Archive for January, 2011

TONYA & NANCY: THE ROCK OPERA coverage coming on WGBH & FOX25
Sarah Kowalski and Tigh Rickman are recent graduates of Stonecoast MFA. Both longtime fans of reality televison, they are both relative newcomers to ABC’s The Bachelor. However, much like crack cocaine, it only took a small hit to hook them both, and now both watch religiously with their fiction writers’ eyes.

The Bachelor Deconstructed: Black Eyed Pleas

In the weeks since last we checked in on Brad and his band of lovelies, much has happened. Our hero felt a true connection with dentist Ashley H. on his first one-on-one date, which was a Scooby Doo-esque outing to an empty amusement park in the woods. Together they sat in the electric glow of the midway’s flashing lights and they bonded over each other’s stories of paternal abandonment, and sealing their connection with a kiss.

Brad also went on a one-on-one date with Jackie; this date was a Pretty Woman affair in which Brad lavished her with expensive clothes and baubles and then took her to a private concert by Train. She told him of her extremely limited dating experience and he nodded understandingly. Swaying slowly under the stars to that top-forty song that sounds pretty much like every other Train song, they sealed their connection with a kiss.

Brad also attended a one-on-one date with Ashley S., in which they recorded ‘Kiss from a Rose’ together at the Capitol Records studio in Los Angeles. It was a touching moment for Ashley, as the song was reminiscent of her late father and the times they had together. She and Brad bonded over stories of what it was like to be without a father, and then sealed their bond with a kiss. (more…)

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Breaking: Charlie Sheen enters rehab. And watch for upcoming coverage on TONYA & NANCY: THE ROCK OPERA on WGBH radio (the Emily Rooney Show on Feb 1) and on FOX25…

An award-winning screenwriter at international film festivals and labs, Caitlin McCarthy has two feature films in development: “Wonder Drug” with director Tom Gilroy (“Spring Forward”); and “Resistance” with director Si Wall (“The Dinner Party,” premiering November 2010). She also has a TV series treatment, “Free Skate,” which is currently being considered by top production companies.


Just before my sixteenth birthday, I saw FERRIS BUELLER’S DAY OFF with my best friend Olga. As soon as newcomer Charlie Sheen appeared in the now-classic police station scene, we both turned to each other and said, “Who’s that?!”

Charlie was more than cute. He had that IT quality. We both knew he’d be a star, and soon we were suffering through VCR rentals like RED DAWN just to watch our Charlie.

PLATOON and WALL STREET showed the world that he could act. His comedic ability was later demonstrated in shows like “Spin City,” for which he won a Golden Globe. Admit it, you’ve even watched one of the countless “Two and a Half Men” reruns and caught yourself smiling at him. He can save a bad joke.

But now he needs to save himself. As I write this post, Charlie has been rushed to the hospital for “severe abdominal pains.” After his recent antics at NYC’s Plaza Hotel and Vegas’ AVN (Adult Video News) Awards, it doesn’t take much to imagine what triggered these pains.

Charlie, Charlie, Charlie. I don’t know you, but I worry about you.

Celebs are just people. When they’re caught in the web of addiction, they need treatment and support – not public mockery or distain. Many in society view celebrity addiction as entertainment when it’s not. It needs to be taken seriously.

All of the fame and money in the world can’t silence your inner demons or make you love yourself. These things come from within. Sobriety is “one day at a time,” and requires surrendering to the process of treatment.

Charlie, I hope you get well on every level. You’ve done it before. You can do it again.

photos: realbollywood.com, superiorpics.com

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I am excited to announce on the blog the NEW PRODUCTION of TONYA & NANCY: THE ROCK OPERA with libretto by me and music by Michael Teoli, premiering JAN 31 in a new short ‘club version’ at the American Repertory Theater’s wild and wonderful Oberon Theater in Harvard Square.  Our new show is produced by Paul Boghosian and Harborside Films.  For ticket info, please check out www.cluboberon.com

And also visit our Facbook Event page.  More soon on this exciting new show with an awesome cast and star director Janet Roston.  The show is based on my Tonya & Nancy: The Opera with music by Abigail Al-Doory Cross.  Our new rock opera has drawn coverage in the Boston Herald and Blast Magazine and Broadway World with more to come.  THANKS to all & Rock On!

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UPDATE: coming soon: more from Tigh & Sarah plus word on the Rock Opera that has taken over my life this month: TONYA & NANCY: THE ROCK OPERA– see our coverage in the BOSTON HERALD on Jan. 24th. ~~THANKS to Judith for our blog’s first-ever Book Review!  Our Celebs in Disgrace film was screened at Stonecoast Movie Night & is headed for NV…
Judith Podell holds an MFA from USM-Stonecoast and lives in Washington, DC. She has reviewed books for numerous publications, including the Washington Post. An excerpt from her novel in progress, The Last of the Khazars will be in the first issue of The New Guard Review of Literature, which can be pre-ordered on the web at www.newguardreview.com.
CELEBRITY CHEKHOV: The Book Review  by Judith Podell

Compassion fatigue is an occupational hazard to those of us who follow the lives of celebrities. We shrug when Lindsay Lohan flunks rehab again, or maybe we laugh. It’s easy to forget that celebrities are people, just like us only more so. People with souls, sure, but Russian souls? Perhaps literature can succeed where tabloids fail. In Celebrity Chekhov: Classic Stories Now with Famous People by Ben Greenman (Harper Perennial, 2010) Nicole Kidman is “The Darling” and Alec Baldwin is “The Unwanted.” Other Chekovized celebrities include Sarah Palin, Tiger Woods and Oprah. 

Greenman asserts that his adaptations are not meant to reflect the actual lives of actual celebrities . The real Nicole Kidman is nothing like the pathetic protagonist of “The Darling” who shapes her identity and opinions to match each husband and has no will of her own. Otherwise she’d still be a Scientologist.

Sure Celebrity Chekhov is a fun read, but poignance lurks behind the comic effects. An older, wiser Britney Spears sobs “My God! My life is wasted.” Justin Timberlake consoles her. “He understood I must weep and that the time for this had come.” A time for weeping? We expect our stars to break down in spectacular ways when they are not putting best face forward for public consumption. The closest we come to private moments are interviews, and snapshots from the paparazzi, who deal in those “gotcha” moments. I’m as fascinated as anyone can be with glimpses of stars without makeup, but none of these express inner life as a few well chosen words by a writer of genius.

After I read Greenman’s adaptation of “A Classical Student” I am overcome with pity for poor dear Lindsay Lohan. Life is brutal if you’re a dysfunctional family’s meal ticket.

(photos: HollywoodGossip.com, bestTVever.com, bosh.com)

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Welcome back Tigh & Sarah! Our Celebs in Disgrace film celebrates the new year with a screening at Stonecoast Movie Night in Maine…
Sarah Kowalski and Tigh Rickman are recent graduates of Stonecoast MFA. Both longtime fans of reality televison, they are both relative newcomers to ABC’s The Bachelor. However, much like crack cocaine, it only took a small hit to hook them both, and now both watch religiously with their fiction writers’ eyes.


With Ali and Roberto snug in their cozy San Diego apartment, we turn our lonely Bachelor eyes to Brad in this, the premiere of The Bachelor.

However, this isn’t Brad’s first rodeo. You see, gentle reader, Brad is the first ever repeat Bachelor. Sure, there have been lower case bachelors and bachelorettes who have taken up the protagonist’s mantle in previous seasons, but never before has a capital-B Bachelor returned to the mansion. And nobody would have suspected that Brad of all people would be the first to break that barrier. In his first Bachelor incarnation he left both of the final two women at the podium, proposing to neither and leaving Bachelorland the same way he came in, as, well, a bachelor. The subsequent lambasting he took from The Bachelor faithful prompted three years of therapy in order, as Brad put it, to find out “what was wrong” with him.

But is he really changed? Can he finally open himself up emotionally in the manner we’ve come to expect from our Bachelors? The mansion has had its post-Bachelor Pad delousing, the pool has been drained and cleaned, the Snickers Bar eaten.

Let the journey begin.

Tigh: In the immortal words of Semisonic, every new beginning comes from some other beginning’s end. And for Brad, our once and future Bachelor, the new journey begins here, where the first one ended in an apocalyptic fireball of ‘the wrong reasons’. At least that’s what I’m told. I totally missed his season.

Sarah:  Likewise.  The “most controversial season in Bachelor history” is one I, as a recent convert to the shameful status of “Bachelor watcher” have no prior interest in.

Tigh: So I take it that he didn’t choose either of the two final young ladies on the finale and in so doing proved that he had deep-seated issues with commitment, not to mention abandonment issues that were so ingrained in his persona that he had to endure three years of “intensive therapy” to return to normal. And why not? If you can’t find love in Bachelorland, you’re obviously emotionally deficient. (more…)

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2010 marked the debut of our short film CELEBRITIES IN DISGRACE; thanks to all for their support!

BREAKING: our popular BACHELOR show commentators Tigh & Sarah will be back SOON with thoughts on Episode 1 & The Slap…

Goodbye 2010 and a special goodbye to this year’s ‘winner’ of Disgraced Celebrity of 2010: Mel Gibson— whose epic-sized celeb. meltdown also ‘won’ Disgraced Celebrity of Summer, 2010.

On a brighter note: a big Year’s End THANK YOU for your support of our  film, Celebrities in Disgrace, which made its debut at the Woods Hole Film Festival on Cape Cod in August.  It had adventures this fall at Boston Globe’s Media Matters Conference (where it was discussed and shown in excerpt) and at Vegas CineFest in Las Vegas.  Next up: a screening at Movie Night at Stonecoast MFA program in Maine.  Stay tuned for updates and THANKS too to all who visit the blog.

As blog fave LupinsSuppins noted, the year in disgrace did not belong to any single overwhelming ‘winner.’ (Unlike Tiger Woods last year).  Votes were cast for Lindsay Lohan (‘Barb’ pointed out that Lindsay’s sad saga unfortunately winds up giving rehab. a bad rep.).  Others noted the controversial Assange and the’rabble rouser’ Glenn Beck.

What about 2011 scandals-in-the-making?  Lupins has her eye on witchy wacky Christine O’Donnell; send us your own choices of Scandals to Watch– Happy Celeb-gazing in 2011!

Thanks to Lupins for links to fun year-end reviews at yahoo and The Onion…  PS: plus here are celeb. PREDICTIONS for 2011…(photos: ew.com, csmonitor.com)

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