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Channel Surfing: Mary-Louise Parker to Keep Puffing on "Weeds," "Scrubs" Back to School, Meg Ryan to Guest Star on "Curb Your Enthusiasm," and More

Welcome to your Monday morning television briefing. I'm back from vacation so there's loads of television-related headlines to catch up on. Buckle your seatbelts; it's going to be a bumpy ride! Weeds star Mary-Louise Parker has put those rumors that she's leaving the Showtime comedy series to bed, stating that she's sticking around for quite some time. "Sometimes when I think about the show ending I get sad. I just can't imagine what it's going to be like," Parker told E! Online's Watch with Kristin. "We for sure have one more year, so I don't have to be sad yet. I can smile a little bit longer. I would stay on, but at a certain point it would get a little bit tired. It'd be like, we don't need to see Nancy and Andy running around in their 60s. I think it will depend on how this season goes, as to whether or not it will have a little velocity for staying around a little longer." ( E! Online's Watch with Kristin ) Wh

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 eve

Channel Surfing: "Ashes to Ashes" Renewed for Third (and Final) Season, Gilles Marini to "Brothers and Sisters," Bates to Chase "Alice," and More

Welcome to your Monday morning television briefing. Ashes to Ashes has been recommissioned for a third and final series by BBC One. Series, which airs in the US on BBC America, will return next year with its final season, which will offer "intriguing twists and turns to keep viewers guessing about the final outcome," said co-creator/writer Ashley Pharoah, and will complete the journey of Alex Drake (Keeley Hawes) as well as reveal just who Gene Hunt (Phillip Glenister) really is. ( BBC News ) Catch this interview with Glenister speaking to BBC Breakfast this morning about the third and final season of Ashes to Ashes : Dancing with the Stars ' Gilles Marini will be sticking around on ABC. The Dancing runner-up has signed on to a multiple-episode story arc on Brothers and Sisters , where he will play a potential love interest for Rachel Griffith's Sarah Walker. ( Variety ) Kathy Bates ( The Day the Earth Stood Still ) will co-star in Sci Fi's upcoming mini-

Channel Surfing: Lin-Manuel Miranda Checks into "House," Zoe Green Mines "Diamond" for Sci Fi, "Heroes" Nabs Two More Actors, and More

Welcome to your Friday morning television briefing. Tony Award-winning actor Lin-Manuel Miranda ( In the Heights ) will appear in at least two episodes of FOX's House next season, where he will play the roommate of Gregory House (Hugh Laurie) at the psychiatric facility where House is currently living. Miranda's first appearance is slated for House 's sixth season premiere, which kicks off this fall. ( Entertainment Weekly 's Ausiello Files ) Zoe Green ( Book of Shadows ) has been hired to write the script for mini-series The Diamond Age , an adaptation of Neal Stephenson's 1995 novel "The Diamond Age: Or a Young Lady's Illustrated Primer," for Sci Fi and executive producers George Clooney and Grant Heslov. Mini-series tells the story about a father and daughter who live in a futuristic society that stifles all creativity; the man creates an interactive book for his daughter, who uses it "as a guide through a surreal alternative world." (

Channel Surfing: Emilie de Ravin to Return to "Lost." Jeff Bell Joins "V" as Showrunner, Knepper Lends Hand to "Heroes," and More

Welcome to your Thursday morning television briefing. Emilie de Ravin is set to return to ABC's Lost next season as a series regular after her character Claire Littleton was absent for most of Season Five, leaving her character's fate tantalizingly ambiguous. (It's still not clear, in fact, whether Claire is dead or alive after disappearing and then being spotted in Jacob's cabin with Christian.) "Damon and I are very excited to bring Claire back to the show," said showrunner Carlton Cuse, "and even more excited for people to experience just how she will return." ( Entertainment Weekly 's Ausiello Files ) WBTV has signed an two-year overall deal with writer/producer Jeff Bell ( Angel ), under which he will come on board ABC's midseason sci-fi series V as showrunner/executive producer. He'll also develop new series projects for the studio later on as well. "Like many people, I have fond memories of whatching the original miniserie

Channel Surfing: Stephen Moyer Talks "True Blood," Madeline Zima Suits Up for "Heroes," Rehearsals to Begin on Final "Gavin & Stacey" Season, and More

Welcome to your Wednesday morning television briefing. E! Online's Watch with Kristin caught up with True Blood star Stephen Moyer, who plays vampire Bill Compton on the HBO supernatural drama, to talk about Season Two, which kicks off on June 14th. "There's no getting away from the fact that Bill is a vampire. He can't wish to be anything else, because he's a vampire, but he's a vampire who wants to live a human life," said Moyer about his character. "Actually, in fact, he wishes not for a human life, but for a moral life. It's not that he doesn't want to feed on blood, it's that he doesn't want it to involve killing—but in his first season he kills as many people as the murderer. That was something that was very present in our minds. He has that blood lust, he has that very strong sense of right and wrong. If somebody f--s him off, he's going to take them out. He's torn. He's not going to do it just for the sake of it.

Channel Surfing: NBC Passes on "Legally Mad" and (Allegedly) "Lost & Found," "Dollhouse" Bonus Ep Gets Comic-Con Screening, Michael Emerson, and More

Welcome to your Tuesday morning television briefing. NBC has confirmed that they have passed on David E. Kelley's legal drama Legally Mad , which will not be going to series. Project, which starred Charity Wakefield, Hugh Bonneville, Kristin Chenoweth, Jon Seda, Loretta Devine, and Kurt Fuller as the denizens of a quirky Chicago law firm, has a rather hefty multi-million dollar penalty against it, which NBC will have to pay out to Warner Bros. Television after making a series commitment to the project last year. It's not anticipated that the studio will shop the project to other outlets. In other pilot news, ABC comedy pilot Let It Go (a.k.a. The Bridget Show ), starring Lauren Graham ( Gilmore Girls ), is now believed to be "dead." ( Variety ) The Peacock is also said to have killed procedural drama Lost & Found , which starred Katee Sackhoff and Brian Cox. There were rumors that the Universal Media Studios-produced pilot was being shopped to USA but The Holl

Channel Surfing: ABC Orders "Flash Forward," J.J. Abrams Teases "Fringe" Season Finale, Michael Trucco Shares "The Plan," and More

Welcome to your Monday morning television briefing. In a move that surprised no one (given the on-air viral campaign), ABC has given a series order to sci-fi drama Flash Forward , based on Robert Sawyer's novel. Series, executive produced by David Goyer, Brannon Braga, Marc Guggenheim, Vince Gerardis, Jessika Goyer, and Ralph Vicinanza, will star Joseph Fiennes, Jack Davenport, Sonya Walger, Courtney B. Vance, John Cho, Zachary Knightton, Peyton List, Brian O'Byrne, and Christine Woods. Guggenheim and Goyer will serve as showrunners on the series, which is rumored to be launching this fall. ( Variety ) Excited about tomorrow night's season finale of FOX's Fringe ? Series co-creator J.J. Abrams promises that the season finale will feature "a really interesting shift in the fundamental paradigm of the show in a very cool way." Abrams also promises that Season Two will have less exposition upfront. "There’s nothing more crazy than having that sort of massi

Channel Surfing: Jared Harris Suits Up for Season Three of "Mad Men," ABC Offers "Christine" a Fallback, FOX Renews "Fringe," NBC Infront, and More

Welcome to your Tuesday morning television briefing. Jared Harris ( Fringe 's David Robert Jones) has been cast in a ten-episode story arc on Season Three of AMC's period drama Mad Men , which is expected to launch in August. Harris will play Lane Pryce, the financial officer of Sterling Cooper Advertising Agency, in the series, which stars Jon Hamm, Elisabeth Moss, January Jones, Vincent Kartheiser, Christina Hendricks, and "guest star" John Slattery. ( Hollywood Reporter ) Should CBS opt not to renew comedy The New Adventures of Old Christine for a fifth season, ABC is willing to give the Warner Bros. Television-produced series, which stars Julia Louis-Dreyfus, a bailout, guaranteeing it a full 22-episode season on ABC. Move marks the second time ABC has organized a deal like this on behalf of Old Christine (network head Steve McPherson is said to be a huge fan), but it's thought rather likely that CBS will renew it in the end. ( Hollywood Reporter ) FOX has

NBC Announces Six New Series, Renews Four Returning Series... But No News for "Chuck"

NBC unveiled part of its plan for the 2009-2010 season just a few hours ahead of its infront presentation to advertisers in New York. The Peacock ordered six new series including dramas Trauma, Parenthood, Mercy, and Day One (described as an "event series") and comedies 100 Questions and Community . NBC also officially announced that it had renewed dramas Heroes and Southland and comedy Parks and Recreation , as well as ordering six new installments of Saturday Night Live Weekend Update Thursday . As expected, there was no mention of on the bubble series like Chuck, Law & Order , and My Name is Earl , although the network was quick to acknowledge that additional renewals and pickups will be announced May 19th, when NBC announces its full 2009-2010 schedule. (Also missing: Medium , which some news outlets had reported as already being renewed.) It's a rather full offering (with the potential for further orders), considering that NBC has lost its 10 pm hour duri