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Posts Tagged ‘Barbara Walters’

         Ok, I get it…the Oscar awards are supposed to be about recognizing the best in the film industry; however, over the years…the Oscars have turned into an industry unto itself.  There are Oscar parties, pre-Oscar and post-Oscar parties, the Barbara Walter’s pre-Oscar interviews, the morning shows that preview the menu’s and the decor of the dinning areas…come on!  Enough already.  (more…)

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      Wow… I just watched a clip from The View today in which Barbara Walters talks about an interview she did with Paula Abdul on her radio show.  http://abcnews.go.com/Video/playerIndex?id=6425460

       In the chat fest in the beginning of the show Barbara refers to that interview when she says that Paula has dropped a few explosive bombs about American Idol producers, Fox television, as well as,  Simon Cowell.

         As many of you know, there was an unfortunate young woman who was allegedly obsessed with Paula Adbul who died in front of Paula’s home…allegedly a suicide.  This young woman, Paula Goodspeed, has been supposedly sending letters and trying to make contact with Paula Abdul for something like 17 years, through her fan club. 

         Abdul claims in the radio interview with Barbara Walters that the producers of American Idol knew of this young woman’s obsession and still they allowed her to audition for the three Idol judges.  That audition  appears to have caused much harm; because of the rejection  Paula Goodspeed felt that she was publically humiliated.  Does a show like this carry a  legal and moral responsibility to pre-screen contestants; to make sure that they can handle the criticism that they face on the show?  I think they should.

          Paula Abdul says that she begged the producers and Simon not to allow Ms. Goodspeed to audition…but, against her wishes they allowed her to audition, possibly more than once.  It put her in a terrible position; Paula says that the producers and Simon wished to see her squirm. 

          At some point, Ms. Goodspeed followed Paula Abdul to her home address.  There were other incidents that took place there before the actual suicide took place.  Paula was not home when the suicide took place.  She now has her home for sale i hear; she says she has not slept there since it happened.

         Paula also says that she has lost endorsements and business opportunities because of the public’s perception that she is drunk or stoned on medications; because of the way that she is portrayed on the show.  She says, part of, that is caused by Simon who says crazy things in Paula’s ear piece while she is trying to communicate her “judgement”.   She says, something to the effect, that this is a distraction; and, Simon tries to make her laugh when she is trying to graciously speak to the contestants.

         If these things are true, and she can prove them…i see this turning into a major big, legal deal.  Obviously, Paula is upset about the whole nightmare of the suicide of Paula Goodspeed.  After all, a life was lost and if it is true that it was because of manipulations behind the scenes of the show…then shame on those involved.   There are more important things than ratings of a television show!

         When asked why Paula was still on the show…she apparently, simply said that she is under contract.  Paula also allegedly says that Simon could have at anytime corrected himself and retracted the statements that he has made.  She is under contract for another year; even though, this year there is a fourth judge being brought onto the show.  Just last week, Randy Jackson was on television shows saying not to believe everything people hear about this year’s American Idol.  

           What does this mean?  Is there a mystery here behind the scenes?  Does Paula want out of her contract?  Did this suicide impress on anyone the importance of the impact of the hurtful words that are said to contestants who don’t measure up to the judges expectations?  Is the show going to be legally liable in the young woman’s death?   I wonder, do you anyone feels guilty who was involved in that episode involving young Paula Goodspeed?

          Does this controversy mean that Paula will no longer associate herself with the show after her contract expires?  Time will tell.  I suspect that we have not heard the last of this drama.  What do you think is going on?  Is it alright to do “anything” to get ratings…or, should networks, producers, and the like be held responsible when things go wrong?

* See related story here: https://writeasrain.wordpress.com/2008/11/13/american-idol-judge-idolized/

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      Talk about a intense flare up of a conversation.  This week on The View, a conversation took place that was shocking in it’s intensity between the races.  The show got onto the topic of conversation of using the “N” -word because of a conversation recorded between (Reverend and i use the term lightly here, only as a matter of clarifying which Jackson made the comment) Jesse Jackson and another person.   Jesse Jackson, Jr. was horrified that his father made such statements; and publicly chastised him for doing so. 

          In that conversation, Jesse Jackson made a couple of inappropriate comments regarding Barack Obama.

      It seems that Jesse Jackson takes issue with the way that Sen. Obama speaks to the African American population.  He said it made him want to rip off his n–s.  Then later, it was also revealed that he allegedly, also used the other “N”- word. 

       On the view, Elisabeth Hasselback made a comments saying, that she felt it was inappropriate to use that word in private or in public.  Wow, did the other “ladies” of the view take issue with her. (more…)

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         With all of the hoopla surrounding the publication of Barbara Walter’s book called, “Audition” i have to wonder; where is her dignity?  i think she lost it somewhere between bragging on her affair with a married man approximately 20-30 years ago and dishing on the ongoing public tongue lashing of her former co-hosts Rosie O’Donnell and Star Jones.  There is so much more, i am sure, in Barbara’s memoirs but i have to wonder…with all of the truly outstanding news stories she has brought to our attention over the years…why resort to digging dirt?

        After all, the book would have been interesting enough because of some of the all time history making interviews such as Fidel Castro, Monica Lewinski, President Gerald Ford, Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez, Rudy Giuliani former mayor of NYC  and the list goes on.  Then there are all of the famous celebrities she has interviewed over the years as well.  Some celebrities doing a PR spin on whatever scandal they were going through at the time…there would have been enough sex, drugs, violence to attract the gossipmongers to the book strickly because of some of those interviews.

        Barbara’s book would not have been short on excitement, intrigue, or interest had she concentrated strickly on those interviews and all of the behind the scenes regarding them.  I fail to see the need to tell us of her sex life and such. She is interesting in her own right just because of her childhood, her professional life, her adoption of her daughter Jackie and the famous people in and out of her life. 

          I wonder if this type of publicity buzz will have a disasterous backlash when it comes to the sale of the book; or, whether it will bring publishing to a whole new level of indigity itself.  The business of publishing has been going through it’s own destructive roller coaster over the last decade or so; regarding making a profit, plagerism, fictionalized memoirs, editors who publisher hop from one company to another; and then, the spector of how digital publishing is affecting printed publishing financially.  When dignity is for sale we all lose out. 

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        Well, i have to admit…i will be reading Barbara Walters’ book that was recently published.  She has done much over the years to further women in the media.   She has been at the forefront of many standout interviews, of the movers and shakers, in our country’s history; not to mention other countries who’s actions have impacted ours.  She is one of those people who mingles with celebrities, politicians, financiers, royalty, muscians and everyday people; and she does it well.

        Not only that; but, as an adoptive parent…i am interested in hearing the background of the adoption of her daughter Jackie.  I think that there is probably an interesting story behind it; as there is with most adoptions.  Barbara has led an interesting life.

        I will also say, that over the last two years i have lost alot of respect for Barbara.  This is just a personal observation; but, i’ve disliked the way that she handled the personal/professional conflicts; in the eye of the public. 

        I felt the issues she had with Star and Rosie could have been handled in a much better way.  Also, since the release of Barbara’s book; i’ve disliked the fact that for the publicity hype of her book; she has brandished her past affair with a married man not to mention riding on the emotion of her handicapped sister’s memory.  Those issues are at conflict with the woman that I have admired over the years for all that she has brought to our culture of working women in the media. 

        So, i will have to read the book to reconcile the two women in my mind; i must do this to understand her, or i won’t be able to watch her with any semblence of respect.  However, i won’t be buying Ms. Walter’s book…she appears to have more than enough money; so, i will hang on to mine.  I will borrow the book from the local library like the good library patron that i am.

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