#ThanksDave: Jennifer Lawrence, Seth Rogen and more send off Letterman

21 May 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

‘Our long national nightmare is over’: Letterman signs off after 33-year run.

Some of Letterman’s most famous pals joined him during his “Late Show” farewell on Wednesday evening to read the final Top 10 list. NEW YORK – David Letterman ended his 33-year career as a late-night television host Wednesday, ushered into retirement by four presidents who declared “our long national nightmare is over” and saying there was nothing he could ever do to repay his audience.For a man who has so much influence that he could call on presidents to speak at his retirement party, David Letterman’s final “The Late Show” last night emphasized the exact opposite characteristic of the man: his humility. The topic was “Top Ten Things I’ve Always Wanted To Say To Dave.” “I think this is a pretty good list, considering it’s our last list,” Letterman introducing those who were for dropping by the Ed Sullivan Theater one last time. Letterman’s self-deprecating approachability underscored the last hour of “The Late Show With David Letterman,” a series finale that was a nostalgia tour for both the comedian himself and his audience of fans, a collection of clips, references, and stories that together attempted to offer a glimpse at 33 years behind the desk.

Bush, and President Obama made that line personal, kicking off Wednesday’s Late Show finale with a little executive privilege. (Jimmy Carter is known to be sick, which might explain his absence.) David Letterman tried to get in on the joke at the end; Obama didn’t let him. As the tuxedoed Foo Fighters performed “Everlong”- a song they first played on the “Late Show” when Letterman returned after heart surgery in 2000 – a long montage of photographs from three decades of television history zipped past on the screen.

In a season that has been crammed full of late-night exits and entrances, as Jon Stewart, Stephen Colbert, James Corden, and Larry Wilmore have found themselves on the brink of something new, Letterman’s stands out for being an expression of the man himself, an extension of his laid-back, idiosyncratic, deeply sincere style. Letterman presided over 6,028 broadcasts on CBS and NBC, the transplanted Hoosier making Top 10 lists and ironic humour staples of television comedy and an influence to a generation of performers. True to his self-deprecating style, he said Stephen Hawking estimated that tenure delivered “about eight minutes of laughter.” The taped intro of President Barack Obama and former Presidents George Bush, Bill Clinton and George W.

There is a presence to Letterman that communicates as authentic, and whether or not that’s truly authentic or just well-manufactured, he’s managed to convey that attitude for his 33 years helming this show. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) vowed to talk from his Senate desk “so long as my legs can stand,” in a symbolic filibuster of reauthorizing the USA Patriot Act and its NSA eavesdropping provisions. Rather than editing it down, CBS decided to let it run in its entirety, so hopefully you didn’t get burned by the tragedy of “PVR cutoff.” (On my cable system, there was a blip and a moment of sheer panic when another show started playing at the usual end time for The Late Show.

Celebrities used to being fawned over either clicked with his prickly personality or didn’t, and when Cher called him a more profane version of “jerk,” it became a memorable moment. In the past few weeks, more and more writers have shared stories of Letterman’s personal influence on their lives, and so many of them come down to a story of rhythm and routine: “What Are My Dad and I Going to Do Without David Letterman?” asks Scacchi Koul at Jezebel; “David Letterman Raised Me,” says Jessica Winter at Slate.

At the same time, “perhaps in an effort to avoid antagonizing his Senate colleagues, Paul carefully timed his protest for Wednesday, when it would fill a lull in proceedings and not delay important votes on the NSA program or the trade bill.” Peter Weber “I want to tell you one thing,” David Letterman told the audience at the beginning of his final Late Show monologue. “I’ll be honest with you, it’s beginning to look like I’m not gonna get The Tonight Show.” For the next nine minutes, Letterman cracked jokes about his post-retirement plans, indulged in a touch of nostalgia, and listed some pretty impressive numbers from his late-night career. His audience welcomed him back after a heart bypass, listened as he became the first late-night host back on the air after the 2001 terrorist attacks and saw him acknowledge to inappropriately having sex with a subordinate. But with David Letterman, there’s also saying goodbye to the figure he was—they guy they invited into their home every night for nearly four decades.

Much of the show’s last episode was a reminder of the comfort of Dave, like his easy banter with kids about Santa Claus, upholstery factories, and his time in prison, or his surprising ability to make annoyed Taco Bell customers laugh, despite being the most annoying drive-thru cashier on the planet. —Peter Weber The U.S. military has been making surveillance flights over a series of manmade islands that China is creating on coral reefs in the South China Sea, and on Wednesday, CNN gave us a peek aboard one of the U.S. The best lines probably went to Rock – “I’m just glad your show is being given to another white guy” – and Louis-Dreyfus – “Thanks for letting me take part in another hugely disappointing series finale.” Of course, what made it especially funny was Seinfeld standing there, pretending his feelings were hurt. His last few weeks have been warmly nostalgic, with Letterman entertaining old friends like Tom Hanks, George Clooney, Julia Roberts and Oprah Winfrey. Anticipating the end, viewers sent Letterman to the top of the late-night ratings the week before last for the first time since Jimmy Fallon took over at “Tonight” and they competed with original telecasts.

It was also an episode that skipped some of the rawer parts of Letterman’s history: A systemic awkwardness with female guests that at once conveyed both Letterman’s inability to fake his way through anything and foreshadowed his admission, in 2009, that he had slept with female staffers on his show, and was, by his own admission, altogether “creepy”; last month he admitted to Dave Itzkoff of the New York Times that CBS probably should have fired him when an extortion attempt brought his philandering to light. Jim Sciutto, CNN’s chief national security correspondent, highlighted the international tensions created by the new military islands in contested waters, and by the U.S. military’s more aggressive surveillance of the islands. Letterman managed to turn the scandal into an opportunity for more of that startling openness; he addressed the matter in his monologue, in his characteristically loose manner that rarely, if ever, sounds rehearsed. (“When I screw up, and lord knows I’ll screw up, I’ll have to go on someone else’s show to apologize.”) The result is that he gets to go out on a high note.

Eight times during the flight he was on, China’s navy warned the P8 to leave the area, Sciutto said, even though, according to the P8 pilots, they were flying in international airspace. Chairman Leslie Moonves to his researchers and crew members. “He was guarded but you could tell it was really hard for him,” said John Bernstein, who flew in from Los Angeles to attend the final taping. “You could see his emotion.

The generational turnover is complete; 16 years separate him from his successor, Stephen Colbert, and those 16 years seem to carry with them the many intricate complexities of late-night in the digital era. Then came another commercial break, and a segment titled, “A Day in My Life.” It wasn’t really a comedy bit, but more of a tribute to, and air time for, many late-night staffers. It’s still an industry dominated by white guys who look approachable, but the format that Letterman radicalized is changing again, as Jimmy Fallon and Jimmy Kimmel make hay out of staged games with celebrities and then upload those clips on YouTube the next day.

How very Letterman, to be attached to a moody alt-rock radio hit; how very Letterman, to make something that was once edgy and make it as mainstream and as weirdly wholesome as apple pie. “If anything could ever be this good forever / if anything could ever be this good again,” go the lyrics. When Dave also introduced his son’s buddy, who was sitting beside him, it struck me what I really will miss about David Letterman, perhaps more than anything else. There are some nice insults aimed Letterman’s way, but a lot of the jokes were about the people making them — Jim Carrey, for example, and Julia Louis-Dreyfus, who also (hilariously) threw a little shade at Jerry Seinfeld, another of the presenters. —Peter Weber Her flavor — toasted coconut with sea salt — hit grocery store shelves earlier this month, and she told The Huffington Post that she’s certain it will become “habit forming.” It was a “long and interesting process” creating a cracker, and Stewart said she tried several different combinations before selecting coconut and sea salt.

We all like salt.” Stewart said she’s not really a snacker — when she does grab a bite to eat between meals, it’s fruit — but believes a well-stocked pantry must have a few different types of crackers. She wouldn’t serve her Triscuits alone, but would add crab meat and lime or avocado and hot pepper, and also suggests turning them into an elevated s’more by topping a cracker with melted milk chocolate and a marshmallow. Of course, you have to present them on a gleaming silver tray alongside Waterford goblets and perfectly folded linen napkins, but you already knew that. Catherine Garcia James Corden is last out of the gate with his homage to David Letterman (the man whose show comes right before The Late Late Show, until tomorrow), and it’s the oddest of the bunch.

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Finding the ‘Joy’ in Jennifer Lawrence

20 Jan 2016 | Author: | No comments yet »

‘Joy’ review: Jennifer Lawrence cleans up in enjoyable biopic.

Writer-director David O. Their latest collaboration — following in the footsteps of Silver Linings Playbook and American Hustle — is a biographical picture about the life and times of Joy Mangano.Jennifer Lawrence groans when she’s asked about singing the classic Nancy and Frank Sinatra duet Something Stupid with co-star Edgar Ramirez in her new film Joy. “David [O Russell, the movie’s director] texted me last night to ask if he could put it on the soundtrack and this is what I texted him back,” the actor says as she digs around for her mobile phone and reads out her response verbatim. “‘David, no!!!’ and it is three exclamation marks.In a very abbreviated nutshell, that actually happened to Joy Mangano, 59, the fabulously successful Long Island entrepreneur/inventor and HSN pitchwoman whose rags-to-riches journey started with the invention of a mop.

Russell has made three kinds of movies: offbeat romances (“Flirting With Disaster”), surreal comedies (“I Heart Huckabees”) and dramas about dysfunctional yet appealing families (“The Fighter”). In real life, Mangano is the Long Island housewife and inventor who became famous and eventually rich after bouts of near-bankruptcy, by creating and marketing her Miracle Mop. Out Boxing Day in Australia, the film stars Jennifer Lawrence in the fictionalised life story of Joy Mangano, a single mum from Long Island who made her fortune selling a mop. On Christmas Day, “Joy,” a movie inspired by her struggles as a divorced, single mother turned mogul by way of that mop, will open at movie theaters across America.

This was before she hooked up with the giant Home Shopping Network, becoming their most effective pitch person and eventually selling her parent company, Ingenious Designs, to HSN. Gross, I can’t listen to it; I have to go to bed.’ And I said yes, but it’s a groaning, reluctant yes.” It’s the kind of unfiltered moment you come to expect when interviewing Lawrence, who may now be one of the most famous actors on the planet but still blurts out whatever she’s thinking with such self-deprecating charm it’s impossible not to be, well, charmed.

Jennifer Lawrence’s performance as Miracle Mop inventor and QVC pitchwoman Joy Mangano glues the movie together, but it threatens to unravel at any time. Lawrence, 25, looks genuinely surprised when complimented about how unchanged she seems from our earlier interviews before the fame and Oscars. “But there would be no reason to change,” she says with a shrug. “I just have a job and I love my job. In the film, Lawrence’s Mangano is a colourful character, a single mom with a unique relationship and friendship with her ex-husband, and an enterprising woman who parlays her creativity into an incredibly successful business.

Mom (Virginia Madsen) stays in her bedroom and watches soap operas, until she falls for a Haitian plumber (Jimmy Jean-Louis) who fixes a hole in her bedroom floor. She landed minor roles on TV shows such as Monk, Cold Case and Medium before her 2010 indie film Winter’s Bone led to her becoming the second youngest best actress Oscar nominee in history. This is true even when the film tilts off its rocker with a bit of Russell-esque madness built into the screenplay, and with the director failing to always keep the energy going. That resulted in not only a string of critically acclaimed films, an Academy Award and another Oscar nomination, but also her very own mega-franchise as Katniss Everdeen in The Hunger Games.

Joy’s grandma (endearing Diane Ladd) delivers messages of empowerment and smooths over constant fights, but she’s opposed by the money-grubbing rich woman (Isabella Rossellini) who dates Joy’s dad and sends negative messages about her. Lawrence’s endearing habit of speaking her mind resulted in a controversial essay she penned on Lena Dunham’s website about her discovery during the Sony hacks that she was being paid less “than the lucky people with dicks” on her recent films, including American Hustle. “I completely understand when people say actors shouldn’t talk about politics and things they don’t know about, but this was my gender at stake and it was being threatened with unfairness and I thought, ‘What is the point of having this voice if it’s not to speak out for myself and for everyone else who can’t?’,” she says unapologetically.

Upon learning that Lawrence would be playing her mom, Miranne says, “I braced myself so I wouldn’t fall on the floor.” As for Mangano, she says Lawrence playing her “made me feel old, number one. Lawrence hangs out with a posse of celebrity girlfriends, including Amy Schumer and singer Adele, but the reason is simple. “The friendship gets expedited a lot when you meet someone you know beyond a shadow of a doubt has no agenda,” she says. Draining her savings and taking out loans, she started off small, selling her mops to local boat owners. “She persuaded QVC to take a thousand, but sales were poor and they tried to send them back,” says Mason. “She suggested letting her demonstrate it herself, and the channel agreed.” Sales skyrocketed and Mangano’s career as a QVC pitch woman was launched. That’s so amazing there aren’t even words.” Mangano and her three children didn’t view “Joy” until the Dec. 13 premiere in Manhattan, though a family outing to see “Trainwreck” included a trailer.

This is, after all, the self-confessed reality-show junkie who confessed in a recent Vogue interview that on the night of her 25th birthday party, friends surprised her with a visit from reality queen Kris Jenner, who presented her with a cake inscribed, ‘Happy Birthday, you piece of shit!’ The only time she seems tongue-tied is when asked about her relationship status, after a four-year stint with X-Men: First Class co-star Nicholas Hoult and a year with Coldplay singer Chris Martin before their breakup earlier this year. “Next!” Lawrence says in a no-nonsense voice, pausing as she decides if she’ll continue that thought. For one thing, Mangano’s childhood is not that interesting for a film, despite some flashbacks to her as a youngster (when she is played by 10-year-old Isabella Cramp, who does actually look like we imagine Lawrence could have at the same age). A satire on the acquisitiveness of the public? (Here, QVC foists unnecessary things on gullible viewers who could better save their money.) Russell doesn’t seem to know. And, of course, the grave ending would be a lie: Mangano is very much alive at the age of 59, still inventing, still pitching products, still a superstar of the American home shopping universe. There’s the Clothes It All luggage system, essentially a rolling suitcase with a removable garment bag, and the Super Chic vacuum, which releases fragrance into the air.

If I even casually say something to a reporter, that quote haunts me for the rest of my life,” she says, “so I am never, ever, ever talking about boys again!” I don’t think any of us brought enough tissues!” A good portion of the film was shot last winter in Boston, and though the always-busy Mangano was twice scheduled to visit the set, snowstorms made travel impossible. He has mixed genres successfully before, as in the anti-war comedy-drama “Three Kings,” but the blender often grinds to a halt in “Joy.” Just as we’re getting used to the realism of Mangano’s fight for respect, Russell photographs Rossellini as if she were a gargoyle.

One of her creations, the thin and velvet-covered Huggable Hanger, remains a bestseller for HSN, at more than 300 million sold, and was endorsed by Oprah Winfrey. Yet in “Silver Linings Playbook,” Cooper, De Niro and Russell all supported her with fine work; here they lay back and make the movie a one-ring circus where she has to be acrobat, bareback rider and clown.

He had a presence all of his own.” At one point, Miranne says, “Jennifer grabbed Joy’s hand and said to David, ‘Look at the nails, a French manicure.’ ” (That manicure is a Mangano signature.) Lawrence revealed that in studying for her part as Joy, she watched recordings of the inventor’s early pitches on HSN, including ones for “Huggable Hangers” and found her so compelling that she wanted to buy them on the spot. There is something special when creative people get together.” Mangano’s take on Lawrence? “She’s beyond her years, so brilliant, hysterical and so talented.

Critically, Russell’s sense of wonder and beauty turns elegiac moments — especially when Joy Mangano becomes fully realized as a woman and as a business executive — into scenes of great beauty. Lawrence recently said on “The Tonight Show With Jimmy Fallon” that the movie was “half Joy Mangano’s story and half [Russell’s] imagination and other powerful, strong women who inspired him.” The director mined much of his Mangano material by phone.

The cast includes Edgar Ramirez, Diane Ladd, Virginia Madsen, Isabella Rossellini, Susan Lucci (in a mock TV soap opera that gives Joy some of its silliness) and even Melissa Rivers as her late mother Joan Rivers. There’s no situation Joy cannot overcome or circumvent.” At a Newsday photo shoot at Mangano’s luxurious but serene 42,000-square-foot mansion on 11 acres in St. As for parting advice for the ambitious? “If this movie inspires even just one more person to believe in themselves and to go after their dreams, then it’s made a very special impact in this world.

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