We May Be Losing a Natalie, But We May Be Getting a Kathie LeeWhen Natalie Morales announced on the Today show this morning that she was pregnant again, we were torn. On the one hand, we love Natalie Morales with all of our hearts (despite her participation in the soul-crushing fourth hour of the show) and think that the higher the percentage of babies in the world that have her for a mom, the better. On the other hand, this means that she’ll probably have to sit out the network’s sure-to-be-bonkers coverage of the 2008 Beijing Olympics in August, which saddens us. We were dying to see her forced into a synchronized-swimming competition with Matt or pulling Al around the streets of Beijing in a rickshaw. Our minds raced with questions — who would pick up the slack for her? Giada De Laurentiis? The sometime Today co-host didn’t seem to work out (plus she also got pregnant), so we haven’t seen her in a while. Tiki Barber? The delightful Amy Robach? The less delightful Jenna Wolfe? Not quite.
Steve Madden and Al Roker Lace Up TightWhen we read this morning’s “Page Six” report about Al Roker and Steve Madden doing a reality show together, we couldn’t quite wrap our heads around it. Why would TV’s favorite weatherman (sorry, Willard) want to produce a show about making women’s shoes? Sure, Roker’s production company has done a variety of great one-off specials (the Lifetime Intimate Portrait of Judge Judy leaps to mind). But Steve Madden? The guy who makes those shoes for $60 that look just like the ones you bought for $350? The guy who tricks you into buying those $60 shoes only to have them fall apart faster than a bra from H&M? Why Steve? At first, we assumed it was because the designer recently had to spend three years in prison for money laundering, stock manipulation, and securities fraud. Is he going to do it again, only this time leaving no tracks? Is he going to try and rehab his image? That, after all, would make a good show. But no. It’s going to be about the “round-the-clock pressure that comes with designing and selling hundreds of different styles of women’s shoes.” Man. Unless it involves a L’Oréal Paris Makeup Room and an episode about stilettos made of vegetables, we’re already bored.
Diddy, Still Fighting After All These Years
Diddy and a hip-hop marketing man fought over a model at Soho club Upstairs. The publisher of Forbes and the editor of Sports Illustrated really like white truffles. Butter owners Richie Akiva and Scott Sartiano were hit with a $120 million lawsuit by the developer of their new Chelsea club. Terrence Howard will make his Broadway debut in Cat on a Hot Tin Roof. Sarah Michelle Gellar and Freddie Prinze Jr. were congratulated at dinner at Primola because Gellar changed her last name to Prinze. At Da Tomasso, Celine Dion ordered fourteen dishes of ravioli with tomatoes and peppers.
Al Roker Always Thought Dumbledore Was a Bit SwishyAl Roker sees everything coming, not just storm clouds. When we caught up with him at the Quills Literary Awards last night, we asked him what he thought of J.K. Rowling’s revelation that Harry Potter character Albus Dumbledore was gay. “I was not surprised because I always got the sense there was actually something between him and Hagrid,” said Roker, who is a fan of the books. “Either that or it was Hagrid and the hippogriff. One or the other.” Oh, Al, you kidder. A hippogriff couldn’t mate with a giant! (For the record, Joan Allen told us, “It never entered my mind to think about [Dumbledore’s] sexuality.” Some people just don’t have dirty minds.) What we really wanted to know from Roker, though, was obviously how his new friend at the Today show was doing. You know, the only other guy on the show who is bald? Yeah, Tiki Barber. We kind of wonder how he’s fitting in, you know, learning how to baste things instead of score touchdowns. “He’s funny, he’s great, he’s on his game. And he’s been a heck of an addition to the touch-football team,” Roker assures us. Only “I wish he would wear some sweaters for men.” —Amy Odell
Find out about Gay Talese’s guilty pleasures and where Steve Schirripa is partying these days at our complete coverage of The Quills Awards.
The Horror! Stephen King Considers HarlemNo bucket of pig’s blood dropped as Stephen King was named Grand Master at the Mystery Writers of America ‘s 61st annual Edgar Awards Banquet last night, but, still, the horror master suggested something mysterious might be afoot in Manhattan: He’s been inspired to write a horror novel set in Harlem, he said, in which the crimes come courtesy of some old-school voodoo. “I’d have to live four years in Harlem to write it,” he told us. “I’m a country kid, and this is the city. I’m a white kid, and it’s a black neighborhood. So I’d have to do some research.” The Edgar Award itself, a pale ceramic effigy of its namesake, is the ugliest but most cherished prize in the mystery world, presented for outstanding achievements in crime fiction. William Monahan won Best Motion Picture Screenplay last night for The Departed, and The Janissary Tree by Jason Goodwin was named Best Novel. Al Roker, the evening’s master of ceremonies, confided that he identifies with King’s Christine, the 1958 Plymouth Fury with a taste for blood. “Because it’s a big, hulking guzzler,” he said, explaining the affinity. If only it could have had gastric bypass. —Nicole K. Sia