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Tony Nominees Include "Christmas Story" Musical, Copley Actress

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 30, 2013

You can find the full list of nominees here. "A Christmas Story, The Musical" is up for best musical and best score, among other things. Carrie Coon of Copley is nominated for best supporting actress in a play, for "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?" Coon is a former track and soccer standout (she's in the Copley Athletic Hall of Fame) but has been getting noticed as an actress onstage and on TV. You can read more about her here.
 

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NBC Signs Maria Shriver

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 30, 2013

The official word: Maria Shriver, the Peabody and Emmy award-winning journalist, producer and best-selling author, joins NBC News as a special anchor reporting on the shifting roles, emerging power and evolving needs of women in modern life.

Through a series of special projects, prime-time reports and appearances across multiple NBCUniversal properties – including NBC News, CNBC, MSNBC and NBC Sports -- Shriver will examine the profound impact that women's rising influence and leadership has had on all aspects of American culture and society.

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More Hulu Plans

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 30, 2013

Here's a list of original programs it noted at its upfront presentation:

The Awesomes

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CNN Announces Another Morning Show

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 30, 2013

The official word: CNN announced today that its new morning show will be called “New Day.”   Hosted by Chris Cuomo and Kate Bolduan, with Michaela Pereira as news anchor, the program will launch Monday, June 10th.  It will broadcast live from CNN’s studios in New York City and air weekdays from 6-9 am ET. As was previously announced, Jim Murphy is the senior executive producer and Matt Frucci is the executive producer of “New Day.” CNN’s John Berman and Zoraida Sambolin will continue to anchor “Early Start” from 5-6 am ET.

 

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"Two And a Half Men" Reups With CBS

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 29, 2013

The official word: CBS announced today that TWO AND A HALF MEN has been renewed for the 2013-2014 broadcast season.

The renewal comes after new agreements were reached for next season with series producer Warner Bros. Television as well as cast members Ashton Kutcher and Jon Cryer.  Producers are in discussions with Angus T. Jones about a recurring role next season while he is attending college.

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Mixed Notes Monday

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 29, 2013

Half of the weekend was spent on family business. The other half included grading students' papers, submitting a proposal for an essay about "Firefly" (anyone want to discuss gender roles in the Whedonverse?), catching up on some DVR accumulation, watching the movie "Jack Reacher" (at once better and worse than I expected), and watching the final five on "Amazing Race" and the season finale of "The Good Wife."

In short, a fairly mellow Sunday.

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Rich and the Movies: Summer sequels

By Ohio.com staff Published: April 26, 2013

Rich previews the many sequels in store for this summer.

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MTV Orders "Scream" Pilot, More Snookl, Three New Series

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 25, 2013

The official word: MTV announced today a pilot greenlight based on the hugely successful horror film franchise “Scream” with Dimension Films for MTV, plus the addition of three new series to its diverse programming slate, including “Generation Cryo,” “Nurse Nation” and “The Hook Up,” at its annual Upfront Presentation at the Beacon Theatre in New York City.

 In addition, the network announced the season three renewal of “Snooki & JWOWW” and highlighted an impressive programming slate of 15 returning hits.  MTV is a division of Viacom Inc.

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"Spring Breakers" Set for DVD, Blu-ray

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 24, 2013

The official word: From the mind of groundbreaking writer/director, Harmony Korine (Kids, Gummo), comes the captivating new film Spring Breakers, arriving on Blu-ray Disc (plus Digital UltraViolet) and DVD (plus Digital UltraViolet) July 9th from Lionsgate Home Entertainment.  The release follows closely on the heels of an incredibly successful theatrical run via A24.  This cutting-edge, gorgeously-filmed crime thriller features breakout, buzz-worthy performances by Disney Channel alums: Selena Gomez (TV's "Wizard's of Waverly Place") and Vanessa Hudgens (High School Musical franchise, upcoming The Frozen Ground). The film also stars James Franco (Oz the Great and Powerful, 127 Hours) in one of the most unforgettable performances of his career along with Ashley Benson (TV's "Pretty Little Liars") and Rachel Korine (The Fourth Dimension). Driven by a sizzling score by Grammy®-winning electronica guru Skrillex and Grammy®-winning composer Cliff Martinez, this is an invigorating and unexpected look at an American rite of passage.

 

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Richie Havens, RIP

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 23, 2013

There was a point, it seemed, when no record collection was complete without Richie Havens' album "Mixed Bag." "Handsome Johnny," "Just Like a Woman," "High Flying Bird" -- just looking at the track list takes me back. Then came the "Woodstock" soundtrack with "Freedom" and he was set forever in my musical memories. He's even in my comedy catalog, thanks to Albert Brooks' monologue about opening for Havens. But I can't say that I have paid much attention to his more recent work, and this New York Times obit concentrates on his Woodstock performances. So let's just set the wayback machine for Havens' heyday ...

 

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Crazy Sorority, Amazing Michael Shannon (NSFW)

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 22, 2013

Rock Hall Benefit Features Tower of Power, War

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 22, 2013

Catching Up

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 22, 2013

As I mentioned in a previous post, I have been away from the office for several days because of a family gathering. A fair amount of gathering time included the TV being on for Boston updates, but beyond that I let the emails pile up and regular TV go unwatched. So here's some of what has accumulated in my absence.

You may have seen my interview with John Lithgow before he came back to Akron recently. While here, he revisited the area with Mary Beth Breckenridge. Her fine story about tha tour is here, and video from his stop at Stan Hywet Hall is here:

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Mixed Notes Friday

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 19, 2013

The Boston saga is most likely dominating all your thoughts and news interest. I am not at work today because of a family commitment, but have been following the story with continuing amazement.

The discovery of suspects so soon, and the rallying of social media to post the photos. The going to bed with one scenario, then rising to see that one of the suspects was dead and the other on the run. The long periods of conversation about what was known, interrupted by bursts of actual information. And, in previous days, the moments when those bursts were wrong and news organizations had to do some egg-wiping.

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Video: 'Dancing with the Stars' recap

By Dan Kadar Published: April 18, 2013

Peabody Award-winning D. L. Hughley stomp-waltzes into the sunset on America's favorite dance competition.

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WKYC Heroin Special Tonight

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 18, 2013

The official word: WKYC TV is preempting its 7pm newscast on Thursday, April 18th for a special, hour long program designed to educate viewers about what is becoming a heroin epidemic across Northeast Ohio.

“We were approached by a group of concerned citizens in Geauga County who are alarmed at the rate by which young people are dying from this epidemic, said Rita Andolsen, WKYC’s Director of Advocacy & Community Initiatives. “After looking into the issue, we learned heroin use and subsequent deaths are a problem across our entire region. We decided to put the resources of our station behind the issue and do something about it”.

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Terry Morrow, RIP

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 17, 2013

You may have come across Terry's prolific and often funny work as a TV critic. And some of you, looking for Jimmy Haslam news, may have come across his name on the Knoxville News Sentinel website. I did not know him well, but I knew him a little and had followed his online updates about his battle with cancer. I also well remember resting at the end of what had felt like a long, hard day on a press tour, and here would come Terry, fresh from an interview or an event, looking as if he could keep working for days -- and that he would love every minute of it.

A collection of videos of Terry at work is here. A photo gallery is here and an obituary is here.

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"42" Props Going to Baseball Hall of Fame

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 17, 2013

The drama about Jackie Robinson, which had the best not-adjusted-for-inflation opening weekend ever for a baseball movie, will have items included in the hall of fame's "Baseball at the Movies" exhibit. The officlal word:

Several artifacts featured in the new motion picture release ‘42’ have arrived in Cooperstown and will be featured in a new exhibit to open in July  to pay tribute to the film’s portrayal of Jackie Robinson in breaking baseball’s color barrier in 1947.

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When It Is Hard To Think About Anything Else

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 16, 2013

We all go through periods in life when one thing goes wrong, and then another, and then we get some fresh horrible news, and as we try to deal with it all, it's as if a cloud has fallen over our minds and spirits -- and we keep asking ourselves when all this will end. The pain we feel over the individual parts of the troubles is awful enough. But the real struggle is with that cloud of weariness, the exhaustion. What will happen next, we wonder, when we are so tired of all that has happened already?

More than the scenes of carnage in Boston, this is what stays with me. Depending on your age, you may be thinking of 9/11, Oklahoma City, the first World Trade Center attack, Atlanta,  overseas acts of terrorism, assassinations, assassination attempts -- but the older you are, the more that is dredged up by each new nightmare. Because the acts are not all specifically connected -- different methods, different villains -- we are left with a sense that anything awful is possible at any time. It almost doesn't matter if the Boston culprit or culprits are found. There's someone else out there. However vigorous our efforts to stop the terror, it will still appear --  even those actions that are detected and prevented add to our sense of limitless possiblity of new horror; we stopped this, but not that.

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NBC Sets Summer Plans

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 16, 2013

The official word: NBC has announced premiere dates for the high stakes adventure competition series “Get Out Alive With Bear Grylls,”  and the highly anticipated summer dramedy “Camp,” while also setting debuts for “Save Me” and “American Ninja Warrior.”

“Get Out Alive With Bear Grylls” will make its debut Monday, July 8 (9-10 p.m. ET). The show is co-produced by Bear Grylls Ventures and Ben Silverman’s multimedia studio, Electus. Grylls, Silverman, Chris Grant, Laura Caraccioli and Doug McCallie serve as executive producers.

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Three Comedy Pros From Cleveland in Library Chat

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 15, 2013

The official word: Public Library and LAND studio welcome three talented and hilarious personalities to the Louis Stokes Wing of the Cleveland Public Library on Thursday, April 25th at 6:30 p.m. to talk about what it means to be from Cleveland and how a regional personality and perspective takes shape. Modern Family’s executive producer Dan O’Shannon, Community’s Yvette Nicole Brown, and Dave Hill a comedian, writer, and frequent contributor to This American Life on NPR will engage in a conversation moderated by local public radio host and Plain Dealer columnist Mike McIntyre.

This will be a lighthearted dialogue titled Who We Are: Comedy, Tragedy, & Cleveland. Cleveland has taken a hit to its self-esteem over the past several decades. An identity stemming from unemployment, government corruption, bleak weather, and subpar sports teams have left Clevelanders explaining to the outside world why anyone would choose to live here. Through decades of common experiences, including a history of hearing Cleveland as the punch line in national media and a general feeling of being the underdog, Clevelanders have weathered the negativity and formed a collective and powerful identity that is forever hopeful.

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Complete "Dobie Gillis" Series on DVD in July

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 15, 2013

One of my favorites -- smart, clever, funny, well-acted ... Yippee. The official word:

The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis ignited one of the many loves of American television: stories about teenagers.  Dobie Gillis was a typically indecisive young man who continually set out on hopeless quests for popularity, money, and the attention of beautiful girls, all while trying to make his parents happy. Created and written by humorist Max Shulman and adapted from Shulman’s celebrated collection of short stories, The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis premiered on CBS in 1959 and was a counter-culture hit throughout all four years of its network run. Starring Dwayne Hickman, Bob Denver, Frank Faylen, Florida Friebus, Tuesday Weld, Warren Beatty and Sheila James, this timeless show triggered a sea change in sitcoms and dramas, which would focus on the hopes, dreams and angst of teenagers for decades to come.

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AMC Putting "Hell on Wheels" on Saturday

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 15, 2013

The official word: AMC announced today that the network is adding a third night of original programming with the season three premiere of “Hell on Wheels” debuting Saturday, August 3 at 9pm ET/PT.

Executive produced by showrunner John Wirth (“Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles,” “Falling Skies,” “The Cape”), Mark Richard and Jeremy Gold, Head of Creative Affairs, Endemol Studios and, and starring Anson Mount, Colm Meaney, and Common, season 3 of “Hell on Wheels” lands in the year 1867, the third year of the building of the transcontinental railroad.

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Gary U.S. Bonds Autobiography Coming in June

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 15, 2013

Mixed Notes Sunday

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 14, 2013

Things we forget in tech age: elderly man at my local McDonald's this morning with the Beacon Journal TV section & a notepad, going page by page and writing down things he wanted to see. While many rely on DVRs or online directories, there are still those who prize -- and read closely -- their TV supplements and other parts of the newspaper. But this industry has chosen to marginalize them, much the way broadcast TV programs mainly for people under 50, or programming is available only on cable when many people find it prohibitively expensive. And this creates an information gap, and a social gap, because of the divide between those who use online and those who cannot/do not.

 

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Rich and the movies: '42'

By Ohio.com Published: April 13, 2013

This week, Beacon Journal pop culture Rich Heldenfels takes a look at 42, Chadwick Boseman as Jackie Robinson and Harrison Ford as Branch Rickey.

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Snoop To Write/Produce New "One Life To Live" Theme

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 12, 2013

The official word: Prospect Park/The Online Network has partnered with Snoop Lion, aka Snoop Dogg, who has signed on to write and produce the new theme song for the serial drama, “One Life to Live,” premiering with all new episodes on Hulu, Hulu Plus and iTunes on Monday, April 29th. The song titled, “Brand New Start” speaks to the much anticipated series return and features soulful singer, Iza Lach, newly signed to Snoop’s Berhane Sound System label, and Snoop Lion himself.

 

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"Draft Day" Movie Casting for Extras on Sunday

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 12, 2013

The Browns-reflecting movie will begin shooting in NYC on April 25, but will start its work in Cleveland on May 8 -- so be sure you will be available for extra work then.

Here's the official word on the casting call: This Sunday, April 14 from noon to 6:00 p.m., Real Style, a leading casting and talent resource, seeks extras of all ages and all ethnicities for the movie "Draft Day," which will be filmed in the Cleveland, Ohio area. The casting call is for those who want to be an extra in a movie - aspiring actors and actresses, with or without acting experience. Extras are used throughout filming to provide authenticity to scenes and to reinforce the creative vision of the director. Extras are paid for their work on set.

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CBS Announces Season-Finale Storylines

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 12, 2013

Some of the following is not revealing, some is a little spoiler-y. Most tell you more than a typical "Mad Men" log line. But, if you want to know where these shows are headed, the info is below.

The official word: CBS announced today the storylines for its 2012-2013 series’ season finales, which include two-hour episodes of SURVIVOR: CARAMOAN - FANS VS. FAVORITES, THE AMAZING RACE, CRIMINAL MINDS and ELEMENTARY, as well as dramatic cliffhangers for CRIMINAL MINDS, CSI: CRIME SCENE INVESTIGATION, THE GOOD WIFE, HAWAII FIVE-0 and THE MENTALIST.  UNDERCOVER BOSS will conclude the season with two “epic employees and bosses” specials.

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Jonathan Winters, RIP

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 12, 2013

The Ohio native, comedian and actor has died, according to his website (which is here.). An Associated Press story is here. The New York Times's is here.Below, I have posted a piece I wrote about Winters in 2000 because, frankly, I can't describe him any better now than I did then.

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Our Long Lazaro Nightmare ...

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 11, 2013

....  is over. He was the lowest vote-getter tonight, and -- even though he sang "Feeling Good" with the skill he should have been showing instead of the lousy performances in recent weeks -- the judges chose not to save him. Which means that, for the first time in ages, "American Idol" will have a woman as the winner.

In the vote, stretched out by one of those silly you-stand-here-you-stand-there arrangements, Kree and Candice were the top two, Janelle and Angie the middle two and -- alas -- Amber paired with Lazaro in the bottom two. Amber was better than that, and it does not bode well for her in the future.

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In Case You Missed It: "Sullivan & Sons" Announces Return ...

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 11, 2013

... AND explains that "thugs don't eat guacamole."

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"Longmire," "Glades" Return May 27

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 11, 2013

The official word: A&E Network is scheduling in some summer drama this Memorial Day, premiering back-to-back new seasons of its popular scripted series “Longmire,” from Warner Horizon Television, and “The Glades,” from Fox Television Studios.  Season Two of the contemporary crime thriller “Longmire” premieres Monday, May 27th at 10 PM ET/PT immediately following the fourth season premiere of the hit drama “The Glades” at 9 PM ET/PT.  This year, crime doesn’t get a holiday.

Last season, the duo of “The Glades” and “Longmire” propelled A&E to become the #1 cable network in Total Viewers on Sunday nights from 9-11 PM.  “Longmire” became A&E’s #1 original drama of all time in Total Viewers. In its first season, the series averaged 4.0 million total viewers, making it the best freshman season in Total Viewers for any A&E series, scripted or non-fiction, in the network’s history.  Additionally, the most recent season of “The Glades” was the series’ strongest ever, averaging 4.1 million total viewers.

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"All My Children," "One Life to Live" Plot Lines

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 11, 2013

As you know, the shows begin their online lives on April 29 via  Hulu, Hulu Plus and iTunes  Here are the first week's storylines:

ALL MY CHILDREN

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Mixed Notes Thursday

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 11, 2013

A bunch of stuff in today's Beacon Journal and Ohio.com. Included:

A chat with poet Rita Dove, who is doing a talk and reading in Cleveland tonight.

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"Idol" Notes: Candice Supreme, The Lazaro Dilemma, More

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 11, 2013

Let's start with a couple of clips ... Why are we even bothering to discuss who's the best singer on "American Idol"? It is, unquestionably, inarguably, listen-to-those-performances above Candice Glover. Case bleeping closed. Amber, Kree, Janelle, Angie -- all singers with some merit. But not remotedly in Candice's league. When I was listening to "Lovesong" again this morning, chills. Complete chills (aside from a weird audio glitch around 0:58). Then I watched it again. Holy crap.Her "Don't Make Me Over" was pretty killing, too.

But, as Malcolm and I have been talking about, "Idol" has a huge problem right now and his name is Lazaro. With an interesting, emotional show (which "Idol" played up) and a good-at-first-listen voice, Lazaro made the upper tier of the competition, but he has ever more demonstrated not only an inability to memorize lyrics but that he is not a good singer. Only he is the last man standing, and we are now at the point where he could start outlasting five women, all of whom singer better than he does. But, because of his story, the show has had to figure out how to criticize his singing without seeming to pick on Lazaro personally, which just encourages his fans to vote even more. A week ago, those fans put him in the top three.

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Talking "Dancing"

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 11, 2013

"Magic City" Returns June 14

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 10, 2013

The official word: Starz announced today that their 1950’s Miami-based drama, “Magic City” will return with an all new season on Friday, June 14th at 9pm ET/PT, one week following the finale of the Starz Original series “Da Vinci’s Demons” on Friday, June 7th. The anticipation of fans worldwide will finally be alleviated as the fate of hotelier Ike Evans (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) is revealed.

 

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Doors' Densmore Sets Rock Hall Visit

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 10, 2013

The official word: The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum will host a Hall of Fame Series interview with John Densmore of the Doors on Wednesday, May 1 at 7:00 p.m. in the Rock Hall’s Foster Theater.  Densmore was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1993. 

The event will begin with a reading from Densmore’s new book The Doors: Unhinged.  After the reading, Densmore will be interviewed in front of a live audience by Lauren Onkey, the Rock Hall’s Vice President of Education and Public Programs, and will answer questions from the audience.  The event will conclude with a book signing.

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IFC Adds Comedy Plans

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 10, 2013

They include a pilot with the delightful Garfunkel & Oates. The official word:

IFC today announced it is developing 11 new comedy projects for 2014 series consideration. Among them, the network has ordered three pilots and eight scripts, in line with the network’s “slightly off” sensibility that attracts a male skewing, adults 18-49 audience.

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"Dexter" Season 7 DVD/Blu-ray Set

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 10, 2013

Shocking secrets are revealed to potentially deadly consequences in the pulse-pounding newest season of the acclaimed original SHOWTIME series, DEXTER: THE SEVENTH SEASON, arriving on Blu-ray Disc and DVD May 14 from Showtime Networks, CBS Home Entertainment and Paramount Home Media Distribution.

Highlighted by performances from guest stars including Ray Stevenson (“Rome”), Yvonne Strahovski (“Chuck”), Jason Gedrick (Backdraft, Iron Eagle) and Santiago Cabrera (“Heroes”), the gripping seventh season begins in an explosive fashion as Dexter’s sister Debra (Jennifer Carpenter) witnesses his ritualistic slaying of a killer.  Now she knows the secret of his “Dark Passenger,” his undeniable thirst for blood, and the Code that their father Harry (James Remar) instilled in him as a young boy.  But as she tries to reconcile the unfathomable idea that her beloved, mild-mannered brother is Miami’s most notorious serial killer, Dexter is still pulled by his natural impulses to seek out the guilty and exact his brand of vigilante justice, leading him on the trail of a brutal Ukrainian mobster (Stevenson).  Along the way, Dexter meets Hannah McKay (Strahovski), a strong, independent woman with a dark past that she's struggled to put behind her.  As a turn of events leads Miami Metro Homicide to ask for her help in solving some old cases, Dexter works with her and begins to wonder if there's more to this woman than she's professed.

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TNT Changes Four Summer Premiere Dates

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 10, 2013

The list:

Franklin & Bash, starring Mark-Paul Gosselaar, Breckin Meyer and new cast member Heather Locklear, will launch its third season with a two-hour premiere on Wednesday, June 19, at 9 p.m. (ET/PT).
Rizzoli & Isles, starring Angie Harmon and Sasha Alexander, will kick off its fourth season on Tuesday, June 25, at 9 p.m. (ET/PT).
Perception, starring Eric McCormack, will return for its second season on Tuesday, June 25, at 10 p.m. (ET/PT).
Cold Justice, a new unscripted procedural featuring former prosecutor Kelly Siegler and crime-scene investigator Yolanda McClary, will premiere Tuesday, Sept. 3, at 10 p.m. (ET/PT).

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Report: Denis Leary To Play Browns Coach in "Draft Day"

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 9, 2013

You can read the complete report here.

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Annette Funicello, RIP

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 8, 2013

UPDATED: Here is the longer appreciation of Annette I wrote for today's Beacon Journal.

A report from Disney's fan club says Funicello has died at the age of 70. She had been dealing with MS for more than 20 years. But for many of us, she is embedded in memory, whether through her work for Walt Disney (always "Mr. Disney" to Annette), her recordings or those beach movies. A few clips to send you back down memory lane:

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Mixed Notes Monday

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 8, 2013

British politician Margaret Thatcher has died. Can't say I was a fan. I did try to wrestle some with her legacy when writing about the "Iron Lady," the film with Meryl Streep as Thatcher. You can read that 2012 review here.

My story on Bill O'Reilly's jabbing the University of Akron is now online. You can read it here, You can also see the piece -- based on the insights of college students during spring break -- here.

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Mixed Notes Sunday

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 7, 2013

Joy in the House of Heldenfels. My son Conor, an Army medic, is back from a stint overseas, including in Afghanistan. We are thrilled to have him home for a long visit.

"Mad Men" returns tonight, and my thoughts about it -- spoiler-free, as the show desires -- are here. I expect to post more after you have all had a chance to see it. (That will most likely be Monday morning.)

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Talking "Idol"

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 6, 2013

"Great Gatsby" Soundtrack Set

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 5, 2013

Every time I see the trailer for the new "Gatsby," I think it's wrong. This soundtrack news is not changing my mind. The official word:

“The Great Gatsby” writer/producer/director Baz Luhrmann and collaborators Shawn “JAY Z” Carter, an executive producer on the film, and Anton Monsted, its executive music supervisor, revealed the lineup for the movie’s soundtrack today, which encompasses the broad spectrum of musical styles represented in this energetic re-telling of the classic text.  The joint announcement was made today by Warner Bros. Pictures and Universal Music Group’s Interscope Records.

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FX Puts Latest "Americans" Episode Online After DVR Snafu

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 5, 2013

The official word:  FX will post the most recent episode of The Americans (aired on Wednesday, April 3) on www.FXnetworks.comfor encore online viewing due to an error by its publicity department (http://vod.fxnetworks.com/watch/theamericans/24079939847)

 

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Roger Ebert, RIP

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 4, 2013

Thursday afternoon I was in Cleveland, talking to a director and producer about their new film, "The Kings of Summer," which was the opening feature of the Cleveland International Film Festival and will be in local theaters in June. On the way back to Akron, my editor texted me that Roger Ebert had died. Strange to go from thinking and talking about movies to thinking about someone who had spent much of his life watching and reviewing movies.

When I was back in the office, I wrote about Ebert, not only about his importance as a film critic but about the way he kept looking ahead even when cancer was tearing apart  his body. I made note of that in a post yesterday about Ebert's latest announcement of his health and his plans for the future. The column I wrote is here.

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Video: 'Dancing with the Stars' recap

By Ohio.com Published: April 4, 2013

We say farewell to Wynonna and note that the cream of the dance crop is already rising to the top in America's favorite dance competition.

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Rock Hall Sets Exhibit of New Inductees' Items

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 3, 2013

The official word: To kick off the week leading up to the 28th Annual Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony on April 18, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum will open its newest exhibit devoted to its latest class of inductees on Tuesday, April 16 in the Museum’s Hall of Fame Wing.

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductees for 2013 are Heart, Albert King, Randy Newman, Public Enemy, Rush and Donna Summer in the Performer Category. The Ahmet Ertegun (non performer) Award winners are Lou Adler and Quincy Jones.

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It's Official: Fallon Succeeds Leno in 2014, "Tonight" Back to NYC

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 3, 2013

If you want to read my backgrounder about this, look here. The official announcement: Jay Leno, longtime host of NBC’s “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno,” announced today that he will wrap up what will be 22 years of headlining the iconic late-night show in Spring 2014.  NBC also announced today that Jimmy Fallon, now host of NBC’s “Late Night with Jimmy Fallon,” will transition into new hosting duties on “The Tonight Show” franchise after Leno concludes his successful run.  

As part of the transition, “The Tonight Show” will be returning to its original home in 30 Rock in New York and will be executive-produced by Emmy Award winner Lorne Michaels (“Saturday Night Live,” “30 Rock”).

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USA Network Sets Summer Returns, Premieres

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 3, 2013

The official word: Continuing its streak of dominating the summer TV landscape, USA Network announced today a powerful line-up of new originals and fan favorite returning series. The network will launch two new series, including the provocative drama GRACELAND from WHITE COLLAR creator Jeff Eastin, starring and Daniel Sunjata (“Rescue Me”) Aaron Tveit (“Les Miserables”), and the fun-filled reality competition series SUMMER CAMP from the producers of “Big Brother.”


This summer the seventh season of BURN NOTICE turns up the heat on Thursday, June 6 at 9/8c, followed by the much-anticipated launch of GRACELAND at 10/9c.  Fan favorite ROYAL PAINS premieres its fifth season on Wednesday, June 12 at 9/8c paired with the third season premiere of NECESSARY ROUGHNESS at 10/9c.  Hit international spy drama COVERT AFFAIRS returns for its fourth season on Tuesday, July 16 at 9/8c, followed by the third season return of acclaimed drama SUITS at 10/9c. SUMMER CAMP premieres in July.

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Mixed Notes Wednesday

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 3, 2013

Roger Ebert, dealing with more cancer, is making some changes in his life. You can read about them here. Among other things, he notes:

At this point in my life, in addition to writing about movies, I may write about what it's like to cope with health challenges and the limitations they can force upon you. It really stinks that the cancer has returned and that I have spent too many days in the hospital. So on bad days I may write about the vulnerability that accompanies illness. On good days, I may wax ecstatic about a movie so good it transports me beyond illness.

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How Could I Not Mention a Show Called "Your Inner Fish"?

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 3, 2013

The official word from PBS: How did the human body become the complicated, quirky machine it is today? The answers can be traced back hundreds of millions of years. PBS announces an ambitious new three-part series, YOUR INNER FISH, which will air in 2014 on PBS stations and will explore the science of how and why we are the way we are. ... The series is based on the best-selling book by leading paleontologist Dr. Neil Shubin. In taking viewers on a cutting-edge, scientific adventure, YOUR INNER FISH reveals a startling truth: hidden within the human body is a history of life on Earth.

 

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"Identity Thief" DVD/Blu-ray Set

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 2, 2013

"Justified" Season Finale

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 2, 2013

When Raylan Givens found out that he was about to father a daughter, his dismayed response was "I don't know (bleep) about girls." The more I have thought about this season, including tonight's season finale, the more that has felt like the theme for the show, and not just for Raylan. For Boyd as well, and for Drew Thompson, women are a reason for great passion and love; men want to protect and comfort them; there is no clear reason for Drew to have insisted on safety for Ellen May beyond this primal protective urge.

Yet there is still something about women that the men do not understand. Ava and Ellen May and Winona and Cassie are repeatedly underestimated -- the men never quite seeing their strength, their intelligence, their will to survive and, perhaps most of all, their consciences. They feel things in a way men don't -- as Joelle Parker's Ava has so ably demonstrated in the latter parts of this season. 

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In Case You Missed It ...

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 2, 2013

CW Announces Summer Programming

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 2, 2013

The official word: Continuing its commitment to more original year-round programming, The CW set premiere dates for its new summer 2013 primetime series, it was announced today by Mark Pedowitz, President, The CW.  The network's summer line-up is strategically planned to start in mid-July and continue rolling out into the fall launch. 

 

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Video: 'Idol' chatter

By Ohio.com Published: April 1, 2013

Malcolm and Rich talk about their favorite show, American Idol.

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"Under the Dome" Peek

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 1, 2013

Conan Continues

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 1, 2013

You may care. I am more in the place of Ken Tucker, who in his recent analysis of late-night said, Conan O'Brien. Remember him? Carrot-topped fellow with a persecution complex? Since his crucifixion by Judas Leno and NBC, his self-assisted martyrdom, and his resurrection performed by TBS, the decline in O'Brien's quality has been quietly shocking. For all the anger and energy and fan fervor on display in the 2011 concert documentary Conan O'Brien Can't Stop, the O'Brien brand no longer has much fizz, and certainly no buzz.

The official word: As CONAN begins a week of shows in Atlanta to celebrate the 2013 NCAA® Men's Final Four®, TBS has announced that it is extending the late-night series through November 2015. The move further solidifies the ongoing relationship between the network and the popular late-night host. CONAN, hosted by Conan O'Brien, airs Monday-Thursday at 11 p.m. (ET/PT) on TBS. Since it premiered in November 2010, CONAN has been a hit with TBS's core audience of young adults, scoring a younger median age than any other late-night talk show.

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"When Things Were Rotten" To DVD

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 1, 2013

Not sure why "mad-capped," unless there was a joke on the show I have forgotten. The official word:

The mad-capped world of Mel Brooks, Robin Hood and his Merry Men intertwine in the deciduous television series “When Things Were Rotten” from CBS Home Entertainment, which will stink things up on DVD starting June 21st.  Parodying the Robin Hood legend with Brooks’ signature style one-liners, gas and witty humor, the series served as a predecessor, by 18 years, for Brooks’ feature film Robin Hood: Men In Tights.

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