Saturday, September 26, 2009

'Twilight's' Taylor Lautner and Selena Gomez hit Teen Vogue bash! R they or RNT they?


There have been ongoing rumors about "Twilight" hunk Taylor Lautner dating "Wizards of Waverly Place" cutie Selena Gomez for weeks and weeks.


But Taylor was flying solo Friday night at the seventh annual Teen Vogue Young Hollywood bash. Kind of.

Selena was also there. And talked to her about Taylor's arrival, whether he was nervous and about his Teen Vogue cover. All things a girlfriend would definitely know.

She says she saw the photos from the shoot and thought they rocked. Surely he only showed his girlfriend?

Check out Taylor's Teen Vogue photos here!

When pressed, Selena admits she would prefer to be a vampire, not a werewolf.

Taylor has to have a talk with that girl and get her on his team.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Does 'Wizards of Waverly Place' Have The Magic Emmy Touch?

Gold Derby by Tom O'Neil (LA Times)

In past years there wasn't much hope for traditional drama and comedy series to win the Emmy Award for best children's program. Sometimes shows like "Hannah Montana" and "The Suite Life of Zack and Cody" — even mega-hot movie "High School Musical 2" — got nominated, but they usually lost to high-minded, real-life fare like "Nick News with Linda Ellerbee."

This year, however — presto, change-o — "Nick News" has been zapped off into a newly created category for nonfiction children's shows, leaving the main slot to nominees "The Wizards of Waverly Place," "iCarly" and Miley Cyrus' "Hannah Montana."

"Wizards of Waverly Place" is a popular new show about a magical family that includes one smart-cookie girl and her two brothers (one bright, one dimwitted). It was created by Todd J. Greenwald, who once wrote for "Hannah Montana" and other tween hits like "Saved by the Bell."

Greenwald is happy about the new Emmy rule change. "The fact that they split the categories makes it a fun and level playing field now," he says in our podcast. Click the arrow below to listen to our chat.

In our dishfest, we cover what makes shows like "Wizards of Waverly Place" and "Hannah Montana" such hits: They give frustrated tweens the feeling of secret empowerment.

"'Hannah Montana' is a genius formula," Greenwald says. "Kids love music and they love being popular. Imagine being popular in your own school, but nobody knows about it. It's a fantasy for every kid to have.

"As far as wizards go, you can do whatever you want whenever you want, but if it's against the rules, that makes it more exciting for the audience. There's a little rebel in every kid."

Photo: Disney Channel

Disney's Effort To Draw Male Audience Wins Over Girls

By Ryan Nakashima; Source: Associated Press

In this undated promotional photo released by Disney, actors Adam hicks, left, and Hutch Dano are shown in a scene from "Zeke and Luther." Disney recently revamped its Toon Disney network with an array of programs to cater to tween boys, a largely untapped demographic for them, and rebranded the channel Disney XD. (AP Photo/Disney XD, Jaimie Trueblood)

BURBANK, Calif. -- A funny thing happened on the way to remaking the Toon Disney channel into one that catered to "tween" boys: It got a lot more popular with girls.

Perhaps it's because teenagers Hutch Dano and Adam Hicks, the stars of the channel's most popular new show, "Zeke and Luther," exude a goofy innocence in a scrubbed-clean environment.

Whatever the reason, the slightly off-kilter rebranding effort at the channel now called Disney XD highlights a larger problem at The Walt Disney Co.: It has had difficulty winning over young male audiences.

Disney recently announced part of the solution, agreeing to buy comic book giant Marvel Entertainment Inc. for $4 billion, bringing characters like Iron Man and Spider-Man into the house of Hannah Montana, Cinderella and Pocahontas.

A closer look at Disney's ongoing efforts with the XD channel - where prime-time ratings this summer nearly doubled among boys aged 9 to 14 but tripled among girls the same age - helps explain why the company wanted Marvel's outside firepower in its quest for boy-focused content.

While there's no harm in attracting more girls to the channel, Disney also wants to draw more advertising for boy-focused products like video games and action figure toys.

That might have taken years on its own. Now Marvel is expected to bring more superhero power to Disney XD, adding to the 20 hours per week that Marvel content already runs on the network.

But going after a more male audience is a tough slog. Boys are fickle. They demand authenticity and appreciate a snarky sense of humor, while at other times, they just want to immerse themselves in fantasy worlds and animation.

Rich Ross, president of Disney Channels Worldwide, said the goal of rebranding Toon Disney as Disney XD was always "to create this destination for boys that is still inclusive of girls."

And the shift has already helped bring in some new ads.

Electronic Arts Inc. boosted its advertising spending about 30 percent this year on Disney XD after its switch, mainly to advertise kid-friendly video games such as "MySims Racing" and "Madden NFL 10."

One big challenge for Disney is that the boys market is well served.

More 'Star Wars'

Time Warner Inc.'s Cartoon Network, whose audience is more than 70 percent boys, plans to roll out the second season of George Lucas' popular "Star Wars: The Clone Wars" series this fall.

Cartoon Network is also branching into live-action and reality TV shows that leave little doubt about their target audience. "Dude, What Would Happen" features a group of teenage boys who try stunts like installing a lemonade tank into the hood of a car. "My Dad's a Pro" follows the Boston Celtics' Eddie House through the eyes of his 8-year-old son, Jaelen.

Ron Geraci, a senior vice president of research for the Nickelodeon kids and family group, questioned Disney's focus on boys.

Nickelodeon's tween audience draws almost equally between boys and girls on such shows as "SpongeBob Squarepants," "iCarly," and "Penguins of Madagascar."

"One of the fallacies in the kids marketplace has been that you can't program to both boys and girls," Geraci said. "We think the commonality among boys and girls is comedy and we've proved it time and again."

Small Firms, Like Disney, Can Sell to Tweens

By Elizabeth Blackwell; Source: TheStreet

No longer children but not yet teenagers, "tweens" are now considered a powerful consumer demographic in their own right. Between the ages of 8 to 12, kids begin to develop into independent consumers: spending their own allowance money and showing specific brand preferences when shopping with Mom or Dad.

Walt Disney(DIS Quote) has been especially successful appealing to tween girls. The company helped launch the careers of actress Miley Cyrus and pop stars the Jonas Brothers, turning them into international brands available on everything from backpacks to snacks.

But Burbank, Calif.-based Disney hasn't had a comparable hit with tween boys, which might help explain this week's announcement that it will buy Marvel Entertainment(MVL Quote), home of iconic male-oriented characters such as Spider-Man and The Incredible Hulk. The Disney marketing machine has convinced tween girls to spend millions on merchandise from Cyrus's show, Hannah Montana; it can probably spin superheroes into a massive new revenue stream.

But there's no reason small companies can't get into the boy business, too. Tween boys have been somewhat overlooked compared to girls. Companies that understand how to appeal to their interests have the advantage of relatively few competitors.

According to youth marketing company Alloy Media + Marketing, tweens spend $51 billion each year, with their families kicking in an additional $170 billion.

To get in on that market, you must understand how tween boys think, says Adriann Fonstein, consumer strategist for AMP Agency, a unit of Alloy. "For them, life is about play. They like silly, physical humor. You have to make them feel like they're in on the joke."

Retailers Banking on Star Power to Sell Styles

By BETSY TAYLOR; Associated Press

MAPLEWOOD, Mo. — Summer Johnson’s back-to-school wardrobe includes shiny wet-looking leggings, a tie-dye camisole and basic tees — all part of a new collection by Miley Cyrus and designer Max Azria at Wal-Mart.

Stores are hoping a touch of star quality will inspire back-to-school shoppers — and their parents — to look beyond basics and seek out clothing lines with ties to celebrity actors and singers, from clean-cut Disney shows to the racier Gossip Girl.

Johnson, a 22-year-old college student from suburban St. Louis, was drawn to the Cyrus collection’s rock-star edge and under $20 prices, but the star power didn’t hurt.

“Celebrities are great, but I go toward a celebrity line because they’re reading up on fashion, teaming up with a good designer,” she said. “They know a thing or two about fashion. They’re our fashion template.”

And the templates abound. A “JONAS” line, inspired by the television show featuring the Jonas Brothers, mixes prep school styles with a rocker twist. A second Disney line based on the show Wizards of Waverly Place is being billed as a “boho chic” collection including tunic-length tops with print scarves and miniskirts that draw inspiration from the show’s Alex Russo character, who happens to be played by Selena Gomez, the newly named Teen Choice red-carpet fashion icon. They’re selling at JC Penney, Kmart, Sears, Wal-Mart and Target.

Star power alone won’t sustain a successful clothing line.

“I’ve seen the peaks and valleys of it,” said Tina Knowles, the mother of singer and actress Beyoncé. Tina Knowles serves as creative director for Dereon, a clothing line that draws from her famous daughter’s style. “The celebrity being attached is a plus, but the clothes have to be good quality,” she said.

Customers respond to Beyoncé, but they come back when they like the fit, style and value, Knowles said.

This fall, the Dereon line includes a Sasha Fierce collection with some back-to-school looks inspired by Beyoncé’s tougher, alter-ego character.

Not all of it screams classroom, but pieces that would make a splash at school include skinny jeans, a houndstooth-print jacket and a lightweight leather jacket that Knowles calls one of her favorites. Sasha Fierce items sell for $25 to $125, and are currently available at some specialty retailers and about 100 Macy’s stores.

Another line that’s new for back-to-school is “Mad Style for True Jackson,” designed by Jane Siskin, perhaps best known for her work on 7 for All Mankind’s famously fitting jeans. The “Mad Style” clothes at Wal-Mart draw from Nickelodeon’s popular tween show, True Jackson, VP, which stars young actress Keke Palmer, whose character lands a dream job as a vice president at a fashion company.

“The thing that excited me was to bring fashion to a tween customer in a collection and in a way that’s already styled,” Siskin said. A gray V-neck dress, for instance, includes a built-in plaid shirt underneath and a black-patent belt with silver charms hanging from it for $12.

Palmer, the tween star of True Jackson, says she’s thrilled about the line. “Wow, words cannot express how exciting it is to know that little girls will be wearing clothes that originated from the show, amazing!” she said by e-mail.

Celebrity clothing lines don’t capture all shoppers’ interest in the same way.

With clothes selling, in some cases, for just a few dollars, industry watchers say it’s safe to say a lot of celebrity lines were manufactured to catch a right-now trend and not intended to last forever.

And if people don’t like a star, they’re probably not going to like the clothes.

An older back-to-school shopper like Johnson says she gets interested based on a designer’s reputation — she knew of Azria, for instance, from his stylish BCBG clothes. She’s not a huge Cyrus fan, but assumes she’ll get trendy looks at good prices when a star works with a designer and a mass retailer.

A high schooler might follow a celebrity’s look in magazines and on the Internet and then shop for a similar style. And young tweens respond to a show, its storyline and its fictional characters, not so much the real-life performers.

“As long as the shows are relevant, the products are relevant,” said Disney Consumer Products’ vice president for global fashion and home, Pamela Lifford.

Target plans to unveil a line by designer Anna Sui inspired by the Gossip Girl television show from Sept. 13-Oct. 17 in more than 600 stores. And in October, Nordstrom will offer Twilight: New Moon-inspired apparel.

Disney in Deal For Gamers

BOB IGER Disney boss.

BOB IGER Disney boss.

By PETER LAURIA; Source: NY Post

Disney is in a buying mood.

Less than a week after stunning the entertainment industry with its $4 billion deal to buy Marvel Comics, the Mouse house yesterday said it agreed to buy edgy videogame developer Wideload Games.

Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

As part of the deal, Wideload Games founder and CEO Alexander Seropian will join Disney's Interactive Studios unit in the newly created role of vice president of creative.

Seropian is considered a videogame visionary, who helped create the successful "Halo" franchise for Microsoft's Xbox after selling his former company, Bungie Software, to the software giant in 2000.

With the two purchases, Disney is attempting to make inroads into what has been an elusive demographic: 'tween males. Though it has a hold on 'tween girls with Miley Cyrus, The Jonas Brothers and other properties, appealing to boys has been a bigger challenge for the company.

The purchases underscore Disney's perception that videogames are the way to bring young men back into the fold.

Indeed, the Marvel deal was done not just because of the movie potential of comic book characters like Spider-Man and Iron-Man, but also because of the videogame franchises that can be developed.

In buying Wideload Games, Disney is betting that Seropian -- like a successful movie producer -- can develop another hit on the order of "Halo."

Wideload's Games include "Stubbs the Zombie," in which gamers take the role of a "rebel without a pulse," "Hail to the Chimp" and "Texas Cheat' Em."

Teen Vogue Launches Its Haute Spot at South Coast Plaza

Teen-vogue-1By Emili Vesilind; Source: LA Times

Orange County ’tweens and teens flooded South Coast Plaza in Costa Mesa on Saturday morning to shop (or contentedly loiter) at Teen Vogue’s new pop-up event space, Teen Vogue Haute Spot, which opened over the weekend in its own storefront at the swanky mall.

Opening day featured a fashion presentation with models illustrating a handful of fall trends: leather, glam-rock and something called “homeward bound” (“Teen Vogue’s way of camping,” explained the moderator).

The buzzing outpost, which is open through Sept. 27, boasts a grab bag of teen merch—including a table brimming with Laura Mercier and Bobbi Brown makeup and teen-targeted perfumes like Marc Jacobs Daisy, along with scattered racks of clothes culled from retailers around the mall, including H&M, Paul Frank, Roxy, Coach and Gucci.

But none of it’s for sale in the pop-up. If shoppers want to purchase an item, they head to the store that carries it, then return with their receipt to pick up a swag bag full of makeup and fashion odds and ends valued at $200.

Teen-vogue-2 Friends Carly and Sophie, 13-year-old Newport Beach residents with matching blue rubber bands on their braces, weren’t sold on any of the merchandise, but were happy to hang out, play on the computers and scope out “the models!”

A DJ kicked out the tunes (Ne-Yo, Justin Timberlake) from one corner, while models twirled on a small stage set up in another. After the presentation, a gaggle of giggling teens took pictures in front of the Teen Vogue-branded Step-and-Repeat. Scattered throughout the pop-up are computer stations supporting HP laptops—“Twitter your friends right now and have them come down here,” suggested the moderator.

Stephanie Ceveba, a shy 15-year-old from Garden Grove, wandered in with her dad, Javier, who encouraged her to look around. “I think it’s pretty fun in here and I think the models are really pretty,” she said, while rifling through a rack of clothes.

Aya Kanai, contributing editor for Teen Vogue, said the 9-year-old magazine opened an Haute Spot in Short Hills Mall in New Jersey recently, and the company was so thrilled with the response, it was looking to replicate the promotional event out West.

“It’s really a way to show girls how they can take stores in the mall and create the Teen Vogue look,” she said. “The editors create a look that’s very specific – it’s Vogue, but it’s for a younger girl. Girls shop and consume media culture in completely different ways than they have in any other time. That’s the most crucial element in keeping Teen Vogue relevant—keeping up with that.”

The outpost will be buzzing with events over the next three weeks—including the chance to customize your Uggs with an airbrush artist (2 p.m. Sept. 13) and special appearances by “Gossip Girl’s” lead stylist Eric Daman (Sept. 20) and Amy Astley, Teen Vogue’s editor-in-chief (Sept. 26.) Visit for the complete schedule of events.

Top photo: Teens killing time (stylishly) at Teen Vogue’s Haute Spot. Bottom: A model shows off the "glam-rock" trend for fall. Credit: Emili Vesilind / Los Angeles Times

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Michael Pitt, Elissa Sursara, to be MTV's Teen Wolf cast?

By Ellen Cromanche; Source: The Examiner

The anticipated MTV series adaption of Teen Wolf is seemingly closer to fruition than presumed, as the network orders a pilot presentation with two actors rumored to be on board. Announced in January, the new Teen Wolf is part of a developmental slate, suggested to be executed in light of the network's attempts to abandon its reality TV programming in favor of scripted television.

According to film insiders, actor Michael Pitt and relatively unknown actress Elissa Sursara, have both read, and been secured for the roles of Teen Wolf and his beloved Boof.

MTV has not yet confirmed the casting.

Pitt, who shot to fame in 2001 as the lover of a transgendered rocker in Hedwig and the Angry Inch, is set to play the role of Scott Howard, the high school misfit who discovers he is a Werewolf. Using this to his advdantage, Wolf gains the attention of the popular Pamela, despite the long-time affections of Boof; to be played by Elissa Sursara. Sursara, 21, began her career as a child model before making the transition to television, however prominent photographs of the actress in search results instead show Mexican model Katarina Vargas.

The roles of best friend Stiles and popular Pamela have not yet been cast and no further details have been released.

The re-vamped film turned television series is promised to have an 'American Werewolf in Paris' feel, according to Liz Gateley, Senior Vice President of Series Development at MTV. "It's a dramatic thriller with two best friends in the centre who provide a great comedy element: They are two very relatable characters on the outer circles of popular cliques."

Gateley said teen elements such as dating will be explored, and that the series will feature a love-triangle romance between Wolf, Boof and Pamela, as well as having a comedy back bone and horror themes. According to the BBC, the new Teen Wolf will be "set in a high school. The show will be drawn from the horror genre to explore werewolf mythology and will also include a romantic plot line."

The new Teen Wolf was written by Criminal Minds creator Jeff Davis.

Taylor Momsen To Perform At Teen Vogue Party

Source: Angry Ape

Gossip Girl actress Taylor Momsen will be performing at a party for Teen Vogue.

The 16-year-old, who plays Jenny Humphrey on the TV series, fronts the band The Pretty Reckless when she's not filming for the show.

According to the New York Post, the group are due to perform tonight (8th September) at the Teen Vogue event in New York. "She's been practicing for it all week," a source told the publication.

The gig isn't the first for Momsen and band - they recently toured with The Veronicas (opening up for the Aussie siblings).

The Pretty Reckless have also inked a deal with Interscope Records and their debut album should be out this year.

Teen Fall 2009 Fashion Trends

Neon sneakers are in style

By Evelyn Block; Source: The Examiner

As schools in Los Angeles start the fall semester, teens are busy planning their fall wardrobes. Because many teens are hyper aware of what their peers are wearing, they often prefer to start the school year in last season’s styles until they determine what’s “in” among their friends. A wise parent encourages a “wait and see” attitude, as many teens discover they can adapt last season’s clothes to this season’s styles.

The look this season harkens back to the 80s. People were leery then as they are now about spending a lot of money on clothes. Staple pieces, in this case skinny jeans for both boys and girls, paired with clothes influenced by punk rock and heavy metal music is the defining style.

Plaids are big. Not the preppy plaids, but rather grungier plaids, Buffalo plaids and even plaid leggings for girls. Long sleeved plaid shirts over skinny jeans is a look likely to be seen on many middle and high school campuses this fall. There will also be lots of graphic t-shirts, especially on the guys. The t-shirts are great to layer under a new plaid long sleeved shirt or a hoodie.

Neon colors are all the rage and they are showing up in solids, plaids and even stripes on clothing. Neon accessories are hot as well as are skinny neon belts that can be worn over a dress or shirt.

Shoes may make the biggest fashion statement on campuses this year as plaids and argyle patterns in all colors, some even in neon colors, adorn the feet of the fashion conscious. Converse has taken the concept a step further, allowing purchasers to select the color, patterns, heel stripe, tongue and even laces for their shoes with a 2-4 week shipping time.

While you may find your teen’s style a bit on the grungy side, remember that as a teen struggles to find his or her own identity his choice of clothing and the message he believes his clothing sends becomes very important to him. Even though it seems as if your teen and her friends all look alike, your child has likely gone to a great deal of effort to be different while still fitting in with her friends. Those differences sometimes are only visible to teens themselves. Unless the clothing is objectionable, it's best to tolerate a teen's clothing choices and save the arguments for something more significant.

Fantasy and Education Top Best-Selling Teen Books

By Sara Gundell; Source: Examiner

Online retailer released its best-selling titles in teen books today, and it was a surprising mix of fantasy-adventure based Young Adult Literature and educational texts. Two classroom reading list books also made the top 8 list. The combination signals the beginning of the school year – and the ever-growing popularity of fantasy literature amongst teens.

The number-one book on the list was Suzanne Collins’ Catching Fire, the second book in her Hunger Games series, which just came out last week. More surprising was the number two book – Stephenie Meyer’s Eclipse, which has been out for a couple years now. It could be fans have a renewed interest in the book, since the movie version is now filming in Vancouver, B.C. A paperback version of Eclipse was also recently released.

The number three book was Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater – another supernatural teen romance, this time featuring the next big thing in creature of the night love interests, a werewolf. The book takes an interesting spin on the werewolf storyline, and has storyline appeal to Twilight Saga fans. The author herself even created a haunting trailer for the book:

The next books on the list are standard assigned reading fare – Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451 and Sandra Cisneros’ The House on Mango Street. Either teens are finishing some really last-minute summer reading, or these books are big on teachers’ lists for the start of the school year. It’s also possible that teens have discovered that some of their assigned reading books are also just really good reads (like Fahrenheit 451 and The House on Mango street). Or is that just wishful thinking?

Also amongst the top six books for teens are two prep guides for standardized tests – showing that teens (or at least their book-buying parents) are gearing up for this Fall’s round of SATs and ACTs.

New Moon: The Official Illustrated Movie Companion (Twilight Saga) is also one of the best-selling teen books. The book isn’t actually out yet – so it made the list based on presales alone, once again proving the buying power of teens and the fan fervor for anything Twilight Saga-related. The New Moon movie hits theaters November 20th.

Here’s the complete list:

LG Seeks 'Fame' With Teens

The phone maker is partnering with the remake of ''Fame'' to reach teen consumers.

LG is working hard to stay the teenage cellphone of choice. The South Korean electronics giant already sells nine of the 20 most popular cellphones among teens, according to Comscore. But rivals like Samsung, Sanyo and Pantech are making their own affordable, text-centric phones, threatening LG's dominance.

To bond with its teen audience, LG is partnering with MGM to promote a remake of the hit 1980s film Fame, which centers on a group of artsy New York high school students. Under the deal, LG will launch a special Fame-themed Web site, LGFameUs that will host a video contest and quizzes. LG phones will also be sprinkled throughout the film, which opens on Sept. 25.

LG says the tie-in is designed to show teens and tweens that LG respects their "view of the world." "Teens are becoming a major force in mobile communications … we need to figure out a way to connect to them," says Ehtisham Rabbani, LG's vice president of product strategy and marketing. According to the company, more than 70% of American teenagers 17 and under have a cellphone--up from 45% in 2004.

The cornerstone of LG's campaign is a personality quiz that will be unveiled on Sept. 8. The quiz, which is being billed as, "What LG Cellphone are you?" will pose questions like "You're gonna live forever! How important are the following?" Answers will include "My career," "Having the latest technology" and "A phone that expresses who I really am, inside and out." After analyzing responses, the quiz will match participants with one of 12 LG phones. Interested consumers will be forwarded to LG's U.S. homepage, where they can learn more about the handsets and connect to carriers' sites to purchase them.

Rabbani says the quiz acknowledges that teens are individuals who want phones that match their lifestyles. (It will also collect useful--though anonymous--information about teen cellphone preferences.) LG's Fame video contest, which asks people to do their own interpretation of the film's iconic theme song, Live Forever, is designed to appeal to teens in a different way--by giving them a place to show off their personalities. "We want to be like a friend to teens, not talk down to them," says Rabbani.

Actress Launches New SHOWBIZ Teen Fragrance

PRNewswire/ -- Kinda McCullough, an actress and former
child talent manager, has launched a new unisex fragrance just for teens.

SHOWBIZ, available at, is a light, fresh fragrance perfect
or day or night. McCullough, who has always had a passion for fragrance and
cosmetics and a love for all things related to the entertainment industry, has
created a scent that she knew would specifically appeal to today's teenagers.

"Teens want to smell good like everyone else," McCullough notes. "But they
don't want to smell like their mother or father. They want a scent that's
mature enough for an adult to wear but light and fresh enough for all the
daily activities teens enjoy. Our scent embodies all of those qualities."

McCullough's original fragrance line, aimed at the younger set, is called
Kinda's Kidz, named after her former Los Angeles-based talent management
agency. SHOWBIZ is an extension of that and designed for the older, mature
young adult.

"SHOWBIZ is perfect for going on an audition or just hanging out with
friends," according to McCullough.

McCullough also embraces social networking, and gives out information about
her product lines and casting information for parents and teens at her Twitter
account at McCullough, who was a child talent
manager in Los Angeles, studied acting in New York at the Michael Howard
Acting Studio, and has had roles as an extra on Days Of Our Lives and other
hit television shows and major films.

In an effort to support the next generation of artists, McCullough is proud to
announce that 10% of all proceeds from sales of her fragrance line are donated
to charity benefiting children in the Performing Arts.

To order SHOWBIZ or to find out more, visit


Kinda McCullough, +1-646-468-8887

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Kajeet: Cell Phones with Training Wheels for Tweens

By Michelle Lamar: Source: MamaGloss

Kajeet mobile phones are a great option for families who are considering a first cell phone — I call them “cell phones with training wheels.” If you want to get your tween a mobile phone but you’re worried about safety and usage, this phone is a great way to ease you and your child into the technology and the responsibilities that come with it.

Our family discovered Kajeet a few years ago, when we were looking for a phone for our then 12-year-old daughter. At a new school and playing on a basketball team with games and practices all over the place, my husband and I wanted her to have a way to call home if she needed to but we weren’t quite ready to let her have have her own phone. The company’s pay-as-you-go service and the parenting controls were a great solution for our family.

When our daughter entered high school, we switched her over to our family mobile plan—and “took the training wheels off” her cell phone. Our youngest daughter is 11-years-old and now she has a Kajeet cell phone. Just like her sister, we are taking it slowly, so she can learn how to use a cell phone responsibly.

Kajeet makes communicating with a cell phone easy and safe for kids thanks to a variety of free parental controls. Mom and Dad can block calls, picture messaging, and text messaging. The phone lets parents determine when, how and how much it can be used by their children.

The company was founded by three fathers, who wanted a service their tweens could use. Kajeet CEO Daniel Neal says they designed the service as dads first:

Thinking of our own kids, we designed a service to provide them with everything they need to safely explore the exciting new world of mobile tech.

Find out more about Kajeet on their website,

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Samsung Launches S3650 Corby Touchscreen Cell Phone For Social Networking Teens

Snapshot by Brian James Kirk ; Source: Mobile Burn

Samsung has launched the S3650 Corby, an affordable touchscreen handset designed for teen mobile users. The Corby has a contoured design and comes in yellow, white, orange, and pink with additional interchangeable and fashionable back covers available.

The device is built on Samsung's finger-friendly Touchwiz user interface. TouchWiz should look sharp on the Corby's 2.8-inch QVGA touchscreen display, which also includes haptic feedback. Users can download new widgets for the user interface through Samsung's online store with the phone's GSM/EDGE data connectivity. Through Samsung's Social Networking Service, users can update their status across their favorite social networks like Facebook, Twitter, and MySpace.

Users can also upload content, like photos and videos created with the Corby's 2.0 megapixel camera, to YouTube, Flickr, Picasa, and even Photobucket. Music collections can be saved onto microSD(INFO) cards. The Corby offers Bluetooth headsets support, as well.

The Samsung S3650 Corby will be available in a handful of colors Europe later this month for 150 EUR (US$214).

"Teen Wolf" In Pilot's Seat at MTV

Source: Reuters

By Nellie Andreeva

LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) - MTV's reinvention of the 1985 movie "Teen Wolf" is inching closer to reality.

The cable network announced the project in January as part of its development slate. After seeing the script, MTV brass have picked it up as a pilot presentation.

The film starred Michael J. Fox as a teenager who discovers he is a werewolf. The MTV version will be set in high school, draw from the horror genre to explore werewolf mythology and include a romantic plot line.

"It has a fresh take and is very different from the original," said Liz Gateley, senior vp MTV series development. "It has more of an 'American Werewolf in Paris' feel to it. It's a dramatic thriller with two best friends in the center who provide a great comedy element: They are two very relatable characters on the outer circles of popular cliques."

The new "Wolf" was written by "Criminal Minds" creator Jeff Davis.

The '80s continue to be hot at the broadcast networks, with contemporary remakes of the feature "Parenthood" and miniseries "V" set to launch next season on NBC and ABC, respectively, and series in developments based on the films "St. Elmo's Fire" (ABC) and "Heathers" (Fox).