Monday, September 24, 2007

The Ruf, The Ruf, The Rufus On Fire

Blah! I fear that today's post is gonna be a quick one ... there ain't a lot of goss going on this fine Monday morn/afternoon. I'm not sure if the shortage of good goss has anything to do with the autumnal equinox that has cast a chill across the land or what but ... there ain't much goin' on. But, we do what we must ... and, in the illustrious words of Mr. Tim Gunn, we make it work ... and so we shall ...

The latest round of Britney Spears bashing continues unfettered as her former bodyguard, Tony Barretto made the rounds at the morning news programs today. Barretto, with his lawyer (and all-around shit stirrer) Gloria Allred by his side, is continuing to blow the whistle on alleged dangerous behavior, the story du jour involves drug use, that he claims to have witnessed while in her employ. Britney, for her part, got the hell out of dodge (or so the sightings claim) as she skipped out of town over the weekend and made her way to Atlanta, GA. Here is the last pic taken of Brit Brit, from the front of her new home as she chatted on the phone, before she supposedly left town:

Photo credit: Flynet

A former bodyguard for Britney Spears – who worked for her after her release from rehab in March and was the much-hyped "secret witness" in Spears and Kevin Federline's custody case – is now making the media rounds, and he says he witnessed Britney using drugs on two occasions. "They were both in a nightclub in Los Angeles," bodyguard Tony Barretto, who protected Spears, 25, for two months before being fired, said on Monday's Today show. "The incident happened at her table. She had me hold up a curtain, to make her area private" ... Speaking to Today host Matt Lauer with his attorney, Gloria Allred, at his side, Barretto was asked if he found Spears appearing to be "completely strung out" in a Los Angeles hotel room. Lauer also noted that Spears lives in Los Angeles, suggesting that her being in a hotel room in a city where she already lived qualified as questionable behavior. "Did you also see evidence of drug use in that hotel?" Lauer inquired. "I did," said Barretto, who said he was frustrated in not being able to step in and offer help. "It was almost forbidden to talk about her personal life," he said. "Britney doesn't listen to nobody. I mean, that's apparent." Asked if he ever saw Spears use drugs or abuse alcohol in front of her children, Sean Preston, 2, and Jayden James, 1, Barretto replied, "I have never seen her use drugs in the presence of her children. ... Alcohol? ... I don't know if 'abuse' is the correct language. I have seen her use alcohol." Wow. One the one hand, sadly, none of this is at all surprising ... on the other, I want to believe that Barretto might be wrong -- but, I'm sad to say, my gut tells me otherwise. I would imagine that this bodyguard/stool pigeon is getting some compensation for some of these interviews (not the Today interview but the one that appeared in the British tabloids over the weekend) so that casts some doubt on his claims ... but not much. If you piece together Barretto's accounts with the erratic behavior that the public at large has been witness to over the past couple of years -- it all kinda makes sense. In any event, the concern has to shift to the children and their well-being ... it's just a very sad, very demoralizing story all around. I just hope that things turn around and it all ends well in the end. I'm afraid to think what might happen if all this bullshizz gets any worse :( [Source]

MTV Europe has announced the nominees for the 2007 MTV European Music Awards, which are scheduled to take place at Munich's OlympiaHalle on November 1. The noms were announced today and, shock of shocks, Justin Timberlake leads the way with 4 nominations ... but there are a slew of artists nipping at his heels with 3 noms each, which means that this year's MTV EMAs are set to be an exciting showdown:

[Justin Timberlake], 26, is the most nominated artist in this year's MTV Europe Music Awards – eligible in four separate categories: headliner award, ultimate urban act, video star award and solo artist of 2007. Timberlake faces a tough fight for solo artist – facing off against Nelly Furtado, Avril Lavigne and Rihanna. Nominated for "What Goes Around" in the video star category, Timberlake will need to beat both Kanye West and Justice. Lavigne, who is up for three awards (solo artist, most addictive track and album of the year), said in a statement, "It's always such a great show and I'm really looking forward to it." Amy Winehouse, BeyoncĂ© Knowles, Fall Out Boy, Furtado, Rihanna, Linkin Park and My Chemical Romance also have three nominations each. Foo Fighters, My Chemical Romance, Mika and Avril Lavigne have already been lined up as performers with more announcements to come later on. This is SO Rihanna's year, I have no doubt that she'll be walking home from the EMAs with at least one or two of those fun, springy European Music Awards. Click HERE for a full list of this year’s nominees. [Source, Source]

Last night, here in Hollywood, CA, Rufus Wainwright performed the last of his hugely successful Rufus does Judy Garland concerts at the Hollywood Bowl after putting on performances in NYC, London and Paris over the past year:

Almost 40 years to the day that Judy Garland performed at the Hollywood Bowl herself, Rufus Wainwright took to the stage to perform Judy's entire classic 1961 concert recording. [Source]

I was lucky enough to attend last night's incredible performance, tho the following photos were not taken by me. My seat was pretty far back from the stage ... these photos were posted by Sabrii on the official Rufus Wainwright message board at his official site:

I have some anecdotal stuff to add but I'll save that for the end of the post. I am utterly thrilled that I was able to see this show for myself. The original Carnegie Hall shows that Rufus did last year in NYC sold out instantaneously so I wasn't able to see it then but I knew that I didn't want to miss this performance at the Hollywood Bowl. Rufus brought out his amazing sister, Martha Wainwright to sing a couple of songs (who I felt kinda upstaged him a bit as his voice wasn't quite up to par and hers soared like an angel) and his mother Kate McGarrigle to accompany him on piano for a couple of songs (most notably, Somewhere Over the Rainbow). Judy Garland's own daughter, Lorna Luft (not Liza, the other one), came out to sing a couple of songs as well. I joked to Mike that Rufus had to settle for Lorna because she was the only Garland daughter who would answer his phone calls ... tho I'm sure that the mostly gay audience would've died on the spot had Liza come out to sing a song or two. The night was absolutely magical. If you live in SoCal and you've never seen a concert at the Hollywood Bowl, you simply must make an effort to do so. The venue is absolutely stunning ... and seeing a show there, especially one as unique as Rufus's show last night, is a once-in-a-lifetime experience. [Source]

In other concert news, Rihanna played a show at the Molson Theater in Toronto over the weekend ... here are a few pics from her show:

Um ... I get that she's all Good Girl Gone Bad but ... a pleather tutu and a bondage bra? Really? Rihanna is way sexier than this ... she really doesn't need to overdo it and try so hard. This is one outfit that she should definitely be hiding under her umbrella. [Source]

Hayden Panettiere has been bizzy with some last minute promo work for the second season of Heroes this weekend and this morning ... here are pics of Hayden as she made her way into the Regis & Kelly show in NYC:

Photo credit: Splash News

First off, she looks lovely. Secondly, has anyone noticed that she hasn't been seen within 85 miles of her co-star Milo Ventimiligia since rumors started heating up that they are secretly dating? Not since they were seen gettin' all touchy-feely on the dancefloor at all those Emmy afterparies last weekend have they been seen in each other's proximity. Curious, no? Suspcisious, yes! [Source]

While Hayden is flying solo in NYC, the other Heroes chicks have been left behind here in LA to do their own part in the Heroes season 2 premiere promo push. Ali Larter and newcomer Kristin Bell were (prolly forced) in attendance at the premiere of the HORRRRRRIBLE-looking new movie The Game Plan which "stars" The Rock:

I won't even discuss this stupid movie at all (haven't we been subjected to enough of this bullshizz when The Pacifier came out ... and Mr. Nanny before that one? How many times are they going to make this stupid movie?) and will focus solely on 1.) how crappy it must be for these hot chicks to be subjected to showing up at an event like this just to promote their TV show and 2.) how really crappy it must be for Ali Larter to be forced to show up to an event like this with the newbie. It's interesting that they weren't photographed together ... I hope there ain't gonna be no trouble on the set of one of my favorite TV shows this season. Hayden was smart to go to NYC. [Source]

Here are a few more pics of Brad Pitt on the set of his new movie Burn After Reading which was being filmed in NYC over the weekend:

Photo credit: Splash News

I can't believe that that fake blood tastes as good as Brad it making it seem but I don't really mind that he's into all that licking. I'm just saying. [Source]

Jesse Metcalfe is a friend to the environment, which is a good thing, altho the poor lamb looks completely forlorn and totally unkept in these pics of his recent trip to put out his recycling bins. Maybe things are really over (again) between him and his on-again, off-again girlfriend Nadine Coyle:

I mean ... look at him. It looks as if he hasn't waxed his chest in ages, let alone done a push-up or two in weeks. I bet he hasn't even been keeping up with his regular eyebrow waxing appointments! Egads! He seems to have lost all hope! It's encouraging that his commitment to saving the planet is still intact ... at least he has something to live for. Um ... and irregardless of the fact that homeboy seems to have let his grooming habits fall by the wayside, I SO still would ... er, that is if I were single ;) [Source via ONTD!]

Here are a few of my favorite pics from the new 2008 Kylie Minogue Official Calendar:

Kylie always comes thru with amazing photos for her official calendars but I think she's really outdone herself this year. The pics are cute and not too campy and she looks absolutely stunning ... especially in the pics where she's not wearing tons of make-up. Now ... if I could just get my hands on an early promo copy of her album I'll be allll set. [Source]

WOOT! WOOT! Don't forget that the new season of the hottest new show of last year, Heroes, premieres tonight on NBC:

After too many months of no new shows, I'm about to get back on my regular TV-watching schedule. Prison Break premiered last week but I'm holding off on seeing more eps before I make a determination about the new season. I'm very excited for Heroes and am looking forward to getting back to the recaps tomorrow. [Source]

And finally, I must urge you all (or as many of you as possible) to make your dinner plans at Chili's Bar & Grill today/night. All proceeds from sales at Chili's today will go to St. Jude Hospital:

On September 24, Chili's Grill & Bar offers an easy way for you to join the fight against childhood cancer: dining out. Participating Chili's restaurants nationwide will donate 100 percent of its profits from this Monday to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. So enjoy those famous Baby Back Ribs or one of Chili's other signature entrĂ©es for lunch or dinner, and you will be supporting the life-saving work of St. Jude. "If you go out to eat for lunch or dinner on September 24, by going to Chili's you will help seriously ill children become the ultimate survivors. On that day, Chili's restaurants nationwide will be donating all their profits to support St. Jude," said Jeff Probst, host and producer of the EmmyTM Award-winning CBS-TV series Survivor, who is serving as the campaign spokesperson for the fourth year ... Guests can also purchase Create-A-Pepper T-shirts ($12) that can be customized with permanent marker as well as dog tags ($5). Sixty percent of the purchase price of the T-shirt and dog tags will go to St. Jude. Special gift cards will also benefit St. Jude with Chili's donating $1 to St. Jude for every $25 purchased in commemorative Create-A-Pepper gift cards. Chili's hopes to raise $5 million through this year's campaign which will go toward its $50 million, 10 year plan to fund the Chili's Care Center, a state-of-the-art research and clinical building. Opening on the St. Jude campus in November 2007, the building will house St. Jude's Department of Radiological Sciences, the national Pediatric Brain Tumor Consortium (PBTC), inpatient beds and activity areas and new research laboratories. To date, Chili’s has raised more than $10.5 million for the hospital. I love me some Chili's, and that's a fact, so I'm gonna make sure I get out there TODAY! I'm a fan of the babyback ribs so it'll be a joy for me to help out in this way. I hope you, too, will make the effort to help out ... it's such an easy way to make a big difference for families that really need the help. [Source]

Les News:
So ... as David was flying off to NYC I was making preparations to meet up with Mike for the Rufus show at the Hollywood Bowl last night. The weather has gotten chilly so we had to wear hoodies but, honestly, the night was so beautiful underneath the stars and the moon that I hardly noticed. Here are a few of my pics from last night:

Because we were so far back I figured it'd be cool to take pictures of the different colored lights that lit up the Bowl thruout the night. I was able to record a short video of Rufus telling a fun story from his childhood:

There is something distinctly nostalgic about seeing a show at the Hollywood Bowl. It could've been 1961 last night ... such a cool experience. At the show I was very lucky enough to meet Pink readers Celine, Bradford, Erin, Tom, Chad and Matthew and I got to run into my good buddy Ross Mathews. Celebs like Debbie Reynolds, Carrie Fisher, Jake Gyllenhaal, Rebecca Romijn, Jerry O'Connell and Drew Barrymore were in the hiz as well. It was such a fun night. A little bird tells me that the official afterparty was held at Carrie Fisher's home in Beverly Hills and that Reese Witherspoon was the first to arrive. Jake Gyllenhaal also came out for the afterparty, tho he arrived separately. I'm told the party was very swank, very Hollywood. I'm not really familiar with the original Judy Garland concert recording so I had to download it on iTunes ... and I have to tell you, Rufus really got most of the nuances down and pulled off a spectacular show. The live performances are over ... but a live DVD and CD are on the way for those of you missed seeing the show for yourselves.

I have an appointment this afternoon and a bunch of errands to take care of. At some point I have to stuff my face at Chili's, too.

And soo ... I guess that's it. I'm out.