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By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 31, 2013

From the print editions of the Beacon Journal:

Is the word "iconic" overused?

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AMC's "Killing" Begins 3rd Season June 2

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 29, 2013

The official word: AMC announced today that the critically acclaimed drama “The Killing” will return for its third season with a two-hour premiere on Sunday, June 2 at 8:00 p.m ET/PT. The new season, which stars Mireille Enos (Sarah Linden) and Joel Kinnaman (Stephen Holder) along with new cast members Peter Sarsgaard, Elias Koteas and Amy Seimetz, is executive produced by series creator Veena Sud, and will focus on a new case, which will be resolved over the course of ten episodes, ending with a gripping two hour finale.

 

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NPR Shakes Up Middays: "Talk" Going, "Here & Now" Expanding

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 29, 2013

Considering that one local radio station carries "Here" but not "Talk" and another has the opposite plan, this will mean changes locally, too. The official word: In response to growing demand for news programming throughout the broadcast day, NPR is forging a new relationship with Boston-based public radio station WBUR to expand its mid-day news program Here & Now from a one-hour to a two-hour program updated for different time zones across the country. The expanded program will provide a total of four hours of news programming, 12 noon- 4 p.m. ET, and serve as a bridge between NPR’s signature news magazines Morning Edition and All Things Considered.

NPR will contribute its editorial muscle to the expanded program. Here & Now's daily lineup will include interviews with NPR's bloggers, reporters and editors. The program will also showcase selected reporting from other NPR News programs. The expanded Here & Now also will enhance NPR's capacity to provide breaking news every weekday from 5 a.m. – 10 p.m. ET.

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Video: 'Dancing With the Stars' break down

By Ohio.com Published: March 27, 2013

America's favorite dance competition had a surprise departure as Dorothy Hamill departed with a serious health issue leaving Lisa Vanderpump and Victor Ortiz to kick around another week.

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CBS Announces 18 Series Pickups for 2013-14

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 27, 2013

It's not everything, but it's a lot. The official word: CBS announced today it has renewed 18 returning series from television's top-rated lineup for the 2013-2014 broadcast season.

The mass renewals showcase the strength and stability of television's leading network among viewers, adults 18-49 and adults 25-54.  This season, CBS is home to the #1 program/drama (NCIS), the #1 comedy (THE BIG BANG THEORY),  the #1 new series (ELEMENTARY) and the #1 newsmagazine (60 MINUTES). 

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Tim McCarver Ending Fox Baseball Ties at End of '13 Season

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 27, 2013

The official word: Tim McCarver, who for three decades has been baseball’s premier television analyst, announced today that he is stepping down from his lead MLB on FOX position upon conclusion of this season’s World Series.

 

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Peabody Winners Include "Girls," "Louie," "Robin's Journey," D.L. Hughley Special, Lorne Michaels

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 27, 2013

The ceremony is May 20. The complete list of winners:

“Under Fire: Journalists in Combat” (Documentary Channel HD)

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"Die Hard 5" on DVD/BD in June

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 26, 2013

The official word: Yippee Ki Yay, John McClane is back, this time with his son and twice the excitement. Keeping audiences on the edge of their seats for 25 years, the latest chapter of the popular action franchise delivers the thrills and the ultimate father-son action duo as A GOOD DAY TO DIE HARD debuts on Digital HD on May 14 and on Blu-ray and DVD June 4 from Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment. Featuring a double dose of McClane power, the film will also be available as an “Extended Edition” with over two hours of extreme bonus material just in time for Father’s Day.


Bruce Willis is back in action — mind-blowing, heart-stopping, rip-roaring action — as John McClane, the heroic New York cop with a knack for being in the wrong place at the right time. John’s latest predicament takes him all the way to Russia to track down his estranged son, Jack (Jai Courtney), who has been imprisoned in Moscow. But the mission takes a deadly turn as father and son must join forces to thwart a nuclear weapons heist that could trigger World War III!

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ABC Family Orders More "Pretty Little Liars," Plus Spinoff

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 26, 2013

The "PLL" order is for a fifth season; the fourth starts in June.  Still waiting/hoping for an announcement re "Bunheads." The official word:

ABC Family has greenlit the original one-hour drama series “Ravenswood,” a spin-off of their number one- rated series “Pretty Little Liars.” “Pretty Little Liars” has also been picked up for a fifth season it was announced today by Michael Riley, President ABC Family. Both series will be produced by Warner Horizon Television.

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CBS, Lionsgate Acquire TVGuide.com & Its Network

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 26, 2013

The official word: CBS Corporation (NYSE: CBS.A and CBS) and Lionsgate (NYSE: LGF) announced today that the companies have entered into a 50/50 partnership for the highly distributed entertainment cable network TVGN and the website TVGuide.com.   The basic cable network, available in more than 80 million homes, will continue to be entertainment-focused, with a specific rebranding and programming strategy to be announced at a later date.

 

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"Warm Bodies" DVD/Blu-ray Plans

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 26, 2013

The official word: One very unusual zombie forms a romantic relationship with a teenage girl in Warm Bodies, which stars hot young actors Nicholas Hoult (Jack the Giant Slayer, X-Men: First Class) and Teresa Palmer (I Am Number Four, The Sorcerer’s Apprentice), along with an all-star supporting cast including Primetime Emmy® winner Rob Corddry (Outstanding Special Class - Short-Format Live-Action Entertainment Programs, “Children’s Hospital,” 2008; Rapture-Palooza), Dave Franco (21 Jump Street), Analeigh Tipton (Crazy Stupid Love), Cory Hardrict (upcoming Lovelace, Battle Los Angeles) and Academy Award® nominee John Malkovich (Actor in a Supporting Role, In the Line of Fire, 1993; Red, Burn After Reading),. Written for the screen and directed by Jonathan Levine (50/50) and based on the novel by Isaac Marion, the film arrives on Blu-ray Disc (plus Digital Copy and Ultraviolet), DVD (plus Digital Copy and Ultraviolet), Video on Demand and Pay-Per-View June 4th from Summit Entertainment, a LIONSGATE company. Warm Bodies will also be available on EST May 14th, three weeks prior to the Blu-ray, DVD and Video on Demand release. 

 

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Celebs Added to Rock Hall Induction Lineup

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 26, 2013

The official word: The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum has announced additional presenters and performers for the 28th Annual Rock and Rock Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony.  Four of this year’s inductees—Heart, Randy Newman, Public Enemy and Rush—are confirmed to perform at the event, which will also honor Albert King and Donna Summer; as well as Lou Adler and Quincy Jones, this year’s recipients of the Ahmet Ertegun Award for Lifetime Achievement. 

To be held at Nokia Theatre L.A. LIVE in Los Angeles on Thursday, April 18, 2013, the star-studded event will feature appearances by Usher, who will perform for Quincy Jones; Pearl Jam’s Mike McCready and Jerry Cantrell of Alice In Chains, who will perform with Heart; Spike Lee and Harry Belafonte, who will pay tribute to Public Enemy; Carole King, who will perform for Lou Adler;  Chris Cornell, who will induct Heart; comedy legends Cheech & Chong, who will present Adler with his award; and Jackson Browne and John Fogerty, who will perform with Randy Newman.  The induction ceremony will be presented on HBO on Saturday, May 18 at 9 p.m. ET/PT. More talent will be announced prior to the show.

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More "Star Trek: TNG" on Blu-ray

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 26, 2013

Revised: Earlier today the headline on this referred to "Stark Trek." I should put that blunder next to one I saw on a news site over the weekend: a reference to "Canal Futon."

The offficial word: Continuing the series of high-definition collections celebrated by fans, STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION® – THE THIRD SEASON and STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION® – THE BEST OF BOTH WORLDS will both arrive on Blu-ray Disc April 30 from CBS Home Entertainment and Paramount Home Media Distribution in separate must-have sets packed with new special features. Both collections are the result of the painstaking restoration of the renowned series that involved returning to the original film elements.

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Your Morning Grin

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 26, 2013

TBS Orders More "Cougar Town"

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 26, 2013

The official word: TBS has renewed its hit original comedy Cougar Town, produced by ABC Studios and starring Courteney Cox, Christa Miller, Busy Philipps, Dan Byrd, Ian Gomez, Josh Hopkins and Brian Van Holt. The network has ordered 13 episodes for season five, which is expected to launch in 2014. Cougar Town joined the TBS lineup in January for the show’s fourth season. It currently airs Tuesdays at 10 p.m. (ET/PT), with the season finale slated for April 9.
“Cougar Town has been everything we hoped it would be: a smart, big-hearted, laugh-out-loud comedy that shines a bright light on the TBS brand,” said Michael Wright, president, head of programming for TBS, TNT and Turner Classic Movies (TCM). “This season, the brilliant cast and immensely creative production team on Cougar Town have crafted their best episodes yet, and we couldn’t be happier inviting them back for more.”
Cougar Town centers on the “cul de sac crew,” a tight-knit group of friends who keep things funny while supporting each other through the challenges and pitfalls of life – with a little dysfunction and a whole lot of wine. Courteney Cox stars as Jules Cobb, a recently remarried mom who is never far from her wine and her friends, including her new husband, Grayson (Josh Hopkins); her under-achieving ex-husband, Bobby (Brian Van Holt); her next-door neighbor and confidante, Ellie (Christa Miller); her feisty protégé, Laurie (Busy Philipps); and Ellie’s loveably average husband, Andy (Ian Gomez). They are frequently joined by Jules’ 21-year-old son, Travis (Dan Byrd), who tends to be far more mature than anyone else in the group.
Cougar Town was co-created by executive producer Bill Lawrence (Scrubs, Spin City) and consulting producer Kevin Biegel (Scrubs). Courteney Cox and David Arquette also serve as executive producers.

Cougar Town Ratings
Since launching its fourth season on TBS Jan. 8, Cougar Town has averaged 2.8 million viewers, 1.7 million adults 18-49 and 812,000 adults 18-34 in Live + 7 delivery. The show ranks as TBS’s top original primetime series ever with adults 18-49 and total viewers. As part of Cougar Town‘s successful transition to cable, new episodes on TBS are drawing an audience whose median age is seven years younger than the show’s last season on broadcast.
Connect with TBS’s Cougar Town
Website: http://www.tbs.com/show/cougar-town
Twitter: http://twitter.com/CougarTownTBS  | #CougarTownTBS
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/CougarTown








 

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The Latest "Idol" Chat With Malcolm X Abram

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 24, 2013

Report: WJW For Sale

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 24, 2013

Broadcasting & Cable, citing unidentified sources, reported here that "Oak Hill Capital Partners has put its Local TV LLC stations on the block."

Oak Hill brought WJW and other former News Corp.-owned stations in 2008 for $1.1 billion.  Besides Cleveland, News Corp. sold stations in Denver, St. Louis, Kansas City, Mo., Milwaukee, Salt Lake City, Birmingham, Ala., and Greensboro, N.C.

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Mixed Notes Saturday

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 23, 2013

In today's Beacon Journal, a rumination on the transitory nature of pop music, drawing on a scene from the HBO movie "Phil Spector" and the lack of Beatles knowledge contestants showed on "American Idol." And, in case you missed it, my look at the latest Jay Leno saga, from Friday's Beacon Journal.

In between battles with a cold, I have been watching a lot of NCAAbasketball. Man: LaSalle, Harvard, FGCU. Some tournament so far. I love this stuff. And am hoping someone treats VCU the way it treated Akron.

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John Mayer Sets Tour, Includes Blossom Show on Aug. 6

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 22, 2013

The official word: Grammy Award-winning artist John Mayer will launch his first major tour in three years with a performance at Milwaukee's Summerfest on July 6, it was announced today. This marks John's first tour in support of Born and Raised, his latest studio album, and will run through the fall, with one dollar from each ticket sold benefitting NCIRE's work supporting returning Veterans. American Idol winner Phillip Phillips will open for John along the tour route (with the exception of Tuscaloosa, New Orleans, Kansas City and Atlantic City). Tickets will be on sale beginning March 29th on LiveNation.com.

In advance of his tour, John will perform at an already-sold-out show at the Tuscaloosa Amphitheater on Thursday, April 25 and will make a highly-anticipated appearance at the 2013 New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival. A true heritage festival, "Jazz Fest" stands alone in presenting the highest caliber artists in such varied genres as gospel, blues, traditional and contemporary jazz, rock, R&B, Cajun, country, zydeco and much more. This year's Jazz Fest has performances scheduled for April 26 - 28 and May 2 - 5. Special ticket packages on John's tour will be available through Tickets-for-Charity.com to benefit NCIRE's work supporting returning Veterans. For more information, go to www.ticketsforcharity.com.

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ABC Sets Summer Schedule, Including "Rookie Blue," "Wipeout"

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 21, 2013

The official word: ABC announced its summer lineup, with two new series joining the schedule, the innovative procedural “Motive,” which will have a special debut following the finale of “Dancing with the Stars the Results Show” on Tuesday, May 21, before moving to its regular time period on Thursday, May 23 at 9:00 p.m.; and “Whodunnit?,” a new mystery reality competition show from Anthony E. Zuiker, the creator of the “CSI” franchise, which will premiere Sunday, June 23 at 9:00 p.m.

These series join returning shows “Celebrity Wife Swap,” which has its summer premiere on Sunday, June 23 at 8:00 p.m.; “Extreme Makeover: Weight Loss Edition,” which debuts on Tuesday, May 28 at 8:00 p.m.; “Rookie Blue” on Thursday, May 23 at 10:00 p.m.; “What Would You Do?” on Wednesday, May 29 at 10:00 p.m.; and “Wipeout” on Thursday, May 9 at 8:00 p.m.

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TNT Sets Summer Returns, Premieres

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 21, 2013

Includes "Major Crimes," "Rizzoli & Isles." The official word:

TNT is going to ramp up the drama this summer with a spectacular lineup of original series, including four brand new shows and five returning favorites. Set to launch new seasons this summer are the hit series Falling Skies, Rizzoli & Isles, Major Crimes, Perception and Franklin & Bash. New series joining them in the lineup include King & Maxwell; the unscripted competition series The Hero and 72 Hours; and the docu-drama procedural Cold Justice (working title).

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This Is What I Call Tearing It Up

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 21, 2013

From last night's "American Idol." The song starts at about 1:53.

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NBC Orders More "Sing-Off" As Holiday Event

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 21, 2013

The official word: NBC has picked up the popular a cappella competition show “The Sing-Off” for a new series commitment as a holiday strip over several nights later this year, it was announced today by Paul Telegdy, President, Alternative and Late Night Programming, NBC.

"To all of the loyal fans of 'The Sing-Off' who asked us to bring the show back - we heard you loud and clear! No other singing competition so genuinely showcases the unique talents and creative camaraderie of the best a cappella singers in the country, putting 'The Sing Off' into a class of its own. The distinctive sounds and boundless spirit of these groups make the perfect soundtrack for the holidays," said Telegdy.

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CBS Renews "CSI," With Ted Danson Returning

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 21, 2013

The official word: CBS announced today a new contract extension for CSI: CRIME SCENE INVESTIGATION star Ted Danson and that the U.S. and global hit series has been renewed for the 2013-2014 season. In addition, Academy Award nominee Elisabeth Shue (“Leaving Las Vegas”), original cast members George Eads, Jorja Fox, Eric Szmanda, Paul Guilfoyle and Robert David Hall along with Wallace Langham, Elisabeth Harnois, David Berman and Jon Wellner will also return next season.

 

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ABC Sets Season Finale Dates

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 21, 2013

Here's the list:

Wednesday, March 27
8:30-9:00 p.m. “The Neighbors”
Wednesday, April 17
8:00-9:00 p.m. “Suburgatory” (special one-hour finale)
Thursday, May 2
8:00-9:00 p.m. “Wife Swap”
Sunday, May 5
10:01-11:00 p.m. “Red Widow”
Tuesday, May 7
8:00-9:00 p.m. “Splash”
Sunday, May 12
8:00-9:00 p.m. “Once Upon a Time”
9:00-11:00 p.m. “Revenge” (special two-hour finale)
Monday, May 13
10:01-11:00 p.m. “Castle”
Thursday, May 16
9:00-10:02 p.m. “Grey’s Anatomy”
10:02-11:00 p.m. “Scandal”
Friday, May 17
9:00-10:00 p.m. “Shark Tank”
Sunday, May 19
7:00-8:00 p.m. “America’s Funniest Home Videos”
Monday, May 20
8:00-9:00 p.m. “Dancing with the Stars” (performance show)
Tuesday, May 21
8:00-10:01 p.m. “Dancing with the Stars the Results Show”
Wednesday, May 22
8:00-8:30 p.m. “The Middle”
9:00-9:31 p.m. “Modern Family”
10:00-11:00 p.m. “Nashville”

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TV Land Orders More "Hot in Cleveland"

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 21, 2013

I was off from this job on Wednesday, so it's time to catch up. The official word:

TV Land has renewed “Hot in Cleveland” for a fifth season, it was announced today by Larry W. Jones, President, TV Land. The 24-episode order brings the series to a total of 104 episodes. This past January, CBS Television Distribution announced that it has sold “Hot in Cleveland” to TV stations in 92% of the United States for a September 2014 launch. The series stars Valerie Bertinelli, Jane Leeves, Wendie Malick and Betty White.

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NBC Scheduling News, Including Some Season Finales

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 19, 2013

The network brings back America's Got Talent on June 4 and announced the following finales:

 “Revolution” will end on Monday, May 27 (10-11 p.m. ET). “Chicago Fire” will close out its first season on Wednesday, May 15 (10-11 p.m. ET).

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Mixed Notes Tuesday

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 19, 2013

Henry Bromell, the fine author with a more than enviable track record in television, has died. Alan Sepinwall looks at Bromell's career here.

John Ford Coley, the surviving half of the duo England Dan & John Ford Coley, will open for Rita Coolidge at the Kent Stage's 11th-anniversary concert on Sunday. "England Dan" Seals died in 2009.

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P!nk Adds Cleveland Show to Tour

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 18, 2013

The official word: Due to overwhelming demand, P!nk will extend her highly-acclaimed and sold-out, THE TRUTH ABOUT LOVE TOUR presented by COVERGIRL, to a total of 60 shows, including a stop at Quicken Loans Arena on Saturday, November 23rd at 8:00 p.m.

Tickets go on sale to the public on Saturday, March 30th at 10:00 a.m. and can be purchased online at www.theQarena.com, charge by phone at 1-888-894-9424, at the Quicken Loans Arena Box Office, and at one of Discount Drug Mart’s 58 northern Ohio locations.  Tickets are subject to applicable service charges.

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In Case You Missed It ...

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 18, 2013

While watching TV on Sunday night, I anticipated a huge outcry over the Vietnam sequences on "The Amazing Race." A song in tribute to socialism? A memorial with a downed American B-52? Was Glenn Beck watching?

Apparently not. The furor, from Beck and others, was over whether the Satan in the series "The Bible" looked like President Obama. And the people behind the show felt compelled to reply. To wit:

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MTV Sets Vintage "Real World" Telecasts

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 18, 2013

How vintage? Two of these seasons were ones I actually watched, and the third is the one where I found myself drifting away from an ever more meaningless show.

The official word: To kick off the explosive premiere of MTV’s “The Real World: Portland” airing on Wednesday, March 27 at 10:00 p.m. ET/PT, the network will take fans on a trip down memory lane and introduce a whole new generation to the pioneer of reality TV when the “RetroMTV: The Real World” marathon weekend begins on Friday, March 22 at 8:00 p.m. ET/PT.  The marathon weekend will feature the entire first, third and twelfth seasons of the series ranging from the groundbreaking New York season to the emotional and awe-inspiring San Francisco cast all the way to the salacious sin-city scandals that happened the first time in Vegas.  Additionally, viewers will get exclusive sneak peeks from the new season of “The Real World: Portland” and hear insider commentary from MTV’s own Snooki, Nikki Glaser and Sara Schaefer, numerous comedians, Real World alums and Challenge veterans on their favorite and most memorable “Real World” moments that have solidified the series as a pop culture staple. 

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TV's "How the West Was Won" Coming to DVD

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 18, 2013

Also includes the leading-up TV movie"The Macahans." The official word: Experience the triumphs and tribulations of the Old West when Warner Bros. Home Entertainment Group brings How The West Was Won: The Complete First Season to DVD July 9.  Originally broadcast in 1977 and based on the 1962 film of the same name, the first season of this beloved series features an all-star cast including James Arness (Gunsmoke), Eva Marie Saint (On the Waterfront, North by Northwest) and Bruce Boxleitner (Scarecrow and Mrs. King, Tron). This two-disc set contains the entire first season, told in three 90 minute segments.  As an added bonus, the release includes the "The Macahans," the 1976 TV movie about the Macahan family’s initial journey out West to escape the Civil War.  How The West Was Won: The Complete First Season is priced to own on DVD at a $19.98 SRP.

How the West Was Won: The Complete First Season is a family saga focusing on the lives of the Macahan family in the Old West. The leader of the family, Zeb Macahan (James Arness) is accustomed to the harsh realities of life on the frontier. His sister-in-law, Kate (Eva Marie Saint), alone since the death of her husband, is struggling to maintain a home for her daughters and sons. Luke (Bruce Boxleitner), Kate's eldest son, is pursued by the law for desertion from the Union Army. Their stories are played out against a realistic recreation of the American West in that lusty, hard-hitting period when laws were frequently broken and progress was charted by individual suffering and survival.

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PBS Sets "Carol Burnett Night"

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 18, 2013

Reruns of two programs about Burnett air as the TV icon releases a new memoir about her daughter. The official word:

PBS announces “Carol Burnett Night,” Tuesday, April 9, 2013, featuring two shows that chronicle the longtime success of a beloved television comedy star. An encore of the 90-minute AMERICAN MASTERS “Carol Burnett: A Woman of Character” leads the night, followed by a 30-minute encore edition of the PBS series PIONEERS OF TELEVISION, called “Carol Burnett and the Funny Ladies"— in which iconic TV stars discuss Burnett’s legacy and her influence on contemporary comedy stars.

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CNN's Appalling Steubenville Report

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 18, 2013

In case you missed it, this is the stunningly insensitive piece CNN had after the verdict in the Steubenville rape case. It's all about the defendants and their futures, and utterly insufficient in acknowledging there was a victim in this case, and how the defendants' expressions of sorrow and regret did not come until after there was a verdict. The report has been greeted with rage aplenty, notably in this Gawker piece, which includes the following:

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Oliver Stone, Gwen Ifill Join May 4 Center Dedication

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 18, 2013

The official word: Film director and producer Oliver Stone, and PBS news anchor Gwen Ifill will join Kent State University to mark its 43rd annual commemoration of May 4, 1970, with the dedication of the May 4 Visitors Center. The center, which tells the May 4 story, set against the political and cultural changes of the 1960s, will be dedicated Saturday, May 4, with other traditional commemorative events beginning Friday, May 3.

Ifill, moderator and managing editor of PBS’ “Washington Week” and co-anchor of “PBS NewsHour,” will moderate a panel discussion titled “Historical Significance of May 4 and the Visitors Center” on May 4 from 4-6 p.m. in University Auditorium at Cartwright Hall. Ifill has received more than 20 honorary doctorates and is the recipient of several broadcasting excellence awards.

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Music Matters

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 18, 2013

Heart and Jason Bonham have announced a tour including a Cleveland stop on July 22, and Rihanna has a concert TV special coming. The official word on Heart/Bonham:

2013 Rock & Roll Hall of Fame inductees, HEART, will take their critically acclaimed live show on the road this summer with very special guest JASON BONHAM’S LED ZEPPELIN EXPERIENCE. Ann and Nancy Wilson first met Jason Bonham, son of famed Led Zeppelin drummer, John Bonham, when they performed “Stairway to Heaven” together at the Kennedy Center Honors tribute to Led Zeppelin in December 2012. Over 6 million fans have watched the performance online and purchased the track on iTunes. Now, in addition to a full set of Heart classic hits including “Crazy on You,” “Barracuda,” “Alone,” “These Dreams,” “What About Love” and many more, fans can experience this historical pairing live when Heart and Bonham close each show with a special thirty-minute finale tribute to Led Zeppelin.

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Mixed Notes Monday

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 18, 2013

Some kind of weekend. For many of you, it was St. Patrick's Day celebration. That day is also my wedding anniversary -- a date my bride and I chose because our previous spouses were of Irish descent; we honored their memory while starting memories of our own. So on Sunday night, we went out for a celebratory dinner -- seated conveniently near enough to the restaurant bar that we could see the TV showing the NCAA selection show.

After all, we had more than a little interest. Friday and Saturday evening found us in Quicken Loans Arena for Akron's games in the Mid-American Conference men's basketball tournament: a win over Kent State on Friday night, and the championship over Ohio U on Saturday. Lively crowd both nights, at times too lively; who can justify booing a school's cheerleaders and dance team? But these games both involved intense rivalries, and ones where no one wants to yield ground. On Saturday, what appeared to be a planned we-play-then-you-do back and forth of single songs by the school bands was broken when OU went into a second song as Akron was getting ready to play.

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Video: Idol Chatter

By Ohio.com Published: March 16, 2013

Alas poor Curtis, your ballads didn't sway the voters so off you go from America's favorite singing competition.

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In Case You're Wondering Who Made Mariah's Unwieldy Dresses ...

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 15, 2013

The folks at "American Idol" are sending along fashion updates. Here are this week's (and I guess Ms. Minaj makes all her own clothes)...

Wednesday Performance Show Wardrobe Details (March 13):

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It's Not Just Portman, Either

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 15, 2013

Look at this emotionally effective video from a legislator talking about her regrets over voting against gay marriage.

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Rob Portman and Gay Marriage

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 15, 2013

Here is one clip from CNN's interview with Rob Portman about his (very admirable) change re gay marriage. You can find other clips here.

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TV Land Adds "Golden Girls"

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 14, 2013

Because you can never have too much Betty White. The official word:

TV Land will debut the Emmy® Award-winning comedy “The Golden Girls” on Saturday, March 16, it was announced today. Marathons will launch on Saturday and Sunday, March 16 and 17, from 3-11pm, followed by a week-long primetime tribute to each of the characters. Then, fans take over the air! Viewers can go online now* and choose their favorite episodes on TV Land’s Facebook Page, then watch the results on Friday, March 22 from 7-10pm. After launch week, the show will settle into its regular timeslot of 7pm, Monday through Saturday, and 5pm on Sundays. Fans of “The Golden Girls” can keep up with the series on Facebook and TV Land’s Tumblr, which will be posting fun activities like tips for throwing the best viewing party and character “sass-offs” all week long and beyond!

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Oscar Winner Ang Lee To Direct FX Pilot

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 14, 2013

The official word: Coming off of his Academy Award® win for Life of Pi, celebrated director Ang Lee will make his television directorial debut with FX, directing the Pilot episode for the highly anticipated drama Tyrant, from Emmy® and Golden Globe® Award-winning producers Howard Gordon and Gideon Raff (Homeland), and Emmy-nominated writer/producer Craig Wright (Six Feet Under, Lost). The announcement was made today by John Landgraf, President and General Manager, FX Networks. 

Tyrant will be Lee’s first project following Life of Pi.

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Apolo Anton Ohno To Host GSN's "Minute To Win It"

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 14, 2013

The official word: GSN announced today that Apolo Anton Ohno, one of the most decorated American athletes of all time and DANCING WITH THE STARS champion, will be the host of GSN’s new series MINUTE TO WIN IT.  GSN’s production of 40 new original episodes marks the first time the series has been developed by a U.S. cable network.  The episodes are to be produced by Shine America - based on the format owned by Shine’s sister company Friday TV.  MINUTE TO WIN IT begins production in March and is slated to premiere in summer 2013.

 

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MSNBC Shuffles Talent

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 14, 2013

Ed Schultz is going to weekends, Chris Hayes gets the weeknight slot. The official words, Hayes first, Schultz second.

From MSNBC: Chris Hayes will host MSNBC's 8 p.m. ET hour starting Monday, April 1. The announcement was made today by Phil Griffin, President of MSNBC.

"Chris has done an amazing job creating a franchise on weekend morning," said Griffin. "He’s an extraordinary talent and has made a strong connection with our audience. This is an exciting time for MSNBC.”

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Jessica Chastain Horror Thriller "Mama" Sets DVD/Blu-ray Release

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 13, 2013

Chastain's "Zero Dark Thirty," which should have won her a long-deserved Oscar, arrives next week. "Mama," spoken of in rather different terms, will be out on May 7.

The official word: From Academy Award® nominated actress Jessica Chastain (Zero Dark Thirty, The Help) comes the pulse-pounding tale of one mother’s twisted love in MAMA. Brought to life by Academy Award® nominee Guillermo del Toro (Pan’s Labyrinth) and also starring Nikolaj Coster-Waldau (“Game of Thrones”), MAMA will be available on Blu-ray™ Combo Pack, DVD and On Demand on May 7, 2013 from Universal Studios Home Entertainment. Also available on Digital Download on April 23, 2013.

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"Psych's" "Clue" Tribute Episode Includes Fan-Voted Ending

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 13, 2013

And doughnuts. The official word: For the first time ever, fans of USA Network’s PSYCH will have the unique opportunity to determine the show’s ending via a live interactive, socially charged crowd-sourced event to mark this landmark 100th episode, ”100 Clues,” on Wednesday, March 27 at 10/9c. With Dunkin’ Donuts as the Social TV sponsor (#WhoDDit), the multiplatform experience officially kicks off on March 13 across web, social and mobile. Fans of the show will get revved up for the 100th episode with a PSYCH-themed interactive countdown calendar, custom polls, trivia and challenges across all the show’s social channels.

“This is a great example of how USA can eventize a broadcast and take fan engagement to new heights – before, during and after the show,” said Alexandra Shapiro, executive vice president, marketing & digital. “In collaboration with Dunkin’ Donuts, we have co-created a Social TV campaign that interfaces with the audience at every consumer touch point, from TV to social channels to mobile.”

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"Veronica Mars" Movie Could Be Happening ...

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 13, 2013

A Kickstarter campaign to raise $2 millon for a low-budget VM film has raised the firswt million bucks toward its goal, and it's only the first day. (Yes, I pledged.) Very exciting. And the video, above, is pretty hilarious.

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Cartoon Network's "Teen Titans Go!" Begins April 23

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 13, 2013

The Teen Titans are returning to Cartoon Network with all-new comedic adventures, and this time they’re giving viewers a look at what life is really like as a teen superhero… once the cape comes off. The half-hour animated series, Teen Titans Go! premieres on Tuesday, April 23, at 7:30pm (ET/PT) and will be rebroadcast during the DC Nation block on Saturday mornings at 10:30am (ET/PT) beginning April 27.

The character-driven comedy series focuses on the funny that happens in between saving the world and living together as teenagers without adult supervision. The comedic mayhem of the animated series is punctuated by pranks and the occasional need to fight crime, but it will also deal with the everyday issues of adolescence. With epic staring contests to decide who does the laundry, a series of quests and battles to construct the perfect sandwich or fighting crime in Jump City, one thing is for sure, these Titans will always be ready for an adventure inside the house and out.  

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MTV Sets Vinny's Talk Show, Bo Burnham Sitcom

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 13, 2013

The official word: MTV is set to debut two highly anticipated new series on Thursday nights, “The Show With Vinny” starring “Jersey Shore's” Vinny Guadagnino and “Zach Stone Is Gonna Be Famous” starring comedian Bo Burnham premiering on Thursday, May 2 beginning at 10:00 P.M. ET/PT.    

In “The Show With Vinny,” MTV will shatter the typical talk show format by taking the biggest celebrities out of the studio and into Vinny Guadagnino’s family home in Staten Island, New York.  Combining the reality of Guadagnino’s home life – one of the biggest fan-favorite aspects and memories from “Jersey Shore” – with off-the-cuff interviews with some of today’s hottest celebrities while they break bread with his family, “The Show With Vinny” will feature no studio or audience - just family, food and big stars.  Each week, Vinny invites the guests into his home so the celebrities can experience the hospitality and Italian cuisine prepared by his ultimate hostess mother, Paola, and the antics of the party boss, Uncle Nino, and more.  There’s no place like Vinny’s home as the guests let their guard down, have a meal and candid conversation and comedy with the Guadagnino family.  Upcoming celebrity guests to be announced soon. 

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Discovery Schedules Redford-Backed "All the President's Men Revisited" Special

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 13, 2013

The official word: Discovery Channel and award-winning actor/director Robert Redford present a landmark television event looking back at Watergate - the original game changer of American politics. Mr. Redford, who served as producer of the iconic 1976 film All the President's Men, brought the story of Watergate to the screen with authenticity, power and precise detail while doing justice to a seminal chapter in American history. More than 40 years after a bungled burglary brought a beleaguered presidency down and the term "Watergate" into the national lexicon, Mr. Redford returns to the scandal that broke all the rules of press and politics, brought down a President and forever changed the country in ALL THE PRESIDENT’S MEN REVISITED which premieres on Sunday, April 21 at 8PM ET/PT.

 

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"Downton Abbey" Season 4 Casting Notes

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 13, 2013

Six new characters. My favorite description is of one played by Kiri Te Kanawa, below.  From PBS:

Carnival Films and MASTERPIECE on PBS announced that six new cast members are joining the Downton Abbey series, plus the return of Shirley MacLaine for next season's finale. The Hollywood star, who reprises her role as Martha Levinson, proved a huge hit with viewers last year when she joined the cast for Lady Mary's wedding to Matthew Crawley. Her sparky relationship with Violet delighted audiences around the world. The series won nine Emmys, two Golden Globes and a coveted Screen Actors Guild Award for the ensemble cast, which is the first time the cast of a British television show has won this award.

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Fox Announces Revised Season Finale Dates

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 12, 2013

A previous version of this post referred to series finales. Should have been season finales. The official word:

FOX is announcing new season finale dates for NEW GIRL, THE MINDY PROJECT, KITCHEN NIGHTMARES and TOUCH.

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Reading Ratings Numbers

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 12, 2013

For your possible amusement, here are the releases CBS and Fox sent out regarding last week's numbers, . As you can see, their interpretations of the same data are different.  I could complicate this even more by throwing in some cable numbers, particularly for "The Bible." And local numbers are subjected to even more analyses. But here's one look.

CBS's release is first, followed (many words later) by Fox's.

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Stuff I've Been Watching: "Samson & Delilah," "This Is 40"

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 12, 2013

And how's THAT for a double feature? Actually, I watched them somewhat apart. "This Is 40" was last night, with the bride, as we looked at a generally empty prime-time TV schedule (and no, "The Bachelor" does not count as filling). It was a movie we had discussed seeing in theaters and just did not get to. So there was the Blu-ray, due out along with the DVD on March 22, and into the player it went.

Cut ahead two hours, when the bride and I have spent a lot of time half-watching the movie, while playing games on our iPads. There were laughs here and there, but they were sporadic at best. There was Graham Parker, a fabulous musician and a pretty funny actor, but I'd rather listen to his vintage music than watch him in this movie.

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Cher Set To Host TCM Films About Women

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 12, 2013

It's part of a larger series of Friday night presentations. The official word:

Cher, the Oscar®, Emmy®, Grammy®, Cannes Film Festival and three-time Golden Globe® award winner is set to be the first host of Friday Night Spotlight, a brand new film showcase launching April 5 on Turner Classic Movies (TCM). TCM host Robert Osborne will join Cher to kick off the franchise with A Woman's World: The Defining Era of Women in Film, a collection of 17 films handpicked by Cher to illustrate the evolving roles of women from the late 1930s to the early '50s. Each month thereafter, Friday Night Spotlight will feature a celebrity or expert host who will take viewers through a collection of films focusing on a specific topic.

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Details on New Series With Dog the Bounty Hunter -- Coming to CMT

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 12, 2013

The world’s most renowned bounty hunters, Dog and Beth Chapman, return to television in an all-new, 11-episode series, DOG AND BETH: ON THE HUNT, premiering Sunday, April 21 at 8:00 p.m. ET/PT on CMT.  Dog and Beth, joined by their son Leland, will step outside their headquarters in Hawaii to unite with bail bondsmen from around the country as they hunt down some of America’s most dangerous criminals.

 

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In Case You Missed It: The Next "Bachelorette" (Updated)

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 12, 2013

In related news, the most recent "Bachelor" star, Sean Lowe, is headed to "DWTS."

Continung the show's habit of using retreads, it's Desiree. The official word:

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CBS Sets Season Finale Dates

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 11, 2013

The official word: CBS today announced season finale air dates that will include two-hour finales for SURVIVOR: CARAMOAN – FANS VS. FAVORITES, THE AMAZING RACE, CRIMINAL MINDS and ELEMENTARY.

 

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"Bunheads" Star Sutton Foster Coming to Cleveland

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 11, 2013

That's the good news. The bad news: Tickets for her benefit show START at $300, The official word:

On Saturday, May 18, PlayhouseSquare will host the illuminate! benefit, co-chaired by Dan and Molly Walsh of Shaker Heights, to celebrate the 90th anniversary of the completion of its historic theaters. Guests will enjoy a cocktail reception, dinner, desserts, dancing and performance by Tony Award-winning Broadway star Sutton Foster with musical director and conductor Michael Rafter.

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"AMC," "OLTL" Online Telecasts Begin April 29

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 11, 2013

Programs will be on Hulu, Hulu Plus and iTunes,. No word on whether the telecasts will air on delay on cable. The official word:

Prospect Park’s The Online Network (TOLN) announced today the highly-anticipated online debuts of the beloved long-running serial dramas “All My Children” and “One Life to Live” for Monday, April 29. With the date confirmed, millions of the shows’ fans and new viewers alike can plan to watch broadcast-quality versions of two of the most beloved franchises in history with easy access and for free.

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In Case You Missed: Akron as a Date Killer

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 11, 2013

Mixed Notes Monday

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 11, 2013

Did you watch the return of "Army Wives"? Here's what I said about the show.

Norman Bates is returning to TV in the A&E series "Bates Motel." I look a the long  book, movie and TV history of the character here.

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Idol Chatter

By Ohio.com Published: March 9, 2013

We're down to the final 10 in America's favorite singing competition. What's this sudden death sing-off for an 11th competitor?

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Rich and the movies: What to watch at home

By Ohio.com Published: March 8, 2013

Feel like staying home this weekend? Beacon Journal pop culture Rich Heldenfels has some options you can watch from home, including the original House of Cards, Schlinder's List and Escape Fire.

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If You Like "Big Bang Theory" ...

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 8, 2013

For Your Video Amusement

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 8, 2013

Excellent compilation of clips of movie characters addressing the audience directly. I so love Belushi's eyebrow in the "Animal House" clip. But I would have added some of Bill Murray leading the sing-along at the end of "Scrooged."

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"American Idol" Top 10

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 8, 2013

As you can tell from my previous posts, four of the five women I liked made it to the next level (Tenna being the one who did not) and the only guy I cared about, Curtis Finch Jr., went ahead as well. Twitter as a barometer, mentioned in a previous post, proved less than perfectly reliable. I liked the way the show just proclaimed the Top 10 while offering a collective see-ya to the losers instead of dragging out individual eliminations. But the whole unveiling thing was odd : Did they turn off all the monitors the audience could see? Did Lazaro really need to talk to the band at that moment (or does this suggest that he's more focused on himself than the show has implied)?

The official word: Tonight in the first LIVE results show of the season from Los Angeles, AMERICAN IDOL revealed the Top 10 finalists, including Lazaro Arbos, Janelle Arthur, Curtis Finch, Jr., Candice Glover, Kree Harrison, Amber Holcomb, Paul Jolley, Angie Miller, Burnell Taylor and Devin Velez.

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CBS Keeps "Golden Boy" on Tuesdays, Moves"Vegas" to Fridays After NCAAs

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 7, 2013

The official word: GOLDEN BOY, CBS's new drama about the meteoric rise of an ambitious cop who becomes the youngest police commissioner in the history of New York City, will remain on Tuesdays (10:00-11:00 PM, ET/PT), after two special previews in the time period.

CBS previously announced that GOLDEN BOY would move to Friday (9:00-10:00 PM, ET/PT) after the preview broadcasts on Feb. 26 and March 3.  An original episode of GOLDEN BOY will still air this first Friday (March 8) at 9:00 PM, ET/PT as planned.  

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"Parks & Rec's" Ansari Coming to Cleveland

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 7, 2013

The official word: Live Nation welcomes comedian Aziz Ansari to the Palace Theatre at PlayhouseSquare Sunday, May 12 at 7:00 p.m.

Ansari has quickly established his presence in the comedy world. He is currently starring in a popular television series, is developing a number of films and will soon debut his second hour-long standup special.  The Hollywood Reporter said that he “has become one of the most prolific writers and performers on the comedy scene in recent years” and Rolling Stone recently placed him on the cover of their special comedy issue labeling him “the funniest man under 30.” In addition, Paste Magazine has named him one of the “Top 10 Comedians of the Decade.” Ansari also wrapped a much buzzed about gig as the host of the 2010 MTV Movie Awards.

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Mixed Notes Thursday, Including Some "Idol" Notes

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 7, 2013

Today's mailbag is here. Includes a "Mike & Molly" question, and readers' thoughts about music on DVDs of old TV shows, and foreign actors playing Americans. In both cases, I take issue with the readers.

I have some thoughts about advocacy documentaries, and especially "Greedy Lying Bastards," here. Having now written about it, I hope to get over my urge to say "Greedy Lying Bastards" aloud over and over; haven't had this much fun since my repetitions of "The Mob Doc-tor."

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"Gangster Squad" DVD/Blu-ray Set

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 6, 2013

The official word about the disappointing action film: It’s a war for Los Angeles in “Gangster Squad,” arriving onto Blu-ray Combo Pack, DVD and Digital Download on April 23 from Warner Bros. Home Entertainment Group. A stylish retelling of true events, “Gangster Squad” follows a team of cops as they band together to bring down a ruthless mob boss— by any means necessary.

A Village Roadshow Pictures Production, “Gangster Squad” stars Oscar® nominees Josh Brolin (“Milk,” “True Grit”) and Ryan Gosling (“Half Nelson,” “Drive”), and Academy Award® winner Sean Penn (“Milk,” “Mystic River”) as Mickey Cohen. The film also stars Oscar® nominee Nick Nolte (“Warrior,” “Affliction”), Emma Stone, Anthony Mackie, Giovanni Ribisi, Michael Peña, Robert Patrick and Mireille Enos. The screenplay was written by Will Beall and is based on the book Gangster Squad by Paul Lieberman. The film is produced by Dan Lin, Kevin McCormick and Michael Tadross. The executive producers are Ruben Fleischer, Paul Lieberman and Bruce Berman.

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Mixed Notes Wednesday

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 6, 2013

You may have seen my and others' tweets yesterday about Kevin Costner starring in a movie about the Browns which was originally going to be a movie about the Bills. If not, the story I wrote for today's Beacon Journal is here. And the Buffalo News story that started the local talk is here. Still hoping for more info and insight from the Greater Cleveland Film Commission.

Cleveland's own Bob Hope may have been old-school as a comedian in his later years, but he wasn't when it came to home design.

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"Community" Prepares Episode With Cast as Puppets

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 6, 2013

The official word: NBC announced today that the characters of its acclaimed comedy “Community” (Thursdays, 8-8:30 p.m. ET) will be immortalized as puppets in an episode airing in April. In the episode, the study group takes a wild balloon ride that crash-lands in the woods and they end up spending a little time with a friendly mountain man (award winner Jason Alexander, “Seinfeld”). The announcement was made at this evening’s PaleyFest panel presentation for “Community” in Beverly Hills, sponsored by the Paley Center for Media.

As the study group recounts their adventures in the woods, which has left them all feeling a little awkward with one another, Dean Pelton (Jim Rash) encourages them to speak about their experience with the use of puppets. The puppets include characters Jeff (Joel McHale), Pierce (Chevy Chase), Britta (Gillian Jacobs), Shirley (Yvette Nicole Brown), Abed (Danny Pudi), Annie (Alison Brie), Troy (Donald Glover) and Chang (Ken Jeong).

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When You're Wondering Where Jon Stewart Is This Summer, Remember This Item

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 5, 2013

He's directing a movie. The official word from Comedy Central: Jon Stewart will go on hiatus from “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart” beginning in June in order to direct his first feature film, entitled “Rosewater,” which will be produced by Stewart’s production company, Busboy Productions, along with Scott Rudin Productions and Odd Lot Entertainment.  Longtime correspondent and writer John Oliver will host the Emmy® and Peabody® Award-winning series for the eight weeks of original episodes that are scheduled during Stewart’s hiatus.

John Oliver joined “The Daily Show” and The Best F#@king News Team Ever in 2006 and since arriving has done everything from interviewing UN Ambassadors to covering the World Cup in South Africa to breaking his nose fighting for the Confederate army.  As a writer Oliver has been nominated for Emmy® and Writers Guild Awards and he won the Breakout Award at the HBO US Comedy Arts Festival in Aspen.  He performs stand-up around the US and his one-hour special “Terrifying Times” debuted in April 2008.  His stand-up series, “John Oliver’s New York Stand-Up Show” premiered on COMEDY CENTRAL in January 2010 and aired its third season last summer.  Along with Andy Zaltzman, Oliver also writes and stars in a weekly podcast, “The Bugle: Audio Newspaper for a Visual World.”

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"Jack Reacher" on DVD/Blu-ray in May

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 5, 2013

The so-so box-office performer  was somewhat controversial with fans of the Reacher books. The official word: One of the most compelling heroes ever to step from novel to screen makes his highly-anticipated home entertainment debut when JACK REACHER blasts his way onto Blu-ray, DVD and On Demand on May 7, 2013 from Paramount Home Media Distribution.  The film will be available for Digital Download on April 23rd.  Tom Cruise tackles the title role with the brute force his character is known for and his “tightly controlled performance holds our attention all the way through to the tense finale” (Elizabeth Weitzman, New York Daily News).  Based on best-selling author Lee Child’s wildly popular series of novels, JACK REACHER was adapted for the screen and directed by Academy Award®-winner Christopher McQuarrie (Best Original Screenplay, The Usual Suspects, 1995).  Filled with heart-pounding action, thrills and a “killer chase scene”
(Chris Vognar, Dallas Morning News), JACK REACHER is “hard-boiled detective story entertainment” (Richard Corliss, Time) that “will have you gasping in surprise at the velocity and ferocity of the action” (Marshall Fine, Huffington Post).  The film also boasts “a top flight ensemble cast” (Claudia Puig, USA Today) including Robert Duvall (Apocalypse Now), Rosamund Pike (Die Another Day), Werner Herzog (Rescue Dawn), David Oyelowo (Rise of the Planet of the Apes), Richard Jenkins (The Cabin in the Woods) and Jai Courtney (A Good Day to Die Hard). 

 

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"Stand Up Guys" on DVD/Blu-ray in May

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 5, 2013

You can see my review of the Pacino/Walken/Arkin movie here.The official word: Hollywood legends Al Pacino (The Godfather), Christopher Walken (Catch Me If You Can) and Alan Arkin (Argo) star together on the big screen for the first time in Stand Up Guys, arriving from Lionsgate Home Entertainment this May.  The action comedy about three ex-gangsters who reunite for one unforgettable evening, will be available May 21 on Blu-ray Disc (plus Ultraviolet Digital Copy), DVD (plus Ultraviolet Digital Copy) and Digital Download. Stand Up Guys will also premiere on Video on Demand on May 7, two weeks prior to its Blu-ray and DVD release date.   

 

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Filmmaker Kernochan at Cinematheque on March 23

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 5, 2013

The official word: Sarah Kernochan, a two-time Oscar-winning filmmaker, will appear in person on Saturday, March 23 at the Cleveland Institute of Art Cinematheque, 11141 East Boulevard. Kernochan will answer questions after screenings of two of her movies: IMPROMPTU (1991), for which she wrote the screenplay, at 5:30 pm, and the full-length documentary MARJOE (1972),  which she co-directed with Howard Smith, at 8:30 pm. Admission to either film is $12, Cinematheque members $9; age 25 & under $8. One can see both movies for an additional $8.

 

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Fox Renews "The Following," 3 Comedies

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 4, 2013

First, the official word on "The Following," then the announcement of "The Mindy Project," "New Girl" and "Raising Hope."

FOX has ordered a second season of the year’s most thrilling new series THE FOLLOWING,it was announced today by Kevin Reilly, Chairman of Entertainment, Fox Broadcasting Company.

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Klum Joins "America's Got Talent"

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 4, 2013

Because, you know, she isn't already on TV too much. But she inspired one epic press release, which among other things notes: "As a testament to Klum’s place in pop culture, Mattel created a Barbie in her likeness." The official word:

NBC announced that supermodel/designer/executive producer/TV host Heidi Klum (“Project Runway”) has been added as a new judge on “America’s Got Talent” – marking the first time that the top-rated summer series has added a fourth judge. Klum will join fellow incoming judge Mel B as well as returning judges Howie Mandel and Howard Stern beginning this summer.

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"American Idol" Adds "Supervote"

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 4, 2013

This looks to me like a sure way to ensure that yet another cute young white guy will win, but here's the official word: In an innovative, fun and engaging new voting feature beginning tomorrow, Tuesday, March 5, AMERICAN IDOL is offering fans the opportunity to “SuperVote” online for their favorite contestant(s) using FOX’s new patent-pending voting experience within the AT&T AMERICAN IDOL VOTE. In 2011, IDOL introduced an online voting window in which fans could cast their votes for that evening’s performances. Now with AMERICAN IDOL’s SuperVote, fans can cast 50 votes all at once.

Viewers will be able to SuperVote – cast multiple votes at one time – via any of these AT&T AMERICAN IDOL VOTE destinations: americanidol.com, the AMERICAN IDOL mobile app (data and message rates may apply) and Facebook. To SuperVote, fans can allocate any number of votes for one contestant or multiple contestants, for a total of 50 votes (across all online voting destinations), and in a unique interactive experience, they can adjust their vote selections as performances happen during the show. When the voting window officially opens, fans can submit their final votes – all at once. [Only fans with a registered Facebook account in the U.S., Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands will be able to cast their vote(s) online.]

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Talking "Twlight" and More

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 2, 2013

The actors who played the Irish coven in "Twilight: Breaking Dawn Part 2" -- including Akron's own Lisa Howard -- passed through Cleveland on Thursday to help promote the DVD/Blu-ray release of the movie, and I chatted with them. You can read about that chat, which ranged far beyond "Twilight," here.

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Video: Idol chatter

By Ohio.com Published: March 1, 2013

Rich and Malcolm are happy we're down to 20 on America's favorite singing competition ... but who's next to leave the show?

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New "Whose Line" Coming to CW

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 1, 2013

You may remember the show from its British incarnation, or the Drew Carey-hosted version. This will have Aisha Tyler as the host but will feature old "Whose Line" mainstays Wayne Brady, Ryan Stiles and Colin Mochrie. Tyler has paid tribute to Drew on Twitter, saying he is" a genius. HUGE shoes to fill. My feet are prob literally bigger because I'm freakishly tall, but metaphorically. You get it." The official word:

The CW is going for laughs this summer by ordering a new take on the hit improvisational comedy series, WHOSE LINE IS IT ANYWAY?, hosted by comedian Aisha Tyler (“The Talk”), it was announced today by Mark Pedowitz, President, The CW. Premiere information will be announced at a later time.

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Mixed Notes Friday (Updated)

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 1, 2013

The Cleveland International Film Festival has its 2013 lineup online. There have been some gltiches but it now seems to be working, even if a bit slowly. And this year's festival will have a bigger presence in Akron.

Some folks on Twitter have asked why WKYC pre-empted two hours of NBC programming for a "Matlock" movie. To me it looked like the long-common practice of "make-good theater," pre-empting network shows usually in rerun in order to sell more ad time or make good on guarantees to advertisers from shows that did not live up to expectations. That said, the Hollywood Reporter has WKYC GM Brooke Spectorsky saying this was an homage to Andy Griffith because of his being snubbed at the Oscars' "In Memoriam" segment. It's an inventive explanation, though not a convincing one.

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CNN To Show "Escape Fire" on March 10

By Rich Heldenfels Published: March 1, 2013

The documentary includes some people from Cleveland Clinic. The official word: CNN has acquired the U.S. television broadcast rights for the award-winning documentary, Escape Fire: The Fight to Rescue American Healthcare.  The film premiered at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival and received honors at the 2012 Silverdocs, Full Frame, and other prominent festivals.  The two-hour feature-length film was produced and directed by Matthew Heineman and Academy Award-nominee Susan Froemke and distributed by Roadside Attractions and Lionsgate.  It will debut on CNN/U.S. on Sunday, March 10 at 8:00pm and air again at 11:00pm Eastern.

The film reveals flaws in the notion that the healthcare delivered via America’s patchwork of facilities, practitioners, and insurers offers good value for its outcomes.  Through the real-life experiences of physicians and patients, Escape Fire shows the tremendous pressures providers feel to reduce costs and limit patient interaction time – and the frustrations of patients struggling with preventable conditions that are often created or exacerbated by insufficient or inappropriate care. 

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