Ed Harris Set as WESTWORLD Villain; James Marsden, Jeffrey Wright, and More Join HBO Pilot

by     Posted 74 days ago

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The HBO pilot Westworld is coming together quite nicely.  Person of Interest creator and The Dark Knight screenwriter Jonathan Nolan is spearheading the adaptation of writer/director Michael Crichton’s 1973 sci-fi film of the same name, which revolved around a malfunctioning Wild West robot at a futuristic adult amusement park.  Anthony Hopkins is already set to lead the potential series as the creator of the park with Evan Rachel Wood co-starring as a “sassy farm girl”, and now THR reports that Ed Harris has signed on to play the show’s primary antagonist, The Man in Black.  The character is described as “the distillation of pure villainy into one man.”  Hit the jump for more on the latest Bad Robot series, including further casting.

HBO Greenlights David Simon Miniseries SHOW ME A HERO Starring Oscar Isaac and Catherine Keener; Paul Haggis to Direct

by     Posted 86 days ago

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HBO is back in business with The Wire and Treme creator David Simon.  Though the insanely smart and wonderfully talented writer is currently developing a Martin Luther King Jr. miniseries America: In the King Years at the network, it appears that a miniseries of a different sort will materialize first.  HBO has now given the greenlight to Show Me a Hero, which is based on the non-fiction book by Lisa Belkin and tells the story of Nick Wasicsko, the youngest big-city mayor in the country in the 1960s who was forced by a federal court to build a number of low-income housing units in white neighborhoods of his town, Yonkers, New York.  The result of the effort was the eruption of tensions in the city and the destruction of his political future.  Oscar Isaac and Catherine Keener are poised to lead the six-hour drama.

So we’ve got David Simon writing a racially charged miniseries with Oscar Isaac and Catherine Keener starring.  Sounds fantastic right?  Well then we have the director: Paul Haggis.  More after the jump.

GAME OF THRONES Comic-Con Panel Recap: D.B. Weiss, David Benioff, George R.R. Martin, and the Cast Look Back at Season 4

by     Posted 91 days ago

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Game of Thrones Comic-Con panels are tough because there’s nothing to really show.  Unlike The Walking Dead, the new season isn’t only a few months away.  Shooting on GOT: Season 5 is just about to begin, so it’s not like there’s going to be a full trailer ready to go.  Instead, these panels function as retrospectives on the most recent season.  As a big Game of Thrones fan, I always enjoy these leisurely, pressure-free panels that almost function like debriefs.  We don’t know much about season five, but we’re going to learn about the most memorable scenes from last season

Hit the jump for my Game of Thrones Comic-Con panel recap. [Warning: Spoilers for the Show through Season 4]

GAME OF THRONES Blooper Reel Reminds Us That Lannisters Are People Too

by     Posted 91 days ago

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Game of Thrones is such an atmospheric show, and so immersive, that it’s easy to forget that it’s a film set just like any other (okay, it has something like 5 units, but you know what I mean).  So seeing a blooper real for the show can be surprisingly disarming.  You so closely associate these characters with the cruel, high stakes world in which they live that seeing them crack a smile or break character is shockingly refreshing.

At the San Diego Comic-Con today, the Game of Thrones panel unveiled a blooper reel for this past season and it’s definitely worth a watch. We’ll have more in-depth coverage of the panel shortly, but you should kill a few minutes with this first.  Hit the jump for the Game of Thrones blooper reel.

Andy Samberg, Kit Harington, Lena Dunham, and More to Lead HBO Sports Mockumentary 7 DAYS IN HELL

by     Posted 92 days ago

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HBO is putting together a sports mockumentary project, and the network has pulled together a rather promising comedic ensemble.  Girls writer/co-executive producer Murray Miller is teaming up with Andy Samberg to create 7 Days in Hell, which is described as a mockumentary send-up of professional tennis.  Per THR, the one-off HBO Comedy Event will star Samberg as a superstar tennis “bad boy” who becomes embroiled in a seven-day tennis match at Wimbeldon with an Andy Murray-type prodigy and certified truck driver, played by Game of Thrones star Kit Harington.  The current roster also includes Fred Armisen, Lena Dunham, Will Forte, Karen Gillan, Howie Mandel, Michael Sheen, Mary Steenburgen, June Squibb, and Soledad O’Brien, who will play herself.

This sounds like the kind of delightfully goofy project that’s perfect for Samberg, and I’m very curious to see how Harington’s comedic skills stack up.  No word on when the project may air, but one assumes Samberg will have to fit the filming schedule into his hiatus from Brooklyn Nine-Nine.

Anthony Hopkins and Evan Rachel Wood to Lead WESTWORLD for HBO

by     Posted 94 days ago

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TV’s the place to be!  That’s what award-winning movie actors are starting to learn thanks to the critical and financial success of shows like HBO’s Game of Thrones and True Detective.  The cable network’s latest series adaptation tackles Westworld, writer-director Michael Crichton’s 1973 sci-fi movie that starred Yul Brynner as a malfunctioning Wild West robot at a futuristic adult amusement park.  While HBO could certainly have gone bonkers with a premise like that, their first casting announcements come with some gravitas.  Oscar-winner Anthony Hopkins and Golden Globe-nominated Evan Rachel Wood have been locked in as series leads.  Hit the jump for more.

HBO’s Michael Lombardo and Richard Plepler Talk GAME OF THRONES Season 5 and 6, TRUE DETECTIVE Season 2, Progress on WESTWORLD, and More

by     Posted 105 days ago

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While at the HBO portion of the TCA Press Tour, President of Programming Michael Lombardo and Chairman and CEO Richard Plepler took some time to talk about new and returning programming.  During the interview, they spoke about how they’re not at all concerned about Game of Thrones getting further ahead than George R.R. Martin’s writing, that they plan to stick with the series until the story is finished, that Nic Pizzolatto’s first two scripts for the new season of True Detective are even more exciting than the first season, that they expect a casting announcement to be made in the next week, how they feel things are going with both Silicon Valley and The Leftovers, their strategy for drama, going forward, the progress of Westworld, and the status of the Ryan Murphy series, Open.  Check out what they had to say after the jump.

HBO Announces BOARDWALK EMPIRE and THE COMEBACK Premiere Dates; Steven Soderbergh’s THE KNICK Renewed Early

by     Posted 106 days ago

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As the TCA’s are ongoing, HBO and Cinemax took the stage today to make a few announcements.  Boardwalk Empire season 5 will premiere on HBO on September 7th, kicking off the final stretch of episodes for the Steve Buscemi-fronted series.  Additionally, the return of The Comeback will take place in November, as the fantastic, Lisa Kudrow-led cult comedy returns for a six-episode limited series event following its short-lived first season back in 2005.

And on the Cinemax side of things, THR reports that creator/showrunner Steven Soderbergh’s upcoming drama The Knick has already been renewed for a second season, even though season one doesn’t premiere until August 8th.  Clive Owen stars as a surgeon at Knickerbocker Hospital in 1900 New York, an era in which medical procedures were extremely dangerous.  Soderbergh directed all 10 episodes of the first season and has stated his eagerness to return for season two.  Watch the trailer after the jump.

TRUE DETECTIVE Season 2 Will Have Multiple Directors and 4 “Central Roles”; William Friedkin in the Mix

by     Posted 106 days ago

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As it does every year, HBO lead the Emmy nominations this morning with a whopping 99 nods and it has a very solid chance at winning in some of the major categories thanks to the phenomenal True Detective.  Though the anthology series wrapped up its complete story at the end of the first season, many (myself included) have been incredibly curious to see what True Detective season 2 will bring.  Creator/writer Nic Pizzolatto has previously teased that the next batch of episodes takes place in the “psychosphere ambiance” of California and deals with “the secret occult history of the United States transportation system.”  Subsequently, speculation has run rampant with what little information we have, and casting rumors have been in abundance.

During an interview earlier today regarding the first season’s nominations, Pizzolatto dropped a few more details about True Detective season 2, walking back the whole “occult history” angle and confirming that it will indeed have multiple directors.  Moreover, The Exorcist director William Friedkin separately confirmed that he has met about working on the series.  More after the jump.

GAME OF THRONES Season 5 May Omit Stoneheart Character Entirely

by     Posted 121 days ago

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Most Game of Thrones fans know of the online furor that arose after the credits rolled on the show’s fourth season finale.  For book readers, there had been an omission: a character who makes an appearance in A Storm of Swords’ Epilogue.  From there, there was much discussion back and forth within the fandom and in a variety of media outlets over whether the omission was a good thing, to the point of whether the character should be eliminated from the storytelling altogether.  Hit the jump for a recent interview that could clear some of this speculation up, but warning, there will be MAJOR book spoilers about who the character is.

Watch: Ben Affleck and Matt Damon Explain How to Enter the New Season of PROJECT GREENLIGHT

by     Posted 121 days ago

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A bit of unlikely (but welcome) news broke a couple months ago, when HBO announced that it was reviving the reality series Project Greenlight for a new season with Ben Affleck and Matt Damon producing.  The show initially ran for two seasons on HBO from 2001-2003 and then for a third on Bravo in 2005, launching a contest to find up-and-coming young filmmakers.  The winning director was then followed and mentored through the pre-production, production, and post-production process on the series, giving viewers an inside look at how a movie is really made while also providing a boost to an exciting new talent.

HBO has now unveiled a promo spot for the new season of Project Greenlight, in which Affleck and Damon explain how you can enter the contest to be considered for the new season.  Submissions begin July 24th and are open through August 8th.  Watch the video after the jump.

21 GAME OF THRONES Season 4 Finale Images

by     Posted 130 days ago

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HBO’s most popular TV series of all time, Game of Thrones, closed out its fourth season last night with almost certainly the show’s best finale yet.  Though traditionally the fantasy drama series has used its finales as a sort of denouement from the previous episode’s shocking events, last night’s episode packed a multitude of surprises, thrills, and emotion into a wholly satisfying 66 minutes.  Though we still have a while to wait before the show returns for season five, HBO has released a large gallery of images from last night’s episode for your perusing pleasure.  If you’re itching for a closer look at some of the more strange or impactful moments from the episode, these stills should be sufficient.

Hit the jump to check out the Game of Thrones season 4 finale images, and if you missed Allison’s recap of the episode, click here.

New Trailer for HBO’s THE LEFTOVERS Starring Justin Theroux, Liv Tyler, and Christopher Eccleston

by     Posted 138 days ago

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HBO has released a new trailer for their upcoming series, The Leftovers.  The story takes place after the 2% of the population mysterious disappears, and centers on the people in a small town that didn’t make the cut.  Although it seemed like the series would be taking place after the Rapture, this trailer makes it clear that the reason for the disappearance is unknown, so presumably the “why” will hang over the series until the question is answered or a character definitively states that the answer doesn’t matter, and the show never focuses on it again.

Hit the jump to check out the new The Leftovers trailer.  The series premieres on June 29th at 10pm, and stars Justin Theroux, Liv Tyler, Christopher Eccleston, Amy Brenneman, Carrie Coon, Ann Dowd, and Chris Zylka.

THE CASUAL VACANCY Miniseries Cast Announced; Michael Gambon Leads HBO/BBC’s J.K. Rowling Adaptation

by     Posted 140 days ago

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Though Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling is currently taking her first crack at scriptwriting by adapting her own book Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them for Warner Bros., another one of her works that has absolutely nothing to do with the Harry Potter world is firming up on the small screen.  The BBC and HBO are partnering on a miniseries adaptation of Rowling’s first post-Potter novel The Casual Vacancy, and now the cast has been announced for the anticipated effort.  Leading the charge is Dumbledore himself Michael Gambon, who will play Howard Mollison in the adaptation, which revolves around the lives of a number of people living in a small town who are affected by the sudden death of a town council member.  In the fight to fill the vacant seat, the various wars of the town (rich vs. poor, parents vs. teenagers, etc.) are brought to the surface.

Hit the jump to check out the announced cast and to read a synopsis for the book.

Matthew McConaughey Says He’s “Open” to More TRUE DETECTIVE

by     Posted 141 days ago

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Few can argue that there was a more arresting presence on TV in 2014 so far than that of Rustin “Rust” Cohle, played by Matthew McConaughey, in HBO’s anthology series True Detective.  Rust’s “time is flat circle” comments (among so many other) captured the zeitgeist alongside the performance of his co-star Woody Harrelson (“what is ‘scented meat?’”) and the show’s exceptional writing and directing (by Nic Pizzolatto and Cary Fukunaga respectively).

But McConaughey’s role as Rust has also been an integral part of the “McConassaince,” which started with Magic Mike and Dallas Buyers Club, and has included films like Mud and presumably the upcoming Interstellar.  Still, his turn in True Detective was one that really resonated with TV audiences in a way few expected.  Might he do it again?  Hit the jump for more.

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