Rambling Reporter

6:00 AM PST 10/02/2012 by Merle Ginsberg & Gary Baum

ET Tries in Vain to Make a Date With Mitt: President Obama was tweaked by everyone from Glenn Beck to The Washington Post for accepting a wet-kiss interview from Entertainment Tonight's Nancy O'Dell that was broadcast Aug. 16, particularly since he hadn't formally taken questions from the White House press corps in more than two months. However, show insiders have been frustrated to hear of liberal bias charges in favor of the incumbent and (by sin of omission) against Mitt Romney, who has yet to appear. According to sources, the show has aggressively attempted to land the GOP nominee. "It's been extremely difficult to pin him down," says a source, noting that an August date was nearly secure until Paul Ryan's VP selection threw the plan awry. "We've had Ann and the boys on. We really want to make it happen." A Romney rep tells THR the campaign has been in touch with ET during the past few months and that "we are working to schedule an interview." An ET spokesperson said that, in an effort to present fair and balanced coverage, "we would welcome an interview with him at any time."

Gwyneth and The Go-Go's

Movie star, singer, Glee guest, healthy cook, Goop impresario -- Gwyneth Paltrow is about to add "musical producer" to her multihyphenate list. She's said to be partnering with several backers, including Donovan Leitch, to produce a musical based on the life and music of The Go-Go's. Given that Jersey Boys, Mamma Mia! and American Idiot have made history -- and cash -- wit might make sense to bring the 1980s all-girl group back to life. Word is, Belinda Carlisle and bandmates -- who were on the road touring this past summer -- are involved and could be penning new songs, while major Broadway writers are being considered for the book. Carlisle wouldn't comment, but she's relocated to L.A. after years abroad.

Looper's Face-Off

Forget the time travel and tele-kinesis. The most talked-about bit in the recently released Looper might just be the morphing of Joseph Gordon-Levitt's face into Bruce Willis' mug. The two share the lead as a hit man whose final assignment is to murder himself. The make-up team of Kazu Tsuji and Jamie Kelman -- who conjured the three-breasted alien sexpot in the recent Total Recall remake -- pinned back Gordon-Levitt's distinctive ears and mimicked key Willisian features: strong brow, prominent nose and jutting lower lip. The result might not be exact, but it's certainly suggestive. When Willis first saw the result, Kelman could tell the star was pleased. "Bruce got that sly smile he gets, and a little bit from Bruce goes a long way." So why didn't Willis, who looks exactly like himself in the film, meet his co-star visually halfway? "I knew the reputation," says Tsuji. "He doesn't like to sit for makeup."

Judd Apatow: Big Daddy

It seemed a little odd that an adult male was milling about the red carpet at the Teen Vogue bash, thrown with Emporio Armani, on Sept. 27 in Beverly Hills. After all, it was all about teenagers like Victoria Justice and Sasha Spielberg in girly dresses. When a security guard stopped the man, who had no credentials, he turned out to be Judd Apatow. His 14-year-old daughter Maude, whom The New York Times just profiled (she has 78,700 Twitter followers), walked the carpet as her proud papa ran along snapping pics. The guard actually detained Apatow for a moment until an apologetic publicist rescued him. Instead of throwing a fit, the producer demured, "Tonight isn't about me, it's about my girls," referring to Maude and his wife Leslie Mann, who were each adorned in long dresses and Rodarte shoes.

Power Lunch

FX head John Landgraf and executive vps Nick Grad and Eric Schrier lunched with Chris Rock (who produces the network's Totally Biased With W. Kamau Bell) at Mr. Chow. …Showtime CEO Matt Blank took a seat at The Grill on the Alley. … STK saw Mel Gibson and Kevin Connolly in separately. … George Clooney and Ben Affleck each put in face time at Soho House. … … Robert Downey Jr. and wife Susan Downey visited Bouchon. On another day, Julia Louis-Dreyfus was in. … Alyson Hannigan, Dylan McDermott and Ricki Lake have all been in to Brentwood's Sweet Crush Ice Bar of late. … Sons of Anarchy's Robin Weigert had pad thai at Toi on Sunset. … Maria Shriver stopped in at Tavern. … LL Cool J settled into Culina one day as HBO communications chief Nancy Lesser anchored another corner of the room. ... Chris Noth checked out the West Hollywood branch of Kitchen 24. ... Mid-City's Cooks County is as hot as ever, with everyone from Todd Solondz and Toby Emmerich to Ellie Kemper and J.J. Abrams making appearances. CAA's John Campisi, Elizabeth Banks and Vanessa Williams also have been seen recently, as has Marisa Tomei, who's in all the time. ... James Gandolfini ordered The Godfather sandwich at Studio Sub in Studio City.

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