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Channel Surfing: HBO's Miraculous Year Lands Lee Pace, Team Darlton Talk Lost, Friday Night Lights, and More

Welcome to your Friday morning television briefing.

According to Entertainment Weekly's Michael Ausiello, HBO's drama pilot Miraculous Year, from executive producer Kathryn Bigelow just got even more miraculous. The project, which is described as "an examination of a New York family as seen through the eyes of a charismatic, self-destructive Broadway composer," just signed a slew of stars to round out its cast, including former Pushing Daisies star Lee Pace, Linus Roache (Law & Order), and Stark Sands (Generation Kill)... who will join the already high-wattage cast of Eddie Redmayne, Hope Davis, Frank Langella, and Patti LuPone. (Entertainment Weekly's Ausiello Files)

E! Online's Megan Masters spoke to former Lost showrunners Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse about the ABC drama's Emmy nominations now that the series has wrapped up its six-season run... and why they chose to break their radio silence. "Every year after the finale we've always gone into radio silence just because we're pretty sick of ourselves, so we can't even imagine what everybody else thinks of us," said Lindelof. "And we've always broken our radio silence at Comic-Con, and this year we're obviously not going to Comic-Con because it's about promoting something to come. The idea of looking back on the show is not something we were particularly interested in, looking back at ourselves. But around a week ago, Carlton and I had both been on vacation and received an email from someone at ABC asking [if we would] be willing to do some press. And that was our first contact with each other where it was like, alright, of course. If the show gets recognized, it feels totally appropriate for us to express out feelings about how awesome that is. There's no reason to not talk about Lost ever again, it's just not in our DNA. Had the show not been nominated for anything, I'm sure Carlton and I would have emerged at some appropriate time over the summer to talk about—" "To begin begging for work at Starbucks," Cuse cut him off, laughing. (E! Online's Watch with Kristin)

Elsewhere, Deadline's Nellie Andreeva also caught up with Team Darlton to discuss the 12 Emmy nominations that Lost racked up yesterday and on the divisive series finale. "I do feel we spent so much time talking about how we were gonna end the show (we started getting questions about that right after the pilot) so the fact that we ended it on our own terms makes us feel absolutely no regrets," said Lindelof. "We acknowledge that it was always a polarizing show that created many theories and made fans passionate about it. It wouldn’t be Lost if everyone loved the finale, but we’re pretty pleased." (Deadline)

Entertainment Weekly's Michael Ausiello caught up with Friday Night Lights's Connie Britton, who received an Emmy nomination alongside her co-star Kyle Chandler yesterday and who thought that "there must be some mistake." (Aw.) Asked whether she had received an interesting phone calls after the nomination, Britton replied, "I just had a really fun phone call with our executive producer Sarah Aubrey. She works with Peter Berg and has been involved with Friday Night Lights since the movie, and is arguably one of the most passionate people ever about this show. She was like, 'I was doing Pilates and I just unabashedly started jumping up and down!' It’s just exciting. We’re about to wrap the show—we’re two weeks away from wrapping the show—and it’s been really melancholy. I’m just feeling it. I’m feeling it approaching—the end is near. So this just feels like such an unexpected surprise and present." (Entertainment Weekly's Ausiello Files)

Remember the rumor floating about the other day that the star of Vicky Cristina Barcelona would be dropping by Glee as a rock star who befriends Artie? Apparently, there's no truth to that story whatsoever, according to Los Angeles Times's Maria Elena Fernandez. A 20th Century Fox Television spokesperson has denied reports that Javier Bardem--and Snoop Dogg--would be appearing on FOX's Glee next season. (Los Angeles Times' Show Tracker)

With Steve Carell set to leave NBC's The Office at the end of next season, one of the show's producers has her sights on his replacement. Entertainment Weekly's Michael Ausiello talks to co-executive producer Mindy Kaling about her pick to take over as the boss in Scranton. "I’d love to see Rainn Wilson in that position,” said Kaling. “Dwight has become so nuanced — you actually care about him now. I think if [we did a good job laying the groundwork] this coming season, he would be a fantastic boss... But that’s my dream. It certainly hasn’t been approved by people that are more powerful than me and who make those kinds of decisions." (Entertainment Weekly's Ausiello Files)

ABC has announced premiere dates for all of its new and returning fall series (except, that is, for Body of Proof and Secret Millionaire):

September 20th:
Dancing with the Stars

September 21st:
Detroit 1-8-7

September 22nd:
The Middle
Better With You (formerly known as Better Together)
Modern Family
Cougar Town
The Whole Truth

September 23rd:
My Generation
Grey's Anatomy
Private Practice

September 24th:

September 26th:
America's Funniest Home Videos
Extreme Makeover: Home Edition
Desperate Housewives
Brothers & Sisters

September 28th:
No Ordinary Family
Dancing with the Stars Results Show

You'll notice that while ABC did change the the title of one of its series, that series isn't Cougar Town, which will keep its title going into its sophomore season after all. (via press release)

Comedy Central has ordered a script for multi-camera comedy Brothers From Another Mother, which will feature comedians Ralphie May and Lavell Crawford as long-time friends who discover that, despite their racial differences, they are actually brothers when their father dies and leaves them his barbeque business. (Hollywood Reporter)

Lewis fans, take heart: ITV has ordered a fifth season of Lewis, comprised of four episodes. (Broadcast)

File under litigious: Hayden Christensen is using USA, claiming that the network stole his idea about a concierge doctor who makes house calls to his wealthy patients and turned it into its dramedy series Royal Pains, now in its second season. Christesen and his brother Tove filed the lawsuit in New York District Court. "The brothers allegedly brought the idea for a concierge doctor show titled Housecall to USA and met with Alex Pepiol, who at the time was manager of original scripted series programing at the network," writes The Hollywood Reporter's Eriq Gardner. "They say they also sent him materials including a treatment, character biographies and show ideas." (Hollywood Reporter)

Season Four of reality series LA Ink will kick off on TLC on Wednesday, August 11th at 10 pm ET/PT. (via press release)

Stay tuned.


Barbara said…
Now I am good and confused. Connie Britton's comment about "wrapping" that great show FNL leads me to ask: is the season that we are now watching the penultimate one? It sounds like it...And are we to expect the same sort of timetable for viewing the season that it seems they are near to completing---that is, the show first being broadcast on Direct TV and then playing on NBC sometime next summer? I wonder if the attention that the two leads' nominations are bringing to the show might change things.
AskRachel said…
Wow. I'm very excited about Miraculous Year. What a cast!
Katie A said…
Thanks for the Lewis update! I'm glad I'm not the only PBS obsessed Anglophile =)
Anonymous said…
Barbara, Connie is referring to the fifth season that is wrapping shooting that will air on Direct TV this fall and presumably on NBC in 2011. The episodes currently airing on NBC (which aired on Direct TV last fall - winter) are apart of the fourth season. So you've got another 13 episodes before the show ends.

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