- The Washington Times - Friday, April 25, 2008

‘Lonely’ no more

The studio behind the Internet video sensation “Lonelygirl15” has received funding from a group of investors, including veterans of Netscape, Google and Mark Burnett Productions.

According to Backstage.com, LG15/Telegraph Ave. Prods. — which is being rebranded as EQAL — will receive a $5 million Series A round of financing led by Spark Capital. Netscape co-founder Marc Andreessen, Conrad Riggs of Mark Burnett Productions, Silicon Valley venture investor Ron Conway and former Google director Georges Harik also are investing in this round.

Company Chief Executive Officer Miles Beckett, President and Chief Operating Officer Greg Goodfried and Mesh Flinders started “Lonelygirl15” in June 2006, and it quickly became a viral hit on YouTube.

The funding isn’t tied to a specific new project. The investors are looking to “build the corporate infrastructure” and hire programmers, developers and ad sales workers. The studio has eight full-time employees, with “Lonelygirl” and “KateModern” employing production units of 12 to 14 people apiece, says Backstage.com.

Wendy gets TV show

Syndicated radio host Wendy Williams, known for her bold personality and an infamous on-air spat with Whitney Houston, will start up her long-awaited television talk show July 14 on Fox, the New York Daily News says.

The hour-long daily show is slated for a six-week run and will feature Miss Williams interviewing prominent guests.

Miss Williams — a former on-air personality at the District’s WOL (1450-AM) in the 1980s and host of “The Wendy Williams Experience” on VH1 in 2006 — will continue her radio show, which is nationally syndicated daily from New York’s WBLS.

Buscemi on ‘ER’

OK, so it’s not George Clooney returning, but the former Tony Blundetto — aka Steve Buscemi — will guest-star on the 14th-season finale of “ER,” airing May 15, TVGuide.com says. He’ll play “a loudmouthed drunk with a dangerous secret.”

Amy’s on a roll

Just call it an Amy Poehler weekend.

Along with her role as a regular on NBC’s “Saturday Night Live” and a new movie (“Baby Mama”) opening in theaters today, the versatile performer also is lending her voice to “The Mighty B!” a new Nickelodeon cartoon debuting on the cable network tomorrow at 10:30 a.m.

The animated series — also co-created by Miss Poehler — focuses on Bessie Higgenbottom, the gung-ho leader of her local Honeybees scout troop. (She even wears her Honeybees uniform every day.) On the premiere episode, Bessie adopts an equally spirited pooch so she can compete in the Honeybees-sponsored dog show. Then she takes a long-awaited ride on the world’s most terrifying roller coaster — but only after proving she’s tall enough to gain admission.

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