Return to Transcripts main page


Kid Rock Says Stars and Politics Don`t Mix; The Madonna-McCain Smackdown; American Idol Gets a Fourth Judge; New "Dancing With The Stars" Cast Revealed

Aired August 25, 2008 - 23:00:00   ET


A.J. HAMMER, CO-HOST: Now, on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, Kid Rock rocks the starvation of the Democratic National Convention.

KID ROCK, MUSICIAN: As soon as somebody comes out - or a politician, especially in Hollywood, and says, "I`m voting for this guy," I go, "That`s who I`m not voting for."


HAMMER: Tonight, Kid`s in-your-face rant about why stars should not get involved in politics. And will the Hollywood invasion of the convention backfire on Obama. Oprah, Scarlett, Kanye, Affleck - tonight, it`s SHOWBIZ TONIGHT at the convention.

Tonight, Madonna-McCain smackdown. Did Madonna really compare Republican presidential candidate John McCain to Adolf Hitler? SHOWBIZ TONIGHT with the Madonna-McCain Hitler outrage.

Plus, explosive "American Idol" news. Tonight, a big shake up involving the judges Randy, Simon and Paula. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT starts now.


HAMMER: Hello, I`m A.J. Hammer, broadcasting tonight and every night from New York City.

BROOKE ANDERSON, CO-HOST: Hi there, everyone. I`m Brooke Anderson, coming to you from Hollywood. And in just a moment, what John McCain is saying about Madonna, apparently him to the likes of Hitler.

HAMMER: But first, tonight, Kid rocks the convention. Tonight, Kid Rock has a message for all the stars who have invaded the Democratic National Convention in Denver. Keep your politics to yourself. Kid Rock aimed a smoke bomb at celebrities just in time for their arrival today, for the start of the convention and of course, the historic nomination of Barack Obama. Well, SHOWBIZ TONIGHT is in Denver covering the stars and bringing you the heated debate making news right now.


HOWARD DEAN, CHAIRMAN, DEMOCRATIC NATIONAL COMMITTEE: The 45th quadrennial National Convention of the Democratic Party will now come to order.

HAMMER (voice over): The Democratic National Convention in Denver is in full swing and SHOWBIZ TONIGHT can tell you it`s looking less like a political convention and more like a movie premiere with almost as many big stars as politicians.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Confirmed celebrities include actress Susan Sarandon, Ann Hathaway, Josh Lucas.

HAMMER: And many of these stars are big time supporters of presumptive Democratic nominee, Barack Obama.

KIM SERAFIN, SENIOR EDITOR, "IN TOUCH WEEKLY": People in Hollywood seem to love him and they`re gravitating towards him. And I think you`re going to see a lot of that at the convention.

HAMMER: But SHOWBIZ TONIGHT can tell you, with all the star power in Barack`s corner, one daring political pundit is making headlines with an explosive opinion, that all these celebrity supporters can actually hurt Obama. And what is the name of this controversial political commentator?

That would be Kid Rock. Yes, Kid Rock. In this interview with CMT, Kid is rocking the star-studded Democratic Convention saying Obama and other politicians can be done in by celebrity reporters.

ROCK: As soon as somebody comes out - or a politician, especially in Hollywood, and says, "I`m voting for this guy," I go, "That`s who I`m not voting for."

HAMMER: And Kid Rock goes after Oprah Winfrey who endorsed Obama during the Democratic primaries.

ROCK: As soon as Oprah Winfrey pops up and says, "Blah, blah." I love Barack Obama. I hate Oprah Winfrey. I don`t hate her. I just don`t believe in her.

HAMMER: SHOWBIZ TONIGHT is asking does Kid Rock have a point? Does having too many stars in your corner do more harm than good?

SERAFIN: I think Kid Rock, to a certain extent, has a point.

HAMMER: "In Touch Weekly`s" Kim Serafin who used to work in politics tells SHOWBIZ TONIGHT Kid Rock may be on to something.

SERAFIN: Voters in general - they want a candidate because they like him or her. They don`t want to feel like it`s being shoved down their throats by someone who they think may be out of touch with the rest of the country.

HAMMER: Obama`s opponent, John McCain, has had a blast tweaking Obama for his Hollywood aura.

FEMALE VOICE OVER: HE is the biggest celebrity in the world.

HAMMER: This McCain ad all but called Obama a Britney and Paris-type celebrity, not ready to be commander-in-chief.

SERAFIN: I think by tying Obama to all these celebrities, he`s trying to play into that world of the frivolous Hollywood that a lot of people in this country don`t like, don`t relate to at all.

HAMMER: But there are pluses to being a celebrity favorite. A pair of economists recently guesstimated that Oprah`s endorsement was good for more than 1 million extra votes for Obama during the primaries. And don`t forget the most important thing a politician can get from Hollywood.

A watch-dog group said Obama got $4.4 million from the showbiz sector. And McCain? Pennies, compared to Obama`s take - a measly $757,000, proof that there can be an upside to being backed by the rich, famous and beautiful.

SERAFIN: You`re a politician. You definitely want celebrity endorsements because it gets you media attention. It can attract a crowd.

HAMMER: It`s clear Kid Rock`s comments have provoked a lot of thought. But given his new status as political commentator, can we expect Kid to host a Sunday morning talk show? No. He tells CMT he`s keeping his political views to himself.

ROCK: I`m good at writing songs and singing. What I`m not educated in is the field of political science.

HAMMER: But in this star studded political season, if Rock does keeps his mouth shut about politics, he`ll be one of the few celebrities doing so.


Republican National Convention is expected to have its own share of celebrities next week in Minnesota. They reportedly include country stars Gretchen Wilson, Charlie Daniels and John Ridge of "Big and Rich."

Now, one of the many stars who is in Denver at the Democratic National Convention tonight is Tim Daly. Tim is now starring in the "Grey`s Anatomy" spin-off, "Private Practice." Of course, you remember him from NBC`s "Wings" back in the `90s. Well, Tim is the co-president of the Creative Coalition. It`s a non-partisan group, and I spoke with him today, from Denver.


HAMMER (on camera): A lot is being made about how many celebrities who support Obama are descending on Denver this week and that it actually could backfire on Barack Obama. Now, Kid Rock, for one, just went on a rant saying stars should keep away from politics altogether. Do you think he was out of line?

TIM DALY, ACTOR AND CO-PRESIDENT OF THE CREATIVE COALITION: I do, because, you know, if you asked the tens or maybe hundreds of thousands of people that guys like Bono have helped around the world, if they should stay out of political issues, I think they would say, you know, "Please don`t. We need more guys like Bono who use the light of their celebrity to shine on issues of social importance.

You know, celebrities are citizens, too. They have the same rights as everyone else. The interesting thing about them is that when they get close to political candidates, they are the only people who have absolutely nothing to gain. Other lobbyists are working for some corporation and it`s essentially trying to gain influence to make that corporation more money.

Celebrities donate their time and their money to candidates because they believe that candidate is going to make the United States a better place. And I think that`s a very noble thing to do. The other thing is I know there`s been an effort on the part of the Republicans to turn the word "celebrity" into a dirty word.

But let`s not forget Ronald Reagan was sort of the icon of the Republican Party. He was a celebrity. He was the great communicator. And now, suddenly, we have a candidate on the Democratic side who is a celebrity and a great orator and those things are bad. So I think that that - they don`t really have a leg to stand on with that because the Republicans have elected a lot of prominent celebrities and actors to public office. The Democrats don`t really do that.

HAMMER: Yes. I`ve got to tell you, I, for one, thought that was hitting way below the belt and really an out-of-line characterization of Barack Obama.

You know, you mentioned Bono. Here`s a guy who obviously is very knowledgeable about the issues he speaks of. Groups like yours, The Creative Coalition, clearly you and the people who work with it, very educated on the issues you fight for. But you know, I think you`re with me on this - it`s been said that a lot of celebrities do speak without knowing all of the issues, which I think is where some criticism may come into play. Do you think in those cases, you find it fair or do you find it true?

DALY: Well, I think it`s a fair criticism if you remember there a lot of politicians who speak about issues and don`t really know what they are talking about. There are a lot of athletes who do it. There are a lot of news people that do it. I think the race shows about the same across the board. There are some people that know what they are talking about and some people that don`t. One of the things The Creative Coalition does is educate their members about the issues they are dealing with so that they are not speaking out of turn.

HAMMER: Yes. Good point there. There are a lot of politicians we hear speaking every day and, yes, maybe they don`t know as much as they should about the issues they`re talking about.

Hollywood, Tim, we well know, has been traditionally a Democratic community. Keeping that in mind, why do you think that so many celebrities this time around really seem to be coming out in support of Barack Obama over John McCain? It`s such a heavy, heavy disparity.

DALY: I think because artists, in general, tend to be idealists. They tend to be humanists. And you know, Barack Obama is talking about something that we haven`t heard in a long time. He`s talking about things like hope. He`s talking about imagining a better future.

One of the things that The Creative Coalition wants to do is to train people`s imagination in the public school system by teaching the arts. When you have an imagination, you can imagine better future. You can imagine better products. You can imagine a better economy. And artists use their imagination every day. So I think Obama has tapped into the creative community in that way as he has tapped into the population at large.

I mean the reason he`s speaking in a 70,000-person stadium is not because they are filling it with celebrities. It`s because they`re filling it with citizens.

HAMMER: Absolutely. Tim Daly, thank you so much for the work that you and The Creative Coalition are doing. I appreciate you being here and best of luck on your show on ABC, "Private Practice."

DALY: A.J., thank you so much. A pleasure.

HAMMER: And make sure you keep right here on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. All week long, we`re going one-on-one with so many of the big stars who are out there at the DNC in Denver. Tuesday, "CSI New York`s" Hill Harper. On Wednesday, Fran Drescher, and on Thursday, the lovely Rosario Dawson.

And now, we want to hear from you for our SHOWBIZ TONIGHT question of the day. Sound off on this - "Hollywood Invades Denver: Could it backfire on Obama?" What do you think? Let us know at Or E-mail us more of your thoughts at

ANDERSON: A.J., that`s a really good question. And tonight, Madonna is actually coming out swinging against John McCain.

HAMMER: Well, we know, Brooke, she is certainly one to speak her mind especially about all things political.

ANDERSON: A.J., did Madonna really compare the Republican presidential candidate to Adolf Hitler? You`ve got to hear this. And yes, there`s plenty of outrage over this Madonna-McCain smackdown.

Also new right now, stunning reality show news. A shake up on "American Idol." A new judge has been picked. Is Paula Abdul on the way out? Tonight, I`ve got what Paula is saying about these explosive developments.

And you definitely want to stick around for this. Coming up, tonight, we`re going to reveal the new "Dancing With The Stars" stars. I`ve got to tell you some really weird casting going on here like Kim "Famous-For-What" Kardashian. And some make sense like N`Sync`s Lance Bass. You won`t want to miss it when we fill you in on who`ll be dancing. Coming up.


ANDERSON: Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. I`m Brooke Anderson in Hollywood.

Tonight, it`s the Madonna-John McCain smackdown. Madonna kicked off her worldwide "Sticky and Sweet" tour in Wales by slamming McCain, comparing the Republican presidential nominee to Adolf Hitler.

With me tonight from New York, Carolina Bermudez, senior editor for "In Touch Weekly." And in Hollywood, Ken Baker, executive news editor for "E!" Ken, Carolina, welcome.

In a video montage, during the first concert of her new world tour in Wales, Madonna put together this video of disturbing images, of global warming, destruction, Hitler and John McCain. OK, I`m all for political expression, but comparing McCain to Hitler? Ken, Madonna, clearly out of line here.

KEN BAKER, EXECUTIVE NEWS DIRECTOR, "E!": Clearly, she`s overstating her point, at the very least on John McCain. No matter whether you`re Republican, Democrat, you support him or not, disagree with him, whatever the case, you can`t deny the fact that he was a pilot in the military. He was shot down over Vietnam. He was a POW. He served his nation. It`s hard to really compare him to Adolf Hitler. I think that`s a very much in extreme, and I was really shocked she did that, even coming from Madonna.

Of course, Madonna is known as being the shock queen and we really shouldn`t be surprised that she`s doing something like this. But it really was shocking. I mean, look, she may want to do that. Madonna just turned 50 last weekend. She`s out promoting this new tour. This was on the first stop of this tour. So if she wanted to get our attention, she definitely succeeded in doing that.

ANDERSON: She certainly started it off with a bang. And you`re right. On the one hand, we should not be surprised because she known for courting controversy. In fact, she`s defined by it, especially while out on tour.

In 2006, she staged a mock crucifixion a few miles away from the Vatican. With the Democratic Convention kicking off this week and politics on the forefront of everybody`s mind, Carolina, is this just an obvious grab for attention on Madonna`s part, or do you really think that she hates John McCain?

CAROLINA BERMUDEZ, SENIOR EDITOR, "IN TOUCH WEEKLY": I really think she hates John McCain. I think you guys are exactly spot on with saying that Madonna is the queen of expressing herself. We get that. She has the right to, you know, express herself in any way she wants to.

But here`s the problem. It`s an absurd connection. There`s nothing there. How are you going to put John McCain next to the president of Zimbabwe and global warming? I wouldn`t give him that much credit just yet, Madonna. And if I were the fan in the audience, I would ask for a refund. We go there to go and see her perform, to dance the thing, to do her thing, not to give us her political manifesto, make her political statements known.

ANDERSON: No. Well, as you can imagine, McCain`s camp, not too happy about the video. And a spokesman for McCain fired back at Madonna telling SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, quote, "The comparisons are outrageous, unacceptable and crudely divisive all at the same time. It clearly shows that when it comes to supporting Barack Obama, his fellow worldwide celebrities refuse to consider any smear or attack off limits."

Ken, are you surprised McCain`s camp took Madonna`s bait and issued a response or should they have ignored her altogether?

BAKER: No, I`m not, because McCain`s camp has entered the Hollywood celebrity, entertainment industrial complex already. They are the ones who came out with the ad that was comparing Obama to Britney Spears and Paris Hilton. So of course, they find that this pop cultural, I guess, touch stone that is celebrity - is something that they are going to engage with. And I guess they`ve done some polling and they found out that people are kind of annoyed by celebrities that had associated with politics. So I think that I`m not surprised by it at all.

ANDERSON: Well, in stark contrast to the McCain video, later in her contrast, Madonna showed another video montage, this time comparing Barack Obama to the likes of Gandhi, John Lennon, Al Gore, making her point very clearly. Carolina, is this the kind of thing that can help Obama or that could backfire on him, having the Material Girl in his corner?

BERMUDEZ: I think eventually it can backfire. Here`s the thing - people want to make their own decisions, their own educated decisions. And somebody shoving their own opinions down your throat - it doesn`t matter if it`s a neighbor or celebrity. You kind of want to make up your own mind.

The fact that Obama was paired with Gandhi, again, I think it was a little bit overboard. But if that`s the way she looks at him, that`s perfectly fine. I think that Obama`s camp needs to separate themselves and distance themselves from the celebrities and everybody who is talking about this. They need to get back to the issues that matter.

ANDERSON: Yes. Back to the core issues. Ken, do you think this new celebrity connection could work in McCain`s favor and maybe reinforce the criticism that McCain`s camp has had for Obama, that he`s a star himself with no substance?

BAKER: Well, I think it depends on who the celebrity is. I mean, someone like George Clooney who`s been recognized by the U.N. Angelina Jolie, much of same. You know, there`s some respect that people have with what their opinions are. They seem to be pretty informed, well-read, they`re up on the topics, but someone like Madonna? I think you sort of just look at her as a provocateur.


HAMMER: And I think that it doesn`t really do much for Obama or his campaign because she`s there to provoke, to prod, to get us to pay attention ultimately for our own self-interest to sell tickets to her show. So I don`t think that`s a good association. But you can`t say all celebrities are bad to be associated with Obama.


BAKER: It just wouldn`t be accurate.

ANDERSON: Yes, no blanket statement needs to be made. I do have to end it there, though, guys. Madonna certainly did garner attention for this. Carolina Bermudez, Ken Baker, thanks.

And hey, late today, Sen. Barack Obama`s camp responded to Madonna`s controversial comments. Obama`s rep said, quote, "These comparisons are outrageous and offensive and have no place in the political process."

HAMMER: Of course, you know there are some huge stars showing up at this Democratic National Convention.

ANDERSON: Yes, Denver`s chockfull of celebrities this week, A.J. You`ve got Oprah Winfrey, Ben Affleck, Spike Lee.

HAMMER: Yes, so many others as well. But here is a very controversial question. Could these stars actually hurt Barack Obama? Well, we are in Denver. Man, do we have a fired-up panel just ready to tear into this. Coming up.

ANDERSON: And you`re right. Now, stunning reality show news. A huge shake up on "American Idol." There`s a new judge on the show. Could Paula Abdul be in trouble? You`ve got to hear what Paula has to say about it. Coming up.

And tonight, I can also reveal the stars of the new season of "Dancing With The Stars." I`ve got to tell you, some pretty surprising choices. Reality show star Kim Kardashian, former boy bander Lance Bass. That is straight ahead.


HAMMER: Did you see this, or as you probably say, did you hear this? This four-eared cat has taken over the Internet. The cat`s name is Yoda, as in "Star Wars." Even though he`s not purrfect, he`s getting some serious TV offers from "Good Morning, America," "The Tyra Banks Show," too. Since Yoda is from a Chicago suburb, I`ve been wondering if he`s an (UNINTELLIGIBLE) fan.

ANDERSON: Cute and cuddly, A.J., like you.

HAMMER: Thank you.

ANDERSON: You`re welcome. All right. Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. I`m Brooke Anderson. Here are some more stories that are new right now.

Charlie Sheen is about to become a dad again. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT can tell you that his wife, Brooke Mueller is pregnant. They got married in May. Charlie has three other kids, two girls with ex Denise Richards and a grown daughter from another relationship.

"Heroes" star Hayden Panettiere tells "Extra" her father`s recent arrest was blown out of proportion by a sheriff who wanted his 15 minutes of fame. Alan Panettiere was arrested August 11 for allegedly hitting his wife in the face.

HAMMER: Well, Brooke, plenty of stars showing up at the Democratic National Convention in Denver. I`m talking about Oprah Winfrey, Scarlett Johansson, Ben Affleck even showing up. But could all this serious star power actually hurt Barack Obama?

Well, SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, right there in Denver. We`ve got a fired-up panel on all of this, coming up next.

ANDERSON: Also, A.J., new right now, stunning reality show news. Wow, I cannot believe this huge "American Idol" shake up. Tonight, I can tell you there`s a new judge on this show. Is Paula Abdul in trouble? You`ve got to hear what Paula herself is saying about all of this, straight ahead.

ANDERSON: I`m actually revealing the new stars of "Dancing With The Stars." There are some completely interesting choices here. I`m talking Kim Kardashian and former `N Sync Lance Bass. That`s coming up.



HAMMER: Now, on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, showbiz at the convention. The stars are coming out in full force with a Democratic National Convention. And SHOWBIZ TONIGHT is right there. Hollywood invades Denver, but tonight, SHOWBIZ TONIGHT is asking could it backfire on Obama?

Here comes the new judge. Blockbuster news from "American Idol." There will be a brand-new judge for the new season. Is Paula on her way out? Tonight, what Paula has to say about "American Idol`s" new judge. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT continues right now.


HAMMER: Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. It is 30 minutes past the hour. I`m A.J. Hammer, broadcasting tonight and every night from New York City.

ANDERSON: And I`m Brooke Anderson, coming to you tonight from Hollywood.

HAMMER: Well, tonight, as the first night of the Democratic National Convention wraps up, SHOWBIZ TONIGHT is covering Hollywood`s convention invasion. Dozens of stars are descending on Denver. The big debate tonight is whether they should even be there in the first place.

Tonight, Kid Rock is saying absolutely not. In an explosive new interview, Kid Rock says stars just need to zip it when it comes to politics and just stick to making music and television and movies.

But actor Tim Daly is giving Kid Rock a smackdown. The star of the "Grey`s Anatomy" spin-off, "Private Practice" is striking back on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.

And as the world waits for Oprah to arrive at the convention, SHOWBIZ TONIGHT is asking can the world`s most influential celebrity deliver the White House to Barack Obama?

Man, I`m just back from vacation. I`m fired up. We`ve got a fired-up coast to coast political panel tonight. SHOWBIZ TONIGHT in Denver.

It`s a CNN (UNINTELLIGIBLE) at the convention with CNN political analyst Roland Martin. And with me in New York tonight, founder of the Britto agency, Marvet Britto. In Hollywood tonight, "Extra" correspondent Carlos Diaz.

All right, guys. We`ve got enough fire here to - I don`t know - cure the energy crisis. Let me get to Kid Rock first. He had a lot to say about stars and politics. This was during an interview with Country Music Television. You`ve got to watch this.


ROCK: Let me tell you what I`m good at. I`m good at writing songs and singing. What I`m not educated in is the field of political science.

As soon as somebody comes up for a politician, especially in Hollywood, when I go, "I`m voting for this guy. I`m vote in voting for this guy." And I go, "That`s who I`m not voting for."


HAMMER: Roland Martin, out to you there in Denver at the convention, does Kid Rock have something there? Do you think a lot of people are saying amen? They`re agreeing that when stars endorse someone, it actually turns people off?

ROLAND MARTIN, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: Oh, yes, Kid Rock has something, 10- cent brain, that`s what he actually has. Obviously, he has no understanding of the history in terms of - you look at Charlton Heston who got to march into Washington to put jobs and freedom in 1963. You look at Aussie Davis(ph) and Ruby Dee. You look at Harry Belafonte. You look at stars who have had an impact in many social movements across this country.

So maybe what Kid Rock should do - maybe he should pick up a newspaper. Maybe he should watch CNN and learn what is happening in this country. What he is doing is trying to advance the ignorance that we see taking place, not only among stars, but also among people who are everyday voters of those not even registered.

HAMMER: What do you think, Marvet? Does Roland Martin have a point that Kid Rock doesn`t have a point?

MARVET BRITTO, FOUNDER, BRITTO AGENCY: I agree. We can`t use celebrities when it`s to our advantage. You know, they speak on issues from Darfur. They speak on issues like Hurricane Katrina relief. So why shouldn`t they speak as Americans who will be responsive and involved in a major way as to who the president will be? Why shouldn`t their voices be heard?

We call on them. We give them that platform. We ask for celebrities to speak when we want to use their voices. So why wouldn`t we involve them in the political process as well?

HAMMER: Well, he`s not only slamming the stars for simply endorsing, getting behind the candidates. He actually said, "It`s plain irresponsible for stars to even share their political opinion in general, which is something we hear happening all the time.

Now, Carlos, I`ve got to tell you, as far as I know, last time I checked, we`re in a free country here and being famous as far as I know does not strip you of your rights as an American citizen, does it?

CARLOS DIAZ, "EXTRA CORRESPONDENT": I`ve interviewed Kid Rock several times. When he says he`s not educated, I believe him. But what I`m trying to say here is that Sheryl Crow said it best from the Democratic National Convention. She said this weekend, listen, stars should use their influence to get people to go out and vote. You don`t have to listen to the star, but when they say get out and vote, listen to that part of it.

HAMMER: And there certainly are stars who do know of what they speak when they`re talking about whether it be political issues or issues of the world at large. I think to dismiss the stars as being categorically naive, I think that`s pretty naive.

Obviously, we`ve heard about Oprah Winfrey`s influence on everything in the world as well as this political process that we`re going through right now. There`s a new study that actually shows Oprah`s support of Obama may have delivered something like a million votes during the primary. You`ve got to listen to what Kid Rock thinks about Oprah`s influence. Would you roll that, Chris?


ROCK: Oprah Winfrey says la, la, la. I love Barack Obama. I hate Oprah Winfrey. I don`t hate her, I just don`t believe in her.


HAMMER: OK. So Oprah says something Kid Rock is not buying. He may not believe in Oprah Winfrey - obviously a lot of people do. Roland, I want to get your take on this, what the poll says, because you`re right there in the middle of the convention. Is there any kind of a buzz at all about Oprah factor and the influence she may, in fact, have here?

MARTIN: Well, first of all, there are so many different people who are here, whether it is Hill Harper, whether it is Danny Glover, Oprah Winfrey. I mean, certainly, for Oprah to come to her first political convention is a whole different ball game.

But the reality is, Sen. Barack Obama just said himself, "Oprah Winfrey is not going to deliver me votes." But what Oprah Winfrey does is she brings people into the process who ordinarily would have ignored a presidential campaign. He said, "That gives me an opportunity to close a deal."

That`s what stars do. Michael J. Fox went to Capitol Hill and testified about Parkinson`s disease. That was about using his celebrity to bring attention to the issue of that particular disease. That`s what you do.

And so what Oprah is saying is, "This is where I stand." Look, she could have easily said, "I don`t want to mess up my ratings. I don`t want to mess up anything." But, A.J., I`m so glad that there were celebrities in history who did not allow movie deals, book deals and record deals to determine where they stood on the social issues of the day. So it`s whether it`s Oprah or (UNINTELLIGIBLE) the Republican side, hey, do what you want to do. You have a right to do so.

HAMMER: Yes, Carlos, what do you think? It`s hard to ignore Oprah`s influence here, isn`t it?

DIAZ: Both with her influence and also with her financial influence. I mean, we can`t ignore the fact that Oprah is making hundreds of millions of dollars a year. She could actually, you know, give generously to the Obama campaign. So not only, you know, can she be an influence in the way of getting people to get out and vote for Barack Obama, but also that money says a lot as well.

HAMMER: You know, Roland, there are a lot of celebrities turning out and a lot of people are saying, particularly on the heels of John McCain trying to peg Obama as being a celebrity who couldn`t possibly rule the world because he`s a celebrity. And that`s it. And a lot of people are saying, with all the stars out there, it could actually end up backfiring on Obama. What`s your take?

MARTIN: Well, I mean, I disagree with that. The reality is people - it`s not like you`re going to have all these entertainers actually introducing Michelle Obama and Sen. Barack Obama. No, they`ll be sitting in the stands.

I mean, you come to these events and that`s what you see. You know what`s also interesting? The media. We love talking about it. Go to the White House correspondents` dinner, those (UNINTELLIGIBLE) dinners. Guess what they have? All stars there. So it is mind-boggling, if people - actors and entertainers don`t go to any of these major events. This could have an impact if they`re sitting in the stands. If they had a visible and active role at the convention, that might be a different story. I emphasize "might."

HAMMER: Yes. No question about that. There are some that are arguing that another big influence on Barack Obama`s historic nomination is actually how TV shows and movies have kind of cleared the path for America to be comfortable with the idea of having its first black president.

And we happened to ask on our SHOWBIZ TONIGHT question of the day on air and online this question - "TV Shows and Movies: Have they made the idea of a black president acceptable?" And look at the response we got, 67 percent said yes; 33 percent said no. Again this is an idea that`s been floating out there before. Marvet, over to you. It`s been said, you know, a show like "24" which featured a black president actually helped plant the idea of a black president in the heads of some voters. Do you buy it?

BRITTO: I absolutely buy it. People can only think from the level they have been exposed. So when you see it, you can conceive it. And I think once you see a black man becoming president, whether it`s on TV or not, it`s hard to differentiate that from reality. So I think that plays a part jus like singing.

Thurgood Marshall - other African-Americans thought they could end up being a judge some day. So I think it will be no different as it pertains to the perception that the masses will see. It won`t be so far-fetched, just like Gina Davis playing a woman president. The same applied to Hillary when she ran.

HAMMER: Gang, appreciate it. We`re going to wrap up - Go ahead, Roland. I`m out of time. I`ve got five seconds.

MARTIN: I love Marvet. I disagree, when you have a powerful position (UNINTELLIGIBLE) that makes a difference to going to the next level.

HAMMER: Got to leave it there. Roland Martin, thanks for joining us from the convention. Marvet Britto and Carlos Diaz, I appreciate it. Be sure to stay with SHOWBIZ TONIGHT at the Democratic National Convention. We`re there all week here tonight in Denver. We`ll talk with "CSI New York" star Hill Harper; on Wednesday, actress Fran Drescher will join us. On Thursday, actress Rosario Dawson.

Well, we`ve been asking you to vote online on our SHOWBIZ TONIGHT question of the day: "Hollywood Invades Denver: Could it backfire on Obama?" What do you think? Vote at E-mail us

ANDERSON: Hey, A.J., guess what? There`s a new judge on "American Idol."

HAMMER: Yes, I heard that, and the first thing that I thought when I heard that is should Paula be worried? I don`t know.

ANDERSON: A.J., is Paula on the way out? We`re going to tell you all about the new judge and what Paula has to say about it. That`s coming up.

HAMMER: Also, the new dancers have been named. Kim Kardashian and Lance Bass are among the new cast of "Dancing With The Stars." So who will they be fox-trotting against? You`ll want to stick around because we will fill you in, coming up.

Also this -

ANDERSON: The Democratic National Convention better be ready to rock. Straight ahead, I`ll tell you how Daughtry is going to rock the convention and show you the music video that put them in the middle of the election.

Remember you can watch SHOWBIZ TONIGHT video anytime you want. We are always posting new stuff for you to watch at our Web site Among the videos now playing, Britney Spears` new diet.


ANDERSON: Welcome back to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. I`m Brooke Anderson. Tonight, a big reality check for both "American Idol" and "Dancing With The Stars." It`s all new right now, the reality show edition.

The startling news today that "American Idol" is adding another judge which got everybody asking is Paula Abdul on her way out? Say it isn`t so.

And the new cast of "Dancing With The Stars" revealed today and it includes everybody from Kim Kardashian to Cloris Leachman. Will this be the best season ever or biggest train wreck ever?

Joining me tonight in New York, Carolina Bermudez, senior editor for "In Touch Weekly." And joining me tonight in Hollywood, Ken Baker, executive news editor for "E!"

Ken, Carolina, we know that "American Idol" has been considering a fourth judge for some time. But still, this really seemed to come out of nowhere, "American Idol" announcing Kara DioGuardi will become the new fourth judge on the show. She`s a singer-songwriter who has written songs for past American idols including Kelly Clarkson, and also the likes of Gwen Stefani and Britney Spears. Carolina, if you were Paula Abdul, would you be worried or would you be welcoming another woman on the show?

BERMUDEZ: If I were Paula Abdul, I would be thanking my lucky stars because this woman means a paycheck is still on the way. The numbers speak for themselves. "American Idol" has been losing some of its steam the past couple of seasons. They need to spice it up and this woman, Kara, coming in - she`s going to provide a different perspective. Yes, they can team up together or she can be the person that sides with Simon and Randy. So I think it`s a great idea. And if Paula is smart, she`s going to welcome her with open arms.

ANDERSON: Yes. And Kara seems smart. She seems feisty and she certainly is experienced in the music industry. So what does Paula really think about all of this? Well, she spoke out today on the "John, Jay and Rich Radio Show" and she says she`s OK with it. Listen.


PAULA ABDUL, "AMERICAN IDOL" JUDGE: They always tried for a fourth judge because it follows the format of the original show "Pop Idol." But, you know, we haven`t had much luck with that working, but, you know, we`re going to give it another try."

UNIDENTIFIED MALE DJ: So you`re actually excited to have a fourth judge?

ABDUL: Yes. Girl Power. You know, I am concerned about the audience and acceptance. And you know, time will tell. And we`ll see.


ANDERSON: All right. So, Paula seems to be a good sport about this. Ken, what do you think?

BAKER: Well, there`s a thing out here in Hollywood that celebrity is just another word for insecurity. Celebrities are known for being so insecure, and it`s because of things like this where producers of a show, to goose the ratings because as she said, the ratings aren`t very good. They aren`t good obviously. It`s still the number one show, but they`ve been declining.

In an effort to get people to pay attention, they`re bringing in another personality. They`re bringing in another woman. Of course, she`s insecure and worried about this. Who wouldn`t be? It`s like someone saying, "Hey, Brooke, you`re doing a really good job. We`re going to bring in another woman just sitting on the show. She`ll sit right next to you. She might have some of your lines." Come on. You`re going to be a little bit concerned about that.

But I have to say as a fan of "American Idol," I am happy to see it, because sure, Paula has her place, but it will be nice to have some counterpoint because Kara is actually known for being very critical, very aggressive, very opinionated. And I think that you might see a lot of fights between Paula and Kara. Right now, it`s between Simon and the rest of them. But we`re going to see another interplay there. I think it will really be interesting.

ANDERSON: Kara going to get into the mix. It`s clear those three already have chemistry, so it will be interesting to see how she plays into that dynamic.

OK, guys. On the same day the "American Idol" announced its new judge, the second biggest reality show on television, "Dancing With The Stars" announced its new cast and it`s an eclectic group. Take a look at some of the names, `N Sync star, Lance Bass, Emmy winner and legendary "All My Children" actress, Susan Lucci, reality show star and sex tape participant, Kim Kardashian, and even 82-year-old actress Cloris Leachman.

Carolina, what do you think about this line up? Some say it may be a strange group.

BERMUDEZ: I think it`s an interesting lineup. But I do think that they are covering all the bases. They`ve got the boy banders. They`ve got a scandalous woman. I mean, they even have like - Toni Braxton, I think, is also going to be appearing on the show. So I think that they are trying to, you know, cater to all of the different people that are going to be watching the show. But Cloris Leachman, guys, that`s a little bit of a stretch there, an 82-year-old. I don`t know. I mean, I don`t want to say it, but it`s a bit much right there.

ANDERSON: Well, Carolina, she may be improbable, but I cannot wait to see her progression and her improvement over the course of the show.

We`re going to leave it there for now. Carolina Bermudez, Ken Baker, thank you both so much.

And it`s time now for an unconventional moment from the Democratic National Convention, a quick look at the name of the arena in Denver and the drink behind it. Here`s CNN`s Jeanne Moos for SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.


JEANNE MOOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT (on camera): No Coke sold at this convention, it`s Pepsi that`s on everybody`s lips and clothes.

(voice over): Pepsi paid a reported $68 million to hang its name here for 20 years.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: A look inside the Pepsi Center.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE REPORTER: Live pictures from inside The Pepsi Center -

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I want to be inside the Pepsi Center -

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (sung): Come alive, you`re in the Pepsi generation.

MOOS: And doesn`t that Pepsi logo remind you of Sen. Obama`s? With an unconventional moment, I`m Jeanne Moos.


HAMMER: Well, did you see this? A would-be burglar in England caught hanging upside down at the house he was trying to break into. Now, the burglar was apparently trying to squeeze through a window when his shoelaces got caught. And he was stuck there, just hanging around for an hour until the homeowner showed up. The guy tried to deny he`d been breaking in even though he was still holding the hammer he used to smash the window.

And did you see this? Some very fancy footwork by the Kangaroo Kids Jumprope Team in Maryland. Look at that. They practice about 20 hours a week and compete in speed and power jumping, individual and team shows. That is very cool.

ANDERSON: Hello, Denver. The Democratic National Convention is going to rock.


CHRIS DAUGHTRY, SINGER (sung): It feels like the first time. It feels like the very first time.


ANDERSON: Straight ahead I`ll tell you how Daughtry is going to rock the convention and show you the music video that put them in the middle the election. That`s next on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. You don`t want to miss it.


HAMMER: Well, the Democratic National Convention is going to rock on Tuesday. You can count on that. Daughtry is performing in Denver. Now, the show is going to benefit the Grammy Foundation`s efforts on music education which needs to get back in our schools. The band has also recorded the cover of Foreigner`s "Feels Like the First Time" for CNN`s League of First-Time Voters project.

You`ve got to see this music video.


DAUGHTRY: I`ve waited a lifetime, spent my time so foolishly. And now that I`ve found you, together we`ll make history. It feels like the first time. It feels like the very first time. It feels like the first time, the first time. It feels like the very first time. You opened up a door, opened up the door. It feels like the very first time. It feels like the first time.


HAMMER: Now, they sound good. Chris Daughtry says he hopes that song will inspire people to vote.

ANDERSON: Last week, we asked you to vote on our SHOWBIZ TONIGHT question of day. It was this - "Television Shows and Movies: Have they made the idea of a black president acceptable?" Sixty-seven percent of you say yes; 33 percent of you say no.

Here are some of the E-mails we received. Samantha from California painted the question, "Should I trust a white doctor because the doctors on `ER` seem nice? Really ignorant."

Jeff from Ohio says, "TV and movies don`t make anything acceptable - they are make-believe and an escape."

We appreciate your E-mails.

HAMMER: Well, there you go. And that is it for SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. We appreciate you watching. I`m A.J. Hammer in New York.

ANDERSON: And I`m Brooke Anderson in Hollywood. Hey, remember, you can always catch SHOWBIZ TONIGHT on the 11:00s - 11:00 p.m. Eastern and Pacific, and in the morning at 11:00 a.m. Eastern. The latest from "CNN HEADLINE NEWS" is next.