Keeping The Faith In Hollywood!

Keeping The Faith In Hollywood!

Friday, January 29, 2010

NBC Late Night Talk Show Wars Over!

Jay Leno v.s. Conan: The Battle Royale over the Tonight Show

The battle is over and the dust has settled. The result: Conan is out. He will receive 42 million and will stay off the air until September 2010. Leno will return to the Tonight Show at its original time of 11:30 PM. Jay appeared on Oprah a few days ago trying to undo some of the bad feelings voiced by some Conan fans and others who felt that Jay should have been the one to leave.

Team Coco stayed outside in the rain for hours for Conan's last show but to no avail. However, this squabble resulted in some of the best opening monologues for Conan. I only wished that he had done this well before and his ratings would have prevented the entire problem.

I prefer Jay's style of humor over Conan's but kudos to Conan for fighting back! He fought for his staff and got a great severance deal for his staff, who had all relocated from NYC for the show. He also showed a lot of class in how he handled the whole mess and for fighting for the integrity of the Tonight Show when NBC offered the 12:05 am time slot. I personally felt that the 11:30 pm slot at NBC was a bad fit for Conan anyway and Fox or ABC may be better fit for him anyway.

Personally, I'm glad that everything is settled so that I can wear my Tonight Show t-shirt in peace. It is one of my favorite t-shirts but every time I wore it it sparked strong debate with 20 something Conan fans vying against 40 plus Leno fans. I am hoping that out of this controversy comes more opportunities for late night comics/comedians to host other late night shows including Christian comics.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

A Somber Golden Globes 2010

The 67th Annual Golden Globes are being held at 5 pm today at the Beverly Hills Hotel in Los Angeles. Hollywood royalty like Merly Streep, Sandra Bullock, Morgan Freeman, George Clooney and Matt Damon are all scheduled to walk the red carpet but it's bound to be a somber event in light of the tragic events in Haiti. This presents a great dilemma to the Globe's organizers and the HIFP: How does one rejoice over make-believe and play-acting and play dress up in your indulgent designer gowns and diamonds (thereby flaunting your wealth and abundance) when so many are facing a harsh reality and experiencing intense loss or lack? The contrast is so sharp that it is almost surreal.

Things aren't all bad though, many Hollywood stars have pledged millions and they are organizing a telethon to raised more funds at the end of the month. Unfortunately I haven't heard any stars (except Haitian-Americans) thank God or even ask for his help, saving grace and mercy on behalf of the people of Haiti. I was going to head down to the Golden Globes with a large sign that said "GOD, Save Haiti!" on one side and with a cross as the "t" in Haiti and "Pray for Haiti!" on the other side. I planned to lift it high in the air as the stars walked the red carpet but I realize appealing to them may be futile. Stars tend to be caught up in their own glory, status, wealth and accomplishments and it is hard for them to acknowledge The Most High God. If they do acknowledge God's existence, they say that He is mean to have caused death and destruction in the lives of people already downtrodden, like in the case of Hurricane Katrina and the situation in Haiti.

Case in point: Brad Pitt's recent statements that he "doesn't believe in God" reflects as much. By all reports, Brad Pitt donated millions to Katrina and worked selflessly for New Orlean's recovery, which was a blessing. He plans to do the same for Haiti and they could sure use the help. Brad Pitt and his mate/wife? Angelina Jolie have great influence in the U.S. and around the world so many will probably follow their lead and donate or volunteer to help Haiti. However, Brad Pitt still has no regard for the Lord and it's doubtful that he is praying for any of these victims.

And he's not alone. For my 2 and a half years in L.A. I've seen and heard from Hollywood stars, writers and major "talent" up close and rarely is their a mention or concern about God. Most feel it's what the industry requires and they are doing their jobs while others feel that Christians who believe the Bible are either uneducated or judgemental. Others want to look cool or hip so they expouse buddha, other eastern alternative religions or life-styles, or scientology over the Lord. Some do wear crosses but paired with dark clothing and tattoos with satanic references to keep their "street creds". It seems that Hollywood isn't "big" on God but thankfully He is "big" on them. I am praying that that God uses this same Hollywood star power and resources for His glory. Meanwhile, I'm going to stay home and pray. I may watch the Golden Globes telecast on NBC at 5 pm PST 8 pm EST and maybe Hollywood will surprise me.

Update 1/17/10 3:30 pm
It just started raining in LA so I tuned in to the Golden Globes red carpet arrivals to see the starlets with wet hair and damp gowns and there are umbrellas everywhere. All the stars are wearing lapel ribbons in red layered above blue and yellow ribbons(the colors of the Haitian flag) to show solidarity with the Haitian people and many are expressing their sympathy and support for Haiti relief. Everyone seems to be trying to make the best of the wet weather but it feels like the event will be somber indeed.

Update 1/17/10 6:00 pm

I tuned in to the GG for a moment:

The tone of the show seems to be a bit subdued but still good. The stars are seated in intimate settings arond small tables and they can be seen eating, drinking and conversing with each other. Some stars express sadness at the great loss of life in Haiti and many presenters and winners make frequent appeals for donations to a Haitian Relief fund at George Clooney looks especially affected and could be seen booking other stars to appear for the Hope For Haiti telethon on January 22.

As much as the tone seemed subdued, there were some very funny moments.

Ricky Gervais is a wonderful host. He is poking fun at his fellow stars(past scandals -Mel Gibson), the Hollywood Foriegn Press and the Golden Globes(selling awards)and NBC (Conan v.s. Jay Leno).

Other Best jokes:

Mad Men winner-- Bar Mitzvah joke in answer to Drew Barrymore's comment


All the women look a bit under stated but classy. No obvious misses.

Best Dressed

Jeniffer Garner
Sophia Loren
Sandra Bullock
Drew Barrymore (except for the sparkly crystal porcupine attached to it)

Movie Reviews 2010

Wow, there are quite a bit of Christian themed movies out or soon to be released.

I haven't seen The Blind Side which has already made over $200 million. Sandra Bullock has already won at the Golden Globes and the SAG for 'Best Female Lead Actor' in a Drama so she may be a shoo-in.

The Book of Eli opens January 25th and stars one of my favs, Denzel Washington.

Legion looks like Constantine meets Children of Men and will probably play loose and fancy free with God's word/the Bible so I think I'll skip it.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Earthquake Hits Haiti-- GOD Save Haiti!

A 7.2 magnitude earthquake hit the island nation of Haiti on Tuesday January 12th 2010 at around 5 pm. Scenes of unspeakable destruction and loss there are on the news and online. It looks like total devastation... houses collapsed on each other like pancakes... dead bodies everywhere... the look of terror in the peoples' eyes... the anguish cry of pain loss and grief. God Save Haiti!

Update 1/14/09:
Received news that my brother's in-laws were in Haiti. We are praying for the best, praise God!

GOD, we are believing YOU for a miraculous outcome, that both parents will be found safe and well and return happily to their love ones in the U.S. We also believe, GOD, that the family member(s) who are traveling through Santo Domingo to try and get to them will have safe passage and YOUR great favor. All this we pray in Jesus' Holy Name. God can do the impossible! I believe God!

Update 1/16/09:
Both parents are alive and well and they have enough food and water for a while. JEHOVAH JIREH!!!! We are praying that they will be able to return to the U.S. soon.

GOD IS GREAT!!!! The pastors made an announcement at church today that the Living Faith Church in Haiti sustained minor damage only and all pastors are well.

Various churches on the east coast are providing funds to help the friends and families of their Haitian-American congregation. I will donate to Christian organizations like the Salvation Army and Feed The Children or to Yele Haiti (Wyclef Jean's -from "the Fugees"- organization), the Red Cross or Doctors Without Borders. All organizations listed are already on the ground in Haiti so distributions should be quicker. Try but don't forget to pray.

Despite what has been reported, all the Haitians I know are strong Bible-believing Christians and they have been so their whole entire lives. I have never even heard a Haitian friend or family member even hint at anything spiritually inappropriate but I know many so called "Christians" from varying races, countries and cultures who believe in palm readings, psychics, the "bad eye", mythology, superstitions or practice eastern philosophies. I don't know what caused the earthquake but I believe God and I know He is doing a great work in Haiti. I take great comfort in Psalm 30.

The Holy Bible: King James Version. 2000.
The Psalms 30

Thanksgiving for Deliverance from Death
A Psalm and Song at the dedication of the house of David.

1 I will extol thee, O LORD; for thou hast lifted me up,
and hast not made my foes to rejoice over me.
2 O LORD my God, I cried unto thee, and thou hast healed me.
3 O LORD, thou hast brought up my soul from the grave:
thou hast kept me alive, that I should not go down to the pit.
4 Sing unto the LORD, O ye saints of his,
and give thanks at the remembrance of his holiness.
5 For his anger endureth but a moment; in his favor is life:
weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning.
6 And in my prosperity I said, I shall never be moved.
7 LORD, by thy favor thou hast made my mountain to stand strong:
thou didst hide thy face, and I was troubled.
8 I cried to thee, O LORD; and unto the LORD I made supplication.
9 What profit is there in my blood, when I go down to the pit?
Shall the dust praise thee? Shall it declare thy truth?
10 Hear, O LORD, and have mercy upon me: LORD, be thou my helper.
11 Thou hast turned for me my mourning into dancing:
thou hast put off my sackcloth, and girded me with gladness;
12 to the end that my glory may sing praise to thee, and not be silent.
O LORD my God, I will give thanks unto thee for ever.

Update 1/17/09:
GOD IS GREAT!!!! CNN reports three miraculous rescues of Haitians trapped in the rubble after 72 hours. I am still praying for more miraculous rescues, praise God!
A friend of mine in Jamaica sent me the following prayer, I don't know who the original author is but it is powerful.

A Prayer For Haiti:

LORD, I just want to say THANK YOU, because this morning I woke up and knew where my children were. Because this morning my home was still standing, because this morning I am not crying because my husband, my child, my brother or sister needs to be pried out from underneath a pile of concrete, because this morning I was able to drink a glass of water, because this morning I was able to turn on the light, because this morning I was able to take a shower, because this morning I was not planning a funeral, but most of all I thank you this morning because I still have life and a voice to cry out for the people of Haiti. Lord I cry out to you, the one that makes the impossible, possible, the one that turns darkness into light, I cry out that you give those mothers strength, that you give them peace that surpasses all understanding, that you may open the streets so that help can come, that you may provide doctors, nurses, food, water, and all that they need in a blink of an eye. For all those that have lost family members, give them peace, give them hope, give them courage to continue to go on! Protect the children and shield them with your power. I pray all this in the name of Jesus!!!

Please copy and forward this so that we can pray together for the people in Haiti .
We here are truly blessed!!!!!