- The Washington Times - Sunday, November 6, 2005

Fat chance

Not above suffering for her art, or at least suffering for bigger ratings, supermodel/talk show host Tyra Banks is suiting up as a 350-pound woman to experience what it’s like to be obese.

“It seemed like the last form of open discrimination that’s OK, and I decided to put on a 350-pound suit myself and live that life for a day and see what happens, and it was one of the most heartbreaking days of my life,” Miss Banks, 31, said of today’s edition (9 a.m. on WTTG-Fox 5) of her eponymous talker during an interview with Associated Press Radio.

She says she was shocked at the reaction.

“I started walking down the street, and within 10 seconds, a trio of people looked at me, snickered, looked me right in my eye and started pointing and laughing in my face,” the talk-show host says. “And I had no idea it was that blatant.”

In September, Miss Banks had a sonogram on her show to prove that her breasts are real, and she’s also planning an upcoming show on obtaining “a beautiful booty.” During that segment, set for Nov. 18, Miss Banks will reveal her own “dimpled” derriere and receive endermologie treatment (for cellulite reduction) on the set.

“The Tyra Banks Show,” one of several new daytime programs to bow in September — a list that includes Martha Stewart’s syndicated talk show — has done well with younger audiences, drawing higher ratings than Miss Stewart’s program among viewers between 18 and 34, media analysts say.

“Both Martha and Tyra’s numbers are good, but not great,” Bill Carroll, vice president and director of programming for Katz Television Group, told Mediapost.com. “We are still at a time when programs are still getting some sampling.”

All ‘Shook’ up

Cable’s AMC has ordered four additional episodes of its new documentary series “Movies That Shook the World,” for a total of 13 episodes, the network announced.

The half-hour weekly series profiles the most influential movies of all time and is narrated by actor Jeff Goldblum, reports TVweek.com. The newly added episodes include profiles of “Philadelphia,” “Shaft,” “The Blair Witch Project” — and “Pink Flamingos” from Baltimore-born director John Waters.

“Movies That Shook the World,” which debuted in September, examines the cultural impact of well-known films. New episodes air Friday evenings at 10.

Capturing the Friedman

He won’t be eating bugs or vying to work for Donald Trump, but humorist and Texas gubernatorial candidate Kinky Friedman plans to put his own stamp on reality television.

“Go Kinky,” which follows Mr. Friedman on the campaign trail, premieres with back-to-back episodes Thursday at 1 a.m. — as in real late-night Wednesday — on Country Music Television, spokeswoman Laura Stromberg said Friday.

If the network likes the show, “Go Kinky” could return as a series in early 2006 in political primary season, Reuters news agency reports.

Mr. Friedman, 61, the former frontman of Kinky Friedman and the Texas Jewboys, a country music group, was followed by camera crews last spring and summer as he ramped up his independent campaign, whose slogan is “Why the hell not?” He’s attempting to get on the statewide ballot through petition next spring on a platform that neither of the two major political parties can effectively govern.

“We hope the people of Texas are going to reject the choice of paper or plastic,” Mr. Friedman told Reuters news agency earlier this year.

In addition to writing songs like “Get Your Biscuits in the Oven and Your Buns in the Bed,” Mr. Friedman — who was born in Chicago and had a role in the 1986 film “Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2” — has written a column for Texas Monthly magazine and a series of mystery novels with a main character based on himself.

Desperate’ measures

Joey Buttafuoco is working on ABC’s “Desperate Housewives” — at the show’s concession stand, anyway.

Mr. Buttafuoco, 49, who made national headlines in the early 1990s when his teenage girlfriend Amy Fisher (then 17 and nicknamed the Long Island Lolita) shot his wife in the face, is working in craft services on the Hollywood sets of TV shows, according to a story in the latest issue of Inside TV.

According to the magazine, Mr. Buttafuoco runs a concession stand that doles out protein shakes and ice cream to the stars of “Desperate Housewives” and “Crossing Jordan,” Associated Press reports.

Last year, Mr. Buttafuoco was sentenced to a year in jail and five years of probation after pleading guilty to auto insurance fraud. In August, he was charged with illegal possession of ammunition and pleaded not guilty.

Compiled by Robyn-Denise Yourse from Web and wire reports.

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