In a "Today" show interview, the Comedy Central anchor says, "It comes down to who has been crueler to a dog."
Singer/songwriter Keyshia Cole has landed another reality TV show. The Grammy Award-nominated hitmaker will put her private life with basketball star husband Daniel Gibson and their two-year-old so...
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The hardest thing a television series will ever do is find a way to successfully close its series[...]
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Bikini baby bumps are all the rage -- just ask Tori Spelling!
The 90210 actress, who is currently expecting baby number four (!), was seen soaking up the sun while on a mini-vacay in Malibu with her 3-year-old daughter Stella, and was wearing some Sanuk yoga mat sandals.
Up until now, most of us know Cobie Smulders as Robin Scherbatsky from "How I Met Your Mother," where she plays the sarcastic Canadian. She certainly takes a different turn in "The Avengers" as Maria Hill, the hard-as-nails former director of S.H.I.E.L.D. Smulders is as far away from her TV character as she could possibly be in a skin-tight suit, wielding a gun and leaping through flames.
Moviefone caught up with Smulders on an "Avengers" press tour, where she spoke to us about stunt love, gun love, and an unstoppable Joss Whedon love.
Were you a fan of "The Avengers" before you took the role?
I was familiar with some of the characters. I had seen "Iron Man" and "Iron Man 2"; but as soon as I got the call that I was going to screen test with Samuel L. Jackson, I immediately went on the computer to research S.H.I.E.L.D. and Maria Hill. [Laughs] She's a new character [in the movie universe], so I was able to take what was already established in the comic books and then, with the help of Joss Whedon, add to it as well.
How much did you work with Joss? And what was it like?
I did spend a lot of time with him. Joss is an amazing man, and he gives you a lot of time even though he probably doesn't have it. He spent a lot of time with me, even though I have one of the smaller roles in this character-driven project. He was there every step of the way, and he wrote the audition scenes that didn't even end up in the movie! He was there at the screen tests, he was there at wardrobe fittings, he was there when we were discussing my bang length. [Laughs] You can imagine how much time he spent with the other characters in this film. I pretty much signed on because he was in charge.
Since your character is new, did you feel any pressure or like you had something to prove?
Absolutely. In not only a new-character sense, but also in a actor-playing-with-really-huge-actors sort of way. I feel like all my answers come back to Joss, but that's how it is. He was so good at giving me confidence. First and foremost, I wanted to make the fans happy. I took what they said to heart, and I wanted this woman to look like she was in charge, that she was comfortable standing up to Nick Fury. I wanted to look like I could take someone down.
You did some of your own stunts, correct?
A lot of it was me, yeah! [Laughs] I wanted to. There's something that feels more organic about watching a stunt that's done by you. There's also a feeling of accomplishment doing it yourself. I was kind of a pain in the ass on set sometimes because I'd be doing a scene with Sam [Jackson] and I'd insist that I get to shoot as many times as him. It's just cool. It's just bad-ass. The whole first scene, of me driving the Jeep, that's mostly me. I wanted to do more.
Did you have fun wielding a gun and wearing a skin-tight suit?
Too much. [Laughs] The most important thing to me, going into this film, was training, and I wasn't given any. I hired someone myself and I started doing boxing, tae kwon do and jujitsu. I hired this great guy out of Los Angeles who trains SWAT teams. He helped me become more familiar with police protocol and tactics, how you would enter a room with a gun, all of these things that I really wanted to get into my mind so I could just focus on Maria when I got on set.
Had you shot a gun prior to this role?
No. I shot prop guns on set, but that's it. The thing that I learned after spending an afternoon in the shooting range - which I think I'm never going to do again - was that I have a great respect for the weapon. I thought I was going to be filled with adrenaline, and that maybe I'd go buy a gun afterwards, but I just left going, "It's not for me." I know how they work now, I know what they can do. Of course, my character on "HIMYM" is a gun enthusiast, so they always have me doing goofy things like shooting the guns into the air, and I always looked at it as a prop. Until now.
"The Avengers" opens wide in North America on May 4.
PROVIDENCE, R.I. — Quahog, R.I., the fictional hometown of Peter Griffin and his dysfunctional "Family Guy" relatives, is coming to life.
The show will meld with reality this weekend when a local tourism council sponsors an all-day bus tour highlighting the Rhode Island institutions featured – for better or worse – on the Fox network's hit series.
Fans will get to visit the bar in Johnston known as The Drunken Clam, a "Family Guy" neighborhood haunt, and drive past a downtown Providence skyscraper off which the often clueless, almost always politically incorrect character jumps in one episode because he's "immortal."
The show, created by Seth MacFarlane, who attended the Rhode Island School of Design, pretty accurately depicts a slew of real-life Rhode Island places, including the iconic Van Wickle Gates at Brown University and the Breakers mansion in Newport. It takes generous liberties with others.
And that's part of the entertainment.
"Pretty much any time you see something local on `Family Guy,' it's fun," said Christopher Martin, whose work cataloging the show's Rhode Island connections would eventually lead to the tour. The event Saturday is put on by the Blackstone Valley Tourism Council – 30 people have signed up, shelling out $49 apiece – and is now in its second year.
Martin runs a website called Quahog.org about Rhode Island fact and folklore. Although his site had nothing to do with "Family Guy," he started getting a lot of inquiries about it because of the shared name. (A quahog is a clam.) So about seven years ago, he decided to start compiling all the references.
The 45-year-old from Johnston, who works as an analyst at a health care company, records all the episodes. He usually watches each one twice, the first time for fun and the second to take notes; he now has 88 typed pages.
His encyclopedia-like entries reveal that Happy-Go-Lucky Toys, where Peter Griffin works on an assembly line, is a satire of the toy maker Hasbro, located in Pawtucket, and that Wes' Rib House is a restaurant in the Olneyville section of Providence that has won awards for its ribs.
During last year's tour, one participant was convinced her husband was a real-world incarnation of Peter.
"He did look like Peter," said Kim Polson, head of an arts nonprofit in Providence who came up with the idea for the bus tour based on Martin's site and now oversees its logistics. "He did a little impersonation of Peter. He could do bits from the show."
She sees the show's Rhode Island roots as an homage to the nation's smallest state – and its quirks. One of Family Guy's writers, Danny Smith, grew up in Smithfield.
"We are the original quirky state of the union, Rhode Island is, ever since Roger Williams was booted out of Massachusetts," she said. "I think it's probably the biggest tourism booster to Rhode Island."
She's hoping to develop a "Family Guy" convention.
This year's tour stops include McCoy Stadium, the minor league baseball stadium in Pawtucket where Peter takes his Irish-Catholic father for a game; Narragansett Beer Company, a stand-in for the show's Pawtucket Patriot beer, in Providence; and Big Blue Bug Solutions, the pest control company with the giant blue bug on the roof, called Quahog Pest Control on "Family Guy."
It won't be possible to visit James Woods Regional High School, named for the real-life actor, who is from Warwick. Or Buddy Cianci Junior High, named for the larger-than-life former Providence mayor best known for resigning office – twice – after two separate felony convictions. Those places don't exist.
And one mainstay of the local food scene – a frankfurter topped with a special sauce and chopped onions, among other ingredients – hasn't made "Family Guy." Yet.
"I'm surprised they haven't done hot wieners," Martin said. "Unless I missed it."
? Pilot Watch: AMC picks up two scripted dramas. ? Connect the Dots: The past few seasons of[...]
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WASHINGTON -- David Lynch is known for making dark films, dark music and dark coffee.
For the duration of these endeavors, he's also been practicing Transcendental Meditation. For nearly 40 years, Lynch has spent 20 minutes, twice a day, meditating. Since 2005 he's been spreading his practice with the David Lynch Foundation for Consciousness-Based Education and World Peace.
The foundation held its first National Summit on Thursday in the nation's capital.
Lynch told The Huffington Post in an interview that the summit was used to share information about "resilience, the brain and meditation." At the event, veterans, doctors, cadets from a private military university and others attested to the positive role Transcendental Meditation has had in their lives.
World War II veteran Captain Jerry Yellin (Ret.) said that Transcendental Meditation is a "tool that allows us to connect with our soul."
HuffPost spoke with the head of the foundation about his experience, hope and goals for Transcendental Meditation.
The Huffington Post:When did you get involved in meditation?
David Lynch: I got involved with Maharishi Mahesh Yogi in 1973, on July 1, a beautiful Saturday morning.
HuffPost:Do you remember what happened on June 30, 1973?
Lynch: I was looking forward to July 1.
HuffPost: Transcendental Meditation is a non-religious practice.
Lynch: That's exactly right.
HuffPost: But the perception is that it's religious. The reality is that it's the brain's version of yoga. Am I off with this?
Lynch: You're right. It's a technique. Transcendental Meditation is a mental technique, how we get to the big within, the unified field, that ocean of consciousness with all those positive quality, is with a technique by going deeper into the mind, deeper levels into intellect, on the border of intellect, then boom, you transcend that source of thought.
When you truly transcend, you infuse some of that and you grow into that consciousness, you expand that consciousness. All those positive qualities, that level of life, is unbounded intelligence, unbounded consciousness, unbounded love, unbounded happiness, unbounded energy, unbounded peace. It's there within every human being. You just need a technique to open that door to that treasury and you've got it.
HuffPost: You're working with a lot of soldiers suffering from PTSD and at-risk individuals. How can they be a part of this without a teacher?
Lynch: You need a legitimate teacher to teach you the technique. That takes about four days, about an hour and a half each day, then you have that technique for the rest of your life. You meditate 20 minutes in the morning, 20 minutes in the evening and you live your life.
You don't have to give up anything, believe in anything, change in anything. You'll just start feeling better and better and better.
When you start expanding those qualities from within. It's like gold is coming and all the negativity and all the garbage goes away. You live and work in more and more freedom, more happiness, more energy, ability to solve problems, understand things easier, relationships improve, all kinds of benefits come in health and work.
HuffPost:So you don't believe that you have to be in a dark space to create dark material.
Lynch: Negativity is the enemy to creativity. If you're truly suffering, you can't get out of bed, let alone create. It's so much bullshit and wrong understanding to think that the artist has to suffer to create. The artist has to understand suffering. The artist has to understand the human condition. You need to be filled with energy, the ability to solve problems. Filled with happiness and then those ideas have a way better chance of flowing. It's common sense.
Lynch: Intuition is another thing that grows. This area of within is an area of all knowingness. Agent Cooper had that intuition and a happiness in his work.
Lynch: It's not, but it is beautiful to me. People do go through the dark night of the soul and the good news is that they can come out of that dark night and the world is really, really beautiful on the other side of that. The only way, I see, to get through that darkness and walk away from suffering, is to contact that deepest level of life everyday and grow in that. Life gets better and better and better.
Then you can go into dark places, light places, here and there, understanding grows and you can tell stories or do music from that and do whatever you want. The stories hold all kinds of negatives and positives, that's what makes a story, but you don't have to suffer to show the suffering. There's a freedom that comes with this. Don't think suffering is necessary. Get that technique, get that key that opens the door to the deepest level and start enjoying life and then you can start doing work.
HuffPost:Are you a religious man?
Lynch: I believe in god but I'm not going to church each Sunday. I think all the great religions are rivers that flow to the same ocean and that ocean is the reality we all want. I'm for religion and for god, but if people think that Transcendental Meditation is a religion, it isn't. It's a technique that benefits every human being. It's for human beings to enjoy life. It's to find that happiness within and really boogie.
HuffPost:The cadets at Norwich University are now practicing Transcendental Meditation. One of the cadets featured in the summit no longer needs coffee to operate. You are a very big proponent of caffeine. Is there a disconnect between your love of coffee and Transcendental Meditation?
Lynch: I think for some people too much caffeine makes them feel not so good. If you're out of balance in any way, Transcendental Meditation will bring you more into balance. A lot of people, when they start meditating, they walk away from things that aren't so good from them. They don't try to do it, they just do it. It's different for each person. You don't have to give up anything. If you're shooting heroin or on methanphetamines, you might start doing that a little bit less or think seriously about quitting it and enjoy life more and keep on boogeying. The things that hurt us tend to leave us if we're bringing in that gold everyday.
HuffPost:Why did you begin working with the military?
Lynch: Well, Transcendental Meditation is a huge stress buster. It's a huge stress buster. When you transcend, the physiology settles down first behind the mind and the body is able to rest three times deeper than the deepest sleep. This is what happens to us when we transcend. We get rid of the stress that kills us, torments us. The soldiers, men and women, coming back suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, this is exactly the ticket for them. The research has shown that the soldiers say, "I got my life back again." Pharmaceutical drugs, illegal drugs, alcohol, it gives them big relief, it takes away the symptoms for a while, but a lot of them are a slippery road to hell. This evaporates the torment.
You teach the soldiers the technique. A lot of the men are ashamed to have Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. This is a big sadness. There's no shame in having PTSD. It's like they had a bullet to the head and heart, there's no shame in that. Take this technique and get your life back together again.
HuffPost:If someone is shameful of PTSD, how do you sell them Transcendental Meditation?
Lynch: Everybody knows about Transcendental Medition. If daytime is a hell and at night they can't sleep and their relationships are going to hell and they hear about a technique that worked for other soldiers, they'll think, "Maybe this is going to work for me."
HuffPost: What about at-risk youths?
Lynch: There's lot of so called regular human beings that are suffering too much. Suffering is a relative thing. Each human being has a full potential. Unless you're supremely enlightened, which is a real thing for the human being, it's our birth right, Transcendental Meditation just accelerates the trip to highest states of consciousness and total fulfillment, the full potential of the human being. It doesn't matter how little or great you're suffering, the trick is to transcend everyday and zoom forward.
HuffPost: What's your meditation schedule?
Lynch: I'll wake up in the morning, have a cup of coffee, meditate then go about my business. I'll meditate again before dinner. Just add that 40 minutes to your life and watch things get better.
HuffPost: What about people that might not be able to spare that time, people that may have a weird work schedule?
Lynch: I got a weird schedule, pal, and I've never missed a meditation in almost 39 years.
I've just finished watching last night's installment of Coronation Street and by 'eck it were good![...]
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Throughout this season, just as in seasons past, AMC viewers are invited to chat about the latest episode of Mad Men with friends and fellow fans on the Mad Men Talk forum.
Want to join the conversation? Log onto the Talk forum then start chatting in the comments section.