November 6, 2007 12:38 PM
Sweeps time has rolled back around and the usual entertainment newsmagazine nonsense is thrust upon the nation. I hope you’re like me and tuning out, except, of course, to “Access Hollywood.” This November, we are trying a different approach to separate ourselves from our cliche-ridden competition. We just launched Body Image Month, where we hope to bring smart, coherent and entertaining segments each day to our viewers, as well as on our Web site.
Oscar winner Marlee Matlin has agreed to do a one-month “Get Fit” challenge as part of the series focusing on body image pressures in Hollywood as well as stars’ healthy and outrageous workout and diet tips. Marlee will be teamed with celebrity trainer Harley Pasternak (Jessica Simpson, Miley Cyrus), who will design a diet and workout for her. Marlee will be weighing in each week for the rest of the month on the show and documenting her journey in a diary that will be available on our Web site.
Also, not a new strategy for “Access Hollywood,” but we are the only show that sent a reporter (Shaun Robinson) to South Africa to cover Oprah Winfrey’s school scandal. Amazing, with everything all these other shows do on every little thing Oprah does; it makes no sense that we are the only show on the ground in South Africa. Trust me, if Oprah had put on five pounds, it’s a lead story for some of these people, yet a scandal that hits to the very essence of Oprah is ignored.... Unreal.
The entertainment news landscape continues to be eaten up by “monkey stories,” a term actually coined by Bruce Willis to Billy Bush. “Monkey questions” are normally the questions that elicit responses that end up making some type of news. It’s the question the star does not exactly love to answer, but that we love to ask.
Lately, “monkey stories” revolve around Britney Spears and the craziness she craves. As a show, we are committed to covering Britney only when legit news surrounds the craziness. Another trip to Starbucks does not make for a story. If we decide to not purchase the paparazzi footage, maybe others will follow (doubt it) and her pap entourage will diminish. The question is: Would she like that?