Jersey Shore: How Wilde!

While I personally do not watch Jersey Shore, I have unfortunately been subjected to a few episodes due to my friends’ obsessive fascination with the show. During the off seasons, I am treated to ridiculous phrases and catcalls, all said in a terrible fake jersey accent. I hate to admit it, but these ridiculous little sayings become quite catchy…annoyingly so.

The other day I stumbled across the following video. Playbill has created a hilarious short series called “Jersey Shore Gone Wilde.” To promote Oscar Wilde’s great play The Importance of Being Earnest, now showing on Broadway, these professionally trained actors can be seen reciting lines from Jersey Shore episodes in the style of the great playwright. British accents? Check. Cheeky conversation? Check. Pencil Mustache? Check. Outfits that Oscar Wilde himself would covet? Double Check.

I shamefully recognized many of the references, but I have to admit that the quotes didn’t seem half so terrible when spoken in a proper British accent. In fact, some of the sounded half-way intellectual– then again, I may just be going crazy.

So what do you? What would Wilde think?

And don’t forget to check out all of the videos in the series!

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Funny or Die: Keeping a Celebrity’s Career Alive.

Funny or die.

No, I’m not just saying the name of the website, I’m outlining the choices that crashing celebrities are given after devastating acts of career suicide.

They could be funny— make jokes about themselves, fully accept their ridiculous acts.

Or they could watch their careers die.

While the SNL monologue has always provided a great platform for a little bit of self-deprecation (see Miley Cyrus, last Saturday, March 5th), the internet makes that bit of necessary humiliation even more accessible.

For those of you living under a rock these past few weeks, Charlie Sheen has taken a swan dive straight into the pool of insanity. After his lawyers forbade him from any further interviews with the media, Sheen took matters into his own hands, creating personal video posts that were deemed less than interesting by tabloids and rabid fans alike. But now that Sheen has officially lost his job on the sitcom Two and a Half Men, Sheen needs to up his crazy to stay relevant (of course, that $100 million dollar lawsuit against CBS might help any financial loses he will experience after never being hired in Hollywood again…).

So how does a star both capitalize their madness while simultaneously working to gain back even a shred of respectability?

Funny or die. And this time I am talking about the website. Founded by famous funny men Will Ferrell, Judd Apatow, Adam McKay, and Chris Henchy, the FunnyorDie website is quite the viral sensation. While the title of the site actually refers to the viewers’ ability to vote a video as either ‘funny’ or deserving to ‘die,’  the name applies quite well to the options of some desperate celebrities.

Several celebrities, from Natalie Portman to Zac Efron, have starred in one of their exclusive videos. After all, a celebrity willing to laugh at themselves seems to denote a sense of grounded-ness. It’s positive for the individuals image for the audience to see that that person is down to earth and connected to the viewers; they are not divas who are above a bit of silliness for a laugh.

These exclusive videos are especially exciting when they feature the tabloid’s latest favorite screw-ups. About two years ago (yes, her “hot mess” status has been applicable for that long), Lindsay Lohan had just faced a very public break-up from girlfriend Sam Ronson. While going through a break-up in the eyes of the public must be devastating enough, the real scandal came when the Ronson family began issuing restraining orders against the apparently insane Lohan. The press had a field day– who can blame them. Lohan had always provided plenty of fodder.

To combat these negative issues, Lohan, or perhaps more likely her publicist, made a deal with FunnyorDie. Soon enough, Lindsay Lohan’s “eHarmony Profile” became a hit web video. With the tagline “Lindsay Lohan is newly single and ready to mingle!,” audience enjoyed laughing at Lohan as she, in turn, laughed at herself.

While that might not have saved her career, it certainly helped redeem her– at least until the next scandal.

Now Charlie Sheen can add an exclusive FunnyorDie video to his resume. “Charlie Sheen’s Winning Recipes” incorporates all of Sheen’s spectacular (and wacky quotes)– from tiger blood, to Adonis DNA, and we can’t forget winning. Filmed as a “cooking show,” Sheen takes his insanity to a whole new level– and we love it!

Perhaps Sheen’s career isn’t completely revived, but it never hurts to laugh at oneself. Afterall, it’s easier than admitting defeat, which Sheen would never do– he’s winning. Or at least this video is.

While I couldn’t embed the video, I have provided the link: http://FunnyOrDie.com/m/5cwg

Side Note: where did they get the tiger hat on such short notice? Do they actually make those?

Check it out and tell me what you think.


Denny’s+DumbDumb= Arrested Development?

Jason Bateman? Yes Please.

Will Arnett? Of course.

Celebrity guests from their wacky group of friends? Give me more.

Apparently Denny’s has been reading my mind and, in light of no new Arrested Development movie, they’ve instead enlisted Bateman and Arnett’s comedic stylings for a new social media campaign.

A new web series put on by Denny’s has hit the web: “Always Open.” Playing off the idea of American diners, celebrity guests chat it up with host David Koechner (best known for his roles in Anchorman and The Office) in a local Denny’s as they polish off plates of the restaurant’s meals.

Denny’s, in an attempt to connect with the younger generation, hired Bateman and Arnett’s production company, DumbDumb, to write and produce these shorts for online viewers. The hope is to not only connect with the viewers, but to encourage a sense of openness and consumer feedback.

Explaining his interest in the project to Ad Age, Bateman said:

“It’s the most efficient way to communicate our tone of humor instead of trying to explain to another actor or write it down. It also shows our peers and our friends that we’re willing to put ourselves out there so when we ask some of our famous friends to come play with us we can say, ‘We did it, now we’re doing it with you.'”

And what a group of friends that includes! Upcoming guests are rumoured to include Kristen Bell, Will Forte, Sarah Silverman and, Arnett’s real-life wife, Amy Poehler.

The real challenge will come in getting a returning viewership. With short web series such as these, it’s difficult to guarantee that an individual will come back for more. Hopefully, however, with the above list of guest stars already announced, adoring fans will flock to the videos to see their favorite comedians enjoy a Denny’s meal and a little chatter.

After having watched the first video, I have a few opinions of my own. I am automatically enchanted by all things Jason Bateman. I love his humour and it definitely worked for the scenario. Host David Koechner is also a fine act, but for me Bateman steals the scene. There’s no real action– it quite literally is just these two individuals sitting down and having a rather comedic (and odd) conversation. I was left wondering how much was improvised and how much was scripted.

Denny’s was perfectly placed as the location without over-emphasizing their brand. There is brief mention of the name by the actors, and of course the restaurant is credited for the series, but I think they’ve done a good job of not inundating us with their involvement. This allows the audience to sit back and enjoy the wit, without being weighed down by commercialism. And yet, I never forgot they were in a Dennys.

I can personally guarantee them my loyal viewership, due largely to the names that have been attached to the show, but how long will other’s be able to sit through meal-time talk? I’ve embedded the video below and hope to hear some more reactions. What do you think? Am I just blinded by my Jason Bateman and Will Arnett love, or does this mini series have some actual potential?

The videos will be launched on both the Denny’s Facebook and College Humor.

Weighing in on the Golden Globes

I love movies and I love television, so I was most definitely among the many viewers who tuned in to the Golden Globes Sunday night. When I first heard that Ricky Gervais was hosting, I was as giddy as a school-girl. His past performances at awards shows, even those he wasn’t hosting, have always been more than memorable (see example here). Gervais hosted last years Golden Globes and the result were increased ratings. This years outcome appears to have been the same, with a 5% rise in viewers. With these sort of results, Gervais would appear to be a shoe-in for hosting any number of award shows. unfortunately, his  performance has brought in mixed reviews.

I would like to comment on the mixed reactions to Ricky Gervais’ hosting. As I watched the Golden Globes, it was clear that Gervais was playing with fire, pushing the envelope with several of his jokes. The reaction from the audience present was a mixture of laughter, half-hearted “ohhhh”s, shocked gasps, and uncomfortable (and forced) chuckles (mainly from the butt of the jokes). His opening monologue was particularly harsh, commenting on everything from Hugh Hefner’s sex life to Charlie Sheen’s outrageous antics. After reading some reviews of the show, it appear that the most controversial remark he made was in reference to Scientology and the closeted homosexuals who practice it:

“Also not nominated was ‘I Love You Philip Morris,’ Jim Carrey and Ewan McGregor.
Two heterosexual characters pretending to be gay.
So the complete opposite of some famous Scientologists, then.”

This thinly veiled joke seems to have upset much of the online community who have called Gervais’ performance as everything from “rude” to “cringe-worthy.”

My opinion?

When you hire Ricky Gervais, expect nothing less than Ricky Gervais.

He is a notoriously malicious comic. His jokes make fun of others as well as himself. And good for him–his unrelenting and unforgiving, an attitude that seems especially necessary in modern-day Hollywood. If someone really is to blame for his indiscretions, shouldn’t it be the producers of the show who a) hired him (back) and b) failed to look over this prepared script?

Luckily, some of the stars seem to have taken Gervais’ quips with a smile. After commenting that Robert Downey Jr. is probably best known for his stints in prison and rehab, the ever good-humoured RDJ took the stage and made his own risqué (though hilarious) jokes.

Others seem to have not been so happy with the comments. Reports say that several celebrity reps have already been in contact with the producers to voice their complaints.

My final word: It’s Hollywood. Celebrities are in the spotlight, and when they end up making ridiculously stupid decisions (Charlie Sheen’s shenanigans for instance), they can’t expect to escape the inevitable jokes that will be made at their expense.

So Congrats Ricky Gervais! Show well done, and much enjoyed!

PR Humor: “The Most Amazing Press Release Ever Written”

How would you like to read the [self-proclaimed] “Most Amazing Press Release Ever Written” ?

Well you’re in luck, because Mitch Delaplane, founder of PitchPoint Public Relations, has seen fit to bequeath upon us this most amazing release.

Delaplane clearly displays his unique approach toward the industry, but putting a twist on the classic release. This tactic is sure to garner much deserved attention for his company. So read on and enjoy, but beware contradicting the release’s title, because, as the press release concludes: “If you disagree, issue your own press release and prepare for war.”

The Most Amazing Press Release Ever Written

PR Professional Distributes Groundbreaking Press Release

CHICAGO, Jan. 11, 2011 /PRNewswire/ – Mitch Delaplane of PitchPoint Public Relations has issued the most amazing press release ever written.  While hundreds of press releases are distributed daily, Delaplane feels this particular release will go down in history as the most amazing press release that has ever been written.

“I’ve been in the business for over ten years and have to say, I’m speechless,” claims Delaplane.  ”The title alone grabs you and demands that it be read.  Then there’s this quote that completely takes things to an entirely new level.  I’m proud of this press release.  In fact, I think it is [really] amazing.”

Typically reserved for company news announcements and other public relations communications, the press release has long been the favored default for informing media about exciting, groundbreaking news.  Then this news release comes along and changes everything people thought they knew about press releases.

“I’m quoting myself again because the first quote didn’t do it justice,” says Delaplane.  ”If you’re still reading this news release, then you know what I’m talking about when I say it’s something special.  In fact, it’s 483 words of pure awesomeness.  When it crosses the wires, I believe history will have been made.”

The science behind this Earth-shattering news release lies in its simplicity – no science, just pure old press release craftsmanship.  It started with an incredible brainstorming session that asked a very simple question: “what makes a press release amazing?”  Elaborate notes from that brainstorm were then formulated into mesmerizing sentences, paragraphs and pages…all expertly designed to make you pause and reflect at the brilliance of this press release.

Every single word of this news release was track changed, stetted, then track changed again to its original draft.  Upon final approval, it was spell checked, fact checked and printed for posterity.  The result is a two-page, 1.5-spaced news release that is like no other news release in existence.

According to PitchPoint Public Relations you have just read the most amazing press release ever written.  If you agree, tell Mitch at mitch@pitchpointpr.com or follow him on Twitter at Lifeisamitch.

If you disagree, issue your own press release and prepare for war.

About PitchPoint Public Relations

PitchPoint Public Relations is a very small public relations company located in Chicago, IL.  It currently consists of Mitch Delaplane, an Apple computer and his bloodhound Sally (no overhead, just great PR).  Mitch has been doing public relations since 1999 and has worked for some of the largest public relations agencies in Chicago and many of their Fortune 500 clients/brands.  While he can do every single facet of public relations, his background is in consumer and sports marketing.  His main interests are helping companies develop creative programs and alternatives to traditional public relations tactics.

SOURCE PitchPoint Public Relations