News, scoops, reviews and more from TV land.
Jay Leno popped NBC in his monologue again last night — nothing serious, just a mild dig at the network's woeful fourth place, or rather fifth place, status. Jay, as you know, may or may not have a gig there in a year, while NBC Entertainment chief Bob Greenblatt excoriated him in private — according to a New York Times report by Bill Carter over the weekend — because of a string of NBC-is-a-flaming-disaster...Read more »
Yes indeed — they're going in a different direction at "Who Wants to be a Millionaire" -- Cedric the Entertainer will replace Meredith Vieira. Just announced and was expected, but this does mean a different show (right?) Vieira hosts through the end of this season; Entertainer picks up in the fall:
“I’m truly looking forward to hosting ‘Millionaire,’” Cedric stated. “The show is...Read more »
And so ends Amy's journey: HBO has canceled "Enlightened."
The statement via HBO: "It was a very difficult decision. We’ve decided not to continue 'Enlightened' for a third season. We’re proud of the show and we look forward to working with Mike White and Laura Dern in the future."
White, the producer and writer of "E" also starred, as Amy's (Dern) passionate/weird/computer-nerdish colleague, Tyler, who helped her scuttle the evildoing corporation they worked for.
The show wrapped Sunday. And yes, too bad: It was unusual, odd, different — and needed to go wherever it was going (which, frankly, wasn't entirely clear — but that was a big part of its charm.) The show bowed in 2011 and Newsday's TV critic (that would be me) was less than enthusiastic. Nevertheless, this was one of those reviews I'd like to take back and get a redo.
But as Amy said about five or so episodes in, "You can try to escape the story of your life, but you can't. It happened."
Meanwhile, a handful of other comedies are in the works at HBO, including one from Lorne Michaels and another from ("Spinal Tap's") Christopher Guest.
Henry Bromell, an esteemed TV writer who helped propel "Homeland" to the front of the TV drama pack, has died; Showtime has confirmed while Howard Gordon and Alex Gansa, the executive producers of the acclaimed series, have released a statement saying:
“Henry was a profoundly decent and generous man. A great writer and a great friend. No matter how crazy things got, when he was in...Read more »
Well, if there was a truce between Jay Leno and his luckless hitless overseers at NBC, it was shattered last night: He called them a bunch of snakes. (Ah well, truth in advertising? Nyuk, nyuk.)
But seriously, as you may have read over the weekend, The New York Times had a report saying Bob Greenblatt, NBC Entertainment chief, called up Leno to berate him over a series of NBC/5th place jokes; Leno — per the report — pushed back, and all of a sudden, we've got a Jay Versus the Suits Battle unfolding. This comes in the wake of All Kowing Reports that Leno will be eased aside for Jimmy Fallon next year. Take a look:
There's been a vast amount of online chatter this morning Monday night's "Late Show with David Letterman" interview with Selena Gomez, in which she jokes about making former boytoy Justin Bieber "cry." It was a joke; the clip's been everywhere; and is now one of those silly Web things that has taken on a life of its own.
But here's the question: Did Gomez really come out with that quip as effortlessly as everyone assumes she did? My bet is no -- it was fed to her. Here's how it works: Dave tells her backstage that he's going to do a brief lead-in about making JB "cry" at which point -- after two beats -- she is to say something along the lines of "you're not alone."
This does happen in late night -- where something that seems unrehearsed was in fact very much rehearsed. I'm betting this is one of those instances. Take a look:
Confirming what many fans already knew -- and "Dancing with the Stars" almost certainly did as well -- ABC's biggest hit opened soft with one of the weakest opening nights in terms of scores in a number of seasons. But who saw the rout of D.L. Hughley coming this soon? He's all but gone tonight after the judges slammed him and partner Cheryl Burke (Cheryl?!) with a total score of...Read more »
In a carwreck that could only happen at the intersection of Television Boulevard and Internet Drive, the History Channel has been forced to release a statement debunking online speculation that the actor who plays Satan on their new series, "The Bible," was purposely chosen because he looks like President Barack Obama.
History Channel statement: “History Channel has the highest respect for President Obama. The series was produced with an international and diverse cast of respected actors. It's unfortunate that anyone made this false connection. History’s ‘The Bible’ is meant to enlighten people on its rich stories and deep history.”
Meanwhile, the producers -- husband and wife team Mark Burnett and "Touched by an Angel's" Roma Downey -- had their own statements which did not refute the network's:
Burnett: “This is utter nonsense. The actor who played Satan, Mehdi Ouzaani, is a highly acclaimed Moroccan actor. He has previously played parts in several Biblical epics -- including satanic characters long before Barack Obama was elected as our president.” Executive producer Roma Downey added, "Both Mark and I have nothing but respect and love our president, who is a fellow Christian. False statements such as these are just designed as a foolish distraction to try and discredit the beauty of the story of The Bible.”
The Satan character in the series, as played by Mehdi Ouazzani, does seem to have a very passing resemblance to the most powerful man on the planet. And "The Bible" has been one of the highest-rated cable miniseries ever, and it is assumed by Hollywood watchers that its appeal largely lies in the (ummm) Bible Belt where support of the president is (ummm) not all that strong.
Ergo: That all knowing, crowdsourcing beast that prowls the land (the Internet, not Satan) has decided the resemblance is not coincidental.
"Game of Thrones" returns March 31 for the third season's "A Storm of Swords" -- first half of the book, second half will be the fourth season - and, well, enough chit-chat. Check out this new trailer, released Sunday.
After the New York Post's latest salvo in its entertaining campaign to oust Matt Lauer as co-host of "Today" -- I think they've got him anchoring "Sesame Street" when his current contract ends -- I figured it's time to finally come to Matt's defense.
After all, he and NBC are sure doing a winning job of that. Someone had better step up before he does join Big Bird on the...Read more »