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Hot Off The Press: The Latest TV News and Information - Page 2893

post #86761 of 93675
Originally Posted by DoubleDAZ View Post

Awesome. Thanks for posting that.

Originally Posted by Nayan View Post

Deception has been cancelled. And thanks for the video of Matt Kemp. Stories like this make my day and restore my faith in humanity smile.gif.

Yes, I'm not embarrassed to say it brought tears to my eyes. I don't care if Matt ever hits another homerun, the guy is a true superstar in my book.
post #86762 of 93675
Originally Posted by keenan View Post

Nope. It's just one group of blowhards(the networks) blabbering nonsense and another(McCain) blabbering more nonsense back. In McCain's case I think the man is actually going senile.
Very true.

The answer the networks should give McCain is this: When campaign season comes around, we all plan to give you guys equal time on our channels - exactly zero.

Sometimes you have to combat over the top silly threats with even more over the top silly threats.
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TV Notes
'American Idol' to Axe All 4 Judges as Part of Massive Makeover
By Jethro Nededog, TheWrap.com - May 8, 2013

EXCLUSIVE: "American Idol" is going nuclear for Season 13.

None of the four judges on the singing competition will be asked to return next season, an individual with knowledge of Fox's plans told The Wrap. Longtime producer Nigel Lythgoe is expected to get the boot. And despite reports to the contrary, Fox isn't even considering bringing former judge Jennifer Lopez back as a lifesaver for next season.

Like we said: nuclear.

"All four are gone," the insider told TheWrap. "They feel they've lost their core audience and they want it back."

Driven by this belief and the need to attract younger viewers, Fox is set to make major on-air changes to "Idol," the most notable of which will be an entirely new judging panel. New judges pop icon Mariah Carey, rapper Nicki Minaj and country star Keith Urban won't be back. Even original judge Randy Jackson won't survive the blood bath this time around.

A Fox spokesperson declined to comment for this story.

All four judges have options to return for another season, but Fox won't be picking them up, according to the knowledgeable individual, who said: "No more big checks for divas."

The network has resolved to stop paying the huge salaries it has been shoveling out for its big name talent, i.e. Carey's reported $18 million package, Minaj's $12 million salary and former judge Jennifer Lopez's $15 million.

The show's format will also change. Its look will be redesigned and the dated tribute nights will be a thing of the past. But the show's trademark audition episodes will continue.

Behind the scenes, Fox Broadcasting chairman Kevin Reilly is charged with "fixing Idol." And one of the first changes will occur at the top of the food chain: Longtime executive producer Lythgoe is expected to be replaced. What that means for the show's producers, FremantleMedia, remains to be seen.

See photos: 'American Idol' & 'Voice' Winners: Who's Broken Out, Who's Just Broken

Fox's meltdown has everything to do with the talent competition's declining viewership. Its ratings are already down 22 percent this season and it hit a series low for ratings last Thursday, when it attracted only 11 million viewers and a 2.4 rating/7 share in the ad-coveted 18-49 demographic. The ratings slide is especially problematic during May Sweeps, where ratings numbers are used to dictate advertising rates.

Viewing has been in decline for several seasons now. At its height during Season 6, "Idol" attracted about 30 million viewers an episode.

So, why not just cancel the show?

"Idol" is still a huge revenue generator for Fox, bringing in $836.4 million in ad revenue last year, according to Kantar Media. Plus, it has nothing to replace it. Simon Cowell's "The X Factor" is far from being "Idol's" heir apparent after failing to meet ratings expectations over its first two seasons. It, too, is undergoing another round of changes for Season 3, with pop star Britney Spears and record executive L.A. Reid not returning.

"Idol's" problems are compounded by the success of NBC's "The Voice." Currently airing its fourth season, the show recently crossed a milestone when it beat "Idol" (and everyone else on the small screen for that matter) in both total viewers and the advertiser-coveted 18-49 demographic. Additionally, "The Voice" took "Idol's" spot in the Emmy race last year, replacing it among the nominees in the Outstanding Reality Competition category.

Fox and Fremantle declined comment for this story, as did a representative for Keith Urban.

Representatives for Randy Jackson, Mariah Carey and Nicki Minaj did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Sharon Waxman contributed to this report.

Edited by dad1153 - 5/8/13 at 9:13pm
post #86764 of 93675
Business/Legal Notes
Viacom: Cablevision’s Lawsuit Over Channel Bundling Should Be Thrown Out
By Todd Spangler, Variety.com - May 8, 2013

Viacom fired off a legal reply calling for a federal court to dismiss a lawsuit filed by Cablevision Systems, which sued the media company earlier this year alleging its bundling of unpopular channels was illegal.

“This suit is a transparent ploy by Cablevision to renegotiate its agreement with Viacom,” the media company said in a statement. ”Its decisions to raise prices for consumers and reject carriage for smaller networks have nothing to do with its Viacom contract. Our suite offering provides consumers greater choice at lower cost.”

Cablevision responded in a statement that Viacom’s assertions are “predictable and do not change the fact that its all-or-nothing approach to selling programming is illegal and anti-consumer.”

Cablevision sued Viacom in February, claiming that the programming giant gave the MSO the choice of either carrying 14 little-watched channels — like VH1 Classic and MTV Hits — or paying a “penalty” of more than $1 billion for eight core channels (MTV, MTV2, Nickelodeon, VH1, Spike, TV Land, Comedy Central and BET).

“Viacom is using our customers as pawns in its game to limit choice and competition and, ultimately, it is the consumer who suffers the consequences of Viacom’s illegal actions,” the Bethpage, N.Y.-based cable op said in a statement.

The case is pending before the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.

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TV Notes
Fox Drama Series Orders: 'Sleepy Hollow,' 'Rake,' 'Gang Related,' 'Almost Human'
By Lesley Goldberg and Lacey Rose, The Hollywood Reporter's 'Live Feed' Blog - May 8, 2013

Following a season in which Fox was saddled with double-digit ratings losses and a weak bench, the network is looking to bulk up its options heading into the 2013-14 season.

Having already renewed scripted entries Glee, Bones, New Girl, Raising Hope, The Following and The Mindy Project, the network is looking to fill what few holes it has with stars including Oscar nominee Greg Kinnear, Karl Urban and Ramon Rodriguez. Less than year after Fringe ended its run, Fox is turning to the beloved sci-fi drama's producers J.H. Wyman, J.J. Abrams (Almost Human) and Roberto Orci (Sleepy Hollow) for new fare.

It is worth noting that Fox has ordered four drama pilots to series, doubling last year's particularly small commitment. The latter included since canceled The Mob Doctor as well as midseason effort The Following.

Pilots not moving forward at Fox are Boomerang, Delirium and The List, with Wild Blue pushed off-cycle.

Here's a look at which of its 16 pilots (eight dramas and eight comedies) have been ordered to series -- in addition to the six-episode live-action comedy Dads, from Seth MacFarlane and the writers behind Ted:

Almost Human (previously Human, the untitled Bad Robot/J.H. Wyman project)
Logline: The action-packed police drama is set 35 years in the future, when police officers are partnered with highly evolved human-like androids. An unlikely connection is forged when a cop with an aversion to robots and a robot with unexpected emotional responses investigate cases in a brave new world.
Cast: Karl Urban, Michael Ealy (Common Law), Lili Taylor, Mackenzie Crook, Michael Irby, Minka Kelly, Mekia Cox (guest)
Team: W/EP J.H. Wyman (Fringe); EP J.J. Abrams, Bryan Burk; co-EP Kathy Lingg, Reid Shane; co-EP/D Brad Anderson
Studio: Warner Bros. Television, Bad Robot Productions, Bonanza Productions

Gang Related
A rising star in L.A.'s elite Gang Task Force (Ramon Rodriguez) is teamed with longtime member Cassius Green (RZA) to take on three of the city's most dangerous gangs -- including one he has ties to.
Cast: Ramon Rodriguez (Charlie's Angels), RZA, Jay Hernandez, Sung Kang (Fast and Furious), Inbar Lavi, Cliff Curtis, Shantel VanSanten, Tom Berenger Terry O'Quinn
Team: W/EP Chris Morgan (Fast and Furious); EP Scott Rosenbaum, Brian Grazer, Francie Calfo; EP/D Allen Hughes
Studio: 20th Television, Imagine Entertainment, Chris Morgan Productions, Skeeter Rosenbaum Productions

Greg Kinnear makes his broadcast TV series debut as a brilliant but self-destructive criminal defense lawyer named Keegan Joye in a drama based on the Australian series of the same name.
Cast: Greg Kinnear, Miranda Otto, John Ortiz, Necar Zadegan, Bojana Novakovic, Tara Summers, David Harbour (guest star), Ian Colletti
Team: W/EP Peter Duncan (creator of the Australian version), Peter Tolan (Rescue Me); EP Michael Wimer (2012), Richard Roxburgh, Ian Collie; co-EP Greg Kinnear; D/EP Sam Raimi
Studio: Sony Pictures Television, Fedora Entertainment, Essential Media & Entertainment

Sleepy Hollow
A modern-day retelling of Washington Irving's classic. The supernatural thriller centers on Ichabod Crane (Tom Mison) who is resurrected and pulled two and a half centries through time to find the world on the brink of destruction. With Crane as humanity's last hope, he's teamed with a contemporary police officer (Nicole Beharie) to unravel the mystery.
Cast: Tom Mison (Salmon Fishing in the Yemen), Nicole Beharie (Shame), Orlando Jones, Katia Winter, John Cho (guest star)
Team: W/EP: Alex Kurtzman, Bob Orci (Fringe); W/Supervising producer: Phil Iscove; EP: Heather Kadin; D/EP Len Wiseman
Studio: 20th Television, K/O Paper Products

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TV Notes
Fox Picks Up Andy Samberg & Chris Meloni Comedies, ‘Us & Them’ And ‘Enlisted’, Almost Doubles New Series Volume
By Nellie Andreeva, Deadline.com - May 8, 2013

Having just ordered its new drama series for next season, Fox also has made its comedy pickups, ordering four new shows in addition to the previously ordered Dads, executive produced by Seth MacFarlane. They are the Andy Samberg starrer, now titled Brooklyn Nine-Nine; Surviving Jack starring Chris Meloni; Enlisted starring Geoff Stults; and Us And Them starring Jason Ritter and Alexis Bledel. All have received 13-episode pickups. Additionally, the order for the Seth Green-Giovanni Ribisi starrer Dads, originally for 6 episodes, has been upped to 13. The new comedies join newly picked-up dramas Rake, Gang Related, Sleepy Hollow, and Almost Human. That is five new comedy series and four dramas, almost double the number of new scripted series Fox picked up last year (three comedies, two dramas). With American Idol on its last legs, the network clearly is stocking up on the scripted side and expanding its push in live-action comedy. Studio-wise, four of the new shows came from Fox sibling 20th TV, two each from Warner Bros and Sony and one from Universal TV.

Fox’s four new half-hour series choices came out of the five half-hour pilots that had been in contention from the get-go. Over the past week or so, the fifth, To My Future Assistant, began to fade as I hear it came in below exceptions. Meanwhile, Surviving Jack (formerly I Suck At Girls) has been steadily rising, buoyed by what I hear were stellar testing results for Meloni. The former Law & Order: SVU star originally turned down the project, and it took a lot of effort on the part of the producers to get him to do it. It was all worth it as the actor helped secure the pilot a series pickup. Also playing in the pilot’s favor is the fact that Surviving Jack comes from veteran comedy showrunner Bill Lawrence. It is shaping up to be a strong pickup season for Lawrence, whose NBC comedy pilot Undateable also looks very good to get a series order, along with Second Floor on TBS. Fun fact: Fox is reuniting Cougar Town co-creators Lawrence and Kevin Biegel, who is behind another newly picked-up comedy series, Enlisted.

With the pickups, Fox has a total of eight new and returning comedy series on tap for next season. Four of them are guy half-hours — cop show Brooklyn Nine-Nine (formerly Schur/Goor), Army comedy Enlisted, Dads and Surviving Jack — and female/family series New Girl, The Mindy Project, Raising Hope and Us And Them. While Us And Them, about a couple navigating their family and friends, would fit seamlessly into Fox’s existing Tuesday comedy block, it is unclear what the network would do with its guy shows, which could stand on their own as a block or get scheduled around Fox’s male-skewing Sunday animated comedies. Fox’s comedy pilots that didn’t make the cut are Assistant, Two Wrongs and The Gabriels. Here are descriptions of Fox’s new comedy series along with first-glimpse photos:

From Dan Goor and Michael Schur, the Emmy Award-winning writers/producers of “Parks and Recreation,” and starring Emmy Award winners Andy Samberg and Andre Braugher, BROOKLYN NINE-NINE is a single-camera ensemble comedy about what happens when a detective who doesn’t take anything seriously gets a new “by-the-book” boss who wants him to grow up and respect the badge. BROOKLYN NINE-NINE is produced by Universal Television and 3 Arts Entertainment. The series is created and written by Dan Goor (“Late Night with Conan O’Brien,” “Parks and Recreation”) and Michael Schur (“The Office,” “Parks and Recreation”). The series is executive-produced by Goor, Schur and David Miner (“30 Rock”). The pilot was directed by the team of Phil Lord and Chris Miller (“21 Jump Street,” “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs”)

The new live-action, multi-camera comedy from Emmy Award winner Seth MacFarlane, Alec Sulkin and Wellesley Wild, the creatively outrageous team behind “Ted” and FOX’s FAMILY GUY, stars Emmy Award winner Seth Green and Emmy Award nominee Giovanni Ribisi as two successful guys – and childhood best friends – whose lives get turned upside down when their pain-in-the-neck patriarchs (Martin Mull and Academy Award and Emmy Award nominee Peter Riegert) move in. DADS is produced by 20th Century Fox Television and Fuzzy Door Productions. The series is created and written by Emmy Award-nominated writer/producers Alec Sulkin (“Ted,” FAMILY GUY) and Wellesley Wild (“Ted,” FAMILY GUY), and executive-produced by Seth MacFarlane (“Ted,” FAMILY GUY), Sulkin and Wild. Marc Cendrowski (“The Big Bang Theory”) directed the pilot.

An irreverent and heartfelt military-set single-camera family comedy starring Geoff Stults that follows three brothers getting to know each other again on a small Florida Army base and the group of misfits who surround them. ENLISTED is produced by 20th Century Fox Television, and written and created by Kevin Biegel (“Cougar Town,” “Scrubs,” “South Park”). The series is executive-produced by Biegel and Mike Royce (“Men of a Certain Age,” “Everybody Loves Raymond”). The pilot was directed by Phil Traill (“Suburgatory,” RAISING HOPE).

Based on the hugely popular and multiple-award-winning BBC 3 series “Gavin and Stacey” and starring Emmy Award nominee Jason Ritter and Alexis Bledel, US & THEM is an ensemble single-camera comedy about a young couple, whose path to happily-ever-after is complicated by the screwed-up circus of people closest to them. US & THEM (wt) is produced by Sony Pictures Television and BBC Worldwide Productions. It is based on the hugely popular and multiple-award-winning BBC 3 series “Gavin and Stacey,” which was created and written by James Corden and Ruth Jones. US & THEM (wt) is adapted and written by David J. Rosen (“I Just Want My Pants Back”), and executive-produced by Rosen, Jane Tranter, Julie Gardner, Corden and Jones. Steve Coogan and Henry Normal serve as executive producers for Baby Cow Productions. Michael Patrick Jann (“Drop Dead Gorgeous”) directed the pilot.

SURVIVING JACK (working title)
A new single-camera ensemble comedy based on best-selling author Justin Halpern’s semi-autobiographical book, “I Suck at Girls.” Set in 1990s Southern California, Emmy Award nominee Christopher Meloni stars as a man becoming a dad, as his son is becoming a man, in a time before “coming of age” was something you could Google. SURVIVING JACK (wt) is produced by Doozer Productions in association with Warner Bros. Television. Based on best-selling author Justin Halpern’s book, “I Suck at Girls,” the series is created by Halpern (“$#*! My Dad Says”) and Patrick Schumacker (“$#*! My Dad Says”) who wrote the pilot. The series is executive-produced by Halpern, Schumacker, Emmy Award nominee Bill Lawrence (“Spin City,” “Scrubs,” “Clone High,” “Cougar Town”) and Jeff Ingold. Victor Nelli (“Scrubs,” “The Bernie Mac Show”) directed the pilot.

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Business/Legal Notes
News Corp.'s Carey downplays threat to make Fox a cable channel
By Meg James, Los Angeles Times' 'Company Town' Blog - May 8, 2013

News Corp. Chief Operating Officer Chase Carey rattled cages last month by threatening to turn his company's Fox Broadcasting network -- home of "Family Guy," "American Idol" and NFL football -- into a cable channel.

Carey threw down the gauntlet in early April at the National Assn. of Broadcasters convention. News Corp., he said, would take the extraordinary step of turning Fox into a cable channel if Aereo, the start-up Internet TV service that captures and transmits over-the-air signals of the broadcast networks to consumers, were allowed to flourish.

On Wednesday, Carey sounded less strident.

In a conference call with Wall Street analysts to discuss the company's quarterly earnings, Carey refused to take the bait offered by an analyst who asked Carey to provide a financial breakdown of the costs associated with making such a move.

"You are getting farther down the road than I'm getting," Carey replied.

"The point we are making is the broadcast business -- to be a healthy business and to be able to deliver the type and quality of events that it does -- needs to be a dual-revenue business," Carey said.

If broadcast television were forced to rely solely on advertising income as it did in the past, these networks "would not be able to compete as effectively," he said. Broadcast networks have huge costs for sports and scripted programming. Networks, including Fox, are increasingly relying on "retransmission fees" for their signals to help make ends meet.

The topic is one of the hottest in the television industry. And Carey's comments came a day before U.S. Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) is expected to introduce legislation in Washington that would take away a company's valuable broadcast spectrum if the company moved its best programming to cable.

McCain's proposal is expected to be included in a bill that would allow consumers to pick and choose what TV channels they wanted to subscribe to.

Fox, CBS and other broadcasters are wrangling in court with Aereo, claiming the service infringes on their copyright. The broadcasters believe that Aereo is stealing their signals.

About 15 million homes in the U.S. do not have cable or satellite TV subscriptions, so the conversion of a major broadcast network to a cable channel would prompt an outcry.

On Wednesday, Carey said his company wasn't planning any preemptive strikes.

"We like the broadcast model as long as our rights are respected," he said. However, he added, "There are other paths we can pursue that would lead us to a very profitable business."

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TV Notes
A&E, History tee up new series
By Gary Levin, USA Today - May 8, 2013

NEW YORK — A&E Networks is flying high: History found gold with Hatfields & McCoys, The Bible and Vikings this past year. A&E's Duck Dynasty set records with 9.6 million viewers for last month's finale and Lifetime also is on the upswing.

Executives touted those gains and new projects to advertisers at a presentation Wednesday at Lincoln Center.

• A&E, currently in its first season of Psycho prequel Bates Motel, is preparing a new scripted drama, Those Who Kill, starring Chloe Sevigny as a detective tracking a serial killer. It also is planning an unscripted series about stay-at-home dads.

• History has a Houdini miniseries starring Adrien Brody, an unscripted series about daredevils and a real-life version of Hatfields.

• Lifetime plans Devious Maids, a soap from Desperate Housewives producer Marc Cherry originally developed for ABC, due in June. Also on tap: Witches of East End, a drama starring Julia Ormond, Jenna Dewan-Tatum and Madchen Amick, and miniseries Bonnie & Clyde, starring Holly Hunter and William Hurt, that will be simulcast on A&E and History.

The three main networks, History, A&E and Lifetime, represent three of the top six networks among women ages 25 to 54, a key target, and are all top-15 networks among all viewers.

All six of its networks gained audience last year, an "amazing stride," says chairman Abbe Raven in prepared remarks to advertisers. And "on the strength of this unprecedented growth of our portfolio, A&E Networks is now the second largest cable group in the nation" among that crowd.

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TV Review
‘Monumental Mysteries,’ close enough
These Travel Channel historical tales are told well
By Tom Conroy, Media Life Magazine - May 8, 2013

A story doesn’t have to be new to be good. In fact, many decent pop documentaries specialize in retelling familiar bits of history.

The Travel Channel’s new documentary series “Monumental Mysteries” presents offbeat stories that can be linked — sometimes tenuously — to landmarks across America. Although neither the show’s choice of topics nor its execution is particularly innovative, the tales are briskly presented and usually interesting.

The premiere episode, airing this Thursday, May 9, at 9 p.m., zips through six locations, with each one introduced by the show’s host, Don Wildman, who has also hosted the channel’s shows “Mysteries at the Museum” and “Off Limits.”

The first stop is in a churchyard in Exeter, R.I., at the gravesite of a girl named Mercy L. Brown, who was one of many members of her family to die of tuberculosis in the late 1800s. When her brother subsequently fell ill, the superstitious townspeople believed that one of the deceased family members was draining the survivors’ blood from the grave.

The story has a satisfyingly gruesome ending, a plausible scientific explanation and a possible connection to the writing of the novel “Dracula.”

The second stop is in New York City and involves the Brooklyn Bridge, the Statue of Liberty, the Metropolitan Museum of Art and Grant’s Tomb, all of which were at one point or another sold fraudulently by a con man named George C. Parker, whose long career of swindling people — often recent immigrants — ended anticlimactically.

From there, the show goes to Alcatraz Island, to talk about a possibly fatal but also possibly successful escape attempt in 1937; to Chicago, where America’s first serial killer murdered at least 27 women during the 1893 World’s Fair; to Mount Rainier, near which a pilot claims to have seen a fleet of objects that gave rise to the term “flying saucer”; and finally to Ford’s Theatre, in Washington, D.C., to recount the story of a man who claimed that he was John Wilkes Booth and had eluded capture by federal troops.

Despite Wildman’s urgent introductions and narration, these stories aren’t exactly hot off the presses. Many have been the subject of books or have been covered in previous TV documentaries.

Each segment features interview bites from someone who seems to know the story well — the UFO expert is identified as a “cultural critic.”

The action — which is dramatized using actors — often ranges far from the monument in question. The possible John Wilkes Booth made his first confession in Texas and died in Ohio. The serial killer was arrested in Philadelphia.

But each story has a satisfying beginning, middle and end. With six of them in 42 minutes of noncommercial time, there’s no room for fussy details or dead air.

“Monumental Mysteries” isn’t exactly a monumental achievement, but it will be a pleasant stop for travelers browsing the three-digit part of the cable spectrum.

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TV/Business Notes
‘Salinger’ the Documentary, Craftily Promoted With a ‘Psst’
By Michael Cieply, The New York Times - May 8, 2013

LOS ANGELES — J. D. Salinger was good at keeping secrets.

Harvey Weinstein, well, not so much.

But now the film producer may have to adopt the air of mystery for which Salinger was so famous. His company is preparing to offer a peek at a documentary about Salinger that is one of the unlikeliest projects ever to join its menagerie of potential Oscar contenders and box-office bait.

The film, “Salinger,” has been nine years in the making and is scheduled for release on Sept. 6. It is written, produced and directed by Shane Salerno, who is mostly known as a writer of action features like “Savages,” “Alien vs. Predator: Requiem” and “Armageddon.”

Selling the film may test even Mr. Weinstein’s Barnum-like skills. Moviegoers will be kept intentionally in the dark about what new information Mr. Salerno might have about the reclusive writer’s life — Mr. Salinger’s son, Matthew, challenges the notion that anyone close to his father in recent decades cooperated — and the Weinstein Company will have to strike a delicate balance in its marketing. It will have to raise the curtains a little, but not too much, as it seeks to build anticipation for the release.

As Mr. Salerno delivers his final cut, the marketers face particularly tough decisions about how much to show in a trailer. They must also figure out whether a screening at a late summer film festival, where prize contenders often start their march toward the Oscars, can work for a picture that has to protect its secrets while selling them.

It’s a difficult task in an era when fluttering fingers on smartphones can give away all the surprises. “I don’t know how we do this and not rob the audience,” Mr. Weinstein said in a telephone interview.

Associates of Mr. Salerno hint at never-before-seen photographs and interviews with aging intimates of Salinger, as well as secrets that they decline to describe. But there is skepticism. Speaking by phone, Matthew Salinger said that neither he nor his father were involved with the film. Nor, as far as he knows, were the seven or eight members of a small circle of people who were close to J. D. Salinger, he said. “There were barely enough people to form a circle in the last 30 or 40 years,” he said.

Asked whether he was confident that his father had not cooperated with Mr. Salerno, Mr. Salinger laughed. “That would be a yes,” he said.

Still, Mr. Weinstein has a proven track record with documentaries, having brought more than a touch of spectacle to the marketing of “Fahrenheit 9/11,” “Bully,” “Sicko,” and “Madonna: Truth or Dare.”

Mr. Weinstein snapped up “Salinger” quickly after Mr. Salerno showed it to him at an unusual 7:30 a.m. screening on Feb. 24, the day of the Academy Awards, according to people familiar with the film, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because of confidentiality agreements. On his way to the ceremony he sealed a deal for the film that is part of a three-prong strategy, including an “American Masters” TV segment on PBS in January and an oral history in book form that Simon & Schuster is to publish in September in tandem with the film’s theatrical release.

Potential foreign buyers may get at least a glimpse of the film as early as this month during the Cannes Film Festival.

The sell for “Salinger” begins with a tantalizing question: What has Mr. Salerno got that lured the only three prospective buyers who watched a rough version to jump in? People involved with the project offer teasing suggestions of new revelations, but no details.

Buddy Squires a seasoned documentarian who collaborated with Mr. Salerno as a producer and a cinematographer on “Salinger,” said recently in a brief phone conversation that “it is safe to say no one has ever seen a film like this.” He declined to say more.

Jonathan Karp, Simon & Schuster’s president and publisher, said in an interview that the 750-page manuscript for the book “was revelatory, far beyond anything that’s been written about Salinger to date.” But like Mr. Squires, he would not reveal anything specific.

Susan Lacy, executive producer of the “American Masters” series, was just as circumspect. She said she was legally barred from discussing details of the film. But when asked whether it divulged any secrets, she replied, “Yes, I would just say that, yes, there are revelations.”

For the moment Mr. Salerno, who is finishing a final version, declines to be interviewed.

While he has not seen the film, Mr. Salinger expressed doubt that Mr. Salerno could meet the lofty expectations generated for the documentary. “I would only wish this were as serious-minded a piece of work as he would have us believe,” he said.

In a statement, the Weinstein Company said: “With due respect to Matt Salinger, he has not seen the film. We’ve seen the film, and unfortunately Matt Salinger does not have accurate information. Shane Salerno had unprecedented access and audiences will be able to see for themselves on Sept. 6.”

By the time Salinger died in January 2010 at 91, he was known as much for his retreat from the outside world as for a small but revered oeuvre that included “The Catcher in the Rye,” published in 1951, and two short story collections that emerged over the next decade.

Although a former lover, Joyce Maynard, and his daughter, Margaret, both wrote widely discussed memoirs, enough mystery remained about his life, including the possibility of unpublished manuscripts, to leave an opening for Mr. Salerno. Around 2004 he began investigating Salinger as the subject of a self-financed film.

The project offered Mr. Salerno, now 40, the chance to reinvent himself and transcend his Hollywood reputation as a writer of noisy action-oriented fare and of more sophisticated scripts that were never produced. He eventually spent more than $2 million of his own money, according to people familiar with the project.

He began knocking on doors around Mr. Salinger. Many slammed shut. But Mr. Salerno populated one version of his film with celebrity interviewees like Judd Apatow, Danny DeVito and John Cusack. Some who were interviewed seem to have forgotten being filmed long ago.

“It’s quite possible I was in a documentary, but I have no recollection of it,” said Robert Towne, the writer-director, when asked about an Internet Movie Database listing that credits him with an appearance.

John Guare, the playwright, said, “Now, I remember the guy, yes, but it was filmed so long ago.” He added that he vaguely recalled having spoken about a reference to Salinger in his play “Six Degrees of Separation.”

According to Mr. Salerno’s associates, the floodgates opened after Mr. Salinger’s death, when people close to the author began to offer recollections, photographs, and — if the promotional whisper is to be believed — more than a few details that had not previously been disclosed.

Roughly 200 were interviewed, according to the associates, and some signed confidentiality agreements. Neither Ms. Lacy nor Mr. Weinstein was shown all of the film’s confidential scenes before a deal was brokered. Even the film crew was ordered out of the room during some interviews. And in selling the movie, Mr. Salerno retained the cherished right of final cut.

Mr. Weinstein indicated that the secrets will be part of the fun as he and his company forge a strategy for selling “Salinger” to the masses. The challenge, he noted, is similar to that posed by “The Crying Game,” a Miramax hit that peddled its surprise ending with a “Don’t tell your friends” strategy two decades ago — before social media had demystified almost everything.

For now the plan is to hit the festival circuit, but with only part of the film, holding back the end until it opens in theaters, Mr. Weinstein said.

And if the movie is shown at Cannes, he was asked, will potential foreign buyers be allowed to see that part?

“No way!” he said.

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TV Notes
On The Air Tonight
THURSDAY Network Primetime/Late Night Options
(All shows are in HD unless noted; start times are ET. Network late night shows are preceded by late local news)

8PM - Wipeout (Season Premiere)
9PM - Grey's Anatomy
10:02PM - Scandal
* * * *
11:35PM - Jimmy Kimmel Live! (Tobey Maguire; Kerry Washington; will.i.am performs)
12:37AM - Nightline

8PM - The Big Bang Theory
8:31PM - Two and a Half Men (Season Finale)
9:01PM - Person of Interest (Season Finale)
10:01PM - Elementary
* * * *
11:35PM - Late Show with David Letterman (Jack Hanna; Benedict Cumberbatch)
12:37AM - Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson (Bob Saget; Sarah Hyland)

8PM - Community (Season Finale)
8:30PM - The Office
(R - Oc. 18)
9PM - The Office (60 min.)
10:01PM - Hannibal
* * * *
11:35PM - The Tonight Show With Jay Leno (Shakira; comic Marc Maron; Tom Jones performs)
12:37AM - Late Night With Jimmy Fallon (Jane Lynch; Nikolaj Coster-Waldau; Lady Antebellum performs)
1:36AM - Last Call With Carson Daly (California Lt. Governor Gavin Newsom; artist Phil Hansen; Purity Ring performs)

8PM - American Idol (LIVE)
9PM - Glee (Season Finale)

(check your local listing for starting time/programming)
8PM - The 'This Old House' Hour (R - Nov. 8)
9PM - TED Talks Education
(R - Apr. 21)
10PM - Antiques Roadshow: Rapid City
(R - May 6)

8PM - Porque el Amor Manda
9PM - Amores Verdaderos
10PM - Qué Bonito Amor

8PM - The Vampire Diaries
9PM - Beauty and the Beast

8PM - Pasión Prohibida
9PM - La Patrona
10PM - El Señor de los Cielos

11PM - The Daily Show with Jon Stewart (Author David Sedaris)
11:31PM - The Colbert Report (Jennifer Egan and Director Baz Luhrmann)

11PM - Conan (Don Cheadle; Pete Holmes; RNDM)

11PM - Chelsea Lately (Edie Falco; Bobby Lee; Loni Love; Mo Mandel)

Edited by dad1153 - 5/8/13 at 10:30pm
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Jeanne Cooper Dead: 'Young And The Restless' Star Dies At 84
By HuffingtonPost.com - May 8, 2013

Jeanne Cooper spent 40 years on "The Young and The Restless," playing the dame of Genoa City, Katherine Chancellor Murphy (née Shepherd; formerly Reynolds, Thurston and Sterling).

The actress died at the age of 84 on Wednesday, May 8 after a being hospitalized last month, but Cooper was on "The Young and The Restless" up until her passing.

From her long-running feud with Jill Abbott (currently played by Jess Walton and previously portrayed by Deborah Adair and Brenda Dickson) to her shocking TV facelift to her alcoholism, Katherine Chancellor is one of the most controversial and longest-running soap opera characters. Cooper recently said was honored to have played her for nearly all of those four decades.

"I've spent a half of my lifetime with 'The Young and The Restless,' but I know a lot of people who have spent their lifetimes right along with me," the Daytime Emmy winner Cooper said recently (in the first video in the slideshow below). "That makes me very proud. Very proud."

She is also up for a 2013 Daytime Emmy, which is her 11th Lead Actress nomination and would be her second win if Cooper gets the honor. The late actress was also given a lifetime achievement award form the Daytime Emmys in 2004.

From her first line to the last time "The Young and The Restless" fans saw her in a rare peaceful moment with Jill, check out the highlights of Cooper's portrayal of Katherine Chancellor.

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Originally Posted by dad1153 View Post

Business/Legal Notes
News Corp.'s Carey downplays threat to make Fox a cable channel
By Meg James, Los Angeles Times' 'Company Town' Blog - May 8, 2013

News Corp. Chief Operating Officer Chase Carey rattled cages last month by threatening to turn his company's Fox Broadcasting network -- home of "Family Guy," "American Idol" and NFL football -- into a cable channel.

Carey threw down the gauntlet in early April at the National Assn. of Broadcasters convention. News Corp., he said, would take the extraordinary step of turning Fox into a cable channel if Aereo, the start-up Internet TV service that captures and transmits over-the-air signals of the broadcast networks to consumers, were allowed to flourish.

On Wednesday, Carey sounded less strident.

In a conference call with Wall Street analysts to discuss the company's quarterly earnings, Carey refused to take the bait offered by an analyst who asked Carey to provide a financial breakdown of the costs associated with making such a move.

"You are getting farther down the road than I'm getting," Carey replied.

"The point we are making is the broadcast business -- to be a healthy business and to be able to deliver the type and quality of events that it does -- needs to be a dual-revenue business," Carey said.

I see one of the chief blowhards got called on his BS. wink.gif
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Critic's Notes
Bianculli's Best Bets
By David Bianculli, TVWorthWatching.com - May 9, 2013

NBC, 8:00 p.m. ET
The “evil timeline” is back – perhaps for the last time, as it’s not yet known whether NBC is giving Community a reprieve or a pink slip. But for now, revel in this: evil Kevin (or evil Chang, if you prefer), as well as evil Jeff, warped Annie, and a lot more.

Fox, 8:00 p.m. ET

Last night’s competition show was, indeed, competitive. Jimmy Iovine, who was backstage (or, at the end, on stage) to evaluate the three rounds of singing from the three remaining contestants, awarded one round to each – but gave the overall night to Candice Glover, who ended and stopped the show with a dynamic version of “Somewhere” from West Side Story. It’s the voters who, tonight, will determine the final two. I’d retain Candice for sure, and go with Angie Miller over Kree Harrison. But the finalists have been strong this season. It’s the judges who have been weak.

BBC America, 8:00 p.m. ET

Though I recommended this episode of Doctor Who when it premiered on BBC America, I didn’t push its biggest selling point. Now I can, just in time for tonight’s repeat: It features, as guest stars, Diana Rigg as the week’s villain, and her real-life daughter, actress Rachael Stirling, who plays Rigg’s daughter here, too. What a duo. And, set in Yorkshire in 1893, it’s so much fun.

Fox, 9:00 p.m. ET
Glee hasn’t done much of consequence this season, other than find various ways to go off the rails even more than before – but tonight’s season finale offers closure, at least partially, on two long-running plot lines. One, the New Directions club competes, once again, at Regionals, at which they bombed last year when Marley collapsed on stage. And two, Rachel (Lea Michele) goes to her callback audition for a Broadway revival of Funny Girl. Hello, gorgeous.

NBC, 10:01 p.m. ET

I don’t like this show, at least not yet, but I do like tonight’s guest star: Gillian Anderson, making a rare stateside TV appearance since leaving The X-Files and moving overseas. She plays Hannibal’s therapist — which, considering what we know of him, ought to be a full-time job. But, in this case, it isn’t.

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Business/Critic's Notes
Upfronts Pregame Analysis: CBS Rules the World
By Josef Adalian, Vulture.com - May 9, 2013

We're less than 100 hours away from the start of upfronts, the weeklong TV industry tradition in which broadcasters (and, recently, a few cable networks) try to convince advertisers they've had the Best Development Season Ever and sponsors best buy lots of commercial time in the new shows because everybody in America has already set their DVRs to record them. It's an elaborate pitchfest that would make Don Draper proud (and very happy, because the drinks are free and plentiful).

This week, before the spin kicks into overdrive, Vulture has been giving you our annual assessment of where each of the Big Four stands headed into upfronts. We began with the long-troubled NBC, then moved on to the increasingly troubled ABC and Fox. Today, we end with the network that's still a Network: CBS, the broadest of broadcasters, which will end this season No. 1 in countless categories. While the Eye has taken some hits this cycle, it remains the dominant force in mass-appeal television.

Where It Stands
CBS does have a ton of older viewers, but it also has plenty of younger ones, too: It will easily win the season among adults under 50, the demo group most coveted by advertisers. Its broadcast of the Super Bowl in February provided a big boost, but its lead is big enough that it would have won even without the game. CBS's The Big Bang Theory will also displace ABC's Modern Family as the top-rated network sitcom in the demo, growing by more than 10 percent in its sixth season. And while overall viewership may not be the preferred metric for advertisers, the decisiveness of CBS's lead in that number is astounding: Once DVR data is factored in, CBS averages just under 12 million viewers every week, over 4 million more than the second most-watched network (ABC, with 7.8 million). The Eye also scored a moderate drama hit this fall with newcomer Elementary, the most-watched new series of the season and a decent performer with adults under 50 (it beats time-slot rival Scandal and is outperforming established hours such as Glee and CSI). The network also managed to buck the trend of sophomore slumps this season with Person of Interest, which saw a double-digit bump in viewership (and also grew among young adults under 35).

While this was an undeniably great season for CBS relative to other networks, the Eye is not immune to the same trends rocking its rivals. Even with the Super Bowl, its overall average in the key demo is down about 3 percent (it's up about the same amount in total eyeballs). Last year's smash hit 2 Broke Girls also lost momentum in its new 9 p.m. Monday time slot, and while it didn't fall as far as Fox's fellow sophomore New Girl, 2BG did decline a sharp 16 percent among adults under 50. And the network wasted big comedy lead-ins from How I Met Your Mother and Big Bang on established shows in their twilight years (Rules of Engagement and Two and a Half Men, respectively). It only tried out one new comedy the whole season, Partners, which was a critical and ratings dud that disappeared before Christmas. (Another comedy CBS planned to air, Friend Me, has yet to make it on the air.) While Elementary took flight, CBS's other new dramas ranged from immediate bomb (Made in Jersey) to lingering disappointments (Vegas, Golden Boy). The good news for CBS is that other networks had similarly awful track records for new shows, which means CBS didn't really lose any ground overall.

Buzziest Prospects
The biggest problem for comedy pilot Mom may be living up to its development season buzz: It's from rock star comedy producer Chuck Lorre, has an amazing cast (Anna Faris, Allison Janney, Nate Corddry), and is being directed by How I Met Your Mother's longtime director Pam Fryman. The show, about a single mom just starting her recovery from alcoholism, has already been given a pickup, according to Deadline and other industry sources contacted by Vulture. It would be similarly shocking if CBS doesn't green-light its small-screen adaptation of Beverly Hills Cop, which is being produced by Shawn Ryan (The Shield) and features Eddie Murphy in what may be a recurring role. We're also rooting to see Rainn Wilson go back to drama in the crime drama Backstrom (from Bones creator Hart Hanson). CBS also has a spinoff of a spinoff in the works (NCIS: Red, an offshoot of NCIS: LA), which we're definitely not rooting for but seems likely to get a shot. It's also hard to see Eye brass turning down The Crazy Ones, a comedy from David E. Kelley starring Robin Williams in his first regular small-screen role since Mork & Mindy. And, in what's being described as a strong comedy year for the Eye, expect to see Greg Garcia's untitled comedy starring Will Arnett and Margo Martindale on your TV/iPad screens next season.

Biggest Headache
In the case of CBS, this is less a headache than a high-class problem, but the network does need to figure out whether or not to get into the single-camera comedy business, and if so, how. While other networks covet the Eye's multitude of syndication-friendly multi-camera sitcoms (you know, the ones with the annoying audience laughter), CBS has either been unwilling or unable to come up with shows with the feel of Modern Family or The Office. This year, the network produced more single-cam comedy pilots (seven) than multi-cam (five), in what seemed to be an attempt to force itself to take the plunge. The aforementioned Robin Williams show is single-cam, so it seems almost certain the form will be represented on the net's schedule. But where? We could see CBS finally reducing Survivor to one annual cycle (or bumping a cycle to late spring or early summer) and trying new comedies in the 8 p.m. hour, where no one network dominates. There's also been discussion of CBS expanding to four comedies on Thursdays, but with Person of Interest picking up some momentum in the 9 p.m. time slot, would CBS really want to mess with what's working — particularly since it needs to worry about replacing How I Met Your Mother after next season (and very likely Two and a Half Men)? It seems more likely CBS will simply try out one new show behind HIMYM in the fall, and then cycle through other comedies in place of Mike and Molly and Men repeats.

Bottom Line
Yes, CBS needs some new hits. Finding shows with big social media buzz should also be a goal, since online chatter is a great way to grow a show's audience (see: Scandal). But at least for now, it's really good to be CBS.

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Business Notes
AMC Networks Q1 Results Beat Forecasts With Strong Ad Sales For Original Shows
By David Lieberman, Deadline.com - May 9, 2013

The stock price is up nearly 6% pre-market after the company released a Q1 report that showed strong results in most key metrics. AMC Networks generated net income of $61.5M, +42.5% vs the period last year, on revenues of nearly $382M, +17.1%. The top line was well ahead of the $366M that analysts projected. And earnings at 85 cents a share topped forecasts for 82 cents. The core National Networks operation led with way with revenues +18.2% to $359.5M and operating income +29.5% to $141M.

The company says that ad sales were up 26.9% to $164M “due to strong demand for our original programming, primarily at AMC” which airs The Walking Dead. Affiliate fees rose 11.7% to $196M. The international business, which is much smaller and includes IFC Films, was a different story: Revenues fell 0.2% to $26.3M with an operating loss that increased by $2M to $15M. AMC says that the operation was hurt by a revenue decline in the independent film operation.

“AMC Networks is off to a strong start in 2013,” CEO Josh Sapan says pointing to the strong performance of shows including Sundance Channel’s Rectify and Top Of The Lake, IFC’s Portlandia, and WEtv’s Braxton Family Values.


* * * *

Business Notes
Starz Q1 Revenues Fall As Distributors Play Hardball On Renewal Terms

The folks at Starz couldn’t have been happy writing this morning’s earnings release. Start with the numbers: The premium cable network company generated Q1 net income of $58.2M, -26.5% vs the period last year, on revenues of $399.3M, -1.4%. Analysts expected revenues to hit $404.5M. And earnings at 47 cents a share missed forecasts for 49 cents. But the explanations had to have been equally painful.

The company says revenues are off in part due to the expiration of its distribution deal with Netflix last year. It adds that it also had to renew two distribution deals in Q4 “on less favorable financial terms than the prior affiliation agreements.” On top of that Starz Animation’s Film Roman studio had fewer projects in the pipeline. Although programming costs fell 9.3% to about $146M, other expenses were up including a 21.2% increase in sales and administrative to $69.2M while stock-based compensation was up 181% to $7.3M.

On a cheerier note, Starz subscriptions at the end of March were up 1.9% from the end of 2012 to 21.6M while Encore subs were +8.6% to 35.1M. CEO Chris Albrecht says that the subscription growth is a sign of “solid operational performance.” He adds that the company has renewed Da Vinci’s Demons for a second season and is “confident that over time our approach to original programming will deliver strong shareholder value.”

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WEDNESDAY's fast affiliate overnight prime-time ratings -and what they mean- have been posted on Analyst Marc Berman's Media Insight's Blog
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Nielsen Overnights (18-49)
‘Voice’ tops ‘Idol’ in head-to-head airing
NBC hit averages a 2.7 in 18-49s for special episode
By Toni Fitzgerald, Media Life Magazine - May 9, 2013

In their first head-to-head matchup of the season, both NBC’s “The Voice” and Fox’s “American Idol” had something to chirp about.

“Voice” topped its rival among adults 18-49 by a small margin during their shared hour. But “Idol” finished with the higher rating for the night thanks to a strong second hour, after “Voice” had gone off the air.

“Voice” averaged a 2.7 18-49 rating at 8 p.m., according to Nielsen overnights, ahead of “Idol’s” 2.5 in the hour.

It was the lowest rating of the season for the special edition of NBC’s hit singing show, which usually airs only on Monday and Tuesday.

“Idol” built sharply in its second hour, averaging a 3.2 at 9 p.m. to finish with a 2.8 for the night, 0.1 ahead of “Voice” and even to last week’s rating.

Fox won its 17th straight Wednesday night on the strength of “Idol.”

Elsewhere last night, ABC’s “Modern Family” fell to a season-low 3.1, down 14 percent from last week, though it was still the night’s top show.

In a good sign for the network, “Family” leadout “How to Live With Your Parents (For the Rest of Your Life)” was down only 5 percent from last week, to a 2.0.

At 8:30 ABC’s new sitcom “Family Tools” plunged 27 percent from last week’s disappointing debut to a 1.1.

Several shows gained week to week. The “Voice” lead-in helped the 9 p.m. edition of NBC’s “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit,” which matched its best rating since Jan. 9 with a 1.9. “Chicago Fire” at 10 was up 6 percent to a 1.8.

CBS’s three shows all saw gains, with “CSI” up the most, 16 percent over last week to a 2.2 at 10 p.m., easily winning the hour.

Fox led the night among 18-49s with a 2.8 average overnight rating and an 8 share. CBS was second at 2.4/7, NBC third at 2.1/6, ABC fourth at 1.9/5, Univision fifth at 1.3/4, CW sixth at 0.9/3 and Telemundo seventh at 0.8/2.

As a reminder, all ratings are based on live-plus-same-day DVR playback, which includes shows replayed before 3 a.m. the night before. Seven-day DVR data won’t be available for several weeks. Forty-eight percent of Nielsen households have DVRs.

NBC started the night in the lead with a 2.7 for “Voice,” with CBS and Fox tied for second at 2.5, CBS for “Survivor” and Fox for “Idol.” ABC was fourth with a 1.4 for “The Middle” (1.8) and “Tools” (1.1), Univision fifth with a 1.1 for “Porque el Amor Manda,” CW sixth with a 0.9 for “Arrow” and Telemundo seventh with a 0.5 for “Pasion Prohibida.”

Fox took the lead at 9 p.m. with a 3.2 for more “Idol,” while ABC moved to second with a 2.6 for “Family” (3.1) and “Parents” (2.0). CBS was third with a 2.5 for “Criminal Minds,” NBC fourth with a 1.9 for “SVU,” Univision fifth with a 1.5 for “Amores Verdaderos,” CW sixth with a 0.9 for “Supernatural” and Telemundo seventh with a 0.8 for “La Patrona.”

CBS led at 10 p.m. with a 2.2 for “CSI,” followed by NBC with a 1.8 for “Fire.” ABC was third with a 1.6 for “Nashville,” Univision fourth with a 1.2 for “Que Bonito Amor” and Telemundo fifth with a 1.1 for “El Señor de los Cielos.”

Fox was also first for the night among household with a 6.7 average overnight rating and an 11 share. CBS was second at 6.1/10, NBC third at 5.0/8, ABC fourth at 4.0/6, Univision fifth at 1.8/3, CW sixth at 1.4/2 and Telemundo seventh at 0.9/1.


* * * *

Nielsen Notes
Gee, a show that’s gaining viewers
CBS's 'Person' is up this season, unlike most shows
By Louisa Ada Seltzer, Media Life Magazine - May 9, 2013

“Person of Interest” didn’t quite live up to expectations in its first season last year.

But this year the CBS drama has become one of the only programs on broadcast to see ratings gains. The show, about a machine that can predict violent crimes, is regularly a contender for the top spot in its timeslot as competing shows like ABC’s “Grey’s Anatomy” and NBC’s “The Office” fade.

Tonight at 9 p.m. “Interest” airs its second-season finale, in which Reese and Finch try to save The Machine from outside threats.

“Interest” is averaging a 3.0 adults 18-49 rating this season, according to Nielsen, up a tenth over last season.

That’s not a huge increase, but at a time where nearly every other show on broadcast has seen ratings decline, it’s notable.

ABC’s competing “Grey’s,” for example, is down 14 percent from last season to a 3.1, while NBC’s “Office,” which airs its series finale next week, is off a considerable 29 percent, to a 2.0.

“Interest” should continue to see growth into next season, too, if it follows the path of previous CBS hits. Top programs like “NCIS” and “The Big Bang Theory” didn’t hit their peaks until at least six years into their runs.

Not to ruin tonight’s inevitable cliffhanger, but that should mean a long and prosperous future for The Machine.

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TV Notes
Neil Patrick Harris To Host Tonys
By Jon Weisman and Gordon Fox, Variety.com - May 9, 2013

For this year’s Tony kudocast, CBS and ceremony producers have gone with an old fave: Neil Patrick Harris, back to emcee the awards for the fourth time.

Harris, also a candidate to host the Emmys this year for the Eye, will also serve as a producer of the June 9 kudocast, alongside the kudos’ longtime exec producers Ricky Kirshner and Glenn Weiss. Harris previously hosted the Tonys in 2009, 2011 and 2012.

Harris is one of the rare screen stars who’s also established real stage cred among legiters, having appeared on Broadway in “Assassins,” “Proof” and “Cabaret.” He also starred in the 2011 New York Philharmonic presentation of “Company” (which screened in cinemas and was later released on DVD and Blu-Ray) and has directed L.A. stage productions including “Rent” and “Nothing to Hide.”

With his fourth stint as Tony host — following emcee outings in 2009, 2011 and 2012 — Harris outpaces Jackman, who hosted three times, but still comes in behind Angela Lansbury, who’s been a Tony host a total of five times.

Planning for the Tony Awards ceremony at Radio City Music Hall is currently in overdrive, with last week’s nominations announcement at last giving the producers a sense of what titles and performers they’ll have to showcase.

The Tonys are generally the lowest-rated broadcast of major entertainment awards: Last year the show brought in six million viewers, down from 6.9 million the previous year. Legit fans, however, are generally a wealthy bunch with disposable income, and so rep a desirable demographic for CBS.

“I’m very excited to be back hosting the Tony Awards at the legendary Radio City Music Hall,” Harris said. “It’ll be more impressive than ever — if my math is correct, it will be 267 times bigger than last year. Oh, wait. No, that can’t … hold on … carry the one … I’m awful at math. But rest assured, the show will rock!”

Said CBS Entertainment prexy Nina Tassler: “Neil is a multi-talented performer whose showmanship, wit and energy command the stage of live events. He is a master of ceremony who truly loves celebrating the performing arts with the highest level of entertainment, and it’s quite obvious to the audience he’s having a lot of fun along the way.”

The co-star of “How I Met Your Mother” is a three-time Emmy winner, two of those coming for his Tony hosting duties.

Weiss is directing the Tonys for the 14th consecutive year.

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Business Notes
Dish Network adds 66,000 broadband, 36,000 TV customers in Q1
By Richard Lawler, Endgadget.com - May 9, 2013

While Dish Network's $25.5 billion bid for Sprint continues to wave in the breeze, the company has reported its earnings for the first quarter. Net subscriber growth only totaled 36,000 compared to 104,000 in the same period last year, as subscriber churn rose due to a price hike earlier this year. Its profits were lower in Q1 2013 than 2012 partially due to Blockbuster-related drops and a boost received last year from its DBSD purchase. (We're guessing higher content costs for things like AMC didn't help either.) A growing percentage of the 654,000 new customers it added got Hopper DVRs, which also raised costs a bit for the new set-top boxes and all those TV advertisements its been running.

Even as it waits to add some terrestrial LTE to its "Seinfeld" wireless data strategy, the dishNET satellite broadband service added 66,000 customers in the quarter, up from from just 6,000 new customers in Q1 2012. We'll have to wait for the earnings call at noon to see if CEO Charlie Ergen has anything else to say about its battle with Softbank to buy Sprint, but all of the data is in the press release and slide below. [CLICK LINK]

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Originally Posted by dad1153 View Post

"The point we are making is the broadcast business -- to be a healthy business and to be able to deliver the type and quality of events that it does -- needs to be a dual-revenue business," Carey said.

While I refuse to pay for TV, and I also refuse to watch commercials. mad.gif
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Technology Notes
Ouya game system gains funding, retail date pushed back
By Mike Snider, USA Today - May 9, 2013

For fans of the new Ouya game console, there's good news and bad news.

The bad news first: you'll have to wait a few more weeks for the $99.99 Android-based system to hit stores. Its June 4 retail release has been pushed back to June 25. Those how supported Ouya on Kickstarter have begun receiving systems already.

The good news: The move will allow the company to satisfy brisk retail demand and "have enough units on retail shelves when we launch," says founder and CEO Julie Uhrman. "We want to be this in long haul and the funds that we just raised will allow us to continue to support game developers and also meet the demand from retailers and gamers alike."

In other news from the company today, Ouya announced that it has received $15 million in new funding from venture capital firms including Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, the Mayfield Fund and Shasta Ventures, as well as graphics chip maker NVIDIA.

Ouya began as a Kickstarter project last June and set records raising $8.6 million. "Ouya, to some extent, has really broken the mold on how you bring a new product to market by starting with Kickstarter and then going to venture funding," Uhrman says.

The company is the largest, and perhaps the only, project to start on a crowdfunding site and then receive major venture funding, she says. "We went to our audience first and asked them if they wanted this product," Uhrman says. "We are going to continue to seek feedback and improved the product based on that."

This additional funding "signifies that Ouya is going to be around for a long time," she says.

Additionally, it will help procure more high-def games for the system that connects to TVs. About 120 games are currently available for the system, with more due before the retail launch. About 12,000 developers are working on Ouya games, Uhrman says.

Among them: game designer Kim Swift, who previously worked on Portal and Left 4 Dead at Valve, and her studio Airtight Games are working on an Ouya exclusive, Soul Fjord Studio.

Kleiner Perkins general partner Bing Gordon, who spent a decade as chief creative officer at Electronic Arts, will join Ouya's board, also. Gordon, Uhrman says, "has a wealth of experience in the gaming industry and … just an amazing track record (with) respecting game creators and thinking outside the box. I have every expectation he will help us do the same thing in establishing us as the fourth console."

In a statement included in the announcement, Gordon said that "Ouya's open source platform creates a new world of opportunity for established and emerging independent game creators and gamers alike. There are some types of games that can only be experienced on a TV, and Ouya is squarely focused on bringing back the living room gaming experience. Ouya will allow game developers to unleash their most creative ideas and satisfy gamers craving a new kind of experience."


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Business Notes
Cablevision Shares Slammed As Q1 Results Fall Short Of Expectations
By David Lieberman, Deadline.com - May 9, 2013

The stock price is down more than 11% in pre-market trading and it’s easy to see why. The cable company reported a net loss of $16.4M, down from a $57.1M profit in the same period last year, on revenues of $1.52B, -7.5%. The Street thought that revenues would hit $1.64B. And analysts anticipated a 5 cent a share profit, not a 6 cent loss.

This morning’s release is short on details but notes that Cablevision lost about 5,000 video customers, ending the quarter with 2.89M. Video revenues fell 4.2% to $767M. The number of broadband and phone customers each increased by 23,000 respectively to 2.79M and 2.29M. Revenues for data were +8.9% to $330M and phone was +2% to $209M. Cablevision says that Hurricane Sandy was largely to blame for the soft results.

“In the second quarter we anticipate the positive impact of our recent pricing moves as well as an improved advertising outlook to lead to sequential improvement in our” adjusted operating cash flow, CEO James Dolan says.


* * * *

Business Notes
Sony Swings Back To Black With First Annual Profit In Five Years
By Nancy Tartaglione, Deadline.com - May 9, 2013

The fiscal year ended March 31 marks Sony‘s first full fiscal year in the black since 2008. The company reported earnings today in Tokyo saying it had a net profit of $458M compared to a $4.6B loss the year prior. Sales were up 4.7% and overall were boosted by a drop in the yen and the success of the film division.

Sony Pictures Entertainment saw profit jump 40.1% to $509M helped by The Amazing Spider-Man and Skyfall. Sony has sold off assets in the past year as it streamlines, but it still faces stiff competition from the likes of Apple and Samsung. However, the company is forecasting profits will rise by 16.1% for the next fiscal year with sales in the camera, game, home entertainment, music and film divisions expected to increase significantly.

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TV Notes
ABC’s ‘Castle’ Eyes Two-Season Pickup
By NELLIE ANDREEVA | Deadline.com - Wednesday May 8, 2013 @ 12:50pm PDT

As ABC’s Castle gears up for its fifth season finale, there is no doubt that the series will be renewed for next season. But I hear ABC is considering giving the quirky procedural starring Nathan Fillion a two-year pickup, which will bring it to seven seasons. That must be gratifying for Caste and its producers as the show spent the first couple of seasons on the bubble until establishing itself as a solid ratings performer with strong fan following. In fact, with help from lead-in Dancing With The Stars, Castle currently ranks as ABC’s most watched drama series. Castle is among several ABC series whose renewal is guaranteed, including Grey’s Anatomy, Scandal, Modern Family, Once Upon A Time, Revenge and The Middle, along with unscripted Shark Tank, which is already casting for next season, Dancing With The Stars, which could potentially scale back on the number of cycles per season, and The Bachelor.


Personal comment: And yet ABC Studios can't bother to release the series on Blu-ray.
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Originally Posted by mrvideo View Post

TV Notes
ABC’s ‘Castle’ Eyes Two-Season Pickup


Rats! Our hopes for a Firefly revival series are once again dashed!


Good news for Castle fans, though (of which I'm one).

post #86786 of 93675
Originally Posted by dad1153 View Post

Business Notes
Dish Network adds 66,000 broadband, 36,000 TV customers in Q1
By Richard Lawler, Endgadget.com - May 9, 2013

Even as it waits to add some terrestrial LTE to its "Seinfeld" wireless data strategy

"Men seem to flip around the television more than women. Men get that remote control in their hands, they don't even know what they're not watching.
You know we just keep going, "Rerun, that's stupid, he's stupid, go, go, go." "What are you watching?" "I don't care, I gotta keep going." "Who was that?"
"I don't know what it was, doesn't matter, it's not your fault. I gotta keep going." "I think that's a documentary on your father." "Don't care, what else is on?"

Women don't do this. Women will stop and go, "Well let me see what the show is, before I change the channel. Maybe we can nurture it, work with it, help it grow into something."

Men don't do that. Because women nest and men hunt....not that theres anything wrong with that."
post #86787 of 93675
Originally Posted by drummerguy View Post

Rats! Our hopes for a Firefly revival series are once again dashed!

After the recent, successful 'Veronica Mars'-movie kickstarter campaign I actually started to wonder if that might be a viable way to another season of 'Firefly'. I mean, why not? Firefly fans are famously fanatically faithful. It could work, but Joss and Nathan would have to be solidly behind it, and they'd have to find a way to work it into their busy schedules. Heck, I'd kick in a few bucks! smile.gif
post #86788 of 93675
I didn't know if I could start its own topic for this, but I read where Sen. John McCain has introduced legislation to force cable and satellite companies to provide a la carte programming. The proposed legislation also addresses broadcast networks from moving to pay TV, and even eliminating sports blackouts in stadiums that were publically financed.

post #86789 of 93675
TV Notes
NBC Renews 'Parks and Recreation'
By Lesley Goldberg, The Hollywood Reporter's 'Live Feed' Blog - May 9, 2013

After picking up three comedies to series early Thursday, NBC has officially renewed one of its Thursday favorites for an additional season, granting a sixth year to Parks and Recreation.

The Amy Poehler ensemble will continue on for a sixth season. The comedy about a rag-tag group of government employees was considered NBC's only slam-dunk comedy set to return to the schedule for 2013-14. The Thursday comedy has proven a launching pad for its cast, with co-stars Nick Offerman, Aziz Ansari, Rashida Jones and Chris Pratt all inking deals for films, book deals, comedy tours and more. This season, Parks and the departing The Office were the only returning NBC comedies to earn full-season pickups.

The renewal brings to two the number of series on the air forproducers Mike Schur and Dan Goor, who on Wednesday had their Andy Samberg comedy Brooklyn Nine-Nine ordered to series at Fox.

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TV Notes
NBC Picks Up 'About a Boy,' 'Crisis,' 3 Other Pilots
By Tim Kenneally, TheWrap.com - May 9, 2013

On Wednesday, NBC handed out several pilot passes, declining to pick up the high-profile "Hatfields & McCoys," "Bloodline" and five other pilots. (The network also axed its freshman drama "Deception.") Now it's time to fire up the greenlights.

The network picked up a number of pilots Thursday, including "About a Boy" and "Crisis," an individual familiar with the pickups told TheWrap.

The comedy "About a Boy," based on the Nick Hornby novel, follows a single guy primary goal in life is avoiding responsibility – until he accidentally befriends the young boy and his needy single mom who live next door.

David Walton ("Happy Endings") and Benjamin Stockham are starring. Jon Favreau directed the pilot, and serves as an executive producer. Robert DeNiro is also among the executive producers on the series.

The drama "Crisis," meanwhile comes from Rand Ravich ("Life"), who's writing and executive producing. Dermot Mulroney, Rachael Taylor and Gillian Anderson star in the series, which chronicles some of the most powerful players in Washington and Corporate America as they're pulled into a chilling international conspiracy when a disgruntled CIA agent threatens what they all hold most dear: their children.

Far Shariat is also executive producing, as is Phillip Noyce ("Salt"), who directed the pilot as well.

Among the other pilot pickups, the drama "Believe," which comes from Alfonso Cuaron and Mark Friedman, centers on a young girl with supernatural powers who's on the run from dark forces who changes the lives of the people she encounters while being protected by an unlikely guardian who was given a reprieve from death row.

J.J. Abrams and Bryan Burk are also executive producing the series, which is produced by Bad Robot Productions and Warner Bros. Television.

"Will & Grace" veteran Sean Hayes stars in "Sean Saves the World," about a divorced gay father who juggles his career, his employees, his pushy mother ("Alice" star Linda Lavin) and his teenage daughter (played by Sami Isler), who moves in with him full-time. Hayes is executive producing, as is his "Hot in Cleveland" cohort Todd Milliner, James Burrows (who directed the pilot) and Victor Fresco (who handled writing duties). Universal Television and Hazy Mills Productions are producing.

The comedy "The Family Guide" stars Parker Posey and "Law & Order" alum J.K. Simmons, looks at how a couple's breakup affects the family, which also includes a son and daughter.

"Arrested Development" star Jason Bateman is providing voiceover narrative for the series and is also among the show's executive producers, along with D.J. Nash ("Up All Night") and Jim Garavente. "Friends"-ter David Schwimmer directed the pilot for the project, which is produced by Universal Television and Aggregate Films.

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