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The Daily Beast: "HBO Axes Michael Mann/David Milch Drama Luck"

Nick Nolte in HBO's 'Luck', Gusmano Cesaretti / HBO After the death of a third horse on set, HBO has announced the end of Luck . Over at The Daily Beast, you can read my take on HBO's decision to cancel Luck , just weeks after a second-season renewal on the Michael Mann-David Milch horseracing drama. Luck has appeared to run out for HBO's Luck. Following a third horse death on the set of the racetrack drama, as first reported Tuesday by TMZ, premium cable network HBO today announced that it has decided to stop production on the low-rated show, citing animal-safety concerns. Luck, created by Michael Mann and David Milch, had already been renewed for a second season, despite meager ratings. “The two of us loved this series, loved the cast, crew and writers," Milch and Mann wrote in a joint statement. "This has been a tremendous collaboration and one that we plan to continue in the future.” The nine episodes comprising Season 1 of Luck were already

Justified, Downton Abbey, Shameless, and More: What to Watch on TV This Winter

With the return of Justified, Downton Abbey , and Shameless , and the launch of Touch, Luck , and others, I take a look at what’s coming to your TV this winter over at The Daily Beast, in my latest feature, "What to Watch on TV This Winter." (To get right to my thoughts on the 18 shows included and bypass the intro, you can click here .) January brings some fresh opportunities for the broadcast and cable networks to try and lure you back with new and returning programming. Among the highlights: costume drama fiends will be lined up for the Jan. 8 return of British drama Downton Abbey; FX’s Justified returns for a third season of Kentucky shootouts on Jan. 17; HBO’s cult comedy Eastbound and Down returns on Feb. 19; auteurs David Milch and Michael Mann unite for HBO’s Luck, launching Jan. 29; and Kiefer Sutherland returns to television with Fox’s Touch, which will get a preview broadcast on Jan. 25. (It officially premieres on March 19.) Absolutely Fabulous, the outrageou

Channel Surfing: Amber Tamblin Checks Into House, Betty White Heads to Community, Dolph Lundgren Vs. Chuck, Luck, and More

Welcome to your Thursday morning television briefing. Entertainment Weekly 's Michael Ausiello and Andy Patrick are reporting that Amber Tamblyn ( The Unusuals ) will join the cast of FOX's House while Olivia Wilde is shooting feature film Cowboys and Aliens for Universal. Tamblyn has signed on to appear in a multiple-episode story arc where she will play " a whip-smart med student House (Hugh Laurie) recruits for his diagnostic team — despite the fact that she isn’t yet 100 percent qualified to treat patients" who will "have to find a way to adjust to her new mentor’s unique bedside manner." [Editor: as someone still mourning the loss of ABC's The Unusuals , I'm glad to see Tamblyn heading back to network television.] ( Entertainment Weekly 's Ausiello Files ) Is there anything Betty White can't do? The octogenarian actress, hot off a streak that includes hosting Saturday Night Live , a slew of films, and a new sitcom ( Hot in Cleveland

Channel Surfing: Syfy Eyes "BSG" Spin-off and "Three Inches," More "Glee," Mia Maestro Gets "Cutthroat," Paula Abdul to ABC, and More

Welcome to your Tuesday morning television briefing. Syfy is said to be exploring the possibility of spinning off its Battlestar Galactica franchise once more and is said to be developing another spin-off series--besides for the currently airing Caprica --that would this time be set in space. "We're looking for other ways to spin off Battlestar beyond Caprica ," Syfy's Mark Stern told The Hollywood Reporter . "That world is so rich. We're sitting down with (executive producer) Ron Moore and his team. It would not necessarily be a traditional series." No other details were available. The cabler also ordered a 90-minute pilot for drama Three Inches , from writer Harley Peyton and executive producer Bob Cooper. Project, from Fox Television Studios, revolves around a slacker who can move objects three inches with his mind and who teams up with other people who have useless superpowers. ( Hollywood Reporter ) Entertainment Weekly 's Michael Ausiello i

Channel Surfing: Cuthbert Gets "Happy Endings," Betty White to Host "SNL," Madsen Clocks in for "24," Acker Finds "Human Target," and More

Welcome to your Thursday morning television briefing. Elisha Cuthbert ( 24 ) has been cast as the female lead in ABC comedy pilot Happy Endings , where she will play Alex, a woman whose relationship ends at the alter and she and her would-have-been husband have to figure out how they and their friends can keep their relationship intact. Project, from writer David Caspe, directors Anthony and Joe Russo, and Sony Pictures Television, also stars Adam Pally, Casey Wilson, Eliza Coupe, and Damon Wayans, Jr. ( Hollywood Reporter ) Facebook has spoken and Lorne Michaels has listened: 88-year-old Betty White ( The Proposal ) will be hosting NBC's Saturday Night Live on May 8th. "It took on a groundswell," Michaels told USA Today 's Gary Levin. "It isn't something we would have said no to, [but the campaign] validated that... It was the outpouring of affection from fans, and we feel the same way." White's episode will also feature former SNL -ers Tina Fey

Channel Surfing: "Lost" Producers Talk Candidates, Nolte Circles HBO's "Luck," Cavanagh Lands "Edgar Floats," Delany Deal Done for "Body," and More

Welcome to your Tuesday morning television briefing. TVGuide.com's Natalie Abrams talks to Lost executive producers/showrunners Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse about candidates, numbers, and the flash-sideways. "The concept of the candidates is really central to the final season of the show," Cuse told Abrams. "Jacob is dead so that leaves a significant problem for the people on the island. Who is destined to be the person who is protecting this place?" Lindelof went further, stating that we'll get answers in the next few weeks about why these particular people have been brought to the island. "One of the big questions of this show is: Why were these people brought to this island?" said Lindelof. "At least now we have some sense — if Jacob is responsible for bringing them there — that it has something to do with the fact that he's been observing them for quite some time. We now have information that he had this lighthouse, that he was ab

Channel Surfing: Dustin Hoffman Gambles on "Luck" for HBO, Julie Benz Suits Up for Superhero Pilot, "Modern Family" Vacation, "FlashForward," and More

Welcome to your Tuesday morning television briefing. Dustin Hoffman ( Last Chance Harvey ) will star in HBO's David Milch and Michael Mann-executive produced drama pilot Luck , which is set in the world of horseracing. Hoffman, will play the lead, Chester "Ace" Bernstein, described as "a man in his late 60s just released from four years in prison who's autodidactic, intelligent, and deeply involved in gambling." Hoffman is the latest cast addition to the high-profile drama pilot, following the attachments of Dennis Farina and John Ortiz last week. Project, being eyed for a potential January launch on the pay cabler, is written by David Milch and will be directed by Michael Mann, both of whom executive produce alongside Carolyn Strauss. ( Variety ) Dexter 's Julie Benz has signed on to star opposite Michael Chiklis in ABC superhero drama pilot No Ordinary Family , about a family that find themselves developing new abilities. In the project, written by G