“This guy’s clearly a complete idiot”: How Fox News became a laughingstock in Paris – BRUCE GAIN THURSDAY, JAN 22, 2015 7:15 PM UTC


While much attention has been paid stateside to Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo’s public threat to sue Fox News this week, less focus has been given to the network’s ridiculous behavior that prompted the call to begin with.

“This guy’s clearly a complete idiot”: How Fox News became a laughingstock in Paris

But here in Paris, Fox’s claims of the existence of Islamist-run “no-go zones,” here and in other areas in Europe, have been lampooned with relish.

Reeling in the wake of the terrorist attacks on Paris-based newspaper Charlie Hebdo and a kosher market, the French equivalent of the David Letterman show, “Le Petit Journal,” managed to convey some much-needed comic relief to a national prime-time TV audience in France where much of the country grieved.

The Petit Journal’s broadcast of the Parisian neighborhoods could not have more patently depicted the absurdity of Fox’s portrayal of Paris, where, in reality, people of different ages, religions and ethnic origins freely go about their business, running errands, pushing strollers, etc.

Le Petit Journal correspondents were shown visiting the “no-go zones,” prompting guffaws from both the live studio audience and the incredulous passersby who were asked if their safe streets were comparable to those in Iraq or Afghanistan, if they ever saw someone wear bin Laden T-shirts, or other absurd questions. The U.S. equivalent would be asking people on the streets in Manhattan if Shariah law was the law of the streets there.

In another broadcast, Le Petit Journal cast members dressed up like U.S. journalists ventured into the “Most Dangerous City in the Universe.” They confronted such dangerous situations as a man with a “terrorist beard” driving a taxi or the site of a couscous restaurant. The sounds of a jackhammer are taken for gunfire as the fake TV reporter rolls on the ground in terror.

http://www.salon.com/2015/01/22/“this_guy’s_clearly_a_complete_idiot”_how_fox_news_became_a_laughingstock_in_paris/

Boundary-Pushing Late Night Hosts Move On — Colbert Up, Ferguson Out


They both started their late night shows in the same year, reinventing their respective corners of television by bending and sometimes breaking the rules.

Craig Ferguson, hosts "The Late Late Show" in 2011.
But, as Stephen Colbert and Craig Ferguson both say goodbye to long-running programs this week, only one has turned his showbiz rebellion into a launchpad for an even bigger TV platform.

From the cover of Entertainment Weekly to shout outs from James Franco and Michael J. Fox, everyone seems to be talking about tonight’s finale of The Colbert Report.

Including, to no one’s surprise, the host himself.

But there’s another long-running late night host also saying goodbye this week.

On Friday, Craig Ferguson hosts his last episode of CBS’ The Late Late Showafter nearly 10 years. His departure isn’t getting much attention — in part because he’s leaving as CBS builds its new late night franchise around Colbert, who will replace retiring legend David Letterman in the new year.

Both Colbert and Ferguson blew up the traditional talk show format, but each man accomplished it in his own, unique way.

Ferguson built a show that often played like an impish inside joke, poking fun at the ubiquitous talk show sidekick by having a robot skeleton sidekick built and naming it Geoff Peterson.

Because he was voiced by ace impressionist and comic Josh Robert Thompson, Geoff turned out to be a pretty good sidekick after all, especially when he did a mean Morgan Freeman impersonation, right in front of Morgan Freeman.

Article continues:

http://www.npr.org/2014/12/18/371552307/boundary-pushing-late-night-hosts-move-on-colbert-up-ferguson-out

Hollywood pumps cash to candidates – By Judy Kurtz October 31, 2014, 06:00 am


Celebrities are putting on a money-raising show, digging into their wallets in a last ditch effort to help Democrats and Republicans before Election Day.

David Letterman, Ben Affleck, former NFL quarterback John Elway, and “Scandal’s” Shonda Rhimes were among those pitching in to help their candidates of choice with cash right before next week’s midterm elections.

The donations made in this past fundraising cycle are largely being funneled to high-stakes matchups that could either keep the Senate in Democratic hands or tilt it to GOP control.

But in some cases, A-listers may be opening their checkbooks for old pals.

“Late Show” host Letterman was one of several high-profile donors to Sen. Al Franken’s reelection campaign. The Minnesota Democrat had worked to fend off Republican businessman Mike McFadden but is expected to survive.

Franken and Letterman have a long history together — the “Saturday Night Live” alum first appeared on the late-night funnyman’s CBS show back in 1987. Franken has the distinction of being the sole recipient of Letterman’s political dollars over the years. Letterman, who’s retiring in 2015, cut a check for $5,100 this year to Franken, and donated to him twice in 2008, and once in 2011.

The television comedian isn’t the only celeb that Franken has in his star-packed (and humor-filled) fundraising arsenal. With donations from comedy mega-producer Judd Apatow, “Cheers” actor Ted Danson, fellow former “SNL” comic Will Forte, and singer Nancy Sinatra, Franken comes in near the top of the list of candidates for the most money contributed to his campaign by Hollywood.

Article continues:

http://thehill.com/blogs/in-the-know/222397-hollywood-puts-on-a-fundraising-show