Tuesday September 12, 2017

The first episode of the final season if The Mindy Project is now streaming on Hulu.

How The Deuce put two James Francos on screen.

A little backstory on Chester Bennington's appearance on Sunday's Shahs of Sunset.

Happy 50th birthday Louis C.K.  More below.

Hand in Hand: A Benefit For Hurricane Relief airs tonight across 17 networks.  Here is a link to donate and so that you know when and where you can watch.

What's ahead for AT&T / DirecTV?

Chris Harrison talked about Bachelor: Winter Games.  When is enough enough?

"Over the summer, Trey Parker revealed that the upcoming season of South Park would focus less on Trump and politics and more on storylines about the kids of South Park, but if this sneak peek from Wednesday’s premiere is any indication, that doesn’t mean the show will avoid those themes entirely. Here’s the official description of the season premiere, titled “White People Renovating Houses”: Protestors armed with tiki torches and confederate flags take to the streets of South Park. Randy comes to grips with what it means to be white in today’s society. Check out the clip, and watch the rest when South Park returns this Wednesday, September 13th at 10:00pm followed by the season 4 Broad City premiere at 10:30pm."

Transparent has tapped Jill Gordon (Heartbeat) to serve as showrunner, starting with Season 5, as creator Jill Soloway — who will continue to write, direct and executive-produce the series — steps down to focus on other projects.

"The Oz team is getting back together -- for one night only. A reunion of the acclaimed HBO prison drama is among the shows that have been added to the lineup for PaleyFest NY 2017, set to run Oct. 6-16. Other newly annouanced panels include Black Mirror, Blue Bloods, Late Night With Seth Meyers, as well as a conversation with Black-ish star (and Emmy nominee) Tracee Ellis Ross. Edie Falco, Craig Grant a.k.a muMs, Terry Kinney, Lee Tergesen, Eamonn Walker, Dean Winters and series creator Tom Fontana are confirmed for the Oz reunion panel, set for Sunday, Oct. 15. David Simon will moderate the panel, which is timed to celebrate the show's 20th anniversary."

"Bruno Mars will take the stage at New York’s famed Apollo Theater for a primetime special set to air on Nov. 29. Bruno Mars: 24K Magic Live at the Apollo will be broadcast on CBS and is executive produced by the singer along with Ben Winston, who said: 'For me, Bruno Mars is the greatest performer in the world. To be producing his first television special is a true honor. This will be a special show and a special night.'”

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Per Vulture, "'I don’t know how much time I have left,' Marc Maron says, beginning a joke about ten minutes into his newest Netflix special, Too Real, out last week on Netflix. 'Not in this set. In life. I don’t know how much time I have left. I’m not sick. I’m not dying. But I don’t know. I’m at that point. I’m like 53. And you start to wonder, How much time do I have left?' To quote many a movie mob lackey when the coppers bust in the door, it’s a setup. A setup for the both the next joke, and really the rest of the special. Maron goes on: 'And it’s playing into my decision-making process. Like if my girlfriend wants to watch a movie I don’t want to watch, I’m like, "I don’t know. I don’t want to die during that.”' The joke continues; Maron realizes it’s just too late for him to get into Phish. ('I got no more room in my heart and my mind for another jam band, man. I got half the Grateful Dead catalogue in there and I think three or four Allman Brothers songs — I’m maxed out, I’m filled up.') There’s more, but I leave that for you to watch on your own time (which you should; it’s good!). Suffice it to say, it’s a funny joke that sharply investigates Maron’s psychology and opinions about culture. It is also the sort of joke you could imagine Maron telling at various points in his career — like him, it’s aggressively neurotic, angrily depressive — but with one very specific difference: As he points out, he’s now 'like 53.' I’m not saying that because Maron is older, his comedy is more wise, but the way Maron’s jokes are perceived benefits from the audience knowing he is well into his 50s.

"Comedy does not exist in a vacuum. When you go see stand-up, the jokes don’t just travel from a black void straight into your brain. This is both stupidly obvious and a little bit controversial, as there is a sort of comedian who likes to contest that their jokes are like undeniable, perfectly crafted comedy bombs. But watching comedy is an act of constructive perception — you construct an understanding of the joke by combining the stimuli of the sound of the joke itself with your existing knowledge of jokes, the comedian, comedians generally, the topic, etc. Context isn’t more important than the joke itself, but it’s essential to what it means to be a comedian. The clearest example of this is a comic’s opening joke, designed to address the audience’s predetermined perception based on her or his appearance. (For example, Nick Kroll used to say, 'I know what you’re thinking — I look like the love child of Harry Potter and Jeff Goldblum.') The hope is, if you address the elephant that is how you look, everyone can move on and just laugh at the jokes. But, say it with me, comedy does not exist in a vacuum.

"So, back to Marc Maron, his new special, and being 'like 53.' I often think about whether certain comedians have an ideal age or time in which their style, persona, and areas of interest perfectly line up with how old they are and look. Maron used to blame his ever-changing look for the shortcomings of his pre-WTF career, but maybe there is one thing he just needed to wait for: getting older. He always had a 'get off my lawn' quality to his routine, as a young, twice-divorced man, obsessed with mortality — his years around the sun had to catch up so the audience could relate. (He is a lucky: You often see comedians get to a certain age where their act is all about complaining about the kids and their rock-and-roll music or how they wear their jeans.) One way of thinking about it is: If Marc Maron were a character in a play, what age would Marc Maron, the human being, be most believable in the role?"

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Per The New York Times, "'[i]t’s not a safe space, it’s not a triggerless place, it just isn’t,' said Louis C.K., describing — in no small understatement — his darkly funny and squirm-inducing new movie, I Love You, Daddy, which debuted to warm applause and some revulsion at the Toronto International Film Festival over the weekend.

"Filmed quietly in New York in June, the movie tells of a successful, emotionally lost television writer, played by Louis C.K., who is dealing — except he’s not dealing — with the seduction of his 17-year-old daughter by an esteemed filmmaker, and rumored pedophile, who is four times her age.

“'There are these people in the world that we all talk about, and we want to know that they’re all good or they’re all bad,' Louis C.K. said during an interview Sunday morning at a cafe in downtown Toronto. 'The uncomfortable truth is, you never really know. You don’t know anybody. To me, if there was one thing this movie is about, it’s that you don’t know anybody.'

"It’s an observation that raises the question of how well do audiences know Louis C.K., a man who has built his career out of relentlessly, albeit thoughtfully, mining collective discomforts and taboos.

"Unsubstantiated internet rumors of sexual misconduct with female comics gained steam last month when the comic Tig Notaro told The Daily Beast that he should 'handle' the rumors. I Love You, Daddy tackles similar rumormongering; however, like the auteur in the film, Louis C.K. at first dodged when asked about them.

“'I’m not going to answer to that stuff, because they’re rumors,' Louis C.K. said during the Toronto interview, as he told Vulture last year. But he added on Sunday, 'If you actually participate in a rumor, you make it bigger and you make it real.'

"So it’s not real? 'No.' he responded. 'They’re rumors, that’s all that is.'

"And what did he make of the comments by Ms. Notaro, whose work he has championed? (Louis C.K. is an executive producer of her Amazon series, One Mississippi, though she has said they haven’t spoken in over a year; a new episode of her series features a plot with echoes of the rumors about Louis C.K.) 'I don’t know why she said the things she’s said, I really don’t,' he replied, adding, 'I don’t think talking about that stuff in the press and having conversations over press lanes is a good idea.'

"As he spoke about 'that stuff,' Louis C.K., who turns 50 on Tuesday, did not come off as defensive, but he did speak forcefully. He conceded that making a movie that toys with did-he-or-didn’t-he questions could strike some as a little flagrant.

“'I made a movie that totally walks all over that electric fence,' he said, 'and that’s weird.'

"There’s the tricky, icky, central questions, like whether the relationship between the daughter (played by Chloë Grace Moretz) and the near-septuagenarian filmmaker (John Malkovich) is more acceptable given that she is just weeks shy of her 18th birthday. The film’s other provocations include a few slurs and a goof-off comedian (Charlie Day) miming onanism, twice, in front of other people.

“'I don’t weigh these things and go, "I hope everybody’s O.K. with this,”' he said. 'I think it’s boring to do that, and I don’t think it’s necessary. I don’t think that everybody has to come to a consensus that it’s O.K. for everybody.'"

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Per The Associated Press, "[m]any viewers first met Billy Eichner in his guise as a manic quizmaster hammering pedestrians with cockamamie pop-culture queries like 'When Matt Damon daydreams he's running for the Senate, what state does he imagine he's in?' and 'Where were YOU when Kelly Osbourne left Fashion Police'?

"Eichner's breathless Billy on the Street premiered on Fuse in 2011, then moved to truTV, where its fifth season hit the pavement last fall (and is up for an Emmy as outstanding variety sketch series).

"Along the way, Eichner's career as an actor has blossomed. Now he can be as hard to miss in his TV acting roles as he was on the street accosting puzzled passers-by.

"He's co-starring in the third season of Difficult People, the Hulu comedy where he and Julie Klausner play 30-something besties bonding in a snark attack on New York and the entertainment world they lackadaisically are trying to break into.

"In Netflix's comedy series Friends from College, he appears alongside co-stars including Fred Savage, Cobie Smulders and Keegan-Michael Key as a grumpy gynecologist.

"And for something a little different, this week he bows as a supporting player on the second episode of American Horror Story: Cult (airing on FX Tuesday at 10 p.m. Eastern). No spoilers here. Let's just say Eichner plays a quirky next-door neighbor of series star Sarah Paulson who keeps bees and likes guns.

"Cult takes its cue from the election of President Donald Trump, which itself constitutes an American horror story in the eyes of the series.

"Trump's presidency 'is a topic that everybody's talking about every single day,' says Eichner, 'but it certainly hasn't been talked about in this way. To combine political commentary with the horror and gore that American Horror Story is known for is, I think, really cool.'

"To discover Eichner off the Street, performing in roles other than his Billy alter ego, is to be surprised. And impressed. A commanding figure at 6-foot-3 with woeful eyes and a mouth that seems to alternately signal pique and wry amusement, he has much more to offer than his hysteric Street performance.

"'I'm not sure people knew that acting was in my bag of tricks,' the 38-year-old Eichner says over a quiet cup of coffee on a recent day off from Cult filming. 'But no one grows up saying "I want to do Billy on the Street." That was just a funny idea I had, and thank God it got me in the door. But when I was growing up, I wanted to be some combination of Nathan Lane and John Malkovich.'

"For him, the seeds were planted growing up in New York, the son of parents who loved the arts and show biz. His accountant dad read him the newspaper gossip columns by Liz Smith and Cindy Adams and together they watched Entertainment Tonight. With his parents, he saw movies and attended Broadway shows.

"He appeared in school plays and took voice lessons, then headed for Northwestern University's legendary drama school.

"After graduation, back in New York, Eichner's scramble began.

"'I remember standing on some crazy line for an audition for some regional musical and seeing how many people there were. I thought, "This CAN'T be the only way in!"'

"He set about writing his own stage show, called Creation Nation. It took the form of a late-night TV talk show — he played the excitable host — and it was staged all over town to increasing popularity.

"As one of the evening's bits, he introduced a pre-taped segment called Billy on the Street.

"'The initial conceit, and it still makes me laugh, is the idea that I am interrupting normal people heading to work or the dentist or otherwise going about their day, and I'm forcing them to talk to me about Cate Blanchett! That becomes a comment on my own love-hate obsession with the entertainment industry.'

"A TV series version naturally followed, which led to Difficult People, whose co-star and creator, Klausner, had first partnered with Eichner as a Billy on the Street producer.

"'He's a flavor that just wasn't out there before,' Klausner said. 'He makes choices that nobody else does. He commits like nobody else does. He never goes for the obvious thing.'

"When time allows, he hopes to be back on the street as Billy — a character who by now, says Eichner, has come into his own.

"'He was commenting on pop culture before, but now he's PART of pop culture,' Eichner says. 'I'm very proud of that. And I never in a million years would have thought that he would be my entry into acting.'

"Even so, Eichner feels like he's just getting started.

"'Now I'm trying to become the guy that I always intended to become prior to Billy on the Street. Giving it time and trusting the process and then delivering: I get what has to happen for me to be where I want to be.'

"Where does he want to be?

"'A lot of places.' A hearty laugh. 'But I'm very aware of the work it's gonna take to get there.'"

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Per Deadline, "[a] non-sports skinny bundle is about to become a reality. Discovery, Viacom, AMC, A+E, and Scripp [sic] Networks are teaming up to offer an entertainment-focused streaming service that will be void of sports programming.

"The Wall Street Journal reported the news about the skinny bundle and said that the new service will have a soft launch in the upcoming weeks with subscriptions priced at less than $20 a month. The lineup of channels featured in the bundle aren’t all drawn out, but WSJ says that the media companies are expecting all their core channels to be part of it. This includes Discovery’s ID, TLC and Animal Planet; Scripps’ HGTV and Food Network; and Viacom’s roster that includes Nickelodeon, MTV, Comedy Central and BET. AMC and A+E’s will be featured as well.

"This non-sports skinny bundle of nonfiction and lifestyle programming, children’s shows and scripted dramas was the topic of discussion in May, when Discovery Communications CEO David Zaslav said that U.S. television viewers should be able to access a true skinny bundle costing about $10 a month with no sports. He went on to say that it was just a matter of time before it happened.

"Although the $10 price point wasn’t exactly right, Zaslav’s company, as well as Viacom and AMC Networks, have been talking to cable and satellite companies about a possible low-priced offering that would include their channels — but not expensive sports networks such as Disney’s ESPN.

"The new service will be powered by a company called Philo, which specializes in streaming TV for college campuses. The service will also be called Philo after Philo Farnsworth, the inventor who developed the first all-electronic television system. It will start out as a direct-to-consumer streaming service, but the goal is to eventually get established pay-TV providers to offer similar packages."

I hope everyone soon realizes that it would have ended up saving you money had you just kept your cable TV subscription than trying to piecemeal together skinny bundles and subscriptions.

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"CBS is developing a new multi-camera comedy series with the executive producers of The Odd CoupleVariety has learned exclusively.

"Currently titled Mr. Frederick, the show would follow a progressive family that welcomes their lonely widowed neighbor into their lives only to learn he’s an outspoken conservative. Ryan Raddatz will write and executive produce. Husband and wife team Eric and Kim Tannenbaum will executive produce. CBS Television Studios will produce.

"This is not the first time the trio has worked together. While the Tannenbaums were executive producers on CBS’ remake of The Odd Couple, Raddatz worked as a writer and supervising producer on the series. In addition to The Odd Couple, Raddatz has written for and produced The Ellen DeGeneres Show and Impastor, the latter of which was executive produced by the Tannenbaums. He also wrote for the short-lived Robin Williams sitcom The Crazy Ones and was a writer on 1600 Penn. The Tannenbaums currently executive produce the Freeform comedy Young & Hungry, and have previously executive produced shows like Two and a Half Men, Impastor, and Notes from the Underbelly.”