On Thursday night’s episode of “Grey’s Anatomy,” Meredith Grey, played by Ellen Pompeo, settled upon the decision to leave Seattle Grace Hospital and move to Boston with her husband, Derek Shephard. Their characters each having been offered a lucrative and enviable position at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School, respectively. Though Grey waffles about the decision, desiring to stay at Seattle Grace, Shepard pushes her to choose Boston as the opportunity being offered to him at HMS. In real life, both Ellen Pompeo and her real life husband, music producer Chris Ivery, are from the Boston area. Pompeo is from Everett, and Ivery is from Cambridge, and grew up 10 miles from each other, but didn’t meet until they both arrived in Los Angeles. Patrick Dempsey, Pompeo’s on-screen hubby, is no stranger to the east coast himself. The dark-haired hunk was born in Lewiston, Maine, and grew up in Buckfield. While it remains to be seen what the decisions of the Seattle Grace residents will have on the make up of the show, in the cliffhanger leading up to the May 17th season finale, a plane carrying a majority of the doctors crashes in the woods, with the creator of the series, Shonda Rhimes, stating that a recurring character will be killed off.
Rhimes other successful series, the new mid-season replacement, “Scandal,” was just announced to be renewed for a second season, after pulling as good as or slightly better than the audience numbers “Private Practice” was pulling in in the same spot, at 10 p.m., after “Grey’s.” Debuting on April 5th, the show stars Kerry Washington as Olivia Pope, a brash-talking, cunning, collected, head honcho of a Washington D.C. Based crisis management firm. Over the course of the seven episodes that have aired, we have learned that Pope used to work for the president, and had an affair with him. Washington formerly had a recurring role on the David E. Kelley series, “Boston Legal.” The president happens to be played by Tony Goldwyn, who is most recognized for his performance as the traitorous Carl Bruner in the movie Ghost. Goldwyn attended Brandeis University in Waltham, Massachusetts, where he received his B.F.A. The series also co-stars Kate Burton as the vice president, who is more recognizable for her portrayals of Ellis Grey, Meredith’s mother, on “Grey’s Anatomy.” Burton studied at Yale University School of Drama, from which she graduated in 1983. In 2007, Burton was given an honorary doctorate from Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island.
The season finale of “Scandal” will also air on May 17th.
Look out The Avengers, there’s a new band of superheroes in town. Just like super-hunk Ryan Gosling before him, Maine’s Patrick Dempsey has shown his courageous colors by swinging into action and saving the life of a real-life teenage boy. Just last week, outside his home in Malibu, California, Dempsey used quick thinking to pull the boy to safety after he flipped his Mustang over. Hearing the crash, Dempsey rushed out, crowbar and fire extinguisher in hand, and was able to safely extricate the boy from the wreck before calling paramedics and later the boy’s mother.
“He had a certain authority in his voice,” said a “super-grateful” Mary Beth Masset, the mother of the 17 year-old Weston Masset. “I asked if he was a paramedic and he said, ‘No, this is Patrick Dempsey.’ I thought, ‘McDreamy?’ ” she told People magazine.
Dempsey reportedly stayed by the teen’s side as Masset was airlifted to the hospital. Dempsey’s wife, Jillian, and three neighbors also came out to view the wreck. The boy was treated for a concussion and an eye injury and is expected to fully recover. Dempsey was originally born in Lewiston, Maine and grew up in Buckfield, Maine.
In other “Grey’s” related news, Dempsey’s co-star and fellow New Englander, Ellen Pompeo, who originally hails from Everett, MA, finds her “Grey’s Anatomy” character in the midst of a big decision. It seems that Meredith Grey suddenly finds herself with the opportunity to take a job with the Brigham and Women’s Hospital of Boston, Massachusetts. The season 8 finale will air on May 17th on ABC.
★ Leno leads in ratings once again, but no one looks for him on the ‘net.
★ Check out the yearbook photos of some New England stars Ellen Pompeo, John Mayer, and “Bachelorette” Ali Fedotowsky.
★ Boston Common Magazine talks to twice Emmy-nominated Samantha Harris.
★ Kings Back Bay hosts an Oscar viewing party on February 27th.
★ Newton’s John Krasinski stars in a new movie with Kate Hudson and Ginnifer Goodwin.
★ Connecticut’s John Mayer sports a new goatee at the Grammys.
It’s hard to believe the summer is almost over, and time for the networks to roll out their new fall shows. The 2010 fall line-ups, once again, will be packed with Hollywood East connections, including some new shows and old favorites.
New on ABC, “Body of Proof”, starring Dana Delaney, was actually filmed in Rhode Island, and follows the story of a medical examiner examiner who finds herself in conflict with the police she works with as she attempts to help solve crimes. Episodes are still being filmed and extra casting opportunities are being handled by LDI Casting in Rhode Island.
On CBS, the one hour drama series “Blue Bloods”, costars Tom Selleck and Boston’s own Donnie Wahlberg as New York cops who also happen to be family members.
NBC, which ordered 13 episodes of a new David E. Kelley series, called “Kindreds”, has chosen to leave the legal drama off of its fall schedule and save it for a mid season replacement. Kelley, who attended law school in Boston, is well-known for his string of Boston-based TV shows, including “Boston Legal”, “Boston Public”, “Ally McBeal”, and “The Practice”.
Returning favorites include Fox’s “Glee”, which was co-created by Newton, Massachusetts bred Brad Falchuk, will be returning with much advance hype about its sophomore season, with an episode featuring Britney Spears music already being discussed amidst the fandom.
On ABC, “Grey’s Anatomy”, which stars Everett’s Ellen Pompeo and Maine’s Patrick Dempsey, is entering its 6th season on the network. Word has it this could be the final season for the popular and successful medical drama.
On cable, Hollywood East will be represented significantly on Showtime, as Newton’s Matt LeBlanc will be starring in “Episodes”. The shot-in-Connecticut Laura Linney, series, “The Big C”, will also debut this season, after filming throughout the early part of the summer in southern Connecticut.
While it’s no secret Boston has become the unofficial capital of Hollywood East, with numerous films and TV shows shooting here each year, it’s been hard not to stumble across camera crews and make-shift sets, despite sometimes very well-guarded production details. What has been kept slightly more hush hush has been the hotspots in the Hub that the stars of these projects hit when they’re not on the clock.
Boston’s restaurant scene has caught the Hollywood wave and starting offering more upscale options. Not surprisingly, many of the celeb favorites are centered around the Back Bay/Newbury Street area. Long-time favorite Sonsie has played host to Tom Cruise, Katie Holmes, Hulk Hogan, Roger Clinton, and Donnie Wahlberg.
For dessert, it seems that everyone in fact does scream for ice cream. The Newbury Street location of Ben & Jerry’s posts pictures on their walls of the famous faces that often stop by their store. Alec Baldwin, John Mayer, Jane Fonda, Ellen Pompeo, and players from the Celtics have all grabbed a cone recently.
In order to keep in shape (and perhaps work off the pounds from all that ice cream) the Sports Club/LA, adjacent to the Ritz Carlton hotel is arguably one of the most upscale gyms in town. That’s why it’s not surprising that The Rock, Justin Timberlake, Patrick Swayze, C. Thomas Howell, and Emilio Estevez, Reese Witherspoon, and Britney Spears have all been spotted working out there at one time or another.
To blow off a little steam in a different sense, Felt Nightclub is a big favorite with the glitterati. Stars like Brendan Fraser, Adam Sandler, Kevin James, and Chris Rock have all made a presence there in the past year or so while they’ve been in town for projects. Other stars like Mark Wahlberg, Matt Damon, and Ben and Casey Affleck frequent the hip spot whenever their roots call them home again.
Speaking of Mark Wahlberg, he and Will Farrell will be at his restaurant, Alma Nove, in Hingham, MA celebrating the premiere of their new flic, The Other Guys, showing at the Patriot Cinemas in Hangham. The Alma Nove restaurant is owned by three Wahlberg brothers, including chef Paul Wahlberg, and family friend Ed St. Croix.
There’s a plethora of other places HEC has spotted celebs during their off hours. Singer Seal was seen in Boston’s Public Garden last spring while he was in town to sing the national anthem at Fenway Park. Actress Natalie Portman was in Cambridge in February for a friend’s wedding. Brooke Shields was spotted in her off-time from shooting Furry Vengeance at South Boston eateries Flour2 and Sportello. Funnymen Denis Leary and Lenny Clark grabbed lunch at the Four Seasons last spring while Leary was in town for his son’s graduation from Emerson College. Grown Ups costars David Spade and Colin Quinn were seen last summer grabbing a weekend bite at Sel De La Terre on Boylston Street.
While the proverbial NBA battle of Hollywood East versus west may be over, we saw a plethora of celebrities and other famous faces packing the stands, cheering their favorite team on.
So which stars cheered for which team? On the Boston Celtics side, “Access Hollywood” cohost, Medford-born Maria Menounos, a graduate of Emerson College, Cambridge-born comedian Dane Cook, retired New England Patriots linebacker (and recent Health Expo attendee) Tedy Bruschi, Boston-born actor Mike O’Malley, New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick and quarterback Tom Brady, Red Sox owner John Henry, Everett’s Ellen Pompeo, Watertown’s Eliza Dushku, and Dorchester’s Donnie Wahlberg. Chief executive of DreamWorks Animation and film producer Jeffrey Katzenberg, who donated $1.25 million to Boston University in 2006, was also assumed to be cheering for the Celtics.
Rooting for the Lakers, as always, was Jack Nicholson, singer Justin Timberlake, Sylvester Stallone, director Spike Lee, Sean P. Diddy Combs, Snoop Dogg, actor Leonardo DiCaprio who spent some time in Boston in 2008 while filming Shutter Island, Kevin Connolly, and Andy Garcia. Stars of the E! reality show, “Keeping Up With the Kardashians,” Kris, Kim, and Khloe Kardashian, wife of Lakers forward Lamar Odom, attended the games in L.A., but were absent on the east coast. Khloe did, however, find herself the target of some unique taunting by Boston fans at the TD Garden; fans were seen waving cardboard cutouts of her in hopes of distracting Odom.
Others famous faces that have been spotted at some of the games, included, First Lady Michelle Obama and daughters Sasha and Malia, singer Christina Aguilera, Olympic gold medalist from Jamaica, Usain Bolt, musicians Glenn Frey and Joe Walsh of the Eagles, “Saturday Night Live” performer Seth Meyers, singer Anita Baker, and comedian Will Ferrell. Actors Chris Rock and Adam Sandler, who have been heavily promoting their movie, Grown Ups, throughout the games, also spent time in Boston last summer filming their new flick, and were spotted sitting courtside in L.A.
The stars in the stands weren’t the only TV and film personalities in attendance. Lakers star Lamar Odom has been featured numerous times alongside his wife on “Keeping Up With the Kardashians” as well as its spin-off “Khloe and Kourtney take Miami”. Celtics star Ray Allen, who began his college career at the University of Connecticut, has also starred in a number of films, including Spike Lee’s He Got Game, and Harvard Man. At a press conference after game 4, Celtics players Nate Robinson and Glen Davis even likened themselves to characters from the popular Shrek movies. Perhaps we’ll see them on set at the next film shot in Hollywood East during their off season!
★ Tom Cruise goes back to school, makes a surprise visit to Harvard.
★ A Tribute to Elton John by Yellow Brick Road at the Regent Theater features “American Idol Finalist” and Wrentham, MA native Ayla Brown.
The fall television season is upon us, as both new shows and old favorites will soon be taking to the airwaves across the networks. While many of these shows are shot in California or Canada, nevertheless, New England is well-represented in a variety of ways. Whether it’s stars who originate from the area, or the shows themselves being set here, let’s check out where we can find Hollywood East on the fall 2009 line-up.
“Eastwick” on ABC, Wednesdays at 10 starting September 23, is inspired by the 1987 movie starring Jack Nicholson, Cher, Michelle Pfeiffer, and Susan Sarandon. This incarnation of the John Updike novel follows the story of 3 women (including Rebecca Romijn) whose everyday lives get thrown for a loop when a mysterious man arrives at their small, fictional New England town.
Connecticut born Seth MacFarlane’s “Family Guy” spinoff, “The Cleveland Show” is set to premiere September 27 on Fox. The animated comedy will air Sunday nights, along with MacFarlane’s other long-running series–”American Dad!” and “Family Guy”.
AMC’s surprise hit, “Mad Men” got a head start, with its season 3 premiere episode airing on August 16. Boston native, and recent Improper Bostonian cover model, John Slattery, will reprise his role as advertising executive Roger Sterling.
Everett’s Ellen Pompeo will be appearing less towards the start of the perpetual favorite “Grey’s Anatomy” with her real-life pregnancy pulling her away from an otherwise heavy workload. The season 6 premiere airs Thursday, September 24, and also stars Maine native Patrick Dempsey.
The second season of Fox’s “Fringe” coincides with production being moved to Vancouver, Canada, despite the fact that the series is set in Boston. Beantown’s own Leonard Nimoy will make several appearances throughout the season of the sci-fi show.
Fox’s other eccentric enterprise, “Dollhouse”, starring Watertown, MA’s Eliza Dushku will be returning for a second season after an uncertain beginning. The first episode will air September 25, as it returns to 9 PM time-slot on Friday nights.
The “Grey’s Anatomy” two-hour season finale has everyone talking, but it seems the stars of the popular ABC drama are developing real-life plot lines of their own.
Patrick Dempsey, alias “Dr. McDreamy”, returned to his birth state of Maine in March to announce the opening of The Patrick Dempsey Center for Cancer Hope & Healing. The center, which is located in his hometown of Lewiston, will serve as an education resource and provide support programs for cancer patients and their loved ones. Dempsey himself provided the grant money for the center, in honor of his mother, an Ovarian cancer survivor. On October 4th, the on-screen doc is also sponsoring the “Dempsey Challenge” a bike tour and run/walk fundraiser that will also help raise awareness of the center as a haven for people whose lives are affected by cancer.
Everett, MA born Ellen Pompeo announced on April 19 that she is expecting her first child with husband Chris Ivery, who also grew up in the Boston area. The 39 year old “Grey’s Anatomy” star met her record-producer hubby at a Whole Foods in New York city in 2003, and later married in 2007. The couple currently resides in Los Angeles. No word on whether the pregnancy will be written into the show.
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