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July 25, 2014

VivaLaughlin

Working Title Films That Would (And Wouldn't) Work on the Small Screen

by Aimee Deeken, posted Apr 1st 2010 8:00AM
Renee Zellweger in Bridget Jones's DiaryThanks to the launch of Working Title Television (WTTV) last month, NBC Universal will glean a few TV-show ideas from movies created by its subsidiary Working Title Films. The UK production company is behind such Oscar crushes as 'Atonement,' Frost/Nixon' and 'A Serious Man,' and fan-faves 'Nanny McPhee,' 'Four Weddings and a Funeral' and 'Pride & Prejudice.'

NBC Universal (which could use some fresh programming following the prime-time Leno debacle) will distribute WTTV content, starting with the comedy 'Love Bites' -- a "romantic anthology" reminiscent of Working Title Films' 'Love Actually' -- starring Jordana Spiro ('My Boys') and 'Ugly Betty's' Becki Newton. Execs in the joint venture announced last month they will also adapt the 'Bridget Jones' franchise for the small screen.

Having looked at the rest of Working Title's 100-plus film repertoire, we've got some thoughts of our own on three movies that would make good episodic programming -- and two that wouldn't.

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Worst TV Shows of the 2000s (30-21)

by Kim Potts, posted Dec 11th 2009 6:00AM

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Does the computerized music in Glee bug you?

by Jane Boursaw, posted Sep 17th 2009 6:00PM
Amber Riley in GleeIn my review of last night's Glee, I praised Amber Riley's voice, noting that it sounded like a combo of Jennifer Hudson and Rihanna when her character Mercedes sang about busting the windows out of Kurt's car. Commenter "czaravm" noted that after about 30 seconds, the computerized music kicked in, giving it a canned sound. I was pretty mesmerized by Riley's voice and the way she was workin' that body, so I didn't really notice it.

Does this sort of canned music bother you? Is it enough to make you stop watching Glee? Based on the comments on my review post, it sounds like some of you are disappointed with how the show is going.

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Are you ready for a singing and dancing Hugh Jackman on Oscar night? - VIDEO

by Mike Moody, posted Dec 12th 2008 5:05PM
hugh jackman oscars wolverine x-menAt the very least, this sounds more promising than an awards show hosted by reality TV stars.

Hugh Jackman, probably the only Tony Award-winner to be named People's "Sexiest Man Alive," will host this year's Academy Awards ceremony. Yep, it's an odd pick. The last few Oscar night hosts have been comedians (Jon Stewart, Ellen DeGeneres, Chris Rock), but something tells me this broadcast will be the funniest in years.

Why? Because Hugh Jackman likes to sing. And dance. And he usually looks pretty silly when he does those things at the same time, like in that episode of Viva Laughlin.

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Tricia Helfer is Inseparable from our televisions

by Jason Hughes, posted Jun 25th 2008 5:42PM
Tricia HelferRemember when FOX signed that holding deal for Battlestar Galactica's Tricia Helfer? Well, now they're using it. The former model, best known as every fanboy's synthetic fantasy via her portrayal of sympathetic Cylon "Number 6" on Sci Fi's reimagined Battlestar Galactica, Tricia Helfer has been cast in FOX's Inseparable. As it turns out she won't be playing a hot figment of anyone's imagination, though that would be a good use for the title.

Instead, she's been cast as a psychiatrist who works for the police department. How that will relate to Lloyd Owen's split personality hero/villain lead hasn't been made clear, but I'm guessing she'll be his psychiatrist. Would she find it weird that all of her male patients would only want to talk about their sexual fantasies with her?

"Here let me show you what I'm talking about, doctor. Why don't you get down on your knees and face me ... What do you mean that wouldn't be professional? I want to know what these yearnings mean. And can you undo that top button."

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The Good Riddance Award nominees

by Brett Love, posted May 27th 2008 2:20PM

Tv Squad AwardsAlright, here we go. The readers, and team TV Squad, have spoken. It's almost a little depressing that there were so many shows that received consideration for the award. Clearly, this wasn't a banner year for the networks. But that's good though. With all of those shows sent packing, there's that much more room on the schedule next season. Here's hoping all that valuable space gets put to good use, and that someone learns from the following examples. After the jump, the nominees, and your chance to vote for the TV Squad reader award.

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The Good Riddance Award: Call for considerations

by Brett Love, posted May 20th 2008 1:02PM

tv squad awardsEvery year at this time there are a few shows that take the cancellation bullet, much to the dismay of fans. There are petitions, mass mailings, and declarations of never watching that network again. On the other hand ... every year there are also those shows that meet the TV reaper that really had it coming. We've had enough of their bad TV and we're not going to take it anymore.

The good riddance award is for those shows. Not only will you not miss them, you'll gladly cheer as the funeral procession passes you by. There is no shortage of contenders as we rap up the '07/'08 season. The first to ping my radar included Next Great American Band. Good grief, so much was wrong about that show. And while we're looking at that ill-fated Fox Friday, let's throw Nashville on the pile as well. CBS has a couple contenders in Secret Talents of the Stars and Viva Laughlin. How do you screw up getting frickin' Wolverine on your network? Of course, we'd be remiss if we didn't offer a tip of the cap to ABC and the Cavemen as well. Those are just a few from my perspective. Add your contenders in the comments and we'll boil it all down to a really great list, of really bad TV.

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Stump the King - Vega$

by Paul Goebel, posted Oct 29th 2007 10:25AM

Vega$I just finished watching the now cancelled Viva Laughlin and I can totally understand why nobody watched the show. It was a total mess!

I was a fan of the BBC version (Viva Blackpool) and I really had high hopes for the Americanized drama. Sadly, the producers made way too many mistakes for this show to have even the slightest chance.

The first mistake they made was the decision to have the leads sing over the original songs. In the original version of the show, the actors lip-synced all the musical numbers which gave the show a really creepy quality. Especially when the male characters are doing a number like "These Boots Were Made for Walking." It was creepy and funny and weird and enjoyable to watch.

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The TV Squad cancellation trifecta game: We have our first winner!

by Keith McDuffee, posted Oct 25th 2007 5:30PM
canceledAs was reported earlier this week, the first victim of the cancellation fairies has been claimed: Viva Laughlin. 41 out of 671 of you chose this show, and we've randomly chosen commenter Eric D from those entries. Congrats Eric -- you'll be hearing from us soon!

Now, this is not the end of the contest! As you know, we're extending this on until three new shows have gotten the boot. We've got two more $75 Amazon.com gift certificates to give away. Everyone's once again eligible to enter, following the complete rules after the jump.

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Viva Laughlin gets a quick cancellation

by Joel Keller, posted Oct 22nd 2007 3:45PM
Viv LaughlinWell, that was fast. After an avalanche of scathing reviews (including mine) and extremely low ratings, CBS has canceled the musical mystery drama Viva Laughlin after two episodes. According to the story on Variety's web site, the show will be replaced in its Sunday 8 PM timeslot by The Amazing Race starting November 4 (a CSI rerun will air in that slot next week). No word yet on if the remaining episodes will be shown on CBS' web site, or anywhere else for that matter.

I imagine what happened is that CBS took a look at the low ratings for the show's Thursday premiere (8.8 million viewers) and the even lower ratings for the first regular Sunday showing (a 1.2 rating and 3 share in th 18-49 demo, according to Variety), saw that the quality of the remaining episodes were not going to improve, and decided to bail out. Those are the two factors that usually lead to such quick cancellations, especially to shows that were as heavily-promoted as Laughlin was.

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Viva Laughlin -- An early look

by Joel Keller, posted Oct 16th 2007 4:21PM
Viva Laughlin
In the world of TV, one of the riskiest things a creative team can do is shoot for the "quirky" factor. It's an all-or-nothing deal: either it works, where everything clicks and the audience embraces the show, or nothing works, and the show explodes in a big awful mess over the poor suckers who decided to tune in and watch. At the beginning of the 2007-08 season, we have two shows who went for the quirk: Pushing Daisies and Viva Laughlin. And as it turns out, one show works and the other show is a disaster. Considering Daisies is one of the most praised new shows of the season, we all know where we're going with this.

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Inside Jericho's resurrection - TCA report

by Michael Maloney, posted Jul 19th 2007 7:32PM
Skeet Ulrich on CBS' JerichoCBS starts off the morning a little later so we can all file our Emmy reports. Thanks!

Unexpected swag courtesy of today's first panel: Jericho -- a one-pound bag of peanuts and a t-shirt from nutsoline.com/jericho, the Internet campaign that helped bring the canceled fan favorite drama back to life for seven episodes next season.

Before the Q&A gets underway, CBS announces "CBS Eye-alert" a multi-platform viewer alert system that will help viewers find their favorite shows. I'm going to write more about this -- as soon as I figure out what it all means.

But, first, Jericho...

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CBS press tour preview day 2 - TCA report

by Michael Maloney, posted Jul 19th 2007 2:58PM

cbs logoOutside of panels for Jericho (which I'm sure is thrilled to be coming back) and Viva Laughlin (which I'm sure is thrilled to have been picked up), CBS' day two of the press tour is about reality (Survivor: China), game shows (Power of 10), research and new media (that still makes my head spin).

No major mingling with talent until the evening at the CBS Stars Party, which might be just as well.

Sadly, the eye network got snubbed in major categories at the Emmys this morning. Julia Louis-Dreyfus (last year's Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy) for The New Adventures of Old Christine, Two and a Half Men (for Comedy Series) and Men's Charlie Sheen (for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy) got nods in top categories. (CBS did score some supporting nods.)

It's too bad our panel with Chuck Lorre (nominated for Men) and his new show -- The Big Bang Theory -- was yesterday. Like with comedy itself, the most important thing about getting Emmy reaction -- is timing.

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TV Squad previews CBS's new shows

by Brett Love, posted Jul 5th 2007 11:00AM
CBS logoCBS probably has one of the more interesting schedules of the fall, just for the fact that they are making a concerted effort to try something different. They could have rolled out yet another procedural (CSI: LA?), and who could really blame them. Those shows have performed extremely well for the network over the past few years.

Instead, in what is a definite gamble, the network will be bringing out some decidedly alternative programming. There is a musical drama about the casino business in Laughlin, a vampire detective, a drama about a Cuban family and their rum making business, and some swinging couples getting their freak on in the 70's. The kind of fare that would probably cause Horatio to tilt his head to the side and remove his sunglasses. Will it work? Time will tell, but we've seen three of them and have a rundown after the jump.

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The Upfronts: CBS

by Brett Love, posted May 16th 2007 10:48AM
CBSCBS is on a good run, being the most watched network for the last five years, but they have taken a bit of heat for the formulaic way they have gone about doing it. Not arguing with success, the whole family of CSIs, and their crime based cousins, will be back, but the network is trying to branch out with some edgier programming. Most notably, Swingtown, Viva Laughlin, and Moonlight.

Returning: The Amazing Race, Cold Case, 60 Minutes, How I Met Your Mother, The New Adventures of Old Christine, Two and a Half Men, Rules of Engagement, CSI: Miami, NCIS, The Unit, Criminal Minds, CSI: NY, Survivor, CSI, Shark, Without A Trace, Ghost Whisperer, Numb3rs, 48 Hours Mystery.

New: Viva Laughlin, Swingtown, Moonlight, Cane, Big Bang Theory, Power of 10, Kid Nation

Out: King of Queens, Jericho, The Class, Close To Home

Moving: Without A Trace moves back to Thursday at 10. Shark heads to Sunday at 10.

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