Monday, January 19, 2015

TCA Winter 2015 Press Tour: NBC, Fox and FX, Includes Eva Longoria Comedy on NBC

NBC

It's a busy recap day today. NBC was up at the TCA Winter 2015 Press Tour on Friday, followed by Fox on Saturday and FX on Sunday...and we have the full scoop! Let's start with NBC. In her return to a starring role on primetime television, NBC is teaming with SAG Award winner and multi-nominee Eva Longoria on the half-hour comedy series Telenovela. NBC has ordered 13 episodes of the singlecam comedy that will star and be executive produced by Longoria. From Universal Television and Unbelievable Entertainment, Telenovela captures the hilarious behind-the-scenes craziness of a popular Spanish telenovela. Longoria will play the willful but popular diva Ana Maria, star of Latin America's most beloved telenovela who strives to stay on top in a world where the drama on-camera is nothing compared to the drama off-camera. Stay with us for info as it will launch in 2015-16. Next, NBC is bringing both the heartbreaking and uplifting stories during one of America's most tumultuous periods to television in adapting author and Pulitzer Prize finalist Betty DeRamus' acclaimed book Forbidden Fruit: Love Stories From the Underground Railroad as an epic eight-hour miniseries titled Freedom Run. It will focus on three specific epic journeys and love stories, each based on actual people. Iconic musician Stevie Wonder will serve as an executive producer.

Zachary Levi is making his long-awaited return to television in NBC's upcoming event miniseries Heroes Reborn to play a key yet undisclosed role. Jack Coleman, who played Noah Bennet in the original Heroes series, has previously been cast to reprise his role as "HRG" for Heroes Reborn. With the return of Heroes Reborn, NBC will launch a digital series prior to the premiere that will introduce the characters and new storylines. This leveraging of social media is a way for fans to re-engage with what was one for the true pioneers in multiplatform storytelling. Still no premiere date has been given. And finally for NBC, they have signed a development deal with Dolly Parton, one of the most honored female country musicians of all time and an American icon. In conjunction with production partner Sam Haskell of Magnolia Hill Entertainment and Warner Bros. Television, NBC will develop a slate of two-hour TV movies based on the songs, stories, and inspiring life of Dolly Parton. This extraordinarily prolific country music artist and movie star will produce these projects that are meant to appeal to an inclusive family audience.


Fox

On to Fox, well that was fast. After just two episodes, Empire is coming back. Fox has renewed hit drama series Empire for a second season. The second episode grew from its already big premiere rating. It is the only new broadcast drama this season to grow from week one to week two. Fox has also ordered a third season of the award-winning comedy Brooklyn Nine-Nine. And if two renewals weren't enough, Fox has also renewed hit drama series Gotham for a second season. Get ready to scream. Joe Manganiello (True Blood), Emmy Award and Golden Globe Award nominee Lea Michele (Glee), Academy Award nominee Abigail Breslin (Little Miss Sunshine) and Keke Palmer (Masters of Sex) have been cast as series regulars in Scream Queens, a new comedy-horror anthology series from Ryan Murphy, Brad Falchuk, Ian Brennan and Dante Di Loreto, the executive producers of Glee and American Horror Story. Additionally, Grammy Award nominee and actress Ariana Grande will guest-star in a recurring role. Jamie Lee Curtis (Halloween) and Emma Roberts (American Horror Story: Freak Show) were previously announced in starring roles in the limited series. The first installment in the new anthology series revolves around a college campus which is rocked by a series of murders. Fifteen one-hour episodes have been ordered, which are scheduled to begin production in the spring, and premiere in Fall 2015 on Fox.

Fox Broadcasting Company (FOX) and Paramount Television announced that superstar singers, dancers and actresses Julianne Hough (Safe Haven, Rock of Ages, Dancing with the Stars) and Vanessa Hudgens (High School Musical, Spring Breakers, Gigi on Broadway) have been cast in leading roles in Grease: Live (working title). With Hough as the angelic Sandy - Rydell High's most talked-about newcomer - and Hudgens as iconic bad girl Rizzo, this first-ever live television production of Grease will re-imagine the hit crossover musical for an entirely new generation. Airing LIVE Sunday, Jan. 31, 2016 from 7:00-10:00 PM ET live/PT tape-delayed on Fox, Grease: Live (wt) will be executive-produced by acclaimed film, television and theater producer Marc Platt. Grease: Live (wt) is based on the original musical Grease by Jim Jacobs and Warren Casey, and Paramount Pictures' 1978 feature adaptation. It will be a Paramount Television production.

FX

Moving on to cable network FX, they have set the premiere date of Thursday, April 9 for the series premiere of the new comedy series The Comedians starring Billy Crystal and Josh Gad and the fifth season of the Emmy(R) Award winning comedy series Louie starring Louie C.K. The Comedians will air at 10:00 PM ET/PT, followed by Louie at 10:30 PM ET/PT. Also, FX has acquired the television rights to Emmy Award winner Louis C.K.'s next standup comedy special, Louis C.K. Live From the Comedy Store. C.K. will make the special available to fans first on his website, LouisCK.net, in coming weeks after his record-breaking run of shows at Madison Square Garden. C.K. is the first comedian to sell out three shows for the same tour in Madison Square Garden history. Tickets for the fourth Madison Square Garden show on January 27 went on sale Saturday. The hour-long comedy special will subsequently air on FX this spring. C.K. will write and direct the special. And the third piece of FX news also has Louie C.K. involved. FX Networks has ordered the comedy pilot Better Things, created by and starring Pamela Adlon and directed by fellow Louie star Louis C.K. Better Things is the fifth comedy series pilot produced or ordered by FX Networks within the past year, including the comedy series pilots Atlanta, created by and starring Donald Glover, and Pariah, starring Bill Burr for Rob McElhenney, Charlie Day and Glenn Howerton. These projects reinforce FX Networks' position as the leading comedy brand in television. Let's see which of these make it to series. Stay with us.


New on DVD/Blu-ray (January/February)

I Love Lucy - Superstar Special #2 (Colorized) The Love Boat - Season Three - Volume Two Hooperman - Season One 227 - The Complete First Season (Mill Creek) Fuller House - The Complete First Season

01/03 - Girls - The Complete Fifth Season (Blu-ray)
01/10 - Broad City - Season 3
01/17 - I Love Lucy - Superstar Special #2 (Colorized)
01/17 - The Love Boat - Season Three - Volume One
01/17 - The Love Boat - Season Three - Volume Two
01/24 - Hooperman - Season One / Review
01/24 - Hooperman - Season Two / Review
01/31 - Ballers - The Complete Second Season (Blu-ray)
02/07 - Sabrina, the Teenage Witch - Sabrina Down Under
02/07 - So Little Time - Volume 1 - School's Cool - Boy Crazy
02/07 - So Little Time - Volume 2 - About a Family - Hangin' Out
02/07 - 227 - The Complete First Season (Mill Creek)
02/07 - Vice Principals - The Complete First Season (Blu-ray)
02/14 - Beavis and Butt-Head - The Complete Collection
02/14 - Grace and Frankie - Season Two
02/28 - Fuller House - The Complete First Season
More TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest


Sitcoms Airing Tonight

Tuesday, February 21

The Middle - "Dental Hijinks" (ABC, 8:00PM ET/PT)
After Frankie tries to get a stubborn Mike to go see Dr. Goodwin to take care of his toothache, Mike convinces the good doctor to leave his tooth alone and tell Frankie that everything was ok. But the two find themselves fabricating a story that’s so ludicrous that they fear Frankie will figure out the truth. Meanwhile, since they are nearing the end of their senior year at college, Axl, Hutch and Kenny decide it’s time to sell the fabled Winnebago; Sue tries her best to let college golf cart driver Tyler know that she likes him; and Brick attempts to write a historic Scottish rap musical – a la “Hamilton” – focusing on the life of Sergeant Charles Stuart MacKenzie.

American Housewife - "The Man Date" (ABC, 8:30PM ET/PT)
Greg is delighted to finally have made a friend in Westport, fellow history buff Stan (guest star Timothy Omundson), but Katie isn’t as happy, especially since Stan is married to her nemesis, Chloe Brown Mueller (Jessica St. Clair).

Fresh Off the Boat - "The Gloves Are Off" (ABC, 9:00PM ET/PT)
Jessica accidentally befriends Marvin’s ex-wife, Sarah (Heather Locklear), and tries to help her and Honey settle their longstanding rift. Meanwhile, Louis and the boys are on a mission to determine Grandma’s true age in hopes of surprising her with a new, free motorized wheelchair.

The Real O'Neals - "The Real Confirmation" (ABC, 9:30PM ET/PT)
When Shannon asks VP Murray to be her godfather leading up to her confirmation, Eileen fears her own relationship with him might be moving too fast. Shannon’s big day also has a surprising effect on Kenny’s relationship when Brett says, “I love you,” sending Kenny into a tailspin. Meanwhile, the return of a hot former babysitter puts Pat and Jimmy at odds when she constantly makes passes at Pat.

New Girl - "Rumsprings" (Fox, 8:00PM ET/PT)
When Jess gets nervous about starting her new position as principal, Nick and Schmidt decide to take her on a relaxing day trip to Solvang, which quickly goes “sideways.” Meanwhile, with Cece’s help, Winston tries to finalize his divorce from Rhonda, but finds that he and Aly are caught in a series of never-ending pranks.

The Mick - "The Baggage" (Fox, 8:30PM ET/PT)
Mickey’s unwanted suitors team up to thwart her new romance. Meanwhile, Sabrina and Alba teach Ben a lesson in responsibility.

The Detour - "The City" (TBS, 10:00PM ET/PT)
Robin isn't thrilled about Nate's new job in New York City, but the family heads out from Syracuse anyway.

Teachers - "Brokebitch Mountain" (TV Land, 10:00PM ET/PT)
Ms. Feldman can’t make ends meet on her salary and takes a second job. Ms. Watson notices a romantic spark between two of her second grade students. The Teachers take advantage of Principal Pearson.

Complete TV Listings


Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of February 20)

Tuesday, February 21

  • Tom Hanks (Bosom Buddies) - Catch Tom on a repeat of the 2011 Jimmy Kimmel Live: After the Oscars special at 11:35pm on ABC.
  • Will Forte (The Last Man on Earth/The Cleveland Show) - Will visits The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 11:34pm on NBC.
  • Yvette Nicole Brown (The Odd Couple/Community) - Yvette appears on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert at 11:35pm on CBS.
  • Allison Williams (Girls) - Allison talks about Girls and Get Out on NBC's Today sometime between 7-9am and in the 10am hour. She will also be on LIVE! with Kelly, so check your listings. Finally, she will be on New York Live on WNBC in New York at 11:30am ET.
  • Mae Whitman (Arrested Development) - Mae visits LIVE! with Kelly, so check your listings. She also talks about Rock Dog on the AOL Build Show at 12pm.
  • Zach Braff (Scrubs) - Zach guest co-hosts LIVE! with Kelly, so check your listings.
  • NeNe Leakes (The New Normal) - NeNe guest co-hosts The Real, so check your local listings.
  • Jason Jones (The Detour) - Jason talks about The Detour on NBC's Today in the 9am hour and on the AOL Build Show at 3pm.
  • Wendi McLendon-Covey (The Goldbergs/Rules of Engagement/Reno 911!) - Wendi is a guest on the AOL Build Show at 1pm. She will also be on New York Live on WNBC in New York at 11:30am ET.
  • Malin Akerman (Trophy Wife/Sin City Saints) - Malin chats on The Talk on CBS at 2pm ET/1pm CT-PT.
  • Judd Hirsch (Superior Donuts/Dear John/Taxi) and Jermaine Fowler (Superior Donuts) - Judd and Jermaine are guests on Steve Harvey, so check your local listings.
  • Kym Whitley (Young & Hungry/Animal Practice/Sparks) - Kym and Kim Gravel help a woman snoop through two bachelors' homes in order to choose which she should date on Steve Harvey, so check your local listings.
  • Ashley Gerasimovich (The Detour) - Ashley is a guest on Cheddar at 12:15pm. Ashley and Liam Carroll will be on Facebook Live on the TBS Facebook account at approx. 4:00pm. Ashley, Liam, Jason Jones and Natalie Zea will be on Facebook live at approx. 8:00PM EST on the official The Detour Facebook page.