Saturday, 26 March 2011

Bland played on for Katie Price and Alex Reid

Snapshots of a disintegrating marriage as the Jordan creature slithered back for a “new” series … and fired her vicious parting shots at poor Alex Reid.

Like a black widow ­spider destroying her defenceless mate, “The Pricey” ­ruthlessly dismissed her ­hapless ­husband for his “vile” dress sense and told him: “You haven’t got that spark you used to have.”

Mr Reid... you are ­surplus to requirements. Kindly leave the building.

Sky Living proudly presents Katie... the ­sizzling seen-it-all-before saga of a bland bombshell whose rigidly repetitive life seems to go round and round in circles.

Katie: The Next Chapter, What Katie Did Next... and now the same old show dutifully ticking the same old boxes.

Hysterical fans at her latest shopping mall ­personal appearance – check. Trip to LA to get her teeth and hair done – check. Pretend fury over the ­paparazzi invading her non- existent privacy – check. Disingenuous complaints about the media she so desperately courts – check.

Can’t they think of ­anything else for her to do?

Katie Price is a roll-er model

KATIE Price's was sporting a look that was enough to make stylists curl up and dye as she jetted off with boy toy Leandro Penna today.

The glamour girl, also known as Jordan, has been spotted several times this week with her hair up in rollers - a far cry from her usual heavily groomed look.

Despite denying she's dating pin-up Leandro, saying the pair are just good pals, they walked hand-in-hand as they made their way through Gatwick airport to catch their flight Dublin.

The 25-year-old South American seems smitten with Katie, 32, saying he's dying to introduce the mum-of-three to his family back home.

Speaking to Argentinian magazine Caras this week, he said: "Yes, I'll take her to Argentina and introduce her to my family

"She introduced me to her family and I want Katie to know where I come from.

"I want her to know my roots, my world. I'll take her home to my family - my parents, my brothers and sister."

Model Leandro has been staying at Katie's Surrey mansion since she met him at a post-Oscars party last month.

And Katie could do with a quick vacation after her ego took a dent when her new Sky Living show debuted to disappointing ratings on Tuesday.

Only 470,000 people tuned into watch the show, Katie, lacklustre figures compared with her previous shows' first episodes.

The busty model's last reality outing, ITV2's What Katie Did next, saw an audience of 1.4million tune in for the series opener.

But Sky bosses insisted they were pleased with her audience and argued that more people have access to ITV2 compared to Living because it's available on Freeview.

Katie: My Beautiful Friends

Katie: My Beautiful Friends, Channel 4, Tuesday Women in Love, BBC4, Friday Midsomer Murders, ITV1, Wednesday.

What threatened to be yet another gawp at disfigurement, ended on a note of uplifting hope Reviewed by Matthew Bell Art, to misquote Keats, can be boiled down to two things – truth and beauty. Without one or the other, art isn't art at all, and the best usually has both. The hitch comes in the definition of beauty (and truth, for that matter, but we'll leave that to the philosophers). It's easy to identify in a painting, or a landscape, but what about in a person?

This is the question at the heart of Katie: My Beautiful Friends, a new series about people with disfigurements. Katie Piper is the former model who was permanently disfigured in an acid attack three years ago. Her career had – I don't think it's controversial to say – been built on her looks. All that was gone. Piper's story was told in a Cutting Edge documentary two years ago. We rejoin her as she sets up a support network for other, similarly blighted, young people. You have to admire anyone who, instead of slinking off into obscurity, launches themselves back into the spotlight.

To be frank, though, you do wonder what kind of person flops on their couch to watch an hour of disfigurement. A ghoulish cottage industry in freak-show telly seems to have sprouted in recent years, often, though by no means always, on the trashier channels. The opening 15 minutes did little to dispel the suspicion that this was another chance for mawkishness. It even managed to be boring as well as voyeuristic as we followed Katie as she set up a charity – surely the most tedious rite of the modern celebrity.

Happily, the narrative moved on to meeting some of the people Katie aims to help, and, suddenly, the programme was passing the Keats Test. For here was the unsavoury truth about our pursuit of beauty – that for as long as people have had eyes, the visual is what we talk about when we talk about beauty. Now, more than ever, we are obsessed with looks, and looking good.

Which is a problem if, like 22-year-old Chantelle, you have a cluster of overactive blood vessels in your nose that make it the size, shape and colour of a beetroot. No matter how beautiful her soul – and she was adorable: shy and mournful – people in the street will always stop and stare. So she never leaves the house, except when she can't bear the boredom any more. The scene of her fleeing a shopping mall in tears was unbearable. The only compensation for Chantelle is the brilliance of modern plastic surgery. Episode one ended with her enduring a life-threatening operation. Fingers crossed for episode two.

Looks are one of the few things that don't hold anyone back in the novels of D H Lawrence. They've got class, morality, religion, and all the other hang-ups of the post-Victorian age to grapple with. This they do to perfection in William Ivory's superb adaptation of Women in Love, an amalgam of that novel with The Rainbow, which Lawrence had originally intended to publish as one.

Rosamund Pike is destined to replace Helena Bonham Carter as our best ivory-cheeked actress, and was perfectly cast as Gudrun, the more ebullient, but wide-eyed of the Brangwen sisters. With beautiful cinematography, a good pace and a minimum of mood music, those who said Ken Russell's 1969 version couldn't be bettered will have to think again.

The script wasn't bad either – getting Lawrence fit for the screen is an unenviable task. "I don't care what other people think," says Gudrun as she embarks on an affair with her older, married art teacher. "Well perhaps you should," snaps Ursula, "since the world is full of other people." And there were some subtle cinematic touches too, such as the crate of apples that Ursula grasps for during a knee trembler with her soldier lover. Fruitfulness? Autumn? Forbidden sin? It worked as a symbol for any and all.

No such finesse in the new series of Midsomer Murders, which stars a new DC Barnaby. I was less tempted to lob my remote at Neil Dudgeon than at smug John Nettles. Otherwise the cream-teas-and-crime formula is untouched – promising much, delivering little. In case you're just back from the Moon, producer Brian True-May is to step down after saying there are no ethnic minorities in his show, because he wants to preserve its "Englishness". If only he would concentrate on making the plots less ludicrous and the dialogue less excruciating, I wouldn't have had to entertain myself playing the dreadful game he spawned – spot the ethnic minority.

Katie Holmes creates luxury bags

Hollywood actress Katie Holmes has collaborated with Italian design house ''Valextra'' to create luxury bags.
The 32-year-old actress has designed a calfskin tote bag with Valextra, which will be retailed for USD 3,950, reported Femalefirst.

"Their quality is exceptional. There''s such integrity in their work - they''re artists," said Holmes.

The actress and her ''Holmes & Yang'' fashion label co-founder Jeanne Yang is expected to launch two versions of the calfskin tote, one in white and navy and the other white and black, which will be retailed for USD 3,950, this July.

The design process was completed in just two weeks after Holmes met with the Valextra team when she visited Milan for a Fashion Week in February.

Katie Couric May Leave CBS News

Katie Couric's days with CBS News may be drawing to a close, according to the LA Times.

Those familiar with the situation have said that Couric, the current anchor of the “CBS Evening News,” is contemplating a move into daytime television.

The Times reports that there has been widespread speculation, since the very beginning of Couric's tenure with the Evening News, that she was never entirely comfortable with the format.

Couric was signed to a 5 year contract, which expires in June of 2011, after a number of years with NBC's popular morning show, “Today.” In recent years, evening network news has declined in viewership across the spectrum of broadcasters.

The daytime television market will experience a void with the exit of The Oprah Winfrey Show later in the year. TV personalities such as Anderson Cooper have begun to vie for the chance to fill that void with new shows starting in the fall. Couric's hypothetical daytime show would not likely debut until the fall of 2012, according to the Times report.

Saturday, 19 February 2011