It's the second and final day of ABC's press-tour pageant, and the roster includes sessions for the Mel Gibson-produced family sitcom Complete Savages, J.J. Abrams' castaway thriller Lost and the sex-crazed teen soap life as we know it, co-starring Kelly Osbourne. Speaking of soap, I just found out that the miniature bathroom accessories I get for free in my hotel room sell for big bucks downstairs in the gift shop. I've got two words for you: stocking stuffers. But enough about that. Let's get to the real point of this trip (wink, wink)...COMPLETE SAVAGES9:07 am Mel Gibson's name is all over this comedy about a single dad raising five teenage boys, yet the Passion auteur isn't here to help promote the thing. Interesting. "Mel had a lot of input on the show," insists exec producer Julie Thacker-Scully. "He directed the pilot... We run ideas by him... We pick his brain... " He does all that! Wow.
9:20 "What is the phenomenon like of being directed by Mel Gibson?" a reporter asks the show's young cast. I can't even write that with a straight face, nevermind say it.
9:25 Oh goody, it's the "What is the current state of the sitcom?" question. It's dead, people get over it!
9:35 Scoop! The producers reveal that they'd like to introduce the clan's estranged matriarch during the second season, most likely in a Halloween episode. Amy Sedaris and Catherine O'Hara are floated as possible contenders for the role.
9:36 Simpsons feature-film update! "It's coming along slowly," says fellow exec producer and Simpsons alum Mike Scully. "I would pencil in the summer of 2024."LOST10:11 ABC's dapper PR general, Kevin Brockman, begins introducing the show's 14 cast members, including Matthew Fox, Ian Somerhalder and Lord of the Rings' Dominic Monaghan.
10:13 ABC's dapper PR general, Kevin Brockman, finishes introducing the show's 14 cast members.
10:13:30 It's Charlie freakin' Salinger! Who the heck is watching Owen? Please tell me he didn't leave him with that alcoholic brother of his.
10:14 The sound of a car horn echoes throughout the ballroom. Did Drea de Matteo break down and start driving?
10:15 Lost's exec producer, J.J. Abrams, insists that the mysterious monster terrorizing the castaways in the two-hour pilot will in "no way be the focus of the show."
10:16 Abrams continues justifying the show's Jurassic Park-esque subplot.
10:21 Abrams finishes justifying the show's Jurassic Park-esque subplot, which, BTW, is one of my favorite parts of Lost.
10:22 Lost clue No.1: The creature "is not a dinosaur," Abrams reveals.
10:24 Dominic Monaghan confirms that he has a black-widow spider as a pet. "I think it's illegal, though," he says, "so don't print that." It's a deal.
10:25 A reporter's question about the FCC and indecency regulations reminds me of another groan-worthy phrase that should be banned at press tour: "Given the current climate... "
10:40 Abrams mentions the late, great Felicity in passing. I tear up.
10:45 Lost clue No. 2: The island on which the plane-crash survivors are stranded is located on the planet Earth, Abrams confirms.
10:51 And now the "Whatchoo talkin' 'bout, Willis?" award for the least thought-out question of the day goes to (drumroll, please) the female reporter who asks Abrams: "The character Emily is eight months pregnant. She's only got a month to go... Is there going to be something that a baby... a baby is born?" That's going to be a tough one to beat. Let's have a big round of applause for our winner.EXTREME MAKEOVER: HOME EDITION11:35 I didn't attend this session, but my colleague Damian Holbrook reports that he sobbed like a baby when "Sweet" Alice Harris once again thanked Ty Pennington and Co. for making her home inhabitable. In related news, I worry about Damian sometimes. GOOD MORNING AMERICA LUNCHEON12:30 pm Oh, I get it. They're serving breakfast for lunch because of the Good Morning America tie-in. That's clever.
12:35 Oh, sweet Jesus, they have an omelet bar with Egg Beaters!LIFE AS WE KNOW IT2:06: Kelly Osbourne is the first member of the drama's ensemble cast to be introduced, and... what's this? Ozzy's little hellion looks almost mature in a simple black jacket, dark jeans and white top. Even her hair, with just a few strategically placed red streaks, looks more subdued than usual. Is she mellowing out? I think she might be.
2:12 Given that the rest of the young ensemble consists of virtual unknowns, I'm surprised no one has asked Osbourne any questions yet.
2:15 Still no questions for Osbourne. Maybe this guy holding the mic in front of me will ask her something. "This is for the producers," he begins. "Given the current climate... " For the second time today, I tear up.
2:20 Fellow exec producer Jeff Judah (an alum of Freaks and Geeks) is asked whether he was a fan of Dawson's Creek. His not-so-diplomatic response: "Not in a lot of ways." Oh, good, so it wasn't just me.
2:24 Nearly 15 minutes in and no one has asked Osbourne a single question! Gimme that mic. "Kelly, how have you been adjusting to this acting thing?" I ask. "Well, it's a whole different world for me," she replies. "It's something that I'm still getting used to. It's so much fun and I get to work with such great people and such great material. I think maybe I might be doing this for a little while." Consider the ice broken, folks. Now, go have at her.
2:38 Referring to a scene in the pilot in which Osbourne's character calls herself fat, a reporter reassures the aspiring actress, "You're not fat." "In high school in L.A., I was considered fat," she laments. "That's how high school is." The surprisingly well-spoken 19-year-old goes on to say that she took the life role "to show people that the world is big enough for [people of] all shapes and sizes."
2:39 James Franco diss alert! When asked why he didn't cast more "normal-looking" actors on the show, Judah reminds the crowd that "Freaks and Geeks went [only] 17 episodes."
2:40 "I don't want my dad to see me making out with [a guy]," laughs Osbourne of the reason she hasn't allowed Ozzy to watch the pilot.
2:42 "When I'm at home, it's very different to when I am working," Osbourne says, responding to a question about whether her issues dealing with authority have impacted her life work. "When I'm working, I do what I am told... I'm not a hard person to work with at all. What you see on [The Osbournes] is an edited version."
2:43: The cast and producers immediately jump to Osbourne's defense. "She was a pleasure to work with." "She is not the person The Osbournes made her out to be." "She was always on time." "She was amazing with the cast."
2:45 When asked if she ever wishes she had a regular teenage life, Osbourne responds, "What is a regular teenage life? Life sucks no matter what you do." Now that's our little girl.
Coming up tomorrow: The WB