Russell Watson – Fighting For Life: Tonight

May 30, 2008 by  
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Russell WatsonTonight, Trevor McDonald’s Tonight show deals with the story of award winning tenor Russell Watson’s fight against a rare form of cancer.

Russell was recoding his latest album in the studio when he began to experience excruciating headaches and was rushed into hospital. After being checked over by a group of doctors it was revealed that he had a tumour in his pituitary gland and his life was literally in the balance.

Tonight is the first time that Russell has been able to talk about the experience and the moment when he was advised to say goodbye to his children for the last time. Miraculously, after complicated surgery he has made a full recovery, but a preview of tonight’s show gave viewers a glimpse of the lasting impact this has had on him and his family – two years not knowing if the tumour was going to come back.

People often think superstars are safe from the worries and issue of life, but Russell’s situation shows that fame and money are not a guard against illness.

Britain’s Still Got Talent

May 29, 2008 by  
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Paul PottsBritain’s Got Talent is back – the show which aims to find the best untapped talent acts in the UK and give them the chance to perform at the Royal Variety Performance. While the show may have its critics, there is no doubt that it has unearthed some top quality talent which would otherwise have gone unnoticed.

Last year’s winner was Paul Potts, an amateur opera singer who was plucked from normal life and turned into a superstar. If you watched the series you’ll probably remember the moment when this humble man first walked onto the stage, looking a little awkward and unsure of himself. When he began to sing, it was probably not what 99% of the viewing public expected to hear!

Britain’s Got Talent is hosted by the ever popular Geordie duo Ant and Dec, with the ever-present Simon Cowell accompanied by fellow judges Piers Morgan and Amanda Holden. While bits of the show are obviously edited to give the viewing public what they want to see, you can’t help but smile at some of the ‘talents’ on display. Ultimately the show looks like delivering again as we approach the final on Saturday.

The beauty of this show is that fact that we have two winners from each evening’s show this week who go on to the final on Saturday. It doesn’t last for weeks and weeks like other talent shows. Once the masses have been whittled down to a final few, we get to the business end of the show, and within a week it is over.

Who will take this year’s cash prize and chance to perform at the Royal Variety Performance remains to be seen, but if anything the competition is even tougher this year. It looks as though another star will be born!

George Clooney’s Love Split

May 29, 2008 by  
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clooney.jpgGeorge Clooney and girlfriend Sarah Larson have broken up according to People magazine. The couple met four years ago in Las Vegas when Larson was a VIP cocktail waitress at The Whiskey Bar where Clooney and friends were having a drink.

“We were hanging out and dancing and being goofballs. Nothing crazy. We talked, that’s it.” Larson told Harpers Bazaar in an interview from this month’s issue.

Larson, who is 29 years old, is from Kent, Washington, and prior to meeting George Clooney was seen in an episode of Season 5 of Fear Factor in the U.S. with her then boyfriend Dan Randolph.

The couple started dating in 2007 and it was not long until they were seen together at several film festivals including the Venice Film Festival and later at the Academy Awards when Clooney was nominated for Best Actor for his role in Michael Clayton.

Clooney’s spokesman Stan Rosenfield was reluctant to confirm, saying: “We do not comment on George’s personal life.”

Educating Rita

May 28, 2008 by  
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Educating RitaHow much would it cost these days to put together a star studded cast of the same quality as Educating Rita‘s?

The list of stars is like a who’s who of the acting world with Michael Caine and Julie Walters taking centre stage, ably supported by the likes of Maureen Lipman, Michael Williams, Jeananne Crowley and Malcolm Douglas. Julie Walters was a star in the making before this film was released in 1983, and this was the break which catapulted her to super-stardom.

The film tells the rags to riches tale of a hairdresser who dreams of changing her life through the medium of education.  She’s volatile, she’s aggressive and she’s rude, but she has the brains and the foresight to see where she wants to go and how she will get there.

She strikes up a bizarre relationship with a drunken lecturer played by Michael Caine and together they push ‘Rita’ to the limit. The acting is excellent, the storyline is pure Pygmalion and the comedy is in a league of its own. Educating Rita is one of those films where you often know what is coming next but it still makes for addictive viewing.  Julie Walters was nominated for an Oscar for her role in this film and even though it may be 25 years old it is still popular.

Julie Walters and Michael Caine have been at the top of the UK acting tree for many years and both managed to crack the difficult US market. They are talented, they are funny and after Educating Rita was first shown on TV they attracted many new fans.

Catch this classic tonight on BBC1 at 23:15.

Hollyoaks Teaser

May 28, 2008 by  
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HollyoaksAmy’s big announcement causes a lot of excitement this week – but is she telling the truth? Sarah is shocked when Ste tells her that Amy is pregnant, and Mike is devastated by the news – little realising that Zoe is at home taking a pregnancy test of her own. Is Mike ready to deal with the results?

Fletch is having a spectacularly bad week, meanwhile, ending up homeless and hungry, much to the shock of best friend Josh. Things start to look up when the Ashworths take him in, but when Josh, Neville and Suzanne discover Fletch injecting heroin it looks as if he might be out on the streets again…

Also this week, Max’s sister, Cindy, works hard on her plan to keep Max and Steph apart. Louise finds Ravi in a ‘hands-on’ situation with Mercedes. Eli comes up with a plan to get revenge on Warren and Louise. Dominic and Jacqui panic when Tina collapses, worrying that something might be wrong with the baby. And when Jacqui demands a contract for the surrogacy, a devastated Tina starts investigating adoption agencies.

Coronation Street Teaser

May 28, 2008 by  
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Coronation StreetSteve and Dan’s feud has ended in tears, with Dan lying injured in the cellar. After fobbing Michelle off with a story about rats being down there, Steve peers down into the darkness to find Dan in a heap on the floor. Dan is rushed to hospital for an emergency operation on a haemorrhaged spleen – and wakes up to claim that Steve knew he was hurt, with the result that Steve is arrested for assault and unlawful imprisonment. Will Dan keep lying just to hurt his enemy?

Family issues also abound this week, with Gail announces to that she’s off to Milan to visit Sarah – leaving Ted to keep an eye on David and Tina. And poor Lloyd keeps handing over cash to Teresa, still under the misapprehension that he’s Finlay’s dad, and asks if he can become more involved in the boy’s life. Teresa tells him that’s not going to happen – if it does, she’ll get the CSA involved. How long will it be before Lloyd realises that Teresa is playing him for a fool?

Elsewhere this week, Becky is having man trouble: not only is Jason avoiding her, but she’s also ended up crying on Steve’s shoulder. Carla is anxious about Liam coming home. And Tina worries about David meeting her dad – will the two men in her life hit it off?

Emmerdale Teaser – May 28, 2008

May 28, 2008 by  
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Things between the Jo and the volatile Andy are getting worse, with Sarah’s birthday the spark for his latest outburst. Embarrassed that Diane has organised a party for her, Andy flies into a rage when he sees that she’s also bought the child a lavish dolls’ house. Smashing the house, Andy then has to come up with an explanation for Sarah, backed reluctantly by Jo – but how long will it be before Jo tells somebody the truth about Andy’s recent behaviour?

EmmerdaleAshley and Laurel are also having a hard time, finding it difficult to adjust to Arthur’s arrival in their lives. Ashley is worried about Laurel’s reaction, noticing that she is failing to bond with the infant, and is also concerned that Arthur isn’t eating. When nothing else works, Ashley is forced to ask Mel for help – but his decision has unfortunate consequences all round.

Also this week, Lexi is turned away when she tries to get her job back. Nicola settles upon a new money-making scheme. Miles is upset to discover that he may have a fight on his hands if he wants to get it together with Jasmine. And Ashley realises that he may be fighting a losing battle.

Neighbours Teaser

May 28, 2008 by  
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NeighboursLovebirds Libby and Daniel hit a rocky patch this week when Daniel just happens to mention that he’s a married man. Initially incandescent with rage over Daniel’s betrayal, Libby calms down when she hears the sad story of his mentally ill wife. Daniel tries to put his past behind him by asking Samantha for a divorce, but it seems that she is not quite ready to let go of the marriage. Does this mean that Libby and Daniel’s fledgling relationship is doomed?

Paul is also having relationship trouble this week, feeling neglected as Rebecca finds the class action and Oliver’s custody battle more interesting than her sulky partner. Predictably, it’s not long before Paul finds himself tempted by the forbidden fruit that is Kirsten… but how long can he resist her charms?

Elsewhere this week, Zeke and Taylah consider taking things to the next level, but Ringo isn’t so lucky in love and finds himself let down gently by Bridget. Steve invites Lou to move in, while Steph returns to find Toadie packed and ready to move out.

EastEnders Teaser May 28, 2008

May 28, 2008 by  
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EastEndersDenise returns to the Square this week – but finds her family in a sorry state. It looks as if she might be about to turn round and quit Walford again, until she and daughter Chelsea begin to settle their differences. Unfortunately, just as the two seem to be getting their relationship back on track, Chelsea’s secret is discovered. Can Chelsea make amends for all of her bad behaviour?

Things are looking more promising for Charlie, however – not only has he met a new lady but he’s even got himself a date. There have also been developments in Lucy’s love life – Ian is letting her new boyfriend move in with them! Ian starts to regret his decision when he starts to fret that the relationship might be about to move to the next level, but Lucy has ways of getting round her dad’s rules…

Also this week, an excited Dawn organises a party and tries to find someone to babysit Summer. The singles night at the Vic is a disaster for everyone except Jean. Bradley’s job prospects finally seem to be improving. And Friday the 13th proves unlucky for Heather.

Thunderbirds’ Brains encourages smart hydration with Britvic’s new advert for Drench

May 27, 2008 by  
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Interview with Executive Creative Director and Writer Ewan PatersonDrench

When thinking up the concept for an ad to promote a bottled water drink, you might wonder, what’s the best way to go?  Someone drinking some water? An overflowing water fountain?  A mighty waterfall?  Indeed, a puppet from a ridiculously famous 1960s television show dancing to a pumping early nineties dance tune set against a back drop that bears a remarkable resemblance to a scene from the 1952 musical Singing in the Rain is perhaps not the first thing that springs to mind.  However, advertising agency CHI & Partners certainly had an inspired vision when asked to advertise Britvic’s new bottled water product, Drench – and what a unique vision it was.

With summer coming in fits and starts and bottled water simply a must-have item when travelling around, it looks like now is the perfect time to hit the market with a promotion that will become fixed in people’s minds.  Executive Creative Director and Writer, Ewan Paterson, speaks to OnTheBox about how the advert came to be, what Brains was really like to work with and how the Drench brand is whipping up a storm among the online community.

OnTheBox:  How exactly did the Thunderbirds’ character work his way into the ad concept for Drench?! Was it a long process or something that someone came up with quite spontaneously?

Ewan Paterson:  Pretty well instantly (last year we used a real brain, this year the next most famous version).
OTB:  Aha, it’s all got that bit more conceptual then?  Considering that the product being advertised is bottled water and Brains is a puppet, a group not generally renowned for their hydration needs, do you think he is an appropriate ambassador for Drench?

EP:  We’re very happy with Brains’ commitment to the job as a spokes-puppet. In many ways, he needs hydrating even more than us humans…
OTB:  …I see.  But obviously, you could have gone for a run-of-the-mill beautiful woman in pool sipping/drenching herself in Drench. What were your motivations to go for something a little more quirky?

EP:  In answer to rule 1 of advertising: to get noticed. And Drench is all about smart hydration so it just made sense!
OTB:  Rhythm is a Dancer.  Snap!  1992. Explain please.

EP:  We felt the time was right to bring back early 90s dance and get people performing at their best. It’s a song we all secretly love and something you wouldn’t expect Brains to dance to.
OTB:  Speaking of which, the choreography all seems fairly complicated for your average marionette – did Brains pick it up easily?

EP:  He started off a little stiff but ended up being a natural (He’s clever remember, particularly after a little Drench).

 OTB:  Clever and cool – impressive.  Are you pleased with the way the advert turned out?

EP:  Yes – we’re pleased that people really seem to be enjoying it and are drinking Drench. There’s some great feedback on YouTube and Facebook from the public.

OTB:  Indeed, there are already four groups celebrating the advert on Facebook!  It looks like you are enthusiastic about using the internet to create a buzz about the product. Your website gives users the chance not only to watch the ad, but also to see the making of it and even play a game to test your alertness! What kind of role does the internet play in Britvic’s marketing campaign?

EP:  A major part – it allows the public to experience and interact with Drench and the whole area of smart hydration in a fun way and in more depth than with a TV campaign. You can also see how we got Brains to perform so well in the making of film.

OTB:  So would you say that you are you hoping to achieve more coverage via the internet rather than television broadcasting?

EP:  It’s important that they both work – people need to see and enjoy the television spots to encourage them to share it with friends on internet… ■

To check out the advert for yourself, watch the making of it and get involved in the general online stir, go to

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