The Dishmaster

Entertainment News With a Side of Dish



April 2017



Tabloid Gossip: Your Week of News

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Lamar Odom came clean about cheating on Khloe KardashianContact Music

Kim Kardashian wants another baby. E! Online

Mary J. Blige opened up about the end of her marriage. BET

Jared Pedalecki and his wife welcomed a daughter. Popsugar

David Arquette had another baby. Us Magazine

Rob Kardashian and Blac Chyna are back together . . . again. Bossip

Scarlett Johansson’s divorce just got messy. Newser

Don’t call Candace Cameron Bure a homophobe. Wet Paint

Naya Rivera and David Spade are dating. Entertainment Tonight

Alec Baldwin discussed his drug abuse. Too Fab

ARod and JLO are twinning. Wonderwall

Lauren Conrad showcased her baby bump. MSNBC



March 2017



How Tom Cruise Revolutionized Ray-Bans

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While sporting my sexy Ray-Ban shades I began to date myself with nostalgic thoughts to the days when you could pick up your pair of the iconic sunglasses at the local 7-Eleven for far less than their current market price. So what gives, and when did things change? Well, folks, it all comes down to the Risky Business of marketing.

Here’s a short history lesson for the cool kids who should learn a little history on their favorite, IG-friendly brand. When American test pilot, aviator, and lieutenant in the US Army Corps John Arthur Macready complained of glare from the sun while reaching higher altitudes, he commissioned a solution from John Jacob Bausch and Henry Lomb, a optician and a financier, respectively. What began as goggles morphed into the brand’s classic aviators, which soon hit the market for pilots and airmen. They expanded their designs to Wayfarers and Caravans and once celebrities like Humphrey Bogart and James Dean began to sport the designs, they flew off the shelves (pun intended). Things changed when bigger frames took a fashion hold, and the competition killed Ray-Ban. But the brand got smart, and they paid to be featured in over 60 films, which most notably includes some serious Tom Cruise classics.

Tom Cruise starred in Risky Business in 1983 and throughout the film he can be seen sporting Wayfarers. Though he did not wear them during that legendary underwear scene, that was enough to put him on the map, and the shades entered our consciousness again. And speaking of cool, who could forget Top Gun, when each and every actor wore Ray-Bans? It was the perfect product placement, and the rest is history.



March 2017



Dancing With the Stars Premieres to High Ratings – Watch the Best Performances

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There’s long-standing complaints about Dancing With the Stars casting contestants with previous dance experience, but strong performances lead to strong ratings, and ABC’s method proved positive with 11.9 million viewers. Plus, when you have multiple contestants with high-level talent, it becomes a bit of an Olympic event. And speaking of the Olympics, I knew Simone Biles would be good, but I didn’t know she’d be THAT good. As for Heather Morris, who was once Beyonce’s backup dancer, she has no ballroom experience, and it showed. In fact, I don’t think the decision to appear on this show was a good move for her career. If your skill set is dancing and you appear on a show marketed to beginners, you’re forced to demean your own talent, which is not good for your future. It’s like a sushi chef appearing on a BBQ cooking competition. No one will eat your sushi if you can’t cook a burger. Watch some of the key performances below.

Simone Biles & Sasha Farber

Rashad & Emma

Nancy Kerrigan & Arten Chigvintsev

Heather & Maks

David & Lindsay

Erika Jayne and Gleb Savchenko




March 2017



Mark Long Interview: The OG ‘Road Rules’ Alum Looks Back

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image1Mark Long has been on my radar since his iconic stint on the first Road Rules in MTV history, but the adventure seeker reached crush-worthy status during his appearance on Real World/Road Rules Challenge: The Duel II, when instead of joining his cantankerous cohorts who were screaming at their female partners to perform better, Mark sat down, waited patiently, and seemed perfectly comfortable with the idea that a win was no longer within his grasp. When asked for a lens into this memorable moment and his always-respectful temperament, Long said he has his parents to thank for his admirable character. He was simply happy for a physical challenge among his friends and grateful for the opportunity to compete at all. So what does the reality television veteran have to say about the show that made him famous over two decades ago and his subsequent journey as a Challenge competitor? Read below to find out more about the last true reality-television gentleman.

 Take me through your journey from the beginning.  What was your original goal when you joined  the first season Road Rules?

I have a degree in broadcast journalism, so I always liked hosting. I even thought of becoming a weatherman because I always felt they were less stuffy than the news people. My aunt and uncle live in Huntington Beach, and I visited them one time and then drove up to Los Angeles. It just kind of felt like this is where I was supposed to be.

How did your parents feel about your move?

My parents are great. I could’ve said I was moving to Alaska to work on a fishing boat and they would’ve said, “Oh, that’s great.” They support me no matter what. I’m sure they would want me to have a more structured lifestyle, but I’m hoping that the time I’ve invested in this city will pay through what I really enjoy doing, which is producing, hosting, etc . . .

When you look back at your time on MTV’s Road Rules, can you process that it was truly one of the first reality television shows? In retrospect, it was revolutionary. 

No one knew what it was about or what to expect. I actually did the Road Rules pilot with four other people that didn’t make the show. I have no idea [why they didn’t make it], but I remember that we shot the pilot in Catalina Island. I flew out from Florida and I was up to be the new roommate when Puck got kicked out of the Real World: San Francisco house. They called me back months later and mentioned the Road Rules pilot and how it would be better for my active lifestyle. I later got a call from Bunim/Murray Productions and they said, “I  know we told you that the [people who shot the pilot] weren’t going to make it to the series, but the guy we had in mind that fit your personality didn’t get approved by MTV so we suggested using you again.” That’s how I snuck through. I don’t know what happened to that other poor bastard [who didn’t make it].

Why didn’t you make it in the Real World house? 

The house wanted a girl. They thought, “We had a guy, lets try a girl out.”

I read about how your parachute didn’t open when you were on Road Rules. It seems like you were not aware until you hit the ground.

I was aware that we were having problems in the air because when we were getting prepped, they said, “We’ll never reach for your equipment.” When I realized he was reaching for my stuff, I knew we were having a problem. We were supposed to pull at 5000 feet, and we just flew by that height. I jumped out of the plane fifth and landed on the ground first. My parachute finally popped out via a CO2 cartridge that serves as a last resort. That night I was laying there trying to go to bed and thought, “I almost fucking died today, and that would’ve been a terrible day.” Then, in true MTV fashion, Eric Nies and I hosted Real World/Road Rules Challenge: Battle of the Seasons, and they asked us to skydive in tuxedos. I thought, “lighting can’t strike twice. Let’s do it!”

Do you ever feel like some of what they ask you to do is unsafe? Are there points where you want to say, “No way.”

They’re not “unsafe,” but I don’t think they truly test how a cast member would actually perform. For instance, we did Real World/Road Rules Challenge: Battle of the Sexes in Jamaica, and they had these roller coasters that were taken off the track and set in the grass. Instead of seats they had huge ice blocks, and you had to wear speedos and bikini bottoms and sit with your hands raised above your head for time. While someone who isn’t playing for a cash prize might last 15 minutes before they hop off, I was on there for an hour and a half. I want to say that one of the girls got frostbite. It was terrible, but it’s part of the allure of being on the show. You want to do stuff that you can’t set up in your backyard.

Just to be slightly sexist, is there a point to having the men compete against women?

No, and what a perfect day to talk about that [given the current climate]. Some girls are phenomenal, but not all of them will be able to perform in a challenge that requires the same skill as men. But line us up in a trivia competition and the girls will crush us.

I think Battle of the Sexes could be better produced for that reason. There are challenges where a woman would succeed that aren’t these high-powered challenges of endurance, such as flexibility or balance.

Balance is great. I think we were hanging upside down from our legs, and the guys dropped like flies, and I remember Ruthie hanging up there like she wasn’t even in pain.

You mentioned Ruthie Alcaide, which brings me to my next question. There are people who used to do these challenges that were beasts, and now there’s a bunch of wusses on there that suck. What happened to the top dogs?

I’ve heard that as well, and I see it. There was a guy a couple seasons back from Are You The One that just quit because he missed his girlfriend. There’s thousands of people that will take your place, so why go?

I also feel like it has become the Johnny Bananas show.

Everyone has a love/hate relationship with Johnny, but he shows up and puts in the work. If you’re going to complain about him being on the show multiple seasons then rally a group to kick him off.

Are you friends with Johnny by the way?

I am very good friends with Johnny. We are actually in the process of doing another project outside of the challenge.

If you watched him on Real World/Road Rules Challenge: The Island and the way he spoke to the women on the island, it’s sexist. The people he betrays are all women, and the people he insults are all women. There has to be an argument to be made there.

Johnny will admit that he’s grown up a little since those island days. I don’t think I would have approved of him talking to the women like that if I was on The Island, but I’ve seen him do stuff with the Special Olympics and I’ve seen him around fans that approach him. Cara Maria used to despise him, for example, but after the last challenge they’re now best friends, so something’s changing.

I saw you on Real World/Road Rules Challenge: The Duel II, and I remember that you were paired up with a woman who was lagging behind, and you just kindly sat there, waiting for her. You didn’t seem angry at all, and you weren’t screaming at her or calling her a “dumb bitch,” like Johnny Bananas on The Island. It stuck with me. Do you remember this?

I don’t think I’ve ever called a girl a bitch. My parents raised a gentleman. People are different. I just choose to take a deep breath and comfort someone instead of put them down.

What did you think of that infamous move Johnny made at the end of The Challenge: Rivals III, where he chose not to split his winnings with his partner, Sarah Patterson?

I thought from a viewing standpoint, it was  fantastic. How do you not talk about that the next day at the water cooler?

What would you have done?

Come on! Do you even need to ask that? I would’ve split it right down the middle. But again, that’s why I’m me, and he’s him.

Can you analyze it? Do you think it’s an evil move or it’s just part of the game?

It would be a lot harder to analyze it if Sarah hadn’t previously [wronged him] on The Challenge: Battle of the Exes II. I’m not saying it’s the same but in terms of gamesmanship, lets’ not forget that this is a game show and the object of any game show whether it’s Wheel of Fortune or The Challenge, is try to win as much money as possible within the time you’re allotted.

You have to take me inside the Chris “CT” Tamburello/Adam King fight on The Duel II where it looked like if CT got his hands on Adam, he’d have murdered him. Did you fear for Adam?

Of course! Production was looking at the cast members like, “Please jump in and help because we do not want to lose a cast member to fists.” I’ll give some credit to the editing as well. It made it look like a horror movie. But much like Johnny on The Island, you have to give people the benefit of growing up. CT is a different person now, and I know at that time he had some family issues. I think you could definitely leave your children alone with CT now and he would be the best babysitter ever.

It also seems like a bad idea to date people on The Challenge, but you again seem to avoid drama. Do you just sleep with saner women?

I have a different way of handling my showmances than these other guys. It’s with fucking padded mittens, because you have to be very, very delicate. But trust me, some of them have not been sane.

Speaking of showmances, what happened with you and Robin Hibbard?

We met on Real World/Road Rules Challenge: Battle of the Sexes 2 and then started dating off of the show. The problem with the challenges is that even if your relationship or showmance was three years prior, people identify you with each other [far into the future]. I could get stopped tomorrow by someone who says, “Where’s Robin?” It’s like, “Dude, she’s married with two kids in Florida. That’s where Robin is.” People still ask me about Kit [Hoover] from Road Rules, and she is also married with kids. I just went on Access Hollywood with her to celebrate the 20th anniversary of Road Rules.

I thought you were a really good host of the MTV Challenge Aftershows, and the hosts they have now are terrible.

Well, they are terrible. I did it for seven seasons but like anything else, they’re like, “Oh, we’re going to [change it up].” And I’m like, “good luck with that,” especially since they chose someone who wasn’t even on the show. At least if you see me pop up, there’s some sort of relevance there. “Oh, Mark’s from the show. Mark’s an OG. He knows the deal.”

Take me behind the scenes of the show. Are you just all sitting around the house bored with nothing else to do but drink and party?

Today, they really monitor what we drink. It’s very rationed, and they’re much more cognizant of what happens with the alcohol now. Back in the day, like anything else, it was the fucking wild west.

Did you announce your retirement as a shtick, or was that serious?

I’ve retired a few times now.

Would you ever return to the show? 

I’d absolutely go back, but I never wanted to be the guy that goes on back-to-back on challenges. I like to let things breathe. If I fit their format, I’d definitely return.




March 2017



Tabloid Gossip: Your Week of Links

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David Arquette had another baby. E! Online

Rob Kardashian and Blac Chyna are back together. Bossip

Scarlett Johansson’s ex is already bad-mouthing her. Newser

Orlando Bloom is back on the market after his Katy Perry breakup. Radar

Paula Patton and Robin Thicke might have called a truce. theGrio

Lily Collins called out her Phil Collins daddy issues. RTVW

Gabourey Sidibe underwent weight loss surgery. Too Fab

A Bachelor Nation baby is on the way. The Stir

Pamela Anderson is dating Wikileaks’ Julian Assange. Jezebel

Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner might have called off their divorce. Refinery29

Karreuche Tran wants a permanent restraining order against Chris Brown. The Shade Room

Rosie O’Donnell’s daughter got secretly married. People

T.I. and Tiny have reconciled. TMZ

Colton Haynes is engaged. Pop Sugar



March 2017



Lorde’s “Liability” v. My Chemical Romance’s “Welcome to the Black Parade”

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Remember when I said Lorde can do no wrong after listening to her new single, “Green Light.” I take it back. After listening to her new, relatively disappointing single, “Liability,” it’s occurred to me (via a kind friend who pointed this out and asked not be quoted) that it’s strikingly similar to My Chemical Romance’s “The Black Parade.” Her upcoming album, ‘Melodrama,’ is out June 16. According to Lorde, the song is about the price of fame, and how everyone in her inner circle will at some point be attacked or impacted even if it means giving up a little portion of their privacy. Liability was also produced by Jack Antonoff. Listen below and judge the similarities for yourself. I called it disappointing for a variety of reasons. First, it’s just not that original, and if you’re going to have a very basic song, then be Adele and make it all about the vocals. Lorde’s voice is strikingly unique, and it deserves a unique melody. Second, I’m not into the piano at all. I imagine that is Antonoff’s influence, and it just doesn’t work. And lastly, the lyrics don’t really justify the sad tone.



March 2017



Why Ciara’s Maternity Photo is Inappropriate

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Ciara received heated criticism for her naked-pregnancy-photo, and rightfully so. Though I don’t agree with social-media slamming, there are some good points buried beneath the hateful barbs. For starters, I don’t condone naked pictures of children on social media, and that goes for my own personal facebook feed, in which I continually call out even close personal friends for posting pictures of their children with their private parts exposed. Two days old or two years old — if a child is not at the age to consent to such photos, it’s inappropriate. Also, nudity is nudity, and since there is no answer as to when it becomes objectively inappropriate to publicly display your child’s genitals, the answer is it’s NEVER appropriate.

Ciara’s maternity image shows her first child with Future without any clothing, buttocks exposed. She has been accused to slighting Future with the photo, given that the tempestuous twosome have had a heated custody battle and her new husband appears in the family photo. Technically speaking, the more love a child has in his life, the better, and perhaps Future should be happy that Ciara married a man that seemingly loves his child. Having said that, there is no need to publicly display it. Most biological fathers I talk to are devastated by losing time with their child and even more devastated by the idea that the step-father will serve a more permanent role in their child’s life than they will. Aside from it being an inappropriate photo, it also feels insensitive and unnecessary to flaunt the new relationship in this way. Lastly, it’s a bad picture, and it’s weird. I need not elaborate. Just look at it.



March 2017



The Wood Brothers at The Troubadour — A Full Review

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The Wood Brothers first came my attention after seeing Medeski, Martin & Wood (MMW) perform at El Rey theater in Los Angeles upon another musician’s invite who was sitting in for a jam session with the improvisational, free-jazz group. That musician is Tony Beliveau of Crash Kings, who plays a clavinet coupled with a whammy bar, making his unique style perfect for an appearance with MMW. Knowing nothing as I entered the venue proved an asset for a free-dive into their high-level avant-jazz jam session. Though I remember feeling as if it was completely over my head, I followed up on that curious evening and discovered that Chris Wood is now a member of the The Wood Brothers alongside his brother, Oliver Wood, and multi-instrumentalist Jano Rix.

When you see Chris (upright bass) and Oliver (lead vocals, acoustic and electric guitar) perform together, the question immediately arises as to why the brothers, who formed their band in 2004, didn’t do that their entire lives. When asked about potential “brother baggage,” Chris is quick to counter the stereotype, saying they “get along pretty damn good.” Though he enjoys the challenge of MMW, he admittedly missed his love for words, having grown up with a published poet for a mother. That thirst is quenched with The Wood Brothers, where his jazz chops now beautifully coincide with extremely moving lyrics co-written with Oliver. What was born of a side project, has now become a main staple in their lives after Billy Martin expressed his desire to slow down from touring with MMW.

To see The Wood Brothers perform live at one of Los Angeles’ most celebrated venues, is a true privilege. It would be a disservice to call them a jam band, given that much of their musical riffs, though both challenging and engaging, do not stray far from their rich melody. I have an innate aversion to indulgent performances, as they often take away from the artist’s connection to the audience, as if the musicians are playing in their own garage — for themselves. The Wood Brothers are far from that. They’re playing for each and every person in front of them, and one song is better than the next. It’s hard to top their recordings, but their live show does just that. Their new record, ‘Live At The Barn,’ is available now. It was recorded at Levon Helm’s studio in Woodstock, New York.



March 2017



New Music Rundown: Lorde, Jennifer Hudson, Lea Michele and more

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Lorde can do no wrong. I love her voice, her face, her performance style, and most of all — her songs. Her new album is admittedly about her ex-boyfriend, and it has incredibly relatable, cutting lyrics, such as, “I know about what you did and I wanna scream the truth/She thinks you love the beach, you’re such a damn liar.” 20-year-old Grant Singer directed the video for “Green Light.”


I want to like Lea Michele’s original music, especially given her uniquely incredible voice. But I just don’t think she stands alone as a solo artist. Sure she can hold down Broadway, which is an incredible accomplishment, but theater stars don’t always make it as soloists. Her new song is part of a new direction, gearing less toward pop and more toward showcasing her voice with power-ballads like her idol, Barbra Streisand. It feels indulgent. Perhaps it’s just not a good song.


Jennifer Hudson’s new song is an example of power vocals combined with a catchy tune. Her new single, “Remember Me,” is part of her fourth LP and it has the power of LA Reid’s support via Epic Records.


Meghan Trainor is back with her usual energy in the video for “I’m a Lady. The song will be featured on the soundtrack of the upcoming 3D animated feature Smurfs: The Lost Village. It’s slightly forced, and though the video somewhat makes up for it, the melody just isn’t strong enough. It’s as if Columbia Pictures asked for something much similar to her previous hits, and she changed the chords around for a poor man’s replica (or a sub-part Ariana Grande tune). Trainer is obviously talented, but she’s a bit of a hit-writing machine. And though you can say the same for Sia, the difference is that when Sia sings her songs, she ADDS soul to it, making you realize what the original song should actually sound like. For those that don’t know, Trainor began her career as a songwriter, and it shows. That’s not a bad thing, but I’d like to see her take her pop-chops down a notch and amp up the authenticity with a pulled back performance that showcases her skill set.


Katy Perry might be the shrewdest pop star out there. She knows her brand, she sticks to it, and she doesn’t take any sh*t from anyone. That being said, I’m sick of this Candyland crap. You’d think she’d do something new for “Chained to the Rhythm,” but this feels like much of what I’ve already seen. It’s obviously very expensive, and thought-out, but that’s not enough for me. A for effort, b for execution.


I’m late on posting this one, but who can resist a band with such a big presence in such a small room? Listen to Run the Jewels perform on NPR’s Tiny Desk Series.



February 2017



Everything We Know About Envelopegate

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Jordan_Horowitz-APBefore we discuss who is to blame for the infamous envelope gaffe for the Best Picture announcement at the 89th Annual Academy Awards, let’s get our facts straight. I’m a lawyer, and I love facts. First and foremost, who’s responsible for any and all of those envelopes and can just anyone put their hands on them? The answer is no. Two people are responsible, and it’s PricewaterhouseCoopers accountants Martha Ruiz and Brian Cullinan. Cullinan and Ruiz each have a briefcase with envelopes of each winner, and they stand on either side of the stage so there’s an envelope ready, no matter what side the talent enters. This means that each category has a duplicate envelope. Once an envelope is distributed, that duplicate should be discarded, so this very situation does not happen. If it is not discarded, the stack becomes disrupted. Because Emma Stone’s award was given immediately before the Best Picture announcement, it stands to reason that an envelope was not discarded, and Cullinan reached for the top of the stack without looking. And why did I single out Cullinan and not Ruiz? Because according to TMZ, the 30-year-veteran of PwC was responsible for handing Warren the card. TMZ also said that Cullinan spent most of the night tweeting, and he even tweeted a picture of Emma Stone while he should have been preparing for the next category.

Here’s the full statement from PwC, aka Price Waterhouse Cooper:

We sincerely apologize to Moonlight, La La Land, Warren Beatty, Faye Dunaway, and Oscar viewers for the error that was made during the award announcement for Best Picture. The presenters had mistakenly been given the wrong category envelope and when discovered, was immediately corrected. We are currently investigating how this could have happened, and deeply regret that this occurred. We appreciate the grace with which the nominees, the Academy, ABC, and Jimmy Kimmel handled the situation.

Now that we know the culprit, let’s analyze how it was handled. For starters, this is Warren Beatty’s third time presenting in this category. Jack Nicholson holds the record of eight, and Audrey Hepburn is second with four. Why do I mention this? Because the more seasoned you are at an activity, the less likely your brain is to shut down during a crisis. It’s not Beatty’s fault, but he knew something was wrong and panicked. Though he turned to Faye Dunaway for help, it was not clear that he was in fact asking for help, and Dunaway rattled off the winner without looking. TMZ also reveals that Dunaway and Beatty battled over who would announce the winner, and perhaps she rushed for fear that Beatty would steal the moment. I feel bad for Beatty, but I also feel he should be seasoned enough to handle a situation like this.

Next up? Reports suggest that there was immense backstage chaos when the mistake was revealed, and La La Land producer Jordan Horowitz said that he knew something was awry when someone ran up to him to ask for his envelope. After opening it, the mistake was confirmed and everyone seemed unable to function in the pressure-filled debacle. La La Land producer Fred Berger was the first to speak, saying, “We lost by the way but you know.” Berger was clearly disappointed, but his comment did nothing to move the moment forward, which needed to happen because Moonlight was the rightful winner, and as each second lapsed, they lost the opportunity to celebrate their win.

La La Land producer Jordan Horowitz came to the rescue, and immediately announced the mistake. He then graciously said he would be “really proud to give it to [his friends] from Moonlight.” As the crowd stood in disbelief and Kimmel, Beatty, and that frantic guy with a headset did relatively nothing, Horowitz quickly insisted it was not a joke, took the card from Warren Beatty’s hands and showed it to the audience as proof. Of the pivotal moment that proved his status as both a gentleman and a fixer, Horowitz said:

Listen, I’m a producer. I gather things together and I change directions and I march things forward. I had just finished saying how much love there was in the community and I want to do diverse and bold work, and so to be able to actually put that into action and make that physical by bringing those guys up onstage and giving them the award that they won…I don’t want to say it was an honor, because it was really confusing, [but it felt right].

There are a few lessons to be learned here. First, don’t get greedy. Just because you’ve been doing something for decades doesn’t mean you can tweet during the most important moment of your job. Second, this is Hollywood, not brain surgery, and there are very few professions that involve such insane indulgence. Oral surgeons don’t get awards for treating periodontal disease and though the Oscars are fun to watch, these Viola-Davis-style acceptance speeches are too grandiose to tolerate. The point? Let’s all take a step back and get some perspective. No one died. Third, to contradict point number two, I feel bad for the producers of La La Land, because they walked away with nothing. Sure the movie garnered Oscars, but not one for their specific role, which is a bummer. The fact that Horowitz could look out for his friends while processing his disappointment should be appreciated. Fourth, when something goes wrong, get your bearings, then speak up. And fifth, Jack Nicholson has to come back.