The Insider

Sep 10, 2001  •  Post A Comment

Partial nudity and covered bases
CBS has piqued a lot of interest with the “Wolf Lake” promos warning of-or is it promising?-“partial nudity” in this sort of wolverine “X-Files.” What this cheeky columnist can tell you is that, yes, there will be glimpses of skin (perhaps even the occasional butt crack) as characters change species, but what earned the promotional warning (tease?) is an opening sequence that may have viewers jumping out of their clothes and then out of their chairs. The Insider’s own Deep Throat mentioned “Lou Diamond Phillips,” “shower” and “sex” in the same sentence as “Mia Kirshner.” And word is that the network has told producers Alex Gansa and Rick Kellard to push the envelope but to cover their, um, bases by shooting nude scenes in a couple of ways, say from the back and from the side. The official line at CBS about the promotional advisory is, “We’re just doing the responsible thing by letting people know in advance.” Sounds like advertising to The Insider.
And now, back to the Emmys
Notes from other folks’ napkins at the news and documentary Emmys last week in New York:
There was, said more than one person in the vicinity, hissing from a CBS News table when it was announced that Lowell Bergman, the former “60 Minutes” producer (who was played by Al Pacino in “The Insider”), had won an Emmy for “Drug Wars,” which he reported for “Frontline” on PBS. “He’s not Mr. Popularity around here,” said one Eye newsie.
Then there was Peter Freundlich, who worked for CBS full time for 20 years before being invited to work for CBS on a less-than-full-time basis. He topped his thank-yous with a couple of raspberries, a k a Bronx cheers. “I don’t say [sound of raspberry] bitterly,” he stressed. “I say [sound of raspberry] philosophically.”
Sean Fine, who earned an Emmy for a memorably titled segment, “The Pigeon Murders,” seen on CNBC`s “National Geographic Explorer,” is the son of Holly and Paul Fine, the ABC News producers who have walked off with an award or few during their own long careers.
Eyebrows were raised when “Peter Jennings Reporting” producer Keith Summa thanked the Academy for recognizing that “there is a place for long-form documentaries,” because his work won in the Breaking News/Program category, where the competition was deadline reporting done on the night after the 2000 presidential election, or the night that the Supreme Court finally decided how the election would turn out. A spokesman noted that the hour about politicking by the National Rifle Association was produced in far less time than the average “Peter Jennings Reporting,” and was hinged to the election. The Insider hereby directs any further questions to the folks who set the Emmy categories and the rules.
Ax and ye shall receive …
As readers of New York magazine’s Intelligencer pages already know, this year’s “VH1/Vogue Fashion Awards” winners will carry home trophies that give a whole new meaning to “cutting-edge” as applied to fashion. Artist Tom Sachs has effectively stuck an ax into a base and strung a crystal from the handle. The Insider somewhat idly asked: If this is the winning design, what got vetoed by the folks who make such decisions at Vogue and VH1? All we can report is that there actually were other options, not whether they were more or less louche. Now, we sit back and wait for the fun to begin as award winners try for an appropriate expression when handed the hatchet (tune in Oct. 23) and then an appropriate explanation to airport security guards.
Z-Day draws nigh
Mark your calendars, Insider-ettes. Only a week to stock up on schadenfreude-and shame on anyone in Hollywood who can’t use that word in a sentence. The much-awaited Lynn Hirschberg profile of NBC Entertainment President Jeff Zucker will be in the Sept. 16 issue of The New York Times Magazine.
Meanwhile, back at Mr. Zucker’s old stomping grounds, Candice Bergen contributed a segment on pet therapy for critical-care patients to “Today” on Sept. 5. But you knew that. What you didn’t know is in internal and external listings for “Today,” that segment was identified as “canine candy.” Dogs … Candice … get it? The Insider has sent off for her “Today” decoder ring so she’ll appreciate inside jokes in future listings.
The final word
You didn’t think The Insider could go a whole week without one mention of CNN? Of course not. So we close by disclosing that “Inside Politics” has begun originating from the roof of CNN’s Washington bureau, and staffers have dubbed the show “Outside Politics.”