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Showing posts with the label FX

Channel Surfing: Sons of Anarchy and Haven Renewed, Walking Dead Novels, NCIS: LA, Modern Family, and More

Welcome to your Friday morning television briefing. FX has renewed motorcycle drama Sons of Anarchy for a fourth season. Series, which wraps up its third season on November 30th, is the most-watched series in the cable network's history. " Sons of Anarchy is the most popular show FX has ever had, and the No. 1 series in basic cable for our key demographic," said FX president/general manager John Landgraf. "It is also one of the best, most original series on television." ( Variety ) Elsewhere, Syfy renewed freshman drama Haven for a second season, with thirteen episodes on tap for next summer. Production is slated to resume in the spring in Nova Scotia on the sophomore season. ( Variety ) Robert Kirkman's zombie comic, "The Walking Dead," which is heading to the small screen later this month with AMC's television series of the same name, will also be transformed into a trilogy of original novels, the first of which will be released in 2011

Pregnant Pauses and Hot-Button Issues: An Advance Review of Season Six of FX's It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia

There are few series that are as gleefully absurd as FX's ribald comedy It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia , which returns for a sixth season tonight after what feels like way too long of a hiatus. Revolving as it always does about the denizens of a low-rent Philadelphia pub, Sunny continues to push its characters into uncomfortable territory, challenging them to not change, learn, or grow even as they sink lower and lower into their own filth. And that's truly the joy of watching this original and groundbreaking comedy. You can't help but fall in love with Mac, Dennis, Charlie, Dee, and Frank, even as you realize that you would immediately cross to the other side of the street if you ever saw these selfish and flawed individuals in real-life. From the safety of your living room, however, Sunny becomes a window into the world of arrested adolescence, where despite pushing their thirties (hard), the gang at Paddy's Pub becomes more a portrait of unfettered id, a l

The Daily Beast: "Nine Shows to Watch, Six Shows to Shun"

My fall TV preview--or at least part of it, anyway--is finally up. Head over to The Daily Beast, where you can read my latest feature, "Nine Shows to Watch, Six Shows to Shun," where I offer up nine new series to watch this fall and six shows to avoid like the plague. Just which ended up on which list? Hint, The Event ended up on my worst-of list, while things like Boardwalk Empire, Terriers, Nikita, Sherlock, Luther, Undercovers and others ended up on my watch list. (While The Walking Dead is on there, I still--like every other critic--have not seen a full episode, so there's that to consider.) But while this is my list, I'm also extremely curious to find out what you're looking forward to this autumn. What are you most excited about watching this fall? Head to the comments section to discuss, debate, and tear into my list.

Channel Surfing: The Future of Serialized Dramas, Dan Akroyd on Defenders, Outnumbered, Law & Order: SVU Lands Sagemiller, and More

Welcome to your Monday morning television briefing. Variety 's Robert Abele has a very interesting feature on the future of serialized programming, following the conclusion of Lost and 24 (and the narrative burn-out of ABC's FlashForward and NBC's Heroes ) last season. Abele talks to AOL Television's Maureen Ryan, NBC's Laura Lancaster, and The Event executive produce Evan Katz about viewer fatigue, commitment, and concerns. "Viewer trust is something you earn by delivering -- it's that simple," said Katz. "It's not easy to accomplish, but when it works, you have something big on your hands... This show is very Hitchcockian in that it's an ordinary man in extraordinary circumstances, and you experience the twists emotionally with him," said Katz. "We don't have 660 beats laid out," Katz says, "but you need to know where the characters are going, and those benchmarks are in place. The line is, mystery is good, c

Talk Back: Series Premieres of FX's Terriers and CW's Hellcats

I could make a joke about dogs and cats fighting here but that would be too easy, no? I've been raving about FX's new drama series Terriers for weeks now but now the Ted Griffin-created series (executive produced by Shawn Ryan) has finally aired so I'm curious to see what you thought of last night's series premiere. (You can read my advance review of the first five episodes here and check out my feature interview with Shawn Ryan over at The Daily Beast .) Did you fall for the series' mixture of comedy and drama? What did you make of the camaraderie and chemistry between series leads Donal Logue and Michael Raymond-James? Of the San Diego setting and the overarching conspiracy plot that arcs over the whole first season? Glad to see Laura Allen sink her teeth into a meaty role as Britt's vet girlfriend Katie? Wondering just what will happen next? And, most importantly, will you tune in again next week? And then there was the CW's Hellcats . I didn't

Dogged Detectives with Bite: An Advance Review of FX's Terriers

As the owner of a small dog, I can attest to the fact that the size of the beast isn't indicative of the largeness of their personalities... nor the fact that they're only too willing to take on adversaries far bigger than them. Which seems to be the metaphor behind the title of FX's new drama series Terriers , which premieres tonight. Despite the title, Terriers isn't about dog breeders or, well, dogs at all, though there are more than a few canines lurking in the background of this scrappy and sly series, created by Ted Griffin ( Ocean's Eleven, Matchstick Men ) and executive produced by Shawn Ryan ( The Shield ). While the unlicensed private detectives of the series, ex-cop Hank Dolworth ( Life 's Donal Logue) and his BFF Britt Pollack ( True Blood 's Michael Raymond-James), might be small fry in the sunny San Diego coastal town of Ocean Beach, they're not ones to back down from anything, even when they've bitten off far more than they can ch

The Daily Beast: "The Shield Creator Shawn Ryan's New Show, Terriers"

Before I post my (glowing) review of FX's new drama series Terriers , starring Donal Logue and Michael Raymond-James, I thought I'd plug my latest feature over at The Daily Beast. Head over to The Daily Beast to read " The Shield Creator Shawn Ryan's New Show, Terriers ," in which I talk to Shawn Ryan about Terriers --created by Ted Griffin--and Ryan's upcoming FOX midseason drama Ride-Along (one of the very best of the season) and discuss the thematic links with The Shield , which transformed FX into a major player in the original programming game and transformed cable as a result. Be sure to head to the comments section to discuss the legacy of The Shield and whether you'll be tuning in to Terriers tonight. (You really should be: it's hands-down one of the best new shows of the year.)

Channel Surfing: Fox Snags Locke and Key, Trouble for Tilda, Torchwood Star Lands Three Inches, Temps, The Office, and More

Welcome to your Wednesday morning television briefing. Vulture's Josef Adalian is reporting that FOX is in talks with 20th Century Fox Television and Dreamworks to develop a series based on Joe Hill's comic book "Locke and Key," which revolves around "three kids who end up watching over a secret, spooky New England mansion filled with mystical doors that transport them to different worlds and give them special powers (like turning into a ghost)," according to Adalian. But FOX isn't turning to just anyone to adapt the series created by Hill (who happens to be the son of Stephen King): Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci ( Fringe, Hawaii Five-0 ) and Josh Friedman ( Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles ) as well as Steven Spielberg are attached as executive producers. ( Vulture , Hollywood Reporter ) Entertainment Weekly 's Michael Ausiello is reporting that there's some major behind the scenes drama brewing at HBO's much anticipated dark comed

Channel Surfing: Bones Bounces Sabato, Sam Page Lands Gossip, SOA's Hunnam Talks Season 3, Victor Webster to Castle, and More

Welcome to your Monday morning television briefing. TV Guide Magazine 's Will Keck is reporting that Bones producers have turned lemons into lemonade with their upcoming Jersey Shore -inspired episode, following the breakdown in talks with The Situation. Instead, Bones has recruited Antonio Sabato Jr. to play a "guido bouncer at a Jersey Shore club that Brennan (Emily Deschanel) and Booth (David Boreanaz) visit to question someone involved with a murder." ( TV Guide Magazine ) Mad Men 's Sam Page is heading to the Upper East Side, according to Entertainment Weekly 's Michael Ausiello, who reports that Page has been cast in a multiple-episode story arc on the CW's Gossip Girl , where he will play a new love interest for Blake Lively's Serena. He's first expected to turn up in an episode slated to air in October. ( Entertainment Weekly 's Ausiello Files ) The Chicago Tribune 's Maureen Ryan--soon to be AOL's chief television critic--has

Channel Surfing: AMC Finds The Killing, Lotus Caves for Syfy and Bryan Fuller, More Office Rumors, FNL Launch Date, and More

Welcome to your Thursday morning television briefing. AMC has given a series order to pilot The Killing , which hails from writer/executive producer Veena Sud and Fox Television Studios and is based on Danish television series Forbrydelsen , ordering thirteen episodes which will air sometime in 2011. Series, which will star Big Love 's Mireille Enos, revolves around the murder of a young girl and a police investigation that connects several seemingly separate story threads. "We are thrilled to be moving forward with this stunning piece of television," said Joel Stillerman, AMC's senior vp of original programming, production and digital content, in a statement. "It is a crime drama, but it is also a gripping character based story that pulls you in and doesn't let go. The storytelling is completely compelling, and the show is visually breathtaking." In addition to Enos, the project--which will be renamed, sadly--also stars Billy Campbell, Michelle Forbes,

Damages Report: Televisionary Talks to Rose Byrne and Executive Producer Daniel Zelman About Season Four

I'm already getting excited about the fourth season of serpentine legal thriller Damages , which moves from FX to DirecTV next year, following a landmark deal that brought the series back from the brink of cancellation and guaranteed a fourth and fifth season. Quite a lot has changed since I spoke to creators Daniel Zelman, Glenn Kessler, and Todd A. Kessler for my Season Three postmortem over at The Daily Beast , not least of which is that surprising (and very welcome) two-season pickup and the series' move to the satcaster's The 101 Network. At last night's Sony Pictures Television party at the Beverly Hilton's Bar 210, I caught up with executive producer/co-creator Daniel Zelman and series lead (and Emmy Award nominee) Rose Byrne to discuss Season Four of Damages , why things always come back to the dock outside Patty's beach house, where we might find Ellen Parsons, whether we'll see Tom Shayes (Tate Donovan) again, why Ellen seems to have forgiven Pat

Press Release: FX ORDERS PILOT PRODUCTION OF ALABAMA

FX ORDERS PILOT PRODUCTION OF ALABAMA Comedy Pilot Co-Created By and Starring Robert Ben Garant and Thomas Lennon LOS ANGELES, August 3, 2010 – FX has ordered pilot production of Alabama , a half-hour comedy co-created by and starring Robert Ben Garant and Thomas Lennon (creators and stars of Reno 911! ), today announced John Landgraf, President and General Manager, FX Networks. Alabama , written by Garant and Lennon, is a comedy set a thousand years in the future, aboard the United Nations peacekeeping spaceship: THE USS ALABAMA. The series begins six years into their seven year mission to maintain peace and enforce treaties between planets in their jurisdiction: Sector 187-G. The show will follow the heart- pounding action as our crew visits hostile planets, meets alien life-forms, and tries to have sex with each other in their tiny, metal bunk beds. “Working as an Executive Producer of Reno 911! alongside Ben and Tom was one of the great professional experiences of my career

Press Release: FX LIKES LOUIE

FX LIKES LOUIE Network Orders Second Season of Comedy Series Starring Louis C.K. Seven All New Episodes Remain in Season One, Tuesdays at 11 PM ET/PT With Season One Finishing with Two All New Back-to-Back Episodes Airing September 7 LOS ANGELES, August 3, 2010 – FX has ordered another season of its newest critically acclaimed comedy series Louie , starring actor/comedian Louis C.K., picking up a 13-episode second season, today announced John Landgraf, President and General Manager of FX Networks. Seven all new episodes of Louie remain in season one, airing Tuesdays at 11 PM ET/PT, with the two final episodes airing back-to-back on September 7 at 11:00 PM and 11:30 PM behind the season three premier of Sons of Anarchy at 10:00 PM. “Louis has made a truly original series – a comedy unlike anything on television, but perfect for his unique voice,” said Landgraf. “We are very happy with the show's performance and critical acclaim, and are delighted to move forward with a sec

Channel Surfing: DirecTV Saves FX's Damages, David Cross to Join Running Wilde, Gregory Itzin Finds Big Love for HBO, and More

Welcome to your Tuesday morning television briefing. Many had given up hope that FX's brilliant and labyrinthine legal drama Damages would survive another season, given the low ratings for the series' fantastically taut third season, which wrapped its run earlier this year. Not so: DirecTV has come to the aid of the Sony Picture Television- and FX Productions-produced series and has renewed the Glenn Close-led series for two seasons of ten episodes apiece. The only problem: it won't be airing on FX anymore as DirecTV has the exclusive rights to the series on The 101 Network. "We're excited to partner with Sony Pictures Television as we breathe new life into this outstanding drama," said Patty Ishimoto, general manager of The 101 Network and vice president of entertainment for DIRECTV, in a statement. "It's a win for our customers because only they will be able to see these new episodes and another great step forward for DIRECTV as we continue to bui

Channel Surfing: James Tupper Heads to Grey's Anatomy, Game of Thrones, Tammy Blanchard Gets The Good Wife, Michael Emerson, and More

Welcome to your Friday morning television briefing. Entertainment Weekly 's Michael Ausiello is reporting that James Tupper ( Mercy ) has joined the cast of ABC's Grey's Anatomy , where he is set to recur as trauma counselor Andrew Perkins, who is "brought in to help Seattle Grace recover from that nightmarish season-ending bloodbath" and who will appear in at least two episodes next season. ( Entertainment Weekly 's Ausiello Files ) The Chicago Tribune 's Maureen Ryan has some dish on the casting--and recasting--going on at HBO's upcoming fantasy drama Game of Thrones . "Varys, the calculating spymaster for the king of Westeros, will be played by UK actor Conleth Hill," writes Ryan. "The role of Waymar Royce has been recast due to a scheduling issue. Jamie Campbell-Bower had played the role in the pilot but when the producers decided to do reshoots of his scenes, Campbell-Bower was unavailable. The role of Royce will now be played by

Channel Surfing: Lost Alum Heads to SVU, David Strathairn Signs on to Alphas, Outlaw Nation Lands Its Cast, and More

Welcome to your Wednesday morning television briefing. TV Guide Magazine 's Will Keck is reporting that former Lost co-star Henry Ian Cusick has signed on for a multiple-episode story arc on NBC's Law & Order: Special Victims Unit , where he will play Erik Weber, a graphic artist. Cusick is expected to appear in at least two episodes of the procedural drama and will cross paths with Mariska Hargitay's Detective Olivia Benson. "There might be some flirtation," executive producer Neal Baer told Keck. "Erik meets Olivia when he comes to someone's aid. And then we'll see how it goes. Olivia is devoted to her job and knows that comes first." ( TV Guide Magazine ) It's official: Academy Award nominee David Strathairn will star in Syfy's 90-minute action pilot Alphas , according to a network press release. In the pilot, written by Zak Penn and Michael Karnow and directed by Jack Bender, Strathairn will play the "unconventional, eccen