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Television legend Ed Asner has won seven Emmy Awards for performing which is more than any other male actor. He is primarily known for his role as Lou Grant on both The Mary Tyler Moore Show and its spinoff series Lou Grant. Asner has had an extensive voice-acting career and starred as the voice of Carl Fredericksen in Pixar’s award-winning animated film Up (2009).

On this podcast the 91-year-old Ed Asner tells us stories about where it started and opens up to our Gentry Thomas about being a Son of a Junkman and the journey of the Junkyard to bright lights of Hollywood! 

You can tell that Ed is no fan of Donald Trump. He calls President Trump a liar and says that better years are ahead of us with President elect Joe Biden. 

Ed has had a chance to work with some of the biggest stars of all time. During this episode of Backstage Pass the Emmy Award winner talks about being on screen with Elvis and what made Mary Tyler Moore so special. 

Recently Ed Asner went on Kelly Clarkson’s new daytime TV show and commented on how she smelled. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nX9FJrbGMoU

Other television appearances with Ed Asner include The Bronx Zoo, Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip, Hawaii Five-O (1975), Hawaii Five-O (2012 remake), The Middle, The Trials of Rosie O’Neill, Hearts Afire, The Untouchables, Curb Your Enthusiasm, CSI: NY, Betty White’s Off Their Rockers, Working Class, Michael, Tuesdays and Thursdays, The Glades, just to name a few and many made-for-television movies. 

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Pauly Shore talks new movie Guest House and his favorite bands of all time.

Marie Osmond told us she is channeling every diva she has ever worked with for her latest role in Lifetime’s Christmas Edition. In this new holiday flick Marie plays a media tycoon, we asked how she felt about the new “Fake News” term, along with the media’s responsibility to tell the American people the truth about the news. Osmond wanted to make it clear that she loved our country, and that the people need to make sure to be responsible themselves, when getting their news. “They need to not just be listening, but they really need to do their research”. The 61 year singer and actress added that “I don’t do politics, who cares what celebrities think when it comes to politics? I don’t.” 

Fans have fallen in love with Marie since the 70’s when she starred on the variety show Donnie and Marie, some will remember her 1973 #1 hit Paper Roses and some know her from her recent stint on The Talk. She did not want to discuss her exit from the daytime talk show, but did open up with us about her music. The singer said she has more music on the way and talked about winning a CMA Award in 1986 for Country Vocal Duo with Dan Seals on the song Meet me in Montana. Music has always been her medicine she explained, Marie is one of the founders of The Children’s Miracle Network and wanted everyone to check out her music video for her song Music is Medicine. 

Finally we asked Marie what a typical Christmas was like in the Osmond household. Her answer may surprise you when it comes to the Holiday’s at Marie’s!

Listen to this episode and other episodes of Backstage Pass with Gentry Thomas by going to The Podcast Playground. 

 

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When it comes to long careers in television, few can rival the success of TODAY’sAl Roker. Hailing from Queens, a borough of New York City, the beloved weatherman has been one of NBC’s most trusted voices for over 40 years.

Now, he’s out with his 13th book, “You Look So Much Better in Person: True Stories of Absurdity and Success,” in which he shares the lessons he’s learned over his distinguished career. 

Al tells us the story of when his Father took him to get his drivers license in a 1967 Ford Squire station wagon and how he got his start in show business on the radio in college. 

He gave us the gravy on this years Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade. This will be the 94th year of the historic event and the parade must go on! It will be “reimagined as you might imagine” Roker told us, “Santa will hit Harold’s Square this year and NBC will be there to cover it”. Even with an increase in Covid cases in NYC, they will have a revised version of the parade this year in the City. NBC’s coverage begins Thanksgiving Day 9am all times zones. 

The beloved weather man expressed that “climate change is a real and there is no question that it’s happening.” he also told us that “You can have good paying jobs, you can have job growth and be a steward to the planet”. Roker also said that Donald Trump was incorrect when he called NYC a ghost town. Roker lives on the upper eastside of Manhattan and says “it’s just as crowed as ever”. 

After 40 years of broadcasting with NBC Al Roker has had a front row seat to 9-11, the #MeToo movement, presidential elections and the latest being Covid-19. We wanted to focus on the positive moments in his career covering musicians, authors and celebrities. Al admitted that meeting Charles Schultz  the American cartoonist, who is credited for the Peanuts comic, was a dream come true.”

Listen to the podcast to hear the rest of our conversation with Al Roker. 

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Actress Lea Thompson reflects on her Back To The Future days playing Lorraine and working with Michael J. Fox. The 80s actress admits she has been spending a lot of time cooking and cleaning lately for her family due to covid-19. Lea recalls another virus that swept the planet in the 1980s when she was starring in blockbuster movies. That was the AIDS virus. Since the first cases were reported in the U.S. in 1981, 39 million people have died from the HIV virus, including 619,000 globally last year alone according to unaids.org. Lea says she is really proud of America right now and how many are coming together but still have work to do. “We’ve started appreciating people that we took for granted in the past (and in the future) “like grocery store workers and people who pick the crops and of couse the nurses and the janitors.”  Thompson told us on the podcast.

Lea has been married to director Howard Duetch since 1989. The 59 year old Thompson opened up to our own Gentry Thomas about how they met on the set of Some Kind of Wonderful in 1987. She reminisced with us about their first photo together and how she recently posted it on her Instagram Page. Her husband is known for directing Pretty in Pink, The Great Outdoors and Grumpier Old Men to name a few. Both her and Duetch  have directing creds now since Lea has directed 7 episodes of ABC’s hit show The Goldbergs.  Lea and hubby Howie often share directing notes these days, but she wanted to make it clear that Howard does not have back to back hit shows with a network like she has done recently. 

Listen to this week’s episode of Backstage with Gentry Thomas and for even more interviews and content join us on The Podcast Playground. 

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Always great to catch up with Danny Tanner on this episode of Backstage he tells us that he and his wife have been sleeping in separate beds. Saget claims that Pets and Dirty Jokes can help everyone through this tough time. You will hear plenty of jokes when Bob Saget returns to host the 34th annual Cool Comedy – Hot Cuisine fundraiser, benefiting the Scleroderma Research Foundation (SRF), on Sunday, Oct. 18. The comedian will be joined by celebrity chef and restaurateur Susan Feniger as co-host of the now online event.

The fundraiser will for the first time be a virtual experience open to global audiences, according to a press release. The event will be live-streamed on YouTube and feature a bey of special musical and comedian guests, including Jack Black, Kelly Clarkson, Queen Latifah, Ray Romano, and John Stamos. 

Cool Comedy – Hot Cuisine was started in 1987 by SRF founder and first CEO Sharon Monsky to help raise funds and awareness for scleroderma. To date, the event has raised more than $45 million to fund scleroderma research. 

To register for the event, go here. Sponsorships begin at the “Friend” level for $100.

 

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Rob Reiner joins Gentry Thomas Backstage this week to get “The Band” back together. They discuss Trump and Archie Bunker similarities, along with heading down memory lane with Reiner’s commentary on some of the iconic movie scenes that have made him one of Hollywood’s most accomplished directors. 

Listen to the podcast and hear the 73 year old Reiner recall the train and bridge scene from Stand By Me, When Harry Met Sally’s restaurant orgasm scene with Meg Ryan, “You can’t handle the truth” in the court room with Jack Nicolson in A Few Good Men and the final kiss from The Princess Bride. 

America fell in love with Rob Reiner when he played the character Meathead on All in the Family. The star of this 70s sitcom was Archie Bunker played by Carroll O’Connor. The character “Archie” was often described as a racist, sexiest, bigot, some of the same names you will hear people call our current President Donald Trump. Gentry Thomas asked Reiner if their were any similarities between the two? Hear Rob’s response and his outlook on the future of movie making in this episode of Backstage with Gentry. 

The cast and director of classic rock mockumentary This Is Spinal Tap are reuniting for a virtual table read that will be moderated by Patton Oswalt. Released in 1984, the Rob Reiner (The Princess Bride) movie starred Christopher Guest (The Princess Bride), Michael McKean (Better Call Saul) and Harry Shearer (The Simpsons) as the hapless British heavy metal band, Spinal Tap. 

The table read will take place on October 14th, 2020 and will aim to raise money for the Philadelphia Democrats ahead of the November 3 General Election. 

Follow Rob Reiner on twitter https://twitter.com/robreiner

Check out more about supporting the Pennsylvania Dems @ https://www.padems.com/

 

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Joey Fatone Talks ‘Common Knowledge,’ His Post-N SYNC Hosting Career. He also told Gentry Thomas on the Podcast his biggest moment personally with the band. 

The former *NSYNC member joins Common Knowledge after starring in My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2, serving as an announcer on Family Feud from 2010 through 2015, and hosting The Singing Bee and Parents Just Don’t Understand.

Joey, now 43, told us that former band member Chris Kirkpatrick would win if N-Sync ended up in a fight to the death! 

Listen to Backstage with Gentry Thomas and Joey Fatone in this episode of the podcast to find out which band mate is the most street smart and which one is the best with the books in the classroom. 

In the summer of 1995, after befriending Chris Kirkpatrick, a fellow Universal Studios stage performer who was singing in a doo-wop group, he became the fourth member of NSYNC, along with Justin Timberlake and JC Chasez. Then Lance Bass was added to the group that would become NSYNC. In 2001, Fatone co-starred with *NSYNC bandmate Lance Bass in the Miramax film On the Line, he guest starred with NSYNC on a 2001 episode of The Simpsons episode New Kids on the Blecch, and also did voice work with Bass on the same episodes of Disney’s Kim Possible and Adult Swim’s Robot Chicken.

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