Monday, September 28, 2009

Dallas: Day 4

Okay, we are at Day 4 of 25 and I am covered in layers of SPF 70, bug spray, and dirt! So, I am taking the best showers ever while I am here in Dallas. Each morning, I hop the Green Line on the DART and find myself surrounded by robots. Robots? Have they taken over the city? Someone must explain this to me and please explain why the robots have little bird friends. This robot is holding his little bird friend:

The fountains at the entrance of the State Fair of Texas reminds me of Disney....or Vegas. I haven't seen the light show yet, but it happens every night at 8 PM as I run out of the gates to catch the DART.

What's a fair without agriculture and a few carved pumpkins? These are pretty amazing and labor intensive. Last year, my pumpkin consisted of two triangles for eyes and a crooked half moon for a mouth. I guess they won't need my talents for this booth.

I showed you Big Tex from the front. Here's his butt. It's BIG!

This is how I know it is 3:40 PM every day. The Marine band marches by with military precision. I also know I am halfway through my shift.

Yes, everything really is fried at the fair. Fried grilled cheese.......

Fried Peaches and Cream.......

People line up like they selling the lastest iPhone at the Apple store. They wait and wait for fried, greasy, deliciousness.....

And then they hop the tram because they are too full to walk.....

At the end of the day, it's all about the glass of wine, cookies, and a glass of chocolate milk to wash down all of the fried food congealed in your arteries.

I still haven't tried the hit of the fair: Fried Butter! Stay tuned for more pictures. If you missed the first in the series, click here:
Dallas: Opening Day

Part 5: Part 5.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Opening Day: Dallas

A photo of me and my Prius on the Jumbotron and the REAL me jumping next to the photo during rehearsal.

The show opened in Dallas and I feel like I am kid in a big Southern Disneyland for the next 3 1/2 weeks. I have never seen anything like this, so I am in awe of all of my surroundings. As a Yankee from Boston, we didn't have State Fairs like this. We had the very small Topsfield Fair, but that wasn't an annual trip. I think I went 3 or 4 times during my New England years. So, here I am plucked straight out of LA and into the nation's largest state fair, The State Fair of Texas. I hope to blog my adventures in photos, so you can get a taste of what I am experiencing....

Big Tex greets you at the gate. He's huge and he talks! Dickies sponsors Big Tex and all of the State Fair employees, so you see a lot of old school Dickies fashions walking around. Big Tex will tell you everything that is happening that day at the fair. He's definitely in the know......oh, and remember, everything is bigger in Texas.

What's this? It's a Cobra! Yes, this sweet-faced boy is named Cobra. He's one of our fantastic show runners who will be with us all season. He provides endless hours of entertainment on the road, so you may see some Cobra sightings in my blog this year.

The Swan Boats! I almost felt like I was back in Boston, but I snapped back to reality. These are actually prettier and better maintained.... and they have shade with the umbrellas. Shhh, don't tell Boston I said that.

Okay, corn dogs were born at the State Fair, but they call them "corny dogs". Until I try one, I still maintain that the best corn dogs are sold at Disneyland. Yes, I said Disneyland. A co-worker tried the corny dog and said it was only "okay". That doesn't encourage me to try one, but the way the Texans were slathering their dogs with mustard, I realized it is serious business here. Stay tuned on the corny dog versus corn dog taste off.

And if you didn't know, football is a religion in this state. I couldn't tell you how to play the game and the only reason I know the name Tom Brady is because he is married to Gisele, the supermodel. So, anyway, the fair grounds are next to the Cotton Bowl and I've been told some big games are coming up. I guess I will see what real football is all about......
Come back for more photos and fun as I experience The State Fair of Texas. Yee Haw!

To see Part 2, click here: Part 2
Part 3: Part 3.
Part 4: Part 4.
Part 5: Part 5.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Our supporters!

Just a quick update while I catch up on the season premiere of Grey's Anatomy and wonder who will be in or out on Project Runway. (By the way, do you not love Models of the Runway this season? Genius idea, Lifetime, genius!) All I have to say is, "Go, Christopher Straub"! He was a colleague of mine when I worked as a network host for ShopNBC. Oh, you didn't know I was a home shopping host in my former life, did you? :)

I cannot thank Mathieas McNaughton enough. His unparalleled support of The Web Files is beyond appreciated. His comments on the episodes make me laugh--whether it is a couch that is too small or his appreciation for my hat obsession. (By the way, Mathieas, I have another hat coming for you in our Cabonauts episode.) So, to support him and his daily features on the web series community, bookmark his blog: LG15 Today

Also, I wish there was a way to show my appreciation for They consistently support our show and you can often find the latest episode of The Web Files on their home page as a part of their "Featured Episodes". Tom Reynolds was an early cheerleader for The Web Files and the exposure we have gained on their site is immeasurable. So, take the time to visit our friends over at and stop by The Web Files while you are at it: The Web Files.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Behind the Scenes of Dirty Bomb Diaries

This shoot was a challenge for all of us and knowing all of the work that went into this episode, I am thrilled to say that it is one of my personal favorites so far. First, I was traveling non-stop the week before this shoot and I had little time to help my EP, Sandra, prepare for the interview. With all the work I was doing in Atlanta and Vegas, I had to focus on watching the Dirty Bomb Diaries episodes and doing my research on creators, Sean Hinchey and Eric Tozzi. I watched all 16 episodes of DBD in the Atlanta airport and on the day of the interview, I landed at LAX from Vegas only to roll right into hair and makeup. Needless to say, I was tired. This should also answer the question I get a lot from our Web Files featured guests, "You watched our show?" Yes, I watch every season, every episode, every bonus video. I do research on the creators, actors, music, and I even read other articles written about the show. The only thing I don't do is watch other on-camera interviews. I find that it colors my interpretation of the show too much. I want to come in with a fresh perspective and outlook.
Now, Sandra had all of the hard work securing the location and fine-tuning all of the details for Dirty Bomb Diaries. I have to say that Sandra is one of the most creative location scouts I have ever met. When she told me we were shooting in the City of Industry at Emergency Disaster Systems, I thought it was a perfect companion location to the premise of DBD. When we arrived, I found out we were shooting in a utility closet. Say what? A utility closet! It was a mess and piled high with boxes, shelves, and it hadn't been swept in days. In a matter of minutes though, this bland closet transformed into a colorful set filled with hard hats, emergency vests, and caution tape. It was fantastic! It gives you a glimpse as to how Sandra's amazing, creative brain works. I couldn't see a thing in that closet, and she saw a shooting location!
Now let me tell you why this is one of my favorite episodes. It isn't a flashy episode by any means, but it is one of the most informative and content rich episodes for web series creators. I think Eric and Sean gave some of the most insightful and straightforward answers on how to draw the viewers to your web series. They have a very specific idea on how to accomplish this, and I know many of you won't agree, but it was very successful for them. If you had 2 million views for your first season, you would be preaching the same thing. So, it definitely brings up the question of exclusivity versus availability. I would love to hear your thoughts on this.
Finally, new to The Web Files team is our DP, Jillian Arnold! She is pictured below working her DP magic. I love that we have so many talented people helping us create new episodes from week to week. They deserve all of the praise because I only know how to host, without them, The Web Files would not have the incredible production values each episode. My next mission is to get a picture of our PA extraordinaire, Jenn Bobiwash! She's always the one snapping the photos. It's her turn to shine in the limelight, so stay tuned!
If you missed Episode 12 with Dirty Bomb Diaries, why here it is: Dirty Bomb Diaries.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

The Web Files in the News.......

I love featuring new and veteran shows for The Web Files because I know how important it is to get the word in the cluttered interwebs. Happily, I know we heard from viewers that they have discovered new shows and websites because of the content we are presenting. So, it is always nice when the tables are turned and we are featured. Here are two articles that recently talked about The Web Files:

1. Mathieas McNaughton is doing a great service to all web series with interviews, articles, scoop, and previews of upcoming shows with his blog, LG15 Today. You will find highlights of Episode 11 of The Web Files with eGuiders' CEO, Marc Ostrick on Mathieas' site: LG15 Today

2. Casting Director, Bonnie Gillespie, continues to write for Showfax in a column called "The Actors Voice". She kindly showcased The Web Files as a part of the "Self-Produced Clip of the Week" in this week's column and our editor, Perry Payne, received a nice mention on his editing work for the show. Check it out here: The Actors Voice.

Thanks to Mathieas and Bonnie for helping us get the word out about The Web Files. We appreciate it!

Monday, September 21, 2009

It's Your Turn!

We just finished a huge round of interviews for The Web Files and I am really excited to share those episodes with you from Dirty Bomb Diaries to Showbizzle to Tim Street to Compulsions to The Cabonauts. There will be a lot of exciting news in the coming months, so keep checking back to hear the latest.

Our next round of interviews begins in mid-October and I decided to open the floor to you, the viewer. Who would you like to see on The Web Files in the coming months? Remember, we are open to anything to do with new media: web celebs, podcasts, web series, vloggers, animated web series, TV festivals, red carpet events, launch parties, etc. The only rule right now is that it has to be Southern California based. Featuring East Coast shows is on our list of things to do, but for now, please keep it on the Left Coast. So, comment below and tell us who needs to be the next featured guest on The Web Files.

**UPDATED** Due to the overwhelming response, we are going to do a "Viewers Choice" episode of The Web Files. So, keep the comments coming. We want to know which show you want to learn more about!

Thanks for watching!

PS If you haven't seen our show yet, you can find The Web Files here:

Saturday, September 19, 2009

The Week in Review

To say this week was busy was an understatement. On Sunday, I was in Atlanta with LG Electronics doing presentations on their new LED/LCD screens for CEDIA. This is the second time I have worked for them this year and they truly are an amazing company. Keep your eye on them, they are a force to be reckoned with in the electronics industry.
Monday it was back to LA for an interview for The Web Files with the creators of Showbizzle, Charles and Lindsey Rosin. If you think the name Charles Rosin sounds familiar, you are correct. He was the Executive Producer and Show Runner for the original 90210 during the Brenda years. As a 90210 fan, it really was a treat for me!

Tuesday had me off to Vegas for a super secret event with a major corporation. No photos were allowed to be taken, but it was a fun night at The Venetian and I loved my beautiful suite with the sunken living room and 3 LCD screens.
Wednesday, I was back in LA and on the set with The Web Files crew for a Dirty Bomb Diaries shoot. The location that EP, Sandra Payne, found was genius: Emergency Disaster Systems in the City of Industry for a web series about a dirty bomb going off in the city of Los Angeles. We had a lot of fun with the hard hats, masks, and first aid kits, so you should expect to see me all geared out in the episode.
By the time we hit Thursday, I was running on fumes, but I rallied because our final interview of the week was with the man behind the tinted glasses, Tim Street. We shared a drink and had a chat about the web industry 10 years ago and today. I think this episode will be very beneficial to the web series creators out there, so stay tuned!

After The Web Files shoot, I ran over to the Dance Channel TV studios to film the biweekly "Can't Miss List". This week brought a Patrick Swayze tribute, the typical DWTS PR stunt of the week, Fame, and the rumor that the GAP dance ads are back! Check out Episode 7 below:

Okay, that's the week in review! Next week brings another Web Files interview with the cast of the upcoming web series, Compulsions, and a job in The Lone Star State. Yee Haw!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Behind the Scenes of eGuiders

Phew, so behind on my blog because of my travels with other host gigs. I will update you on those later because it is time we feature this week's guest, Marc Ostrick, of eGuiders. I was thrilled to interview Marc, not only because of his savvy web series work with 24, John from Cincinnati, and eGuiders, but because he is a fellow NYU/TSOA grad. Since we graduated around the same time and only oh, say two or three years ago, we had a lot to share about our time in the Big Apple. So, if you hear a lot of "Go, Violets!" noise on Twitter this week, you can blame us, but please blame NYU for choosing the wimpiest mascot ever.

This was the end of a long, hot week of shooting before the Labor Day weekend. We decided on a simple Barbara Walters-type of sit-down interview and while I didn't make him cry, he did threaten a Cruise couch jump. Fortunately, I didn't go all Mike Wallace on him and he avoided any Cruise PR moves. Seriously though, it is important to understand that Marc has worked in the web industry way before many of us thought it was a viable place to watch series and content. His work on 24: Conspiracy was one of the leaders in paving the way for what eGuiders calls "TV Web Extensions". While the 24: Conspiracy content was created for Verizon's VCast for mobile phones, I doubt we would be seeing extensions of Entourage, The Office, or Ugly Betty today without the pioneers of the mobisodes from a few years back. These shows create an even larger universe for fans to explore and it allows the writers to breathe more life into the supporting characters. What I find most impressive though is that Marc and I went to college during a time when computers were used for word processing only. So, computers were not a part of our daily life, but he has created a fascinating and pioneering career with creative content on the web.

What really appeals to me about eGuiders is that it cuts through all of the clutter on the internet. It gives us a one-stop shopping place to find new web series, viral videos, and learn from industry experts. With Core eGuiders like Tim Street, Gennefer Snowfield, and Jeremy Redleaf and Guest eGuiders like one of my favorites, Hayden Black, you are sure to watch some hilarious and informative videos they have selected as their Pick of the Day. So, make sure to bookmark this site because Marc has been ahead of the game with internet content every step of the way. So, is eGuiders the next TV Guide? I am putting my money on it.

If you haven't watched the episode yet, check it out here: eGuiders Episode
We have had a lot of comments and feedback about this episode and Marc's comment about "humanizing the internet", so make sure to let us know what you think.

And Marc kindly wrote his feedback on the episode here: eGuiders Exclusive.

If you missed the eGuiders episode, you can find it here: eGuiders.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

The Web Files: Psychic Bunny

Phew! Quick turnaround on this episode. We usually have more episodes banked, so I often have to think really hard about all of the details of what went on behind the scenes. Not here though! It was only a week ago that we sat with the creators of Coma, Period, Rick Castañeda and Asa Shumskas-Tait. It was one of the hottest days in LA since the city was recovering from a weekend of fires in the San Gabriel Valley. The tough thing about any set is not being able to run the air conditioner, add the high temperatures, and you have an on set oven. So, temperature aside, I was really curious to find out about a web series that had tremendous buzz beginning back in April 2009 thanks to Tubefilter.
What's behind the door at Psychic Bunny? A lot of creativity. The four founders of Psychic Bunny met at USC and they do it all from start to finish, pre to post-production. Recently launched within the production company is their creative content banner, Lead Balloon. Lead Balloon is also the division that launched the web series, Coma, Period, and after looking at their production board, there is a lot more to come. You can actually catch a glimpse of that board in the interview. We didn't zoom in on in too closely....lots of secrets up there. Sssshhhhhh.......

I think the one thing that stands out in my mind with this episode is how methodical they were in creating this series. From the inception of the idea to the execution of the series to the distribution deal, Rick and Asa really made careful and smart decisions. Even when creating that stark, white background look for the series, they researched other shows that had done something similar. They knew what worked and they what didn't work. They knew they wanted to shoot it on green screen and create the stark, white look versus shooting on a white background which created more of a glowing background. I really enjoyed hearing how they went through this process because it is a call to web content creators to plan with the same detail that you would with a film or TV series. Web series may be a more affordable format, but it requires the same attention to production values. This won't be the last time I mention attention to detail. The quality of writing a web series comes up in my interview with Hayden Black/The Cabonauts and he also has some strong (and helpful) opinions on this topic.

Finally, those little go-karts (I have no idea what they are really called) are a blast! They are used in Coma, Period, but I was thrilled I was able to race Rick down the hallway despite my poor wardrobe choice. A dress and a go-kart are not the best idea. He did let me win, but if I had worn something more appropriate, I would have won anyway. Ha! I think that is a challenge for a rematch, I like the competitive spirit.

So keep your eye on Psychic Bunny, we will be hearing more from this talented group in the future....web series, movies, and more! Check out Coma, Period here:

PS Thank you to Rick for having a Tilde on his last name. It gave me a new computer skill, I know how to work the Tilde on a Mac now!

Check out the Psychic Bunny episode here: Coma, Period.

Monday, September 7, 2009

The Web Files Weekly Update

Hanging with Hayden before the interview......

A very Barbra Walters set-up. Did I make Marc cry? Find out soon.......

Shhh....What's behind the Psychic Bunny door? You'll find out on Wednesday!

he Web Files team was incredibly busy with interviews with some top web movers and shakers. Part of the reason for the craziness is my travel schedule....Atlanta, Vegas, and Dallas all in the next 5 weeks. Phew! We want to make sure we continue to bring new episodes to you each Wednesday, so we are banking a few interviews in The Web Files vault.

The week started out with the Psychic Bunny crew on the eve of their web series launch for Coma, Period on It was a hot day, but it was even hotter two days later with the cast of The Cabonauts. Hayden Black hosted us in the secret location of Salford Studios where The Cabonauts was filmed. I sat in the cab, so I feel kind of like the cool kid for being allowed to do that. Finally, Friday brought us to the world headquarters of eGuiders with Co-Founder, Marc Ostrick, a fellow NYU grad. Go Violets! We are taking this week off from shooting, but we will come back with a vengeance the following week with Showbizzle, Dirty Bomb Diaries, This Week in YouTube, and Compulsions. Exciting line-up, right?

In other news, we have had a terrific response to this week's episode including write-ups from Mathieas McNaughton over at LG15 Today and Michelle Denise Norton from Lonelypond. Thanks for the feedback, we appreciate it!

Only two more days before we show you a behind the scenes look at the offices of Psychic Bunny, so catch up with The Web Files and Episode 9 and then head on over to MYMHM with Juan, Lee, and me as we discuss one of my favorite Oscar-winning performances, Joan Crawford as Mildred Pierce. See their show here: MYMHM. Happy viewing, we will see all of you on Wednesday!

The Web Files interview: Episode 9

Kodak Theatre: KB has left the building!

Yesterday was my last day on a media job that I have held for 4 years. It was a fantastic ride, but with my current schedule with The Web Files and a few other upcoming host gigs, it was going to be impossible to keep it all up. Believe it or not, this was a job I found off of Craig's List when I was at a crossroads in my career. 2005 was not a good booking year for me and I needed something to keep me in the host loop, earn me money, and keep me sane. Surprisingly, the job gave me so much more......amazing friendships, more Oscar knowledge than I could ever imagine, tons of laughter, tickets to the 79th Annual Academy Awards, and best of super cute BF.

Meet The Oscars 2007

I know the Kodak Theatre inside and out. I took naps on the benches on the 4th floor after a few late nights out, Zen Gray and I used to chill our (non-alcoholic drinks) on the kegs in the bar area since we didn't have a fridge in the guide room, and we all spent many hours trying to find a wireless connection at Hollywood and Highland. I spent hours talking the ear off of one colleague, Dom, who really loved my incessant chatter despite the annoyance. :) The Kodak often gave us tickets to events when the house needed to be papered and Michael Bolton was the best of them all. Who else brings the entire cast of Desperate Housewives, screaming middle-aged women held back by security guards, and love ballads that you long forgot? One of the best nights ever after a few cocktails.

Friends after the 79th Annual Academy Awards: Seth, Ash, me, Rose, and Brian, at Cafe des Artistes

I did interviews for media outlets in Mexico, Japan, the US, and the UK. I filmed a piece as an Oscar expert that opened the live 80th Annual Academy Award show in Belgium. I talked about how heavy little Oscar was, what he was made of, where he was made, and how each winner got their name plate weeks after the show.

Post-show in 2007, everyone needs a Charlie's Angels pose.

When American Idol was exciting to me, it was thrilling to watch the set-up for the finals. I spent an afternoon listening to Tony Bennett rehearse for his concert from the front row of the theatre. I observed Lance Armstrong rehearse a monologue for the 2006 ESPY awards in flip-flops and shorts. Even better, Steven Spielberg and Catherine Zeta Jones stopped by to practice their introduction to AFI's 2006 honoree, Sean Connery.

On the red carpet by the bleacher seats with friends, Ash and Brian

Best of all was my opportunity to work at AMPAS' Meet the Oscars exhibit from 2006-2008. There, I met the most amazing people who continue to play a huge part in my life. Nothing like the excitement that builds with each week of Oscar madness. The red carpet goes up, the flowers, and then the statuettes move in. It was magic, especially for an Oscar geek. Oh, and when I attended the Academy Awards in 2007, I managed to get my photo in People magazine. Okay, so they were taking a picture of former Vice President Al Gore and family and the photo ran months later after his son, Al Gore III, was arrested for speeding in a Prius, but hey, I made it to People!

An Associated Press photo of me polishing Oscar in 2006.

So, good times behind me, but even better times ahead. Thanks to Crabby, Ash, Dom, James, John, Sarah, Zen, Ro, Tiffany, and Seth who made my time there so incredible. KB has officially left the building!

It takes a lot of technique to polish Oscar correctly! :)

Pointing out some of Oscar's uh.....assets.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Episode 9: Movies You May Have Missed

Now normally, I would start with a cast picture or a behind the scenes photo, but I want all of you to see the first time I met Juan Carlos Bagnell in person. Yes, he was kissing a crow. Okay, okay, it was our official launch party for The Web Files, Sandy bought the crow for atmosphere, and everyone took a liking to it. In fact, Brett Register of Absolute Disaster is now the proud owner of the crow who will hopefully make a cameo in one of his web series soon.

Back to the story, Sandy and I took a liking to Juan and the podcast he co-hosts with Lee Buckley called Movies You May Have Missed. The title explains it all......they will tell you all about a It's a fun show for movie geeks who like to engage in a lively discussion or two about film. So, I thought it would be fun to do a "very special episode" kind of like the sitcom, Blossom, did back in the day. I pretty much invited myself on the show in exchange for a Web Files interview. Good thing Lee and Juan took the bait! The only rule they brought to the table involved me picking the movie. Easy, done, and sold! Mildred Pierce.

Anyone that knows me is well aware of my Oscar geek status. Yes, I can tell you how much it weighs, where it is made, the materials that go into making the statuette, who has won the most, how you vote, how you get into the Academy of Motion Pictures, and the gossip behind Barbra Streisand's 1968 Best Actress win. Mildred Pierce was the perfect movie to explore for Joan Crawford fans. It was her only win out of 3 nominations and it came after a 2-year lull in her career. Little did I know that Lee had an aversion to black and white film, so I am sure my choice was not something he was very excited about. What Lee should be excited about is the bet that he won. What bet am I talking about? Well, you will just have to view the episode of Movies You May Have Missed here: MYMHM
The afternoon was a blast filled with craft services, amazing audio, a 4-camera shoot, and cupcakes. Does life get any better than that? We had so much fun and I really think that shows on camera in both the interview and on MYMHM's show. I wish every set was like that. I also want to thank Voicecaster for donating the location since Lee's bachelor pad, the site for most of MYMHM's shows, was a bit small for the crew we brought that day. Oh, for those of you who need Lee's email address, it is featured prominently in our interview. Lee Buckley=bachelor pad=Ladies' Man.

So, I hope you enjoy this 'very special episode". As Joey would say, "Whoa!"

Lijit Ad Wijit


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