Tuesday May 9, 2017

The CW has canceled a couple of shows called Frequency and No Tomorrow.

An interview with Al Madrigal.  His bit about cilantro is brilliant.  "I was in Eagle Rock in LA. I went to this taco truck and a guy really said that. You know when somebody just hands you a bit? He handed me that bit. I looked at the guy and rushed home to my wife like, 'You’re not going to believe what this guy just said to me.' I went onstage that night and it killed right away."

"Brian Yorkey is putting down his roots. The 13 Reasons Why showrunner has signed a two-year overall deal with Paramount Television, the producers behind the Netflix breakout. Under the pact, Pulitzer Prize winner Yorkey will develop new projects for broadcast, cable and digital television projects for the studio, which will have exclusive rights to them."

"Richard Simmons filed a libel suit Monday against the National Enquirer and Radar Online, alleging that the publications relied on a blackmailer for stories claiming the former fitness guru was transitioning into a woman.  In the suit, Simmons alleges that he has been blackmailed for several years by Mauro Oliveira, a former assistant and friend. The suit alleges that Oliveira went to the National Enquirer with three different explanations for Simmons’ withdrawal from the public eye in 2014. In May 2016, Oliveira allegedly told the Enquirer that Simmons was transitioning into a woman. In June 2016, the Enquirer ran a story claiming that Simmons 'is now called Fiona!' Simmons’ reps strongly denied the story at the time."

In support of Sense8.

Southern Charm Savannah is horrendous, not surprisingly.  More Bravo news below.

Getting you caught up on House of Cards.

"USA has announced that Psych: The Movie will be making its way to the network just in time for the holiday, reuniting the cast for the first time since Psych signed off for good in 2014. Picking up three years since we last saw Shawn (James Roday) and Gus (Dule Hill), our favorite fake psychic and his BFF will be teaming up once more for the two-hour reunion movie.  They'll be joined by former series regulars Timothy Omundson (Lassiter), Maggie Lawson (Juliet), Corbin Bernsen (Henry) and Kirsten Nelson (Chief Vick), as well as some yet-to-be-announced returning fan-favorite characters. Roday and Psych creator Steve Franks co-wrote the film with Franks at the helm as director.  Psych: The Movie sees the pals come together during the holidays after a mystery assailant targets one of their own. 'A comedic thrill ride follows, as the wild and unpredictable Psych team pursues the bad guys, justice …and food,' the official logline reads."

David Spade and the Cash Me Ousside girl are feuding.

"Actress" Estella Warren remains the single biggest piece of trash human on the planet.

Antonio Sabato, Jr. is running for Congress.

"Bachelor alum Chris Soules has formally been charged with a felony hit-and-run in Iowa in connection with a fatal car crash last month. The April 24 crash, in which officials say Soules rear-ended a tractor driven by 66-year-old Kenneth Mosher, resulted in Mosher's death. Monday's charge is essentially the same as Soules' initial charge of 'leaving the scene of a deadly crash, resulting in death,' according to local NBC affiliate KWWL-TV."

Nygel Lythgoe is not standing behind the revival of American Idol.  That makes 2 of us.

From the All In Department, "NBC has greenlit A.P. Bio to series, marking the first comedy order for the network’s 2017-2018 slate, Variety has learned.

"Starring It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia’s Glenn Howerton, the series hails from writer Mike O’Brien and executive producers Seth Meyers and Lorne Michaels.

A.P. Bio is about a philosophy scholar (Howerton) who loses out on his dream job and goes to work as a high school Advanced Placement biology teacher, but he makes it clear he will not be teaching any biology. Realizing he has a room full of honor roll students at his disposal, he decides instead to use the kids to his own benefit.

"Along with Howerton, Patton Oswalt, Lyric Lewis, Mary Sohn, Aparna Brielle, Jacob McCarthy and Nick Peine star. Saturday Night Live’s Vanessa Bayer guest stars in the pilot.

"O’Brien wrote the pilot and will executive produce with Michaels, Meyers, Andrew Singer and Michael Shoemaker. Osmany Rodriguez directed the pilot. The series hails from Universal Television and Michaels’ Broadway Video.

A.P. Bio marks the third official series order from NBC, following Rise from Jason Katims and military drama For God and Country. On the other side, the network has cancelled freshman series Emerald City and yanked Powerless off the air, though the cancellation has not been made official."

Per Deadline, "Amazon is making a push in family entertainment with The Dangerous Book for Boys, an original half-hour single-camera series from Emmy-winning Breaking Bad star Bryan Cranston and Superbad director Greg Mottola, which has received a straight-to-series six-episode order.

"Created by Cranston and Mottola, the project, originally set up at NBC during the 2014-15 season, is based on the book The Dangerous Book for Boys by Conn and Hal Iggulden.

"Mottola and Cranston have written the pilot and second episode of the series, in which Wyatt and his brothers are coming to terms with the death of their dad, Patrick, a wonderful, whimsical inventor who touched the lives of everyone who knew him. Patrick leaves the boys with a copy of The Dangerous Book for Boys, and the how-to book inspires fantasies for Wyatt. While in his fantasy world, he reconnects with his father and learns life skills that help him navigate real life.

"Mottola will direct the series, which will film in New York this summer. Cranston’s Moonshot Entertainment produces with Sony Pictures Television, where the company has had a first-look deal, and Amazon Studios. Mottola and Moonshot’s Cranston and James Degus executive produce.

"This has been a passion project for Cranston, who optioned the rights to the best-selling 2006 British book in June 2014 and helped shape up the idea for the series. In early September, in a very competitive situation, the project landed at NBC in a premium deal, marking Cranston’s first major TV sale as a producer.

"Dangerous Book For Boys is a collection of tongue-in-cheek advice for boys on 80 topics, including how to climb a tree, build a treehouse or a go-kart and grow a crystal. It was published in the U.S. in 2007 and was previously optioned as a feature by Scott Rudin."

Per the network, "Bravo announced on Monday that six new unscripted series have been added to its development slate that will expand on the high-end real estate space as seen on Million Dollar Listing New York and Flipping Out.

“'Bravo’s incredible equity in the high-end real estate space allows us to explore the biggest characters and most aspirational lifestyles, which are both key differentiators in this crowded landscape,' Rachel Smith, Senior Vice President, Development, said in a statement. 'In addition, with a large stable of original series that continue to grow in the key demos, we’re able to take big swings in new spaces across many genres, and we’re excited to get these projects off the ground.'

"Center Staged features married couple Adair Curtis and Jason Bolden, who are go-to stagers for the rich and famous in California. Million Dollar Home Hacks will show two couples (with the help of interior designers) who compete to transform their homes into 'million dollar' interior inspired by a luxury property in the U.S.A. but without the hefty price tag. Flippin’ Exes includes ex-couple and current business partners, Nina Klemm and Michael LeSure, who buy, rehab, and sell homes in Indianapolis, Indiana.

"The High School Project details the true stories of NYC's most elite students who grew up fast and partied hard in the Big Apple in the '90s. This series retells and recreates their most epic tales. Welcome to America is a social experiment that takes a small town in America with demographics that have remained the same for generations, and shakes things up to reflect different parts of the country. When certain residents move out for a month, newbies will move in. Empty Nesters features a group of friends who plan to send their kids to summer sleepaway camps, and that means when the kids are away, the parents will play."

Riveting.

"Ben Stiller’s Escape From Clinton Correctional is nearing a series order at Showtime, TheWrap has learned.

"Benicio del Toro and Patricia Arquette will star in the eight-part limited series based on the prison break in upstate New York in the summer of 2015. The high-profile escape spawned a massive manhunt for two convicted murderers who were aided by a married female prison employee with whom they both became sexually entangled.

"Del Toro will play convicted murderer Richard Matt. Arquette will play Tilly Mitchell, who supervises the prison tailor shop. Stiller will serve as executive producer and will direct all eight episodes.

"The drama will be written and executive produced by Brett Johnson and Michael Tolkin, both writing alums of Showtime’s Emmy-nominated “Ray Donovan.”

"The series will be produced by Showtime, with Bryan Zuriff and Michael De Luca executive producing via Michael De Luca Productions alongside Nicky Weinstock for Red Hour Productions."

Per The Hollywood Reporter, "Richard Splett has lived out his ultimate fanboy moment.

"Veep dropped another Easter egg Monday morning by posting a video of Richard (played by Sam Richardson) interviewing his favorite movie star, Amy Brenneman. The chat posted to Let's Talk About Splett, the blog the HBO comedy created for the character last season.

"'I was on my way to work and I stumbled upon a movie being filmed with the star of my favorite film Heat, Amy Brenneman,' explains Richardson in character as Richard. 

"'I have to tell you, I'm a huge fan of Splett.net,' replied Brenneman. The Heat star then proceeds to school Richard in some of the facts of his 'favorite' movie.

"'The second we knew we had Amy coming on the show, we knew that Richard Splett had to meet her,' Veep showrunner David Mandel tells The Hollywood Reporter about breaking the fourth wall for the video interview. "We had to do it, because he's such a Brenneman fan."

"Brenneman made a guest appearance this season on Veep as Selina Meyer's (Julia Louis-Dreyfus) old college roommate, with whom the former president sexually experimented and won't admit to. Brenneman actually landed the gig thanks to a joke the season prior, where Richard fawns over the actress and mistakenly said she starred alongside Robert De Niro in the 1995 film Heat, failing to mention Al Pacino. The Leftovers star tweeted at Louis-Dreyfus after the episode, suggesting she come on the show and play her old roommate. 

"The Splett.net video was filmed during a lunch break while Brenneman was on set to film the April 23 episode.

"After rising the ranks, Richard now plays chief of staff to Selina in season six. Veep launched Richard's blog last year, after the character referred to it on the show, but this season the show has upped the ante by adding vlogs after each episode. 'Adding the video element allows Sam to do Richard in this world and lets us take advantage of what a brilliant improv comedian he is,' added Mandel.

"In addition to Richard's blog, the show's elaborate online campaign includes a hub for the Meyer Fund, website for Congressman Jonah Ryan and site for Catherine Meyer's documentary, Kissing Your Sister: The Story of a Tie."

Per Vulture, "[g]o ahead and fast forward through every episode of Netflix’s 13 Reasons Why except for the ones with Ross Butler. There’s no reason to feel bad about it: The 26-year-old actor is crush-worthy as Zach Dempsey, a lonely but popular basketball star, and his charismatic performance makes him the show’s standout.

"Butler is no stranger to teen dramas: He also plays Reggie Mantle on the CW’s Riverdale, although he couldn’t commit to the show’s second season because of his schedule. Well-liked, wealthy, and sad, Butler describes Zach as a 'nuanced jock,' an Asian high schooler who does good work to bring visibility to Asian bros. In Zach’s episode, Hannah reveals that she was hurt when she wrote him a half-love note, half-cry for help, only to think he threw it away. Zach’s tape ends with the last-minute twist that he hadn’t tossed that note, something Hannah never knew. Butler spoke to Vulture about playing Zach, working as an Asian-American actor, and his random friendship with Courtney Love:

Congrats on 13 Reasons Why, it’s a huge hit. How does that feel?
Thank you. It feels pretty good, to be honest. I wasn’t really expecting it to explode like this, but of course I’m happy the message is getting out there and that it’s stirring up conversation.

How did you come to audition for 13 Reasons Why?
I was back home in northern Virginia and I was staying at my best friend’s house and I got an email from my agent saying I had an audition for this show called 13 Reasons Why. It seemed cool — I looked it up and saw the book. I had to tape my audition with my best friend’s mom because it was due the next day. My original sides were for Justin Foley and Jessica Davis. So I had to have this really heated argument scene with my best friend’s mom. She needed to play this high-school girl. Of course, she’s not an actress so she acted like how she thought acting should be: She had that transatlantic accent.

No! You’re kidding.
Yeah, I have to see if I have that tape lying around somewhere. So I sent that in, like, “God, this is not gonna go anywhere.” They called me in and said, “Maybe not Justin, but take a look at Zach.”

What’s next for you? Do you want to keep doing TV?
Movies are where I want to be next. When I was growing up, my mom didn’t let me watch a lot of TV. She said I couldn’t watch Friends or that era of sitcoms. Today, when all my friends reference Friends or The Simpsons, even, I’m always like, “Ahh, I never watched any of those.” I watched movies. Growing up, my favorite movies were Forrest GumpShawshank RedemptionGladiator — none of them really had Asian leading men. That’s what’s important to me: My role models were Hugh Jackman in Wolverine or Russell Crowe. I want to fill that gap.

Between 13 Reasons Why and Riverdale, you’re pretty savvy about choosing material. What’s your secret?
Anything that’s character-driven, even though that seems kind of obvious. I’ve played a jock a lot, but pretty nuanced jocks. It’s not all about action or special effects for me.

Zach is a great character because he’s the lonely popular kid. What was the hardest scene for you to shoot?
The last scene of my tape [in episode seven], when I’m talking with Clay in his front yard. He asks me about Hannah and I reveal that I have the secret letter she wrote me because I never threw it away like she thought. At first, it was just hard because I’d never opened up to anyone as Zach. Then all of a sudden, I’m telling Clay the truth and saying how sorry I am about everything that happened with Hannah. Asking him to read the letter was a big moment. Until then, no one else had read that letter besides me and Hannah. It was me asking for help, kind of, “Read this so I can have someone to talk about this with.” But then Clay says no.

Was there anything else about your upbringing that prepared you to be an actor or work in Hollywood?
At first glance, no. I was raised to be an academic. I went to Ohio State for chemical and biomolecular engineering for a year and then dropped out and moved to L.A. I wouldn’t really say anything prepared me to be an actor other than just watching a lot of movies.

I wasn’t raised for this particular industry, but my mom’s style just worked out. She taught me a lot about having a good work ethic. She always wanted me to be a perfectionist, which of course I hated at the time. Finishing high school and being educated is also a positive to be an actor. I think the best actors are well-read and well-versed.

From your Instagram, it looks like you’re pretty good friends with Courtney Love. How did that happen?
A good friend of mine is her manager. I met him [through a mutual friend] when I moved to L.A. and he was like, “Hey, do you wanna meet Courtney Love?” and I said sure. She and I just clicked really well. She’s super educated, like a walking encyclopedia. She’s just decided to keep me around, and has been my mentor and my big sister ever since. She’s actually helped me be more confident about wanting to be a leading man who’s Asian-American. When I moved here I had no direction, and she brought it up to me as something I should feel confident about.

Since you’re an official Vulture crush, inquiring minds want to know: Are you single?
[Laughs.] Yes, I am."

This interview has been edited and condensed.

Per The Associated Press, "Britt Robertson is no stranger to having to emote on the screen. She played a foster kid who finds her birth parents in the CW series Life Unexpected and a young waitress kidnapped and held hostage in CBS' Under the Dome.

"The 27-year-old actress is now starring in the Netflix comedy Girlboss, based on the rags-to-riches story of Sophia Amoruso, who started selling vintage clothing on eBay in her early twenties and built the Nasty Gal empire that made her a millionaire. The best-selling #Girlboss, published in 2014, is the basis for the series.

"Robertson says she thought acting in a half-hour comedy would be easy, but playing a version of the fearless and witty Amoruso, called Sophia Marlowe on the show, was 'energy-sucking.'

"'It took more out of me than anything else I've ever done in my life, in a good way. You want to be challenged. You want to be fulfilled and that takes energy, but ... it's hard,' she said recently.

"Robertson had to change her look for the show, dying her blond hair to chestnut brown and adding bangs. She also rocked vintage clothing to represent Amoruso's style.

"'I think it was really important for me to change the way I look. Even when we were doing the costume fittings we would have to put a wig on me. It was so hard to picture the real Sophia character I was trying to embody while I look like a bleach-blond surfer girl. It just didn't really make that much sense. I loved it. It was so much fun for me. It's so hard to keep up though because it's not my natural color. My hair was not having it by the end. It was turning red and orange and yellow.'

"Amoruso stepped down as CEO of Nasty Gal in 2015. The company filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy the following year and Amoruso resigned from the company.

"Robertson says she's not sure if future seasons of Girlboss would follow the real story of Sophia's life that closely.

"'Sophia's story is still changing so much as we speak,' she said. 'She's at a really crucial part where she's figuring things out a decade later in a different way so I think it just depends. Also she's a producer on the show. I'm sure she'll have some direction she'd like us to go in, but maybe not. She was very forgiving when we started doing the show and with my performance and with the writing; I hope we can take the things she's experienced in life because it's very fascinating. I hope people would love to hear a version of the story that isn't just the media side, but we'll see.'

"Now that Girlboss has been released on Netflix, Robertson is enjoying her time off from the series.

"'For the first time I realize how important it is for me to enjoy what I'm doing and have a good time in the process. I'm really living right now. I went to South Africa. I went on a safari. I went diving with great whites (sharks). The last two days I went to Mets games, which are my favorite baseball team. I'm really living. I'm doing it all. This is my time to check off bucket-list stuff.'"