Friday October 3, 2014

The Giudices are going away.  Her for 15 months.  Him for 41.  Adios.  Here's their backstory in the event you want to get caught up.

CNN seems to be a bit ahead of the curve when it comes to digital programming.

HBO will televise The Concert for Valor, a Veterans Day event on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. – featuring such musical acts as Eminem, Dave Grohl, Bruce Springsteen, Metallica, Carrie Underwood, Rihanna, and the Zac Brown Band – on Nov. 11.

Following up on a story from yesterday, "Rush Hour is coming to CBS.

"The network has given a pilot production commitment to the television adaptation of the 1998 film, which hails from Cougar Town co-creator Bill Lawrence, Blake McCormick and Warner Bros. Television, EW has learned."

Jerry Seinfeld thinks Portlandia is one of the best comedies of all time?

This is disturbing.  ""Evel Dick' Donato says a romp with a Vegas stripper is why he's HIV positive ... so he thinks.

"Dick tells TMZ ... he had unprotected sex with the stripper -- who he says got her period during intercourse. Dick says, 'When I woke up, she was gone and I looked like I had murdered someone.'

"Donato was diagnosed in 2011 ... from blood tests administered on Big Brother.  Donato says he left the show and broke the news to his mother and his girlfriend ... calling it the 'hardest conversation I have ever had to have.'

"Dick says his GF -- who tested negative -- was amazing ... assuring him they would get through it. She stuck by him for the next two years, until they split in 2013. They're appearing on Couples Therapy to see if they can re-ignite their relationship.

"As for the whole unprotected sex thing ... Dick says he already had a vasectomy so as far as he was concerned he had eliminated the only known risk.  Clearly he didn't know ... unprotected sex is risky."

This is also disturbing.  "The man behind The Brady Bunch's Greg Brady is getting his own 1970s musical variety show — and the process will be documented as a reality series.

"Barry Williams, who played the eldest Brady son for five seasons on the ABC comedy, will star in Great American Country network's original series A Very Barry Branson, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.

"The six-episode half-hour series will focus on Williams as he trades Hollywood for America's heartland — Branson, Missouri — to launch his own '70s-era musical variety show.

"The series, which will premiere in early 2015, will follow Williams as he works to create and promote his stage show, gets to know the locals and attempts to make Branson his home. Along the way, he'll take cues from other Branson entertainers, including family band The Haygoods, host former TV co-stars and do anything he can to build an audience.

"'Branson represents everything I love about America, including the Ozarks, the people, the beautiful lakes,' Williams said. 'Performing my '70s Music Celebration show here is icing on the cake.'

"The 50-song show features Williams performing covers of hits from the Eagles, Elton John, Neil Diamond, John Denver, the Bee Gees and more."

Here's a humorous take on this week's new romantic comedies that premiered on NBC and ABC.  "Is the old-fashioned rom-com dead?

"If so, blame FX. This summer, the network debutedYou’re the Worst, a dirty, shameful comedy about hate-shagging that also happens to be one of the best new shows on TV. Its depiction of blasé thirtysomethings in heat (Chris Geere and Aya Cash) could not feel more of-the-moment. Sex leads to dating, not the other way around. Fancy dinners are out of the question, because formalities like that put too much pressure on a couple who’d rather believe they’re dating ironically. And, true to life, the woman wants the same things the guy wants: on-demand hookups, lots of independence, and the freedom to do cocaine off somebody’s breasts.

"There’s just one problem with You’re the Worst: It makes this fall’s new rom-coms look like awkward attempts to identify with young people. They’re the types of shows your parents will send you 'thumbs-up' emojis about.

"Technology may be the only thing that grounds these series in 2014. Yes, the couples connect through Facebook and Tinder, but they don’t seem to know how online dating works. True, Andrew (Ben Feldman) meets Zelda (Cristin Milioti) through his job at an online dating service on A to Z (NBC), a quirky meet-cute premiering tonight that charts their relationship from beginning to end. Yet they’re introduced when the site accidentally sets up Zelda with a woman—a mistake that’s virtually impossible in real life, since profiles include photos and simple Google stalking can tell you the rest.

"It doesn’t help that A to Z‘s cultural references will be lost on anyone under 30: Andrew believes in destiny, because he’s obsessed with Back to the Future and Celine Dion songs. That’s a shame, since the writing can be smart and Feldman shows a real gift for playing neurotics whose grand flourishes will strike women as either romantic or totally creepy. When he was Ginsberg on Mad Men, that meant cutting off his nipple. It’s just as unsettling here to listen to him sing My Heart Will Go On.”

"If A to Z gets points for a semi-interesting male lead, Manhattan Love Story (ABC), which premiered Tuesday, makes the man feel almost irrelevant. He’s not essential to the fantasy—it’s all about the girl."

And for completeness, here's the other side of the coin argument from Vulture.

Per Real Screen, "[h]otel brand Marriott International is launching an in-house content production studio.

The division comprises development, production and distribution teams focused on three areas: 'snackable' travel and lifestyle content, story-driven episodic content, and real-time content based on trending topics on social media, all aimed at travelers.

"The studio is part of a strategy to make content a cornerstone of Marriott’s global marketing efforts and will be led by vice president, creative + content marketing and global marketing David Beebe, formerly of Disney-ABC Television Group.

"His recent credits include the PBS travel show Lucky Bastard and the Yahoo.com series Ultimate Proposal and Stunt Nation.

“'Rather than talk at consumers, we’re shifting to speaking with them using attention-grabbing content that adds value,' he said in a statement. 'While content is just part of the overall travel experience we provide, we believe Marriott can become the world’s leading publisher of travel lifestyle content for the next generation.'

"Marriott has inked talent deals with Sonia Gil, a vlogger and star of the ulive travel series Almost Free; social media and YouTube star Shira Lazar of What’s Trending with Shira Lazar; and comedian and red carpet host Taryn Southern.

"Inaugural projects include The Navigator Live, an AEG-produced Renaissance Hotels music and travel series already distributed on AXS TV; and the 12-episode Marriott Rewards’ Year of Surprises hosted by basketball star Jordan Farmar.

"Programming will be viewable via Marriott.com, Marriott Mobile, the brand’s social meeting channels, Marriott Rewards and through hotel room TVs."