Whoopi Goldberg

3.366060606061 (1650)
Posted by pompos 03/27/2009 @ 13:14

Tags : whoopi goldberg, actors and actresses, entertainment

News headlines
NORM: Emergency halts Whoopi's show - Las Vegas Review - Journal
During Whoopi Goldberg's closing minutes, a male patron suffered an apparent seizure near the front of the Encore Theater, according to several witnesses. Goldberg stopped her show when ushers began tending to the man, who was near Steve and Elaine...
Celebrities Share Secrets of Success - FOXNews
By Uma Pemmaraju What do mega church pastor Joel Osteen, country superstar Martina McBride, multimillionaire entrepreneur Chris Gardner, comedienne Whoopi Goldberg, NBA superstar Dikembe Mutombo, and world-renowned flutist Sir James Galway all have in...
Whoopi Goldberg: no Mother Superior - Telegraph.co.uk
Whoopi Goldberg was no exception. 'Needs must,' she says pragmatically. 'I was young, homeless and addicted to heroin. I'd dropped out of high school and into drugs. Simple as that. I was a child of the Sixties so I ingested as many mind-altering...
Can Elton John become a grand-slam awards champ? - Los Angeles Times
So far only 10 people have won the grand slam of showbiz peer-group prizes — the Oscar, Emmy, Grammy and Tony: Mel Brooks, John Gielgud, Whoopi Goldberg, Helen Hayes, Audrey Hepburn, Marvin Hamlisch, Mike Nichols, Rita Moreno, Richard Rodgers and...
Barbara Walters and Whoopi Goldberg go after Glenn Beck on "The ... - Gay Socialites
Glenn Beck made an appearance on "The View" this morning, and he basically got flogged by Whoopi Goldberg and Barbara Walters. Beck evidently went on his radio show and told a story about how he was pushed aside by Amtrak employees who were busy...
Governor's School grad wins starring role in stage musical - Greenville News
By Ann Hicks • ARTS WRITER • May 24, 2009 It took a yearlong global search to find the new Deloris Van Cartier to fill the role made famous by comedienne Whoopi Goldberg in her 1992 blockbuster movie, “Sister Act.” Now, reincarnated as a new musical...
What ascension means - Manila Bulletin
Do you still remember the American actress Whoopi Goldberg in the highly-popular movies “Ghost” and “Sister Act”? Every year Goldberg co-hosts a TV program “Comic Relief” to aid her country's numerous homeless. (Yes, in the world's richest country,...
Whoopi Goldberg wants Amy Winehouse to change her path - Entertainment and Showbiz!
American actress Whoopi Goldberg wants Amy Winehouse to change her path. Goldberg has urged Rehab singer Amy Winehouse to fight her drink and drugs problems, warning her that her lifestyle will kill her if she continues. Goldberg, 53, revealed her love...
Sherri Shepherd and Whoopi Goldberg up for Emmy - First Coast News
Whoopi Goldberg and Sherri Shepherd are joining with co-panelists Joy Behar, Elisabeth Hasselbeck and Barbara Walters in a joint nomination for best host at this year's Daytime Emmys. They are competing against Rachel Ray, Ellen DeGeneres and "Live!...
Whoopi Goldberg and the Separate Reality - Big Hollywood
Thus the Separate Realities, as exemplified by this exchange between Whoopi Goldberg and Bill O'Reilly: GOLDBERG: I'm still not a fan of the war in Iraq. I think we went in under misguided ideals and with no real way to get out....

Whoopi Goldberg

Whoopi Goldberg at a NYC No on Proposition 8 Rally.jpg

Whoopi Goldberg (born November 13, 1955) is an American actress, comedian, singer-songwriter and media personality. She is one of only a handful of people who have won Academy, Emmy, Grammy, and Tony Awards. In 1990, for her performance in the film Ghost, she became the second African American female, after Hattie McDaniel, to win an Academy Award. She has also won two Golden Globes and two Saturn Awards.

Goldberg was born Caryn Elaine Johnson in New York City and raised in Manhattan's Chelsea neighborhood, the daughter of Emma (née Harris), a nurse and teacher, and Robert James Johnson, a clergyman. Goldberg's mother was a "stern, strong, and wise woman" who raised her as a single mother after Goldberg's father had left the family. Her stage name was taken from whoopee cushion, which she initially used as her stage name; she stated that "If you get a little gassy, you've got to let it go. So people used to say to me, 'You're like a whoopee cushion.' And that's where the name came from." She chose the surname "Goldberg" after Jewish ancestors of hers who bore the surname, having said that "Goldberg's a part of my family somewhere." In 1991, she referred to herself as a "Jewish-Catholic girl from New York"; she has also stated that her mother is Jewish and referred to herself as a "Jewish-American Princess". A DNA test, broadcast in the 2006 PBS documentary African American Lives, traced most of her ancestry to the Papel and Bayote people of modern-day Guinea-Bissau. Her racial admixture test revealed her genetic makeup to be 92 percent sub-Saharan African and 8 percent European.

In an anecdote told by Nichelle Nichols in the documentary film Trekkies, a young Goldberg was watching Star Trek, and upon seeing Nichols' character Uhura, exclaimed, "Momma! There's a black lady on TV and she ain't no maid!" This spawned life-long fandom of Star Trek for Goldberg, who would eventually achieve a recurring guest-starring role in 1987's Star Trek: The Next Generation.

Goldberg's on-screen talent first emerged in 1981-82 in Citizen: I'm Not Losing My Mind, I'm Giving It Away, an avant-garde ensemble feature by San Francisco filmmaker William Farley. Goldberg created The Spook Show, a one-woman show devised of different character monologues, in 1983. Director Mike Nichols was instantly impressed and offered to bring the show to Broadway. The self-titled show ran from October 24, 1984 to March 10, 1985 for a total of 156 sold-out performances. While on Broadway, Goldberg's performance caught the eye of director Steven Spielberg. He was about to direct the film The Color Purple, based on Pulitzer Prize-winning novel by Alice Walker. Having read the novel, she was ecstatic at being offered a lead role in her first motion picture. Goldberg received compliments on her acting from Spielberg, Walker, and music consultant Quincy Jones. The Color Purple was released in late 1985, and was a critical and commercial success. It was later nominated for 11 Academy Awards including a nomination for Goldberg as Best Actress. The movie did not win any of its Academy Award nominations, but Goldberg won the Golden Globe Award.

Goldberg starred in Penny Marshall's directorial debut, 1986 Jumpin' Jack Flash, and began a relationship with David Claessen, a director of photography on the set, and the couple married later that year. The movie was a success, and during the next two years, three additional motion pictures featured Goldberg, Burglar, Fatal Beauty, and The Telephone. Though not as successful as her prior motion pictures, Goldberg still garnered awards from the N.A.A.C.P. Image Awards. Claessen and Goldberg divorced after the box office failure of The Telephone, which Goldberg was under contract to star in. She tried to sue the producers, but with no luck. The 1988 movie, Clara's Heart, was critically acclaimed, and featured a young Neil Patrick Harris. As the 1980s concluded, she participated in the numerous HBO specials of Comic Relief with fellow comedians Robin Williams and Billy Crystal.

In January 1990, Goldberg starred with Jean Stapleton in the TV situation comedy Bagdad Café. The show ran for two seasons on CBS. Simultaneously, Goldberg starred in The Long Walk Home, portraying a woman in the Civil Rights Movement. She played a psychic in the 1990 film Ghost, and became the first African-American female to win the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress in nearly 50 years. Premiere Magazine named her character, Oda Mae Brown, the 95th best movie character of all time.

Goldberg starred in Soapdish and had a recurring role on Star Trek: The Next Generation as Guinan which she would reprise in two Star Trek movies. On May 29, 1992, Sister Act was released. The motion pictured grossed well over US$100 million and Goldberg was nominated for a Golden Globe. Next, she starred in Sarafina!. During the next year, she hosted a late-night talk show, The Whoopi Goldberg Show and starred in two more motion pictures Made in America and Sister Act 2: Back in the Habit. From 1994 to 1995, Whoopi appeared in Corrina, Corrina, The Lion King (voice), The Pagemaster (voice), Boys on the Side, and Moonlight and Valentino. Goldberg became the first African-American female to host the Academy Awards in 1994. She hosted the Awards again in 1996, 1999, and 2002. Goldberg released four motion pictures in 1996: Bogus (with Gerard Depardieu and Haley Joel Osment), Eddie, The Associate (with Dianne Wiest) and Ghosts of Mississippi (with Alec Baldwin and James Woods). During the filming of Eddie, Goldberg began dating co-star Frank Langella, a relationship which lasted until early 2000. Goldberg wrote Book in October 1997, a collection featuring insights and opinions. In November and December 2005, Goldberg revived her one-woman show on Broadway at the Lyceum Theatre in honor of its 20th anniversary.

From 1998 to 2001, Goldberg took supporting roles in the Angela Bassett vehicle How Stella Got Her Groove Back and Kingdom Come. She starred in the successful ABC-TV versions of Cinderella, A Knight in Camelot, and the TNT Original Movie, Call Me Claus. In 1998, she gained a new audience when she became the "Center Square" on Hollywood Squares, hosted by Tom Bergeron. She also served as Executive Producer, for which she was nominated for 4 Emmys. She left the show in 2002, and the "Center Square" was filled in with celebrities for the last two on-air seasons without Goldberg. In 2003, Goldberg returned to television, starring in the NBC comedy, Whoopi, which was cancelled after one season. On her 48th birthday, Goldberg was honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. During the next two years, she became a spokeswoman for Slim Fast and produced two television sitcoms: Lifetime's original drama Strong Medicine that ran for six seasons and Whoopi's Littleburg, a Nickelodeon show for younger children. Goldberg made guest appearances on the Hit CW Network comedy, Everybody Hates Chris, as an elderly character named Louise Clarkson. She produced the Noggin sitcom Just For Kicks, in early 2006. She was a guest at Elton John's 60th birthday bash and concert at Madison Square Garden on March 25, 2007.

Goldberg has recently announced her retirement from acting. She said in interviews that she wants to focus on The View and her broadcasting career.

On September 4, 2007, Goldberg became the new moderator and co-host of The View, replacing Rosie O'Donnell. O'Donnell stated on her official blog that she wanted Goldberg to be moderator. Goldberg's debut as moderator drew 3.4 million viewers, 1 million fewer than O'Donnell's debut ratings. After two weeks, however, The View was averaging 3.5 million total viewers under Goldberg, a 7% increase from 3.3 million under O'Donnell the previous season.

Some defended Goldberg, including her co-host Elisabeth Hasselbeck, saying that her comments were taken out of context by the press, because she repeated several times that she did not condone what Vick did.

Goldberg performed the role of Califia, the radiant Queen of California, for a theater presentation called Golden Dreams at Disney's California Adventure, the second gate at the Disneyland Resort, in 2000. The show, which explains the history of the Golden State (California), opened on February 8, 2001, with the rest of the park. Golden Dreams closed in September 2008 to make way for the upcoming Little Mermaid ride planned for DCA.

Goldberg hosted the 2001 documentary short, The Making Of A Charlie Brown Christmas. In July 2006, Goldberg became the main host of the Universal Studios Hollywood Backlot Tour, in which she appears multiple times in video clips shown to the guests on monitors placed on the trams.

Goldberg made a guest appearance on the hit television show 30 Rock, in which she played herself. She is shown as endorsing her own workout video.

From August 2006 to March 2008, Goldberg hosted Wake Up With Whoopi, a nationally syndicated morning radio talk and entertainment program.

On July 14, 2008, Goldberg announced on The View that from July 29th to September 7th, she will perform in the Broadway musical Xanadu.

On November 13, 2008, Goldberg's birthday, she announced live on The View that she will be producing, along with Stage Entertainment, the premiere of Sister Act: The Musical at the London Palladium. The show begins on Wednesday, May 6, 2009 with the official press night on June 2, 2009. Casting is to be confirmed.

Since its launch in 2008, Goldberg has been a contributor for wowOwow.com, a new website for women to talk culture, politics and gossip.

Goldberg has also been an advocate for human rights worldwide, moderating a panel at the Alliance of Youth Movements Summit on how social networks can be used to fight violent extremism in 2008 and also moderating a panel at the UN in 2009 on human rights, children and armed conflict, terrorism, human rights and reconciliation.

On December 13, 2008, Goldberg guest starred on The Naked Brothers Band, a Nickelodeon rock-mockumentary television show. It stars real life brothers Nat and Alex Wolff, which is based around their musical talents. The brothers' mother actress Polly Draper—who starred on ABC's Thirtysomething—created, executive produces, head writes and directs the television show. The episode was called Christmas Special that was about Nat's stresses over decreases of X and O's signed on love letters from his girl friend, Rosalina (Allie DiMeco). During a charity event that was hosted by Goldberg, Nat saw Leon Williams (Leon Thomas III) talk about how he sings in the street's for money because he's poor. He also talked about how his family has been in-and-out of shelters and lived without food, but still has hope. It inspired Nat to write the song "Yes We Can" with guest star Natasha Beddingfield, Leon, and the entire Naked Brothers Band. Before the episode premiered, on February 18, 2008 the band performed on The View and the band members—including Draper who was in the audience—were interviewed by Gorldberg and Sherri Shepherd.

Goldberg was involved in controversy in July 2004 when, at a fundraiser for John Kerry at Radio City Music Hall in New York, Goldberg made a sexual joke about President George W. Bush, by waving a bottle of wine, pointing toward her vagina and saying: "We should keep Bush where he belongs, and not in the White House." Slim-Fast, the biggest company in US health shake market, took exception to these comments made by Goldberg and dropped her from their current ad campaign.

As a result of several bad experiences, Goldberg has not flown on an airplane since the mid-late 1990s, instead traveling via a personal bus. She admitted to Jay Leno that it takes 42 hours of non-stop travel to get from New York City to Los Angeles this way.

Goldberg has received two Academy Award nominations, for The Color Purple and Ghost, winning for Ghost. She has received five Daytime Emmy nominations, winning one. She has received five (non-daytime) Emmy nominations. She has received three Golden Globe nominations, winning two. She won a Grammy Award in 1985 and a Tony Award as a producer of the Broadway musical Thoroughly Modern Millie. She has won three People's Choice Awards. In 1999, she received the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation Vanguard Award for her continued work in supporting the gay and lesbian community. She has been nominated for five American Comedy Awards with two wins. In 2001, she won the prestigious Mark Twain Prize for American Humor at the Kennedy Center.

Goldberg is one of few to win an Oscar, a Grammy, a Tony, and an Emmy. She has starred in over 150 films, and during a period in the 1990s, Whoopi was the highest-paid actress of all time. Her humanitarian efforts include working for Comic Relief, recently reuniting with Billy Crystal and Robin Williams for the 20th Anniversary of Comic Relief.

In February 2002, Goldberg sent her Oscar statuette from Ghost to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to be cleaned and replated. During this time, the statuette was taken from its shipping container, and later retrieved by the shipping company, UPS.

To the top



Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress

Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role is one of the Academy Awards of Merit presented annually by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) to recognize an actress who has delivered an outstanding performance while working within the film industry. Since its inception, however, the award has commonly been referred to as the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress. While actresses are nominated for this award by Academy members who are actors and actresses themselves, winners are selected by the entire Academy membership.

Throughout the past 73 years, accounting for ties and repeat winners, AMPAS has presented a total of 73 Best Supporting Actress awards to 71 different actresses. Winners of this Academy Award of Merit currently receive the familiar Oscar statuette, depicting a gold-plated knight holding a crusader's sword and standing on a reel of film. Prior to the 16th Academy Awards ceremony (1943), however, they received a plaque. The first recipient was Gale Sondergaard, who was honored at the 9th Academy Awards ceremony (1936) for her performance in Anthony Adverse. The most recent recipient was Penélope Cruz, who was honored at the 81st Academy Awards ceremony (2008) for her performance in Vicky Cristina Barcelona.

Until the 8th Academy Awards ceremony (1935), nominations for the Best Actress award were intended to include all actresses, whether the performance was in either a leading or supporting role. At the 9th Academy Awards ceremony (1936), however, the Best Supporting Actress category was specifically introduced as a distinct award following complaints that the single Best Actress category necessarily favored leading performers with the most screen time. Nonetheless, May Robson had received a Best Actress nomination (Lady for a Day, 1933) for her performance in a clear supporting role. Currently, Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role, Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role, Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role, and Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role constitute the four Academy Awards of Merit for acting annually presented by AMPAS.

The only actresses to have won the award twice are: Shelley Winters, in 1959 and 1965 (she was also nominated in 1972, in addition to receiving a nomination for lead actress in 1951); and Dianne Wiest, in 1986 and 1994 (she was also nominated in 1989).

Thelma Ritter had six nominations, more than any other actress. As she never won the award, she also holds the record for the number of unsuccessful nominations. Thelma Ritter is also the only actress with nominations in four successive years (1950-1953). Glenn Close was nominated three years consecutively (1982-1984).

Actresses with four nominations are: Ethel Barrymore, Agnes Moorehead, Lee Grant, Maureen Stapleton, Geraldine Page, and Dame Maggie Smith. All of Agnes Moorehead's and Geraldine Page's nominations were unsuccessful (but Page did win a Best Actress award); each of the others won once (with Smith also having previously won a Best Actress award).

Those with three nominations are: Anne Revere, Celeste Holm, Claire Trevor, Angela Lansbury, Shelley Winters, Glenn Close, Diane Ladd, Dianne Wiest, Meryl Streep, Frances McDormand, Cate Blanchett, and Marisa Tomei. Lansbury, Close, Ladd, and McDormand have never won a Best Supporting Actress award (but McDormand did win a Best Actress award).

Hattie McDaniel was the first African American, Miyoshi Umeki the first (and only) Asian, Rita Moreno the first (and only) Puerto Rican and the first Hispanic, Brenda Fricker the first (and only) Irish, Catherine Zeta-Jones the first (and only) Welsh, Cate Blanchett the first (and only) Australian, and Penélope Cruz the first (and only) Spaniard to win Best Supporting Actress.

Only three actresses have received Best Supporting Actress nominations for non-speaking roles: Patty Duke won the award for The Miracle Worker in 1962, Samantha Morton was nominated for Sweet and Lowdown in 1999, and Rinko Kikuchi was nominated for Babel in 2006. Both Morton and Kikuchi performed their roles without speaking a word, while Duke had no dialogue whatsoever other than grunts and screams.

The earliest nominee in this category who is still alive is Olivia de Havilland (1939) followed by Jennifer Jones (1944) and Angela Lansbury (1944). The earliest winner in this category who is still alive is Celeste Holm (1947) followed by Eva Marie Saint (1954).

The only actor to win an Oscar for playing a real-life Oscar winner is Cate Blanchett. She won Best Supporting Actress in 2004 for playing Katharine Hepburn in The Aviator.

There have been no posthumous nominations for this award.

Only three black actresses have won the award: Hattie McDaniel, Whoopi Goldberg and Jennifer Hudson.

Following the Academy's practice, the films below are listed by year of their Los Angeles qualifying run, which is usually (but not always) the film's year of release. For example, the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress of 1999 was announced during the award ceremony held in 2000. Winners are listed first in bold, followed by the other nominees. For a list sorted by actress names, please see List of Best Supporting Actress nominees. For a list sorted by film titles, please see List of Best Supporting Actress nominees (films).

Beginning with the 1943 awards, winners in the supporting acting categories were awarded Oscar statuettes similar to those awarded to winners in all other categories, including the leading acting categories. Prior to this, however, winners in the supporting acting categories were awarded plaques.

As the Academy Awards are based in the United States and are centered on the Hollywood film industry, the majority of Academy Award winners have been Americans. Nonetheless, there is significant international presence at the awards, as evidenced by the following list of winners of the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress.

At the 37th Academy Awards (1964), for the first time in history, all four of the top acting honors were awarded to non-Americans: Rex Harrison, Julie Andrews, Peter Ustinov, and Lila Kedrova. This occurred for the second time at the 80th Academy Awards (2007), when all four acting categories were similarly represented: Daniel Day-Lewis, Marion Cotillard, Javier Bardem, and Tilda Swinton.

To the top



Rosie O'Donnell

Rosie O'Donnell by David Shankbone.jpg

Roseann "Rosie" O'Donnell (born March 21, 1962) is an American television host, stand-up comedian, actress, singer and author. She has also been a magazine editor and continues to be a celebrity blogger, LGBT rights activist, television producer and collaborative partner in the LGBT family vacation company R Family Vacations.

Raised Roman Catholic, O'Donnell lost her mother to cancer as a pre-teen and has consistently stressed values of protecting children and supporting families throughout her career. O'Donnell started her comedy career while still a teenager and her big break was on the talent show Star Search when she was twenty years old. A TV sitcom and a series of movies introduced her to a larger national audience and in 1996 she started hosting The Rosie O'Donnell Show which won multiple Emmy awards.

During her years on The Rosie O'Donnell Show she wrote her first book, a memoir called Find Me and developed a reputation for being "the queen of nice" as well as a reputation for charitable philanthropy. She used the book's $3 million advance to establish her own For All Kids foundation and promoted numerous other charity schemes and projects encouraging other celebrities on her show to also take part. O'Donnell came out stating "I'm a dyke!" two months before finishing her talk show run, saying that her primary reason was to bring attention to gay adoption issues. O'Donnell is a foster—and adoptive—mother. She has since continued to support many LGBT causes and issues.

In 2006 O'Donnell became the new moderator on The View boosting ratings and attracting controversies with her liberal views and strong personality, dominating many of the conversations. She became a polarizing figure to many conservatives and her strong opinions resulted in several notable controversies including an on-air dispute regarding The Bush administration's policies with the war in Iraq resulting in a mutual agreement to cancel her contract. In 2007 O'Donnell also released her second memoir, Celebrity Detox, which focuses on her struggles with fame and her time at The View. She continues to do charity work and remains involved with LGBT and family-related issues.

On October 22, 2008, TV Guide reported that O’Donnell will star in and executive produce a new Lifetime original movie called ‘’America’’, in which she plays the therapist of the title character, a 16-year-old boy in the foster-care system. The film is based on the E.R. Frank book of the same name.

O'Donnell, the third of five children, was born in Bayside, Queens, New York and raised in Commack, Long Island, New York. She is the daughter of Roseann Teresa (née Murtha), a homemaker, and Edward Joseph O'Donnell, an electrical engineer who worked in the defense industry. O'Donnell's father had immigrated from County Donegal, Ireland during his childhood, and her mother was Irish American; O'Donnell was raised Catholic. Four days before her 11th birthday, on March 17, 1973, O'Donnell's mother died of breast cancer.

While she attended Commack High School, O'Donnell was voted homecoming queen, prom queen, senior class president and class clown. It was during high school that she began exploring her interest in comedy, beginning with a skit performed in front of the school in which she imitated Gilda Radner’s character Roseanne Rosannadanna. After graduating in 1980, O'Donnell briefly attended Dickinson College, later transferring to Boston University, before ultimately dropping out of college.

After this success, she moved on to television sitcom comedy, making her series debut as Nell Carter's neighbor on Gimme a Break! in 1986.

In 1988, she transferred to VH1, where she hosted Stand-up Spotlight, a showcase for up-and-coming comedians. In 1992 she starred in Stand By Your Man, a Fox Network sitcom co-starring Melissa Gilbert. The show bombed, just as O'Donnell's movie career took off.

O'Donnell made her feature film debut in A League Of Their Own alongside Tom Hanks and Madonna. Throughout her career, she has taken on an eclectic range of roles: she appeared in Sleepless in Seattle as Meg Ryan's best friend; as Betty Rubble in the live-action film adaptation of The Flintstones with John Goodman; as one of Timothy Hutton's co-stars in Beautiful Girls; as a federal agent comedically paired with Dan Aykroyd in Exit to Eden; as the voice of female gorilla in Disney's Tarzan; and as a baseball-loving nun in M. Night Shyamalan's Wide Awake.

In 1996, she began hosting a daytime talk show, The Rosie O'Donnell Show. The show proved extremely successful, winning multiple Emmy awards, and earning O'Donnell the title of "The Queen of Nice" for her style of light-hearted banter with her guests and interactions with the audience. As part of her playful banter with her studio audience, O'Donnell often launched koosh balls at the crowd and camera. She also professed an infatuation with Tom Cruise.

With New York City as the show's homebase, O'Donnell displayed her love of Broadway musicals and plays by having cast members as guests, encouraging the audience to see shows, premiering production numbers as well as promoting shows with ticket give-aways. After the September 11, 2001 attacks Broadway and tourism in New York City was down and many shows were in danger of closing. O'Donnell was among many in the entertainment field who helped the city rebound by encouraging viewers to visit and support the performing arts. She announced that she would donate $1 million dollars for aid in the rescue efforts and encouraged other celebrities and citizens alike to "give till it hurts".

In 2002, she left her talk show. The show was then replaced by The Caroline Rhea Show, with comedian Caroline Rhea and ran for one additional season.

In May 1999, a month after the Columbine shootings, O'Donnell interviewed actor Tom Selleck, who was promoting a film The Love Letter. After a commercial break, O'Donnell confronted him about his recent commercial for the National Rifle Association (NRA) and challenged him about the NRA's position on the use of assault rifles. According to Selleck, the two had agreed not to discuss the topic prior to his appearance on the show. O'Donnell maintains that Selleck and his publicist had been informed that the topic would be discussed. She said at the end of the segment the conversation had "not gone the way I had hoped" and added "if you feel insulted by my questions, I apologize, because it was not a personal attack. It was meant to bring up the subject as it is in the consciousness of so many today." Around the same time, the cast from Annie Get Your Gun was to appear on the show but refused O'Donnell's request to remove the line "I can shoot a partridge with a single cartridge" from the song "Anything You Can Do" and agreed to perform "My Defenses Are Down" instead.

Later in 1999, O'Donnell discontinued her contract with Kmart as their spokeswoman, as gun enthusiasts complained that she shouldn't be the spokesperson for the largest gun retailer. O'Donnell countered that Kmart sells hunting rifles, not handguns or assault weapons and does so legally which she supports. Both Kmart and O'Donnell denied publicly that Kmart had terminated the contract.

In May 2000, O'Donnell's bodyguard applied for a concealed firearm permit in Connecticut. O'Donnell stated that it was not she who requested the permit, but Kroll, the security firm through which the guard was hired and was contracted by O'Donnell's employer Warner Brothers. Numerous parents of children who attended the same school as O'Donnell's children expressed their concern about the possibility of O'Donnell's bodyguard being armed while on school grounds. O'Donnell confirmed "the guard does not normally have a gun, but is trained in self-defense techniques. And there was never any intention of his carrying a gun at school." O'Donnell added that because of threats, she and her family need protection, which she attributes, ironically, to her "tough gun-control rhetoric".

In May 1996, Warner Books advanced O'Donnell $3 million to write a memoir. She used the money to seed her For All Kids foundation to help institute national standards for day care across the country. Her memoir, Find Me, was released in April 2002 and became the second highest on the New York Times Bestseller List.

In December 2006, at a one-night charity event on the Norwegian Pearl cruiseship, Elizabeth Birch, Executive Director for the Rosie's For All Kids Foundation, confirmed that $50 million from O'Donnell's five-year contract were donated in an irrevocable trust to charity. She is also reported to have contributed several hundred thousand dollars to for rehabilitation therapies for war veterans who have lost limbs in Iraq and Afghanistan wars.

In November 2006 Nightline aired a video report about the opening of The Children's Plaza and Family Center in Renaissance Village, a FEMA trailer park in Louisiana. This was an emergency response initiative of Rosie's For All Kids Foundation with the help of many local nonprofit organizations and for-profit businesses, all efforts were to assist the families displaced by Hurricane Katrina.

In May 2007 O'Donnell and Pogo Games announced a joint-effort to raise money for Rosie's All Kids Foundation. EA, which owns Pogo, committed $30,000 and more money can be raised based on the amount of playing time people spend on certain games. They also held a sweepstakes in which winners get to fly to New York and meet Rosie and attend a charity function as her guest.

In 2003, Rosie and Kelli O'Donnell collaborated with Artistic Director Lori Klinger to create "Rosie's Broadway Kids", dedicated to providing free instruction in music and dance to New York City public schools or students. Rosie's Broadway Kids serves more than 4,500 teachers, students, and their family members at 21 schools. Currently programs are in Harlem, Midtown West, Chelsea, Lower East Side, East Village, and Chinatown. All net profits from O'Donnell's 2007 book Celebrity Detox are also being donated to Rosie's Broadway Kids.

During the summer of 2007 Rosie was a guest on the multi-artist True Colors Tour, which traveled through 15 cities in the United States and Canada. The tour, sponsored by the gay cable channel Logo, began on June 8, 2007. Hosted by comedian Margaret Cho and headlined by Cyndi Lauper, the tour also included Debbie Harry, Erasure, The Gossip, Rufus Wainwright, The Dresden Dolls, The MisShapes, Indigo Girls, The Cliks and other special guests. Profits from the tour helped to benefit the Human Rights Campaign as well as P-FLAG and The Matthew Shepard Foundation.

Rosie appeared again on True Colors Tour 2008.

In 2000, O'Donnell partnered with the publishers of McCall's to revamp the magazine as Rosie's McCall's (or, more commonly, Rosie). The magazine was launched as a competitor to fellow talk show hostess Oprah Winfrey's monthly magazine. Rosie covered issues including breast cancer, foster care and other matters of concern to O'Donnell. In the September 2000 issue she shared that "she has struggled with depression her entire life" and decided to start medications when she realized her fears were affecting her family.

With a strong start and a circulation close to 3.5 million things looked promising but the magazine stumbled as conflicts emerged between O'Donnell and the editors. The contract gave O'Donnell control over editorial process and editorial staff but veto power remained with publisher Gruner+Jahr USA. O'Donnell quit the magazine in September 2002 following a dispute over editorial control. "If I'm going to have my name and my brand on the corner of a magazine, it has to be my vision" she told People. Rosie magazine folded in 2003.

In late 2003, O'Donnell and the publishers each sued the other for breach of contract. The publishers claimed that, by removing herself from the magazine's publication, she was in breach of contract. The trial received considerable press coverage. O'Donnell would often give brief press interviews outside of the courtroom responding to various allegations. Of note was a former magazine colleague and breast cancer survivor who testified that O'Donnell said to her on the phone that people who lie "get sick and they get cancer. If they keep lying, they get it again". O'Donnell apologized the next day and stated "I'm sorry I hurt her the way I did, that was not my intention." The judge ruled against both sides and dismissed the case.

In 2006, O'Donnell responded to a question on the "Ask Ro" section of her website in which she stated that she would love to do another magazine. In addition, O'Donnell has written a new book, Celebrity Detox, which was released on October 9, 2007.

In 2002, O'Donnell wrote Find Me, a combination of memoir, mystery and detective story with an underlying interest in re-uniting birth mothers with their children. In addition to cataloging her childhood and early adulthood, the book delved into O'Donnell's relationship with a woman with multiple personality disorder who posed as an under-aged teen who had become pregnant by rape. The book reached number two on the New York Times bestseller list.

On October 9, 2007, O'Donnell released Celebrity Detox, her second memoir which focuses on the struggles with leaving fame behind, noting her exits from The Rosie O'Donnell Show and The View.

In her January 31, 2002, appearance on the sitcom Will & Grace, she played a lesbian mom. A month later as part of her act at the Ovarian Cancer Research benefit at Caroline's Comedy Club O'Donnell came out as a lesbian, announcing "I'm a dyke!" "I don't know why people make such a big deal about the gay thing. ... People are confused, they're shocked, like this is a big revelation to somebody." The announcement came two months before the end of the hosting of her talk show.

Although she also cited the need to put a face to gays and lesbians her primary reason was to bring attention to the gay adoption issue. O'Donnell is a foster and adoptive mother. She protested against adoption agencies, particularly in Florida, that refused adoptive rights to gay and lesbian parents.

Diane Sawyer interviewed O'Donnell in a March 14, 2002, episode of PrimeTime Thursday, telling USA Today she chose to talk to Sawyer because she wanted an investigative piece on Florida's ban on gay adoption. She told Sawyer if that was done, "I would like to talk about my life and how (the case) pertains to me." She spoke about the two gay men in Florida who face having a foster child they raised removed from their home. State law won't let them adopt because Florida bans gay or bisexual people from adopting.

After leaving her show and coming out, O'Donnell returned to stand-up comedy, and cut her hair. O'Donnell told the press that her haircut was meant to mimic the haircut of former Culture Club backup singer Helen Terry. She subsequently attributed the haircut as a way to emulate Boy George, in hopes that he would allow her to produce his stage show Taboo. O'Donnell did invest in and produce the show, but it was an expensive failure on Broadway.

On February 26, 2004, O'Donnell married Kelli Carpenter, a former Nickelodeon marketing executive, in San Francisco two weeks after SF's Mayor Gavin Newsom authorized the granting of marriage licenses to same-sex couples. Her decision to go to San Francisco to marry Carpenter was seen as a show of defiance against then-President George W. Bush over his support for the Federal Marriage Amendment.

The couple were married by San Francisco Treasurer Susan Leal, one of the city's highest ranking lesbian officials and they were serenaded by the San Francisco Gay Men's Chorus. On ABC's "Good Morning America," O'Donnell said during the trial over Rosie magazine she had decided to marry Carpenter, in part because even though they acted as spouses they legally were no closer than friends.

The couple are parents to adopted children Parker Jaren (born 1995), Chelsea Belle (born 1997), and Blake Christopher (born 1999). Their fourth child, Vivienne Rose (who was conceived through artificial insemination), was born in 2002 to Carpenter. In 2000 the family took in a foster child Mia (born in 1997), and announced intentions to adopt her. In 2001 the state of Florida removed Mia from their home, and Rosie has since worked extensively to bring an end to the Florida law prohibiting same-sex family adoption.

Rosie and her family currently reside in Nyack, New York, a suburb of New York City that is located in Rockland County and in Miami's Star Island. O'Donnell's brother Daniel, who is also gay, represents the Upper West Side of Manhattan as a member of the New York State Assembly. O'Donnell and fellow actress Bridget Moynahan are 3rd cousins.

In 2008, The View won an Emmy for "Outstanding Special Class Writing" for a specially-themed Autism episode broadcast when O'Donnell was co-host. Janette Barber, O'Donnell's longtime friend and producer/writer of the Rosie O'Donnell Show, accepted the award on behalf of herself and the other two winners, Christian McKiernan and Andrew Smith.

On The View O'Donnell joked about communion rituals alongside co-host Behar's drunk priest comments. On 2 October 2006 she compared the Republican Party cover-up of the Mark Foley scandal to the cover-up of child sexual abuse by Catholic Church officials who actively concealed perpetrators by moving them from parish to parish as detailed in Amy Berg's award-winning film about the abuse within the Catholic Church. O'Donnell said "the most interesting thing about Deliver Us from Evil (is) that the person who was in charge of investigating all the allegations of pedophilia in the Catholic Church from the 1980s until just recently was guess who? The current Pope." Although Joseph Ratzinger (now Pope Benedict XVI) was the Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith from November 1981 to April 2005, responsibility to investigate sexual abuse of minors by priests only started in 2001 and he has denounced the abuse.

On April 19, 2007 the all-woman panel on The View discussed the Supreme Court of the United States ruling on Gonzales v. Carhart decision upholding the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act. O'Donnell cited a Gloria Steinem quote, "If men could get pregnant abortion would be a sacrament" and asked rhetorically "How many Supreme Court judges are Catholic?" and "ow about separation of church and state?" Some conservatives called her statements "anti-Catholic bigotry" and suggested that such statements against other religions would not be tolerated.

Conservative commentators responded by claiming O'Donnell was comparing American soldiers to terrorists. On May 23, 2007, a heated discussion ensued, in part, because of what O'Donnell perceived as Elisabeth Hasselbeck's unwillingness to defend O'Donnell as not against the troops with O'Donnell asking her "Do you believe I think our troops are terrorists?" Hasselbeck answered in the negative but also stated "Defend your own insinuations." O'Donnell stated that Republican pundits were mischaracterising her statements and the right-wing media would portray her as a bully attacking "innocent pure Christian Elisabeth" whenever they disagreed. Despite repeated attempts by their co-hosts to change the topic or cut to a commercial break, O'Donnell and Hasselbeck continued their debate.

According to ABC News, O'Donnell said that she knew her time on the show was over when she saw the exchange reported in the news media with the split screen effect showing her and Hasselbeck on either side. O'Donnell and ABC agreed to cut short her contract agreement on May 25, 2007, as a result of this issue. ABC News reported that her arguments with Hasselbeck brought the show its best ratings ever.

On April 25, 2007, O'Donnell announced she would be leaving the show as a co-host when her contract expired because the network could not come to terms on the length of a new contract, but that she planned to return as an occasional correspondent. On the April 30, 2007, show Walters announced that O'Donnell would be listed by Time magazine as one of their 100 most influential people. On May 25, 2007, it was announced by ABC and O'Donnell that she would not stay until the end of her contract (which was supposed to end on June 21, 2007). On September 4, 2007, Whoopi Goldberg replaced O'Donnell as moderator.

In March 2007, O'Donnell started a video blog, Jahero, on her website Rosie.com answering fans questions, giving behind the scenes information and serving as a video diary. Originally featuring only O'Donnell and her hair and make-up artist Helene Macaulay they were soon joined by her writer from The Rosie O'Donnell Show, Janette Barber. Called Jahero, which has each of their first name's letters in it, they occasionally had short cameo appearances by View co-hosts Joy Behar, Elisabeth Hasselbeck, and Barbara Walters. Jenny McCarthy appeared once briefly, as has Hasselbeck's mother-in-law and O'Donnell's mother-in-law, her life-partner Kelli's mother. Kathy Griffin also appeared, where she read some of the questions. It became so popular that O'Donnell and her creative team considered an "on the road" version of the video blog utilizing fan-submitted suggestions. O'Donnell was the front runner for the "best celebrity blogger" category in the 2007 Blogger's Choice Awards.

O'Donnell had expressed an interest in replacing Bob Barker as the host of CBS's long-running game show The Price Is Right. Barker was a frequent guest on her talk show and told reporters that she "would make a fine host." Although it was reported he had "endorsed" her as a possible successor" Barker said that he had no role in choosing his replacement. On June 24, 2007 she announced on her blog it was not going to happen, implying the decision was hers and was based on her reluctance to uproot her family and move to California. Drew Carey was eventually chosen as the replacement host.

To the top



The View

The View Title Card.jpg

The View is an Emmy Award-winning American talk show created by Barbara Walters and Bill Geddie and broadcast on ABC as part of ABC Daytime. It features a panel of women as co-hosts: currently, Whoopi Goldberg moderates discussions and is joined by Joy Behar, Elisabeth Hasselbeck, Sherri Shepherd and Barbara Walters, who also serves as the show's executive producer along with her business partner Bill Geddie.

The View format has been replicated around the world, most notably in the UK with ITV's Loose Women.

The View premiered August 11, 1997 replacing Caryl & Marilyn: Real Friends, which was dropped due to low ratings. The original set was a leftover set from a cancelled soap opera, The City; ABC introduced a new set for The View for its fifth season, located within ABC Television Studios in New York City.

The idea of women talking to one another on daytime television is not exactly radical. The idea that those women should be smart and accomplished is still odd enough to make The View seem wildly different. It actively defies the bubbleheads-'R'-us approach to women's talk shows....

The View has caught on with viewers because it gives expression to feelings more complicated, and real, than its detractors realize. Like the Rat Pack, it's all about freedom in an uptight world. Vieira, Walters, et al., have confessed to a lot of things on the show that women are supposed to feel guilty about: forgetting to vote, being too lazy to exercise, hating skinny models, letting the kids watch too much TV, admiring Hollywood's latest hunk. And, apparently, they don't care what people think. Look, I'm not holding them up as role models. And I'm not saying they're representative of the death of feminism, or the rebirth of feminism, or anything like that. I just like the way they don't give a damn. If the Rat Pack was Everyman's id, The View is Everywoman's.

Behar has since become a full-time co-host.

Mostly five women discuss current issues and news items ranging from social and political issues to tabloid headlines and celebrity news. News journalist Barbara Walters has been the permanent host of the show, while four co-hosts support her. Walters, "a co-owner (with ABC) and co-executive producer" of the show, likely has final decisions as to the casting of her co-hosts.

The View has had ten co-hosts in its twelve year run. Barbara Walters and Joy Behar are the only original co-hosts that are still on the program. Walters appears, on average, three days a week. Sometimes guest co-hosts fill-in to ensure there are always four or five people discussing issues.

For the first couple of years of its existence, the series remained rather controversy-free save for criticism given towards Debbie Matenopoulos, a panelist who was spoofed mercilessly by the critics, who felt that Matenopoulos did not have the proper news credentials for the show. She was ultimately let go in 1999, when her contract was not renewed. Following Matenopoulos' departure, Lisa Ling was announced as the new co-host beating out Rachel Campos-Duffy and Lauren Sanchez who competed in an on-air try-out to fill the vacated seat.

Ling departed in 2002 to host National Geographic Explorer. Former Survivor contestant Elisabeth Hasselbeck replaced Ling in 2003 after Hasselbeck, Rachel Campos-Duffy and Erin Hershey Presley were the finalists in a competition that ended with each of the three getting a week-long on-air tryout.

The View experienced several host changes through the end of season 9 and the start of season 10.

Meredith Vieira announced on April 6, 2006 that she was leaving the show to become co-host of NBC's The Today Show, which Barbara Walters co-hosted in the 1960s and 1970s, first with Hugh Downs, then with Frank McGee, and later Jim Hartz, replacing Katie Couric (who had just announced she was leaving Today to anchor the CBS Evening News). On April 28, 2006 an announcement was made at the 33rd Daytime Emmy Awards that former talk show host Rosie O'Donnell would be joining the show at the start of the tenth season in September 2006.

The announcement about O'Donnell fueled speculation that Jones would also leave the show. One reason for this speculation was a dispute regarding O'Donnell's public remarks about Jones' dramatic weight loss. Jones publicly stated that her weight loss was a result of diet and exercise, but O'Donnell disputed that saying it was the result of gastric bypass surgery). In a 2007 issue of Glamour magazine, Jones revealed that she had, in fact, undergone gastric bypass surgery in August 2003, leading to her dramatic weight loss over the next four years.

Following Jones' departure, the show used guest co-hosts to fill her spot. Various media outlets reported that television personality Gayle King and actress Sheryl Lee Ralph were both interested in the job. Jones eventually landed a job with AOL as an "AOL Coach" and subsequently negotiated a deal with Court TV to host her own one-hour talk show, Star Jones which premiered on August 20, 2007. This show lasted less than six months before being canceled, due to a combination of low ratings and the channel's rebranding to truTV and a shift away from a focus on courtroom trial coverage and discussion programming.

In September 2006 Rosie O'Donnell made her debut as the new co-host, and moderator of the show. With the new changes in place, including a new set design and new table, September 2006 brought in record ratings. A total of 3.1 million viewers watched that month, the highest total viewership the program has ever seen. The talk show also surged 34% in the advertiser-friendly "women aged 18-49" demographic, and sustained its early season success with its best ever November sweeps period. Entertainment Weekly magazine in March 2007 cited The View as doing for daytime TV what the Daily Show has done for nighttime TV in that it offers viewers a show that deals in genuine opinion and not mere fluff.

During season 10, O'Donnell led the daytime women's chatfest as the moderator steering the opening "Hot Topics" portion of the show. Unlike previous seasons, however, politics and taboo subjects were readily explored with the two comics (O'Donnell and Joy Behar) quickly finding humor in the news of the day and often giving strong opinions against then-President George W. Bush's policies including the war in Iraq which was losing support amongst Americans. As a counterpoint to O'Donnell's more liberal views, conservative co-host Elisabeth Hasselbeck would often support the Bush Administration's views and the two would get into an adversarial give-and-take at least until both had made their points.

Always outspoken, O'Donnell sometimes crossed a line with certain audiences when the comedian would talk politics or veer into religious discussions, at one time stating "radical Christianity is just as threatening as radical Islam". Often clips from the show would be recirculated by other media outlets, often surprising The View co-hosts. In reaction, O'Donnell lamented that news outlets were focusing on less important subjects like her comments instead of more important issues.

The View achieved higher ratings with Rosie O'Donnell's outspoken and candid nature moving the show into a newsworthy spectrum from traditional daytime talk fare. She was sometimes criticized for not acting as much as a moderator for discussion as much as a spokesperson for various, often liberal, viewpoints. As a big-name talent she drew criticism for her opinions while keeping the show's "buzz factor" up. The downside of being spontaneous and putting her views in front of a national audience was that such remarks were often the subject of controversy and criticism, especially by conservative commentators and other media outlets, who recirculated comments and clips from the show. It is unclear if O'Donnell's viewpoints were calculated to attract viewers but the show has continued to address more substantive subjects even after her departure.

On April 25, 2007 O'Donnell announced she would be leaving the show as a co-host when her contract expired because the network could not come to terms on the length of a new contract. She did, however, say that she planned to return as an occasional correspondent.

O'Donnell has been outspoken about her condemnation of many Bush administration policies including the entire Iraq War. She consistently brought up recent military deaths and news about the war, and criticized the US media for its lack of coverage on the Bush administration's actions and policies. On May 17, 2007 O'Donnell rhetorically asked, "655,000 Iraqi civilians dead. Who are the terrorists? f you were in Iraq and another country, the United States, the richest in the world, invaded your country and killed 655,000 of your citizens, what would you call us?" Conservative commentators claimed O'Donnell paralleled American soldiers to terrorists. On May 23, 2007 a heated discussion ensued because of what O'Donnell perceived as a lack of willingness of conservative co-host Elisabeth Hasselbeck to defend O'Donnell's right to disagree with invading Iraq and the resulting military occupation. O'Donnell also stated the right-wing media would portray her as a bully attacking "innocent pure Christian Elisabeth" whenever they disagreed and she believed Republican pundits were mischaracterizing her statements. The debate became more heated when co-host Joy Behar and guest host Sherri Shepherd made joking attempts to end the discussion. The incident was widely covered in mainstream media including a split-screen shot of O'Donnell and Hasselbeck arguing. The following day Kathy Griffin sat in for O'Donnell who was celebrating her partner Kelli's birthday. The day after that ABC announced that O'Donnell had asked to be let out of her contract nearly a month before its expiration and was given permission to leave immediately. ABC News reported that her arguments with Hasselbeck brought the show its best ratings ever. According to ABC News, O'Donnell said that she knew her time on the show was over when she saw the exchange reported in the news media with the split screen effect showing her and Hasselbeck on either side. O'Donnell has stated she bore no ill will towards Hasselbeck and she loves all the co-hosts. In Jahero, O'Donnell later stated she had not talked to Hasselbeck but was "stunned" Hasselbeck subsequently brought up Donald Trump, with whom O'Donnell had publicly feuded. While the number of viewers was higher than the year before O'Donnell joined the show, in the month following her departure, viewership was down by an average of 232,000.

Prior to the official announcement that Goldberg would be joining the program, various media outlets reported that both Goldberg and Sherri Shepherd would be added to the panel. In Touch magazine reported that a deal for Shepherd to join The View fell through after negotiations went awry over a salary dispute. Along with Shepherd, The View was reportedly also in talks with radio personality Jacque Reid and comedian Kathy Griffin to join the show. ABC offered the job to Kathy Griffin when negotiations with Shepherd fell through. Griffin didn't accept the offer because the salary was too low. The View ended up picking Sherri Shepherd to be the new co-host.

The View returned for its eleventh season on September 4, 2007 with celebrity guest Danny DeVito. Returning from season 10 were Joy Behar, Elisabeth Hasselbeck, and Barbara Walters. The season premiere also marked Whoopi Goldberg's first official day as co-host and moderator of the program. Preliminary ratings show that 3.4 million people watched the debut episode, roughly 1 million less than season 10's debut with O'Donnell, but still ranking as the show's second highest season premiere.

Walters announced on September 10 that Sherri Shepherd was joining the panel as the fifth permanent member. This marks the first time since Meredith Vieira left in 2006 that the show features a complete panel of five co-hosts (although Hasselbeck began an extended maternity leave in November). It also marks the first time in the show's history that two African-American co-hosts are part of the same panel. With the addition of Goldberg and Shepherd, The View has garnered its highest ratings ever. After two weeks, The View under Goldberg is averaging 3.5 million total viewers, a 7% increase from 3.3 million under O'Donnell last season.

In addition to two new co-hosts, the show's set underwent a transformation from blue to orange, Behar returned to the 2nd position seat (next to the moderator), and the format of full-hour Hot Topics was introduced allowing more in-depth conversations and debates. Other changes and additions included a week of episodes from Las Vegas (the show's first time in the location), an episode with limited commercial breaks (sponsored by T-Mobile), and various segments pertaining to changes in Whoopi's life (quitting smoking, losing weight, and rehearsing for her role in Xanadu (musical) to name a few).

On 16 October 2007 it was announced that Elisabeth Hasselbeck would begin her maternity leave as of October 23, 2007. Hasselbeck returned to the show when the show returned from Christmas hiatus on January 7, 2008. While Hasselbeck was on maternity leave her seat was filled by a rotating guest cast. An article in the Boston Globe a week later stated: "When Elisabeth Hasselbeck bade farewell to her cohosts on "The View" Tuesday, it was all hugs, well-wishes, and baby-product endorsements. But as Hasselbeck begins her 2 1/2-month maternity leave, the political landscape is shifting, as well. America's most dangerous conservative - or so some liberals see it - is leaving TV for a while." It went on to say: "Hasselbeck, the apple-cheeked blonde with the football-player husband, consistently draws a brand of hatred from the left that Hillary Clinton generates from the right; "screechmonger" is one of the more printable slurs hurled at her from the blogosphere. Barry Manilow has called her "offensive" however it's interesting that an America's sweetheart-type would generate such vitriol says a lot about the state of debate in a polarized country.".

For the week of June 23, 2008 (June 23-27), The View was live from Caesar's Palace in Las Vegas with guest including Bette Midler, Kim Kardashian, Khloe Kardashian, Kourtney Kardashian, David Cook, David Archuleta, Wayne Brady, Penn and Teller, Jessica Simpson, Danny Gans, Rita Rudner, and Cirque du Soleil. The show was shot in front of Caesar's Palace with heavy promotion of Midler's The Showgirl Must Go On which is performed in the Coliseum, the hotel's theater.

Goldberg's comments also were denounced by Wayne Pacelle, president of the Humane Society of the United States, who noted that dogfighting is outlawed in all 50 states and is considered a felony in all but two: Idaho and Wyoming.

Goldberg defended herself the following day by explaining she was attempting to explain Vick's actions from a cultural view but was in no way condoning or excusing his actions.

On the September 25, 2007 show, Goldberg criticized two ABC news anchors for the manner in which they reported the death of French mime Marcel Marceau on World News Now, the network's overnight newscast. Describing Marceau as "the greatest mime of his time" and a "huge influence" on how she performs, Goldberg said she was moved to speak out on Taina Hernandez and Ryan Owens presentation of Marceau's death as "disrespectful" and "poorly handled by the two anchors". "If you are a news person and you don't understand the person you are talking about, don't make fun of them," Goldberg added.

Almost a year later, Hasselbeck sits next to co-host Sherri Shepherd who shared in July 2008 that she had several abortions, as a form of birth control, in her promiscuous youth.

Prompted by Jesse Jackson, and his use of nigger before an interview on Fox and Friends, the panel got into a discussion about its use and history. Goldberg and Sheppard explained that it's a word "that has meaning when you give it meaning" and that "we use it the way we wanna use it," emphasizing its acceptance within the black community. Saying they had reappropriated the word and, in part, re-purposed its usage. Hasselbeck asked how could she tell her child that she can not say it, but "Billy, the African-American child," can. Hasselbeck voiced frustration about its use in pop culture and how its negative past only encourages division. "How are we supposed to then move forward when we keep using terms that bring back that pain," said Hasselbeck, tearfully, following Goldberg's statement that "we don't live in the same world." Later that week Behar hosted Larry King Live and moderated a debate about the segment on The View. Fran Drescher was a guest and said she found Hasselbeck's crying awkward and didn't understand what made her so upset. Hasselbeck called into the program and expressed her disappointment, on air, to Dreschers' remarks.

The View returned from summer hiatus on September 2 with the 'Hot Topics' section covering items from the past few months and a performance from New Kids on the Block. For the week of March 9-13, 2009, the show is broadcasted from the Walt Disney Studios in Burbank, California, a first for the show.

The View has consistently covered events related to the 2008 United States presidential election with attention towards the issues affecting women in particular and more broadly, the United States. They closely followed Senator Hillary Clinton's campaign in the 2008 Democratic presidential nomination race. Clinton won more primaries and delegates than any other female candidate in American history, but after a long campaign, Senator Barack Obama became the party's presumptive nominee in June 2008 and Clinton endorsed him. Likewise attention was focussed when Senator John McCain chose Sarah Palin as his Republican vice-presidential running mate in August 2008. Palin is the first female vice presidential pick on a major party ticket since Geraldine Ferraro in 1984, and the first in the history of the Republican Party. Since Palin was largely unknown outside of Alaska prior to her selection by McCain, her personal life, political positions, public image and reception all became the focus of intense media attention and scrutiny.

Several of the discussions on The View became heated and many were also subsequently reported in other major media outlets. Political comedian Bill Maher's September visit made Elizabeth Hasslebeck visibly uncomfortable with his disparaging comments about Palin and his agnostic views which is counter to Hasslebeck's conservative Christian beliefs. He was also promoting his upcoming film Religulous which is a satirical documentary that questions the concept of religion and the perceived problems it brings about.

In another discussion, Palin's comments regarding the age of Senator Joe Biden, the Democratic running mate of Obama, prompted Barbara Walters to ask Hasselbeck about Palin's experience and therefore qualification to run the United States. The back and forth ended when they went to commercial break but other media outlets tied the tension to reported rumors that Hasslebeck would be leaving for Fox News and former View auditioner Rachel Campos-Duffy had been contacted about returning as a guest co-host.

Hasselbeck, due to her continual advocacy for the Bush Administration, McCain and Palin, became a formal part of the election. CNN noted the tension between Hasselbeck and the other hosts as arguments that escalated after the "hard-hitting" interview they did with McCain. Hasselbeck designed and wore a pro-McCain ("Great AmeriCain Hero") t-shirt which caused the show to field a large number of complaints. The following day Walters noted that it was a political advertisement and not appropriate after the "Hot Topics" segment had finished. Hasselbeck's design was later given to raise funds at McCain's election website. Hasselbeck was noted as the celebrity designer for McCain in contrast to Beyoncé and Tina Knowles (House of Deréon) for the Obama campaign. Another clothing issue, in regards to Palin, was being discussed at the same time. A financial disclosure report showed that US$150,000 had been spent on Palin's wardrobe, hair and makeup as well as clothing and accessories for her family. This was held in contrast with Palin's hockey mom rhetoric. Palin's campaign invited, and Hasselbeck agreed, to introduce Palin at several Florida stops. Hasselbeck used the opportunity to take "a stab at her co-hosts" noting she could speak without being interrupted; she also asserted that focusing on Palin's wardrobe was sexist. Media critics have discounted the sexist concerns noting that similar issues with male candidates have also been extensively covered. Campaign developments and footage of Hasselbeck on the campaign trail were routinely covered by the show.

The day after the election, November 5, was the highest rated show in The View history. The panel discussed election results including state-level initiatives and elections. Same-sex marriage issues became a source of heated exchange, likely reflecting cultural and religious viewpoints of the co-hosts. They are somewhat split in the views with two on either side of the issue and Barbara Walters maintaining journalistic neutrality. California's Proposition 8, which would change that state's Constitution to deny marriage rights to any LGBT couples who are not defined as "a man and a woman", passed by a slight majority. The Proposition was the most expensive one in U.S. history with each side spending in excess of $35 million for campaigning. California had recently allowed same-sex marriage and within six months 18,000 couples had wed. After the election, non-heterosexual marriages were immediately halted, efforts to legally challenge the proposition started and nationwide protests against the propositions passage took place. Exit polls showed that black voters sided in favor of the measure by a ratio of more than two to one with black turnout, spurred by Barack Obama's campaign for president, unusually large, making up roughly 10% of the voters. Polls also showed that regular churchgoers sided in favor of the measure by a ratio of more than four to one, and made up nearly one-quarter of the voters. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, which is based in Utah, was noted for protests of its strong support both financially and in volunteers for its participation. The co-hosts had differing views on the issues and outcomes of the election, as well as the protests and legal issues resulting from the election. Hasselbeck and Shepherd both support the proposition, with Shepherd stating she defends a Biblical definition of marriage, although she was unable to explain what that entailed. Behar and Goldberg both opposed the proposition, with Goldberg correcting some misinformation from Hasselbeck and Shepherd; Goldberg also took part in New York City's protest against the proposition's passage. The continued unfolding events surrounding the legality of the measure and protests have remained a subject of many "Hot Topics" discussions and regularly brought up in interviews.

From the week of March 9 - March 13, 2009 The View broadcasted live from the Walt Disney Studios in Burbank, California. The View has guests such as Lady Ga Ga, Miley Cyrus, Bob Iger, John Lasseter, Jay Leno, Jimmy Kimmel, Keyshia Cole, Heidi Montag, Spencer Pratt, Calista Flockhart, Sally Field, Patrick Dempsey, Jewel, the cast ofDancing with the Stars and Doug Savant. Each day the hosts were escorted by a different disney chracter including Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse, Goofy, Donald Duck, Cinderella, and Wall-E.

For the week ending February 2, 2009, Nielsen Media Research reported the key demographic of women ages 18-34 and ages 18-49 favored the show. The View was tied with General Hospital for the top spot for both groups. For the fourth week running, The View was the daytime’s third highest rated show with 4.42 million total viewers for the 18-34 group. ABC Daytime shows, four soap operas and The View, were the top five shows for 18-49 women television watchers.

The View's longtime director Mark Gentile received a Daytime Emmy Award in its first year and again in 2004. The show's producers shared the "Outstanding Talk Show" Emmy in 2003 with The Wayne Brady Show. In 2008, The View won an Emmy for "Outstanding Special Class Writing" for a specially-themed Autism episode broadcast when Rosie O'Donnell was co-host. Janette Barber, Rosie O'Donnell's longtime friend and producer/writer of the Rosie O'Donnell Show, accepted the award on behalf of herself and the other two winners, Christian McKiernan and Andrew Smith.

Since 1999, the show's hosts have received Emmy nominations every year, although they have not won.

Since the show's premiere, The View has been the subject of numerous parodies. One such was a recurring skit on Saturday Night Live in the late 1990s, portraying Jones, Vieira, Behar, and Walters as jealous older women and Matenopoulos as a simple-minded bimbo, who was consistently being punished for making stupid comments. Barbara Walters was one of Cheri Oteri's best known impersonations during her tenure on Saturday Night Live. In 2005, MADtv parodied the show in a sketch, exaggerating the women's speech as simultaneous bickering and featuring Michael McDonald as a farmer treating the women as hens, tossing chicken-feed on the ground and producing eggs from the women's seats. It was also parodied on the animated show Family Guy, in which Stewie is quarantined in a glass ball such that Brian gets to watch whatever he wants. Brian takes advantage of his freedom by selecting the one show that Stewie can't stand: The View. The women are clucking like chickens and Star Jones lays an egg. They were also parodied in The Simpsons with the show being called "Afternoon Yak" where the members of Afternoon Yak resemble the hosts of The View. The studio audience has also been compared to seals, as there are many breaks for applause during the show. In Zoey 101, it's parodied as "Point of View" in the episode "Anger Management." On Season 5 of The L Word, Alice, played by Leisha Hailey, was invited to replace a former lesbian co-host on the show "The Look." On November 1, 2008 Saturday Night Live unleashed a modern parody of the show. The parody depicted at Hasselback as shrill and unreasonable, Goldberg as condescending, and Behar as indifferent and fed up with the bickering. Walters was not present, and Shephard was replaced by guest host Jennifer Aniston, played by SNL newcomer Casey Wilson. A short webisode of the teen Canadian drama Degrassi featured several of the female stars of the show in a talk show called "DeView" that takes place in the foyer of Degrassi High.

The View has been accused of a variety of forms of bias over the years.

While diverse in terms of host age and backgrounds, the show has been criticised by many conservatives for what is seen as a liberal bias and a lack of diversity in political views. However, the show has had several conservative guest hosts (e.g., Ann Coulter, Laura Ingraham, Dennis Miller, Kathie Lee Gifford) and regular co-host Hasselbeck is an outspoken pro-life conservative. In the 9 April 2007, issue of People magazine, Hasselbeck stated that she and O'Donnell get along well off-stage, that they e-mail frequently, and that she credits O'Donnell with inspiring her to speak out more on the program.

During a Sirius XM Stars radio interview with documentary film maker John Ziegler, Barbara Walters said that she agreed that "The View sometimes seems to have a liberal bias" and added "that's why it's called The View".

On January 21, 2003 Jennifer O'Neill was a guest on the show promoting her "Silent No More" campaign with the goal of reducing teenage abortions. Having had an abortion herself, O'Neill spoke about her personal experience. Conservatives believed she was handled harshly by hosts and ridiculed by actress Katey Sagal in the following segment.

Joy Behar has said that conservatives are "so annoying", but that she would likewise take on liberals if they were in power. Nevertheless, conservatives contend that Hasselbeck is the only conservative on the show, as opposed to the liberal presence of Behar and Goldberg. Of the remaining co-hosts, Sherri Shepherd, has professed to be "not savvy in the political arena". and Walters declines to state political affiliations due to her journalism career.

To the top



Steven Spielberg

Steven Spielberg with President Ronald Reagan and Nancy Reagan after a showing of E.T. at the White House

Steven Allan Spielberg, KBE (born December 18, 1946) is an American film director, screenwriter and film producer. Forbes magazine places Spielberg's net worth at $3.1 billion. In 2006, the magazine Premiere listed him as the most powerful and influential figure in the motion picture industry. Time listed him as one of the 100 Most Important People of the Century. At the end of the twentieth century, Life named him the most influential person of his generation. In a career of over four decades, Spielberg's films have touched on many themes and genres. Spielberg's early sci-fi and adventure films, sometimes centering on children, were seen as an archetype of modern Hollywood blockbuster filmmaking. In later years his movies began addressing such issues as the Holocaust, slavery, war and terrorism.

Spielberg won the Academy Award for Best Director for 1993's Schindler's List and 1998's Saving Private Ryan. Three of Spielberg's films, Jaws (1975), E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial (1982), and Jurassic Park (1993), broke box office records, each becoming the highest-grossing film made at the time. To date, unadjusted gross of all Spielberg directed films exceeds $8.5 billion worldwide.

Spielberg was born in Cincinnati, Ohio, the son of Jewish parents Leah Adler (née Posner), a restaurateur and concert pianist, and Arnold Spielberg, a computer engineer. Throughout his early teens, Spielberg made amateur 8 mm "adventure" movies with his friends, the first of which he shot at a restaurant (Pinnacle Peak Patio) in Scottsdale, Arizona. He charged admission (25 cents) to his home movies (which involved the wrecks he staged with his Lionel train set) while his sister sold popcorn.

He became a Boy Scout and in 1958, he fulfilled a requirement for the photography merit badge by making a nine-minute 8 mm film entitled The Last Gunfight. Spielberg recalled years later to a magazine interviewer, "My dad’s still camera was broken, so I asked the scoutmaster if I could tell a story with my father’s movie camera. He said yes, and I got an idea to do a Western. I made it and got my merit badge. That was how it all started." At age 13, Spielberg won a prize for a 40-minute war movie he titled "Escape to Nowhere". In 1963, at age 16, Spielberg wrote and directed his first independent movie, a 140-minute science fiction adventure called Firelight (which would later inspire Close Encounters). The movie, which had a budget of US$400, was shown in his local movie theater and generated a profit of $100. He also made several WWII films inspired by his father's war stories.

After his parents divorced, he moved to California with his father. His three sisters and mother remained in Arizona, where he attended Passover seders at the home of Zalman and Pearl Segal on an annual basis. Although he attended Arcadia High School in Phoenix, Arizona for three years, Spielberg ended up graduating from Saratoga High School in Saratoga, California, in 1965, which he called the "worst experience" of his life and "hell on Earth". It was during this time Spielberg attained the rank of Eagle Scout.

After moving to California, he applied to attend film school at the University of Southern California School of Theater, Film and Television three separate times but was unsuccessful due to his C grade average. He attended California State University, Long Beach. While attending Long Beach State in the 1960s, Spielberg became member of Theta Chi Fraternity. His actual career began when he returned to Universal studios as an unpaid, seven-day-a-week intern and guest of the editing department. After Spielberg became famous, USC awarded him an honorary degree in 1994, and in 1996 he became a trustee of the university. In 2002, thirty-five years after starting college, Spielberg finished his degree via independent projects at CSULB, and was awarded a B.A. in Film Production and Electronic Arts with an option in Film/Video Production.

As an intern and guest of Universal Studios, Spielberg made his first short film for theatrical release, the 24 minute movie Amblin' in 1968. After Sidney Sheinberg, then the vice-president of production for Universal's TV arm, saw the film, Spielberg became the youngest director ever to be signed to a long-term deal with a major Hollywood studio (Universal). He dropped out of Long Beach State in 1969 to take the television director contract at Universal Studios and began his career as a professional director.

His first professional TV job came when he was hired to do one of the segments for the 1969 pilot episode of Night Gallery. The segment, "Eyes", starred Joan Crawford , and she and Spielberg were reportedly close friends until her death. The episode is unusual in his body of work, in that the camerawork is more highly stylized than his later, more "mature" films. After this, and an episode of Marcus Welby, M.D., Spielberg got his first feature-length assignment: an episode of The Name of the Game called "L.A. 2017." This futuristic science fiction episode impressed Universal Studios and they signed him on a short contract. He did another segment on Night Gallery and did some work for shows such as Owen Marshall: Counselor at Law and The Psychiatrist before landing the first series episode of Columbo (previous episodes were actually TV movies).

Based on the strength of his work, Universal signed Spielberg to do three TV movies. The first was a Richard Matheson adaptation called Duel about a monstrous tanker truck which tries to run a small car off the road. Special praise of this film by the influential British critic Dilys Powell was highly significant to Spielberg's career. Another TV film (Something Evil (film)) was made and released to capitalize on the popularity of The Exorcist, then a major best-selling book which had not yet been released as a movie. He fulfilled his contract by directing the TV movie length pilot of a show called Savage, starring Martin Landau. Spielberg's debut theatrical feature film was The Sugarland Express, about a married couple who are chased by police as the couple tries to regain custody of their baby. Spielberg's cinematography for the police chase was praised by reviewers, and The Hollywood Reporter stated that "a major new director is on the horizon". However, the film fared poorly at the box office and received a limited release.

Studio producers Richard Zanuck and David Brown offered Spielberg the director's chair for Jaws, a horror film based on the Peter Benchley novel about an enormous killer-shark. Spielberg has often referred to the grueling shoot as his professional crucible. Despite the film's ultimate, enormous success, it was nearly shut down due to delays and budget over-runs.

But Spielberg persevered and finished the film. It was an enormous hit, winning three Academy Awards (for editing, original score and sound) and grossing $470,653,000 worldwide at the box office. It also set the domestic record for box office gross, leading to what the press described as "Jawsmania". Jaws made him a household name, as well as one of America's youngest multi-millionaires, and allowed Spielberg a great deal of autonomy for his future projects. It was nominated for Best Picture and featured Spielberg's first of three collaborations with actor Richard Dreyfuss.

Rejecting offers to direct Jaws 2, King Kong and Superman, Spielberg and actor Richard Dreyfuss re-convened to work on a film about UFOs, which became Close Encounters of the Third Kind (1977). One of the rare movies both written and directed by Spielberg, Close Encounters was a critical and box office hit, giving Spielberg his first Best Director nomination from the Academy as well as earning six other Academy Awards nominations. It won Oscars in two categories (Cinematography, Vilmos Zsigmond, and a Special Achievement Award for Sound Effects Editing, Frank E. Warner). This second blockbuster helped to secure Spielberg's rise. His next film, 1941, a big-budgeted World War II farce, flopped with audiences and critics alike.

Spielberg then revisited his Close Encounters project and, with financial backing from Columbia Pictures, released Close Encounters: The Special Edition in 1980. For this, Spielberg fixed some of the flaws he thought impeded the original 1977 version of the film and also, at the behest of Columbia, shot additional footage showing the audience the interior of the mothership seen at the end of the film (a decision Spielberg would later regret as he felt the interior of the mothership should have remained a mystery).

Next, Spielberg teamed with Star Wars creator and friend George Lucas on an action adventure film, Raiders of the Lost Ark, the first of the Indiana Jones films, was an homage to the cliffhanger serials of the Golden Age of Hollywood, with Harrison Ford (whom Lucas had previously cast in his Star Wars films) as the archaeologist and adventurer hero Indiana Jones. It became the biggest film at the box office in 1981, and the recipient of numerous Oscar nominations including Best Director (Spielberg's second nomination) and Best Picture (the second Spielberg film to be nominated for Best Picture). Raiders is still considered a landmark example of the action genre.

A year later, Spielberg returned to the science fiction genre with E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial. It was the story of a young boy and the alien whom he befriends, who was accidentally left behind by his people and is trying to get back home to outer space. E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial went on to become the top-grossing film of all time. E.T. was also nominated for nine Academy Awards including Best Picture and Best Director.

Between 1982 and 1985, Spielberg produced three high-grossing movies: Poltergeist (for which he also co-wrote the screenplay), a big-screen adaptation of The Twilight Zone (for which he directed the segment "Kick The Can"), and The Goonies (Spielberg, executive producer, also wrote the story on which the screenplay was based).

His next directorial feature was the Raiders prequel Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom. Teaming up once again with Lucas and Ford, the film was plagued with uncertainty for the material and script. Reviews were generally less positive than they were for its predecessor (although critic Roger Ebert gave the film four stars and Pauline Kael praised the movie after criticizing the original), and it was criticized for lacking the energy of the original, its questionable depiction of East Indian culture, and for the level of violence in a movie with a large audience of young viewers. This film and the Spielberg-produced Gremlins led to the creation of the PG-13 rating due to the high level of violence in movies targeted at younger audiences. In spite of this, Temple of Doom is rated PG by the MPAA, even though it is the darkest and, possibly, most violent "Indy" movie yet. Nonetheless, the film was still a huge blockbuster hit in 1984. It was on this project that Spielberg also met his future wife, actress Kate Capshaw.

In 1985, Spielberg released The Color Purple, an adaptation of Alice Walker's Pulitzer Prize-winning novel of the same name, about a generation of empowered African-American women during depression-era America. Starring Whoopi Goldberg and future talk-show superstar Oprah Winfrey, the film was a box office smash and critics hailed Spielberg's successful foray into the dramatic genre. Roger Ebert proclaimed it the best movie of the year and later entered it into his Great Films archive. The film received eleven Academy Award nominations, including two for Whoopi Goldberg and Oprah Winfrey. However, much to the surprise of many, Spielberg did not get a Best Director nomination. The Color Purple is the second of two Spielberg films not to be scored by John Williams, the first being Duel.

In 1987, as China began opening to the world, Spielberg shot the first American movie in Shanghai since the 1930s, an adaptation of J.G. Ballard's autobiographical novel Empire of the Sun, starring John Malkovich and a young Christian Bale. The film garnered much praise from critics and was nominated for several Oscars, but did not yield substantial box office revenues. Reviewer Andrew Sarris called it the best film of the year and later included it among the best films of the decade.

After two forays into more serious dramatic films, Spielberg then directed the third Indiana Jones film, 1989's Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. Once again teaming up with Lucas and Ford, Spielberg also cast actor Sean Connery in a supporting role as Indy's father. The film earned generally positive reviews and was another box office success, becoming the highest grossing film worldwide that year; its total box office receipts even topped those of Tim Burton's much-anticipated film Batman, which had been the bigger hit domestically. Also in 1989, he re-united with actor Richard Dreyfuss for the romantic comedy-drama Always, about a daredevil pilot who extinguishes forest fires. Spielberg's first romantic film, Always was only a moderate success and had mixed reviews.

In 1991, Spielberg directed Hook, about a middle-aged Peter Pan, played by Robin Williams, who returns to Neverland. Despite innumerable rewrites and creative changes coupled with mixed reviews, the film made over $300 million worldwide (from a $70 million budget).

In 1993, Spielberg returned to the adventure genre with the film version of Michael Crichton's novel Jurassic Park, about a theme park with genetically engineered dinosaurs. With revolutionary special effects provided by friend George Lucas's Industrial Light and Magic company, the film would eventually become the highest grossing film of all time (at the worldwide box office) with $914 million. This would be the third time that one of Spielberg's films became the highest grossing film ever.

Spielberg's next film, Schindler's List, was based on the true story of Oskar Schindler, a man who risked his life to save 1,100 people from the Holocaust. Schindler's List earned Spielberg his first Academy Award for Best Director (it also won Best Picture). With the film a huge success at the box office, Spielberg used the profits to set up the Shoah Foundation, a non-profit organization that archives filmed testimony of the Holocaust survivors. Some critics maintain that Schindler's List is the most accurate portrayal of the Holocaust, and in 1997 the American Film Institute listed it among the 10 Greatest American Films ever Made (#9).

In 1994, Spielberg took a hiatus from directing to spend more time with his family and build his new studio, DreamWorks. In 1997, he helmed the sequel to 1993's Jurassic Park with The Lost World: Jurassic Park, which generated over $618 million worldwide despite mixed reviews, and was the second biggest hit of 1997 behind James Cameron's Titanic (which topped the original Jurassic Park to become the new recordholder for box office receipts).

His next film, Amistad, was based on a true story (like Schindler's List), specifically about an African slave rebellion. Despite decent reviews from critics, it did not do well at the box office. Spielberg released Amistad under DreamWorks Pictures, which has issued all of his movies since Amistad, a streak that ended in May 2008 (see below).

In 1998, Spielberg released the World War II film Saving Private Ryan, about a group of U.S. soldiers led by Capt. Miller (Tom Hanks) who try to find a soldier missing in France. The film was a huge box office success, grossing over $481 million worldwide and was the biggest film of the year at the U.S./domestic box office. Spielberg won his second Academy Award for his direction. The film's graphic, realistic depiction of combat violence influenced later war movies such as Black Hawk Down and Enemy at the Gates. The film was also the first major hit for DreamWorks, which co-produced the film with Paramount Pictures (as such, it was Spielberg's first release from the latter that was not part of the Indiana Jones series). Later, Spielberg and Hanks presented a TV mini-series based on Stephen Ambrose's book Band of Brothers. The ten-part HBO mini-series follows Easy Company of the 101st Airborne Division's 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment. The series won a number of awards at the Golden Globes and the Emmys.

In 2001, Spielberg filmed fellow director and friend Stanley Kubrick's final project, A.I.: Artificial Intelligence which Kubrick was unable to begin during his lifetime. A futuristic movie about a humanoid android longing for love, A.I. featured groundbreaking visual effects and a multi-layered, allegorical storyline, adapted by Spielberg himself.

Spielberg and actor Tom Cruise collaborated for the first time for the futuristic neo-noir Minority Report, based upon the sci-fi short story written by Philip K. Dick about a Washington, D.C., police captain who has been foreseen to murder a man he has not yet met. The film received strong reviews with the review tallying website rottentomatoes.com reporting that 199 out of the 217 reviews they tallied were positive. The film was praised as a futuristic homage to film noir, with its intelligent premise and "whodunit" structure. The film earned over $358 million worldwide. Roger Ebert, who named it the best film of 2002, praised its breathtaking vision of the future as well as for the way Spielberg blended CGI with live-action.

Spielberg's 2002 film Catch Me If You Can is about the daring adventures of a youthful con artist (played by Leonardo DiCaprio). It earned Christopher Walken an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actor. The film is known for John Williams' score and its unique title sequence. It was a hit both commercially and critically.

Spielberg collaborated again with Tom Hanks along with Catherine Zeta-Jones and Stanley Tucci in 2004's The Terminal, a warm-hearted comedy about a man of Eastern European descent who is stranded in an airport. It received mixed reviews but performed relatively well at the box office. In 2005, Empire magazine ranked Spielberg number one on a list of the greatest film directors of all time.

Also in 2005, Spielberg directed a modern adaptation of War of the Worlds (a co-production of Paramount and DreamWorks), based on the H. G. Wells book of the same name (Spielberg had been a huge fan of the book and the original 1953 film). It starred Tom Cruise and Dakota Fanning, and, as with past Spielberg films, Industrial Light and Magic (ILM) provided the visual effects. Unlike E.T. and Close Encounters of the Third Kind, which depicted friendly alien visitors, War of the Worlds featured violent invaders. The film was another huge box office smash, grossing over $591 million worldwide.

Spielberg's film Munich, about the events following the 1972 Munich Massacre of Israeli athletes at the Olympic Games, was his second film essaying Jewish relations in the world (the first being Schindler's List). The film is based on Vengeance: The True Story of an Israeli Counter-Terrorist Team, a book by Canadian journalist George Jonas – a book whose veracity has been largely questioned by journalists. The film received strong critical praise, but underperformed at the U.S. and world box-office; it remains one of Spielberg's most controversial films to date. Munich received five Academy Awards nominations, including Best Picture, Film Editing, Original Music Score (by John Williams), Best Adapted Screenplay, and Best Director for Spielberg. It was Spielberg's sixth Best Director nomination and fifth Best Picture nomination.

Spielberg directed Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, which wrapped filming in October 2007 and was released on May 22, 2008. This was his first film not to be released by DreamWorks since 1997. The film received generally positive reviews from critics, and has performed very well in theaters. As of June 30 2008, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull has grossed $315 million domestically, and over $785 million worldwide.

Since the mid-1980s Spielberg has increased his role as a film producer. He headed up the production team for several cartoons, including the Warner Brothers hits Tiny Toon Adventures, Animaniacs, Pinky and the Brain, Toonsylvania, and Freakazoid!, for which he collaborated with Jean MacCurdy and Tom Ruegger. Spielberg also produced the Don Bluth animated features, An American Tail and The Land Before Time. He was furthermore, for a short time, the executive producer of the long-running medical drama ER. In 1989, he brought the concept of The Dig to LucasArts. He contributed with the project from that time to 1995 when the game was released. He also collaborated with software publishers Knowledge Adventure on the multimedia game Steven Spielberg's Director's Chair, which was released in 1996. Spielberg appears, as himself, in the game to direct the player. Spielberg was branded for a Lego Moviemaker kit, the proceeds of which went to the Starbright Foundation.

In 1993, Spielberg acted as executive producer for the highly anticipated television series seaQuest DSV; a science fiction series set "in the near future" starring Roy Scheider (who Spielberg had directed in Jaws) and Jonathan Brandis akin to Star Trek: The Next Generation that aired on Sundays at 8:00 p.m. on NBC. While the first season was moderately successful, the second season did less well. Spielberg's name no longer appeared in the third season and the show was cancelled mid way through the third season.

Spielberg served as an uncredited executive producer on The Haunting, The Prince of Egypt, Shrek, and Evolution. In 2005, he served as a producer of Memoirs of a Geisha, an adaptation of the best-selling novel by Arthur Golden, a film he was previously attached to as director. In 2006 Spielberg co-executive produced with famed filmmaker Robert Zemeckis a CGI children's movie called Monster House, marking their first collaboration together since 1990's Back to the Future Part III. He also teamed with Clint Eastwood for the first time in their careers, co-producing Eastwood's Flags of Our Fathers and Letters from Iwo Jima with Robert Lorenz and Eastwood himself. He earned his twelfth Academy Award nomination for the latter film as it was nominated for Best Picture. Spielberg served as executive producer for Disturbia and the Transformers live action film with Brian Goldner, an employee of Hasbro. The film was directed by Michael Bay and written by Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman, and Spielberg will continue to collaborate on the sequels, including Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen.

Other major television series Spielberg produced were Band of Brothers and Taken. He was an executive producer on the critically acclaimed 2005 TV miniseries Into the West which won two Emmy awards, including one for Geoff Zanelli's score.

In 2007, Steven Spielberg and Mark Burnett co-produced On the Lot an ill-fated TV reality show about filmmaking.

Steven Spielberg had cameo roles in The Blues Brothers, Gremlins, Vanilla Sky, and Austin Powers in Goldmember, as well as small uncredited cameos in a handful of other films. He has been in lots of movies singed one punch.

Other than films, Spielberg has also revealed an interest in video games, revealing himself to be a gamer. In 2005 the director signed with Electronic Arts to collaborate on three games including a currently unnamed action game and a puzzle game for the Wii called Boom Blox. Previously, he was involved in creating the scenario for the adventure game The Dig. He is also the creator of the Medal of Honor series by Electronic Arts.

Spielberg is planning a motion capture film trilogy based on The Adventures of Tintin, with Peter Jackson. He will direct the first film The Adventures of Tintin: Secret of the Unicorn, which will be released by 2011 due to the necessary computer animation, while Jackson will direct the second which Spielberg will produce. The two will co-direct a third. Afterwards, Spielberg is expected to film a Abraham Lincoln biopic, titled Lincoln, starring Liam Neeson, with a script by Tony Kushner. He is also directing and producing the film Interstellar, and adapting Oldboy – with Will Smith – and Chocky.

Another upcoming project is a miniseries which he will produce with Tom Hanks and Gary Goetzman, titled The Pacific. The miniseries will cost $250 million and will be a 10-part war miniseries in conjunction with the Australian Seven Network. The project is centered on the battles in the Pacific Theater during World War II. Writer Bruce McKenna, who penned several installments of the first miniseries (Band of Brothers), is the head writer. Filming is expected to begin in August 2008 and will continue for a year, with locations mostly in Australia, to include Far North Queensland, Melbourne, and the Northern Territory. Producers have chosen to base the series at Melbourne's Central City Studios. He is also producing two untitled Fox TV series, one focusing on fashion, another on time-travellers from World War II.

Spielberg's films often deal with several recurring themes. Most of his films deal with ordinary characters searching for or coming in contact with extraordinary beings or finding themselves in extraordinary circumstances. This is especially evident in the Indiana Jones series. In an AFI interview in August 2000 Spielberg commented on his interest in the possibility of extra terrestrial life and how it has influenced some of his films. Spielberg described himself as feeling like an alien during childhood, and his interest came from his father, a science fiction fan, and his opinion that aliens would not travel light years for conquest, but instead curiosity and sharing of knowledge.

A strong consistent theme in his family-friendly work is a childlike, even naïve, sense of wonder and faith, as attested by works such as Close Encounters of the Third Kind, E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, Hook, and A.I.. According to Warren Buckland, these themes are portrayed through the use of low height camera tracking shots, which have become one of Spielberg's directing trademarks. In the cases when his films include children (E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, Empire of the Sun, Jurassic Park, etc.), this type of shot is more apparent, but it is also used in films like Munich, Saving Private Ryan, The Terminal, Minority Report, and Amistad. If one views each of his films, one will see this shot utilized by the director, notably the water scenes in Jaws are filmed from the low-angle perspective of someone swimming. Another child oriented theme in Spielberg's films is that of loss of innocence and coming-of-age. In Empire of the Sun, Jim, a well-groomed and spoiled English youth, loses his innocence as he suffers through World War II China. Similarly, in Catch Me If You Can Frank naively and foolishly believes that he can reclaim his shattered family if he accumulates enough money to support them.

The most persistent theme throughout his films is tension in parent-child relationships. Parents (often fathers) are reluctant, absent or ignorant. Peter Banning in Hook starts off in the beginning of the film as a reluctant married-to-his-work parent who through the course of his film regains the respect of his children. The notable absence of Elliott's father in E.T., is the most famous example of this theme. In Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, it is revealed that Indy has always had a very strained relationship with his father, who is a professor of medieval literature, as his father always seemed more interested in his work, specifically in his studies of the Holy Grail, than in his own son, although his father does not seem to realize or understand the negative effect that his aloof nature had on Indy (he even believes he was a good father in the sense that he taught his son "self reliance", which is not how Indy saw it). Even Oskar Schindler, from Schindler's List, is reluctant to have a child with his wife. Munich depicts Avner as man away from his wife and newborn daughter. There are of course exceptions; Brody in Jaws is a committed family man, while John Anderton in Minority Report is a shattered man after the disappearance of his son. This theme is arguably the most autobiographical aspect of Spielberg's films, since Spielberg himself was affected by his parents' divorce as a child and by the absence of his father. Furthermore to this theme, protagonists in his films often come from families with divorced parents, most notably E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial (protagonist Elliot's mother is divorced) and Catch Me If You Can (Frank Abagnale's mother and father split early on in the movie). Little known also is Tim in Jurassic Park (early in the movie another, secondary character mentions Tim and Lex's parents' divorce). The family often shown divided is often resolved in the ending as well. Following this theme of reluctant fathers and father figures, Tim looks to Dr. Alan Grant as a father figure. Initially, Dr. Grant is reluctant to return those paternal feelings to Tim . However, by the end of the film, he has changed, and the kids even fall asleep with their heads on his shoulders.

Most of his films are generally optimistic in nature. Critics frequently accuse his films of being overly sentimental, though Spielberg feels it's fine as long as it is disguised. The influence comes from directors Frank Capra and John Ford.

In terms of casting and production itself, Spielberg has a known penchant for working with actors and production members from his previous films. For instance he has cast Richard Dreyfuss in several movies: Jaws, Close Encounters of the Third Kind, and Always. Spielberg has also cast Harrison Ford for several of his movies from small roles, as the headteacher in a cut scene from E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial as well as in leading role in the Indiana Jones films. Although while only directing him for only the one time (in Raiders of the Lost Ark, as he voiced many of the animals), veteran voice actor Frank Welker has lent his voice in quite a lot of productions Speilberg has executively produced from Gremlins to its sequel Gremlins 2: The New Batch as well as The Land Before Time (and lending his voice to its sequels which Spielberg had no involvement in), as well as Who Framed Roger Rabbit and television shows such as Tiny Toons, Animaniacs, Seaquest DSV. Recently Spielberg has used the actor Tom Hanks on several occasions and has cast him in Saving Private Ryan, Catch Me if You Can, and The Terminal. Spielberg also has collaborated with Tom Cruise twice on Minority Report and War of the Worlds. Spielberg prefers working with production members with whom he has developed an existing working relationship. An example of this is his production relationship with Kathleen Kennedy who has served as producer on all his major films from E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial to the recent Munich. Other working relationships include Allen Daviau, a childhood friend and cinematographer who shot the early Spielberg film Amblin' and most of his films up to Empire Of The Sun; Janusz Kaminski who has shot every Spielberg film since Schindler's List (see List of noted film director and cinematographer collaborations); and the film editor Michael Kahn who has edited every single film directed by Spielberg from Close Encounters to Munich (except E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial). Most of the DVDs of Spielberg's films have documentaries by Laurent Bouzereau.

A famous example of Spielberg working with the same professionals is his long time collaboration with John Williams and the use of his musical scores in all of his films since The Sugarland Express (except The Color Purple and Twilight Zone: The Movie). One of Spielberg's trademarks is his use of music by John Williams to add to the visual impact of his scenes and to try and create a lasting picture and sound of the film in the memories of the film audience. These visual scenes often uses images of the sun (e.g. Empire of the Sun, Saving Private Ryan, the final scene of Jurassic Park, and the end credits of Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (where they ride into the sunset)), of which the last two feature a Williams score at that end scene. Spielberg is a contemporary of filmmakers George Lucas, Francis Ford Coppola, Martin Scorsese, John Milius, and Brian De Palma, collectively known as the "Movie Brats". Aside from his principal role as a director, Spielberg has acted as a producer for a considerable number of films, including early hits for Joe Dante and Robert Zemeckis.

From 1985 to 1989 Spielberg was married to actress Amy Irving. In their 1989 divorce settlement, she received $100 million from Spielberg after a judge controversially vacated a prenuptial agreement written on a napkin. Their divorce was recorded as the third most costly celebrity divorce in history . Following the divorce, Spielberg and Irving shared custody of their son, Max Samuel.

Spielberg subsequently developed a relationship with actress Kate Capshaw, whom he met when he cast her in Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom. They married on October 12, 1991. Capshaw is a convert to Judaism. They currently move among their four homes in Pacific Palisades, California; New York City; East Hampton, NY; and Naples, Florida.

Janet Sanders (November 28, 1990) is Spielberg's goddaughter who lives with him.Spielberg has several pets including a dog. His previous dog, Mikhaila, starred in several of his films in various guises including Jaws, Close Encounters, and 1941.

In 1991 Steven Spielberg co-founded Starbright with Randy Aduana– a foundation dedicated to improving sick children's lives through technology-based programs focusing on entertainment and education. In 2002 Starbright merged with the Starlight Foundation forming what is now today – Starlight Starbright Children's Foundation.

Since playing Pong while filming Jaws in 1974, Spielberg has been an avid video gamer. He owns a Wii, a PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, and enjoys playing first-person shooters such as the Medal of Honor series and Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare. He has also criticized the use of cut scenes in games, calling them intrusive, and feels making story flow naturally into the gameplay is a challenge for future game developers.

In 2001, Spielberg was stalked by conspiracy theorist and former social worker Diana Napolis, who accused him along with actress Jennifer Love Hewitt of controlling her thoughts through "cybertronic" technology and being part of a satanic conspiracy against her. Napolis was committed for a year in a state hospital before pleading guilty to stalking and released on probation with a condition that she have no contact with either Spielberg or Hewitt.

Spielberg is a winner of three Academy Awards. He has been nominated for six Academy Awards for the category of Best Director, winning two of them (Schindler's List and Saving Private Ryan), and seven of the films he directed were up for the Best Picture Oscar (Schindler's List won). In 1987 he was awarded the Irving G. Thalberg Memorial Award for his work as a creative producer.

Drawing from his own experiences in Scouting, Spielberg helped the Boy Scouts of America develop a merit badge in cinematography. The badge was launched at the 1989 National Scout Jamboree which Spielberg attended, personally counseling many boys in their work on requirements.

That same year, 1989, was the release of Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. The opening scene shows a teenage Indiana Jones in scout uniform bearing the rank of a Life Scout. Spielberg stated he made Indiana Jones a Boy Scout in honor of his experience in Scouting. For his career accomplishments and service to others, Spielberg was awarded the Distinguished Eagle Scout Award.

In 1998 he was awarded the Federal Cross of Merit with Ribbon of the Federal Republic of Germany. The Award was presented to him by President Roman Herzog in recognition of his movie "Schindlers List" and his Shoa-Foundation.

In 1999, Spielberg received an honorary degree from Brown University. Spielberg was also awarded the Department of Defense Medal for Distinguished Public Service by Secretary of Defense William Cohen at the Pentagon on August 11, 1999. Cohen presented Spielberg the award in recognition of his movie Saving Private Ryan.

In 2001, he was honored as an honorary Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire (KBE) by Queen Elizabeth II.

In 2004 he was admitted as knight of the Légion d'honneur from president Jacques Chirac. On July 15, 2006, Spielberg was also awarded the Gold Hugo Lifetime Achievement Award at the Summer Gala of the Chicago International Film Festival, and also was awarded a Kennedy Center honour on December 3. The tribute to Spielberg featured a short filmed biography narrated by Tom Hanks and included thank-yous from World War II veterans for Saving Private Ryan, as well as a performance of the finale to Leonard Bernstein's Candide, conducted by John Williams (Spielberg's frequent composer).

In November 2007, he was chosen for Lifetime Achievement Award to be presented at the sixth annual Visual Effects Society Awards in February 2009. He was set to be honored with the Cecil B. DeMille Award at the January 2008 Golden Globes; however, the new, watered-down format of the ceremony result from conflicts from the 2007-08 writers strike, the HFPA postponed his honor to the 2009 ceremony. In 2008, Spielberg was awarded the Légion d'honneur.

In June 2008, Spielberg was the recipient of Arizona State University’s Hugh Downs Award for Communication Excellence.

Spielberg, as a then co-owner of DreamWorks, was involved in a heated debate in which the studio proposed building on the remaining wetlands in Southern California, though development was later dropped.

Spielberg's films are often accused of leaning towards sentimentalism at the expense of other aspects of the film.

French New Wave giant Jean-Luc Godard famously and publicly criticised Spielberg at the premiere of his film In Praise of Love. Godard, who has continuously complained about the commercial nature of modern cinema, holds Spielberg partly responsible for the lack of artistic merit in mainstream cinema. Godard accused Spielberg of using his film Schindler's List to make a profit of tragedy while Schindler's wife lived in poverty in Argentina. In Spielberg's defense, critic Roger Ebert argues that Spielberg is very talented and has also said, "Has Godard or any other director living or dead done more than Spielberg, with his Holocaust Project, to honor and preserve the memories of the survivors?" American artist and actor Crispin Glover (who starred in the Spielberg-produced Back to the Future) also criticised Spielberg in his 2005 essay What Is It?.

Critics such as anti-mainstream film theorist Ray Carney also complain that Spielberg's films lack depth and do not take risks. Some of Spielberg's most famous fans include film legends Ingmar Bergman and Terry Gilliam (although he has criticised some of Spielberg's more recent work). The late French filmmaker François Truffaut admired his work and took a role in Spielberg's film Close Encounters of the Third Kind.

To the top



Source : Wikipedia