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TV Ratings: ‘America’s Got Talent’ Season 12 Finale Hits 7 Year in Total Viewers

31 minutes ago

“America’s Got Talent” closed out a powerful Season 12 with multiple highs in both key ratings measurres, according to Nielsen data.

Airing from 8 p.m.-10 p.m. on NBC, the season finale averaged a 2.9 rating in adults 18-49 and 15.4 million total viewers. That makes it the show’s top finale in six years in adults 18-49 and in seven years in total viewers. In addition, it was up over 30% in both measures from last week’s episode on Wednesday.

After “Agt,” the Season 2 premiere of “The Good Place” averaged a 1.4 and 5.8 million viewers, airing from 10-11. That is a significant decrease from the Season 1 premiere (2.3, 8 million on Sept. 19, 2016) but an increase of 27% in the key demo and 47% in total viewers from the Season 1 finale (1.1, 3.9 million on Jan. 19, 2017).

On CBS, the Season 19 finale of “Big Brother” (2.2, 6.7 million) was up 19% in the key demo compared to last week and approximately 4% in total viewers.

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- Joe Otterson

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Billy Eichner’s ‘Billy on the Street’ to Leave TruTV

1 hour ago

Billy Eichner’s comedy game show series “Billy on the Street” is leaving truTV, Variety has confirmed.

The show features Eichner asking impromptu quiz show-type questions to people on the streets of New York, often accompanied by a celebrity guest. Past celebrity guests have included: Sarah Jessica ParkerChris Pratt, Aziz Ansari, John Oliver, Seth Rogen, Will Ferrell, and Anna Kendrick.

“We can confirm that new episodes of ‘Billy on the Street’ will not be returning to truTV,” a truTV spokesperson said in a statement to Variety. “The show is deceptively time-consuming to make and scheduling was increasingly difficult. We had a great run together capped off by the show’s Emmy nomination, and we wish Billy nothing but the best.”

Produced by Funny or Die, the show aired on Fuse from 2011-2014 for its first three seasons, moving to truTV in 2015 for Seasons 4 and 5. Season 5 concluded back in January. The »


- Joe Otterson

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‘Search Party,’ ‘The Deuce,’ ‘Swat,’ Shawn Ryan Set for New York Television Festival

1 hour ago

The Season 2 premiere of “Search Party,” a panel on the production of “The Deuce,” and keynotes with showrunner Shawn Ryan, Jordan Klepper and TBS programming chief Brett Weitz are among the events set for the 13th annual New York Television Festival next month.

The sophomore year of TBS’ quirky mystery-comedy “Search Party” and the premiere of TruTV’s “At Home with Amy Seders” will be the fest’s opening night showcase programs on Oct. 23. Earlier in the day, TBS’ Weitz will be featured in a conversation moderated by Nytvf founder Terence Gray. The weeklong festival runs Oct. 23-28 at various venues.

Other highlights of the event include:

Premiere of the Sony TV/CBS drama “Swat” (Oct. 24) Keynote conversation with Ryan (Oct. 24) Premiere of Starz documentary “Nude,” about fashion photog David Bellemare (Oct. 25) Keynote conversation with director Michelle MacLaren and other female creatives on “The Deuce” (Oct. 26) Fan panel with John C. McGinley and others stars of “Stan Against Evil »


- Cynthia Littleton

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Lifetime Banks on Buzzy Beauty Industry for Next Reality Competition Series

2 hours ago

Lifetime is home to fashion’s biggest reality show, “Project Runway,” and now the network is banking on the beauty industry for their next competition series.

American Beauty Star,” hosted by supermodel Adriana Lima, brings celebrity stylists and salon professionals head-to-head to compete in a series of hair and makeup challenges over the course of 10 episodes. The contestants are mentored by make-up artist to the stars, Sir John, who has worked with everyone from Beyonce to Karlie Kloss, and judges are Vogue’s Sarah Brown and photographer Russell James.

To celebrate the launch of “American Beauty Star,” the cast was joined by an crowd of entertainment and fashion types at the Gramercy Park Hotel’s terrace for an intimate, yet swanky, cocktails-and-conversation soirée on Tuesday night where guests were greeted with champagne and bid adieu with gift bags full of — what else? — beauty products.

The series, which debuts Thursday night at 10:30 p.m »


- Elizabeth Wagmeister

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Watch the Foo Fighters’ Raucous ‘Carpool Karaoke’ With James Corden

2 hours ago

It’s hard not to get the feeling that a big part of the Foo Fighters’ ongoing popularity is the fact that it looks like it’d be so much fun to hang out with them, and their “Carpool Karaoke” with James Corden does nothing to dispel that notion. As usual, the host and the artist drive around L.A. singing songs like “The Best of You” and “Learn to Fly” at top volume — in this case you get the added bonus of seeing both Dave Grohl and Taylor Hawkins air-drumming — along with entertaining stories about life on the road, being in a band, and, oh yeah, that time Grohl broke his leg and dislocated his ankle onstage in Germany. But wait there’s more! The group makes a stop at the Guitar Center on Sunset and not only gives Corden a drum audition — okay, you try to sound good next to Grohl and Hawkins — and later »


- Jem Aswad

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Nielsen Unveils New Ad Yardstick for Madison Avenue (Exclusive)

2 hours ago

Nielsen, which for years has backed a system under which advertisers paid for TV commercials based on the number of people of a particular age or gender who saw them, now wants to be able to offer Madison Avenue a different kind of yardstick.

The media-measurement concern, whose ratings provide the bedrock of TV-industry economics, has come up with a way to help advertisers buy based on different criteria. Under current norms, marketers ranging from Apple to Zyrtec use Nielsen to determine how many men or women between the ages of 18 and 49 saw a commercial – and pay based on those measures. With new Nielsen technology in place, advertisers like General Motors or Mondelez International might instead count the number of first-time car buyers or likely purchasers of lunchbox snacks they reach, part of a burgeoning technique that is known in the industry as “audience buying” that’s gaining favor as rival digital outlets allow for more precise »


- Brian Steinberg

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NBC Touts Megyn Kelly’s Softer Side in Bid to Launch New Morning Show

3 hours ago

Megyn Kelly is best known as the hard-edged news anchor who wasn’t afraid to push back on conservative orthodoxy at Fox News Channel. Her new employer, NBC Universal, is trying to trot out a softer side.

As NBC prepares to launch a new morning show led by the much-scrutinized Kelly, it has unleashed a promotional salvo that speaks less about her news chops and instead tries to unveil other facets of her personality. One recent promo shows Kelly shaking hands with people in a supermarket and at a baseball stadium, and suggests her program, “Megyn Kelly Today,” is “not about us versus them. It’s about us for everyone.” She’s sharing space on an NBCU billboard in Times Square that depicts her offering up a hot cup of coffee. In a video posted on her new show’s Twitter feed, she reveals a fondness for “Overboard,” the 1987 comedy featuring Kurt Russell and Goldie Hawn.

NBC »


- Brian Steinberg

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Vice Ramps Up Original French Content With Three New Shows

5 hours ago

Paris – A year after launching Viceland in France, Vice is ramping up its original French content with three new productions: “Rum Diaries with Joey Starr,” “Instagraille” and “Hometown.”

“Rum Diaries with Joey Starr” follows the rapper-turned-actor-producer Joey Starr (pictured) on a journey to rum distilleries across the world, including in Martinique, his homeland, Guadeloupe, Cuba and Jamaica. Through his travelogue, Starr sheds light on the history of colonialism, slavery and the essence of Creole identity. Starr, whose hip hop band Ntm was hugely popular in the ’90s, remains one of France’s best known musicians and has become a prominent actor since his breakthrough role in Maiwenn’s “Polisse.”

Vice will also bank on France’s renown for cuisine and fashion with “Instagraille” and “Hometown.”

“Instagraille” follows France’s top-ranked chefs and their entourages to their favorite restaurants and hangout spots. “Hometown” delivers intimate portraits of several high-profile designers. In each episode, a »


- Elsa Keslassy

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HBO España Orders Up ‘Patria,’ an Original Series on the Basque Conflict (Exclusive)

8 hours ago

Madrid — In the first confirmation of its production plans, HBO España has commissioned Alea Media to develop an original adaptation of Fernando Aramburu’s bestselling novel “Patria,” with Alea Media founder Aitor Gabilondo, one of Spain’s best-known showrunners, both writing and producing.

Confirmation of the project comes after months of speculation over HBO’s Spanish production plans. Last November, HBO España launched a standalone streaming service in Spain and hired Miguel Salvat, a highly respected former director of content at Canal Plus and of premium channels at Movistar, as its commissioning editor of original programming.

Patria” studies the impact of the Basque conflict on ordinary people on either side of the divide, such as the widow of a man shot dead by the armed separatist group Eta who returns to her home village after the 2011 ceasefire, and the mother of an incarcerated terrorist. The novel, published last year, runs to 646 pages.

Gabilondo »


- John Hopewell

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MSNBC’s Lawrence O’Donnell Apologizes for Leaked Tirade

15 hours ago

MSNBC anchor Lawrence O’Donnell has issued an apology after a clip leaked of him verbally berating his staff while taping his nightly news show.

“A better anchorman and a better person would’ve had a better reaction to technical difficulties,” O’Donnell wrote on Twitter. “I’m sorry.”

Earlier on Wednesday, a series of clips obtained by Mediate show O’Donnell repeatedly cursing at his staffers for problems with his earpiece. The clips seem to be from the August 29 episode of “The Last Word,” which O’Donnell anchors for MSNBC.

In the clips, O’Donnell becomes visibly angry after complaining multiple times that he is hearing someone in the control room speaking about matters unrelated to that night’s show in his earpiece. At one point he slams his fists on his desk and is heard muttering “God dammit.”

He becomes more and more upset until finally standing up and screaming, “Stop »


- Joe Otterson

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Netflix Pulls Episode of Children’s Cartoon With Penis Drawing

16 hours ago

Netflix has pulled an episode of a children’s show “Maya the Bee” after what appeared to be a penis was spotted etched on a tree trunk in the background of a scene.

Screen caps of the tree with the phallic image made the rounds on social media earlier this week.

Chey Robinson, a concerned mother, appears to have been the first to share a clip from the show, writing on Facebook, “Please be mindful of what your kids are watching. I did Not edit any images whatsoever, this is ‘Maya the Bee,’ Season 1, Episode 35. I know I’m not going crazy and I know that something like this shouldn’t be in a kids’ show whatsoever. I’m extremely disgusted by it, there should be no reason my kids have to see something like this. I don’t know if they’re gonna do something about this or what, but »


- Erin Nyren

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TV News Roundup: Joe Bastianich Returns to ‘MasterChef Junior’

17 hours ago

In today’s roundup, Joe Bastianich will return as a permanent host to “Masterchef Junior” and Christian Drobnyk has joined National Geographic.

Casting

Former “MasterChef” and “MasterChef Junior” host Joe Bastianich will return as a permanent judge to Season 6 of “MasterChef Junior,” which will air during the 2017-18 season on Fox. Bastianich will also join chefs Gordon Ramsay, Christina Tosi and Aarón Sánchez on the “MasterChef” Season 8 finale Sept. 20 at 8 p.m. on Fox. Bastianich is a world-renowned restaurateur who co-owns 30 restaurants across the globe, including Michelin Star eatery Del Posto, Babbo, Osteria Mozza and Eataly in the Americas. He previously served as a judge on “MasterChef Junior” for its first three seasons and on “MasterChef” for its first five seasons.

Dates

Stage 13, a digital content brand under the Warner Bros. Digital Networks umbrella, announced that its new anthology series “Two Sentence Horror Stories” will premiere on Oct. 3 on go90, Verizon’s mobile entertainment destination. A »


- Erin Nyren

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‘Watchmen’ Pilot From Damon Lindelof Ordered by HBO

17 hours ago

HBO has ordered a pilot for “Watchmen,” the new drama series it is developing with “The Leftovers” creator Damon Lindelof.

The premium service has also committed to additional backup scripts for the series. HBO confirmed the pilot order and script commitment Wednesday, one day after Lindelof teased on Instagram that work had begun in the writers room on the project.

Watchmen” is based on the landmark DC Comics miniseries of the same name by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons. The series, later collected as a graphic novel, was a serious-minded deconstruction of superhero comics loosely inspired by characters from the Charlton Comics library, which were owned by DC. Set in a universe in which the appearance of costumed heroes in the mid-20th Century had altered the course of history — leading to U.S. victory in Vietnam and a Nixon presidency that stretched into the mid-1980s — “Watchmen” followed a group of crimefighters investigating the murder of »


- Daniel Holloway

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Jemele Hill Is a Fading Memory. Which Means Espn Lost a Big Opportunity

17 hours ago

Remember Jemele Hill?

Wipe the cobwebs from the darkest corner of your memory banks, and the name may sound vaguely familiar. She was well on her way to becoming a household name just last week, which in our hyper-speed news cycle, is about two or three eons ago. So you’re forgiven if you don’t remember.

Espn is probably hoping you don’t recall Hill, whose tweets calling Donald Trump a white supremacist prompted condemnation from a White House spokeswoman and a demand from the president himself on social media that the network apologize. The sports network issued a few statements making clear she had run afoul of employee guidelines but stopped short of punishing her, which only fueled the outcry from conservatives.

But it’s actually a shame that Hill is already fading from our collective memories — for her and for Espn itself. The network has mistaken what looked like adversity for what her controversy »


- Andrew Wallenstein

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‘The Punisher’ Unloads in First Trailer for Netflix Series (Watch)

17 hours ago

Netflix has released the first trailer for the television adaptation of Marvel’s “The Punisher.” What starts out as a sentimental montage of Frank Castle’s family turns into a bloodbath once his wife is shot and killed.

The Punisher” chronicles Castle (Jon Bernthal) exacting revenge on those responsible for the death of his wife and children. Now known throughout the criminal underworld as the Punisher, he discovers the truth about injustices that affect more than his family alone.

In the first look, Castle suits up in his notable skull vest to hit the town after uncovering a conspiracy that runs far deeper than New York. The trailer also hints at the comic-book characters origin story. “They killed my family to get to me,” he says. “I was a part of a covert CIA operation. The man in charge wants me dead. Homeland, the FBI, everybody’s a part of this.”

At »


- Rebecca Rubin

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Sound Teams Detail Aural Aspects of Five New TV Drama Series

17 hours ago

With all the talk about streaming platforms and pay cable providing the best content and grabbing the lion’s share of Emmy Awards during this era of Peak TV, traditional network shows sometimes tend to be overlooked. To remedy that omission, here are five greatly anticipated network programs that spare neither tools nor talent to deliver top-notch production values — in this case creating high-quality sound to support their equally excellent visuals. The sound pros here who push the envelope comment on their creative vision.

The Brave (NBC) 9/25

Building heart-pounding tension is key for this hour-long drama series that follows a group of soldiers who carry out dangerous missions behind enemy lines. Anne Heche stars as the head of their tactical command center.  “It’s a very unique environment where we wanted the sound perspective to be more vocalized rather than filled with the familiar sound effects you’ve heard in the ‘Bourne’ movies, for »


- Daron James

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‘Younger’ Season 4 Is Series’ Highest-Rated Ever in Delayed Viewing

18 hours ago

Younger” Season 4 was the highest-rated and most-watched installment of the TV Land dramedy to date, according to Nielsen data.

In Live+3 ratings, the series saw double-digit increases in multiple measures, including an averaging adults 18-49 rating of 0.72, up 32% from Season 2. In total viewers, it averaged 1.3 million viewers per episode, up 29% from last season. Similarly, the series was up 31% in adults 25-54, women 25-54, and women 18-49. “Younger” also saw 2.1 million full episode starts on TVLand.com and the TV Land app, the highest in-season consumption in series history.

Created by “Sex and the City’s” Darren Star, “Younger” stars two-time Tony winner Sutton Foster, Hilary Duff, Debi Mazar, Miriam Shor, Nico Tortorella, Peter Hermann and Molly Bernard. The series was recently renewed for a fifth season on TV Land.

It follows Liza (Foster), a 40-year old woman who pretends to be 26 in order to get a job. Now working under the prickly Diana (Shor), Liza has to »


- Joe Otterson

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Hollywood Cashes in as Mobile Providers Ante Up to Hook Customers With Free Programming

18 hours ago

Consumers who line up for the new iPhone this week will once again get seemingly irresistible offers from the big carriers. But this time around, telcos have something more to offer than just lucrative trade-in deals and deeply discounted iPads: “Game of Thrones,” “Stranger Things” and other hot TV shows, for free.

Both At&T and T-Mobile are betting on the power of content to lure new subscribers to their services and keep iPhone upgraders from switching to the competition. T-Mobile announced an exclusive deal with Netflix earlier this month, and is offering free access to the video-streaming service to those who buy T-Mobile’s unlimited family plan.

“Free is our favorite price,” quipped T-Mobile chief operating officer Mike Sievert at last week’s Goldman Sachs Communacopia conference.

Christoph Hitz for Variety

At&T countered the move days later, expanding its existing HBO promotion to a larger number of its wireless customers. “It »


- Janko Roettgers

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Battle-Tested Michael Winship Wraps 10-Year Tenure as WGA East President

18 hours ago

Ten years ago this month, veteran news and documentary scribe Michael Winship was elected president of the WGA East’s governing council. A week later he was on a plane to Los Angeles, where the WGA East and WGA West’s joint contract negotiations with the major studios were turning ugly, setting the course for the 100-day strike that began on Nov. 5, 2007.

Winship’s tenure began with a trial by fire and comes to a close just a few months after another round of film and TV contract talks went down to the wire amid the specter of a crippling walkout by writers.

After serving five consecutive terms — making him the second-longest tenured president in WGA East history behind Herb Sargent — Winship formally hands the baton today to Beau Willimon, who ran for the office unopposed. Winship has earned the respect of industry writers for his steady and effective leadership of the Wgae. But »


- Cynthia Littleton

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‘I Mom So Hard’ Web Series Scores Pilot Production Commitment at CBS

18 hours ago

Popular web series “I Mom So Hard” is in development at CBS as a multi-camera comedy, Variety has learned.

The series has landed a pilot production commitment. Kristin Hensley and Jen Smedley, who co-created the web series, will star in and co-write the series, which will see the two moms show how their friendship gets them through being wives and mothers. Michelle Nader will also serve as a writer on the series in addition to executive producing. Rob Thomas will executive produce under his Spondoolie Productions banner, with Danielle Stokdyk and Dan Etheridge also executive producing. Spondoolie Productions will produce in association with Warner Bros. Television.

Hensley and Smedley are repped by UTA, Management 360, and attorney Matt Feil. Nader is repped by ICM.

Hensley and Smedley began posting funny videos of themselves discussing motherhood and family life in 2016 on Facebook and YouTube. Their YouTube channel currently has over 58,000 subscribers and over 5 million video views, while »


- Joe Otterson

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