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Channel Surfing: Whedon Talks "Dollhouse" Season Two, "My Name is Earl" Officially Dead, Middleton Talks "Sarah Connor," and More

Welcome to your Friday morning television briefing.

Wondering what Joss Whedon has in store for Season Two of Dollhouse, which returns to FOX this fall? Entertainment Weekly's Mandi Bierly caught up with the Dollhouse creator to find out what to expect. "About two hours after starting to talk to the writers about story, I was back with such a vengeance, and so energized and so pumped because we really understand the show now," said Whedon. "We understand what works, and what didn't work so well or what we weren't so thrilled about. We don't have the onus of trying to be a big hit sitting on our shoulders. We can just be ourselves. And so the stories we're breaking are pure, and exciting, and everybody's on-board in the room, and it's never flowed better." Look for Echo to use that final word of Season One as a springboard for her second season mission. ""Echo wants to find not just Caroline, but what's going on behind everything," said Whedon. "She doesn't have all of the skills. [Laughs] But she does have this weird super power of becoming a different person all the time, so she might start using that more specifically to find out who Caroline was and what happened to her and why this place exists." (Entertainment Weekly's PopWatch)

My Name is Earl has officially been killed, following talks between studio 20th Century Fox Television and cabler TBS about picking up new installments of the comedy series. The studio released a statement yesterday that talks between the two sides had broken off after they were unable to reach an agreement. "While we had hoped to find a way to produce additional episodes for TBS, in the final analysis we simply could not make the economics work without seriously undermining the artistic integrity of the series," said the studio in a statement. "As none of us, [creator Greg Garcia] included, want the show to go out on anything but a high note, we regret that we must put to rest any speculation that Earl will continue." (Variety)

SCI FI Wire catches up with James Middleton, the executive producer of FOX's canceled Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles to find out what would have happened in the series' third season, had it continued. "By jumping into this future, [John] has erased his existence in a certain way, and we see that. We see that nobody recognizes him," said Middleton. "We would have to have explored that if we did get a third season. If we had gotten a third season, I should say, we definitely would have explored what it all meant, but I think there's a great moment where we see Allison [Summer Glau], and John's look to her is very meaningful. I think that also would have been a great thing in terms of dramatic potential. Like I said, the show has ended, and it would all be speculation, and I really don't want to raise anybody's expectations." (SCI FI Wire)

Eric Roberts has joined the cast of Starz drama Crash, where he will play "an entrepreneur hoping to bring a professional football team to L.A." Other new cast members for Season Two, which launches on September 18th, include Dana Ashbrook (yes, Twin Peaks' Bobby Briggs himself!), Linda Park, Jake McLaughlin, Tess Harper, and Julie Warner. (Variety)

The Chicago Tribune's Maureen Ryan is reporting that Comic-Con's Dollhouse panel next month will be two-hours long and will feature a screening of the unaired thirteenth episode, entitled "Epitaph One" and a discussion with Joss Whedon and series star Eliza Dushku. The two-hour session, according to a 20th Century Fox Television source, will take place on Friday, July 24th. (Chicago Tribune's The Watcher)

Meanwhile, Ryan is also reporting that there won't be a Heroes panel this year at Comic-Con. "According to a representative from Universal Media Studios, which makes the show," writes Ryan, "Heroes will "have a presence" at Comic-Con in various ways, but that presence will not involve the typical panel discussion that is a staple of Comic-Con." What that presence is remains to be seen but Ryan implies that it will involve a Season Four sneak peek in some form. (Chicago Tribune's The Watcher)

Entertainment Weekly's Michael Ausiello is reporting that Stephanie March will be staying put on NBC's Law & Order: Special Victims Unit and will appear in at least ten episodes next season. "The show is expected to introduce one or possibly two new characters to fill the ADA void when Cabot isn't around," writes Ausiello. (Entertainment Weekly's Ausiello Files)

CBS Television Studios has signed a two-year overall deal with CSI: NY executive producer Peter Lenkov. Under the terms of the deal, Lenkov will remain on board CSI: NY next season, where he teases fans will see ""Much more character. The mystery and the science are important, but people are just as important." (Hollywood Reporter)

Discovery has given a ten-episode series order to Garage Wars, in which mechanics will be pitted against each other to determine the best garage in America; two teams will be given a box with the same parts and must build the best vehicle from them in just four days. Series, from A. Smith and Co., is currently on the lookout for two car experts to serve as hosts. (Variety)

Outbound News Corp. president/COO Peter Chernin and Katherine Pope are said to have already begun taking meetings at the town's top talent agencies and inviting them to begin pitching projects. The duo are launching a new production company as part of Chenin's exit from News Corp that is said to operate under a similar deal as David E. Kelley's former arrangement. (Hollywood Reporter)

Chuck's Sarah Lancaster will guest star in an upcoming episode of TNT's medical drama Hawthorne, where she will play the girlfriend of a horrific motorcycle accident victim (My Boys' Reid Scott). (Entertainment Weekly's Ausiello Files)

Reveille has picked up US remake rights for Icelandic workplace comedy The Nightshift, about three graveyard shift workers at a gas station who try to remain motivated after dealings with eccentric customers. "The Nightshift is that rare international format that has American sensibility, and we're eager to tackle another workplace comedy after the success of The Office," said Reveille's managing director Howard Owens. "The show has a smart, ironic point of view, which we know will translate well in the U.S." (Hollywood Reporter)

Stay tuned.


Baxter said…
Still very undecided about Dollhouse. I wasn't crazy about the first season but Joss' excitement about season two has me wondering if it could, indeed, reach its full potential.
susie que said…
Now Reveille is stealing shows from Iceland? Impressive.

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