In the tabloid industry, there’s an often-used tactic in which magazines take old interviews with celebrities and re-hash them to make them appear to be current. It’s something we at CB usually see through and our readers do, too. “OK!” is a frequent offender. Tabloids doing it is one thing, but a popular news channel? Apparently, Fox News is taking some heat from two celebrities for this very practice. Rap star and actor LL Cool J and country star Toby Keith have both issued statements that the new Fox News program, “Real American Stories,” hosted by Sarah Palin, has recycled old footage of them as part of the program – and they want viewers to know they had nothing to do with it.
Is there a feud brewing between LL Cool J and Sarah Palin?
Originally, the rapper and star of “NCIS: Los Angeles” was being promoted as a guest on Sarah’s new show, “Real American Stories.” However, he claims he was never actually asked to be on the program.
“Contrary to what was reported, LL Cool J was never scheduled to be a guest on ‘Real American Stories’ with Sarah Palin this week,” his rep tells ET. “The show had planned to use an interview from 2008 that was being re-purposed without LL’s permission.”
The rep went on to say there is no animosity on their end, adding, “This statement is not a reflection of any feelings LL has toward Fox News or Ms. Palin, whom he has never met, rather a clarification of what we have seen published in the media.”
However, a rep for Fox news tells ET a different story. When ET asked the network to clarify LL’s appearance, the Fox rep responded by saying they decided to cut him from the show altogether, telling ET: “‘Real American Stories’ features uplifting tales about overcoming adversity and we believe [LL Cool J]’s interview fit that criteria. However, as it appears that [LL Cool J] does not want to be associated with a program that could serve as an inspiration to others, we are cutting his interview from the special and wish him the best with his fledgling acting career.”
Wow! That Fox News response is rather nasty, eh? I don’t think LL could have made it any more clear that he has no problem with Palin – he just wanted to set the record straight that he wasn’t a “new guest” on the show. Meanwhile, Toby Keith has made a similar statement about his involvement in the show.
What are they putting in the water at those tea parties?
Just hours after LL Cool J took issue with Fox News for splicing old footage of him into a promo for a Sarah Palin-hosted special in which she profiles “real Americans,” country singer Toby Keith said that the very same thing happened to him!
Keith’s rep, Elaine Schock, confirmed to E! News Wednesday that the U.S.A.-championing artist has never been interviewed by Palin, yet there’s a clip of him in the same commercial, right before LL Cool J comes on.
“I have no idea what interview they are using,” Schock told the New York Times’ Arts Beat blog.
“Toby’s talked to Fox a number of times, and I had no idea that this was going to be on Sarah Palin’s special. Fox has never contacted me—not now, not when they were putting this together, not at all. I have no idea what they’re using.”
She later informed the Times that the interview likely occurred in early 2009.
After ending up the target of a negative tweet, the network has since dropped the repurposed LL Cool J interview from Real American Stories, airing Thursday night.
Keith, a self-described “conservative Democrat” who’s known for his unflagging support of U.S. troops, has helped give Fox News some celebrity cachet over the years, sitting down for multiple chats about his music and movie projects.
Hmmm. I wonder if Fox News has plans to issue a similar scathing statement about Toby as they did with LL? Again, it doesn’t appear that either celebrity has a problem specifically with Palin, and I doubt she had any control over how Fox News decided to edit this show together using old footage. But if Fox wants to make Palin their media darling and give her any kind of credibility as a news show host, they may want to avoid such shady journalism tactics. I’m sure the channel and this new show have a big enough budget to go out and interview guests to air new footage, right?