When CBS presented their new fall drama “The Defenders” at the Paley Center for Media in Beverly Hills, the producers told the press that they were eying Dan Aykroyd to play a tough judge who Jim Belushi will face later in the season. The new Blues Brothers go way back, so creator and executive producer Kevin Kennedy thinks it will be easy to get Aykroyd. Belushi actually wanted him sooner but Kennedy didn’t want to stunt cast the pilot.
“Obviously he and Jim are friends,” Kennedy told Screen Junkies on the red carpet at the Paley center. “I believe he did a couple of “According to Jim”s. They’ve talked about it. Jim asked him. Jim suggested him to play the judge in the pilot and we said, ‘You know what? We’d like to save that because we think we could really plan for it and write something specific for it.’ So we talked about it and we asked Danny if he’d be interested in doing it. In theory, yes. It’s a matter of time. It’s a matter of making the schedules work and obviously Danny has to like the script. It’s a long way down the road but it’s a dream.”
More after the jump…
Previously on "True Blood," we found out that Sookie's part fairy. We found out Crystal's a werepanther. Jason promised to help Crystal save her crystal meth commune. Sam flashbacked on his life of crime and kicked Tommy out. Tommy broke into Sam's safe. Arlene attempted a mystical abortion (unsuccessful). Lafayette got Jesus into V. Jess got back together with Hoyt, who let her feed off of him. And Eric tricked Russell into the sunlight, (potentially) sacrificing himself to kill The King. Onto the season finale of "True Blood."
More after the jump…
You pretty much have the whole entire force of God coming at you via Kenny Powers in this new trailer for "Eastbound & Down's" second season. You also have cornrows, a dwarf, hot Mexican women, an army of jet skis, mopeds, and drunken firing squads. This is the closest we will ever come to a Kevin Federline biopic.
Check out the new trailer after the jump…
Roger Ebert isn't one to let a lack of a jaw stop him from jawing on about what movies do and don't suck ass. With "At The Movies" officially off-the-air as of August 14th, Ebert has unveiled his newest program, "Roger Ebert Presents 'At The Movies'." It's pretty much "At The Movies" but with occasional appearances from the Roger Ebert Cyborg.
Appearing as the show's main critics are Christy Lemire and Elvis Mitchell. And if Ebert's sagging chin flesh pouch and Elvis's dreadlocks don't do it for you, Kim Morgan will also appear in weekly segments.
It'll be like when the hot weather girl shows up on that fat guy's show on Telemundo. (Sun Times)
NBC’s new Thursday night comedy “Outsourced” is about an American sent to Mumbai to run a call center. We’ve all been on the phone with those guys. It’s not really funny when you’re trying to explain why your DVR is recording the wrong shows, but they’re making it funny on TV. There premiere on September 23 will basically just set up the characters. What we really want to know is how is this going to be funny week after week.
The cast of the show came to the Paley Center for Media in Beverly Hills last night to premiere the pilot for fans. We got a spot on the red carpet for some exclusive interviews and the actors promised some edgy comedy involving sexual harassment and Halloween costumes. Visit the Paley Centers in New York and L.A. this week and next for more fall TV previews.
Ben Rappaport – Todd
FX dropped a testosterone-fueled teaser for their new series "Lights Out." This footage already has me amped up and the show doesn't even premiere until January. How am I supposed to expend all my energy now? Huh?! No you tell me!
The show stars Holt McCallany as Patrick Leary, a former heavyweight champ facing various difficulties in his life outside the ring. We've seen the whole broken down boxer thing before, but I have no doubt FX will deliver a fresh take on the premise. Or I'll fight them.
Check out the teaser after the jump…
J.J. Abrams is going out with another show. He has partnered up with the younger NoBro, Jonathan, to shop a new crime show around to the networks. With names like J.J. Abrams and Jonathan Nolan attached, and work like "Lost," Dark Knight, and Inception under their collective belt, I'd think it's only a matter of time before this gets picked up. Especially if Joaquin Phoenix can sell footage of the guitarist from Spacehog pooping on him. They're just giving development deals away out there in California!! (EW)
"Battlestar Galactica" fans should be happy about this. Edward James Olmos isn’t ready to let William Adama go. The creators of the TV series are sticking with prequels but he’s got a plan to see Commander Adama again.
“If they don’t, I am,” Olmos said in a conference call today. “I’m going to go there. I’m going to go there in a graphic novel. Pretty soon I hope. I don't know. It just depends on whether people can get behind it and understand it for what it is. I think people will.”
More after the jump…
"Chuck" makes its return September 20, but we can give you hints about what’s happening in the episode airing October 25. They’re six episodes into the fourth season and we caught up with Zachary Levi while was on a break doing some PR for his Disney animated film, Tangled.
Season three ended with Chuck coming clean to Ellie (Sarah Lancaster) about his spy career, and resigning from the CIA. The fact that there’s a season four means there must be more spying and more secrets, but they’re not jumping the shark.
More after the jump…
The print campaign for "Dexter" has always been eye-grabbing and awesome, and the new poster art for season five does not disappoint either. We already reported that the new season will follow in the footsteps of The Karate Kid 2, Halloween 2, and the Back To The Future sequels by picking up right where the action ended last season. Looks like this poster is doing the same. So much for spoiler warnings. This baby will soon be seen on billboards, bus stops, subway platforms, baseball stadiums, tramp stamps, magazines, banner ads, and the lunchboxes of the criminally insane.
Melinda Clarke is one actress you may know as Jerry Seinfeld's girl on the famous 'Muffin Tops' episode. Since then Melinda has made a name for herself playing deadly courgarish women on "The O.C." and "CSI," and this week she'll be continuing down the sexy/deadly path of television with the premiere of "Nikita."
A word from Melinda: "I'm getting a lot of roles as women who are very powerful. I think that's a reflection of me as a person."
I don't think "O.C." fans would have a problem calling your character a bitch. Not quite the reflection she's looking for, I'm sure.
More pics of Melinda after the jump…
Amy Poehler will host the 36th season premiere of "Saturday Night Live" on September 25 with musical guest Katy Perry. That's on a Saturday. Considering that everyone is either leaving (Will Forte) or getting fired (possibly Jenny Slate), the "SNL" alum and star of "Parks and Recreation" might have to calm the nerves of newbie cast members.
Hopefully it won't turn out like last year's season premiere, in which Jenny Slate uttered the word "f*ckin'" on live television. You can't do that kind of stuff, Jenny Slate! Now her head is on Lorne Michaels's chopping block. I don't watch the show anymore, but I've been told by people who do that Slate is groan-worthy. If you're going to shoot off at the mouth like sailor you should at least get people laughing. Off with her head, Lorne! (Deadline)
Bianca Lawson is no stranger to television, having appeared most recently in "The Vampire Diaries" all the way back to "Buffy the Vampire Slayer." See a trend here? She also played Megan on "Saved by the Bell: The New Class," the spin-off that only Screech and Belding stuck around for.
A word from Bianca: "I want to go to Rome. I want to go to Italy so bad."
Then do it with that sweet "Saved by the Bell" money. And take Dustin Diamond along with you.
The new fall TV season is upon us. If you’ve been following my sage advice for fall TV viewing of the new shows, you’ve probably been eagerly anticipating my last installment in the series. Well anticipate no more. Here it is. I saved the sci-fi/supernatural/fantasy shows for last because…it was the last category I picked out of the hat. Regardless, it’s an important segment of your TV viewing and one show deserves your attention. Another show does not.
Whether you are a science fiction/comic book fan or not, these shows will be one of your choices this fall. Read on…
WATCH IT: “No Ordinary Family” (ABC), Tuesdays at 8 pm (ET)
My favorite media event of the entire year is the Television Critics Association press tour. For two weeks, every network and cable station brings their talent to have presentations with their stars and producers for the TV critics. At night they host parties where you can just roam around and find celebrities to pester.
Comcast Networks held their party outdoors in the Oasis Garden at the Beverly Hilton Hotel. When I found G4 “Attack of the Show’s” Alison Haislip, she was shivering in a clingy black skirt. At least it wasn’t as bad as the lingerie models floating in the fountain. I found Haislip a heat lamp where we could chat about guest hosting for Olivia Munn, old school video games, and technology.
Screen Junkies: Were you always grooming yourself to fill in on “Attack of the Show” or was there an opening you seized?
It's the Friday before the holiday weekend so news is slower than my bowl movements when I'm on vacation. I could bore you with more casting news that you don't care about, or I could show you the dance remix of the Crazy Coffee Lady.
In case you're not up to date, the other day a video hit the interwebz of a woman giving an animated testimony of her brush with death. She was getting coffee at a Shell station when two robbers busted in. I'll let her explain the rest because I won't do it justice.
The original video is after the jump.
Oren Peli, the writer-director of the indie hit Paranormal Activity is looking to get his feet wet in the world of television. Peli is close to landing a deal with ABC to bring his original drama idea "The River" to primetime. According to Deadline, "The River follows the story of a famed adventurer/TV personality who goes missing and is presumed dead deep in the Amazon. His friends and crew go to look for him on their state-of-the-art research vessel." The show would be shot shakey-cam-style (cinema verite to all you elitists) like Paranormal Activity, a trend that's quickly becoming tiresome.
I'm not sure how you make an entire series out of that premise, but I'll give them the benefit of the doubt. I'm more concerned about this "state-of-the-art" research vessel. Such words make James Cameron's ears ring. If he gets word that people are doing "research" near "water" he could take the whole thing over and turn it into an Omnimax documentary about indigenous jungle wildlife.
From hooking up with Turtle on this season's "Entourage" to banging "The Sopranos" son AJ, Dania Ramirez is one foxy babe that gets around on HBO hit series. She'll also be giving Joseph Gordon-Levitt the Premium Rush soon in theaters too. Originally from Dominican Republic, Dania shows that caribbean isn't just a place for old, drunk pirates anymore.
A word from Dania: "I love everyone, but certain people more!"
You better not be talking about your family and friends because that is so cliché.
More pics of Dania after the jump.
Frank Darabont has responded to the news of an early pick-up of "The Walking Dead" season two with an interjectory "Slow your roll, homeboys." It seems that the news from the other day that AMC has already renewed the zombie survival drama for a second season was premature. Darabont himself tells AICN:
"Shooting in February? As tired as I am right now getting season one through post, I'd rather shoot myself."
There you have it from the man himself. No greenlight for season two as of yet. We'll keep you posted when AMC eventually does go all Deerhunter and place the cold, hard steel in Darabont's hand. You can however catch the premiere of season one on October 31st. If you watch, a second season is much more likely.
If you think the new “Nikita” is just another Hollywood remake, you might be interested to know how much effort has gone into proving you wrong. The forthcoming CW series…
If you were a nerd with an affinity for the occult between the years of 1988 and 1996, this news may upset. Warner Bros. Television is moving forward with plans to adapt Neil Gaiman's "Sandman." Also, condolences on being a nerd.
It's not all bad news though. "Supernatural" creator Eric Kripke is said to be Warners' #1 choice to head up the project. We don't write about "Supernatural" much around here but it is a mostly-solid show. Kripke is immensely talented, and is certainly capable of building the intricate world required to pull this off. Unless he's not available. In which case, you could always get Tim Kring. That would be good too, right guys? Guys?? (THR)
Move it along. Nothing to see here.
With a second season already confirmed before the first has even aired, AMC's "The Walking Dead" is shaping up to be a monster hit. Thomas Jane agrees with that point, and is eager to get the chance to hang around with BFF Frank Darabont and his stiff, rotting corpses. When the series was first announced, I'd thought Jane in the lead would be a no-brainer, if he could work his schedule out. Turns out, that was the plan back when the series was expected to go to HBO. When it ended up going to AMC, his inclusion fell through. Now, he may get the chance to bash in some zombie skulls afterall.
"That show is going to be a a big f*cking hit. I've seen it and is fan-f*cking-tastic. I'm going to come on and do a guest thing. Maybe play a bad guy. I'm not going to be a zombie. That's too much make up."
Jane is polarizing for a lot of people, but I think he'd be a great addition to the cast. As long as he's not expected to do any crying scenes. (NBC Washington)
Marisol Nichols is a Chicago native with a mixed blend of Hungarian and Mexican ancestry. She got her start in the biz as the final Audrey Griswold in Vegas Vacation. Since then she has moved up the Hollywood ladder with spots on the Series "Cold Case," "24," and this past summer's "The Gates."
A word from Marisol: "Working everyday with werewolves, witches and vampires. How much fun is that?!"
More pics of Marisol after the jump…
"Could we have this removed, please?"
Here's some nutso casting that seems to be torn from Peter Berg's playbook (aka left field), "The Office" showrunner Paul Lieberstein wants to replace the departing Steve Carell with professional actor/cleaner Harvey Keitel. Though no talks have begun, the plan would be to bring him in as an old salesman who attempted to retire, but was pulled back into the workforce after the stock market collapse. Speaking of Keitel's comedy potential, Lieberstein had this to say:
"He's a real tough guy, but I saw him in 'Life on Mars' and I saw a lot more comedy in his work, just little slivers of it, little things he would do that made me think he's capable of a lot more than what (he's done)."
Also, he did Little Nicky. So, you know he's not above this. (Reuters)
I normally don't report on people shopping projects around to networks, even if those people are J.J. Abrams, but damn is it a slow news day. So hey, Abrams and former "Lost" writer Elizabeth Sarnoff are waving Sarnoff's drama pilot "Alcatraz" under the nose of hungry execs.
Not much is known about the script except that it takes place on the San Francisco Bay island that once housed the worst of the worst offenders. A few years ago, Ed Harris took over Alcatraz, and Nic Cage had to bring him down with Sean Connery, but the show most likely won't recognize those events. Poisonous green balls or not, someone will buy this script quicker than you can say, "Abrams equals profit." (Deadline)
Fox has turned to Jamie Foxx to fill the offensively-unfunny-sketch-comedy-show shaped hole left by the cancellation of "Mad TV." The network picked up a twelve-episode order of "The Jamie Foxx Project," a half-hour sketch series that will skewer pop culture with a diverse cast of comedians, for mid-season.
Hopefully this won't delay the Skank Robbers film we were promised. Because we still want that. (Deadline)
"Tell them no MSG."
"Robot Chicken" creators Seth Green and Matthew Senreich have decided to take the main premise of Matthew McConaughey classic EdTV and turn it into a interactive reality show. The duo is teaming up with Ford Motor Co. and Sprint Nextel for "ControlTV." The series, which will follow six weeks in the life of a guy in his twenties, enables the audience to vote, in real time, on every aspect of his life—from what he wears and eats, to where he works, to who he dates. What they can't decide on is what kind of car he drives and phone he uses. Ford and Sprint got the lock on those.
They say the audience can vote on every aspect of this guy's life, but I'm sure we'll get some pretty standard choices. What should he eat? A) Tuna Sandwich B) Cheeseburger C) Chicken Soup. What the demented viewing audience will want is an option D, which would be somewhere inbetween dog sh*t and spoiled milk. Hey, if you're going to let us decide, don't cuff our hands behind our backs. (Deadline)
Amanda Righetti, the red-headed eye candy of CBS's "The Mentalist," comes from a Utah-raised family with 7 siblings (6 sisters and 1 brother). That makes me jealous that I wasn't raised by a family of hot gingers in the mountains of Utah.
A word from Amanda: "Guys blow my looks up more than I ever would. I guess I have issues with myself. I don't think I'm as pretty as everybody thinks."
Perfect. That means guys with slightly below average looks still have a chance.
More pics of Amanda after the jump…
It seems like everything’s changed for Dexter this year. SPOILER ALERT!!! for people waiting to watch Season Four on DVD, but he’s lost his wife and his executive producers in one fell swoop. Chip Johannessen takes over for departing Clyde Phillips and Melissa Rosenberg, but continues their story from the death of Rita.
Over the summer, Johannessen told the Television Critics Association that new guest stars are coming in who will end up helping Dexter deal with grief. We’ve got Peter Weller (Robocop), Julia Stiles, Jonny Lee Miller and Shawn Hatosy. Could they each represent one of the five stages of grief?
More after the jump…
Don't be distracted by his off-putting facial hair. Conan O'Brien has a message of utmost importance to share with you. Namely, the name of his new show. Much like his parents did 47 years ago, he's made the regrettable decision of naming it "Conan." This show is going to sooo get its ass kicked during recess. (Vulture)
Check out O'Brien making the official announcement after the jump…