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Dan Barrett is an industry commentator & TV critic. He does radio - 4BC & ABC GC and co-hosts the Screen Watching podcast. He's a former Mediaweek deputy editor and content creator for SBS.
The branded Living Room Concert for America
ALSO: Will we see improved Muppet representation on TV?
A quickly assembled charity concert will air on Fox within the next few hours. It’s the Fox Presents the iHeart Living Room Concert for America. No, really. That’s what it is called.
Celebs appearing include:
That’s right. THE Ben Falcone.
Musicians performing will include:
Billie Joe Armstrong
The event will be hosted by Elton John with all the artists filming performances from their homes with their personal cell phones, cameras, and audio equipment. It will be ad-free and encourage viewers to support Feeding America and First Responders Children's Foundation.
To my knowledge there aren’t any international broadcasters announced, but it might be worth checking YouTube over the next few hours to see if a stream appears there. Also, the audio will be on the iHeartRadio app. It’s on at around midday Sydney-time.
Maybe the best thing I watched all weekend was of Fox News presenter Judge Jeanine Pirro in… well, she was in a state.
According to Variety, a source says that Pirro doesn’t drink.
“Jeanine Pirro was broadcasting from her home for the first time when she encountered several technical difficulties which impacted the quality of her show, including the loss of a teleprompter. As we have previously said, we are operating with a reduced staff working remotely to ensure the health and safety of our employees in these unprecedented times,” the spokesperson said in a statement to Variety.
I think it is great that well-known people are creating online series on platforms like YouTube and making podcasts. It’s awesome that they can trade upon their established profile to have an immediate audience, use their established networks of other well-known celebs to appear as guests, and to just hire people to take care of the actual production without learning any additional skills needed to produce and distribute their shows. It’s. Just. Great.
And having said that, here’s a list of celebrities who have launched their own shows on IGTV (ie Instagram video) during this time of shutdown. At least they’re (mostly) doing it themselves.
My understanding is that this is an audio series that has been produced by Amazon’s Audible. I don’t know much more than that, but I’m eager to take a listen.
With a change in CEO, maybe The Muppets will be taken seriously by Disney. Apparently former CEO Bob Iger wasn’t very interested in them.
Iger inherited the Muppets from his predecessor, the embattled Michael Eisner—who purchased the property in 2004, less than a year before he left the company. (Eisner had known Jim Henson since 1967 and had been trying to make the deal happen since 1989.) And though Iger’s tenure was defined by blockbuster deals of his own—the purchase of venerable institutions like Pixar, Marvel, Lucasfilm, and 20th Century Fox—Iger was less than enthusiastic about integrating the Muppets into Disney’s portfolio.
That does explain a lot about how The Muppets have been treated by Disney in the last few years.