Latest Blog Posts

'Boardwalk Empire' returns for a final, 8-episode season on Sept. 7

“Boardwalk Empire” returns for a final, 8-episode season on Sept. 7
HBO confirmed today that Season 5 will be set during the Depression in 1931. PLUS: "The Comeback" will come back in November, along with "Getting On."

“True Detective” creator: “There are four central roles” for the California-set Season 2
Nic Pizzolatto wouldn’t reveal much more, but HBO programming chief Michael Lombardo said today: “The two scripts we have are… I hate to jinx it, but are more exciting than the first season,” and casting announcements should come next week.

HBO isn’t concerned about the “Game of Thrones” books, says Larry David is still thinking about “Curb Your Enthusiasm”
HBO programming chief Michael Lombardo said he recently bumped into Larry David. “I said, ‘So Larry, should I emotionally get Curb out of my head?’ He says, ‘No, no, no.’ As long as he’s still thinking about it, we have a place for him.”

“Big Brother” will begin tracking housemates’ every move with wireless activity trackers
The Fitbit Flex trackers will generate information that will be posted on

Donald Trump calls Rosie’s “View” return “a good move” — but "Rosie always self-destructs”
Rosie O’Donnell’s longtime nemesis says: “I think it’s a good move on ABC’s part. It’ll have a short term positive effect. The show has really missed not having Barbara (Walters) on it. With that said, it’ll have a short term positive impact, but then you have the long term. Rosie always self-destructs.”

HBO will show Beyonce and Jay-Z’s “On the Run” tour
The “major musical event” will tape in Paris in September.

Cinemax renews Steven Soderbergh’s “The Knick” before its premiere
The 1900-set NYC hospital drama won’t premiere for another two months.

Kate Mulgrew earned her very 1st Emmy nomination today
"This is my first Emmy nomination,” she says of her “Orange is the New Black” nod. "Can you believe it, after 40 years in this business?"

Ali Larter: I’m not reprising my “Heroes” role
Larter says she’s too committed to TNT’s “Legends” to return for “Heroes: Reborn.”

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Press Tour: July 2014 HBO Executive Session Live-Blog
Credit: HBO

Press Tour: July 2014 HBO Executive Session Live-Blog

Expect 'Game of Thrones,' 'True Detective' and other discussion

Welcome to my first live-blog for the July 2014 Television Critics Association press tour!

Up first, HBO Chairman and CEO Richard Plepler and Michael Lombardo take the stage to discuss "True Detective," "Game of Thrones," "The Leftovers" and whatever else we feel like we want to talk about.

Follow along!

That's Richard Plepler above. He looks like a character on "Mad Men," doesn't he?

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Cannes drama-comedy 'Pride' starring Bill Nighy acquired by CBS Films
Credit: CBS Films

Cannes drama-comedy 'Pride' starring Bill Nighy acquired by CBS Films

Fact-based Queer Palm winner to hit U.S. theaters in September

"Pride" is heading to U.S. theaters.

The winner of the Queer Palm at this year's Cannes Film Festival has been acquired for Stateside distribution by CBS Films, it was announced today. Directed by Tony winner Matthew Warchus from a script by Stephen Beresford, the "dramatic comedy" stars Bill Nighy, Imelda Staunton, Dominic West, Paddy Considine, Andrew Scott, Joseph Gilgun, George MacKay and Ben Schnetzer in a fact-based story about the unlikely alliance between LGBT activists and striking mineworkers in the U.K. during the mid-1980s.

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Fox reveals fall premiere dates

Fox reveals fall premiere dates
Fox’s fall season kicks off on Sept. 7 with “Utopia,” “New Girl” and “The Mindy Project” return Sept. 16, “Gotham” debuts on Sept. 22 and “Mulaney” won’t premiere until Oct. 5.

“How I Met Your Dad” may be revived next year with a brand-new cast
The pilot starring Greta Gerwig is officially dead since the casts’ contracts expired last month. But according to TV Line, “How I Met Your Mother” creators Carter Bays and Craig Thomas are planning to redevelop “HIMYD” for the 2015-16 season.

11 black actors received Emmy nominations this year
That’s the most since “Roots” was up for consideration in 1977.

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Mary Lambert

Mary Lambert confesses in fun lyric video for new song, 'Secrets'

New single from forthcoming album, 'Heart On My Sleeve'

There’s a saying that you’re only as sick as your secrets. If that’s the case, then Mary Lambert is very,very healthy.

On her new single, “Secrets,” the singer best know for her feature on Macklemore & Ryan Lewis’ “Same Love,” proudly declares all her secrets: she’s bi polar, her family is dysfunctional, sometimes she cries all day, and some less secret ones— she’s overweight and gay.

All these confessions are sung over an impossibly jaunty tune as she refreshingly reveals all in the lyric video. “‘Secrets’ might be the first fun song I’ve ever written,” says Lambert. And, indeed, the bouncy track has an irrepressible Katy Perry, “Roar” vibe. She co-wrote the track with Eric Rosse, Benny Cassette and MoZella. Rosee and Cassette are also executive producers on her new album, “Heart On My Sleeve,” out Oct. 14 on Capitol Records.
The song is about accepting yourself, flaws and all. “I felt like there were a lot of songs coming out about self-empowerment and challenging beauty standards and I wanted to write a sgon along those same lines, but in my voice,” Lambert says in a statement. “There is so much shame and guilt in our society and I think it has deprived a lot of people from living fully. We are all facing battles, We’ve all had someone who has hurt us. So let’s talk bout it.”

We can already imagine the fan-posted videos that “Secrets” will spawn, with folks posting they videos confessing all their closet skeletons with abandon. Bring it on!

Lambert is on the road this summer with Matt Nathanson and Gavin DeGraw. Below the video are tour dates.


07/10  Cedar Rapids, IA                  McGrath Amphitheater*
07/11  Fargo, ND                              The Venue*
07/12  Green Bay, WI                      Green Bay Pride
07/16  Toronto, ON                          Sound Academy*
07/17  Toledo, OH                            Toledo Zoo Amphitheater*
07/20  Vancouver, BC                     Vancouver Folk Music Festival @ Jericho Beach Park
07/23  New York, NY                       RBaby Foundation Concert @ Hammerstein Ballroom
08/10  Chicago, IL                            Northalsted Market Days
08/23  Saratoga Springs, CA         Luscious Queer Music Festival
09/20  New York, NY                       SubCulture
09/26  Thousand Oaks, CA            Scherr Forum-Thousand Oaks Civic Arts
09/27  San Francisco, CA              Nourse Theatre


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<p>Reese Witherspoon in &quot;Wild&quot;</p>

Reese Witherspoon in "Wild"

Credit: Fox Searchlight Pictures

'Wild' trailer reveals a de-glammed Reese Witherspoon hiking the pain away

Is she on a crash-course with awards season?

Jean-Marc Vallée directed two actors to not only their first Oscar nominations last year, but their first wins, as "Dallas Buyers Club" stars Matthew McConaughey and Jared Leto ended up walking away with gold that felt preordained early in the season. This year he could do the same for Reese Witherspoon, who won the Best Actress Oscar for "Walk the Line" back in 2005 and has a significant opportunity in "Wild" to remind us what she's capable of.

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'Glee’s' final season reduced to 13 episodes

“Glee’s” final season reduced to 13 episodes
The Fox musical dramedy will have its shortest season yet with Season 6, which will air at midseason.

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President Obama’s 'Between Two Ferns' interview is up for an Emmy

President Obama’s “Between Two Ferns” interview is up for an Emmy
The president will be battling it out in the same category as his White House Correspondents Dinner roaster, Joel McHale.

Mark-Paul Gosselaar will play not 1 but 2 notorious serial killers on “CSI”
He’ll guest-star as twins on a multi-episode arc this fall.

Madeleine Albright congratulates Amy Poehler on her Emmy nomination
The former secretary of state took to Twitter to write: “Dear Leslie: Keep up the good work!”

“Game of Thrones” isn’t Sean Bean’s favorite onscreen death
Bean, speaking before TV critics today about his upcoming drama “Legends," said he much preferred his death on “Lord of the Rings.” “Quite bizarre, isn't it?” Bean added. “I've died quite a few times, actually, and I've died quite a few different deaths. Maybe it's the quality of my death.”

Seth MacFarlane’s “Cosmos” earned 12  Emmy nominations
That's the same number of Emmy noms received by HBO’s “True Detective."

Jerry Seinfeld drives Aziz Ansari's massive tour bus on "Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee"
The tour bus' name: "Good Times."

Check out the 1st official image of Peter Capaldi’s “Doctor Who” and Clara
The image is from the season premiere.

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Jimmy Kimmel and his co-head writer wife welcome a baby girl

Jimmy Kimmel and his co-head writer wife welcome a baby girl
Kimmel just tweeted: "Congratulations to my beautiful and very tough wife,” Molly McNearney, "on delivering our baby girl this morning.” Kimmel already has two kids, a boy and a girl who are in their 20s, with his first wife. PLUS: After giving birth, McNearney tweets: "Kids, don't do drugs. Until you have a baby. Then do ALL OF THEM." UPDATE: The baby's name is Jane Kimmel.

“Fargo” creator hints at tackling another Coen Brothers movie for Season 2
Will Noah Hawley next tackle “Raising Arizona” or “A Serious Man”?

Chris Rock congratulates his mom on her new TV gig
Rose Rock is the new co-host of Myrtle Beach’s “Carolina & Company Live."

TruTV gets a new logo, adds 4 new shows
The four new shows include musical "Branson Famous,” bar competition “The Shake  Up,” “Hack My Life” and “Kart Life.”

“True Blood” gets a “Cheers” makeover
Watch “True Blood’s” new theme song, courtesy of “The Wil Wheaton Project.”

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Garth Brooks

Garth Brooks finally joins the digital age, new album and tour plans

Will downloads be album only? Plus his thoughts on the Dublin fiasco

Garth Brooks’ five comeback shows in Dublin slated for later this month may still be in jeopardy, but the rest of his comeback is now taking shape.

Brooks, the top-selling solo artist in the U.S., according to the Recording Industry Assn. of America, held an occasionally emotional press conference today in Nashville that addressed many key points for his return, following his 13-year retirement, including his music finally being available digitally, a new label deal with Sony Music, and his world tour. He also addressed the status of the July 25-29 Ireland shows, which were cancelled on Tuesday because of permit issues, but talks are now ongoing to revive the shows.

Here’s what you need to know:

*His music will finally be available digitally. He has been the lone holdout among superstars at iTunes and will continue to be. Instead, his music will be available through his website,, within the next two-to-three weeks. Though he didn’t address this in the press conference, Brooks’ reluctance to put his music on iTunes stemmed from the fact that he wanted his music sold as full albums, not as individual song downloads. We've asked his publicist about the album only and she said details to come, which indicates there may be some wiggle room there.  Brooks has long offered very low pricing on his packages and he hinted at an introductory offer for the downloads that will be so low, “people will think we’re giving it away.”  That’s a smart move. He rewards the fans who have been waiting a very long time to get their hands on his unavailable catalog and, by selling it in album-only form, he increases his album numbers. UPDATE: Here's how the downloads will work: For the new material, fans can buy the single, but they are pre-ordering the full album when they do so. He has to have the singles available for individual sale in order for him to chart on the Billboard Hot Country Singles chart, so this is his way around it. I'm not sure how it will work for singles that come out after the album has come out.

*There will be a world tour and he will announce the kick-off city on July 14.   (When he said the date for the announcement, he said Sept. 14, so that may have been a bit of a slip, as the tour is rumored to start this fall). Though Brooks would not confirm ticket prices or dates, Billboard reported that he will charge no more $80 per ticket, and  that a $60 ticket is more likely. Brooks have never believed in scaling the house, so all tickets will be the same price. Other outlets are reporting that he will do multiple dates in cities to meet demand, which isn’t so much of a leak as just common sense given the likely pent-up demand.

*Expect new music within the next two months. Brooks owns his music, including his back catalog, and he has made a licensing deal for his label, Pearl, to go through Sony Music’s RCA Nashville imprint (putting him on the same label as Elvis Presley).  He hinted that a single will come out within two months and that the album, a double album, will come around around Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving. He’s writing for the album, but added that the material he’s receiving from outside songwriters is better than his stuff so he’s been cutting outside material more than his own songs. The new album will be available through all physical retailers and his website, not just through Walmart, as has been the case for his last several projects since leaving Capitol.

*He admitted there was a “black cloud” over the day’s proceedings as the five Dublin shows  are still up in the air. They were initially cancelled on Tuesday, but he sent a letter to the promoter yesterday that has now opened back up talks, all the way up to the level of Ireland’s prime minister, who is now trying to save the concerts. Brooks said he will drop everything if the prime minister wants to talk with him and fly over to Dublin. “I will drop on my knees and beg for those 400,000 people to be able to come and have fun and sing.” At issue is that the Dublin City Council only approved licenses for three of the five shows, citing regulations that only permit three concerts at the 80,000-seat Croke Park per year. Brooks refuses to play unless he can perform all five shows. He got quite emotional discussing Ireland during the press conference and his feelings that he couldn’t let down the 160,000 who wouldn’t get to see him play if he caved and did only the the three shows. “They said to me, ‘With a simple yes, you cane make 240,000 people happy. And my statement back was ‘with a simple yes, you can make 400,000 people happy’.” And if there was any question as to whether young fans were eager to hear him, he said that a staggering 75% of the tickets sold to the Ireland shows were to people 25 and under.

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Fred Armisen says his Supporting Actor Emmy nomination is a 'Portlandia' team win

Fred Armisen says his Supporting Actor Emmy nomination is a 'Portlandia' team win

HitFix interview: Will Seth Meyers pull him in for musical duties at the ceremony?

This morning, Fred Armisen used the words "really," "exciting" and "group" extensively as he hopped on the horn to discuss "Portlandia's" six Emmy Nominations for the 2014 honors.

The IFC program earned nods for a varied crop of comedy and variety series awards, some of which are more elaborate than others: Art Direction For Variety, Nonfiction, Reality Or Reality-Competition Program; Directing For A Variety Series; Single-Camera Picture Editing For A Comedy Series; Guest Actor In A Comedy Series; and Writing For A Variety Series.

But a surprise first for Armisen was in a major category, for Outstanding Supporting Actor In A Comedy Series.

In my second interview in a half year with Armisen, I ask about his newly minted Supporting Actor nominee status, the snub of Brownstein for Supporting Actress, and what role (if any) he may play at the ceremony in August with "Late Night" buddy and Emmys ceremony host Seth Meyers.

Check out the television shows with the most 2014 Emmy nominations here.

Congratulations! What has your morning been like, did you get up bright and early for the announcement?

Fred Armisen: We have to get up fairly early anyway for pre-production, but I definitely woke up to a whole bunch of really excited texts from friends and the group. 

I mean, I really love TV. I love watching TV so much. Thank you so much, I'm just... yes.

This is the first time you've earned an Actor Emmy nomination. Does that feel any different than "Portlandia's" other former nominations?

It's all a huge honor, all the way through. It's all because the way we work on the show, we do everything in a group. It's very harmonious. It's just really exciting.

I assume you feel pretty strongly that Carrie should have gotten an actress nomination?

I feel like is all part of the same thing. There's nothing singular about my nomination in the category. We do everything together.

When I went to sleep last night, I was think about the group, not in sums of should or shouldn't. It's all celebration. We're lucky to be doing comedy at all. We're lucky to have a show on air. Even that is a really huge honor to be in anything.

We really all write together, perform together. She's nominated for writing. It's all very much in the same room.

The Emmys have special rules for comedy actors in a variety series, about submitting as Supporting as opposed to Leads. You're obviously a co-lead in "Portlandia," but your nomination is for Supporting Actor. Do you have any strong feelings about those inner workings, anything you'd want to change?

I just don't know how everything... works. I just feel like we all get to go and be part of it. It's not for me to say what should and shouldn't be. There are people who are definitely better with questions like that.

Has Seth [Meyers] dialed you in for any musical duties for the ceremony?

We haven't talked about it yet. I hope that may come somewhere down the line. We've been texting all this morning.

Any other nominees this morning that knock your socks off?

Oh man. I sit down at my TV and I've got "Veep," "[Inside] Amy Schumer," "Key & Peele"... in the future, we're gonna look back at this time period and think, "People really did some great shows, great work, great art." "Orange Is The New Black," are you kidding me? "Girls?" All of it I love it all, how exciting.


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ABC makes it official: Rosie is returning to 'The View'

ABC makes it official: Rosie is returning to “The View”
“The View” confirmed the news via a tweet: "It's official! ABC confirms Rosie O'Donnell returns as co-host of #TheView w/ moderator Whoopi Goldberg for Season 18."

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