In an interview with the Radio Times, Graham Norton says he has always toned down his bawdy humor for his BBC chat show and adds there are certain topics that he avoids. “Audiences don’t find Amy Winehouse funny anymore because now it’s the walking wounded. Something bad is going to happen; everyone has that sense. And so, although she could be a very useful punchline, we avoid it. And people don’t find Jordan funny either. There’s a weird respect for what she’s done with her life.”(Comedy Central UK)
This is why fact-checking is so crucial: the UK quiz show Million Dollar Drop based one of their questions on a fake Graham Norton Twitter account. The Sun reports, “Two contestants on Monday night’s show, hosted by Davina McCall, were asked to name the celeb who had tweeted about BBC reality series Over The Rainbow…The ‘winning’ answer was Norton – except he is a well-known hater of social networking websites.”
Cheryl Cole, who today announced that she’s filing for divorce from husband Ashley Cole, is reportedly “close to signing a deal” to appear as a judge on Simon Cowell‘s U.S. version of X Factor. Well, at least she’ll be traveling stateside with a lot less baggage.(Metro)
Former Doctor Who star Noel Clarke told The Guardian he doesn’t look fondly back at his first season as Mickey Smith: “I came in and played him quite badly in season one. We didn’t know what Doctor Who was going to be – it was a kid’s show, right? So there’s me, doing the big eyes, grinning like an idiot. It’s partly my fault, I didn’t rehearse, but I wasn’t really told about the tone of the show either.”
Tyler Perry‘s movies are finally coming to British shores. Four DVD titles will launch in August, and Why Did I Get Married Too? will hit UK theaters in September. Lionsgate, Tyler’s studio home, says, “It’s taken us time to find the right window to launch his brand in the U.K. and the end of this summer is the perfect time to do so.” Perry and Janet Jackson recently appeared on The Graham Norton Show to promote Why Did I Get Married Too?. You poor Brits…how have you survived without Madea?
Tracey Thorn is finally back with a new album, but the worldwide success of Everything But the Girl‘s 1994 hit, “Missing,” has meant she hasn’t had to work in years. She tells The Daily Telegraph‘s Neil McCormick: “‘Missing’ still gets played such a lot. I find checks in the post and think, ‘How did I earn that money? I haven’t even left the house in seven years.'”
Simply Red‘s Mick Hucknall will front the newly reunited Faces, replacing Rod Stewart. Original Faces member Ronnie Wood, currently in The Rolling Stones, applauds the addition: “Mick’s a big Faces fan and it comes out when he sings, it’s a kind of relief for him because he can let loose. Mick’s range is like Rod’s vocal range was in the seventies.”(Guardian)
Meanwhile, Ronnie Wood claims he’s been sober for two months.(Telegraph)
Gorillaz will headline this year’s Glastonbury, replacing U2, who pulled out of the gig due to Bono‘s back surgery.(NME)
Kevin Wicks founded BBCAmerica.com's Anglophenia blog back in 2005 and has been translating British culture for an American audience ever since. While not British himself - he was born and raised in St. Louis, Missouri - he once received inordinate hospitality in London for sharing the name of a dead but beloved EastEnders character. His Anglophilia stems from a high school love of Morrissey, whom he calls his "gateway drug" into British culture.