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October 01, 2008

Building a (Russell) Brand


Two questions about the upcoming show that Russell Brand is taping for Comedy Central: Is it before or after the election, and were the Jonas Brothers and Jordin Sparks able to clear their calendars and start working on a chaste but rockin' song-and-dance number for the occasion?

Well, the network says there will be "an eclectic roster of special guests." Who'd qualify more?

We might've been among the minority that really got a charge out of the cheeky Brit comedian and bestselling author's hosting turn at the recent MTV Video Music Awards. He didn't go over so well in the room with his sharp political humor and sharper jabs at bubble gum pop's Golden Boys. (Sparks, fellow purity ring-wearer and non-slut, to the rescue!)

But either all is forgiven or he sure has good representation, as he's parlaying that performance into a one-hour standup on MTV's sister cable channel that will air in '09.

Brand and his coiffure continue to fight their way to household name status. We say -- you go, boy.


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Margaret in TOronto

I'm looking forward to seeing this. Hopefully he won't tone his jokes down like he did at MTV and instead, let 'er rip.

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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.

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  • 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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