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Posted at 10:28 AM ET, 01/26/2009

Celebritology 101: Red Carpet Moments from Hell

By Liz Kelly
Celebritology 101

It was as if someone had walked into the room carrying a flatulent skunk. In fact, that might have been a relief compared to the uncomfortable silence that ensued last week when, at a pre-inaugural red carpet event, a reporter of unknown provenance asked actress Kerry Washington for her thoughts on Jennifer Hudson's upcoming performance at the Super Bowl vis a vis the brutal murders of Hudson's family.

The look on Washington's face telegraphed wonderment (who is this idiot?), fear (is she dangerous?) and split-second analysis (can I slap her?) before she quietly said, "I don't think that's an appropriate topic for me to discuss."

You get the picture. Say what you will about Joan Rivers's shock-and-awe interviews of yesteryear, but red carpets these days are lousy with an ever-expanding gaggle of correspondents who all graduated from the same program: about three sessions at the closest tanning salon.

On last night's SAG Awards red carpet, the level of inanity reached dizzying heights. Below, a sampling of the worst pre-show moments:

1

Most Inane Red Carpet Questions Ever Directed at Brangelina: E!'s Giuliana Rancic

How painful was it? For those of you who can't watch the video at work, here's a good example of Rancic's ham-fisted queries:

Rancic: It must be so much nicer having your man by your side at these things. You've done it alone before and with your brother before. Is it nice having Brad to comfort you and be together in this?"
Jolie: Yeah, I suppose, but we've been together four years. I'm used to that now.

Students of celebrity will note that Jolie, who is not an A-lister for nothing, has mastered the art of simultaneously smiling while wishing a lightning bolt down on someone's head.

It was surprising, after that performance, to see Brad Pitt then subject himself to a round with Rancic. Let's watch:

Again, a sampling of Rancic's big girl reporter questions:

Rancic: How would you say Angelina has helped you grow as a man?
Pitt: Let's go to the next question.
2

Most Idiotic Interview Conducted by a Former Boy Band Member: Joey Fatone interview's "Milk's" James Franco:

A sampling:

Fatone: You played a homosexual, correct? It is challenging for an actor to do something like that who's straight?
Franco: Yeah, but you just do it.
Fatone: Now do men hit on you more than women?
3

Most Uncomfortable Interview Conducted by a Bubble-Lipped '80s-Era Joan Rivers Look-Alike: Lisa Rinna interviews Kate Winslet

Rinna's best shots:

Rinna: You've grown into the most beautiful woman. Not the most beautiful actress.
Rinna: You are our next big thing, I think.

Any favorite red carpet snafus -- from last night or awards shows past? Share yours below...

By Liz Kelly  | January 26, 2009; 10:28 AM ET
Categories:  Awards Season, Celebritology 101  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Morning Mix: Paul McCartney Set for Marriage No. 3?
Next: Morning Mix: Matt Damon to Debate Bill Kristol? Donnie Osmond Set for 'DWTS'

Comments

I can't do it. I'm not a weenie, really, but I just got over a stomach virus and I just can't watch those videos. Thanks for the snippets, though, Liz. Oy vey (shakes head in amazement.)

Posted by: pras40 | January 26, 2009 10:45 AM | Report abuse

Good answer, Kerry Washington.


Posted by: hodie | January 26, 2009 10:48 AM | Report abuse

Watching that just makes me even more grateful that they don't have red carpets at celebrity funerals.

That's your cue, byoolin!

Posted by: memphis1 | January 26, 2009 11:04 AM | Report abuse

Can I write the endings myself???

Fatone: You played a homosexual, correct? It is challenging for an actor to do something like that who's straight?

Franco: Yeah, but you just do it.

Fatone: Now do men hit on you more than women?

Franco: (Laughs, leers suggestively) Well, Joey, it sure seems like it.

====
version #1

Rancic: How would you say Angelina has helped you grow as a man?

Pitt: Are you saying that Angelina makes my butt look fat?
====
version #2

Rancic: How would you say Angelina has helped you grow as a man?

Pitt: (Steps back, thrusts out pelvis) Giuliana, why thank you for noticing!


Posted by: mdreader01 | January 26, 2009 11:06 AM | Report abuse

mdreader, your version #2 took the words right out of my computer!


Rancic: It must be so much nicer having your man by your side at these things.

Angelina (channeling the 1950s): Yes, because we all know that a woman is nothing without a man to validate her existence.


I'm waiting for this encounter to occur on the red carpet:

Joey Fatone, to Neil Patrick Harris, most recently of HIMYM: You played a heterosexual, correct? It is challenging for an actor to do something like that who's gay?

NPH: Yeah, but you just do it.

Fatone: Now do women hit on you more than men?

Posted by: Nosy_Parker | January 26, 2009 11:41 AM | Report abuse

Lisa Rinna's best unsaid shots:

1: "When I tell you that I think "You've grown into the most beautiful woman," is that creepy for you? Because I just realized it sounds like I'm hitting on you, and even if you did go that way, you could do so much better than me."

2: "I spent thousands on surgery to end up looking like byoolin in a Monty Python sketch and then you come along with barely any makeup and now none of the boys will even look at me. How does that make you feel?"

3: "Kate, those are some great breasts you have there. I mean, REALLY great."

Posted by: byoolin1 | January 26, 2009 12:49 PM | Report abuse

I actually find I can't watch these things anymore - it's just too painful. Not to mention the stupid cutaways they always do - you wait for them to interview someone to see the dress, and then they reduce it to a picture-in-picture and have twenty billion other people on the screen, it's annoying.

I just look at the dresses on line and watch the follow up "Fashion Round Up/Fashion Police shows" - though those are painful too. Which station has the little British guy who looks and acts so incredibly hip and affected, who hates anyone who looks classy and lovely and oohs and ahhs over anyone who wore something couture and unflattering? I want to reach through the screen and throttle him.

It makes me miss Isaac Mizrahi. We have some dress makers in my family, so I knew exactly what he was doing to ScarJo a few years back - a little inappropriate on camera, but he was just curious support structure built into the dress. Funny, but more appropriate than these idiots on the Red Carpet now, because he was actually discussing the dress...

Posted by: Chasmosaur1 | January 26, 2009 1:12 PM | Report abuse

byoolin, After any or all of these Kate replies to Lisa, "Just buck up and get over it. Stop being such a f---king pansy"?

Posted by: Nosy_Parker | January 26, 2009 1:18 PM | Report abuse

Didn't Melissa Rivers plant her foot it in during an Oscars red carpet once by calling Best Supporting Actor nominee Michael Clarke Duncan by the name, "Ving Rhames"?

(I imagine her fallback was "Seal" just in case "Ving" was wrong.)

Much as I think those red carpet scenes are ridiculous, I also recall Emma Thompson one year entering behind another nominated actress (Annette Bening? Helen Hunt?) and bowing spectacularly from the waist at the other actress saying, "I'm not worthy" and it was pretty darn hilarious.

Posted by: td_in_baltimore | January 26, 2009 1:37 PM | Report abuse

Nosy, I think your suggestion would be the perfect close to any of those vignettes that I imagined.

Posted by: byoolin1 | January 26, 2009 2:00 PM | Report abuse

Isn't Giuliana's last name spelled R-a-n-c-i-d?

Perhaps Tom Cruise saves his eructational episodes for red carpet interviewers like Giuliana rancid who ask stupid, inappropriate questions.

Example:

FATONE: Tom, does playing a gay male come naturally to you?

CRUISE [Lifts one leg]: PFFFFFFFFFFFTTTTTTTTTTTTT!! Paint it green, Joey!

Posted by: sasquatchbigfoot | January 26, 2009 2:13 PM | Report abuse

Chasmosaur1, that would be Peter Ishkans, who is the most irritating person on TV. Worse than Rancic and Metanopoulous combined.

Anyhoo, speaking of fashion, I thought Angelina's dress was really hiddy. Not sure why she's trying to hide her bod (both her SAG and Golden Globes dresses were unflaterringly blousy). And the hair last night was kind of frumpy too.

Posted by: spartan123 | January 26, 2009 2:18 PM | Report abuse

Can't say I remember any specific interviews but here are a couple that should have happened:

Interviewer to Bjork: What the hell were you thinking???? Halloween was months ago.(Come on, did anyone have any idea who this chick was before she showed dressed up as a bird that Dick Cheney shot?)

Interviewer to Mickey Rourke: Mickey, Ronald McDonald called and he wants his shoes back. Hot date with Wendy tonight.

Posted by: hodie | January 26, 2009 2:32 PM | Report abuse

I just looked at the Post's photo gallery from the SAG Awards. What was Meryl Streep wearing? It looked like something a widowed retiree in Florida would wear. Awful.

Posted by: pras40 | January 26, 2009 2:37 PM | Report abuse

Interviewer to Mickey Rourke: Mickey, Ronald McDonald called and he wants his shoes back. Hot date with Wendy tonight.

SPLOOT!

Posted by: Nosy_Parker | January 26, 2009 2:43 PM | Report abuse

Spartan:

Yes, that's the little leprechaun. I'm obviously blocking his name.

His web site is nearly as bad as GOOP.

Posted by: Chasmosaur1 | January 26, 2009 3:31 PM | Report abuse

This is way better than actually watching the red carpet comments!

Posted by: memphis1 | January 26, 2009 3:36 PM | Report abuse

Yes, that's the little leprechaun. I'm obviously blocking his name.

Posted by: Chasmosaur1 | January 26, 2009 3:31 PM

-------------------------------------------
If only you could also block his web site.

Posted by: sasquatchbigfoot | January 26, 2009 4:00 PM | Report abuse

I looked at some red carpet pics and there was a chick in a red satin dress...I'm sorry but it was a bit clingly and I could clearly see her Ruffed Lemur, so gals, puleeze either get the wax or wear underpants! Stop showing your Madagascars!!!

Posted by: possum_pouch | January 26, 2009 5:01 PM | Report abuse

I only wish Brad had told Guiliana "bubblehead" Rancic the following: "umm, how does Angie make me grow? Well there's this move she makes when we're alone that um- you know what I think I should let her demonstrate, come here Ange!"

Posted by: plamar1031 | January 26, 2009 5:31 PM | Report abuse

OMG that Giuliana Rancic is more dangerous than Karl Rove. Her incessant barrage of idiocy took stupidity to new heights. Was she on crack? I couldn't believe the questions she asked and the interview with Angelina was the absolute worst. I'm surprised she didn't ask Kyra and Kevin about Madoff. What a tactless broad. Someone nuke her before her type of brainless speak spreads. Stop the madness E! She sucks!

Posted by: writingprincess | January 26, 2009 11:41 PM | Report abuse

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