Inside TV+Movies with Daniel Fienberg
Merely getting to Moscow causes serious complications for some teams
Oh, "The Amazing Race."
You so crazy!
And yet... You also so predictable!
Sunday (November 11) night's episode of "The Amazing Race" was, for the most part, the best episode of the season. By a lot. It featured exactly the sort of travel intrigue that I usually relish, exactly the sort of genuinely challenging, but also amusing, tasks that I normally endorse and, in Moscow, one of those locations that's probably in my Top 5 of dream destinations. It also included both semi-amusing bickering between teams, but also ample warm-hearted unity between teams.
Total success, right?
Comrade-in-arms Andy from RealityBlurred.com tweeted enthusiasm for the episode at 8:40 and I responded, "Unless/Until the episode gets ruined by an NEL, it's a pretty good Leg so far..."
Darn you, "The Amazing Race," for making me so distrustful of you, for making me so certain that if there's an ending to be blundered, you'll find a way to blunder it. Emmy winning juggernauts shouldn't have so much difficulty sticking the landing, but "The Amazing Race" does and watching Sunday's episode, I never felt for a second like there was going to be a satisfying resolution.
Click through for the full recap...
Sheen will follow his vampire role by playing sex expert William Masters
It's going to be a busy week of interviews for "The Twilight
Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 2."
I've already posted my interviews with stars Kristen Stewart
and Robert Pattinson
, but over the days leading up to the "Twilight" franchise's climax, you can expect to see conversations with Taylor Lautner, director Bill Condon and the Cullen pairings of Kellan Lutz & Jackson Rathbone and Elizabeth Reaser & Nikki Reed, plus Michael Sheen
Sheen and I discuss his fantastic mustache before the video started rolling and I complimented him on his fantastic red velvet jacket afterwards and I had plenty of questions about his final film playing ageless vampire Aro, but I also made sure to ask a couple questions about Sheen's upcoming Showtime
drama "Masters of Sex
"Masters of Sex" stars Sheen and Lizzy Caplan as noted human sexuality scholars William Masters and Virginia Johnson. Michelle Ashford adapted the pilot from Thomas Maier's "Masters of Sex: The Life and Times of William Masters and Virginia Johnson, The Couple Who Taught America How To Love." I haven't seen the pilot, but the clips Showtime has screened for critics look like an intriguing mixture of emotional drama and kinda wacky dark, sexual comedy.
In this little snippet from the Sheen interview, he discusses what drew him to the part and how he thinks the tone will develop once production begins in January.
Oh and the mustache is just for fun. It's not for "Masters of Sex." Yeah. I'm disappointed, too.
Stay tuned for all of this week's "Breaking Dawn" interviews.
All-Star second baseman talks Jonathan Penner and the Steroid Era
Jeff Kent's legacy is already pretty well established.
The National League MVP in 2000 and a five-time All-Star, Kent retired in 2008 with 377 career home runs and 1518 RBIs. You could make the argument that he's one of the greatest offensive second basemen in baseball history, an argument that's sure to come up when he makes his first appearance on the Hall of Fame ballot next winter.
Jeff Kent is unlikely to make the "Survivor" Hall of Fame, but by finishing 10th for the "Survivor: Philippines" season and making the Jury, he didn't shame himself either.
In fact, for several episodes, Jeff Kent was the most active and important player in "Survivor: Philippines," temporarily anchoring a briefly successful alliance, but then turning on that alliance in a seemingly single-minded attempt to get Jonathan Penner voted out of the game. And then one week after that vote failed to go his way, Jeff Kent was blindsided and sent packing.
In this week's "Survivor" exit interview, Jeff Kent discusses his regrets about the past couple episodes and tries to clarify how Jonathan Penner fit into his strategy. And, because it's not like I get to talk to Jeff Kent frequently, I also made sure to ask him about the decisions facing Hall of Fame voters in upcoming years as some of the pivotal players in the so-called Steroid Era (including his old teammate Barry Bonds) hit the ballot.
Click through for the full interview...
Who's heading home? And, heck, how many people are heading home?
The only thing I know about Thursday (November 8) night's "The X Factor" is that One Direction is performing twice.
How many singers are being elimination from the Top 13? Not a clue!
But I'm going with the hunch that Beatrice Miller won't be one of them...
So click through and follow the results...
'Chicago Code' veteran discusses his approach to Connor
Todd Williams' Connor Jordan hasn't been around for very long on "The Vampire Diaries," but the character has already caused a heap of trouble, leaving bodies and flashbacks in his wake.
Introduced earlier this season in "Memorial," Connor arrived in Mystic Falls to investigate the death of The Council and we quickly learned that he's a vampire hunter with a very peculiar and increasingly informative tattoo.
Since then, Connor has spent nearly equal amounts of time torturing or threatening the show's main characters and being tortured and threatened by them.
Earlier this week, I got on the phone with Williams, who some viewers will remember from his regular gig on FOX's short-lived "The Chicago Code."
We talked about Connor's moral code, his mysterious past and the sort of revelations that may come out in Thursday's (November 8) episode, titled "The Killer."
Click through for the conversation...
Zoey Deutch and Thomas Mann also discuss their witchy new teen romance
COVINGTON, LOUISIANA - Richard LaGravenese is experiencing seasonal confusion on the set of "Beautiful Creatures."
The reality is that it's May in this small city an hour's ride (if your driver is more prone to telling stories about his time in the Marines or complaining about the corrupting influence of movies on kids than paying attention to directions) from New Orleans.
But time is passing very differently in fictional Gatlin, South Carolina.
'Shameless' star discusses the new look for Dark Caster Ridley
COVINGTON, LOUISIANA - It's early May in Covington, Louisiana with the heat and humidity to prove it, but in Gatlin, South Carolina it's shortly after Halloween.
Pumpkins still perch on the stoops in a neighborhood that required very little set decoration to embody the more-Southern-than-Southern fictional town at the heart of Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl's "Beautiful Creatures," a bestselling Young Adult Fantasy novel getting the big screen treatment courtesy of Warner Brothers and Oscar nominated writer-director Richard LaGravenese.
In the book, the first installment of the "Caster Chronicles" series, Gatlin is an imagined stand-in for any Dixie town lorded over by the Daughters of the Confederacy, in which the ghosts of the Civil War hover atop the architecture like spectral Spanish moss. There's more than enough literal Spanish moss to go around in Covington and other than the South Carolina license plates on any car that might accidentally or purposefully make it into a shot, the city -- statistically a piece of the New Orleans–Metairie–Kenner Metropolitan Statistical Area, but a long drive from New Orleans on the Lake Pontchartrain Causeway -- might as well be playing itself, minus the newfound infestation of witches and other supernatural creatures.
The only real signs of state affiliation are on the backs of the individual crew members, whose t-shirts boast work on productions like "Treme" and "Bad Lieutenant" or offer support for the Saints and embattled coach Sean Payton.
A straight-forward episode goes pear-shaped, leading to a wacky Tribal Council
Pre-credit sequence. Hell hath no fury like a Penner scorned. Jonathan is perplexed and frustrated with Jeff Kent and Man-Dana. Penner doesn't like secrets and he doesn't like betrayal. Denise is at least straight-forward and honest with Penner about writing his name, while Jeff Kent talks in widening circles without saying anything. Jeff Kent remains determined to target Penner in the future, though he also knows he's given up some power and authority. Skupin tells Penner not to quit and that there are cracks in the main alliance and urges his fellow returning player to wait for those cracks to grow. "I have no alliances. I have no allegiances. I don't care. Everybody's equal. They are all ready to die," Penner announces. Damn. If Penner were a '90s rapper, he'd be talking about his glock and making lewd statements about the sex he had with all of their significant others. He's gangsta!
Would it be another week of raves for Emblem 3 or would somebody else steal the spotlight?
When last we dropped in on "The X Factor," we were saying farewell to Willie Jones, Sister C, David Correy and Diamond White. We'll see if we miss those four.
We were also saying farewell to whatever awful name "The X Factor" gave to The Lylas after their original name didn't clear. There was a promise that an online contest would determine the new moniker. We'll see how that went.
Click through for the full live-blog/recap of Wednesday's (November 7) performances from the "X Factor" Top 12...
How are these 'Bond Beasts' different from past Bond Girls?
NEW YORK CITY - In "Skyfall
," Naomie Harris
and Berenice Marlohe
play variations on what have typically been called "Bond Girls," since Ursula Andress rose from the sea in "Dr. No."
Of course, with James Bond
turning 50 this year and a whole new generation of filmmakers and audiences discovering and embracing the franchise, perhaps it's time for some new nomenclature.
"I would prefer Bond Woman rather than 'Girl,'" laughed Harris when we spoke in New York City a few weeks ago.
Marlohe offered a playfully different version, saying "I love 'Bond Girl,' but I would prefer 'Bond Beast.'"
In our conversation, Harris and Marlohe explain how Eve and Severine from "Skyfall" aren't typical Bond Girls, no matter what you choose to call them. They also discuss the importance of Daniel Craig in setting the on-set tone as Ambassador of James Bond.