Remaking 'Dirty Dancing,' 'The Help' opens and more: Celebritology Live with Jen Chaney

Aug 11, 2011

Join Celebritology blogger Jen Chaney to gab about the latest celebrity gossip and pop culture news making waves across the Web.

Past Celebritology Chats

This week, you've been angry about the "Dirty Dancing" remake, concerned about the exposure of Kelly Rowland's breasts and many other things worthy of discussion.

I have to roll immediately after the chat to go do an interview, so let's get started.

Say it ain't so! How can one have a GLEE movie without Sue Sylvester?

Well, it is primarily a concert  movie that focuses on the musical numbers. So when you see the movie, it feels like less of an oversight than it would have if we didn't already know she was cut out.

But yeah, I wanted to see some Jane Lynch.

it seems almost every morning i end up clicking on the link i think should take me to the story you are giving a blurb about and instead get taken to some old celebritology post about the same person or movie but having nothing to do with the new story, and then have to go back and figure out which link will take me to the new information. I know you are after the almighty page views and clicks, but this is really annoying, the old stories are not relevant unless they are referenced somehow. news about viola davis adopting has nothing to do with "the help" lawsuit, there is no reason to mention it or link to that story. (and that is only the first example from this morning's mix, it is the same for every item every day. ugh

First of all, my apologies for making you click on things that aren't taking you where you want to go. We changed the format of the mix a while back -- this happened when Liz was still here, if memory serves -- and now write each item as a separate graph with a parenthetical link to the outlet that originated the story. The parenthetical link is the one that will send  you to the full story.

Within each graph, we may hyperlink certain names, movie titles, etc. that we have written about in the past, which is pretty common practice in most  blogs. I know it differs a bit from the way we did it in the original incarnation of the mix, though, so hopefully this explains the logic and will help you navigate it in a way that's more to your liking.

Thanks to Us Weekly, Rob Pattinson just gave me the final reason to skip "Breaking Dawn." The headline reads, "I 'Ruined' the Bed During Breaking Dawn Sex Scene."

Well, I don't think he, um, ruined it in the way you might be thinking.

Obviously provocative headlines like this will finally give the Twilight movies the attention they sorely need. I mean, they really have been ignored up until this point.

No Swayze? No wayze!

The first of many Dirty Dancing responses. And, also, a potential slogan for the T-shirts that will inevitably worn at the anti-Dirty Dancing Remake Rally.

I think it was much worse to have a movie which was partly about the Washington Nationals (How Do You Know? with Owen Wilson playing a Nationals pitcher) with no real Nationals in it. That really made me angry.

Maybe Ryan Zimmerman was booked?

I understand the desire to remake a movie if the technology allows it to be done better than the original. I can understand the desire to reboot a series if it's gone off of its tracks. I can understand the desire to remake a movie if the original was several decades (as in more than 4) old. But I don't understand the desire to remake a movie that almost all of the cast is still alive for, that technological advances don't make a difference for and that is still shown on TV every other weekend. To me Footloose and Dirty Dancing don't need to be remade- the idea of youthful independence still is true whether the cast is now in its 40's and 50s or not. This reeks of obvious moneygrab to me, and they won't get a cent of my thirtysomething-year old money.

I mostly agree with you, although I still have qualms with remakes of some movies that are more than four decades old. Anything that was close to perfect and/or is revered as a classic in some day -- like "Casablanca" or "The Wizard of Oz" -- should not be touched, in my view.

Also, in some rare instances, remakes of recent movies can actually turn out well. My big example of this is "Let Me In," the remake of "Let the Right One In," which in some ways I liked more than the original.

But Dirty Dancing, for the reasons you wisely mentioned, should be left alone. It's hard for me to imagine doing anything but damage to it.

Who are the actors/actresses we will consider for these roles?

Let's see ... no one? And then also ... no one?

Seriously, does anyone have ideas about this? Jennifer Grey was great, but Swayze in particular seems impossible to recast.

Singing the Powerpuff Girls song, which I'd never actually heard before. Thanks, Jen!

You are very, very welcome. Your life has undoubtedly been brightened as a result.

Do celebrities' agents check places like the Celebritology blog in order to see how many people have left comments, and what the tenor of them is? They sure must be disappointed when their client gets (0) comments!

Good question. I know that PR companies must have Google alerts set up, because I often receive canned pitches about things I have recently written about shortly after posting them.

As in: "I saw you recently wrote about Zac Efron, so I thought you would like to know that Zac Efron drinks VitaminWater. VitaminWater is the choice of so many celebrities. Please feel free to use this photo of Zac Efron drinking VitaminWater in your upcoming coverage." **

As far as agents or publicists being concerned about a lack of comments, I would think they might be relieved on some level. It's better than a bunch of people weighing in to talk about how much they hate the person and refuse to see any movie/TV show said person appears in.

**Note: I have no idea whether Efron drinks VitaminWater. This was just a hypothetical example used to illustrate a point, a point I made while drinking Coke Zero, the choice beverage for entertainment bloggers***.

***Coke Zero isn't the official choice beverage for entertainment bloggers.

what's wrong?


Is this a question? Or just a general voicing of one's desires?

And is it in French?

Actually, maybe this is what the Cooper comment meant.

It's with Vera Farmiga. And I do not believe it's in French. If it is, then we are going to spend a lot of time repeating the words monsieur and fromage and also imitiating Pepe le Pew, since that's about the extent of my knowledge of the language.

Julianne Hough and Mark Ballas? (If it were Derek Hough, there'd be a real Ick. Nast. factor).

Like you, my first thought was Dancing with the Stars.

Which just further drives home the reasons for not remaking the movie.

Hi Jen: do you think romantic and sexual behavior tends to be crazier and less conventional (more hook-ups and break-ups, infidelity, open relationships, multiple partners, looser definition of monogamy, etc) in Hollywood or do they just get more attention?

I think they just get more attention.

Unconventional sexual/romantic behavior among celebrities was hardly just invented. It's just that the Internet and social networking -- where anyone can immediately tweet about anyone famous they may have seen doing something saucy -- has made it much more difficult for people to keep those things private.

How about if we all just watch the classic musical film "Damn Yankees," based on the concept of the old Washington Senators (the ones who later became the Minneapolis Twins in 1960) winning the pennant because of a deal struck with the devil (the late, great Ray Walston)? No real Nats in it either, but at least a great flick! "Ya gotta have heart, miles and miles and miles of heart..."

Wait, it's old and classic? Ripe for a remake!

Jen, any chance the powers that be might be talked into inviting Liz back as a guest chat host for a Very Special Celebritology Live Reunion Chat? No video chat though. Every time a video chat replaces a text chat, God kills a puppy and a kitten.

Oh, is that what happens when we do video chats? I thought that only made cherubic angels weep.

Since Liz now works for a competing outlet, I am not sure how or if that would work. I'd love to have her back on with me. Maybe we can forge some sort of partnership.

Did you find out about him the way I did, through Adam Levine's Twitter? Odd that nobody knew something happened to him until a day later. I know he's not a major star, but being beat up and hit by a cab in NYC seems like news you'd hear about.

No, I didn't catch it until other outlets started to pick it up. Sometimes, even in the digital age, news is slow to disseminate. Not often, but occasionally.

The summer movies this year have been awesome. Captain America was fantastic ( although I could have done with a bit more footage of Chris Evan's pecs and less of Samuel Jackson as Nick Fury... ) and Rise of the Planet of the Apes even with it's slightly flawed script was great. Now I'm thinking I might just as well see the Smurfs movie and make it a perfect trifecta -- any advice ?

I still haven't seen "Captain America" -- I was at Comic-Con when it screened and was released -- but I was pleasantly surprised by "Rise of the Planet of the Apes," too.

As for Smurfs, I suspect the odds of a pleasant surprise there are slim. Maybe try Winnie the Pooh (which was very sweet) if you want to see an unexpectedly decent family film?

<smallvoice>I have never actually seen Dirty Dancing.</smallvoice>


It's okay. We all have at least one everyone-has-seen-it movie that somehow we still haven't seen.  Hmmm ... perhaps fodder for a Friday List?

Bristol Palin!

"No one puts Bristol in a corner?"

You're really trying to pour additional gasoline on an already raging fire, aren't you?

Me too!!!

Good to know. Is it because you can't secretly watch them at the office? Text chatting is much easier to do clandestinely.

you need some chocolate

Oh, is that what my problem is? I was wondering...

Ohhh, I love her...just watched "Source Code" which was just eh, but I found her mesmerizing. Julianne Hough certainly is destined to be a movie star (she was the best thing in "Burlesque"...the camera loves her) but I almost think she's too "big" to even bother with what will likely be a really crappy re-make. They should cast some of the kids from "So You Think You Can Dance." They are talented and hot and relatively unknown.

Farmiga is a wonderful actress, agreed.

Hough is also starring in the movie version of "Rock of Ages." She might be great, but it's so obvious to cast Dancing With the Stars people in a Dirty Dancing remake.

I suspect they'll go with total unknowns, based on what Kenny Ortega said.

I was surprised when I heard there was to be a remake of "Dirty Dancing"-- I mean Why? The real one is great, why do it agin? Is it lack of creativilty, laziness,etc...? Then I realized that it came out over 20 years ago. When did that happen? does this happen to all of us that are over 50? Imagine my shock when I found out my neigboor's kid, a 17 year, old had never seen Ferris Beuller's Day off. REALLY! How could that be. I am now offically old at 54.

It happens to me and I haven't hit 40 yet.

Also, go talk to your neighbor's kid and straighten him out. He needs to be exposed to Bueller. You know, so he can learn how to con his unsuspecting parents.

Saw an item that Kris and Bruce Jenner just renewed their marriage vows after 20 years, and that the Kardashians were there because it was their mother. I'm confused, because I thought their mother had been married to Bruce back in his mid-'70s Olympics days, then they got divorced and she married attorney Robert Kardashian, who fathered the K sisters, while Bruce married someone else. So, WHO exactly remarried Bruce Jenner last weekend?

Okay, now you're confusing me.

Kris married Robert Kardashian in the '70s, they divorced in early '90s (I think?) and she later married Bruce Jenner.

Bruce Jenner was previously married, but not to his current wife. The K sisters are the daughters of Kris and Robert Kardashian.

If I have any of this wrong, please feel free to correct me, readers.

and hate video chats. typically, when an article is linked to and it indicates it's a video, I don't click on the link. I just want to read, don't want to watch videos. i get annoyed, then I see how long til it's over, and it rarely holds my attention, etc. But i just want to read the chats, that's all.

Interesting. Do other people also avoid watching video online? Just curious.

I know this may be the Summer of Babies, but the already-born children of celebrities are starting to spend as much time in the news as their parents. These children are becoming notorious on their own, with clear first-name-only references (Kingston, Suri, Romeo, Sunday, etc.). This is not only disturbing, when their antics are "worthy" of attention, but also a little boring. Pre-schoolers who shave their heads for the summer aren't news. Or are they really that interesting and I just don't get it?

Well, I think they make headlines for a couple of reasons. 1. Because people like to look at photos of celebrity kids, when they're babies and as they grow and start to look more and more like the famous people who birthed them. A little weird, maybe, but I think it's true.

2. I think people also love to criticize celebrity parents. So every time a famous kid wears something wacky or is out in public with a binky in her mouth at the age of 4, it's fodder for discussion.

In terms of what they're actually doing, independent from their parents? I don't think that anyone cares that much until they get old enough -- see Willow and Jaden Smith -- to launch their own careers.

And by old enough, I mean out of pre-school.

"Swayze in particular seems impossible to recast." Two words - Channing Tatum.

No offense to Tatum, but I am so not feeling that.

I have never made it to the end. I fall asleep. I actually like "film" , especially older films, foreign films, but just can't watch Citizen Kane. I used to be ashamed, but now it is kind of badge of honor.

It is a great film. You should give it another chance.

The way that it's shot alone is mindblowingly ahead of its time.

Of course, if it's truly a badge of honor for you, then don't watch it. But maybe you can find a new badge, like never having seen "Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo."

I've never seen Dirty Dancing, Pretty Woman, Footloose... On a more modern note, I've also never seen Titanic, any of the Lord of The Rings movies or Avatar...

Dang, that's a lot of big mainstream fare to have missed.

I'll watch videos online, but not video chats. They're just not very compelling most of the time. The Post employs writers -- I hope they'll just let you WRITE sometimes.

You want staff writers who merely write? Because that's asking a lot in the digital era, my friend.

I *will not* watch video on a news site. I hate it. The only online videos I watch are of the youtube variety. I do NOT want to watch talking heads (sorry, your head is lovely) nattering on about today's social trends.

Man, you all really hate online video. Or at least the news Web site kind.

The audio is still going when I click away after I hear the boss' footsteps. If she ever switches from heels to sneakers, I'm toast.

You're also toast if they ever fully carpet your office.

Shoot, guys! I gotta go. Vera Farmiga awaits.

Let's talk again next week.

In This Chat
Jen Chaney
An accredited Celebritologist, Jen focuses on pop culture news and trends in the entertainment world.

In addition to overseeing movie content for the Post's Web site, she also writes regularly about film, DVDs and stars of screens large and small.

When she isn't blogging or at the movies, she's ... um ... probably at home, watching a movie.

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