This episode of Texas Entertainment News, broadcast in July of 1996, focuses on the summer movie season, and features updates on native Texas actors Woody Harrelson, Randy Quaid, Brent Spiner, Forest Whitaker, Bill Paxton, Kris Kristofferson, and Matthew McConaughey. The Texas Celebrity Profile showcases Willie Nelson and his Texas town of Luck - the location for Red Headed Stranger and Lonesome Dove. Other feature segments include a spotlight on Houston's folk art, and a history of Stubb's Barbecue told by musician Joe Ely and highlighted by footage of Stubb's founder, Christopher B. Stubblefield.
Texas Entertainment News was created by media producer Fred Miller in 1996. Hosted by Tom McConnell and Leisa Hart (of Total Fitness "Buns of Steel" fame), its goal was to provide a weekly look into entertainment production and events throughout Texas. Airing on Sunday nights at 10:30pm, it was anchored at WFFA in Dallas and carried by 15 affiliates statewide. In addition to the television broadcast, TEN had an online component- a fairly unique experience in 1996. A total of 33 episodes were made before the show was canceled at the end of its first season.
The original URL, www.txent.com, no longer links to the Texas Entertainment News, but it still can be seen at the Internet Archive's Wayback Machine.
Willie Nelson was born in Abbot, Texas on April 29, 1933. He is a world renowned country music singer and musician, as well as an actor, activist, and author. His most famous country albums include Shotgun Willie (1973), Red Headed Stranger (1975) and Stardust (1978). Nelson popularized the "outlaw country" subgenre along with Merle Haggard and Waylon Jennings, and has written some of the most famous country music songs recorded, including Patsy Cline's "Crazy," which he wrote at the ripe age of 19, "On the Road Again," and "Pancho and Lefty." His primary musical collaboration is with Johnny Cash, Kris Kristofferson, and Waylon Jennings, performing as the Highwaymen, among many others. Nelson was named the honorary chairman of the advisory board of the official music charity of the state of Texas, the Texas Music Project, for his philanthropic work in and outside the music community. He was also inducted to the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1993 and received a 1998 Kennedy Center Honor.
Nelson has also advocated for marijuana legalization, biodiesel alternative fuel, and is a supporter of democratic campaigns, such as Dennis Kuchinich's 2004 run. He also founded the annual fundraiser Farm Aid, which benefits the local, American, small farmer, and has featured multitudes of musicians of different genres.
Born in Uvalde, Texas on November 4, 1969, actor Matthew McConaughey has appeared in some of Hollywood's most popular films. McConaughey grew up in Longview as the youngest son of a teacher and the owner of an oil pipe supply business. McConaughey originally studied to be a lawyer at the University of Texas. The actor cites reading Og Mandino's motivational book, The Greatest Salesman in the World, as his inspiration to change his major and career path from law to film.
Prior to his 1993 breakout role as Wooderson in Richard Linklater's cult classic Dazed and Confused, McConaughey acted in commercials and student films. Throughout his career, he has performed in, produced, and directed over fifty feature films. His select filmography includes John Sayles's Lone Star, Contact, How to Lose a Guy In 10 Days, Magic Mike, Killer Joe, Wolf of Wall Street, and Richard Linklater's Bernie, in which he played small town Texas attorney Danny Buck and his mother had a cameo. He also achieved great popular and critical success for his role as Detective Rust Cohle on HBO's True Detective in 2014. McConaughey won both the Golden Globe and Academy Award for Best Actor In a Leading Role for his portrayal of a cowboy diagnosed with AIDS in Dallas Buyer's Club in 2013. In addition to his film career, McConaughey established the j.k. livin Foundation in 2008. The Foundation is dedicated to teaching high school students the importance of active living and healthy decisions.