Story | Sep 19, 2014 | 2:35 PM
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Column | Nov 7, 2014 | 5:20 PM"The Merv Griffin Show, 1962-1986" (MPI Home Video). Even for many of us who remember the genuine article, the image of talk show host Merv Griffin is inextricably mixed up with the impression Rick Moranis unleashed on "SCTV": "Oooo, we'llberightback." But as this filling and fulfilling new DVD romp through the late midcentury demonstrates, that was barely a parody at all. There is a kind of jazzy intimacy to his sound, like a cocktail lounge strapped to the back of a Lear Jet; he pronounces the favorite word "sensational" with an exclamation mark attached to the middle syllable, as if he's taking a corner at high speed. With an afternoon talk show on NBC debuting on the same day (Oct. 1, 1962) that Johnny Carson took over "The Tonight Show," Griffin was a man of the old school, when talk shows were more devoted to talk than they are now and guests flogged their wares somewhat less conspicuously. (Some guests do just seem to be have been favorites of the series, whether great -- Richard Pryor, Henny Youngman -- or small, like rock-singing celebrity hairdresser Monti Rock III.) They have a leisurely air.
Story | May 22, 2014 | 2:30 PM
Angela Bassett will make her directorial debut with a Lifetime Original Movie based on the life of Whitney Houston, Lifetime announced Thursday. Scheduled for a 2015 world premiere under the working title of "Whitney Houston," the pic chronicles the...
Story | May 6, 2014 | 6:30 PM
"Empire," the drama project from Lee Daniels and Danny Strong set in the world of hip-hop, has received a series order at Fox. The family drama from Imagine TV and 20th Century Fox TV stars Terrence Howard as industry heavyweight Lucious Lyon, a tough...
Story | Jan 9, 2014 | 4:30 PM
The NAACP announced nominees for its 45th annual Image Awards, with Weinstein Co. nabbing 17 bids in the film categories thanks to "The Butler," "Fruitvale Station" and "Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom," followed by Fox Searchlight, with seven, for "12...