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November 27, 2014

Awards

ABC restored to Cablevision

by Brad Trechak, posted Mar 8th 2010 10:05AM
ABCIn a nick-of-time save that was worthy of a movie unto itself, ABC was restored to Cablevision just in time for the Academy Awards. Apparently both sides hammered out enough of a deal for the awards show to be broadcast.

Cablevision customers -- 3.1 million in the New York City area -- got another treat on the same day. To accommodate those that lost their ABC, the company offered free On Demand movies all day. As a Cablevision customer, I was interested in the veracity of the claim and took advantage of that particular offer. Later this month, it will be determined how legitimate that offer was when I see my bill.

So many people were using this freebie that the first few times a movie download was attempted, the system would return an error. This issue stopped once the Academy Awards started.

It seems more likely that Cablevision acquiesced to the demands of ABC given the timing of the channel restoration rather than the other way around. What do you think?

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Academy Awards Broadcast Was a Comedy of Errors and an Error of Comedy

by Danny Gallagher, posted Mar 8th 2010 7:38AM
The Best Picture goes to
There was a great industry joke lobbed at the Hollywood awards machine by the short-lived but loved TV cartoon 'The Critic.' The joke featured a Midwestern farmer and his boy spotting a plane headed to Hollywood.

"Yep, son," the wide-eyed farm says with a big pitchfork in his all-American paw, "on that plane are the people who fill our lives with blockbuster movies, moronic situation comedies, awards shows where awards shows win awards. Get my gun, boy."

If the 82nd Academy Awards takes home an Emmy or even a nomination for their television broadcast, just about every middle American farmer with a sidearm will land on a terror alert watch list and every first class flight from New York to Hollywood will have to divert over the Gulf of Mexico in order to avoid the inevitable strafe of gunfire from America's heartland.

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NBC Confirms the Emmys Will Be Live On The West Coast

by Bob Sassone, posted Mar 5th 2010 2:02PM
EmmysJoel reported a month ago that NBC had been thinking about dumping the West Coast tape delay for the Emmys and actually airing them live for people on the left side of the country too. Now NBC confirms that they will indeed show the awards show live on the West Coast too.

This will be the first time since 1976 that the Emmys will be seen live on the West Coast. In this day of the web and Twitter and time-shifted TV viewing, it makes sense that the network would make this decision. I'm sure people on the other side of the country can get used to the fact that the Emmys will now start at 5pm instead of 8pm (though I could never get used to living on the West Coast schedule - I'd feel so behind all the time).

The Emmy Awards airs on August 29. We'll have complete coverage here all night, of course.

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Neil Patrick Harris Will Take on Will on 'Glee'

by Allison Waldman, posted Mar 5th 2010 10:01AM
neil_patrick_harris_singing_Tony_AwardsSo, this has all come together. CBS said okay. Joss Whedon came on board. And they named the character Bryan Adam, inspired by the Canadian pop star which must be some kind of tribute to Cobie Smulders' character Robin Scherbatsky on 'How I Met Your Mother.' All that's missing is Harold and Kumar dropping by for a blow.

In plain speak, 'Glee' will welcome Neil Patrick Harris for a guest role in an upcoming sweeps episode. The 'How I Met Your Mother' star has been rumored to be doing 'Glee,' but only if CBS let him appear on the competition during the heart of the TV season. It wouldn't be as bad if it was a summer series, but this is sweeps. That means some CBS show will be going up against Neil's 'Glee' episode. Michael Ausiello broke the details of Neil's character on the show. If you don't want to know, don't follow us on the jump. Just wander off and read the next story.

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Barbra Streisand, Charlize Theron and Kathy Bates Added to Oscar Roster

by Allison Waldman, posted Mar 3rd 2010 9:00AM
barbra_streisand_vanity_fair_with_cameraThis week they started revealing some of the stars who'll be presenting at Sunday night's Oscar broadcast on ABC, and at the top of the list were three former Oscar winning actresses, Barbra Streisand, Charlize Theron and Kathy Bates. Also on the roster will be Queen Latifah, Ben Stiller, Robert Downey Jr., Samuel L. Jackson and John Travolta.

Nikki Finke's Deadline.com column has a major spoiler about the opening of the show. If you don't want to know, avoid the last paragraph below.

There's an interesting angle on Barbra Streisand's appearance on the show. Speculation is that Streisand will be presenting Best Director, which insiders say is a lock for Kathryn Bigelow.

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Dustin Hoffman Taking on TV with 'Luck'

by Allison Waldman, posted Mar 2nd 2010 10:10AM
dustin_hoffman_headshot_meet_the_fockersIn 1965, Dustin Hoffman played Buddy in an episode of CBS's legal drama 'The Defenders.' It didn't cause much of a ripple. He was still an unknown, struggling actor when he landed the role of Benjamin in 'The Graduate,' a role bigger names had all turned down including Charles Grodin, Robert Redford and Warren Beatty. The point is that unlike many young actors, television did not launch the career of two-time Oscar winner Dustin Hoffman.

But Dustin is giving TV another shot. Dustin Hoffman will star in 'Luck,' David Milch's new series for HBO. Michael Mann has also signed up to direct the pilot, and Dennis Farina and John Ortiz have been cast as well. That's a boat-load of talent and a good indication that HBO is high on the project. Presumably, Hoffman, Milch, Mann and company don't come cheap. Milch's previous work for HBO includes 'Deadwood' and 'John in Cincinatti.'

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Wha? Oscar Broadcast to Feature a DJ?

by Danny Gallagher, posted Feb 26th 2010 8:02PM
The Oscar shows have long had a problem attracting the younger crowd, or at least the part that doesn't spend every waking moment organizing the AV club's equipment cabinet. So this year they have tried to "hip it up."

The Academy has hired DJ Joel Madden to serve as the ceremony's "house DJ" for the broadcast.

Producer Adam Shankman said he wanted the show to have more of a party atmosphere. Does that mean there will be a birthday clown and a "Pin the Tail on the Fellini" game too?

[via TV Tattle]

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NBC's 'Prime Suspect' Put on Hold

by Allison Waldman, posted Feb 25th 2010 8:29AM
helen_mirren_headshotRemember that proposed remake of the British crime series 'Prime Suspect' for NBC? You can forget about it... for a while anyway. NBC has shelved 'Prime Suspect' till June and the reason why is all about casting. This, my friends, is exactly what we were saying when the idea first surfaced.

The notion that you're going to find an actress as perfect for the role of detective chief inspector Jane Tennison as Helen Mirren is madness. T'aint gonna happen. She's an Oscar, Emmy, SAG and Golden Globe winner for a reason. She's freaking brilliant.

So, NBC is acknowledging that they have not found another Helen Mirren and will not push 'Prime Suspect' into pilot production at this time. Veteran writer/producer Hank Steinberg -- he did 'Without A Trace' for CBS -- has wisely decided to push the project back and revisit it in June. It could always be created as a mid-season show instead of a fall 2010 premiere... assuming the project comes together.

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PBS Launching New Sherlock Holmes

by Allison Waldman, posted Feb 23rd 2010 9:29AM
benedict_cumberbatch_viewimagesBBC Worldwide and PBS have decided that it's time for a new 'Sherlock Holmes.' The 1984 series, which ran ten years and 41 episodes, had Jeremy Brett as Sherlock and is still widely regarded as the best Holmes since Basil Rathbone's incarnation in the movies, but after the success of Guy Ritchie's kinetic Robert Downey Jr. version last Christmas, the people in a position to make things happen are ready to give us a 21st century variation on Holmes and Watson and 221B Baker Street.

Thus far the casting is promising. Martin Freeman, who is best known as the British version of Jim in the UK 'The Office,' will play Dr. Watson. In the role of Sherlock, the actor chosen is named Benedict Cumberbatch. That's a great name for an actor cast as Holmes; it just sounds so British. But Benedict also has the look of a Holmes, and he was in 'Atonement' and was nominated for a BAFTA playing Stephen Hawking in a BCC drama.

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WGA Awards Honor 'Mad Men,' '30 Rock' and others

by Allison Waldman, posted Feb 22nd 2010 1:00PM
writers_guild_award_trophyOn Saturday night, the Writers Guild of America revealed the big winners for 2010, honoring the best in TV, movies and other media, but for our purposes, let's just stick with television. And as such, we can say the they rounded up the usual suspects.

'Mad Men' was tops in Drama Series and '30 Rock' was tops in Comedy Series. There was something new honored, Best New Series was 'Modern Family,' but seeing how the category makes new a requirement, it's not that shocking that it won.

However, in the episodic categories, for individual shows, there were was variance. The pilot of 'Modern Family' won in a tie with '30 Rock' for the episode 'Apollo, Apollo.' And the two part episode of 'House' -- 'Broken, Part 1 and Part 2' -- overcame all the 'Mad Men' nominees to take the WGA prize.

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Sacha Baron Cohen Was Considered as Oscar Host

by Allison Waldman, posted Feb 19th 2010 3:03PM
sacha_baron_cohen_headshotThe history of the Academy Awards telecast has been generally a pretty traditional show. You've had historic moments of bad taste like Rob Lowe dancing with Snow White, bizarre musical opening numbers from the likes of Lucie Arnaz and Liza Minnelli -- not together -- and, of course, great highs like most of the Billy Crystal musical medleys of the Best Oscar nominees.

This year if Billy were there, his medley would be about 20 minutes long to include all ten nominated movies! They'd have needed an oxygen tank in the wings to revive him after that.

But here's a wickedly wild idea that might have set the Oscars into to fierce wilderness of 'oh-my-God' TV. The Oscar producers were toying with the idea of having Sacha Baron Cohen host the show. Yep, believe it. Producers Adam Shankman and Bill Mechanic were on NPR's 'Fresh Air' with Teri Gross, and they said when they contemplated shaking up the broadcast, they thought of 'Borat.'

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The Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show Was Great Sports TV

by Allison Waldman, posted Feb 17th 2010 5:14PM
sadie_the_scottish_terrier_APWhen it comes to competition and sports on television, the fare of late has been leaving fans wanting something better. Last weekend, the Daytona 500 -- the Super Bowl of NASCAR -- suffered in the ratings because of a pothole on the track that resulted in nearly two hours of delays. The NBA also served up their All-Star weekend of festivities; they were a major dud, especially the Slam Dunk contest that used to be one of the best exhibitions in sports. And the Vancouver Olympics? So far, so dull.

However, there was one very exciting competition on television and it aired over the last two nights -- the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show. Live from Madison Square Garden, the dog show was one of the purest contests I've seen on TV in a long time. It was exciting and tension-filled, especially last night between 10:30 and 11:00 p.m. when the judge started to evaluate the best in show candidates.

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Changes Coming For Oscar's Best Song Nominees

by Allison Waldman, posted Feb 16th 2010 10:40PM
crazy_heart_jeff_bridges_guitarIn recent years, the songs nominated at the Oscars have not been particularly memorable or worth the time during the broadcast to waste on music that nobody remembers after walking out of the multiplex. This year, ironically, there is at least one very good song that was going to be an Oscar highlight, assuming the producers convinced Jeff Bridges to sing 'The Weary Kind' from 'Crazy Heart' during the March 7th broadcast. That's not going to happen now.

New Oscar producers Adam Shankman and Bill Mechanic have decided to drop the Best Song performances, according Entertainment Weekly. Instead of singers -- either from the movie or good enough to sing the songs from the movies -- we're going to see a montage of images from the picture with the soundtrack recording.

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Kevin James Hosting Nick's 'Kids' Choice Awards'

by Danny Gallagher, posted Feb 16th 2010 7:00PM
The actor, comedian and former 'King of Queens' star will host this year's Nickelodeon awards show.

Kevin James has been announced as the host of the 23rd annual 'Kids' Choice Awards' set to air on March 27.

What a shame. That means his breathtaking tour-de-force film 'Paul Blart: Mall Cop' won't be eligible for a nomination, per the 'Kids' Choice' voting bylaws pact of 1997 overseen and enacted by former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, then-UN Secretary General Kofi Annan and the guy who played Barth on 'You Can't Do That on Television.'

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Barbara Walters To End Oscar Specials This Year

by Bob Sassone, posted Feb 15th 2010 2:30PM
Barbara WaltersOK, all at once: "Nooooooooooooooooooo!" Barbara Walters says that this year will be the final year that she has an Oscars special. Walters says that while she loves doing the specials and ABC is happy with the ratings the specials get, she feels that they are a little "been there, done that." The last one will air on March 7.

It must be hard to keep a show like that going anyway. I mean, there are approximately 37 entertainment news shows on every single night now (plus 24 hours of celebrity coverage on E! and on the web) and as the years went by her interviews with celebrities weren't as important or newsworthy. Now everyone asks a celeb "what type of tree would you be?"

Fear not, Barbara Walters fans. She's going to continue as one of the panelists on 'The View' and she will continue her annual 'Barbara Walters Chooses The Most Painfully Obvious People For Her 10 Most Fascinating People List (Plus A Couple of Head-Scratchers)" specials.

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