Simon now has competition for Paula. ABC has offered Paula Abdul a spot on 'Star Search.' According to the Hollywood Reporter, following another report in Entertainment Weekly, the latest incarnation of 'Star Search' will be a singing competition and Paula could be a host and a judge. That's twice as much as she did on 'American Idol.'
More importantly, it's on ABC.
I can't imagine a worse TV vehicle for Paula, especially the kind of talk show she envisions. She said, "It would be a lot of fun variety with a ton of unexpected stuff and tributes to everyday people getting their big chance."
That sounds perfectly cloying, especially if you assume that Paula will be pretty much herself, pretty much like she was on American Idol, which was uncritical, sweet, gentle and pleasantly unfocused.
According to his publicist, Howard Bragman, McMahon, who was hospitalized with pneumonia in February, died at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center after suffering a "multitude of health problems the last few months."
Among the reported ailments: bone cancer, an anonymous source told the Associated Press.
He was 86.
Stairway to Stardom, or what American Idol filmed in a Staten Island basement 25 years ago would look like - VIDEO
Starting in 1979, Brooklyn resident Frank Masi created and hosted a program on local New York television called Stairway To Stardom. Filmed in what appeared to be a freshly carpeted Staten Island basement, Stairway was an especially early, low-budget predecessor to Star Search and American Idol, but sprinkled with the key element of hometown appeal.
He's a TV legend, so much so that even people who didn't grow up watching The Tonight Show at least know of him and his work. It's been even harder to duplicate. Hank Kingsley was right. Sidekickology is a "dying art."
But a few little factoids popped up around the Internet surrounding McMahon's hospitalization, and it made the news even more tragic and depressing.
Television and the talent show have been partners since the very first days of the industry. Taking the best (and sometimes worst) performers and putting them in front of the camera, these shows introduced viewers to personalities that either faded into the background or became household names. Usually, these personalities had a talent that would entertain the public -- singing, dancing, telling jokes -- that they would use once they left the talent show stage to increase their fame.
It continued in this fashion throughout the decades. Until, of course, the 21st Century and the Reality Revolution. While standard, yet bigger and bolder, talent shows continued, network programmers began to realize that there were more talented people than just performers. There were models, clothing designers, chefs, hair stylists, and businesspeople out there ready to show their stuff and make it big. So, they turned some of their attention away from singers and dancers and focused on the others. The result? A schedule full of top models, top chefs, top businesspeople, and top inventors.
In other words, the talent show had returned to television in a big way.
Unfortunately, I don't know where Wade Robson is. Believe me, if I find out if he's coming back to Fox's hit show, you TV Squad readers will be the first to know. I thought in the meantime we could enjoy some of his other work, including his performance on Star Search as a little boy. It's adorable.
Granted, he's not alone in these tough times -- and, yes, he has had millions in his time -- but the revelations that the former Tonight Show star and Star Search host is in money trouble strikes me as really unfortunate. And apparently that help from Jay Leno is slow in materializing. Why isn't Publisher's Clearinghouse giving him a gig?
The latest news is that Citibank is suing McMahon for $200,000, a loan they extended to Ed. In a lawsuit filed in L.A. Superior court on June 9, the bank is seeking $179,687 in damages, plus legal fees. This is on top of the potential foreclosure on his Beverly Hills home.
Kathy Griffin has found the perfect genre for her particular brand of comedy. A sitcom wouldn't capture her true character, strict stand-up is not her best venue (although she's gotten very good at it), and a talk show would force her to chat with others and appear interested. The My Life on the D-List format works for her and she's found a way to incorporate stand up, situation comedy and guests into a reality hour that highlights her being funny. She has supporting players -- Team Griffin, Jessica, Tiffany, Tom and Kathy's adorable mom, Maggie -- as her comic foils and partners in crime.
Now, former Star Seach judge Naomi Judd is coming out backing up the claims that at least on that show, Jeff Archuleta was a horrible "stage dad," who at one point had to be put in the security guard's box to stop him. The last report to come out about Papa Archuleta's antics came during a recording session of "We Can Work It Out," the Beatles song that David infamously flubbed the lyrics to during the live performance. Supposedly, Jeff wasn't pleased with David's performance and brought him to tears with his criticisms. Maybe that means the Idol staffers have managed to shush him.
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