The Oprah Winfrey Show: April 2008 Archives

Blaine's video blog from the "Oprah" show

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The stunt:

Note: There is no audio with this clip

He spent 44 days suspended from a glass box by the River Thames in London. He was buried alive for a week in a see-through coffin in New York City. Now, he's held his breath longer than anyone underwater.

Magician David Blaine's latest feat of endurance was to break the current world record of holding one's breath underwater live in front of Oprah's studio audience.

Blaine held his breath underwater for 17 minutes and 4 seconds -- beating the current world record of 16 minutes and 32 seconds, a record set Feb. 10 by Switzerland's Peter Colat, according to Guinness World Records.

Toward the end, Blaine thought he wouldn't have been able to make it -- but he held strong, garnering his first record to be in the Guinness Book of World Records.

"I feel slightly emotional. I feel good about it, I feel happy," Blaine said. "It's a life-long dream, and I can't believe I did that."

Blaine says he was uncertain whether he would make it or not, fighting hard to stay underwater.

Blaine says his goal was to stay underwater for 23 minutes -- for his mother's birthday.

Oprah pressed Blaine on what his next challenge would be: Trying to stay awake longer than anyone ever has -- for 11 days straight.

Blaine just broke the world record for holding his breath underwater at 17 minutes and 4 seconds.

Is he in a lot of pain?

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Officials say Blaine's diaphragm is in is in a lot of pain right now.

"And so is mine," Oprah says.

Blaine's one minute away from breaking the world record.

Medical officials say they expected Blaine's heartbeat to be lower than it is now -- meaning it will be hard for him to stay underwater.

"Is it painful holding your breath?" Oprah asked Blaine before the stunt.

Blaine says he fights the hardest during the last six minutes, and one wrong move and cause the stunt to fail.

How does he do it?

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Blaine's been holding his breath under water for eight minutes: As soon as his body senses his oxygen has been cut off, the body goes into "survival mode" -- sending oxygen to vital organs including the heart and brain, Oprah said.

As long as blood continues to circulate throughout his body, Blaine can survive.

Blaine begins holding breath under water

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Blaine just started "lung packing" -- swallowing air to increase his lung size and hold more air.

Officials say the stunt is dangerous -- and can cause damage to the heart and lungs.

Surely Dr. Oz say wouldn't think this is a good idea.

Oprah: Do you have some kind of death wish?

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"No," Blaine told Oprah in an interview before today's stunt. He calls it more of a life wish.

According to experts, the lower David's heartbeat, the easier it'll be for him to hold his breath under water.

The high price of a death-defying stunt

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Five minutes to go: Blaine's 20,000 tank -- which cost $200,000 to make -- was trekked all the way from New York and is made of acrylic to prevent it from breaking.

Oprah's stage had to be reinforced to hold the sphere.

Less than ten minutes before stunt begins: The average human heart beats an average of about 60-80 beats per minute. Blaine's going to stay underwater until it becomes dangerous -- or until his heart lowers to 10 beats a second.

We're nervous for Blaine are you?

To break the record

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Four months ago, Blaine started training for the stunt -- eating just enough to keep his energy up but not enough to gain weight. He runs five days a week and has lost 40 pounds.

According to Oprah, Blaine trained in the Cayman Islands with skilled divers to attempt to hold his breath under his water.

So far, he's been able to stay under water for about 14 minutes leading up to today's stunt.

Don't try this at home

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15-minute countdown: >One would wonder why someone would want to hold their breath under water for that long. I think I tried it as a kid once, and lasted 30 seconds. More power to you, David.

Blaine's suspended in a 20,000 pound sphere filled with water in Oprah's studio -- "testing the limits of the human body" as Oprah says.

Minutes to Blaine's death-defying stunt

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23-minute countdown: In about 19 minutes -- Blaine will risk his life by holding his breath under water. Beforehand, Blaine has to breath pure oxygen for 23 minutes before attempting the death defying stunt.

Steadman makes rare appearance on 'Oprah show"

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For the first time since Oprah's 50th birthday bash, the talk show host's long-time partner is in the audience today to witness spectacle David Blaine try and break a world record for holding his breath underwater.

The current record stands a little over 16 minutes -- and Blaine will try and break that record in front of a live studio audience in Chicago.

He spent 44 days suspended from a glass box by the River Thames in London. He was buried alive for a week in a see-through coffin in New York City.

Magician David Blaine's latest feat of endurance likely will last less than 17 minutes, but he's planning to do it in front of talk show queen Oprah Winfrey -- and her audience of millions.

Blaine will try to break the world record for breath-holding during this morning's live broadcast of ''The Oprah Winfrey Show,'' less than two years after going into convulsions during a similar attempt.

The time he has to beat is 16 minutes and 32 seconds, a record set Feb. 10 by Switzerland's Peter Colat, according to Guinness World Records. AP

Oprah and Tom Cruise: Together again

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After years of gossip speculation about their on again/off again friendship, Tommy and Oprah are back together again.

Oprah taped a one-on-one with Cruise at his home in Telluride, Colo., on Friday for a show schedule to air in the next week. Cruise is slated to join Winfrey in her studio as well to mark the 25-year anniversary of his breakout performance in "Risky Business."

Couch jumping here he comes.


It's truly an Oprah world, and we're lucky to be living in it, the NYPost said today about the longtime daytime talk show host.

The newspaper came out with its list of the 35 best television shows of all time, ranking "The Oprah Winfrey Show" number three.

"No one has mastered the genre like Oprah Winfrey, who has turned TV into her temple," the Post said. " Winfrey is a goddess to American women, a humanitarian who never runs out of ways to make the world a better place and the most influential media personality in America."

The newspaper cited Winfrey's success of commanding a talk show, book club, magazine, satellite radio and highly anticipated launch of the Oprah Winfrey Network with Discovery as playing a role into her huge fan following.

Popular HBO hit "The Sopranos" topped the list, with CBS's "All in the Family" coming in second.

First: "The Sopranos"
Second: "All in the Family"
Third: "The Oprah Winfrey Show"
Fourth: "American Idol"
Fifth: "The West Wing"
Sixth: "Mary Tyler Moore"
Seventh: "Dallas"
Eighth: "24"
Ninth: "Twin Peaks"
Tenth: "Sesame Street"

Proud Mary's back: Turner set to tour again

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If you've still got it at 68, you might as well still flaunt it. Tina Turner revealed this week during a taping of the Oprah show she's going back on tour again.

Turner -- one of the most popular selling singers of all time -- said pal Sophia Loren convinced her to go back on tour, asking when she's going to get "back to work."

Proud Tina -- who hasn't toured for eight years -- is kicking off her yet-to-be-named tour Oct. 1 in Kansas City. Sources claim Turner has sold more concert tickets than any other solo performer ever -- her last tour being attended by over four million proud listeners.

Turner's taping with Oprah and special guest Cher is slated to air May 8.

You go Tina!

Tom Cruise headed back to Oprah

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The last time we saw Tom Cruise on Oprah, he was jumping up and down on her couch like a kid on a sugar high. (Come on Tom, didn't someone teach you proper manners?).

Let's hope after three years, Tommy's a little more behaved.

The actor -- married to Katie Holmes and the proud papa of picture-perfect Suri Cruise -- is making a return to Oprah's daytime show, MSNBC reports.

The timing comes as Cruise celebrates the 25th anniversary of his role in "Risky Business." Warner Home Video has confirmed special plans for the anniversary, and other celebs have been recruited to join Cruise during his hour on Oprah.


Four years after their last appearance on Oprah's highly-rated daytime talk show, the gals of "Sex and the City" -- including Kim Cattrall, Cynthia Nixon and Kristin Davis -- are slated to appear on the show again next month to promote their new movie.

The girls reunite in the movie -- out May 30 -- for the first time on screen since the popular HBO television series went off air in 2004. Despite public filming across New York City, the plot of the movie has been heavily kept secret, with several scenes allegedly filmed to throw fans off.

Chicago favorite Jennifer Hudson takes on a new role in the movie, playing the glamorous Carrie Bradshaw's personal assistant.

Talks are already underway for a sequel to the highly-anticipated movie.

On Tuesday, Perez Hilton reported that pop diva Fergie has recorded the title song to the new movie: listen here.


Oprah's turning up the heat in Vegas when she takes her show on the road and takes stage with mega-hits Tina Turner and Cher.

Oprah will film a show next week with the duo scheduled to air May 8, according to The Insider.

The show will be taped at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace -- where Cher is slated to perform a slew of some 300 upcoming shows.

The last time Oprah shared a stage with Turner, she donned a Tina-like wig for the act.


She's back, thinner and hotter than ever.

A day before her second comeback album hit store shelves (read Sun-Times pop music critic Jim DeRogatis' review here) and the Internet, Mariah Carey shared girl talk with Oprah during Monday's show. Click here for pics and more video >>

Strutting onto the stage with sexy, slimmer look, the pop diva shared her secrets on how to get in shape: a diet consisting of a lot of artichoke and quality time in the gym.

Mimi told the audience she spends up to an hour and a half each day working out and what she misses most by living healthier: eating macaroni and cheese.

Touch My Body, the new single off her album E=MC², recently hit the top spot on the Billboard charts, edging her past Elvis with the most number one hits by a solo artist.

Mariah also let cameras go where they've never been before: inside her lingerie closet:

Critics have given her new CD mixed reviews, but Mimi's back, and spicier than ever. Watch for her to appear on Wednesday's American Idol to pimp out her new tunes.

Oprah hugs long-time pal John Travolta during Sunday's episode of the "Big Give" on ABC.

Viewers are gonna be able to get a little more up close and personal with talk show queen Oprah Winfrey.

Harpo president Tim bennett -- citing recent partnerships with Internet calling phenom Skype -- announced Monday that Oprah's top-rated daytime show will go hi-definition come fall.

“We’re pleased to offer viewers their favorite daytime talk show -- the Oprah show -- in stunning HD beginning this fall,” Harpo president Tim Bennett said in a statement to Broadcasting & Cable. “From our cutting-edge production values to our recent partnership with Skype, Harpo is embracing new technologies to always deliver the highest-quality content for our viewers.”

Oprah's previous specials -- Building a Dream: The Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy and The Oprah Winfrey Oscar Special -- were produced in HD.

According to Sun-Times columnist Bill Zwecker, Oprah's show on puppy mills has gotten a huge response. One viewer apparently donated the cost of 100 surgeries to PETA's spay/neuter program after seeing the show.

Oprah dedicated the show to her dog Sophie, who died last month. >

Photo linked from

Thomas Beatie is just as excited as any future dad would be. Except this isn't your everyday miracle-making story: He's the one giving birth.

On "The Oprah Winfrey Show" Thursday, the 34-year-old transgender male from Oregon talked about being the world's first "pregnant man."

Wife Nancy -- who has two daughters from a previous marriage -- was unable to have any more children after suffering complications from a medical condition.

The couple say they've gotten mixed reaction from family members and neighbors.

Beatie was born and lived the life of a female for 24 years. It wasn't until after college that he embarked on his "true identity." Beatie took testosterone and had his breasts removed but kept his reproductive organs -- hoping one day to conceive a child.

He was artificially inseminated in 2007 but lost the baby. Beatie has carried this baby 24 weeks.

"Love makes a family" Beatie said. "And that's all that matters."

Mark Bieganski

Thomas and Nancy just shared their story about how Thomas, born a female but not legally a man, is having a baby.

What do you think? Is it OK for a man to have a baby? Are people who don't accept their choice wrong in their thinking? Tell us what you think and share your thoughts.

We just want to have the baby now: Nancy

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"If we have to, we'll hide," Nancy says when asked about how they'll handle the public eye focusing on them since the announcement that Thomas is pregnant.

"I can't imagine 50 years from now -- however people to choose to live -- with harmony," Oprah says. "I don't think people will be judging it ... and I applaud you."

Thomas and Nancy's life in photos

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You know how neighbors can be: Oprah talks with the pregnant man about what his neighbors thought of his pregnancy.

Oprah's cameras have gone inside Thomas and Nancy's nursery -- decorated with yellow walls and full of clothes, toys and baby furniture.

"Our roles are going to stay consistent," Nancy says. "He's going to be the father, and I'm going to be the mother."

Thomas and Nancy's neighbors
What was your first reaction: "It wasn't one of shock, it was surprise," his neighbor, Victoria, describes.

Thomas and Nancy told their two neighbors about his pregnancy, who says their were more surprised than anything.

"I thought they had a secret," his neighbor George describes. "We have a pretty close-knit community and neighbors seem to be understanding of the situation."

In describing to Oprah how they got pregnant, Nancy tells the audience how she inseminated Thomas at home herself.

"I went to the vet and I asked for a syringe and the gave us one," she says. "[Then] I got our container of sperm ... "

Nancy's daughters and how they responded to Thomas becoming a man
I think it was more of a relief to see that she got to be who she wanted to be, one of Nancy's daughters tells the audience.

"I'm a little scared for them," her daughter says about the world accepting Thomas' pregnancy, saying she looks to Thomas and Nancy as role models.

"In reality, our patients choose us," his doctor says, describing Thomas and his wife as a devoted couple.

His doctor decribed to Oprah how others never told her not to take on the case, but that people's normal perceptions would be challenged by the case.

Worried about her reputation?
Thomas' doctor tells Oprah she was never worried about her reputation, as Oprah ponders what kind of risks are associated with Thomas' pregnancy.

"This is a normal pregnancy," his doctor says. "I consider this an average pregnancy."

Thomas describes finding a doctor to treat his pregnancy very hard.

"Is there something really wrong with us?" Nancy says.

Nine doctors later -- Dr. Kimberly James took on Thomas and Nancy's pregnancy. At 24 weeks into the pregnancy, Oprah's cameras capture what'd normally be a routine ultrasound, except this time it's with a man.

"I can't believe that she's inside me," Thomas said. "It's so surreal."

Click here to watch Thomas and Nancy's visit to the doctor's office

"Getting dressed is becoming more and more challenging," Thomas says.

Thomas and Nancy's first pregnancy -- with him being pregnant -- resulted in an atopic pregnancy in which doctors say he may have been pregnant with multiple babies.

Thomas and his father
"My father, I think, wanted a son," he says of his father, but calls his son by his female name.

"He can't see me in that way," he says.

Becoming a man

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Thomas describes how he transformed into a man -- wearing men's clothes initially then making the decision to have his breasts altered.

"Since we're in the genital area, let's just get it over with and keep going," Oprah asks. "Let's get to the penis part."

Thomas reveals he opted not to do anything to his reproductive organs because he wanted to have a child one day.

"That's so interesting," Oprah says, expressing how Thomas had the feelings of being a man, yet wanting to give birth to a child.

After taking testosterone, Thomas describes how his clitoris got larger and began to form a small penis.

Oprah's one-on-one with the pregnant man

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"Thomas is a pregnant man, and he is here."

In her exclusive interview with the "pregnant man", Thomas tells Oprah and America about his story as a 12-year-old girl whose mother died, leaving him with a female void in his life.

He describes his father as a traditional man, who wasn't around much as a child.

Thomas lived his early years as a woman -- being names Miss Teen Hawaii and having several boyfriends and secret admirers.

"I felt like that's what I had to do in society," he says. "When I was a teenager, I had an attraction to women. I wanted to be around them more."

Thomas describes his initial feelings toward women as non-sexual, which changed as the years went by.

"I went to college, and that's when I found myself," Thomas says as he describes his first relationship with a women in college.

Oprah's exclusive with the pregnant man

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His story has been a water cooler topic for weeks. Now, the world's "pregnant man" goes one-on-one with Oprah on being a pregnant male.

Their first television interview starts now.


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About this Archive

This page is a archive of entries in the The Oprah Winfrey Show category from April 2008.

The Oprah Winfrey Show: May 2008 is the next archive.

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