Bob Newhart Joins Lifetime's 'Project Five,' 'Heroes' Star Heads to 'Law & Order: CI' and More Casting News
According to TV Guide, Newhart will join the star-studded cast as Dr. Roth, a friend of Jeanne Tripplehorn's character, Pearl.
Besides 'Big Love' star Tripplehorn, the cast includes veteran stars Patricia Clarkson, Tony Shalhoub, Rosario Dawson, Kathy Najimy, Jeffrey Tambor. The project of five short films tells the story of how breast cancer impacts people's lives.
Jennifer Aniston, Demi Moore, Alicia Keys and Patty Jenkins direct separate parts of the film series.
In other casting news ...
• Adrian Pasdar will guest star on 'Law & Order: Criminal Intent.' The former 'Heroes' star will be joined by 'Mad Men' actor Bryan Batt in the episode titled 'Trophy Wife.' Pasdar will play a wine collector and Batt a wine sommelier. [TV Guide]
• Bill O'Reilly is branching out into scripted television. The Fox News anchor will play himself as a potential murder suspect on an episode of 'Rizzoli & Isles.' [TV Guide]
• Adam Arkin is heading to 'The Closer.' The 'Sons of Anarchy' actor will play Steven Hirschbaum, described as "a Bernie Madoff-like businessman." Arkin previously directed an episode of the TNT drama. [TV Guide]
According to Entertainment Weekly, Newhart will play Dr. Walter Magnus, a former medical examiner. When Dr. Magnus comes out of retirement, something happens that surprises Ducky (David McCallum) and the others.
Newhart was last seen on primetime TV as Morty in 'Desperate Housewives.' Before that he did a multi-episode arc on 'ER.'
In other TV news ...
• Lara Spencer has denied any feud with Nancy O'Dell. Rumors swirled that Spencer was upset that O'Dell got Mary Hart's upcoming vacant 'Entertainment Tonight' seat. "There's no feud. I have a great job. I host a show that I love and that I helped launch." [PEOPLE]
• Drea de Matteo will guest star on 'Law & Order: SVU.' De Matteo will play Sondra, a pregnant battered wife. [Movieline]
• ABC has ordered more 'Castle.' The series has done well in the ratings, holding its own against 'Hawaii Five-0.' This season will be 24 episodes. [Live Feed]
"I'm sorry, Sayid, the tribe has spoken," says 'Survivor' host Jeff Probst, as he follows the reality-TV show's protocol and snuffs out Sayid's torch.
In his exit interview, Sayid lashes out: "I did not spend five years in the Republican Guard ... get drowned in a pond, take a bomb to the stomach on a submarine to get eliminated by Jeff [beep] Probst."
Then 'Lost' creators Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse are shown brainstorming some more series endings and come up with a parody of a parody. It's like the finale of 'Newhart' -- which itself was a spin on 'The Bob Newhart Show' -- except his wife Emily isn't in bed beside him. There's this young brunette going on about polar bears...?
On Sunday at 8 PM ET, he co-stars in The Librarian: Curse of the Judas Chalice, the third in the Librarian series that has become a nice little franchise for TNT. He plays Judson, who acts as a guide and mentor to Noah Wyle's character of Flynn Carsen, a librarian who acts more like Indiana Jones than the person who stamps the insides of new books.
I spoke to Newhart by phone last week; we discussed the movie, shooting in New Orleans, his recent penchant for memorable supporting roles, and if he thinks the multi-camera sitcom has a future.
Participating television (and movie) writers include Lester Lewis (The Office), Rob Kutner (The Daily Show), Stephen E. de Souza (Die Hard), Karen Harris (General Hospital) and Ron Corcillo (Malcolm in the Middle). Acting talent involved with the programming include Bob Newhart, Timothy Dalton and Kristen Wiig.
"What is this channel that plays all these old shows I remember as a kid?" I asked the TV Gods.
"It's AmericanLife," they replied. "They feature classic family shows aimed at Baby Boomers -- shows like Remington Steele, The Courtship of Eddie's Father, Lost in Space, and Welcome Back, Kotter."
Ok, the TV Gods didn't really say that. I looked it up on the AmericanLife Web site, not to be confused with Showtime's This American Life, the fab documentary series hosted by Ira Glass.
As AOL Television continues their look at the 50 Best TV Comedies -- Ever with their Top 10, we here at TV Squad are also looking at television comedy, but with a slightly skewed difference. Last week, we took a look at the Saturday Night Live cast members from 1996 to 2006 that made it to the big time. This week, we get a bit more serious.
There are those in the industry who say that it is easier to go from acting in a drama to acting in a comedy than it is the other way around. Yet, as you will see from the list we've compiled after the jump, there are plenty of comedic actors who have jumped from the world of comedy films, stand-up comedy, and television sitcoms into the more serious world of drama. In many cases they have had even greater success than they did on the other side of the tracks. There have even been instances where they stayed in the drama genre and never went back to being funny.
The Bob Newhart Show
Recently, when the American Masters did a special about Bob Newhart, they showed footage from The Bob Newhart Show. No, not the one with Suzanne Pleshette as Emily. They had clips from the 1961-62 Bob Newhart Show on NBC. It was a variety hour, showcasing many of his now classic routines. It looked really funny, filled with his inspired sketches and bits. And it was critically acclaimed, too, winning Emmy and Peabody awards. Naturally, NBC canceled it after just one season. I'd love to think that there's enough footage from those shows to create a DVD.
There's former 7th Heaven star Stephen Collins will star in The Ride of Her Life; Jacqueline Bisset has a holiday pic in the works called Thanksgiving Reunion, which will air in November; and Pam Grier, Florence Henderson (The Brady Bunch) and Donna Mills (Knots Landings) will headline Ladies of the House, about three women from the same church who team up on a home renovation project.
When Suzanne Pleshette passed away a couple of weeks ago of respiratory failure, it seemed to derail the plans for her to get a star on the Walk of Fame sidewalk in Hollywood. A lot of times when a celebrity has died they won't do a public ceremony. But tomorrow's ceremony is going forward, with a familiar face at the helm.
Pleshette's television hubby Bob Newhart will lead the ceremonies tomorrow, on what would have been Pleshette's 71st birthday. Newhart also gave the eulogy at her funeral last week, along with Bob Newhart Show co-star (andlongtime Simpsons voice) Marcia Wallace.
- At 8, PBS has a new Wired Science, followed by the American Masters tribute to Bob Newhart.
- The CW has a new Crowned at 8.
- G4 has a new X-Play at 8.
- Lifetime Movie Network has the movie Under the Misletoe at 8.
- At 9, CBS has The 30th Annual Kennedy Center Honors, with honorees Steve Martin, Martin Scorcese, Diana Ross, Brian Wilson, and Leon Fleischer.
- TBS has the Funniest Commercials of the Year: 2007 at 9, followed by new episodes of Tyler Perry's House of Payne.
- Also at 9: HBO has Real Sports with Bryant Gumbal, then a new Inside the NFL.
- At 9:30, HGTV has a new Design on a Dime.
Check your local TV listings for more.
- At 8, TLC has two new episodes of Little People, Big World.
- Soccer players join Emeril on a new Emeril Live on Food Network at 8.
- At 9, ABC has a new Extreme Makeover.
- FOX has a new Hell's Kitchen at 9.
- There's a new Age of Love on NBC at 9, followed by a new Dateline, a salute to Stone Phillips.
- PBS has a new History Detectives at 9.
- TNT has a new episode of The Closer at 9, then a new Heartland.
- USA has a new Monday Night RAW at 9.
- I didn't know that American Life had started showing The Mary Tyler Moore Show. The first episode is on at 9, followed by the first episodes of Newhart, WKRP In Cincinnati, and The Bob Newhart Show.
- Also at 9: GSN has a new High Stakes Poker.
- At 10:30, BBC America has a new Hollyoaks.
Check your local TV listings for more.
Television buffs should know that the catchy theme to the Bob Newhart Show, written by Lorenzo Music, is titled "Home to Emily," but I added that "funky" to the title of this post because what I found on YouTube is not the original theme, but a funk version recorded by the Inner City Jam Band.
The music comes from a YouTube channel belonging to a vinyl collector, and I think it's pretty cool. I kept imagining Bob strutting through Chicago in bellbottom pants and a gigantic afro, and everyone on the series replacing the ubiquitous "hi, Bob" with "hi, Funky Bob." You can skip to about 1:38 to hear the actual song in its entirety, or you can listen to VinylJunkie's introduction and stare at his insane collection of records. Seriously, that's a pretty sweet collection.
Welcome to TV Squad Lists (formerly 'The Five'), a feature where each blogger has a chance to list his or her own rundown of things in television that stand out from the rest, both good and bad.
Even before "Must-See TV" networks made an attempt to capture a particular demographic with a killer lineup of TV shows. (Bob's done one of these lists in the past.) What follows is a list of the best TV lineups in history.
1. CBS Saturday, 1973: All in the Family, M*A*S*H*, The Mary Tyler Moore Show, The Bob Newhart Show, The Carol Burnett Show. All classics. If this lineup were on today, it would still get huge ratings. It's hard for most folks to remember when these shows were originally on and it's even harder to believe that they were once all on in the same night. It makes me wonder what the other networks were showing or why they even bothered.
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