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Channel Surfing: Cynthia Nixon Heads to The Big C, Glee Comic-Con Mystery, Entourage Cast Teases New Season, and More

Welcome to your Thursday morning television briefing.

Cynthia Nixon (Sex and the City) has signed on to appear in four episodes of Showtime's upcoming dark comedy The Big C, which stars Laura Linney as Cathy, a suburban teacher whose life is thrown off track by a terminal cancer diagnosis. Nixon will play Rebecca, Cathy's "flaky, long-lost college roommate who re-enters her life and shakes things up in a wild way," according to the official press release from Showtime. Nixon's casting follows on the heels of that of ex-Wire co-star Idris Elba. The series, created by Darlene Hunt, stars Linney, Oliver Platt, and Gabourey Sidibe. (via press release)

Wondering why none of the main cast members of FOX's Glee will be heading to Comic-Con next month despite 20th Century Fox Television's announcement that there will be a Glee panel at San Diego Comic-Con? Entertainment Weekly's Andy Patrick is reporting that half of the Glee cast wasn't asked to participate, as they had already journey down to the con last year. Last year, we brought down Lea Michele, Cory Monteith, Matthew Morrison, and Dianna Agron," said an unnamed studio spokesperson. "Because we have such a large cast and we can’t bring everyone every year, this year we decided to bring down some of the cast who didn’t get to go last summer. So this year, Chris Colfer, Amber Riley, Jenna Ushkowitz, Kevin McHale, Mark Salling, Heather Morris, and Naya Rivera will get to experience the convention, as well as co-creators Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk." [Editor: Weakest. Excuse. Ever.] Meanwhile, Jane Lynch reportedly had a scheduling conflict, so she too will not be appearing at the convention, despite her character--Sue Sylvester--being one of breakout stars of Glee. (Entertainment Weekly's Ausiello Files)

E! Online's Megan Masters talks to the cast of HBO's Entourage about what lays ahead for Vince and Co. during Season Seven of the Hollywood-set comedy series. "Vince has always been a very even-keeled guy, but that doesn't mean there's not a lot going on underneath," said Adrian Grenier. "It's been a great season for me as an actor because Vince is getting into trouble. He needs help. Like there's an emotional side to Vince that comes out with a fury." The cast also has some dish on complications for Eric and Sloan this season, as well as Ari and Mrs. Ari, Turtle's new love interest (played by former Heroes star Dania Ramirez), and Drama. (E! Online's Watch with Kristin)

Entertainment Weekly's Michael Ausiello is reporting that Paula Patton (Precious: Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire) is in talks to join the cast of NBC's Law & Order: SVU as the new ADA, replacing Sharon Stone who last held the position for a four-episode story arc this spring. (Entertainment Weekly's Ausiello Files)

NBC's new thriller The Event is heading to Comic-Con next month and the Saturday, July 24th panel--which will feature stars Jason Ritter, Blair Underwood, Laura Innes, Zeljko Ivanek and Ian Anthony Dale, and producers Evan Katz, Steve Stark, Jeffrey Reiner, Nick Wauters, and Jim Wong--will be moderated by E! Online's Kristin Dos Santos. (E! Online's Watch with Kristin)

Lifetime has ordered three new cop drama pilots, including Jeff Bell's Exit 19 (which had been shot as a pilot presentation at CBS during the 2008-09 season), an untitled drama from Josh Berman (Drop Dead Diva) about a female police detective who may have to raise her two children on her own, and Against the Wall, from Annie Brunner (Huff), about a female cop who is placed in the internal affairs division of the Chicago PD, a fact that doesn't sit right with her two cop brothers. (Variety)

AMC is said to nearing a deal to develop drama The Wreck, from writers Graham Gordy and Michael Fuller and executive producer John Lee Hancock (The Blind Side), which would revolve around the head coach of a struggling college football team who is given one last chance to turn the team's fortunes around. (Hollywood Reporter)

The Futon Critic is reporting that NBC will swap the timeslots of Persons Unknown and Last Comic Standing, effective immediately. The former, produced by Fox Television Studios, will move to 9 pm ET/PT for at least the next two weeks. (Futon Critic)

Syfy has unveiled the cast for its latest Saturday night creature feature, Mega Python vs. Gatoroid and it's... Debbie Gibson and Tiffany?!? Yes, the former 1980s pop icons will star in the project, from writer Naomi Selfman and director Mary Lambert, which is slated to air next year on the cabler. "Gibson will play a fanatical animal-rights activist who frees illegally imported exotic snakes from pet stores, sending them into the Everglades, where they grow to mega sizes," writes The Hollywood Reporter's James Hibberd. "Tiffany will play an overzealous park ranger who uses dangerous methods to save endangered alligators. In the script, the pair brawl at a party, then take matters outside into the swamp." [Editor: Just... wow.] (Hollywood Reporter)

ABC Studios has signed a new overall deal with Jessika Borsiczky (FlashForward), under which she will develop new programming for the studio and may join the staff of a new or existing ABC series. Elsewhere, the producer has set up single-camera comedy House of Lies at Showtime; project, from writer Matt Carnahan, "looks at the woes of corporate America." (Variety)

In other deal-related news, Denis Leary and Jim Serpico's Apostle shingle has signed a two-year overall deal with Fox Television Studios, under which they will develop new cable programming for the studio, while in talks with CBS Television Studios about a separate deal that would have them developing for broadcast networks, according to Deadline's Nellie Andreeva. Apostle was previously based at Sony Pictures Television, until the studio opted not to renew its deal (along with several other high-profile pod deals). (Deadline)

Broadcasting & Cable's Paige Albiniak is reporting that CBS is developing Say It Now, a live daily daytime talk show to possibly fill the void left in the schedule by the cancellation of long-running soap As the World Turns that features actress Valerie Bertinelli (Hot in Cleveland) and Aussie talk show host Rove McManus. Other contenders to take the timeslot include game shows Pyramid and Password and a female-skewing talk show a la The View that would star Julie Chen, Sharon Osbourne, Holly Robinson Peete, and Leah Remini. (Broadcasting & Cable)

Disney Junior has started production on animated series Doc McStuffins, which will revolve around a "6-year-old girl who communicates with and heals stuffed animals and toys." Project, from creator/executive producer Chris Nee, will launch in 2011 on the Dinsey Channel. (Variety)

AMC has hired Marci Wiseman as SVP of business affairs. She will be based in Los Angeles and will report to Charlie Collier. (Variety)

Stay tuned.


Lauren9to5 said…
Oooh. Laura Linney and Cynthia Nixon together on The Big C? Excellent!

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