Comic-Con: BATES MOTEL Stars Vera Farmiga and Freddie Highmore, and Executive Producers Talk Possible Romance, and Give Hints about Season 3

by     Posted 123 days ago

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Bates Motel has been home to one of the strangest but also fascinating mother-son relationships on television.  With Vera Farmiga and Freddie Highmore delivering exceptional performances each week, it’s no wonder the show’s garnered such a loyal audience.  Before the cast:  Farmiga, Highmore, Nestor Carbonell, and Olivia Cooke hit the Comic-Con stage along with executive producers, Carlton Cuse and Kerry Ehrin, they sat down with us for a round table interview to discuss what’s in store for Season 3.

The cast talked about their expectations for their characters and offered their opinion on some of the relationships that still remain unexplored on the show.  And the producers were kind enough to give us some hints of what to expect when Bates Motel begins filming this fall.  Hit the jump for more.

BATES MOTEL Comic-Con Panel Recap: A Look Back at the Insane Second Season, and a Promise for More Creepiness to Come

by     Posted 124 days ago

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Bates Motel has never been a show that was afraid to “go there.”  With a second season that saw many supporting characters sent away or killed, a tense showdown with drug trading, and that mother and son kiss that went on just a bit too long, showrunners and creators Carlton Cuse and Kerry Ehrin have a lot to live up to with their upcoming third season of the A&E show.

Along with cast members Vera Farmiga, Freddie Highmore, Olivia Cooke, and Nestor Carbonell on hand, the panel reflected back on the insanity and never before seen hilarity of the second season, while teasing fans slightly with a special guest appearance, if the show will ever seen any character spillover from the original Psycho, and what the cast themselves would like to see for their characters in the upcoming season.  Hit the jump for the Bates Motel Comic-Con panel recap highlights.

Imelda Staunton, Freddie Highmore, Miranda Hart, and Toby Jones Join OSCAR WILDE’S THE CANTERVILLE GHOST, Plus the Film’s First Poster

by     Posted 202 days ago

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Nearly two years ago we reported that Stephen Fry and Hugh Laurie would be reuniting for the animated Oscar Wilde adaptation, The Canterville Ghost.  Today, in addition to the announcement of the rest of the cast, we have the first poster for the film, which is currently in pre-production.  Joining the Kim Burdon-directed tale will be Imelda Staunton (Vera Drake), Freddie Highmore (Bates Motel), Miranda Hart (Call the Midwfie), and Toby Jones (Captain America: The Winter Soldier).  Fry voices the title character, a deceased English noble whose ghost has successfully turned away every potential tenant over the last 300 years, but may have met his match with the American Otis family.  There are no details as to who the new cast members will be playing, but we should hear more once the picture starts to be shopped during the Cannes Film Festival.

Hit the jump for more details and the first look at The Canterville Ghost poster.

Carlton Cuse and Freddie Highmore Talk BATES MOTEL Season 2, the Finale, Strained Relationships and Pay-Offs, Season 3, and More

by     Posted 209 days ago

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After the explosive events of the first season, things on Bates Motel only got tougher and more dangerous in Season 2, for Norman Bates (Freddie Highmore) and his mother Norma (Vera Farmiga), especially with the economic livelihood of the motel being threatened and their family dynamic being in jeopardy with some unexpected revelations.  The series also stars Max Thieriot, Nestor Carbonell, Olivia Cooke and Nicola Peltz.

During this recent interview to discuss Season 2 and the May 5th finale, and to look ahead to Season 3, actor Freddie Highmore and executive producer Carlton Cuse talked about how the Season 2 finale compares to Season 1, how strained the relationship between Norma and Norman will continue to be, the pay-off for the relationship between Norma and George (Michael Vartan), what Cody (Paloma Kwiatkowski) brought to Norman’s life, some of the biggest writing and production challenges this season, where any other Lost actors could appear on the show, how much they’ve thought ahead to Season 3, and what the overall plan of the series will be.  Check out what they had to say after the jump, and be aware that there are some spoilers

A&E Renews BATES MOTEL For a Third Season

by     Posted 234 days ago

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Halfway through its second season, Bates Motel has been renewed by A&E for another ten episode run.  The engrossing and underrated drama was developed by Carlton Cuse (Lost) and Kerry Ehrin (Friday Night Lights), and acts as a prequel of sorts to the 1960 Alfred Hitchcock film Psycho.

The series’ greatest strength has been creating a world that leads up to, but isn’t dependent, on the story on which it is partially based.  Actually, scratch that — the series’ greatest strength is the Emmy-nominated Vera Farmiga, who plays Norma Bates.  Farmiga’s Norma is crafty, vulnerable, and hypnotic to watch — she’s completely unpredictable as the character and in the way Norma is portrayed.  Hit the jump for more on the series (spoiler-free), and its current ratings. 

BATES MOTEL Recap: “Gone But Not Forgotten”

by     Posted 269 days ago

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Last year, Bates Motel proved itself a surprisingly strange and hypnotic entry to the TV landscape.  Not only did the series find a way to be much more than just a prequel to the Hitchcock film, but the performances (particularly by Vera Farmiga as Norma Bates) were unlike anything else.  Bates Motel also created a unique setting — modern, yet a throwback — and expanded the world of White Pine Bay beyond the motel and its infamous inhabitants.  “Gone But Not Forgotten” picked up right where the show left off last year with its mysterious and potentially damning finale, but in its typical way, ultimately wriggled away from what seemed to be the obvious truth.  Hit the jump for why “this is the road that’s going to ruin our lives.”

Fan-Made Teaser Trailer for BATES MOTEL Season Two [UPDATED]

by     Posted 1 year, 51 days ago

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Just in time for Halloween, a teaser trailer for the second season of A&E’s Psycho prequel series Bates Motel has landed online.  The first season introduced a young Norman Bates (Freddie Highmore) who, with his odd mother (Vera Farmiga), moved to the mysterious town of White Pine Bay, Oregon and purchased a rundown motel.  Run by executive producers Carlton Cuse (Lost) and Kerry Ehrin (Friday Night Lights), the first season was a tad uneven overall, but the good mostly outweighed the bad.  Farmiga’s performance as Norma Bates is wonderfully strange and unsettling, and Cuse and Ehrin have set up an interesting mythology for the town of White Pine Bay that extends beyond the future psychopath Norman Bates.  The season ended on a fascinating note, and I’m interested to see how things progress in the new episodes.  This teaser offers just a tiny taste, as we see Norman nonchalantly working on some taxidermy.  What a sweet boy.

Hit the jump to check out the teaser.  Bates Motel will return to A&E sometime in 2014. [Update: We've been informed that this teaser is not official and is apparently fan-made. Carry on.]

BATES MOTEL: Season One Blu-ray Review

by     Posted 1 year, 66 days ago

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It’s hard to believe that Psycho actually qualifies as a franchise, mostly because everything after the immortal original was a steaming pile of cow flop.  Three theatrical sequels, one aborted TV pilot, the well-intentioned but ultimately pointless Gus Van Sant thing… it hasn’t been an easy ride for Norman Bates and his mother. Until now.

Bates Motel starts out feeling like a terrible gimmick, covering Norman’s (Freddie Highmore) formative years in what initially promises to be a one-trick pony.  Instead, the show serves up a meaty cocktail of American Gothic, as Mrs. Bates (Vera Farmiga) buys a quiet hotel with her young son in hopes of escaping a very checkered past.  Naturally, things go from bad to worse as the hotel’s old owner shows up, the local sheriff (Nestor Carbonell) pops in to ask awkward questions, and bodies both real and metaphorical start getting dumped in out-of-the-way places.   Hit the jump for my full review of Bates Motel season one on Blu-ray.

Comic Con: BATES MOTEL Panel Recap; Cast and Producers Talk Relationships, Re-Imagining a Classic, and Tease Season 2

by     Posted 1 year, 130 days ago

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Fresh off her recently-announced Emmy nomination, Vera Farmiga and the rest of her Bates Motel cast members, including: Nestor Carbonell, Olivia Cooke, Freddie Highmore, and Max Thieriot, joined by producers Carlton Cuse and Kerry Ehrin, took the Comic-Con stage to discuss the upcoming season of A&E’s new hit series. During the discussion, they delved into the show’s relationships and provided some teases for what to expect in Season 2. Hit the jump for highlights from the panel.

Freddie Highmore, Vera Farmiga, and Producers Carlton Cuse and Kerry Ehrin Talk BATES MOTEL at Paley Center Panel

by     Posted 1 year, 196 days ago

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The A&E drama series Bates Motel is currently wrapping up its first season and has already been picked up for Season 2.  To celebrate the show’s success, the Paley Center held a panel called Bates Motel: Reimagining a Cinema Icon, and Collider was there to cover and attend the event.  From executive producers Carlton Cuse (Lost) and Kerry Ehrin (Friday Night Lights), the show is a contemporary prequel that gives an intimate portrayal of how Norman Bates’ (unsettlingly portrayed by Freddie Highmore) psyche unravels through his teenage years and just how deeply intricate his relationship with his mother, Norma (in an awards worthy performance by Vera Farmiga), truly is.

During the panel, Carlton Cuse and Kerry Ehrin, along with Freddie Highmore and Vera Farmiga, talked about the challenges of pulling this show off, what makes the relationship between Norman and Norma Bates so compelling to watch, what the actors bring to their characters, learning more about Norma’s backstory and what made her the way she is, how exhausting it is to write for crazy people, what they look for in directors, and the ideal plan for how long the show will run.  Check out what they had to say after the jump, and be aware that there are some spoilers.

A&E Renews BATES MOTEL for a Second Season

by     Posted 1 year, 233 days ago

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A&E’s Psycho prequel series will be continuing for at least another year.  The network announced today that it has ordered a second season of Bates Motel, which premiered a couple of weeks ago to solid ratings and positive reviews.  The drama series comes from Lost co-showrunner Carlton Cuse and Friday Night Lights alum Kerry Ehrin and centers on the relationship between a teenage Norman Bates (Freddie Highmore) and his mother (Vera Farmiga).  The show is similar to Lost in that it has set up a number of mysteries in its first few episodes, some of which may or may not be resolved by season’s end.  Hit the jump for more, including the full press release.

BATES MOTEL Episode Recap: “Nice Town You Picked, Norma”

by     Posted 1 year, 247 days ago

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This week, Bates Motel was a lot more low-key than last, but it was no less strange.  I gave most of the kudos to Vera Farmiga for her wacky, totally creepy performance as Norma, but already Freddie Highmore is really starting to find his own inner creep, from his nascent violent tendencies to his obsession with snuff manga.  In fact, there are very few things about White Pine Bay that aren’t creepy, and this is where the Twin Peaks comparisons start to gain traction (ever so slightly, or did I confuse that with Top of the Lake? So many creeper shows on right now).  The town is described by Deputy Shelby as being fake (how could people without real jobs have such fancy homes and drive such fancy cars?) with a vigilante underground.  Will the Bates fit in, or will they be targeted?  Hit the jump for why “I’m your mother, it’s not like it’s weird or anything.”

BATES MOTEL Pilot Episode Recap: “First You Dream, Then You Die”

by     Posted 1 year, 254 days ago

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A&E has gathered together some formidable talent to creates its Psycho prequel series Bates Motel, with Carlton Cuse (Lost) and Kerry Ehrin (Friday Night Lights) producing, and Vera Farmiga (Up in the Air) and Freddie Highmore (Finding Neverland) as Norma and Norman Bates.  The series is billed as a “contemporary” prequel to Hitchcock’s 1960 classic, and while the show does take place in that familiar setting with a few winking call-backs to the original film, it’s clear that it wants to be its own thing.  The show is seeking to straddle that difficult line of basing itself off of very familiar material (which guarantees an audience, if just from the curiosity) — though which also burdens it with the fact that things have to end up at a certain place at a certain point — and doing something new with the story.  Things have started off slowly and strangely in the first hour, with the show seeming to not quite find its tone, but there are also some legitimately promising elements.  Hit the jump for why “we belong to each other.”

Freddie Highmore Talks BATES MOTEL, Identifying with Norman Bates, Working with Vera Farmiga, and More

by     Posted 1 year, 254 days ago

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The new A&E drama series Bates Motel gives viewers an intimate portrayal of how Norman Bates’ (Freddie Highmore) psyche unravels through his teenage years.  This contemporary prequel to the genre-defining film Psycho reveals the dark, twisted backstory and shows first-hand just how deep the relationship with his mother, Norma (Vera Farmiga), truly goes, as she helps forge the most famous serial killer of them all.  The show also stars Max Thieriot, Nicola Peltz, Olivia Cooke, Nestor Carbonell and Mike Vogel.

During this recent exclusive interview with Collider, show star Freddie Highmore talked about why he was intrigued by the show and the character, why it’s alright to identify with Norman Bates, who this version of Norman is when the story picks up, working with co-star Vera Farmiga, what it was like to see the sets for the house and the Bates Motel, how throwing a brother (Thieriot) into the mix affects things, and just how dark things will get with the show.  Check out what he had to say after the jump.

First Full Trailer for A&E’s BATES MOTEL Starring Freddie Highmore and Vera Farmiga

by     Posted 1 year, 281 days ago

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The first full trailer for A&E’s upcoming Psycho prequel series Bates Motel has been released, and it’s sufficiently tantalizing.  The drama comes from executive producers Carlton Cuse (Lost) and Kerry Ehrin (Friday Night Lights) and centers on the relationship between a young Norman Bates (Freddie Highmore) and his mother (Vera Farmiga).  This trailer gives us our first look at extended footage from the show, and it appears to be equal parts intense, mysterious, and nuts.  I have high hopes for this one.

Hit the jump to watch the trailer.  The series also stars Nestor CarbonellMax ThieriotOlivia Cooke, and Mike Vogel.  Bates Motel premieres on A&E on March 18th.

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