LoHud celebrities go iPhone crazy!

iphone.jpgOver the holidays, I’ve been hemming and hawing like Hamlet over whether to get an iPhone. The dilemma boils down to this: Come MacWorld Expo in mid-January, is Steve Jobs going to unveil a brand new version of the gadget? iPhone 2.0, complete with GPS, faster 3G connectivity, and of course 16GB of storage? Yes, I’m a geek. And yes, I’ve decided to wait it out. But in the meantime, I can’t get enough of these iPhone rumors, and in the process of searching for them, I also happened to stumble upon a bunch of stories about Lower Hudson Valley stars who have joined the cult of multitouch. Here are just a few of the ones I found:

Bill Clinton: A guy named B. Ioffe broke the news the Chappaqua resident got his iPhone directly from Steve Jobs. How exactly did Ioffe learn this? By asking the former prez to sign the back of his iPhone, of course (go to the link above for a pic of the signed phone). The Unofficial Apple Weblog also makes a funny observation: “If ex-Veep Al Gore is on Apple’s Board of Directors, why didn’t he snag his old buddy an iPhone himself?”

Rosie O’Donnell: In an interview with Switched, a blog devoted to gadgets and the digital life, the South Nyacker says that she (and her partner Kelli) go everywhere with two gadgets: a Nextel walkie-talkie phone and the iPhone. If stranded on a desert island, Rosie/Kelli says, “I would bring my iPhone. You can do just about anything — from e-mailing and surfing the ‘Net to listening to music, watching movies, and taking photos — on it. What more do you need? Well, besides someone to share it with on the island!!!!”

Me, I’m not so sure. That is, unless iPhone 2.0 comes with a built-in swiss army knife (sort of like the one from this classic Conan O’Brian skit). Oh, and Stevie J., if you’re listening, a flint wouldn’t hurt either.

(AP Photo/Jason DeCrow)

Sorkin’s ‘Farnsworth Invention’ likened to ‘an animated Wikipedia entry’

farnsworth.jpgIt’s a good thing Aaron Sorkin is Jewish, because he got the equivalent of a half dozen lumps of critic coal after the debut of his new Broadway play, “The Farnsworth Invention,” which came out at the beginning of this month.

The play is about the birth of the modern TV set and let’s just say that it was met with about as much warmth as Sorkin’s last foray into TV land, “Studio 60.”

NY Times critic Ben Brantley ripped the Scarsdale native a new one, comparing the production to “a classroom presentation on a seven-figure budget.” Actually it was even harsher than that:

<blockquote><div>With billionaire parents now producing bar mitzvah celebrations and sweet-16 parties as if they were major motion pictures, it’s only a matter of time before this spare-no-expense approach is applied to their kids’ school projects. The resulting effort might well be something like ‘The Farnsworth Invention.'</div></blockquote>

He goes on to say “you’re likely to leave ‘The Farnsworth Invention’ feeling that you have just watched an animated Wikipedia entry, fleshed out with the sort of anecdotal scenes that figure in “re-enactmentsâ€? on E! channel documentaries and true-crime shows.”

Slate wasn’t any nicer: “It’s typical that Sorkin wrings optimal tension from the mission-control countdown—and also that the play ends before liftoff.”

Fortunately, there was one holiday surprise for the LoHud native: “Charlie Wilson’s War” nabbed a Golden Globe nomination for best screenplay. Undoubtedly that means his chances at winning his first Academy Award are rising, too. Ho, ho, ho.

(‘Farnsworth Invention’ photo of Jimmi Simpson, left, as Philo T. Farnsworth and Hank Azaria as David Sarnoff; AP Photo/Boneau/Bryan-Brown, Joan Marcus)

Last-minute stocking stuffer tip: Trump cologne on clearance at TJMaxx

Yes, you know it’s a sign of your falling celebrity cred with your over-hyped fragrance, like everything else in your over-hyped empire, arrives in the bargain bins with a stickered price of $8, down from the suggested retail of $48.

As BloggingStocks summed it up: “The signs have been there for awhile: rampant overexposure, a feud with Rosie O’Donnell, declining ratings on ‘The Apprentice,’ a falling stock price on Trump Entertainment Resorts, a terrible book with the clown of personal finance, Robert Kiyosaki, and an appearance on World Wrestling Entertainment. But now it’s all over.”

EXCLUSIVE: Fanning the Flames with Fire


Over the summer, the Nyack-based rapper Lucky Me drew attention to his music by talking about drugs, Uggs, and slices of pizza in New City. When we included Lucky Me as one of our People of the Year, several readers informed us of another incendiary act from Nyack—Fire.

The 23-year-old, raspy voiced artist (Gregory Dubuisson on the dotted line) has been penning rhymes since he was 12-years-old and started passing out demo CDs back in his days at Nyack High School. He launched a MySpace page last year, which connected him to several promoters who got him gigs in Manhattan and Atlantic City, opening for Saigon at one point (Entourage fans will remember Saigon, who lives in Nanuet, as Turtle’s protégé). Fire has a deliberate, confident flow, and a gravelly voice that exudes character, but a few of the themes that pop up in his songs—sex, violence, contempt for the law—are bound to cause a stir among some Nyack residents. Especially nettlesome is a song where Fire slams the police, repeating a refrain that talks about proffering an insolent middle finger and a gesturing with his crotch. But more on that after the jump.
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Hulk Hogan hates on Rosie O.

hulk-hogan.jpgSooner or later, it seems, every A-, B-, and D-list celebrity will be forced to weigh in on where they stand on South Nyack resident Rosie O’Donnell. The latest to sound off is Hulk Hogan, who, at a press day for his new show “American Gladiators” was asked which celebrity he’d most like his gladiators to pummell.

“Without a doubt Rosie O’Donnell,” he said. “Somebody needs to shut that big mouth up.”

Rosie’s response, via her r blog in a post inexplicably titled “Dead in Iraq”:


hulk hogan
the wrestler guy
wants to pummel me
isnt that sweet
and wildly odd

its like a gang of gross guys
a club almost
old dumb white and on tv


Hulk Wants to Pummel Rosie … and Not in a Good Way” [TMZ.com]

(AP Photo/Matt Sayles)

EXCLUSIVE: A Martha Stewart Roast, without the main course

tish.JPG These days it might seem like Martha Stewart and Katonah couldn’t be any cozier if they were cuddling in a color-coordinated pillow and duvet set, but Katonah resident Bill Tisherman is still taking a few more jabs at the business magnate/ baking queen via YouTube. Tisherman (“Tish” to anyone but Martha) recently posted several video clips from “The Martha Stewart Roast,â€? an amateur comedy show and wine tasting sponsored by his company, Wine For All.

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More Bjork goodness: a new music video by Michel Gondry

Just this morning, when we announced the Rockland native as No. 22 on our “People of the Year” list, we wondered when her next bizarro artistic move would take place. We didn’t have to wait long.

Witness the freaky awesomeness of her new video for “Declare Independence.” If you’ve ever wondered what it takes to immobilize a small army, you now know: a cannon shooting silly string in a kind of cat’s-cradle/puppet-master mish-mash. Fantastico!


How Bill Murray “owns” the X20 bar

I’ve been meaning to post this for a long time now, but somehow I misplaced the original post. Again, I blame Media Temple for everything.

The always brilliant Esquire writer Tom Chiarella had a great column back in September all about Sneden’s Landing comedic god Bill Murray. In it, he recounts more or less the same type of run-in I had with Bill Murray a few months earlier at X20. As with my experience, Murray was instantly likeable and just as any lifelong fan would imagine him to be in real life—a ball-busing, wise-cracking riot. Here’s part of Chiarella’s account:


Murray was drinking lemon juice, with cayenne pepper in it, and maybe something else — I don’t remember — like a splash of maple syrup. He said he was coming off a fast. It made him look ragged. Every time he sipped the drink, he raised his eyebrows, pinched his lips, and glanced sideward. Only then did he look like the movie guy. I kept thinking, What makes this guy so watchable?He looked bolted to the frame of the world, like he controlled the space he stood in. He was completely aware of everything around him, even me watching him in the mirror. After a while, I nudged into the conversation and asked about the time he had playfully taunted my friend in the middle of a golf game — something about not spilling orange Gatorade on his white shirt.

Bill Murray looked at me hard. I actually felt a little scared, not because the question was inappropriate, but because the moment was so in his control that I didn’t have the least little idea what he was about to say. I hadn’t even asked a question, but I was waiting for an answer. “That wasn’t about golf,” he said. I believed him. He had something.



Nicely done. Couldn’t have summed it up better.

The rest of Chiarella’s piece—one of his new “Influence” columns for the magazine—is even better. After the Murray encounter, he seeks out Jeff Daniels to give him a lesson on having “presence.” And The Dude abides. Awesome.

I  don’t know if literary “presence” is as elusive or desirable as Muray’s live-action variety, but Chiarella certainly has it. Another case in point: His brilliant profile of Halle Berry, written entirely by Berry and heavily annotated by Chiarella. Quite simply, it’s the most fascinating, revealing celebrity profile I’ve read. Ever. And it does all this without revealing anything remotely newsworthy about Halle. Here’s the link to the online version, but trust me: You really need to see this one in print.

OK, wait, somehow this post has metastasized from a Murray thing into shameless ass-kissing of a non-LoHud writer. I’ll stop.

“How to Own the Room” [Esquire]

‘Wit’ meets Botox: Joan Rivers’ new autobiographical play

joanrivers.jpgCan’t get enough Joan Rivers? Lucky you, the former Larchmont resident is going to be starring in her very own autobiographical play titled—what else?—”The Joan Rivers Theater Project.” Set to open February 13 at the Geffen Playhouse, the play will be a four-character act set inside her dressing room immediately before an awards show. According to Variety, “Rivers takes a look at aging, life’s ups and downs, and being a woman in Hollywood.”

Wait, wait, hold on a sec. Rivers in a dressing room before an awards show? What about that is remotely autobiographical? When has Rivers done anything before awards shows other than accost celebrities or crack wise on her VH1 blog?

Still, for those who want Joan, Joan, and more Joan (and just for good measure, a fourth Joan), this play foots the bill. While I’m not a lifelong fan, after reading her hi-larious liveblogging of this year’s Emmy Awards, I’m a little intrigued. Anyone in LA out there who had a chance to see the play while it was being workshoped at San Francisco’s Magic Theater in August? Any good?

(AP Photo/ Max Nash)

Duel of the Week: Oprah vs. Streisand

oprah-streisand.jpegIt’s been a while since we threw down our dueling gauntlet here on Suburbarazzi, but this post over on our sister blog, Politics on the Hudson, has all the makings of a mega-celebrity death match. Yes, Oprah vs. Streisand.

After Barack Obama’s campaign announced that Winfrey would join him on the campaign trail in the coming weeks, Clinton fired back today with news that Babs Streisand would be coming out to support her. As the Streisand endorsement said, “Hillary Clinton has already proven to a generation of women that there are no limits for success. She is driven by her passion for public service and her belief in the enormous potential of our country. Smart, capable and strong in her convictions, Hillary has transcended the dictates of what is thought to be possible for our time. â€?

That’s so sweet! Now, if only anyone other than Rosie O’Donnell cared a bit who or what Streisand endorses, maybe it would make a bit of difference.

“Top that Obama! Clinton gets Streisand” [Politics on the Hudson]

(AP file photos)

Milo Ventimiglia denies dating Hayden Panettiere

Ever since they were caught grinding at a post-Emmys party, “Heroes” stars Milo Ventimiglia and Hayden Panettiere have been rumored to be off-screen sweethearts. Our official tally of the evidence showed that the likelihood of the rumor being true was greater than zero (+2 to be exact). But, as Ventimiglia told People mag, “She and I are close friends. It’s only natural that people are going to couple us together.” In fact, he isn’t the only denying the rumor. James Kyson Lee, aka Ando on “Heroes,” also told the magazine, “The rumor is not true. Let’s just end it there.”

Me thinks doth protest too much, but fine, we’ll drop the issue. For now.

(Photo: NBC Universal)

Bill Murray back for more Ghostbusters!

01gi_cover172.jpgVenkman: We’re the best. We’re the beautiful. We’re the only Ghostbusters.

Ray: We’re back!

Well, sort of. It’s not quite the same as it was in that quote from Ghostbusters 2. We’re not looking at a Ghostbusters 3. But, happily, Murray, Ramis, and Aykroyd are reteaming for Ghostbusters the video game. According to soon-to-be published December issue of Game Informer magazine, the boys are working together to script and voice the game, which is due out next year.

Aykroyd even even said, “I’m actually going to have to perform and do some motion capture for them.” No word on whether Murray (who lives in Sneden’s Landing) will be shooting any scenes with his old buddy Ramis, but as I learned from this excellent profile of Ramis by Tad Friend The New Yorker, that doesn’t seem likely. Despite Murray being godfather to his Ramis’s daughter, the two have been trapped in a toxic friendship ever since collaborating on “Groundhog Day.”

One thing I would really like to see in the video game: an animated version of how Aykroyd describes Murray’s erratic behavior in recent years — what he calls “the Murricane.” If they can somehow add that into the Wii version, sign me up.