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Offline apskip

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Re: Celebrity Apprentice 4
« Reply #50 on: May 10, 2011, 07:36:01 AM »
Here is a potential reason for the antipathy between Star Jones and NeNe Leakes:

New York Post Page Six, 5/10/11 1248am

Fired "Celebrity Apprentice" contestant Star Jones' ex-husband, Al Reynolds, is demanding $50,000 from the loose-lipped diva for trashing him on "The Wendy Williams Show" and blasting his rumored current girlfriend -- her TV nemesis, NeNe Leakes.



Offline apskip

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Re: Celebrity Apprentice 4
« Reply #51 on: May 10, 2011, 03:12:42 PM »
CA4, Ep. 10

Celebrity Apprentice is rolling toward its final conclusion. Donald Trump announced that he was dealing with the reciprocated strong hatred between NeNe and Star by switching NeNe to Backbone, so she would have the opportunity to beat Star as an opponent rather than teammate. Meat Loaf was switched to ASAP to join Marlee and Star. The task was to raise the most money by creating a Comedy Night and he brought in CNBC’s Jim Cramer, a guy he associates with big money, to be his advisor with Ivanka. La Toya has joined Backbone and was named PM. Meat Loaf got that responsibility for ASAP.

Backbone started working on this task, but NeNe never showed up and never called. She did call Donald Trump to explain to him that she saw no point in being part of Celebrity Apprentice if she could not be fighting on the same team as Star Jones. (Note: in the paper today when I write this is an article about why this may have developed - Star Jones' ex-husband, Al Reynolds, is demanding $50,000 from the loose-lipped diva for trashing him on "The Wendy Williams Show" and blasting his rumored current girlfriend -- her TV nemesis, NeNe Leake

John claimed that he tapped out his big money sources during his earlier fund-raising competition against Marlee Matlin, but he did the best he could and did indeed raise $20,000 cash from one donor. It appears that Backbone is claiming a total of about $70.000. Mum was the word from ASAP on fund-raising. You just know that Marlee can raise it if she chooses to.

The performances are 30 minutes each at the Gotham Comedy Club. John Rich dug deep and convinced Jimmy Fallon to perform for Backbone. Jimmy not only agreed, but he wrote a song (Yer fired! Yer fired! Yer fired! Yer fired!) and personally donated $10,000. Star went to Tracy Morgan, who shot a brief comedy video. The rest of the performances were 3 young comedians on the way up for each team. Those performances went off well. Meat Loaf was the emcee against La Toya and Marlee did a 2 minute comedy routine. The big question remained who had raised the most money? Based on past obfuscation on fund-raising for ASAP, I am betting that they somehow did and Donald Trump did not want the audience to know that for a while longer.

The boardroom was fairly typical. Trump went out of his way to mention Meat Loaf’s special request for keeping his own fund-raising and not losing it if they lost. Trump stated that his response was to reject that request because Celebrity Apprentice is all about raising money for charity, all about winning. He went on to point out the upside that Meat Loaf could keep everything raised by the other team if he won.

Trump stated that NeNe quit. He said that she was a loser and a quitter and had her ass kicked by Star Jones. He said that Hope and NeNe were gone and that was fine. He went on to state that LaToya was very solid.

However, this task was only measured on money raised. ASAP raised $102,080, much of it by Meat Loaf. Backbone raised $82,500, over half of it by John Rich. ASAP won and was excused. It was then all about who was responsible on Backbone. Trump found LaToya responsible (because she was by not raising more money herself) and she was given a very friendly firing.


Celebrity Apprentice 4, Ep. 11

There are now John and Lil Jon on Backbone and Marlee, Star and Meat Loaf on ASAP.  The task was to make a 90 second commercial for OnStar and the criteria were the same as they have been for most creative tasks. The PMs were Marlee and Lil Jon. The prize was $20,000 which OnStar executives present agreed to match.  Each team went about this in a different way. The final commercial for Backbone was based on mentioning the name OnStar up front and at the end as available in local electronics stores, with Lil Jon doing the ending with two actors and urging the viewer to “Discover On.” A soccer mom filmed driving a car was not wearing a seatbelt, which was a major flaw in the Backbone production.  Star was in charge of branding. Nobody was responsible for placing it into the video and there was no script for their commercial which was improvised. Meat Loaf put in 2 attempts at humor into the filming actually made, but I found both of them lame. Star was the narrator.

Trump got the verdict from the OnStar executives. He came to the boardroom and went through his normal routine. Backbone had the superior commercial, so it was someone from ASAP who would be fired. John Rich and Lil Jon were excused with John reaching a total of $695,000 with his total winnings (thanks to the generosity of Marlee Matlin).

Marlee as PM was the obvious choice, but she leads a charmed life. All focus was on Meat Loaf versus Star. After a bit of questioning they were asked to step out of the room. Star and meatloaf got into a shouting match hearable from inside the boardroom because Meat Loaf called Star “sweetie” and she overreacted, probably as a way of causing another negative to be chalked up to the Trump tally on Meat Loaf. However, George Ross was not buying it and he stated while they were out of the room that Star should be fired due to brand messaging deficiencies. Donald Jr. stated that there was a good case for each of the three ASAP team members. I would have fired Marlee Matlin for poor project management leadership or Meat Loaf for being the creative director and having little sense of comedy (in spite of his being a star in rocky Horror Picture Show movie from way back when). Trump elected to fire Star Jones.

In the next episode, Trump plans to have the 3 past Celebrity Apprentices evaluate the remaining 4 and recommend which 2 should be fired. I don’t know if the Final 2 will get started on their final task, but I would expect that they do.
 

Offline apskip

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Re: Celebrity Apprentice 4
« Reply #52 on: May 10, 2011, 06:01:26 PM »
It occurred to me that a double standard could be in use by Donald Trump on "what constitutes a situation where you can ask to keep your money raised?" In an early episode, distinguished by record fund-raising, John Rich and Marlee Matlin were given permission by Trump to request permission for that from the other. Marlee must have known she could not be beaten, but gave up over $500,000 that John had raised so that he could keep it for St. Jude. In episode 10, Meat Loaf asked for the same to Donald Trump and Trump said no. So what was different? I think that the latter situation is the standard and the John Rich request was offered only in the context of totally record fund-raising.

Offline TexasLady

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Re: Celebrity Apprentice 4
« Reply #53 on: May 12, 2011, 06:35:15 PM »
NeNe knew she couldn't compete for donors. She isn't in the same social circle and competing with performers who have wide access to people with money would have hurt her badly. It's a shame she didn't try to make up for this by doing something constructive but I'm certainly not sorry she is gone!

I was extremely disappointed with Marlee because she did not defend Meatloaf and she should have. Star was deflecting blame for branding when she was put in charge of branding and it was up to her to use the photos that would make the most of what Onstar exec's wanted. That was not leadership on her part.

About the money, this season has made so much of it that it has become tiresome for me. I wouldn't mind if they were selling pizzas and the general public had to endorse a certain team because they had better pizza or more ambiance, or like the exercise routine that we saw in the last season.

There has been a double standard this year, I agree with you apskip.
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Offline bee1233

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Re: Celebrity Apprentice 4
« Reply #54 on: May 13, 2011, 02:32:52 AM »
I agree with the final 2 prediction.  I can't picture it to be anyone else.


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Re: Celebrity Apprentice 4
« Reply #55 on: May 18, 2011, 08:09:39 PM »
CA4, Ep. 12

The first part of this episode focused on the decision to cut the remaining players from 4 to 2. I thought all of this was a bit absurd, as anyone who had been watching the show except Lil Jon and Meat Loaf knew that the choice should end up being John Rich and Marlee Matlin left. Donald Trump had the past Celebrity Apprentice winners (Piers Morgan, Joan Rivers, Bret Michaels) advise him on this decision. It will be no surprise when that ended up with Lil Jon being fired for lack of self-confidence and Meat Loaf
for being overly emotional.
So the final task started with the introduction of 7Up VP Marketing Jim Trebilcock. He introduced the task as a 3 related ones around the theme of either the 1970s or 1980s:
1.   Create a 7Up Retro can and other packaging
2.   Create an interesting commercial featuring that new can and celebrities
3.   Set up a product launch event
The criteria for success were performance on each of those 3 plus integration of celebrities. Trump stated that the charities of John Rich (St. Jude children’s Hospital) and Marlee Matlin were getting $50,000 at the beginning and the winner would get $250,000 more. That meant that this was not a fund-raising event and both John and Marlee were happy to hear that as they had tapped out their donors when they raised $1.6 million combined. Marlee as raiser of more money got to pick either the 1970s as exemplified by the Harlem Globetrotters or the 1980s as exemplified by the rock band Def Leppard. It was expected that Marlee would prevent John from getting a music group to work with, but she did not. She stated her interest in sports and the Globetrotters in particular and chose the 1970s. John got the 1980s and Def Leopard and was very pleased with that.
Trump offered help to Team John Rich and Team Marlee with the selection from a group of 6 eliminated celebrities to help. John got first pick and chose Lil Jon. Marlee did not choose Star as expected; she went with Meat Loaf because “he is the 1970s.” John picked Mark McGrath. Marlee had another surprise pick of Richard Hatch. John took Star Jones and Marlee was left with LaToya Jackson. I would give the edge to Team John Rich based solely on the team he selected.
Meat Loaf got Team Marlee started with “the biggest things of the 1970s were disco balls, “Staying Alive” and the Globetrotters with disco the key. He followed up with disco glitter ball cans and a boombox, which he felt was critical.
Team John bounced ideas around and came up with the theme “7Up Retro, Still Keeping It Real.” They also appointed Star to keep the schedule information so that  knew when they were off it.
Team John developed the graphics of black and white zebra stripes for their can.
Ivanka visited and stated a concern for Marlee not reining in Meat Loaf’s sometimes counterproductive productivity. The concern was misplaced, as Marlee did not share Meat Loaf enthusiasm for the boombox idea and engineered a change to drop it while he was away getting props. Ivanka felt that the zebra graphics of Team John were very good.
Team John ran through some ideas for 1980s celebrities. If they weren’t already in New York City, it would be difficult since the commercial would shoot the next day. John asked Dee Snider of Twisted Sister to be the star of the commercial. He had to get permission from the producers of the Broadway show Rock of Ages he was starring in to have his Fu Manchu beard cut so he would be in Twisted Sister character.
Team Marlee decided to ask Geoffrey Holder, who had starred in 7Up commercials in the 1970s and later. Geoffrey agreed to do it.
Both teams started doing their photo shoots (focusing on John Rich and Marlee) and their commercials. John Rich had maxed out on his ability to manage tasks and was upset about the production, managed by Lil John, appeared to him to be running behind. Meat Loaf wrote the commercial and was its director. It used all of the team as an ABBA-type woman, a disco guy, a superhero and a CB trucker and a “bat out of hell.” Each would peel away until only the 7Up Retro was left. It was very funny.
The Team John Rich commercial was based on Talent Auditions having a Madonna impersonator, an Axl Rose impersonator and the real Dee Snider, whose performance was declining until revived by a can of Retro 7Up. It appeared to film quite well and only 4 takes were needed.
So it’s time for the Donald Trump twists to appear. Geoffrey Holder never showed up for his performance, with the argument that his lawyer would not allow him to sign the release. John Rich had a call from Def Leppard and their manager will not allow the drummer to be on stage for some very nebulous reason. These twists are to test the ingenuity of the final apprentice candidates and are always tough to overcome.

Offline apskip

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Re: Celebrity Apprentice 4
« Reply #56 on: May 18, 2011, 10:12:23 PM »
The finale on Sunday is a tough one to call. I think John Rich has a better creative team than Meat Loaf by himself is. My prediction is that Team John beats Team Marlee in a close one.

Offline chill_sd

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Re: Celebrity Apprentice 4
« Reply #57 on: May 19, 2011, 10:32:38 AM »
I agree with your assessment, apskip.  I was a little surprised when Marlee chose Richard Hatch when she could have had Star or even LaToya at that point.  John Rich definitely seems to have the stronger team.

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Re: Celebrity Apprentice 4
« Reply #58 on: May 23, 2011, 10:05:01 AM »
CA4, Ep. 13, Finale
Donald Trump kicked this off with a statement that the fund-raising efforts of this season have exceeded $3 million for the designated charities of the celebrities. The issues with the performers were resolved, but this required serious efforts and time by the teams. Meat Loaf continued his discussions directly with Geoffrey Holder, who finally showed up for the commercial photo shoot. That commercial was classy. John Rich personally took charge of negotiations with Def Leppard, which morphed into discussions of how the band would come on-stage. John volunteered to introduce them, which was acceptable as a compromise.
Richard Hatch stated that Marlee was not delegating and did not appear to have a plan. This did not bode well for the success of Team Marlee. Team John was well-organized in its efforts to set up its event, including decorations and lots of balloons. The owners of the Melting Pot Restaurant showed up to deliver a $25,000 donation to St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital even though the event judging criteria did not have any incentive for obtaining such a gift. Team Marlee finally got their act in gear and started setting up for the Globetrotters. Richard Hatch recognized that Marlee had finally acted like a Project Manager.
The Team Marlee event started with the welcome of each guest by Meat Loaf at the door. LaToya escorted the 7Up executives and Donald Trump to Marlee, who then stayed with them when not required for introducing her team’s commercial. It was quite good in my opinion, with Geoffrey Holder’s deep bass voice distinctive. The theme was “Feel the Love” and the 7Up execs liked that. The Globetrotters were their usual thrilling selves.
John Rich was surprised by a last-minute donation of $250,000 from a couple uncredited in the telecast who I did not recognize. That put his total fund-raising at over $1 million. It figuratively blew him away. As the guests came in, there was no special attention to VIPs like the 7Up execs and Trump. The commercial featured Dee Snider morphing into his Twisted Sister costume and persona. John started the show without double-checking the readiness of the band, so when he called for them come on-stage they weren’t there (second strike against John Rich).  They were sticking to the original contract which called for them at 7pm and it was 640pm because the earlier festivities were over ahead of schedule. So John improvised an interim performance, starting with his “Don’t Fire Me, Mr. Trump” song. It was brilliant and indicated what a performer John is and how well he can handle unexpected last-minute twists.
Trump after the events asked the 7Up execs for feedback. He received the pluses and minuses of each team. These were later summarized in the Boardroom scene by Donald Jr. Marlee was recognized as a sales expert and John as a marketing expert. Both presentations of their commercials were judged excellent. According to Donald Trump, the Retro 7Up cans nod went decisively to Team John and both were judged good enough to be released nationwide and above 1 million in sales so far. Team John had the previously mentioned glitches of no greeter (which Team Marlee did in an exemplary fashion) and the lack of coordination for the introduction of Def Leppard. 
So, who would win? There was about 45 minutes left in the program, which should have ended here with a decision on the winner by Donald Trump and the announcement of that. But no, there was a need for minor banter with each of the fired executives, except that I did not see Jose Canseco and Richard Hatch is in prison (with Trump wishing him well). The low point of this was Star trying to speak at her turn and NeNe acting like the obnoxious, spoiled, idiotic low-life that she is by talking over her. Trump should have shut NeNe up, but he make a prediction at some time in the future that Star and NeNe would be friends. NeNe said that was possible. Star replied “when pigs fly.”
My wife tells me that each of the celebrities was next shown briefly working with their charities (I had nodded off briefly). Finally it was time for the announcement. The fourth Celebrity Apprentice is John Rich. It would have been well-deserved with either winning, but I think a Team John win was appropriate.

Offline TexasLady

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Re: Celebrity Apprentice 4
« Reply #59 on: May 23, 2011, 04:26:23 PM »
John Rich the Celebrity Apprentice! What a great ending! The right person won and he deserved it. He was consistent and a winner at most tasks. He handled Gary Busey and Latoya, Star Jones extremely well, each needing a different type of management. Further, he endeared himself to his team which was vital if he wanted to win the last task.

I thought he would lose when he committed the cardinal sin of not welcoming Trump and for sure when his timing was off for introducing Def Leppard but he handled it perfectly by performing. Brilliant idea to have Dee Snider morphing into his Twisted Sister character for the commercial. (I also loved Team Marlee's commercial with Geoffrey Holder. If there was a team win, I did not hear it. I believe we were left in the dark as to who the 7UP executives thought did the best job.

The $250,000 donation came in from Dollar Central I believe.

All in all a good season even if we did have to endure NeNe fighting every week with her fellow team members. Thinking back, it might have been the best thing for her to leave instead of being fired for a poor performance. I also found LaToya to be a sweet person, unassuming and sadly for her team, they didn't listen to her often enough.

One thing that bothered me last week was Piers Morgan saying that Little Jon and Big John threw Meatloaf under the bus in their interviews. That annoyed me, they really didn't and what was the purpose of that comment? To breed trouble? Didn't work.  
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