Two And A Half Men star Ashton Kutcher has been named U.S. TV's highest-paid actor for the third year in a row.
The actor earned an estimated $26 million (£15 million) for his work on the hit sitcom over the past 12 months, according to editors at Forbes magazine. Kutcher's Two and a Half Men co-star Jon Cryer follows behind in second place earning $19 million (£11.5 million). The pair is heading into the long-running programme's 12th and final season next month (Sep14).
Cryer is tied in second place with NCIS veteran Mark Harmon, while Neil Patrick Harris comes in at fourth, raking in $18 million (£11 million) to end his eight season run on How I Met Your Mother, which finished earlier this year (14).
Grey's Anatomy hunk Patrick Dempsey and House of Cards star Kevin Spacey tie in the fifth position with $16 million (£9.7 million).
Other actors featured on the countdown include The Big Bang Theory's Jim Parsons and Johnny Galecki, Harris' co-stars Jason Segel and Josh Radnor, Tim Allen, Charlie Sheen, and newcomer on the list, Mad Men's Jon Hamm.
If there's a cinematic alchemy award to be given this year director Bill Condon deserves to take it home after magically turning the tedious Twilight franchise into entertainment gold. 2011's Part 1 was a horror camp romp that turned the supernatural love triangle — the naval gazing trio of Bella Edward and Jacob — on its head. Breaking Dawn - Part 2 continues the madcap exploration of a world populated by vampires and werewolves mining even more comedy thrills and genuine character moments out of conceit than ever before. The film occasionally sidesteps back into Edward and Bella's meandering romance (an evident hurdle of author Stephenie Meyer's source material) but the duller moments are overshadowed by the movie's nimble pace and playful attitude. Breaking Dawn - Part 2 will elicit laughs aplenty — but thankfully they're all on purpose.
Part 2 picks up immediately following the events of the first film Bella (Kristen Stewart) having been turned into a vampire by Edward (Robert Pattinson) to save her life after the torturous delivery of her half-human half-vampire child Renesmee. She awakes to discover super senses heightened agility increased strength… and a thirst for blood. One dead cougar later Bella and the gang are able to focus on the real troubles ahead: Renesmee is rapidly growing (think Jack) and vampiric overlords The Volturi perceive her a threat to vampiric secrecy. Knowing the Volturi will travel to Forks WA to kill the young girl (a 10-year-old just a month after being born) The Cullens amass an army of bloodsucking friends to end the oppression once and for all.
Packed with an absurd amount of backstory and mythology-twisting plot points (some vampires can shoot lightning now?) Condon and series screenwriter Melissa Rosenberg mine revel in the beefed up ensemble of Breaking Dawn - Part 2 and thanks to a wildly funny cast it never feels like pointless deviation. Along with the usual suspects Lee Pace adds swagger to the series as a grungy alt-rock vampire Noel Fisher appears as a hilarious over-the-top battle-ready Russian coven member and Michael Sheen returns has Volturi head honcho Aro and steels the show. Flamboyant diabolical and a steady stream of maniacal laughter Sheen owns Condon's high camp vision for Twilight and he lights up the screen. There are a few throw away nations of vampires — the oddly stereotypical Egyptian and Amazonians sects are there mostly there to off-set the extreme whiteness — but the actors involved bring liveliness to a franchise known for being soulless. Even Stewart Pattinson and Taylor Lautner give personal bests in this installment — a scene between Bella and her dad Charlie (Billy Burke) is genuinely heartfelt while Jacob's overprotective hero schtick finally lands.
Whereas Breaking Dawn - Part 1 stuck mostly to the personal story relying on the intimate moments as Bella and Edward took the big plunge into marriage and sex Part 2 paints with broader strokes and Condon has a ball. Delving into the history of the vampires and the vampire world outside Forks is Pandora's Box for the director. One scene where we learn why kids scare the heck of the Volturi captures a scope of medieval epics — along with the bloodshed. Twilight might be known for its sexual moments but Breaking Dawn - Part 2 will go down for its abundance of decapitations. The big set piece in the finale is something to behold both in the craftsmanship of the spectacle and in its bizarre nature.
The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 2 had the audience hooting hollering and even gasping as it twisted and turned to the final moments. There's little doubt that even the biggest naysayer of the franchise would do the same. No irony here: the conclusion of Twilight is a blast.
Ray Liotta and Jason Patric have joined the indie forces.
The two actors will co-star in the thriller "Narc," The Hollywood Reporter says. The story follows a narcotics officer (Patric) assigned to investigate the death of a rookie cop.
He gets teamed up with the cop's former partner (Liotta), whom he finds out is up to no good.
Liotta is also executive producing the film, which goes into production in Toronto next week.
KAREN GOES BIG SCREEN: "Will & Grace's" Emmy Award-winning Megan Mullally might join the cast of "Stealing Stanford," Daily Variety reports.
If she signs, this would mark the actress's first leading role in a feature film. The film stars Jason Lee as a guy who turns to petty crime in order to finance his niece's education.
Before "Will & Grace," Mullally performed on Broadway and in other theatrical productions.
KA-CHING! "Cast Away" scribe William Broyles isn't feeling one bit lonely these days. The screenwriter has landed a seven-figure screenplay deal with Deep River Prods, Variety columnist Michael Flemming reports. The contract will guarantee Deep River one of the two original scripts Broyles is working on.
GOING O.C.: "High Fidelity" standout Jack Black will co-star in the high school comedy "Orange County," Variety says. The Paramount/MTV flick is about the crazy antics pulled by a high school senior in order to get into Stanford University.