Sunday, August 30, 2009

Quick Hit: Anna Paquin Naked!

The ESC is obsessed with True Blood. (Yeah, we know, us and about five million other people.) Lilith was the first one to get into it, and awhile back she basically insisted that I start watching it too, so now we're both hooked.

The show stars Anna Paquin as Sookie Stackhouse, a telepathic waitress who gets herself involved with vampires, killers, vampire killers, shapeshifters...it's complicated. There's a lot of sex and violence on the show, which is part of the reason why we love it and the One Million Moms would hate it. Paquin is on the cover of the September issue of Nylon magazine, and one of the questions in the interview is about all of the nude scenes that she's had to do on the show:

Anna Paquin, on her Nude Scenes:
“I don’t think a naked body is particularly shocking or interesting… It’s not the culture I was raised in. I was not brought up in the United States. I don’t share the [attitude] that you can have graphic violence, but – God forbid – you see someone’s nipples.”
We've written a bunch of times before about the sex/violence disconnect - that is, the fact that conservative groups like the One Millions Moms and Morality in Media consistently freak the fuck out about any sexual content in the media while largely ignoring all of the violent content that's out there. So it's nice to see an actor call it out and point out that nudity shouldn't be particularly shocking or scandalous.

Also, I realized that this is the third time this month that I've written about a celebrity being naked for one reason or another, so...um, any requests for September?

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Another Naked Picture Scandal!?

So we're sure you know about all the fuss over the leaked naked photos of Vanessa Hudgens. Now everyone is talking about the newest naked picture scandal over yet another High School Musical star, Corbin Bleu... only... wait... they're not.

Here's the picture:


OMG it's Chad Danforth naked!!!!!!!!!!! What will all of the kids at East High think when they see this?

Okay, so this is a promo shot for the Corbin's new show The Beautiful Life, which is about a group of models. And I think that I should have waited until the end to add the picture, because now naked Corbin Bleu is staring at me as I write this and it's a little awkward.

Anyway. On the one hand, this is obviously different from the Vanessa Hudgens "scandal" because Corbin Bleu posed for his naked picture in the context of a role and knowing that it would go public. He did it on purpose. On the other hand, he did it on purpose. He chose to put a naked picture out there, and as far as we know, Vanessa Hudgens never made that choice. But the reactions to the two situations are really different.

For example, here are a few comments from Pink is the New Blog readers about the Vanessa Hudgens picture leak:
She is an attention-whore. If you are famous and take nude pictures they are going to leak. There is no exception to this rule. AND she has already dealt with this. This girl is a major dumbass and doesn’t deserve her career. Seriously, Disney needs to pull the plug on her already.

dirty hoe.

What a little whore. I mean seriously….

She was underage, but I dont feel bad for her. What an idiot. And uh kind of slutty and desperate.

She is fucking dumb. She needs to get slapped.

goddd, prosti-tots are idiots..
And here are some comments from Pink is the New Blog readers on Corbin's picture:
I’ve been thinking Corbin Bleu was hot for a good while now. I definitely appreciate the picture.

Wow, Corbin. Can I say yum? I might just watch this show for him.

Go Corbin woot woot

I’ve wanted him to shed his cookie cutter, bubblegum image for a while now - excited for this drug-filled, twisted show!

I def thought Corbin Bleu had potential in HSM. Clearly he has fulfilled it, haha.
So if you're playing a character who publicly gets naked in front of a camera it's perfectly okay, but if you privately get naked in front of a camera in your real life you're a dirty tramp? If getting naked is a career choice, more power to you, but if it's part of your sex life that gets leaked without your consent, you're an idiot who doesn't "deserve" a career at all. Got it.

Is anyone worried about what impressionable young High School Musical fans will think when they see this picture? It certainly doesn't seem like it, even though I'm sure some of the Disney crowd will be tuning in to The CW to see Corbin's new show. I guess we're only supposed to worry about that with Vanessa Hudgens' pictures, because after all, young girls might want to imitate her! And we can't pass up an opportunity to police the sexuality of young women by making a slut-shamed example out of Vanessa. I have to wonder what people would say if it was Vanessa or one of the other female stars of HSM who had joined the cast of The Beautiful Life and participated in this photo shoot.

To be clear, I'm not saying that Corbin did anything wrong by posing for this picture. He's an adult and he's got a new show to promote, and the picture itself is not really a big deal. And he can't stay in the HSM universe forever. I am saying that Vanessa Hudgens didn't do anything wrong either, and the double standard at work here is stupid.

Friday, August 28, 2009

I have an urge to purge...

Well, fuck me gently with a chainsaw... they're doing it again. They're trying to turn a hit 80's movie into a TV show. Or rather, trying to exploit the "brand" name of a hit movie by watering it down. Just a few days ago we wrote about the St. Elmo's Fire "remake" and how we thought it was a pretty dumb idea. But now they've gone too far!

Heathers was one of my most favorite 80's films ever. I love it so much, in fact, that we purposely didn't include it in our recent 80's remake fantasy casting because I could never imagine anyone filling the shoes of Winona Ryder, Christian Slater, et al. There have been rumors of a Heathers sequel forever - mainly because Winona Ryder brings it up every few years - but director Michael Lehmann swears that it's never gonna happen. So imagine the shock and dismay (and I'll admit, curiosity) when we read that 1988 theatrical failure turned cult-hit Heathers would also be taken to the small screen. What's your damage, Fox!?

The other day, we had the misfortune of accidentally watching another great-movie-turned-terrible-TV-show, 10 Things I Hate About You. What a piece of garbage that show is. I'm sure that Heath Ledger is turning over in his grave every time it airs. (Well, what else do we expect from the network that brought us The Secret Life of the American Teenager?) The story has been completely watered-down and the characters are mere caricatures of the originals.

We think it's safe to assume that this will be the same fate for any Heathers-reimagining. It's got to be somewhat of a tough-sell (even for Fox) to bring the dark humor tale of teenage murder-disguised-as-suicide storyline to network TV. Might be pretty risky trying to preserve the true essence of the movie and the plot is sure to be a logistical nightmare. Can they really drag the murders out farther than a few episodes, let alone a few seasons, without totally altering the heart of the story?

If they eliminate the murders altogether and just turn it into another "high school can be a mega-bitch" series, then what's left to differentiate it from Gossip Girl, the new 90210, or pretty much anything else on the CW? Why even bother calling it Heathers in that case? Just call it Mean Girls: The Series.

But who knows... maybe it will work. Taking a famous movie and turning it into a TV show can be a big risk, but sometimes the bigger the risk, the bigger the reward. One huge risk that did pay off was Buffy The Vampire Slayer. Based on a cheesy B-movie about an airhead cheerleader turned "chosen one", that series may have been one of the biggest risks in TV history. (The original film starred Kristy Swanson and Luke Perry for chrissakes!). It ended up being a risk worth taking. Buffy, which aired for seven years, earned creator Joss Whedon Emmy nominations, a spin-off (Angel) and a cult following. And this was before the vampire genre blew up with the likes of True Blood and Twilight, etc.

There was a very different fate for the short-lived and long-forgotten Ferris Bueller series, based on the movie starring Matthew Broderick. The film was a huge hit and is still popular today, but the show tanked. The TV show Clueless - which actually featured many of the original cast members from the movie version, minus star Alicia Silverstone - was also canceled early on.

So maybe Heathers will be successful as a TV show... maybe it will be true to the original film... but it's pretty unlikely that it will be both.

St. Elmo's Fire

We just wrote about remaking our favorite 80s movies... but this is just too much. Apparently St. Elmo's Fire is being remade - nay, "re-envisioned" - as a TV show. No really.

Joel Schumacher, who co-wrote and directed the original film, is teaming up with Dan Bucatinsky, Jamie Tarses, and Topher Grace to bring this "new" show to ABC. Luckily they're not trying to completely recreate the movie (because that would totally not work). Rather they're just using the film as inspiration to recreate "the feeling of bonding with your friends who become your surrogate family."

Instead of the original seven characters, there will be six recent grads - three girls and three guys - sort of like a post-grad Friends. Bucatinksy, said "I feel it is time to re-create Friends in the hour-long genre and feel like this is the perfect opportunity". (Also, Tarses developed Friends as an NBC exec).
Of course, there already are a few shows out there that have tried to mimic the Friends-phenomenon with quirky ensemble casts of buddies... like How I Met Your Mother, the geeky The Big Bang Theory or the CW's new Melrose Place remake. (Not to mention the fact that there was already a sitcom about recent graduates this year called Roommates. It lasted a whole two months before it was cancelled.)

Of course, this begs the question: if it's not going to be like the original St. Elmo's Fire, then why even call it "St. Elmo's Fire"? Maybe because they're just trying to capitalize off of an already-established favorite (by copying another already-established favorite) instead of trying to come up with an original idea for a change? Yeah, that's probably it.

But how successful is it really going to be if the people who didn't like the movie are put off by the concept and end up not giving the show a try, the people who loved the movie are put off by the watered-down and half-assed attempt at a "reframing", and the people who don't remember or don't care about the movie will assume that the show isn't for them?

Even if you put all of that aside, the biggest problem is that the best part of St. Elmo's Fire wasn't really the storyline, but the cast... and it will definitely be hard to recreate that kind of chemistry again without a group like the Brat Pack. So why even bother?

Thursday, August 27, 2009

80s Remake Fantasy Casting

We've been watching a lot of 80's movies lately. Not sure why... Maybe the TV networks are just feeling a bit nostalgic for fun music and bad fashion, who knows? Either way, we've been enjoying it, but it's also given us a lot to think about. So many classic movies from our childhood have been - or are about to be - remade. It definitely brings up mixed feelings.

On the one hand, we love these movies... who wouldn't want to relive them? On the other hand, there really only a small chance that anyone will possibly be able to do these films justice. Yes, we realize that a lot of these films actually totally sucked, but they sucked in a good way. It's very hard to reproduced the correct ratio of cheesy-to-awesome. There have been a lot of remake rumors over the years. Some totally great (like Tron: Legacy) and some totally terrifying (like an Adventures in Babysitting remake starring Raven-Symone). Some of the choices are just puzzling... like reinventing Fame as a squeaky clean teen flick or casting Chace Crawford in the new Footloose. Sure he's pretty, but can he dance?

We admit we were a little disappointed when we heard the news that Zac Efron was taking a pass on the Footloose remake. He seemed perfect to fill Kevin Bacon's shoes. But then the other day we were watching TV and realized that there is a much better 80's remake idea for him: Teen Wolf! No, really.

Unlike some classic 80's flicks like Weird Science or Red Dawn that just would not translate to our 21st century world, Teen Wolf is a story so timeless it could take place in any decade. Plus we know how much people love to cast Zac Efron as a high school basketball star. (And really, if there was ever anything more implausible than Zac Efron as a basketball star, it was Michael J. Fox as one).

They even almost look alike:


Actually, after writing this, we googled "Zac Efron Teen Wolf" on a whim and realized that we're not so far off - there is a remake in the works and he is being considered. (We are always right on top of this shit). He probably won't take the part, but we're keeping our fingers crossed. We'd also throw James Lafferty from One Tree Hill into the cast too - he's cute and he has years of experience playing a high school basketball star and dealing with totally implausible plotlines.

There are other 80's movies we'd secretly love to see remade (but of course we'd claim to be totally offended if anyone actually attempted to redo them)... like Little Darlings. We all know that Miley Cyrus is going to want to take some more serious movie roles after Hannah Montana... what could be better than losing her virginity at summer camp? America's favorite robot Kristen Stewart can co-star, because after Twilight she deserves a movie with some actual sex in it. It's at least got to be a better movie than Rhinestone 2: Still Rhiney.

And while I really hope that the rumors of Miley starring in a Girls Just Wanna Have Fun remake are totally, utterly false... I would love to see that movie remade. Screw Miley - if they're going to insist on going Disney, I'd rather see BFFs Selena Gomez and Demi Lovato co-star. How cute would that be!? Or maybe Gossip Girl besties Blake Lively and Leighton Meester.


 


Speaking of Blake Lively, did you know that her older sister Robyn was the star of Teen Witch? Which means that Blake would have to appear in any remake - such as the one rumored to be starring Disney darling Ashley Tisdale. It's the law.

And since it's a little known fact that we will watch almost anything starring Amanda Bynes (can't exactly explain why we love her, but we just do)... who else would we cast in a fantasy production of Sixteen Candles? She was already adorable in She's the Man (which, although not technically a remake, had pretty much the same premise as Just One of the Guys). In fact, she could re-team with co-star Channing Tatum as Jake Ryan. Not too many of today's current "hotties" are actually hot enough to pull off that kind of role and luckily there wouldn't be too many lines to confuse him. But they would have to add in an extra scene or two where Chan takes his shirt off. Please...



There are other 80's flicks that Hollywood is already attempting to remake. We're not quite sure if our reaction is horror, morbid curiosity, or breathless anticipation. Probably a combination. Some of these include Ferris Bueller's Day Off (the proposed script is actually for a sequel, with Matthew Broderick reprising his role as Ferris 20 years later) and Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure (without George Carlin can it possibly be any good?)


There's one classic that we hope never gets made: The Breakfast Club. There's just no way they could ever do the original justice. But the more we thought about it, the more we wondered which of today's young stars would fill the shoes of the infamous brain, athlete, basket case, princess and criminal... and we came up with some hilarious ideas.




  • They could do an all Gossip Girl recast: Penn Badgley, Chace Crawford, Taylor Momsen, Leighton Meester, and Ed Westwick (respectively)
  • Or One Tree Hill: Bethany Joy Galeotti, James Lafferty, Hilarie Burton, Sophia Bush and Chad Michael Murray
  • Or a 90210 version: Michael Steger, Dustin Milligan, Jessica Stroup, Shenae Grimes, and Matt Lanter.
  • How about the Secret Life (you know we love any excuse to mention this show): Ken Baumannn, Greg Finley, India Eisley, Megan Park and Daren Kagasoff.
  • Or even a High School Musical one: Lucas Grabeel, Zac Efron, Vanessa Hudgens, Ashley Tisdale, and Corbin Bleu.
On second thought... no. Let's just forget about that one. What are some of your favorite 80's flicks you'd like to see remade... and your fantasy casts?

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Hot New Power Couple Alert!

Of course I'm talking about the summer's latest, most beautiful and inspiring love story...Kathy Griffin and Levi Johnston. Yes, Bristol's babydaddy and the queen of the D-List. It's a match made in...well, in the hilariously twisted mind of Kathy Griffin, obviously.

Here are the lovebirds at the Teen Choice Awards.


Teen Choice Awards 2009 - Arrivals Teen Choice Awards 2009 - Arrivals

And here's Kathy interview Levi on Larry King Live:



I think we just may be looking at the next Brangelina here, folks.

Kathy's been joking for awhile about wanting to get the rumor going that she was having a secret affair with Levi so that she could get some publicity out of it. And she actually pulled it off. (Well, the publicity part at least, which we know is all she really cares about anyway.) We love and respect her shamelessness. And if Levi continues to do his part to keep Sarah Palin as far away from the White House as possible by pulling stunts like this, he'll cement his reputation as a true American patriot.

Also, I totally think that Levi should move in with Kathy for the next season of My Life On The D-List. You know you'd watch.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Give Vanessa Hudgens A Break

This week we've all been treated to Round 2 of the Vanessa Hudgens nude pictures scandal. And this time it's extra shocking and scandalous because...oh wait, actually it's just a stupid rehash of the previous immature freakout over leaked pictures that were meant to be private. Exciting!

Let's break down all of the nonsense that people have been saying about this since the "story" broke yesterday. (I'm not linking to any sites that have the pictures up. Try the usual gossipy suspects if you really must see them.)


1. Vanessa Hudgens is so stupid to let this happen again! Didn't she learn her lesson about naked pictures the first time?

This might be a valid point to raise if the pictures were actually new, but they're not. In fact, they're apparently a little bit older than the pictures that leaked last time and may have been taken when she was underage.
The pics have been pitched to various sites, including TMZ -- we turned them down. Several websites have published the photos, taken by Vanessa herself in her home. Vanessa's lawyer says the pics were taken when she was underage. As such, publication could be a federal crime...The lawyer has sent cease and desist letters to various websites that have published the photos, asserting the publication is both a crime and a violation her right of privacy. [TMZ]
If the pictures are years old and are being leaked by someone that she sent them to back then, there's nothing she can really do to prevent them from coming out now. It's not a matter of a lesson that she didn't learn, but rather it's unfortunately about a mistake that she can't unmake. And of course, we never hear "this loser ex-boyfriend/ex-friend/whoever is responsible is such a spiteful douchebag! Will they ever learn their lesson?"


2. She has a new movie coming out so she probably leaked the photos herself as a publicity stunt!

Considering that the movie she has coming out, Bandslam, is a PG-rated summer movie about high school kids in a band competition and not some kind of edgy 'playing against type' role for her, I kinda doubt that she'd go for a manufactured naked photo scandal to promote this one. If some goofy rumor had come out this week about her and Zac Efron getting engaged, breaking up, starring in a Dirty Dancing remake together, or whatever, it would be a lot easier to claim that as a free publicity grab for Bandslam. But naked pictures? I'm not buying it.

Also, if we're going to entertain the "she did it for the publicity!" claims, shouldn't we at least consider the opposite argument? Maybe the person who leaked the photos did want publicity for Vanessa...the negative, embarrassing kind. (Hey, maybe it was Ashley Tisdale and she did it because she wants Sharpay to end up with Troy if they ever make a fourth High School Musical movie! ...yeah, I'm kidding and I'm embarrassed that I was able to type that sentence without having to look up any HSM character names or plotlines.) If the person who has the photos is a pissed off ex-boyfriend or someone else with an agenda, it's possible, and the timing of the leaks would still make sense. But hey, why bother to even consider who might really be to blame when we've got a celebrity to gleefully tear down, right?


3. Disney should fire her for this!

That would be tricky considering that she's not working for Disney anymore. But what exactly would they be firing her for anyway? For having her privacy invaded? For making a bad decision about her private life when she was a teenager? For having a sex life at all? Stop me when I get close.

For the record, when the first "scandal" broke and Vanessa was between High School Musical movies, some people thought she would be dropped by Disney. But she issued an apology to her fans, saying that she was embarrassed and regretted taking the photos, and Disney put out a statement saying, "Vanessa has apologized for what was obviously a lapse in judgment...We hope she’s learned a valuable lesson."

And again, these were private photos, so I think her apology at the time was more than enough. It's not like she promised to be a squeaky clean Disney star and then turned around and immediately posed for Playboy or something. In an interview with GQ awhile back, Megan Fox was asked about the situation and I think her response is pretty awesome:

“With any of the Miley Cyrus shit, or any of that Vanessa Hudgens shit—I would never issue an apology for my life and for who I am. It’s like, Oh, I’m sorry I took a naked, private picture that someone is an asshole and sold for money. I’m sorry if someone else is a dick. No. You shouldn’t have to apologize. Someone betrayed Vanessa, but no one’s angry at that person. She had to apologize. I hate Disney for making her do that. Fuck Disney.”

Not much I can add to that.


4. What about the bad message that this sends to her fans?

Obviously nobody wants Vanessa's really young fans to get the idea that they should all start doing nude photo shoots in their bedrooms and emailing the results to their 12 year old boyfriends, but I really really doubt that that's going to start happening. I'm a lot more concerned about the negative messages that the reaction to this "scandal" will send to a lot of young women. Your body is something to be ashamed of. It's wrong to express your sexuality. Even if you're legally old enough to consent to sex. Even if you're in private. Even in the context of a relationship. Even if you choose to do it because you want to. (Especially then.) Good girls don't. Also, it's okay for us to judge each other and call each other sluts and whores, especially if we can do it anonymously on the internet.



5. She's a total slut/whore/tramp/skank/etc. because of these pictures!

No, she isn't. If you actually think this, you just might be a judgmental moron. And probably a hypocrite too.

She didn't do anything wrong. Maybe she used bad judgment in keeping these pictures or sending them to someone who ended up not being trustworthy, but so what? She was young, she made a mistake, and she learned from it in the most public and humiliating way possible. But there's nothing bad or wrong or dirty or slutty about taking naked pictures, just like there's nothing bad or wrong or dirty or slutty about being a sexually active young woman, as long as you're safe and comfortable and doing it because you want to. So let's stop the slut-shaming already and leave Vanessa alone!


Sunday, August 2, 2009

Bring Back The Hat

A while ago we said that our love of reality TV (and Vh1 celebreality in particular) had returned and that we were going to go back to writing about it all the time, and then...we just didn't. There are some decent shows (and by "decent" we mean "horrible" and by "shows" we mean "trainwrecks"), but it's just not the same. We never thought we'd ever say this, but we actually kinda sorta miss The Pick Up Artist. Yeah, we know. But it's still the only show that ever inspired us to do weekly instant message commentary.
Maybe it was the fuzzy hat. Or the goofy medallion things that the guys earned at the end of each episode. Or the cheesy nicknames. Or the out of control "peacocking". Or the very fact that they used terms like "peacocking" and "kino". Or the generic pick up lines that all the guys had to use over and over again as if none of the women they were talking to would ever catch on. Or our deep deep hatred of Pradeep.

I think it was the hat.

Okay, so honestly, maybe it's also the fact that we didn't feel quite as dirty watching that show as we do watching some of the other celebreality trainwrecks. Sure, a lot of it was completely over the top and ridiculous and sometimes offensive, but most of the guys who went on the show seemed like they were decent guys who were just a little (or a lot) socially awkward and needed the whole "pick up artist" thing to help them figure out that talking to girls is actually not that terrifying.

But maybe we should be careful what we wish for. If our last field report is any indication, the popularity of the whole pick up artist thing - from the show to books like The Game to various pick up artist websites - has convinced a whole lot of guys out there that they're just a fuzzy hat away from being Mystery themselves. Of course, they all sort of have to be in denial about it, so if you call them on using textbook pickup lines or "Mystery method" techniques, they'll either pretend to have no idea what you're talking about, or say that they vaguely remember watching that show with the guy in the fuzzy hat because "it was pretty funny". We give them points for effort, at least.

Speaking of The Game, I will admit that I actually have read it. Yes, the entire book. I found it fascinating in a sociological 'window into a mysterious subculture' sort of way. And apparently the author, Neil Strauss, who claimed that he was totally done with the pick up artist community after The Game, just finished writing a new book all about...the pick up artist community, called Rules of the Game. So who knows, maybe he'll make that into a reality show and then we'll have something to text about again.