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Finally some news that indicates NBC's long national comedy nightmare may be nearing an end: Ellie Kemper just got her own show, to be produced by Tina Fey and Robert Carlock.
No word on launch date or even what the show will be about, other than there will be 13 episodes devoted to it. But the fact that these three are involved is only for the good and betterment of NBC's lineup, which continues to gasp on the comedy front.
Carlock's one of the geniuses behind "30 Rock" -- I'd go so far as to say "30 Rock" would never have existed without him. And we know all about that other talent. You know, the one named Tina...
But Kemper now becomes the first star that I'm aware of to emerge from "The Office" to land a series deal -- I don't even think Rainn Wilson has this kind of commitment yet (and no, the "Annoying Orange" doesn't really count, does it?). Nor even Jenna Fischer or John Krasinski -- though he is in Cameron Crowe's new movie, so nothing wrong with that.
Kemper was great on "The Office." The wonderful, funny, ditzy, sweet, romantic, effervescent, lovable, gullible Kelly Erin Hannon.
Here's a quick clip from "Bridesmaids"... It's racy, but amusing: (And Newsday app readers please go to newsday.com/tvzone if you want to see what my definition of "racy" is...)
Fulfilling a joke -- seriously -- that they told as hosts during last January's 70th Golden Globes ceremony, Amy Poehler and Tina Fey will reprise hosting duties for the 71st and 72nd awards telecasts in 2014 and 2015, NBC and the Hollywood Foreign Press Association said Tuesday.
That joke? "We have no intention of being edgy or offensive tonight," Poehler promised at the outset of last January's telecast, "because as Ricky [Gervais] learned the hard way, when you run afoul of the Hollywood Foreign Press, they make you host this show two more times."
Prophesy fulfilled -- and not even a bit surprising either. Not only were Fey and Poehler critical and audience hits, but they scrubbed away a certain acerbic attitude Gervais brought to the role the prior two years. In plain English, they were nicer and funnier.
Meanwhile, viewership also popped dramatically for the telecast, virtually ensuring a repeat performance. In fact, perhaps the only surprise Tuesday was that NBC and the HFPA didn't book them for life.
"Tina and Amy are two of the most talented comedic writer/performers in our business and they were a major reason the Golden Globes was the most entertaining awards show of last season," said Paul Telegdy, NBC chief of alternative and late night, in only a modestly over-hyped statement: After all, did he not see the VMAs?
Nevertheless, these two hosted a show seen by 19.7 million viewers, the highest figure in six years. Were they the only reason for the surge? Maybe not -- but they sure didn't hurt.
The 71st awards telecast airs Jan. 12.
Here's a quick look at last year's open... and Newsday app readers, please view at newsday.com/tvzone:
"Saturday Night Live" opened it's 39th season with the full realization that this won't be the 39th but in one obvious sense the first with a mostly new cast, new characters, new challenges.
And it wasted absolutely no time in integrating the newcomers into the cold open, Tina Fey's monologue and most of the sketches. But the big moments, as expected, went to established stars,...Read more »
Tina Fey is hosting the 39th season premiere of "Saturday Night Live," and -- per tradition -- the host must cut a series of promotions that will a.) Promise a good show b.) Promote the musical guest, Arcade Fire c.) Offer an amusing diversion in themselves d.) be topical e.) Get posted on a multitude of websites, like this one.
Check, check, check and check. Oh right, and check.
References to "Breaking Bad" and wardrobe malfunctions... take it away: (And as usual, app readers please go to newsday.com/tvzone for the video.)