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Channel Surfing: "Ashes to Ashes" Renewed for Third (and Final) Season, Gilles Marini to "Brothers and Sisters," Bates to Chase "Alice," and More

Welcome to your Monday morning television briefing.

Ashes to Ashes has been recommissioned for a third and final series by BBC One. Series, which airs in the US on BBC America, will return next year with its final season, which will offer "intriguing twists and turns to keep viewers guessing about the final outcome," said co-creator/writer Ashley Pharoah, and will complete the journey of Alex Drake (Keeley Hawes) as well as reveal just who Gene Hunt (Phillip Glenister) really is. (BBC News)

Catch this interview with Glenister speaking to BBC Breakfast this morning about the third and final season of Ashes to Ashes:

Dancing with the Stars' Gilles Marini will be sticking around on ABC. The Dancing runner-up has signed on to a multiple-episode story arc on Brothers and Sisters, where he will play a potential love interest for Rachel Griffith's Sarah Walker. (Variety)

Kathy Bates (The Day the Earth Stood Still) will co-star in Sci Fi's upcoming mini-series Alice, Nick Willing's reimagining of Lewis Carroll's "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland" and "Through the Looking-Glass," which will provide the basis for a dark journey into a strange realm, much like Willing did with Sci Fi's Tin Man. Joining Bates will be Crash's Caterina Scorsone, Colm Meaney (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine), Tim Curry (The Colour of Magic), Alessandro Juliani (Battlestar Galactica), Philip Winchester (Crusoe), Matt Frewer (Watchmen), and Primeval's Andrew Lee Potts. (Chicago Tribune's The Watcher)

Matt Letscher (Eli Stone), William Fichtner (Prison Break), and Scott Caan (Ocean's Eleven) have been cast in multiple-episode story arcs on Season Six of HBO's Entourage. Letscher will play arrogant studio executive Dan Coakley who is assigned to Johnny Drama's TV series, Fichtner will play Phil Yagoda, "a slick TV producer who had a hit teen series in the 1990s and is trying to remake it with Drama," and Caan will play Scotty Lavin, a "cocky and highly competitive manager who acts tough and trash talks to cover up how insecure he is and sees E (Kevin Connolly) as a threat." (Hollywood Reporter)

Wondering why Dominic Monaghan popped up in those new ABC promos and if it's in any way related to a possible return to Lost? Entertainment Weekly's Michael Ausiello has the scoop: "The real reason Monaghan is featured in that cheeky spot is because he's actually joining the cast of another hour-long ABC drama series as a full-time series regular. And the net's brass want it to be a surprise." So what series could it be? Grey's Anatomy? Flash Forward? Hmmm... (Entertainment Weekly's Ausiello Files)

Producers of drama series In Treatment will meet with HBO executives this week to discuss the possibility of a third season, though HBO Programming Group president Michael Lombardo stressed that no decision has been made about renewal. Meanwhile the pay cabler will begin shooting new series Treme in New Orleans this fall, production begins on the pilot for Martin Scorsese-produced period drama Boardwalk Empire this week, and HBO is developing a series based on Steve Bogira's non-fiction book "Courtroom 302" with executive producers Tom Fontana and James Yoshimura. This summer the channel will feature the launch of Hung and the return of True Blood and Entourage. “We had unwittingly maneuvered ourselves into a little bit of a box,” said Lombardo about HBO's post-Sex and the City years. “Our programming started to skew a little ponderous. We are as excited about a show like Treme as we are about Hung, and they're very different shows.”(Broadcasting and Cable)

ABC will be launching reality competition series Shark Tank (the US version of British format Dragons Den) on Sunday, August 9th at 9 pm ET/PT, in order to use the return of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire as a lead-in. Series will then run on Sundays through August 23rd, after which it will move to its regular timeslot of Tuesdays at 8 pm on August 25th. (Futon Critic)

Days of Our Lives' Rachel Melvin will guest star (with the option to recur) on Season Four of NBC's Heroes, where she will play Annie, another college roommate of Claire Bennett (Hayden Panettiere), along with Californication's Madeline Zima. (Hollywood Reporter)

Nick at Nite has acquired rights to all 151 episodes of FOX's Malcolm in the Middle from 20th Century Fox Television, which it will air Sundays through Thursdays at 8 pm ET/PT beginning July 5th. (Variety)

The CW has opted not to launch its unscripted series Blonde Charity Mafia on July 7th as planned but will instead hold off on the series launch until later next season. (Futon Critic)

Picture This Television has signed a production deal with 14-year-old chef Greg Grossman to develop an unscripted series based around the life of the professional teenage chef. (Hollywood Reporter)

Stay tuned.


Veronica said…
I'm thrilled that there will be a third season of Ashes to Ashes, even if it's the final one. I think it's smart to wrap things up while the story is still interesting and unique and I can't wait to find out the answers behind the man that is Gene Hunt!
Jules said…
Have you seen the last two episodes of s2, Jace?

Really amazing stuff!

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