Some of the big surprises of Emmy night were the wins for the final season of 'Friday Night Lights.' To say that fans of the NBC/DirecTV show had full hearts would be putting it far too mildly.
First executive producer and head writer Jason Katims won an Emmy in the best drama writing category, and gave a lovely, graceful speech that ended with "Clear eyes, full hearts, can't lose." Katims won for writing the show's series finale, 'Always,' which beat out 'Mad Men's' 'The Suitcase,' which was widely expected to win in that category.
Not long after that, a clearly stunned Kyle Chandler won as best dramatic actor. The man who played Coach Eric Taylor on 'FNL' for five seasons bested 'Mad Men's' Jon Hamm and 'Boardwalk Empire's' Steve Buscemi, among others.
Executive producer Jason Katims says that Jesse will be on 'Friday Night Lights' for the fifth and final season, but not a regular. It'll be part-time, which isn't the worst situation. However, with his status as recurring and Taylor Kitsch as Tim definitely gone -- along with Zach Gilford as Matt and Scott Porter as Jason and Gaius Charles as Smash before them -- they're definitely breaking up that old Panther team from the first couple of seasons.
Sigh ... is it too soon to hope for a Dillion Panther Championship team reunion in the next decade?
According to Joel, who saw the pilot, Sarah is no Lorelai. She's not chummy-chummy with her children. She's a lot tougher and more of a mom than a buddy. That would definitely be different from 'Gilmore Girls.' Lorelai and Rory's relationship was unique because they were really best friends... most of the time.
The one-hour dramedy, from the creative dream team of writer/producer Jason Katims ('Friday Night Lights') and producers Ron Howard and Brian Grazer ('Arrested Development') will debut in a post-'Chuck' slot on Monday, March 1 at 9PM (this is after both the 'Heroes' season finale on Feb. 8 and the Winter Olympics have aired).
Okay, so it's a Sex And The City version of The Wizard of Oz. It may work. It certainly has enough familiar elements to do so.
Without knowing anything about this series other than what is written in the article, I already know that she will have three co-workers, one with no brain, one (and pretty loose) with no heart (and fairly stiff) and one with no courage (and quite possibly hairy. And, if he acts like Burt Lahr in the classic movie, quite possibly gay).
NBC and its various cable stations are making their presentations today and tomorrow. Since it is Sunday, the critics got a little bit of a break and didn't have to start until noon, when a lunch session was held for Friday Night Lights. This session had a little bit of added juice, due to the unique deal NBC struck to have DirecTV shoulder the cost of producing the series in exchange for the rights to air new episodes on the satellite service first, before they air on NBC. Thirteen episodes will be produced and will air in October on DirecTV's 101 Network, and they'll air in February on the Peacock network.
Not surprisingly, there were as many questions about the new arrangement as there were about the creative aspects of the show. Show-runner Jason Katims and DirecTV entertainment head Eric Shanks fielded most of those questions, and the cast of the show fielded the rest.
It's a question that popped up even before our pals in Dillon had their premiere. What are they going to do when these kids start graduating? Well, we have an answer now, and I'm not sure it's going to be embraced by everyone. EW's Michael Ausiello reports that Gaius Charles (Smash) and Scott Porter (Street) have been moved to recurring status.
Producer Jason Katims released a statement that says both characters will get four episode arcs to move them into the next chapter of their lives. Presumably, those would be chapters that won't be captured by the handheld Friday Night Lights cams. The cynic in me can't help thinking that this has as much to do with the shaky nature of the FNL renewal as it does with being able to work these characters into the show. After all, the idea of budget cuts after the strange Direct TV deal isn't an outlandish one. That being said, the explanation is reasonable. They were going to have to address the graduation dilemma eventually.
They may have intended that title as a reference to what is going on with many of the characters. Things like Tami's admission that her insistence that she and Julie stay in Dillon was a bad idea, how Buddy's own actions have created his situation, the experimental Mexican surgery proposed to Street, or even Antwone's trip to the Justin Timberlake concert. To me though, THE bad idea is nothing that any of the characters are doing. It is this Landry and Tyra story that the writers and producers have cooked up. So we'll get started there, after the jump.
Don't get me wrong, I'm as much in the bag for the show, and Katims, as anybody. But we have to be realistic and admit that the renewal did come as something of a surprise after the way the show performed in the ratings last season. Renewing it was a gamble for the network, so is pulling one of the people credited with giving it that quality away to work on another show really the best idea? I certainly think that Katims can be a help to the Bionic Woman team, but I hope that Friday Night Lights doesn't suffer for it.
[ via Ausiello Report ]
If we're supposed to like Chuck, Levi's well cast in the role. He has a self-effacing way about him, especially when asked if he's bulked up over the last few years. He jokes he's eaten a lot of pizza and doesn't work out as much as he should.
Co-star Adam Baldwin is asked a question pretty much everyone knows the answer to. No, he's not related to the famous acting Baldwin brothers of Long Island. Baldwin jokes he hopes to meet Alec Baldwin (30 Rock) now that they're both on NBC so they can settle this in person.
The show has a strange, but not unfamiliar history, to Hollywood watchers. The series is based on a similarly-themed 2004 pilot project that Kelley and co-producer Jason Katims, now the showrunner for Friday Night Lights, developed for ABC called DeMarco Affairs and a Fox project that was in the process of being redeveloped. That project was entitled The Wedding Album. The amalgamation we'll be seeing on TV this Spring is described by Kelley as "a romantic comedy about a group of wedding planners dedicated to having their clients live happily ever after, or at least until they get to the parking lot."
The wedding industry has never been more ripe for satire than now. Let's hope the great premise ends in great results.
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