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Bruce Springsteen to Release Autobiography, Born to Run

Thu, 2/11/2016 11:13 AM

Hold on to your handkerchiefs, Springsteen fans. On September 27, Bruce Springsteen will release his autobiography. The tome, fittingly entitled Born to Run, will be published in hardcover, ebook, and audio editions by Simon & Schuster. The Boss has been secretly working on the autobiography for the last seven years, and according to the man himself, it’s a look inside his life and his head.

“Writing about yourself is a funny business,” Springsteen says in his book. “But in a project like this, the writer has made one promise, to show the reader his mind. In these pages, I’ve tried to do this.”

brucespringsteen.net (brucespringsteen.net )

According to his own website, in the book, Springsteen “describes growing up in Freehold, New Jersey, amid the ‘poetry, danger, and darkness’ that fueled his imagination. He vividly recounts his relentless drive to become a musician, his early days as a bar band king in Asbury Park, and the rise of the E Street Band. With disarming candor, he also tells for the first time the story of the personal struggles that inspired his best work, and shows us why the song ‘Born to Run’ reveals more than we previously realized.”

If you can’t wait for the book’s arrival, you can get your Bruce fix live: He’s currently touring with his E Street Band in support of his box set, The Ties That Bind: The River Collection. Click here for tour dates.

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Categories: Entertainment

Bellamy Young Teases the Return of Scandal and Mellie’s Run for President

Thu, 2/11/2016 10:02 AM

The outrageous behavior and over-the-top political situations that are Scandal continue when the hit ABC series returns tonight.

It’s been six months since Olivia (Kerry Washington) and Fitz (Tony Goldwyn) have broken up, and they are both handling their newfound freedom in very different ways with Olivia throwing all her energies into Pope and Associates and Fitz  working to secure his legacy.

Meanwhile, the race for president of the United States is underway and, even though she has only been a senator for a very short time, Mellie Grant (Bellamy Young) is one of the many contenders hoping to become the next Republican on the ballot.

“It’s fun to see where she’s going, what her game plan is, what allies she has, who she has left as friends, and who she reaches out to,” Young tells Parade.com. “It’s also fun in the larger context of everything that’s going on right now in our country in terms of campaigning. It’s unbelievably meta to have this going on. You shoot all day and then you come home and you watch the Republican debates.  It’s an opportunity that, of course, [creator/executive producer] Shonda [Rhimes] is seizing on with masterful aplomb. There’s a lot of fun stuff coming.”

Mellie has been through a lot since Scandal began. She has been cheated on, divorced, and her teenage son was murdered. It’s enough to give a girl a migraine, and that is something that Young knows about from firsthand experience.

She suffers from migraines, which start with a shooting pain in her left eye and she starts to lose her field of vision. In the past, it’s meant that she has had to go lie down and try, if possible, to get to sleep before the real pain comes, but that changed when she discovered Treximet last April.  She says it has made all the difference to her. It has freed her from the worry about the onset of a migraine.

“I’m lucky because my doctor and I have found a medicine that works for me, so if I can catch it before my vision has completely pinholed then I can break the cycle and have my life back,” she says, but cautions that not one drug works for everybody. “It’s important to keep a good dialogue with your doctor and know that there really might be something that makes you feel absolutely free to live your life again without worry and fear. That feels so different because it’s not just when you are having a migraine that keeps you a prisoner. It’s the fear of getting one, or the recovering from one because you sort of feel like a truck hit you after you go through that.”

During our chat, Young also talked about the “Molivia” relationship — how they are allies but not friends, how the role of Mellie was originally only going to be for three episodes, and her favorite Mellie storyline. Check it out below:

ABC/Craig Sjodin Scandal stars Bellamy Young as Mellie Grant. (ABC/Craig Sjodin)

How are Mellie and Olivia going forward?  They don’t really like each other but they need each other.

I know. I love Molivia. I have to say, I really am a fan. I love all those scenes together. I think, for me personally, because it’s the role I play, one of the great tragedies of the show is their never getting to be great friends because they have so much in common. It’s such a real crucible to be in the White House, to be in D.C. Actual friends are so few and far between.

I think definitely they are wedded on this path right now. Fitz is what brings them together, they both love him. He’s been both wonderful and horrible to them both. In spite of their really self-possessed, powerful selves, they still have fallen for it time and time again. Yes, they are not friends but they share so much and they are allies.

It will be interesting to see who can hold their boundaries, or when compassion will cut a little door in the fence, or when the wall will absolutely go up. I think it’s delicate but they’re definitely in each other’s lives for the long haul.

One of the things that I think has really helped Mellie is the filibuster that she did just before the hiatus. Going forward, how is that going to change the perception of her? It seemed like she earned a lot of people’s respect with that.

I hope so. I know she earned her own respect when she did that.  She definitely did not plan to do that and, I think that she had no idea that she was capable of doing that.  And often, that’s the most important thing. When we respect ourselves, then we walk through the world a little differently and we, in that way,  galvanize more respect in our direction.

It’s really interesting the growth that Mellie’s has had since Season 1 because at first she seemed like she was going to be a minor character, but she’s major.

It surprises me as well and I’m so grateful every day to be on this ride.  You’re right, I was hired the day before I worked. I had two lines in the pilot. When we got picked up, it was going to be a little, three-episode arc because Shonda wanted to write a presidential divorce. Then they just started writing beautiful stuff using Mellie as a wedge, like a real lever between Fitz and Olivia.

Every day I go to work, every time I sit down at a table read, Mellie evolves into a grander beast, has a ferocious heart, a limitless ambition, and is a very complicated woman, but with all this passion inside her that has so long been thwarted. She has so much frustration but now she’s free because they are divorced. This is a whole new chapter. I’m lucky enough to have a job at all, but to have a job that keeps surprising me and to get to do that job with beautiful hearted people is just the blessing of a lifetime.

Do you have a favorite Mellie storyline?

Gosh, my favorite is the worst. Losing her child, going through all of that was such a shock. That table read, and we have some doozies, but that one was the one that still makes me nauseous to even think about. That was such a hard table read. So much happened in that season finale. We were sitting in a sort of rectangle. Shonda, [executive producer] Betsy [Beers] and [executive producer] Tom [Verica] sit on one flap, and the writers sit across from them. Then on the other long side, the cast sits. Shonda just kept saying, “Don’t get excited, it’s just the end of act two.”  She’s like, “This is just act three.” She kept saying, “There’s more to come.” And there was.

They killed poor Jerry, and then when we came back in the fall and dealt with all of that. It took me a long time to understand the tone of it.  Shonda’s such a great boss.  She’s right there in the trenches with you, so you go back and forth and you find it together.

And [costume designer] Lyn Paolo, because definitely the look of smelly Mellie was 80 percent of the work. It was really freeing, especially after playing two years of very buttoned-up, judgy, protocol-driven Mellie, wearing her wronged woman like a badge.  For her to be completely unfettered was an unbelievable freedom.

One of the things that helped me get it was Shonda wrote in an email when we were going back and forth about this was, to Lyn actually in particular, Mellie’s never been more beautiful because she has never been more free. I just thought, “When do you get to spend two years being one thing and then start a new season and be something completely different?” So far that’s been my favorite to explore.

Scandal returns tonight at 9 p.m. ET/PT on ABC.

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Categories: Entertainment

Interview: Jo Frost Talks About Hitting the Road as the Nanny on Tour

Thu, 2/11/2016 10:01 AM

America’s favorite real-life TV nanny Jo Frost is back working one-on-one with families to solve their problems in the new UP series Jo Frost: Nanny on Tour.

Each week, Jo will travel to a new city and work with a family that desperately needs her expertise. Before she arrives, she will monitor the family’s behavior from her mobile RV office, via surveillance cameras which the family agrees to have placed throughout their home, gathering enough information to let her hit the ground running.

Jo will use the hard-earned techniques she acquired over years of hands-on experience, sincerity, love and humor, to pinpoint each family’s challenges and give parents practical tools that they can implement on their own.

After several years working abroad, Frost has returned to America. She sat down with Parade.com to talk about what she’s been doing in the interim, her new TV series, and how listening is an important tool for parents.

Did America fall apart while you were gone, and is that why you needed to come now to rescue us from bad parenting?

No. (Laughs)  As a parental educator/host, I needed to make sure I had the right network to facilitate helping families in need. So I worked in the U.K. and in Holland; and worldwide, I’ve been doing seminars. It was important to me to be able to make sure that coming back to America, we were on the same page to be a vessel for helping families with 21st Century issues, like anaphylaxis, or embracing technology for all the good that it does, but learning how to not let it disconnect us as a family.

Also, looking at all family members, not just what people have been used to seeing me do ten years ago with naughty toddlers. But actually looking at teenagers, and grandparents and their role as they’re now living with their kids, who have kids, in a home.

This time you’re working with children of all ages. Is there an age group that you find to be the most difficult?

No. It isn’t about being difficult for me. I think it’s about families and where they find it difficult. From observing a lot of families in America, they find the toddler years are very difficult and the teenage years, because it’s a time when they’re laying down all that fresh foundation.

Is there a general bit of advice that you can give to parents?

I don’t think we listen enough. Half of communication is listening first.

We know that your advice works. We’ve seen the successes.  But do people still ever say to you, you don’t have kids, it’s different?

Of course. There’s always going to be those families or even just individuals who can be quite defensive. They’re ready to  just shut it down, shut the doors, like, “What do you know?” I’ve spent thousands upon thousands of hours helping families. It’s just an attitude and a quick, very lazy sentence really to throw at someone like myself. If I spent time stopping at every rock that was thrown at me, I would never move on my journey, would I?

What kind of parents were your parents, and did you learn to parent from them?

No, my parents were young parents. Certainly they shaped the person that I am today. They were very loving and very connected. My parenting skills came from two decades of being in the field helping families and having the opportunity to work with hundreds of families of all different ages. [It also comes from] the makeup of who I am intuitively, the connection that I have with individuals, and being able to understand them and to have compassion, and the passion of being able to stick with it in their journey with them to help them get to that place and to listen. You have to be a good listener.

Jo Frost: Nanny on Tour airs Thursday nights at 8 p.m. EST on UP.

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Categories: Entertainment

Geometry is Important, Too!

Thu, 2/11/2016 5:00 AM

Jim Elliott in Staten Island, New York writes:

Thank you for your response to the question about studying algebra. (December 6, 2015) As a retired math department chairman and a mathematics teacher for 34 years, I know that the question of, “When are we going to use this?” has been brought up many times in all math classes across the country. Yes, you are not going to have to factor algebraic expressions nor solve quadratics, but you are going to have to think in a logical manner, solve problems by looking at them step by step, and reason with different options. Out of all the subjects offered in a high school curriculum, mathematics in general–algebra and geometry in particular–develop the thinking process in young people more than any other course. Logic leads us to solve algebraic equations in a step by step way, and geometric proofs use reasons and proven theorems to draw a conclusion. Students will be using these tools for the rest of their lives. Great answer! This is the first time I have seen this in print. Now if only middle and high school students would read it (and understand it!)

Marilyn responds:

I’m glad to see you mention the subject of geometry. I wholeheartedly feel the same way, but I didn’t think I could add the subject to my comments without taking too much space on the topic of–imagine–mathematics!

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Categories: Entertainment

Jadium – February 11

Thu, 2/11/2016 12:00 AM

How to play Jadium

Monday and Tuesday – 16 givens (Blueberry), Wednesday to Sunday – 4 to 15 givens (Coconut)

To solve online, copy the puzzle below (including the date), then click here for where to paste the copied puzzle. (Thanks to Kenneth R. Whitaker.)

February 11, 2016 __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ 66 __ __ __ __ __ __ 69 __ __ __ 41 __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ 08 __ 02 __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ 73 __ __ __ 45 __ __ __ __ __ __ 30 __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __


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Categories: Entertainment

Younger Recap: Liza’s First Chapter

Wed, 2/10/2016 10:30 PM

Liza is starting to feel her real age. Mostly in her shoulder. When she wakes up next to Josh, unable to raise her arm to a normal height, he takes her to the doctor, who diagnoses her with “40-year-old shoulder.” After listing a number of unsexy health issues that befall women of a certain age, the doctor tells her the shoulder will heal itself. But Liza’s ego remains seriously bruised.

At Empirical (a publishing house which you may have forgotten publishes books for non-millennials, too), Diana and Charles are wooing an uber-feminist writer named Hugh Shirley (David Wayne), who is so devoted to his cause that he straps on faux breasts to feed a real baby. His new book The Male Feminist is a hot commodity, and rival publisher Achilles has already made an offer. And though Achilles has earned a nasty reputation with authors and agents for dirty dealings, Diana brings her A-game to the meeting, which she concludes by telling Hugh he will be nothing less than the new Betty Friedan in her capable hands. Hugh accepts Empirical’s offer, but only if he can work with Diana…and get paid at 77 cents on the dollar for gender equality.

Over drinks, Liza and Kelsey discuss how to handle Jade, who has blown the last of her advance on a $1,200 diamond pacifier. In an attempt to cover for her friend, Liza told Charles they already had the first chapter of Jade’s non-existent book. As Kelsey is wallowing in defeat—and the possibility that Millennial may be finished before it started, since Jade’s advance was their entire budget—her nemesis, Brad Westlake (McKean Rand), walks in. The two were interns together, and now he’s taken his smug mug to Achilles. He tells the girls he’s not worried about backlash against the company because, “in the end, money always wins.”

Liza has a plan. Because they own the rights to Jade’s social media, and Jade posts every second of her life online, she can cobble together a first chapter for Jade’s book. “It’s like she’s been writing her autobiography 140 characters at a time,” she says. When Kelsey asks how she’s going to write the rest of the book, Liza tells her cryptically, “I may not have to.”

At the nail salon, Kelsey and Lauren read through Liza’s draft and agree it’s perfect. But Liza’s arm is not. When the manicurist tries to lift her hand, Liza yelps in pain, prompting the technician to tell her she’s suffering from “40-year-old shoulder.” (Is this for real a thing?) When Liza, worried her friends will overhear, tells her she’s not even 30, the manicurist assesses her hands and replies, “Who are you kidding?”

Does this show make anyone else judge their own hands? I’ve never been more paranoid about them betraying my own age than I have been since I started watching!

Meanwhile, Liza’s secret plan is in motion, and Kelsey and Lauren are onboard. Lauren leaks the fake first chapter to The Cut, which gets Charles’ attention. When he asks the girls how the fashion blog got ahold of their forthcoming tome, they say Jade must have leaked it herself. And while Charles is full of criticism for Jade’s writing ability (much to Liza’s chagrin), he doesn’t mind one chapter leaking. It piques interest.

Now it’s Kelsey’s turn at bat. She meets her old pal Brad Westlake for a drink, and after toasting their own success, she laments the leak, saying that Charles was pissed and that she had to convince him not to sell to one of the many bidders who tried to buy it out from Millennial. But, she adds, none of the offers were high enough anyway. Brad takes the bait. He says with the recent backlash, he’s been having trouble bringing in new authors. He asks Kelsey what offer they would accept. After a little fake argument, Kelsey tells him the magic number: twice Jade’s advance. He accepts.

At a different meeting across town, Diana can’t put up with Hugh Shirley’s girlie ways much longer. Frustrated by Hugh’s dinner conversation topics (getting rid of urinals because they give men too much power, the lack of appreciation for menstruation), she’s pushed to the edge when he tells her he wore a tampon for a day, just to know what it felt like. “That is so revolting,” she tells them. “Try as you may you can never know what it is like to be a woman.” Hugh weepily agrees, telling her he just wants to feel what it’s like to “get inside” women. Specifically Diana.

The two spill out onto the street, kissing and gyrating against a fence before calling a cab. But ever the feminist, Hugh is worried Diana is too drunk and tells her to think it through before sleeping with him. He doesn’t want to push her. Though she tries to thwart his overly sensitive efforts, he prevails and tells her he will call her tomorrow. “And when I say that, I mean it.” Once again, Trout Pout loses out.

Liza and Kelsey are celebrating the official sale of Jade’s memoir to Achilles, when they are approached by their boss. “Let me just clarify a few things before the Achilles lawyer calls me,” he says, before recounting what really happened: They never received any pages from Jade, Liza wrote the first chapter, which Kelsey then had Lauren leak to The Cut, “which somehow convinced Achilles [the book] was worth double what you paid for it.” But since everything in the chapter was culled from Jade’s intellectual property, owned by Millennial, the scheme—and the sale—were completely legal. And profitable. The girls just doubled their budget. And lost the dead Jade weight.

The only thing sweeter than success? Telling Jade she’s out. When she whines that she doesn’t want her book sold to Achilles, Kelsey uses Jade’s own line against her. “B—ch, there is no book!”

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Categories: Entertainment

Numbrix 9 – February 11

Wed, 2/10/2016 7:00 PM
Categories: Entertainment

Sneak Peek: American Idol Performances

Wed, 2/10/2016 5:48 PM

The American Idol Top 24 begin performing tonight, and Parade.com has a sneak peek at three of the 12 before they take the live stage.

Check out:

Jordan Sasser takes on Celine Dion in Hollywood!

La’Porsha Renae puts on her dancing shoes during her solo performance in front of the judges!

Thomas Stringfellow takes the stage for a moving performance in front of a live audience!

Then on Thursday, February 11, former Idols Ruben Studdard, Fantasia, Scotty McCreery, Lauren Alaina, Caleb Johnson and Nick Fradiani return to mentor and perform a duet with the 12 semi-finalists before the judges reveal which seven contestants will move forward in the competition and who will be going home.

The farewell season of American Idol continues each Wednesday from 8-9 p.m. ET/PT and Thursday from 8-10 p.m. ET/PT.

The season-long celebratory event will feature host Ryan Seacrest and judges Jennifer Lopez, Keith Urban and Harry Connick Jr., as they discover an Idol one last time, and pay tribute to the past 14 seasons of amazingly talented contestants and the millions of fans who phoned, tweeted, texted and championed their favorites.

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Categories: Entertainment

David Schwimmer Shares His Thoughts on Fame and Playing Robert Kardashian in The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story

Wed, 2/10/2016 5:32 PM

The new FX series The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story, examines the O.J. Simpson trial from the perspective of the lawyers. Based on Jeffrey Toobin‘s book The Run of His Life: The People v. O.J. Simpson, the series uncovers how each side worked behind the scenes to create their strategies. Along the way, we learn how they stumbled and prevailed.

David Schwimmer plays the late Robert Kardashian (aka the father of Kim, Khloé, Kourtney and Rob). The businessman, lawyer and close Simpson friend was part of Simpson’s high-profile defense team. Schwimmer appears with a dream cast which includes Cuba Gooding Jr., John Travolta, Sarah Paulson, Courtney B. Vance, Nathan Lane, Connie Britton, Selma Blair, Rob Morrow, Steven Pasquale, Evan Handler, Cheryl Ladd, Robert Morse and many more. To celebrate the 10-episode anthology, several of its stars gathered at a luncheon at the Four Seasons Restaurant in New York City.

David Schwimmer talked to Parade and other reporters about playing Robert Kardashian, his thoughts on the trial and how he handled his own fame after Friends.

What inspired you to play Robert Kardashian?

What appealed to me was the idea of mystery. How does a man choose to stand by a good friend when many people believe him to be guilty of terrible, terrible crimes? Also, given the fact that he was dear friends with Nicole, it was very complicated and messy. Robert Kardashian was very conflicted.

How much did you know about him?

I knew nothing about Robert Kardashian. I spoke to Kris Jenner about him for a couple of hours. When I learned that he was a very religious man of great faith, that held one of the keys to understanding how he could decide to stand by his friend and stick it out. Even when there might have been great uncertainty or doubt in his heart. Part of it was the idea that it was not for him to judge. It was just for him to love and stand by his friend. The more I learned about Robert, I discovered that he represents the conscience or the moral compass of the whole series.

Did you ever think there’d be a day where you’re playing Kim Kardashian’s father?

Never. It never occurred to me that I would play a Kardashian. But what’s really surprising is how different Robert is to whatever the perception is of what the Kardashian name means today.

We didn’t have a lot of scenes with the kids. But there is one in particular where suddenly Robert is famous. He became recognized overnight. There is a scene on Father’s Day where Robert takes the kids to Chin Chin, a restaurant in Los Angeles. It is packed. They can’t get a table but when the hostess recognizes him from the trial, suddenly they say, ‘oh, right this way, Mr. Kardashian,’ and they get seated. The kids are blown away saying, ‘oh, my God, my dad’s a rock star.’ You see the seeds where the writers wanted to plant the idea of the taste of celebrity. Whether he liked it or not, he became very famous.

The scene was also very personal for me. I remember very well when celebrity first came to me. It was not something that made me comfortable. It was almost painful. I didn’t like being treated differently than who I was. I just didn’t respond well to it. I didn’t understand why people were treating me as if I were special. I found that painful because I hadn’t changed. I didn’t like the idea that someone could suddenly get special treatment for doing nothing other than being on TV.

Where were you and what were you doing during the actual Bronco chase?

I was in Los Angeles because we were making the Friends pilot. It was 1994. And actually Cuba [Gooding Jr.], John [Travolta] and I were all talking at some point during production. We all realized that close to that time the three of us were having a career-defining moment. John had Pulp Fiction, Cuba had Jerry Maguire and I was starting Friends and not knowing whether we were picked up to be a series. It was a strange existence to be living a not very real life of: my gosh, is my career going to happen now? Is this happening? And then also living the reality of being in Los Angeles at this time, which was a time of great civil unrest, and a very challenging time for everyone.

How much did you know about the case?

I wasn’t one of those people that was obsessively watching the case as it unfolded day to day, There were a lot of details I didn’t know. Reading the book several times and doing research, we learned a great deal about the actual facts of the case. A lot of the evidence wasn’t submitted or allowed to be heard. And most importantly, all the politics and the hubris involved on both sides of the defense and the prosecution was all really illuminating. I had no idea how much was going on behind the scenes. One thing in particular is how much of the [Mark] Fuhrman material was not allowed to be heard and how much there actually was. It was unbelievable how much evidence there was on tape and how much was not admitted in court.

Were you familiar with Ryan Murphy’s work? [Murphy executive-produced The People v. O.J. Simpson, and directed some of of the episodes. The prolific screenwriter, director and producer is known for Glee, Nip/Tuck, American Horror Story and other series.]

I’m a huge fan. One of the reasons I wanted to do this was just to work with him. And Nina [Jacobson] and Brad [Simpson] as well—who are great producers.

It’s hard to predict but do you feel that the trial and outcome of the case would have been different, if it occurred closer to the present, especially with the social media that exists today?

That’s a good question. But I don’t think anyone can really answer that. It was the birth of tabloid journalism and reality TV. This was one of the first times an entire trial was televised. You felt like you were in the courtroom, and that was highly unusual. Judge Lance Ito made that decision. He didn’t have to let it be televised. I believe that changed the public’s reaction and response to the trial, which really divided the nation.

See a trailer below and click on the gallery to see photos from the luncheon.

The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story airs on FX Tuesdays at 10 p.m. ET.

Marion Curtis/Startraksphoto.com (From left) Courtney B. Vance, John Travolta, Sarah Paulson, Cuba Gooding Jr., David Schwimmer at a special luncheon at the The Four Seasons Restaurant (Marion Curtis/Startraksphoto.com )
Michael Becker/FX Networks David Schwimmer (Robert Kardashian) and John Travolta (Robert Shapiro) play two of O.J's defense attorneys. (Michael Becker/FX Networks)
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Categories: Entertainment

Up Close with Molesley: Downton Abbey’s Kevin Doyle on Bad Hair Days, Lady Edith and Fan Encounters

Wed, 2/10/2016 5:20 PM

With Season 6 of Masterpiece’s Downton Abbey in full swing and fans’ farewell fears building, I decided it was time to catch up with a few more actors from the hit series. Saying “good bye” to the Granthams and their team might not be easy, but it helps to have as many morsels of information as possible before the big send off. If there’s one man that’s experienced a huge shift from Season 1 to Season 6, it’s got to be Mr. Molesley. So I cornered actor Kevin Doyle a few hours before Downton Abbey snagged a SAG Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series, to find out more about his beloved character and living the Downton Abbey experience.

You can now binge watch all of Masterpiece’s Downton Abbey Season 6. Find out more.

Kevin Doyle describes his role as “kind of intermittent” for the first few seasons. When initially hired, the actor notes “there wasn’t any hint for sort of a longterm future for the part [of Joseph Molesley]. I think it was only meant to be for a few episodes.” But that changed as the show evolved, and later even Doyle’s castmates Phyllis Logan and Joanne Froggatt revealed that, were they forced to play a different role, they’d choose his. And Doyle follows the shake-it-up-a-little attitude of his colleagues, when asked the same question. Without hesitation, he picks the brooding, unlucky in love, but suddenly soaring Lady Edith. “I think she’s had the most fantastic story development over the last few years,” explains Doyle.

One of Molesley’s best moments on camera might have been his unfortunate encounter with a little hair dye in Season 5. His Grecian Formula incident resulted in Lord Grantham’s famous question—“Molesley, you look very Latin all of a sudden. Do you have Italian blood?” Of course when his hair turned blue, it only proved that even at the Abbey, too much of a good thing isn’t so good.

Did Kevin Doyle love that bad hair day storyline as much as we did? Perhaps, but the process wasn’t a pleasant one for the actor. “It was a pain actually,” Doyle says laughing. “The male members of the cast are normally in makeup for about 5 minutes. It’s the women who have got to be in at 6:30 in the morning to have their hair and what have you done, so they’re in the seat for hours. Whereas I’m normally in for two or three minutes. They throw some stuff on my face and that’s it and I’m ready to give a breakfast. So it was quite unusual for me to have to sit there for quite a while while they spray painted my head. And then they put lots of gunk in it when I had to sort of apply all of that stuff. I mean it was great fun to see the finished product, but it was a pain every day to have to have my hair sprayed.”

But bad hair days aside, Molesley does seem to have captured the attention and heart of Miss Baxter. Might they follow the Carson-Hughes trend and tie the knot? Doyle isn’t spilling the beans on any endings. “I think one of the nice things about the end of the show is that not everything is packaged up neatly and hand delivered to the audience.” Uh oh. Could this mean we won’t be getting a wedding invitation?

Parade readers have asked if the actor has had any amusing fan encounters given the popularity of his character. “People are always very generous and respectful,” says Doyle who admits that the funny encounters are plentiful on this side of the pond. I suggest I’d like to be a fly on the wall at Starbucks when the barista realizes the beverage being crafted is for Downton’s favorite coffee pourer. Doyle laughs with the same sensitive tone as Mr. Molesley, “It happens occasionally. Lots of double takes.”

Watch Masterpiece’s Downton Abbey’ on PBS Sundays 9 p.m. ET.

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Categories: Entertainment

The Amazing Race Host Phil Keoghan Gives You An Inside Look At Season 28’s First Leg

Wed, 2/10/2016 3:02 PM

Phil Keoghan hits the road at eleven o’clock in the morning. He sits shotgun in a sleek sedan, cruising northeast from Mexico City toward Teotihuacán, an ancient city flanked by pyramids, and the site of the first Roadblock challenge of The Amazing Race 28.

He spends the hourlong car ride practicing the pronunciation of the location. “Tay-oh-tay wah-con,” he repeats over and over again, quietly. It’s not Morgan Freeman uttering “Zihuatenejo” near the end of Shawshank levels of gravitas, but there’s gravitas all the same in the way Phil speaks the word, reading from a pocket-sized travel book containing scripts not just for the first leg of the race, but the whole season ahead. The scripts are a collaboration between a few forces — executives at home, producers on the scene — but the words always begin with Phil.

“I do the first pass out loud, writing with another producer, who types while I talk it out. I try to put them in my voice, so it feels as much as possible like me,” he says, calling back to me in the backseat. “We polish it, cut it down, and get it to a point where it makes sense. Then we run it by the country producers for accuracy. They might have a note: ‘It’s not so much candy, it’s more of a delicacy. It’s not really sticky, it’s more like this.’ They give us notes on clarity, to make sure everything’s accurate.”

Phil knows the importance of accuracy as well as anyone, both for the integrity of the show, as well as the standards of the audience. “Our fans are very discerning,” he says with a grin. “Thankfully, we don’t get called out too much.”

Beyond writing for his own voice, Keoghan says he designs the scripts with specific shots in mind. He works with a lean team of three, and season 28 marks the addition of cinematographer Petr Cikhart to the crew, joining Phil and Phil’s longtime collaborator and sound operator Barry Weissman. All three have worked with one another in the past, but never as a single unit.

“It’s like a new team of players trying to find a rhythm,” Phil explains. He’s hoping to spend the next few hours establishing that rhythm with Petr and Barry, as they film the stand-up for the Roadblock. Phil shows me what he has in mind for the shot, flipping to a blank piece of paper in his script book and sketching rudimentary pyramids and fields.

“I write in a certain way to be shot a certain way,” he tells me. “Am I holding props? Where am I standing when I start the first line? Do I come off this way or that? That’s what I’m coordinating with the camera operator, but then I need to review the take, so I have to jump on the other side of the camera and watch the playback.”

On top of envisioning the shots, Phil also captures the footage and selects his “keeper takes” for editors to use once they’re crafting episodes — mostly accomplished while he’s out on the field, but finished up at home. If it sounds like a lot of responsibility for someone already responsible for hosting the show, then, well, welcome to my initial reaction to hearing about Phil’s process. But to hear him tell it, there’s no better way to fly.

“It’s what makes my job stimulating,” he says. “As much as I love hosting, it’s the other layers of what I do that make my job interesting and different from other hosting gigs. What I do in front of the camera allows a level of comfort, because I can write something I can own.”

There’s traffic on the way to Teotihuacán, as people spill out onto the road, perusing food carts and pop-up craft shops. An ambulance blocks the way ahead at one point. It takes nearly twenty minutes to reach the site when it should only take two. Time is of the essence on The Amazing Race, and in most situations, the delay would likely cause some measure of panic throughout the production. But today, things are different. The race has already begun, with the 11 teams of social media influencers already in the sky on their way to Mexico. They aren’t expected to land until night, giving Phil and the rest of the TAR team time to shoot his stand-ups, prepare for the night’s Detour challenges, and the following morning’s Roadblock and Pit Stop.

“Usually they want us in and out fast, but today, we have time, so everybody’s relaxed,” he says. “Generally what would happen right now in a regular Race situation, would be me calling ahead on the phone to see if there are any changes to our script copy, and trying to juggle our arrival timing with them being ready for us.”

“We really push it,” he emphasizes. “We push it right up to the edge.”

It’s a well-rounded edge this morning as we leisurely stroll into Teotihuacán. After our arrival, Phil spends an hour or more shooting his stand-up, working with Petr and Barry to find their new rhythm. Others are on location, too, including Amazing Race co-creator and director Bertram van Munster; he’s thrilled with the relaxed pace of the first day, saying he “needed to change it up” from seasons past, to find new creative challenges in creating the show.

Van Munster collaborates with Phil for a while on the shot, before leaving to check in on other locations for the first leg of the race. Once he’s gone, Phil takes control of the scene, directing local men and women playing flutes and banging drums, covered in plumage and paint. Phil runs through his monologue multiple times, explaining the rules of the Roadblock, nailing the pronunciation of “Teotihuacán” with confidence on every take, even if there are other aspects of the filming he and his team spend time getting just right.

“Now we’re feeling good,” Phil says to everyone around him, with a big smile on his face. “We’re in the groove. We’re like a family now.”

A flute player asks Phil if they’ve performed well enough for an Oscar. “No, just the Emmy,” Phil responds. “We’ll get the Oscar when we come back for the movie.”

Phil’s playfulness is on full display at Teotihuacán, but even more so a few hours later, as he’s surrounded in a Mexico City square by literally hundreds of Mariachi performers playing a booming rendition of “Cielito Lindo.” He stands at the center of the circle, conducting the musicians like a maestro, as he explains the rules for this particular Detour to the camera. (Racers will have to identify a small handful of musicians who aren’t actually playing music; not an easy feat, given the explosive sound.)

Phil is fortunate enough to film this stand-up before the teams arrive in the country, but he’s not so lucky with the other Detour; the racers are expected in about an hour, and he needs to get to the Monument of the Revolution to greet the teams both for the show and for a live-stream viewable by fans at home.

An hour turns into two hours. Some of us pass the wait at a cafe, a few minutes on foot from the monument. I sip a spicy hot chocolate, catching a few minutes of the Castle episode playing on the barista’s laptop. I even catch Phil taking a glance at the episode, too. Good to know that there’s always time to spare for Nathan Fillion, even on The Amazing Race.

We finally get word that the teams are thirty minutes away, so everyone gets in position. Whatever relaxed atmosphere existed earlier in the day immediately evaporates at the start of the live-stream, beginning with the arrival of Jessica and Brittany, the Instagram Models. They shout out for Phil and give him a big bear hug as he gives them their clue for the Detours. Over the next fifteen minutes, the rest of the racers spill out of taxis and burst forward toward the Monument, nearly barreling over each other due to their feverish case of Phil-o-mania.

It’s a high-energy moment, one you can’t watch without a huge smile on your face, as each and every team frantically reads through clues, splitting off into this direction or that, asking locals for help, and even asking crew workers who they mistake for locals. It’s pure pandemonium, an unfiltered display of chaos that immediately changes the momentum of the day. Even though the race technically began earlier in the morning when teams got video message clues from Phil, it’s only now that it really feels like the game is afoot.

I spend the next hour or so on the roof of a parking garage, watching teams race to set off fireworks in order to get to the next stop on their journey — an overnight stay near Teotihuacán, where they’ll compete in the Roadblock the following morning. Phil sticks around for much longer, waiting until the teams are all finished, so he can shoot his stand-up. It’s been a long day, no matter the easy pace of the morning, and yet he’s wide-eyed and awake.

“I drink caffeine, for sure,” Phil says about how he keeps his energy up. “I drink a lot of water, and I try to stay as fit as I can, even if it’s just stairs at a hotel, to keep the blood pumping. And I set three alarms, always, because you’re constantly fighting your biological clock.”

One can only imagine how many times he hit snooze the following day, given that he’s at the Pit Stop at the Museo Soumaya at eight o’clock, no more than six hours after finishing up at the Detour. Phil greets the arriving teams over the next few hours. Some find him easily. Others waste time running around the Plaza Carso looking for the host. (In their defense, the building looks like a spaceship, and the perfect spot for a Pit Stop.) The teams jump in the air with elation and relief at the sight of Phil — most of them do, anyway. When the last team arrives, Phil breaks the news, and one of the racers crumbles to the ground, overcome with emotion. It’s a morning of highs and lows.

Phil Keoghan should hit the road at eleven o’clock if he wants to make it to the airport in time for his 1:45pm flight to Colombia, the next leg of the race. Instead, it’s noon, and he’s still working. Phil drags the Pit Stop mat to the middle of the plaza, meticulously angling the thing to get it just right for a slew of promotional photos he’s about to take.

“You really do push it up to the edge,” I tell him as I pack up to leave.

Phil laughs and shrugs his shoulders. “You gotta get it done,” he says. “If you come back here, and the sky is cloudy…”

He stops there. Phil knows it’s not the clouds that dictate the shot. The clock calls the shots — and as such, in Phil’s own words, “There’s no coming back.”

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Categories: Entertainment

The Daily Cute: Cozy Wednesday

Wed, 2/10/2016 2:56 PM

Unless you’ve given up cute animals for Lent, you’re gonna want to see these cozy animals lounging around the house. Not only are they adorable, but they may just inspire you to cuddle up with some blankets when you get home. Add a pet, loved one, book, or movie, and you’ve got yourself one nice night ahead of you.

Click here to see “Ten for Tuesday” and check back every weekday for a new Daily Cute! If you would like to submit cute photos which you took, please send them to DailyCuteParade@gmail.com. You will be credited if they’re used in a future Daily Cute.

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Categories: Entertainment

Lauren Ash and Mark McKinney Put Engaging and Funny TV on Sale at NBC’s Superstore

Wed, 2/10/2016 1:28 PM

Mind Your Body with Stephanie Stephens features celebrities and high achievers age 45+ who share their latest projects, healthy living secrets and more.

When you watch NBC’s Superstore, you may feel like “you’ve been there done that”—as a customer, that is, as you get wrapped up in the goings-on at the fabulous, fictional “Cloud 9” store in St. Louis, Missouri.

The show is clever, great fun, and says things out loud that you may be thinking when you shop at a superstore. (I’m not naming names but Cloud 9’s set bears a very familiar blue color.) It’s a single-camera show, with America Ferrera at the helm as producer and star, joined by Ben Feldman, Colton Dunn, Nichole Bloom, Nico Santas and my two special video guests Lauren Ash and Mark McKinney.

What’s ‘In Store’

I loved the energy and spontaneity of this interview with the wonderfully talented Canadian, Ash, 33, who plays assistant manager Dina, and another of her countrymen, McKinney, 56, who plays store manager Glenn Sturges.

On the show, Glenn wants to be “top dog.” Dina follows the rules, and takes her job very seriously. The pair butts heads over religion and other timely topics. It makes for great repartee within the show and in this short video as Ash and McKinney spar in character.

Both Ash and McKinney say they loved the script immediately, and it shows in their performances. The cast is clearly having a wonderful time.

Let’s Get Along

The Atlantic calls Superstore “extremely successful as a piece of pop-cultural confectionery… It’s ‘small, easy, and gloriously two-dimensional.’” McKinney has said the comedy is really “human.” You can’t help but embrace this diverse “family” of people who work together—and try to get along together. Well, some of them try…

Don’t miss Superstore on NBC Mondays at 8 p.m. ET.

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Categories: Entertainment

Vanessa Lachey Reveals the Most Romantic Thing Nick Lachey Has Ever Done

Wed, 2/10/2016 12:02 PM

With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, Vanessa Lachey is looking forward to a low-key romantic holiday with her husband, singer Nick Lachey. And he’s got (his own) big shoes to fill when it comes to topping previous romantic gestures.

“One Valentine’s Day he wrote me a song,” Vanessa said of Nick’s most romantic gift to date. “He went to the studio and recorded it and then he gave it to me. When we sat down [to dinner], he had a chef come over and cook, he had my favorite flowers, my favorite wine and he played my song. It was just beautiful.”

Even Nick knows that particular gift will be hard to top. “He’s a good guy, that Nick!” Vanessa said laughing. “But he was like, ‘crap! What am I going to do to top this next year?’ I thought he set the bar pretty high.”

In addition to getting the inside scoop on how Vanessa and Nick keep the romance alive, we caught up with the 35-year-old mother of two in the middle of cold and flu season to talk about her daughter’s first birthday and her partnership with Puffs Plus Lotion.

Valentine’s Day is coming up, do you and Nick have any plans or any traditions?
“Valentine’s Day is the one holiday where we don’t have any traditions and we don’t make any specific plans. To have plans and traditions wouldn’t be spontaneously romantic, I guess. I feel like every year we’re going to want to one-up the other person’s gift and so we thought we’ll save our money on gifts and go on a mini-cation together. Because of that, Valentine’s Day seems like the same sort of thing. So selfishly I let him do all the planning. It’s the one day of the year you can let the guy be super cheesy romantic stuff. Every single year he’s made me smile and laugh and fall in love with him again. So we’ll see what he has planned this year!”

With such young kids, what’s the hardest part of leaving them with sitters or nannies when you and Nick have date night?
“The whole family goes on trips together, that’s extremely important to us. Of course you miss them, your heart absolutely breaks when you leave them and wave or if they cry. Camden [her 3-year-old son] is pretty independent and he understands that mommy and daddy will be back, but Brooklyn is just one and she’s not very happy about it. But you just have to live your life, but you also love your children. Thank goodness we’re in a time where we have FaceTime and smartphones. When we go out together, Nick and I, we schedule it around their naps. We have their afternoon nap synced together, so we can do something pseudo guilt-free and be back by the time they’re up.”

Brooklyn just turned one, how did you celebrate her birthday?
“I went and did a huge birthday party for Camden when he turned one. It was way too over the top for a one-year-old’s birthday. So for Brookyln, we did something super intimate. The funny thing is, we had no idea, she hates the song ‘Happy Birthday’. We started singing it a week before her birthday so she wasn’t shocked at hearing the song. When we started singing it, she immediately burst into this awful cry. We decided to sing Stevie Wonder’s version and she loved it, so on her birthday party day, we asked everyone to sing that version. She sat there and played with her cake. Now that I’m telling this story, this is going to have to be our tradition!”

What are you most looking forward to as Brookyln and Camden grow up?
“Honestly, just every step of the way. I try not to get so caught up in jumping ahead and try to appreciate the now. When I see a mom and her daughter at the nail salon, I get excited. When I see a father-daughter dance, I get super excited. When I see a mom and her son on the field at a high school football game… There’s just so many memories. I can’t wait to see if they’re going to be the best of friends, I can’t wait to see their spouses. I get so excited. I keep saying this is only the beginning. They’re only one and three, we have the rest of our lives to see.”

What led you to partner with Puffs Plus Lotion?
“I have been working with Puffs for years. I’m a huge fan of them. They put family first, that’s my and Nick’s No. 1 priority in life.”

As a mom, how do you approach cold and flu season?
“The one thing we’ve encouraged Camden to do is sneeze into his elbow. I learned this from his teacher last year, to cover your cough with your elbow. He knows exactly what to do. I think it’s helped us! There was a moment when Nick and I were both under the weather and the kids managed for a while, but then it all caved in and everybody gets the bug that’s being passed around. It’s almost like initiation to parenthood.”

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Categories: Entertainment

Millennials and Money: Q&A with Nicole Lapin, Author of Rich Bitch

Wed, 2/10/2016 11:00 AM

When you think about millennials, you probably think of the entitled generation without a care in the world. But this group of young people (born between 1981 and 1997) are entering the real world (or are about to enter the real world) with a huge burden on their shoulders.

Right now Americans have $1.2 trillion (with a T) in student loan debt. According to the Institute for College Access & Success, 7 in 10 seniors (69%) who graduated from public and nonprofit colleges in 2014 had student loan debt, with an average of $28,950 per borrower.

Now more than ever young people, including the millennials (of which my daughters, ages 18 and 20, are part) need to know as much as they can about managing money. The last thing they need is to keep incurring debt with no plan to pay it off.

According to the recent Millennial Mindset on Money Survey conducted by Capital One, more than a quarter (27%) of millennials say that establishing a solid nest egg would give them the greatest feeling of financial accomplishment.

That’s why I spoke with Nicole Lapin, a financial expert, Redbook money columnist and author of Rich Bitch: A Simple 12-Step Plan for Getting Your Financial Life Together…Finally.

Why is getting your finances in order especially challenging for millennials?

There’s a lot of smiling and nodding going on, where younger folks don’t know financial terms or concepts but pretend they do instead of asking. You need to learn the language of money—and don’t think you don’t because you aren’t on TV talking about it. Money-speak comes up in all aspects of life: from jobs to social situations to relationships. So the sooner you can understand and speak it, the sooner you’ll be able to accomplish what you want to accomplish and the sooner you’ll be able to live the life you want to live.

What role do debit cards and online accounts play in this lack of financial literacy? (My own daughters, millennials themselves, never have to use actual green money to pay for anything, which I think affects their ability to really “feel” when they spend.)

Credit and debit cards are convenient and a great way to build credit, but there is simply no replacement for cold hard cash to learn the value of a dollar. That’s why I always say to take out your monthly “fun” money (which, by the way, I encourage in every budget as long as it does not exceed 15% of your overall monthly budget) in cash. Spend that cash on whatever you want: a mani/pedi, a movie, new shoes. But once the cash is gone, the party is over until next month.

What do you hope to accomplish with the New Year New You Bootcamp presented by Capital One? (Nicole has partnered with Capital One.)

The goal of the bootcamp is to help young people get their finances in order so they can take control of their own financial destinies. I’m helping them tackle the financial bootcamp just one step per day, with baby steps so they don’t get overwhelmed. Because here’s the thing: budgeting sucks. But so does being broke!

Speaking of your bootcamp, let’s talk about some of your tips and why they’re important. For example, your suggestion to take out receipts and cross reference them with credit card statements. What’s the benefit there?

Credit mistakes can and do happen, and you want to ensure that the credit score you get is an accurate descriptor of your spending habits, not those in a mistaken report. So check all credit card statements and credit reports carefully. If there’s a mistake, you could be hurt without actually having done anything wrong yourself. If you see people you don’t know claiming you owe them money, dispute it. Sometimes it’s an honest mistake, like having the same name as someone else, or the result of a disconnect in a company’s billing department. Sometimes, though, it’s not. If there’s a mistake, send a letter and call the company or person filing the complaint against you. You also then have to follow up and keep following up with the credit card company or reporting agency to make sure the problem is fixed. It’s your money—fight for it!

Also, you recommend setting up bills on autopay. What is the benefit?

Autopay is a great way to build credit while remaining well under the spending maximum of your credit card. Since your payments are on autopilot, you are demonstrating that you can pay on time month after month (which creditors love!) with very little effort of your own.

You suggest ordering your credit report so you can see your credit score. Why is it important for young people to know their credit score?

If your credit report is your financial report card, then your credit score is your actual grade. A credit score is a measure of how reliable you are at paying your bills. If you are looking to borrow money, your score will determine your interest rate, or whether you can borrow at all. It measures how much debt you have versus how much debt you could have (so if your credit cards are maxed out, your credit score will be lower).

Also, for young people just out of school who might not have a credit history yet, what can they do to build one?

The best way to build credit and keep up steady payments that you can sustain is to put one regular bill, like cable or utilities, on your credit card. Set that bill to autopay on your credit card, on time or before it’s due every month, so you are technically using your card but not thinking much about it— all while racking up good payment points.

And what advice would you give to parents of younger children to help them build their financial literacy?

The biggest thing is to start talking about it. I didn’t grow up around The Wall Street Journal; everything I learned about finance, I had to learn on my own. And that was tough, with many mistakes along the way. Learn from my mistakes and start ‘em young, by explaining even simple financial concepts and the value of saving from a young age. And of course: lead by example, by getting your own financial house in order!


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Categories: Entertainment

Showbiz Analysis: Gary Cole Goes from Mercy Street to The White House

Wed, 2/10/2016 10:46 AM

Gary Cole’s non-stop career has involved more genres, settings and eras than I can track. The actor, whose credits span television (Midnight Caller, American Gothic, The Good Wife, Veep), film (Office Space, Talladega Nights, Pineapple Express), and theater, has always brought star power to his roles. So I was thrilled to catch up with Cole for my podcast Whine At 9 to discuss the new PBS Civil War drama Mercy Street and his portrayal of wealthy property owner James Green Sr.

“The Civil War has been covered quite a bit in television and film,” he says. “But never quite examining this aspect of it, which was not so much battlefields and generals…but doctors and medicine, and then basically civilians in an occupied town, which is what Alexandria was, and that’s the backdrop of our story.”

Mercy Street captures the emotional and far-reaching impact of war. “No matter what era you’re looking at—war affects things in so many different ways. Even people who aren’t engaged on the actual battlefield—the effects of war reach out like tentacles into families, into economies—into the changing geography, into politics. It shakes up everything,” notes Cole. “What is the Green family at the beginning and where they are down the road in six episodes is a very different thing. And so there’s a lot of emotional changes going on.”

Gary Cole and fellow castmates talk about Mercy Street’s Green family in this video clip (courtesy of PBS).

The actor welcomed the detail that came with filming an important historical project. “When you have that kind of research and that kind of detail to wardrobe and art direction and historical accuracy, you know, you’ve got a lot of help as an actor. You’re not inventing everything.” The intricacies of the production that included elaborate costume design, historical accuracy and animals, might have made for a chaotic set, but Cole says he has never seen a more efficient production. Citing great directors and organization, the actor admits that “On all levels, it was just a really good experience.”

Mercy Street is now available on DVD and Blu-ray.

Photo courtesy of PBS Distribution (Photo courtesy of PBS Distribution)

With Mercy Street filming behind him, Gary Cole is now busy on the set of the Emmy-winning HBO series Veep (He’s Kent Davison, Senior Strategist to the President). So is versatility and going from the Civil War to the White House part of his secret to staying happy in Hollywood? Cole chuckles. “I was able to kind of adapt to whatever was in front of me. And I think, for me and my journey in show business, that’s been a helpful tool.”

Listen to Nancy’s interview with Gary Cole iTunes and follow the podcast on Facebook.


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Categories: Entertainment

Kate Middleton and Prince William Enjoy ‘Low Key’ Date Night at Local Pub

Wed, 2/10/2016 10:36 AM

For years now the British royal family has been trying to present itself as more down-to-earth than it was during the dramatic years before and immediately after the death of Diana, Princess of Wales in 1997.

Kate Middleton and Prince William’s efforts to demonstrate that they are essentially normal have ranged from Kate’s dedication to ‘recycling’ outfits (wearing the same dresses and coats to multiple engagements) to the couple’s decision to send Prince George to a local Montessori school near their home in Norfolk.

Now it’s been revealed that the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge—one of the most high-profile couples in the world—chose a local pub near their home of Amner Hall for a recent date night.

A regular at The Crown Inn in East Rudham told The Sun, “They were very low key and it seemed quite a last minute thing. Maybe it was a rare night out since Charlotte was born.

“They were both dressed down—with Kate in skinny jeans and a navy jumper—and just wanted a quiet table out of the way.

“They both looked a little tired but seemed to have a lovely time and left at about 10:30 p.m.”

Over the course of the evening, the two royals were reportedly “leaning into one another chatting away, laughing and joking.”

Prince William seemed to enjoy a night off from his job as a search-and-rescue helicopter pilot with the East Anglian Air Ambulance, and both parents were sure to have appreciated an evening away from their two young children.

It’s been a busy week for Kate as well, whose video speech on behalf of children’s mental health charities was released a few days ago to launch Children’s Mental Health Week in the UK.

“William and I feel that every child deserves to be supported through difficult times in their lives,” she said.

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Categories: Entertainment

Ready Jet Go! Aims to Bring Science to Kids

Wed, 2/10/2016 10:10 AM

From the creators of Dinosaur Train, Ready Jet Go! is a new science and astronomy series that will premiere on PBS on Monday, February 15 (check local listings).

The series follows two neighborhood kids: Sean, who has an all-consuming drive for science facts, and Sydney, who has a passion for science fiction and imagination. They befriend the new kid on their street, Jet Propulsion, whose family members happen to be aliens from the planet Bortron 7. Together, they explore the solar system and the effects it has on the science of our planet, while learning about friendship and teamwork along the way.

Dr. Amy Mainzer, who will appear in the live interstitials on the show, is an astrophysicist for the Jet Propulsion Lab and took some time out from making comets to chat about the show.

Why is it important that we continue to explore space and push the boundaries?

Exploring space allows us to test the laws of physics in ways that we can’t here on Earth. For example, we can see what extreme gravity does to matter around a black hole. Or we can start to understand why the universe isn’t just expanding but is flying apart. Now those may sound like academic questions, but think of it this way—when the laws of quantum mechanics were first discovered in the 1930s, no one could imagine that they would give rise to lasers, transistors, and ultimately the smartphones and satellites that we use every day. Basic research has the power to completely transform our lives.

It seems that the science world is typically male-dominated. What sparked your interest and what words of encouragement do you have for young ladies out there that are interested in pursuing a career in science? 

I stumbled on science when I was about 6 or 7 because I had a kids’ book on Greek mythology. When I went to look up some of the Greek myths in the encyclopedia (remember those?), I found that names like Andromeda and Perseus have two meanings—the mythological characters, and the galaxy and constellations. I was captivated by those pictures of the stars. This interest in nature drove me forward, since learning about the universe is like watching a really great movie—you want to know what happens next!

As a professional scientist and engineer, every day is different from the next, and it’s impossible to be bored. Science is all about understanding and appreciating nature while working with a team of your friends to figure things out. Plus, we need the brainpower of smart people everywhere if we’re going to tackle some of our toughest problems, like climate change. Science is universal—it is for everyone. If you’re interested in science, go for it! It’s a chance to be part of a community working together for the joy of discovery and shared purpose.

You’ll be the face of the live interstitials in the show. What will you be showcasing during these segments? Will it be along the lines of Mr. Wizard experiments kids can replicate?

Our interstitials are roughly divided into three types: giving kids an insider’s look at some of the careers that are possible in space science, showing off the amazing universe we live in and doing fun table-top experiments that illustrate how things work. Southern California provides us some pretty fantastic places to explore, like NASA’s Deep Space Network, the Palomar Telescope and the Space Shuttle Endeavour’s home at the California Science Center. When I was starting out, I had no idea what careers I could do, or how to get into them. Through the interstitials, we can give kids a peek at some possible futures and give them a sense that science and engineering lead to exciting adventures in a vast and wonderful universe.

Ready, Jet, Go! premieres on PBS on Monday, February 15 (check local listings for exact times).

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Categories: Entertainment

Lauren Daigle Prepares for the Grammys

Wed, 2/10/2016 10:06 AM

Lauren Daigle is pretty busy these days and she couldn’t be happier about that. The three-time Dove Award winner recently landed her first Grammy nomination for her debut album How Can It Be (Best Contemporary Christian Music Album). The album also again hit No. 1 on Billboard’s Top Christian chart and her single “Trust In You” became her fourth Top 10 Christian single. I recently caught up with the singer/songwriter to discuss her journey to the 58th Grammys and who she’s hoping to bump into on Monday, February 15.

Were you taken by surprise when you learned that you had received a Grammy nomination for your debut album?

Yes, it was an absolute surprise to me! I was on the tour bus when my road manager woke me up to tell me the news. When I was younger, I would set up Grammy parties at my house where I would invite all of my friends over and my whole family would sit in the living room glued to the TV. But I would just dream of someday going there, and I would watch the red carpet interviews over and over and study what was happening. I really think that was God setting me up for what was to come, putting those desires in my heart, way back then when I was 15 and 16 years old.

You had already won three Dove Awards before this Grammy honor, what is it like knowing that your music is being recognized and embraced by audiences and experts?

It’s really overwhelming! I have known in my heart since I was a little girl that music was a major part of my life and always would be, but seeing others respond to the words I sing amazes me. The most incredible part of seeing people embrace and recognize my music is experiencing the lives of people when they are powerfully affected, encouraged and personally impacted. To be recognized by NARAS (National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences) for that is such an honor and a privilege.

Watch Lauren Daigle’s music video of the single “Trust In You” from her Grammy-nominated album….

There’s will be a lot of talent buzzing around the Staples Center Monday. As a first-time Grammy nominee and attendee, who would you most like to bump into?

Adele and Taylor Swift…and Justin Bieber! But it’s all going to be great!

What’s next on Lauren Daigle’s calendar?

I’m currently on the road performing on the national 2016 Winter Jam Tour through April with some of the best music artists on the planet! I’m also in the process of writing/recording my next album that will release in 2017. I have a couple of other exciting projects in the works too for this year and some new tour announcements…so stay tuned.

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Categories: Entertainment

Grey’s Anatomy Star Jason George Teases the Second Half of Season 12

Wed, 2/10/2016 10:01 AM

The drama on Grey’s Anatomy returns in a big way when the second half of Season 12 begins airing on Thursday, February 11.

As we have seen in the promos, Meredith (Ellen Pompeo) is brutally attacked by a patient, and Penny (Samantha Sloyan), the doctor responsible for Derek’s (Patrick Dempsey) death, is the one who discovers her. The doctors of Grey Sloan Memorial rush to stabilize Meredith and remain by her side in the harrowing aftermath in this episode directed by Denzel Washington.

We will also get more information on why Owen (Kevin McKidd) has such a hatred for Nathan Riggs (Martin Henderson), who was involved with Owen’s sister somehow; we will see flashbacks of April (Sarah Drew) and Jackson’s (Jesse Williams) lives before they started at Grey Sloan, and we will discover whether or not Amelia (Caterina Scorsone) broke her sobriety.

But first, Parade.com caught up with Jason George, who plays Dr. Ben Warren and is married to the Chief (Chandra Wilson), to get his take on what is coming up.

What can you tease about the first episode back?

First off, it is Denzel Washington’s episode. The one he directed. If you see a special glow emanating from all the women, it is because Denzel was there. There was Denzel in the air. Everybody dressed up nice for some reason instead of rolling up in sweats.

But the episode itself, the writers knocked it out of the park. It is an intense episode. We get to watch the show when we do the table read, the way you guys get to watch when you see the episode. That is when it is new for us. We read that table read and everybody’s jaw was on the floor.

How is the marriage doing?

Bailey and Ben are strong and happy, but I will just say that even the strongest of men has a male ego. No matter how strong a man he is, he still has a male ego, and it is intense when your wife is your boss. It is even worse when your wife is your boss’ boss.

Is it rough for Ben because he went back to being a resident so he could switch from being an anesthesiologist to being a surgeon?

It gets rough for Ben in spots. He is a full doctor as an anesthesiologist, but he is a resident. He’s older than most of the residents. His wife runs the hospital, so he is in between worlds. He is not all resident, or all doctor.

Because he is sleeping with the boss, the other residents probably do not trust him.

Are you the sleeper agent? If I tell you something, does it end up getting back to the powers that be, or are you the person we go to to fix stuff? Ben gets caught hard between the two worlds. Then, on top of it, he starts to realize how bold he can be as a surgeon.

As an anesthesiologist, your job is just to get them asleep and keep them asleep. But as a surgeon, for lack of a better word, you can get creative. The artistry comes out. That can get you in trouble.

There was that episode where Ben was in surgery with several of the women, and he got caught up in their problems. How does he deal with that?

The fun part of that is he is the married man with the stepson in school, so for lack of a better word, he is safe. He is the guy they can talk to, so this interesting thing happens, where he is like the brother. I play the brother who is the brother.

What are you allowed to say about Owen’s relationship with Nathan Riggs?

We find out that there was a relationship with his sister. Owen’s mother loves Nathan still, so it is much more complex than we thought. I am happy that there is a deep story there because Martin and I did another show—Off the Map—for Shonda [Rhimes] back in the day. So when they said they were bringing Martin on the show I was, “Oh, you’re getting the band back together.” Martin’s a great guy. He is doing great on the show, so it’s a lot of fun.

You’ve got the Kiwi (Henderson), the Scottish dude (Kidd) and the New Englander (George,) and it’s accent-palooza when Kevin and Martin are hanging out. They are both surfers, so it is hilarious that they’re playing enemies on set, because they are best of friends. They hit it off behind the scenes.

Grey’s Anatomy returns on Thursday, February 11 at 8 p.m. ET/PT on ABC.

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Categories: Entertainment
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