Barack ObamaLatest News and Opinion
Posted Thursday 2/08/18 at 6:30PM EST
Ex-Obama staffers’ are bringing their Pod Save America podcast to HBO
Former Obama administration officials Jon Favreau, Jon Lovett and Tommy Vietor will adapt their popular left-leaning podcast into a series of hour-long specials focused on the midterm elections this fall. The news follows this week's premiere of another HBO project based on a podcast, 2 Dope Queens.
Posted Friday 1/19/18 at 4:41PM EST
President Trump turns down NBC’s request for the traditional Super Bowl pregame show interview
Former President Obama did a Super Bowl pregame show interview every year of his presidency, and Trump did one last year on Fox with Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly. NBC is still extending an open invitation, according to Deadline’s Lisa de Moraes. She speculates that Trump may be avoiding this year’s interview for fear of low ratings. About 12.2 million watched his Super Bowl pregame interview last year, which was significantly less than any of Obama's interviews. “Or,” she adds, “perhaps Trump does not want to take any uncomfortable questions about his relationship with Stormy Daniels, DACA, reported description of Haiti and countries in Africa as “sh*tholes,” etc.” Also, Trump may not want to go on an NFL pregame show after repeatedly bashing the sports league last year over National Anthem protests.
Posted Friday 1/19/18 at 4:41PM EST
Legends of Tomorrow is searching for an actor to play a teenage Barack Obama
The time-traveling CW superhero series is planning to devote a Season 3 episode to the former president as a student at Occidental College in Los Angeles in the late 1970s.
Posted Thursday 1/18/18 at 9:48PM EST
Portlandia was fundamentally an expression of the Obama era, which is why it had to end
“We should be clear about something: Portlandia was always going to end this year,” says William Hughes, “regardless of who won the big prize in 2016. (Eight seasons is a damn long run for any sketch series that isn’t Saturday Night Live.) But Trump’s victory still felt like a retroactive death knell for the show, a widespread political statement that that dream of the ’90s might be well and truly dead. Like some kind of beautiful but easily disturbed freshwater fish, Portlandia was a product of a dangerously hope-rich environment. And while it’ll be fascinating to see how well it can swim during this last batch of episodes, we can’t really blame it if it doesn’t get very far in a world where the chemicals it was born and bathed in—things like safety, equality, comfort, and, most especially, that Obama-propagated idea that ‘Things are going to be okay’—are suddenly in such drastically short supply.”
Posted Saturday 1/13/18 at 12:37AM EST
David Letterman’s Netflix talk show would be much better without the “late-night questions”
Willa Paskin says My Next Guest Needs No Introduction offers a “perfectly serviceable interview” of former President Obama, but Letterman’s “questions are late-night questions: They are designed to elicit an expected or predicted bit, not to meander, surprise, or plumb.” As she notes, there is one point where Obama tried to “show Letterman a way to do the new show differently” by “tossing” a question back at the former Late Show host. But Dave would have none of it. In the end, it was Obama who asked the most unpredictable question of the episode: Does Letterman feel lucky? Letterman's Netflix talk show, says Paskin “is pleasant, entertaining, occasionally moving, a little funny, and almost indistinguishable from a standard late-night interview, just stretched out. It is long, but it is not particularly deep. New network, new set, new beard: same Dave. You can take the host out of late night, but you can’t take the late night out of the host. “
- Letterman fawns over his guest more than he should in a “frustrating exercise in talking a lot but, ultimately, saying a little"
- Letterman was never known for his interrogatory skills, so his “borderline small talk” is actually fascinating
- Both men seemed rusty at the art of banter, but it’s clear Obama should’ve been the one interviewing Letterman
- With its bare-bones structure and thoughtful approach, this seems like a self-reward for a long career
- Interviewing Obama is tricky, but there surely should’ve been some new material to be mined from the former president's first interview since leaving office
- It’s clear Letterman wants to talk about substance, no matter whom he's talking to
- There is a self-reflection that runs through the show that maybe Letterman is reassessing what he’s accomplished in life
- The overall production felt synthetic — like a PBS Q&A reimagined by Michael Bay — compared to the pleasant simplicity of the late-night two-shot
Posted Friday 1/12/18 at 5:54AM EST
David Letterman’s new Netflix talk show is like watching a rock star doing his first acoustic tour
My Next Guest Needs No Introduction, says Mike Ryan, “reminded me a little bit of Bruce Springsteen’s current run on Broadway: in a ‘this is the essence of what I want to do, here I am, take it or leave it’ kind of way with no band in the background to rely on. And here, Letterman is without Paul Schaffer (Schaffer did write the theme music) or any of that other numerous weirdos he could rely on for a quick laugh. This is Dave, unplugged. And, by golly, Dave seems to be having the time of his life.” He adds: “A funny thing happens, that happens so often when we realize we really do need something after it’s gone – we really missed that steady, calm voice of reason who can speak truth to power. We needed Dave back. And I think Dave needed us back, too. I have a feeling we won’t take him for granted this time.”
- The Barack Obama premiere episode almost entirely ignored Donald Trump
- Letterman’s Obama interview was "a pleasantly informal but ultimately inconsequential chat”
- Letterman, with his “off-putting Methuselah-esque beard,” was rather humorless, behaving like a grump
- Between Obama’s open collar and Letterman’s massive beard, they were finally free to just be themselves
Posted Wednesday 1/10/18 at 6:16PM EST
Former President Obama talks to David Letterman about showcasing his “dad moves”
Watch a clip from Letterman’s interview with the former president from My Next Guest Needs No Introduction with David Letterman, which debuts on Friday.
Posted Friday 1/05/18 at 12:04PM EST
David Letterman’s Netflix talk show, titled My Guest Needs No Introduction, debuts Jan. 12 with Barack Obama
Netflix will roll out each of the six episodes of Letterman’s new talk show series once a month, starting on Jan. 12 with the Obama episode, which will mark the former president’s first television interview since leaving office. Other guests include George Clooney, Malala Yousafzai, Jay-Z, Tina Fey and Howard Stern. Watch the first trailer.
Posted Friday 12/22/17 at 2:05PM EST
David Letterman's new Netflix series: What we know (so far)
With audience members being asked to sign non-disclosure agreements and to leave their phones at the studio door, David Letterman's still-untitled Netflix series is shrouded in secrecy. With an assist from local press reports and twitter sightings, here's what we know so far. More...
TOPICS: Netflix, Jimmy Kimmel Live!, Late Show with David Letterman, My Next Guest Needs No Introduction With David Letterman, Abdirahman Kahin, Al Franken, Barack Obama, David Letterman, George Clooney, Howard Stern, Ilhan Omar, John Lewis, Malala Yousafzai, Moussa Doualeh, The Howard Stern Show
Posted Wednesday 12/20/17 at 2:14PM EST
David Letterman interviews Malala Yousafzai
The youngest-ever Nobel prize winner was spotted leaving a taping of Letterman’s Netflix series. She’s expected to be the second of six guests, according to TMZ, which adds that “rumor is Barack Obama was Dave's first guest a month ago.”
Posted Friday 12/01/17 at 9:24PM EST
Barack Obama and Joe Biden will time travel on Barry & Joe: The Animated Series, from producer Conan O’Brien
O’Brien will serve as executive producer on the time travel series that takes its inspiration from Quantum Leap.
Posted Wednesday 11/29/17 at 2:16PM EST
Watch Jimmy Kimmel sing “We’re Going to Hell” with Bono, Diddy, DJ Khaled and Kristen Bell
Ashton Kutcher, Rita Wilson and Bryan Cranston were also part of last night’s annual (RED) episode to raise money for HIV/AIDS programs in sub-Saharan Africa. The special episode also featured a taped cameo by former President Obama.
Posted Tuesday 10/17/17 at 11:32PM EDT
Curb Your Enthusiasm: Pretty, pretty boring?
After six years off, Curb Your Enthusiasm has returned with episodes that feel “stale and annoying,” says Michael Starr. “Yes,” he says, “Curb’s theme music is still obsessively catchy — so there’s that — but I’ve found the new season’s first three episodes grating and forced in a been there, done that kind of way — with some genuinely funny lines (i.e. 'warm pocket candy' from the most recent episode) blunted by the show’s predictability and overemphasis on trying to create a Seinfeld-ian 'close talker'/'man hands'-type watercooler moment (i.e. 'no one’s above the beep' from last Sunday’s episode). Add lots of high-decibel shouting and gesticulating and it gets old really fast.
Posted Wednesday 9/27/17 at 3:06PM EDT
Bill Simmons: President Obama essentially told me I suck on TV
Simmons, whose HBO sports talk show Any Given Wednesday was canceled last year after a few months, says the former president predicted his return to writing. Simmons recalls a 2015 interview he had with the then-president: “He said to me, ‘You gotta write more. I mean, you’re okay on TV, but you need to write more.’ I was like, ‘He thinks I suck on TV,’” Simmons said.
Posted Thursday 9/07/17 at 9:21PM EDT
All five living former presidents film an ad for Hurricane Harvey relief
Check out the commercial for One America Appeal featuring Presidents Obama, Bush Jr., Clinton, Bush Sr. and Carter.