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'Parks and Recreation' finale: 'Workaholics' star Blake Anderson to guest -- Exclusive
Parks and Recreation will unveil its season finale next Thursday, and it will be filled with all sorts of guest stars, from musical (Yo La Tengo, The Decemberists, Letters to Cleo, the returning Jeff Tweedy) to political (First Lady Michelle Obama) to mystery (???). One name you can add to the list from the comedy world: Workaholics star Blake Anderson.
In the hourlong episode, father-to-be Ben (Adam Scott) and Andy (Chris Pratt) visit Grizzle, a Bay Area tech start-up (whose music service, Grizzle Dump, was referenced in April 3′s “Prom”), and Anderson plays one of its founders, Mike Bean. “The only »
- Dan Snierson
CW Sets Summer Timeslots for ‘Backpackers,’ Other New Shows
The CW is joining the comedy and magic club this summer.
The net, which throughout the year typically airs nine drama series as part of its 10-hour schedule, is experimenting with a pair of new half-hour comedies, “Backpackers” (originally a digital series) and “Seed,” as well as magic series “Penn & Teller: Fool Us” and “Masters of Illusion,” as part of its summer lineup.
CW kicks off its summer June 2 with improv comedy “Whose Line Is It Anyway” on a new night; each week, an original episode will be followed by a repeat. Original episodes of sophomore drama “Beauty and the Beast” will air from 9 to 10.
Reality docuseries “Famous in 12″ bows the next night, airing from 8 to 9. It’s an unscripted series/social experiment that will film one fame-seeking family around the clock for 12 weeks straight. The family will be guided by the TMZ machine, which will create a series of opportunities for them. »
- Rick Kissell
Kobe Bryant Documentary in the Works at Showtime
The project, directed by Gotham Chopra, is filming in Los Angeles and will offer an in-depth look into the life, inspirations and challenges facing one of the most successful and complex figures in professional sports.
Bryant is recovering from a serious Achilles’ heel injury that kept him out of most of the 2013-14 season.
“We are thrilled that Kobe has given us this unprecedented access, which will allow our viewers to witness such a challenging period of time in the life of one of the NBA’s greatest players,” said Stephen Espinoza, executive vice president and general manager of Showtime.
The documentary will examine Bryant’s storied basketball career with the Lakers, detailing his mentorships, allies and rivalries that have helped shape his 18-year tenure in the NBA, »
- Variety Staff
'Idol' Exit Interview: Dexter Roberts is happy to get some sleep
With the competition getting down to the wire, every American Idol performance counts. Unfortunately for the three finalists from Alabama who joined together for a trio performance, their “Compass” pointed Dexter Roberts and Jessica Meuse to the bottom — with Dexter not getting America’s vote. EW talked to the “lucky man” after his elimination.
Entertainment Weekly: How are you?
Dexter Roberts: I’m great, I’m great — how are you? It’s okay. I get to go home, see my family, friends…and my dogs!
What were you thinking before you final song?
I played the guitar on the song originally, »
- Jake Perlman
The Good Wife’s Emmy Campaign Goes After: True Detective, Breaking Bad and More
The Good Wife is tired of being shut out of the Emmys by its cable and pay-channel brethren, so they’re mounting a fierce campaign to say they deserve a moment in the sun. Their argument? They have more episodes per year. In a chart they fashioned above, they show how the top show of the [&hellip
First Promo for Fox’s Reality Dating Show ‘I Want to Marry Harry’ Released
Move over The Bachelor and The Bachelorette, Fox’s new reality dating show I Want to Marry Harry is coming. Only on this dating show, the 12 contestants are in for a little bit of a surprise. According to reports, I Want to Marry Harry will feature 12 female contestants from America. The ladies will fly [&hellip
First Promo for Fox’s Reality Dating Show ‘I Want to Marry Harry’ Released »
- Chris Norton
The Vampire Diaries 5.18 Review: “Resident Evil”
Paul Wesley deserves a round of applause for this incredible episode that served as his directorial debut on The Vampire Diaries. Seriously, it was very impressive for numerous reasons including how it dealt with the mythical doppelganger prophecy and the mythology of the Travelers. Plus we got to see some familiar faces on the Other [&hellip
Community 5.13 Review: “Basic Sandwich”
You’ll have to forgive me. I’m a little short of words after watching another one of my favorite shows end for the season. I’ve lost too many of my favorites this past year (Psych, Breaking Bad, How I Met Your Mother) to even consider the possibility of losing another. However, as you recall, I wrote [&hellip
Community 5.13 Review: “Basic Sandwich” »
- Nick Hogan
The 5 NBA Playoff Series to Watch
For all you basketball junkies out there, this is the time of year that you’v all been waiting for—because it’s (finally) playoff time. And since the first-round matchups have been set, we’re giving you the five best series that you need to make sure you don’t miss a second of. So clear your schedule or [&hellip
The 5 NBA Playoff Series to Watch »
- Nick Dimengo
A Classic is Born...on Masterpiece Contemporary
guest review by Darwyn Carson With a solid reputation for superior dramas, PBS’s Masterpiece Theatre has undoubtedly been a hard act to follow. Now its close cousin, Masterpiece Contemporary raises the bar tonight with the tightly woven political thriller, Page Eight. Writer-director David Hare (the playwright perhaps best known in the States for his screenplays The Hours and The Reader) has culled together a terrific cast of players led by Bill Nighy that includes Ralph Fiennes, Michael Gambon, Judy Davis, Felicity Jones, and Rachel Weisz. A traditional spy drama, taut with suspense, Page Eight almost feels sophisticated in its darkness, with undercurrents of danger lurking in the shadows and veiled threats being made from unexpected quarters, wholly reminiscent of— —Noir when it was king. Long-time military intelligence analyst Johnny Worricker (Nighy) is a passionate man, about his art collection, jazz records and the many women he has wooed—some of whom he’s. »
- Darwyn Carson
Acorn TV Expands Streaming Service
Guest review by Darwyn Carson - Good news all! Acorn Media Group, the first company to provide live streaming of the best in classic and contemporary British television, recently expanded the service, which launched in July of 2011 with a roster of six series and 40 hours of programming online at any given time. Now viewers have complete episodes of 10 series and 60 hours of programming accessible. There’s so much material—a lot of it never seen before in the States. Two new shows are rotated in weekly (as the oldest shows are rotated out) and remain in the schedule for five weeks, allowing ample time to watch your favorites or never-seens. First episodes are gratis, so if you’re a BBC America or PBS Masterpiece buff, or simply have a passion for excellent drama, check it out at acornonline.com/TV. I did just that and found a gem: Above Suspicion, »
- Darwyn Carson
‘Scandal’ Season Finale Buckles Under Dizzying Absurdities
“Scandal” often brings to mind Stephen J. Cannell’s story about pitching “The A-Team” to Brandon Tartikoff. The legendary producer fondly recalled that the wilder the pitch became (until they were essentially just winging it with whatever crazy thing they could think of), the more the NBC executive liked it.
Viewers have largely responded the same way to Shonda Rhimes’ political drama, which wrapped up its third season Thursday night, punctuated at frequent intervals by the by-now customary dramatic pyrotechnics and insanity.
To be fair, this comes from someone who had little regard for the ABC show when it premiered and doesn’t like it much better now.
Yet it’s hard not to admire how the series became a genuine hit (and thus worthy of attention on those terms) by simply going nuts – embracing a simple-minded view of politics and ridiculous elements of espionage, including the family of political »
- Brian Lowry
‘Scandal’ Finale: Shonda Rhimes On ‘Jimmy Kimmel Live!’
Jimmy Kimmel gamely interviewed Shonda Rhimes — “the woman whose brain gave birth” to ABC’s primetime soap Scandal, in a full episode of his late night show Jimmy Kimmel Live, tonight, while viewers attempted to recover from the dizzying Scandal season finale. Chatting with Rhimes on the show set, Kimmel noted the season wrapper was really about three finales’ worth of action. “I always want to make the show something you can’t do other stuff while it’s on…You can’t fold laundry, you can’t yell at your husband,” Rhimes explained. Kimmel said that was noble of her. And so, the night wore on, Shonda calmly declining to cough up any dirt about future plans for the show, Kimmel trying to liven things up by noting the conference table at which they were seated was the one on which two of the show’s characters had sex »
- THE DEADLINE TEAM
Global Showbiz Briefs: Tom Jones To Star In ‘Under Milk Wood’; Marco Frazier Upped To Svp At AMC/Sundance Channel Global
Tom Jones, Sian Phillips & Michael Sheen Join ‘Under Milk Wood’ Cast Tom Jones, Sian Phillips and Michael Sheen have joined the cast of Under Milk Wood, BBC Wales TV’s adaptation of Dylan Thomas’ “play for voices.” Jones stars as the blind and tormented Captain Cat, with Sheen among several actors playing First Voice and Second Voice, including Matthew Rhys and John Rhys Davies. The cast also includes Jonathan Pryce, Ioan Gruffudd and opera star Bryn Terfel. Since its debut on radio 60 years ago, the tale of the residents of the fictional Welsh village of Llareggub has been adapted as a stage play, an opera, and a 1972 starring Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor. Marco Frazier Upped To Svp At AMC/Sundance Channel Global AMC/Sundance Channel Global has promoted Marco Frazier to Svp Global Distribution, Emea. Based in Italy, he will oversee the channel’s distribution in the region. Frazier »
- THE DEADLINE TEAM
'Scandal' Season 3: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly, Ugly, Ugly
ABC's Scandal came out of the gate swinging from the very beginning of its season three opener and it never slowed down until the 59th minute of the finale last night. Whew! The true natures of Olivia Pope's parents were revealed, Quinn took a swan dive off the deep end, Sally slaughtered her husband, Cyrus pimped out James, Rowan was dethroned from B613 Command in a hostile takeover and then was reinstated after 'killing' Mama Pope for Fitz, Mellie's tragic history got all out in the open winning Mellie presidential sympathy, and Fitz betrayed Olivia in the worst way possible by being so hurt of Mellie's frigidity in their early marriage. Oh, and Mama Pope, she blew up a cathedral.
Though we nearly got whiplash from the twisty plot developments of a truncated labyrinthine final quarter, Scandal was a bit light on powerful soliloquies in comparison to past seasons. Scandal »
'Parenthood' finale react: A house is not a home
Even though I knew it was coming, losing the Braverman house hurts, guys. It hurts bad. Let’s be honest: Next to Joel, it was arguably my favorite thing about this show. Okay, that’s taking it too far, but I am going to miss that beautiful house for a number of reasons, and I didn’t even grow up there!
That being said, losing the house was not the thing that made me cry the hardest in this episode. Nope, that award (not surprisingly) goes to Mae Whitman and Matt Lauria. At the hospital, we finally got to meet Ryan’s mother, »
- Samantha Highfill
Survivor's L.J.: "I Was Completely Shocked" by Tony's Betrayal
Tony Vlachos is certainly not winning any friends on Survivor: Cagayan. Now that we've gotten to the portion of the game where people voted off become members of the jury, two out of three jurors heading into next week are victims of blindsides at least partially engineered by the New Jersey cop.
The latest castoff, L.J. McKanas, became the victim of an eyebrow-raising betrayal by Tony on Wednesday's episode, getting blindsided just a few episodes after he gave Tony his immunity idol at Tribal Council.
"I was completely shocked," McKanas tells TVGuide.com about his ouster. "I mean, when I replayed it in my mind, I thought, there's no circumstance where that makes any sense."
Read More > »
- Liz Raftery
Deadline Awards Watch 70: The Cannes Lineup Assessment Podcast
In this week’s podcast, Deadline Awards Columnist Pete Hammond and host David Bloom assess the just-announced lineup for this year’s Cannes Film Festival, which competing films have serious Oscar hopes and which pics Pete can’t wait to see when he hits the Croisette for Deadline next month. Today also was the last day for would-be Emmy voters to make themselves eligible with the TV Academy, and Pete and David take a look at the Emmy campaigns that are heating up, while also grumpily acknowledging the first Oscar campaign of the 2015 season. Finally, Pete gives his take on the weekend’s notable movie debuts, including Wally Pfister’s directorial debut Transcendence, the Woody Allen-John Tuturro collaboration Fading Gigolo and faith-based hit-in-the-making Heaven Is For Real. Listen to the podcast in your choice of formats here: Deadline Awards Watch podcast 70 (.MP3 version) Deadline Awards Watch podcast 70 (.M4A »
- PETE HAMMOND
Scandal: Who Didn't Survive the Season Finale?
[Warning: This story contains major spoilers from Thursday's Scandal finale. Read at your own risk!]
Scandal's season finale was quite explosive — but it wasn't the bomb that was the most shocking moment.
The big bomb scare was actually quickly resolved in the opening moments of Thursday's episode, with Jake (Scott Foley) arriving at the Oval Office to tell Fitz (Tony Goldwyn) about the bomb at the church before it exploded, which allowed them to evacuate in time. Unfortunately...
Read More > »
- Natalie Abrams
‘Scandal’: Shonda Rhimes Whips Up Spoiler Storm With Season Finale
Major Spoiler Alert: This story contains many details of Thursday’s season finale episode of ABC’s Scandal. ABC’s D.C. drama, created by Shonda Rhimes, has grabbed big ratings over three seasons with a potent mix of wild plot twists and savvy use of social media. In another signature Shonda shocker, Washington fixer Olivia Pope (Kerry Washington) tonight watched Potus Fitzgerald Grant (Tony Goldwyn) become a virtual certainty to lose his re-election bid when a bomb intended for him goes off at the funeral of a U.S. senator who’d been assassinated by Olivia’s terrorist mom Maya Lewis (Khandi Alexander) in order to get Grant at the funeral, only Potus isn’t there. But his chief presidential-race rival — and Vpotus – Sally Langston (Kate Burton) was there, and survived, and becomes simultaneous ministering angel and Irony Lady at the scene of the blast. President Grant’s day »
- LISA DE MORAES, TV Columnist
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