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Hackers Up Attacks On Media, Showbiz

2 hours ago

Computer hackers’ efforts to penetrate and disrupt media and entertainment networks were up sharply in the quarter that ended June 30, major Internet security company Verisign reported. Media and entertainment companies represented 20% of Verisign’s work in the quarter to thwart or minimize attacks such as the 2014 assault on Sony Pictures Entertainment, according to Rapid TV News. Verisign said the largest attack targeted online video services with denial-of-service… »

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‘Downton Abbey’ Season 6 Trailer: UK Start Date Set For Final Sojourn At The Estate

9 hours ago

ITV has dropped a promo for the final season of its flagship period drama, Downton Abbey. The network also confirmed today that Season 6 will kick off on September 20 in the UK. Not much has been publicly revealed about the upcoming farewell, other than it being set in 1925. The teaser above does presage more change at the Abbey as Robert Crawley (Hugh Bonneville) tells Mr Carson (Jim Carter), “If I could stop history in its tracks, maybe I would. But I can’t, Carson, for… »

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Bill Maher Slams Donald Trump’s “Go Back To Univision” Comment As Racist

13 hours ago

Bill Maher is taking Donald Trump more seriously these days. While continuing to use the Republican front-runner as an ever-ready punchline, the HBO host seemed more angry than bemused during last night’s Real Time with Bill Maher when talking about the increasingly amped-up anti-immigration rhetoric used by Trump and some of his supporters. Maher was particularly outraged by the recent dust-up between Trump and Jorge Ramos, news anchor for the Spanish-language… »

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Trump To Sarah Palin: Jorge Ramos “Just Putting On A Show”

28 August 2015 8:59 PM, PDT

If you haven’t watched One America News Network, you’re not alone. Available in only 12 million homes, the San Diego-based 24/7 news channel feels almost like a vlog rather than a huge journalism operation. Loose and conversational, and openly partisan, you can’t say it isn’t entertaining, especially if you’re politically conservative. This channel was launched expressly for people who think Fox News isn’t conservative enough. But even if you haven’t watched it, you’ve no… »

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Jimmy Kimmel Reveals Vin Scully To Return For 67th Dodgers Season

28 August 2015 8:39 PM, PDT

Jimmy Kimmel tonight helped announce that longtime Dodgers play-by-play announcer Vin Scully will indeed be coming back next baseball season, marking his 67th year in the job. The pleasant surprise was revealed on the Dodgers videoboard during the second inning of tonight’s Dodgers-Cubs home game. The short video showed Kimmel in his ABC studio, as he dropped cardboard signs saying that Scully “is back for one more year (at least). God bless us everyone.” The Dodgers… »

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NBCUniversal Heading To Trial In Age Discrimination Case From Award-Winning Ex-knbc Producer

28 August 2015 6:15 PM, PDT

It's looking more and more certain that Frank Snepp is going to get the trial he wants against NBCUniversal and Comcast. A L.A. Superior Court Judge today refused the media giant's best efforts to have the Emmy and Peabody-winning journalist's nearly 2-year old age discrimination case thrown out. That means the November 2 jury trial start date is still on the calendar – and approaching probably too fast for Comcast. The former CIA analyst first filed suit on October 1… »

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ABC Nabs Dramedy From Liz Heldens Based On ‘Big Ballet’ UK Reality Series

28 August 2015 6:08 PM, PDT

In a competitive situation, with multiple networks pursuing, ABC has landed  ballet-themed dramedy written/executive produced by Deception and Mercy creator Liz Heldens and executive produced by Sue Naegle. The project, which has received a script commitment with a significant penalty, hails from Sony Pictures TV’s recently relaunched TriStar TV label. The British reality series, which had a brief run on Channel 4 last year, featured 18 amateur, plus-sized dancers, many… »

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Steven Pasquale Cast As Male Lead In CBS’ New ‘Doubt’ Pilot

28 August 2015 5:30 PM, PDT

Steven Pasquale (The Good Wife) is set as the male lead opposite Katherine Heigl in CBS‘ new pilot for legal drama Doubt. The project, from writers Tony Phelan and Joan Rater, CBS TV Studios and Timberman/Beverly Prods, centers on Sadie Ellis (Heigl), a smart, chic, successful defense lawyer at a boutique firm who shockingly gets romantically involved with one of her clients, the decent, altruistic pediatric surgeon Billy (Pasquale), who may or may not be guilty of… »

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‘The Jury’ Legal Drama Produced By Carol Mendelsohn Sold To ABC With Big Penalty

28 August 2015 4:26 PM, PDT

ABC is developing The Jury, a drama project written by Justified writer-producer VJ Boyd and Mark Bianculli (MTV pilot Self Promotion) and executive produced by CSI alumna Carol Mendelsohn. The project, from Sony Pictures TV, where Mendelsohn is under an overall deal, landed at ABC with a significant penalty. While the network is stopping short of categorizing it as a put pilot, I hear the size of the penalty is in a high-six-figure range that regularly qualifies as a… »

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‘Complications’ Cancelled By USA After One Season

28 August 2015 2:45 PM, PDT

USA Network has opted not to order a second season of Complications, its freshman drama starring Jason O’Mara. I hear the options on the cast had recently expired, but the network brass, still on the fence about a pickup, secured a four-day extension while pondering the show’s fate. It came down to the wire but, after lengthy deliberations, the network ultimately decided against a second season. Complications, which finished its summer run earlier this month, comes from… »

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Bert Fields Talks Disney Ban, George Lucas, James Cameron, Harvey Weinstein, Napoleon & The Next Big Thing

28 August 2015 2:33 PM, PDT

Exclusive: It might not be too much of a stretch to say that Bert Fields has played a role in almost every great Hollywood legal battle of the last 30 years. The Cardinal Richelieu of Tinseltown attorneys, Fields counts among his accomplishments successfully taking on Disney and Michael Eisner to the tune of a $250 million payout for Jeffrey Katzenberg back in the late 1990s. He repped Star Wars creator George Lucas in negotiations with the House of Mouse as well. The… »

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‘House Of Lies’ Star Don Cheadle On “Getting Back To The Fun” In Season 5 – Emmys

28 August 2015 1:46 PM, PDT

Don Cheadle’s viciously dishonest corporate consultant Marty Kaan on Showtime’s House Of Lies isn’t exactly a departure for the actor, but it might be the most fun he’s had in a role. Following a tense, dramatic season that saw Kaan clawing his way back after a stint in jail, Cheadle has nabbed his fourth Emmy nomination (and eighth overall) for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series for the part. Here, the Oscar-nominated actor (for Hotel Rwanda, and he also was a… »

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‘Hindsight’ Cancelled By VH1, No Season 2 For Drama Series

28 August 2015 1:13 PM, PDT

VH1 will not be proceeding with a second season of drama series Hindsight. The network has reversed its March decision to pick up a second season of the show, and Season 2 will not go into production as planned. I hear the producers are looking for a new home and are in discussions with streaming services and other platforms about taking the series in. Hindsight, which was part of VH1’s recent push in original scripted programming, stars Laura Ramsey as Becca, who, on… »

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Google’s Matt Brittin Rejects Criticism That Search Engine Helps Pirates – Edinburgh

28 August 2015 12:51 PM, PDT

Google's Matt Brittin delivered a keynote to industry execs here in Edinburgh this morning, extolling the virtues of YouTube and how it can be a strong partner for the television business. The president of Emea business and operations pointed to the 24M subscribers FremantleMedia's channel has and said The X Factor channel gets 1.1B views a month, with 75% outside the country of origin. He also talked up Jimmy Kimmel Live's Mean Tweets as an example of a TV show reaching… »

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‘Inside Amy Schumer’ Head Writer Jessi Klein: “We Don’t Have To Be So Terrified Of Quote-Unquote Female Voices” – Emmys

28 August 2015 12:31 PM, PDT

Jessi Klein has been working in comedy for more than a decade, writing for such sketch-based series as Saturday Night Live, Michael & Michael Have Issues, and Kroll Show before signing on as head writer for Inside Amy Schumer, for which she just nabbed her third writing Emmy nomination (and fourth overall). The writer-comic knew Schumer from the standup scene, and was invited to collaborate by Schumer herself when Comedy Central offered a pilot. "Then we went and got… »

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Stone Village Sets ‘Cuba’ Drama Series Shot On Location; Rob Cohen Directing Pilot

28 August 2015 11:03 AM, PDT

With U.S.-Cuba relations resuming after half a century, a drama series set on the island nation is in the works. Stone Village TV said today that it will produce Cuba, about an international real estate mogul who returns with his family to the place of his childhood to restore a hotel in hope of capitalizing on Cuba's emerging tourism business. Rob Cohen will direct the pilot and executive produce. Filmed on location in Havana and elsewhere on the island, Cuba will… »

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Trial Comedy From Jeff Astrof & Matt Miller Gets NBC Put Pilot Commitment

28 August 2015 10:38 AM, PDT

NBC is taking The Trail, giving a put pilot commitment to a single-camera comedy from comedy veteran Jeff Astrof and Forever creator Matt Miller. Written/executive produced by the duo, the half-hour, whose title is a scrambled version of Trial, is a documentary-style procedural comedy. It follows the arrest and trial of a beloved poetry professor from a small town in South Carolina, who is accused of brutally murdering his wife, and the young "Northeastern" lawyer hired… »

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How Lake Bell Brings An Auteur’s Touch To The Absurdity On ‘Childrens Hospital’ – Emmys

28 August 2015 10:21 AM, PDT

The following piece contains spoilers about Childrens Hospital Season 7. When it comes to giving their Eugene Ionesco-on-acid comedy series a cinematic flair, the Childrens Hospital team looks to cast member Lake Bell as their director. The actress, who plays Dr. Cat Black on the Adult Swim comedy series, won the Waldo Salt Screenwriting Award at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival for her feature directorial debut In A World… However, she’s been the go-to gal on six episodes… »

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‘Apprentice’ Producers Speak Out About Donald Trump – And Their Stories Might Surprise You

28 August 2015 10:21 AM, PDT

Donald Trump isn't what he appears to be. On camera, he's brash and disrespectful, a pompous ass whose defiant demeanor and bullying behavior have put all of the Republican presidential candidates on their heels. He insults people – everyone from Sen. John McCain and rival Jeb Bush to Fox's Megyn Kelly and Univision's Jorge Ramos and the entire population of Mexico – and he plays fast and loose with the facts. I thought that the best way to get a sense of the bombastic… »

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BBC Two Chief On New ‘Top Gear’: “Exciting” And “Scary” – Edinburgh

28 August 2015 9:52 AM, PDT

BBC Two controller Kim Shillinglaw spoke at the Edinburgh Television Festival today where she said of the new Chris Evans-hosted Top Gear, “It’s scary, but it’s really exciting.” Evans was named in June to succeed Jeremy Clarkson on the motoring show after the latter's contract was not renewed following a dust-up with a producer. While calling Clarkson’s departure a "very sad episode," Shillinglaw, according to the BBC, said the new show will be “really different" and… »

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