Bright and early this morning…by which we mean 8:40 AM EST / 5:40 AM PST…the nominees for the 62nd Primetime Emmy Awards were announced by Joel McHale (“Community,” “The Soup”) and Sofia Vergara (“Modern Family”). It ended up being a worthwhile gig for one of them, at least, with Vergara pulling in a Supporting Actress nod for “Modern Family.” Maybe that’s why McHale seemed so stone-faced. (Seriously, did someone tell McHale that he wasn’t getting paid if he didn’t keep his smart-assery in line ’til after the nominees were read? The only time he cracked anything approaching a joke was when he preempted Vergara’s mangling of Mariska Hargitay’s last name.) Anyway, here’s a list of who got the glory…and, in the case of Best Actress in a Drama, who got the shaft.
Outstanding Comedy Series:
* Curb Your Enthusiasm (HBO)
* Glee (Fox)
* Modern Family (ABC)
* Nurse Jackie (Showtime)
* The Office (NBC)
* 30 Rock (NBC)
My Pick: “Modern Family.” There’s no question that “Glee” is award-worthy, but not necessarily as a comedy, which is also where “Nurse Jackie” falters in this category. I feel like “The Office” and “30 Rock” coasted in on their past merits this year, but “Curb” got a huge boost from the “Seinfeld” storyline, so it’s the only real competition here. Still, the buzz on “Modern Family” is all over the place. I can’t imagine it won’t bring home the glory.
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Lots going on…
* Via Merrick at THR.
New Line has picked up a pitch from Darren Lemke, the writer behind the studio’s Bryan Singer project “Jack the Giant Killer,” that reimagines the classic tale of “The Nutcracker and the Mouse King” as an action-adventure movie.
I’m thinking Steven Seagall for the lead, with Jet Li as Kato, though I’m not sure how either of them are at dancing to the music of Tchaikovsky. Okay, actually, this version won’t be a ballet (obviously) and they’re going for more of a “Chronicles of Narnia” vibe.
* Brad Pitt will be producing, but not playing the lead, in an action-oriented flick about the young Vlad Dracul (his buddies call him “the Impaler”). I’d prefer if they would be honest and call this “Dracula Begins,” but the actual title is “Vlad.” The studio will be the “Twilight” driven Summit. How much you wanna bet this vampire-to-be has a tortured love-life?
* Hand drawn animation appears to be coming back to Disney in a big way. Yay. Film-maker Brendon Connolly has some interesting hints.
* And one more item from THR/Heat Vision that I can’t really ignore. Cowriter-producer Peter Jackson has announced that auditions for “The Hobbit” have begun and the only role that’s precast is Ian McKellan as Gandalf. So, actors, if you’ve got a snub nose, a pasty complexion, are never chosen first for basketball, and have hairy feet, I suggest you get into gear. They are denying rumors that James McAvoy could be in the running for Bilbo, though he does have an overall Baggins thing going on, I think. Another actor who screams “hobbit!” to me is writer Peter Morgan’s favorite star, Michael Sheen of “Frost/Nixon,” “The Queen,” and “The Damned United.” Of course, whoever it is, I guess it will have to believable that he’ll look like Ian Holm when he gets on in years.
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Here’s a pair of movies that are so relentlessly tedious in their presentation that it only makes perfect Hollywood sense that a franchise was born out of the simple notion that vampires and werewolves would make a kick ass combo if they were beating the crap out of one another. Admittedly, the idea has a sort of kitschy appeal on paper; in practice, however, it leads to one repetitive fight scene after another, broken up by some of the absolute worst dialogue to be heard coming out of center channels in years. There isn’t an insightful or clever word uttered from even a single fanged mouth, which is a huge shame when you’ve got fantastic actors like Bill Nighy, Derek Jacobi and Michael Sheen thrown into the mix. There’s also Scott Speedman as the male protagonist, who is the blandest leading man ever to stream through a movie projector, and yet the dialogue manages to sound quite right as it tumbles from his lips (go figure). The real star of the “Underworld” movies, however, is Kate Beckinsale’s ass covered in tight black leather, since it’s the only thing that you can’t take your eyes off of during the proceedings. That ass will unfortunately be absent from the upcoming prequel, “Underworld: Rise of the Lycans” (probably to be replaced by Rhona Mitra’s posterior, and all things considered, that isn’t such a terrible trade-off). If someone is going to drag you kicking and screaming to what’s sure to be yet another misfire, you might impress them by beefing up on your “Underworld” history by picking up this affordably priced repackaging of previous releases (or, alternatively, use your experience with the set as the reason you don’t want to go).
Click to buy ” Underworld / Underworld: Evolution”