EXCLUSIVE: There will be Oscar Specials

You may heard: There’s a little reality-TV program scheduled this weekend where beautiful people will preen for the camera and get voted on by the masses. And no, I’m not talking about the all-new episode of Big Brother 9. It’s that other show, the one where they give out big gold men (weighing eight pounds) and then little gold men (made of chocolate). I’d like to say we’re above picking the winners and losers — like every other print/blog/television entity on the planet — but, well, we’re not. And, fortunately, our friends at RNN, bless their souls, were good enough to let us opine on air tonight for a special Oscar Special.

Sure, Small Bites and Varsity Insider may have been the first blogs to the half-hour TV party, but our show had far more gold.

I should also point out, despite giving ourselves billing in the ad on our sidebar, the truth is the program is all RNN. Or to be more specific, Karen DePodwin. She did yeoman’s work pulling this all together. The ad really should have said, “The DePodwin Oscar Special, with guest stars Suburbarazzi and Liz Johnson.”

One other caveat: Please ignore the painfully awkward segments when I start rambling about Michael Moore (Wha? Castro? Huh?) and “Juno” (what I meant to say — “Blood” and “No Country” will split the high-brow voters, leaving “Juno” a chance at winning). Instead, focus on my esteemed colleague, Chris Serico — whose Ruby Dee logic (anytime you slap a former Oscar winner, you automatically get to win one, too) was downright brilliant. Or, for that matter, Liz Johnson and Peter Pratt, who can spray me with truffle juice any day of the week. And, of course, the indomitable Karen DePodwin, who looks lovely enough to be Suffern HS homecoming queen.

More thoughts on RNN’s Oscar Preview Special

oscar2.jpgHey, it’s Chris here. Ted and I initially posted the footage of the RNN Oscar Preview Special at about the same time, so I’m just going to supplement his words with a couple of thoughts.

As Ted mentioned, many thanks go to anchor/reporter Karen DePodwin and the entire RNN crew for thinking of us when she first pitched the Oscar Preview Special. I know Ted and I were really proud and thrilled to be a part of it.

Plus, we’d highly recommend ordering an imitation Oscar and surprising someone with it. We swear we didn’t tell her in advance! We also didn’t have the heart to tell her it wasn’t real. But maybe it’s got chocolate inside, so if that’s true, it would not be a total loss.

Oscars, Suburbarazzi-style: Ted and I predict the winners

oscar2.jpgThis Friday at 7:30 p.m. EST, Ted Mann and I will join TV reporter Karen DePodwin for a live RNN segment about Sunday’s Academy Awards. I’ll be wearing my tux for only the third time since my senior year in college, so the comedic value of that alone might be worth the tune-in. Here’s another preview of one of the topics slated for discussion. Click here to read the first preview.

We at Suburbarazzi like to make predictions, especially when they involve shiny glorified bowling trophies.

Notice, these Oscar picks are predictions, not necessarily our rooting interests. Let it be known that, with few exceptions, we often root for films, actors and crew members with connections to the Lower Hudson Valley (North Salem resident Alan Menken, New Rochelle resident Ruby Dee, et al.). Also, since I’ve shockingly seen none of the films scoring the major nominations, I’m just going to base my predictions on reviews, buzz and my gut feeling.

But hey, do you really think Oscar voters are any different? I swear, dart boards must have been mailed out with the screeners of “Ordinary People” back in 1980, because that’s the only logical reason why “Raging Bull” didn’t win Best Picture that year.

As a teaser, we won’t reveal the Oscar predictions of TV’s Karen DePodwin until she does so herself on Friday night. (By the way, how fun is it to refer to anyone as “TV’s [actual name]?” I say extremely.) But in the meantime, you’ll have to consider the predictions of Mr. Mann and me. Grain of salt not included.

Ted’s predictions:
Best Picture: “Juno�
Best Actor: Daniel Day Lewis, “There Will Be Blood�
Best Actress: Julie Christie, “Away from Her�
Best Supporting Actor: Hal Holbrook, “Into the Wild�
Best Supporting Actress: Tilda Swinton, “Michael Clayton�
Best Director: Joel and Ethan Coen, “No Country for Old Men�

Chris’ predictions:
Best Picture: “No Country for Old Men�
Best Actor: Daniel Day Lewis, “There Will Be Blood�
Best Actress: Ellen Page, “Juno�
Best Supporting Actor: Javier Bardem, “No Country for Old Men�
Best Supporting Actress: Ruby Dee, “American Gangster�
Best Director: Joel and Ethan Coen, “No Country for Old Men�

(AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

Suburbarazzi Week in Review on RNN: ‘Arrested Development’ the movie, William Hurt in ‘Vantage point,’ and Ace Frehley’s solo album


This week’s quiz:

Bill Murray, once a fixture of the Pebble Beach Pro-Am, missed the tournament a couple weeks ago. Murray is the undisputed best celebrity golfer in our region, with a handicap of 7.2. But can you guess which fellow local star is close on his heels, with a handicap of 7.3?

• Kevin Dillon (Mamaroneck)
• Al Pacino (Sneden’s Landing)
• Dick Clark (Mount Vernon)
• Joe Torre (Harrison)

The answer is at the end of the clip and after the break.
Continue reading

Emeril sells out to Martha for $50 mil


Who knew “Bam!” had such market equity. Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia forked over $45 million in cash and $5 million in stock to purchase the rights to Emeril Lagasse’s line of cookbooks, TV shows, and kitchen products yesterday. What’s more, according to the AP story on CNN, that sum could rise $20 million higher “if certain benchmarks are achieved.” Mind you, this does not include Lagasse’s restaurants — just the television and gadget rights.

Now, if only Martha could figure out a way to sweet talk the Katonah Village Improvement Society into giving her the same kind of deal for “Katonah.” If “Bam” is worth as much as $70 mil (including bonuses), a word twice as long is surly pushing a cool $150.

(AP Photo/The Martha Stewart Show, Anders Krusberg)

Oscars, Suburbarazzi-style: Local nominees and recent winners

oscar2.jpgThis Friday at 7:30 p.m. EST, Ted Mann and I will join TV reporter Karen DePodwin for a live RNN segment about Sunday’s Academy Awards. I’ll be wearing my tux for only the third time since my senior year in college, so the comedic value of that alone might be worth the tune-in. Here’s a preview of one of the topics slated for discussion.

Stars with a connection to the Lower Hudson Valley have done very well for themselves at the Oscars over the years, and 2008 is no exception.

Eight-time Oscar-winner Alan Menken, a New Rochelle native and North Salem resident, has been nominated three times for his songs from the Disney movie “Enchanted.” He took home his first two trophies for Best Song and Best Score for “The Little Mermaid,â€? and his most recent ones were in the same categories for songs from “Pocahontas.â€? In total, he’s been nominated for a whopping 18 Oscars, but hasn’t won one since 1996.

First-time nominee and sentimental favorite Ruby Dee, a New Rochelle resident, is nominated for Best Supporting Actress for her part in “American Gangster,” starring Mount Vernon native Denzel Washington and former Nyack dweller Russell Crowe — both of whom are Oscar-winners themselves.

LoHud also has at least two representatives in the Best Documentary/Short Subject category, including Ossining High School alumnus Francisco Bello (for “Salim Baba”) and former Croton-on-Hudson resident Cynthia Wade (for “Freeheld”).

After the break, check out a list of some other prominent current and former residents of the Lower Hudson Valley who have won or have been nominated for an Oscar in the last 30 years. Continue reading

Ace Frehley Goin’ Solo (Again)

Former Kiss guitarist Ace Frehley, who lives in Chappaqua, is in the midst of recording his first solo album since 1990, with a planned April release. He’s laying the album down as his Westchester home and is then planning to go on a North American concert tour later this year.

He summed up the artistic process behind the new album to Billboard:

<blockquote><div>”Basically, I’m trying to get back into the mindset I was in when I did my first solo record [1978’s ‘Ace Frehley’]. That record seemed to have all the elements everybody liked — a real cool instrumental, a hit single, some real heavy rockers, a nice variety of different genres of music.”</div></blockquote>

Though he also pointed out some of his favorite new tracks — “A Little Below the Angels,” “Pain in the Neck,” “Fractured Quantum,” and “Genghis Khan” — he bizzarly won’t be performing any of the new work on stage. “Every show’s on YouTube, every song,” he said. “I don’t want to play any of the new songs ’cause I don’t want to give away anything.”

Which is all fine and good (frankly, I’m more jazzed about him doing the old Kiss tunes anyways), but sooner or later, if you keep beating that dead horse, all that’s left is to star on season two of “The Celebrity Apprentice.” And, well, we all know how that turned out for Gene Simmons.

(AP Photo/Paul Warner)

Bedford Dominatrix ordered to give sponge baths to naughty hospital goers


Sandra Chemero, the S&M specialist who was arrested last year after an undercover investigation of her Bedford Hills home, made InTown Westchester’s “People of the Year” list, but when it came time for Suburbarazzi to rattle off our top 25 newsmakers of 2007, we decided to lay off. And late last month, the so-called Bedford Dominatrix got another bit of leniency.

Despite strong evidence that brains behind a sex dungeon dubbed “The Soverign Estate” (complete with website picturing her brandishing whips and leather chains), Chemero got off almost Scot free. She agreed to a lesser charge of “disorderly conduct” (for operating a business out of her home without a permit) and was only fined $350.

The real punishment: 30 days of community service working at a local hospital. If anyone happens to see her on duty, be sure to alert us if there’s any spanking going on after the bandages up her patients.

“Charges dropped against dominatrix” [Daily New]

(photo: Rory Glaeseman / The Journal News)

Tuesday Twofer — ‘American Gangster’ and ‘Lust Caution’ out on DVD

Two of the best movies of 2007 (starring local celebs) are out on DVD today.

70060009.jpgFor my money, I still say “American Gangster” was as good (and enjoyable) as just about any other Best Picture nominee that isn’t named “Juno.” It’s bizarre that New Rochelle resident Rube Dee is the only person to get nominated from the film, especially considering that Mount Vernon native son Denzel Washington was at the top of his game. Anyway, if you didn’t see it in the video, be sure to add it to your Netflix queue.

70059999.jpgAnd the other movie is “Lust Caution,” directed by Larchmont’s Ang Lee. This too was snubbed by the Academy in the best foreign language category. Bunch of prudes, I say.

Thanks to F.O.S. Amy Vernon for the tip.

Mos Def character in new film: ‘I’ll be Bill Murray and you can play everybody else’

mos-def.jpgIn the Michel Gondry movie “Be Kind, Rewind,” which hits theaters this Friday, Jack Black and Mos Def play video store owners who are forced to film extremely low-budget versions of popular films when their movies are accidentally erased.

In the process of refilming my favorite movie, “Ghostbusters,” Mos Def’s character paraphrases something I probably said to classmates on the Greenvale Elementary School blacktop in 1984.


I’ll be Bill Murray and you can play everybody else.


Nice to see there’s still some Dr. Peter Venkman love out there for the Sneden’s Landing resident.

(AP Photo/Ric Francis)

Hayden Panettiere spends Valentine’s night with her brother

hayden-panettiere.jpgIt’s always nice, and at times refreshing, to know that Hollywood celebrities actually love their families. But spending Valentine’s Night with them when a significant other is reportedly in the picture might be going a bit overboard.

Just Jared reports that Palisades native Hayden Panettiere had her Valentine’s dinner with her brother, Jansen. According to J-squared, their parents served as chaperones. (To stop what from happening exactly?)

The site says there was no sign of her reported boyfriend, “Heroes” costar Milo Ventimiglia. Hmm.

Lest you think I am being too tough on HP, I will be the first to say that the most love I’ve shared on some of my Valentine’s Days was for a perfectly cooked cheeseburger.

EXCLUSIVE: Audio of Suburbarazzi references on Howard Stern’s radio station

howard.jpgBecause I needed some time to figure out how to use the audio software on my computer, I’m a little late in posting these clips of Suburbarazzi mentions on Howard Stern’s radio show. (OK, six weeks late.) But better late than never! Still seems appropriate, considering Stern’s sound effects master, Fred Norris, performed with his band in Yonkers on Saturday night.

First up, although neither the blog nor my name is mentioned in this clip from the Jan. 2 Howard Stern show, here’s the first on-air reference to Suburbarazzi’s exclusive interview with Norris in Eastchester:


Later that day, Howard 100 News reporter Steve Langford interviewed me for a Howard 100 News brief that first aired at 5:37 p.m. Jan. 3:


Hooray for technology!

(AP Photo/Richard Drew)