PERSON OF THE YEAR
PERSON OF THE YEAR
When Michael Lohan went off to prison in 2005, no one expected that Lindsay Lohan’s troubled father would emerge two years later as a new man with a new mission, setting out not only to reconcile with his daughter, but to save others from falling into the same traps that destroyed his own life. And certainly few would expect that he would remain in the tabloid headlines, day after day, week after week in 2007, with new surprises and outrages, sometimes teetering on the brink of ridiculousness, often falling over the edge, but always with an optimistic message that had us chuckling or shaking our heads.
The year of Michael Lohan was a grown-up parallel story to the chaotic chain of kiddie carwrecks, confrontations and McConaughey-perving rolled out by TMZ. Lohan’s was a story with consequence, with much more at stake than his long-awaited-- and unexpectedly successful-- reunion with his daughter Lindsay. There was his emergence as a mail order minister, his work with the Long Island Teen Challenge youth program, his bitter war with his ex-wife Dina, followed by their unlikely reprochement. His plans to open a celebrity drug rehab center in the Hamptons were matched by his blueprints for a restaurant in Los Angeles, where Lindsay could continue to party under his watchful eye.
And Lohan struggled in public, as well. When the pitch reel for the Michael Lohan Reality Project (above) was leaked to YouTube (receiving more than 100,000 hits within hours), Lohan, in fear of offending Lindsay, denied the show existed. While “working for God,” he was spotted treating his new girlfriend to a posh shoe-shopping spree. And all along, he's been on parole, walking that line uneasily, being fitted with a GPS ankle bracelet, living under curfews and the constant threat that a wrong move could send him back to prison.
Considering all those escapades-- not to mention the Writers Strike that has made unscripted programming so crucial to television networks-- every executive who passed on the idea of the Lohan reality series should be strapping him or herself to an ass-kicking machine.
Lohan's road is a bumpy one and he is the poster boy for taking life one day at a time. But we look forward new grand schemes and projects, more unexpected headlines, and possibly, his testimony in the lawsuit trial of Frozen Pictures’ Lindsay-related lawsuit against the X-17 paparazzi agency (Scoop: We hear the action is being revised next week to seek damages around the $1 million mark). And with the reality series on the back burner for now, he’s also at the center of a new film documentary on the wages of fame, now in production from our pals at Frozen Pictures.
ARTIST OF THE YEAR
Neil Innes is the greatest musical satirist of the past fifty years. For most of that half century, he's made a monumental, if deliberately subtle, impact on popular culture, music and comedy. Having made his mark on rock 'n' roll, television, art, publishing, children's programming and philosophy, Innes was hard at work this year, overseeing pristine reissues of the Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band and Rutles catalogue, recording and releasing the first new Bonzos album in 35 years (earning four stars in MOJO), and completing filming of the musical documentary about his life and work. Innes set the stage this year for what will surely be a time of recognition and appreciation as Frozen Pictures’ film, The Seventh Python, brings the world up to date on this brilliant artist.
COMEBACK OF THE YEAR
The Hudson Brothers
The Hudson Brothers
Twenty five years after they went their separate ways, the Hudson Brothers reunited for their first group photos in twenty years and their first group project, albeit behind the scenes, in producing and supervising the music for The Seventh Python. The Hudsons, an influential rock ‘n’ roll group whose career was elevated yet stymied by success as a network television musical comedy team in the Seventies, is the rare act from that decade that has not cashed in on the VH1-TVLand nostalgia market, but individually blazed new trails in music, television and film. With their classic television series about to be released on DVD and talk of an onstage reunion, we look forward to more Hudson Brothers activities in 2008—as well as a potential boycott of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and its parent, Rolling Stone magazine, if the contribution continues to be ignored.
Stay tuned for news on all our Tabloid Baby honoree projects!