Return to Transcripts main page
ESPN Sacks Sportscaster Steve Phillips After Explosive Sex Story Breaks; Defending Richard Heene?; Jon and Kate Court Face-Off; Oprah Weight Debate; Aniston Talk Show?; Ivanka Trump Gets Married; Tyler Perry vs. Spike Lee; Anka`s Jackson Angst
Aired October 26, 2009 - 23:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
A.J. HAMMER, HEADLINE NEWS ANCHOR (voice over): Right now on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, fired over sex. ESPN sportscaster Steve Phillips gets the boot after an affair with a young coworker. The explosive great debate that erupted today. Did the punishment really fit the crime? Wait a minute. How come he got fired and David Letterman didn`t?
Tonight, bad news for Oprah. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT breaks big news today about Oprah Winfrey and her weight loss advice. Plus, is Oprah really giving Jennifer Aniston her own talk show? The SHOWBIZ truth squad is on the case.
Defending the balloon boy dad. The remarkable new claim today that we should actually feel sorry for him. What the heck is that all about?
TV`s first, most provocative entertainment news show starts right now.
(on camera): I`m A.J. Hammer broadcasting tonight, and every night, from New York City.
BROOKE ANDERSON, HEADLINE NEWS ANCHOR: Hi there, everyone. I`m Brooke Anderson coming from Hollywood.
And tonight, fired for sex. ESPN sportscaster Steve Phillips paid the price big time today for cheating on his wife with a young production assistant he worked with. ESPN has told the one-time start announcer to take a hike. Oh, and that young production assistant, who allegedly tried to pull a "Fatal Attraction" on Phillips? SHOWBIZ TONIGHT learned today she is also out of a job with ESPN.
But let me tell you what I heard a lot of people debating today. How come Phillips got fired and David Letterman did not? SHOWBIZ TONIGHT bringing you the brand new, explosive new developments making for big news breaking today.
ANDERSON (voice-over): It`s an affair that made headlines. Steve Phillips, the smooth talking and very married baseball analyst for ESPN.
STEVE PHILLIPS, SPORTSCASTER: He doesn`t pass the gut check for me.
ANDERSON: And seedy sexual dalliance with much younger ESPN production assistant Brooke Hundley, who allegedly harassed Phillips family.
JO PIAZZA, AOL POPEATER: This is absolutely the modern-day "Fatal Attraction".
ANDERSON: Even "Fatal Attraction`s" Glenn Close talked about it on "The View."
JOY BEHAR, CO-HOST, "THE VIEW": Do you have any advice for that lunatic?
GLENN CLOSE, ACTRESS: Probably go get help.
ANDERSON: Now as the story of the 46-year-old baseball analyst, and his PA, reaches a fever pitch, ESPN has now turned its own double-play and thrown them both out. ESPN sacked Steve Phillips last night and just today ESPN confirmed to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT Brooke Hundley is out, too. A sex scandal with a married TV personality and a much younger subordinate. Haven`t we just seen this movie?
PIAZZA: This is yet another in the icky old man sex scandals we have to deal with.
ANDERSON: "The New York Post" published police reports filed by Steve Phillips, his wife and his oldest son. They claim Hundley terrorized them after he ended their brief affair this past summer.
MARNI PHILLIPS, 911 CALL: I have a crazy woman who is involved with my husband and she comes to my house to harm me and my children.
ANDERSON: TMC obtained the frantic 911 call placed by his wife, Marni, on August 19. She tells police Hundley actually showed up at the Phillips`s Connecticut home while Marni was alone with their seven-year-old son.
911 OPERATOR: Did she confront you? Did she threaten you or anything?
M. PHILLPS: She has been threatening me via text and phone calls.
ANDERSON: Phillips also claims Hundley used an alias to contact their 16-year-old son online, asking for dirt on Steve and his wife. Now, SHOWBIZ TONIGHT can tell you Brooke Hundley made some accusations of her own.
MIKE WALTERS, TMZ: Brooke filed a restraining order against Steve, claiming that Steve was the aggressor.
ANDERSON: TMZ`s Mike Walters tells SHOWBIZ TONIGHT that Hundley filed for a restraining order against Phillips the day after that creepy alleged visit to the Phillips`s home.
WALTERS: She claims, in the documents that we got our hands on, that Steve was giving her drinks, telling her to come up to his suite, and kind of coercing her into having that relationship with him.
ANDERSON: Hundley reportedly withdrew that complaint and at Phillips request, police in their Connecticut town didn`t pursue charges against Hundley. But there affair is now a huge story.
DAVID LETTERMAN, "LATE SHOW WITH DAVID LETTERMAN": I have had sex with women who work for me on this show.
ANDERSON: This whole mess is drawing comparisons to David Letterman who was forced to admit his own interoffice relationships after someone tried to blackmail him. He kept his job.
PIAZZA: There does seem to be an epidemic of very powerful men in television preying on younger women who in subordinate roles.
ANDERSON: But TMZ`s Mike Walters tells SHOWBIZ TONIGHT that Phillips and Letterman are two different affairs.
WALTERS: The fact is Letterman didn`t break any rules according to his contract. We don`t know what ESPN`s contract says about dating someone below you.
ANDERSON: Now, Phillips and his ex-lover are out of a job. And Phillips is also out of a marriage. His wife filed for divorce. Everybody is humiliated.
WALTERS: This has gotten really out of hand for everybody involved and I think at the end, it costs everybody a huge amount.
HAMMER: So, it`s the question on everyone`s mind and it`s the explosive SHOWBIZ TONIGHT debate. Was it right to fire Steve Phillips for having sex with his 22-year-old coworker? With me tonight, here in New York, Jane Velez Mitchell; she is the host of "ISSUES WITH JANE VELEZ- MITCHELL." That program can be seen every night, 7 p.m. Eastern, here on HLN. She is the also author of this incredible new book, "I Want: My Journey From Addiction and Overconsumption To A Simple Honest Life".
And in Hollywood tonight, Hyla, he`s an entertainment journalist with 5DollarPrep.com.
All right. So, here we are tonight, Steve Phillips and the young woman he had sex with, Brooke Hundley, both out of work for having a consensual relationship that ended really, really badly to put it mildly.
But, Jane, is that reason enough for Steve to be fired in your mind?
JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL, HLN HOST, "ISSUES": I don`t think he is fired for having sex. I think he is out of there because he exhibited unprofessional conduct and very questionable judgment. He`s 46years old having sex with a 22-year old, the woman less than half his age.
He is also married, with children. And he is a de factor boss because even in he is not her direct supervisor, by just the virtue of the fact that he`s on television, he has power and authority to wield over subordinates in the office.
On top of that, he has a track record of doing this kind of thing when he was the Mets general manager he was sued for sexual harassment, admitted having an affair with an employee and later settled out of court. This could be the tip of the iceberg. There were some nasty stuff in that restraining order. We don`t know if any of it is true. But we don`t know if work e-mails were used, work locations, work computers. We don`t know the half of it, I`m sure.
HAMMER: Well, for ESPN, is seems that it came down to image as far as they`re concerned. Listen to how ESPN explained to us, today, why Steve Phillips was fired.
This is what they said, very concisely: "His ability to be an effective representative for ESPN has been significantly and irreparably damaged."
Hyla, what do you think? Should he have been fired?
HYLA, 5DOLLARPREP: Absolutely. You can`t compare him to David Letterman. David Letterman is of the biggest brands in Hollywood of all time. You also have to think about the bottom line. How does Steve departing from ESPN, now does that affect ESPN? They don`t care. He is not even in the same league as David Letterman. Letterman leaving CBS? That would be a major shake-up, that would affect a lot of people and it would also affect the network financially. It is no surprise they let him go. They don`t need the headache.
HAMMER: And as I mentioned, SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, did learn late today that Brooke Hundley is also no longer working for ESPN. We don`t know if she was fired or if she in fact quit.
But what do you think, Jane, should she have been fired as Steve was?
MITCHELL: Again, I don`t think she was fired for having sex. I think she was fired for being an alleged loony tunes, chock full o`nuts, who is terrorized, allegedly, Steve Phillips`s wife and children. If she did half the things that are being reported that she is alleged to have done, she exhibiting way beyond unprofessional conduct. These are potential criminal charges, except for the fact that the family said, we don`t want to press charges. They want this to go away.
HAMMER: Well, the Steve Phillips sex scandal broke just two weeks after Letterman`s shocking admission that he was having sex with several employees. Let`s take a look at both cases and break it down a little bit.
David, of course, hosts "The Late Show" on CBS. And he runs Worldwide Pants, that of course, the company that produces the show. Steve is a high-profile baseball analyst, he admits to having this affair with a 22-year-old employee. Again, he is not her boss. He gets the boot as well.
Now, Hyla, you said you can`t really compare the two, but looking at the similarities, how do you explain Phillips getting fired, and Dave not so much?
HYLA: Phillips is just nowhere near the same league as Letterman. When you look, and you are a network, and trying to decide what`s best for our network, CBS decided, OK, it`s best for our network to keep Letterman on, because of the brand, and what he brings to the table. Phillips doesn`t bring that type of power that Letterman does. So, it`s an easy decision for ESPN. They don`t need the headache. They don`t need the drama. They had to deal with Erin Andrews a couple of weeks ago.
HYLA: Now there is another scandal involved. They don`t want it. Just cut all the ends and let`s start fresh.
HAMMER: Quickly, Jane, I want to get your take on that. How do you see the difference between why he got fired and Dave Letterman did not?
MITCHELL: Well, first of all, David Letterman doesn`t have a history of being sued for sexual harassment and settling out of court. This corporate culture at ESPN, from everything I have read, is something that perhaps needs to be looked at. It`s a jock culture. And I suspect that there is a lot more to this than meets the eye. In the restraining order, this 22-year-old woman claims that she told her supervisor something and the supervisor said get used to it.
HAMMER: All right. There is still a lot to look into as far as that`s concerned.
Right now, another big story breaking tonight. Suzanne Somers` stunning apology to Patrick Swayze. Right after Swayze died Somers made a shocking link between his death and his chemotherapy. Well, CNN`s Larry King asked Somers, who is a cancer survivor, about that.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LARRY KING, CNN HOST, "LARRY KING LIVE": What did you say about Patrick Swayze? And where did you say it?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAMMER: Jane, Hyla, don`t go anywhere. You do not want to miss Suzanne`s answer.
ANDERSON: Tonight, bad news for Oprah. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT breaks big news today about Oprah Winfrey and her weight loss advice. I have to tell you, I don`t think Oprah is going to like what we are about to reveal.
Plus, is Oprah really working with Jennifer Aniston for Jen`s own talk show? Would you watch it? The SHOWBIZ TONIGHT truth squad is on the case.
And defending the balloon boy dad. The remarkable new claim today that we should actually feel sorry for him. What the heck is that all about? And is anyone really buying it?
HAMMER: And now the SHOWBIZ news ticker. More stories from the SHOWBIZ TONIGHT newsroom, making news right now.
You are watching SHOWBIZ TONIGHT on HLN. Right now, I want you to keep on watching the bottom of your screen for more nonstop, compelling and provocative news from SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.
HAMMER: Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. I`m A.J. Hammer.
ANDERSON: I`m Brooke Anderson.
Tonight, Suzanne Somers`s explosive, out-of-the-blue apology to Patrick Swayze. Just days after Patrick lost his battle to pancreatic cancer, Somers made a startling link between chemotherapy and Patrick`s death, basically blaming the treatment, and not the deadly cancer for Patrick`s death.
With me in Hollywood tonight is Kim Sarafin, she is a senior editor with "In Touch Weekly" and in New York tonight is Marvet Britto, she is a celebrity publicist and brand strategist.
Ladies, listen to what Suzanne, a breast cancer survivor herself, said last month, just days after Patrick Swayze died.
Quote, "They took this beautiful man and they basically put poison in him. Why couldn`t they have built him up nutritionally and gotten rid of the toxins in his body?"
CNN`s Larry King asked Suzanne, point blank, why she made such a disturbing statement. Listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KING: You said that -- what did you say about Patrick Swayze and where did you say it?
SUZANNE SOMERS, ACTRESS, AUTHOR: At Tom Ford`s private party. I shouldn`t have said it. But now that you then story, I was so raw from my chemotherapy experience, so raw from watching Farrah Fawcett die. It`s an epidemic. I so I should not have - I wrote a letter of apology to his family. I should not have said it.
KING: How did it get out?
SOMERS: A reporter, who did not identify himself as a reporter.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Marvet, what do you think? Was it unfair that Suzanne had to apologize for something that she said at a cocktail party, and not on the record?
MARVET BRITTO, PUBLICIST, BRAND STRATEGIST: Well, anything you say is on the record so I don`t think it was unfair for her to have to apologize. I just think that Suzanne clearly is passionate about alternative medicine. She personally experienced it and clearly was moved by the loss of Patrick and felt that what she was saying and what she was sharing would be helpful, not harmful.
ANDERSON: Yes, I think it was terrible that she was misled by this reporter. Thought she was having a private conversation, expressing her opinions, but in the end, I think best to apologize. She also revealed on "Larry King Live" that she wrote a personal letter of apology to Patrick Swayze`s family. But Suzanne still sticks to her guns about her highly controversial theories about cancer treatment.
So, Kim, I`m thinking that Suzanne may be getting slammed here. Because some people think -well, I just have to say it, that she kind of out there.
KIM, SARAFIN, "IN TOUCH WEEKLY": Yeah, that could be part of it. Look, I think she is being slammed because she is not a doctor and she is really talking about a lot of theories that are controversial, that may have worked for her. And that`s great if she talks about what worked for her and what helped her, but obviously she is not a medical expert.
So, people are certainly going to criticize her. Again, I don`t know whether these are right or wrong, but she had to expect that. She is not naive to this industry. She has been in the business for a long time. She knows that if she goes out there and says something, at a cocktail party, or on "Larry King", people are going to slam her for it.
ANDERSON: Yes, people are going to pay attention. She certainly feels strongly about her opinions. She does have a right to speak her mind.
Kim Sarafin, Marvet Britto, thanks, ladies.
HAMMER: So, Brooke, the SHOWBIZ "On Call" phone lines have been bombarded with so many people who have been calling in about "The Biggest Loser" trainer Jillian Michaels just slamming Oprah Winfrey.
ANDERSON: You`re right, A.J. Jillian said that Oprah`s weight loss advice is totally misguided. And people really fired up about this.
We got a call-in to SHOWBIZ "On Call" from Nikki in California. Nikki says that maybe they should work together.
BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
CALLER: The issue with Jillian and Oprah, why don`t they have a show off. Why doesn`t Jillian take the time to go with Oprah and teach her all the new tricks, and Oprah can learn some new advice on how to drop the weight and keep it off. I think Jillian has a big heart and Oprah and a beautiful lady, whether she`s skinny or heavy. So, I think the two together would make an excellent team.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Pretty good idea. Thank you, Nikki.
HAMMER: We also heard from Jackie who called in to SHOWBIZ "On Call" from New York. Jackie says, Jillian may have an ulterior motive here.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
CALLER: I think Jillian just wants to be noted as Oprah`s trainer. Because she can knock Bob Greene out of the ballpark. You know, once somebody is noted by Oprah, they become totally, almost millionaires overnight.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
HAMMER: All right, Jackie, appreciate your call. Remember, the SHOBIZ "On Call" phone lines are always open.
ANDERSON: Give us a ring at 1-888-SBTBUZZ, that`s 1-888-728-2899. Simply leave a voice mail and we will play some of your calls right here on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. And listen to this, your calls to SHOWBIZ "On Call" are now also on our Web site, cnn.com/showbiztonight. Check them out.
HAMMER: Tonight, bad news for Oprah. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT breaks big news today about Oprah Winfrey and her weight loss advice. I gotta tell you, I don`t think Oprah is going to like this.
Plus, is Oprah really working with Jennifer Aniston for Jen`s own talk show?
Brand new details in the Jon and Kate divorce drama. The angry war of words just ramped up today after a court hearing. So, why did Jon lash out on the court steps?
Rosie O`Donnell`s break up news. What`s the deal here? What is really going on with Rosie and her long time partner, Kelly. Rosie gave the real story today and we will have it for you.
It is time for the SHOWBIZ "News Ticker." These are more stories from the SHOWBIZ TONIGHT newsroom. They are making news right now.
You are watching SHOWBIZ TONIGHT on HLN. Right now, I want you to keep on watching the bottom of your screen for more nonstop, compelling and provocative news from SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.
ANDERSON: Tonight, Rosie`s big break up. Rosie O`Donnell and her long-time partner Kelli Carpenter are having problems. And just this morning, on Howard Stern`s Sirius XM Satellite radio show, Rosie talked about it very, very candidly. Listen to this.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
ROSIE O`DONNELL, ACTRESS: Listen, Kelli and I.
HOWARD STERN, TALK RADIO HOST: Robin Wilson (ph) is 26.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Is that true?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Not this week. But look at her.
STERN: Go ahead.
O`DONNELL: Listen, the thing is Kelli and I have a very strong connection. I`m not.
STERN: So, stay with her then.
O`DONNELL: Well, we`re trying to -we`re working things out.
STERN: You`ve got to work it out.
O`DONNELL: We`re trying, Howard.
STERN: She`s hot.
O`DONNELL: She is very beautiful. Absolutely beautiful.
STERN: I`ve seen her.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And she definitely gets you.
O`DONNELL: Yes, she gets me. Sometimes she gets me too much and thinks do I want to do this? And I go, listen, I understand. It`s not a walk in the park.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Rosie said that she and Kelli came to the conclusion that it may be better to not live together, but they will continue to be parents to their children together.
HAMMER: Well it looks like Chris Brown is reminiscing about the good old days with Rihanna, before he beat her, that is. Late last night, on his Twitter account, Brown posted a link of a video montage that someone made of he and Rihanna set to the tune of R Kelly`s song, "The Way We Used To Be". Here`s a little bit of that montage.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAMMER: Brown`s Tweet included this message. Quote, "I`m sorry, y`all. Just had to post it."
ANDERSON: The SHOWBIZ TONIGHT Facebook page filling up with comments about the Michael Jackson movie, "This Is It" The movie was made from footage of Michael`s rehearsals for what was supposed to be his final concert tour.
Not everybody thinks it`s a good idea.
Tanja T writes, "I personally won`t watch it because it`s much too painful. I will carry him in my heart forever."
But Kara B writes, "I think it`s a good thing for the movie to come out. There are a ton of people that are really excited about seeing the movie and Michael on stage. I have my tickets and ready to go."
I want to hear from you on Facebook. Also follow us on Twitter for breaking entertainment news alerts. Sign up for our Facebook and Twitter pages at CNN.com/showbiztonight.
HAMMER: And now the SHOWBIZ line up. Here`s what`s coming up at the bottom of the hour on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.
SHOWBIZ TONIGHT breaks big news today about Oprah Winfrey and her weight loss advice. She is not going to like this.
Plus, is Oprah really teaming up with Jen Aniston?
Defending balloon boy dad. The remarkable new claims that we should actually feel sorry for the guy.
The Tyler Perry-Spike Lee smack down. Their brand new war of words over race and comedy.
This is SHOWBIZ TONIGHT on HLN. Now the SHOWBIZ news ticker. More stories from the SHOWBIZ TONIGHT newsroom, making news right now.
You are watching SHOWBIZ TONIGHT on HLN. Right now you are definitely going to want to keep watching the bottom of your screen for more nonstop, compelling and provocative news from SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.
HAMMER: Now, on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, the great debate over the balloon boy hoax. The startling new admission that the balloon scam was a bunch of hot air. Today a big name comes to the defense of the Heene family. Shouldn`t we feel sorry for balloon boy dad?
Tonight, bad news for Oprah. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT breaks big news today about Oprah Winfrey and her weight loss advice. She is not going to like what we are revealing. And is Oprah giving Jennifer Aniston her own talk show?
Also, Jon and Kate face off in court the same day Kate answers heated questions on national TV. Plus, more stories breaking from the Showbiz News Ticker. TV`s first most provocative entertainment news show continues right now.
Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. It`s 30 minutes past the hour. I`m A.J. Hammer, broadcasting tonight and every night from New York City.
ANDERSON: And I`m Brooke Anderson, coming to you tonight from Hollywood.
Tonight, defending the balloon dad? You heard me. A "New York Times" columnist today set off a raging debate after saying it`s time to lay off Richard Heene and cut him some slack, and it made for big news breaking today.
We have just learned that Heene`s wife admitted to cops that the whole balloon fiasco was in fact one big hoax. But brand new tonight, people are saying cut the Heene some slack. He`s just trying to make money. People are fired up over this one. In a moment, let the great debate begin.
HAMMER: But wait! There`s more. We`ve got brand new details in the Jon and Kate divorce drama. The "he said, she said" hoopla was back in court today. It was another hearing and more angry words were tossed around. Why was Kate a no-show and why did Jon lash out at her in public on the courthouse steps.
Joining me tonight in New York, Jane Velez Mitchell who is the host of "ISSUES." Jane Velez-Mitchell, you can catch her program, and you should, every night 7:00 PM Eastern here on HLN.
In Hollywood tonight is Hyla, who`s an entertainment journalist for 5dollarprep.com.
Let`s begin with this raging hot debate today about the balloon dad. Now, in a brand new column in the "New York Times," renowned columnist Frank Rich, a guy I respect, wrote that everybody just needs to lay off Heene. Rich says that this is a guy who was just trying to make a buck. He sees an opportunity when he saw one. Specifically, he wrote, "Once his appetite had been whetted by two histrionic appearances on Wife Swap, it`s easy to see why Heene would turn his life and that of his family into a non-stop audition for more turns in the big tent of the reality media circus."
Jane Velez-Mitchell, have we been wrong? I mean, does Frank Rich have this right? Can we fault Heene for trying to work the system to his favor?
JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL, HLN HOST, "ISSUES": Frank Rich is totally wrong. In fact, his article scares me almost as much as the balloon boy stunt. This guy put people`s lives at risk. They were deploying choppers and they were discussing sending a rescuer from the chopper onto the top of the balloon to cut it open to try to rescue this kid. What if somebody had died in the process?
Not to mention that he`s forcing his children to lie, allegedly, according to his wife, and the child is so traumatized every time he`s confronted about the lie, the poor child throws up. So to me this is tantamount to child abuse. And why are we saying just because - what? - this guy had a - was on a reality show, that makes it OK?
There are people doing prison time for stealing a TV set, so this is far more potentially dangerous and destructive than stealing a TV set. This guy should be prosecuted to the max.
HAMMER: Well, believe it or not, there was a moment in the history of this whole story when we actually thought it was true and it was for real and maybe there was a kid in this thing. And now, of course, we`ve learned that Heene`s wife did `fess up to the cops that the whole thing from the very beginning was a great big balloon hoax.
Court documents reveal Mayumi Heene said her husband and her, quote "instructed their three children to lie to authorities as well as the media regarding this hoax," and lie they did. Well, almost. We all remember when their son, who was supposedly in that balloon, told CNN`s own Wolf Blitzer the whole thing was just for a show. Watch how painful it was for Heene to kind of squirm his way out of this one. Take a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
WOLF BLITZER, CNN HOST, "THE SITUATION ROOM": You want to ask him now - I don`t know if he can hear me - what he meant about what he said, "We did this for the show." You - you want to ask Falcon?
RICHARD HEENE: Falcon, they want to know - they want to know why you were in the attic, OK, for so long and why you - say it again?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAMMER: Now, watching it again, of course, it looks like he didn`t want to ask that question. He was clearly very uncomfortable there. Hyla, a lot of people at that moment, when we all thought this was for real, actually felt sorry for this guy. Do you now, just a little bit, maybe?
HYLA: I don`t know if sorry is the right word. I think he got in way over his head, and, you know, I think Hollywood creates this climate, the more outrageous you could be, the better chance you can get a reality show. Now, again, the buck stops with Richard Heene. He`s the one that makes the decisions. He`s the father. It all falls on him.
But, you know, if there`s executives saying, hey, do something outrageous and maybe we can get you on a television show - it doesn`t surprise me. I mean, he`s playing with the world of entertainment that, you know, it`s something he got a taste with with "Wife Swap." I don`t think he fully understood the power of what he did. So, in that regard, I do kind of feel sorry for him.
HAMMER: Yes. I mean, I think I understand - and this was what Frank Rich was saying - I think he perhaps is a product of our culture. That doesn`t make it right, and that doesn`t make what he did OK. And the SHOWBIZ TONIGHT Facebook wall blowing up over this today. It`s blowing up like a balloon, as a matter of fact.
Not a single person feeling sorry for Heene. Let`s look at Alissa K. who writes, "No one should be defending him!!! He is exploiting his kids to get his reality show!!! Makes me sick!!!" Jennifer S. writes this, "The truth is this idiot probably will get a reality show! And people will watch it!"
Well, Jane, they`re on your side there, and I think Jennifer has a point. People may not be forgiving Heene, but, you know what? A lot of people - they might not admit it, but they`d probably watch a reality show if he did one, don`t you think?
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Oh, I hope he doesn`t get a reality show. I think he made the crucial mistake of sort of giving it away for free. He did the reality show. It`s already aired. It aired on cable channels across the country, as we covered it. He didn`t get paid for it and I don`t think anybody`s going to be interested in watching him do something else because I don`t think he`ll ever top that.
HAMMER: Well, let`s see. Brooke Anderson, let me bring you back in here. Brooke, are you watching this reality show? I will tell you, I will not watch it unless it is a homework assignment.
ANDERSON: No way. Me too, AJ. I feel the exact, same way. This guy makes me want to throw up, like his poor child was doing when he was forced to lie during those media interviews. What his parents did was deplorable, teaching them essentially lie and deceit - it just makes me so upset every time I talk about it because parents should not use their children.
HAMMER: Let`s pop this story and move on to another big, explosive story breaking today. Jon and Kate Gosselin expected in court today to account for - remember all that money that they both took from a joint account without the other`s permission? But Kate, a no show. What does Jon do? Well, he complains about Kate in a little impromptu press conference on the court steps.
He was saying he was a little shocked because, you know, I to get through this together with her and she keeps avoiding, avoiding, avoiding and that`s the Kate Gosselin way, I guess.
Hyla, why, why, why? Please give me a good answer as to why Jon feels like he has to discuss all of his personal business in public. He hasn`t learned to please shut up.
HYLA: You know what? There`s only one explanation to this, and this could posiibly be the biggest publicity hoax, bigger than "Balloon Boy." I think Heidi and Spencer are coaching Jon Gosselin on how to handle the media. It`s the only explanation.
I mean, the back and forth is just ridiculous at this point. There has to be some type of conspiracy that`s going on underneath all this because there`s no other explanation. Sane people don`t act like this.
HAMMER: Jane, I need a quick response from you now (ph). Kate`s lawyers are saying, you know what? She wasn`t required to be in court. She did all the paperwork. But why? Why, Jon?
VELEZ-MITCHELL: I think these people are possibly more contemptible than the Heenes because the Heenes made one really, really bad decision. They make bad decisions day in and day out, season in and season out.
HAMMER: Oh, may it never end. Jane Velez-Mitchell, Hyla, thanks guys. I do appreciate you being here tonight.
ANDERSON: Tonight, I`ve got some brand-new bad news for Oprah Winfrey. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT breaks big news today about Oprah and her weight loss advice, and I can tell you she`s not going to like what we are about to reveal.
Also, is Oprah giving Jennifer Aniston her own talk show? Rumor has it that Aniston could be dishing on television pretty soon, but would you watch?
And did you see this? The frightening idea behind dressing like America`s favorite pitchman. It`s the Billy Mays look alike Halloween contest. He was a character but is this just inappropriate since he died only a few months ago? You will never guess who is behind this wacky idea.
HAMMER: Now, the Showbiz News Ticker. More stories from the SHOWBIZ TONIGHT Newsroom, making news right now.
You`re watching SHOWBIZ TONIGHT on HLN. Now, right now I want you to keep on watching the bottom of your screen for more nonstop, compelling and provocative news from SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.
HAMMER: Did you see this? You too can be Billy Mays for Halloween. The son of the late great pitchman says if you want to scream at your neighborhoods just like Billy Mays did in those infomercials, just do it. Billy Mays III launched whereisbillymays.com. This is where he asked people to send in photos for a Billy Mays look alike contest.
Now, critics saying this is a pretty morbid thing to do, but Mays III says it`s all in the spirit of positivity. Mays died suddenly in June.
Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. I`m AJ Hammer in New York.
ANDERSON: And I`m Brooke Anderson in Hollywood.
Tonight, the great Oprah weight debate. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT breaks big news today about Oprah Winfrey and her weight loss advice, and I can tell you, the news is not good. Oprah Winfrey might want to stop sharing weight loss advice on her talk show after we show you the results of a shocking poll that only SHOWBIZ TONIGHT can share with you tonight.
And speaking of Oprah, the SHOWBIZ TONIGHT Truth Squad has been on the case all day today on another brand new story. The target? Jennifer Aniston. The case? Is Oprah really giving Jennifer Aniston her own talk show?
Joining me tonight from Hollywood, Kim Serafin, who`s a senior editor with "In Touch Weekly," and from New York, Marvet Britto, who`s a publicist and brand strategist.
Marvet, Kim, this brand-new Oprah weight debate began when Jillian Michaels, who is one of the trainers from the hit TV show "Biggest Loser" was asked by "Health Magazine" who she would like to take under her wing and train. She said this, "If there`s someone I think is utterly misguided, it would be Oprah Winfrey. She says she had a thyroid problem and ate soy and I`m like, how? Where is Dr. Oz? She`s just so misinformed it is shocking to me on a daily basis. Soy is terrible for you if you have thyroid issues."
So we asked in the SHOWBIZ TONIGHT Question of the Day "Oprah Winfrey: do you trust her weight loss advice?" The results just came in today, a whopping 84 percent said, no, they don`t trust her weight loss advice. Only 16 percent say they do.
Kim, are you shocked by those results?
KIM SERAFIN, SENIOR EDITOR, "IN TOUCH WEEKLY": You know, I am really shocked because the fact is Oprah is not a political operative, yet a lot of people trusted her opinion on Obama, on the election. She`s not a book critic, but yet people - if she endorses a book, that book goes to number 1. It goes on all the bestseller list. If she puts a product on her favorite things list, that product goes out of stock even though she`s not a brand specialist.
So I think, you know, look. You look at Oprah. She`s obviously struggled with her weight but I think people really do trust her, so I`m very surprised at these results.
ANDERSON: Yes, they do. They look at her advice like it`s the gospel. Marvet, is this bad news for Oprah?
MARVET BRITTO, PUBLICIST AND BRAND STRATEGIST: I don`t think it`s bad news at all. The last time I checked, Oprah`s never officially endorsed any product. So, if - if you decide to follow her influence.
Oprah`s speaking about what works for her. Everyone`s DNA is different, so you have to adopt remedies and therapies and treatments that you think are best for your body. If it doesn`t work for you, fine, but Oprah`s only sharing her experiences, and I think for her to say what Oprah should or shouldn`t be doing, or what she should or should not be sharing, her viewers have a will and a choice to choose, and that`s what they do.
ANDERSON: That`s true. And I don`t think this is going to make a dent in her viewership.
BRITTO: Not at all.
ANDERSON: She`s - her fans are not going to abandon her over this. But I do have to tell you that today the SHOWBIZ TONIGHT Facebook page still exploding with comments about Oprah.
Samantha D. wrote on our Facebook wall, "Maybe Oprah should can it for once and listen to what someone else has to say. After all, Jillian won her own personal battle with her weight and Oprah`s been trapped in a losing battle for years."
Kim, do you agree with Samantha`s point that - that Oprah should stop giving little weight loss advice until she gets her own weight under control?
SERAFIN: No, because I think people identify with Oprah. Probably more people who try to lose weight had the same situation that Oprah has rather than what Jillian has. I think Jillian obviously should go on Oprah`s show. It will be a big ratings hit. They can talk about things. They`ll (ph) get another expert in.
I think Oprah has talked about this. This is why people love her show. They identify with her, they relate to her and they struggle themselves.
ANDERSON: That`s true. They can identify with that. I do think this is a tricky one. Oprah needs to make sure she approaches it very carefully.
I do want to move now to the brand new report about Jennifer Aniston getting her very own talk show on Oprah`s upcoming cable network that she`s launching. The SHOWBIZ TONIGHT Truth Squad been working all day on this, and late this afternoon, a rep for Jen called the report, quote, "completely false."
Marvet, no disrespect, but I personally have doubts whether Jen could pull off hosting a talk show. What do you think?
BRITTO: I think that Jen is a movie star and she should stick to leveraging her brand against movies. I`ve never her host a show, I`ve never heard of her even being interested in a show, so I think she should stick to what she does well.
ANDERSON: Stick to what her strengths are. Well, what got this repost started was this: Jen`s appearance on E!`s "Chelsea Lately." Chelsea asked Jennifer what she`s drinking because she`s got such a great body. Jennifer was pretty funny. Watch this.
CHELSEA HANDLER, E! HOST, CHELSEA LATELY: I drink vodka.
JENNIFER ANISTON, ACTRESS: Yes! That`s what I drink. That`s - If I - that`s my drink of choice, actually.
ANISTON: It`s a clean liqueur. Yes.
HANDLER: So like.
ANISTON: Just, you know, no sugar.
HANDLER: Right. Well, that`s what I`m - that`s why I drink it, but it doesn`t seem like the same thing is happening.
ANISTON: Well, first of all, you`re crazy. Second of all, how many are you drinking?
ANDERSON: So Kim, she does seem to have a pretty good sense of humor. Is this such a far-fetched idea, Jennifer hosting her own talk show?
SERAFIN: You know, she is really funny, and if she ever did this, people would definitely tune in, but she would have to change her entire personality. The fact is, Jennifer Aniston is known for being a very private person, and if you have your own talk show, you have to be someone like Oprah who`s willing to put herself out there about her weight issues, or someone like Tyra Banks who goes out on her TV show wearing a bathing suit, showing her cellulite or takes off her wig. And until Jennifer Aniston is ready to do that, which she`s never done in the past, I don`t think we`re going to see a talk show from her very soon.
ANDERSON: My thoughts exactly. She would have to be very open about her personal life and she is not used to doing that.
Kim Serafin, Marvet Britto, good to see you, ladies. Thanks.
And now we want to hear from you on this. We`ve been asking you to vote on our SHOWBIZ TONIGHT Question of the Day, "Jennifer Aniston: If she hosted a talk show, would you watch?" Keep voting, cnn.com/showbiztonight. E-mail us email@example.com.
HAMMER: Tonight, Donald Trump`s daughter ties the knot. Twenty-seven year old Ivanka Trump married 28 year old newspaper publisher Jared Kushner over the weekend. Ivanka posted this beautiful wedding photo right there on her website for the jewelry line, ivankatrumpcollection.com.
Now, the reports that it was a Jewish wedding ceremony are true, but did Donald`s good friend Regis Philbin sing at the wedding? Well, Regis answered that question this morning on "Live with Regis and Kelly."
KELLY RIPA, CO-HOST, "LIVE WITH REGIS AND KELLY": I read in the blogosphere that you sang. (INAUDIBLE) sing at this wedding?
REGIS PHILBIN, CO-HOST, "LIVE WITH REGIS AND KELLY": Honest to God - what - where did you read that?
PHILBIN: Does people take notes (ph) of the whole day and said.
RIPA: . every papers everywhere.
PHILBIN: What are you singing tonight at the Trump wedding? I said, "What?" I didn`t know anything about that.
RIPA: I heard that you were singing.
PHILBIN: No, I`m not, so.
RIPA: I read that you sang.
PHILBIN: That blogosphere is crazy.
RIPA: Unbelievable. So no singing from you?
PHILBIN: No singing. No.
RIPA: Oh! Though it just got less exciting.
HAMMER: According to People.com, Ivanka and her new husband plan to honeymoon in Africa.
OK, I got to say, Spike Lee and Tyler Perry are two of the most talented filmmakers in the industry. So what`s got them in a brand new Hollywood brawl with each other? Tonight, Tyler Perry is striking back after Spike Lee slammed his work. You`ve got to hear why Tyler called Spike`s words insulting.
This is SHOWBIZ TONIGHT on HLN.
HAMMER: And now, the Showbiz News Ticker. More stories from the SHOWBIZ TONIGHT Newsroom, making news right now.
You`re watching SHOWBIZ TONIGHT on HLN. Right now, keep on watching the bottom of your screen for more nonstop, compelling and provocative news from SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.
HAMMER: Thank you, Charles (ph). Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. Tonight, the Tyler Perry-Spike Lee smackdown. In a brand new interview, Tyler Perry slams Spike Lee after Spike criticize Tyler for reviving old African-American stereotypes, even comparing his work to "Amos `n` Andy".
In an interview with "60 Minutes," Tyler made it clear he did not appreciate what Spike had to say.
BYRON PITTS, CBS NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Spike Lee has said, and I quote, "I think there is a lot of stuff out today that is coonery and buffoonery. I see ads for `Meet the Browns" and `House of Payne" and I`m scratching my head. We got a black president and we`re going back. The image is troubling and it hearkens back to `Amos `n` Andy`".
TYLER PERRY, DIRECTOR: Right.
PITTS: He`s talking about you.
PERRY: I would love to read that to my fan base. Let me tell what Madea Brown, all characters are bait. Disarming, charming, make you laugh, baits so I can slap Madea in something and talk about God, love, faith, forgiveness, family - any of those things, you know? So, that thing, you know, that pisses me off. It really does, because.
PERRY: Yes. It`s so insulting. It`s attitudes like that that make Hollywood think that these people do not exist and that`s why there`s no material speaking to them, speaking to us.
HAMMER: Well, Perry`s next project is a film called "Precious." It`s a collaboration with Oprah Winfrey. It is said to be spectacular. It will hit theaters in November.
ANDERSON: Tonight, Paul Anka`s angst over Michael Jackson`s new single. In a brand new interview today, Anka explained why he nearly sued Jackson`s estate after not getting the proper credit for a song he said he wrote with Jackson.
Anka was on "The View" this morning and they played a portion of the song in question called "This Is It." Listen to this.
("THIS IS IT" BY MICHAEL JACKSON PLAYING)
ANDERSON: Anka said the song was originally called "I Never Heard" and he was upset that he never heard anyone give him credit for the song. On "The View" this morning, he said it was a case of lost studio tapes and he actually spoke to Michael about the song a few years ago. Watch this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PAUL ANKA, MUSICIAN: What happened was Michael obviously copied those original tapes, put them away, all these years later what`s emerged is - that we wouldn`t be sitting here - that copy that he had in his drawer of my tape was the one that they used, thinking that it was a new song.
A few years later, I was in a - a lawyer`s office, and one of the attorneys come in and said, "Michael Jackson`s next door. He wants to meet you." Well, I was still smarting a little, but I said, you know what? Bygones. I went next door and he said, "Paul, I hope you`re not still mad." I said. "Michael, don`t worry about it."
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Anka said it was all an honest mistake and he`s hashed everything out with Jackson`s estate. Anka will reportedly get 50 percent of the song royalties.
HAMMER: Brooke, I`m going to see "This Is It" tomorrow night. I`m very excited to tell you all about it.
ANDERSON: I can`t wait.
HAMMER: That - that is it for SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. I`m AJ Hammer in New York.
ANDERSON: And I`m Brooke Anderson in Hollywood. Remember, you can catch SHOWBIZ TONIGHT on the 11s - 11:00 PM Eastern, 11:00 PM Pacific, and, in the morning, at 11:00 Eastern on HLN.