Wednesday, March 17, 2010

This Shall Be The Whole Of The Law

The housewives choice, Adrian Chiles, has dismissed the BBC's claims that he is 'too busy' to front The ONE Show five days a week. At the weekend, Chiles confirmed that he is thinking about leaving the programme after the BBC unveiled plans to replace him with Chris Evans on Friday evenings. Executives have reportedly said that the decision was made because Chiles will soon be hosting a new Friday chat show, but the presenter told the Sun that he doesn't understand their reasoning. 'The show won't even air this year,' he said. 'And it's not going to be on a Friday. It's more likely to be recorded on a Wednesday and aired on Thursday. Plus there are only going to be six shows initially so it'll hardly take up all my time. It's a strange situation.' Chiles, who also hosts Match of the Day 2 and The Apprentice: You're Fired, added that he is still unsure what to do when his BBC contract ends next month. 'I'm half-Balkan, and the Balkan in me just wants to walk away,' he said. 'But then there's a more rational side of me that thinks I should be more cautious. The show is going really well and I've helped it get some great ratings. I don't see why they need to change things.' He added: 'I haven't made up my mind what I'm going to do yet - it's all still up in the air.'

The British ambassador to Georgia has complained about footage of him being used in a TV hoax about a fictitious Russian invasion. There was reported panic in Georgia on Saturday after a TV report that Russian tanks had invaded the capital and that the country's president was dead. It included footage of UK ambassador Denis Keefe, which was edited to make it look like he was talking about the invasion. Mr Keefe has asked the TV station to make it clear he knew nothing about what he described as 'the irresponsible programme.' The TV station - pro-government Imedi TV - said that the aim had been to show how events might unfold if the president were killed. It later apologised.

There was a brilliant bit by Russell Howard in this week's Radio Times: When asked the question Which TV series would you take to a desert island? Russell replies pretty much as yer Keith Telly Topping would have if asked the same question: 'The West Wing. I was depressed when it finished because I'd never see my mates again. Then I discovered the [DVD] boxed-set and many are the times that CJ and Josh have gently whispered me to sleep. I know more about the Bartlet administration than the actual White House.' Isn't that great? Knew I liked Russell for another reason besides his amusing contributions to Mock The Week.

MTV has denied that it has banned Lady GaGa's new 'Telephone' video from the music channel. Reports surfaced over the weekend that the network has banned the clip for being 'too sleazy' for its younger viewers. 'MTV did not ban Lady GaGa and Beyoncé's 'Telephone' video - in fact, we premiered it on Friday, 12 March on-air and online at, two days before this story was falsely reported,' said MTV executive vice president of music and talent Amy Doyle. 'Fans can continue to catch the video as we repeat it on-air and online.' It was also recently reported that the near ten-minute-long video has become the most popular online promo ever, clocking up fourteen million hits in three days.

The X Factor and Britain's Got Talent lost out at last night's Royal Television Society Programme Awards 2009. The Simon Cowell-produced talent shows were beaten in the 'Entertainment' category by BBC4's Newswipe With Charlie Brooker. Louis Theroux defeated Piers Morgan for 'Best Presenter'. Theroux won for his BBC documentary A Place For Paedophiles. The 'Best Scripted Comedy' award went to the BBC's The Thick Of It, beating The Inbetweeners and Miranda. However, Inbetweeners writers Iain Morris and Damon Beesley picked up 'Best Comedy Writing.'

The BBC has revealed plans to broadcast a series of debates between the main ministerial candidates to accompany its coverage of the party leaders' debates. According to The Times, the nine Cabinet Contender discussion programmes will see Labour ministers, their Shadow Tory rivals and Liberal Democrat counterparts discussing 'the key issues' ahead of the general election. The programmes will run in addition to the BBC's main debate between Prime Minister Gordon Brown, David Cameron and Nick Clegg. The Daily Politics host Andrew Neil will front the Cabinet Contender debates on BBC2 in the two weeks immediately before the election date, which is still to be confirmed. Sky and ITV will also host their own leader's debates, but neither broadcaster has revealed similar plans to support Cabinet-level programming. The ministers taking part will include Lord Mandelson (who will provide his own shadow-absorbing darkness), David Miliband, Vince Cable and Ken Clarke. They will appear on BBC2 to discuss subjects such as health, education, defence and crime. Nearly all of the participants have signed up to take part in the debates, although Labour would not reveal whether chancellor Alistair Darling - and his weird eyebrows - will contribute to the economy discussion, despite his Tory shadow George Osborne having already agreeing to appear. A final debate will carry the theme of 'trust in politics' and air the day before the election, although no participants have been confirmed as yet for that particular discussion. Presumably because no party can actually come up with a candidate that more than a handful of gullible glakes actually would trust as far as they can spit. Each programme will be broadcast from 2.15pm to 3pm on The Daily Politics show, but not in front of a live studio audience as with the main election debates. Despite the party leaders having to adhere to a strict code of conduct, the Cabinet Contender debates will be more relaxed. All three ministers will get forty five seconds to deliver their opening statements - and make a complete berk of themselves - before facing questions from Neil and a BBC specialist reporter. Viewers will also get the opportunity to submit questions via e-mail. 'Peter Mandelson (seen left in classic 'have him killed' mode), you're absolutely horrible, is it true that you disintegrate if exposed to direct sunlight' being, perhaps, one such potential offering. The format will be expanded to a four-party system for debates on the environment and immigration, with the Green Party and UK Independence Party taking part. Additional debates will be held in Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales for key issues, such as health and education. The Daily Politics editor Robbie Gibb said: 'We are now in the very final stages of negotiating these Cabinet-level debates. It's clear that the public has a huge appetite for live head-to-head debates of this nature and they will provide a unique opportunity for the public to compare and contrast what each party has to offer on the issues that matter most to the public like crime, health, schools and economy.'

Sir Michael Parkinson, Barry Cryer and Penelope Keith were among friends of Keith Waterhouse who attended a special service to commemorate the late author this week. One of Britain's most prolific writers, Waterhouse died last year, aged eighty. The actor Peter O'Toole, who starred in Waterhouse's West End hit Jeffrey Bernard is Unwell, read excerpts from the play during the service in London. Sir Michael said Waterhouse wrote 'like an angel' and possessed 'the stamina of a seaside donkey. He attributed his stamina to what he called a delayed hangover, which meant it only occurred when he had finished work for the day, if at all,' Sir Michael said. Lord Bragg said it had been 'a wonderful service' and Sir Tom Courtenay, who starred in the film adaptation of Waterhouse's novel Billy Liar, said it was 'lovely.' He added: 'I didn't really see him much after the film but wanted to come here today because I thought I owed him a great debt because of it.' Una Stubbs and Peter Bowles also attended the memorial. Waterhouse made his screenwriting debut on the 1961 film Whistle Down The Wind, but he remains best known for 1959's Billy Liar. The Leeds-born writer had more than sixty books, plays and television scripts to his credit and was a regular newspaper columnist.

Actress Sheila Hancock has said that she is 'disturbed' by reality series such The X Factor and Britain's Got Talent. The veteran West End star, who will appear on the panel of Andrew Lloyd Webber's new talent show Over The Rainbow, said that she often 'squirmed' when watching Simon Cowell's shows. 'I'm in the theatre every night, so I don't always see these things, but I've seen them in the past and squirmed,' she said. 'I often think, "Ooh ouch! They have chosen that person because they are awful and not because of potential." I think that is unnecessary, quite honestly. I really do. I have been disturbed by shows that I've watched.' Speaking about Big Brother, she added: 'The house things are like watching bedlam. You have a feeling like you are watching the maniacs in the mental asylum and that troubles me because it is something that is happening in our society. If we are not careful, we are inciting this hatred and dislike. We reject people very easily.' Comparing the other talent shows to Webber's latest BBC series, she said: 'We don't have anyone on the show who is crass bad. I think on some of the reality shows, people are chosen because they are laughably bad. Then the nation, the panel and everyone can laugh at them. It's not like that on this show, it really isn't. We're looking for talent.'

Coronation Street star Kym Marsh has claimed that Channel 4 soap Hollyoaks is currently in a bad state. The actress said that she can understand why new producer Paul Marquess has axed a number of characters from the teen drama. Writing in her New magazine column, Marsh remarked: 'The cull could be good - the show's not been in very good shape for a while. They tried to make it like Skins, but it's on too early to compete.' The thirty three-year-old, who is in a relationship with former Hollyoaks actor Jamie Lomas, also insisted that departing cast member Nico Mirallegro was not a victim of Marquess's shakeup. She said: 'He's a friend of Jamie's and I know he decided to leave some time ago.' Marquess recently promised that the departing characters will be replaced by 'fantastic' new arrivals - including a new family who are to make their first appearance in the summer.

Davina McCall has tweeted to tell her fans that she is currently filming a pilot for a new show in Rotherham for ITV. As if the poor bastards of Rotherham didn't had enough to put up with when Jamie Oliver was in town.

Pioneering ambient trance duo Orbital are to headline the Glastonbury Festival's Other Stage this summer, sixteen years after a legendary performance at the event that made their name. The Hartnoll brothers will play as part of the festival's fortieth anniversary. Phil Hartnoll said their famed 1994 gig was 'a pivotal point' for the festival. 'It twisted their head around toward dance music,' he told 6 Music. 'And now they've got a huge dance field.' The last tickets for this year's festival will go on sale on 11 April. A 'limited' number of cancelled tickets will be up for grabs to fans who have registered on their website by 31 March, organisers have announced. Rave on. Yer Keith Telly Topping himself - buzzing his tits off on lager, lager, lager - saw Orbital live once. Jesus, what a show that was. They did this ten minute version of 'Satan' at the end that was like the coming of the apocalypse. Mad as badgers, so it was.

Alex Reid has revealed that he would like Gerard Butler to play him in a movie. Funny that. Yer Keith Telly Topping would like Brad Pitt to play me in a movie. Neither bits of imaginative casting are likely to happen any time soon, however.

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