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Marilyn Beck & Stacy Jenel Smith


Gary Owens' Legacy of Charity and Humor It won't be surprising if tribute is paid to Gary Owens when this year's Carousel of Hope gala for the Children's Diabetes Foundation rolls around. The late, great announcer of "Laugh-In" lore and "Roger Ramjet" renown was a long-time supporter of …Read more. Ask Stacy -- Week of 2/28/15 DEAR STACY: Can you tell what TV shows or movies I've seen Ta'Rhonda Jones in before? She plays Porsha, Cookie's personal assistant, on "Empire" and she's dynamite. — F.G., Bloomfield, New Jersey DEAR F.G.: On a plane or at the grocery store, …Read more. Oscars 2015, Backstage Interview Notebook Eddie Redmayne enjoyed being in a weird dream, Julianne Moore gushed about her husband, and Patricia Arquette honored Meryl Streep in backstage interviews at the 87th Academy Awards. "It just felt like a euphoria really, an extraordinary euphoria," …Read more. Ask Stacy -- Week of 2/21/15 DEAR STACY: I miss "Raising Hope." What is Lucas Neff doing now? — Lorrie B., Cedar Rapids, Iowa DEAR LORRIE: The actor is doing voice work — the lead character, in fact — in Pixar's upcoming animated movie, "The Good Dinosaur," …Read more.
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Steven Tyler Sure New Aerosmith Song Will Get Radio Play/‘Desperate Housewives' Takes an Unexpected Turn


With Steven Tyler's "American Idol" gig bringing bigger attention to Aerosmith than the band has enjoyed in a while, work is moving forward swiftly on the first full-fledged Aerosmith rock album in seven years.

"I got all the guys to come out here except for Joe (Perry), and I promised them, 'You come out, we'll get a song a day,' and we did," the 63-year-old rock icon reports. "Seven songs, and I listened to four of them the other day, looking at the ocean — and I heard one I know the radio is going to play," he adds. "I know what a good song is. I know something that's melodically compelling, that's got a really good melody line. And you know, I found some just-right words over it."

Tyler has already made it clear he's enjoying the positive impact his "Idol" exposure is having on the music side of his career, including new young fans wherever he goes and a 260 percent increase in sales of the Aerosmith catalog.

Hey, what's not to like?!

Of the forthcoming album, expected in the spring, he says, "Is it the right game? Is it the only game on the block? No, but it's Aerosmith, and people are going to love it." Some of it, he says "is so strange and so different." Other parts sound as if they could be "outtakes of the second album."

AN UNEXPECTED TWIST: Eva Longoria, Teri Hatcher, Felicity Huffman, Marcia Cross and Vanessa Williams may be in for a wild ride as they finish out their final season of "Desperate Housewives" — in fact, creator Marc Cherry promised as much when he and the stars met with press recently to talk about the end of the 8-year-old phenomenon. However, there's one storyline in this crazy last season that's being handled straight: Mrs. McCluskey will be dealing with lung cancer.

The arc has everything to do with actress Kathryn Joosten, who plays the character, and is a two-time survivor of the disease.

"The show knows what my medical condition is. They're aware of it; it hasn't interfered with anything," says Joosten, who won Emmys in '05 and '08 for her work on the series. "They came to me and said, 'What would you think if we did this storyline?' And I said, 'Wow, I think it's a great idea.' So lung cancer is going to be prominent, and it's a terrific way to give (the cause) a voice."

According to her, they've already shot some of the scenes, and the production people and crew "were very supportive.

They knew it was a personal statement for me as well. I was kidding around saying it was practice sessions." She adds that she and the team "collaborated to some extent on how this might go. The show was eager to get it right. We didn't want a soap opera-y, non-realistic situation."

Joosten expects the story to play out over "several episodes near the end, but I don't know. They don't tell us anything," notes the feisty 72-year-old. A long-time activist against lung cancer — which she believes has failed to get the attention it deserves from the public and medical community compared to other forms of the disease — she plans to "play up" this "Desperate Housewives" arc. She's already involved in a Pfizer campaign to draw attention to new developments in testing for tumor bio-markers that she reports can make enormous differences in lung cancer treatment.

And after "Desperate Housewives" bids farewell? Joosten is already working on a whole new thing. She's ratcheting up her equestrian know-how by learning how to train a horse and documenting the whole thing as a TV show, or maybe webisodes. She says she knew that buying her 2-year-old mare, Sprite, was the right thing to do when she found out "the lady who was taking care of her in Montana is named Mrs. McCluskey. Can you believe it? That proves the horse is mine."

SOMETHING DIFFERENT: Tanna Frederick is best-known for her work in Henry Jaglom films including "Hollywood Dreams" and theatrical fare such as A.R. Gurney's comedy Sylvia, in which she played a dog. But the red-haired actress doesn't mind admitting she'd love to try something a little more mainstream.

"My whole thing is, 'Try something new all the time,' so a sitcom or series would be fabulous. Probably anybody would say that right now. Michael has one coming up on HBO," Tanna notes, referring to Michael Imperioli, her leading man in the upcoming big-screen "The M Word." Imperioli will be seen in Doug Ellin's forthcoming "40" with Adrian Pasdar and Billy Zane on the cable net. "I would love to do an HBO or Showtime show," says Tanna, "and work in irony and humor and all sorts of good stuff."

To find out more about Marilyn Beck and Stacy Jenel Smith and read their past columns, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at




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