Tuesday May 24, 2013

I spent a lot of time in airports and on planes this past week, during which I watched the first season of Scandal on ABC.  I've heard such great things about this show that I felt compelled to jump in, albeit late.  It certainly lives up to the billing.  Kerry Washington is fantastic, as is her crew at Olivia Pope and Associates.  The story lines get a bit trite and unrealistic, but the pace of the show is great and I am very much looking forward to digging in on season 2, especially after the cliffhangers thrown out at the conclusion of season 1.

E! News is reporting that American Idol has inked a deal with its first new judge for season 13: former contestant and Oscar-winner Jennifer Hudson. The two remaining spots are, reportedly, intended for former Idol contestants, too. Namely, Kelly Clarkson and either Adam Lambert or Clay Aiken. Season 12's entire panel of Nicki Minaj, Mariah Carey, Randy Jackson and Keith Urban, will not be returning for next season.

Big news in the world of television executives hit on Friday as Mike DarnellPresident of Alternative Entertainment for Fox Broadcasting Company, is leaving the network at the end of June. "I'm extremely grateful that FOX has offered me a new long term contract (and anyone who knows me won't believe I'm saying this), but I've decided it's time for a change, " said Darnell in a statement. "With my current deal ending in June, and having been here for 18 years (kind of a record in Hollywood), I had to make a decision: either stay (and basically admit to myself I was going to retire at FOX... not a terrible choice) or leave and try something new. I've been in 'Reality' since before it was even called that, and it has truly been an amazing ride. However, the world has changed drastically over the last few years and now with hundreds of channels and limitless ways to watch television, I've decided this was the perfect time to take advantage of the rapidly changing marketplace." Darnell, who joined FOX in 1994, has overseen the launch of such hit shows as American IdolThe X Factor and Hell's Kitchen.  

According to Deadline, "[a]s for the timing of his decision to leave Fox and likely the executive ranks, “my dream was to work on a big show that will go down in the history books,” he said. “I achieved that with American Idol, which may be the biggest show that ever was.” But Idol, as well as newbie The X Factor, had been taking up a lot of Darnell’s time over the last few seasons with a series of shakeups and attempts to keep Idol fresh and relevant after 10 years amid an inevitable ratings decline. “The last couple of years have been very intense, with me taking on duties of a current executive and line producer,” Darnell admitted. As for his legacy, “I’ve done good things, I’ve done bad things, I’ve done funny things, and I’ve done evil things,” said Darnell, whose stature in the business is far greater than his 5’2″ height. Fox’s search for Darnell’s successor won’t be easy. “They’ve got some some really small shoes to fill,” he quipped."

The CNN Original series Inside Man, hosted and produced by Oscar®-nominated documentary filmmaker Morgan Spurlock, premieres Sunday, June 23 at 10:00 p.m. ET.  The one-hour weekly series will provide an intimate look into diverse sectors of American life and offer a deep-dive into pressing issues facing the U.S. that include migrant farm workers, the elder care industry, union workers, gun owners, education, bankruptcy and the drought. The premiere episode of Inside Man features Spurlock as a worker in a medial marijuana dispensary in California.

Deadline reports that Brooke Burns has inked a deal to host GSN‘s The Chase, the network’s new rapid-fire quiz show adapted from the British original that pits a team of four contestants against a resident genius. NBC Sports’ Dan Patrick had been up for the hosting gig before negotiations fell through at the last minute, sources tell Deadline. Burns is also attached as host to GSN’s dating show Where Have You Been All My Life,
announced as part of GSN’s development slate at last month’s upfront. Filming on 
The Chase, an ITV Studios America production, is set to begin within a few weeks.

Inside Amy Schumer has been renewed for a 2nd season according to the show's host.  Kudos.

I have NOT yet watched Arrested Development but here's a story on Adam Devine's cameo.