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Clint versus Spike; Nick Bollea`s Jailbreak; Will Hulk Hogan Bounce Back?; Ed McMahon Opens Up About His Mortgage Problem; Goodbye to Hillary Jokes
Aired June 6, 2008 - 23:00:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
BROOKE ANDERSON: A Clint Eastwood-Spike Lee racial controversy. Why Clint reportedly said Spike should, quote, "shut his face."
And will Rosie O`Donnell marry her girlfriend again? I`m Brooke Anderson in Hollywood, TV`s most provocative entertainment news show starts right now.
On SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, Nick Hogan`s jailbreak. Hulk`s jailed son gets out of his cell? Is he getting special treatment? The fired-up debate.
Plus, the Hulk gets body-slammed. The Hulkster was one of the most popular guys around. But now, the world seems furious with him. Tonight, showbiz investigates, can Hulk Hogan ever bounce back, or is he down for the three-count for good?
Ed McMahon`s startling confessions. Tonight, for the first time, the TV legend opens up about his dramatic, heartbreaking attempt to save his home.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ED MCMAHON, TV LEGEND: You know, it`s a combination. It`s like a perfect storm. The economy problems -
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: And does Britney Spears actually have something to do with his housing crisis?
Plus, Shania Twain finally speaks out about her stunning, painful split from her husband of 14 years. Her emotional, heart wrenching words that you`ve just got to hear.
Hi there, everyone. I`m Brooke Anderson, coming to you tonight, from Hollywood. A.J. Hammer is off tonight.
Making news right now, Nick Hogan`s jailbreak? The outrage over Hulk Hogan`s son has taken a dramatic, new turn. First, there were those shocking jailhouse tapes, where Nick and his dad talked about doing a reality show.
Now, Nick, who is serving eight months for nearly killing his best friend in a car crash, is getting at least one of his wishes. He`s been moved out of solitary confinement into a cell with three other juvenile inmates.
So, tonight, SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, has to ask, is Hulk Hogan`s son receiving special treatment? And is this only going to fuel the bitter outrage over this Hogan family drama?
(voice over): For almost a month, Hulk Hogan`s son, Nick, stewed in the slammer, all by his lonesome. And we all heard him complain about it in those infamous jailhouse phone calls.
NICK BOLLEA, HULK HOGAN`S SON: This is like solo in there.
ANDERSON: Now, instead of singing "So Lonely" like the police, Nick is singing a different tune.
Yes, like "The Jeffersons," moving to a deluxe apartment in the sky, Nick Hogan Bollea is moving on up to a deluxe jail cell complete with other inmates.
KATIE DARYL, TMZ TV: Nick probably feels like he`s at the Ritz Carlton because he`s no longer in solitary confinement. He`s officially in a room with three other juvenile inmates and a television.
JUDGE: I`m going to pose eight months in the county jail.
ANDERSON: Back on April 9th, Nick was sentenced to eight months in the slammer for this street-racing accident that left his friend, John Graziano, in a semiconscious state. Since then, Nick was housed all by himself in a cell like this one. TMZ`s Katie Daryl explains why.
DARYL: He was given solitary confinement for two reasons. One, because he`s a juvenile. But two, they said that, you know, he`s a celebrity, so because of this, they need to protect him.
ANDERSON: But Nick quickly started to go stir crazy, as we heard in phone calls to his parents.
N. BOLLEA: I`m in maximum. I`m going to ask them at least to put me in a cell with, you know, like maybe something with, you know, some bars where I can see some people or something. I`m really freaking out.
HULK HOGAN, REALITY TV STAR AND WRESTLER: OK. All right. Don`t freak out.
ANDERSON: Nick`s situation didn`t exactly inspire a lot of sympathy from others.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Oh, boo hoo. He`s in a cell without a window. His victim is lying in a hospital bed for the rest of his life.
ANDERSON: But Tru TV`s Ashleigh Banfield tells SHOWBIZ TONIGHT Nick`s solitary confinement did not fit the crime.
ASHLEIGH BANFIELD, HOST, "HOLLYWOOD HEAT": If you committed murder, it would be a whole other story. The last time I checked, the crime of reckless driving causing serious bodily injury, while it is a serious crime, it doesn`t warrant solitary confinement.
ANDERSON: Earlier this week, a judge turned down Nick`s request to let him serve part of his sentence under house arrest and the rest with other inmates. But soon after, the Sheriff`s Department had a change of heart and moved 17-year-old Nick into a cell with other juveniles.
DARYL: They did say because of an ongoing assessment of inmate situations, Nick Hogan would no longer have to be in solitary confinement. But he would be able to be put into a cell with other people.
ANDERSON: So now, instead of freaking out in isolation from the rest of the world like Tom Hanks` desert island dweller in "Castaway - "
TOM HANKS, ACTOR: They may never find us.
ANDERSON: Nick can forge uplifting jailhouse friendships with some fellow inmates, ala the "Shawshank Redemption."
MORGAN FREEMAN, ACTOR: You`re going to fit right in.
DARYL: They`re going to whittle something out of spoons together.
ANDERSON: But Nick isn`t through battling with his jailers. He`s filed a lawsuit against the Pinellas County sheriff for releasing those tapes of his jail conversations. And even though he got what he wanted, contact with other people, this former street racer is definitely not on easy street.
BANFIELD: I don`t see this as a huge favor regarding Nick Bollea`s crime and punishment. He`s still in jail. He`s going to serve the time. He`s just in a different cell.
ANDERSON: So, is Hulk Hogan`s son, Nick, getting special treatment?
Here, now, in Hollywood, Darren Kavinoky, attorney for the Kavinoky Law Firm. And from New York, Carolina Bermudez, senior editor from "In Touch Weekly."
Carolina, Darren, welcome. As you just heard, Hulk Hogan`s son, Nick, was transferred out of solitary confinement. He`s now sharing a cell with three other juvenile offenders. Darren, there has been a lot of outrage about this story. What do you think here? Special treatment?
ATTY. DARREN KAVINOKY, KAVINOKY LAW FIRM: You think? I don`t think it`s mere coincidence that his environment has changed suddenly and the idea that the Sheriff`s Department, who do have control over his accommodations, would say that they did this in the ordinary course of things.
I`m sure that that statement was released in writing, because nobody could say it with a straight face that this just happened in the ordinary course of things. He is still in jail, but certainly, the upgrade in his status is just the great example of the squeaky wheel getting the grease, or in this case, perhaps, the body oil.
ANDERSON: Yes, he`s got more amenities now, and whether or not you think this is special treatment. Carolina, does this just add to the outrage here?
CAROLINA BERMUDEZ, SENIOR EDITOR, "IN TOUCH WEEKLY": Definitely, it adds to the outrage. This wouldn`t happen to anybody else. He is the son of a celebrity, and let`s just face it, he was under emotional distress. Jail is not Disneyland, guys. It`s not supposed to be fun. But now he has three buddies. He can watch TV. His friend is confined to a bed, probably for the rest of his life.
BERMUDEZ: And he`s complaining about incarceration for eight months? Suck it up.
ANDERSON: Yes, his friend, John Graziano, I`m sure, would trade places with him in a heartbeat. And the fury has been fueled, in part, by those taped phone conversations between Nick and his parents. And I want to play for you, now, one of the conversations he had with his mom, Linda, complaining about solitary confinement.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
N. BOLLEA: I would do anything to get out of this room.
LINDA BOLLEA, NICK BOLLEA`S MOTHER: I know. Imprisoning you by yourself is almost beyond what you deserve, don`t you think?
N. BOLLEA: Yes.
L. BOLLEA: I mean, solitary confinement is what they do to like, what, "triple-X" criminals? I mean, you know, it`s like for a car accident.
N. BOLLEA: I want to go outside. I just want to breathe some fresh air.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
ANDERSON: OK, well, now he`s got a television. He`s got buddies to chat with. Darren, do you think all the griping that his family did maybe led the Sheriff`s Department to move him?
KAVINOKY: Well, I think the griping certainly had something to do with it. I doubt very much that this just would have happened on its own without the family really getting involved in making some noise. But there was one, I think, valid legal point that his defense team made when they were initially asking for the electronic monitoring and this whole shift in the first place. And that`s this notion that when people are placed in solitary confinement, that`s typically what happens when we want to punish people who are already incarcerated and who can`t play nice with other people. It is a form of punishment that`s quite extreme.
And in Nick Hogan`s case, being in solitary confinement leaves him alone with his thoughts, which is, at once, terrifying for him, and also incredibly boring. But it`s a -
ANDERSON: But isn`t that the point of jail? It`s supposed to be punishment. You`re supposed to think about what you`ve done wrong.
KAVINOKY: Well, the point of jail is really two-fold. It`s both to punish the offender and also to deter future conduct from those who are not in custody. So to that extent, it`s serving what it is designed to do.
ANDERSON: Well, you know, for their part, the Sheriff`s Department says this move was routine, nothing special treatment about it. And whether or not the whole thing was justified, Carolina, aren`t a lot of people going to say this is just a spoiled, little rich kid getting his way?
BERMUDEZ: I think people have already said this is a spoiled, little rich kid getting his way. And it`s no surprise to me that the Hogans have been making a big stink about it. They want to be in the public eye. And I think that they are also very humiliated because people have seen them for what they really are.
Now, look at him. He`s with his buddies again. He`s not - there`s no contrition. There`s no remorse. This kid hasn`t even thought about the fact he has permanently injured one of his friends. For me, to hear him talk to his mother like that, and to talk to his father about him being a negative person, these people, it`s like they don`t have any consciences.
ANDERSON: It`s deplorable. I agree with you. And Darren, don`t you think it would be smart for Nick to pipe down now? No more jailhouse conversations with his parents. Just zip it and finish the sentence quietly.
KAVINOKY: Yes, that would be the smart thing to do unless your main goal is to keep your name in the news and in the media and on the most compelling hour of entertainment television that there is. So I don`t have much confidence he`ll actually be able to do that, although I agree, it would be an incredibly smart move to just do his time and make a graceful exit from all of this.
ANDERSON: Yes, who knows if they`re even capable of keeping that at this point? All right. Darren Kavinoky, Carolina Bermudez, thank you both. We appreciate it.
And we have been asking you to vote on our SHOWBIZ TONIGHT question of the day, it is this - "Hulk Hogan`s Son, Out of Solitary: Is he getting special treatment?" Vote at CNN.com/ShowbizTonight. E-mail us at email@example.com.
Well, not so long ago, Hulk Hogan was one of the most popular guys around. Everybody loved his family, and who could forget Hulk-a-mania, running wild in wrestling? He was one of my favorites. But now, with a divorce, his son behind bars, Hulk has gotten totally body-slammed. So many people are furious with him. Tonight, I`ve got to ask, can Hulk ever recover? Or is he pinned down with a bad reputation for good?
Also, Ed McMahon, speaking out for the very first time. It`s about his devastating battle to save his home. You`ve got to hear his emotional, dramatic words. And get this, could Britney Spears be part of the reason he could end up homeless? That`s next.
Also this -
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JEANNE MOOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It`s unthinkable. No more cracking jokes about the Hillary Nutcracker.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: This year`s presidential campaign has been fascinating, and it`s been a total feast for late-night comedians. But tonight, I can tell you they`re very sad and that`s because Hillary Clinton`s leaving the race which mean no more Hillary jokes. But tonight, for one last time, I`ve got the funniest, most outrageous ones. That is coming up.
But first, remember you can always watch SHOWBIZ TONIGHT video, anytime you want. We`re always posting new stuff for you to watch at our Web site at CNN.com/ShowbizTonight. Among the videos now playing, the stars who keep saying they will stop fighting each other. But then, they open their mouths again.
ANDERSON: Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, TV`s most provocative TV news show. I`m Brooke Anderson in Hollywood. Tonight, McMahon`s mess. TV icon and former "Tonight Show," sidekick, Ed McMahon, is speaking out for the first time, about potentially losing his Beverly Hills home. McMahon is just weeks away from foreclosure, and he owes more than $600,000 on his mansion.
Now, in a brand-new interview with CNN`s Larry King, Ed talks about being on the brink of being homeless. And Ed tells Larry about his crusade for the millions of Americans in the very same boat.
With me, tonight, here in Hollywood, "Extra" correspondent, Carlos Diaz, and CNN entertainment correspondent Kareen Wynter.
Kareen, Carlos, for the very first time, Ed McMahon, telling his side of his heartbreaking foreclosure drama. And Thursday night, Larry King asked what we all want to know here, "What happened, Ed?"
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MCMAHON: It`s like a combination. It`s like a perfect storm. The economy problems, selling the house right now is a tremendous operation - to sell a house.
LARRY KING, HOST, "LARRY KING LIVE": And the payments? You can`t - What`s the problem?
MCMAHON: You know, if you spend more money than you make, you know what happens.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Ed McMahon, who has been a staple on television since the 1950s, has made millions and millions of dollars over his long career. Carlos, how could he really have spent more than he made? We`re talking some serious mismanagement here.
CARLOS DIAZ, "EXTRA CORRESPONDENT": Serious mismanagement. He`s a victim of the refinance gone wrong. Basically, he bought this house 18 years ago for just over $2 million. He has a mortgage on it right now for $4.8 million. The balloon payments killed him on this. As you mentioned, he had a few divorces there, and he has it listed for $6.25 million. For less than a million more, you can buy Britney`s home. Just up the street, you get 2,000 square feet more. You`d have an extra bathroom and tons of stories to tell. So it`s just one of those things where it`s just mismanagement all the way around.
ANDERSON: It`s so tragic. And you know, I can understand, if this were a young Hollywood star who made foolish money choices. But, Kareen, were you as shocked as I was when you heard that Ed McMahon is facing foreclosure? Shouldn`t he know better?
KAREEN WYNTER, CNN ENTERTAINMENT CORRESPONDENT: Oh, absolutely. And Brooke, how many stories have we reported on or done out in the field the last several weeks on the economy when we`ve spoken to blue collar workers, even upper class Americans. But you`re talking a celebrity here with an entirely different bank account who makes millions, right? So how could this happen?
I think his wife summed it up best, and I did watch the interview with Larry when she said, "Hey, you know, we were helping out friends and family along the way. We didn`t make the smartest financial decisions. I mean we haven`t even kept our - taken our eye off the ball here." So it shows no matter what your income bracket is, you can fall prey to the market when it starts to slide as it is right now.
ANDERSON: Yes, nobody is immune. And speaking of Ed`s wife, Pam, she got very emotional when discussing their dire financial situation. Listen to this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PAM MCMAHON, ED MCMAHON`S WIFE: You can just say it`s embarrassing, to say the least. And it`s sad because, you know, Ed`s worked his whole, entire life. I sit there, and I cry and I feel sorry. And you know, I`m sad. And, you know, you go through a million different emotions. And you know, when I`m upset, I go to the Target dollar bins because I don`t go to any of the other stores anymore.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: OK. This is a pretty sad Hollywood story. But there are those who aren`t sympathetic and who don`t feel sorry that she has to shop at Target. So I`ve got an idea. Stick with me here. What if some of Ed`s famous neighbors, like Britney Spears, rallied around him? Carlos, they could put together some cash, go to Ed`s house with a giant cardboard check, just like he used to use for the "American Family Publishing Sweepstakes." What do you think? Rally around this.
DIAZ: I like the way you`re thinking. I like the way you`re thinking there. Those big checks are hard to cash, though, especially in the drive- through because - But I`m thinking what he needs to do is he needs to go around with a big check right around dinner time, then, present the check and go, what are you guys cooking? And he could have dinner. And think of the money he could save by that alone right there.
ANDERSON: A thrifty approach. You`re right. Well, Kareen, what do you think? Do you think any of Ed`s Hollywood friends will reach out to help him? Maybe some former "Star Search" winners, because Ed did help jumpstart a whole lot of careers.
WYNTER: Oh, absolutely. And, hey, Britney Spears, his neighbor, she`s turning over a new leaf so he may get that knock on the door. She may, you know, fork over a couple million. I`m sure she can spare that.
But, you know, seriously here, Brooke, his interview was quite sincere. This wasn`t someone who came on national television, looking for a handout, looking for pity. He says, "Hey, you know what? I`m in the situation that I`m in, and I`m going to get out." So I think that`s going to resonate a lot with the public and I think he may get a lot more help than he perhaps bargained for.
ANDERSON: Yes, he was very forthcoming and I was impressed by the interview, as well. And even if his house is safe, he has now become the celebrity face of foreclosure. The upside is that Ed says he wants to help the millions of Americans who are also on the brink of losing their homes. Listen to this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MCMAHON: The billion people that now have foreclosure signs on their house, or nearby. And I just want to give them hope, give them optimism, give them some kind of guidance.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Ten seconds, Carlos. Could he be a cautionary tale here?
DIAZ: He could be. And there`s a simple solution to this cautionary tale. Brad Pitt, and Angelina Jolie, adopt Ed McMahon. Based on a $70 million place, they`ve got plenty of room.
WYNTER: Carlos, come on.
DIAZ: That could work. That could work!
ANDERSON: Kareen`s not buying it, are you?
WYNTER: I`m not at all. Hey, he has a message. He`s inspiring a lot of people out there, and if nothing else, I think that`s important.
ANDERSON: We will leave it there. Kareen Wynter, Carlos Diaz, thank you both.
ANDERSON: All right. You know, I used to be a fan of Hulk Hogan during his wrestling days. I mean, who didn`t like the Hulkster, right?
Well, he has really taken a huge hit. He`s gone from one of the most popular guys around. And now, so many people are furious with him and his family. A painful divorce, his son in jail, a total meltdown. Tonight, I`ve got to ask this controversial question, can Hulk ever bounce back, or is he down for the three-count for good?
Also, Shania Twain is down, but definitely not out. Tonight, she`s speaking out for the very first time about her painful split with her husband of 14 years who reportedly cheated on her. I`m really bummed about this. We`ve got her emotional words, straight ahead.
And as Shania and her husband break up, here`s a question everybody is asking, will Rosie O`Donnell and her girlfriend get married again? Rosie herself tells us, next.
ANDERSON: And here we go. Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. I`m Brooke Anderson. Here are some more stories that are new right now. And I want to tell you, tonight, Rosie O`Donnell is not getting married. Now, ever since California`s highest court has ruled that gay marriages are OK, other big stars like Ellen DeGeneres, and "Star Trek`s" George Takei say they will marry their same-sex partner. But tonight, Rosie says, for her, not so fast. Now, she actually married girlfriend, Kelly Carpenter four years ago in San Francisco. But the court struck those weddings down as invalid. Listen to what Rosie tells AP Radio.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
ROSIE O`DONNELL, COMEDIENNE: We`re going to wait until it`s legal everywhere because otherwise, Kelly will be going around, touring the country on the marriage tour every - state by state.
ANDERSON: All right. We will see. And uh-oh, problems on the new edition of "Survivor" in the African country of Gabon. Host Jeff Probst says the crew`s housing hasn`t arrived. Also, a crane fell over and more than $100,000 in food has gone missing. Oh, and then there are the animals who haven`t been so cooperative.
And here`s the question I have, can Hulk Hogan survive the explosive and shocking meltdown of his family? You know, I used to be a big Hulk fan. I totally remember Hulk-a-mania running wild when he wrestled. But now with the painful divorce, his son in jail, so many people are outraged at Hulk and his family. But tonight, I`ve got to ask, can Hulk bounce back? Or is he pinned down to the mat for good?
Shania Twain is going through a stunning, painful split, too. For the first time tonight, she`s speaking out about the breakup of her 14-year marriage. Her husband reportedly cheated on her. You`ve got to stick around for her heart-wrenching, emotional words.
Also this -
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MOOS: It`s unthinkable. No more cracking jokes about the Hillary nutcracker.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: I just love political jokes. But tonight, I can tell you, talk show hosts everywhere are really sad because with Hillary Clinton leaving the presidential race, they`re going to lose one of their favorite subjects. So, straight ahead, one last time, the funniest, most outrageous Hillary Clinton jokes.
ANDERSON: On SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, has the Mighty Hulk fallen? Hulk Hogan, a star, adored by so many fans, takes a big hit after his son gets sent to jail. Tonight, SHOWBIZ TONIGHT asks, can Hulk`s image ever bounce back? Or is he down for the count?
Shania Twain speaks out about her heartache. For the first time since she and her husband split up after 14 years of marriage, Shania has a message for her fans. How is she doing? Is she planning a comeback? Tonight, SHOWBIZ TONIGHT has Shania Twain`s public breakup and private pain.
Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. It is 30 minutes past the hour. I`m Brooke Anderson coming to you tonight from Hollywood, and this is TV`s most provocative entertainment news show.
Tonight, Hulk Hogan takes a hit. You know, it wasn`t that long ago that Hulk was a world wrestling icon beloved by millions. Now, he`s gone from daddy of the year, to daddy of disaster.
The downfall started the night Hulk Hogan`s son, Nick, was involved in a horrible car crash. That crash left his friend, John Graziano, in a semi-comatose state. Hogan`s son is now serving an eight-month sentence and it`s the outrage that has followed that has put Hulk and his family on the fast track to meltdown. So can Hulk ever recover?
First, here`s the latest. Hulk`s son, Nick, has been moved from an isolated jell cell to a shared cell. He now shares his new jail cell with three other juvenile inmates. And now, Nick can watch TV, too. The Sheriff`s Office says the move was routine and not special treatment. But now, what about Hulk? His image has taken a serious beating. So, will Hulk-a-mania survive the hits? Or will the hall of famer have to retire to the hall of shame?
With me, tonight, in Hollywood, Darren Kavinoky, attorney with the Kavinoky Law Firm; and in New York tonight, Carolina Bermudez, senior editor with "In Touch Weekly." Also in New York, Michael Musto, entertainment columnist for "The Village Voice."
Gang, here is a guy - Hulk Hogan was literally at the top of his game. And even when he revived his career with the reality show, "Hogan Knows Best," a new generation of people fell in love with him, this time as a family man. Carolina, are you surprised to see how quickly the mighty have fallen?
BERMUDEZ: I`m not surprised at all. The public has so much information at their disposal with publications, television shows, and bloggers talking about celebrities and their every move. I think people were sympathetic at first, when they did hear everything that Hulk was going through. But after the release of those jail tapes, I think the sympathy went out the window.
ANDERSON: Michael, what do you think? Do you think that the sympathy went out the window and then in a blink of an eye, things can completely change?
MICHAEL MUSTO, ENTERTAINMENT COLUMNIST, "THE VILLAGE VOICE": Sure. Show business goes in cycles, Brooke. I think in Hulk`s favor, or at least lucky for him, he`s not Sir Ian McKellen or some (UNINTELLIGIBLE) of integrity and respect. He`s somebody who became famous for basically big biceps and beating people in the face. For a while -
ANDERSON: But he did have - he was respected and revered by many.
MUSTO: But he did it with some integrity. That is very true. But you know what? If for a while, it looked like it would hurt his image if he was seen being nice. If he helped a sick puppy or something, that would devastate him. However, this whole turn of events, Brooke, is really too much. He and his ex-wife have shown little compassion in dealing with the victim of his son, and the mother of the victim of his son. He needs to turn it around very quickly.
ANDERSON: Well, needless to say, it has been a very tough year for Hulk Hogan, the horrific car crash, accusations that Hulk supplied alcohol to his son, the divorce, accusations of infidelity, and probably the most outrageous lately is hearing his voice on these jailhouse conversations. Listen to what he and Nick said about the crash victim.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HOGAN: Well, I don`t know what type of person John was or what he did to get himself in this situation. I know he was pretty aggressive and used to yell at people and used to do stuff and - but for some reason, man, god laid some heavy (EXPLETIVE DELETED) on that kid, man. I don`t know what he was into.
N. BOLLEA: John was a negative person.
HOGAN: He was what?
N. BOLLEA: He was a negative person.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: It`s unbelievable. Darren, this is tough to recover from. They knew they were being recorded. How could they have been so callous? It`s a damning conversation.
KAVINOKY: Wait a second, Brooke. Maybe I`m the token old guy on the panel today, but I remember most of the `80s. And the Hulk Hogan that I know made his living wearing Speedos and body oil as his work attire and basically was a glorified carnival performer. And possibly jumped the shark of his career, when he played Thunder Lips in "Rocky 3."
So the idea that he`s going to make calloused and insensitive statements isn`t really surprising to me. I think I`m more surprised that anybody else would be surprised. You can take the man out of the carnival, but apparently, you can`t take the carnival out of the man.
ANDERSON: But you know, that was all an act, or so tens of millions of people thought. To them, he was the Hulkster. Carolina, what do you think? Has this done permanent damage to his image?
BERMUDEZ: Absolutely. Irreparable damage. Actually, I don`t think he and his family will ever come out of this unscathed. Here`s the problem. Hulk was becoming a family guy. People were really starting to like him and the way he was parenting his son and his daughter. Now, people have seen the true story. And I don`t think that there`s any other producer or TV station or anybody that`s going to want to bring this family back on board and want to support them because they know how the audience feels about them now.
ANDERSON: But you know, I`d like to take a look back at what it was like before all of this drama started. A very different time, when Hulk was promoting their reality show, "Hogan Knows Best." He told SHOWBIZ TONIGHT he was so proud of all the success his family was having.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HOGAN: It`s great for all of us. I mean the show`s been awesome. We love doing it. And Nick, now, has been signed by Mopar. He`s the youngest pro- driver ever.
N. BOLLEA: Thank you, Brooke.
ANDERSON: Record deal.
HOGAN: Thank, God, Scott Storch and Cecile Barker from Miami, signed Brooke. And Linda is getting ready to do some of her own business with QVC. So, we`re rolling.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Michael, what a difference a few years makes. It doesn`t even seem like the same family to you.
MUSTO: I don`t know, Brooke. To me, that still looks -already looks like "The Adam`s Family" more than "The Brady Bunch." And by the way, I was almost going to wear that same head kerchief.
ANDERSON: Oh, why didn`t you?
MUSTO: Yes, I don`t know.
ANDERSON: That`s nice.
MUSTO: I knew he was going to wear that in the clip. But look, Hulk is so ruined by all of this stuff that the only thing he could do now is a reality show. Oh, he`s already doing one? You know what? I don`t know what he can do, an autograph show or something. Or just hire a publicist like Tom Cruise used to have, who used to report to the press all the great things that he did, like save people on the highway whether he did them or not. He needs to get that message out there.
ANDERSON: Put a positive spin on things. Well, you know, Darren, Hulk was using their reality show to give his kids really an opportunity to have the careers that they wanted. And all of this has really kind of blown up in their face, hasn`t it?
KAVINOKY: Oh, it`s definitely blown up, although maybe it will be for their benefit, ultimately, so they can burn their images into the American consciousness. I think their best hope now is the notion that we Americans have an incredibly short attention span or that we love a comeback story. And that could really be ala Britney Spears, the comeback story we all hope to see, as they raise themselves from the ashes.
ANDERSON: Well, we do love a comeback story. But you know, this story of the crash has really struck a nerve among Hulk`s fans. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT viewers have been writing in by the tens of thousands.
And I want to read an E-mail from Dave in Delaware. "I really liked the Hogans until I saw the way they really are when they don`t know that anyone is listening. This poor veteran and his family`s lives are ruined at the hand of someone who continues to make bad decisions. I`m a forgiving person as I think most people are. But I doubt if these people are capable of change. The best they have to offer is showmanship."
Carolina, you`ve said it before that Hollywood is a very forgiving place. Do you think we`ll ever see Hulk Hogan on top again?
BERMUDEZ: On top? Not necessarily. But I do think he`s going to continue to work. He has a great show right now, "American Gladiators." Some people watch it. I don`t know. I don`t think that crowd is really going to stop watching because of this situation.
But I don`t think that he`s going to be in any big blockbusters anytime soon. I don`t think he`s going to be the frontrunner for any type of shows. So I think that he`s lucky that he has this right now. And in the future, maybe he`ll be lucky if he gets another project.
ANDERSON: We will have to see if people can ever really look at Hulk Hogan the same way again. OK. Darren Kavinoky, Carolina Bermudez and Michael Musto, thank you all so much. Great to see you.
And we`ve been asking you to vote on our question of the day, "Hulk Hogan`s Son Out of Solitary: Is he getting special treatment?" Keep voting at CNN.com/ShowbizTonight. E-mail us - the address, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Shania Twain is speaking out about her split from her husband. I think it`s so sad. They were together for 14 years. Now, for the first time, Shania is opening up about how she feels. I`ll tell you what she`s saying, next on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.
Also, Clint Eastwood has a bone to pick with fellow director, Spike Lee. And wait until you hear what Clint has reportedly said about Spike. But who`s in the right? I`ll fill you in on this unlikely feud, coming up.
Also this -
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MOOS: It`s unthinkable. No more cracking jokes about the Hillary nutcracker.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Hillary Clinton supporters aren`t the only ones who are sad that she`s leaving the race for the White House. The comedians are going to miss a lot of good material. I have the funniest, the most outrageous Hillary jokes coming up on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.
Remember you can watch SHOWBIZ TONIGHT video anytime you want. We`re always posting new stuff for you to watch at our Web site, CNN.com/ShowbizTonight. Among the videos now playing, Hollywood divorce court.
ANDERSON: Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, TV`s most provocative entertainment news show. I`m Brooke Anderson in Hollywood. Tonight, two big stories that are new right now. First, it`s a battle of the Hollywood heavyweights. Clint Eastwood is firing back at Spike Lee over claims his films are racist, reportedly saying lee should, quote, "shut his face," according to the U.K.`s "Guardian Newspaper."
And also tonight, for the first time ever, Shania Twain, speaking out about her sudden split from her husband of 14 years, and how she`s getting through her very public heartbreak.
Joining me tonight in Hollywood, CNN entertainment correspondent, Kareen Wynter. Also in Hollywood, Marc Malkin, columnist for "E! Online."
Kareen, Marc, welcome to you both. And hey, the war of words between Clint Eastwood and Spike Lee is really heating up here. Eastwood is speaking up, after Lee criticized his film, "Lives of our Fathers," for not including African-American actors.
Speaking to "The Guardian" newspaper, Eastwood reportedly said Lee should, quote, "shut his face," adding it would be historically inaccurate to include African-Americans in a story about the specific men who raised the flag at Iwo Jima. Marc, should Spike Lee shut his face, or should Clint shut his?
MARC MALKIN, COLUMNIST "E! ONLINE": I have to say I think Spike Lee is a great filmmaker, but I just don`t think this is the battle he should be going for. It`s true Clint Eastwood made a movie about a historical time. There were no African-American soldiers in this story. I`m not sure what Spike Lee is upset about. You know, it`s like Spike Lee making a movie about a black character and casting Tom Hanks.
ANDERSON: True. And you know Spike Lee - he always speaks his mind. He wasn`t going to stay quiet for long. He now tells ABC this - "The man is not my father and we`re not on a plantation either. He sounds like an angry, old man."
Ouch. Kareen, have they gone too far here?
WYNTER: No way. We want them to keep going. This is absolutely entertaining for us. Look at us, we`re talking about it. We are laughing, and what`s really funny is Spike just, you know, made the comments, reportedly, about Clint being an old man.
We`re not talking men here. These are little boys, Brooke. It`s so reminiscent of, you know, back in the days of fights on the schoolyard. These are little kids who were duking it out. And what`s really getting lost here is the fact they`re both very, very talented. Their work speaks for itself. We`re forgetting about all that. We just want them to, you know, keep fighting. It`s so (UNINTELLIGIBLE).
ANDERSON: Yes, here they are, two revered filmmakers trading barbs. And this whole thing started at the Cannes Film Festival when Lee was promoting his own film about black soldiers in World War II called "Miracle at St. Anna."
Marc, call me a cynic here, but do you think Lee may just be trying to stir up some controversy here, get some free publicity for his own movie?
MALKIN: You know, Spike Lee has always been a pro at getting publicity. He knows what to say that`s going to set people off. I have to be honest, I wasn`t really hearing about Spike`s new movie, but now I know all about it. Now, I want to see it. But I think it`s time the two of them get together and do "Grumpy Old Men," or "The Odd Couple." They should star in a movie together.
ANDERSON: That`s a good idea. They certainly have stirred the pot here.
All right. Moving now to another huge story that is new right now. Shania Twain and her hubby, music producer Matt Lange recently announced they are separating after 14 years of marriage, this amid a "People" magazine report that he cheated on her with a family friend. Lange and the friend deny an affair.
And now, for the first time, Shania is opening up on her Web site about this painful split. And here`s what she had so say to her fans, "As I am sure you have seen or heard, I am going through a rough time personally in my life. I wanted you all to know that I could not be getting through this without you. Your letters, E-mails and words of encouragement give me strength. I need some time to heal this broken heart. But make no mistake, I will be back and hopefully stronger than ever."
Kareen, she`s really opening herself up here. Is this some sort of Internet therapy for her in a way, connecting with her fans?
WYNTER: I absolutely do. You know, when someone is going through such a personal time like Shania is right now, it`s not that you can pull back and deal with it personally, Brooke. It`s all over the blogs. It`s in the press. It becomes a very public matter.
And what do you do when you want to release? Well, you can choose the outlet that Shania has chosen, so that`s sitting on a couch airing your feelings that way. You don`t have to be in the defensive mode, so I think it`s quite effective. And as she mentioned in that blog, that she is going to be using her music to basically tell the story. So, you can see where this is going.
ANDERSON: Oh, yes. You know, really getting it off her chest and it`s just really sad. It surprised me. They were a couple that didn`t live in Hollywood. They stayed out of the spotlight. We do wish Shania and everyone involved well. Marc Malkin, Kareen Wynter, thank you both for your insight. We appreciate it.
All right. So the big news in the country right now is that Barack Obama will be the Democratic nominee for president. What does that have to do with showbiz, you might ask? Plenty, because there are a ton of comedians who have found Hillary Clinton`s campaign to be a gold mine for material. So, now what? Here`s CNN`s Jeanne Moos, for SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.
MOOS (voice over): The pool cleaning guy came to the Clintons` house to service their pool Thursday. But now that Hillary`s dropping out of the race, she may actually have time to swim. But woe is me, contemplating life after Hillary.
JAY LENO, HOST, "THE TONIGHT SHOW WITH JAY LENO": Final clearance, all Hillary Clinton jokes must go tonight. Everything must go.
MOOS: Please, please, don`t go.
STEPHEN COLBERT, HOST, "THE COLBERT REPORT": Dear Hillary, do not stop until all is blood and ash.
MOOS: We`re left with two guys in suits, but no pantsuits.
DAVID LETTERMAN, HOST, "LATE SHOW WITH DAVID LETTERMAN": Hillary lost. And she said, "Today, I`m not going anywhere. I`ve already purchased my inaugural pantsuit. So -"
MOOS: In honor of her departure, Conan retired a pantsuit into the rafters. But Hillary will get the last laugh. Where, oh, where, are we going to get laughs?
(AMY POEHLER LAUGHS)
SEN. HILLARY CLINTON (D-NY), FORMER PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Do I really laugh like that?
MOOS: And what are Hillary impersonators going to do? Does this Chilean performance artist`s act have legs without Hillary? It`s more fun when it`s a woman tossing back shots. It`s a woman -
PAUL GIPSON, PRESIDENT OF A STEELWORKERS UNION: That has testicular fortitude.
MOOS: We`re going to need testicular fortitude to go on. What about our Hillary toys, from all those toys we`ve done.
(on camera): And it`s unthinkable, no more cracking jokes about the Hillary nutcracker? They sold 230,000. I broke a nail.
(voice over): Critics called them offensive. But Hillary autographed at least one. Suspicious packages containing the nutcrackers have even caused several bomb scares. The center has revamped the Web site to reflect what may be next, "Will the vise president become the vice president?" If she doesn`t, we`ll sure miss her pointed gestures. Exaggerated pointing comedians love to point out.
COLBERT: Clap, clap. Point, point. Clap, clap. Point, point.
MOOS: And if we don`t have Hillary, we don`t have Bill.
BILL CLINTON, FORMER UNITED STATES PRESIDENT: You always follow me around and play these little games.
MOOS: Maybe the presidency was the one nut Hillary couldn`t crack, but we`re sure she`ll pop up again. This is one politician you can`t just put back in the box.
ANDERSON: That was CNN`s Jeanne Moos for SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.
All right. You remember Melissa Joan Hart from "Sabrina, The Teenage Witch?" Well, she`s grown up now. She`s been married almost five years and has two young boys. She stopped by SHOWBIZ TONIGHT and we had to ask how she manages to make her relationship work with all the pitfalls of fame. That`s next.
ANDERSON: Hey, there. It is time now for "Making It Work." Now, this is where we shine a spotlight on celebrity couples who have strong relationships in Hollywood. Tonight, "Sabrina, The Teenage Witch" star, Melissa Joan Hart. She and her husband have been married for almost five years. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT`s A.J. Hammer sat down with Melissa and asked about their secret to success.
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MELISSA JOAN HART, ACTRESS: First, you`ve got to pick the right person, you know. And then, you`ve got to understand that it`s a struggle. There`s ups and downs. There`s times you look at the person and you can`t stand them. But you don`t just divorce them because of that. You know, you get through it. You work out problems. You communicate. You know, as long as you have that base, that love, and attraction for each other, then you`re fine.
But the thing is, people forget that Hollywood is an artist community. You know, I like to think of it as - this may be a big stretch, like Maman Stran(ph) in the days of Moulin Rouge or something. You know, all these fabulous painters. Or you know like, they`re crazy. Hollywood people are artists that are just crazy. They`re egomaniacs or they`re completely insecure. And even if they`re insecure, they act like egomaniacs. So, everyone`s just trying to find the new, the better, the this, the that. They love - you know, they`re emotional and romantic. Everyone falls in love like that or falls out of love just as quick.
You know, it`s a matter of - if you really - first of all, I think a lot of those types of people just shouldn`t be married, just shouldn`t get married, you know. You just have relationships. But if you are going to get married and you want to stick with it, you`ve got to find the right person. And you`ve got to be willing to make the sacrifices. And you know, stick with it.
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ANDERSON: Melissa and her husband have two sons, two-year-old Mason and three-month-old Brady(ph).
On Thursday, we told you about the bidding war that`s reportedly already underway for the first pictures of Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie`s twins. And we ask you to vote on our SHOWBIZ TONIGHT question of the day, "Angelina Jolie`s Twins: Would the first photos of them be worth $15 million?" Twelve percent of you say yes; 88 percent of you say no.
Some E-mails we`ve received - Susan from South Carolina writes, "I wouldn`t have a problem with them collecting $15 million as long as they donate that money to charities."
Rachel from Georgia writes, "When I think of how so many people are scraping up money for gas and food while the costs keep going up and up, it makes me sick to think that anyone would spend $15 million to take a picture."
Valid points by both Susan and Rachel. Thanks so much for watching. That`s a wrap for SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. I`m Brooke Anderson in Hollywood. Remember, you can watch SHOWBIZ TONIGHT on the 11:00s - 11:00 p.m. Eastern and Pacific, and in the morning at 11:00 a.m. Eastern. The latest from "CNN HEADLINE NEWS" is next. Take care.