Coolio propels Texas newspaper ‘The Burleson Star’ across the web with viral ‘Batman’ scoop

Entertainment news agencies across globe cite taped interview and mention ‘Burleson Star’ by name

By BEN TINSLEY
btinsley@live.com

BURLESON — Who has two thumbs and can work the words “journalism,” “Coolio” and “Batman” into the same sentence?

THIS guy!

I never expected the Burleson Star’s biggest 2017 Internet splash to date to be an impromptu interview with recording artist Coolio in North Texas.

I’ve long been a fan of this MTV icon, but my views of him have been confined to the television and movie screen. I loved his ’90s hits, including ”Gangster’s Paradise,” “Fantastic Voyage,” and “1, 2, 3, 4 (Sumpin’ New)” — as well as his other ventures such as the web series “Cookin’ with Coolio.”

I was even among the faithful who wondered angrily why a performer of Coolio’s stature was wasted in a bit role in Joel Schumacher’s “Batman & Robin” movie.

Things turned surreal when I received word earlier this month that I was actually going to meet Coolio.

He was slated to perform at the Turkey Creek Bar & Grill in Alvarado on Saturday, Feb. 4.

This, I thought, was the perfect time to initiate the Burleson Star’s new ongoing film initiative — an effort to develop film versions of our most compelling print stories to reach an even wider audience.

Since I started in late December as the paper’s new editor, this was really my first chance to even use our video camera.

We had just brought our amazing intern, Arik Hughes, aboard, and Arik was eager to help me on this project by filming me interviewing Coolio and then putting the film together. Arik is a real go-getter.

Now, things didn’t go completely as planned. We had to wait several hours longer than planned for Coolio to arrive at the Turkey Creek Bar& Grill.

But arrive Coolio did! And he dropped a scoop in my lap.

For no reason other than me randomly mentioning out loud he had appeared in “Batman and Robin,” Coolio let out with a fact no one had mentioned in quite some time: He revealed he only took a bit role in the movie because director Joel Schumacher had promised him he would be cast as the villain The Scarecrow, master of fear, in his next Caped Crusader movie.

Unfortunately for Coolio, Schumacher lost control of the Batman movies and whatever he had planned for the star never came to be.

At the time, I recognized that his tidbit Coolio gave me during our taped interview would not mean much in Burleson specifically, but in the entertainment news world, it would be a HUGE news bomb to drop.

Coolio as a major villain fighting Joel Schumacher’s craptacular Batman cast is one of those “coulda, shoulda woulda” scenarios that drive comic book fans wild — and much of the entertainment media that picked up this story is made up of comic book fans.

What followed was amazing! The Burleson Star was quoted by name, and links to our taped interview — the only source of this news — were posted in all their publications. Our link was: https://www.burlesonstar.net/news/mtv-icon-coolio-performs-alvarado-print-story-and-video

Even Coolio’s publicist emailed me to marvel at the coverage frenzy.

You can see it for yourself. Go on Google and look up “Coolio” and “Scarecrow” together. You’ll see the endless stream of stories, all of which used our interview footage as the basis of their coverage.

At least one of these stories was in French and another in Spanish. The Burleson Star is even mentioned audibly in a few podcasts.

The Hollywood Reporter was one of many entertainment news agencies that picked it up.

Others include, but are not limited to: Slashfilm.com, ion.gizmodo.com, denofgeek.com, screen rant.com, cbr.com, flickeringmyth.com, inverse.com, geektyrant.com, blastr.com, comicbook.com, comicbookresources.com, screencrush.com, theplaylist.net, cosmicbooknews.com. screengeek.net, wegotthiscovered.com, theouthousers.com, heroichollywood.com, entertainment.ie, imdb.com/news, darkhorizons.com, reddit.com/r/DCcomics, avclub.com, ohnotheydidnt.livejournal.com and cinemablend.com.

Once again, the link to the Coolio interview was: https://www.burlesonstar.net/news/mtv-icon-coolio-performs-alvarado-print-story-and-video

Thank you Coolio!

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