dreamgirls"
Actress, Musical or Comedy: Meryl Streep, "The Devil Wears Prada"
Actor, Musical or Comedy: Sacha Baron Cohen, "Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan"
Supporting Actress: Jennifer Hudson, "Dreamgirls"
Supporting Actor: Eddie Murphy, "Dreamgirls"
Director: Martin Scorsese, "The Departed"
Movie Screenplay: Peter Morgan, "The Queen"
Foreign Language Film: "Letters From Iwo Jima," USA/Japan
Original Score: Alexandre Desplat, "The Painted Veil"
Original Song: "The Song of the Heart" - Prince - from "Happy Feet"
Animated Film: "Cars"
Series, Drama: "Grey's Anatomy," ABC
Actress, Drama: Kyra Sedgwick, "The Closer"
Actor, Drama: Hugh Laurie, "House"
Series, Musical or Comedy: "Ugly Betty," ABC
Actress, Musical or Comedy: America Ferrera, "Ugly Betty"
Actor, Musical or Comedy: Alec Baldwin, "30 Rock"
Miniseries or movie: "Elizabeth I," HBO
Actress, Miniseries or Movie: Helen Mirren, "Elizabeth I"
Actor, Miniseries or Movie: Bill Nighy, "Gideon's Daughter"
Supporting Actress, Series, Miniseries or Movie: Emily Blunt, "Gideon's Daughter"
Supporting Actor, Series, Miniseries or Movie: Jeremy Irons, "Elizabeth I"
Cecil B. DeMille Award: Warren Beatty
-- Associated Press
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Monday, January 15, 2007

Being a Producer in Hollywood Isn't So Easy Anymore

In 2006 the Producers Guild of America established standards for qualifying to be listed as a 'producer.' Studios are still free to list anyone as a 'producer,' but to qualify as a producer for an Academy Award, only those approved by the PGA qualify. The Golden Globe Awards do not adhere to the PGA standards.

The PGA goes through an audit process to determine who actually did what on films. The basic qualification is that the producer must be hands-on with the film from beginning to end. This includes from development (including buying the rights to the script) through post production. (New York Post)
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Wednesday, January 10, 2007

AAEA Prez Being Considered for James Cameron Film

Update: McDonald took himself out of consideration after Cameron's nutty claims about finding the remains of Jesus Christ.

AAEA President Norris McDonald, center, is being considered for a major role in a new film by Hollywood super-director James Cameron, right. The director's new $200 million action adventure sci-fi film will star Sam Worthington and Zoe Saldana, left. Ms. Saldana was Ashton Kutcher's love interest in the movie "Guess Who," which also starred Bernie Mac. McDonald came to Cameron's attention after a 2006 AAEA press conference in Malibu.

The movie is tentatively being called "Avatar" and takes place on a planet orbiting Alpha Centauri, the star in another galaxy that is closest to Earth (about 4.3 light years). Of course, there are problems with the indigenous beings. McDonald is being targeted to play a tech and weapons wizard, interplanetary environmentalist and planetary management specialist. The movie is scheduled for release in the summer of 2009.

Plot: A super conductor metal, unobainium has a price that is high enough to warrant sending missions to the remote star system. Antibodies are also found there that cure human diseases. Of course, Earth is extremely polluted and McDonald is a leading environmentalist trying to save the planet. Unobainium could make electricity from nuclear power plants more efficient. McDonald is fascinated and agrees to join the mission. Of course there is a genetic fuse between a human and the indiginous “primitive” race. And of course, the planet is one organism, Gaia-style (James Lovelock would love that). There is plenty of shooting, some alien love, and....we will not spoil it.
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James Brown Funeral Pictures

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Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Tiffany 'New York' Pollard Gets Her Own Flavor Flav Show

New York, as Tiffany Pollard, left, is called on the much criticized but much watched VH1 TV show "Flavor of Love," now has her own show debuting in 2007, "I Love New York." Like Flav, except involving men, she will get to pick one out of 20 as her soul mate. Flav's romances haven't worked out too well.

She can't swim, she got a spit rocket from a fellow contestant and her mother is a real character. But people seem to love to hate New York. The question is whether she will be loved like Flav. Regardless of how crazy things got around Flav, his humanity would always shine through. We did not see that in New York. We hope we will in her new show. Good luck Tiff.
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Russ Mitchell Is Replacing Rene Syler on The Early Show

A couple of months after it was announced that Rene Syler would be leaving The Early Show, it was announced that Russ Mithchell would be joing the show. Technically, Rene was a victim of low ratings but the word put out on the street was that there were too many anchors on the show. There are four including Julie Chen, who broadcasts from Los Angeles and is married to management.

Russ Mitchell was the original co-anchor of The Saturday Early Show. Now he will be a news anchor of the weekday show.

Hmmm. Star Jones is booted from "The View" because of ratings and is replaced by a parade of black women as cohosts and now Rene Syler is nailed because of ratings and is replaced by a black man. Wouldn't you just love to be in the management meetings where these decisions are made?
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Ed Begley, Jr Has a New Reality Show on HGTV

Ed Begley, Jr, left, is the real deal on environmental issues. He takes the environment very seriously. Now he has a new show called "Living With Ed" that captures him at home with his wife in a "Green Acres" type of setting. His wife, Rachelle Carson, is more Amercan consumerist in the descriptions of the show. We guess that makes her name a bit ironic since many environmentalists credit Rachel Carson with jump starting the professional environmental movement with her book, "Silent Spring."

The show is broadcast on Sundays at 10 Eastern time. Good luck Ed. Our president met you at the new mayor's inauguration and he informed us that you are a regular guy.
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Arch Campbell Moves From NBC to ABC in DC

Legendary movie critic Arch Campbell was axed after decades at NBC because of budget cutbacks by NBC Universal. Although NBC-4 is number one in the DC market, they are cutting away at long time celebrity journalists, reporters and newscasters.

ABC-7 in DC seems to recruit the best from other stations. They recruited Maureen Bunyan and Gordon Peterson after they left CBS-9. The Washington Metropolitan Area loves Arch Campbell. He is a nice guy and it comes through on the camera. Good luck Arch. We can tell you really love what you do.
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Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Beauty & the Geek Has Interesting Racial Component

Ashton Kutcher's Beauty & the Geek seems to have a rule that blacks are placed with Middle Easterners. A black woman was placed with a Middle Eastern man in the 1st installment and again in the second installment. Kutcher knows black and white culture so the producers must be playing to what they think people in Kansas will accept.

The women are supposed to be dumb and beautiful and the men are supposed to be smart, geeky and not so good looking. The black woman in the 2nd installment was really (how shall we put it?) not so bright. WOW. There is a certain sexual tension between the geeks and the beauties so we can see how the interracial sexual tension could make racists and mild racialists uncomfortable. These people should know, however, that there is much more interracial sex going on than is generallly publicized. And white men proved their lust for black female flesh from slavery on - - just look at all the light-skinned black people.
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Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Courtney Cox, left, plays tabloid editor Lucy Spiller who reminds you of J.R. Ewing. This FX drama is no "Entourage." It really gets down and 'dirty.' Maybe that is why the magazine is called Dirt and why the show is called "Dirt." The environment in Hollywood has a sleazy side and it is portrayed very well in this cable show.

Cox has definitely left "Friends" behind. This show is about sleaze and will leave you feeling dirty. And not Amish farmer dirty. These folks have no souls and will sell the lack thereof for fame. It is Hollywood. Would you sell your soul to the Devil for fame? The schizophrenic photographer is a real trip. Rick Fox (Vanessa Williams Ex) plays a family man by day and a real sleaze by night.
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Monday, January 01, 2007

Cool: The Ultimate Weapon of the Black Man

Donna Britt nailed 'Cool' in The Washington Post series "Being A Black Man" in her essay, "The Hard Core of Cool." We share some excerpts: Confidence is cool's most essential element. There's cool (Frank Sinatra, Joe Namath Johnny Depp)--black men remain cool's most imitated--there's cool and then there's brothercool. Know what else is vital to cool? Authenticity. A whiff of falseness or visible exertion chases it away. Cool is grace made masculine, the seamless melding of emotional authority with physical poise.

No other group's identity is as steeped in the necessity of appearing cool, or in the expectation that they instinctively bring coolness to the table. That expectation is fueled by black men's outsize influence on music, language and culture, and by white artists--Elvis, Eminem, Justin Timberlake--who mimic them. Everytime buddies anywhere share a knuckle-clasping handshake or slap their palms in agreement, they're demonstrating brothercool assimilation.

We think cool emanates from a man's innermost soul, but it has strong physical and sensual components. Yet it's never just about the physical. It's about control--over something, whether its the basketball court, a musical instrument or just your wardrobe. Cool is so individual that one man's cool won't work for othe men in other times.

Cool is learned. Cool is being at the cutting edge, whether it's politically, musically or artistically." Slavery, Jim Crow and ongoing institutional racism in American society did not allow them to be men in the traditional sense. Style became where black men could express their masculinity. Sometimes cool is all that we have. Once cool wasn't about violence, it was about being dapper. Cool is coolest when it's a facet of --not the purpose of--a man's existence. Muhammad Ali was a global icon who understood black men's struggle but whose rage never doused his joy.
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