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Question: Any word on who will be writing Castle‘s season premiere? —Ben
Ausiello: The good news: Newly coronated showrunner David Amann is penning the Season 7 opener. The even better news: Rob Bowman is directing. And now, the provocative news: Castle will return with a two-parter, and to that end is casting the guest-starring role of “Henry,” a highly intelligent yet unassuming gent who’s deft at blending into a crowd. (A spook-y nemesis of Jackson Hunt’s? »
The broadcast networks have more than two dozen shows debuting this fall, including a new Shondaland drama, and a trip to Gotham, a third NCIS and a Flash-y Arrow offshoot. To help you prep for it all, TVLine is offering First Impressions of the not-for-review pilots.
Next up on our list….
Photos Fall TV Preview: Your Guide to What’s New!
The Show | CBS’ Madam Secretary (Sundays at 8/7c, premiering Sept. 21)
The Competition | NBC’s Sunday Night Football, ABC’s Once Upon a Time and Fox’s The Simpsons/Brooklyn Nine-Nine
CBS is second out of the gate this year in detailing its premiere plan for the 2014-15 TV season. It kicks off (appropriately enough) with its brand-new Thursday Night Football offering, starting Sept. 11.
The Eye’s non-sports fare starts unspooling on Sunday, Sept. 21 — with the debut of Tea Leoni’s Madam Secretary followed by The Good Wife. Then, as previously and well-reported, The Big Bang Theory will open Season 8 in a new time slot (Mondays at 8/7c, stating Sept. 22). But by Oct. 30, it’s business as usual for America’s most watched network, as Tbbt, The Millers, Two and a Half Men »
It’s not that strange for a stage actor to play the same role for the film version. Erich Bergen is different, though, in one key way: He was fired from the Las Vegas cast of Jersey Boys five years ago, only to land the part of Four Seasons songwriter and singer Bob Gaudio in the Clint Eastwood–helmed movie edition that opened Friday. Bergen, who kicked up a media ruckus in the Vegas press in 2009 by badmouthing the producers after his dismissal, admits he wasn’t sure what would become of his career after that. But the 28-year-old booked a series of plays and musicals, including a starring role in the touring cast of Anything Goes, and appeared on Desperate Housewives, Gossip Girl, and other TV shows. This fall, he’ll star opposite Téa Leoni and Bebe Neuwirth in Madame Secretary, which CBS is slipping between 60 Minutes and The Good Wife on Sundays. »
- Steve Friess
They came, they schmoozed, they screened. More than 1,500 television buyers from around the world have made the studio rounds in Los Angeles the past few days, checking out the 50-plus new series that landed orders from major networks last week.
The L.A. Screenings are a lower-profile affair than the upfront presentations mounted in Gotham last week, but in many ways they are equally important. International licensing, to linear and digital platforms, is crucial to funding production, particularly for high-end dramas. Unlike upfronts, which are geared to advertising sales, L.A. Screenings are organized around the studios that control the international distribution rights to shows.
“This is an important week,” said Armando Nunez, president and CEO of CBS Global Distribution Group. “It tees up a (sales) process that depends on the market. Every year there are more channels to put content on. We need to talk to them all and »
- Cynthia Littleton
Exclusive: Emmy-winning character actor Željko Ivanek (Damages) has joined the cast of CBS‘ new drama series Madam Secretary as a regular after guest starring in the pilot. Written by Barbara Hall and exec produced by Morgan Freeman, Madam Secretary, from CBS Studios, stars Téa Leoni as Elizabeth McCord, the shrewd, determined, newly appointed Secretary of State who drives international diplomacy, battles office politics and circumvents protocol as she negotiates global and domestic issues, both at the White House and at home. Ivanek, repped by SMS Talent and Leading Artists, plays the President’s intimidating and opinionated Chief of Staff Russell Jackson. »
- NELLIE ANDREEVA
ABC Studios is selling a diverse slate of new hours as well as a trio of unique comedies.
On the drama side, “Marvel’s Agent Carter” and “The Whispers” may hold the most global appeal, but others have potential as well.
“Agent Carter,” the second series from Marvel in the last two years, follows Peggy Carter in 1946 as she balances her administrative work with embarking on secret missions for the covert Ssr (Strategic Scientific Reserve). It should hold more appeal for women than last year’s “Agents of Shield.”
In “Whispers,” aliens have invaded Earth by using our most unlikely resource to achieve world domination — our children. As the kids unwittingly help these unseen enemies, the clock counts down in a race to save humanity.
- Variety Staff
Look who’s in the bread line after pilot season!
Lots of exciting stars will join the broadcast TV lineup this fall (Viola Davis, Octavia Spencer, Tea Leoni, Ioan Gruffudd) but an equal amount were left jobless after the networks announced their schedules last week in New York. Here’s who (and what projects) we will miss now that the upfronts are over:
- Lynette Rice
With the oncoming end of the 2013-2014 television season, many network channels, and television fans, are looking ahead to the fall, when the 2014-2015 television season kicks off. With a stable of shows that already include hourlong dramas such as The Good Wife and sitcoms such as Mom, many were interested to hear what CBS would be picking up, especially with the end of long-running sitcom How I Met Your Mother this past television season. The new shows that shall be appearing on CBS, starting from the fall, are NCIS: New Orleans, CSI: Cyber, Madam Secretary, Stalker, The McCarthys, The Odd Couple, Scorpion and Battle Creek. CBS released the trailers for some of their new shows, which can be seen below.
- Deepayan Sengupta
Welcome back to TV, Téa Leoni! The Naked Truth star is headlining CBS' new drama Madam Secretary where she plays the newly appointed secretary of state. In the drama, Leoni plays Elizabeth McCord, a former CIA analyst-turned-college professor who gets an offer from the president that she can't refuse. "There was something—I adored her. I adored her by page two, there's no sarcasm to her. Sarcasm is too slow," Leoni told E! News' Kristin Dos Santos about her character. "I want to wake up and be her every day." The show, which hails from Barbara Hall of Judging Amy fame and Morgan Freeman, follows the character as she battles office politics, international »
Some sources (i.e. the whole world) have speculated that CBS's new series Madam Secretary will focus on a character loosely based on -- or inspired by -- former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. It'll be interesting to see if these comparisons continue to be made now that the trailer for Madam Secretary is out. Tea Leoni stars as Elizabeth McCord, a former CIA analyst turned college professor. When asked by friends if she misses the CIA, Elizabeth explains that she misses the people, but not the life. Madam Secretary was created by Barbara Hall, who has written for Homeland and Judging Amy. Hall created cult classic Joan of Arcadia. Madam Secretary will air on Sundays at 8-9 pm, after 60 Minutes and before The Good Wife a prime berth which shows that CBS is high on the show (It is rumored to be CBS chief Nina Tassler's favorite pilot. »
- Laura Berger
What’s the best new show coming to CBS? Well, we have high hopes for Vince Gilligan and David Shore’s Battle Creek, but as CBS Entertainment Chairman Nina Tassler explained during the network’s upfronts presentation, that doesn’t premiere until midseason. For fall, CBS knows what you want: More NCIS! Your guide to non-ncis offerings also appears below.
- Melissa Maerz
If you've already checked out CBS's Fall schedule, you may have noticed a handful of new shows. The network is adding four dramas and one comedy to its lineup, and stars Dylan McDermott, Maggie Q, Téa Leoni, and Katharine McPhee are all trying their luck with CBS's primetime crowd. Get a peek at the new shows, and don't forget to check out Fox's new shows, ABC's new shows, and all the new series on NBC! »
- Shannon Vestal
When I first saw the trailer for CBS' new fall show "Madam Secretary," my first thought was, hey, Tea Leoni! I love Tea Leoni! My second thought was, man, have not been seeing much of her in recent years. Sure, she was just in "Tower Heist" in 2011, but no one saw that, and it's been a whole lotta years since "Flirting with Disaster." There have been many projects in between, but not enough of them have been ideal showcases for Leoni's talent, plus movies like "Jurassic Park III" and "Deep Impact" weren't really about the actors, and plenty of other stars dominated hits like "A League of Their Own." Here are five reasons why I'm really hoping this is the hit Leoni has long deserved. 1) She's smart by any standard Yes, she dropped out of Sarah Lawrence, but let's remember that she got into Sarah Lawrence. Watching her on screen in any role, »
- Liane Bonin Starr
This morning CBS unveiled its full fall schedule, and now the network has released trailers for its new upcoming series. Briefly: Stalker – From creator Kevin Williamson, the psychological thriller drama stars Dylan McDermott and Maggie Q as detectives investigating stalking incidents. Extant – A new sci-fi series from executive producer Steven Spielberg starring Halle Berry as an astronaut who returns home to strange occurrences. The series debuts this summer. Madam Secretary – A new political drama series starring Tea Leoni as the newly appointed Secretary of State. Scorpion – A new drama inspired by the true story of an eccentric genius and his band of misfits working to protect the U.S. from high-tech threats. Katherine McPhee and Eddie Kaye Thomas star. NCIS: New Orleans – A self-explanatory spinoff starring Scott Bakula. The McCarthys – A new ensemble comedy series about a sports-crazed Boston family and their gay son. Hit the jump to watch trailers »
- Adam Chitwood
CBS has unveiled its schedule for the 2014-15 season, along with summaries and trailers for its fall offerings. Among the Eye’s upcoming shows: spinoffs for “NCIS” and “CSI”; a Kevin Williamson thriller starring Maggie Q and Dylan McDermott; Matthew Perry’s latest attempt to headline a comedy post-”Friends”; and a procedural from “Breaking Bad” creator Vince Gilligan and “House’s” David Shore.
Check out the summaries and first looks for fall below:
A mystery thriller starring Halle Berry as Molly Woods, a female astronaut trying to reconnect with her family after returning from a year in outer space. Her mystifying experiences in space lead to events that will ultimately change the course of human history.
A comedy about a loud, sports-crazed Boston family whose somewhat athletically challenged son, Ronny, is chosen by his father to be his assistant high school basketball coach, to »
- Laura Prudom
With its amalgamation of “NCIS” and “CSI” spinoffs on its new fall schedule, CBS appears to have resigned itself to being a butt of jokes within the TV industry, as well as accepting that a sizable part of the younger cohort advertisers crave will be watching only when visiting their grandparents. Still, the network also enjoys what is quite possibly the coup of the fall by having snagged a September-October package of Thursday-night NFL games, which should be the sort of ratings grabber – and breather for the network’s lagging comedies – that covers up a multitude of sins.
Even if it doesn’t work, there’s a foundational TV logic in everything CBS does, and almost all of its new shows — even if they aren’t direct brand extensions — look like dead ringers for the existing series with which they’ll be paired. So the new drama “Stalker” could just »
- Brian Lowry
CBS released first-look videos for their newly picked up shows, including the Tea Leoni drama “Madam Secretary” and others. Watch the videos below to see what the Eye has in store for you this coming season. Also read: 2014-2015 TV Season: TheWrap's Complete Network Guide “Stalker” stars Dylan McDermott and Maggie Q in a psychological thriller centered around a pair of detectives who handle stalking incidents for the Threat Management Unit of the Lapd. “The McCarthys” follows the antics of a loud, sports-crazed Boston family. “Extant” stars Halle Berry as an astronaut who goes on a 13-month solo mission, but does not return alone. »
- Tim Kenneally
CBS has unleashed trailers for next season including writer-producer Kevin Williamson’s thriller Stalker, which CBS president Nina Tassler described to ad buyers in New York on Wednesday as the scariest drama the network has ever aired. Also in the mix is new Boston-centric comedy The McCarthys, Tea Leoni’s D.C. drama Madam Secretary, spin-off NCIS: New Orleans and ensemble procedural drama Scorpion. There’s also a new trailer for CBS’ promising summer sci-fi drama Extant starring Halle Berry, which debuts July 9. Watch them below, then take our poll, and see how they all fit into CBS’ fall schedule here. »
- James Hibberd
Following the 2014-15 schedule announcement, CBS released the full trailers for its fall slate of new dramas and comedies. Including midseason, the network will debut eight scripted series, six of them dramas: Kevin Williamson's Stalker, starring Maggie Q and Dylan McDermott; Madam Secretary with Tea Leoni; Nick Santora's Scorpion; Battle Creek, from Breaking Bad's Vince Gilligan and David Shore; and two spinoffs, NCIS: New Orleans and CSI: Cyber. Photos: Broadcast TV's New Shows for 2014-15 Season Two comedies will launch during the new season, Matthew Perry's The Odd Couple redo and The McCarthys. Check out the trailers for
- Philiana Ng
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