Press Tour Day 2 (CBS): Food, Folks and Flatulence
Two and a Half Men
9:10 am The session begins, and with Charlie Sheen up there like a sitting duck, I'm bummed that the first question isn't, "So, why did Denise dump you?" Does that make me a bad person? I think it does.
9:19 "We have to have fart jokes [on the show]," reasons Sheen's TV mom, the regal Holland Taylor, "because everyone in the cast farts constantly." Tee-hee. Holland Taylor said "farts."
9:25 A reporter asks another question that isn't, "I have to ask: You. Denise. What's the deal there, huh?" Bummer.
9:40 Scoop! Charlie confirms that his real-life pa, Martin Sheen, will guest-star this season.
9:45 Speaking on behalf of chiropractors everywhere, a reporter informs Jon Cryer — who plays a back-cracker on Men — that "they love the fact that you're giving them a face."
9:50 Scoop! Cryer reveals that his Pretty in Pink leading lady, Molly Ringwald, "crapped out on" doing commentary on the film's forthcoming 20th-anniversary DVD. "She was supposed to be there," he says, "and then at the last minute, she couldn't make it." In her defense, she was probably just busy doing… um… uh… Wait. We're talking about Molly Ringwald here. What the heck could she possibly have been doing?
9:52 Oh, goody. The dreaded "What's the state of comedy today?" question has reared its ugly head at yet another press tour.
9:53 It's the final question of the session, and unfortunately, it's not "How awkward was it in the delivery room? I'm guessing pretty darn awkward." Damn.
10:15 For the record: Carla Gugino's knockers are definitely not bigger than Paula Marshall's.
10:16 One of the producers of this alien-invasion saga reveals that they added a new scene to the pilot that will make people "lose their s--t." Hey, what's with all the potty talk today?
10:25 A reporter posing a "Do you believe?"-type question to the cast butchers the word extraterrestrials, making it sound like "extra-testes." I scan the room to see if anyone else finds this hysterical.
10:25:30 Nope, just me.
10:46 Responding to a question about accepting roles unrelated to his height, diminutive Peter Dinklage (The Station Agent) confesses, "I don't really want to play an Ewok."
10:47 Cementing today's diary theme, the French bulldog owned by Gugino's character on Threshold is revealed to have a serious gas problem.
CBS Digital Media Presentation and Q&A
11:15-12:15 pm Time to hit the gym!
Emmy Awards-Themed Lunch
12:30 I'm boycotting this to protest Lauren Graham's reprehensible Emmy snub. Someone's gotta take a stand.
1:20 I have a confession to make: I'm currently at the Emmy Awards lunch stuffing my face with soft tacos and bean salad. In my defense, I didn't really have any other food options.
2:10 CBS' latest procedural is about an elite group of FBI profilers (why is it never an ordinary group?) who track the country's most twisted serial killers. It stars Mandy Patinkin and Greg from TV's Dharma & Greg.
2:25 Patinkin uses the word "osmosized" in a sentence. I scan the room to see if anyone else is scratching their head.
2:25:30: Nope, just me.
2:26 Diary theme update: That bean salad from lunch is kicking in.
2:40 I'm bored.
2:41 "Sorry — not a winner! Do yourself a favor, try again!" D'oh.
King of Queens
3:25 It appears that Kevin James and Queens producer Michael J. Weithorn are running a little late for this "informal" press conference. Oh, wait, here they come.
3:27 Scoop! Nicole Sullivan, who plays Jerry Stiller's dog walker on the hitcom, has jumped to the new ABC sitcom Hot Properties and therefore won't be returning in the fall. OK, I guess that's not really scoop. Oh, but this is: Weithorn says he plans to fill the vacancy with some recurring guest stars.
3:28 What would have happened had Leah Remini not re-upped earlier this week for a reported $400,000 per episode? "The contingency plan was to clean out our offices and go home," says Weithorn . Adds James: "I was ready to do a remake of Chico and the Man."
3:40 Weithorn laments the fact that no one from Queens — particularly James, Remini and Stiller — has ever been nominated for an Emmy.
3:45 James' real surname is Knipfing. I did not know that.
3:50 Scoop! In an upcoming episode, Doug convinces Carrie to take a pole-dancing class, and she ends up sucking at it. Cracks James: "Watching bad pole-dancing is tough." Unless you're getting paid millions of dollars to do it. Then, not so much.
Martha Behind Bars
4:10 Cybill Shepherd is nuts, so this should be a fun session.
4:11 When asked if she's really getting to know Martha now after playing her in two telepics, Shepherd veers completely off topic and reveals, "When it came up that I might play her again… I went to Beverly Hills and spent thousands and thousands of dollars on shoes that are very uncomfortable to wear." See? I told ya she was nuts.
4:16 "If [Martha] came in the room now, I might make a fast exit," Shepherd confesses.
4:17 A reporter asks exec producer Tom Patricia whether his source material for the telepic included a snitch inside Camp Cupcake, prompting Shepherd to ask, "What's a snitch?" OK, even I know what that means.
4:21 In comparing herself to Stewart, Shepherd is quick to point out that "she's about eight years older than me."
4:25 And she also "outweighs me by a few pounds."
4:35 Shepherd would "absolutely" play Martha a third time.
4:37 She'd also be up for lending her voice to the rumored Taxi Driver video game…
4:40 … and starring in a Moonlighting feature with Bruce Willis.
4:41 A fellow journo leans over and whispers, "Do you think Cybill Shepherd has money problems?" My response? "Shhhh! I don't wanna miss the next crazy thing she says!"
4:42 OK, now Maddie Hayes is creeping me out. Whenever she makes eye contact with a reporter, she gives a huge clownish smile and squeals, "Hi!"
4:45 Maybe that reporter was onto something about Cyb's money troubles: Shepherd grumbles that Carsey-Werner — the production company behind Cybill — cheated her out of a fortune when it sold the rerun rights to Oxygen. (Carsey-Werner owns one third of the cabler.) "They gave Cybill to themselves," she alleges. "They made sure there was no profit [left over]." Juicy!
4:46 Had she been given a piece of the Cybill pie, Shepherd says she would have used the coin to fulfill a lifelong dream. "I always wanted to have a ranch. All those big stars have ranches. Do you know what I mean? Like [in] Montana and Aspen. I don't care so much about [having a] house in Malibu, because I have a home in Memphis and the Mississippi is right there. But the whole ranch thing… "
4:46:30 "I think I'm incredibly fortunate," she goes on, rather unconvincingly. "Oh well, so I don't get the ranch."
4:47 In closing, Shepherd says, "I don't really feel bitter… except about that ranch."
4:49 I knew that was gonna be a fun session. The only thing that would have made it better was if Shepherd had let one rip upon exiting.
Coming up tomorrow: UPN!
Check out the rest of Michael Ausiello's press tour diary entries: Day 1 (CBS) - Day 2 (CBS) - Day 3 (UPN) - Day 4 (WB) -Day 5 (NBC) - Day 6 (NBC) - Day 7 (ABC) - Day 8 (ABC)
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