Thursday, September 30, 2010

Bobby Brown, Wayne Brady & Mike Tyson: Every Little Step and Misstep!

This is some funny (beep) and one of my FAV Bobby Brown songs! Lawd, Mike Tyson, Wayne Brady, and some nameless dude. I'm going to call him "Too Short" cause the sleeves on his jacket are...well, see for yourself...!

THIS VIDEO IS HI-LARIOUS! Go Mike! Go Mike! Get busy! Get busy! And Bobby Brown...it's still your prerogative baby! Y'all definitely gotta GET BUSY to this!

The Social Network: Sex, Lies, and Facebook

WRITTEN BY GUEST BLOGGER: ERIC ALONSO, tv producer and all around great guy!

Arriving in theatres this Friday is David Fincher’s “The Social Network”, the movie that tells the story of how in 2004, Harvard University student, Mark Zuckerberg (played by Jesse Eisenberg) and his college roommates launched an online network that changed how the globe communicates today.

Adapted from Ben Mezrich’s 2009 book, The Accidental Billionaires, this film details the turbulent years of how Facebook was created. A tech-savvy Zuckerberg, who has just been dumped by his girlfriend Erica (played by Rooney Mara) one night decides to create and launch an online version of Hot or Not by illegally capturing the photos of female students. In one night, Zuckerberg’s version of Hot or Not garnishes the attention of 22,000 Hot or Not voters and also crashes the University’s online system. After school officials find out about his stunt, Zuckerberg is slapped on the wrist with six months probation, a punishment that would make most Harvard students reexamine what they publish online. Zuckerberg on the other hand sees potential and now having made for him self, is courted by Harvard classmates the Winklevoss twins, to help them start “Harvard Connection”, an online community for Harvard students.

It’s here that Zuckerberg allegedly takes their idea and molds it to create “The Facebook”, an online success that eventually lands Zuckerberg in federal court on charges of property theft, while at the same time burning bridges as he climbs to the top of the ladder of success.

It’s ironic how the youngest self-made billionaire who created a website that allows us to communicate and reunite with friends, colleagues, classmates from our past can’t even get people to accept his own request for friendship online. The Social Network is a well written story that is filled with greed, betrayal and laughter. Actors Jesse Eisenberg, Andrew Garfieled, who plays co-founder Eduardo Saverin, and Justin Timberlake who is maniacal as Sean Parker, the co-founder of Napster, will earn praises for their convincing performances. This film is a must see and it will be all the buzz come award season.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Social Media Week Los Angeles

Calling out around the world are you ready for a brand new beat? The technology is here and the time is right for Social Media Week...Tweeting in Bogota...(tweeting in the streets)...down in Beunos Aires (tweeting in the streets)...Mexico City (tweeting in the streets)...blogging in Milan...and in LA!

From September 20-24, 2010, we didn't necessarily dance in the streets during the week long social media conference but we had reason to! FREE panels, knowledgeable panelists, useful insights and information, and great locations through out the city of LA made for a fantastic week of networking and learning. Did I say FREE thanks to global brand sponsorship? Truly, that detail alone is worth learning how to "Dougie" because generally a conference like this costs hundreds of dollars to attend. And while we were hashtagging #SMW in the streets here in the US, conference goers were doing the same in other languages around the world in four other international cities.

From Beverly Hills, downtown LA, Santa Monica, and West Hollywood, Social Media Week Los Angeles kept conference goers busy visiting popular venues including the Paley Center and the House of Blues. Panelists and guests attending were some of the most notable people in social media including Brian Solis, author of Engage, a must read for social media marketers and enthusiasts, Hollywood big wigs and execs, and application developers.

Another great aspect of Social Media Week Los Angeles was its fund-raising platform, Twelethon. Using social media for social good is what it's all about. And through Social Media Week Los Angeles, Twelethon raised funds to support Inner City Arts, a much needed program that provides art programs to kids in a professional environment at no cost.

If you were a newbie to social media it all may have been a little intimidating, but for those of us not-so new, there was something for everyone from the technical to the creative to the business. Speaking of which the biggest question of the week in my opinion was how to measure social media success. The answer varied. The great debate between hard numbers (sales, fan page members) and valuable engagement continued. Personally, I believe it's a combination of the two and my clients are educated early to focus on engagement first, numbers second and why.

Other great panels I attended addressed location based marketing, Hollywood's social media make-over, story-telling and transmedia (Digital LA), how to improve user engagement, and how the music industry and artists value social media. You can see my live tweets from different panels on Twitter at SheerSocial. And yes, I do have two twitter profiles; the other is displayed to your right from @hollywoodlvwork.

Big Up to Kevin Winston and Digital LA for conducting great panels and networking events throughout the week AND hosting a screening of "Waiting for Superman" with a Q&A discussing how the film was marketed through social media. One of the best panels I wasn't able to attend but saw later online was Digital LA's "TV Going Social." Just play the vid below.

And lastly, huge thank you to Social Media Week founder and Executive Director, Toby Daniels, for bringing the conference to LA! Most social media conferences are on the east coast or mid west. It was great not having to travel far to attend. I'm truly eager to see what next year's event will bring.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

NBC's The Event & Undercovers: A Few Observations


YAAAS! Black people are on tv and they're in leading roles! That may not be big news to the masses but considering the LACK of black actors on the small screen (and other non-whites) this is good news. And that isn't the best part! The best part is these new roles aren't in sitcoms! We've got a two gorgeous spies and a handsome United States president. Thanks NBC! But before you pat yourself on the back, I do have some comments.

So here's my review of "The Event" which premieres MONDAY NIGHT with Blair Underwood and "Undercover" which airs WEDNESDAY with Boris Kodjoe and British newcomer, Gugu Mbatha-Raw.

The Event

The Good
  • "Lost" and "24". If you like those shows, you may like this one.
  • Great casting
  • Suspense, drama, intrigue
  • Interesting Sci-fi element
Not-So-Good
  • If you didn't like "Lost" nor "24", then you may not like this one. This story has multiple plots that are interconnected, exactly how they connect is hard to totally figure out. Probably as the series progresses figuring it out gets easier.
  • The flashback element. We start in the presence, then flash back a week, then cut back to the present, then flash back a month with different characters, then a year. Did I lose you? If the screening audience expressed annoyance with this way of story-telling, how will people respond at home?
  • Trying to kill two racial birds with one stone. Yes, NBC I have to call you out on this one! In your efforts to appeal to the demand for diversity you cast a well known black actor in a role as a Hispanic president. Then cast a Hispanic actress as his wife. So which racial group are you REALLY appealing to? I'm feeling a little hoodwinked! That said how much diversity is behind-the-scenes writing scripts?

Undercovers

This show has soooo much potential! Truthfully, it was the series I was most excited about between the two. Spies, international espionage, sexy characters. To look at the trailer it has everything for a tv hit, but...Let's start with the positive.

The Good
  • Remember "Hart to Hart"? If you liked it back in the 80's you might like "Undercover" now. Personally, I loved "Hart to Hart" as a kid.
  • Equally gorgeous actors, Boris Kodjoe and newcomer, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, look great together on screen. Both have international backgrounds..
  • Kodjoe and Mbatha-Raw have great chemistry on screen
Not-So-Good
  • Where's the high action? "Undercover" pilot lacked the spicy action throughout that grabs our attention and holds it. Where are the gadgets, the superhero-esque stunts? Though this is tv, I expect the same action I pay to see at the movies. Am I wrong to expect it? This show is a J.J. Abrams production ("Alias", "Fringe") so I know it can be done.
  • Ok! They love each other! I ain't hating (much), but do we need to be reminded of it each time one of them enters a dangerous situation? Leave the lovey-dovey stuff alone on the job.
  • Learn to damn tango! You're spies not Soul Train dancers! Again, what I see Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt do on the big screen, I want to see "Undercovers" do on the small screen.



Thursday, September 16, 2010

For Colored Girls Trailer...A Message to the Brothers!


Call your "girls", load up your sorors, pick up mom and your sisters, get your daughters, make reservations for dinner either before or after the movie, and be sure to get to the theater EARLY. In fact, buy your tickets IN ADVANCE!

Brothas that doesn't mean you don't need to be present! With all that emotional estrogen flowing over the popcorn and Twizzlers, we'll need your good testerone to balance out the evening. Don't be scurrred! This film is NOT about bashing you as it may seem, it's about enlightening us to our own issues, fears, baggage, needs, etc. And just as much as you may appear to be part of the problem in many films of this genre, off screen you can be a part of the solution. So show up, November 5th! Support the men behind and in front of the camera...Tyler, Michael Ealy, Omari Hardwick, Hill Harper, Khalil Kain, Richard Lawson.

Bokeem Woodbine Talks M. Night Shyamalan's "Devil" & 13 Purple Dragons

What the devil has veteran actor Bokeem Woodbine been up to lately? Working! And according to him, the election of President Obama could have something to do with it. Browse the aisle's of your favorite store's DVD section, and you'll see he's done a lot of straight to DVD movies over the years, but we haven't seen him on the big screen in a while. This Friday that will change as Woodbine stars in M. Night's Shyamalan's new suspense flick, "Devil."


In my enlightening interview with Woodbine, we discuss not only his new role in "Devil" but also and some other exciting projects we'll see starting in December. He also talks about his ROCK BAND! Remember "Cult of Personality"? Take a listen after the interview!




Friday, September 10, 2010

Verizon MTV Video Music Award's Pre-Party

It's been a minute since I've done a party review...a real long time, so here goes!

Verizon's MTV Video Music Awards Pre-Party last night at celebrity hangout Playhouse Hollywood was a good mix of the good and the bad, mostly good! Is there video? No, why? To protect the innocent and not so innocent! But trust once the morning hangover is gone, there will be plenty of videos popping up on YouTube.

Playhouse Hollywood for those that don't know is in the heart of club zone on Hollywood Blvd. Lines to get in are generally long and if you ain't on the list either be very patient or find another party destination. But we are on the list and our wait time is minimal. Thank you party gods!

The liquor's flowing, the house DJ's got my head bobbing, and the professional dancers are showcasing their flexibility above the bar and the stage. Men and women are mesmerized and so are we for a minute. These chicks got plenty of gymnastic tricks, but lack that one necessary essential to bring the boys to the yard...BOOTY! I got that so my momentary hateration dissapates.

Within about an hour of our arrival the place is packed and once pop singer, Sean Kingston, hits stage there's a rush to an already crowded dance floor. Admittedly, I'm knowledgeable of who is but his music, not so much. I'm instantly reminded though once "Beautiful Girls" is performed. The crowd of mostly wiggling blondes and brunettes squeal in drunken delight and sing along.

Three drinks in and your typical Hollywood party crowd is OPEN and ready for anything. Unfortunately, there's not much room to do it. Playhouse Hollywood is a fire marshall's professional wet dream! I'm having some issues with pushy drunks constantly elbowing, bumping, and swinging their hair in my face, plus people are smoking inside the club. Thank God! We were invited into a more comfortable VIP area.

When the producer, the rapper, the unofficial mayor of ATL, Jermaine Dupri, hits stage the real party is on! He's having fun multi-tasking DJing, posing for pics, dancing, sipping on beer, greeting friends on stage, hyping the crowd, and never misses a music beat! He drops "Teach Me How To Dougie" and at last a sista is having fun! I've got room to move and I'm literally dancing momentarily with the legendary Chi-town legend, George Daniels. Talk about old skool swagger! I see you Mr. Daniels!

Once Lil Jon joins Jermaine, the Patron starts flowing literally from unexpected places. Chicks standing below the stage open their mouths like hungry baby birds and wait for Jon to pour. Some even kiss each other for the taste then continue their usual bump and grind! Yep, I'm in Hollywood cause you know that scene ain't common at Inglewood's Savoy!

In VIP some are sipping on that Gin and juice with their mind on their money as Jermaine plays old skool gangster rap by Eazy-E, Snoop, and Nate-Dogg. The mostly white crowd I imagine from the OC, LA, Beverly Hills, the Valley, and Europe put their W's in the air like they lived in South Central LA all their lives. I'm laughing and dancing knowing most won't even consider venturing south of Wilshire for anything except maybe some weed.

By 2:30 am, I call it a night! The party is still going strong with Lil Jon and the house DJ. My sexy new boots are officially broke in, but my feet are paying the cost as I head to the parking area behind the club. It was a good night! It started out uncomfortably, but overall it was good night partying in Hollywood. The MTV VMA weekend festivities have officially begun! Read my Twitter stream, @hollywoodlvwork, for other details from the party.

Thursday, September 02, 2010

The 100 Most Powerful Black Women And Men on Twitter Lists

Are we on the list? Having your name on an email or precious clipboard is so Hollywood. There's a list to get in the club, attend the event, get a table...ya know how it goes. Wanna break somebody's ego here in Lala land? Let someone walk confidently right up to the door and tell them, "your not on the list." And most recently, social media imitated life when two new elite lists appeared on the online social scene concerning black folk.

BlackWeb2.0, a GREAT online resource for all things tech from "a different perspective" posted on it's blog the 100 Most Powerful Black Women on Twitter. Of course, social media heads flocked to the site, myself included, tweeted it and retweeted it. And then once the web traffic dust settled down, questions of the list's validity came up.

"How she get on the list? She ain't even black! And she got more followers than she does, and she hardly tweets at all, so why is her number such and such?" You know how WE do! And what began as something seemingly positive was now turning a little negative which made the analytical side of my brain take a closer look.

To gauge just how "powerful" someone is on Twitter, BlackWeb2.0 used Klout and Twittergrader, two very usefool tools in social media measurement. These online tools use not only follower numbers, but also an analytical cocktail of your tweet frequency, retweets, mentions, and other things most of you care nothing about. To put it simply the 100 Most Powerful List was NOT a roster of Blackweb2.0 favorite people nor celebrities. Yet, celebs over populate the list.

Realistically, the most powerful woman on the list is Oprah. She's #53. Power is when you can say your favorite ice cream or your pet's fav dog food and millions of people will rush out to get it just cause you said it. Most celebs, black, white, or otherwise acquired that power without a Twitter profile.



So take a look at the list of women and the 100 Most Powerful Black Men On Twitter. Do entertainers really have power in social media whether they tweet regularly or follow you back? Hells-to-the-yes! Why else would companies pay Kim Kardashian loads of money to tweet?

But no one on either list is reportedly being paid like Kim so again, are those on the list really powerful or just popular as hell? We who take our social media more seriously than the rest don't measure power solely by the numbers. Numbers, like Hollywood makeup, are deceptive. We put our rulers to ENGAGEMENT and INFLUENCE. And yes both are measurable.

So don't take these lists as Bible; they're good PR for those listed. Instead use them as a start not a finish in who's notable in Twitter's "Blackville." Check their profiles and see who's really talking back to their followers, using hashtags, contributing regularly to their timeline, retweeting other people's tweets, sharing original content like photos, and links to their blogs. Truly, those that can make you take action offline not just online with 140 characters or less are truly the most powerful people on Twitter. And that fact alone shortened both the lists considerably.

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