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'Vikings' Comic-Con comic book cover is pillage-worthy

43 minutes ago | EW - Inside TV | See recent EW.com - Inside TV news »

History’s Vikings has a pillage-worthy comic book debuting at Comic-Con this week, and here’s a first look at the cover. The image has Floki (Gustaf Skarsgard) and Ragnar (Travis Fimmel) front and center with the Viking gods Loki and Thor are depicted on the top of the page. The comic is being given out to fans who visit the Vikings behind-the-scenes exhibit in downtown San Diego (450 2nd Avenue) during the fan convention. Guests will be treated to viking makeovers (the hair, the make-up, the weapons) and placed into backdrops from the shows to get a share-worthy photo. History »

- James Hibberd

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White House Bypassed Obama ‘Jimmy Kimmel Live’ Appearance Because of ‘More Serious Matters’

48 minutes ago | Variety - TV News | See recent Variety - TV News news »

White House spokesman Josh Earnest said that President Obama and his staff chose not to do an appearance on “Jimmy Kimmel Live” on Wednesday because of “more serious matters the president is dealing with on the international scene.”

TMZ reported on Monday that Obama would do a segment for the show during a trek to Los Angeles, in which he also will attend two fundraisers and speak on job training at a technical college. But ABC and Kimmel’s reps quickly denied such a booking.

Yet Earnest confirmed at the White House daily briefing that they “had been in touch with representatives from Mr. Kimmel’s show about the possibility of participating, of having the president participating, on this trip.”

“We ultimately elected not to have the president do that interview over the course of this trip, and that is at least in part related to the challenges of doing »

- Ted Johnson

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Lucy Lawless will guest star on 'Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.'

56 minutes ago | EW - Inside TV | See recent EW.com - Inside TV news »

After Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D.’s first season ended with the unforgettable (and very cryptic) image of Agent Coulson waking up in the middle of the night to scribble some mysterious symbols on the wall, fans have been dying to know what season two will hold. And as far as Coulson is concerned, the jury’s still out. However, there’s at least one new person in town: EW has confirmed that Lucy Lawless will guest star on the second season.

What her role is and how long she’ll stick around is, as most things are, »

- Samantha Highfill

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Downton Abbey Ep Talks 'High-Stakes' Season 5, Mary's Long Road to the Altar

1 hour ago | TVLine.com | See recent TVLine.com news »

“Things are changing” at Downton Abbey, according to the fifth season’s first promo, a sentiment executive producer Gareth Neame echoes to TVLine.

Related TVLine Items: A Walking Dead Actress Joins Downton Abbey

“In the new season, we have the high-stakes drama, the laugh-out-loud comedy and the romance,” Neame promises. “We have all of the characters doing the things people love to see them doing, but we have a few really nice twists and turns as well.”

Below, Neame teases more of what we can expect in Season 5 — which premieres Jan. 4 on PBS — including the effects of Anna’s rape, »

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Graceland Sneak Peek: With Paige Missing, Is Mike Too Hot to Handle?

1 hour ago | TVLine.com | See recent TVLine.com news »

This week on USA Network’s Graceland (Wednesday, 10/9c), Jakes doesn’t waste any time relaying the bad news that Paige has gone missing on his watch — and we’ve got your first look at Mike’s “hot” reaction. 

Video Exclusive Suits Sneak Peek: Louis Gives Donna the Greatest Gift of All

When last we tuned in, Paige and Jakes (played by Serinda Swan and Brandon Jay McLaren) were out to crack the Tinker Bells case — but police officers showed up to drag Jakes away (on restraining order violation charges) just as Paige made the impulsive call to take the »

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Tim Pastore Joins National Geographic Channel as President, Original Programming & Production, Ngc U.S.

1 hour ago | Variety - TV News | See recent Variety - TV News news »

Emmy-nominated producer and TV veteran Tim Pastore has been named president of original programming & production, Ngc U.S., of National Geographic Channel.

He is currently executive vice president of production & development for National Geographic Society production entity National Geographic Studios and will transition to the new position over the next four weeks, starting full time beginning Aug. 18, National Geographic Channels CEO Courteney Monroe announced Tuesday.

In his new role, he will oversee all development, production and production management for National Geographic Channel U.S., responsible for approximately 400 hours of content annually. Executive vice president of programming & strategy Heather Moran and senior vice president of programming & development Alan Eyres will work closely with and report to Pastore.

Tim’s taste and sensibility for the National Geographic brand coupled with his incredible success in the factual cable entertainment landscape makes him the perfect person to help us realize the full potential of this network, »

- Alex Stedman

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PBS Chief on ‘Downton Abbey,’ ‘The Roosevelts’ Streaming and ‘Midwife’ Return

1 hour ago | Variety - TV News | See recent Variety - TV News news »

It didn’t take long for “Downton Abbey” to dominate the question-and-answer session between PBS president and CEO Paula Kerger and journalists at the summer Television Critics Assn. press tour on July 22.

The British period drama’s delayed airdate in the States — as well as fellow Brit import “Sherlock” — tinted the discussion on Ken Burns’ upcoming 14-hour miniseries “The Roosevelts,” which will be streamed in its entirety the day after its September 14 premiere.

“Because ['The Roosevelts'] is such a big and important series … we’ve found that by offering it up in multiple places, people could catch up and come in and out of the broadcast so that the broadcast audience, rather than being impacted negatively, is impacted positively because the people who miss an episode or two can catch up and come back into the series,” she said, adding, “I’m waiting for someone to ask now why don’t you do that with ‘Downton’? Now, »

- Whitney Friedlander

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Beetles destroyed George Harrison's memorial tree, so we rewrote some Beatles songs about it

1 hour ago | EW.com - PopWatch | See recent EW.com - PopWatch news »

A tree that someone planted in memory of the Beatles’ George Harrison is no more: It was destroyed by beetles. No, really.

The pine tree, planted in 2004 near Los Angeles’ Griffith Observatory, died when it was infested by a swarm of beetles. It will eventually be replanted—but for now, we have some words for those tree-destroying insects. And naturally, those words come in the form of reinvented Beatles songs.

“Dear Beetles”

Dear beetles, won’t you eat new things today?

Dear beetles, don’t make trees de-cayyy

The sun is up, the sky is blue

It’s beautiful, and you are not

Dear beetles, »

- Ariana Bacle

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Sneak Peek: Almost Royal Finale Serves Up a (Macabre?) Music Video

1 hour ago | TVLine.com | See recent TVLine.com news »

They may be Almost Royal, but do Georgie and Poppy have music in their blood? That’s what the siblings will find out when they explore Nashville during the season finale airing this Saturday (BBC America, 10/9c).

Related Intruders Trailer: New BBC America Drama Looks For Life After Death

Inspired by Music City, Poppy (played by Amy Hoggart) decides to launch herself as a country-pop fusion star — even going as far as making a music video. Meanwhile Georgie (Ed Gamble) gets bitten by a fish and has an embarrassing encounter with an American icon.

In an exclusive deleted scene, Poppy »

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Covert Affairs Casts Lynn Collins as 'Formidable' Russian Agent

1 hour ago | TVLine.com | See recent TVLine.com news »

Is Annie Walker about to get caught in a “nyet”? Perhaps, seeing how Covert Affairs has cast X-Men Origins: Wolverine‘s Lynn Collins in the recurring role of a “formidable” Russian agent who’ll continuously cross paths with Piper Perabo’s protagonist spy, TVLine has learned exclusively.

Related Fall TV 2014: Your Handy Calendar of 99 Season and Series Premieres

Collins, best known to TV fans for her role as True Blood‘s Dawn, will play Olga Akarova, an Fsb operative “who does not shy away from taking on any opponent who gets in her way.”

Other guest stars slated for »

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CNN’s Chris Cuomo Talks Malaysia Airlines Coverage

1 hour ago | Variety - TV News | See recent Variety - TV News news »

Chris Cuomo has his share of harrowing on camera moments, but on Tuesday he had a dramatic one off-camera: While talking to a reporter about his current effort to follow the remains of victims of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, the CNN anchor was stopped at a checkpoint in Ukraine on his way to Amsterdam by a guard with a sizable firearm.

“This isn’t a cop stopping you. They have loaded Ak-47s or Kalashnikovs and they are pointing them at you,” Cuomo explained while, he said, he was showing his identification papers so he might proceed on a trip he expects to take him to Amsterdam. “This is a different animal here.”

Cuomo has been in the Ukrainian industrial city of Donetsk and around the Flight 17 crash site for six days, and is now en route to Amsterdam, part of an effort he said is an important one: “I want »

- Brian Steinberg

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'Arrow' producer reveals details of season 3's Big Bad and 'Flash' crossover episode

2 hours ago | EW - Inside TV | See recent EW.com - Inside TV news »

What’s that? You say you need to know what’s going to happen on this season of Arrow after last season’s absolutely bonkers finale that saw the greatest freighter-based showdown this side of Lost?

EW caught up with Arrow executive producer Andrew Kreisberg—who now has his hands full with The CW’s other new flashy (get it?) superhero show The Flash (now you get it). But since Kreisberg is pulling double duty with the DC Comics heroes, that means he’s got double the scoop to offer.

Perhaps most pressing is the question of which villainous threat »

- Marc Snetiker

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Ken Jeong will star in a MTV pilot that's now about Ken Jeong

2 hours ago | EW - Inside TV | See recent EW.com - Inside TV news »

In May, MTV picked up an as-yet untitled comedy pilot about a 22-year-old who finds an unlikely advice guru after accidentally rear-ending a celebrity’s car. Now the pilot has a star, and it’s ready to Chang—er, change—its name.

EW has confirmed that Ken Jeong (The HangoverCommunity) will star in said pilot, now known as Ken Jeong Made Me Do It. The script follows Andy, who catches his girlfriend cheating, accidentally damages Jeong’s fancy car, and then gets advice from the star on how to Chang change his life for the better. Jeong will play himself. »

- Jackson McHenry

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TVLine Items: Ken Jeong Plays Himself on MTV, James Garner Tribute and More

2 hours ago | TVLine.com | See recent TVLine.com news »

Ken Jeong is set to inhabit a very familiar role.

The Community actor will star as himself in MTV’s coming-of-age comedy pilot Ken Jeong Made Me Do It, per The Hollywood Reporter.

Related Community‘s Danny Pudi on Abed’s Impressions, Marvel Gigs

The project centers around 22-year-old Andy, who accidentally rear-ends Jeong’s car after he catches his own girlfriend cheating. Taking pity on Andy, Jeong takes it upon himself to teach the lad how to man up.

The MTV pilot is not expected to prevent Jeong from returning to Community for its sixth season on Yahoo Screen. »

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Another 'Lost' alum to guest on 'Hawaii Five-0'

3 hours ago | EW - Inside TV | See recent EW.com - Inside TV news »

Another Lost vet is set to pop up on Hawaii Five-0: William Mapother, who played creepy island resident Ethan Rom, will guest-star in an episode of the CBS police drama, EW has learned.

Mapother—who has recently popped up on shows including The Mentalist, Mad Men and Castle—will play Eric Porter, a likable, wealthy business owner who gets entangled in a painful and tense situation but offers his help to the authorities. His episode is slated to air sometime this fall.

Mapother represents the ninth (!) Lost alum to appear on Hawaii Five-0. The others (not The Others) are Daniel Dae Kim, »

- Dan Snierson

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Zach Galifianakis and Ted Danson bring The National doc to 'Broadway'

3 hours ago | EW.com - PopWatch | See recent EW.com - PopWatch news »

In Hollywood, when big celebrities discover a splendid little documentary, they’re sometimes tempted to adapt it into a big-budget feature film—which may destroy what they loved about that little doc in the first place. But Ted Danson and Zach Galiafanakis aren’t your typical power-mad narcissists. They fell in love with Mistaken for Strangers, the poignant music doc about slacker Tom Berninger and his brother, Matt, who happens to be the lead singer of The National. Rather than turn it into a film, the two former Bored to Death co-stars took that pure story to the only place »

- Jeff Labrecque

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What Happens Next, The Good Wife: Will Alicia Become State's Attorney?

3 hours ago | TVLine.com | See recent TVLine.com news »

TVLine hits rewind on the TV season’s biggest “What Happens Next” finales, then invites you to predict the cliffhanger outcomes

Necessity may be the mother of invention, but reinvention proved the mother of sensationally gripping drama on Season 5 of The Good Wife.

Related TCA Awards 2014: Good Wife, Oitnb, True Detective, Veep, Breaking Bad, RuPaul Among Winners

Alicia and Cary left Lockhart-Gardner to launch their own rival law firm — with Will and Diane declaring war in the wake of what they perceived as a huge betrayal. Then, just as the show’s main characters began to accept this new normal, »

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Walt Disney Biopic to Air on on PBS

3 hours ago | Variety - TV News | See recent Variety - TV News news »

PBS and American Experience are taking a look at the man behind the mouse and will air “Walt Disney,” a four-hour, two-night film that aims to explore the life and legacy of the iconic film producer and business magnate.

The film is spearheaded by biopic veterans director-producer Sarah Colt (“Rfk,” “Henry Ford”) and writer Mark Zwonitzer (“JFK,” “Triangle Fire”) and promises to showcase archival footage and interviews with artists who worked with him on “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs” and Imagineers who helped design Disneyland.

“For many Americans — and for me — the twinkle and swish of the Sunday night Disney logo was pure magic. It was an invitation to a special event,” said Beth Hoppe, chief programming officer and general manager, general audience programming for PBS. “For my kids, introducing them to animated Disney movies from ‘Beauty and the Beast’ to ‘The Lion King’ brought us great joy and taught them life lessons. »

- Whitney Friedlander

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'Gotham': Penguin actor takes our bird-brained questions

3 hours ago | EW - Inside TV | See recent EW.com - Inside TV news »

Those who have seen the pilot of Gotham agree: TV fans are going to be tweeting about Robin Lord Taylor this fall. The young actor and relative newcomer nabbed the role of Oswald Cobblepot (aka The Penguin) on the upcoming Fox series, which details the origins of iconic characters in the Batman universe. In the first episode, we meet Cobblepot as an abused but ambitious underling for gangster Fish Mooney (Jada Pinkett Smith). Taylor brings a desperate, jittery energy to the role that’s far more compelling than his campy predecessors—and with a first name like “Robin,” the actor »

- James Hibberd

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Carrie Preston is returning to 'The Good Wife'

3 hours ago | EW - Inside TV | See recent EW.com - Inside TV news »

With True Blood coming to an end, Carrie Preston already has more work lined up. EW has confirmed that Preston will reprise her role as fan favorite Elsbeth Tascioni in the upcoming sixth season of The Good Wife. There’s no word yet on how long Elsbeth will be sticking around, but let’s just hope that this time, she stays away from any and all anti-Semitic bears (or not).

The Good Wife isn’t the only place Preston’s fans will be able to find her. As EW previously reported, the actress is also set to guest star in »

- Samantha Highfill

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