I was going to post just a few clips of Oprah Winfrey’s interview with marathon swimmer Diana Nyad but they were all so good that I kept adding more and more snippets.
It’s interesting because as inspiring and accomplished as Oprah is, Nyad really is the one who shines here. What an amazing human being.
Watch the first clip and my hunch is you will watch another then another. Much of the attention given to this interview has been the part about Nyad saying she’s an atheist and Oprah seemingly challenging her on that.
But there’s so much more here that is even more fascinating.
Robert Gant has done some memorable guest spots in his busy career including the one on Friends when he was one of two amazing guys who Phoebe (Lisa Kudrow) could not choose between – so she just kept dating both.
More recently, the Queer as Folk alum (he was Professor Ben Bruckner for five seasons) has guested on Hot in Cleveland, Happily Divorced, NCIS, Anger Management and Mike & Molly.
Tonight, the hunky actor drops in on the Sean Hayes new NBC sitcom Sean Saves the World as Sean’s blind date.
I’ve seen the first two episodes of the show and like it just fine. I think it has all kinds of potential – especially with the great Linda Lavin as Sean’s mom.
Hopefully we will see Mr. Gant in more than one episode!
Today’s Morning Man is a staunch LGBT ally who has just been elected to the United States Senate.
He’s Cory Booker who is 44 and has been mayor of Newark New Jersey since 2006.
Booker is the first African American US Senator from New Jersey and the first African American to be elected to the Senate since Barack Obama in 2004.
He’s always been a high achiever. Booker played football at Stanford University and was awarded a Rhodes Scholarship to study at the University of Oxford. He then earned his Juris Doctor in 1997 from Yale Law School where he operated free legal clinics for low-income residents of New Haven, Connecticut.
At Yale, Booker was a founding member of the Chai Society (now the Eliezer Society)a Big Brother with Big Brothers Big Sisters of America, and was active in the National Black Law Students Association.
Lately we’ve been talking about Cher a lot as the ultimate showbiz survivor but at 67 she’s just a kid compared to amazing Angela Lansbury.
Miss Lansbury, the winner of a record-tying five Tony Awards, has had an A-list career that has spanned seven decades. She turned 88 today and is still going strong.
She was signed on at MGM way back in 1942 and soon after earned Oscar nominations for Gaslight (1944) and The Picture of Dorian Gray (1945). Her third Oscar nod came for 1962′s The Manchurian Candidate. She will soon receive an Honorary Oscar for her career in films which also includes National Velvet, The Harvey Girls, State of the Union, Bedknobs and Broomsticks, Death on the Nile and The Mirror Crack’d.
She would later go on to star for 12 seasons as Jessica Fletcher on CBS’s Murder She Wrote and be nominated for a total of 18 Emmy Awards for that and other television work.
While Lansbury never won the Oscar or the Emmy, she was showered with Tonys winning for her Broadway roles in Gypsy, Mame, Dear World, Sweeney Todd and Blythe Spirit. She was also nominated in recent years for the play Deuce and the musical A Little Night Music.
Last year, Miss Lansbury starred in the Broadway revival of the Gore Vidal play The Best Man and was nominated for a Drama Desk Award. Earlier this year, she starred with James Earl Jones in an Australian tour of Driving Miss Daisy.
She is one for the ages and below are three musical performances of Miss Lansbury’s that I especially like. The third video, Everything’s Coming Up Roses, doesn’t have sound for about the first 40 seconds but it will come on and you won’t miss a thing!
I never figured Bethenny Frankel as a talk show host and I have yet to check out her new daytime chatfest. But I gotta admit, her backstage Would You Ever? segment is catching on.
It has celebs picking sometimes deeply personal questions out of a bowl and answering them right on the spot.
Bravo personality Andy Cohen was in the hot seat. Watch to see if he would ever get romantically involved with a guy he was really good friends with (Anderson Cooper?) or if he would ever marry a guy half his age.
Yeah, that’s Adam Lambert in the photo to your left. It looks more like a painting! Well, I hurriedly snapped it as I was walking into the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Samuel Goldwyn Theater last night for the LA premiere of Bridegroom.
It was a richly emotional evening and though I’ve seen the film before, I got even more out of this time.
I’ve written all about the premiere in a story posted over at Gay Star News so go over there to see what the film’s producer and subject Shane Bitney Crone had to say.
I’m so glad I captured the moment where he is receiving heartfelt words of support from Lily Tomlin as his proud and amazing mom, Cindy Bitney, looks on.
I invited my good friend Jim Key, who happens to be Chief Public Affairs Officer at the LA Gay & Lesbian Center, as my guest and we grabbed seats in the second row.
We bumped into so many people that one or the other or both knew including Wilson Cruz, Chad Allen, Producer Peter Marc Jacobson (The Nanny/Happily Divorced), and soap opera star journalist Michael Fairman, and Instinct Magazine Editor Jeff Katz, among others.
At the after-party downstairs, Jim and I managed to have a few seconds with Shane who literally had a crowd around him three people deep waiting to meet him. He was unfailingly polite and kind to each of them.
I’m so excited for Shane and was so touched that he personally got in touch a few weeks ago to make sure I was coming to the premiere.
He’s a very special guy.
I’ve posted the film’s trailer and Shane’s original It Could Happen to You video over at Gay Star News. But below is his It Gets Better video which I had not seen until today.
The way he has opened himself up to help others is such a beautiful thing:
I know, I know. It’s a completely misleading and tabloid-like headline that is usually beneath Greg In Hollywood. Usually. But when it comes to Mario Lopez, I just get all cheap and tabloidy and want to shout: “Extra! Extra!”
Here’s what Mario had to say about his wardrobe malfunction:
Yeah, I’m a big Cher fan going in but I gotta say, am LOVING her latest single I Hope You Find It.
It’s the kind of power ballad that she does so well and it’s easier to sing along to than 2010′s You Haven’t Seen the Last Of Me.
Cher performed the song on the UK version of The X Factor and they give her a really cool introduction with some snippets from her astonishing 50 year career.
I do get annoyed though when they are listing Cher’s accolades and they have “Oscar winner, Grammy winner, Emmy winner … and Golden Globe winner.” Okay, a Globe is nice and I’d love to have one but it should be limited to the Big Three.
Brant Daugherty interrupted my coffee date with a really cool guy last night.
For a few days, I had been juggling various times with his publicist that all depended on how Brant did on this week’s Dancing With the Stars.
In the late afternoon, I received word that he would be calling me for a phone interview at 8 pm. I had a coffee date in Silver Lake scheduled for 7 pm that I did not want to cancel.
Around 7:45 pm I had to come clean with my date and share that we were about to have an interruption from a very handsome TV star!
The call came right on time, we chatted for 15 minutes with my date listening for part of it. It turned out to be kind of fun.
Anyway, Brant was great and I have posted the entire interview (minus the details about the coffee date) over at Gay Star News.
Here is a little snippet about his time on Days of Our Lives earlier this year. As Brian, he briefly came between Sonny and Will.
‘I really like the way they handled the storyline and that’s why I accepted the part,’ he says. ‘I wanted to be a part of a show where the gay characters had the same depth and problems that the straight characters had. When they wanted to bring me in as part of a triangle, I jumped at it.’
Fans who would see Daugherty out and about had mixed reactions.
‘People love the characters of Sonny and Will and want them to be together so everyone gets up in arms,’ he says. ‘But there were a lot who were supportive of me too – they wanted to see things a little mixed up.’
To read the interview in its entirety, CLICK HERE.
One half of the legendary duo The Carpenters, Richard has done a magnificent job of continuing to celebrate the amazing work he did with his late sister Karen who died more than 30 years ago of complications from Anorexia nervosa.
Richard was the mastermind behind the Carpenters sound – those gorgeous arrangements – and in picking so many hits (and writing a few too!) including Close to You, We’ve Only Just Begin, I Won’t Last a Day Without You, Top of the World, Yesterday Once More, Hurting Each Other, Superstar, Please Mr. Postman, Only Yesterday, Sing, and Goodbye to Love.
One of my favorite Carpenters songs was I Need to Be in Love from their A Kind of a Hush in 1976. Here is Richard singing it recently then video of Karen doing the same.
There’s a lot of buzz surrounding today’s Morning Man Jamie Dornan right now.
He’s one of the names being mentioned most frequently as the possible replacement for Charlie Hunnam in the Fifty Shades of Grey movie.
The 31 year old is a Northern Irish actor, model, and musician. He is best known for playing Axel von Fersen in Sofia Coppola’s film Marie Antoinette, for playing Sheriff Graham Humbert in the ABC series Once Upon a Time and as serial killer Paul Spector in the BBC Two crime drama series The Fall.
He entered showbiz as a musician as one half of the Irish folk duo Sons of Jim from 2002-08.
If he gets the role of Christian Grey (filming is scheduled to begin in November), he will have to juggle it with the second season of The Fall which is set to begin production in January 2014.
During the summer, a kid named Jonathan Allen really wowed us with his singing on NBC’s America’s Got Talent.
He also broke our hearts with his personal story.
The day he turned 18, his parents kicked him out of the house because he is gay.
If they were watching TV the day their son began his run to the semifinals on the talent competition, they would have seen the enthusiastic support coming from the judges and the audience after Jonathan told his story and performed.
I got to meet this amazing singer recently at a benefit in Malibu for Gay and Lesbian Elder Housing. We had a nice chat then later we all got to see him sing a few numbers.
I’ve posted some of the performance below but to read my full interview, go over to Gay Star News.
Tuc Watkins arrived at last week’s fundraiser for the Gay and Lesbian Elder Housing looking like a million bucks.
It was a sunny Sunday in Malibu and Tuc left his twins Catchen (Catch) and Curtis at home for the afternoon to lend his star power to the event.
‘My kids are 10 months old now which means they are crawling,’ Tuc told me during our brief chat. ‘Not only are they crawling – it’s like they’ve got little jet packs on their backs and of course go in opposite directions.’
He added: ‘They are animated, they are active, they’re starting to talk in words that sound like syllables.’
Tuc is a single dad but he has help at home from his cousin who he joked he has hired as a manny for life.
The actor, so good in such shows as Desperate Housewives and Beggars & Choosers, hopes to return to his best-known role of David Vickers on One Life to Live – a role he has relished playing off and on for nearly 20 years.
Although the show was canceled by ABC in January of 2013, it returned as an online soap in April and the comically self-absorbed and totally unself-aware David was back.
But the second season has been put on hold while production company Prospect Park deals with its lawsuit against ABC over General Hospital’s treatment of One Life to Live characters.
Tuc told me he is eager to return to work when the situation is resolved. He also said he has received nothing but positive treatment from fans and those in the industry since he publicly came out as a gay man earlier this year.
Absolutely love this interview with Cher that aired three weeks ago on Channel 7′s Sunday Night.
The orange hair is a hoot and the questions from the very-informed interviewer are excellent. I knew that Cher had lost her virginity at 16 to Warren Beatty I’ve never heard about how the two future Oscar winners met: at a fender bender.
Anyway, lots more here and told in a wonderful chronological order with great clips and photos. Good stuff about Sonny Bono and I was not aware that it was Sonny’s eye for other women that really doomed the marriage in the early 70s at the height of their TV fame. He also left her with no money.
This is my favorite interview of the entire Closer to the Truth publicity blitz.
I’ve told friends that it is getting harder and harder to tell who the heck is gay these days. All the old stereotypes are out the window. The straight guys have become more Metrosexual while a lot of the gays are more “butch.” Believe me, I don’t think being “straight acting” is some kind of accomplishment or that being a bit flamboyant is a bad thing. Just making an observation on what I have seen happening over the past 20 years ago.
And so, after that long-winded intro, here is a delightful video of a gay guy going around the campus of Ball State in Indiana asking people if they think he’s gay.
Many of the straights don’t think so because he doesn’t fit the outdated stereotypes but the gays know better – their gaydars are right on point!
Since I have not watched The Young and the Restless since the days when they briefly brought Phillip Chancellor III back as a gay man and had Adam Newman flirting with bisexuality, I had not been aware of today’s very handsome Morning Man Blake Hood.
He played the role of Kyle Jenkins Abbott on the CBS soap for a year then suddenly was replaced in April. Not sure why but from what I’ve read online, that left plenty of Blake’s fans disappointed.
Blake, who had a recurring role on 90210 and appeared in the film Easy A, returned to the airwaves recently in the season premiere of the NBC drama Revolution.
He appeared quite shirtless in one of his scenes with shorter hair and a bit of a beard.
Which do you prefer? The clean cut Blake or the scruffy Blake?