The six-episode series — Ellen DeGeneres‘ first on cable television — is titled Ellen’s Design Challenge and scheduled to premiere in 2015. It will feature six contestants tasked with designing and building furniture in 24 hours with the help of a carpenter. There also will be a six-part online companion series. “I’m so excited about this show because I love finding really special pieces of furniture,” DeGeneres said. “One time I found a beautiful one-of-a-kind armoire that spoke to me in a way I’d never experienced. It turned out there was a drifter living inside of it, but that’s a story for another time.” DeGeneres’ production company, A Very Good Production, is producing with A. Smith & Co. in association with Telepictures, a division of Warner Bros. TV where DeGeneres’ company is based. Executive producers are DeGeneres, Jeff Kleeman of A Very Good Production, and Arthur Smith, Kent Weed and Jay Bienstock of A. Smith & Co.
Chelsea Handler is no longer a part of the CBS late-night conversation, the comic having finished her deft manipulation of the media by announcing, “I would never go to CBS.” ”My mouth? What would they do with me there?” she told Ellen DeGeneres on Ellen’s talk show Wednesday, stating the obvious. “I would never be on a regular network. I would never do that to my fans, myself, or the network,” she added. Handler insisted the Instagram photo that she posted this week of her large-ish dog sitting on her lap, in which she’s seen holding papers upside down so that CBS logo could clearly be seen by viewers, was a giant misunderstanding, explaining she doesn’t look at photos before posting them. She’s talking to CBS about something entirely different, she said.
DeGeneres noted the one solid fact in the Handler late-night saga is that she has said she is ending her Chelsea Lately on E!. “Is that your choice?” Ellen asked. ”Well…..yeah,” Handler said, adding that she thinks it’s time to move on because she wants a vacation and some sleep.
Ellen asked Handler about the Comedy Central opening that will be created when Stephen Colbert leaves to replace David Letterman on CBS. “What is Comedy Central?” Handler snarked, adding, “I don’t want to take a job that somebody else has already done.”
Continuing to urge Americans to sign up for Affordable Care Act coverage before the March 31 deadline, President Obama today turned to the woman who’d broken his re-tweet record, Ellen DeGeneres. Obama appears on her syndicated The Ellen DeGeneres Show via live shot from the White House – his first appearance on the show since being elected to the White House. “I thought it was a pretty cheap stunt myself,” the president says of Ellen’s Oscar selfie, “Getting a bunch of celebrities in the background…you feeding them pizza.”
It’s been about a week since Obama appeared on the Funny or Die web series Between Two Ferns with Zach Galifianakis to tout the benefits of Obamacare; some members of the media had a field day with that one, but they’re pretty busy now with the missing Malaysia Airlines plane story so you may not see so much hair-tearing about today’s appearance, in which POTUS discusses his having eaten carrot sticks with potato chips while FLOTUS Michelle Obama is in China with their daughters; his Practically Perfect Tattoo Deterrent for his two teenagers; and how life at the White House is not nearly so sexy as it’s played in House Of Cards and Scandal. (Check out the video below.)
2nd UPDATE, 5:42 PM: Trust The Simpsons to go for the big picture when they weighed in on Ellen DeGeneres‘ mega-retweeted Oscars selfie – literally. Today, Homer’s official Twitter feed threw up this perspective on the now famous pic (retweeted more than a record-breaking 3.209 million times so far) from the front row of the 86th Academy Awards. “The ugly true story of that Oscar® selfie can finally be told! Let’s break Twitter again. Look for Bart,” said the tweet. All we can say is Bradley Cooper, be kind. BTW – Ellen and fellow selfie star (and Oscar winner) Jared Leto are helping Homer in his goal: Both retweeted the pic.
UPDATE, SUNDAY PM: In less than an hour, Oscar host Ellen DeGeneres beat President Obama‘s Twitter record for Twitter retweets. Ellen’s on-the-fly pic with Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence, Brad Pitt, Julia Roberts, Meryl Streep, Kevin Spacey, and more is racking up the Twitter love with over 1M RTs and over 720K favorites and counting.
Oscars: Ellen DeGeneres And Samsung Make More Selfie Headlines; Lupita Nyong’o Talks Lip Gloss; Pizza Guy Gets Tip: Video
After partying until 3 AM-ish today, Ellen DeGeneres continued making Oscar headlines today when she announced on a live post-Oscar edition of her syndicated talk show that Samsung would donate $3 million to charity in celebration of her celebrity-hug selfie during the Academy Awards and its record-setting 3 million retweets. She also played host to Oscar winners Lupita Nyong’o, Cate Blanchett, Jared Leto — and Edgar the Pizza Guy.
Related: Oscars Viewership Hits 10-Year High
Watch Nyong’o explain the lip gloss here:
Awards ceremony broadcasts may have been changed forever at last night’s Oscars when Ellen DeGeneres took a selfie of herself and a dozen A-listers in the theater. She broke the record for most retweets – 3 million-plus and counting — causing a brief service issue with Twitter. “We just broke Twitter,” DeGeneres announced during ABC’s broadcast of the Oscars after word got out.
Related: Ellen Gets Mixed Reviews For Oscars
“The envelope please … to @TheEllenShow — this is now the most retweeted tweet with over 1 million RTs. Congrats!” chimed in Twitter when DeGeneres’ selfie hit that retweeting threshold. (According to Poptip, a platform that analyzes and synthesizes social conversation in real time, among last night’s Oscar highlights, four of the top 15 phrases about the Oscars were about the Samsung selfie.)
For the third time in her career, Ellen DeGeneres was asked to host a Hollywood awards ceremony after a tragedy — this time the tragedy being Seth MacFarlane’s Hollywood-savaging Oscars hosting of a year ago. Ellen hosted the twice-delayed Emmy Awards after the September 2001 terrorist attacks and, four years later, after Hurricane Katrina. Tonight she hosted the first Academy Awards since MacFarlane opened the Oscars with “We Saw Your Boobs” and followed it up with a crack about John Wilkes Booth (rather than nominee Daniel Day-Lewis) being the actor who best got into President Lincoln’s head.
“For those of you watching us around the world, it’s been a tough couple of days for us. It has been raining. We’re fine – thank you for your prayers,” DeGeneres joked as she opened tonight’s ABC broadcast — a nod to her deft hosting of the aforementioned Emmy broadcasts, including that twice-postponed ’01 Emmys, which she’d opened with the observation: “What would bother the Taliban more than seeing a gay woman in a suit surrounded by Jews” to gales of laughter.
Related: OSCARS: Deadline’s Live Blog
When tonight’s disjointed show finally ended, a minute or two into Monday morning for about a third of the country’s TV viewers who live on the East Coast, DeGeneres had reminded us she’s likeable as all get out, but her improvised bits did not work so well – Amy Poehler and Tina Fey did it much better at the Golden Globes. She’d called Liza Minnelli “sir”, complimented “him” on his great Liza Minnelli impersonation; shamed Harvey Weinstein into putting $200 bucks into Pharrell’s hat, which she was passing around to collect money to pay for the product-placement pizza she ordered for the A-listers in the front rows; pocketed and used best supporting actress winner Lupita Nyong’o’s pizza-collection contribution (a lip gloss); and maybe crashed Twitter shortly after piling about a dozen celebrities into one selfie during the broadcast in an attempt to break the record for most re-tweets (it was pushing 2 million by the time the trophy show was over, causing the Motion Picture Academy to apologize for contributing to the Twitter traffic jam).
OSCARS: Producers Craig Zadan & Neil Meron Play It Safer This Year With Star-Studded Show Led By Ellen
Some people were surprised when the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences invited 2013 Oscar producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron back to run the 2014 telecast. After all, that was the Seth MacFarlane-hosted show that caused controversy (“We Saw Your Boobs,” anyone?). You have to wonder what he might have done with 12 Years A Slave or The Wolf Of Wall Street this year! The reviews, though, were mixed to negative (I actually liked the attitude MacFarlane brought — different), with critics saying the show had too many musical segments and a James Bond tribute that, other than Shirley Bassey’s rendition of “Goldfinger,” fell flat. But it scored well in the ratings and actually added a lot of previously missing young males to the typically female-driven viewing demographic. Zadan and Meron return this year in triumph after single-handedly reviving the live Broadway musical The Sound Of Music with their smash-hit version that starred Carrie Underwood and aired on NBC in December. Critics balked at that, too, but who’s laughing now? (Peter Pan is the next live musical they will do for NBC). Perhaps in a bid for more universal appeal, the producers are bringing back past Oscar host Ellen DeGeneres for what promises to be a much safer, more female-friendly telecast. Ellen is, well, Ellen, and very likable, so you know what you’re getting. The ABC …
UPDATE: 7:20 AM: “CeeLo Green has been an instrumental part of the success of The Voice and we deeply appreciate all his contributions,” NBC reality TV chief Paul Telegdy said in a statement about Green’s announcement today that he’s leaving the network’s hit singing competition series. “We’re looking forward to working with him on other upcoming projects that will tap into both his musical and entertainment expertise.”
Green also issued a statement: “I’m officially announcing today that I won’t be returning as a coach on The Voice cycle 7 in the Fall. There are numerous reasons that led to this decision, which has been amicably reached with NBC, but I’m excited to be developing several other ideas with the network and my association with NBC remains strong. The Voice has been an immensely enjoyable experience for me and I can only hope I have enriched the lives of our viewers, the contestants, and the many friends I made there. I will always be there in spirit.
“Meanwhile, NBC and I plan to continue our relationship with several new co-ventures including a new music show, while we also explore our ideas for me to create and host a new show of my own. I will not go quietly into the night… expect more great music and entertainment done in my own unique unmistakable and undeniable way. And The Voice has given me all the altitude and incentive to do just that. Thanks for the memories and make way for many more!”
This year’s Oscar host says The Ellen DeGeneres Show will air live Monday March 3, the day after The Academy Awards. Ellen DeGeneres warns she’ll “be delirious from staying up all night long. Not really sure what condition I’ll be in. I may be in my pajamas. I sleep naked.” DeGeneres, who made the announcement on her show today, also notes ‘Ellen’ has only aired live “maybe twice in 11 years”. This will be DeGeneres’ second time hosting the Oscars. She also hosted in 2007. Here’s the clip posted on her YouTube channel:
Ever since chimps became a no-no for Super Bowl ads — too many pesky press reports about baby chimps taken from their moms, and no good coming to them after they’d aged out of acting — advertising industry navel gazers have been trying to figure out what’s the new chimpanzee of Super Bowl spots. (Yes, chimps were so big, as recently as 2011, polls were created asking viewers for their fave from that year’s crop of Super Bowl chimp ads.)
This year the search continues. Puppies are the new chimpanzees, say some, citing Budweiser’s “Puppy Love” ad featuring a Clydesdale and a puppy that had clocked more than 30 million YouTube views by Saturday noon (see it below). That’s tens of millions of views ahead of the latest Cheerios Super Bowl ad featuring a multi-racial family, despite the best efforts of MSNBC and the RNC to whip up interest in that one. Others insist bears are the new chimps, pointing to Goldilocks’ three bears appearing with Ellen DeGeneres in a Beats Music ad (see that one below), the slow-clapping bear in the CarMax ad, and the behemoth bear in the Chobani ad. Still others pronounced “weird” the new chimps, citing this year’s Doritos finger-cleaner ad, and Audi’s Doberuahua ad.
Here’s the Budweiser ad you will see tomorrow:
The ad industry, meanwhile, appears to have banked on Hollywood celebrities being the new chimpanzees based on the volume of entertainment industry luminaries flooding the game ads this year. They include Scarlett Johansson plugging a home carbonation gadget; Stephen Colbert plugging nuts; James Franco pitching Fords; Bob Saget, and Dave Coulier pitching in to help John Stamos hawk Greek yogurt; Ben Kingsley, Tom Hiddleston and Mark Strong urging us to buy something called a Jag-ewe-ar; and Seinfeld promoting whatever it is he’s going to plug.
UPDATE: NBC Picks Up Dating Comedy Pilot From David Janollari & Jason Bateman, Lesbian Lead Comedy From Liz Feldman & Ellen DeGeneres
UPDATE, 12 PM: NBC has added another comedy pilot to the mix, the single-camera Two To Go, from Universal TV and studio-based David Janollari Entertainment and Jason Bateman‘s Aggregate. Written/co-exec produced by Bryan Shukoff and Kevin Chesley (The Hard Times Of RJ Berger, which Janollari developed and launched at MTV), Two To Go centers on longtime best friends Kurt and Laura, who grapple with the challenges of modern-day dating while their group of friends try and prove that they are destined to be together. Janollari, Bateman and Jim Garavente executive produce. This is Janollari’s second pilot at NBC, joining drama Salvation. Aggregate has upcoming NBC comedy series Growing Up Fisher.
PREVIOUS, 9:40 AM: Sixteen years after Ellen DeGeneres came out on her ABC sitcom, another broadcast comedy with a lesbian lead is inching closer to primetime. NBC has given a pilot order to a multi-camera comedy executive produced by DeGeneres. The project, titled One Big Happy, is written/exec produced by openly gay comedy scribe Liz Feldman (2 Broke Girls). In it, a gay (woman) and straight (man) best friends decide to have a baby together, but things get complicated when the man finds the love of their life. Warner Bros TV and DeGeneres’ studio-based A Very Good Production are producing, with AVGP’s Jeff Kleeman …
As any guild member receiving screeners via courier the past few weeks know, the studios and networks are vehement about their DVDs not ending up in the wrong hands or wrong places. Well, seems someone on Oscar host Ellen DeGeneres’ talk show isn’t quite with the War On Piracy program. A copy of The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty that began popping up online a few days ago has been traced back to The Ellen DeGeneres Show. Producers on the syndicated talker are working with Mitty distributor Fox to investigate the matter but they are not sure if they are the source of the leak. “Our show is sent advanced screeners of movies, sitcoms, reality shows, cds, etc. before guests appear on our show. We do everything we can to protect the content and in 11 seasons nothing has ever leaked online from our show,” they said in a statement I was sent. “We’re not sure if this leaked from our show or not, but we are doing everything we can to find out and to make sure it never happens again.”
Kickstarter’s former CTO Andy Baio first noted the Ellen-screener leak connection on his blog yesterday. Fox confirms that the “Ellen DeGeneres 11/26/13″ watermark on the pic online seems genuine. The DVD was made for DeGeneres and her staff as background for her interview with the film’s star and director Ben Stiller that aired in early December. The pic itself came out on Christmas Day. Sources tell me the DVD was delivered to the show on November 27 and picked up a couple of days later. Somewhere in those couple of days someone uploaded it to the web or put in online storage to upload at a later date.
The Academy today released the official poster for the 2014 Oscars featuring host Ellen DeGeneres and the man of the hour – the Oscar statuette. March 2, 2014 will mark the comedienne and talk show host’s second time emceeing the Academy Awards. She last hosted the 79th Academy Awards in 2007 and garnered an Emmy nod for it. Check out the 2014 key art below:
The Movie Academy has launched a trailer for the Oscars starring host Ellen DeGeneres and directed by Paul Feig that is part of the “Here We Go!” campaign and website ahead of the March 2 Academy Awards on ABC. The trailer will launch nationwide beginning January 3. Lots of dancing here, but where are the movies? Check it out:
EXCLUSIVE: Sixteen years after Ellen DeGeneres came out on her ABC sitcom, there may be another broadcast comedy with a lesbian lead. NBC has put in development a multi-camera comedy executive produced by DeGeneres. The untitled project, written/exec produced by openly gay comedy scribe Liz Feldman (2 Broke Girls), centers on a lesbian and her straight male best friend who get pregnant just as he meets and marries the love of his life. Warner Bros TV and DeGeneres’ studio-based A Very Good Production are producing, with AVGP’s Jeff Kleeman also exec producing. Feldman previously worked for two years on DeGeneres’ hit syndicated talk show and wrote for DeGeneres’ first stint as Oscar host. (She returns to Oscar duties on March 2).
NBC has a tradition with gay-themed comedies, most notably Will & Grace, and launched two half-hour series centered on gay men the last two seasons with The New Normal and Sean Saves The World. Meanwhile, CBS veteran Two And A Half Men recently added a new lesbian character played by Amber Tamblyn who is envisioned as potential co-lead. ICM Partners-repped AVGP also has a drama from Lauren Graham, a period drama about 1930s Hollywood at the CW, a comedy toplined by viral stars Sophia Grace and Rosie at NBC and a comedy from Judge Greg …