'SNL': Kate McKinnon is perfection in this killer 'Casablanca' parody
It's easy to imagine Kate McKinnon as the heroine of a 1940s screwball comedy - but turns out she can do wartime melodrama too. "Saturday Night Live" parodied "Casablanca" (of all things) on tonight's episode, and the newly-minted Ghostbuster absolutely killed it as Ingrid Bergman's Ilsa, who in an "alternate ending" cannot wait to get on that damn plane after Rick (J.K. Simmons) mentions the concentration camps. God, I like her a lot better now. »
- Chris Eggertsen
Watch: J.K. Simmons Channels His ‘Whiplash’ Character on ‘SNL’
The supporting actor Oscar frontrunner hosted “Saturday Night Live” this week and, in his opening monologue, channeled his “Whiplash” character Terence Fletcher, the temperamental music teacher who is seen slapping and throwing chairs at Miles Teller’s head in the drama. To prove he’s not as mean as Fletcher, Simmons prepared a musical number with “SNL” cast members, and proceeded to yell at all of them for not being good enough.
The first victim was Kyle Mooney. Simmons not only yelled in his face while Mooney played the drums, but mocked his hair (“I think all hair is ridiculous,” the bald actor said).
“This isn’t one of your weird videos!” he yelled at Kyle Mooney. “This is the opening of the show!”
“I really miss Blake Shelton, »
- Alex Stedman
Geraldine McEwan Dies At 82: ITV’s Miss Marple, UK Stage Luminary
The actress, a staple of UK modern and classic repertory who became synonymous with the Agatha Christie heroine, died January 30 in the aftermath of a stroke suffered in October, her family said in a release to the press. In addition to Miss Marple, whom she played from 2004 through 2009, she won a 1991 BAFTA TV award for best actress for her role in Oranges Are Not The Only Fruit. She was Emmeline “Lucia” Lucas in Mapp And Lucia, a TV series adapted from E.F. Benson’s… »
- Jeremy Gerard
Al-Jazeera Journalist Peter Greste Released By Egypt, Deported Out Of The Country
Australian journalist Peter Greste, the Al Jazeera English reporter jailed in Egypt on charges of spreading false news, has been released from prison and deported out of the country, according to state media sources. Greste, a former BBC reporter and Peabody Award winner, along with fellow Al-Jazeera journalists Mohamed Fahmy and Baher Mohamed, spent more than a year in jail following their arrest in December 2013 on what many believe were politically motivated… »
Al Jazeera Journalist Peter Greste to Be Released, Deported: Reports
London — Al Jazeera journalist Peter Greste has been released from jail in Egypt and flown out of the country, according the Egyptian state news agency Sis, the BBC, and Al Jazeera.
Greste, who is an Australian citizen and is a former BBC correspondent, was arrested in December 2013, and convicted, alongside Al Jazeera English colleagues Mohamed Fahmy and Baher Mohamed, in June last year on charges of allegedly reporting “false news” in support of the Muslim Brotherhood in a conspiracy. All three denied the charges. In January, Egypt’s top court ordered a retrial of all three men.
There is no word as yet on the status of Fahmy and Mohamed. Fahmy holds dual Egyptian and Canadian citizenship, and Mohamed is an Egyptian national.
The verdicts against the Al Jazeera journalists were widely considered to be prompted by the fact that they had become political pawns in growing tensions between Qatar, »
- Leo Barraclough
‘SNL': Richard Sherman, NFL Anti-Violence PSA & Anti-Women Ads Get Super Bowl Barbs
NBC’s Saturday Night Live was very good to NBC’s Sunday Night Live, Aka the Super Bowl telecast, tossing barbs of varying pointedness at the big game. The best bit was the shortest, from Weekend Update co-anchor Colin Jost, who noted that the NFL’s powerful anti-domestic violence PSA was slated to run on the one night of the year no NFL players would see it. In other Super Bowl faux-news, the cold open featured Kenan Thompson, Jay Pharaoh and Taran Killam mimicking zip-lip… »
- Jeremy Gerard
NBC Makes Last-Minute Changes To Super Bowl Ad Lineup
NBC continues to tinker with the advertising schedule of its broadcast for Super Bowl Xlix in the hours leading up to the game.
A spokesman for the Lexus division of Toyota said Saturday evening that the automaker would now have two 30-second ads in the game, as opposed to the one originally scheduled. The spokesman, Maurice Durand, said Lexus would take a 30-second spot for its Rc Couple originally slated to air during NBC’s pre-game coverage and place it instead during the big event.
Meantime, a spokeswoman for GoDaddy, Elizabeth Driscoll, said the company had been told NBC moved its ad to what is known as slot “11B,” a berth that airs around the game’s two-minute warning in the first half. The ad had originally been slated for the third quarter.
Such horse-trading is not atypical as a network prepares a Super Bowl broadcast, depending on the final list of commercials, »
- Brian Steinberg
Miss Marple Actress Geraldine McEwan Dies at the Age of 82
She died on Jan. 30 following a stroke in late October, her family said.
McEwan won the BAFTA TV award in 1991 for best actress for her role in “Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit.” She also won awards for her theater work, taking Evening Standard best actress awards for “The Rivals” in 1983 and for “The Way of the World” in 1995.
She was nominated for a Tony Award for the 1998 production of Ionesco’s “The Chairs.”
- Leo Barraclough
J.K. Simmons Hosts SNL: Watch Video of the Best and Worst Sketches!
J.K. Simmons may be the least-recognizable name to serve as Saturday Night Live host during the show’s landmark 40th season. But the beloved character actor — who just scored an Oscar nomination for Whiplash — seemed on paper like a great choice for the gig, thanks to his ability to disappear into roles in everything from Oz to The Closer to Growing Up Fisher (to his ads for Farmers Insurance).
Alas, while many of the episode’s sketches had even fewer laughs than slabs of bacon in a vegan restaurant kitchen, Simmons did prove up to the task in the instances »
Adg Awards Live Blog
The Art Directors Guild’s 19th Annual Excellence in Production Design Awards is now in the history books with Birdman, The Grand Budapest Hotel and Guardians Of The Galaxy winning the top film prizes. HBO’s Game Of Thrones, True Detective, and Silicon Valley, and FX’s American Horror Story: Freak Show cleaned up on the TV side. Here’s how it all went down. »
- Ross A. Lincoln
‘How to Train Your Dragon 2′ Wins Annie Award for Animated Feature
It’s the Year of the dragon, as DreamWorks Animation’s “How to Train Your Dragon 2″ took home the top prize at the at the 42nd annual Annie Awards honoring the best in film and TV/broadcast animation for 2014. “Dragon” helmer Dean DeBlois nabbed directing honors at Saturday’s kudos, presented by Asifa-Hollywood at Royce Hall on the UCLA campus.
While Dwa has bragging rights for the best animated feature, Disney came away with the most awards, nine for Disney Television Animation alone and 11 overall. Disney Television Animation’s “Gravity Falls” picked up the nod for television/broadcast production for a children’s audience. “Disney Mickey Mouse” picked up the most individual Annies including directing in a TV/broadcast production (Aaron Springer), writing »
- Terry Flores
Report: E! Docuseries Will Capture Bruce Jenner's Transition to Woman
Olympic gold medalist-turned-reality TV family patriarch Bruce Jenner for more than a year has been transitioning to a woman, with the journey to be shared via an E! docuseries.
Our sister site Variety reported on the E! series earlier this week, and now multiple reports confirm the presumed subject matter.
“Bruce is transitioning to a woman,” a source close to the Jenner/Kardashian family told People. “He is finally happy and his family is accepting of what he’s doing…. [The series] will air when he is ready to be open about his transition” — perhaps as early as May, TMZ reports.
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