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Bill Clinton a Little Too Pricey for HBO

Monday, 09 May 2005 12:00 AM

Producers wanted to do something different for the final episode of the final season of the series, so they offered a guest spot to the man who put the "X" in ex-president.

According to The Week, Bill Clinton liked the idea of being on the show, so much so that negotiation engines were reportedly revved up.

It seems that HBO ran into an obstacle, though. Cable shows are generally on a limited budget, even the highly acclaimed ones. And Bubba was apparently asking for some big bucks in exchange for face time. Talks purportedly broke down as a result.

The Left Coast Report believes HBO made the mistake of sending a senior executive instead of an intern.

In his first movie since hosting the Oscars, Chris Rock appears in the remake of the 70s flick "The Longest Yard," which also stars Adam Sandler.

While hawking the movie, Rock did an interview with Rolling Stone and suggested that if he was an athlete he'd be juiced up.

"If I was playing (football), I'd definitely be on steroids. You know, most people in the world, if you told them they could take a pill and be better at their job, they'd take the pill," Rock said.

As for the controversial Academy Awards hosting performance, Rock confessed, "Doing the show got a bit of the chip off my shoulder."

The comic also addressed the profanity that always seems to be a part of his act. "When you're a comedian that curses, you're always a second-class citizen to the guys who don't curse. They say, `You're big, but so-and-so's a family comedian.' It's almost like porn — nobody admits to liking it, but it's a billion-dollar industry."

Almost porn?

The Left Coast Report expects that Rock's CDs and DVDs will now come in a plain brown wrapper.

In the midst of live coverage of British Prime Minister Tony Blair's reelection, the U.K. tax-funded TV network British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) decided to add some entertainment. It hired an impressionist to create a caricature of President Bush.

You'd think that the creative types at "the Beeb," as it's called across the pond, would have come up with some fun, new material for their segment on Bush 43, but they didn't. Featured on the ‘telly' was the usual Bush denigrating lefty fare; the kind that portrays the president as an IQ-challenged cowboy.

The Bush mimicker misused phrases that included "Prime Sinister," "Barry Blair," and "his Chandelier of the Exchequer."

There were even some potshots taken at our new Secretary of State, who at one point was referred to as "Condoleezza Rice and her Uncle Ben."

The impersonator even invoked the specter of Florida, saying, "This is Britain, this is like the United States of Britainland. I mean, it's only about as big as Florida..."

The Left Coast Report thinks that if the BBC becomes any more anti-American, it will have to change its moniker to "BBCCCP."

In some ways Jennifer Lopez has had a tough go lately.

Lopez has had to endure some hefty PETA harassment. Apparently, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals has vowed to follow her everywhere. The group hounded the actress at her appearance on David Letterman's show and at the premiere of her new film "Monster In Law."

J.Lo's has even had to suffer through a food fight with co-star Jane Fonda, too. Evidently, she had to beg Fonda not to harm her during the filming.

In describing a scene where Fonda shoves cake in J.Lo's face, Lopez tells the UK Mirror, "It was like, 'take it easy, I have a bad neck.' I was left with cake up my nose and in my mouth."

What's Jenny from the Block to do? Well, she could set her sights on the White House.

"I'm a total powerhouse. If you ask me, I'd like to become the first female president – that would be really cool," J.Lo told the German periodical Bravo.

"The first thing I would do is redecorate the White House - it doesn't look very cozy," she added.

The Left Coast Report says maybe J.Lo thinks she can enhance America's image by getting the White House on "MTV Cribs."

You never know what'll turn up on eBay.

Recently, while sorting through the various products on the auction site, Todd H. Hilliard happened upon an unusual offering: A "dream date" with Carmen Electra.

The description on the site indicated that "guys ages 15-20" were "eligible for this chance of a lifetime."

Hilliard turned up the winning bid, a tidy sum of $407,500.00. He beat out 121 other bids.

The Electra-fying date will take place in Los Angeles with proceeds going to The National Prostate Cancer Coalition.

The Texan will have to undergo a mandatory background check before the "dream date" can be scheduled.

Hilliard let me in on the reason why he made the ample offer for one night with the former Baywatch lifeguard.

"I bid that much on Carmen because a gypsy in Lorenzo, Alabama told me we were soul mates. So obviously, any amount of money spent is worth it," Hilliard explained.

The Left Coast Report wonders if the gypsy had anything to say about Carmen's husband.

These days it seems that whenever Hollywood meets history, history gets the squeeze. Today it's the factually challenged movie "Kingdom of Heaven," whose historical content appears to have been smushed.

"Kingdom of Heaven"'s director Ridley Scott chose the Crusades as the subject of his latest epic. But I have to wonder how a talented filmmaker like Scott got stuck with an incoherent script like this.

It's understandable that a film dealing with the ancient battles that took place between European Christians and followers of Islam might seek to make some modern day comparisons. But is it really necessary to stuff the screen with the kind of pseudo-humanistic claptrap that could make a knight dump his armor on eBay?

The movie takes place in 1184, sometime in between the Second and Third Crusade. At the top of the film the audience is introduced to a young blacksmith named Balian (played by Orlando Bloom). Balian receives a visit from Godfrey of Ibelin (played by Liam Neeson) who claims to have fathered him and is seeking forgiveness for having done so illegitimately.

After a few conversations with Godfrey, Balian switches out of his horse-shoeing duds and opts for Crusader couture instead. In a Middle Age minute, the guy transforms himself into the most formidable knight in town. He also starts stealing a page from MoveOn.org and some guidance counseling tips from Dr. Phil.

Balian eventually finds himself as a stand-in for the king of Jerusalem and in a position to surrender the city to the Muslim army. But this doesn't happen until he's killed a creepy priest, given up on organized religion, tossed his faith out the door and joined the ranks of the "can't we all just get along" crowd.

The film has a certain cinematic allure for some. If you like lots of head splitting, side piercing, gut wrenching, limb flying battling between foes, then this flick is for you. If you like a hefty dose of accuracy with your historically based entertainment, then it's not.

To me, the real problem with the movie's authenticity is the way it interjects sappy messages into the story line. Exceedingly clear is who the heroes are, and likewise who the villains are.

Muslim leader Saladin (who, in one scene, respectfully cradles a fallen cross) is portrayed as wise, seasoned and noble. In contrast, Guy de Lusignan, crony Sir Reynald, and the Knights Templar are shown as bloodthirsty, empty-headed war mongers. And as you might have predicted, the Christian clergy are cast as cowardly hypocrites who want to kill "infidels."

In the film the only Christian good guys are Balian, leper-King of Jerusalem Baldwin IV and his minister Tiberius. But unlike other Christians in the flick, these folks aren't motivated by religious faith. Instead they spout a form of modernist egalitarian drivel that sounds like Dennis Kucinich wrote it.

Balian makes a dramatic speech before the final battle where he tells the assembled throng that the Muslim army, which is about to attack and kill all of them, has just as much right to rule as its Christian counterpart does. Rather than a call to arms, Balian gives his troops a call to multiculturalism. If a real medieval commander had given such a speech, he'd have been chopped into tiny little pieces.

The Left Coast Report thinks that's what should have happened to the preposterous section of footage, along with all the other PC portions.

102-102

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Producers wanted to do something different for the final episode of the final season of the series, so they offered a guest spot to the man who put the "X" in ex-president. According to The Week, Bill Clinton liked the idea of being on the show, so much so that negotiation...
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2005-00-09
Monday, 09 May 2005 12:00 AM
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