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Video: Two Guys Talkin' about the Super Bowl

By Ohio.com Published: January 28, 2015

It's Super Bowl XLIX and our two guys can't wait for the halftime show!

And you can find a bonus chat here..

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"Young & Hungry," "Freak Out" return March 25

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 28, 2015

The official word: – ABC Family today announced the second season of hit comedy series “Young & Hungry,” along with the season premiere of the funny, scary prank show “Freak Out,” will premiere on Wednesday, March 25th, 2015.

“Young & Hungry”’s second season picks up with Gabi (Emily Osment) surprised by the return of ex-boyfriend Cooper (guest star Jesse McCartney), just as her boss, Josh (Jonathan Sadowski), has called off his wedding due to his feelings for her. “Young & Hungry” executive producer Ashley Tisdale will reprise her guest role as formidable magazine editor Logan Rawlings in Season 2, and Jesse McCartney will return as tech genius Cooper in several episodes. “Young & Hungry” will premiere Wednesday, March 25th, 2015  at 8:00 PM ET/PT.

“Young & Hungry” ranked as basic cable’s #1 telecast in its time period in Adults 18-34 and Women 18-34, as well as other key demos during its debut season. The show was recently nominated for two Teen Choice Awards for Choice Summer TV Show and Choice Summer TV Star – Female for Osment, as well as a People’s Choice Award for Favorite Cable TV Comedy.

“Young & Hungry” is produced by David Holden, Ashley Tisdale, Jessica Rhoades, Caryn Lucas, and Eric Tannenbaum and Kim Tannenbaum in association with CBS Television Studios. Gabi  Moskowitz, a San Francisco-based food blogger, of BrokeAssGourmet.com, contributed to the development of this project. The show stars Emily Osment, Jonathan Sadowski, Aimee Carrero, Kym Whitley, and Rex Lee. 

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ABC sets Shania Twain special

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 28, 2015

The official word: On FEBRUARY 28 (9:00 p.m., ET/8:00 p.m., CT), the ABC Television Network will air an exclusive concert event, “Shania: Still the One Live from Vegas.” International superstar, Shania Twain, wrapped up her successful 2 year residency in Las Vegas, Nevada in December. The five-time Grammy Award winner performed 105 shows and is one of the world’s best-selling artists of all time. Produced by Twain, “Live From Vegas,” captures the full “Shania: Still the One” stage performance plus over an hour of never-before-scene footage tracking the conception, training, rehearsals, costumes, and all the decisions in between that go into creating a one-of-a-kind experience for the audience. The show features a 13-piece live band, dancers, trained horses, and a flying motorcycle with plenty of Vegas flash. 

With more than 75 million albums sold worldwide and U.S. sales topping 34.5 million, Twain remains the top-selling female country artist of all time. Her 1997 release Come On Over has sold in excess of 15.6 million making it the top-selling country album and places it in the Top 10 all genre best sellers of all time.

“Shania: Still the One Live from Las Vegas” is produced and directed by Mark D. Allen and Raj Kapoor and is executive produced by Shania Twain.  
 

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"RuPaul's Drag Race" sets return; Carson Kressley a new judge

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 28, 2015

The official word: “RuPaul’s Drag Race” returns to Logo TV with a gaggle of queens so ingenious, a competition so unpredictable and a judges’ panel so packed with talent, you’ll be seeing stars! New this season, RuPaul welcomes pop culture aficionados Carson Kressley and Ross Mathews to the permanent judging panel alongsideMichelle Visage. Kressley and Mathews will leave fans gagging with their rapid-fire quick wit, impeccable sense of style and signature sass. Think you know this race?  Honey, you have no idea. “RuPaul’s Drag Race” returns with a new season on Monday, March 2 at 9 p.m. ET/PT.

 

"Yes, Virginia, there is a gay Santa Claus!” exclaimed Executive Producer, RuPaul. “I asked for a new, wickedly funny, smart and experienced judge…and I got two! Ross and Carson are the perfect addition to the ‘RuPaul’s Drag Race’ family because they're not just show biz experts, they’re superfans and longtime lovers of the art of drag."

 

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"Foxcatcher" home viewing plans

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 26, 2015

The official word: Steve Carell (Crazy, Stupid, Love.), Channing Tatum (22 Jump Street) and Academy Award® nominated Mark Ruffalo (Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role, The Kids Are All Right, 2010) star in the multiple Golden Globe and Academy Award-nominated psychological thriller FOXCATCHER, available on Digital HD and on Blu-ray™ & DVD on March 3 from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment.

 

Based on actual events, this critically acclaimed film from Academy Award® nominated Director Bennett Miller (Best Director, Capote, 2005) tells the story of Olympic gold medal-winning wrestler Mark Shultz (Tatum), who is invited by eccentric multi-millionaire John du Pont (Carell) to his state-of-the-art training facility in preparation for the 1988 Seoul Olympics.  Hoping it will catapult him out of his brother’s shadow, Mark jumps at the opportunity. But du Pont soon becomes unsatisfied with Mark’s performance, driven by hidden needs, and seeks backing from Mark’s revered and charismatic brother, Dave (Ruffalo). Misguided loyalty, jealousy and ultimately betrayal lead to an unexpected and tragic end.

 

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VH1 Classic begins "SNL" mega-marathon on Wednesday (updated)

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 26, 2015

See a note at the end about program content. The official word: VH1 Classic celebrates the 40th anniversary of the longest-running sketch comedy show in history by bringing fans 40 years of “SNL” in one place:  “The SNL Rewind:  2015 – 1975 Mega-Marathon” beginning Wednesday, January 28th and wrapping on Sunday, February 15th. 

Fans can relive the best moments (or binge on all the ones you missed) of “SNL” history with 19 days of back-to-back SNL episodes in this 433-hour “SNL” marathon -- the longest ever mounted for a single series on television ever.*

The marathon showcases 40 seasons of Not Ready For Primetime Players many of whom are now known around the world:  Chevy Chase, Eddie Murphy, Billy Crystal, Dana Carvey, Mike Myers, Will Ferrell, Adam Sandler, Kristen Wiig, Tina Fey, Amy Poehler, Jimmy Fallon, and Seth Meyers.  VH1 Classic will deliver the best moments -- which will leave fans demanding “even more cowbell.”

VH1 will also join the party with a marathon of retrospective specials by decade for at least 10 hours on Sunday, February 15th, ending at 8pm. 

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"Whiplash" home viewing plans

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 26, 2015

Saw this on Sunday. Very good, although not near the top of my Oscar list. The official word: – The compelling and critically acclaimed drama WHIPLASH arrives
on Blu-ray™, DVDand Digital HD Feb. 24 from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment. Inspired by writer/directorDamien Chazelle, this Sony Pictures Classics film follows the journey of a young jazzmusician with a passion for drumming and dreams of greatness.

Andrew Neiman,played by rising star Miles Teller (That Awkward Moment),
is a determined19-year-old student.  His rigid music teacher, Terence Fletcher, played byJ.K. Simmons (Golden Globe®winner and Oscar®nominee for his role), sees Andrew’s raw talent, but will accept nothing less than perfection. Nominated for five Academy Awards®(Best Picture, Best Supporting Actor, Adapted Screenplay, Editing, Sound Mixing), WHIPLASHalso stars Paul Reiser (Life After Beth) as Andrew’s father and Melissa Benoist (“Glee”) as Andrew’s love interest, Nicole.

Winner of both the Audience and Grand Jury Prizes at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival, WHIPLASH was first screened at the festival as a short film a year earlier to excellent reaction.  Chazelle returneda year later with a  full-length version, which captured the top prizes in Park City and continued on as a festival favorite throughout the year.Film critics took to the film immediately, as evidenced by a 95 percentrating on Rotten Tomatoes.

Variety’s Peter Debruge wrote that “[WHIPLASH] demolishes the clichés of the musical-prodigy genre, investing the traditionally polite stages and rehearsal studios of a topnotch conservatory with all the psychological intensity of a battlefield or sports arena.”In addition, Rolling Stone called the film “electrifying,” and Peter Traversproclaimed that WHIPLASHis “A spellbinder. Miles Teller and J.K. Simmons will blow you away.”

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"60 Minutes" looks at Cleveland Police

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 23, 2015

The official word: The U.S. Justice Department was already investigating the Cleveland Police when one of the division’s officers gunned down a 12-year-old playing with a pellet gun last November.  In his first national interview since that tragedy, Cleveland Police Chief Calvin Williams disagrees with parts of the Justice Department’s report and defends his troubled force, saying the majority are good, but there are bad officers he is working hard to rid from the division. Bill Whitaker reports from Cleveland, where he accompanies the city’s law enforcement officers on routine patrol and as they engage in community outreach for a story on the hot-button issue of policing in America. He also conducts the first sit-down interview with the family of a mentally ill woman killed in an altercation with Cleveland police officers. His story will be broadcast Sunday, Jan. 25 (7:00-8:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network.

“Of course there are [bad guys among the Cleveland Police], and it’s my job to make sure we weed out the bad people from this division, and that we nurture and grow and support the good officers that are out there,” says Williams. Watch an excerpt.

He also aims to keep potentially unsafe policemen off the force. The rookie officer who shot 12-year-old Tamir Rice had been deemed emotionally unfit by another police department.  “Those are things that are under investigation,” Williams tells Whitaker. “We know some of the things that happened in that process and we’re… changing the way some of that is done.”

In the Rice incident that made national headlines, the boy was shot dead within a few seconds of the arrival of the police cruiser.  “A 12-year-old boy lost his life. Period,” says Williams. “And what makes it even more difficult for me, not just as a person who lives in the city but as a chief, is that that happened at the hands of a police officer.”

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"Mockingjay 1" home-viewing plans

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 22, 2015

The official word: Lionsgate’s (NYSE: LGF) global juggernaut The Hunger Games franchise continues to set the world on fire with The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1 arriving on Digital HD February 17 and on Blu-ray Combo Pack (plus DVD and Digital HD), DVD (plus Digital) and On Demand Friday, March 6, the Company announced today.

 

Mockingjay – Part 1 became the highest-grossing domestic release of 2014 when it reached nearly $333.2 million at the domestic box office yesterday.  The last two installments of The Hunger Games franchise (Catching Fire and Mockingjay – Part 1) have become the highest-grossing releases at the domestic box office each of the past two years, the first time in decades that a studio has scored back-to-back #1 films of the year and the first time ever for back-to-back sequels.  Mockingjay – Part 1, which opens in China on February 8, has already grossed more than $700 million worldwide, bringing global box office for the franchise to over $2.2 billion.

“The number one theatrical release of 2014 is poised to become one of the biggest home entertainment events of 2015,” said Lionsgate Home Entertainment President Ron Schwartz and Lionsgate President of Worldwide Television & Digital Distribution Jim Packer.  “With the film’s home entertainment rollout beginning on Digital HD next month and continuing on Blu-ray, DVD and on demand in March, we’re continuing to expand the portfolio of choices we offer to enrich the experience of our consumers.”        

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Paula Abdul, Jason Derulo join "SYTYCD" as judges

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 22, 2015

Make your own "wiggle" joke. The official word: World-renowned choreographer, performer, singer and songwriter Paula Abdul and global superstar, singer/songwriter/dancer Jason Derulo will join Nigel Lythgoe at the judges’ table, alongside returning host Cat Deeley, for the 12th season of SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DANCE. The upcoming season will feature a new twist in the competition: stage dancers vs. street dancers.

 

“With the new and exciting format comes a new and exciting panel of judges,” said executive producer and judge Lythgoe. “I’m delighted that Paula Abdul and Jason Derulo will be joining me at the judges’ table this season on SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DANCE. Paula is an incredible artist and she brings the perfect combination of expertise and heart to the panel. Jason’s insight, humor and creativity will add a new perspective to the panel that we haven’t had before.”

 

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On a personal note ...

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 22, 2015

On this date in 1973, the Supreme Court announced its decision in Roe v. Wade. Women's lives changed for the better. This is not to say that the decision to have or not have an abortion is an easy one. For many, it is agonizing. But the court decision meant that women could make that decision in private, without the intrusion of meddling lawmakers or the fear of legal action.

While a lot of so-called conservatives oppose abortion, Barry Goldwater -- the godfather of modern American conservatism -- was pro-choice. He once said whether to have an abortion is "a decision that's up to the pregnant woman, not up to the pope or some do-gooders or the religious right. It's not a conservative issue at all." Yet on this day, protesters and politicians will again try to take the decision away, causing unending pain in the process

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New "Walking Dead" trailer

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 20, 2015

2012 Paul McCartney tribute concert (with Paul) on DVD & Blu-ray in March

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 20, 2015

The official word: On February 10, 2012, Sir Paul McCartney was honored as the 2012 MusiCares® Person of the Year. At a gala event in Los Angeles, Paul and a cast of superstar guests performed some of the quintessential songs from his renowned and celebrated career. On March 24, 2015, Shout! Factory will release A MusiCares Tribute to Paul McCartney, a collection of these never-before-seen performances on DVD and Blu-ray. Fans can pre-order their copy by visiting ShoutFactory.com or Amazon.com.

 

The 15 exclusive performances featured on A MusiCares Tribute to Paul McCartney include exceptional solo performances by McCartney of “Magical Mystery Tour,” “Junior’s Farm,” and “My Valentine,” a riveting medley of “Golden Slumbers,” “Carry That Weight,” and “The End” by McCartney (with Dave Grohl and Joe Walsh joining the performance of “The End”), and incredible performances by a slate of all-star artists including Alicia Keys, Coldplay, Norah Jones, Neil Young with Crazy Horse, Alison Krauss & Union Station featuring Jerry Douglas, James Taylor, Diana Krall, Duane Eddy, Sergio Mendes, and The Beatles “Love” cast.


Proceeds from the sale of A MusiCares Tribute to Paul McCartney will provide essential support for MusiCares, which ensures that music people have a place to turn in times of financial, medical and personal need.

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New "Amazing Race" cast announced

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 20, 2015

The next season will have all dating couples -- some already dating, some set up on blind dates for the show. The cast info is here.

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Did you see "The Nightly Show" with Larry Wilmore? You should ...

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 20, 2015

... and I am offering you a link to Monday's premiere here. Tonight, by the way, the show will be talking about Bill Cosby.

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Hall & Oates concert beaming into cinemas in February

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 20, 2015

The official word: Rock and Roll Hall of Famers Daryl Hall and John Oates come to the big screen for a special one-night concert event on Thursday, February 19, 2015 at 7 p.m. local time, presented by Fathom Events, Cinema 1 and Eagle Rock Entertainment. The number-one selling duo in music history, they played before a sellout crowd in July 2014 at Dublin’s Olympia Theatre which will now come to select theaters as “Daryl Hall & John Oates: Recorded Live From Dublin.” Their set list included their smash hits such as “I Can’t Go For That (No Can Do),” "Rich Girl, "Kiss on My List," "Private Eyes," "Maneater,"  “She’s Gone,” "Out of Touch" and many more. Over 90 minutes of concert content will be shown along with special interviews and exclusive backstage footage.

Tickets for “Daryl Hall & John Oates: Recorded Live From Dublin” are available at participating theater box offices and online at www.FathomEvents.com. The event will be presented in more than 300 select movie theaters around the country through Fathom’s Digital Broadcast Network. For a complete list of theater locations visit the Fathom Events website (theaters and participants are subject to change).

“Ireland has a very music-oriented culture and a proud musical heritage,” said Hall. “It was the perfect storm for a band, a concert and an audience.  There are very few first-time experiences after you’ve been doing this for more than 40 years.”

Daryl Hall & John Oates are soul survivors.  Signed to Atlantic by Ahmet Ertegan in the 1970’s, from the mid-’70s to the mid-’80s, the duo would score six #1 singles, including “Rich Girl” (also #1 R&B), “Kiss on My List,” “Private Eyes,” “I Can’t Go For That (No Can Do) (also #1 R&B), “Maneater” and “Out of Touch.”  By 1987, the R.I.A.A. recognized Daryl Hall and John Oates as the number-one selling duo in music history, a record they still hold today. In May 2008, the duo was honored with the Icon Award during BMI’s 56th annual Pop Awards. In 2014, the two musicians hit another high as they were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

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CBS, NFL extend Thursday-night TV deal

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 18, 2015

The official word: The National Football League will continue its partnership with CBS to produce and televise Thursday Night Football for the 2015 season, it was announced today by NFL Commissioner ROGER GOODELL and LESLIE MOONVES, president and CEO of CBS Corp., and SEAN McMANUS, Chairman, CBS Sports.

 

CBS will broadcast the first eight Thursday Night Football games which also will be simulcast on NFL Network. NFL Network will also exclusively televise eight games in the run-up to the playoffs. The mix of games will include 14 on Thursday nights and two late-season games on Saturday.

 

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Cinemark sets showings of best-picture Oscar nominees, plus live-action and animated shorts

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 16, 2015

The official word: Cinemark’s OscarMovie Weekwill commence on Friday, February 13th with the Best Picture nominees playing at various times throughout the weekend and up to Sunday, February 22. All 10 of the nominated Best Live Action and Animated Shorts will show on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, February 20-22.
A special bundled price of $40 is available to come see all of Best Picture nominations and the Shorts Program at a discounted rate for select showtimes during the week and weekend. Customers can also see the nominees on a single film basis at the regular admission price.Tickets for the Oscar Shorts are only $10 each. A full list of participating theatres will be available beginning Friday, January 16thatwww.cinemark.comfor both the OscarMovie Weekand the Oscar Shorts.
For customers who purchase the bundled package for $40, Cinemark will provide them with a special editionOscarMovie Week badge and lanyard that will gain them admission into each film and the Shorts program. Bundled packages and Individual tickets will be available beginningFriday, January 16, 2015 online at Cinemark.com and at participating theater box offices.
The order and start times of Cinemark’sOscarMovie Weekare:
Friday, February 13: Birdman (or The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) 7:00pm
Selma    10:00 pm

Saturday, February 14: The Theory of Everything  1:00pm
The Grand Budapest Hotel  4:00pm
Whiplash   7:00pm
American Sniper   10:00pm

Sunday, February 15: The Imitation Game  4:00pm
Boyhood    7:00pm

Monday, February 16: The Grand Budapest Hotel 7:00pm
Birdman (or The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) 10:00pm

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Urban Meyer visits Letterman on Friday

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 15, 2015

The official word: Urban Meyer, head football coach of the Ohio State University Buckeyes, talks about his team’s upset of the University of Oregon Ducks in the inaugural College Football Playoff National Championship when he visits the LATE SHOW with DAVID LETTERMAN, Friday, Jan. 16 (11:35 PM-12:37 AM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network. Meyer helped Ohio State to their first national title since 2002 in their Monday night’s defeat of Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback Marcus Mariota and the Oregon Ducks, 42 to 20. He has coached the Buckeyes since 2012 and previously led the Florida Gators to two national titles.

Also visiting the LATE SHOW with DAVID LETTERMAN Friday are standup comedian Johnny Beehner and musical guest Ella Henderson.

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Oscar: Race is still an issue, reality makes honored movies, box office does not matter

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 15, 2015

Big morning for "Birdman" and "The Grand Budapest Hotel" with nine nominations each, followed by "The Imitation Game" (eight), "American Sniper" and "Boyhood" (six each). Complete nominees list, including a link to a list by film, is here.

We will have to talk again about race in the movie industry. No people of color in the acting nominations. "Selma," once thought to be an across-the-board fave, ends up with just two nominations, although one is for best picture. (The other is for best song.) Yes, there has been some controversy about its portrayal of Lyndon Johnson. But "The Imitation Game," for one, has also bent facts without being pounded the way "Selma" was.

Speaking of movies from life: the eight best picture nominees include four -- "Imitation Game," "American Sniper," "Selma," "Theory of Everything" -- while other major nominees include "Foxcatcher" and "Wild."

Glad to see some love for "American Sniper," which I saw recently and is both good and moving. But, as there are always academy oddities, it's nominated for picture, actor, adapted screenplay, but not director (Clint Eastwood).

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Flashback: "Today" show premiere, Jan. 14, 1952

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 14, 2015

Thumbtacked photos, news summary, the sound of an electric typewriter, a photo in minutes and Dave Garroway.

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Directors Guild nominees for film, TV, more

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 14, 2015

The detailed announcement of the movie nominees -- Wes Anderson ("Grand Budapest Hotel"), Clint Eastwood ("American Sniper"), Alejandro Inarritu ("Birdman"), Richard Linklater ("Boyhood") and Morten Tyldum ("The Imitation Game") -- is here. The nominations for documentaries, TV programs and commercials is here.

Among the TV  contenders, a lot of Jodie Foster: in dramatic series, two directors of "Homeland" and one each from "House of Cards" (Foster), "True Detective" and "Game of Thrones." In comedy: "Louie," "Orange Is the New Black' (Foster again), "Silicon Valley," "Modern Family," "Transparent."

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TV anniversary telecasts: "DWTS" 10th, "AFHV" 25th

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 14, 2015

The official word, with notes: ABC today announced the premiere dates for the 10 year anniversary edition of “Dancing with the Stars,” MONDAY, MARCH 16 (8:00-10:01 p.m., ET), and a special 25th anniversary episode of “America’s Funniest Home Videos,” SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 15 (7:00-8:00 p.m., ET).

[NOTES: "DWTS" premiered on June 1, 2005, with a six-couples field."AFHV" premiered on Jan. 14, 1990, with Bob Saget as host. Tom Bergeron succeeded him in 2001 and, of course, also hosts "DWTS."]


“DANCING WITH THE STARS” (Monday, March 16, 8:00-10:01 p.m., ET)
“Dancing With the Stars” returns for its 20th season with an all-new celebrity cast-- to be announced at a later date -- who will brave the dance floor for the first time. Each week, these celebrities will leave their comfort zones and endure hours of grueling rehearsals to master technical choreography and entertaining performances. In the end, only one star will rise above the rest to be crowned champion and win the coveted mirror-ball trophy.

Hosted by Emmy® Award-winning  Tom Bergeron (“America’s Funniest Home Videos”) and Erin Andrews, “Dancing with the Stars” is the hit series in which celebrities perform choreographed dance routines judged by renowned ballroom judge Len Goodman and dancer/choreographers Bruno Tonioli, Carrie Ann Inaba and Julianne Hough.

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"The Interview" DVD/Blu-ray coming in February

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 14, 2015

Do we need to revisit the North Korea controversy, or should we just sum it up, as Amy Poehler did, as "forcing us all to pretend we wanted to see it"? The official word:

From the writers of Superbad and Pineapple Express, and the directors of This Is The End, the new film THE INTERVIEW arrives on “Freedom Edition” collectible Blu-ray™ and DVD Feb. 17.  The action-comedy stars Academy Award® nominee James Franco (Best Actor, 127 Hours, 2010) as a celebrity talk show host and Seth Rogen (Neighbors) as his producer longing to make the jump to serious news.  After snagging an exclusive in-person interview with North Korea’s Kim Jong-un (Randall Park, “Fresh off the Boat”), the unlikely pair are recruited by a covert CIA agent (Lizzy Caplan, “Masters of Sex”) to embark on a mission to take out the reclusive dictator.

 

The “Freedom Edition” Blu-ray disc comes packed with 90 minutes of bonus feature content, including 14 deleted scenes, multiple behind-the-scenes featurettes, a seven-minute blooper reel that shows the outrageous gags and goofs from the set, as well as three “line-o-ramas” (where cast shot several alternate takes of jokes during filming). Also included on both Blu-ray and DVD are The Discovery Channel
TV special “Naked and Afraid,” starring James Franco and Seth Rogen, as well as commentary by
Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg.

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Local Valentine's dinner dance to celebrate "Downton Abbey"

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 14, 2015

And, at $250 per couple, it will expect you to have some Crawley-level money. The official word on the event, which follows one in 2014:

Northeast Ohio is in for an evening fit for the British aristocracy when Western Reserve PBS hosts a Valentine's Day dinner-dance inspired by the popular Masterpiece Classic program "Downton Abbey." The charitable event to benefit Western Reserve PBS will be held Saturday, Feb. 14, beginning at 6 p.m. at Sheraton Suites Akron-Cuyahoga Falls. The ticket price includes a five-course Edwardian feast, a live dance performance and instruction, dancing to live music and a silent auction. Attendees are encouraged to wear period formal attire.


The event celebrates both Valentine’s Day and the new “Downton Abbey” season, which premiered Jan. 4 and continues on Sundays at 9 p.m. through March 1. Attendees at the dinner-dance will enjoy a fabulous multi-course meal that would make “Downton Abbey” cook Mrs. Patmore beam, followed by a dance performance by Akron's Martell School of Dance. The performers will then invite those who are interested to receive basic dance instruction, just in time for the live music to begin. The evening's music, provided by The Kool Nights Band, will move through the decades as the evening progresses.


A silent auction will also be held during the event. “We have an impressive selection of items, including an electric guitar autographed by members of Trans-Siberian Orchestra, hotel packages and dinner gift certificates,” said Paula Mastroianni, chief development and marketing director. Organizations interested in donating to the silent auction are encouraged to call us at 1-800-554-4549.

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Jimmy Kimmel invades "The Bachelor"

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 13, 2015

The official word: Jimmy Kimmel surprises Bachelor Chris and the 18 remaining women by taking over the show as guest host for this episode. A long-time avid fan of the franchise, he informs them that he is there to help Chris on his journey to find a wife to bring home to Arlington, Iowa. He introduces the bachelorettes to his “Amazing Jar,” plans dates and winds up in a hot tub – all in the name of love, on “The Bachelor,” MONDAY, JANUARY 19 (8:00-10:01 p.m., ET), on the ABC Television Network.
Jimmy fools Chris and Kaitlyn into believing that they will be going to a high-end members only club for their date. Little do they know, that is not exactly what Jimmy has planned. Later, Jimmy crashes an intimate dinner at the Bachelor’s pad, where the couple is grilling some steaks. But will Jimmy amp up the romance and help Chris decide if this lucky lady really deserves a rose?

Next, Jimmy and Chris take 12 stunning bachelorettes to compete in a farm-themed relay race to see if they can handle being a farmer’s wife. Included in the grueling gauntlet of farming duties are milking a goat, shoveling manure and wrestling a greased pig. To everyone’s surprise, an underdog beats out a brash woman in top physical shape. Things heat up at the after party when one inebriated bachelorette confronts Chris about the number of women he is kissing. But in the end, one dignified and self-possessed charmer wins the group date rose.

Chris and Whitney are sharing a wonderfully romantic day in beautiful wine country when they
stumble upon a wedding in progress and spontaneously decide to crash it. Posing as friends of the bride, the daring couple dance and mingle with the unsuspecting wedding guests. But will Whitney get a rose or will their ruse be discovered and get them kicked out?

The day of the cocktail party, Jimmy returns with one last surprise for the women. It’s fun and games until single mom Juelia shares her tragic story with Chris and the traumatic event that changed her life and that of her daughter. Later, one woman has an epic meltdown as the race to capture Chris’ attention and affection intensifies.

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"St. Vincent" DVD/Blu-ray/digital plans

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 13, 2015

The official word: Anchor Bay Entertainment and The Weinstein Company are proud to announce the home entertainment release of Ted Melfi’s directorial and screenwriting debut, ST. VINCENT. The “charmingly warm and heartfelt” (Betsy Sharkey, Los Angeles Times) comedy features an all-star cast that includes Bill Murray, Melissa McCarthy, Naomi Watts, Chris O’Dowd, Terrence Howard, and introducing Jaeden Lieberher.

The highly praised and popular film has garnered numerous accolades including a Golden Globe® nomination for Best Motion Picture, Musical or Comedy—alongside a nomination for Bill Murray, Best Actor in a Motion Picture, Musical or Comedy. Naomi Watts was recognized with a Screen Actors Guild Awards® nomination for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Supporting Role. The Critics’ Choice Awards honored the film with a Best Comedy nomination, alongside nominations for the cast including Bill Murray, Best Actor in a Comedy; Melissa McCarthy, Best Actress in a Comedy; and Jaden Lieberher, Best Young Actor.

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Canton Palace sets dates for Oscar-nominees fest

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 13, 2015

The actual titles will have to wait until at least Thursday, when the nominations are announced. Here's the basic info:

 Academy Award nominated films will be featured as part of the Canton Palace Theatre’s 2015 Academy Award Film Series. From January 15 to March 29, 2015 the Palace Theatre will show an Academy Award nominated film Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 7:30pm and as a matinee on Sundays at 2pm, as the schedule permits.  

 

Details on which film is being shown and on what date can be found at www.cantonpalacetheatre.org or by calling the 24-hour automated hotline at 330-454-8171.  Movie tickets are just $5 and are sold at the door starting 30 minutes before each showing
 

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TCM sets Rod Taylor night

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 13, 2015

Includes "Young Cassidy," one of my favorite Taylor performances. The official word: Turner Classic Movies (TCM) will celebrate the life and career of Australian-born actor Rod Taylor with a five-film tribute on Thursday, Jan. 29. Taylor, who passed away Jan. 8 at the age of 84, had a long career which encompassed dozens of iconic films, including The Time Machine, The Train Robbers and more recently, Inglorious Basterds.

The following is the complete schedule for TCM's tribute to Rod Taylor:

 

TCM Remembers Rod Taylor – Thursday, Jan. 29

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Amazon gets Woody Allen TV series

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 13, 2015

The official word: Amazon Studios today announced it has signed the critically-acclaimed director Woody Allen to write and direct his first television series ever. Untitled Woody Allen Project, a half-hour series, has received a full season order and episodes will be written and directed by Allen. Customers will be able to see the series exclusively on Prime Instant Video in the US, UK and Germany. Additional details, including casting information will be made available in the future.

“Woody Allen is a visionary creator who has made some of the greatest films of all-time, and it’s an honor to be working with him on his first television series,” said Roy Price, Vice President of Amazon Studios. “From Annie Hall to Blue Jasmine, Woody has been at the creative forefront of American cinema and we couldn’t be more excited to premiere his first TV series exclusively on Prime Instant Video next year.”

Woody Allen added, “I don’t know how I got into this. I have no ideas and I’m not sure where to begin. My guess is that Roy Price will regret this.”

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"Foyle's War" wrapping up

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 12, 2015

Here's the word from Acorn TV: The beloved British mystery series FOYLE’S WAR is coming to an end. Creator and prolific writer Anthony Horowitz, who is busy writing the new James Bond novel and recently wrote a second Sherlock Holmes novel, has decided to move on to other projects. Acorn TV will exclusively feature the North American premiere of the final three feature-length films beginning Monday, Feb. 2nd with High Castle, Monday, Feb. 9th with Trespass, and the series finale on Monday, Feb. 16th with Elise. The episodes are available now upon request. Watch the new trailer here.

 

Today, Horowitz noted, “It feels a terrible wrench to say goodbye to characters I’ve lived with for more than fifteen years. But the truth is that I’m not sure there are any more stories to tell and anyway it was always my intention to end on a high note and I think this year’s episodes are the very best we’ve done. I’m proud of what we’ve achieved with Foyle’s War and I’m very grateful to the audience that has stayed with us for so long. I’ve had a good war.”

 

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CBS sets the date for Stephen Colbert's "Late Show" premiere

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 12, 2015

He will take the helm on Sept. 8, about 3 1/2 months after David Letterman steps down on May 20. In between, Hitfix reports, "the network will be running its primetime shows in the summer at 11:30, specifically encores of scripted programming." For those of you who stay up a lot later than I do, James Corden takes over the "Late Late Show" on March 23.

The official word: The CBS Television Network announced today that LATE SHOW with STEPHEN COLBERT will debut Tuesday, Sept. 8 (11:35 PM-12:37 AM, ET/PT) from the historic Ed Sullivan Theater in New York City. Colbert was named David Letterman’s successor on April 10, 2014.

“The production office is open, the premiere date is set, and we’re incredibly excited to welcome the creative and comedic genius of Stephen Colbert to CBS late night this fall,” said Nina Tassler, Chairman, CBS Entertainment.

“I have nine months to make a show, just like a baby. So first, I should find out how you make a baby,” said Colbert.

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CBS renews "NCIS: NOLA," "Scorpion," "Madam Secretary"

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 12, 2015

The official word:

CBS announced today that the hit freshman dramas NCIS: NEW ORLEANS, MADAM SECRETARY and SCORPION have been renewed for the 2015-2016 broadcast season. The series represent the #1, #2 and #3 most-watched new programs on broadcast television this season: NCIS: NEW ORLEANS is the season’s #1 new series and broadcast television’s #2 drama (behind #1 NCIS), MADAM SECRETARY is the #2 new series of the season, and SCORPION is #3. All three rank among network television’s top 10 series, and are produced by CBS Television Studios.

 

“These freshman dramas have each made a big impact on key nights of the week,” said Nina Tassler, Chairman, CBS Entertainment. “Creatively distinctive, the series are backed by strong showrunners with amazingly talented casts, and have resonated with a big, broad audience.”

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"House of Cards" Season 3 trailer

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 12, 2015

Final run of "Mad Men" begins April 5

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 12, 2015

The official word: MC’s Emmy® and Golden Globe® Award-winning drama “Mad Men” kicks off its final seven episodes on Sunday, April 5 at 10:00PM ET/PT. Created by Emmy® Award winner Matthew Weiner and produced by Lionsgate, “Mad Men’s” highly anticipated series conclusion will, for the last time, follow the complex lives of Don, Peggy, Roger, Joan, Betty and Pete, and their families, colleagues, rivals and love interests, as their stories come to an end.


“What an incredible journey this has been. I take great pride in what the entire 'Mad Men’ team was able to create episode after episode, season after season,” said Weiner.  “We sincerely thank the fans for joining us on this ride and hope it has meant as much to them as it has to us.”
“‘Mad Men’ is the show that put AMC on the map. Period. It is impossible to overstate the impact it has had on AMC, and I would argue, this era of television,” said Charlie Collier, AMC President. “We are honored to forever be the birthplace and home of this iconic series and we can’t wait to share its artful conclusion with the fans. From the first shot, Matthew, his cast and crew handcrafted something truly distinctive for the screen, the very definition of premium television on basic cable. We will miss the remarkable people, the consistently exquisite program, and of course, the free scotch and cigarettes in our vending machines.”
“‘Mad Men’ surpasses our highest expectations year after year and these final episodes are no exception as the fates of its characters are ultimately revealed,” said Kevin Beggs, Chairman, Lionsgate Television Group. “Thanks to the genius of Matthew and all the extraordinary artists on both sides of the camera, the series has raised the standard by which all dramatic television is judged. It’s had a profound impact on popular culture, as well as the evolution of Lionsgate’s television business, and is an incredible gift to all of us.” 


Golden Globe® Award winner for Best Actor - Television Series Drama, Jon Hamm leads an unforgettable ensemble cast, including January Jones, Vincent Kartheiser, Elisabeth Moss, Christina Hendricks, John Slattery, Aaron Staton, Rich Sommer, Christopher Stanley, Jessica Paré, Jay R. Ferguson, Kevin Rahm, Kiernan Shipka and Mason Vale Cotton.
“Mad Men” has earned seven Emmy® Award nominations for Outstanding Drama Series, leading to four wins; three Golden Globe® Awards for Best Television Drama Series; a Peabody Award; three Producers Guild Awards; four Writers Guild Awards; two BAFTA Awards; five Television Critics Association Awards, including Program of the Year; and for seven consecutive years has been named one of AFI’s Top 10 Outstanding Television Programs.
“Mad Men” is produced by Lionsgate, in association with AMC. Joining Weiner are executive producers Scott Hornbacher and Janet Leahy; co-executive producer Semi Chellas; supervising producer Erin Levy; producers Jon Hamm, Blake McCormick and Tom Smuts; consulting producers Lisa Albert and Robert Towne; and co-producers Josh Weltman, Bob Levinson and Marcy Patterson. Chris Manley, ASC is director of photography. Emmy® Award winner Dan Bishop is production designer and Emmy® Award winner Janie Bryant is costume designer. Christopher Gay, Tom Wilson and Chris Figler are editors.
Fans looking to catch up on “Mad Men” can set their DVR every Sunday morning beginning at 6:00am ET/PT. For a full schedule of the Sunday morning marathon, visit http://www.amctv.com/. 













 

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CW midseason programming plans

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 12, 2015

The official word: The CW announced its midseason schedule today at the winter gathering of the Television Critics Association in Pasadena, CA, including the series premieres of new dramas iZOMBIE and THE MESSENGERS, the new unscripted competition series CEDRIC’S BARBER BATTLE and a new cycle of WHOSE LINE IS IT ANYWAY?.

From executive producer Rob Thomas (“Veronica Mars”), iZOMBIE makes its series debut on Tuesday, March 17, (9:00-10:00pm ET), following an all-new episode of THE FLASH (8:00-9:00pm ET).   Rose McIver (“Masters of Sex,” “Once Upon a Time”) stars as Olivia “Liv” Moore,a rosy-cheeked, disciplined, over-achieving medical resident who had her life path completely mapped out… until the night she attended a party that unexpectedly turned into a zombie feeding frenzy. As one of the newly undead, Liv has devised a way to resist her baser urges to devour fresh human brains – she’s taken a job in the Seattle coroner’s office.  In this appropriately dead-end job, she can secretly snack on the brains of the many Jane and John Doe corpses that make a final stop in the morgue.  Liv remains resigned to an eternity without hope or purpose, until she realizes that with every brain she consumes, she retains a portion of that person’s memories, and she begins to experience visions from the point of view of the murder victims. It’s not the same as being alive again, but at least she can find purpose in her undead existence by helping to solve the murders of those who are indeed fully dead.

With iZOMBIE on Tuesdays, the Winchester brothers move to their new night as SUPERNATURAL returns to Wednesdays, beginning March 18, 9:00-10:00pm ET, the week after THE 100 concludes its second season onWednesday, March 11, 9:00-10:00pm ET.

On Friday, April 10, The CW presents the series premiere of its apocalyptic new drama THE MESSENGERS (9:00-10:00pm ET).  When a mysterious object plummets to Earth, the blinding explosion it causes sends out a shock wave that instantly connects five strangers who awaken after the pulse with extraordinary gifts they can barely believe.  Most mysterious of all is a figure known only as The Man, who brings death and suffering wherever he appears.  The wheels of Revelation have begun to turn, and these five newly christened Angels of the Apocalypse may be the only hope for preventing the impending Rapture.

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Oscar nominations Thursday will be stretched out some

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 12, 2015

From ABC: Oscar producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron announced today that actor Chris Pine, Academy President Cheryl Boone Isaacs, and directors Alfonso Cuarón and J.J. Abrams, on Thursday, January 15, will announce the nominations in all 24 Oscar categories at a special two-part live news conference at the Academy’s Samuel Goldwyn Theater in Beverly Hills. 

“Each of the three years we’ve produced the show, we have attempted to refresh elements of the process and the telecast,” said Zadan and Meron. “This year, we’re honored to start a new tradition that celebrates the contributions of all the nominees by announcing all 24 categories. We’re thrilled that a distinguished actor and two world-class film directors are part of the initial launch.”

At 5:30 a.m. PT, Cuarón and Abrams will announce the nominees in the following categories: Animated Feature Film, Documentary Feature, Documentary Short Subject, Film Editing, Original Song, Production Design, Animated Short Film, Live Action Short Film, Sound Editing, Sound Mixing and Visual Effects.

At 5:38 a.m. PT, Pine and Boone Isaacs will take the stage to unveil the nominations for Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Supporting Actor, Best Supporting Actress, Cinematography, Costume Design, Directing, Foreign Language Film, Makeup and Hairstyling, Original Score, Adapted Screenplay, Original Screenplay and Best Picture. 

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Video: Rich and the movies - Snow movies to watch

By Ohio.com Published: January 9, 2015

You know the weather has been cold, snowy and terrible. Fear not, things could be worse. This week Beacon Journal pop culture writer Rich Heldenfels points out three snowy movies with really awful situations.

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How many ways can you follow the College Football Championship?

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 9, 2015

ESPN is putting it on 12+ different channels and platforms, following up on its "Megacast" of the old BCS championship last year. I'm kind of drawn to the natural-sound ESPN Classic version. Here are the details from the World Wide Leader:

ESPN will supplement its traditional telecast of Oregon vs. Ohio State in the inaugural College Football Playoff National Championship Presented by AT&T on Monday, Jan. 12, at 8:30 p.m. ET with more than a dozen alternate productions across its multimedia platforms.

The CFP Megacast initiative of the title game from Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas, will include a different telecast across ESPN2, ESPNU, ESPNEWS, ESPN Classic, ESPN Deportes and ESPN Goal Line; ESPN Radio and ESPN Deportes

Radio broadcasts; five variations on ESPN3; and coverage around the world via ESPN International distribution. ESPN’s only other Megacast production featured the final BCS National Championship last season.

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A&E brings back "Bates Motel," "The Returned" in March

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 9, 2015

The official word: A&E Network presents two original scripted series’ premieres on Monday, March 9 with the season three return of the critically acclaimed “Bates Motel” followed by the new original drama “The Returned” at 9PM and 10PM ET/PT respectively.

 

“Bates Motel,” returns for a gripping third season filled with family strife, murder and mystery lead by Vera Farmiga (Norma) and Freddie Highmore (Norman). This season focuses on the evolution of the Bates family and dives head first into Norman’s waning ability to stay in denial about what’s happening to him and the lengths he will go to gain control of his fragile psyche. The dramatic events of last season leaves Norma (Vera Farmiga) reluctantly more aware of Norman’s mental fragility and is fearful of what he is capable of.  From executive producers Carlton Cuse (“Lost,” “The Returned”) and Kerry Ehrin (“Friday Night Lights,” “Parenthood”) “Bates Motel” serves as a contemporary prequel to the genre-defining film Psycho and provides viewers with an intimate portrayal of how Norman Bates unravels through his teenage years.

 

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Disney Channel stars get new TV movies

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 9, 2015

The official word: 13 year-old Rowan Blanchard and 15 year-old Sabrina Carpenter (of Disney Channel's hit comedy series "Girl Meets World") and 16 year-old Paris Berelc (of Disney XD's "Mighty Med") and Sofia Carson (of this year's highly anticipated Disney's "Descendants") will each add an upcoming Disney Channel Original Movie to their credits this year, as the Channel continues its focus on developing young entertainers and giving them opportunities to showcase their talent across multiple projects.

The movies will be part of Disney Media Sales and Marketing presentations to potential sponsors during the Kids Upfront this year.

Rowan Blanchard and Paris Berelc will star in the live-action adventure/comedy "Invisible Sister."
Sabrina Carpenter and Sofia Carson will star in "Further Adventures in Babysitting," inspired by the hugely popular 1980s film "Adventures in Babysitting."

The movies are set to begin production this spring during a production hiatus for "Girl Meets World" and "Mighty Med." They are scheduled to premiere beginning in Fall 2015 and early 2016 on Disney Channels around the world.

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"Glee": Let it be gone

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 9, 2015

"Glee" begins its final season with two episodes tonight. I watched the first one, and was too exhausted to go on. In fact, I barely made it through the first episode and fast-forwarded a bunch at the end as Rachel (Lea Michele) barreled through "Let It Go." Which by itself is a reason for prolonged sighing.

This is a show that should have ended after no more than two seasons, its concept no longer fresh, its characters less and less enthralling. There were so many wrong moves: themed episodes, the over-emphasis on Rachel, the attempt to have some characters in New York and others back in Lima (a move that added to the over-emphasis on Rachel), and a ton of erratic plotting. What had begun as a "High School Musical" with serious issues turned into a preachy, sluggish soap.

And it's still that way in the first hour tonight, as plot contrivances reunite several characters in Lima, and put the focus back on McKinley High and maneuvers around it\.I had dropped out entirely during the previous season and had to do some backtracking to catch up on plot developments. But that did not help. Neither did the little self-conscious comments like a Journey reference. It is all too, too tiring. Hitfix recently used "Glee" as an excuse to revisit other shows with bad final seasons; "Glee" will likely deserve a place on any such future list -- only it fell apart long before it ended.

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New cast members for "Fargo" Season 2

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 9, 2015

The official word: Golden Globe nominated actor Patrick Wilson (Angels in America, The Conjuring), multiple Emmy and Golden Globe winner Ted Danson, and multiple Emmy winner Jean Smart have signed on to star in the second installment of FX’s Emmy and AFI Award winning miniseries franchise Fargo, it was announced today by Eric Schrier, President, Original Programming, FX Networks and FX Productions and Steve Stark President, Television Production & Development of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios. 

Wilson, Danson and Smart join previously announced leads Kirsten Dunst and Jesse Plemons.

Patrick Wilson will star as “Lou Solverson,” a clean cut Minnesota State Patrolman, four years back from Vietnam, where he served in the Navy.  A humble and competent man, Lou is a devoted husband to his wife “Betsy” (yet to be cast), and father to four-year-old “Molly” (yet to be cast). 

Ted Danson will play “Hank Larsson,” the Sheriff of Rock County, Minnesota.  An unflappable WWII vet who embodies a certain cowboy poetry, Hank is Lou’s father-in-law.

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Friday notebook

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 9, 2015

A notes column, some of which will be familiar to blog readers, is in today's print Beacon Journal and online here. Don't miss the Marilyn Manson item.

Todd Rundgren is coming back to the Hard Rock Rocksino Northfield Park on April 26. A gig there last March sold out. Tickets for the new show go on sale at 10 a.m. on Jan. 16.

Reserved tickets are $59.50, $42.50 & $29.50 and available the Rocksino Box Office, LiveNation.com, Ticketmaster.com, Ticketmaster outlets, or by phone (800)745-3000

Two celebrity deaths recently: actor Rod Taylor and gospel legend Andrae Crouch.

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Happy 80th, Elvis Presley

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 7, 2015

Jan. 8 is the King's birthday. Malcolm X Abram and I talked about what life might have been like if Elvis had not died in 1977; we came up with this tale.

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Video: Two guys talkin' about Stuart Scott

By Ohio.com Published: January 7, 2015

Malcolm Abram and Rich Heldenfels honor Stuart Scott

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Documentary legend Frederick Wiseman coming to Cinematheque (Corrected)

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 7, 2015

The correction is footnoted below. The official word: Frederick Wiseman, the dean of America’s documentary filmmakers, is coming to the Cleveland Institute of Art Cinematheque on Sunday, January 25, at 1:00 pm for a program entitled AN AFTERNOON WITH FREDERICK WISEMAN. The legendary moviemaker, who has directed 40 feature-length documentaries in a career spanning almost 50 years, and whose latest film NATIONAL GALLERY is turning up on many Ten Best lists for 2014, will answer audience questions after a series of clips from some of his films. Tickets to the event, which will take place in CIA’s Aitken Auditorium at 11141 East Boulevard, cost $25; Cinematheque members and CIA students and staff $20; ages 25 & under $12. $25 and $20 tickets can be purchased in advance at http://wiseman.brownpapertickets.com/

 

“There can be little doubt that Frederick Wiseman is the greatest American filmmaker alive,” says Cinema Scope magazine. “He is for modern U.S. cinema what John Ford was for the classical era.” Wiseman’s lifelong work has been to chronicle the inner workings of American institutions—schools, hospitals, police departments, prisons, army outposts, and art institutions, to name just a few. He does this by visiting a place for a period of weeks, recording what he sees there, and then editing his hours and hours of raw footage down to a “movie” (in his words) that can last anywhere between 90 minutes and six hours. Wiseman’s “fly-on-the-wall” aesthetic shuns voiceover narration, interviews, explanatory titles, and graphics. He says he seeks only to assemble individual dramatic episodes into a condensed work that has “rhythm and structure” and is “fair” to the subjects portrayed. Wiseman, now 85, has won numerous awards, including a Guggenheim fellowship and a MacArthur Foundation “genius” grant.

 

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"Marvel's Daredevil" series coming in April

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 7, 2015

The official word: Season one of MARVEL’S DAREDEVIL will premiere with thirteen (13) one-hour episodes on April 10, 2015 at 12:01 AM PT in all territories where Netflix is available.


Synopsis: Blinded as a young boy but imbued with extraordinary senses, Matt Murdock (Charlie Cox) fights against injustice by day as a lawyer, and by night as the Super Hero “Daredevil” in modern day Hell's Kitchen, New York City.


Marvel’s Daredevil is a grounded, authentic, suspenseful and edgy action drama featuring a great cast that includes:

Charlie Cox as Matt Murdock / Daredevil

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Live concert by Ed Sheeran stars new "VH1 Storytellers" season

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 7, 2015

The official word: Singer/songwriter Ed Sheeran will kick off an all-new season of “VH1 Storytellers” LIVE from Dublin, Ireland on Saturday, January 24 at 7PM ET/PT. VH1 is rewriting the script on its critically acclaimed music franchise “VH1 Storytellers,” and for the first time in network history, the series will be broadcast LIVE from a venue of special meaning to the performing artist. In this tradition, Sheeran will perform and share personal stories from his life that have inspired his chart-topping songs from Whelan’s in Dublin, the venue where he first saw the artist that made him want to pursue music -- Damien Rice. “VH1 Storytellers Live: Ed Sheeran” will also air live across the UK on MTV Music at 12AM GMT and live stream on VH1.com as well as on the VH1 App. Fans can continue watching an exclusive 30 minute after show, only on VH1.com and in the VH1 App.

 

“It’s amazing to come back to perform at a place that means so much to me personally,” said Sheeran.  “I was only about 11 or 12 years old when I saw Damien play at Whelan’s, and that night literally changed my life.  The time he spent talking with me after the show made all the difference.  It inspired me in a way that I only hope to do for someone else.”

 

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Hulu orders more "Hotwives"

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 7, 2015

The official word: Hulu announced today the renewal of hit original series The Hotwives of Orlando from Paramount Digital Entertainment. The second season of the series will return in 2015 as The Hotwives of Las Vegas and will move locations from scenic Orlando to Las Vegas.

 

Writers from NBC’s hit Marry Me, Danielle Schneider and Dannah Phirman are set to return as creators and producers to the series, along with Emmy© Award-winning Executive Producers Jonathan Stern and Paul Scheer.  The Hotwives of Las Vegas, will be distributed and produced by Paramount Digital Entertainment, the studio behind the Emmy© nominated Burning Love.

 

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Netflix news: more "Marco," series premieres

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 7, 2015

The official word: Netflix, the world's leading Internet TV network, today announced a new ten episode chapter in the adventures of Marco Polo and upcoming premiere dates for some of its highly anticipated new original series.


Marco Polo, the sweeping adventure that follows the famed explorer’s exploits in Kublai Khan’s court in 13th century China, will return to delight the global Netflix audience. Creator John Fusco’s tale of Marco’s journey will continue for 10 all-new episodes as Marco navigates Kublai Khan’s world of greed, betrayal, sexual intrigue and rivalry. Fusco serves as executive producer along with Dan Minahan. Academy-Award nominated directors Joachim Rønning and Espen Sandberg also serve as executive producers. Season one was shot in Malaysia, Kazakhstan and Italy. Produced by The Weinstein Company, the series stars Lorenzo Richelmy as Marco and features Benedict Wong, Joan Chen, Zhu Zhu, Chin Han, Olivia Cheng, Tom Wu, Remy Hii, Uli Latukefu, Mahesh Jadu, Claudia Kim and Rick Yune. 

 


Netflix also announced upcoming premiere dates for the following new original series, all of which will be available globally upon release in all territories where Netflix is available:

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Feeling Ducky?

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 7, 2015

I have some thoughts about why a team would be named the Ducks. You can read the column and see a gallery of notable ducks here.

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New GM at WEWS

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 5, 2015

Steve Weinstein, most recently general manager of a Bakersfield, Calif., TV operation, has been named general manager of Cleveland ABC affiliate WEWS (Channel 5).

Weinstein, who will join the local station on Monday, succeeds Sam Rosenwasser, who left WEWS late in 2014 after 4 1/2 years running the E.W. Scripps Co.-owned station. Weinstein has worked for Scripps stations for more than a decade, as GM in Bakersfield for two years; news director of a Tulsa, Okla., station for six years, and three years as news operation manager for Scripps’s Baltimore, Md., station,

A graduate of the University of Florida, he has also been an award-winning news photographer.

During his Bakersfield tenure, the hiring announcement said, Weinstein was "instrumental in driving new technology and innovative newsgathering tools." He also added newscasts, including the first weekend morning news in the area. Ed Fernandez, regional general manager for Cincinnati-based Scripps, said Weinstein "can enter a market and immediately have a powerful and then lasting positive impact."

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"Antiques Roadshow" sets Cleveland event

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 5, 2015

The official word: Antiques Roadshow, PBS’s most-watched ongoing series and a production ofWGBH Boston, visits Cleveland as part of a six-city summer tour. Antiques Roadshow and WVIZ/PBS ideastreamwill host an all-day appraisal event on Saturday, July 11, 2015.Antiques Roadshow airs locally on WVIZ/PBS Mondays at 8pm and has not visited Cleveland since June 2002.
Fans can apply now for chance to win a pair of tickets to Antiques Roadshow in Clevelandatwviz.org/antiques. The application deadline is Monday, April 6, 2015 at 8:59pm Eastern Standard Time.Tickets will be awarded by random drawing.

Antiques Roadshowis also accepting furniture submissions for the 2015 Tour. The series is looking for a few pieces of furniture to appraise and display on the set. Selected pieces will be transported to the event and back at no cost to the owner.For more details head topbs.org/wgbh/roadshow/furniture.

At the appraisal event,approximately 5,000 to 6,000 ticketed guests will receive free valuations of their antiques and collectibles from specialists from the country’s leading auction houses and independent dealers. Each guest is invited to bring two items for appraisal. From Antiques Roadshow’s visit to Cleveland, three episodes of television will be created for inclusion in Roadshow’s 20th Season, airing in 2016.
 

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Some things from 2014 to keep in mind in '15

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 5, 2015

Think of this as an "In case you missed it" list of pop-culture items deserving your attention. Every one of these made my 2014 better. Not ranked, just offered for consideration.

"The Imitation Game." It's still slowly making its way into more theaters (and I did not see it until early 2015), so keep an eye out for this deeply felt look at Alan Turing, the World War II codebreaker; while it appears at first to be about his work, the movie ever more becomes about his emotional life and how deep (and, in many circles, remaining) prejudices ruined a man who could have changed the world even more than he managed to do in a too-short life. Excellent lead performance by Benedict Cumberbatch.

Walter Kirn, "Blood Will Out." Kirn's examination of his relationship with the fraud known as Clark Rockefeller is an extended meditation on what we want to believe about people, why we believe it, and what happens when those beliefs are shattered. Reading it, I could not help thinking about Bill Cosby, and how our belief in him kept us from looking closely at what he was really like.

Meghan Trainor, "All About That Bass." Catchy pop song, and video, with a good message about body image. It's still in my mental playlist along with Taylor Swift, "Blank Space"; all of Jenny Lewis, "The Voyager," and the Black Keys, "Turn Blue."

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RIP, Stuart Scott

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 4, 2015

We knew this was coming. We knew how graceful and affecting Scott had been in his waning days. But the loss is still sharp.You can read the full written tribute to Scott from ESPN here.

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Orson Welles films at the Cleveland Museum of Art

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 4, 2015

Marking Orson Welles' centennial year*, all are projected from 35mm film. Special admission to each film is $10; CMA members, seniors 65 & over, students $8; no vouchers or passes. Here's the list:

Citizen Kane

Sunday, January 11, 1:30. Wednesday, January 14, 6:45. Directed by Orson Welles. Welles’ film directorial debut is a fun, flamboyant account of the rise and fall of a mysterious newspaper tycoon. Long voted the greatest movie of all time. Cleveland premiere.

USA, 1941, b&w, 35mm, 119 min.

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Happy 2015

By Rich Heldenfels Published: January 4, 2015

Posts have been sporadic the last couple of weeks. I was on a vacation which morphed into an extended bout of flu/cold/whatever has been plaguing us all. I did squeeze in some pop-culture activity, including reading (Walter Kirn's excellent "Blood Will Out," Gillian Flynn's two novels before "Gone Girl," currently in the deeps of James Ellroy's "Perfidia") and, as illness eased,  moviegoing ("Annie," "Wild,"  "The Imitation Game"). But there was alos a LOT of time spent on the couch, sniffling, and barely focused on "SVU" and "NCIS" marathons.

Anyway, back now. Hoping to post more about some things in the days ahead.  

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