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'666 Park Avenue': The devil sets up shop in Brooklyn where Williamsburg hipsters have yet to tred

25 November 2012 2:00 PM, PST

To have a Manhattan apartment like those in The Drake just might take a deal with the devil.

The exquisite building on ABC's "666 Park Avenue" is the sort that lines the gracious, monied boulevard. The set, however, is in an industrial strip in Brooklyn on the edge of Williamsburg, the part where hipsters don't yet live.

Here, in an old Schaefer beer factory, the sets still smelled new before Hurricane Sandy. Though production had stopped, as just about everything else did in New York, it was scheduled to resume Tuesday, Nov. 6, despite unspecified damage to the set.

The art deco lobby to the fictional building, which certainly seems to be a portal to hell on the show, is sweeping and elegant, with mirrored tables and the sort of polished black and white floors that Fred Astaire would glide across.

When the action switches to the basement, the show moves to a church in Harlem. »

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'Liz & Dick' costumer: Elizabeth Taylor and Lindsay Lohan 'both have tiny waists and large breasts'

25 November 2012 1:00 PM, PST

The new Lifetime original movie "Liz & Dick" has three stars, according to costume designer Sal Perez:  Lindsay Lohan/Elizabeth Taylor, Grant Bowler/Richard Burton and the jewels.

"We had an entire budget just to re-create jewelry," Perez tells Zap2it. "We needed to have the Taylor-Burton diamond, which he gave to her as a ring and was made into a necklace, so those two pieces, the Krupp diamond and La Peregrina pearl."

Taylor's diamonds, hair and cleavage all play a large role in her iconic style, but it is the balance she struck between elegance and extravagance that sets her apart.

"There are so many photos of her, and her look was effortless and fabulous," Perez says. "She took something very simple, and it was the way she carried herself that made it spectacular.

"She was bold and fearless," he continues. "You see her in lace fitted T-shirt and »

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'Home Alone: The Holiday Heist': It takes two to fill Macaulay Culkin's shoes

25 November 2012 12:00 PM, PST

A sequel may have different characters and actors, but thanks to the original movie, countless viewers know what to expect from anything with the title "Home Alone."

The John Hughes-written, Chris Columbus-directed 1990 comedy -- which famously made a star of Macaulay Culkin as a resourceful youngster outwitting thieves who invaded his family's home -- has yielded three follow-ups, two for theaters and the other for television. Now there's another: ABC Family debuts "Home Alone: The Holiday Heist" Sunday, Nov. 25, with the first "Home Alone" immediately preceding it.

In the new tale, instead of Culkin's Kevin, it's a just-relocated boy named Finn (played by Christian Martyn) who fends off crooks along with his sister (Jodelle Ferland) when what the siblings initially think are ghosts haunting their new home turn out to be burglars (Malcolm McDowell, Debi Mazar, Eddie Steeples). Seven-time Emmy winner Ed Asner also is in the cast, »

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'Liz & Dick': Lindsay Lohan as Elizabeth Taylor? 'Listen, I knew it was a risk'

25 November 2012 11:00 AM, PST

She broke into "the business" before she was 10, grew up too quickly on-screen and off, and had many lovers and a shameless stage mom. Myriad health issues -­- some self-inflicted, some not. And a loyal inner circle that swears to her heart of gold. So is she Elizabeth Taylor? Or Lindsay Lohan, the talented but troubled starlet who plays the violet-eyed movie star in "Liz & Dick," Lifetime's much-discussed biopic produced by telefilm whiz Larry A. Thompson?

Tthe answer is both. And that, says Thompson, is why he believed Lohan would lend "magic" to his opulent production, premiering Sunday, Nov. 25, on the cable channel, that chronicles Taylor's illicit international love affair with Richard Burton (Grant Bowler) and the rabid media coverage that led famed director Federico Fellini to first use the term "paparazzi" to describe it.

"Listen, I knew it was a risk," the affable Thompson, who has managed hundreds »

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Food Network's 'Sugar Dome' concocts a sweet rivalry

25 November 2012 10:00 AM, PST

Revenge is sweet, but so is victory for the diverse experts who create the most stunning works of food art in "Sugar Dome," a new competitive reality series premiering Sunday, Nov. 25, on Food Network.

Each episode finds three teams composed of artists from different disciplines competing to create breathtaking works with an edible component. On each team, cake designers, sugar artists and/or chocolatiers collaborate with a third partner ranging from a graffiti artist to a muralist to a pyrotechnics expert, with their results judged by cake designer Paulette Goto, pastry chef Pichet Ong and a third rotating guest judge.

"When I was told about the premise, I was so excited because this really has not been done before," Goto tells Zap2it. "Yes, there have been the standard pastry and cake competitions on TV, but this is not like anything you've seen before, because they're taking people -- cake artists, »

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'Giant,' 'Cleopatra' and 8 more of Elizabeth Taylor's best movies

25 November 2012 9:00 AM, PST

"National Velvet" (1944): Elizabeth Taylor's star-making role casts her as a young jockey who teams with a novice trainer (Mickey Rooney) to enter England's celebrated Grand National horse race.

"Father of the Bride" (1950): Taylor is a charmer as the original "Bride" whose upcoming wedding turns her father (Spencer Tracy) into a nervous wreck.

"A Place in the Sun" (1951): Director George Stevens won an Oscar for guiding Taylor and others through the drama of an ambitious man (Montgomery Clift) torn between two lovers.

"Giant" (1956): It's easy to see how Taylor's lovely Leslie becomes the woman between a Texas rancher and a rebel (Rock Hudson, James Dean) as she teams again with director Stevens - again an Oscar winner here - on this sprawling version of Edna Ferber's novel.

"Cat on a Hot Tin Roof" (1958): Taylor makes an excellent Maggie to Paul Newman's Brick and »

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'Naughty or Nice': Michael Gross and Meredith Baxter's 'Family Ties' still bind

24 November 2012 2:00 PM, PST

Meredith Baxter and Michael Gross are renewing their ties.

The actors played spouses for seven years (1982-89) on the NBC sitcom "Family Ties," on which their "children" included politically immersed Alex P. Keaton (Michael J. Fox). They reunite Saturday (Nov. 24) in the new Hallmark Channel movie "Naughty or Nice," as the parents of one Krissy Kringle ("One Tree Hill" alum Hilarie Burton), an advertising executive whose holiday season is mirrored by a magical book detailing whether she's been -- yes -- naughty or nice.

"It's pretty special," Gross tells Zap2it about acting again with Baxter, with whom he also shares a birthday (June 21, 1947). "One of the nice things about 'Family Ties' has been the relationship with the cast members over the years, most particularly Meredith.

"She was just a special person, and still is. I didn't realize, until I read her book, how important our friendship was to her at the time. »

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TV ratings: ABC wins the night, CBS holds on with holiday programming

24 November 2012 8:58 AM, PST

Fast National ratings for Friday, Nov. 23, 2012

Black Friday primetime was an evening of reruns and holiday specials, barring ABC, which aired original episodes of "Last Man Standing" and "Malibu Country." Both shows fared evenly compared to last week's numbers.

CBS won the war of holiday programming, bringing in 6.9 million viewers for "Frosty the Snowman" and 5.8 million for "Frosty Returns."

The CW's "Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer" and "The Happy Elf" did not fare as well, garnering 1.7 million viewers during the 8:00 p.m. hour.

ABC led the night with 5.8 million viewers and a 3.7 rating/6 share in households. NBC (4.8 million, 3.1/5) came in second, just besting CBS' 4.4 million viewers and 2.3/4. Fox (2.0 million, 1.1/2) finished fourth of the night, and The CW (1.6 million, 0.8/1) trailed.

The adults 18-49 winner was ABC, which scored a 1.4 rating in the demographic. CBS took second with a 1.1. NBC came in third with a 1.0, followed by Fox's 0.7, and »

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'iCarly' series finale: Miranda Cosgrove says 'iGoodbye'

23 November 2012 9:16 PM, PST

Miranda Cosgrove says an emotional goodbye in the series finale of Nickelodeon's "iCarly."

In the episode entitled "iGoodbye," Cosgrove's character, Carly, is devastated when her dad can't be there to take her to the Air Force father daughter dance. When Carly's brother Spencer (Jerry Trainor) gets too sick to take her himself, Carly's bestie, Sam (Jennette McCurdy) goes into action, talking buddies Freddie (Nathan Kress) and Gibby (Noah Munck) into getting their tuxes on.

But Carly is too upset to attend the dance with anyone but her dad, or her brother as his fill-in, and says she just wants the night to be over. At that moment, Carly's father walks in the door for an emotional surprise reunion.

Upon learning after the dance that dad has to return immediately to his Air Force base in Italy, Carly has a difficult decision to make. Should she go with him? How can she leave her friends behind? »

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Lindsay Lohan in 'Liz & Dick': Train-wreck TV - sit back and enjoy the carnage!

23 November 2012 2:57 PM, PST

"Liz & Dick," Lindsay Lohan's corny "comeback vehicle," is so awful it makes the entire slate of Lifetime guilty-pleasure TV movies look like Masterpiece Theatre.

But if you've got a bottle of wine (or three), and a living room full of other people to share the laughs, the unintentionally hilarious biopic of Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton's tumultuous romance could be the perfect way to cap off your Thanksgiving weekend.

From director's chairs on a dark soundstage (apparently from the acting afterlife), Liz (Lohan) and Dick (Grant Bowler) provide a confusingly creepy exposition, punctuating scenes of their decades-long love affair. Which, judging by this movie, was insipid, not sizzling, characterized by overwrought declarations like "I don't need a pool -- I've got a whole ocean in you."

Or, from one of the star-crossed lovers' many rows: "You look at me like you loathe me," says Burton channeling a Basset hound. »

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'Glee' preview: Homecomings and sectionals mark 'Thanksgiving'

23 November 2012 11:43 AM, PST

Next week, "Glee" will air its "Thanksgiving" episode. Now, you might think that just because the show actually aired an episode on Thanksgiving, that that was it. Nope. The episode that aired on Turkey Day was not, in fact, meant to commemorate the holiday. The real "Thanksgiving" is coming a week late to "Glee."

Confused? That's fair. Probably, we should just blame the vagaries of network scheduling and move on.

What will fans see in the "Thanksgiving" episode airing on Thursday, Nov. 29? The main events of the episode center around a whole bunch of McKinley High alumni coming back to visit while the current batch of New Directions singers gear up for Sectionals.

The alums who are coming back include Quinn (Dianna Agron), Santana (Naya Rivera), Puck (Mark Salling), Mike (Harry Shum Jr.) and Mercedes (Amber Riley).

Of course, Finn (Cory Monteith) is already at McKinley pretending to be Will, »

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'Kenan and Kel' reunion not in the works: Kenan Thompson wants nothing to do with Kel Mitchell

23 November 2012 11:08 AM, PST

The revival of "Boy Meets World" has given us hope for some of our other childhood favorites, like Nickelodeon's "Kenan & Kel." Unfortunately, according to the series' star, Kel Mitchell, a reunion episode of the series, about two best friends who work at a burger joint, is highly unlikely.

"The truth is Kenan does not want to be seen with me in any form of media, or even have my name mentioned around him," Mitchell told TMZ.

According to Mitchell, he and "Saturday Night Live" star Kenan Thompson were booked for a reunion interview in a magazine, but Thompson pulled out at the last minute. "I have not been upset about this. I respect his choice of wanting to make a name for himself solo."

Thompson is currently developing a sitcom for NBC, but Mitchell says he won't be making a cameo appearance. "There is no bad blood on my side, »

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'Killer Karaoke': Five questions with host Steve-o

23 November 2012 11:00 AM, PST

Steve-o survived reality television and addiction, and now, life is but a song.

Born Stephen Glover, Steve-o first gained fame in 2000 for doing outrageous things on MTV's reality show "Jackass," which spawned three feature films.

His "Jackass" co-star Johnny Knoxville and other crew from the show later staged an intervention to help Steve-o recover from drug and alcohol abuse. After a stint in rehab, he became a vegan and now has been clean and sober since 2008.

In 2009, he went from reality host to reality-competition contestant, lasting six weeks on ABC's "Dancing With the Stars" with professional partner Lacey Schwimmer. Then, in 2011, he released an autobiography, "Professional Idiot: A Memoir."

Now, rather than performing dangerous stunts and battling his own demons, Steve-o is instead challenging contestants to overcome their fear of singing a karaoke song while being put through hilarious and unexpected physical challenges.

"Killer Karaoke" premieres Friday (Nov. 23) on truTV, »

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'The Vampire Diaries': Are Klaus and Caroline headed for romance?

23 November 2012 10:41 AM, PST

After last week's episode of "The Vampire Diaries," we were so focused on Stefan and Elena's emotional break-up, we barely had time to process the fight between Tyler and Caroline. Tyler's temper flared up when he found out that Caroline had promised to go on a date with Klaus, in exchange for the life of one of Klaus's hybrids.

At the time, Caroline was focused on saving Elena -- just like everyone in Mystic Falls usually is -- and she didn't consider the fact that the hybrid in question was a member of Tyler's pack. To say that Tyler was angry about the situation is a bit of an understatement. He'll be taking Hayley (Phoebe Tonkin) to next week's Miss Mystic Falls dance, and though it's supposed to be part of the ruse to help the hybrids break their sire bond, the tension forming between Caroline and Tyler is very real. »

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'Downton Abbey' renewed for a fourth season in the U.K.

23 November 2012 10:08 AM, PST

"Downton Abbey" fans can breathe easy: The show is returning in 2013.

Not that there was much danger of it ending -- the show just wrapped its highest-rated season ever in the United Kingdom, and creator Julian Fellowes said earlier this week that he was pretty confident about a fourth season. The official word of a renewal came Friday (Nov. 23) from ITV, which airs the show in the U.K.

"We're thrilled to welcome back a drama series that has become a much anticipated part of all our lives every autumn and achieved success around the globe," says Laura Mackie, ITV's director of drama. "Creator, writer and executive producer Julian Fellowes and the production team, led by Gareth [Neame] and the producer Liz Trubridge, never rest on their laurels and have exciting plans for the fourth series."

Related: 'Downton Abbey': The Dowager Countess' best lines

There's no word yet on whether PBS, »

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TV ratings: NFL dominates Thanksgiving night while 'X Factor' and 'Glee' do Ok

23 November 2012 8:54 AM, PST

Fast National ratings for Thursday, Nov. 22, 2012

The New England Patriots' blowout of the New York Jets dominated the Thanksgiving prime-time ratings for NBC. Fox's afternoon NFL game also bled into primetime, which helped "The X Factor" to decent numbers as well.

A new "Glee," which started at 9:17 p.m. Et, dropped off some, but considering the overall low level of viewing Thursday, it did Ok. Elsewhere, ABC's "Michael Jackson: Bad25" special turned in smaller ratings than a Lady Gaga special on Thanksgiving night last year.

NBC easily led the night with 15.9 million viewers and an 8.5 rating/16 share in households. Fox (9.4 million, 4.9/9) came in second, topping CBS' 6.8 million viewers and 4.3/8. (ABC 4.2 million, 2.4/5) finished fourth, and The CW (819,000, 0.5/1) trailed.

The adults 18-49 crown also went to NBC, which scored a 5.8 rating in the demographic. Fox took second with a 3.1. CBS came in third with a 1.7, followed by ABC, 1.2, and The CW, »

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Old Navy brings back Chevy Chase and the Griswolds in 'Christmas Vacation'-themed holiday ads

23 November 2012 6:45 AM, PST

Old Navy is helping customers celebrate Christmas with the Griswolds once again.

The company is releasing a batch of holiday-themed TV spots that will feature Chevy Chase (hot off the news he's leaving "Community"), Juliette Lewis, Beverly D'Angelo and the rest of the cast from "National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation." Old Navy already has "Star Trek" star George Takai appearing in its Black Friday ads, and the Griswold family is the next step in its holiday campaign.

"We have a strategy this season to be doing it all the way, larger than life. Gifts all the way; Cheer all the way," Michelle Wlazlo, global senior VP-adult merchandising and licensing and interim chief marketer tells Ad Age. "When we thought about how we would bring Christmas to our audience with the next round of celebrities, there's no family that's more all the way than the Griswolds."

The first TV spot released will »

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'The X Factor' results: Another double elimination

22 November 2012 7:43 PM, PST

The Thanksgiving night (Nov. 22) live results show for "The X Factor" marked another double elimination.

Right off the bat, the honor of lowest vote-getter went to Arin Ray, one of Britney Spears' teens, and he was immediately eliminated from the competition. 

Next it was announced that CeCe Frey and Beatrice Miller both received the next fewest votes, so they each were given the chance to perform their "song for survival."

Spears joined the other judges, Simon Cowell, Demi Lovato and L.A. Reid to deliberate following the performances. The panel ultimately sent home Beatrice -- dumping two members of Britney's team in one night.

The top eight finalists will sing it out live next week in a battle for America's votes. 

Here is who remains from each team and how they ranked this week:

TeensCarly Rose Sonenclar (1st place)

Diamond White (5th place)

Young AdultsCeCe Frey (8th place)

Paige Thomas »


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'Glee' recap: Fighting evil -- with song! -- in 'Dynamic Duets'

22 November 2012 7:13 PM, PST

Every once in a while, "Glee" gets it just right. The combination of singing and bizarre comedy in "Dynamic Duets" works beautifully to give us an episode that manages to be about plenty of issues while still making us laugh at the silliness of it all.

Because glee clubs aren't dorky enough

Sometimes I think these kids want to be picked on. Not that there's anything actually wrong with dressing up in tights and a cape while you pretend to be a superhero. That's kind of cool really.

It is not, however, terribly cool in high school. In fact, it's a good way to have the bullies target you.

But that doesn't happen in "Dynamic Duets." Maybe it would eventually, but the New Directions superheroes are too busy singing, fighting crime, standing up for lunch ladies, getting diagnosed with learning disorders and developing bulimia to notice.

More power to them! »

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'Bad 25': Michael Jackson celebrated on Thanksgiving by Spike Lee and ABC

22 November 2012 1:00 PM, PST

Call it one entertainment icon's tribute to another.

When Michael Jackson's classic release "Bad" debuted in 1987, Spike Lee's filmmaking career was just starting to take hold. The director pays tribute to the fifth-best-selling album of all time -- which yielded such singles as the title cut, "Man in the Mirror," "The Way You Make Me Feel," "Smooth Criminal" and "I Just Can't Stop Loving You" -- in the documentary "Bad 25," which ABC gives a Thanksgiving night television premiere Thursday, Nov. 22.

Lee interviews such other Jackson collaborators as fellow moviemakers Martin Scorsese and Joe Pytka in creating a remembrance of how "Bad" came to be, utilizing archival footage that also recalls the global concert tour Jackson launched in support of the album. Results included sales of approximately 45 million copies and five chart-topping singles, a record tied only relatively recently by Katy Perry's "Teenage Dream."

"Do the Right Thing, »

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