Guest Diary

LIZ SMITH: AN EXALTATION ...

Generally having a rollickin' good time ...
Thursday, December 18, 2014
by Liz Smith

Stephen Colbert Says Goodbye ... Seth Rogen — An Idiot! ... Madonna Annoyed (To Say The Least!)

"AN EXALTATION OF CHRISTMAS ... A ROLLICK OF REVELERS ... A Rooftop of Reindeer ... A Gobble of Turkey Dinners ... a Deja Gout of Leftovers ... A Banquet of Wines ... A Caper of Kids ... A Descent of Relatives ... A Rainbow of Ribbons ... An Excelsis of Carols."

Thus reads the annual card from the fabulous Jimmy Lipton and his wife Kedakai. And before he was famous as the host of “Inside the Actor's Studio's” incredible interviews, Mr. Lipton was already well known for his formula of quaint descriptions of the holidays.

You can see him on Bravo doing his one-and-only probing, piercing, appreciating interviews with every kind of acting star. These luminaries grant Mr. Lipton time even when they say NO, NO, A THOUSAND TIMES NO to other celebrity types of Q & A.

And who can blame them for feeling a little "used" by the networks and the Internet and all that social media which has changed our lives. Celebrities have fabulous money but they have no privacy and are over-analyzed to death.

So when you want the real thing, keep turning to Jimmy Lipton and “Inside the Actor's Studio” on Bravo! Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to our friends, the Liptons!
Jimmy and Kedakai.
TONIGHT, one of the most brilliant TV characters in history says goodbye when Stephen Colbert ends his “conservative fool” impersonation after nine years at Comedy Central. He is a great actor. I don’t quite know how he did it but I will miss him greatly.

I’ve never met this genius but I look forward to experiencing his real-life personality, replacing David Letterman on CBS soon.

Lately, Letterman himself has become compelling again. He has nothing to prove and nothing to lose in his self-chosen bow-out.
ONE John Willenbecher sends me this regarding the new movie “Exodus,” saying: “I am reminded of an old Milton Berle joke:

After the great struggle across the desert, Moses and his people finally reached the Red Sea.But standing on the shore, looking right and looking left, Moses said to Manny, his agent, "So where are the boats? I distinctly remember saying we'd need boats." And Manny, looking horrified, said "Oy — I forgot to order them!" So Moses said, "Manny, how do you think we're going to get across the Red Sea if we don't have any boats? Do you expect me to just command the waters to part so we can walk across??"

"Listen, Moses," Manny said, "if you can do that, I can get you two pages in the Old Testament."
PAULA Mutzel of New Jersey comments about the now super-controversial Sony “comedy” about assassinating North Korea’s Kim Jong-un, “The Interview.”

“You are so right about this ridiculous movie ... people wonder why there is so much violence and mayhem in the world ... they need look no further than Hollywood ... it's promoted, encouraged, glorified and revered all for money and the producers should be ashamed of themselves. This movie should never have been made. Thanks for all of your wonderful commentary ... past, present and future.”
'Not Coming to a Theater Near You.'
Now that at least one movie chain has declined the film, now that the NYC premiere has been cancelled, now that Sony says it won’t argue with other chains that might pull out of showing it, the question becomes — whose incredibly stupid idea was it to make this movie in the first place, and whose even dumber concept to release it at Christmastime?

The hackers who have wrought so much damage to Sony are believed to be offended North Koreans. But nobody knows for sure. The North Koreans aren’t much of a danger to the U.S. militarily — they can barely get a rocket off the ground — but nowadays all countries are threats to each other, in terms of cyber-terrorism.
This is what has occurred. And despite a lot of people screaming about what a terrible precedent this sets — giving in to hackers who make threats — those screamers and defenders of the First Amendment aren’t the ones who’d be held accountable should some form of violence occur during a screening of “The Interview.” And it wouldn’t have to be anybody sympathetic to North Korea — just some nut encouraged by the idea of committing carnage.
Seth Rogen, who co-directed and co-wrote “The Interview,” will no doubt eventually attempt to make himself into the victim of a weak studio that wouldn’t stand up to some silly hackers. But in truth, it was an idiot concept from beginning to end — what if North Korea still held American captives right now?

The movie had to have been conceived and filmed while Americans were still in the hands of the North Koreans. Brilliant, Seth. So funny.

Not.
"This is artistic rape!! These are early leaked demo's half of which wont even make it on my album the other half have changed and evolved. This is a form of terrorism. Wtf!!!! Why do people want to destroy artistic process??? Why steal? Why not give me the opportunity to finish and give you my very best?" — Madonna
AND THE bad news just keeps on coming. It appears that Madonna’s entire album, not scheduled for release until well into next year, has been leaked online. All eleven tracks, in fairly rough form. Madonna has been working extremely hard on this CD, which was titled “Iconic.” (Or it was before this leak!)

This is not only unfortunate for Madonna, but continues the obviously unstoppable trend of material of any kind getting into the wrong hands and being disseminated willy-nilly. What kind of basement trolls out there, sitting at their computers, think this is funny?

The leak won’t have much of an effect on Madonna financially — that is, her livelihood is not threatened, or her already massive fortune. But a year’s worth of work, suddenly compromised? Frustrating!

Especially with the music industry as we once knew it, fading fast.

Contact Liz Smith here.