||Where is our Lenny Bruce? (The Berkshire Eagle) - An article about Lenny Bruce's social criticism in and influence over comedy. Included in the article is how South Park and other shows have been influenced by him.
||Boy bashing: Some say girl power movement may have gone too far (Alameda Times-Star) - It's all on the T-shirts, man. Girl Power at boys' expense is not power at all.
Who's snappy now? (The Australian) - A recap of Steve Irwin's travails. Crikey!
||Some teens just shouldn't watch South Park (NetJak) - 2003 marked also the renewed assault on violence in gaming. Imitating the South Park episode where the children lie about being abused, two teenagers got savvy and blamed Grand Theft Auto: Vice City for shooting at cars and killing one person.
Post mod con (The Student Independent Voice) - South Park as guiding force in ordering and shaping our attitudes and opinions to suit the shifting nature of the modern world around us.
||Keeping an Eye on the Media, for Kids' Sake (Zenit News Agency, Italy) - The Catholic Church is concerned about viewing habits. Example:
Ireland's broadcasting commission reports that children aged from 4 to 6 are watching adult dramas and violent police programs, the London Sunday Times reported Dec. 14. Those aged 7 to 10 enjoy watching a "hard-hitting prison drama" and the adult cartoon "South Park," while 11- to 14-year-olds regularly stay up until 11 p.m. and later to watch adult shows. Overall, Irish children spend between 2 and 3 hours a day watching television.
Where are the adults? Have children taken over the household so completely that their parents are unwilling to just say no?
The Goths are alright (Las Vegas Mercury) - The state of Goth culture in Las Vegas. They're pretty well-behaved and friendly.
Theater: A Kiss Is Never Just a Kiss: Hairspray’s Marc Shaiman (Windy City Times) - Richard Knight Jr. interviews Marc Shaiman, who has a lot to share about his time with Matt and Trey during the making of SP:BLU - he got to do everything he ever wanted to do. Shaiman confirms that Team America will resume production next year. Which means the movie comes out in two years or more.
||Some choice sounds for love's big day (The Baltimore Sun) - If you're lucky enough to cuddle with a honey on Valentine's Day, do it with the right tunes. Here are a few new collections and some timeless goodies that'll get you in the mood. Among the selections listed...
Isaac Hayes, Greatest Love Songs: Before Barry White swept onto the pop scene in '73, the soul man known as Black Moses had cleared the way for him with 1969's Hot Buttered Soul, a groundbreaking album of four daylong songs that smoldered with rich, layered symphonic arrangements and Isaac's Southern-kissed baritone. Perhaps best known today for his role as Chef on South Park, the Memphis-based singer-songwriter-musician was an incredible force in R&B (and pop) throughout the '70s. And some of his sexiest songs - "Walk On By," "A Few More Kisses to Go," "Joy Pt. 1" - are featured on this 12-track collection.
Simpsons film planned for 2006 (iTV) - South Park made it to the movies first. Now Matt Groening is planning The Simpson's arrival to the big screen by Christmas 2006. :)
Vote on TV decency standards is still out (Seattle Post-Intelligencer) - I wonder what effect this will have on the syndicated eps of South Park that are to arrive on broadcast TV in 19 months, especially after Janet Jackson's display at the Super Bowl. This opinion urges South Park cartoons to be banned from prime-time family viewing hours because of its vulgarity and offensive language in front of children.
Menu part of successful retooling at Isaac Hayes (Commercial Appeal) - A review of the revamped Isaac Hayes restaurant.
Channel 4 brings South Park to Streatham (MediaGuardian) - Props to the folks at the SPS BBS for finding this: a new series is planned for the UK about teen life at Streatham Hill, in South London. It will mimic South Park's style, but be about three teen girls, one of whom is pregnant.
Students shine in a night of song and dance (MTU) - Delta Upsilon performed a South Park-inspired skit. Read:
The main characters from the cartoon "South Park," Kyle, Kenny, Stan and Cartman traveled across the country on a class trip and all the while Kyle was trying to market his new idea "boomsticks." This skit was filled with spoofs of popular commercials and popular catch phrases from the cartoon. It ended with the boys bringing the "boomsticks" to Houghton. The cast took off the costumes and played the drums on a number of different pails and garbage containers, much like the show "Stomp."
||Nobby posted a link to a short video for Shocked at OrgazmoDVD. Trey does a variation of his Cartman voice and the characters in the "Princess" short look like SP characters wouild look if they were animated in traditional cel animation, including somewhat better articulation.
||Found at XFM Online: Tuesday (March 2) saw some of the biggest young stars in Hollywood gathered in Beverly Hills to publicise the right to vote. Andre (of Outkast) joined Donnie Darko star Jake Gyllenhaal, South Park creators Matt Stone and Trey Parker, and dozens of other celebrities to support legendary American TV producer Norman Lear's 'Declare Yourself' scheme.
Sci-Fi Thursday (Louisville Courier Journal) -
"Tripping the Rift" at 10:30 is a new animated series about purple aliens that battle space enemies and other evils. Think "South Park" versus "Star Trek."
Freak Factor (Newday) - the bottom half of this article has more info on this new cartoon, including its early history on the Internet. I remember downloading a short of this several years ago. I'm pleasantly surprised that it's become a full-fledged cable series. :D Oh, you can catch the short that led to the series here
A Review of Tripping The Rift (Animation Insider) - Quite detailed, it reveals that Andrew Borakove, one of the key writers of the series, has worked on hilarious series such as South Park and Dilbert; so there's plenty of sophisticated adult humor to be found.
Arts In Brief (Jerusalem Post) - Israeli Film première: The Simpsons and South Park meet the IDF in this satirical television series about the foibles at a secret nuclear missile plant in the south of Israel. (Heb. only) Courtesy of Keshet.
Celebs Go To The Post Office To Deliver Pro-Vote Message (MTV) - Even Matt Stone and Trey Parker, the creators of "South Park," had something to say about [gay marriage]. "Matt and I have been wanting to get married for a long time," Parker said. "Not because we're gay, but because we look forward to the tax breaks, being two single men. We think it's fantastic."
Animated success 04/04 (Northern Ontario Business) - All about Chilly Beach, the Great White North’s version of South Park.
Kyle O'Neill: Columnist reminisces on days at University (The Michigan Daily) - I learned Sting is still the best musician and performer, “South Park” is still reigning king, “The Simpsons” still surprises us with funny episodes, “Family Guy” may have jumped the shark by getting cancelled and sent to Cartoon Network, “The Matrix Reloaded” and “Star Wars: Episode II” were much better than what people thought, “The New Guy” was a horrible and horribly addictive movie and “Madden 2002” was the perfect way to bond with your roommates
||Bush's attempt at WMD humor is disrespectful to U.S. soldiers (Oregon Daily Emerald) - This one is here only 'cause this site is mentioned in it, with a piece of the transcript for "A Ladder To Heaven" included. The author didn't much like Bush's lil bit of humor at the White House concerning the missing WMD.
They Killed Kenny -- Live (The Tufts Daily, MA) - A live stage version of the movie, but not as raunchy. "South Park the Musical: Bigger, Longer, and Live" is an irreverent, laid-back riff on an irreverent, laid-back film. It's a fun story sprinkled with expletives, and potty humor. So while that may not be for everyone, the talent of the cast and crew working with the low budget and less-than-ideal space is worth a watch alone.
What? Morals in 'South Park'? (The New York Times) - A nice analysis of what makes South Park tick. For all its anger at the hypocrisy of today's society, it sometimes seems too sane for its own good.
It's getting harder to tell truth from fiction
"The whole war in Iraq has been like a bad episode of South Park. The little kids are in the streets pointing at our reckless and corrupt leaders, and Iraq is this harmless blimp in the sky. Meanwhile, the filthy rich have looted our nation clean."
“Team America: World Police” (10/15) (scroll down for info, or read...)
“South Park’s” Trey Parker and Matt Stone supply the bulk of the voicework in this animated adventure about a band of superhero marionettes out to eradicate terrorism and annoying celebrities.
Spain's festival of `politically incorrect' films
Runs Sept. 17-25. South Park cartoons will be featured in them.
Calling it Quits (Review Journal)
Collins passes up a chance to strike back at the creators of "South Park." The cartoon spent an episode slagging Collins after his "You'll Be In My Heart" won an Oscar over a song from the "South Park" movie. Collins was drawn as a cockney hack who walked around holding his Oscar and performed for children who enjoyed him only because they were medicated.
"I'm flattered more than offended, to be honest," he says.
Collins says the episode reminded him of an earlier caricature of him.
"In the '80s, there was a thing called Spitting Image, and they did very cruel puppets, which we (later hired for the music video for) Genesis' `Land of Confusion.' We got a Grammy for that. It's the only Grammy we ever got, for a video we weren't in," Collins says. "We thought they were very funny. They'd done me already, with my kind of broken-heart songs, writing at a piano with water streaming out of my eyes."
He notes, though, that the tone was harsher with "South Park."
"With the `South Park' thing, it's very vicious. I kind of laughed a bit at the Oscar (episode). But if you don't know someone, it just made it look like I was someone totally different than the person I am," he says. "And they kind of couldn't be seen to be nice to me, because they've got their own position in their culture to think about. They're not gonna own up and say anything nice about me, even if they felt it."
Well, they thought he sucked then, they think he sucks now, so they don't care how he takes their depction of him.
They're at it again (Bradenton.com)
"Putting the "F" back in Freedom"
The above is the tagline for the latest bit of anarchy from demented "South Park" geniuses Matt Stone and Trey Parker, "Team America: World Police."
The "F" line introduces a basic thematic feature of the "Thunderbirds"-style puppet-starring action flick about superheroes fighting terrorism: It's really, really dirty. So dirty that even though Parker and Stone are contractually obligated to deliver an R-rated flick, World Entertainment News Network reports "Team" is getting an NC-17 or worse because it supposedly features graphic scenes of puppets having sex.
We have a feeling this is a case of early-word-of-mouth over-hype. (The movie opens Oct. 15.) Meanwhile, the filmmakers promise that "Team" is just plain funny, period. "Watching puppets discuss life-and-death issues is just funny," Stone says.
Controversial 'Team America' aims left and right
The movie attacks both sides, so even though the conservatives are attacking the movie right now, it's the progressives who should worry more.
'South Park' creators produce parody film
Some more details on the movie. "We don't know what this movie is about. We still don't know how it's going to end," Stone said. What the duo does know, however, is their cast consists of dozens of 22-inch-tall puppets amid miniature replicas of Paris, Cairo, London, North Korea, the Panama Canal and Mount Rushmore.
ON THE SET: Trey and Matt String Together 'Team America'
In-depth view of the movie, including the start date of filming, May 23. Number of puppet characters: 270. Budget: $32 million. "Ultimately, it's just another lame-ass puppet movie," Parker sighs. "We swore we'd never do another movie again, but I'll assure you we'll NEVER do another PUPPET movie again!"
We have a release date
Mattt Potter, of OrgazmoDVD, makes this claim in that thread, but he isn't revealing the date just yet.
||Men discover the girlie joy of "matching"
The Denver International Film Fest opens with "Ray" Oct. 14, and later that night a special screening of Trey Parker and Matt Stone's new flick "Team America: World Police." Says fest head Ron Henderson of the "South Park" duo: "We salute our own homegrown heroes, Mr. Parker and Mr. Stone, for putting the 'F' back in Festival."
"Team America" set account
Reporter Shawn Adler says, "Team America, the new film from South Park creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone, WILL be uproariously funny. It will challenge and amuse and perhaps even enrage some audiences. It will cause many others to laugh until it hurts. It will do all this and more because Trey Parker and Matt Stone are perhaps the best satirists in America today, because they are witty and bright and full of jokes that make my belly ache from laughter.
And it will have nothing to do with puppets."
You're all screwin' around too much!
||Micro Engineering - the New York Times.
The creators of "Team America" (opening Oct. 15) took starmaking literally: they built the stars of their film from raw materials like Bondo, putty, silicone, synthetic and human hair, foam rubber and (in the case of Michael Moore's stomach) bubble wrap. The film, a satire directed by Trey Parker and Matt Stone (of "South Park") about an American police force that travels the world battling terrorism, was made entirely with puppets, many of whom play the parts of actual celebrities who get caught up in the fight. Here puppet makers and filmmakers discuss the construction of what they expect to be a few breakout marionettes.
"It was really, really difficult to get him as fat as he is," Matt Stone said. "A marionette won't function if it's too fat. So he's actually skinnier as a puppet than he is in real life." Even so, he wears overalls because "otherwise his pants would fall down."
The face made for the Fry Guy, a Parisian French fry vendor, was used again for the weapons inspector Hans Blix and for Mr. Moore. "I took that foundation face for a heavyset man and I increased the fat layer in his cheeks and his neck," the puppet designer Norman Tempia said. "And I found a nose that matched Michael Moore's silhouette. He has a distinct nose. It's got a nice curve in it and it's kind of pointy. It's different from his face. You'd think he'd have a heavier nose but he doesn't."
Kim Jong Il
Kim is the shortest of marionettes, "but he's got the same-size skull, like a little toddler head,'' said Charlie Chiodo, who built the puppets with his brothers Ed and Stephen. "He's this mean little man. But this sad little man."
Kim's jowels were so extreme that his face couldn't be articulated to achieve different expressions, so two heads were made - "a sad Kim Jong Il, and a happy Kim Jong Il," Mr. Chiodo said. "His smiling face is very cute and adorable. It shows the two sides of the evil dictator."
"There are so many images of Alec Baldwin," Stephen Chiodo said. "There's a young Alec Baldwin where he was more trim and chiseled, then there's the older Alec Baldwin who's a little rounder and more - full." Mr. Tempia said that a "heavy, but handsome" Baldwin was chosen as the model.
"Male puppets have bigger pupils than female puppets,'' Ed Chiodo said. "But Alec Baldwin's eyes are close together and tiny. So we took female eyes and put them in his skull, and all of a sudden, his eye shape looked a little squintier, and by squinting his eyelids,'' using tiny motors in the skull, "we got the characteristic Baldwin sneer."
The executive producer Scott Rudin "was obsessed with Alec Baldwin," said Mr. Stone, and asked for at least four remakes. Why? "I don't know. None of them look perfect. . . . If you just assert, people will accept." When production was finished, another producer asked for an extra Baldwin head for Mr. Rudin. "I put it on a nice wooden base with a glass bell jar on top," Mr. Tempia said. Mr. Rudin could not be reached for comment.
||PEOPLE, "Christopher Reeve" issue:
two-page article on Team America.
They show the puppets of Kim Jong Il, Alec Baldwin, Susan Sarandon, Tim Robbins, Matt Damon, and Sean Penn--plus, they scrounged up file photos of the celebrities that actually resemble them!
More on the Matt Damon character: Matt Stone said that the reason they had Matt Damon act like a doofus in the film is because his puppet came out looking doofusy. So doofusy that they thought it funny enough not to redo, and wrote the "dialogue" accordingly.
Entertainment Weekly, Mel Gibson on the cover:
There's an article/interview with Trey and Matt in the new Entertainment Weekly that has Mel Gibson on the cover if anyone's interested. It's not a bad read. They also reviewed Team America and gave it a B.
||Hilton inspires 'South Park' episode
Creators of South Park, Trey Parker and Matt Stone, have been inspired by Paris Hilton and her sex tape antics.
Last year some dirty footage of the hotel heiress and ex-boyfriend Rick Saloman could be found online.
Paris will be given the standard South Park treatment when she visits the town's school to compete in a "whore-off," according to the New York Post.
"Proving she's the best at her craft, this blond celebrity comes to South Park to compete in a `Whore-Off' to the delight of her young fans," a spokesperson for the show said.
||Let's review here: who were the players highlighted in "Up the Down Steroid" again... Ahh, yes, Mark McGuire, Barry Bonds, and Jason Giambi. News now is that Jason Giambi has been receiving steroids from Barry Bonds's weight trainer, Greg Anderson. HA! May this controversy crush him for good!