Posts Tagged ‘HBO



International boxer Vladimir Klitschko with girlfriend, the stunning actress Hayden Panettiere smile for The Ravi Report

International boxer Vladimir Klitschko with girlfriend, the stunning actress Hayden Panettiere smile for The Ravi Report

The National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences  34th annual Sports Emmy Awards were recently celebrated  in NY. A major  event that brings out  top producers, hosts,  writers and directors from television networks also included gorgeous actresses and international athletes  from the world of sports.

Celebrities from the sports world including the famous Russian boxer Vladimir Klitschko who along with  his stunning girlfriend, “Nashville” star Hayden Panettiere were among the list of prominent sport figures and celebrities who graced the occasion.

Hayden Panettiere smiles for The Ravi Report

Hayden Panettiere smiles for The Ravi Report

The world of sports has certainly changed over the years with athletes gaining  notoriety for enormous salaries, extracurricular activities off the field and of course dating hot supermodels. Then there are those few gifted athletes who till this day, continue to maintain their legendary status and world-wide fame without being in mainstream sports. One such superstar who continues to receive the kind of respect and fame that most players work a lifetime to achieve is the famous  former NY Jets quarterback, the popular and very well liked star Joe Namath, fondly known as Broadway Joe and one of the greatest athletes known to mankind.

NFL legend Joe Namath being interviewed on the red carpet

NFL legend Joe Namath being interviewed on the red carpet

The NFL legend’s HBO documentary Namath won an Emmy for “Outstanding Sports Documentary”. The film displays Namath’s personal sports journey and features close friends, family and influential people who shaped his incredible career. Co-produced by NFL Films and HBO the documentary was executive produced by  Rick Bernstein, Howard Katz and Steve Sabol. It’s a MUST SEE FOLKS!! Incredible film.
I have to admit here. I have been a long time fan of Joe Namath. As a journalist,  I follow the careers of a few very talented superstar athletes like Namath who literally rocked the word of sports during their reign. Namath was unstoppable and yet despite after all these years, the  former Jets quarterback continues to maintain a massive following from Jets fans from around the world and he still has that youthful appeal that captured the attention of millions.
Joe Namath poses with Ravi Yande at the NY Sports Emmys

Joe Namath poses with Ravi Yande at the NY Sports Emmys

The Ravi Report exclusively spoke to the NFL superstar backstage after his Emmy win.

RR: It is indeed an honor Joe. Congrats on the Emmy win. It was such a terrific documentary filled with personal details about your life and profound career. You  clearly are still well-loved and appreciated for your contribution to the world of sports. Your thoughts?
You just said something there that is hard to accept all the time and I so respect that. After this documentary, I would be walking down the street and people would stop and talk to me about the documentary. When I’m in the supermarket to this day, people said they sincerely loved it.
RR: The documentary  was very well produced. And you know what is interesting is that those who didn’t closely follow your incredible career or had not been Jets fans, truly loved this documentary and have praised you and the HBO team for their efforts. How does that make you feel?

Emmy winning HBO team

Emmy winning HBO team

Namath: Being a former athlete, knowing what it takes to do your part, I had a small part in that sense. The hours and time that the crew put in is mind blogging and the passion that they put into it and of course without all that, it was not going to work. I had  a very small part in this. It was an incredible team that did most of the work.
RR: You had a legendary sports life. To this day, new star athletes often try to become the “next Joe Namath” on the field. How does it make you feel that your legendary status still continues  to this day?
Namath: Well, thank you. I love life and people! I feel that karma and I like to have that feeling felt by others and want to make sure when I say hello to someone it’s a good thing and it comes from the heart. I insist on feeling good and it came along the way. I learned it. It’s selfish to a degree, but I want to connect with people and  feel good about it.
RR: How has the journey been for Joe Namath, the NFL Legend?
Namath: Boy, I’ve been lucky and it’s ever changing. But the main thing is the spirituality and health is there.  Life takes some twist and turns health wise and accidents and things and you know if we are fortunate, we need to enjoy it.  I enjoy it and respect it.
RR: Today’s NFL has changed so much in terms of players, salaries and talent. What are some of the major changes that you have seen over the years that have transformed well into the NFL?
Namath: It’s mind blogging to see how good the athletes are today. We have come a long way and we should. You learn from your past and you are supposed to get smarter. The athletes are better because the coaches are better, the nutrition is better. I think it’s more competitive because  it’s exposed to a far wider audience now then before. When I played, we had three main TV stations, now look at how much access we have to sport programming. We are winning Emmys for our work and we are getting more out of sports.
RR: Congrats again Joe on the honor. You and your team so deserve it.
Namath:Thank you. I feel blessed.
Emmy winning reporter Jeff Verducci speaking to the press backstage

Emmy winning reporter Jeff Verducci speaking to the press backstage

Another Emmy winner included the very talented MLB star reporter and renowned Sports Illustrated baseball writer, Tom Verducci,  who won for Outstanding Sports Reporter. Verducci has been with the MLB Network for years as an on-air reporter and is considered a top and respected journalist in the sports world.

A life long baseball writer, Verducci has gained an enormous amount of notoriety as both an award-winning  writer and reporter among his peers and the public.

“I have always loved sports.. writing about it, talking about it, being in the  center of it, so it’s not a job for me because I love it so much,” Verducci exclusively told The Ravi Report after his win.

For a complete list of 2013 Sports Emmy winners , please  visit
The journey continues….

Paul Giamatti & Amy Ryan Are In a “Win Win” situation

Superstars Paul Giamatti and Amy Ryan smile for The Ravi Report

 The Spring is here folks and you know what that means. Brighter days, warmer weather, extensive gym workouts, sprouting tulips and the box office blossoming with an amazing film. It’s a “win win” situation. Get it? Read on.

Win Win” is a movie that is for everyone. Plain and simple and “wins” in every category. Casting, story, music, emotion, direction well you name it, it wins. Plus, the story takes place in my home state of New Jersey where  some of the best Hollywood films (and TV shows) are made and where some of the biggest stars in Hollywood came from.

Writer-director Tom McCarthy knows how to write, director, act and  how to make great movies. He can also discover talent as he did with newcomer Alex Shaffer.  McCarthy is known for tapping into the emotional side of people with his scripts and this film is no exception. It’s a great film people!

The cast includes the incredibly talented Paul Giamatti (I’m a big fan since his film “Sideways”), the versatile & amazing actress Amy Ryan (I think the “R” should stand for “Rocks”), Bobby Cannavale, Jeffrey Tamor and Burt Young and  Alex Shaffer, who already has won the hearts of millions  as a first -time actor who clearly knows how to hold his own on screen.

The talented cast of "Win Win" pose exclusively for The Ravi Report

The story revolves around  Mike Flaherty(Giamatti) a lawyer married to Jackie (Ryan) living a simple life in suburbia New Jersey and trying to make ends meet. Flaherty  is given legal guardianship of an elderly client (Bert Young) and does a little wheeling and dealing in client care when he gets a visitor- the client’s grandson Kyle (Shaffer). Kyle is a high-school talented wrestler who needs a lot more than hair gel and pretty girls to get back on track. With mom in rehab, Kyle has no place to go so he stays with Flaherty and in essence, turns their lives upside down, but in a good way.  Did I mention that Flaherty also happens to be moonlighting as a  part-time wrestling coach? The story transforms into one of the most emotional and heart-warming movies you will ever see. You will also be astounded at Shaffer’s remarkable performance. How good? Ah, let’s just say you may see the young star on the red carpet soon behind a 75 feet high golden statue.

 Academy Award nominee  Paul Giamatti is simply brilliant in the film. What else is there to say?

Directed and written by the ingenious actor turn director Tom McCarthy,  the gifted filmmaker  is probably one of the few directors that knows how to touch the soul of the audiences through his way of making films and his way of  bringing characters to life. His previous films “The Station Agent” and “The Visitor” were brilliant films based on human emotions and unexplainable friendships. So I knew what to expect when I saw “Win Win” and got exactly what I had hoped for- an emotional film that shows the strength of the human spirit  and will  make you think about the story long after you leave the theater.

Amy Ryan is awesome.  Her versatility in acting has always been noted by the  critics.  Her role as Adele in the HBO  show “In Treatment” (one of my favorite shows) gave the show a special  refinement while her role as Holly in the hit television series “The Office”  raised the caliber of the show in many ways. Ryan has been one of my favorite actresses for a long time and “Win Win” proves that the pretty actress is indeed one of the most  talented actresses we have today.

Giamatti in my opinion is one of the most proficient and versatile actors there is today in Hollywood.  The  actor earned a SAG Award for his compelling performance in “Cinderella Man” as well as an Academy Award nomination. The star recently finished up “Ironclad” in which the award-winning actor portrays “King John” in the year 1215.

During a media event in  NY, director McCarthy talked about how he wanted amazing music for the film but didn’t have the budget to pay a big rockstar.  And we all know that big time musicians don’t even bat an eyelash unless they see $$$$ up front.  But the  influential McCarthy managed to rope in the mega superstar and well-loved singer Bon Jovi who allowed McCarthy to use his song “Have A Nice Day” in the film for next to nothing.  Now that’s clout people!!

What I found  special about the film and meeting the cast in person,  is that  besides having a great storyline and being well-respected and talented actors, there was a certain positive energy and feel-good chemistry that came from both seeing the film and meeting the talented group. For more info on the film and national release dates,  go to

So in all it’s been a “Win Win” experience for The Ravi Report!

The journey continues….




The Ravi Report in line with the best!

The prestigious and world-famous NY Waldorf Astoria  was recently home to one of the most prestigious honors for television and radio programming.  The George F. Peabody Awards given to  the most distinguished and talented individuals in electronic media from around the world celebrated its 69th awards presentation in elegance and style. 

Recipients included producers, actors, writers, directors and talent that were associated with some of the most innovating and thought-provoking films, radio broadcasts, documentaries and television shows.  The Ravi Report was invited to cover the special awards ceremony which included meeting some of the dignified winners. 

"Modern Family" star Sophia Vergara graces the Peabody Awards with her beauty!

36 recipients picked up the eminent award for their outstanding work reflecting diversity, creativity and original content in electronic media.  

Newark, NJ mayor Cory Booker poses with executive producer Forest Whitaker.

The charismatic, humble  and well liked mayor (over a million followers on Twitter!)  of Newark, NJ , Cory Booker  was featured in the film  “Brick City” which won  for its portrayal of a selected group of Newark residents trying to make their lives better against all odds. The film follows Booker along with the city’s Police Chef  as well as the individuals facing daily struggles of survival. 

But fame was never important to the mayor.   Booker is a well grounded and goal oriented individual and has been since he got elected into office.  He has deep passion for the city of Newark and its residents. That is very clear in his actions and in the film.  

Booker spoke to The Ravi Report about the film’s honor.  

“I think the film being on the Sundance Channel and having such a great team behind it, I’m happy that the film is getting the kind of recognition it deserves,” stated the mayor.  

But the rising political star  likes to give credit where credit is due regarding his success.  

"Brick City" executive producers Mark Benjamin, Mark Levin and Forest Whitaker

“It’s really everyone not just me. It’s a group effort and that’s very important” smiled the mayor who recently attended President Obama’s state dinner for the Mexican President. 

Booker who has been credited for turning Newark into a platform for positive change and is very grateful for the amount of support that he has received from everyone including celebrities and politicians. 

The multi-talented actor Forest Whitaker served as one of the executive producers of  “Brick City” and he spoke to The Ravi Report about what the film meant to him.   

Cory Booker poses exclusively for The Ravi Report

“This film shows how people can change with positive influence and how there is hope with people like Cory”  commented the award-winning actor.  

The ceremony was hosted by the legendary news anchor  and ever glamorous and beautiful Diane Sawyer  who also won a Peabody for her  news special ” A Hidden America: Children of The Mountains” an expose of poverty-stricken Central Appalachia families.  Sawyer and her team spent two years documenting  four youths trying to escape the despair of poverty.  

"Modern Family" executive producer Steven Levitan speaks to The Ravi Report about his show's success.

The prevailing ABC show “Modern Family” won for its creative content and original format.  Steve Levitan, the creator of the hit series said that he was excited that his show has gotten such a loyal following and was grateful for the honor. HBO’s innovative drama series “In Treatment” a psychoanalysis therapy-session drama with award-winning actors Gabriel Bryne and Dianne Wiest also won.  

Another popular series that won was “Glee” (Fox) the television drama that focuses on realistic issues teenagers continue to deal with such as  pregnancy, disability and sexual orientation.  

"60 Minutes" acclaimed journalist Steve Kroft and his team of producers exclusively pose for The Ravi Report

60 Minutes” the  most innovating news programs, on the air today, added two more Peabodys to their collection of awards.  Esteemed and audacious journalist  Steve Kroft’s  special report on  cyber terrorism entitled “60 Minutes: Sabotaging the System” focused on potential attacks on computer systems around the world won the award as did  w his report “60 Minutes: The Cost of Dying”.   

Peabody Winner Anika Noni Rose speaks about her win to the press

The beautiful and talented Tony Award winning actress Anika Noni Rose won for her role in  the HBO series “No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency”. The show based in Botswana displays the talents and personalities of several ladies with  probing kind of  nature and is produced by The Weinstein Company, BBC and HBO Entertainment. Rose comes from a strong stage background where she won her Tony Award for her role in “Caroline or Change” and for her role in “Dreamgirls”.  This is the first Peabody for the actress.  

For a complete list of winners please go to  

The journey continues..and for these Peabody winners…it just became sweeter!!!  


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