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October 4, 2015


Showtime Picks Up a New William H. Macy Drama

by Rich Keller, posted Apr 9th 2010 1:03PM
William H Macy stars as an alcoholic, blue-collar father in the Showtime drama 'Shameless.'William H. Macy is one of those unique actors who can adapt to any role he's given. Whether it be as Chief of Emergency Medicine on 'ER' or a salesman with cerebral palsy in the TV movie 'Door to Door'. Now, Macy will take on the role of father in a new Showtime drama series.

The subscriber movie channel (known more these days for its original programming) has picked up the series 'Shameless' from 'ER' and 'The West Wing' producer John Wells. A remake of an award-winning British drama, 'Shameless' will star Macy as an alcoholic, blue-collar father of a large Chicago family. The twist...after his wife leaves him, he ends up handing the parenting of the clan over to his eldest daughter, who will be played by actress Emmy Rosum.

For Wells, the production of 'Shameless' will be a reunion of sorts. Not only will he be reunited with Macy, whom he worked with when the actor played Dr. David Morgenstern on 'ER,' but he'll also work with former 'The West Wing' colleague Allison Janey, who will have a recurring role as Macy's wife.

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Movie Stars Invade TV: A Look at Pilot Season 2010

by Chris Harnick, posted Mar 24th 2010 2:00PM
Sissy SpacekTelevision fans, look out: Oscar-winning actors are taking over! And not just for a special cameo or a three-episode guest star stint, either. Movie stars are coming to TV in a big way ... as series regulars.

Why? Well, for a few reasons. Portraying a character on a weekly basis can present a new challenge to these veteran silver screen stars, but let's not forget that young Hollywood actors in tween-targeted films are dominating the box office. These Oscar-winning actors aren't giving up films, but their star power and names alone are big enough to attract an audience to a TV show.

Many Oscar-winners and nominees have left their mark on both screens -- just look at Sally Field. She's won an Oscar for 'Norma Rae' and Emmys for 'Sybil,' 'ER' and 'Brothers & Sisters.'

Maybe the Oscars of these latest stars got lonely on the mantle and the next logical thought would be: Why not add an Emmy sister?

Check out the list of actors who are coming to TV -- including Sissy Spacek and Dustin Hoffman -- after the jump.

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Sissy Spacek to Star in CBS Medical Drama

by Mike Scalise, posted Mar 22nd 2010 4:30PM
Sissy Spacek is moving from sabotaging polygamists to saving the world.

According to the Hollywood Reporter, the Oscar-winning actress will follow up her role as the duplicitous lobbyist Marilyn Densham on HBO's 'Big Love' by playing the lead in a medical drama pilot for CBS, produced by John Wells ('ER'; 'Southland').

The pilot centers around a crew of mobile medical professionals who travel the globe in search of those in need of treatment. Spacek will play the group leader -- a role originally written for a male lead -- who has a tireless, demanding work ethic despite undergoing cancer treatments.

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TV Casting: EXCLUSIVE -- Tess Harper Returning to 'Breaking Bad'

by Andrew Scott, posted Mar 19th 2010 12:45PM
Tess HarperEXCLUSIVE: Veteran film and television actress Tess Harper ('Tender Mercies'; 'No Country for Old Men') will reprise her role as Jesse's (Aaron Paul) mom on AMC's Emmy-winning series 'Breaking Bad.' Star Bryan Cranston broke the news in his exclusive interview with AOL TV, saying, "She and Michael Bofshever, who plays [Jesse's] dad, are both back again and we're glad to have them, because they do a really solid job." According to Cranston, Harper's appearance will be a minor one, because the "storyline didn't put it in that way to explore more of Jesse's background, but that's neither here nor there." 'Breaking Bad' season 3 premieres Sun., Mar. 21 at 10PM. [AOL TV]

More casting news after the jump.

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TV Casting: Lindsey Vonn to Go for Gold on 'Law & Order'

by Andrew Scott, posted Mar 1st 2010 12:08PM
Lindsey VonnOlympic champion Lindsey Vonn is eyeing another Gold medal-winning performance -- this time, on NBC's 'Law & Order.' Bob Costas broke the exciting news to her during an interview segment on Saturday, in which he revealed that she will play a jury foreman in a future episode. 'Law & Order' is said to be Vonn's favorite show. [TV Guide]

More casting news after the jump.

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TV Casting: 'Twilight' Star Headed to CBS

by Andrew Scott, posted Feb 19th 2010 12:30PM
Rachelle Lefevre'Twilight''s Rachelle Lefevre will sink her teeth into a role on John Wells' new medical drama for CBS. Lefevre will play Katy, who joins a team of medical professionals that travels the country to help those in "desperate need of assistance." Lefevre joins the previously cast Amy Smart (more on that here.) [Ausiello Files]

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Amy Smart Scrubs in for CBS Medical Drama

by Michael D. Ayers, posted Feb 16th 2010 11:00AM
CBS is getting smart -- Amy Smart, that is.

According to the Hollywood Reporter, Smart will star in CBS' untitled medical drama from executive producer John Wells ('ER'; 'Southland'). In it, she will play a "tough nurse" who speaks her mind and is romantically involved with another character.

The show follows a group of medics who travel the country to help less-fortunate people in need of medical care.

While Smart's career has mostly been relegated to film -- she's had a long history with both frat comedies ('Road Trip,' 'Varsity Blues') and romantic comedies ('Just Friends,' 'Win a Date With Tad Hamilton!') -- she's had a few roles on the small screen, including a season of 'Felicity' and a four-episode arc on 'Scrubs' as "Tasty Coma Wife."

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CBS Orders John Wells Medical Drama Pilot, Yet Another Police Procedural

by Leonard Jacobs, posted Feb 2nd 2010 10:30AM
Not to suggest that CBS already has a drama-heavy primetime schedule, what with three 'CSI' franchises, two 'NCIS' franchises, 'Cold Case,' 'Criminal Minds' and so on, but the Eye is greenlighting two more drama pilots.

Per the Hollywood Reporter, CBS has ordered one pilot for a police procedural called 'Reagan's Law,' which traces the lives of several generations of New York City police officers.

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Southland may yet find new life on cable

by Jason Hughes, posted Oct 19th 2009 2:29PM
SouthlandJust when I'd added Southland to my list of shows to spotlight in upcoming editions of "Gone Too Soon," now there are glimmers of hope for its future. After NBC unceremoniously dumped it before it premiered this season, in favor of more Dateline, fans and television pundits were stunned.

Executive producer John Wells has reportedly been in contact with the cast to tell them he has at least two cable networks interested in picking up Southland. The good news comes in two ways. One, the series gets to come back. And two, a cable network is a lot less likely to tamper with the storytelling style Southland was developing in its first season. NBC already had them de-emphasizing the larger cast and the serialized nature of their storytelling in the episodes they were filming for the new season.

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Two Networks Interested in 'Southland'

by Scott Harris, posted Oct 19th 2009 2:00PM
Southland'Southland' fans getting ready to give the show the 'Jericho' treatment can hold off buying those nuts for now, because it looks like the series may not be dead just yet.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, 'Southland' executive producer John Wells has informed the show's cast and crew that he is in discussions with two networks about moving the series to a new home. While Wells did not divulge which networks are in contention, speculation is centering on TNT as the frontrunner.

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Willam H. Macy is getting Shameless for Showtime

by Jason Hughes, posted Oct 15th 2009 8:08PM
William H. MacySince January 2004, the UK's Shameless has been bringing to life the story of a drunken working-class father and his nine children. Snippets of this long-running hit; going into its seventh season; have aired in the US on BBC America and Sundance. And for five years, it's been in development hell.

The show has been tied to NBC, with Woody Harrelson in consideration for the lead role of Frank Gallagher, and more recently at HBO. Now, finally, original creator Paul Abbott and John Wells Prod. have signed a deal to bring Shameless to Showtime with William H. Macy in the lead.

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Southland -- An early look - VIDEO

by Mike Moody, posted Apr 3rd 2009 1:29PM
southland early look nbc hulu

, the gritty new police drama from film producer Ann Biderman, puts the spotlight on the dark and grimy corners of Los Angeles as seen through the eyes of uniformed cops and plainclothes detectives. Unfortunately, the series premiere is mired in cop show clichés and forgets to deliver anything we haven't seen before.

The first episode – stream it now or watch it below, a week before it debuts on NBC – owes a lot to NYPD Blue, Homicide: Life on the Street and countless other cop shows that came before it. It's a procedural with a large cast about cops struggling to balance "the job" with their personal lives.

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ER: The longest goodbye in television history just got longer

by Jason Hughes, posted Jan 9th 2009 8:00PM
I think ER first started saying farewell like eight years ago or something. Then last year was the final season. Then this year was the final season. And now NBC has added three more episodes to the final season of ER to push the last episode back just a little bit more. Of course, the end result is that this season of ER is now 22 episodes which makes it the same length as any other normal season. It also gives them a little more time to come up with an excuse to renew the show for another year and make next season it's new final season. What else do you have going on NBC?

They'd have to move it to 9:00 though because of Jay Leno, but it's not like the NBC lineup is brimming with hits they'll have to shuffle around. Of course, there is new programming to think about. In fact, the deal that netted the additional three installments was part of a negotiation involving Warner Bros. TV and another show they've got in development called Police, about the ... uh ... police ... in LA.

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ER may be replaced with LAPD

by Brett Love, posted Jun 16th 2008 9:43AM

John WellsNBC has had it pretty easy for the last fifteen years where Thursday nights at 10, 9 Central, are concerned. ER was locked in, and for the better part of that run was a dominant force. Now that the show is finally coming to an end, they need to start grooming a replacement. It looks like it could be a case of meet the new boss, same as the old boss.

ER executive producer, John Wells, has set up a new show, LAPD, at the network. It's an ensemble show that will follow the lives of police officers in Los Angeles and will be written by Ann Biderman. That's a solid choice as she won an Emmy for her work on NYPD Blue. The network has ordered a pilot and casting has begun. Another ER alum, Christopher Chulack, is on board to direct. Can it replace ER? Probably not completely. Remember, ER had a run as the number one show on television. That kind of success is hard to come by. Still, given the talent involved, it is something to look forward to.

[ via Cynopsis ]

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Why Smith was canceled

by Bob Sassone, posted Oct 22nd 2006 3:29PM

Ray LiottaIf the comments section here is any indication, even though Smith was canceled rather quickly by CBS, it actually had a lot of fans. Of course, we didn't get 10 million comments, so "a lot" wasn't really enough.

TV Guide has a breakdown on why the show was canceled. It seemed like it could be a hit: West Wing/ER producer John Wells, big stars like Ray Liotta and Virginia Madsen, and lots of hype by CBS, but what happened? People have speculated that it was because the gang of crooks on the show weren't likable, but the magazine says that it was more the price of the show. Each episode cost about $3 million dollars!

I wonder how much that awful motorcycle chase with Simon Baker cost to film?

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