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The Limitations of Some Technology

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 30, 2013

Sorry to have been MIA for so long. The bride and I took a week's vacation out of town and, instead of taking my laptop, I took an iPad and keyboard. And then discovered I could not post here with my iPad. Or from the computer station the hotel had available for guests. So, while I did a few Facebook posts and Tweet, no bloggage was possible. I expect to start catching up on Monday -- about entertainment matters, vacation reading. dealing with  a tornado warning at North Myrtle Beach, and later dealing with long flight delays coming home. I hope you are all having a good summer.

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A Note and a Link

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 21, 2013

Posts in the coming week will be more sporadic than usual because I am taking some vacation time. But there will still be some updates and links in this space, including this one about some recent books on TV news; the column is also in Saturday's print editions.

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Akron Murder from '80s Gets TV Examination

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 21, 2013

The official word: on the look at thje case of Roger "Butch" Pratt: On Wednesday, June 26 at 9/8c, Investigation Discovery is featuring the homicide of Butch Pratt on its all-new series MOST LIKELY TO...

 

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Whoopi Goldberg in New Terry McMillan Project

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 21, 2013

The official word:

Academy Award®, Golden Globe®, Emmy®, Grammy® and Tony Award®-winner Whoopi Goldberg (Ghost, The Color Purple, The View) will headline and executive produce the Lifetime Original Movie A Day Late and a Dollar Short, based on the New York Times bestseller by Terry McMillan (Waiting to Exhale, How Stella Got Her Groove Back). The announcement was made today by Rob Sharenow, Executive Vice President, General Manager, of Lifetime.

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This Week's "Two Guys Talkin' "

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 21, 2013

My wife. for one, has noted how the stuff on both sides of the blog page tends to cut me out of the frame for these video chats. If you really need to see all of me, you can also find this in the video section of Ohio.com. And I will look into framing the image so that my three to five fans can see my entire image.

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NBC Announces Fall Premiere Dates

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 21, 2013

The official word: NBC has announced premiere dates for its fall schedule, which include the launch of two highly-anticipated new shows: “The Blacklist” on Sept. 23 and the series debut of “The Michael J. Fox Show” with back-to-back episodes on Sept. 26.
“The Blacklist,” starring James Spader as an international criminal who works with a rookie FBI agent in order to bring down some of the world’s most wanted, begins Monday, Sept. 23 at 10 p.m., immediately following the fifth-season two-hour premiere of “The Voice” at 8 p.m. that will reunite the four original coaches: Christina Aguilera, CeeLo Green, Adam Levine, and Blake Shelton. (All times are ET.)
“Chicago Fire” will begin its second season at 10 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 24 following the Tuesday edition of “The Voice.”
On Wednesday, Sept. 25, the sophomore season of “Revolution” will begin the night in its new time period at 8 o’clock, followed by the season premiere of the 15th season of “Law & Order: SVU” at 9 p.m. in which Det. Benson (Mariska Hargitay) will be fighting for her life against a madman.
Highly-acclaimed comedy “Parks and Recreation” will launch its sixth season with an hourlong episode at 8 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 26 that takes the show to London. That will be followed by back-to-back episodes for the debut of “The Michael J. Fox Show,” starring the iconic actor as a father and husband returning to work as a news reporter in New York after a brief leave of absence to get his Parkinson’s under control.
“Parenthood,” which is beginning its fifth season this year, moves into the 10 p.m. time period on Sept 26 (immediately following “The Michael J. Fox Show”) with special guest star Ray Romano.

“Dateline NBC” will premiere with a two-hour episode Friday, Sept. 27 at 9 p.m.

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Video: Rich and the Movies - 'Much Ado About Nothing'

By Ohio.com Published: June 21, 2013

Beacon Journal popular culture writer Rich Heldenfels checks in with some thoughts on Much Ado About Nothing. Written and directed by Joss Whedon, the black and white movie features some lovely performances.

Read Rich's review online here.

 

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Mixed Notes

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 20, 2013

My friend Matt Zoller Seitz, who knew James Gandolfini, has a warm tribute to him here. It's an excellent look at the personal side of Gandolfini and what a good guy he obviously was.

My mailbag this week ponders why "NCIS" does not get a lot of Emmy love, what's happening with the "forgotten" Osbourne and more.

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James Gandolfini, R.I.P.

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 19, 2013

 

James Gandolfini, a TV legend for his performances as Tony Soprano, has died, according to published reports. The cause may have been a heart attack. He was 51.

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Ohio State-Michigan Rivalry Now Includes Home Makeover

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 19, 2013

The official word: Longtime collegiate rivals Ohio State and the University of Michigan battle it out for the best home makeover in HGTV’s new one-hour special Raise a Roof: College Challenge. Premiering on Saturday, June 22, at 2 p.m. ET/PT, the special features teams of university students as they compete in a spirited makeover event that benefits two Rebuilding Together-sponsored homes near their campuses. DIY Network’s Anitra Mecadon (Mega Dens) and HGTV’s Chip Wade (Elbow Room) work with teams from each school to renovate their assigned home. Host Chris Grundy (DIY Network’s Blog Cabin and Cool Tools) joins judges Tim Parsons of Rebuilding Together and Jackie Jordan of Sherwin-Williams to determine which team makes the most significant home improvements and wins the championship bragging rights.

During the special, the teams must fix a safety issue, upcycle an existing item in the home and showcase their school spirit. With the help of Anitra, the Ohio State University team transforms a home in Columbus, Ohio for a single mother of two young daughters−one of whom is autistic. In the meantime, Chip works with the University of Michigan team to overhaul a home in Ypsilanti, Mich., where a mother and daughter need help to create a spacious and comfortable living environment.

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Chet Flippo, R.I.P.

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 19, 2013

It's one of those oddities of timing that, on the day news broke about the death of country star Slim Whitman, news also came about the death of Chet Flippo, a journalist and country-music expert who was part of that distinguished crowd of writers at Rolling Stone in the '70s. He also penned a fine biography of Hank Williams. A full obituary is here and a tribute noting his place in country history is here.

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Slim Whitman, R.I.P.

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 19, 2013

You may remember the singer only from commercials like the one above. But he had a significant career, as this obituary notes.

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Acclaimed "Stories We Tell" Due on DVD, Blu-ray

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 18, 2013

The official word: Academy Award® nominee Sarah Polley plays filmmaker and detective in the award-winning documentary arriving on DVD, Digital Download and Video on Demand September 3 from Lionsgate Home Entertainment. To

Heralded by The New York Times as "the kind of experience that has the power to alter your perception of the world," Stories We Tell is equal parts "genius," (Vanity Fair)  "engrossing" (Vogue) and "riveting" (The Washington Post). In the latest film from Academy Award® nominee Sarah Polley (Best Adapted Screenplay, Away from Her, 2007) we discover the truth depends on who is telling it. Stories We Tell arrives on DVD, Digital Download and Video on Demand September 3 from Lionsgate Home Entertainment.

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NBC Sets Valerie Harper News Special

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 18, 2013

The official word: NBC News today announced that it has greenlit an exclusive, hour-long documentary chronicling Valerie Harper’s battle with a rare, terminal cancer. Hosted by Meredith Vieira and produced by NBC News’ Peacock Productions, this first-person account captures Harper’s raw, emotional and hopeful journey as she goes through experimental treatments and lives each day to the fullest with her husband Tony Cacciotti and their daughter Christina.

A recurrence of Harper's 2009 lung cancer, the disease spread into the membrane surrounding her brain and she was diagnosed with leptomeningeal carcinomatosis on March 6, 2013.  Since then, she has allowed camera crews unprecedented access into her life to help tell her story - every step of the way.  From the revelation that she had an incurable disease, to doctor’s visits, second and third opinions, surgeries and reunions with family and friends,  the documentary, airing on NBC in primetime, takes an intimate look inside Harper’s reality.

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Roger Ebert's Birthday

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 18, 2013

The film critic, who died in April, would have been 71 today.

Rogerebert.com has posted several items of interest. There's a table of contents here. Among the pieces is  a look at eight movies Ebert championed, including "Hoop Dreams," "Monster" and "Juno." And there is a  contest to finish a science-fiction story Ebert had started.

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MTV Studies Differences Between "Young" and "Old" Millennials

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 18, 2013

From the network: MTV, a division of Viacom (NASDAQ: VIAB, VIA), today unveiled the results of its new landmark generational study, “The New Millennials Will Keep Calm and Carry On,” investigating the shifting dynamics between younger and older Millennials in the United States. ... Today’s results uncover that younger Millennials (ages 13-17) are different from their older counterparts in key ways: beginning to map their careers at 13, absorbing the advice of pragmatic Gen X parents, and adjusting the rules of how and when to use technology – even unplugging and mono-tasking to de-stress.

The differences between first and second wave Millennials can be seen as the juxtaposition between Harry Potter and Katniss Everdeen of “The Hunger Games.”  Today’s twenty-somethings – more akin to the magical wizard Harry Potter – represent the  Millennials that came of age in the economic boom of the 90s/early 2000s, a time of “Yes We Can” and the belief that college, working hard and playing by the rules would guarantee future success. Raised by idealistic Boomer parents, older Millennials were told they were special and gifted, with a magic wand capable of changing the world.

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Remember Nick Cellini?

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 18, 2013

I made note of the the former sports guy on WWE radio and WKYC (Channel 3) on Twitter and Facebook yesterday. In case you missed it,  Cellini was part of a morning-radio team in Atlanta that made fun of a former NFL player with ALS -- an act so tasteless that it got them fired. You can read more about it here.

 

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Ohio Lottery Returning to WEWS

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 18, 2013

After a long run on WEWS (Channel 5), the telecasts went to WKYC (Channel 3) on July 1, 2011. They return to Channel 5 on July 1 of this year. The official word:

WEWS NewsChannel 5 is pleased to announce a new partnership with the Ohio Lottery.  Effective July 1st, NewsChannel 5 will broadcast the Pick 3, Pick 4 and Pick 5 drawings at 7:29 p.m. Monday through Friday.  In addition, the station will air the Ohio Lottery’s Cash Explosion® game show on Saturday nights at 7:30 p.m.

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Disney Channel Picks Up "Girl Meets World" Series

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 17, 2013

Yes, it is the successor to "Boy Meets World," the 1993-2000 comedy with Ben Savage and Danielle Fishel, whose Cory and Topanga are now the parents of the title's "Girl." The official word:

Disney Channel has ordered "Girl Meets World," a comedy series for kids and families from executive producer Michael Jacobs ("Boy Meets World"). Starring are 11-year-old Rowan Blanchard ("Spy Kids All the Time in World in 4D") as the girl -- Riley Matthews -- 14-year-old Sabrina Carpenter ("Sofia the First" voice cast and a newly signed Hollywood Records recording artist) as her best friend Maya, and Danielle Fishel and Ben Savage reprising the "Cory and Topanga" roles they made famous in ABC's hugely popular sitcom "Boy Meets World" (1993-2000).

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MDA Telethon Moving to ABC

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 17, 2013

You may have seen that this announcement, while discussing the telethon's long history,  never mentions Jerry Lewis, who hosted the telethon for 45 years before being let go in 2011. And lest you presume that Lewis deserves a mention here, note these lines from the end of the release:

The telethon has consistently enjoyed robust support from thousands of the biggest stars in show business. However, the real stars on the broadcast have always been the MDA families who have graciously agreed to open their homes and hearts to America and tell their stories of strength

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Four Vintage Danny Kaye Films Now on iTunes

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 17, 2013

The official word: Four beloved films starring the incomparable Danny Kaye are available on iTunes for the first time ever in celebration of The Danny Kaye Centennial. Fans can now download the Oscar-nominated biopic The Five Pennies (1959), the musical comedy On the Double (1961), the period comedy The Court Jester (1955) and the hilarious caper Knock on Wood (1954), all quintessential family-friendly films that everyone can enjoy for Father’s Day. This year marks the 60th anniversary for Kaye as a UNICEF ambassador as well as the 60th anniversary of both the Knock on Wood and White Christmas releases.

 

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Yes, I Want To See This ...

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 17, 2013

CBS Announces Fall Premiere Dates

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 17, 2013

The official word: CBS, America's #1 network, will premiere nearly all of its new and returning series during official premiere week (Sept. 23-29), following the Network's Sept. 22 broadcast of THE 65TH PRIMETIME EMMY AWARDS, which will air live, 8:00-11:00 PM, ET/5:00-8:00 PM, PT. 

 

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Mixed Notes

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 15, 2013

In today's Beacon Journal and on Ohio.com I have interviews with Janet Evanovich and Lee Goldberg about their new book, "The Heist." They will be in Westlake on Tuesday to sign copies.  I interviewed them separately not long ago, and had so much fun with each talk that I ended up with far more material than I used in the story. I may add some more to the blog next week.

Also, in tomorrow's print edition and online now, is my interview with Andy Cadiff, who is directing the live "Hot in Cleveland" episode airing this week. Lots about the logistics of live.

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Looking Back: "Superman: The Movie"

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 14, 2013

With "Man of Steel" in the air, the bride and I revisited "Superman: The Movie," the first of the Christopher Reeve films. We watched the DVD-special Richard Donner cut, complete with remastered audio that made our home theater sit up and take notice in a way it seldom does. And, in the end, I had a renewed appreciation of Christopher Reeve, but still more admiration for "Man of Steel." ...

The problem facing not only Superman movies but costumed-hero tales generally is how to balance the origin story with the beginning of contemporary adventures: How much of this hero's past do we really need to know? Batman, for example, usually makes note of the death of Bruce Wayne's parents as an inspirational moment -- but his adolescent years are seldom addressed. With Superman, there was a whole set of comics dealing with his Superboy youth, and some films feel an obligation to do so, among them "Superman: The Movie" and "Man of Steel."

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Video: Rich and the movies: 'Man of Steel'

By Ohio.com Published: June 13, 2013

Superman is back in theaters, and Beacon Journal pop culture writer Rich Heldenfels has some thoughts. Check out his thoughts on Man of Steel. Read his review here.

 

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Mixed Notes

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 13, 2013

My review of "Man of Steel," which would have been pretty much perfect with fewer or shorter fight sequences, is here. And, in case you missed it earlier this week, I have a look at the history and significance of Superman. Also in today's Beacon Journal and on Ohio.com, the latest mailbag, with questions and answers about "Vegas," "Bates Motel" and other topics.

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Graham Parker DVD/Blu-ray Coming in August

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 12, 2013

Kevin Costner Talks Music: The Background

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 12, 2013

In today's Beacon Journal and on Ohio.com, I have a few words from Kevin Costner about his musical work, which will be on display in two local shows with his band Modern West later this month. You can read the story here.

And here's what you should know about the chat came about. Costner is in the cast of "Draft Day," the new movie in which he plays the general manager of the Cleveland Browns. The cast also includes Denis Leary, as the Browns coach, and is directed by Ivan Reitman ("Dave," "Stripes"). Last week, some reporters including me were admitted to the set to see how it looked, watch a bit of the movie being made and interview Reitman, Leary and Costner. The condition was that the material from the visit, including the interviews, be held until close to the movie's opening.

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WNIR Marks 1st Anniversary of Chizek's Death (with Update)

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 11, 2013

UPDATE: I have a story online today with some more explanation of why WNIR is, among other things, using Chizek's next to last broadcast instead of the final one.

The official word: Sunday June 16th, 2013 marks the first anniversary of the death of WNIR Radio personality, Howie Chizek, who passed away while en route to Disney World with a group of teens from his New Adventures mentoring program.

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Television Critics Association Nominations Announced

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 11, 2013

The list is below. While I have not been active in the organization for quite a few years, I remain a member. Here's one analysis of the nominees.


INDIVIDUAL ACHIEVEMENT IN DRAMA  

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"Amour" on DVD/Blu-ray in August

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 11, 2013

You can read my review of the Oscar-winning film here. And here's the official word on the video release: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment is thrilled to announce that writer/director Michael Haneke’s powerful film, AMOUR, will be available on Blu-ray™ and DVD August 20th.  The Sony Pictures Classics film starring Jean-Louis Trintignant (A Man and a Woman, My Night at Maud’s), Emmanuelle Riva (Skylab, Can’t Say No) and Isabelle Huppert (I Heart Huckabees, Madame Bovary), is one of the most critically acclaimed films of the past year, winning the Academy Award®, Golden Globe®, BAFTA and Independent Spirit Award for Best Foreign Language film.  Oscar® nominations also included Best Achievement in Directing and Best Original Screenplay for Haneke, and Best Actress in a Leading Role for Riva who, at age 85, became the oldest Best Actress nominee of all time. AMOUR also made Academy Award® history with a nomination for Best Picture, making it one of only four films to be nominated for both Best Picture and Best Foreign Language Film in the same year. The film was awarded numerous additional honors, including Best Picture from the César Awards, the 25th European Film Awards, the National Society of Film Critics and the Los Angeles Film Critics.  Both the César Awards and the 25th European Film Awards also gave the Best Director trophy to Haneke, with top acting awards for Riva and Trintignant. Riva was named Best Actress by BAFTA, the National Society of Film Critics and the Los Angeles Film Critics. 

Bonus features on the Blu-ray and DVD include the “Making of AMOUR” featurette and a Q & A with Haneke.

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"DaVinci's Demons" on DVD/Blu-ray in September

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 11, 2013

The official word: In a world where thought and faith are rigidly controlled, one man fights to set knowledge free.  Anchor Bay Entertainment releases the adventurous Starz Original series “DA VINCI’S DEMONS - THE COMPLETE FIRST SEASON” on a three-disc Blu-ray™ and DVD set September 3rd.   From David S. Goyer, co-writer on The Dark Knight trilogy and Man of Steel, comes a journey into the mind of the greatest Renaissance man of them all.  The collection contains bonus features including featurettes, behind-the-scenes footage and audio commentaries from the cast and creators.  SRP is $54.99 for the Blu-ray™ and $44.98 for the DVD.  Pre-book is August 7th.

 

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Mixed Notes Monday

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 10, 2013

Tonight brings the return of "Major Crimes," with a good episode, followed by the premiere of "King & Maxwell." My review of that show, from Sunday's Beacon Journal, is here. And yes, that is a link to the Toledo Blade, because I did not find that column on Ohio.com yet.

"Behind the Candelabra," the much-praised HBO movie about Liberace, will come to DVD and Blu-ray on Sept. 17, one week after the home-video debut of  the less enthusiastically greeted "Parade's End." I liked "Candelabra," as I said here, but didn't pay much attention to "Parade's." I have for many years had paperbacks of the Ford Madox Ford novels that inspired the series, and have tried diligently more than once to read them -- and just never managed to get far.

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Mixed Notes Saturday

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 8, 2013

Today's HeldenFiles asks when it's all right to talk spoilers for a show: a week? Month? 22 years?

Online now, and in print editions tomorrow, is my look at 75 years of Superman. I am seeing the newest interpretation, "Man of Steel," on Monday.

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Rich and the movies: Kings of Summer

By Ohio.com Published: June 7, 2013

Summer blockbusters can be fun, but for Beacon Journal pop culture writer Rich Heldenfels, it's nice to find a movie with character and feeling. The Kings of Summer is one of those movies.

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Mixed Notes Thursday

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 6, 2013

Tonight includes the return of "Burn Notice" for its final season, and the premiere of new drama "Graceland." Here is how I saw the latter: premiere, fourth and fifth episodes, with a highlight reel for the second and third. That's not ideal BUT I am glad I saw the fourth and fifth because they kick in dramatically in a way that the premiere does not.

The series involves a group of feds working undercover in the drug trade, and living in a house nicknamed Graceland because the former owner was Elvis-fixated. Here endeth the relevance of Graceland. With many characters and interrelationships to establish, the premiere is a bit slow. By those later episodes, though, the pieces are meshing, and the characters' struggles evident. After all, they have to maintain their undercover identities, deal with pressure to produce from their bosses, hold onto pieces of themselves while befriending criminal scum, figure out how to navigate the drug world without becoming too much a part of it -- and keep some secrets for themselves. The identity issue in particular gets dizzying for more than one character. But it's good, if more than a little grim. And there are fine performances from the consistently good Daniel Sunjata and  Vanessa Ferlito.

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Conan O'Brien To Host TCM's Johnny Carson Interviews

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 5, 2013

The official word: Conan O'Brien is coming to Turner Classic Movies (TCM) this summer to host Carson on TCM, a new series featuring memorable Johnny Carson interviews from three decades of The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson. The series is set to air Mondays at 8 p.m. (ET), beginning July 1.

 

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Champion, Meade, Hammer Hosting Daytime Entertainment Emmys

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 5, 2013

Meade and Hammer, conveniently, both work for HLN, which is carrying the show. Meade also grew up in New London, Ohio; is a former Miss Ohio and early in her career worked at WJW (Channel 8).

The official word: HLN, the host network of the annual Daytime Entertainment Emmy® Awards show, now in its 40th year, presented live from The Beverly Hilton hotel in Los Angeles on Sunday, June 16, 8-10 p.m., ET/PT, today announces ABC’s Good Morning America’s Sam Champion along with HLN’s own A.J. Hammer and Robin Meade to host this year’s landmark awards show. 

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Shatner, Baumgartner Join "Hot in Cleveland" Live Telecast

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 5, 2013

The official word: TV Land announced today that William Shatner (“Star Trek”) and Brian Baumgartner (“The Office”) will guest star in the LIVE episode of “Hot in Cleveland” on Wednesday, June 19.

The episode will be live on the East Coast at 10pm ET, with the West Coast getting the live-to-tape version three hours later at 10pm PT. “Hot in Cleveland” stars Valerie Bertinelli (“One Day at a Time,”), Jane Leeves (“Frasier”), Wendie Malick (“Just Shoot Me!”) and Betty White (“The Golden Girls”).

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Kris Jenner Gets Her Own Comic Book

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 5, 2013

Too bad she didn't get just 15 minutes. As Bruce Jenner noted in his Jimmy Fallon appearance (part 1 is above, with a link to part 2), the Kardashian clan is basically indestructible. And now includes Kanye. But under the circumstances, a comic book seems the right place for her. The official word:

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"Unforgettable" Season 1 on DVD, Season 2 Coming in July

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 5, 2013

The Poppy Montgomery drama begins its second season on CBS on July 28. As for the DVD, the official word:

Highlighted by brand new behind-the-scenes looks and interviews with the cast and crew, UNFORGETTABLE: THE FIRST SEASON makes memories on DVD July 9, from CBS Home Entertainment and Paramount Home Media Distribution. With exclusive new material, only available in the 6-disc collection, fans can delve deeply into the inspiration for and making of the fascinating series headlined by Poppy Montgomery and co-starring Dylan Walsh, Michael Gaston, Kevin Rankin, Daya Vaidya and Jane Curtin, just in time for its second season broadcast premiere on July 28.

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Colbert McCartney Special on June 12

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 5, 2013

The official word: The Nation will experience a special one-hour episode of "The Colbert Report" as Stephen Colbert welcomes Paul McCartney. The super-sized show will feature an interview as well as performances of songs featured on McCartney’s current Out There tour, the new 2013 reissue of “Wings Over America” and more with one song to be exclusively available at www.ColbertNation.com. Tune-in to "The Colbert Report" on Wednesday, June 12 from 11:30 p.m.-12:30 a.m. ET/PT to watch this epic episode.

Said Colbert, “I think this McCartney kid’s got something special and I’m gonna put him on the map!”

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TBS Post-Season Baseball Telecasts To Include Keith Olbermann

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 5, 2013

Of course, the post-season is still months away, so there is plenty of time for Olbermann to become disenchanted and quit. The official word:

Furthering Turner Broadcasting’s longstanding commitment to leading coverage of the Major League Baseball (MLB) Postseason, David Levy, president of sales, distribution and sports, today announced key players in TBS’ 2013 coverage. Keith Olbermann has been named host of TBS’ Major League Baseball postseason studio show, joining analyst and Hall of Famer Dennis Eckersley. Additionally, Ron Darling, who joined TBS as an MLB analyst in 2008, has reached a long-term extension with Turner Sports.

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And Another: "42" on DVD/Blu-ray

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 4, 2013

This official word: Watch the true story of an American legend when “42” arrives onto Blu-ray Combo Pack, DVD and Digital Download on July 16 from Warner Bros. Home Entertainment and Legendary Pictures. Starring Harrison Ford and Chadwick Boseman as two men who changed baseball forever, “42” follows the legendary Brooklyn Dodgers GM Branch Rickey and the great Jackie Robinson as they take a stand against racism and baseball’s infamous color line.

 

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Still More DVD/Blu-ray News: "G.I. Joe: Retaliation"

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 4, 2013

The official word: Called “a stunning, high-flying, super-charged blast of fun” (Shawn Edwards, FOX-TV), the $355+ million* worldwide blockbuster  G.I. JOE: RETALIATION explodes onto Blu-ray, Blu-ray 3D, DVD and On Demand July 30, 2013 from Paramount Home Media Distribution.

  Based on Hasbro’s popular G.I. JOE brand, the film will be available on Digital two weeks early on July 16th.  “Born to play a G.I. JOE” (Scott Bowles, USA Today), Dwayne Johnson embodies ROADBLOCK and he and Channing Tatum “are a match made in action flick heaven” (James Oster, JoBlo.com) in this “cool ride” (Richard Corliss, Time) that is “awesome times 10!” (Shawn Edwards, FOX-TV).  From Paramount Pictures and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures, G.I. JOE: RETALIATION also stars action legend Bruce Willis as the original G.I. JOE, as well as Adrianne Palicki, D.J. Cotrona and Jonathan Pryce.  In director Jon M. Chu’s heart-pounding thrill ride, the G.I. JOE team not only faces off against its mortal enemy COBRA, it is also forced to contend with threats from within the government that jeopardize its very existence. 

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"Walking Dead" Season 3 DVD/Blu-ray Set Coming in August

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 4, 2013

The official word: It has become a cultural phenomenon. The fans embrace it, the critics adore it. And now the stakes have never been higher for the survivors...On August 27th, Anchor Bay Entertainment unleashes AMC’s original series THE WALKING DEAD: THE COMPLETE THIRD SEASON on Blu-ray™ and DVD. Available as a 5-disc set in each format, the release contains all sixteen episodes from the past season. Like the previous releases, THE WALKING DEAD: THE COMPLETE THIRD SEASON comes stuffed with tons of bonus features, including exclusive behind-the-scenes footage, never-before-seen featurettes, audio commentaries from cast and crew, deleted scenes and other surprises!

 

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"Oblivion" DVD/Blu-ray Plans Announced

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 4, 2013

The official word: On a desolate, nearly ruined future Earth, Tom Cruise (Mission Impossible Franchise) and Academy Award® winner Morgan Freeman (The Dark Knight Rises, Wanted) star in the ground-breaking cinematic event Oblivion, a visually stunning, post-Apocalyptic thriller. A glimpse of a perilous future from visionary filmmaker Joseph Kosinski (TRON: Legacy) and the producers of Rise of the Planet of the Apes, Oblivion is “unlike anything you’ve ever seen” (Moviefanatic’s Joel Amos), as one man confronts his mysterious past in a journey of redemption and discovery.

 

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Ken Burns To Make Cancer Documentary for 2015

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 4, 2013

The official word: Siddhartha Mukherjee, M.D., award-winning author of The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer (Simon & Schuster 2010), and acclaimed filmmaker Ken Burns will collaborate on a new documentary inspired by the Pulitzer Prize-winning book, both parties announced today. The film CANCER: The Emperor of All Maladies will be directed by the award-winning filmmaker Barak Goodman with Burns as executive producer, and will air on PBS in the spring of 2015.

 

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Tickets on Sale Friday for Food Guy Alton Brown's Akron Show in November

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 4, 2013

The official word: Alton Brown, Iron Chef host and renowned television personality is taking his brand of quirky humor and culinary science on the road with the “Alton Brown Live! The Edible Inevitable Tour.” Brown will appear at The University of Akron’s E. J. Thomas Hall on Tuesday, November 5 at 7:30PM. Tickets go on sale this Friday, June 7 at 11:00AM and are available at ticketmaster.com, by phone at 800-745-3000, at all Ticketmaster outlets and at the Thomas Hall Ticket Office.


Recently named Best Food TV Personality at The Munchies,* Brown’s tour promises to be an eventful evening of stand-up comedy, talks show antics, multimedia lecture, live music and food experimentation. Be prepared. Ponchos will be involved. The show will offer an interactive component in which audience members will have the opportunity to serve as Brown’s trusted assistants on stage.  For those hoping to sip at the pure source of Brownian wit and wisdom, this is a must-see extravaganza for the whole family. 

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Matt Zoller Seitz the New Editor of Rogerebert.com

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 4, 2013

You can read the announcement here. Matt introduces himself here. Seitz has written often and eloquently about TV and film, and I consider him a friend as well as a colleague. Check him out. He has a blog post on the site here.

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Ready for a Director's Cut of "Boondock Saints II"?

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 4, 2013

An extended version of the cult film is coming this month. The official word:

After a theatrical box office of more than $10 million, Writer/Director Troy Duffy’s sequel to the cult classic The Boondock Saints is back and bigger than ever when Sony Pictures Home Entertainment debuts The Boondock Saints II: All Saints Day (Director’s Cut) on two-disc Blu-ray™ with UltraViolet™ exclusively at Best Buy on July 16th. 

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Discovery Sets Tribute to Dead Stormchasers for Wednesday

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 3, 2013

The official word: In order to honor the lives of Tim Samaras, Carl Young and Paul Samaras who were killed during the May 31 tornado outbreak in Oklahoma, near El Reno, Discovery presents an enhanced episode of MILE WIDE TORNADO: OKLAHOMA DISASTER that will include highlights and special scenes of all three men from Discovery’s series, STORMCHASERS. MILE WIDE TORNADO: STORMCHASERS TRIBUTE will premiere Wednesday, June 5 at 10PM ET/PT. 

Tim, Carl and Paul were entrenched in the learning gained from the science of the storm. Tim founded tornado research unit Tactical Weather Instrumented Sampling Tornadoes Experiment (TWISTEX), and spent more than 20 years following storms. His career was spent intercepting storms, assessing their power and helping to further the research to advance tornado warning systems. Carl studied tornado dynamics and earned a master’s degree in atmospheric science from the University of Nevada, Reno. While attending a meteorological conference, Carl met Tim, who encouraged him to collect meteorological data from inside tornadoes as the principle focus of his research. Every spring since 2003, Carl chased storms with Tim, and together they tracked down over 125 tornadoes. Tim's son Paul Samaras had become TWISTEX's videographer, providing vivid details of the team's intercepts and research. Paul was also an accomplished photographer and shared his father’s zest for science and exploration. 

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Writers Guild List of Best-Written TV Series of All Time

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 3, 2013

"The Sopranos" topped the list, which includes 101 shows. "Oz" is 101st. I have already whined a little on Twitter, ("All in the Famly" has not aged well and is ranked too high; "The Shield" is much too low). but I leave the list for your further debate. The WGA announcement is here. You can see the complete 101 list here.

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Disney Channel Sets July Preview of Fall Series "Liv and Maddie"

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 3, 2013

The official word: It's double the fun following the world premiere of the Disney Channel Original Movie "Teen Beach Movie," as Disney Channel presents a preview of the upcoming original sitcom "Liv and Maddie," FRIDAY, JULY 19 (9:45 p.m., ET/PT). The series follows smart and witty fifteen-year-old identical twins Liv and Maddie, both played by seventeen-year-old Dove Cameron, and their tight-knit family, younger brothers Joey and Parker, and parents Pete and Karen. "Liv and Maddie" will premiere this fall on Disney Channel.


In the preview episode, twin sisters Liv and Maddie at long last reunite when Liv returns home to Wisconsin after starring for four years in a hit musical television show in Hollywood. The Rooney sisters quickly realize their polar opposite personalities put their unbreakable twin bond to the test. While their parents play referee between Liv, a cool, confident, social butterfly who loves to sing, and Maddie, a smart, athletic, high school basketball star who opts for high tops over high heels, brothers Joey and Parker seize the opportunity to capitalize on the chaos and get away with as much as they can.

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Ridley Scott-Backed "Crimes of the Century" Hits CNN on June 23

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 3, 2013

The official word: Crimes of the Century, a CNN Original series executive produced by acclaimed director Ridley Scott, David Zucker and Mary Lisio of Scott Free Productions, premieres Sunday, June 23 at 9pm ET.

Each of the series’ eight episodes will focus on a single major news event that was considered not only shocking at the time, but has since had far reaching repercussions.  Employing Scott’s signature visual style, the series builds on archived and never-before-seen footage, exclusive interviews with witnesses, victims, and investigators of the crimes, offering viewers a virtual scene-of-the-crime vantage point.

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Rich and the movies: Memorable acting roles for summer blockbuster stars

By Ohio.com Published: June 3, 2013

We're in the midst of blockbuster season. But how important is the acting in big-budget summer movies? Not much, but actors like Don Cheadle, Michelle Rodriguez and Bradley Cooper have memorable performances in other roles.

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Ready for More "Catfish"?

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 3, 2013

Get More: MTV Shows

It's been close to five months since Manti Te'o introduced a world full of non-MTV-watchers to the concept of catfiahing -- and boosted interest in the TV show in the process. Now "Catfish" itself is back, with a 16-episode second season beginning June 25. The trailer is above.

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Why Would Anyone Object To This Ad?

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 3, 2013

Mixed Notes Saturday

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 1, 2013

You can get a jump on your Sunday reading today online. A look at the making of the well-received, locally shot "Kings of Summer" is here. I will have my own review later in the week. My Channels cover, about the very silly "Mistresses," is here. And this week's DVD/Blu-ray column is here.

In case you missed today's HeldenFiles, which includes some notes about the third season of "The Killing" and a recap of local folks on reality TV now, you can read it here.

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