Latest Blog Posts

'SNL's' new black female cast member revealed: Sasheer Zamata

"SNL's" new black female cast member revealed: Sasheer Zamata

Upright Citizens Brigade member Sasheer Zamata will become a featured player when "Saturday Night Live" returns on Jan. 18, according to Deadline. Watch her perform standup and check her out in a sketch scene.

NBC orders a retooled "Mr. Robinson" starring Craig Robinson

"The Office" alum's pilot has been redone -- without "The Office" boss Greg Daniels, who was involved in the first version of the pilot.

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ABC Family picks up Jennie Garth/Tori Spelling comedy, plus Emily Osment in "Young & Hungry"

ABC Family picks up Jennie Garth/Tori Spelling comedy, plus Emily Osment in "Young & Hungry"
The "Beverly Hills 90210" alums will reunite for "Mystery Girls."

Jerry Seinfeld: I'm working on something "big, huge, gigantic" with Larry David
"We wrote this script for this thing that you will eventually see but I can't reveal what it is at this time," Seinfeld said in his Reddit Ask Me Anything. "All I can do is tell you is that it’s big, huge, gigantic. Even bigger than that Amazon package." PLUS: Watch a preview of Patton Oswalt in a "Back to the Future" car with Seinfeld.

New Dish DVR to allow recording of 8 shows at once

Introducing the SuperJoey.

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Listen: Firewall & Iceberg Podcast No. 216

Dan and Alan review 'Intelligence,' 'Killer Women,' 'Girls' and 5 other shows


Happy Monday, Boys & Girls!
We've got so much new stuff premiering this week that we had to reverse the timing for the podcast and the video show. With a ton of stuff premiering on Tuesday, we moved the podcast up to review gems like "Intelligence" and "Killer Women" and whatnot. We have eight reviews in this podcast. That's a lot.
Then tomorrow, we'll do our video show, which will include a Golden Globes preview and a preview of the upcoming TCA press tour, plus reviews of "True Detective," "Enlisted," "Chozen" and "Spoils of Babylon."
Here's today's podcast breakdown:
"Intelligence" (00:02:15 - 00:11:15)
"Killer Women" (00:11:15 - 00:18:00)
"Justified" (00:18:00 - 00:24:30)
"Cougar Town" (00:24:30 - 00:29:30)
"Chicago PD" (00:29:35 - 00:41:45)
"Helix" (00:41:45 - 00:50:45)
"Shameless" (00:50:50 - 00:57:00)
"Girls" (00:57:05 - 01:04:30)

As always, you can subscribe to The Firewall & Iceberg Podcast over at the iTunes Store, where you can also rate us and comment on us. [Or you can always follow our RSS Feed or subscribe on IHeartRadio.] 

And as always, feel free to e-mail us questions for the podcast.


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Firewall & Iceberg Podcast, episode 216

Dan and Alan review an awful lot of new and returning shows as 2014 starts off busy


Happy 2014, Firewall & Iceberg fans! The podcast is back on Monday for this week only, simply because press tour starts later in the week and turns both our schedules upside down. It's a super busy week for premieres, and Dan and I dealt with eight different new and returning shows here, and we'll have another four tomorrow on the video show. The rundown: 

"Intelligence" (00:02:15 - 00:11:15)
"Killer Women" (00:11:15 - 00:18:00)
"Justified" (00:18:00 - 00:24:30)
"Cougar Town" (00:24:30 - 00:29:30)
"Chicago PD" (00:29:35 - 00:41:45)
"Helix" (00:41:45 - 00:50:45)
"Shameless" (00:50:50 - 00:57:00)
"Girls" (00:57:05 - 01:04:30)

As always, send questions to You can subscribe to The Firewall & Iceberg Podcast over at the iTunes Store, where you can also rate us and comment on us. Or you can always follow our RSS Feed, download the MP3 file, subscribe on IHeartRadio or stream it on Dan's blog.

There's also now a complete archive of all the podcasts to date.

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<p>You can almost feel Edgar Wright's elbow give you a shot to the ribs as you check out his hint about his upcoming 'Ant-Man' film</p>

You can almost feel Edgar Wright's elbow give you a shot to the ribs as you check out his hint about his upcoming 'Ant-Man' film

Credit: Marvel Animation

Edgar Wright reveals a major clue about which 'Ant-Man' Paul Rudd is playing

Sounds like a very different approach to a Marvel movie

One of the reasons I've been so excited about "Ant-Man" for so long now is because the premise for the film, as explained years ago by Edgar Wright, sounds like it won't be like any other superhero film we've seen.

The other reason, of course, is because Edgar Wright has one of the most distinct voices in film right now. I'm excited to see how his aggressive visual style fits into the Marvel cinematic universe, and the test footage that was revealed at Comic-Con a few years ago was a tremendously encouraging first look at how Ant-Man's powers could be used in a fight.

Wright's been working on the script for several years now, on and off, with co-writer Joe Cornish, and when I was interviewing Cornish about "Attack The Block," I happened to mention the "Ant-Man" plot I'd heard, and he went a little pale. "You're not going to print that, are you?" he asked, and I assured him that I wasn't going to be the one to ruin all the surprises.

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Study: 80% of Super Bowl ads 'don't sell stuff'

Study: 80% of Super Bowl ads "don't sell stuff"
Turns out, since most Super Bowl ads have nothing to do with the product their selling, viewers will remember the creative part of it more than the actual company behind the ad.

Jerry Seinfeld answers questions on Reddit, recalls his 1975 introduction to Larry David
"The first time I met him," writes Seinfeld, "that's a long story... I actually was eavesdropping on him talking to another comedian, and I wasn't even in comedy yet. But he was leaning on my car in front of the Improv on 9th Ave and 44th Street, and this would be probably 1975." PLUS: Seinfeld answers the question, What if 'Seinfeld' was still on TV today?

Kaley Cuoco adds "Sweeting" to her name
Now that "The Big Bang Theory" star is married, she has added her husband's name, according to her Twitter.

"Kardashians" star Scott Disick loses his father, two months after the death of his mother
Disick's dad, Jeffrey, died Friday in Los Angeles.

Kris Jenner's talk show won't likely return
The E! star's daytime talker had mixed results during a summer test run on Fox.

Old Spice creeps out viewers with "Mom Song" ad
Watch the new ad that premiered during yesterday's AFC Wild Card game.

"The Bachelor" paid tribute to Gia Allemand in last night's special
The moving special aired as part of the "Countdown to Juan Pablo" special.

Showtime puts the "Shameless" season premiere on the web
Watch the censored version now.

"Law & Order" creator Dick Wolf releases his 2nd detective novel

"The Execution" is a follow-up to "The Intercept."

"Downton Abbey" feels like it's run out of steam

"The fourth season doesn't so much extend a plot forward as drift from set piece to set piece," says  Stephen Marche. "The great television dramas have a tendency of writing themselves into corners and then miraculously escaping. Downton has taken the opposite tack. Everything just becomes easier and easier." PLUS: Patton Oswalt live-tweeted the premiere, it seems like "Downton" is remaking the 1st season, everyone is so sad?, and watch "Falling Downton Abbey."

"The Queen Latifah Show" gets a 2nd season
Queen Latifah has a two-year deal, so her renewal was a formality.

"Kroll Show" releases star-studded Season 2 trailer
Among the Season 2 guest stars are Nick Kroll's girlfriend Amy Poehler and Zach Galifianakis.

Comedian Tig Notaro gets her own web show, from Entertainment Weekly
"Up Close with Tig Notaro's" first guest: "Community's" Gillian Jacobs.

Wayne Brady is dating Chilli from TLC

According to Us Weekly, this is their 2nd time as a couple.

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<p>Ralph Fiennes and Tony Revolori in &quot;The Grand Budapest Hotel.&quot;</p>

Ralph Fiennes and Tony Revolori in "The Grand Budapest Hotel."

Credit: Fox Searchlight Pictures

Ralph Fiennes gets official in new clips from 'The Grand Budapest Hotel'

Wes Anderson's latest premieres in exactly one month's time

We have exactly one month to go before Wes Anderson's "The Grand Budapest Hotel" is unveiled on the opening night of the Berlin Film Festival. We recently featured the film in our Most Anticipated Prestige Films list, but if your appetite still needs whetting, Fox Searchlight have unveiled another two clips from the all-star comedy, both focused principally on the dashing manager of the titular hotel, played by Ralph Fiennes, and his wide-eyed new lobby boy Zero, played by Tony Revolori.

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<p>Lady Gaga performing last month on 'The Voice'</p>

Lady Gaga performing last month on 'The Voice'

Credit: AP Photo/NBC, Trae Patton

Lady Gaga claims betrayal and mismangement in stunning post

Missive reveals reason for 'DWUW' video delay and apologizes to fans

In an stunning, revealing post, Lady Gaga blames betrayal and mismanagement for the delay in the “Do What U Want” video  and plaintively asks her fans for forgiveness in what becomes a broader apology for her new album “Artpop’s” performance so far.

The missive, posted Sunday on Lady Gaga's fan site,, explains that she was only given a week to plan the video for the song, which features R. Kelly, and that wasn’t enough. She originally expected it to bow in December.

Without ever naming specific individuals, she adds that those who have “betrayed me gravely....let me on my own to damage control any problems that ensued as a result. Millions of dollars are not enough for some people. They want billions. Then they need trillions.”

She adds after her hip surgery last year, she was “too sick, too tired, and too sad to control the damage on my own. My label was not aware that this was going on.”

The rest of the post asks for their forgiveness in how “Artpop” has rolled out and she asked for another chance to “Let me be for you the Goddess that I know I truly am.”  Lady Gaga declares that “the next few months of “Artpop” will truly be its beginning.”

In November,  “Artpop” debuted at No. 1 with sales of 258,000 —more than 100,000 less than expected— and mixed reviews. Despite first single “Applause’s” success at radio, the album quickly dropped out of the Top 10 as if a heavy stone had been tied to it. A week prior to the album’s release, she parted ways with her longtime manager, Troy Carter, for reasons neither has disclosed, and Lady Gaga does not name Carter specifically in the post.

Lady Gaga has been communicating with her fans through the Little Monsters site much more heavily than her Twitter account, including informing one of her fans that she and her mother would like to hire her to help run her Born This Way Foundation yesterday. After not tweeting since Jan. 1, this morning Lady Gaga tweeted, “In this lifetime how will you use the power in your voice? Wlil you give back to the world what you receive, or are you just talking?” 

In addition to what sounds like a relaunch for “Artpop,” Lady Gaga’s The Artpop Ball tour kicks off May 4 in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., following a seven-date residency at New York’s Roseland Ballroom starting in March before the theater shuts down. While tickets remain for that tour kick-off, according to Lady Gaga's website, a number of shows on the arena outing are already sold out. 

Below is the full text of Lady Gaga's message:

DWUW Video

It is late because, just like with the Applause video unfortunately, I was given a week to plan and execute it. It is very devastating for someone like me, I devote every moment of my life to creating fantasies for you. All my my most successful videos were planned over a period of time when I was rested and my creativity was honored. Those who have betrayed me gravely mismanaged my time and health and left me on my own to damage control any problems that ensued as a result. Millions of dollars are not enough for some people. They want billions. Then they need trillions. I was not enough for some people. They wanted more. I am very grateful to the photographers and designers who have always stood by me to make sure my fans are never aware of the things that happen behind the scenes, but unfortunately after my surgery I was too sick, too tired, and too sad to control the damage on my own. My label was not aware that this was going on. The next few months of ARTPOP will truly be its beginning. Because those who did not care about ARTPOP's success are now gone, and the dreams I have been planning can now come to fruition. Please forgive me that I did not foresee this coming, I never thought after all the years of hard work that those I called friends and partners would ever care so little at a time I needed them the most. Give me a chance to show you the meaning of seeing art all around you. Open your hearts to me again that I may show you the joy of us coming together through our talents, that we are stronger as a unit than when we are alone. Let me be for you the Goddess that I know I truly am, let me show you the visions that have been in my mind for two years. I love you. Forgive me monsters. Forgive me ARTPOP. You are my whole world.


What do you think of Lady Gaga's message? 


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<p>Amy Seimetz and Shane Carruth in &quot;Upstream Color.&quot;</p>

Amy Seimetz and Shane Carruth in "Upstream Color."

Credit: eprb

Georgia critics big on '12 Years a Slave' and 'Upstream Color'

'Mud' finds some Southern support

The Georgia Film Critics' Association is a young and fairly small group: they've been going three years and have 10 members, which means their nominee list is a bit less groupthink-influenced than most. "12 Years a Slave" might lead the field with 11 nods, but there are unusual choices elsewhere: while "American Hustle" and "Inside Llewyn Davis" share second place with seven mentions, so does Shane Carruth's "Upstream Color," which landed Carruth nods for directing, writing, cinematography and score. Meanwhile, "Mud" found some Southern comfort with a Best Picture nod. Full list below; everything else at The Circuit.

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Jimmy Fallon's primetime special does well for NBC

Jimmy Fallon's primetime special does well for NBC

In a good sign for Fallon's "Tonight Show" launch, about 5.7 million viewers tuned in for last night's "Best of Late Night" special.

Will Smith breaks his silence on James Avery's death

Smith says of his "Fresh Prince of Bel-Air" co-star, in a statement: "Some of my greatest lessons in Acting, Living and being a respectable human being came through James Avery. Every young man needs an Uncle Phil. Rest in Peace."

Jonah Hill will host "SNL" for the 3rd time
Hill was just announced for the Jan. 25 episode, with musical guest Bastiell. Hill previously hosted "SNL" in 2008 and 2012.

Robin Roberts officially comes out on "GMA"
This morning, Roberts showed a picture of her longtime girlfriend.

Eurythmics will reunite for Grammys' Beatles tribute
Annie Lennox and Dave Stewart will be part of the Feb. 9 special "The Night That Changed America: A Grammy Salute to the Beatles."

"Girls" meet "The Bachelor"

Lena Dunham and Allison Williams bumped in Juan Pablo.

Check out "The Simpsons'" Lego set

It consists of 2523 pieces.

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<p>Joaquin Phoenix and Russell Crowe both did remarkable work in Ridley Scott's 'Gladiator'</p>

Joaquin Phoenix and Russell Crowe both did remarkable work in Ridley Scott's 'Gladiator'

Credit: Paramount Home VIdeo/DreamWorks

We kick off a new column called 'Movie Rehab' with a look back at Ridley Scott's 'Gladiator'

Does winning Best Picture automatically turn people against a movie?

HitFix just quietly turned five years old.

The most remarkable part of that is the time frame in which we launched. We could not have picked a worse day for the site to go live. The financial meltdown was happening at the exact moment that we were attempting to start a brand-new media company, and if we'd failed, it would have made us just one more example of how the crisis impacted people.

Instead, we've slowly but surely carved out our own place online, and with each new voice we've added to the mix, HitFix has gotten stronger. For the last five years, I have been blessed by the opportunity to define my own blog by my own interests, and I feel like I've done some of my best work here. "Film Nerd 2.0" has taken on a life of its own, and I am enormously grateful to everyone who has not only read the columns but shared them.

The one thing I don't think we've done as well as we could have is create a larger sense of community in the comments section. Sure, we've got several people who comment regularly, but what I'd really love to see is more conversation. That's hard when we're publishing a review of something that isn't out yet because you guys aren't able to weigh in at that point, and by the time the film is out, that review could be 20 articles back on the blog.

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<p>Director and co-star Kenneth Branagh on the set of &quot;Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit&quot;</p>

Director and co-star Kenneth Branagh on the set of "Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit"

Credit: Paramount

Set Visit: 'Jack Ryan' team brings Russia to London for franchise reboot

How has Tom Clancy's hero been made current?
LONDON, ENGLAND. It's a late October day in 2012 and a movie called "Maryland" is shooting in the lobby of a Moscow skyscraper.
As the dateline to this story might spoil, we're actually nowhere near Moscow. We're actually directly adjacent to the very British Liverpool Station.
And as the headline to this story might also spoil, "Maryland" is just a dummy title to throw civilians off the scent. The movie that's actually shooting is Paramount's "Jack Ryan," a reintroduction for the eponymous character, who has been previously played by Ben Affleck, Alec Baldwin and Harrison Ford.
On this day, our new Jack Ryan, played by Hollywood's reigning king of the franchise reboot Chris Pine, isn't engaged in any high tech espionage, or at least not in any tradecraft that we can see. The budding intelligence operative is just descending an escalator and a flight of stairs outside of headquarters belonging to villain Viktor Cherevin, played by Kenneth Branagh, who is present, but dressed for his other job as director on the Paramount production. Over and over, Jack Ryan makes his way out of the building, each time seemingly sensing that he's being watched. Each time, he ends up in a mysterious blue van.
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