Aug 15, 2018
1:39 am

Penn Jillette Says He Witnessed Trump Making ‘Racially Insensitive’ Remarks on ‘Celebrity Apprentice’
(New York Magazine's Vulture website, THR, Twitter)

Magician Penn Jillette, who was a contestant on “Celebrity Apprentice” in 2012, says that Donald Trump made “racially insensitive” remarks during the show.

Jillette talked about the series during an interview published by New York magazine’s Vulture website on Tuesday, Aug. 14. The interview was conducted by David Marchese. Jillette is part of the magic team Penn & Teller.

During the interview Marchese asks Jillette whether producer Mark Burnett has tapes of Trump saying damaging things during “Celebrity Apprentice.”

Penn Jillette: Yeah, I was in the room.

David Marchese: You’ve heard him say —
Jillette: Oh, yeah.

Marchese: Can you tell me what you’ve heard him say?
Jillette: No. If Donald Trump had not become president, I would tell you all the stories. But the stakes are now high and I am an unreliable narrator. What I do, as much as anything, is I’m a storyteller. And storytellers are liars. So I can emotionally tell you things that happened racially, sexually, and that showed stupidity and lack of compassion when I was in the room with Donald Trump and I guarantee you that I will get details wrong. I would not feel comfortable talking about what I felt I saw in that room — because when I was on that show I was sleeping four to five hours a night. I was uncomfortable. ‘Stress’ is the wrong word, but I was not at my best. Then at the end of a day, they put you in a room and they bring out a guy [Trump] who has no power whatsoever and he’s capricious and petty…

Later in the interview Jillette says that Trump “would say racially insensitive things that made me uncomfortable. I don’t think he ever said anything in that room like ‘African-Americans are inferior’ or anything about rape or grabbing women, but of those two hours every other day in a room with him, every ten minutes was fingernails on chalkboard. He would ask one cast member if he’d rather have sex with this woman or that woman…

Jillette was on the fifth season of “Celebrity Apprentice,” which ran on NBC from Feb. 19-May 20, 2012. He was fired off the show during its 11th week, on April 22, 2012, just four weeks before that season’s finale.

The Hollywood Reporter, writing about the Vulture interview, says, “The infamous tapes that have dogged Trump since his campaign are once again in the news after former White House staffer and reality star Omarosa Manigault Newman said she heard the tapes, which allegedly include Trump using the N-word during production of the NBC series, which he hosted.

“Manigault Newman is on a high-profile media blitz for her tell-all book about working on the Trump campaign and her time in the White House before she was fired. She has released tapes in the last few days of alleged conversations with White House Chief of Staff John Kelly and Trump that she claims she secretly recorded.”

Here are Trump’s two tweets on Tuesday about any “Celebrity Apprentice” tapes that may exist with him saying the N-word:

@MarkBurnettTV called to say that there are NO TAPES of the Apprentice where I used such a terrible and disgusting word as attributed by Wacky and Deranged Omarosa. I don’t have that word in my vocabulary, and never have. She made it up. Look at her MANY recent quotes saying…

“….such wonderful and powerful things about me – a true Champion of Civil Rights – until she got fired. Omarosa had Zero credibility with the Media (they didn’t want interviews) when she worked in the White House. Now that she says bad about me, they will talk to her. Fake News!”

To read the full interview with Penn Jillette, please click here, which will take you to the Vulture site. If you scroll down in the interview you will eventually get to the part where Jillette talks about Trump.

Aug 14, 2018
5:27 pm

With the Broadcast Nets Pushing Their New Fall Shows, Which Network Is the Most ‘Promo-Happy’? (MediaPost, NBC)

If you’ve been watching broadcast TV, you’ve probably already noticed that the push is on to drum up interest in the new fall shows. MediaPost reports that CBS, which has six new fall series lined up — more than any other network — has been especially busy running on-air promos.

The MediaPost report published earlier today suggests CBS has been particularly keen to make sure viewers know about its upcoming reboot of “Magnum P.I.,” which has had 288 spot airings on the network since May 15, accounting for 533.1 million total impressions, according to iSpot.tv.

“That is the highest number of impressions for any new show so far,” MediaPost reports. “CBS’s ‘FBI’ has seen 234 airings and 449.8 million impressions, and ‘The Neighborhood’ has had 215 airings and 420.6 million impressions.”

Over at ABC, the two front-runners appear to be “The Rookie,” with 204 airings and 452.7 million impressions, and “A Million Little Things,” 275 airings and 444.7 million.

NBC’s focus, meanwhile, seems to be largely on “Manifest,” with 222 airings and 448.9 million impressions. We encourage readers to click on the link above to MediaPost to see the rest of the numbers.

Aug 14, 2018
4:29 pm

The Story Behind ‘Crazy Rich Asians’ (TVWeek)

“Crazy Rich Asians” is poised to take the box office by storm when it opens nationwide Wednesday. Based on the runaway 2013 bestseller by Kevin Kwan, it’s the first major studio film with an all-Asian cast since 1993’s “The Joy Luck Club.”

So after a 25-year wait, the energy in the room was electric — with every seat in the house filled — as the Writers Guild’s Asian-American Writers Committee presented a pre-release screening last Friday night at the WGA Theater in Beverly Hills.

TVWeek Open Mic writer Hillary Atkin was on hand and got the movie’s backstory in a presentation that included many of the film’s key players. Please click here to read Hillary’s insightful report.

Aug 14, 2018
4:21 pm

How Much Did Tiger’s Resurgence Pump Up Golf Ratings? A Lot! (AP)

Ratings for CBS’s coverage of the PGA Championship went through the roof as Tiger Woods appeared to find his old form during Sunday’s final round.

The AP reports that CBS reached 8.5 million viewers for Sunday’s round, up a whopping 73% from the 4.9 million who watched the final round a year earlier, based on Nielsen figures.

“Woods was the difference,” the AP notes. “The old hero was playing his best golf in years, leading to a second-place finish against champion Brooks Koepka. Koepka may have won, but crowds and newspaper headlines followed Woods.”

The ratings were reportedly the best for a PGA championship since 2009, with viewership peaking at 12.3 million people in the final half-hour of the tournament.

Aug 14, 2018
4:17 pm

Here’s the Picture That Beatles Fans Are Freaking Out About (TVWeek, Instagram)

A photo that was posted online has caused a stir in the universe of Beatles fans. The photo, which you can see below, is basically just a selfie featuring two sons of Beatles — Sean Ono Lennon and James McCartney.

Sean is the son of John Lennon and Yoko Ono, and James is the son of Paul McCartney and Linda McCartney. Like their famous parents, the two men are musicians.

Sean posted the pic on his Instagram page, along with the message “Peekaboo…” Beatles fans immediately began having flashbacks, with many commenting that the “boys” look a lot like their dads.

Sean Ono Lennon and James McCartney (Instagram)

Aug 14, 2018
3:57 pm

Nicki Minaj Gets Frisky on ‘Colbert’ (TVWeek, CBS)

Rapper Nicki Minaj made a memorable appearance on CBS’s “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert,” including apparently getting the host flustered with some risque new lyrics to her song “Barbie Dreams.”

Here’s the clip, posted by CBS …

Aug 14, 2018
12:59 pm

Lawsuit Accusing Harvey Weinstein of Sex Trafficking Moves Forward (NY Post)

A federal judge denied an attempt by Harvey Weinstein to have a lawsuit thrown out that accuses him of being a sex trafficker.

The New York Post’s Page Six reports that the Manhattan judge “gave the thumbs-up Tuesday to the suit, which was filed by aspiring British actress Kadian Noble, claiming that the ‘Shakespeare In Love’ producer violated federal laws against sex trafficking when he lured her to his Cannes, France, hotel room with false promises of an acting role for the purpose of sex.”

Weinstein had argued that letting the civil suit proceed “would unfairly expand the federal sex-trafficking statute to all sexual activity occurring between adults in which one party holds a superior position of power and influence,” according to court papers.

“Weinstein also claimed that Noble’s assertions that he engaged in a ‘commercial sex act’ don’t apply to her case because nothing of value was exchanged,” The Post reports.

Noble, who filed suit against Weinstein last year, says the former film mogul invited her to come to the Le Majestic Hotel in Cannes in February 2014 to discuss her film reel.

“Instead, he began massaging her and instructed her to ‘walk up and down the room for him’ as part of an ‘audition’ before assaulting her in the bathroom, she claimed,” The Post reports, adding that Noble said when she resisted his advances, Weinstein told her: “Everything will be taken care of for you if you relax.”

“Judge Robert Sweet’s ruling noted that other courts have applied civil claims of sex trafficking to ‘defendants who have lured women, under false pretenses, with lucrative promises for sexual purposes,'” the report adds.

Aug 14, 2018
12:44 pm

Wow, the Ariana Grande-James Corden ‘Titanic’ Musical Is a Hoot — Watch It Now (TVWeek, CBS)

They squeezed 13 songs and nine sets into five minutes — all in one take — but somehow Ariana Grande and James Corden pulled off their own musical version of “Titanic” — featuring songs by Styx, Hall & Oates, Vanilla Ice, Lady Gaga … and of course, Celine Dion, among many others.

Here’s the clip, which aired on CBS’s “The Late Late Show with James Corden” …

Aug 14, 2018
12:31 pm

Trump Hits Back Hard at Omarosa
(CNN, ABC News, MSNBC, Twitter)

Donald Trump is taking no prisoners in his war with former White House staffer Omarosa Manigault Newman, referring to her in a tweet sent out this morning as a “dog” and a “crazed, crying lowlife.” You can see his tweet below.

In a piece on the CNN website, Veronica Stracqualursi notes that Manigault Newman is “the only African-American to have served in a senior role in the White House.”

The piece adds: “Referring to an African-American woman as an animal is at best a sharp departure from the language typically employed by Presidents and at worst a reference that traffics in sexual and racial imagery. Trump has long denied being racist and has dismissed a claim made by Manigault Newman that he used a racial slur on the set of ‘The Apprentice.’ He’s also invoked ‘dog’ to insult non-African-Americans — including Mitt Romney and former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon.”

Trump’s campaign organization, meanwhile, has taken legal action against Manigault Newman. ABC News quotes a statement from a senior Trump campaign official saying: “Donald J. Trump for President, Inc. has filed an arbitration against Manigault-Newman with the American Arbitration Association in New York City, for breach of her 2016 confidentiality agreement with the Trump Campaign. President Trump is well known for giving people opportunities to advance in their careers and lives over the decades, but wrong is wrong, and a direct violation of an agreement must be addressed and the violator must be held accountable.”

Manigault Newman says Trump is trying to silence her, telling MSNBC: “I don’t believe that I have violated, but I will leave it to the lawyers to sort it out. It is interesting that he is trying to silence me. And what is he trying to hide or (is) afraid of? If he had not said anything that is derogatory or demeaning to African-Americans and women, why would he go to the extent to shut me down?”

Here’s one of the tweets sent this morning by Trump …

Aug 14, 2018
12:17 pm

Report: Demi Lovato’s Overdose Linked to the Same Drug That Killed Prince (TMZ)

Details of the night that led to a near-fatal overdose for singer and actress Demi Lovato are being reported by TMZ, which says Lovato used oxycodone pills laced with fentanyl — the same drug that killed Prince and Lil Peep.

The website says Lovato texted a drug dealer at 4 a.m. on July 24, requesting that the dealer come to her house.

“Sources with direct knowledge tell us, Demi had been at a party in WeHo following a birthday celebration at Saddle Ranch on the Sunset Strip. After the drug dealer got the text, he came to her house and we’re told the 2 of them freebased Oxycodone on tin foil,” TMZ reports. “Our sources say unbeknownst to Demi, the drug dealer had a bad habit of buying dirty drugs from Mexico … and the batch in question appeared to be laced with fentanyl.”

TMZ’s sources report that the dealer fled Lovato’s home after seeing her in bed breathing heavily.

Lovato has reportedly been in an out-of-state rehab facility after being hospitalized for two weeks.

Older Articles