Staff Directory 10645166

Neal Justin

Columnist/Reporter | Media
Phone: 612-673-7431
Location: Minneapolis
Other languages: None

Neal Justin covers the entertainment world, primarily TV and radio. He also reviews stand-up comedy. Justin is the founder of JCamp, a non-profit program for high-school journalists, and works on many fronts to further diversity in newsrooms.


Justin is currently president of UNITY, co-chair of the Star Tribune News Guild and teaches at Minnesota State University. He is a former governing board member of the Asian American Journalists Association and Minnesota chapter president for AAJA.
Recent content from Neal Justin
Kaley Cuoco in “The Flight Attendant.”

'Big Bang' star Kaley Cuoco soars to new heights in 'The Flight Attendant'

The "Big Bang" star keeps showing off her comedy chops in her latest series.
Richardson, who came to the Twin Cities to be a Pioneer Press sportswriter, is heading to Los Angeles.

KMOJ's Ray Richardson says goodbye to the Twin Cities

His final show included his all-time favorite R&B classics.
The Warner brothers, Yakko and Wakko, and the Warner sister Dot, return in “Animaniacs.”

The return of 'Saved by the Bell' and 'Animaniacs,' and other shows our TV critic is watching this week

Tasmanian devils In the 1990s, the hyperactive characters on “Animaniacs” tore up the Warner Bros. lot, ravaging pop-culture references in their path. It’s more of…
The doctor had been disguised at The Serpent.

Mayo Clinic's singing surgeon is revealed on 'The Masked Singer'

The Mayo Clinic's singing surgeon, who became a viral sensation in 2018 with his version of Mike Yung's "Alright," is back in the spotlight.
Lizz Winstead

Lizz Winstead's new comedy special was filmed on a lake with crowd in kayaks

The "Daily Show" co-creator's topical performance will be available on-demand.
Nick Swardson tested out new material at a sold-out show at the Comedy Corner on Dec. 11, 2019, in Minneapolis. The Corner Bar, a popular gathering sp

Minneapolis sports bar and comedy club closed by fire

Popular sports pub and its Comedy Corner were inundated by smoke.
Will anyone fill the gap left by City Pages?

Will anyone fill the gap left by City Pages?

The loss of the Twin Cities' alternative weekly could provide an opportunity for other local entrepreneurs to fill the gap in local arts coverage.
James Hong in his Warner Bros. trailer: “Even if I was playing a part that simply said ‘Chinaman’ or ‘Villain,’ I would put my heart and sou

At 91, will Minnesota native 'working actor' finally get star on Hollywood Walk of Fame?

James Hong, Minnesota's most prolific actor of all time, looks back on his storied career.
Take a closer look at the 40th president in the four-part documentary “The Reagans.”

A scathing documentary on the Reagans and four other shows our TV critic is watching this week

Far from Camelot Romantic notions about Ronald Reagan’s presidency are shattered in the four-part documentary “The Reagans,” which spends more time on the first lady’s…
“The Crown” adds Emma Corrin as Princess Diana, top, and Gillian Anderson as Margaret Thatcher to the ensemble.

Review: Season 4 of 'The Crown' is a royal pain

The fourth season of 'The Crown" welcomes Princess Diana and Margaret Thatcher to the self-pity party.
“Moonbase8”

Space comedy 'Moonbase 8' and four other shows our TV critic is watching this week

The wrong stuff In “Moonbase 8,” John C. Reilly, Tim Heidecker and Fred Armisen play misfit astronauts assigned to a never-ending training exercise in the…
“Last Week Tonight With John Oliver”

Liberal-leaning late-night comedians rally for Joe Biden

Stephen Colbert and company did little to hide their liberal leanings.
Hunter Quinn, left, and Steve LaTart, right.

Two Twin Cities radio personalities have lost their jobs

An executive producer for "The Dave Ryan Show" and a Cities 97.1 morning host both announced their departures on Monday.
WCCO’s senior political reporter Pat Kessler in front of the State Capitol, his longtime stamping grounds.

WCCO's Kessler looks back at most memorable moments, politicians

While the 67-year-old news hound insists he'll still contribute special reports to WCCO and appear on KFAN, he officially slips into retirement after this election cycle.
Anya Taylor-Joy stars as orphaned chess prodigy Beth Harmon in “The Queen’s Gambit” on Netflix.

'The Queen's Gambit' and more chess films worth checking out

"Queen's Gambit" is just one of many projects that celebrate the royal game.
Hugh Laurie stars as a scheming U.K. government minister in “Roadkill” on TPT.

Hugh Laurie's latest series, and four other shows our TV critic is watching this week

But seriously, folks Viewers accustomed to watching Hugh Laurie play acerbic characters like he did in “House” and “Veep” may be disappointed in his latest…
Meteorologist Dave Dahl has been with KSTP for 43 years.

KSTP weatherman Dave Dahl announces he's retiring

The meteorologist has been with the station for 43 years.
Jordana Green

WCCO Radio host Jordana Green reveals she has leukemia

The radio personality is receiving treatment at the Mayo Clinic.
CBS White House Correspondent Ben Tracy says “the seats are nothing fancy” on Air Force One — but “the food is fantastic.”

Ex-WCCO reporter shares his often 'crazy' life as White House correspondent

What's life like for a St. Paul native covering President Donald Trump during unprecedented times?
Madison Iseman and Fin Argus in "Clouds." Argus used Zach Sobiech's actual crutches in the film.

How Hollywood turned a young Minnesotan's life into a Disney movie with 'Clouds'

The movie version of Zach Sobiech's life borrows true details as well as items from his bedroom.
Hugh Grant and Nicole Kidman dabble in murder and betrayal in “The Undoing.”

In HBO's 'The Undoing,' Nicole Kidman and Hugh Grant get away with murder

Why are Nicole Kidman and Hugh Grant so compelling? Here are a few clues.
“Chelsea Handler: Evolution”

A weird Steve Bannon documentary and four other shows our TV critic is watching this week

Growing up “Chelsea Handler: Evolution,” the comedian’s first stand-up special in six years, seems familiar in the first 20 minutes with lots of jokes about private…
Minnesota Public Radio's headquarters in downtown St. Paul.

Another MPR executive announces his departure

Another high-ranking executive at Minnesota Public Radio has announced he’s leaving the company. Tim Roesler, senior vice president and chief business development officer for MPR…
Lizzo and David Letterman collaborate on his Netflix show, “My Next Guest Needs No Introduction.”

Lizzo and Letterman swap Minnesota memories on Netflix show

New episodes of David Letterman's Netflix series include a conversation with the onetime Minnesotan.
Sydney Lemmon, Tom Austen in “Helstrom.”

'Helstrom' and four other shows our TV critic is watching this week

Running with the devil “Helstrom” may be part of the Marvel canon, but the series owes more to “The Exorcism” than to Stan Lee. Tom…
John Prine recorded "When I Get to Heaven" with his grandson and Brandi Carlile, among others, on kazoo. Associated Press

10 moving songs artists recorded while facing death

  Zach Sobiech wasn’t the first or last artist to deal with imminent death in song. Here are other powerful examples of musicians sharing their…
Chuck Zwilling, the subject of the station's award-winning piece, is at left. With him are Janne Kapylehto, middle, from Finland, the CEO of the World

KARE, MPR win national Edward R. Murrow Awards

KARE and MPR were both recognized Saturday with a national Edward R. Murrow Award, one of broadcasting’s most prestigious prizes. The NBC affiliate won in…
Martin Sheen as President Bartlet in "The West Wing."

8 episodes of 'The West Wing' to binge watch before the cast reunion

A cast reunion of the classic political series should trigger a binge watch you need now.
Lily Collins stars in “Emily in Paris.”

'The Good Lord Bird' and four other shows our TV critic is watching this week

Moulin rude Darren Star, who created “Melrose Place” and “Sex and the City,” offers his own twist on the American in Paris tale in “Emily…
Momo Hayakawa, the lead director on TPT's new "Mashopolis" animated project, is shown in 2019 testing responses to TPT's "Hero Elementary" program.

With $4.6M grant, TPT begins work on new animated series, 'Mashopolis'

The locally produced series hopes viewers will root for kids as they construct their own city.
Actress Tina Fey plays Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, on "Saturday Night Live" in New York.

10 best political impressions in 'Saturday Night Live' history

From Bob Dole to Kamala Harris, these are some of the most iconic political impressions.
Rising Irish actor Jessie Buckley plays villainous nurse Oraetta Mayflower in the fourth season of “Fargo,” which returns Sunday on FX.

Actor Jessie Buckley makes a stop in 'Fargo' on her way to the top

Irish actor Jessie Buckley's rise to the top makes a devilish detour to Minnesota.
Billy Bob Thornton

All four seasons of 'Fargo' in a nutshell

Before Sunday’s premiere, you can take a road trip through the past three seasons, all of which can be found on Hulu. First-timers are in…
Mr. Burns goes undercover on “The Simpsons.”

'The Comey Rule' and four other shows our TV critic recommends this week

Kings of the hill Let’s all agree that “The Simpsons” and “Family Guy” ain’t what they used to be. Let’s also clasp hands and pray…
Jon McTaggart is president and CEO of American Public Media.

CEO of MPR's parent group tells the staff that he will step down

Jon McTaggart, president and CEO of American Public Media, informed employees in a memo.
ANDRIJ PAREKH

Blake School grad Andrij Parekh celebrates his big Emmy win for 'Succession'

Former Minnesotan was named best director of a dramatic series.
Dudley Riggs, founder of Brave New Workshop, helped Mayor R.T. Rybak put on a bow tie to match Dudley's signature bow tie in November 2011. The Theate

An oral history of Dudley Riggs' Brave New Workshop

How Minneapolis' first espresso coffeehouse launched a nationally known comedy institution.
Daniel Levy and his dad, Eugene Levy, celebrated their seven wins for “Schitt’s Creek” from a tent party at Eugene’s home.

'Schitt's Creek' completely sweeps an unprecedented Emmy Awards

Jimmy Kimmel might have made his life a lot easier if he had just hosted “The 72nd Emmy Awards” from Eugene Levy’s house. The SCTV…
Jimmy Kimmel

Jimmy Kimmel and producers get ready for the home edition of the Emmy Awards

Jimmy Kimmel and his team don't know exactly what to expect. That's part of the draw.
Adult actors Maya Erskine and Anna Konkle star as 13-year-old students in “PEN15.”

'PEN15' stars revisit the trauma of being a teenager

Hulu's "PEN15" looks at how it's not always easy to enjoy being a girl.
Gina Carano, Pedro Pascal and Carl Weathers star in Season 2 of “The Mandalorian.”

'The Crown,' Baby Yoda and plenty of stars return for the fall TV season

Neal Justin Star Tribune You try telling “The Mandalorian” that he can’t go back to work. The Disney+ hero’s bromance with Baby…
Larry Wilmore, the veteran comedian, producer and host, in Pasadena, Calif., Sept. 2, 2020.

Larry Wilmore, Amber Ruffin hope to break the color barrier with new talk shows

Two of comedy's strongest Black voices get ready to diversify the talk-show genre.
Ed Asner, surrounded by Spring Grove locals dressed as "Up" characters, relishes his role Sunday as special guest in the town's parade.

Ed Asner shows spunk during three nights in small-town Minnesota

The 90-year-old Emmy winner served as honorary guest for the inaugural edition of the Spring Grove International Film Festival.
Paris Hilton forged a trail for future reality stars.

Claiming her dumb-blonde persona was just an act, Hilton tries to show 'the real Paris'

A new documentary tries to convince viewers that the hotel heiress is no dumb blonde.
John Remes

KARE 11's longtime boss will step down at year end

John Remes has led the Twin Cities station for 24 years.
Lisa Evanson, winner of Acme's Funniest Person in the Twin Cities competition.

Funniest Person in the Twin Cities finally crowns female winner — and she's a Target manager

Lisa Evanson won the competition that Acme Comedy Co. has run annually since 1992.
Marc Warren as Van der Valk.

New season of 'Dancing With the Stars' and four more shows to watch this week

Crimes and poor demeanors Detective work has rarely seemed as glum as it does in “Van der Valk,” the latest TV adaptation of Nicolas Freeling’s…
Zach Sobiech recorded "Clouds" and became a YouTube sensation in the year before his death to cancer in 2013.

Disney announces premiere for 'Clouds' movie inspired by Minnesota's Zach Sobiech

Directed by Justin Baldoni, "Clouds" will premiere Oct. 16 on the streaming service Disney+.
A still from the film “The Epicenter.”

Virtual Cannes fest will showcase Minnesota film about George Floyd's death

A Minneapolis-based team of Black women produced the short film., titled "The Epicenter."
“Earth to Ned”

A new Ozzy Osbourne doc and four other things our TV critic is watching this week

Alien invasion The extraterrestrials in “Earth to Ned” are committed to owning the talk-show genre, at least until Space Ghost returns to our galaxy. The…
Hilary Swank stars as the commander of a three-year mission to Mars in “Away.”

Hilary Swank's new space series has all the right stuff

Feel free to get emotional watching Netflix's new sci-fi series; in space, no one can hear you cry.
Liu Yifei is “Mulan.”

Review: Hesitant to pay more than $30 to watch 'Mulan'? Get over it

The live-action adaptation of "Mulan" defies gravity — and expectations.
In this video grab issued Sunday, Aug. 30, 2020, by MTV, Lady Gaga performs during the MTV Video Music Awards.

VMA viewers get punk'd in a ceremony that was anything but live

Lady Gaga dominated the annual event that took more than a few liberties during its pandemic broadcast.
Bill Hudson’s role at the CBS affiliate went beyond filing stories locally and from the road. Colleagues praised his role as a mentor, helping to se

Bill Hudson, WCCO's 'newsroom dad,' announces his retirement

The world-traveling TV reporter will sign off Friday.
The highly anticipated "Love in the Time of Corona," with Leslie Odom Jr., is a funny and hopeful look at the search for love, sex and connection duri

TV shows and stars are learning to adapt in an awkward pandemic age

Stars from Bette Midler to Samantha Bee learn new tricks to adapt in upside-down times.
Paula Pell and John Lutz in Quibi’s “Mapleworth Murders.”

Former 'SNL' head writer Paula Pell is ready for prime time

The acclaimed comedy writer is finally getting her chance to shine on the screen.
Hundreds of Minnesota "American Idol" fans cheered as host Ryan Seacrest arrived for for auditions at Mariucci Arena in Minneapolis in June 2014. (Pho

Minnesotans can audition Friday for 'American Idol' – via Zoom

Participants for the 19th season will be selected via Zoom.
Selena Gomez in her debut episode of "Selena+Chef". Her first guest? Chef Ludo Lefevbre

Selena Gomez's latest TV series is the perfect comfort food

The pop star successfully tackles a whole new genre in her latest series.
A scene from “Immigration Nation.”

Minnesota filmmaker addresses response to her Netflix documentary, 'Immigration Nation'

Christina Clusiau co-directed the buzzed-about documentary series.
Ben Hopkins (Jake Johnson) coaches a cast of characters in the new Netflix series “Hoops.”

Netflix's 'Hoops' and four other shows our TV critic is watching this week

Flagrant foul Ben Hopkins makes Bobby Knight seem like a pussycat in “Hoops,” an animated comedy about a high school basketball coach who won’t hesitate…
St. Cloud native Sonny Side (Will Sonbuchner) has millions of YouTube subscribers with his “Best Ever Food Review Show.”

How St. Cloud native Sonny Side went from Applebee's server to YouTube's international food star

His "Best Ever Food Review Show" is a streaming sensation with more than 5.4 million subscribers.
KARE-11 anchor and reporter Adrienne Broaddus is leaving the Twin Cities to become a CNN correspondent based in Chicago.

KARE's Adrienne Broaddus heading to CNN

The anchor/reporter had been with the station for six years.
Jonathan Majors and Jurnee Smollett in “Lovecraft Country.”

HBO's 'Lovecraft Country' takes horror to a new level

What a new HBO series has to say about racial discrimination will chill you to the bone.
Maddie Phillips and Anjelica Bette Fellini in “Teenage Bounty Hunters.”

'Teenage Bounty Hunters' and other shows our TV critic is checking out this week

Sister act The fraternal twins in “Teenage Bounty Hunters” might be more successful chasing bail jumpers if they weren’t so busy squaring their deeply religious…
Sven Sundgaard

Former KARE meteorologist Sven Sundgaard gets new weather gig

The one-time KARE meteorologist hasn't stopped reporting the weather.
NBC's "This Is Us" is one of the popular broadcast network shows that would become available through the Locast app.Photo by Maarten De Boer, NBC Univ

Free network TV streaming service Locast comes to the Twin Cities

Locast, an app that provides viewers free access to network TV, will be available Tuesday in the Twin Cities.The nonprofit service, which launched in 2018,…
“Perry Mason” director Tim Van Patten, right, on location with Shea Whigham.

Why 'Perry Mason' director Tim Van Patten may be the most important visionary in entertainment

Tim Van Patten has helped shape some of the most iconic series in recent history.
“Yusuf Hawkins: Storm Over Brooklyn” looks back at the killing of a New York City teen.

Guillermo del Toro's animated adventure and four other shows our TV critic is watching this week

Legendary Guillermo del Toro’s “Tales of Arcadia” trilogy won’t make you forget “Pan’s Labyrinth” or “Hellboy,” but it’s still a terrific animated adventure in which…
HBO Max’s “16 Days of Glory” revisits the 1984 Olympic Games in Los Angeles, including Mary Lou Retton’s gold-medal performance.

9 great documentaries to feed your Olympic fever

These documentary films are the next best thing to watching the postponed Games.
The “Medora Musical,” shown in 2017, is the marquee event at the Burning Hills Amphitheatre in Medora, N.D. This year, capacity is limited to arou

Despite the pandemic, the show goes on in Medora, N.D.

A North Dakota road trip leads to relatively healthy Medora, where the summer performance season is still going strong.
Ali Lucia

WCCO news anchor Ali Lucia is leaving the station

WCCO’s Ali Lucia is signing off from the Twin Cities. The journalist announced on social media that Friday will be her last day at the…
“Immigration Nation” takes an in-depth look at all sides of immigration enforcement.

'Muppets Now,' 'The Swamp,' 'Immigration Nation' and other shows our TV critic is watching

Missed connection The last time Kermit and company lifted the curtain it was for “The Muppets,” ABC’s short-lived mockumentary series that took a lot of…
Andrew Zimmern. (Courtney Perry photo for the Washington Post)

Andrew Zimmern wins Emmy for his Travel Channel series

"The Zimmern List" was named TV's best travel and adventure program.
Regina King in HBO's "Watchmen."

The biggest snubs and surprises from this year's Emmy nominations

“Watchmen,” a bold departure from the comic book that inspired it, flexed its super-strength Tuesday with a field-leading 26 Emmy nominations, proof that HBO still…
Cybill Shepherd and Bruce Willis went back to the 1940s, thanks to a dream sequence, to solve a murder in a 1985 episode of “Moonlighting.”

The 10 greatest TV shows we wish we could binge – but can't

These influential TV series are not available on any streaming services. Hollywood should fix that.