They’ve had late-night hosts for the past two years, but now the White House Correspondents Association Dinner is going primetime. Straight out of NBC’s Thursday lineup, Community’s Joel McHale will be the headliner …
3RD UPDATE, 3:40 PM: Psy is the only act to get 1 billion hits on YouTube with his “Gangnam Style” video, and his follow-up video “Gentleman” is already past 232M views. He has been tapped to join CBS News’ table at tomorrow’s White House Correspondents’ Dinner alongside the likes of Homeland‘s Claire Danes and her husband, Hannibal‘s Hugh Dancy.
2ND UPDATE, 8:10 AM: One day before the White House Correspondents’ Dinner, Fox News Channel has said who from Hollywood it is bringing to the event — and it’s a big list. While Greta Van Susteren is passing on this year’s dinner, Fox News stars Bill O’Reilly, Chris Wallace, Geraldo Rivera and Bret Baier will be in attendance, as will the likes of Oscar-winner screenwriter Dustin Lance Black and a contingent from sister studio Fox’s latest X-Men movie: director Bryan Singer and producer-writer Simon Kinberg. See who will be sitting at FNC’s 14 tables below. Also check back for more last-minute additions as we head into the final hours before Saturday’s dinner.
UPDATE, THURSDAY PM: TV comedy king Chuck Lorre will be making his first White House Correspondents’ Dinner appearance this year while waiting for series-pickup news for his hot CBS pilot Mom. Lorre, who is behind the CBS series The Big Bang Theory, Two And A Half Men and Mike & Molly, will be sitting with former Secretary of State Madeline Albright.
Related: Conan O’Brien Tweets Pic From DC
PREVIOUSLY: Hollywood is again the guest everyone seems to want at their table for this year’s White House Correspondents’ Dinner. Returning headliner Conan O’Brien is set to take up the court-jester role that Jimmy Kimmel played last year and news organizations have begun to reveal guest lists for the April 27 event. There’s a lot of Tinseltown glitter already set alongside generals and top-tier cabinet secretaries — as well as power players like Harvey Weinstein. We know President Obama and the first lady will be there; here’s who else we know is going from Hollywood so far:
Conan O’Brien Tweets Pic From DC For White House Correspondents’ Dinner; CNN Joins Others In Airing Event
Looks like Team Coco is in the house. Well, actually just near the house, but it is the White House we’re talking about. In the nation’s capital to host this year’s White House Correspondents Dinner, Conan O’Brien today tweeted a pic of himself in front of the Executive Mansion. “In D.C. to perform at the White House Correspondents’ Dinner. Practicing my opening “Goofy Sunglasses” bit,” the TBS late-night host wrote Thursday. Saturday’s dinner is the Boston native’s second stint as headliner. He also hosted in 1995, a couple of years after joining Late Night.
Jimmy Kimmel and President Obama high-fived their performances. But it was anything but a memorable evening of comedy at tonight’s White House Correspondents Dinner, that annual media-politics-showbiz schmoozefest in Washington DC. After three years in a row of telling funny jokes, President Obama flatlined. And ABC late night host Jimmy Kimmel didn’t fare any better: he was bland to a fault. They also couldn’t get any laughs out of the few Mitt Romney jokes they told, even though the GOP presidential candidate wasn’t in attendance. Here’s the live-blog. Judge For yourself:
UPDATE 7:30 PM: Jimmy Kimmel at the mic now. Just as Obama closed on a mention of the Secret Service scandal, that’s the topic Kimmel opens with. “Mr. President, I know you won’t be able to laugh at any of my jokes about the Secret Service,” Kimmel says looking at the Commander-in-Chief, “so cover your ears if that’s physically possible.” The ABC host continues: “I do have a lot of jokes about the Secret Service. I told them for $800 I wouldn’t tell any. But they only offered $30.” Kimmel is on a roll and tells still more Secret Service jokes.
Then he starts on other subjects. “It’s kind of hard to be funny with the President of the United States sitting right next to you, looking at you. And somehow day in and day out, Joe Biden manages to do it,” says Kimmel noting the Veep’s absence. Praising the popular First Lady and her anti-childhood obesity campaign, Kimmel makes a joke about the girth of New Jersey Governor Chris Christie who laughs when the talk show host reminds that the state’s slogan is “not the Olive Garden State”. He raises the Democratic strategist’s comment who criticized Mitt Romney’s wife Ann for “not working a day in her life”. Then the crowd loves it when Kimmel uses that to make fun of tonight’s guests “Kim, Lindsay, etc” for not knowing anything about current events.
Kimmel’s digs at the press are the first real lulls in his performance. “What’s black and white and read all over?” he asks. His answer of “Nothing any more” gets public groans from the mediacentric audience. A boo is heard. “Really?” Kimmel asks in response. “The Christie jokes are OK, but not [that]?”
After a joke about Abraham Lincoln killing himself falls flat, Kimmel asks, “Is the Fox table laughing or did Rupert Murdoch hack into all my jokes already? … Some people think Rupert Murdoch was intentionally trying to appear to be confused when he testified in front of the British government recently. I don’t know. The man is 81 years old. I think you have to know how to use a cell phone before you can know how to hack into one.”
Kimmel starts on the campaign fundraiser which George Clooney is hosting for President Obama at the actor’s home in Los Angeles on May 10th: “I for one have always dreamed of eating a Hot Pocket with the President of the United States and Batman,” quipped the comic.
Kimmel is now weighing in on a wide range of targets. Some are observations, like this: ”Here in one room we have members of the media, politicians, corporate executives, advertiser, lobbyists and celebrities. Everything that is wrong with America is here in the room tonight.” He jokes that Kim Kardashian is as big a threat to America as Osama Bin Laden, which doesn’t go over well. His other jokes are about gay marriage, Keith Olbermann, Current TV (“Channel 1,000,000″), pot-smoking, Michelle Bachman’s husband (and his sexuality), Benjamin Netanyahu’s name (shortening it to “Yahoo!”), Midest peace (“a mutual love of Falafel and terrible dance music”), and the Obama healthcare plan. “I think I’ve figured it out,” Kimmel says, addressing the President. “you’re not from Kenya. It’s even worse. You’re from Canada.”
Finally Kimmel gets around to Mitt Romney yet can only muster the bland joke that the GOP presidential candidate was “picked out of a Land’s End catalogue”. And this one. “You can’t have a beer with him because he doesn’t drink. You can’t have a cup of coffee with him because he can’t have caffeine. You can’t even play Monopoly with him because he keeps trying to put the dog on the car.”
Kimmel closed with, ”I’d like to thank Jake Tapper for writing all the jokes you didn’t like.” (Reference to the ABC White House correspondent.) Kimmel’s routine ends after about 40 minutes with a high five of the President.
UPDATE 7:00 PM: The President starts off with a live mic joke of him lamenting tonight’s dinner and tolerating he has to “open for Jimmy Kimmel”, or the cast of Glee being invited. Then the President says to the audience: “Delighted to see the cast members of Glee out here. And, Jimmy Kimmel, it’s an honor, man.”
Obama continues, “We gather during a historical anniversary. Last year we finally delivered justice to one of the world’s most notorious individuals.” Of course everyone thought he meant Bin Laden. But the audience howls when a picture of Donald Trump is shown on the screen.
Ari Emanuel and Charlize Theron will be among the Hollywood A-listers joining Barack Obama and the political elite at this year’s White House Correspondent’s dinner Saturday night. Politico announced today that the WME CEO and Oscar-winning actress are coming to the WHCA as their guests. Also invited are Desperate Housewives’ Eva Longoria, a longtime Obama supporter; Hollywood stylist and Bravo star Rachel Zoe; Apprentice judge Ivanka Trump; and MPAA chairman Chris Dodd. Former Michigan governor and Current TV host Jennifer Granholm and FCC chairman Julius Genachowski also are invited. Of course, they all might be overshadowed by Lindsay Lohan, who is expected to be a guest of Fox News’ Greta Van Susteran.