The Widdershins

Archive for the ‘Entertainment’ Category

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The #MeToo movement blasted the door off Hollywood like a tsunami. The first villain to go down was Harvey Weinstein, the notoriously vicious and deranged producer who produced some extraordinary films. In his wake many others have fallen, some perhaps unfairly (Al Franken is still hotly debated on Twitter.) The last couple of weeks saw the fall of 2 big CBS figures: the president of the network Les Moonves and the 60 Minutes’ chief Jeff Fager.

After Ronan Farrow’s article in The New Yorker discussed allegations against Fager, CBS journalist Jericka Duncan, preparing a report on the story, contacted Fager for comment. Fager wrote back via text:

If you repeat these false accusations without any of your own reporting to back them up, you will be responsible for harming me. Be careful. There are people who lost their jobs trying to harm me and if you pass on these damaging claims without your own reporting to back them up that will become a serious problem.

Once head of CBS News learned of this message, Fager was fired.

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Former CBS president Les Moonves

The bigger fall at CBS, however, was its very president, Les Moonves. Moonves has been accused of not just harassment, but assault, forcing women to perform oral sex on him. And, of course, he ruined many careers. Moonves (who is married to CBS host Julie Chen) carried a vendetta against Janet Jackson because of the “wardrobe malfunction” at the Super Bowl, and ordered MTV and VH1, as well as Viacom owned radio stations, to stop playing Jackson’s music. The “disappearance” of Janet from much of the music scene over the past decade is now being largely attributed to this. Before Jackson, Moonves set his sights on Linda Bloodworth-Thomason, the creator of the hit show Designing Women. Bloodworth-Thomason wrote a searing article in The Hollywood Reporter describing her relationship with Moonves and how he ruined her career. One story is that high on the success of Designing Women, she wrote a pilot for a new series (actually she wrote many pilots, all of which Moonves rejected, including one with Bette Middler) and arranged a reading of the script with big names, including Ileana Douglas. At the reading, Moonves sat across from Bloodworth-Thomason and just stared at her:

Having been voted most popular in high school, I felt confident that I would be able to charm him. I was wrong. He sat and stared at me throughout the entire reading with eyes that were stunningly cold, as in, “You are so dead.” I had not experienced such a menacing look since Charles Manson tried to stare me down on a daily basis when I was a young reporter covering that trial. As soon as the pilot was completed, Moonves informed me that it would not be picked up. I was at the pinnacle of my career. I would not work again for seven years.

When Bloodworth-Thomason finally left CBS after Moonves rejected all of her writing, his last words to her were “Go fuck yourself.”

Remember too that Les Moonves said this about Donald Trump in 2016:

It may not be good for America, but it’s damn good for CBS… Man, who would have expected the ride we’re all having right now? … The money’s rolling in and this is fun… I’ve never seen anything like this, and this going to be a very good year for us. Sorry. It’s a terrible thing to say. But, bring it on, Donald. Keep going.

CBS Board of Directors – all men – tried their darnedest to save Les. Arnold Kopelson, who once upon a time won an Oscar for producing Platoon, said in a board meeting: “I don’t care if 30 more women come forward and allege this kind of stuff. Les is our leader and it wouldn’t change my opinion of him.” Another member fo the board, William Cohen (yes, Bill Clinton’s Defense Secretary in the 1990s) said: “We are going to stay in this meeting until midnight if we need to until we get an agreement that we stand 100 percent behind our CEO, and there will be no change in his status.” These are the type of men who protect other men’s perversions. They are why people like Moonves and Weinstein, and there are so many others, have thrived and will continue to thrive.

One other note on Arnold Kopelson: after Kathy Griffin’s debacle with the fake Trump head, Kopelson wrote Griffin a letter telling her how to get her career back. It’s one of the most shocking things I’ve read in a long time. He thinks he’s being helpful, but…

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Mr. Kopelson is no longer a member of the board of directors of CBS, incidentally.

Margaret Sullivan of Washington Post (and a former public editor of the NY Times, a position that paper got rid of) wrote a powerful column discussing the fact that the damage done by men like Moonves – and Mark Halperin and Charlie Rose – is incalculable. They have shaped our culture’s view of women for decades.

What if Mark Halperin, for instance, had not been a network commentator during the 2016 presidential campaign? (James Wolcott of Vanity Fair aptly described him as “a political kingmaker and narrative shaper” and “the most influential” of the men who were felled by sexual-misconduct allegations last year.)

What if Bill O’Reilly of Fox News hadn’t been the biggest cable TV star in the nation when a woman had a major-party presidential nomination for the first time?

[…]

A media figure doesn’t have to show up for a business meeting in an open bathrobe to do harm, though that strange practice has turned out to be something of a leitmotif.

He can help frame the coverage of a candidate’s supposedly disqualifying flaws. He can squelch a writer’s promising work. He can threaten an underling’s job if she doesn’t stay in line and remember who really runs the show around here.

All these little moments add up, though we’ll never know their full cost. Only that it’s very, very high.

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So I don’t know if you’ve heard, but Dump did crazy shit and now the media is making excuses for him. But –

Did you also know that Brad Pitt’s first name is actually Bill? Brad is his middle name.

Chuck Norris’ first name is Carlos.

Justin Bieber knows how to juggle.

Once upon a time Madonna worked at Dunkin Donuts, but was fired after squirting jelly at a customer.

Tom Hanks is a third cousin, four generations removed, of Abraham Lincoln.

Beyoncé has a species of horse fly named after her. Australian researchers named a

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Larry Fishburne

golden-bellied insect Scaptia beyonceae in 2012.

Elvis Presley was a natural blond.

Dr. Ruth is a trained sniper.

James Earl Jones stuttered when he was a child.

When he was 37, Jack Nicholson discovered that the woman who he thought was his sister (16 years his senior) was actually his mother. Puts “Chinatown” into some sort of perspective.

In 1933 Lucille Ball was asked to shave off her eye-brows for a film role (Marlena

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Dietrich shaved hers.) They never grew back.

Actor Larry Fishburne (later to rename himself Laurence Fishburne) was 14 years old when he was cast to be in “Apocalypse Now.” He lied about his age. By the time the film finished filming, he was 17 (the age his character is in the movie.)

Hitchcock’s Psycho (1960) was the first American film to show a flushing toilet.

The first series to show an abortion (illegal) on TV was the soap opera Another World in 1964.

Michael Myers’ mask in the movies “Halloween” is Captain Kirk’s face painted white.

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William Shatner’s face

This is an open thread!

Did You Know?

Posted on: May 3, 2018

This week my post will be non Dump related. Our comments will follow the latest news, but I thought I’d do something a little different to take our mind off the bananananity of our lives. It’s a “Did You Know?” of interesting facts you may not know about. So let’s dive in and maybe learn a thing or two (I didn’t know any of these things.)

Did you know that Leonardo da Vinci’s Mona Lisa is estimated to be worth about $780 814px-Leonardo_da_Vinci,_Salvator_Mundi,_c.1500,_oil_on_walnut,_45.4_×_65.6_cm.jpgmillion? (Seems cheap, no?) But since it’s not for sale and never will be it’s unclear how much someone would actually be willing to pay for it. I’m sure an auction would bring the price into the billions. The most expensive painting ever actually sold and bought is da Vinci’s Salvator Mundi, painted in around the year 1500 of our lord. It sold in 2017 for $450.3 million. The seller? Dmitry Robolovlev. Yes, the same guy who bought Trump’s worthless Florida house for tens of millions more than it was worth…

Did you know that the German chocolate cake is named after an English-American baker Sam German, not the country??

Did you know that the chainsaw was invented to aid in childbirth. Think about that for a minute. The instrument of horror in horror movies was invented in 1830 by a German (naturally) orthopedist Bernhard Heine. Heine made a prototype for cutting bone and by late 18th century two Scottish doctors revised the instrument to aid in symphysiotomy (widening of the pelvis to help the baby move out.)

Did you know that the last letter added to the English alphabet was the letter J and it is located next to the letter I because it looks almost the same?

Did you know that the Citicorp building in Manhattan, built in 1977 and designed by IMG_4597-copy-3-1024x768.jpgWilliam J. LeMessurier, was destined to be blown down by the wind if Diane Hartley, an enterprising architecture student, didn’t notice the flaw in its design? The building has an unusual structure – its 9 story columns stand in the center not the corners of the building to make room for a Church that was there first. It looks cool, right? Now think about winds: there are two types of winds – winds that blow at the corners and winds that blow directly at a wall, and all buildings take into account strong winds, so the building doesn’t collapse in a storm. LeMessurier accounted for the winds by installing a gigantic weight at the top that would swing in the opposite direction of the building in a storm and keep it balanced. After this Citicorp building was already opened and occupied, Mr. LeMessurier got a phone call from an assistant who had a phone call from a young architecture student (Diane Lee Hartley) writing a thesis on the building and she noticed that LeMessurier did not account for the winds that would blow at the corners of the building. Typically buildings are strongest at their corners, so it wouldn’t be an issue. But this was not an ordinary building. It had no support at the corners which would have made it vulnerable to strong winds blowing at the corners and there was a high chance (1 in 16) that the building would eventually collapse from a storm. And there was a

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Diane Lee Hartley in 2014

Hurricane Ella making its way towards the island! In the middle of the night, in secret to prevent panic, the architects worked to fix the mistake, and the NYPD and emergency services coordinated an evacuation plan within a 10 block radius in case the building collapsed. 2500 Red Cross volunteers were on stand-by. The good news is that Hurricane Ella never made it to Manhattan and the building was reinforced without its occupants even knowing they were in danger.

Did you know that “a buttload” is an actual measurement of weight?

Did you know that opening a barrel of whiskey is called “drilling the bunghole?”

And if I were to ask you what is the most perfect day in the history of the world, what would you say? I’m beginning to think that the most perfect day in the history of the world was April 18, 1930. Why? Well, it was so perfect that there was literally no news to report. A BBC News announcer came on the air at 20:45 and said: “There is no news.” And with the remaining 15 minutes of the broadcast the BBC played music.

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GREETING WIDDERSHINS! (Philadelphia Eagles Green)

So if you’re a fan of professional football, this is the ultimate weekend and game for you; the Superbowl.  Many times, the game itself has been a dud, just not that interesting.  Other games have been very exciting  with the lead changing several times over the course of the game. However, one thing is almost always great and that’s the commercials that air during the Superbowl.  And they had better be great, considering the cost of a thirty-second commercial.

The cost of a 30-second Super Bowl commercial continues holding at a premium level this year, with NBC drawing in excess of $5 million for a 30-second spot for Sunday’s showcase.

So with that let’s take a look at a couple of the 2018 commercials and some that have been favorites of mine from previous years.

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(1) Amazon Alexa loses her voice (Will Apple’s Siri offer help?) (2) Martha Stewart gets slammed by Jack in the Box? (3) Chris Pratt 2018 Michelob Ultra Beer  Commercial (4) M&Ms commercial with Danny DeVito (5) Morgan Freeman and Peter Dinklage, Mt. Dew/Doritos Commercial

Some Oldies

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And this one always cracks me up: There ya go Widdershins; a plethora of Super Bowl commercials. Now I understand some of y’all don’t have teevees and won’t have seen any of these or other S.B. commercials.  For those who have, feel free to put some in the comments below. Open thread of course. Oh, and: GO Iggles! The Patriots have won enough.      

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Good morning Widdershins,

There’s a storm coming, so I hope anyone being effected is prepared and staying warm! I think it’s supposed to come to NYC as well, but honestly, since I’m working from home I’m not too concerned. Although my dog might not enjoy blistering walks (he likes snow.)

Speaking of storms, category 6 Hurricane Bannon hit the Dump White House yesterday. Excerpts from a new book by Michael Wolff, “Fire and Fury,” were published in The New Yorker. (The book is already #1 on Amazon’s best seller list.) Whether or not it’s true (and there are reasons to question Michael Wolff’s often imaginative imagination) isn’t even relevant. I’m sure some of the stories are true and others are true in part. And it’s not the stories themselves that matter, it’s the fact that Steve Bannon told some of them them, Michael Wolff put them in a book, and Donald Dump thought they were true enough to release a blistering attack on Bannon (on official White House letterhead via Sarah Huckleberry), calling Bannon insane. Don Junior activated his attack mode and called Bannon a lying, backstabbing ingrate on Twitter.

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Rebekah Mercer

Rebekah Mercer, the former actress (whose credits include “Xena: Warrior Princess) and evil billionaire who has been funding Bannon’s Breitbart and the Dump campaign has, supposedly, severed all ties with Bannon. Which part of all this is not living up to Mercer’s expectations, I don’t know. I suppose she may have expected loyalty from a man she gave so much money to. Perhaps she expected honor among thieves? Dump doesn’t have any; he has destroyed more people than one can count. But it will be interesting to see what happens in this angry divorce between Bannon and Dump. So much of their followers are the same people: alt-right, white supremacists. Arguably they were Bannon’s first. He gifted them to Dump. Now they will have to choose sides. It’s a real pickle they find themselves in… Who do you think they will choose?

 

And what does the GOP think about all this? Well, Mitch McConnell’s official Twitter feed posted this creepy gif:

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Draw your own conclusions. Everybody else has been strangely quiet. (But we can imagine their responses. For example, when asked about Dump’s tweet threatening nuclear annihilation, Susan Collins said … “I’m going to vote” as she stormed away to vote on something. Bob Corker laughed and said he hadn’t seen the tweet, but Trump will be Trump. LOL.) So as a Civil War breaks out in the GOP – what do we think Widdershins? What is Bannon doing? We know his real desire is to destroy everything. So are his opening shots at Trump a surprise? He built Dump and he will destroy him. What will Dump do in response? He’s certainly going to do something… What will McTurtle do besides grin? Is this war good or bad for the GOP? And how will Democrats screw everything up?

I know only one thing: in 2020 Bannon will endorse Bernie Sanders for President. Mark my words.

 

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Happy weekend Widdershins!

This week has been a cray-cray rollercoaster. Dump continues to Dump, but we did get further confirmation that everything he touches dies. He has not been good for the GOP. And I don’t just mean that he has corrupted them (in fact, we all know Dump didn’t corrupt them. This is how they’ve been for a long time. Dump is a symptom, not the cause of the infection.) He is bad for the GOP because he is causing “minority flight.” It’s like white flight, but the reverse: non-white people are fleeing. Except by fleeing I mean running to the polls. We have witnessed stunning upsets in elections all over the country, locally Democrats are taking government seats previously occupied by Republicans in deep red places like Oklahoma. And nationally we have seen two stunning upsets for the GOP: Virginia and Alabama. Democrats actually won a US Senate seat in Alabama. And Doug Jones didn’t do it by running as a conservative Democrat. That has been one of the remarkable features of his campaign. He didn’t waffle on choice or gay marriage. He didn’t run by blasting Pelosi or Schumer. So by Alabama standard Doug Jones is a far-left nut job. Except he won the election anyway. He won because black women (and black men) came out in higher than expected numbers and voted. Even though GOP tried their darnedest to stop them. Many irregularities were reported all day. And still, they came out to vote. White men and white women chose the accused pedophile. But it didn’t matter: non-white voters came out to vote. They have lived for a year under the horror of Dump. And this is what happens when Democrats bring out their base to vote: Democrats win. If Democrats managed to win a seat in Alabama, every state should be in play in 2018.

The fact that Roy Moore refuses to concede the race is irrelevant. He will have to exit the stage regardless. There are speculations that Bannon’s reputation is greatly damaged because he went all in on Moore – as did Dump. And Moore losing is a humiliating defeat for Bannon and Dump. So let us imagine for a minute that this is the beginning of their grand exit off the stage too.

Omarosa is existing too. Actually she was escorted out.

So many exits this week. Let’s wish some of these people good riddance.

 

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In Brief

Posted on: October 18, 2017

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Hello Widdershins,

My apologies for being an absentee poster. I run out of hours in the day and have no computer at work. Only a very weak signal on my iPhone. But I’m sure the news keeps everyone busy. I’ll be back to my regular schedule in a week!

The worst thing I read all day is Dump’s awful phone call to the widow of slain U.S. Army Sgt. La David Johnson. After ignoring the 4 American soldiers killed in Niger for weeks (he golfed though), he finally brought himself to call a family. And he told the pregnant Myeshia Johnson: “He knew what he signed up for.” There truly is no end to Trump’s depravity. But we should read the names of the 4 soldiers killed and a hold a moment of silence because our president doesn’t care.

From one kind of depraved to a very different kind of depraved, the story of Harvey Weinstein is continuing to reverberate in the entertainment industry. There are now at least 47 women who have accused Weinstein of harassing or assaulting them. Of the well-known actresses the most recent story comes from Lena Headey, who plays Cersei Lannister on the hit HBO series “Game of Thrones.” The story, of course, is bigger than Weinstein. The singer/actress Björk, who has starred in only one movie, critically acclaimed “Dancer in the Dark,” wrote a letter in which she referenced being abused by a Danish director. Since she only appeared in one film and that film was made by a Dane, the unnamed director is Lars von Trier. Von Trier makes controversial films (I personally detest each and every one of them). In 2011 he stunned the Cannes Film Festival when he announced during a press conference:

“I found out I was actually a Nazi. My family were German. And that also gave me some pleasure. What can I say? I understand Hitler…I sympathize with him a bit.”

Molly Ringwald has also said she’s had “plenty of Harveys of my own.” She says she was first assaulted when she was 13. Reese Witherspoon says she was sexually assaulted by a director when she was 16. And America Ferrera said that she remembers the first time she was assaulted was when she was 9.

On Monday I went out to grab a Starbucks while at work. Crossing the street on 49th St and Park Avenue (a short distance from Grand Central station), I saw an SUV almost run over a young woman. He was backing up against his light and not paying attention. He side-swiped this woman (she was not breaking any laws), and only reason he didn’t actually run her over was because she jumped out of the way in time. So she started yelling to him to watch it, he hit her with his car. This man, big man, in his late 40’s, looked out of the window and said: “Oh did I hit you? Let me see. Where? In the back? Show me. Turn around baby, let me see you from the back.” As she began to turn to show him…she froze. I think all the witnesses did. It became obvious he was literally trying to see her ass. He was sexually harassing woman in the middle of the street that he just literally hit with his car… You could see her face changing as she realized what was happening and that dumbass grinned at her. It was truly breathtaking.

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To make you feel maybe 1% better about all this insanity – there is the story of the immortal Carrie Fisher. After being told by a friend, screenwriter Heather Robinson, that a studio executive sexually assaulted her, Carrie Fisher took matters into her own hands. She personally delivered to the executive a Tiffany box. Inside the box – a cow tongue. And a note: “If you ever touch my darling Heather or any other woman again, the next delivery will be something of yours in a much smaller box.”

And finally, if you follow reporters on social media you may have noticed that a few voices have been oddly missing for several days. New York Times voices. The normally rambunctious Maggie Haberman has been MIA. Glenn Thrush quit twitter altogether. And then we found out why. The bosses have slapped down their on-line behavior. Dean Baquet (a man who has a lot to answer for as far as the 2016 coverage) announced new social media rules for his reporters. And poor Maggie and Glenn, their entire gig is up. The stuff they are best at – snide condescension and sarcasm are discouraged. I think these rules broke Maggie.

So what’s on your mind Widdershins?


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Blog Archive

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Kellyanne Conway’s new job

Take the kids to work? NO!

That moment when *your* pussy gets grabbed

You go gurl! h/t Adam Joseph

“The” Book

Nice picture of our gal

Time till the Grifter in Chief is Gone

Hopefully soonerJanuary 21st, 2021
2.1 years to go.

Mueller Time!

Wise Words from Paul Ryan

B-I-N-G-O!

Only the *best* politicans bought by the NRA

Marching for their lives

Perfect Picture

Rudy: oh shit the pee tape IS real!

Need Reminders?

Never too early to shop for Christmas

“Look this way”

Manafort’s Jail Photo

Indeed who?

Trump spam

IOW Dumb = Happy?

Simply Put

Ironic

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