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Channel Surfing: "True Blood" Finds Its Debbie Pelt, Emily Rose Heads to Syfy's "Haven," "Ugly Betty," and More

Welcome to your Friday morning television briefing.

Entertainment Weekly's Michael Ausiello is reporting that Brit Morgan (The Middleman) has been cast in Season Three of HBO's True Blood, where she has landed the pivotal role of Debbie Pelt, the "psycho ex-girlfriend of werewolf Alcide (Joe Manganiello)." (Entertainment Weekly's Ausiello Files)

SPOILER! In other True Blood-related news, TV Guide Magazine's Will Keck is reporting that an upcoming storyline will involve an Eric flashback to the year 900 A.D., where viewers will meet Eric's father, a Swedish Viking king named Ulfrick. Casting is currently underway for the role. (TV Guide Magazine)

Emily Rose (John From Cincinnati) has been cast as the lead in Syfy's supernatural series Haven, which is based on Stephen King's novella "The Colorado Kid." Rose will play FBI Agent Audrey Parker, who is sent to the titular Maine community in order to investigate a murder and finds herself caught up in a series of supernatural events. Project, from E1 Entertainment and Universal Networks International, is executive produced by Scott Shepard, Lloyd Segan, Shawn Piller, John Morayniss, and Noreen Halpern, along with writers Sam Ernst and Jim Dunn. (Variety)

Entertainment Weekly's Michael Ausiello talks to Ugly Betty creator/executive producer Silvio Horta about the upcoming end of the ABC dramedy series. "The braces are coming off," Horta told Ausiello about an upcoming March episode in which Betty is sent on a metaphysical journey about what her life might have been like. "There’s a big fantasy element to it. We’ll ask the question, 'What if Betty had perfect teeth?'" Also coming up on the series: a new job opportunity for Betty, a wedding, the return of Wilhelmina's first love, and much more. (Entertainment Weekly's Ausiello Files)

HBO is developing comedy series Tilda, about a "powerful female online showbiz journalist with a no-holds-barred style." [Editor: Hmmm, sound like anyone we know?] Bill Condon (Dreamgirls) and Cynthia Mort (Tell Me You Love Me) are attached to write and executive produce the project, with Condon also attached to direct, should it be ordered the pilot. (Hollywood Reporter)

Broadcasting & Cable's Melissa Grego is reporting that NBC is considering airing the 62nd Primetime Emmy Awards telecast live across the country on August 29th. The move to end the tape-delay comes on the heels of NBC's decision last month to air the Golden Globes live in all timezones across the country. "According to sources, NBC is in the process of discussing a similar live Emmys scenario with affiliates," writes Grego. "Spokespeople for NBC and the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, which administers the top TV awards, declined to comment." (Broadcasting & Cable)

Syfy has acquired the basic cable rights to BBC's Merlin, the first season of which NBC aired last summer. Syfy will debut the fantasy series in April and will air the first two seasons of the series. "A viewer favorite after only one season, Merlin will be a strong addition to our schedule this spring," said Thomas Vitale, EVP of programming. "We expect its enthralling imaginative vision, engaging young talent, and rich production values to resonate with our audience." BBC, meanwhile, will launch the third season of Merlin in September in the UK. (Hollywood Reporter)

Pilot casting alert! Laura Prepon (That '70s Show) will star opposite Danny Wallace in ABC comedy pilot Awkward Situations for Men, where she will play Meg, the wife of British television personality Danny Wallace who moves to the US and who takes a job at a smoothie job with a boss (Matt Letscher) whom she shares a romantic past. Bret Harrison (Reaper) has landed the lead role in FOX's untitled Adam Goldberg single-camera comedy, where he will play a member of a team who crack computer security systems. Michael Kelly (The Sopranos) has been added to the cast of CBS' currently untitled Criminal Minds spinoff; he'll play a former gang member who joins a team of profilers. (Hollywood Reporter)

E! Online's Kristin Dos Santos is reporting that Michelle Trachtenberg will return to Gossip Girl for the current season's final episode, while Gossip Girl's Connor Paolo is set to make a guest appearance on Trachtenberg's NBC medical drama Mercy. "I'm sure Georgina will be seeking vengeance," Trachtenberg told Dos Santos. "They haven't written it yet, but she was tricked and sent away, after all. And that li'l lady certainly doesn't like to be tricked." (E! Online's Watch with Kristin)

ABC has given a pilot order to single-camera comedy pilot Wright vs. Wrong about a female Republican political commentator. Project, from Sony Pictures Television and Tantamount, is written by Stephanie Weir (MadTV), who will executive produce alongside Eric Tannenbaum, Kim Tannenbaum, and Mitch Hurwitz. (Hollywood Reporter)

BBC America announced that it will premiere the second season of comedy The Inbetweeners on Wednesday, February 24th at 9:30 pm ET/PT, a week after the first season wraps its run. (via press release)

Fox Television Studios has signed a two-year first-look deal with documentary filmmaker RJ Cutler (The September Issue) under which he will develop scripted projects for broadcast and cable, a first for the director who has seen success on the small screen with such unscripted projects as 30 Days and American High. (Variety)

VH1 has ordered an untitled dramedy telepic about two twenty-something African-American women in Atlanta, one a wannabe fashion mogul, the other a former dancer. Project, from writer Stacy Littlejohn, is executive produced by Queen Latifah, Sha-Kim Compere, Maggie Malina, and Jeff Olde. The cabler is treating the telepic as a backdoor pilot; should it be successful, it could be ordered to series. (Variety)

Nickelodeon is developing an untitled comedy, from executive producers Joe Simpson and Tommy Lynch and writer Emily Cutler, that will be loosely based on Simpson's life, revolving around a psychologist raising two daughters in Texas. (Hollywood Reporter)

Telemundo executive Enrique Guillen has been moved to NBC, where he will take over as VP of alternative programming and production. NBC also promoted Nicole Silveira to manager of alternative series and specials. Both report to Paul Telegdy. (Variety)

Michael Grindon, Sony Pictures Television's head of international television, will leave the studio in March after a 24-year tenure. Move comes after much of his oversight was taken over by Steve Mosko in a corporate restructuring. (Variety)

Stay tuned.


The CineManiac said…
How About Erik's real dad, or at least actor Alexander Skarsgard's real dad, the fantastic Stellen Skarsgard?
Hannah Moon said…
Hurray for The Inbetweeners! So happy we don't have to wait ages to see the second season!
Beckacheck said…
CineManiac, I was hoping for Stellan Skarsgard as Eric's dad, too. Apparently though, (according to E!) that's not going to happen.

Maybe Mads Mikkelsen - the Bond Villain in Casino Royale - would be good? I loved him in "After the Wedding" - and that won the Oscar a few years ago.
He's Danish, not Swedish, but the guy who played Godric was Danish too, I think.

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