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October 24, 2008

Palin's rising star


Speaking of Halloween, horror stories, blood and gore -- can't imagine anything more spine-chilling than Sarah Palin as a TV star after this election is over.

Insert eardrum-piercing shrieks here.

A couple of THR's intrepid and masochistic reporters have asked the question to industry folks, who've suggested possible ways to use "the talent" in the months and years ahead. Since we're still trying to shake off something we heard on "Countdown with Keith Olbermann" last night -- that Palin seems to have her eye on 2012 -- we think this story's enough to give us nightmares indefinitely.

A veteran morning-show producer, Steve Friedman, can't help but look at the numbers:

"The passion she has on each side, love and hate, makes television people say, 'Wow, imagine the viewership.'"

A Fox News platform, a syndicated chat show, a Lifetime movie? All terrifying. A slightly more palatable idea? Reality, says a Hollywood producer, a la "The Osbournes" meets "Northern Exposure." Now that we might sample, for the same sick, train wreck reasons we sometimes tuned in to "I Love Money."

Multiple Emmy winner Tina Fey has already thrown down the gauntlet, saying she wants to retire her evil twin/Palin impersonation on Nov. 5. Now we're faced with the prospect of more of the original, and many nights of waking up in a cold sweat.

Go here for some clips from the Thursday "SNL" and here for the ratings.


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Oscar Contenders

  • So "The Dark Knight" didn't make it into the final five after all, never mind that critical and popular support. Let's just call the comic-inspired mega-hit "The Biggest Snubee."

    Here are the best picture contenders in a race that, two weeks away from the Oscars, seems to be a foregone conclusion ("Slumdog") unless there's a come-from-behind possibility ("The Reader" anyone?)

    "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button," with Brad Pitt and Cate Blanchett; the politically timely "Milk;" rags-to-riches fairy tale, "Slumdog Millionaire," Holocaust best-seller-based drama "The Reader," and Watergate-era biopic "Frost/Nixon."

    Could "Button" and "Slumdog" split the vote, allowing another film to take the prize? Doesn't seem likely. After having clung to "Button" for months as what we thought would be the Academy voters' top vhoice, our money's now on "Slumdog." Momentum can't be ignored.

    Watch this blog for updates, ephemera and all manner of postulating.

Picture this

  • Mmmmm, chocolate Oscar. Not every star will walk away from the 81st annual Academy Awards with a trophy, but if they hit the high-profile Governor's Ball they can have pastry chef Sherry Yard's gold-dusted candy version. Also on the menu from celeb chef Wolfgang Puck is tuna tartare in sesame miso cones, chopped Chino Farms vegetable salad with ginger soy vinaigrette, Maine lobster and caviar. Serve it up! (Getty Images)

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