June 11, 2013 1:50pm EST
How can you tell if someone is a sociopath? It’s an intriguing yet terrifying question that many of us have never had to consider. However, after tuning in to tonight’s sneak peek of episode of the new ABC Family drama Twisted, you’ll never look at your family and friends the same way again.
Following the heart-pounding Season 4 premiere of Pretty Little Liars, stay tuned to catch the entire first episode of Twisted — an hourlong murder mystery thriller that will make you gasp from disbelief and shriek, then sigh contentedly because you’ve found your next new favorite show. To get you as excited as we are, Hollywood.com chatted with star Maddie Hasson to bring you five terrifyingly fun reasons why Twisted will quickly become your newest TV obsession.
1. If You Love Pretty Little Liars… You’ll absolutely adore Twisted. Set in the small east coast town of Green Grove, a murder — or should we say murders — devastates the community and it’s nearly impossible to tell who can be trusted. “I think fans of Pretty Little Liars would love Twisted,” Hasson says. “It has that dramatic element that Pretty Little Liars perfects in all their episodes, where you never know what’s going to happen next.”
But the mysteries that plague Green Grove are completely different from the black-hoodie events we've watched in Rosewood. The actress explains that Twisted captures the essence of all ABC Family's shows, but presents it in a way we’ve never seen before. “There’s tons of twists and turns, and every episode is going to leave you thinking, 'I have no idea what could possibly happen next!'” she says.
2. The Ultimate Bad Boy: Twisted centers on Danny Desai (Avan Jogia) and believe us when we say that you’ve never met a bad boy quite like this before. Danny is a teen with a troubled past who returns to Green Grove after spending a good majority of his youth in juvenile hall. Although we cannot reveal exactly why Danny was locked away in Juvie for so many years, we can tell you that it’s a jaw-dropping, throat-clutching, can’t believe ABC Family let this one slide answer. In short: it’s terrifyingly twisted. “Oh! We’re going for it!” Hasson teases. All we can say is you need to watch tonight’s episode, because you wouldn’t believe us even if we told you!
3. Three Lovely Ladies: Way back in the simple yet splendid days of middle school, Danny, Jo (Hasson) and Lacey (Kylie Bunbury) were best friends — but now many years and one horrific experience later, the three have drifted apart. Hasson explains that the two former lady besties have now become polar opposites of one another. “They both really just went to opposite ends of the spectrum, personality-wise. Lacey became this popular outgoing person,” she says. “And Jo became super reclusive. She dresses really grungy and she likes to keep to herself and is very solemn in the first episode.”
Adding to the mix is Regina (Karyn Moore), Lacey’s closest friend in the popular clique. Hasson explains, “Regina is probably the sassiest and her character is really vivacious and cool. You’re going to love this character because she is hilarious in literally every scene.” And if you’re guessing that ABC Family is laying the groundwork for some potential love triangles then you would be very correct. Hasson teases, “It’s really possible that it could go there, they all have really individual strong bonds with each other so I feel like it could definitely cross that line at some point.”
4. Hot Mama: Two words: Denise Richards. That’s right the Wild Things star is ready to unleash her inner Stepford Wife as the mother of our troubled protagonist Danny. Richard plays Karen Ryder and Hasson describes her as a Real Housewife of Green Grove. “She is really good at putting on a good face. She would be great at giving interviews or being a politician,” Hasson says of Richards' character.
From an outsider looking in, it would appear that Karen is thrilled to have her son back home, however appearances can be twisted into hiding one’s true feelings. “I’m not even sure of her feelings on it honestly,” Hasson says. “Her character is that good at concealing what she’s feeling. [Karen] is one of the most mysterious characters in this show.” Hmm, and so the plot thickens!
5. Worth the Wait: By now you should be jumping up and down with anticipation for tonight’s episode — but keep in mind, future Twisted lovers, this is just the beginning! The series will leave you craving more more and this season will be a truly Twisted journey.
“The last scene leaves you with such a cliffhanger that it’s really mean of them to do this,” teases the 18-year-old actress. “I haven’t even gotten the second script yet and I’m dying and waiting to see what happens next. After the last scene you’re going to want to see where the relationship between Danny and Lacey and Jo goes. It’s on the edge of being something more with each of their characters, but you’ll have to watch what happens next.”
Don't miss the series premiere of Twisted tonight at 9 PM on ABC Family.
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April 12, 2013 2:33pm EST
It worked for Dallas. So it's no surprise Patrick Duffy, who returned to TNT to revive his role as Bobby Ewing for the hit Dallas reboot, is considering other possible TV reunions.
Next on his list? Step by Step, the beloved '90s TGIF series that Duffy hopes to bring back for a two-hour reunion special. "I would love to work with Suzanne [Somers] again," he tells The Hollywood Reporter. “The Step By Step cast was so wonderful to be with. They were my family and I think a little two-hour special about where these people are – not a documentary, but actually doing a show – seeing where they all come to over the years. It would be so fun to play that goofy Frank Lambert character again, aging another 25 years.”
But with the exception of Duffy and Somers, who has gone on to develop a lucrative line of anti-aging products, Step By Step's cast has stayed out of the spotlight following the series' wrap in 1998. So what have the Fosters and Lamberts been up to? And what do they look like now? Before they meet up for a second time around, find out below!
Following 2004's Dallas Reunion: Return to Southfork, Patrick Duffy — otherwise known as Step By Step's patriarch Frank Lambert — returned to Southfork once again with TNT's Dallas reboot, now in its second season. The actor also has used his fame for endorsement deals, proving how old we are by becoming a spokesman for Miracle-Ear hearing aids.
Suzanne Somers' Carol Foster-Lambert might have lived happily ever after with Frank, but since wrapping Step By Step, the actress has become obsessed with living happily ever after as a young woman. The 66-year-old actress so inspired fans with her anti-aging efforts that's she's developed a successful product line in her own name. But not everyone is happy with her happily ever after — Somers has come under fire for her support of the controversial bioidentical hormone replacement therapy and for her 2010 book, Knockout, which suggests alternative cancer treatments for those facing chemotherapy.
With the exception of a traffic incident that left Brandon Call shot in both arms in 1996, little is known about the actor who memorably portrayed oldest son J.T. Lambert. In fact, though Call starred on such series as Baywatch, Magnum, P.I., and the Charmings prior to his successful Step By Step run, J.T. would prove to be Call's final role call.
Staci Keanan — who played Carol's oldest daughter, Dana — would most likely be game for a Step By Step reunion. After all, the actress already reteamed with Duffy and Christine Lakin in You Again. But the 2010 comedy wasn't her only turn on the big screen — Keanan, who guest starred in various series like Diagnosis: Murder in the late '90s — turned her attention to film after Step By Step's run was complete. Among the projects on her resume: 2009's Sarah's Choice, 2010'S Holyman Undercover, and her most recent project, 2010's Death and Cremation. Could a Step By Step reunion revive her career again?
Angela Watson — the actress who played Step By Step's beauty queen, Karen — found herself fielding the same problem that plagues many child stars. Discovering that her own family had mismanaged the $2.8 million in wages she earned on Step by Step, the actress founded Child Actors Supporting Themselves in 2000 in an attempt to help young actors learn how to manage their money. Watson, who acts on stage and in various low-profile film projets, continues to turn her attention toward helping others, becoming the spokesperson for the charity Hugs America. It's nice to say that Karen wouldn't approve.
One of step By Step's more successful actors, Christopher Castile — who played brainiac Mark Foster — turned starring roles in Beethoven and Beethoven's 2nd into a voice acting role as Hey Arnold!'s Eugene Horowitz. But he had enough of show business following Step By Step's success — Castile soon left Hey Arnold! (replaced, strangely enough, by Jarrett Lennon, an actor who was cast as Step By Step's Mark before Castile stepped in) and retired from acting altogether. And it turns out life imitated art — Castile channeled his smarty-pants Step By Step alter-ego and became a political science professor at Biola University.
Arguably Step By Step's most successful alum, Christine Lakin — who played tomboy Al — boasted guest roles in high-profile series like Boston Public, Veronica Mars, CSI: Miami, Bones, Family Guy, and more. Her big screen is not quite as respectable, with critically reviled films like Valentine's Day, Parental Guidance, and, of course, the Hottie & The Nottie on her resume. The silver lining? The actress, who continues to win roles on the big and small screen, definitely grew up to be a hottie.
Just as quickly as Frank's youngest son Brendan mysteriously disappeared from the series without mention (in order to make way for the cuter baby Lilly), the actor who portrayed him, Josh Byrne, disappeared from Hollywood. We'd claim he was still chained in Frank and Carol's basement, but this picture of the actor dressed in costume proves he's alive, and presumably can be seen at your local Renaissance Faire.
Emily Mae Young was already famous by the time she joined Step By Step's cast as Carol and Frank's youngest daughter, Lilly. The young actress first won acclaim as the Cabbage Patch Doll-like girl in a series of Welch's Grape Juice ads before she moved on to the TGIF TV series. Her career, however, was short-lived, and following a role in 1999's Undercover Angel, Young disappeared from Hollywood.
Sasha Mitchell, who portrayed lovable loser Cody, suffered from a bout of bad publicity in the late '90s when he was accused of domestic abuse. Perhaps that's why Mitchell — who retained full custody of his children following claims that he was protecting his children from their abusive mother — opted to change his appearance dramatically following the headlines. Though Cody could hardly work hard enough to leave the Lamberts' backyard, Mitchell worked hard in the gym, beefing up enough to earn roles in films like Dickie Roberts: Former Child Star and on acronym-friendly series like JAG, ER, and NYPD Blue. Mitchell, who continues to act, also has a black belt. As Cody would say, Whoa.
Jason Marsden, loved for his roles in two beloved '90s series — Step By Step, as J.T.'s friend Rich, and Boy Meets World, as, fittingly, Jason Marsden — began a successful career in voice acting after Step By Step, starring in series like The Legend of Tarzan, Justice League, The Batman, The Fairly OddParents, and much, much more. Makes sense the animated actor would find money in animation.
Patrika Darbo, who played Carol's sister Penny, might have been written out of the series after Season 1, but she was hardly written out of Hollywood. One of the industry's more recognizable character actresses, Darbo has boasted roles in Seinfeld, Desperate Housewives, and Dexter. She also scored a recurring gig on Days of Our Lives, playing Craig Wesley's wife Nancy. So it turns out Darbo's hair wasn't the only thing that improved post-Step By Step.
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April 10, 2013 4:17pm EST
In case you missed it, it's 2013. You'd think that by now, no one would need to petition for Barbie birthday supplies that are indicative of the diversity of our nation. Apparently not.
Representing different ethnicities is just too hard for toy giant Mattel, at least that's what they just told one mother who petitioned to see birthday party supplies with more variety than just the grinning mug of one blonde Barbie. namely, her daughter wanted birthday items that also feature a black Barbie. Mattel couldn't comply, because duh, getting people to buy Barbie supplies without the iconic blondie at the center is impossible — never mind the fact that ethnically diverse dolls make them millions of dollars every single day.
Karen Green Braithwaite makes that exact point in her petition on Change.org. Barbie has won over Braithwate's daughter with the brand's ability to give little girls the opportunity to see themselves reflected in a doll whose ambition knows no bounds. Why is it so difficult to see that in all areas of their merchandizing?
According to the Observer, representatives from Mattel called Braithwaite into a conference call and told her that licensees wouldn't carry the supplies and that focus groups tested negatively for diverse paper plates, cups, and napkins. But it seems rather strange that the company took the time to not only respond to their petitioner, but respond with such a negative answer. The Barbie name has already come under fire for its unrealistic depictions of women, many critics connecting Barbie's shape to the body image issue rampant among young women. Why would Mattel want to put out the word that they've simply given up on diversity in some elements of their business? Why not just tell the petitioner they'd "look into it" or give some other, more diplomatic response?
Of course, a spokesperson for Mattel says they did just that. "What we said was that we are looking at how we can work with our partners to redesign a new line as the current line of Barbie party products has been discontinued ... Development of new products takes a minimum of 18 months from creative development to sell in to production to being on shelves in stores and as such consumers will not see any new product in the near term," they said.
If, however, Mattel is correct and they've not been able to sell more ethnically diverse party supplies, Barbie still may be the problem, however unintentionally. Barbie is the original doll, the star amongst the Midges, Skippers, Teresas, and Kens. It's always been her show, and as much as her character is a blank slate for whatever adventures young kids can dream up (heck, there's even a President Barbie, years before we'll see a woman as the POTUS), her racially limited universe promotes an ideal that doesn't at all represent the nation we live in.
Take a single look at Mattel's Barbie website and you can see there's not an inch that isn't occupied by a bouncy, smiling blonde girl. If you click around enough, you can eventually find Barbie's friends, which include a black girl named Nikki, a gluten-free girl named Teresa, and a vaguely Latina girl named Raquelle — but without the tenacity to comb over every inch of the website, the message is decidely blonde. There isn't a single featured photo or graphic on the website's main pages that shows our main character, Barbie, palling around with her diverse group of friends, and you'd be hard-pressed to find a page that features Teresa or Nikki instead of Miss Barbie. And if this is the strong message Mattel is promoting, it's no wonder they have had trouble selling diverse merchandise: it comes in opposition to the message the brand has cultivated with its one-shade-fits-all presentation.
The birthday supplies are admittedly less popular and lucrative than the dolls, but this is not a small issue. It feeds into a larger suggestion: that the other dolls are lesser dolls and that only Barbie can be the star. But on a day when the little girl (or boy) in question is supposed to "celebrate themselves" (as Braithwate puts it in her petition), shouldn't he or she be able to choose which character is the star? Wouldn't Barbie, herself, want her other friends to have their special days, too? Shouldn't kids have a merchandise choice that puts the doll that reflects themselves best at center stage?
It's something even Disney — whose lineup of Princesses includes Middle Eastern Princess Jasmine and the newest edition, a young black woman named Tiana — has managed to change. Disney's Princess birthday supplies feature all the princesses in equal measure, with sets of cups and napkins that give each lady her own featured moment. With that in mind, it seems strange to think that the best Barbie can do is to add small images of a brown-skinned Barbie and a brunette to the borders of a handful of party supplies, while everything else is a parade of Barbie's big blonde head.
Of course, if market research says it doesn't sell, Mattel's hands are somewhat tied: they're a business, not a non-profit group. But perhaps that just means it's time for parents to take up some agency and instead of trying to change a stalwart brand, reevaluate which toy lines to expose their kids to. If she can't handle true diversity and inclusion, then maybe it's simply time to say Bye-bye, Barbie.
Follow Kelsea on Twitter @KelseaStahler
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March 27, 2013 11:18am EST
Life can be tough for movie stars who've faded from public view. Just look at Karen Black. She appeared in some of the most prominent films of the '70s, like Five Easy Pieces, Nashville, The Great Gatsby, and Family Plot. But, despite being regularly employed ever since, her parts got smaller and smaller. Now, she's been struggling to pay for her own cancer treatment. Luckily, though, there are fans who remember her.
Black's husband, Stephen Eckelberry, realized that Black still has a following, so he set up a crowdfunding campaign to help with their medicals bills and finance an experimental treatment in Europe his wife thinks may help her condition. In November of 2010 she was diagnosed with ampullary cancer, which was treated by removing most of her pancreas and having her submit to intense doses of radiation. By the summer of 2011, it seemed she was in remission, but by early 2012 another tumor formed in her lower back that eventually spread to her lungs. What savings they possessed had already been spent on her previous treatment, so, to enable her to travel to Europe to try this different approach, Eckelberry set up a page on GoFundMe.com and established a fundraising goal of $32,000.
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"Some of you may remember my wife, Karen Black," Eckelberry wrote in a statement on the page. "She contributed tremendous work as an actress in movies of the seventies and eighties. If you’ve ever enjoyed her work, now is your chance to reach back to Karen – because Karen needs your help.... So here is the big question; why would someone like Karen need money? Yes, she was an actress in movies, but most of the high-paying work dwindled out many years ago. She has a modest pension and medical insurance (thank goodness), but as anyone knows who has fought cancer, that is not enough. In the last two years we have used up all of our savings keeping Karen alive – traveling – treatments, getting people to help her. We have nothing left. And the European treatment is not covered by insurance."
As of March 27, they've already received $45,454 from over 4,000 contributors, so maybe this story will have a Hollywood ending after all.
Follow Christian Blauvelt on Twitter @Ctblauvelt
[Photo Credit: JB Lacroix/WireImage]
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March 23, 2013 11:28am EST
The new romantic dramedy Admission marks some pretty big firsts for television royalty Tina Fey: it's the first time the 30 Rock star worked with Paul Rudd (despite having a whole lot of very funny factors previously connecting them) and the first time the funny lady took on a more serious role.
Admission director Paul Weitz (whom Fey also worked with for the first time) is no stranger to adapting books for the big screen and having stars step out of their comfort zone (see: About A Boy and Hugh Grant's revelation of a performance in it), but he was particularly eager to work with the Emmy-winning Fey on this project.
In Admission, Fey plays Portia, a content, straight-laced Princeton admissions officer whose life takes a series of unexpected turns when her longtime boyfriend Mark (Michael Sheen) leaves her for another woman, her mother Susannah (Lily Tomlin) reveals she's had a double mastectomy, and Portia meets a charming single dad and high school teacher named John (Rudd) who not only becomes a romantic interest but also introduces her to Jeremiah (Nat Wolff), a bright young man who could be the son she gave up for adoption years ago. Subsequently, she hits a series of moral dilemmas with her job when Jeremiah applies to Princeton. It's not exactly an episode of 30 Rock.
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"I like it when they're taking a step," the Oscar-nominated Weitz (whose previous credits also include American Pie, In Good Company, and Little Fockers) tells Hollywood.com regarding working with actors and actresses on a role that breaks them out of their usual mold, like Fey in Admission. "I felt like the character [Portia] needed comedy and intelligence and Tina has both of those things. I really felt like it would be something she could do."
"The character feels like she is settled in her life and nothing is going to change for her: she has the job she wants for the rest of her life, she's in a relationship and doesn't want to get married, and most of all, doesn't want to be a mom. Then she gets thrown this massive curve ball in the course of this movie," Weitz continues. "So it's really important to have somebody who you think is smart enough to fool themselves into thinking that everything's done."
Weitz says he was not aware that Admission would mark Fey's first post-30 Rock performance ("I was aware that there was a certain amount of the year when one could shoot a movie with her"). He said that after reading Jean Hanff Korelitz's 2009 novel of the same name on which the film is based: "I immediately thought of Tina for it."
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Fey tells Hollywood.com that appearing in the more serious Admission "wasn't a craven choice of, 'Check me out now, world'... it just happened to be that this felt like a really good script and story," but it seems her co-star Rudd needed a little more convincing for his part of the saintly John.
"When he first read the script he really wanted to work with Tina, but he felt like his character was kind of too good to be true," Weitz reveals. "This guy who does relief work, he's a single dad, traveling place to place doing good. He said, 'I don't understand this guy, he needs to be a selfish bastard as well.' So I worked pretty hard with him on the script."
In the end, both Rudd and Weitz seemed happy with the end result. Weitz says he appreciated that the film, and Rudd's characterization in particular, turned out to be "a pretty realistic portrayal of how when you have a kid you love, you yell at them a lot and they drive you insane. He's also a guy who's at a point in his life where he's gotten to make all the decisions, and his kid who is now 11 is saying, 'Wait a minute, why do we have to move?' I liked that not only was Tina's character in flux, but [Paul's character] was dealing with this big new thing."
While the director says that he doesn't "keep in mind what the fans of the book want because I figure they've had the wonderful experience of the book," he does take into account what the original text's author takes away from his "subjective reaction to it and what I take from it."
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He explains, "I don't want the author to hate me when the film's done, so usually I touch base with them and say, 'I wanna go in this direction, this is what I'm thinking of, here's why, and I hope that you're not upset with me.' It's always nice when the writer sees it and feels happy with the product." Looks like Hanff Korelitz gave Weitz and screenwriter Karen Croner a passing grade for their interpretation.
Watch the full interview with Admission director Paul Weitz below, including his thoughts on what constitutes as a romantic comedy in this day and age.
Admission is currently in theaters nationwide.
[Photo credit: Focus Features]
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March 22, 2013 2:48pm EST
For generations now, the world has looked at the Ivy League as a Mecca for the narrow framed intellectuals who didn't fare too well in gym class. The sort of folk who'd pray for fire drills during hockey season, who'd repeatedly shuffle to the back of the batting lineup to avoid ever stepping onto the field (I say this with affection... and far too much familiarity). But you just have to have everything, don't you, Harvard? You're not satisfied with an academic reverence so high that whenever one of your almumni so much as mentions his or her alma mater, the listener is immediately entrenched in a diminished sense of self-worth. Nope — being smart wasn't enough for the Crimson. They're actually good at sports now.
In case you didn't hear the guys in the apartment next to yours screaming vociferous "Are you kidding me?!"s on Thursday night, Harvard managed a huge upset by beating out the University of New Mexico's Lobos in their first ever NCAA victory. But fear not, fellow safety schoolers — there are still plenty of things Cambridge's sweatervest-laden institution is bad at...
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The OscarsWhile many people might have championed the Harvard-set The Social Network as the cream of the crop of 2010's cinematic output, the Academy felt it more appropriate to honor The King's Speech. Thirteen years prior, Good Will Hunting (which featured Harvard, MIT, and the spiritual academia of Casey Affleck) suffered the same fate to some movie about a big boat that nobody can even remember. And was Legally Blonde even nominated?! Harvard's no Oscar fave, that's for sure.
Mental HealthWe're sure there's a lot going on upstairs as far as Harvard grads go... perhaps a bit too much. Cinema and real life alike have treated us to one too many horror stories about Crimson alums turning violently nuts: American Psycho's Patrick Bateman? Harvard. Unabomber Ted Kaczynski? Harvard. "LSD Killer" Stephen Kessler? ... Okay, this is just getting depressing.
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HairTom Hanks in The Da Vinci Code. Conan O'Brien in actual life. These are all people with Harvard educations. These are all people without combs or mirrors.
Pleasant Ballet MoviesRemember Black Swan? Of course you do — you still wake up in tremors because of it. Well, you'll be happy to know that both director Darren Aronofsky and star Natalie Portman were Harvard folk. Thought you were in for a sophisticated movie show about the ups and downs of the dance, eh? Didn't think you'd be haunted years later with dreams of knife-wielding Winona Ryders, did ya? And Portman's Golden Globes speech... that's where the nightmares got really bad.
HonestyOh, Harv (can I call you Harv?). Less than a day has gone by since your big NCAA win, and you're already coming out with Quiz Bowl cheating scandals — National Academic Quiz Tournaments, LCC has publicized that the school's team members had improperly accessed information that might have helped them win the recent competition. Maybe that's how they won the basketball game, too...
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The Office CharactersOkay, okay, this one's kind of a stretch... but Ryan Howard and Karen Filippelli, two of the least favorable characters in the NBC sitcom's run, came from Harvard alum actors: B.J. Novak and Rashida Jones. Maybe series creators Greg Daniels and Michael Schur, Harvard grads themselves, didn't take kindly to the rest of their student body...
Not Letting James Franco Teach ThereJames Franco taught there.
Follow Michael Arbeiter on Twitter @MichaelArbeiter
[Photo Credit: Lionsgate; Cait Oppermann/flickr; Columbia Pictures (2); NBC]
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March 06, 2013 12:01pm EST
Smash is a musical drama that sparks a flurry of emotions in anyone who watches it. People either love it, hate it, love to hate it, hate to love it, love iet so much that it eventually turns to hate, hated it until they started to love to hate it now they just hate to hate it. There are so many choices! So to help celebrate all the outrageous, over-the-top, and fantastically farfetched moments, we present to you a weekly recap filled with the best Smash superlatives!
With Jerry now at the helm of Bombshell, the group decided to host a read-through so everyone could hear Julia and Pete’s (the dramaturg) new book. Julia was excited and calm to debut her new take on Marilyn and the men who made her, however she ran into a friend who told her that Pete recently destroyed the career of another writer by steering her in the wrong direction and then rewriting a better script of his own. It turns out Pete did write his own version of Bombshell. His assistant (Hairspray leading-lady Nikki Blonsky) inadvertently spilled the news to Julia.
When Julia confronted Pete, he denied the whole thing, encouraged Julia to go through with the reading, and the entire team—especially Derek—absolutely loved the new book. However Jerry decided that he would rather produce a flashy and fun version of Bombshell and the group was split down the middle with what creative direction they want to take. It was decided that Eileen would be the deciding factor and as the drama nears the 10:55 mark Eileen says, "Well, my decision is..." fade to black, cue the "next week on Smash". Damn you, cliffhanger!
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Karen decided the host a read-through of Hit List for Jimmy and Kyle so a bunch of her theater friends came over, read the first act, and realized that the writing is really bad. However everyone decided that the songs were amazing so after some emotional tug-of-war between Kyle and everyone else, they decided that Hit List should go the way of Rent and become a musical with only songs. Karen and Jimmy decided to keep things professional and just be “friends” but the audience sees that Jimmy and Kyle think that she is actually dating Derek.
Ivy was a week into rehearsing for her new Broadway-bound version of Dangerous Liaisons (or Les Liaisons Dangereuses if you want to get all fancy about it) when her male lead, comedy actor Terrence Falls (Sean Hayes), finally decided to show up. Terrence was too afraid to show his vulnerabilities as an actor so he decided to turn this tragedy into a comedy. However, Ivy was not going to let this movie star ruin her big break, so she encouraged Terrence to tap into his emotions. The actor took this to mean that he should go off his six or seven different types of medications and Ivy quickly realized that her play is screwed.
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Best Original Song: “Public Relations” — the big new possible opening for Bombshell's second act captures the essence of Broadway in the best way possible. It was three minutes of pure fun.
Best Cover Song: Karen’s reinvented and slowed-down version of Death Cab for Cutie, “Some Boys” was absolutely angelic. The lighting and Karen’s sweet (yet almost obsessive) way of following Jimmy around the apartment was a really unique Smash experience.
Best Insult: In order to stress the severity of an impressive read-through, Derek thought it would be best to be as brutally honest as possible with Julia: “We can't afford for you to stumble again, and neither can your career.” Ouch!
Best-Backhanded Compliment: The group of actors give their opinion of Hit List after their rough read-though, “The concept is cool, but the dialogue and characters need some work.”
Most Awkward Moment: Karen looks at Jimmy like he’s some kind of a musically talented Greek god (hey, we would too). So it was heartbreakingly awkward when some little blonde with sex hair appeared half naked asking where the coffee is. Can you say player?
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Dumbest Line: Karen’s new roommate, Ana, is trying so hard to be relevant in this episode — going to kickboxing class, offering boy advice, and encouraging Karen to call Jimmy. So when Karen gets a call from Derek that he’d like to get Hit List into a small showcase, it’s obvious that Karen now has the perfect excuse to call her crush. So it was especially eye-rolling when Ana wore an overly-smug expression and said, “Something tells me you just found your reason to call.”
Biggest WTF Moment: Watching our beloved Sean Hayes bumble around the stage acting like an immature 12-year-old reciting lines. We understand that he’s supposed to be a comedic actor but the entire persona that he put on is just one big head-scratching, sigh-inducing fiasco.
Most Swoon-Worthy Moment: Listening to Jimmy sing, “Caught in the Storm.” Up until now we’ve only heard Karen’s version of the song and let’s be real, he blows her out of the water.
Best Verbal Bitchslap: Eileen showed us that sometimes the best insults can be said in the sweetest voices. As she was hanging up the phone with some frustrating little assistant she quipped, “And by the way, you’re terrible at your job.”
Best Almost-Kiss: Karen and Jimmy almost had a perfect NYC rooftop kiss, the wind was blowing, the lighting was romantic and they both are ridiculously attractive. However the moment was completely when Jimmy offered Karen his hand and said, “Friends?” Why has he never bothered to ask her if she's actually dating Derek?
Biggest Bombshell Blunder: The Bombshell creative team is completely split down the middle and they can’t decide on a creative direction for their show. Will they go for a flashy and fun portrayal of an icon, or an insightful and emotional journey of Marilyn and the men who made her? Eileen will reveal her answer next week!
RELATED: ‘Smash’ Scoop: New Showrunner Talks Season 2 Changes
What did you think of “New Song”? Which superlatives would you like to add to the list? Sing your thoughts in the comments below!
Follow Leanne on Twitter @LeanneAguilera
[Photo Credit: Craig Blankenhorn/NBC]
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February 06, 2013 7:41am EST
Smash is the musical drama that sparks a flurry of emotions in anyone who watches it. People either love it, hate it, or love to hate it. So to help celebrate all the outrageous, over-the-top, and fantastically farfetched moments, we present to you a weekly recap filled with the best Smash superlatives! What was the best cover song of the night? Who had the best verbal bitch-slap? What was the biggest Season 1 jab? Read on for all of the awards, and take to the comments with your favorite moments from “On Broadway” and “The Fallout.”
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It’s back to NYC for the cast and crew of Bombshell — their preview in Boston ended, and while the majority of the musical had sensational reviews, the critiques were less than pleased with Julia’s script. Oh well, she’s too preoccupied with the fact that her marriage is officially kaput after an extremely embarrassing public blow up. Luckily Tom invited his bestie/business partner to move in with him, so now we have a Will & Grace 2.0 kind of situation. Tensions were at an all-time high between Karen and Ivy as the new queen Marilyn of Bombshell slowly but surely tried to edge Ivy out of the show. Ivy apologized to Karen for being a fiancé-seducing slut, denied a kiss from Derek, and began to realize that she needs to focus on herself to lead a happy and healthy lifestyle. However, none of that really mattered because Eileen’s ex-husband tipped off the government about the dirty money she was using to fund the show, and the Broadway-bound production was frozen. Just like that.
While waiting to learn the fate of their beloved musical, Derek encouraged Karen to find “something else” that would captivate her attention. The Iowa native was instantly intrigued by a hot-headed bartender named Jimmy — who has an amazing voice, but was extremely stubborn and protective of his work. Jimmy’s writing partner Kyle was thrilled to learn that Karen was interested in learning more about their musical, and went behind his best friend’s back to show the Broadway starlet all of their amazing songs for “Hit List.” Karen and the rest of her posse headed to Kyle and Jimmy’s apartment in Brooklyn for a little party, and after some light/awkward flirting, Karen surprised the room by singing one of Jimmy’s songs. Jimmy was furious, but after a few days — and the cold shoulder from his best friend — Jimmy gave Karen a copy of everything he’s ever composed, and Karen later shared them with Derek.
In order to save face from her brief Broadway failure, Rebecca Duvall accused Derek of sexual harassment, and then six other dancers from the director’s past decided to jump on the womanizer bandwagon too. At the American Theater Wing gala, Eileen and the rest of the Bombshell team were shunned, so in order to really make a splash, they asked Ivy to give an impromptu performance to show their peers the immense talent that the musical would have had. In the end there was no need to worry, the government cleared Eileen’s dirty mobster money — but she still needed more. Conveniently her smarmy ex-husband, Jerry, was ready with his open checkbook to dish out the dough so he could put his name next to hers on the Playbill.
RELATED: ‘Smash’ Scoop: New Showrunner Talks Season 2 Changes
Best Original Song: Ivy’s performance of “They Just Keep Moving The Line” at the gala was hauntingly beautiful.
Best Cover Song: Karen and Veronica (The lovely Jennifer Hudson) captivated the Bombshell press peeps with their infectiously fun rendition of, “On Broadway.”
Biggest Bombshell Blunder: Bombshell is the show that just can’t seem to catch a break. So what was the problem this week? There were multiple, actually. First, the St. James theater pulled out of their contract with the show, and then someone tipped off the government about the dirty money that was used to fund it all. And, finally, Eileen had to ask her ex-husband to save the show by writing a big fat check, thus securing the fact that he now will forever have his hand in the Bombshell cookie jar.
Best Insult: “Tom did you pack something warm for your trip to the moral high ground?” — Derek, to Tom.
RELATED: Leanne's Spoiler List: Season 2 Secrets from 'Smash,' 'Vampire Diaries' Boss Talks Delena
Best-Backhanded Compliment: “If you stop clenching your jaw like that, you could actually be cute. Relax” — Jimmy, to Karen
Most Swoon-Worthy Moment: Jimmy pouring his heart out into “Broadway Here I Come.” The pure magic of his voice mixed with intense yet sexy scowl on his face while he played the piano was perfection.
Best Almost Kiss: This is a tie, and of course they both involve the oh-so sexy Derek Wills. The sexual tension between Derek and Karen was ridiculously high as their lips almost met. But we also loved the self-aware comedic moment between Derek and Ivy as she quipped, “Nope. Ain’t gonna happen.” Basically any near-kiss involving Derek is better than any real kiss with anyone else.
Dumbest Line: “Mark my words, I’ll have this all ironed out toots sweet.” — Eileen to some sure-to-be confused person on the phone.
Biggest WTF Moment: Derek’s alcohol-induced hallucination of “Would I Lie to You.” Wearing a curve-squeezing black dresses and hot pink pumps, Ivy, Karen (and a group of fembots?) grabbed Derek’s crotch, threw him across the room, and fawned all over him. WTF.
RELATED: Leanne's Spoiler List: 'Smash' Will Shake Things Up, 'Vampire Diaries' Gets Intense
Best Verbal Bitchslap: “You can catch the next one.” — Karen to Ivy as she shut the elevator door in her face
Most Awkward Moment: In order to get Julia out of her funk and into the real world, Tom told her that they would be presenting at the American Theater Wing Gala. Smooth. Julia fawned all over the Gala Director, thanking her for the honor — babbling on and on about how thrilled she was to be speaking in front of the entire room. It was beyond awkward when Julia learned that she had been deceived by her best friend.
Best Jab at Season 1: “In the spirit of honesty and as your friend and partner, can I say something? It’s time to retire the scarves.” — Tom to Julia, referring her fashion horrors from the first season.
What did you think of the Season 2 premiere of Smash? Which superlatives would you like to add to the list? Sing your thoughts in the comments below!
Follow Leanne on Twitter @LeanneAguilera
[Photo Credit: NBC]
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January 11, 2013 10:00am EST
January is a debaucherous month at Showtime. After all, it's when the network’s trio of serially addicted men — Frank (William H. Macy) on Shameless, Marty (Don Cheadle) on House of Lies, and Hank (David Duchovny) on Californication — all return to the pay-network to get back to the business of being bad. So it's quite fitting that Showtime is labeling Jan. 13, the date that all three shows begin their new seasons, “Sinful Sunday."
But while we’ve got a serial drinker in Frank, a career liar in Marty, and a compulsive fornicator in Hank, the characters are hardly just sinners. Fans of the three series would agree with President of Entertainment at Showtime, David Nevins, who notes Frank, Marty, and Hank are far more layered than your average bad boys. “We try to make sure that all of our characters have a real complexity to them, and that goes for both men and women,” he says.
RELATED: 'Shameless' Season Finale Recap: This is What a Family Looks Like
So while Macy, Cheadle, and Duchovny's roles are characters that could likely only exist on a network like Showtime, Sunday's well-rounded trio impossible to pigeonhole. “I think [Macy and Cheadle] are making full human beings,” Duchovny says. “Across the board, [these characters are] human.” That's likely what makes House of Lies the top performing comedy on Showtime, according to Nevins. It's also probably what brings fans of Hank Moody back season in and season out and keeps Shameless fans — a notoriously obsessive set — as rabid as ever for more Gallagher family hijinks. Of course, each of the series' leading men have their own ideas about what keeps the fans coming back for more.
Your Friendly, Neighborhood Rascal: Shameless's Frank Gallagher
As the patriarch of Shameless’ Gallagher family, Frank isn’t exactly the poster child for father of the year. The perpetually drunk (or, at the very least, tipsy) South Side Chicago native is a man only his family (and Macy... and Shamelessfans everywhere) could love. Macy gets that, and it’s what makes his job so challenging. “This is my take on Frank,” he says. “He’s smart, he’s funny, he’s got a wicked sense of humor. He sees the irony of life and so he holds things somewhat lightly, but he’s very hard-working, entrepreneurial, and dogged. He never gives up.”
RELATED: 'Shameless' Star Shanola Hampton Spills Season 3 Details
Of course, that’s not exactly what most people would say about Frank, who ended last season asleep in the Chicago snow after punching his son Ian (Cameron Monaghan) over a case of Old Style beer. “I like the guy. [Laughs] But at the same time, he’s deplorable,” says Macy. “If I do my job right [the audience] will have enough forgiveness in them and the next week they’ll tune in again.”
So the audience may continue to come back for more, but what about the Gallaghers themselves? At the end of Season 2, they seemed to have had it with Frank. But all is not lost — Fiona (Emmy Rossum) and Co. may be a wild bunch, but when it comes down to it, they’re family. “I happen to know the family is not done with Frank, nor will they ever be done with Frank,” Macy says. “As perplexing as it is, even to me, there’s a part of it I find very moving. We say blood is thicker than water and that family trumps all, but the Gallagher family is living proof of that."
And heading into Season 3, Frank faces a few additional challenges beyond his own addictions. “At the end of this next season, he’s got some health issues … he bears his health problems stoically,” Macy says.
So it seems, even Frank can figure it out when the straights become dire. Macy’s not hoping Frank gets it allfigured out though. “I’ve got the role of a lifetime," he says. "At first [my scenes] are uncomfortable and icky, but if I just [bring] up [my] courage and throw [myself] into the scene as Frank would do, oh boy, I feel like the king of the world."
NEXT: Don Cheadle and David Duchovny spill what's next.
House of Lies and Marty, King Con of The Corporate World
Sinful Sunday's youngest member is the sophomore series House of Lies, produced by and starring Cheadle as Marty Kaan, a leader in the ruthless, opportunistic world of management consulting. Together with the rest of his pod — or team of consultants — he swindles his way into deals with major corporations, but such a ruthless existence has its consequences outside of the office.
But those consequences have led to success for the network and Nevins, who boasts House of Lies as the “strongest comedy on our schedule, ratings-wise.” “It just feels like this show is starting to happen,” Nevins says. Even Macy admits he’s a fan, albeit a jealous one: “Cheadle is just great, but he should pay themto do that role,” he says. Indeed, Cheadle is enjoying the freedom of starring on a Showtime series. “There’s definitely a style of writing that appears on cable that definitely doesn’t happen anywhere else … definitely not on network television and unfortunately, not any more really in the movies, a lot of times,” Cheadle says.
According to the critically beloved actor, his series steps outside the boundaries of most other cable and pay-cable series. “I don’t know a lot of shows that deal with cross-gender kids and deal with parents and how to talk about that, and I don’t see a lot of [Marty’s son] Roscoe and not a lot of black leads in anything, so I think we were just able to stretch out in ways that are a little different,” Cheadle says.
Season 2 is also going to allow the characters themselves to stretch, now that the ordeal of explaining the giant world of management consulting has been dealt with in Season 1. “We’re getting to know everyone a little better,” he says. “We’re getting deeper and more nuanced … bringing in elements of race. [And] one of our characters deals directly with the Occupy [Wall Street] issue."
Of course, social politics add dimension, but fans of the show are likely waiting in fitful anticipation to see what happens between Marty and Jeannie (Kristen Bell) after last season's finale, during which she broke up with her fiance and the narrative hinted that it had something to do with her hooking up with Marty. Cheadle says Season 2 will have some serious work to do in sussing out what it all means for their relationship after their implied moment: “Well, we’re definitely trying to figure out what happened between Marty and Jeannie. Is this the start of something?”
After all, that's a question that lingered throughout the show's first season. The duo has spent 12 episodes flipping back and forth between potential romance and potential mutual destruction. “I think they clearly had this love, this strange dynamic between them of partners, and friends, and adversaries," Cheadle says. Of course, the actor won't tell us exactly where Marty and Jeannie will find themselves once they broach the love subject, or whether or not that hint in the season finale was a giant tease. We’re not that lucky.
Hank Moody, The Californicat-or
Last, but not least, comes Duchovny’s seasoned Showtime vet Hank Moody, the champion fornicator of Los Angeles. Over the five years we’ve known Hank, we’ve followed him through his life as a writer in Los Angeles: He wrote a book, taught some college classes, stood trial for statutory rape, wrote a movie for Rza of the Wu Tang Clan, and now, in Season 6, he will take a stab at writing a musical. Clearly, nothing is off limits for Hank. But, of course, despite Hank's many talents, his main draw will be the series' original peg: his apparent sex addiction.
Of course, as he embarks on year six of Moody’s chronicles, Duchovny wants to make it known that Hank is more than a rapscallion. “I tend not to think of [Hank] with one flaw, but as flawed. And by flawed, I mean human,” he says.
Despite his seemingly unwieldy life, Hank is always brought back to earth by some circumstance or consequence for his actions. It’s a cycle that works for him... and for Duchovny, who’s not looking to morph Hank into something he’s not to keep the show “fresh.” "I think it’s a temptation over a long-running series to try to reinvent the character, when in fact the character is the essence of the show,” Duchovny says. “If you change the character and reinvent it, you’re actually making a different show. As fun as it may be for the actor, it’s kind of a dissolution of the bond you’ve made with your audience,” he adds.
And that’s why, time and again, Hank goes through his own form of “reinvention,” according to Duchovny. “The touchstone for Hank instead of reinvention is to come back to the original relationship [with Karen and Becca]… It’s a rediscovery of what’s most important to the characters.”
Heading into Season 6, that’s exactly where we’ll find Hank, who’s just survived his crazy girlfriend’s attempted double suicide. “This year picks up with him getting physically better in the first episode,” Duchovny says.
If we know anything about Hank, it’s that he seems to be able to survive anything. And his reward, this year, is a little time with guest star Marilyn Manson, who Duchovny says got on the show by emailing with the creator Tom Kapinos. “[Manson’s] a fan of Hank’s and Hank’s a fan of Manson,” he says of the rocker’s two-episode stint in which he plays himself.
And while Duchovny’s excited about the guest star, he’s mostly excited to be back. “If we weren’t brought back, then that would have been the end of the show — Hank would have been killed by his crazy lover,” he says.
Luckily for Duchovny, and for his fans, Hank Moody doesn’t go down that easily.
Sinful Sundays … And Beyond
Sundays are loaded up with plenty of laughs and drama starting in winter, and the success of shows like Shameless, House of Lies, and Californication will only lead to more off-the-wall content on the network, like the upcoming Showtime series Ray Donovan, about a professional “fixer” for wealthy families, and Masters of Sex, about the pioneers of the science of human sexuality, airing sometime in 2013. “I feel an enormous sense of freedom and opportunity right now [because] the best people in the business want to be making shows on television," Nevins says. "We’re reaping the benefits."
Lucky for audiences, we all share in that bounty, too.
Follow Kelsea on Twitter
[Photo Credit: Showtime (6)]
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December 31, 2012 12:44pm EST
You’re invited! Tonight we’re throwing a huge New Years Eve bash and all of your favorite TV characters will be there. The alcohol is flowing, the playlist is perfect, and as the clock ticks closer to midnight, ten cross-network couples begin to form. Due to our vivid imaginations and an insane passion for TV, we at Hollywood.com have your sneak peek into what would happen if Ted Mosby, Sookie Stackhouse, Tom Haverford, Dana Brody and many more were all together to welcome 2013 with their 12 o’clock smooches. Check out our fantasy TV pairings below to see who would find their soul mate and would have their first one night stand of the new year!
Schmidt and Max Black (New Girl/2 Broke Girls): Max would thoroughly enjoy calling Schmidt out on his obnoxious behavior in front of the entire party and then secretly pass the money from the Douchebag Jar over to Caroline. Schmidt, enamored by Max’s blunt personality and sexually charged jokes, would be determined to kiss her by midnight. At Midnight: Max slaps Schimdt and the two later disappear into the coat closet with a bottle of champagne.
Ted Mosby and Karen Cartwright (HIMYM/Smash): She is totally Ted’s type (driven, smart, kind, brunette, etc.) and after Karen’s most recent catastrophic breakup, she needs a good guy like Teddy Westside right now. Plus, we all know that Ted would go above and beyond to make sure that Karen had everything should could ever need while “in tech” At Midnight: A sweet 5-minute makeout complete with nose nuzzling and forehead kisses.
Nick Miller and Shoshanna Shapiro (Girls/New Girl): These two are amazing, so naturally they would find each other at our fictional party. Shoshanna would admire Nick’s laidback personality and Nick would see that Shoshanna’s upbeat personality is strong enough to stop him from making that ugly turtle face we all know so well. They would become good friends who commiserate that their dates bailed at the last minute. At Midnight: An awkward brother/sister type kiss followed by a marathon of Baggage on the Game Show Network.
Sam Evans and Haley Dunphy (Glee/Modern Family): Talk about cross-network soul mates! Sam and Haley have never been the brightest bulbs in the box, but they’re both extremely attractive and easily persuaded. Throw any topic at them and these two would think that the other is a gorgeous genius. At Midnight: Sam pulls out (yet another) ring and proposes to Hayley at 1 in the morning because they still have yet to change their watches from Daylight Saving Time. She accepts because she thinks Dylan has dyed his hair blonde.
Tom Haverford and BJ (Parks and Rec/Ben and Kate): Tom has always tried to lure the ladies with his swagger but often failed. Luckily for him at this party BJ would be on the prowl tonight looking for a fella with some smooth lines and extra bottles of Ciroc.Their eyes meet while Tom is singing Justin Bieber's "Baby" on Wii karaoke. At Midnight: BJ pins Tom to a wall and the entire party looks away as they have a sloppy makeout for about two hours complete with loud moans.
Joffrey Baratheon and Dana Brody (Game of Thrones/Homeland): Ugh, these two. Neither of them could find someone to go with, so they would be here on a blind date. Everyone hates them both and they've both killed people, so they deserve each other. Dana’s incessant whining is enough to drive anyone crazy, but Joffrey is particularly annoyed. At Midnight: A quick peck for tradition before Joffrey sentences her to the great beyond. Good riddance.
Stefan Salvatore and Sookie Stackhouse (The Vampire Diaries/True Blood): Stefan and Sookie are both single now and after commiserating about their drawn-out love triangles, sparks would begin to fly. Stefan would like the fact that Sookie doesn’t whine all the time and Sookie would instantly see that Stefan has is redicuoulsy attractive and has fangs. He's totally her type. At Midnight: A super sexy makeout sesh that lasts about 30 seconds until Stefan needs to leave because his inner Ripper is dying to drain her of every ounce of her fairy blood.
Raj Koothrappali and Mindy Lahiri (The Big Bang Theory/The Mindy Project): There’s always champagne flowing on New Years Eve, so Raj would have the perfect excuse to use his alcohol enhanced voice to woo Mindy with his knowledge of the stars in the galaxy. Mindy—totally wasted in her super sequin dress—would think that Raj is the perfect guy that her parents will finally approve of. At Midnight: The two are overly excited for their kiss and they smack their heads together. Raj now has a concussion.
Chris Traeger and Marnie Michaels (Parks and Rec/Girls): Marnie and Chris would meet each other while reaching for the last fat-free hors d'oeuvre. Chris would instantly fall in love with Marnie’s smile, trim figure and perfect hair, and Marnie would be enjoy his blue eyes and positive outlook on life. Marnie, drunk and depressed, could care less if they ever see each other again, she just doesn’t want to be alone at 12. At Midnight: Their kiss leads to the nearest bedroom and the two have a wild night. New Years Day: Marnie must now change her number because Chris keeps calling her every seven minutes and sending her countless emoji-filled texts.
What did you think of our New Years Eve couples? Who do you think would be great together at midnight? Shout out your suggestions in the comments below!
Follow Leanne on Twitter @LeanneAguilera
[Photo Credit: ABC, CBS, FOX, HBO, The CW]
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