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HBO Greenlights Pilot for Mike Judge's Live-Action Comedy 'Silicon Valley' -- I Believe You Have My iStapler

6 December 2012 11:55 AM, PST

Mike Judge, of "King of the Hill," "Beavis and Butthead" and "Office Space" fame, will dabble into live-action TV with scripted, single-camera comedy "Silicon Valley." HBO has greenlit the pilot. Judge will team with Scott Rudin, John Altschuler and Dave Krinsky as executive producers. The title references the venture capital-heavy, high-tech culture of Silicon Valley, described by Judge as a place where "the most qualified to succeed are the least capable of handling success." Cinema Blend predicts the show will have a workplace angle, which makes sense given Judge's experience with cubicle shenanigans in "Office Space."

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- Beth Hanna

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'Key & Peele' Are 2013 Writers Guild Awards Nominees! No 'Scandal' Love (Cable TV Dominates)

6 December 2012 10:54 AM, PST

Proving once again that the best-written shows (especially dramas) are on cable TV... here are your 2013 WGA nominees for TV, news, and radio. No nomination for Scandal. But, no network TV drama was nominated in the Drama Series category; all the nominees in that category are cable TV shows. And in terms of "black shows," Comedy Central's Key & Peele (which was just renewed for a 3rd season) received a nomination in the Comedy/Variety category. The full list of nominees below via press release: Los Angeles and New York – The Writers Guild of America, West (Wgaw) and the Writers Guild of America, East (Wgae) have announced nominations for outstanding achievement in television, news, radio, promotional writing, and graphic animation during the 2012 season. The winners will be honored at the 2013 Writers Guild Awards on Sunday, February 17, 2013, at simultaneous ceremonies in Los Angeles and New York. Television Nominees Drama...

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- Courtney

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ABC Developing Cop Comedy Series To Be Written By & Starring Hannibal Buress

6 December 2012 10:26 AM, PST

ABC is getting into the Hannibal Buress business. The stand-up comedian and television writer has been tapped by the ABC network to develop a cop/comedy series that he, Hannibal Buress, would star in. The yet-to-be-titled program, which will be co-written by Buress and Rob Sheridan, is said to be inspired by Buress’ stand-up, and will see him starring as a cop in a small town.  The script commitment is 1 of 3 cop comedy shows currently in development at ABC - the other two being an ensemble cop comedy and a paranormal cop comedy show - so there's a good chance that all 3 will not make it. Buress (one of Variety magazine's "Ten Comics to Watch in 2010") has been featured in The Awkward Comedy Show special on Comedy Central, and on the FX sitcom Louie. You can currently catch him on The Eric André Show on Adult Swim. He's also written »


- Courtney

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The PBS Winter/Spring Lineup Includes the Return of 'Downton Abbey' and 'Call the Midwife,' Premiere of 'The Central Park Five'

6 December 2012 9:54 AM, PST

Any fan of repressed British emotional drama and period costumes knows that "Downton Abbey" is set to make its season three return to U.S. television on PBS on Sunday, January 6 at 9pm. But the new PBS lineup for winter and spring brings other welcome news. "Call the Midwife," a BBC medical drama set in 1950s East London and starring Jessica Raine, Miranda Hart, Cliff Parisi, Jenny Agutter, Pam Ferris, Judy Parfitt and Vanessa Redgrave, will be back for a second season in March. Doc "Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry" will premiere via Independent Lens in February, as will "Girl Model," via Pov, in March and Ken and Sarah Burns' acclaimed "The Central Park Five" in April. Programming highlights are below (descriptions courtesy of PBS). Read More: 'Downton Abbey' Renewed for a Fourth Season Secrets Of Highclere Castle Sunday, January 6, 2013, 8:00-9:00 p.m. Et It may »


- Alison Willmore

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'Central Park Five,' 'Soul Food Junkies' & More Are PBS Winter/Spring 2013 Lineup Highlights

6 December 2012 9:41 AM, PST

An exciting winter/spring season is ahead for PBS, including the return of fan faves like Downton Abbey; and lots of new original programming, including The Abolitionists, which brings to life the epic struggles of the men and women who fought to end slavery, intertwining the stories of Frederick Douglass, William Lloyd Garrison, Angelina Grimké, Harriet Beecher Stowe and John Brown. Also, look for documentary pick-ups like Soul Food Junkies, The Central Park Five, and 180 Days: Inside An American High School (all covered on S&A), and more. The full lineup follows below via press release from PBS: PBS Announces Winter/Spring 2013 Lineup - Including Season 3 of Masterpiece Classic "Downton Abbey," Season Two of Hit BBC Drama Call The Midwife - - Previews of many highlighted shows available on PBS YouTube Channel- Arlington, Va, December 6, 2012 - The Crawley family's fate hangs in the balance when Masterpiece Classic...

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- Courtney

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Review: 'In Vogue: The Editor's Eye' A Flip Through The Editorial History Of The Iconic Fashion Magazine

6 December 2012 8:20 AM, PST

It might be hard to believe, but 2012 marks the 120th birthday of Vogue magazine. When it first started, there were no photographs, just illustrations, and a focus on society women. When Condé Nast took over in 1909, things changed, with photography introduced and fashion becoming the focal point of the weekly. Of course, the publication eventually became a monthly, and riding the social tides and political changes, it has become the magazine we know today. And to commemorate the journey, directors Fenton Bailey and Randy Barbato have put together "In Vogue: The Editor's Eye," a brief flip through the pages of the magazine's editorial history, particularly the women whose influence and determination not only allowed the magazine to stay relevant, but maintain its position at the forefront of its many competitors. Though the documentary fails to delineate the various editorial positions and their responsibilities (at times it seems the magazine has as many. »


- Kevin Jagernauth

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Glenn Beck and Vince Vaughn Are Making a Documentary Filmmaker Reality Competition Show

6 December 2012 6:46 AM, PST

Are you ready, documentary filmmakers? In what has to be the strangest TV project of the year, conservative media personality Glenn Beck announced yesterday that he's teaming up with Vince Vaughn for a reality show in which 20 documentarians will compete for financing and distribution for their film. The show is called "Pursuit of the Truth," and currently accepting applications from "filmmakers of all walks of life" at PursuitOfTheTruth.com until January 31st, 2013: Our team of experienced producers and executives will be hand selecting twenty of the most compelling contestants to compete on the show. If selected, contestants will be asked to perform a series of tasks during the ten-week production period for our panel of expert judges. Contestants will be asked to not only prove the validity of their idea for a documentary but also their film-making abilities. They will either survive or be eliminated based on the criterion. »


- Alison Willmore

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Before 'Django Unchained' There Was 'The Outcasts'

5 December 2012 7:41 PM, PST

So with all the attention on Tarantino's Django Unchained (which I confess I've seen already and absoluely love - but I'll get to that soon in due time) one should keep in mind that the basic premise of a black and white team of bounty hunters isn't new at all. In fact there was a TV show based on the same premise back in 1968. I wrote about it for the old S & A wesbite, and what better time to reprint it again. The show I'm referring to was the TV western series The Outcasts. And if you were a young, impressionable black kid back then (like me), this was simply The Show. The "I-have-to-see-it-every-week-or-else-i'll-die" TV show. A long time friend of mine and I still talk and reminisce about the show and the impact it had on us as young kids. Even once, a few years ago, I was speaking »


- Sergio

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Tonight On 'Don't Sleep!' - Victoria Mahoney, Armond White, John Singleton Talk Black Hollywood

5 December 2012 2:31 PM, PST

So... this should be interesting, and definitely worth watching, even if you've never watched an episode of Bet's Don't Sleep! with T.J. Holmes: a panel that includes John Singleton, Victoria Mahoney and our favorite film critic Armond White. And with those 3 names, I'm sure you can guess what tonight's topic of conversation on the show will be. On this episode of Don't Sleep!, T.J. Holmes will talk about how African-Americans influence Hollywood and how Hollywood influences African-Americans. Are African-Americans under or misrepresented in Hollywood? Do we need more Black writers and directors? Do Black people in movies help contribute to stereotypes? See what Don't Sleep! has to say about Black Hollywood tonight Wednesday, December 5th, at 11P/10C. All topics (and more) that we've discussed/dissected/chewed on/spat out/ingested again/chewed on and digested some more/etc, etc, etc. on this site; you get the picture :) But. »


- Tambay A. Obenson

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Watch: Deleted Scene From 'Girls' Finds Hannah Trying To Get A Job At A Cupcake Shop

5 December 2012 2:03 PM, PST

So you still have no idea what the deal is with the hype around "Girls"? Or do you want to have a holiday marathon of the first season before the new episodes drop in January? Well, in both cases you're in luck, because next week Lena Dunham's hit show arrives on DVD and Blu-ray and with it will be a few extra baubles for fans. Those that will likely attract the most interest are the deleted scenes, and the first one to pop online has confirmed that there is some great stuff to uncover that didn't make the episodes that aired. In this scene, Lena Dunham's Hannah follows up with a cupcake shop where she handed in her CV and, as always, the results are both kind of surreal and very funny. And in case you were wondering, the Little Cupcake Bakeshop is indeed real. "Girls" season one »


- Kevin Jagernauth

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Jay and Mark Duplass Talk Playing Midwives on 'The Mindy Project' and How TV is Taking After Indie Film

5 December 2012 12:29 PM, PST

On last night's episode of "The Mindy Project," Mindy (Mindy Kaling), Danny (Chris Messina) and Jeremy (Ed Weeks) faced down rivals from the office upstairs -- two holistic midwifing specialists who'd started poaching their patients and threatening their business. One of the siblings was a familiar face to any indie film fan -- Mark Duplass, star of "Safety Not Guaranteed," "Humpday" and FX comedy "The League." The other was played by his brother and filmmaking partner Jay, who's tended to stay behind the camera when directing the pair's efforts together, including features like "The Puffy Chair," "Cyrus" and "Jeff, Who Lives at Home." Indiewire caught up with the Duplasses today to hear about their guest arc on the Fox sitcom and how TV and indie film aren't all that different. Jay, we don’t often get to see you in front of the camera -- how did that happen, and what led you to take. »


- Alison Willmore

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Style Network Orders Hour-Long Fashion Designer Search Series From Rihanna

5 December 2012 11:21 AM, PST

All the juicy details via press release from Style below: Style Media Joins Forces With Multi-grammy Winner Rihanna To Search For The Next Fashion Design Superstar On "Styled To Rock" Set To Premiere In 2013 On Style Music Meets Fashion in Style's First-Ever Competition Series from Executive Producer Robyn Rihanna Fenty, Providing Up-and-Coming Designers a National Platform to Showcase Their Talent in Creating Trendsetting Designs The Fashion Designer Search Kicks Off with a Nationwide Casting Call on StyleNetwork.com, Beginning December 5. Los Angeles - December 5, 2012 - Style Media today announced the search for America's next groundbreaking designer with its first competition series, "Styled to Rock," executive produced by and starring multi-Grammy Award winner and fashion icon Rihanna. Slated to premiere in 2013, the hour-long 10-episode series will give 12 up-and-coming designers, hand-picked by Rihanna, the opportunity of a...

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- Tambay A. Obenson

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Watch: While You Wait For The Movie, Here's Marvel's 1991 TV Pilot For 'Power Pack'

5 December 2012 10:42 AM, PST

Remember Marvel’s Power Pack? Well, this writer doesn’t, but they were one of the second tier Marvel properties being mooted for a small-budget big-screen adaptation a couple years ago. They were among characters like Luke Cage, Dr. Strange, Iron Fist, et al. (none of which have yet come to pass), but when the rumor first circled, we highlighted Power Pack as the property that likely had the most crossover appeal thanks to its pre-teen X-Men style set-up. Well it turns out that wasn’t the first time someone had recognized the live-action potential of the characters, because back in 1991 a pilot for a "Power Pack" TV show was filmed. The company New World arrived at Cannes earlier that year and announced that they had plans for a “Punisher” sequel, a “She-Hulk” movie starring Brigitte Nielsen (someone should make this now!) and a "Power Pack" show. Only the latter »


- Joe Cunningham

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How 'Sons of Anarchy' Returned to Its Roots in Season Five

5 December 2012 10:25 AM, PST

The article below contains spoilers through the most recent season of "Sons of Anarchy." "J'ai Obtenu Cette," last night’s propulsive season finale of "Sons of Anarchy," was a good indicator of why the fifth year of the FX motorcycle gang drama has been the show’s best since its first. This season, Jax Teller (Charlie Hunnam) finally assumed control of the Sons and was able to start implementing his vision for a new direction for the club, something easier said than done. This was also the first season in which Jax’s bad blood with his mother Gemma Teller Morrow (Katey Sagal) and, more notably, her husband Clay Morrow (Ron Perlman) has been most actively dealt with. There was also the welcome presence of a parade of talented character actors like Danny Trejo and Donal Logue and a couple of shocking and impactful reversals of fortune. But more than anything else, »


- Simon Abrams

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Colbert's Hobbit Week Maps New York As Middle Earth

5 December 2012 10:06 AM, PST

I may not be a big Hobbit fan (review here) but I do love The Colbert Report, which is now in the middle of Hobbit week. Tolkien-obsessed Stephen Colbert visited the film's set in New Zealand and famously won a Hobbit trivia contest, beating out one of its screenwriter’s, Philippa Boyens. This week’s guests have included Ian McKellen, Martin Freeman (in that interview Colbert came as close as I’ve ever seen him to stepping out of his fictional character and gushing with fandom), with Peter Jackson and Andy Serkis still to come. The interview set has been turned into a version of Bilbo’s village, but the ingenious part is the Colbert Report’s Hobbit Week introduction, which features a map of New York transmuted into Middle Earth. Here you’ll find Green Witch Village, not far from the Mutton Packing District, which of course is south of The Square of Time. »


- Caryn James

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Discovery Presents 'Africa' (7-Part Epic Series Look At The Continent You Thought You Knew)

5 December 2012 9:38 AM, PST

Everything you thought you knew about Africa, and then some... apparently. And you can thank Discovery for it! All the details on what to expect via press release from Discovery: The Makers Of "Life" Return With The Epic Series "Africa," A Revealing Look At The Continent You Thought You Knew -- Africa to Premiere on Discovery Channel January 8th, 2013 -- (Silver Spring, Md.) - The award-winning documentary team behind the breakthrough natural history series Life returns with a revealing look at a seemingly familiar continent that is still holding many secrets. A Discovery Channel/BBC co-production fouryears in the making, Africa - premiering Tuesday, January 8, 2013 at 10Pm E/P - is a seven-part series that brings the continent to life with never-before-filmed species, animal behaviors and secret, natural wonders of the world. Travel to a secret location in southwest Africa to witness what could be the last great rhinoceros gathering on Earth, »


- Tambay A. Obenson

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Movie Rights? Oprah's Book Club 2.0 Announces 2nd Selection - 'The Twelve Tribes of Hattie'

5 December 2012 9:20 AM, PST

A good look for the author Ayana Mathis - especially since it's her debut novel. Her life is probably about to change dramatically.  I wouldn't hold my breath on the "movie rights" question though; anyone planning to read along with Oprah? Details via press release from Own below... Oprah'S Book Club 2.0 Announces Its Second Selection, "The Twelve Tribes Of Hattie" By Ayana Mathis Los Angeles, CA, New York, NY, and Toronto, Canada - Own: Oprah Winfrey Network and O, The Oprah Magazine announce the newest Oprah's Book Club 2.0 selection, The Twelve Tribes of Hattie by Ayana Mathis (Knopf). In her extraordinary debut, Mathis tells the story of the children of the Great Migration through the trials of one indomitable heroine (Hattie) and her unforgettable family. The novel has earned starred pre-publication reviews from Publishers Weekly, Kirkus and Booklist. "The opening pages of Ayana's debut took my...

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- Tambay A. Obenson

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Byron Hurt's 'Soul Food Junkies' Will Broadcast Nationally On PBS In January 2013

5 December 2012 8:03 AM, PST

After traveling the film festival circuit this year, and winning acclaim along the way, filmmaker/activist Byron Hurt's latest work, Soul Food Junkies, which explores the health advantages and disadvantages of what we call Soul Food - an investigation into what he calls "the dark side of the food industry and the growing food justice movement that has been born in its wake" - will air nationally on PBS's Independent Lens, starting on January 14, 2013, at 10pm. Vanessa saw the film at the American Black Film Festival (Abff) over the summer, and she reviewed it enthusiastically, Here. Now the rest of you will get a chance to finally see it as well. Watch the trailer below: "Soul Food Junkies" Official Teaser (2011) from Byron Hurt on Vimeo.

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- Tambay A. Obenson

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Why 'The Walking Dead' is, in Its Third Season, the Most Improved Show on Television

5 December 2012 7:09 AM, PST

The article below contains spoilers pertaining to the current season of "The Walking Dead." This time last year, at the midpoint of season two, "The Walking Dead" was just putting to rest the fruitless search for missing 12-year-old Sophia (Madison Lintz) by having her stagger out of Hershel's (Scott Wilson) barn, revealed to be dead and transformed into a walker. The quest to find Sophia, who went missing in the season two premiere, exemplified one of the most maddening aspects of the show in its second year -- its focus on infighting, bickering and overall wheel-spinning, as Rick (Andrew Lincoln) and his group overstayed their welcome on the Greene farm and ultimately left it overrun by the undead and on fire. There was the struggle between Rick and the increasingly unstable Shane (Jon Bernthal), the debate over Lori's (Sarah Wayne Callies) pregnancy, the endless talk of finding Sophia and a »


- Alison Willmore

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Watch: 'The Simpsons' Own Mr. Burns Explains the Fiscal Cliff (Video)

5 December 2012 6:05 AM, PST

After endorsing Mitt Romney last month, "The Simpsons" billionaire Mr. Burns is back for another dispatch from Springfield Republican Party Headquarters ("Rape now bad," as the sign proclaims). This time, Burns grapples with the loss of the election by offering a public service announcement explaining the fiscal cliff and the fact that "rich people feel things more deeply than the common man." As up and down as the quality of "The Simpsons" can be in this, its 24th season, these promo one-offs are very entertaining -- we'd really like to hear from the Rich Texan next.

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- Alison Willmore

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