Tag Archives: Amy Poehler


Now that Murphy has stepped down from the job in the wake of Brett Ratner’s departure, who should step in as emcee of the next Academy Awards show?  Here’s an idea put forward by our former colleague, Fortune Feimster, years ago:  

Tina Fey and Amy Poehler

 Yes, yes, they’re too busy and bla bla bla.   But we’re talking the Oscars, ladies.  Do it for the cause, make it one for the ages…  

Who do you want to see?

Poehler’s Humor Intact Despite Hectic Pace

Amy Poehler NBC photo Mitchell Haaseth

Amy Poehler NBC photo Mitchell Haaseth

Things could not be much busier for Amy Poehler, but if she’s feeling stressed, it certainly isn’t hurting her sense of humor.

We caught up with the blond dynamo, who’s enjoying the kudos that have been heaped on her “Parks and Recreation” series in this, its second season — and the fact that the zany show has been given a full-season pickup by NBC.

As much as “Parks” is occupying her attention, however, she does have other projects going, not to mention her and husband Will Arnett’s one-year-old son at home.

“We are working on ‘Lunch Lady,'” she says of the big-screen movie in which she’s to play a hairnet-wearing cafeteria worker who doubles as a heroic crime fighter. “Lots of good things are happening. We are expanding my web series ‘Smart Girls At the Party’ and continuing work on ‘The Mighty B” — the Nickelodeon show she co-created and produces, and for which she provides the title voice.

And, as if all that weren’t enough, she adds, none-too-seriously, “And I’m writing, starring, directing and producing the next in the ‘Oceans’ series, ‘Oceans 14.'”


How about return visits to “Saturday Night Live?” When might she pop up in her old stomping grounds?

“I hope soon. I can’t wait to sit under the bleachers with Lorne and watch the show,” she responds, referring, of course, to producer Lorne Michaels.

And, one more thing. Outside of when the Secretary of State appeared on “SNL,” has Amy communicated with the political icon she’s often imitated, Hillary Rodham Clinton?

“Only telepathically.”

WHAT’S IMPORTANT: News last week that Dennis Hopper is battling prostate cancer made his comments to this column a few weeks ago — about being grateful for his health — particularly poignant.

“I’ve got a wonderful life — and that’s a miracle,” said the actor and 60’s icon. “After so many years of drug and alcohol abuse, I should be dead.”

Hopper is being treated through a program at USC.

BIG HAIRY DEAL: If you think Gordon Ramsay is a tough cookie in the kitchen, then you haven’t seen Tabatha Coffey’s sassy style in a salon. The outspoken Aussie has hairdressers running for cover as she’s back for a second season of “Tabatha’s Salon Takeover,” premiering tonight (11/3) on Bravo.

Tabatha tells us despite what people think of her less-than-friendly tactics, it all comes from a place of wanting to help.

“I understand that it’s really hard for them because I guess I am outspoken. I like to think that I’m just really honest,” she notes. “I really want to help them and it doesn’t do any good to pussyfoot around and not tell them the truth. I’ve got to tell them what needs to change to make their business better.

“To some people, that’s really hard to hear. It takes time over the week that I’m with them for them to kind of realize where I’m coming from, and it is actually coming from a good place. It’s coming from a place of trying to help them.”

While getting these salons to change their bad habits isn’t easy, Tabatha claims the rewards are far greater than the stress.

“That’s probably the thing that gets me going more than anything. They really do need help and sometimes, the people in the salon don’t want to change or the owner does. It becomes really, really frustrating,” she says. “With this season, there are some really interesting stories, but as always, there’s drama.

“For me, though, the most rewarding part is when I can see that people get it and they are working hard to change their business. It’s nice when I get e-mails from the salons or the stylists who will reach out to me and tell me that I’ve really made a difference.”

ALL FIGURED OUT:  Eleven-year-old “Zeke and Luther” co-star Ryan Newman is a math-loving girl — who’s in an advanced math program she manages to fit in daily in addition to her regular on-the-set schooling and camera calls. “I’m transitioning from pre-algebra to algebra,” reports Ryan. She loves working with numbers, she says, “because there’s a right answer.”

Ryan Newman     Disney XD photo Jaimie Trueblood

Ryan Newman Disney XD photo Jaimie Trueblood

 Newman is also into fashion and music and has other interests. She’s hoping that she can inspire young female fans to not hesitate to use their brains.

“My advice is to be as smart as you can be, to try your hardest in whatever you’re doing. Yeah, I’m kind of a nerd, but I’m not nerdy,” notes the very hip young lady, who also got her gal pal next door to join the math program. “I feel that being smart and well spoken is a very important thing — well, besides being a good person.”

Newman wants to continue her acting career (it started when she was three) when she grows up. For now, she loves “Zeke and Luther” and goofing around with her cast mates, Hutch Dano and Adam Hicks. They had a Silly String fight shortly before our chat, in fact.

Ahead for her on the skateboard-centric show, her character Ginger is going to do some skateboarding. “I’m very excited about that happening,” she says. “I’m not that great at it. I can push and balance, but I can’t do any tricks.”

With reports by Emily-Fortune Feimster

Francis Ford Coppola Makes Stars, Loses Stars

Alden Ehrenreich

Alden Ehrenreich

Francis Ford Coppola is enjoying the reception meeting his “Tetro” newcomer Alden Ehrenreich, who’s being likened to Leonardo DiCaprio. “With all my instincts, I believe he’s a young star of tomorrow,” Coppola tells us.

He’s also enjoying the fresh burst of appreciation his June 11-premiering drama is bringing star Vincent Gallo. And he says, “I hope I can get to work with them again in the future. You know what happens when actors become successful – they become mini-industries for their managers and agents and it becomes hard to get to them. It’s happened before.”

Francis Ford Coppola

Francis Ford Coppola

The cinema master, whose arresting, mostly black-and-white \”Tetro\” was a Cannes sensation, recalls, “Even in my first career, as it were, we were never able to hire the star of the day. We couldn’t penetrate all the elements of management, payment and schedule. We were always looking for new talent in the past — new talent to the public. Then oddly enough, by the next film we couldn’t afford the young people we had discovered.”

If unknowns are gettable, so are actors whose careers can use some rehabilitation. For instance, “Marlon Brando. Nobody wanted to hire him in those days, when we did ‘The Godfather”  nobody, because of his alleged bad boy behavior,” Coppola recalls. “So he was available to me.”

Now it’s Gallo, whose past controversies and nasty comments turned off many, proving his acting worth anew, playing a writer who’s left his famous father behind and created a life of anonymity in Buenos Aires – until his 17-year-old brother (Ehrenreich) comes looking for him.

“Tetro” marks the first film Coppola scripted himself since 1974’s “The Conversation” and his second self-financed smaller budget film (following “Youth Without Youth”). Reviews have been anything but bland, with love and hate both represented. The Economist calls it “the film of a free man starting again.”

Is it? “That’s a little dramatic, but yes, I am definitely having the fun and adventure of a second film career with different rules to it,” Coppola says. “I’m doing more of what I wanted to do.”

OUT OF THE FISHBOWL: Lauren Conrad, who rose to fame on “Laguna Beach” and most recently “The Hills,” has left the popular MTV reality series, and she tells us the decision has been bittersweet. Luckily she has a lot of new projects on the horizon to keep her occupied without TV cameras following her every move. “It’s nice. I’ve been done for like two months and I’m really enjoying no cameras,” says Conrad. “It’s always sad saying goodbye to a show and all the people that worked on it, though.” When asked what’s next, she responds, “Right now I am writing my second book. The first one launches on the 16th and then I’m going on a two week book tour. I’m also working with Kohl’s department store for a line that launches in October so I’m keeping busy.”

RECREATIONAL VEHICLE: “We got picked up for a second season so we’ll start filming again in a couple of months,” says an excited Aziz Ansari about his newest show “Parks and Recreation.” “People seem to be into it, and it helps to be on a network with other smart comedies like ‘The Office’ and ’30 Rock.'” Though the NBC series, which started with six episodes, was met with mixed reviews, the comedian thinks having more time to explore the characters will help. “I feel like the show is really good and is only going to get better. I think Amy Poehler’s great in this role, and as the show goes along, she’ll get in there and make it a really memorable character.” So far, though, it’s been Ansari’s sarcastic character, Tom Haverford, that’s been stealing many of the scenes. “It’s fun to play kind of a p—-. They write so many fun bits for him, but I also get to improvise a lot,” he tells us. “The scripts are already really funny so it doesn’t feel like there’s as much pressure to be funny, but it’s nice to have the freedom to come up with my own stuff.”

NEW FACES: The Disney/ABC new talent showcase launches today (6/5) with casting forces heading out on a nationwide trek to audition wannabe stars. The operation is being met with shaking of heads around these parts, as one industryite grumps, “They’re going out since there’s no talent here in town.” By the way, don’t call us.

With reports by Emily-Fortune Feimster