Archive for January, 2006

Carnivale dead?

The HBO series “Carnivale” may be cancelled, but it’s not forgotten by its loyal fans.

Those fans want to know what another season would have looked like.

And so would “Carnivale” producer Scott Winant, who has moved on to Showtime’s “Huff.”

“If we could have gotten another season, the battle would have started between the good, (Ben Hawkins, played by Nick Stahl) and the evil (Sofie, played by Clea DuVall), says Winant. “I think we were going to have a great season. I still miss that series.”

As do we all.

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Spam Man

Hank Azaria arrived from New York to chat with critics gathered at the winter press tour about his Showtime series “Huff.”

He’s currently starring on Broadway in “Spamalot” as Sir Lancelot, which garnered Azaria a Tony nomination for Best Actor in a Musical.

But would he want to continue that role when the show opens in Las Vegas?

“When it goes to Vegas, it will be shortened and turned into more than a revue than a play, and that doesn’t interest me as much,” Azaria says.

So he wouldn’t consider it?

“I didn’t say that,” smiled Azaria. “A month in Vegas? And if they backed that money truck up to my door, it would be hard to say no.”

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`West Wing’ bows out

NBC confirms that this will be the last season for “The West Wing.”

Early reports had series creator Aaron Sorkin coming back for the final episodes, but producer John Wells says that won’t happen.

“I’ve always tried to get Aaron back, but he’s been too busy. Right now he’s working on ‘Studio 7′ for NBC, and he just doesn’t have the time,” Wells said.

Wells said series co-star John Spencer, who recently died of a heart attack, had already shot his episodes up to five days before the election storyline featured this season on the show.

Spencer’s character was a staffer turned vice president candidate.

“We knew where we were going when this happened, so it didn’t change much about what we were going to do with the series until the final few epsiodes,” Wells, who had just come from a memorial service for Spencer. “It’s difficult to think of the series and where it is going when you are still grieving for a friend.”

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Laughs die on Fox

Three comedies won’t be returning to the Fox schedule this fall: “Arrested Development,” “Malcolm in the Middle” and “That ’70s Show.”

The eighth season of “That ’70s Show” ends on May 18, but no word yet as to whether Ashton Kutcher or Topher Grace will return to send off their old show.

And “Malcolm in the Middle” signs off on May 14.

As previously noted, the critical darling “Arrested Development” will have its final airing on Feb. 10 _ opposite the opening ceremonies of the Winter Olympics.

Gee. Thanks Fox.

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Goodbye ‘Heaven,’ hello `Everwood’

There’s no hope for the WB series “7th Heaven,” which will be axed this year.

Garth Ancier, chairman of the network, says it all boiled down to dollars and cents.

“This year the show will lose $16 million for the WB and that’s with a license fee reduction from last year,” Ancier says. “At least to us, that’s a big number…As much as we all love the show, you do have to run a business.”

On the other hand, “Everwood” will be back stronger than ever after “Beauty and the Geek” wraps up. The series will have 13 episodes airing without a single repeat.

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Reba’s goodies

Country legend Reba McEntire , star of the WB sitcom “Reba,” says she doesn’t really care if they put a pair of $1,250 jeans in her Golden Globes goodie bag.

“That’s nice, but my favorite goodie bag item was from a country music awards program: a $5,000 gift certificate for Tupperware. I was so excited. I called back to make sure I wasn’t reading that wrong,” Reba says. “When I found out it was right, I called everyone in my family and we went shopping!”

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On the WB drawing board

New series? We’ve got your new WB series.

Or at least a few proposed series.

Former Jessica Simpson life partner Nick Lachey is set to star in a half-hour comedy created by Danny Jacobson (“Mad About You”).

Matthew Bomer, who was in “Flightplan” with Jodie Foster, has just been cast as the lead in “Cult,” a sci-fi show.

“Cult” is written by Rockne S. O’Bannon, who created “Farscape.”

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DeGeneres going to the dogs

Comic Ellen DeGeneres teams with her brother Vance DeGeneres (Mr. Bill on “Saturday Night Live”) for a new WB sitcom, “My Dog Sparky,” depicting family life from two different perspectives: both the people and the pets.

Ellen will be voicing the lead character, Sparky the Dog.

“Joining forces with my brother has long been a dream of ours. Of course, that dream used to involve world domination. But a show on the WB works, too,” DeGeneres says. “I’m really looking forward to working with Vance on a project that doesn’t involve a late Mother’s Day gift for our mom.”

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`Survival of the Richest’

Yep. That’s the title of the WB’s next reality series.

Seven really rich, spoiled kids team up with seven economically challenged kids for a chance to win $200,000 _ or a dinner out for some of these rotten little scoundrels.

Also on the reality agenda is “Fountain of Youth,” now being cast by “Beauty and the Geek” creator Ashton Kutcher. The series is sort of an “Amazing Race,” teaming a young person with a “senior citizen.”

By WB standards, that means anyone over 40.

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`Smallville’ gets smaller

“Smallville” loses a resident in the Jan. 26 episode.

That episode, the 100th, marks a change in direction for the series, according to star Tom Welling.

“I think from this episode on, this show is going to be very different from what it’s been in the past,” Welling told critics gathered in Pasadena for the winter press tour. “We’re going to actually start seeing the Lex Luther and Clark Kent rivalry. It’s going to explode a lot faster than it has in the past.”

As for that main character leaving the show, Welling says it was bittersweet for both the show and the actor.

“I think (the actor) was looking forward to a little time off, but then when the day came that person was caught a few times on the set just kind of looking around, going ‘Yeah, well, I guess this is it.’ “

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