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'Marvel’s Agent Carter' brings on Chad Michael Murray
Credit: CW

'Marvel’s Agent Carter' brings on Chad Michael Murray

“Marvel’s Agent Carter” brings on Chad Michael Murray
The “One Tree Hill” alum will become a series regular on the ABC midseason show, playing the important role of Strategic Scientific Reserve Agent Jack Thompson. PLUS: “Dollhouse” alum Enver Gjokaj is also joining the cast.


“Modern Family” casts Andrea Anders as an annoying new neighbor
She and Steve Zahn will move in next to the Dunphys next season.


“CSI” books Greg Grunberg
The “Heroes” alum will guest as a man in rehab.


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<p>Eli Manning</p>

Eli Manning

Credit: AP

TV Ratings: CBS leads Thursday as NFL Preseason preemptions rule

All five networks saw their numbers impacted by football

Fast National ratings for Thursday, August 28, 2014.

While it seems likely that "Big Brother" will have led CBS to its usual Thursday wins, NFL Preseason preemptions on all five networks have rendered these numbers almost completely meaningless.

CBS offered exact details for its preemptions, which were 27 percent in the 8 p.m. hour, 23 percent in the 9 p.m. hour and 13 percent in the 10 p.m. hour, while I have a list of overall preemptions for each network that pretty much make these figures moot, top-to-bottom.

On to the entirely inaccurate numbers...

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Chelsea Clinton exits NBC News
Credit: NBC

Chelsea Clinton exits NBC News

Chelsea Clinton exits NBC News
The former first daughter had been reportedly making $600,000 for doing very little actual work.


Some “Friends” fans didn't like Jennifer Aniston’s upset reaction to Jimmy Kimmel’s reunion
They didn’t realize the whole bit was rehearsed and planned, as Kimmel pointed out last night.


Jimmy Kimmel dressed Aaron Paul’s Emmy statues like Run-DMC
Check out the “Run-DMC Emmys.” PLUS: Paul talked to Kimmel about his “Breaking Bad” Scavenger Hunt, and Kimmel dressed Ed Sheeran as Annie.


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<p>The Cosmopolitans</p>

The Cosmopolitans

Credit: Amazon

Amazon hits some bumps with its third pilot season

Less to be excited about than in the second batch of pilots

Amazon keeps accelerating the pace and output of its "pilot season" process. The original batch of Amazon pilots were presented to the public in April of last year; of those, only "Alpha House" (which got renewed for a second season) and "Betas" (which remains in limbo) got picked up. The second batch of pilots were unveiled less than a year later, and Amazon ordered almost all of them — other than "Rebels," the pro football comedy that no one seemed to like — to series. That was in February, and while none of those new shows has debuted — "Transparent," the best of the bunch, will premiere all of its episodes, Netflix-style, on September 26 — Amazon yesterday unveiled its third pilot season, even as there's already news about casting for the fourth wave of Amazon pilots. At this rate, they may be ordering some shows before a word's even been written, and traveling back in time to cancel others before the creator has even thought of the idea.

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<p>&quot;Leviathan&quot;</p>

"Leviathan"

Exclusive: International 'Leviathan' trailer sets the stage for Russian social critique

Will Russia balk on submitting it for foreign Oscar consideration?

When last we left Andrey Zvyagientsev's "Leviathan," it was causing a stir at the end of Cannes and looking like a sure-fire Palme d'Or winner. In the end, the Russian drama — which is a spin on the Biblical Book of Job — settled for a screenplay award at the fest, but now it's set to spur discussion again as it's set for a North American premiere at the Telluride Film Festival Friday night.

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Exclusive: My Brightest Diamond song premiere 'This Is My Hand'
Credit: Bernd Preimi

Exclusive: My Brightest Diamond song premiere 'This Is My Hand'

Fans invited to submit photos for use in the music video: Read our interview with Shara Worden

Shara Worden, aka My Brightest Diamond, wants you to put your hands up -- on social media.

The artist is preparing a Sept. 16 release of her next album, "This Is My Hand," and today HitFix exclusively premieres the title track from the set.

Like the full-length, "This Is My Hand" is lush and intense, sensual but confrontational, arranged with detail and imploringly original. All songs feed into an effort that Worden says "tortured" her, at least when it came to crafting lyrics.

But it's exactly those hard-fought lyrics that My Brightest Diamond wants fans to riff on: launching today, the songwriter invites listeners to ThisIsMyHand.com, to take a picture that matches the lyrics and use Instagram tags to send her way, to help compile a crowdsourced music video entirely from those images.

Head to the website to read all the lyrics and get started.

Below, I interview Worden on "This Is My Hand" and her recent EP "None More Than You" and writing about her whole self. Tracklists, tour dates and more are beyond that.

"This Is My Hand" arrives next month via Asthmatic Kitty, and was recorded in Berlin, New York, Los Angeles and Detroit with producer Zac Rae. It is her fourth album, coming on the heels of 2011's "All Things Will Unwind." You can pre-order "This Is My Hand" here.

(Listen to previously released My Brightest song "Pressure" here.)

HitFix: You're releasing your album only a couple of months after you dropped your EP. How has your opinion changed over they years on the value of an "album" -- versus the compiling and releasing of EPs, singles, music videos, et cetera?

Shara Worden: I love making records. I love the history of the form. This is our fourth record since 2006, so we have seen a lot of changes in the industry to be sure. When I first started thinking about making another album, I did feel pretty bleak about the value of recorded music, but then I did a lot of reading and thinking and inputting, and then became really excited about the process again. I made a big pile of recordings this time around, writing at least 20 songs and then we chose the material that made the most sense as a unit, and the other songs we are releasing as EPs.  

"This Is My Hand," lyrically, is already so illustrative -- and very inspirational. What do you hope to achieve by opening up the music video to fan submissions of visuals?

I was writing this album thinking about an imaginary tribe of people, gathering around a fire, making music together, telling stories, hearing from the shaman, and so of course I also imagined everyone dancing, but then when I went to make "dance music" I realized how I have spent so much of my life disassociating from the body. I was brought up in a conservative Christian culture that in essence said the body was "evil" and then also as a female musician, from early on I felt that I wasn't going to be taken seriously as a musician if I was also dancing, so I just shut off my connection and focused on my mind. 

This song is really about self acceptance and re-integrating the WHOLE self and there is so much happening right now across the globe, with body image, our sexuality, slavery, racism, that I just feel like this song belongs to "the larger tribe" and I want to open up this video format so that more people can have a "ritual" of sorts, accepting themselves and the tribe shows itself to be beautiful and varied as possible.

There are lines in this song and others on the album that reference female-ness, and play with sex and gender. Can you talk about any evolution or approach you've had to incorporating these themes in your compositions?

As I began making this music, uncharacteristically starting from the beats first, I was really forced to deal with my questions about my body, my sensuality, my sexuality, and even the violence and love that I am capable of, and embracing all aspects of who I am as a human being.  It still feels like I'm in a process on the subject that is going to continue for a long time.  

Describe the most challenging day, instrumentally, you had in the studio for this album.

All of the instrumental aspects of this record felt super easy, actually. All the musicians are such incredible artists, but strangely enough it was the lyrics for this album that really tortured me. Normally lyrics have been my foundation, but this time around I ended up changing almost half the songs, some of which had existed for at least two years at the last minute. I knew that I had to be more vulnerable and more honest, so there were a lot of desperate moments where it felt like I was pushing on this wall that I had to crumble and it was really quite scary and then on the other side, it feels quite liberating.

 

Here is the "This Is My Hand" tracklist:

1. Pressure
2. Before The Words
3. This Is My Hand
4. Lover Killer
5. I am Not the Bad Guy
6. Looking At The Sun
7. Shape
8. So Easy
9. Resonance
10. Apparition

Here is the "None More Than You" EP tracklist:

1. Dreaming Awake
2. Whoever You Are
3. Dreams Don't Look Like
4. Dreaming Awake
5. That Point When

Here are My Brightest Diamond's tour dates:

September 19 /// Detroit, MI /// Music Box
September 20 /// Toronto, ON /// Drake
September 22 /// Boston, MA /// The Sinclair
September 23 /// Philadelphia, PA /// World Café Live
September 25 /// New York, NY /// Bowery Ballroom
September 27 /// Washington, DC /// Rock & Roll Hotel
September 28 /// Pittsburgh, PA /// Altar Bar
September 30 /// Charlotte, NC /// Visulite Theater
October 1 /// Atlanta, GA /// The Earl
October 3 /// Austin, TX /// Austin City Limits Music Festival
October 12 /// Dallas, TX /// The Kessler
October 10 /// Austin, TX /// Austin City Limits Music Festival
October 17 /// Stockholm, Sweden /// Scandic Grand Central
October 18 /// Gothenburg, Sweden /// Folkteatern Foajebaren
October 19 /// Copenhagen, Denmark /// Loppen
October 21 /// Hamburg, Germany /// Knust
October 22 /// Berlin, Germany /// Postbahnhof
October 24 /// Brussels, Belgium /// Botanique Rotonde
October 25 /// Amsterdam, Netherlands /// Paradiso Noord-Tolhuistuin
October 26 /// Paris, France /// Bababoum
October 28 /// London, UK /// Village Underground
October 29 /// Leeds, UK /// Brundenell Social Club
October 30 /// Glasgow, UK /// Oran Mor
October 31 /// Dublin, Ireland /// Workman’s Club
November 12 /// Grand Rapids, MI /// Wealthy Theater
November 13 /// Chicago, IL /// Lincoln Hall
November 14 /// Madison, WI /// High Noon
November 15 /// Milwaukee, WI /// Vogel Hall
November 16 /// Iowa City, IA /// The Mill
November 17 /// Minneapolis, MN /// Cedar Cultural Center
November 19 /// St. Louis, MO /// Old Rock House
November 20 /// Indianapolis, IN /// White Rabbit Cabaret
December 2 /// Denver, CO /// Larimer Lounge
December 3 /// Salt Lake City, UT /// Urban Lounge
December 5 /// Portland, OR /// Doug Fir Lounge
December 6 /// Seattle, WA /// The Crocodile Café
December 7 /// Vancouver, BC /// Electric Owl
December 10 /// San Francisco, CA /// Great American Music Hall
December 12 /// Los Angeles, CA /// The Roxy
December 13 /// San Diego, CA /// The Casbah

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Review: The First Lady of Iranian Cinema returns with dialogue-heavy 'Tales'

Review: The First Lady of Iranian Cinema returns with dialogue-heavy 'Tales'

A multi-stranded portrait of everyday lives

VENICE — Known as the "First Lady of Iranian Cinema", Iran's premier female director Rakhshan Bani-E'temad is a formidable chronicler of the day-to-day existence of Iranian people. Not a million miles removed from the outlook of the Dardennes brothers in Belgium or Ken Loach in the UK, she is concerned largely with so-called ordinary lives. "Tales (Ghesseha)" is a multistranded take on a dozen or so people's stories intersecting across a single city. Some characters are encountered once, never to return, others recur throughout, but it's not a film with a protagonist or supporting characters in the traditional sense; it's much more a slice of life/lives.

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Summer Box Office Winners and Losers: 'Guardians of the Galaxy,' 'Lucy,' 'Sin City 2'

Summer Box Office Winners and Losers: 'Guardians of the Galaxy,' 'Lucy,' 'Sin City 2'

Michael Bay is a winner people

In case you hadn't heard, Hollywood would like everyone to forget the summer of 2014 ever happened. Sure, there were some notable exceptions such as "Guardians of the Galaxy," "Lucy," "X-Men: Days of Future Past" and "22 Jump Street," but for the most part it was a summer of disappointment.

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Review: Garfield and Shannon spark in broad brush moral crisis drama '99 Homes'

Review: Garfield and Shannon spark in broad brush moral crisis drama '99 Homes'

This one sticks it to the man

VENICE — The title treatment for Ramin Bahrani's Venice Competition entry consists of blood red letters on black. Filling the entire screen with blocky all-caps letters and numbers dozens of feet high, we read: 99 HOMES. It looks more like the title treatment for a horror than a drama digging into a moral morass of foreclosure, subsistence level employment, and better paid but more spiritually costly work. As it turns out, it is also a horror movie of sorts. The first shot of the film itself is even a post-mortem scene, as Michael Shannon's predatory realtor Rick Carver -- and how's that for a horror movie name? -- gazes almost impassively at blood dribbling down tacky pink bathroom tiles.

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<p>&quot;Springfield Up&quot;</p>

"Springfield Up"

Credit: FOX

FXX's Every Simpsons Ever Marathon: Day 9 - HitFix Picks

'The Simpsons Movie' joins the Marathon, plus five more episodes to watch

[As you probably already know, starting on Thursday, August 21, FXX is running the Every Simpsons Ever Marathon, running through all 552 episodes of "The Simpsons," plus "The Simpsons Movie." To aid in your viewing process, Team HitFix is selecting our favorite episodes from each day, plus an episode or two that you can skip and use as a bathroom or nap break.]

Day 9 of FXX's Every Simpsons Ever Marathon takes us from "Simpson Christmas Stories" (mid-Season 17) through "Funeral for a Fiend" (mid-Season 19). It's a bit truncated in terms of half-hour episodes, because from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. FXX is airing "The Simpsons Movie."

Fortunately, we've got some episodes to recommend and Sepinwall wanted to salute the movie, so you can still dedicate quality time to the Marathon.

And there are some good ones we didn't get to. I love the poetry humor and author cameos in the poorly titled "Moe'N'A Lisa." And I know lots of fans love "24 Minutes," but nobody in our dwindling group of fans wanted to salute it. Feel free to watch, though!

Check out our recommendations for Day 9 and chime in with your own favorites...

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Recap: 'Big Brother' Thursday - Eviction and Christine-Cody Shaming
Credit: CBS

Recap: 'Big Brother' Thursday - Eviction and Christine-Cody Shaming

Deja vu: Did Nicole or Donny get to talk to Julie Chen tonight?

It's another "Big Brother" Thursday. Follow along for the normal live-blogging fun leading up to eviction.

9:01 p.m. "Tonight, your alliance is in jeopardy," Julie Chen tells us as the episode begins. That seems unfair. The hamsters in the House aren't required to still be in an alliance in the first week. Why do I have to stick with Team America?

9:03 p.m. When we left off, Cody was talking about making a big move, but then not making one, Victoria's head was swelling to the size of a watermelon and causing her to pass out and Donny was better than Team America didn't make "Saving Donny" into their mission for the week. Good times. Donny and Nicole are sitting on the Block.

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Jimmy Kimmel proved that a real 'Friends' reunion would look stupid
Credit: NBC

Jimmy Kimmel proved that a real 'Friends' reunion would look stupid

Jimmy Kimmel proved that a real “Friends” reunion would look stupid
Kimmel's viral sketch reuniting the female cast "established once and for all how stupid this reunion would be by demonstrating how stupid this reunion would be,” says Verne Gay. "The characters are older (much older), and those who played them are stars in their own right, with their own bodies of shows and movies -- most of all, the lead female characters. They've moved on, and so should fans.”


Joan Rivers was reportedly put in a medically induced coma
The NY Daily News reports doctors plan to take Rivers out of the coma this weekend to determine how much damage was caused when she went into cardiac and respiratory arrest during a routine doctor’s visit. UPDATE: Melissa Rivers says her mom is “resting comfortably."


Explaining David Chase’s “Sopranos” revelation that wasn’t a revelation
The Sopranos” creator appeared to confirm the ending to Vox, but that isn’t the same as actually confirming the ending. PLUS: Chase wanted to leave fans in limbo.


Ed Helms to visit “Brooklyn Nine-Nine”
He’ll play a USPS inspector.


"The Leftovers" should learn a lesson in subtlety from “Rectify”
One show was subtle in the way it built up to a transfixing two hours, the other was unsure of what it wants to do or who its characters are.


When The New York Times writes about Brooklyn, it often mentions “Girls”
The HBO series has become a defining cultural benchmark of modern Brooklyn, name-dropped in articles about landlords, bar reviews and political intrigue.


“Dating Naked” couple weds
The VH1 reality show has produced its first married couple.


Examining the state of black cast members on “SNL”
Sure, “Saturday Night Live” has three black cast members. But, says Wesley Morris, Maya Rudolph’s "dynamism and sense of showbiz hasn’t been replaced, either. And it’s left a bitterness in the culture that you felt in last year’s complaints about there being no black women on the show. You felt it in the writer Leslie Jones’s shocking 'Weekend Update' editorial in which she speculatively raged about her sexual undesirability as a big, black woman. It was both a moment of comedy and cultural expurgation. Her rant was as much about her as it was about the working conditions of her employer." PLUS: Graphing “SNL” ratings, “SNL’s” most essential/inessential musical guests, how Nasim Pedrad auditioned and left “SNL,” Sasheer Zamata gives advice from a grown woman, and examining “SNL” movies.


Remembering Phil Hartman, “The Glue” on “SNL”
With a biography on Hartman due out next month, it’s hard to explain why he was one of “SNL’s” most important cast members. Part of it, says Bryan Curtis, was "the unusual nature of Hartman’s talent. Hartman was so good at playing smarmy, air-quoting, golden-voiced sharpies — '20 percent droid,' said the writer Robert Smigel — that it’s difficult to catalogue all the comic notes he left behind in the universe.” PLUS: Remembering Hartman’s “Simpsons” characters, including Troy McClure.


“Ground Floor” returns Dec. 9 in a new timeslot
The Bill Lawrence-produced TBS comedy will air Tuesdays at 10.


ABC’s updates its mysterious “Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” billboard
The billboard in L.A. now features Agent Coulson and the show’s new timeslot.


CBS reveals details of its season premieres
Read descriptions of the new fall episodes.


Oprah Winfrey Network launching a YouTube series
Celebrity guests will be interviewed on “Who Am I."


Emmys snubbed “Sharknado”!
Here’s a belated “For Your Consideration” video.


Amy Sedaris on future “Late Show” host Stephen Colbert: “He has this whole bag of tricks people haven’t even seen yet”
"This guy can do anything,” she says of her “Strangers with Candy” pal, "and his reference level is so high. It’s going to be from talking to politicians to talking to reality TV stars, but he’ll be able to do it. It’s gonna be a good show.”


With retirement looming, Letterman is great again
Dave seems refreshed since announcing his retirement in April, says Mike Ryan. "Here’s a guy just enjoying his last few months on the job – with a renewed sense of purpose after vanquishing his rival, Leno.” PLUS: Paul Shaffer: “I’m not retiring, as many people have assumed."


“Southern Charm” star’s U.S. Senate bid is accompanied by reality TV cameras
Thomas Ravenel, who’s attempting to unseat longtime U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham, has a sign outside his campaign events warning: "You are being photographed . . . Please do not enter this area if you do not wish to appear.”


Watch “Grey’s Anatomy” star attempt and fail to explain medical terms
It’s a bonus feature of the 10th season DVD box set.


Whit Stillman’s Amazon pilot “The Cosmopolitan” is as good as his movies
The Paris-based pilot is retro-Stillman that is the spiritual heir to “Barcelona.” PLUS: Stillman explains how his pilot was cut in half.


New Dan Harmon “Harmontown” trailer revisits the Chevy Chase voicemail
It also features Harmon's “Community” stars.


“Bachelor in Paradise” star: We did not have a threesome
Says Jesse Kovacs: "The whole threesome thing, that didn’t happen.”


Kevin Spacey to take a “House of Cards” break for a 1-night-only concert performance
He’ll sing Billy Joel and Simon & Garfunkel songs at a Washington benefit to raise money for his foundation.


Allison Janney says of her 2 Emmy wins this year: “Television is a woman’s medium”
“I am proud to work in TV,” she says.


Naked extras on “Looking" get paid much more
While clothed non-union extras can earn $85.92 for eight hours, nude extras can earn $250 over the same period.


Will Forte’s beard has become bushier
The “SNL” alum has been growing his beard for Fox’s “Last Man on Earth."


“Glee” vet Nolan Funk joins “Arrow”
He’ll play Felicity hacker ex-boyfriend from when she was at MIT.


NBC buys naked amnesiac drama “Blindspot” from Greg Berlanti
The FBI thriller focuses on a naked amnesiac discovered in Times Square with his name tattooed on his back.


Ranking Kevin Arnold’s “Wonder Years” romantic flings
Winnie Cooper is No. 5!


Corbin Bernsen is headed to “Scorpion”
The “Psych” star will play a Vegas casino owner.

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