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This post contains spoilers for "Hannibal's" series finale, "The Wrath of the Lamb" When TV criticism moved from a sporadic schedule to a weekly one, the rest of the coverage followed suit, leading, in the case of the most popular shows, to a regular series of interviews running anywhere from the minute to the morning after an episode finishes. The impulse is instilled in us by now: Just as you might flip to the special features after watching a movie, so you might finish, say "Game of Thrones'" Battle of Hardhome and look up what director Miguel Sapochnik has to say about how they pulled it off. The problem, as Ryan McGee puts in a blog post called "Why It Might Be Time to Kill the Post-Mortem," comes when we turn to a show's creative personnel not for information but interpretation. Did Don Draper write the Coke ad? Did Jaime Lannister rape his sister? »
- Sam Adams
USA Network announced a pilot pick-up for the hour-long scripted drama Shooter and has locked in Ryan Phillippe (Secrets & Lies) to star. Shooter is based on the best-selling Bob Lee Swagger novel by Stephen Hunter, Point of Impact, and the 2007 Paramount film starring Mark Wahlberg. The co-production with Paramount Television and Universal Cable Productions comes from executive producers Mark Wahlberg (Boardwalk Empire, Entourage) of Closest to the Hole Productions; Stephen Levinson (Boardwalk Empire, Ballers) of Leverage Entertainment; and Lorenzo di Bonaventura (Transformers, The Real O'Neals). John Hlavin (The Shield) wrote the pilot and will also executive produce. Simon Cellan Jones (Ballers) is set to direct the pilot.
Ryan Phillippe is a producer on the project and will star as Bob Lee Swagger, an off-the-grid former Marine sniper who is coaxed into action to thwart the killing of the President. Ultimately double-crossed and framed for the attempt, he must call upon »
Written and executive produced by Petty, the project follows the inner workings of a secret subdivision of the NYPD that functions as social services for some of the city’s most unique citizens — werewolves. Delving into the lives of both the Case Officers, and the secretive, highly insular Kveld-Ulf, a community of werewolves living deep in the borough, “Brooklyn Animal Control” will examine city politics, immigrant communities, and families divided by ambition, secrecy, and tradition.
“Batman v Superman” writer David Goyer, Circle of Confusion’s David Alpert and Rick Jacobs, and Idw Entertainment’s David Ozer and Ted Adams will serve as executive producers on the project, which hails from Universal Cable Productions and Idw Entertainment.
“Fans of the comic book know that ‘Brooklyn Animal Control’ is a thriller »
- Laura Prudom
True Detective, Season 2, Episode 6, “Church in Ruins”
Written by Nic Pizzolatto
Directed by Miguel Sapochnik
Airs Sundays at 9pm (Et) on HBO
The good news is that the so-called “orgy episode” of this season is not nearly as gratuitous and exploitative of women as it could have been in a worst case scenario. The bad news is that it is still pretty gratuitous and unnecessary once it is made clear what exactly the show is trying to accomplish throughout the party. Ani could have still been drugged, accosted, nearly killed, and then saved the day without dozens of female bodies gyrating in the background for no real reason other than that the show wants them to be there. The last quarter of “Church in Ruins” is filled with moments of entertaining action and solid acting, but it is all undercut by the fact that the show can’t help itself »
- Whitney McIntosh
Season two of "True Detective" has been an exercise in patience. Last week was a let down because it completely sidestepped dealing with the emotional state of the participants of the shootout. For a series that has always been just as interested in exploring the inner lives of its characters as it has been in solving a murder, it was a strange choice. Flashing forward 66 days but having no new information concerning the case may have been the biggest misstep of all. Of course the case would have to be shut down following such massive bloodshed, but the entire affair seems pointless if absolutely nothing was learned. Seeing Bezzerides (Rachel McAdams) going undercover at this point in the season seems like a tale of "too little too late", and for that reason, "Church In Ruins" finds itself awkwardly placed as the sixth episode in the season. Tipping off the final three hours of the season, »
- Michael Hindle
A review of tonight's "True Detective" coming up just as soon as I find "Friends"... This week, on "Looking For Silver Linings From 'True Detective' Season 2": * The very busy Miguel Sapochnik (who also directed tonight's "Masters of Sex") did a fine job of making Ani's ordeal at the orgy seem every bit as nightmarish and suspenseful as intended, even if the idea of her going in there with only Paul and Ray as backup felt incredibly contrived and there only to set up that scenario where we had to fear so much for our heroine. * The score throughout that sequence was lush and melodramatic in a way that very much evoked the kinds of '40s and '50s La noir films where parties like this might take place (albeit ones presented in less explicit fashion than this). * This was a non-terrible episode for Vince Vaughn, and »
- Alan Sepinwall
Some thoughts on tonight's "Masters of Sex" coming up just as soon as I sell an airplane to the Amish... * The Marriage of convenience remains a dominant theme of the season, even in an episode where George is absent. We see Libby trying very hard to convince her new best friend Joy to stay in her marriage, because if this woman can walk away from a marriage that isn't perfect but is still vastly better than her own, then what excuse does Libby have to still be with Bill, other than vanity? Barton Scully returns, no longer living with Margaret, but now with a new female companion who either doesn't know or doesn't care about his sexual orientation. (Even if rumors of it forced him out of his job as provost.) Bill tries desperately to make a match with an academic institution to help make "Human Sexual Response" a nationally-recognized textbook, »
- Alan Sepinwall
USA Network has given a pilot order to Poor Richard’s Almanack, a drama project developed by Legendary Television. The high-concept thriller drama, written by executive producer Jim Danger Gray (Orange Is The New Black) and consulting producer Miguel Sapochnik (Game Of Thrones), weaves between modern day and a possible future where characters have changed radically and revolves around a cadre of heroes who emerge as the new “Founding Fathers,” after America is pushed to… »
The drama, titled after Ben Franklin’s yearly almanac, comes from exec producer Jim Danger Gray, who served as a producer on “Orange Is the New Black,” and consulting producer Miguel Sapochnik, who directed two “Game of Thrones” episodes this past season and will direct two more in 2016.
“Poor Richard’s Almanack” is described as an edge-of-your-seat thriller about a group of heroes who emerge as the new Founding Fathers, after America is pushed to the brink of collapse. The series weaves between modern day and a possible future where characters have radically changed.
The pilot marks the second project between Legendary and USA, »
- Elizabeth Wagmeister
Looking for news, casting, rumours and more about the next season of HBO's Game Of Thrones? Then you've come to the right place...
This is news we were all expecting, but welcome nonetheless. After a season's absence, Isaac Hempstead-Wright, aka Bran Stark, will be returning in Game Of Thrones season 6. Presumably, that means catching up with Hodor and Meera, too.
The last we saw the second-to-youngest Stark boy, he had finally completed his quest to meet the Three-Eyed Raven and was about to begin another, a training journey with the Children of the Forest which would teach him more about his Warg powers.
Here's what Hempstead-Wright told The Irish Examiner about Bran's return to the show:
“I can’t say a lot but I am back this season, and it’s going to get particularly interesting with Bran. He has some interesting visions."
"I missed the whole of »
Jeremy Podeswa, Daniel Sackheim, Jack Bender, Mark Mylod and Miguel Sapochnik have been announced as the directors of "Game of Thrones" Season 6, with each helming two episodes each next year. That means a total of zero of next year's ten episodes will be directed by women. As was the case for Season 5. Meanwhile, the fantasy series is currently embroiled in controversy on account of its treatment of female characters. Star Emilia Clarke was recently asked about the show's violence against women and, as Vulture predicts, every other cast member will likely be asked the same question leading up to Season 6. The Mary Sue has stopped covering the show in protest of its casual over-reliance on sexual assault as a narrative shortcut. Women and Hollywood's TV columnist Sara Stewart shared that this past season of "Game of Thrones" will be her last. Many fans feel similarly to Stewart and The Mary Sue, »
- Laura Berger
Check out Part 1 and Part 2 of the Best TV Episodes of 2015 (So Far)
Justified, “The Promise”
Directed by Adam Arkin
Aired April 14th, 2015 on FX
Over the course of its run, Justified established itself as a top tier drama, which meant that expectations were high going into its sixth and final season. The series finale, however, delivered on several fronts, elevating itself into not only a highlight of the show, but a highlight of the television year as a whole to date. The deft manner in which the episode balances its numerous characters is one of the key ways in which it distinguishes itself. While the finale’s most important showdown is the one between Boyd and Raylan, the writers make sure to give the season’s antagonist Avery Markham his due as well, not diminishing the danger he posed by dismissing him easily. »
- Kate Kulzick
News has been leaked about the directing responsibilities for the sixth season of HBO's "Game of Thrones" (via Entertainment Weekly). The list returns a few standouts from last season and adds a few new names into the mix. Episodes 1 & 2 will be handled by Jeremy Podeswa. He directed one of my favorite episodes from season five, "Kill the Boy" as well as the supremely unpopular "Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken". He's been working with HBO for a while having also directed episodes of "True Blood", "The Newsroom", "Boardwalk Empire". Episodes 3 & 4 go to "Game of Thrones" newbie Daniel Sackheim. Recently he's contributed great work for the the FX original series "The Americans" including the standout season three finale. His work on "The Americans" proves he can handle meditative episodes with punches of action, a description that usually applies to mid-season "Thrones" episodes. Episodes 5 & 6 will also be helmed by a newcomer, Jack Bender. Bender is »
- Michael Hindle
Game Of Throne season 6 has firmed up its list of directors, including Miguel Sapochnik of the magnificent Hardhome...
For anyone curious about which directors might be returning for Game Of Thrones season 6, today an official list has been confirmed. The biggest news, for us at least? That'd be Miguel Sapochnik, who has been bumped up to directing the final two episodes having impressed so much with season 5's Hardhome battle. That makes us think that season 6 might end with a big fight, too.
Notable for their absence once again are previous directing regulars Alex Graves, David Nutter, Alik Sakharov and Michelle Maclaren. Neil Marshall too, helmer of Blackwater and The Watchers On The Wall, won't be returning next time around by the looks of things.
Directing: Episodes 1 & 2
Season 5 credits: Kill the Boy, Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken Other credits: The Pacific, »
All this week, the Vulture TV Awards honor the best television from the past year. Up next, Matt Zoller Seitz provides audio commentary for his pick for Best Direction of the year. Steven Soderbergh, The Knick ("Get the Rope") Thomas Schlamme, The Americans ("Open House") Miguel Sapochnik, Game of Thrones ("Hardhome") Ryan McFaul, Inside Amy Schumer, ("12 Angry Men Inside Amy Schumer") Thomas Schnauz, Better Call Saul ("Pimento") And the winner is ...Steven Soderbergh for The Knick. »
- Matt Zoller Seitz
Midway through watching the very first episode of "True Detective" season 1, Matthew McConaughey's Rust Cohle delivered what was already his fourth or fifth monologue about the pointlessness of existence, and I jotted down the following note: Do I want to watch many hours of McConaughey saying this (stuff)? As it turns out, I did. McConaughey was just that mesmerizing, Woody Harrelson wasn't far behind, and the direction of Cary Joji Fukunaga was so stunning that I was able to look past Cohle's lectures, the thinness of the female characters (or, really, anyone who wasn't Rust or Marty Hart), and the serial killer tropes and other recycled devices and even lines of dialogue peppered throughout Nic Pizzolatto's scripts. It had its flaws, but it was still one of the best things on TV a year ago. Pizzolatto's writing was memorable, mixing in hard-boiled detective cliches with Cohle's nihilist philosophy, »
- Alan Sepinwall
After seasons of buildup, winter finally arrived on Sunday night's Game of Thrones, in an episode that finally made clear one of the lessons of George R.R. Martin's books: The jockeying for the Iron Throne is nothing but a petty distraction; the real terror is the White Walkers and their ever-increasing army of the dead. The 20-minute battle scene that made up the climax of "Hardhome" was a mini-masterwork on the part of director Miguel Sapochnik, who invested the proceedings with a chaotic intensity (and plenty of reliable action-movie beats). We caught up with Sapochnik — who also handled the previous episode, "The Gift" — by email to discuss the episode.I understand you didn't read the books before taking on the directing gig. Was that a matter of wanting to bring your own vision, or simply a timing issue?I wish I could have. It was simply a timing thing. »
- Nate Jones
Game of Thrones, Season 5, Episode 8: “Hardhome”
Written by David Benioff & D. B. Weiss
Directed by Miguel Sapochnik
Airs Sundays at 9pm Et on HBO
“The Gift,” spent plenty of time setting up several major storylines; Cersei was imprisoned for her sins against the church, Stannis was gearing up for battle, Samwell Tarly had to deal with the death of Maester Aemon, Jorah helped Tyrion finally meet Daenerys face-to-face, Sansa tried to escape Ramsay’s grasp and Jon Snow and Tormund headed north. Last week on our Game of Thrones podcast, I discussed why I enjoyed “The Gift” so much, and it all came down to balance. The best episodes of Game of Thrones give viewers a bit of everything they’ve come to love about the show: betrayal, family values, justice, judgement, principles, politics, love, death and a some well choreographed fight scenes. This week we get all that, »
Directed by Miguel Sapochnik.
“This is my Randy Orton pose.”
Um…wow. Things…things really escalated quickly there. I mean, stuff got out of hand first. A lot of people died. And then those dead people got up to make more people dead. What do you mean we can’t talk about that first? The other plot lines?! They were good, but c’mon – White Walkers. Ok, ok…
Tyrion and Daenerys
Tyrion (Peter Dinklage) and Daenerys (Emilia Clarke) have finally met and the Imp is pitching himself as Khaleesi’s new advisor. Lord knows she needs one. Jorah’s (Iain Glen) been re-exiled to the non-friend-zone, Ser Selmy is dead and Daario Naharis (Michiel Huisman)…can we not go onto the White Walker stuff yet? Fine.
Daenerys seems harsher in Tyrion’s company. »
- Oli Davis
It’s back! Can you believe it’s been almost a whole year since we last left the Westeros realm? During that time the hype hasn’t died down any and we’ve all been clambering at the bit, excitedly waiting for Game of Thrones to return. Happily our not so patient waiting is finally over as season five has finally landed.
One of the best things about the show is of course the audience participation, we love to talk about Game of Thrones. Thn will be here every week post evening UK transmission to chat about all the inevitable twists, turns and tragic deaths in our Blog of Thrones.
Be warned, only read on if you have seen the eighth episode of season five Hardhome as this article contains spoilers.
Writers: David Benioff, D. B Weiss
Directors: Miguel Sapochnik
- Kat Smith
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