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Channel Surfing: Cliffhanger-Less Ending for "Pushing Daisies," Brooke Smith on "Grey's" Firing, Sonya Walger is the Constant for "Flash Forward"

Welcome to your Wednesday morning television briefing.

Pushing Daisies fans can at least look forward to one thing: closure. The series finale was said to contain a cliffhanger ending for our girl Chuck but no more, according to Entertainment Weekly's Michael Ausiello, who learned that Bryan Fuller and Co. were able to tack on a different opening and ending to the episode in post. "We're doing a lot of work in post to shape it so that it is satisfying for the audience," said Fuller. Ausiello also reports that there are rumors swirling that ABC may burn off the final three episodes in a single night. I don't know about you but I'm already missing Daisies. (Entertainment Weekly's Ausiello Files)

Looks like she's always the constant: Lost's Sonya Walger has been cast as the female lead in ABC's drama pilot Flash Forward. She'll play Olivia, the wife of newly sober FBI agent Mark Benford (Joseph Fiennes), who is troubled by the vision she has of her future, one in which she shares her life with another man. Also joining the cast: Christine Woods (Welcome to the Captain) who will play computer-savvy FBI agent Janis Hawk, who unearths a vitally important clue about the worldwide blackouts. (Hollywood Reporter)

Fired Grey's Anatomy staffer Brooke Smith says she has "no hard feelings" about her recent dismissal from the ABC drama last month and is currently writing a pilot script with Deadwood creator David Milch. "There's no hard feelings," said Smith. "I have other projects now, so it is what it is." (US Magazine)

A new batch of Battlestar Galactica webisodes entitled "The Face of the Enemy" kicks off this Friday at 9 am PT. After that, the nine remaining installments will roll out each Monday and Wednesday through January 12th... just in time for the launch of Season 4.5 of Battlestar Galactica on Sci Fi on January 16th. As for the plot? "'The Face of the Enemy' follows the gripping action and suspense inside a stranded Raptor carrying a group of passengers including Lieutenant Felix Gaeta (Alessandro Juliani) and a Number 8 Cylon (Grace Park). When passengers suddenly start dying one by one in alarming ways, fear, panic and chaos erupt within the confines of the small ship, as they come to realize there is a killer among them. Michael Hogan (Colonel Tigh) and Brad Dryborough (Lieutenant Hoshi) also star."

Could ABC Studios and ABC be the next corporate merger, following NBC's recent reorganization of a joint studio-network content team? ABC Studios head Mark Pedowitz's contract is said to expire in February and rumors are swirling that the Alphabet might be ripe for reorganization. Possible plan could involve merging development teams (as they did at NBC and Universal Media Studios) and shifting oversight of both the network and studio to Steve McPherson. One should note that there was a time when the two units were combined and they were only separated when McPherson left ABC Studios to run ABC Entertainment. (Variety, TV Week)

Speaking of the recent NBC announcements, panelists at yesterday's HRTS luncheon were quick to twist the knife while speaking of the upcoming changes at the Peacock. "I think it's wonderful that NBC has completed its transformation into AM radio," said James Duff, creator of TNT's The Closer. Chuck Lorre wondered if there were in fact four major networks anymore. Ouch. (Variety)

Brenda Walsh won't be getting killed off anytime soon on CW's 90210. At least, according to series star Shenae Grimes. “They’re not killing off her character,” said Grimes of Shannen Doherty's Brenda. Dustin Milligan, for his part, agreed. “I don’t think the CW would wanna kill anybody,” said Milligan. “[Brenda’s] definitely not going like that." (E! Online)

Laurence Fishburne talks about joining the cast of CBS' CSI, beginning tomorrow. Fishburne's character, criminal pathologist Dr. Raymond Langston, will be replacing William Petersen's Gil Grissom on the series. Petersen is set to depart the series on January 15th. "I'm not fooling myself -- I am filling the shoes of a man who is irreplaceable," said Fishburne. "Once I recognized that, then I knew exactly what my responsibility was. My purpose is to serve the show. That's one of the most important things to remember. This is not about me. This is about the audience. What's really wonderful is that the writing team has managed to introduce my character while also giving Grissom a beautiful send-off. The way he exits the series is very smart." (Los Angeles Times)

Martha Plimpton (ER), Kiele Sanchez (Lost), Eddie Shin (Gilmore Girls), Nate Torrence (Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip), and Dreama Walker (Gossip Girl) have joined the cast of Showtime's comedy pilot The End of Steve. Project stars Matthew Perry (Friends) as a self-involved local talk show host who finds himself on the road to redemption. (Hollywood Reporter)

Stay tuned.


Anonymous said…
Very cool that Sonya Walger will be starring in Flash Forward (and thanks for that great script review, BTW). It will be nice to see "Penny" shine in a starring role.
I'm glad that Fuller and Co. are trying to provide a more "satisfying" end to Pushing Daisies but hope it doesn't feel too forced. I just wish we could have seen the whole story that Fuller intended instead of a tacked on ending. Sad.

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