'HUSTLE' TO THE TOP
I stood at my mailbox for half an hour staring into those eyes and
remembering the gospel hymn that caused them to well up in Hustle &
Flow. Terrence Howard's performance throughout that movie was gripping
and full of soul. I sat at the edge of my seat every time he spoke, and
felt pride as he donned his bling from Shug. He spared no talent and fell completely into his Dirty South role as a pimp with a dream. I've watched Howard over the years play second fiddle and am overjoyed that finally someone has recognized his ability to hold down a leading role, and spit a few tracks while he's at it. Your article, although brief, put him at the right spot: No. 1.
Never have I been so happy to be a subscriber as when I opened my mailbox and saw Terrence Howard on the cover. Kudos to EW for helping to let others know what I've known for years: that Howard is one of the best actors of our generation. It's great to see him get the credit he deserves for performances in movies like Crash.
FUNNY BONE TO PICK
In ''No Funny Business,'' you ask why there are so few hit comedies airing on the broadcast nets. You answer your own question in the story on Judd Apatow, who worked on the critically acclaimed Ben Stiller Show, Freaks and Geeks, and Undeclared, whose creative and entertaining shows ran only 12, 15, and 17 episodes, respectively, thanks to the Big Six's devotion to Nielsens. Apatow's contributions to the brilliant Larry Sanders Show found an audience and longevity only because it was on cable, where HBO gave it a chance to develop. The essence of comedy is getting to know the characters which takes time.
CASTING CALL OUT
As a person of color and an indie TV producer, I can't say I was shocked by Warren Bell, According to Jim's executive producer, crying about putting more minority actors in his show (News & Notes). He shouldn't have to cast an actor because of his color, but what he might want to do is write real people ones with ethnic backgrounds and cultures other than his own. If people look at shows like Friends and Sex and the City, you'd think there were virtually no ethnic people in New York. Thanks for pointing out the sad state of affairs in Hollywood.
ALEX P. MICHAELS
RESPECT THE 'ELDEST'
I'm a die-hard Inheritance fan, and have just completed the latest installment, Eldest. I loved it; however, your reviewer obviously has a different opinion. I was positively offended by your bogus assault on Eldest; in fact, I give your imagination a D+. Christopher Paolini is a master of wordcraft and writes some of the most spellbinding explanations and descriptions in contemporary literature, and you still dragged his name and his book through the mud.
I've been flipping through the back pages of EW for weeks, waiting to hear something, anything, on podcasting. Finally! But only a ''60-Second Lesson''? It may not be mainstream yet, but it's quickly becoming a mash of blogging, ham radio, TiVo, MP3 downloading, marketing, and nerdy new underground music discovering all in one! I hope EW's pages soon include podcasts and other news about them in an expanded Download This section.
CORRECTION: The black-and-white photo of actress Barbara Bel Geddes on page 16 should have been credited to mptv.net (News & Notes).