Monday, November 14, 2005

What We Need to Know Today - November 14

The Supreme Court Update
So what's the deal with Judge Alito? we all know he's conservative yet he can say he's respectful of precedent and then everyone steps back and says he's not going to overturn Roe v. Wade. wake up people. This is what he said in meetings yesterday.

From last week in Washington Post:
"In private meetings with senators who support abortion rights, Alito has said the Supreme Court should be quite wary of reversing decisions that have been repeatedly upheld, according to the senators who said it was clear that the context was abortion.

"He basically said . . . that Roe was precedent on which people -- a lot of people -- relied, and been precedent now for decades and therefore deserved great respect," Sen. Joseph I. Lieberman (D-Conn.) told reporters after meeting with Alito yesterday. Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) said she had a similar conversation about an hour later with Alito, who has made clear that he personally opposes abortion.

"I asked him whether it made a difference to him if he disagreed with the initial decision but it had been reaffirmed several times since then," Collins told reporters. "I was obviously referring to Roe in that question. He assured me that he has tremendous respect for precedent and that his approach is to not overturn cases due to a disagreement with how they were originally decided."

Albright's Secret: Brooch Diplomacy
As a rare woman in the male-dominated diplomatic world, former United Nations Ambassador and Secretary of State Madeleine Albright came to the posts during the Clinton years with a different approach--and wardrobe. And, she tells us, that gave her a new weapon in America's diplomatic battles: her trademark jeweled brooches. The Dame of Foggy Bottom reveals that her secret jewelry box diplomacy was sparked by a little comment made by the deposed Iraqi tyrant while Albright was ambassador to the United Nations. "Saddam Hussein called me a snake," she says. The next time she was on television, she wore a snake pin to show off her new status.

"So then," she says, "I thought it would be fun to send messages with my pins." Word spread fast in the diplomatic community. "When people would say, 'How do you feel?' I'd say, 'Read my pin.' " Butterflies meant happy, bees angry. Some were sarcastic, as with the huge bug she wore to meet a Russian diplomat after a Kremlin recording device was found at the U.N. At another meeting with Russians to talk about the antiballistic missile treaty, she wore an arrow, prompting then Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov to ask, "Is that one of your interceptors?" Albright's clever answer: "Yes, and we know how to make them very small." There's much more to the story. Albright tells us she's planning a book on her brooches.

Katha Pollitt kicks a little Maureen Dowd ass in the Nation.

Movie News
It looks as if there may be extra time for Bend it Like Beckham. The Sun (from England) reports that Gurinder Chadha, who directed the British footballing hit, is making a sequel to the 2003 film. Apparently she also has signed up the film's stars, Keira Knightley and Parminder Nagra, to reprise their roles.

Joan Allen is to star with Jessica Lange and Kathy Bates in a new road movie, Bonneville. The film is about a widow who goes on a trip to deliver her deceased husband's ashes to her daughter.

5 minutes with...Naomi Foner Gyllenhaal- mother of Jake and Maggie and awesome screeniwriter in her own right. From NY Daily News: Naomi Foner Gyllenhaal

I'm a big fan of Sarah Silverman. Her movie- Jesus is Magic, based on her stand-up opened Friday. Learn a little more about her. From the NY Times: Sarah Silverman

Paramount beat out several bidding studios for Stop-Loss, a drama to be directed by Kimberly Peirce about the controversial statute now used by the U.S. Defense Dept. to extend soldiers' combat time. Peirce, who has not directed a movie since Boys Don't Cry in 1999 but has been linked to many, sparked to the subject when her own brother returned from a year of duty in Fallujah and was quickly called back.

Scarlett Johansson is in talks to topline the Weinstein Co.'s bigscreen adaptation of Emma McLaughlin and Nicola Kraus' bestselling tome The Nanny Diaries.

Diane Keaton is in negotiations to play Napoleon Dynamite star Jon Heder's mother in Mama's Boy for Warner Independent Pictures.

TV News
I've been talking about the disaster of Desperate Housewives for the entire fall. The show basically sucks. Here's some confirmation. HOUSEWIVES NEEDS MAKEOVER

Kim NG has just interviewed to be the Genral Manager of the LA Dodgers. if she gets the gig, she would be the first female general manager in baseball.
Kim Ng

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

What We Need to Know Today - November 8

I know I've been remiss in blogging lately. That's because I'm editing a site so you can check out my work on there. Check out The Women's Media Center

Brat pack hits middle age. Remember St. Elmo's Fire, that brilliant movie that was so damn good in high school? (The top film will always be Fast Times at Ridgemont High.) Well it seems that those of us in that age bracket are about to have our midlife crisis. I don't know about you but I'm on my third crisis.
It's midlife crisis time for the Brat Pack

Buffy is a feminist
"'Think about Rosa Parks,' Sarah Michelle Gellar intoned to Lowdown the other night at the DKNY Jeans party. "There was a woman who did so much for other women. And nowadays, women are famous for the way they wear their hair. Or designers they wear. Or who they date."

Hmmmm. Can't imagine who she's talking about.

Buffy continued: 'Someone like Rosa Parks reminds you that fighting for women's causes is the most important thing we can do.'

The 28-year-old Gellar was chatting away in a VIP banquette at Hiro, playing host to the festivities - benefiting the nonprofit Step Up Women's Network."

Commnder in Chief updates
Polly Bergen has joined the cast of ABC's Commander in Chief, playing the mother of President Mackenzie Allen (Geena Davis). Bergen, who herself played the first female U.S. president in the 1964 feature Kisses for My President, will join the skein with the Thanksgiving episode, airing Nov. 29.

Alternet has a good piece on Commander in Chief
A Woman in Command

More TV News
WB has ordered a script for a new primetime soap called The Body Politic from Touchstone Television, and is set in the nation's capital, according to Variety. The project is written by Bill Robinson and Jason Rothenberg, produced ands directed by Peter Horton. Unlike other dramas set in Washington, in and around the political scene, this show will concentrate on a young woman arriving in Washington for the first time and her impressions of the less that politically correct side of town.

Film News
Sela Ward has signed on to star opposite Kevin Costner in The Guardian for Touchstone Pictures, Beacon Pictures and A School Prods.

Sports News
You must check out Dave Zirin's article in The Nation about how everyone missed the Sheryl Swoopes coming out opportunity.
Sheryl Swoopes: Out of the Closet--and Ignored

From the AP: The difference between the sexes has long been a rich source of humor. Now, it turns out, humor is one of the differences. Maybe we laugh more because we know if we stopped laghing we would just cry forever at how fucked up everything is?
Women get more joy out of humor

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