Celebritology Live with Jen Chaney

Aug 18, 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

... the upcoming Kim Kardashian wedding, the sad Russell Armstrong situation, the new "Blade Runner" movie, Kate Gosselin, Gerard Depardieu.

The options are endless. Let's begin.



Should be the next Bachelorette. Ratings Gold!

That was one of the options I did not consider in my "What should Kate Gosselin do next?" post. She has strongly hinted that she wants to do something in the reality-dating show arena, so that would make a lot of sense.

At the same time -- as implied in my piece this morning on reality stars -- maybe the best thing she could do for herself and her kids is to jump off that train and do something else with her time. It might be less lucrative, but probably more healthy.

Jen, I love your blog but there's something about the formatting that drives me insane. At the bottom of each blog post, there's a navigator for the latest entry and the previous entry. But the links are actually reversed! Previous entry goes forward, next entry goes backwards. I can manage because I click on the story I want but everytime I do it I curse you just a little bit. "Previous: David Cross and Amber Tamblyn are engaged Next: Watch: Daniel Radcliffe in ‘The Woman in Black’ trailer" If you or the IT folks over there could fix that, I promise to stop muttering about it under my breath. My coworkers thank you.

Thanks for your note about this. I suspect it does this because the "next entry" hasn't been generated when I initially publish a post, if you see what I mean. But I agree, it's strange. And the formatting in the blog is a challenge, especially re: access to archival posts.

The good news is that I believe a lot of our blogs (hopefully this one included) will be getting redesigns in the near future. Hopefully that will make it far easier to navigate since the last thing I want is to make reading entertainment journalism difficult.

Can we all agree that not everything September 11-related is a worthy tale to tell? I just read about how Gwyneth Paltrow "saved" someone on 9/11/01 by making her miss her train to the WTC. I nearly barfed. I get it, it's a chance encounter that made you miss your train (Sliding Doors, anyone?). But still: I will lose my breakfast a lot in the next few weeks if this level of story continues.

I linked to that one in the a.m. mix even though, to your point, the way it was played on People and other sites sold the story as something more than it was. (I also the fact that it involves Gwyneth tends to make it more likely to induce barfing among some people.)

Do I get credit for not writing an entire separate item on it? No? Not so much?

For the record, can I just say how adorable Mr. Cooper is? Please?

Your statement has been duly noted on the record. 

I recently read something about Angelina Jolie being so thin that it is actually a distraction on-screen. I have noticed the same thing about some other actresses, such as Sarah Jessica Parker. SJP has always been skinny, but as she gets older, she starts to look more and more gaunt, bony, and sharp. Angelina Jolie looks at least 10 years older than she is. Do these actresses not realize that gaining a few lbs. actually makes them look better and younger -- which should be a good thing in Hollywood-land?

I am pretty sure no one in Hollywood thinks gaining weight is a good thing, even though both women you mention could do so without diminishing their looks.

Having seen both women in person, they are definitely wispy but did not look unhealthily bony, if that means anything.

Never having watched "Mad Men", I first saw Christina Hendricks on-screen just recently in "Life as we know it" on HBO. And I wondered ... why is she portrayed in the media as "plus-size"? She is actually trim (and the camera adds 10 lbs.!), she just has a ginormous chest.

She is definitely not plus-size in my eyes. But she is curvy, which makes her stand out in Hollywood, for the reasons mentioned in the previous post.

Jen, You made me SO happy yesterday! As a late comer to the Gossip Girl boat (Ed Westwick brings the pretty so well...), I was over the moon with the news that Taylor Momsen is retiring from "acting." Now if someone would just chop off that ratty hair of hers, I could float happily through the rest of August. Thanks!

You're welcome. (I think?)

Ha, great interview, Jen! So, if you could be a journalist during another time period, which era would you choose? :)

Oh, thanks. That was actually a fun Q&A to do.

Re: the time period question -- I'll say the '80s since that tends to be my stock answer for everything. Also, there was no Internet journalism then. Which is bad for a lot of reasons -- I love the interactivity of the digital medium and the way it allows us to tell stories in multidimensional ways we simply can't do in print. But I suspect without it, I would have had more time to actually inhale and exhale.

And sometimes oxygen intake is a good thing. Or so I am told.

Yay! Another redesign! Woohoo!

Now, don't freak out on me. This isn't a massive overhaul on the level we went through site-wide earlier this year. This would just be a way to make it easier to find posts, etc. within the blog.

I don't even know when it's happening, exactly. So for now, please enjoy Celebritology in its current antiquated format.

If it ain't Harrison Ford, I ain't going.

If it's a sequel, Ford could be in it. If it's a prequel, not sure how that would work.

In any case, it seems like his character would have to figure in, at least tangentially.

I don't know who he is, but seeing the name made me this of Liz's awesome cat, Andy Kelly who was often pictured being charismatically feline.

The person was referring to Anderson Cooper of CNN fame.

If I can, I will post a dog photo shortly to make up for the lack of cat photos. I'm working from home today and have more access to pics of my beagle.

Didn't we all know this was going to happen to one of the reality shows sooner or later? It's terrible.

Well, other reality stars have died before. But in terms of a suicide that seems, at least in some way, to be connected to the strain of becoming a public figure, this is one of the more high profile cases I can remember.

It is very sad, especially since he wasn't the one necessarily playing the starring role here. Obviously he could have tried to say no and not be on the show, but it's pretty tough when the point of the program is to show the home lives of these women.

It's a very stark reminder of what being a public figure can do to a person, assuming, again, that played a role in whatever was going on with Armstrong.

Well, to be fair, the story appears to be from the woman who was "saved," not Goopster self-promoting...

True. And -- to respond to those who criticize Paltrow for almost hitting the woman with her car -- the woman was jaywalking and Paltrow managed to stop in time. That could happen to anyone.

Let's have more video chats while we're at it.... Note to washingtonpost.com management, I was joking. Video chats are evil and stupid and evil.

Oh, I forgot to mention -- the entire blog is going to be nothing but one continuous video chat from now on. Hope you enjoy it.**


**Note: I am kidding. That's not going to happen.

Not sure how Celebritology-ish this is, but AMC is replaying Mad Men on Sunday mornings seasons 1-4. That show is better the second time around, like Thanksgiving leftovers.

We frequently write about Mad Men here, so it's very Celebritology-ish. Thanks for the head's up.

The eps are also available via Netflix streaming now, too, should you decide to spend your entire weekend laying on a sofa while staring at Don Draper. Which is hardly the worst way one could spend a weekend.

He could play the father of his future self.

Yeah, a sequel clearly makes more sense in terms of a Ford inclusion.

Although this is sci-fi, so there's always some wiggle room in terms of logic...

Shia LeDouef could reprise Harrison Ford's role hunting down paparrazzi and throwing coffee on them. Let's call it Latte Runner.

I love it! Hey, let's throw some huge robot-replicants in it, too. The kids love that stuff.

Please get a better hairdo, Jen. I recommend something past your shoulders, and blonde. Thanks. Also get contacts, a deeper brown, or go blue. Just trying to help you out...

I will admit that is not my best hair moment. That picture was taken three or four years ago, on a day when I was wearing no make-up and did not realize there was some stray stick-uppers on one side of my head.

That said, the way I looked three or four years ago still seems like an improvement on the present to my hypercritical eyes. (Aging sucks.) So I leave the photo as is.

But thank you for your suggestions. 

It destroyed his business and his reputation, and his mom says recently he says he couldn't survive another season. I'd say it played a major role.

That's certainly a fair assumption. Since I never talked to the guy and he can't speak for himself -- and apparently did not leave a suicide note -- we don't totally know the truth.

But it's hard to imagine that the show had no impact on him emotionally. It had to have affected him, and it's sad to hear from his other family members who believe that it did.

OK, we do a series where a dissident Mormon marries both Kate Gosselin and Octomow, and the series shows the hilarious situations this family has as they settle into a mansion in Beverly Hills.

"Come and listen to my story about a lady named Kate..."

This sounds horrible. Which is another way of saying that a reality show producer will probably pursue it.

Do you think there is a suicide clause in the Bravo contracts that would prevent them from showing scenes involving the deceased or stating that they are still allowed to used footage even if one of the actors/actresses commits suicide? If there isn't one I am sure they will add one now.

That's a great question. I would think there is some kind of clause that removes them from liability for some things that may happen in the participants' personal lives, but I have no idea if something like suicide would be covered.

It would be a really interesting case if Armstrong's family actually does file suit. On the face of it, it doesn't seem like Bravo is at fault. But if there's evidence that they were encouraging arguments within the marriage or pressuring the Armstrongs to live at a certain income level, it might have a bit more merit.

In the immediate future, I am more interested to see what happens with the airing of the series. It's supposed to premiere in a few weeks and I can't see that happening without a major retooling of footage, assuming there is stuff in there about the Armstrongs' marriage further falling apart. And I have to assume there is.

Was there a lull in question submissions while we all scrolled to the top of the page to analyze your photo?

Sigh. Probably.

See, this is why women get plastic surgery . We're scrutinized and told to change our hair, eye color and such. Then the next thing you know we've got fake lips and cheeks Botoxed to epic, frozen proportions.

Did you see it? Did you read the book first? I liked the book but didn't adore it and am trying to decide if it is worth the full price ticket this weekend.

I did see it a while back because I wrote a piece on Tate Taylor, the director, and Octavia Spender.

I had not read the book, but I had read a lot about the book, so I knew the basic plot (not to mention the issues it raised) before seeing the movie.

Some of the film is a bit hokey. And I also understand why some are offended by the whole "white savior rescues black women" construct, although I thought the story was a bit more nuanced than that. But it was certainly entertaining and often moving. And Viola Davis is extraordinary, as always.

I never pay full price for anything so I am a bad person to ask. But I think it's worth seeing.

How long will the Kardashians be "famous"? I'm already shocked they've lasted in the limelight this long, but based on previous reality stars and their inevitable falls, what do you forecast for this annoying family?

I think Kim K. will be famous for a long time. People are very interested in her, either openly or secretly. The amount of online curiosity about her wedding is testament to that.

I expect the other Kardashians may not attract as much attention once their various series end. (And they will, eventually.) But Kim will probably maintain some level of celebrity, I suspect.

I don't care what Kate does next as long it does not involve her kids on camera. What happened to Mr. Armstrong should send a STRONG signal to Kate about the possible harm to her kids. Not that won't need therapy anyway now that they don't have cameras following them around (and still have Kate for a mom).

I hear you, epjd. The thing is, though, that since those kids entered the spotlight, they will always remain celebs, just on a more minimal level. Five years from now, if not less, there will be stories about where the Gosselin kids are now.

The minute one of them screws up or makes a mistake or (God forbid) gets arrested, that's a news story.

Even if Gosselin bails out of the reality show biz, that focus can't be undone. Diminished, yes, but not undone. But diminished is a better alternative to continually heightened.

I loved the book and thought the movie did justice to it. I did pay full price and to me it was worth it.

Okay, cool. Thanks for weighing in.

If you don't know why an older Harrison Ford can't be in a Blade Runner prequel, sequel, or remake, you don't understand the movie.

I will admit that it has been a really long time since I watched Blade Runner and need to refresh my memory in a major way.

But I know what you're getting at re: replicants and I don't want to say anything more lest I issue a spoiler for someone who gets all crazy about someone spoiling a movie from almost 30 years ago.

It is totally awesome that you decided to post that obnoxious hairdo comment. It shows you don't take yourself too seriously and have a sense of humor. You should see my new driver's license picture... eyes 2/3s closed but the clerk said if the computer accepts it, it is OK. Of course I didn't get to see the picture until the whole process was already completed.

My driver's license says I'm still 23 and weigh 100 pounds. I mean, that's okay, right?**

**Note: I am joking. My license does not say that.

Did you watch Russian Dolls last week on Lifetime? One of the woman says she is 23 years old, but looks 35 and not in a good way. I'll be watching tonight!

I did not watch it. Is this woman a Russian cousin of Courtney Stodden, by chance?

Oh, for those kids' sake, I hope she doesn't do a dating show. I can think of few things more horrifying than having your mom's dating exploits on TV for all to see. Yick.

That reminds me of one of my favorite George Costanza quotes, as stated to Estelle Costanza when she announced she was back on the dating scene. 

'You're not out there. You can't be because I am out there. And if I see you out there, there is not enough voltage in this world to electroshock me back into coherence."

And every 5 years after that. And every single milestone.


...where's the beagle pix? (BTW the LW who commented on your hair-do needs to visit the Web Hostess chat to learn some on-line manners.)

Ack, it's going to take me long to find one and pub it. I'll try to do it in advance for next week's chat.

(I don't know why you guys love looking at mine and Liz's pets, but hey. I will try to accommodate.)

Wesley Snipes said he would be interested in reprising his role in Blade Runner? He was in it? How old is that guy (or is this another replicant reference)

Are you thinking of Blade? 

Since Snipes is in prison right now, I suspect he's interested in doing a lot of roles once he gets out.

I'm not really sure what I want to talk about, but my manager and 6 others got fired today and I'm in a bad place. Make me laugh please!

Oh man, that's terrible. I'm so sorry.

Maybe go watch the Anderson Cooper video posted earlier in the blog? That might make you giggle.

*************non spoiler alert****************** because, unlike the previous poster and all the other "ooooh, let's make the story more complex and nuanced than it is" conpiracy theorists, Decker isn't a replicant, either in the original story or the movie. Phillip K. Dick's major constructs was to force readers, through his characters, to question the nature of reality and perception. just becasue he raised the issue of whether Decker's perception of his mortality was different than the replicants doesn't mean that there was ever any intent to impy that Decker might be one of them. <end rant/sermon> that is all.

I have gotten several responses to the Decker Blade Runner issue. Everyone has a different theory. 

And if my admittedly shaky memory serves, the film is really open to interpretation. (Great. Now I have to rewatch Blade Runner this weekend.)

But what I now know for sure, and already kind of knew, is that there is enough interest in the Blade Runner story to justify another film.

I thought maybe it was someone chanelling the Millionaire Matchmaker lady. She says stuff like that.

Might have been. Hard to tell. 

You just referred to "Blade Runner" as "a movie from almost 30 years ago.' I hate you.

Hey, I don't feel good about it either.

I keep looking for a "Lost" revival on the list of new series. There isn't going to be one, is there, no matter how much we wish, is there?

They are heavily promoting "Once Upon a Time" as a "Lost" successor because some "Lost" vets are involved in it. I haven't seen it yet so I am not sure if it's a worthy replacement.

But the idea of replacing "Lost" seems impossible. Surely we can find a show that we like as much but trying to find a replica -- to keep that replicant theme going -- is sort of pointless, I think.

I'm not piling on, and I'm still a dedicated reader! But is it time to ditch the Lost Hub on the blog page? And some other blogs (GOG, I think, comes to mind) has a pic of Liz still when they link to Celebritology.

Well, at lest one person has moved on from Lost.

I suppose it might be. (The Liz pic should have been refreshed on GoG. At least I think.)

And on that note, I really have to roll. Thanks as always for your questions, comments and snarky albeit accurate comments about my hairdo from four years ago.

Sorry I couldn't answer everything. But I shall return next Thurs. at 2. See ya!

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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