She used to always play the endearing bad girl, but now Christina Applegate has the parent role nailed, onscreen and off. Her "Up All Night" character, Reagan, is a cool, quirky working mom, and as Applegate told the LA Times, "It's the closest I've ever been to myself in a character -- the sense of humor, the baby love. It's there."
In fact, "both" of Applegate's babies just had first birthdays. Onscreen Amy had an absurdly lavish party, complete with a bouncy house, after pushover dad Chris (played by Will Arnett) agreed to celebrate with the couple's overbearing neighbors. As for Applegate's real-life daughter, Sadie? She had a smaller event held in her honor. "I only invited people with babies, so we've got about 10," the actress told Access Hollywood.
Here, she tells HuffPost Parents what she's learned since being a mom.
The best parenting advice I ever got ...
Schedule, schedule, schedule. Because of her schedule, Sadie has been sleeping twelve hours a night since she was 6 months old.
Favorite kid song ...
Favorite kid movie ...
Sadie's baby signs DVD
I get my kid to "go the f&@ to sleep" by ...
Singing to her while she has her bottle in the dark but only if she is really feisty
The thing I swore I'd never say to my kid, but do is ...
Don't pick Mama's nose.
The last lie I told my child was ...
Mama's water is all gone.
The word that best describes me as a mom is ...
The one word I wish described me as a mom is ...
Biggest splurge on a kid item ...
The carpet for her room, which eventually had to be torn out because it shed. Damn fancy carpet.
The title of my parenting memoir will be ...
"How Did I Ever Live Without You?"
What is a perfect day with your child?
Walking on the beach, showing her starfish and birds and listening to the ocean.
What is your perfect day without children?
There is no perfect day without children.
One of the grimmer, more distressing declarations I've heard from a TV executive has come from Ben Sherwood, president of ABC News, just a year or so into his still-new position.
Sherwood said, in a recent interview with the New York Times' indefatigable Brian Stelter, that audiences themselves nowadays "pick what matters most to them, and we are trying to be adaptive."
It might sound subtle and suggest some corporate agility. But it's in fact merely another fairly crude formulation for the time-old approach of low-minded media bosses who are abandoning high-minded standards (if they ever had them) for the journalistic quality of their output. Remember the phrase "we just give 'em what they want"?
It's an accepted truism that what in effect was once -- oh, long ago now -- a monopoly enjoyed by our major TV networks' cartel for supplying news footage to the home consumer has completely collapsed. None of us, armed with our remotes and cursors to click, can be held captive any more by the 6:30 p.m. executive producers and their predictable run-downs; we are all our own news editors now. Those network dinosaurs certainly have to adapt or die.
That's not especially sad in itself. It's just a fact.
What's sad is the almost universal agreement in decision-making offices that this means dumbing down the news. It's hardly logical, but it's inescapably the direction in which our network lemmings are heading.
There's been much micro-managing talk among analysts of this shrinking marketplace. A lot is made of the efforts by NBC, ABC and CBS to differentiate themselves in clever ways (indeed this was the tack taken by the article for which the Times interviewed ABC's Sherwood). Truth is that for all that NBC -- still in first place in this unrewarding race -- tries to be tabloid in general... ABC tries to be more based on "human-interest" and "relevance to viewers" (anchor Diane Sawyer and her "empathy" are regarded as its stealth weapons)... and CBS tries, maybe too late, to recall that news affecting the nation as a whole is what's most important... they all come off as desperate and patronizing.
Ironically -- and it's a form of dramatic irony that recalls Greek tragedy -- it is CBS which is avowedly trying, with fervent appeals to our TV culture memory that it was once called the "Tiffany network" (always for me an odd cultural reference to signify high-quality journalism) to resurrect its famous high standards. And it's the nuts-and-bolts of how that attempt is being made that carry the seeds of its own downfall.
It all began, skeptical company directors and many shareholders won't forget, with substantial extra expenditure (called "restructuring costs" in the company's latest quarterly return) that have amounted to $40 million, merely in laying off its cancelled Early Show staff and closing down its show-bizzy Fifth Avenue studio in favor of a more newsroom-based set for the new CBS This Morning program. Charlie Rose has raised eyebrows by being brought in as anchor in the mornings -- an arresting piece of Greek-style hubris in itself, given that he's already making a nightly public television talk-show as well, and is newly drafted into a weekly talk-show for CBS intended plaintively to revive the success of Edward R Murrow's Person to Person in the 1950s. Spreading on-air talent this thin is not a good sign.
The new morning output is meant to match the proclaimed seriousness brought to The CBS Evening News by Scott Pelley as anchor and Pat Shelvin, a four-decade CBS News veteran, as executive producer -- and everything under the News banner is now meant to echo the solidly, continuingly successful (but very special) case of 60 Minutes.
Already the entrail-readings are proving discouraging. CBS This Morning, with its proud boast to newly emphasize "hard news," drew some additional curious viewers to its very first broadcast, but when audiences for an entire week are compared with its predecessor's numbers a calendar year ago, they are 10 percent down.
The seeds of failure? I'd say they reside (and I'm maybe biased by my time working with 60 Minutes' formidable but business-like Mike Wallace) in the tone of "we are giving you our grand vision of what you need" that pervades this now grandstanding news division's programming as a whole. 60 Minutes is different, as ever; its deeply-ingrained collective consciousness that "all that matters is the story" (probably founder Don Hewitt's greatest legacy) still prevails.
And CBS is not in any great degree different from its rivals. The tone is different, maybe, from channel to channel; but the overall effect is, equally across the dial, that of the superior purveyor of valuable goods.
It's the superiority that is deadly. NBC's news chief Steve Capus may also talk confidently of the networks' significantly "different tacks," but with power now entirely in the hands of the viewer, online or off -- any such stance, redolent of that inbred insider superiority, simply can't win.* * * *
Read more of David Tereshchuk's media industry insights at his weekly column, "The Media Beat," with accompanying video and audio. Listen also to The Media Beat podcasts on demand from Connecticut's NPR station WHDD, and at iTunes.
When the "The Monkees" premiered in 1966, the made-for-TV band turned into an overnight sensensation. They had all the elements of a pop culture phenomenon in the making, including a dashing Davy Jones. Sadly, Jones recently passed away at the age of 66.
“It was a television show about this band that was not successful, that wanted to be the Beatles but never was on the show," Dolenz told "GMA." "It was about the struggle for success, and it spoke to all bands ... The closest thing that's come along down the pike since 'The Monkees,' I think, is 'Glee,' which is a show about an imaginary glee club, but they really are good and they can actually do it.”
If "Glee" is the new version of "The Monkees," then they're going to need bigger tour busses. TVLine's Michael Ausiello reports that the Fox comedy is currently casting a new gay character -- Chandler -- a vivacious, hunky high schooler.
When it comes to "The Bachelor," we should all really know by now that it is better not to believe everything that you read, in particular when it comes to a contestant that not every loves.Such is...
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I was invited to attend the Dr. Phil show last week to offer commentary on their feature story about a young and beautiful woman who had a tale of unsettling circumstances in regard to her Hasidic background. As the Dr. Phil show unfolded, I listened intently to a young woman named Pearlperry Reich (aka Pearl) who, at the age of 17, was betrothed to a man for whom she was clearly unsuited at her parents' discretion and against her will. Pearl shared claims of sexual, emotional and physical abuse by a husband who had never trusted or loved her. Pearl depicted herself as a desperate woman with four young children trying to escape an abusive and loveless marriage -- distancing herself from the Hasidic community of her childhood in an attempt to seek her own path as an actress and a model. Pearl purported that her husband was so incensed by her path of self-discovery and self-actualization that he now refuses to give her a Jewish or legal divorce and is even threatening to take her children away if she does not abandon her acting and modeling career, a pursuit that her husband claims is against the moral values on which they based their marriage vows.
As I listened to Pearl, I was struck by the great contrast between our experiences in the Hasidic community. As my readership knows, I am a Chabad Hasidic woman who lives in the public eye as a writer, speaker, filmmaker and singer who has an incredibly supportive husband and community that champions my individuality and artistic pursuits. The idea that this woman had no choice in whom she married or that her own identity and self expression was at stake left me shocked and troubled. It is my understanding that Hasidic philosophy is meant to support one's individuality and uniqueness. The very philosophical foundation of Hasidic mysticism, based on its founder Rabbi Yisroel Baal Shem Tov (1698-1760), is that each person is like a musical note in the symphony of life and that each individual possesses G-d given talents meant to be shared with the world. We have an obligation to seek out our own skills and talents and use them to reveal the majesty and G-dliness found even in the most mundane and corporeal parts of our existence and the world. When we actualize our talents for the purpose of elevating our surroundings we also reveal the holiness inside all of us.
Every time I get up to sing or speak, I am reminded of my own opportunity as a Jewish woman to reveal the gifts that I have been graciously given by the One Above. Obviously, Pearl's unorthodox account of a troubling marriage that has threatened her spiritual quest in no way represents the Hasidic philosophy of how women should be treated or how husbands and wives should support each other in their individual spiritual journeys. Judaism supports romance and encourages women to seek out their own spouse. Hasidism encourages the personal quest for individuality as well as marriages that celebrate mutually beneficial and healthy spirituality. Abuse of any kind should never be tolerated or condoned.
I am also not naive and realize that people are people -- human beings are fallible creatures capable of perverting the beautiful and deeply spiritual precepts taught by the Baal Shem Tov. The matter begs a serious conversation: How can one become enlightened and create a spiritual relationship with one's Higher Power despite being cast away by those who promised to love and protect them? When any individual we look up to fails us so remarkably, how do we recover? How does a person ever rectify one's own faith when corrupted personalities with bad principles cloaked in good ones take over? When our spirituality is tested, as Pearl's was, how are we supposed to respond, and does Hasidic philosophy really have those answers?
When I was a kid my father used to tell me, "Chava, remember, always place principles above personalities." But one Shavuot (you know, that holiday when Jews eat cheesecake and celebrate the giving of the Torah) many years ago, I can remember feeling deeply unmoved by my faith, for the personalities I relied on to guide me had let me down, and I had no idea how to come out of my deep dark cloud of disappointment. I began judging everyone I met and failed to remember the lessons of the Baal Shem Tov. Even Dr. Phil admitted that while he was in his teens he could remember "Loving G-d yet hating Christians." This fundamental human challenge is not a Hasidic issue, but a human one that humanity grapples with in every faith across the board.
The Baal Shem Tov used to say that when a person peers into a mirror and sees stains of soil on his own face, it is only because he has failed to wash himself. So too, when someone sees imperfections in another, it is a sign that those imperfections may live inside him. Clearly, I needed to have a shift; I had only disdain for those around me and could not muster the courage to see how that disdain blemished my own personal faith in myself, and in my own Higher Power as well.
That Shavuot I had decided to challenge a friend and rabbi, Rabbi Yosef Yitzchak Jacobson, with a letter sharing my great pain highlighting my inner conflict. When Rabbi Jacobson came to town that Shavuot to address the entire community, as was the local tradition each year, I never really thought he would have customized his speech to directly answer my letter. I didn't really expect any answer. The only reason I had gone to the speech that year was to prove my point that religion is uninspiring, and no one could prove to me otherwise. The truth was I got more spirituality from my Al-Anon meetings (AA meetings for friends and family of alcoholics) than from going to synagogue. In Al-Anon, I felt understood. In synagogue, I felt like a phony. I just didn't fit. My resentment toward my world and myself began to creep up on me. Something had to give. I found myself able to live with the outfit but without the heart. I hated my hypocrisy.
Rabbi Jacobson approached the pulpit. He stood there wearing black and white. I expected a black and white speech. What emerged instead was a fresh and empowering message. And his voice boomed (I am paraphrasing of course):
"Moses was the greatest man in history. He was a man who was known for his humility. What made Moses so humble? What was the inspiration that created his ultimate humility? Moses was the leader of a great generation. It was a generation that witnessed the splitting of the Red Sea, ten plagues, clouds of glory, Manna from heaven. They had seen G-d in full "exposure," with all His miracles. Yet they were not a generation who were able to bring great change in the world. However, Moses looked into the future. And through the future he saw the last generation who would usher in the world's utopian vision, a world of peace and prosperity where G-d's living presence and the inherent unity of mankind would be revealed. This generation would not have miracles to count on. They would be a generation born out of the ashes of Auschwitz and the flames of 9/11. Unlike previous generations, they would not have great Kings, dazzling prophets, or holy men and women to lead them. They might even come to observe leaders who are corrupt, and trendsetters who are unethical and unscrupulous. And yet, they would still have the ability of seeing the leaders as humans, humans who are flawed and who may make grave mistakes. And they will become people who make the decision to become leaders in their own right and change the world despite itself. It's time we take the responsibility of leading our generation into goodness on our own. Moses saw that our generation had this exceptional quality -- the quality that small, ordinary people would become their own leaders, living extraordinary lives and creating dignity out of doom. Become your own leader, become your own leader."
I expected tolerance. I received acceptance. I expected a party line. I received out of the box. For the first time, I understood that I had no one to blame for my lack of faith but myself. I had to start to trust my own instincts. I had to become the person that I assumed and expected others were supposed to be for me.
I decided to take that moment only to judge myself. I had to ask myself a difficult question: Was I being all that I could be? Or was I truly living with resentment and rage that had hindered my own spiritual growth? Was I projecting my own insecurities on others, blaming them for not taking responsibility for my life? Was I tolerating myself or accepting myself with all my weaknesses and accepting others with all of their shortcomings? Tolerance is not Hasidic. Acceptance is Hasidic. Living inspired by our own struggles and challenges rather than in spite of them is Hasidic. Morphing into leadership by example and trail blazing through a complicated world that uses pain and suffering in its narrative to illuminate important life lessons rather than using them as an excuse to be trapped into victimhood, is Hasidic. Making a mental and emotional accounting of one's humility, kindness, personal discipline, exposing the world's beauty, ambitiously living with joy, bonding with our creator and the world around us, and taking the time to judge less and examine more is Hasidic.
So many times we look to others as our role models for Jewish values before adopting them as our own. When the others fail to prove those values by example, we are deeply disappointed. Man was created to be challenged, and at times fails, giving him the opportunity to climb that ladder of personal growth with new perspective and courage. Unfortunately, many of us don't have the fortitude or resolution to recognize our faults or that our ladder of personal growth is no longer upright, but has fallen flat -- becoming a bridge to the extramundane and sacrilegious. Putting too much stock into the infallibility of human beings creates huge disappointment and challenges our inner compass. Many people spend a lifetime without ever getting on the ladder and most of us get on only to climb and fall and climb and fall. In truth, we must never stop climbing, and as we learn to accept our human condition and challenges, they afford us the great wisdom that ancient books write about. Human beings are created as material creatures infused with spiritual longing. We must be careful not to allow our own flawed whims to take over our sleeping spirits.
I truly empathize with Pearl and I am so sorry for the pain she has endured and continues to endure. My heart goes out to this wonderful lady and her children and I pray for her well-being and full happiness and serenity. I wish Pearl the good fortune to, in time, have the perspective to see her journey from a new and a fresh vantage point. To realize the very beauty she possesses is also a product of the pain and suffering she has endured. That the heavy weight on her shoulders currently pinning her to the ground can become the wings on her back lifting her ever higher. Together, maybe we can fight for faith, acceptance and personal leadership, and finally bring about the world's utopian vision of peace and prosperity where authentic and genuine spirituality is finally revealed.
On Monday night's new episode of "Smash," we saw Nick Jonas make a brief appearance as an young TV star-turned millionaire looking to potentially invest in the Marilyn Monroe musical. Even though his time on...
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Now that the world of George R.R. Martin has already expanded onto the small screen, it is apparently looking to cross over into as many mediums as possible. Even prior to Thursday, we were aware of one "Game...
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One of the biggest stories involving the upcoming movie "The Lorax" has actually had very little to do with the movie itself; instead, it has revolved around Zac Efron accidentally dropping a condom out of his pocket while...
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It seems like just yesterday that you couldn't flip the channel without seeing Carrot Top's 1-800-CALL-ATT commercials. It's perhaps a testament to the glory of the '90s that the redhead's name still appears frequently in trivia games. But what feels like yesterday was actually more than a decade ago, and Carrot Top, born Scott Thompson, is now 47 years old. Who would have guessed? Not us.
Since his primetime TV spots, the comedian has, more or less, faded into the whitewashed walls of the has-been home, seldom making appearances or turning up at red carpet events.
The 47-year-old goofball, turned bodybuilder, turned '90s relic shares his age with Hollywood veterans like Teri Hatcher, Alan Cumming, Hoda Kotb, Courtney Love and Kim Richards.
Check out Carrot Top over the years:
If you love Daniel Gillies, then you're in luck: you now have an opportunity to check out even more of him in the summer courtesy of the Canadian series "Saving Hope."According to The Hollywood Reporter...
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