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2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2005 | 2004 | 2003 | 2002

1-20 of 35 items from 2015   « Prev | Next »


Emmys: 'Mad Men' and 'Silicon Valley' Scribes Reveal How to Write a Finale

20 August 2015 5:00 AM, PDT | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

A version of this story first appeared in the Aug. 28 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe. This year’s Emmy-nominated scribes agree: Writing a finale is no easy feat. Recently, Mad Men creator Matthew Weiner was tasked with wrapping up seven seasons of the AMC critical darling, while Silicon Valley’s Alec Berg had the (albeit slightly less stressful) chore of tying up the second season of the HBO comedy breakout. Weiner, who is nominated twice in the writing category, reveals key steps in his writing process, including the two objects on

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- Bryn Elise Sandberg

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Can Anything Stop ‘Modern Family’ at the Emmys?

19 August 2015 10:00 AM, PDT | Variety - TV News | See recent Variety - TV News news »

For five years running, the Emmys have kept the best comedy series race all in the family.

The quintet of consecutive wins for “Modern Family” already put ABC’s breakout laffer in the TV Academy’s record books: It’s tied with “Frasier” for the most ever wins in the top comedy category. One more victory and it would hold the record solo.

Modern Family” co-creator and showrunner Christopher Lloyd is in the unique position of owning a piece of both records, having served as exec producer on the two series.

He says it would be “thrilling” if “Modern Family” broke the tie but doesn’t feel like it’s a competition. Rather it would mean recognition of how hard the show’s cast and crew continue to push themselves after six seasons and over 140 episodes.

“We aren’t writing for validation on ‘Modern Family,’ but we did set out »

- Geoff Berkshire

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Script and Direction Don’t Always Get Equal Love Come Emmy Time

12 August 2015 10:00 AM, PDT | Variety - TV News | See recent Variety - TV News news »

Ask this year’s crop of nominated directors and writers how to distinguish between a well-written and a well-directed episode of television and the answer you will get is largely the same: You can’t. On television shows, particularly cable series where the creative team is small, the relationship between director and writer is often so collaborative that separating the two elements is virtually impossible.

“If something is badly written or directed, I’m thinking, this is poorly written or poorly directed,” says “Silicon Valley” executive producer Alec Berg, nominated for writing the HBO comedy’s second season finale, “Two Days of the Condor.” “But if things are effectively rendered, you’re just thinking, ‘Wow, this is awesome.’ Or, ‘I love this,’ or ‘I can’t wait to see what happens.’ You’re not really thinking about the craft.”

Logically, this would mean that when submitting the episode that represents »

- Carita Rizzo

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TCA: Comedy Directors Talk Single vs. Multi Camera, Shrinking Running Times

5 August 2015 5:50 PM, PDT | Variety - TV News | See recent Variety - TV News news »

There’s no such thing as a single-camera comedy series, a clutch of prominent TV helmers agreed during a panel session Wednesday at the Television Critics Assn. press tour.

Comedies produced outside of the traditional multicamera stageplay-style format rarely if ever shoot scenes with just a single camera. Most of them use a hybrid multi- and single-camera format, as few showrunners would be willing to risk losing the option of having multiple choices for various shots in the editing room.

“There are degrees of single-camera-ness,” said Michael Blieden, whose credits includes “Late Night With Jimmy Fallon” and FX’s “Sex&Drugs&Rock&Roll.” He noted that there are plenty of single-cam shows that shoot scenes on a proscenium to mimic a multi-camera environment for actors.

Peter Atencio, director of Comedy Central’s “Key & Peele,” pointed to “Modern Family” as a show that is “a multicam show very creatively and intelligently done in a single-camera format. »

- Cynthia Littleton

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Silicon Valley s2/Veep s4 Digital HD Giveaway

28 July 2015 10:37 PM, PDT | SoundOnSight | See recent SoundOnSight news »

The most recent seasons of HBO’s critically acclaimed Silicon Valley and Veep (to get a sense of why, check out Jj Perkins’ coverage of Silicon Valley season 2 and Deepayan Sengupta’s coverage of Veep season 4) are coming out on Digital HD and in conjunction, we are excited to offer one SoS reader a download code for each! The code will give the winner all 10 episodes of each season, along with deleted scenes for Veep season 4. Listen to the latest episode of SoS’s TV podcast, The Televerse, to find out how to enter. The giveaway will run from July 29th until August 2nd, with a winner announced on next week’s podcast.

For those unfamiliar with either these series, here’s what HBO has to say about them. Warning, Spoilers (for Silicon Valley Season 1 and Veep Season 3) Ahead.

Silicon Valley Season 2:

After taking the tech world by storm last season at TechCrunch Distrupt, »

- Kate Kulzick

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Announcing the 2015 Emmy Nominations!

17 July 2015 | POPSUGAR | See recent BuzzSugar news »

Orange Is the New Black star Uzo Aduba and So You Think You Can Dance host Cat Deeley announced the 2015 Emmy nominations this morning. Spoiler alert: they were both nominated, along with Jon Hamm for Mad Men, Taraji P. Henson for Empire, Amy Schumer for Inside Amy Schumer, and Anthony Anderson for Black-ish. There are a few double nominees and a ton of first-timers, making this year's race already one of the most exciting in a while - not to mention the fact that Game of Thrones has a whopping 24 nominations. Take a look at the full list below! Outstanding Drama Series Better Call Saul Downton Abbey Game of Thrones Homeland House of Cards Mad Men Orange Is the New Black Outstanding Comedy Series Louie Modern Family Parks and Recreation Silicon Valley Transparent Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt Veep Outstanding Lead Actor In A Drama Series Kyle Chandler, Bloodline Jeff Daniels, The Newsroom Jon Hamm, »

- Maggie-Pehanick

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Emmys: Only Three Women Nominated in Top Writer-Director Categories

16 July 2015 3:25 PM, PDT | Variety - TV News | See recent Variety - TV News news »

Out of the 23 people nominated for writing or directing Emmys in the top comedy and drama series races, only three are women: “Transparent’s” Jill Soloway, “Mad Men’s” Semi Chellas and “Homeland’s” Lesli Linka Glatter.

Despite what the Academy described as a 60% increase in the number of women writing and directing nominees from last year, their numbers in the most prominent series categories dropped by two from last year.

Women were represented in the longform field with Dee Rees grabbing writing and directing mentions for HBO’s Bessie Smith biopic “Bessie.” Lisa Cholodenko and Jane Anderson were nommed for directing and writing HBO’s miniseries “Olive Kitteridge.” And Amy Schumer was recognized for variety series directing, along with Ryan McFaul, for the “12 Angry Men” episode of Comedy Central’s “Inside Amy Schumer.” There are also numerous women among the writing staffs nominated for variety series and specials.

But »

- Cynthia Littleton

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Emmy Award Nominations: Full List of 2015 Emmy Nominees

16 July 2015 8:38 AM, PDT | Variety - TV News | See recent Variety - TV News news »

The 2015 Primetime Emmy Awards were announced on July 16 and HBO’s “Game of Thrones” received the most nominations.

Andy Samberg will host the 2015 Primetime Emmy Awards on September 20. Fox will broadcast them live from the Microsoft Theater in downtown Los Angeles.

The nominees are below:

Outstanding Drama Series

“Better Call Saul”

Downton Abbey

Game of Thrones

Homeland

House of Cards

Mad Men

Orange is the New Black

Outstanding Comedy Series

Louie

Modern Family

Parks and Recreation

Silicon Valley

Transparent

Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt

Veep

Lead Actor, Drama

Bob Odenkirk, “Better Call Saul”

Kyle Chandler, “Bloodline

Kevin Spacey, “House of Cards

Jon Hamm, “Mad Men

Jeff Daniels, “The Newsroom

Liev Schreiber, “Ray Donovan

Lead Actress, Drama

Taraji P. Henson, “Empire”

Claire Danes, “Homeland

Viola Davis, “How to Get Away with Murder

Tatiana Maslany, “Orphan Black

Elisabeth Moss, “Mad Men

Robin Wright, “House of Cards

Lead Actor, Limited Series Or Movie

Timothy Hutton, »

- Variety Staff

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A-List Writers From 'Silicon Valley,' 'Transparent' on Embarrassing Scenes Stolen From Real Life, "Crushing Blow" of a Writers-Room Firing

19 June 2015 10:00 AM, PDT | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

This story first appeared in a special Emmy issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. You really can't blame a comedy showrunner — on whose shoulders a show's successes and failures squarely sit — for being totally exhausted. And on a recent spring afternoon, six such weary souls converged inside a Hollywood studio to talk about TV's toughest gig and its biggest occupational hazards. (No. 1 on the list: loss of sleep.) But it's not all grousing for these writer-producers, who over­see some of the most impactful comedies of the year: HBO's Silicon Valley (Alec Berg, 45), Amazon's Transparent (Jill

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- Stacey Wilson Hunt, Lacey Rose

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Top TV Showrunners Pull Double Duty as Directors

17 June 2015 10:00 AM, PDT | Variety - TV News | See recent Variety - TV News news »

After Alec Berg and Mike Judge finished the first season of their HBO comedy “Silicon Valley,” the showrunners made a decision to take on even more work for the current year: they’d alternate writing and directing episodes, rather than hiring guest directors.

“It’s an extension of the same process,” Berg says. “When you’re running a show, you consult on all the directorial stuff to an extent anyway. The guest directors we used last year were super-talented people, (but) ultimately, I have to be there anyway, so I may as well just be a hog and do it all.”

Because the lines between TV directing and writing continue to blur, Berg and Judge aren’t the only showrunners moving seamlessly between the two. Writer-directors say the two disciplines complement each other in a way that makes for a better show overall.

“They’re both connected,” says writer-director Jonathan Krisel of IFC’s “Portlandia. »

- Christy Grosz

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Silicon Valley, Ep. 2.10, “Two Days of the Condor” is a fleeting victory

15 June 2015 4:14 PM, PDT | SoundOnSight | See recent SoundOnSight news »

Silicon Valley, Season 2, Episode 10, “Two Days of the Condor”

Written by Alec Berg

Directed by Alec Berg

Airs Sundays at 10pm Et on HBO

What a bombshell, huh?

What’s most impressive about “Two Days of the Condor” is how it gives the most visceral ending to every possible arc of the season, while still committing to the perceived outcome last week of Richard losing Pied Piper. Richard’s code and the core group get to prove their bona fides, Erlich realizes the importance of his relationship with Pp, Gavin Belson gets the boot, Big Head continues to fail his way upward, Russ is back in the three commas club, and even Richard’s lawyer gets to feel the high of a “second chance.”

But still, Richard gets fired. The fight to keep Pied Piper has been a series of Pyrrhic victories. Richard called out the head of homicide for being a double asshole, »

- Jj Perkins

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Silicon Valley Season Two Finale Recap: The Thrill of Victory and the Agony of Defeat

14 June 2015 7:30 PM, PDT | Vulture | See recent Vulture news »

Last season, I was quite the Cassandra here in Silicon Valley recap land. I repeatedly predicted a dark end for Richard Hendricks, yet he bested Hooli, won TechCrunch Disrupt, and became a hero to little guys everywhere. I gladly took my lumps from readers for being a whiny soothsayer of doom. Now that you’ve seen “Two Days of the Condor,” the dark second season finale, I just have one thing to say: “Cassandra Henderson was Right!!! Who’s your Miss Cleo now?!!!”Yes, I’m being petty. If this show has taught you anything, it’s that we can be some petty ass people here in Information Technology. In this regard, I plead guilty with a capital T. This plea is appropriate, because Alec Berg’s excellent “Two Days of the Condor” script has a streak of pettiness running through it.  Almost everyone gets their shot at this trait in the finale. »

- Odie Henderson

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Zach Woods talks sleep-talking on 'Silicon Valley' (Exclusive Video)

12 June 2015 1:35 PM, PDT | Gold Derby | See recent Gold Derby news »

During our recent webcam chat (watch below), "Silicon Valley" supporting player Zach Woods reveals that a real-life incident was the inspiration for his character, Jared Dunn, to speak in his sleep in an episode ("Server Space"). He recalls telling executive producer Alec Berg of a time when his college roommate saw him sit up in bed and say, "I hate the Jews!" and then go back to sleep. Woods, who is Jewish, readily admits, "This is probably the dumbest thing to say in an Emmy-oriented interview." -Break- Watch dozens of video chats with 2015 Emmy contenders His HBO series just won Best Comedy at this year's Critics' Choice TV Awards and earned five Emmy nominations last year, including one for the top prize. While Woods has appeared on several Emmy winners ("Veep" and "The Good Wife"), he admits to being more connected to the accolades that "Silico..." »

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Emmys 2015: Best Comedies Prove Definitions Out of Date

10 June 2015 9:00 AM, PDT | Variety - TV News | See recent Variety - TV News news »

It used to be easy to define a TV comedy: characters hitting punchlines for half an hour in front of a live — and lively — studio audience, captured by a static four-camera setup.

It’s no longer that simple. The TV landscape has changed so dramatically that one Emmy voter’s comedy is quite literally another voter’s drama.

In a few cases, the traditional format thrives — i.e. the universe’s No. 1 sitcom, “The Big Bang Theory,” and its edgier sister series “Mom” — but today’s “comedy” has more styles than the stars on an Emmy red carpet.

Do you prefer your comedy dark or cheerful? Lowbrow or high? Bruising or fanciful? British or Brooklyn? Take your pick. It’s all available.

Some comedies are easy to spot. The serialized storytelling in HBO’s “Silicon Valley,” and the nuanced performances of Thomas Middleditch and T.J. Miller as a socially awkward »

- Geoff Berkshire

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Silicon Valley, Ep. 2.08, “White Hat/Black Hat” doesn’t let Richard win

1 June 2015 11:52 AM, PDT | SoundOnSight | See recent SoundOnSight news »

Silicon Valley, Season 2, Episode 8, “White Hat/Black Hat”

Written by Dan Lyons

Directed by Alec Berg

Airs Sundays at 10pm Et on HBO

Richard Hendricks can’t have nice things. It’s not that he doesn’t allow himself to have nice things, or even that he doesn’t want to have nice things, it is that he is almost karmically incapable of having nice things. Through either incredible worry or the incredible stupidity of others, Richard is never allowed to be an unqualified winner. Part of this is due to Richard being a dweeb who lacks confidence, but it is also due to the fact that Richard is the main character on a TV show, and thus can’t be top dog for very long. Stories of winners constantly winning become boring because watching deserved success is boring. It’s fun to watch a single arc of a story »

- Jj Perkins

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Silicon Valley, Ep. 2.07: “Adult Content” sets the season up for success

25 May 2015 2:11 PM, PDT | SoundOnSight | See recent SoundOnSight news »

Silicon Valley, Season 2, Episode 7, “Adult Content”

Written by Amy Aniobi

Directed by Alec Berg

Airs Sundays at 10pm Et on HBO

Who knew that Silicon Valley would be the type of show to sit down and have a grand moral discussion about ethics in business?

Actually, it makes sense when one stops to think about it. For as much as the show splits up the cast into Richard/Erlich A-plots and Dinesh/Gilfoyle B-plots, with Jared playing utility man, the core of the show is still the interaction between all of these characters. So having them all sit down to discuss what they’re going to do about End Frame gives the show an opportunity to have its main cast play off of each other. Gilfoyle gets to dryly ask a series of “What ifs”, Erlich righteously declares that he alone increases porn traffic on the internet by one percent, »

- Jj Perkins

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Silicon Valley, Ep. 2.04, “The Lady” reveals how season two changes the pacing

4 May 2015 5:52 PM, PDT | SoundOnSight | See recent SoundOnSight news »

Silicon Valley, Season 2, Episode 4, “The Lady”

Written by Carson Mell

Directed by Alec Berg

Airs Sundays at 10pm Et on HBO

Running a business is hard. Hell, being in charge of anything is hard. Decisions have to be made that affect the vague notion of a collective, and these have tangible impacts on the egos of the guys (and gal) lower on the totem pole than the decision-maker. Sometimes these bruised egos manifest themselves in worker complaints calling the leader a pussy for supposedly paying a new employee too much. At other times, this means a board member will go on a tirade about the tyranny of wide spoons and the inefficient design of Fage yogurt containers. A new investor could poach a prospective employee from the company and use the wrong logo on $30,000 dollars worth of swag for the company. Of course, none of that could matter if your »

- Jj Perkins

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Silicon Valley, Ep. 2.03: “Bad Money” brings another player to the table

26 April 2015 10:39 PM, PDT | SoundOnSight | See recent SoundOnSight news »

Silicon Valley, Season 2, Episode 3, “Bad Money

Written by Alec Berg

Directed by Alec Berg

Airs Sundays at 10pm Et on HBO

Silicon Valley is raising the stakes by bringing in the one big archetype it has yet to tackle: the washed-out tech CEO. Gavin Belson is a conniving, devious, maniacal douchebag, but he is successful. This means that if he were do something seemingly innocuous, like, say, compare the plight of billionaires in America to that of Jews in Nazi Germany, all he would have to do to fix the problem is build a statue on the Hooli campus in order to “hardwire sensitivity into our corporate mind-space.”

Russ Hanneman (Chris Diamantopoulos), on the other hand, is a conniving, devious, maniacal douchebag who is a Silicon Valley laughing stock. So when Hanneman whips onto the scene in his specially-made McLaren in order to hijack Pied Piper from Belson, he is »

- Jj Perkins

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‘Game of Thrones’ Season 5 Premiere Scores Series High Ratings

14 April 2015 8:32 AM, PDT | The Wrap | See recent The Wrap news »

Everyone loves musical chairs — throw in dragons, and it’s game on for adults. The “Game of Thrones” Season 5 premiere episode landed a series-high 4.2 rating in the 18-49 demographic; the fantasy drama hauled in 8 million total viewers. Last year, the popular HBO show’s Season 4 premiere netted a 3.6 rating in the key demo, which means this one is up 16.7 percent. The premium network’s comedy “Silicon Valley” returned for its sophomore season with a 1.3 demo rating, which was good for second place across cable on Sunday. The Mike Judge-Alec Berg sitcom netted 2.13 million total viewers, which placed it. »

- Tony Maglio

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Veep Renewed for Season 5 and Silicon Valley for Season 3 by HBO

13 April 2015 5:16 PM, PDT | TheHDRoom | See recent TheHDRoom news »

HBO wasted little time in renewing two of its ongoing franchises that have the privilege of airing on the same night as Game of Thrones.

In a blanket announcement today, HBO gave Veep starring Julia Louis-Dreyfus as new President Selina Meyer, a Season 5 order. They also gave Mike Judge and Alec Berg's Silicon Valley a Season 3 order. Both renewals came less than a day after each show's current season premiere episodes debuted.

The next seasons of Veep and Silicon Valley will run 10 episodes as per each respective show's current season trend.

With the renewals, all four of HBO's Sunday evening original programs are now set for 2016. Game of Thrones Season 6 was picked up at the same time as Season 5. Last Week Tonight with John Oliver was also picked up more recently.

The fun connection with Veep's renewal is that art imitates life with Hilary Clinton announcing her official »

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2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2005 | 2004 | 2003 | 2002

1-20 of 35 items from 2015   « Prev | Next »


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