Donald Trump Counterprograms Playmate Interview Chatter With Spending Bill Veto Threat Tweet

President Donald Trump appeared to take by surprise those Republicans still not familiar with the basics of television competition with his morning tweet that he is  “considering a VETO” of the Omnibus Spending Bill.

Trump surrogate Kellyanne Conway, for instance, had insisted this morning that Trump would sign the bill. Yesterday, House Speaker Paul Ryan boasted that Trump “supports this bill…no two ways about it.”

Trump, however, this morning tweeted he is considering “a VETO of the Omnibus Spending Bill” passed after midnight Thursday, based on “the fact that the 800,000 DACA recipients have been totally abandoned” which he insisted was the work of Democrats, saying they were “not even mentioned in Bill).

Trump also complained the bill does not fully fun “the BORDER WALL, which is desperately needed for our National Defense. Trump had vowed Mexico would pay for “the BORDER WALL” when campaigning.

This morning’s news cycle was destined to be all about CNN’s Anderson Cooper interview with former Playboy Bunny Karen McDougal, who claims she had a 10-month affair with Trump about a decade ago. McDougal is fighting to be freed from the deal she signed with National Enquirer parent American Media Inc., not long before the election, in which she was paid $150K for exclusive rights to her story. AMI, whose chief is Friend of Trump, did not publish her story about her alleged relationship with then reality-TV star Trump, in what is known as a catch-and-kill strategy to squash stories that hurt Trump’s campaign.

Trump’s tweet:

I am considering a VETO of the Omnibus Spending Bill based on the fact that the 800,000 plus DACA recipients have been totally abandoned by the Democrats (not even mentioned in Bill) and the BORDER WALL, which is desperately needed for our National Defense, is not fully funded.

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 23, 2018


Actor Jonathan Rhys Meyers Signs With ICM Partners

He’s been the King of England and the King of rock ‘n roll in his various acting gigs. Now Jonathan Rhys Meyers has taken on a new role, that of client for ICM Partners, as the Irish-born actor has signed with the talent and literary agency for representation

Rhys Meyers first gained notoriety for his performance in the Todd Haynes’ 1998 film Velvet Goldmine, which gained him a London Film Critics Circle Award. He went on to star in Gurdinder Chadha’s hit Bend It Like Beckham in 2002.

Other notable roles include his Golden Globe-winning portrayal of Elvis Presley in the CBS miniseries, Elvis; starring in the 2006 J.J. Abram’s Mission Impossible III, and his iconic portrayal of King Henry VIII in the Showtime series The Tudors, for which he received two Golden Globes nominations for Best Actor in a TV series.

Most recently, he can be seen in the fifth season of the History Channel series Vikings as well as Harald Zwart’s World War II thriller 12th Man.  Rhys Meyers is currently shooting the independent thriller Wake Up.

Rhys Meyers is represented by Stacy O’Neil and Karen Garner at Brillstein Entertainment Partners.


Senator Bernie Sanders Is First Guest For Mehdi Hasan Podcast ‘Deconstructed’

Attention, Bernie Bros: former presidential challenger and Senator Bernie Sanders will be the first guest on the new podcast Deconstructed, hosted by British journalist and author Mehdi Hasan and sponsored by The Intercept news organization. Hasan will also join The Intercept’s staff as a columnist and senior contributor.

The new podcast is envisioned as unpacking the consequential news of the week and challenging the mainstream media’s takes on American and global politics. Recorded in Washington, D.C, the podcast debuts tomorrow (Friday, March 23) with Sanders.

Deconstructed is available for download at web site and via iTunes, Google Play, Stitcher, iHeartRadio, Spotify and RSS.  New episodes are available every Friday.

“We’re thrilled to launch Deconstructed at a political moment when Mehdi Hasan’s voice is desperately needed,” said Betsy Reed, editor-in-chief of The Intercept. “Mehdi has an amazing ability to spot what everyone else is missing. Both erudite and accessible, he makes complex issues understandable without giving up depth or nuance. Deconstructed will become a must-listen for the same reasons Mehdi’s columns have found a large and loyal audience at The Intercept.”

Hasan was equally effusive. “In an age of “alternative facts,” I couldn’t turn down the opportunity to be part of an organization committed to adversarial journalism and holding power to account,” he said.  “Every week, I hope to bring my outsider, and perhaps contrary, perspective to the crazy ups and downs of political life in Trump’s America and beyond.”

On the first podcast, Sanders discusses that he would vote to impeach Donald Trump if the president fires Special Counsel Robert Mueller. “Yes…I’ve been very reluctant to talk about impeachment until we have all the information coming in from the investigation,” Sanders said. “But that would be a major, major, major obstruction of justice. That would be an impeachable offense in my view,” said Sanders.

Sanders also warned Democrats of the danger of another Trump election victory in 2020. “Anyone who thinks Trump cannot win a re-election is just not looking at reality. He can. That doesn’t mean he will. And I think there’s a good chance he could be stopped. But anyone who just sits back and says, ‘Hey, no problem, come 2020 Trump is gone’– that would be a big mistake.”


Sundance Winner ‘The Miseducation of Cameron Post’ Picked Up By FilmRise

FilmRise has acquired the North American rights to Sundance Dramatic Grand Jury Prize-winning drama The Miseducation of Cameron Post, which will get a summer release this year. Directed by Desiree Akhavan, the coming-of-age film stars Chloë Grace Moretz, John Gallagher Jr., Sasha Lane, Forrest Goodluck, and Jennifer Ehle.

It follows the titular character (Moretz), who is sent to a gay conversion therapy center run by the strict and severe Dr. Lydia Marsh (Ehle) and her brother, Reverend Rick (Gallagher Jr.).  In the face of intolerance and denial, Cameron meets a group of fellow sinners including the amputee stoner Jane (Lane), and her friend, the Lakota Two-Spirit, Adam (Goodluck). Together, this group of teenagers form an unlikely family and fight to survive.

The pic is based on  Emily M. Danforth’s novel of the same name, which Akhavan and Cecilia Frugiuele adapted for the screen. Michael B. Clark and Alex Turtletaub of Beachside produced the pic with Cecilia Frugiele of Parkville Pictures and Jonathan Montepare. Akhavan and Parkville’s Oliver Kaempfer exec produced the film, while Beachside financed.

The deal was negotiated between Fisher and FilmRise’s Faye Tsakas with UTA Independent Film Group and Endeavor Content.


‘I’m Dying Up Here’ Season 2 Trailer: It’s Not All Laughs In The 1970s L.A. Stand-Up Scene

Radio interviewer to budding female comic and his audience: “Girls are funny too. Are they?” Her quick response: “Well, we have a great sense of humor — just ask some of the women you’ve slept with.” Radio guy: “Damn!”

Here’s the first trailer for the 10-episode Season 2 of I’m Dying Up Here, Showtime’s series about the 1970s stand-up scene in Los Angeles — complete with the hair, clothes, inebrients and all else. Created by Dave Flebotte based on William Knoedelseder nonfiction book, it stars Melissa Leo, Ari Graynor, Clark Duke, Michael Angarano, RJ Cyler, Andrew Santino, Erik Griffin, Al Madrigal and Jake Lacy.. Among the actors set to recur in season-long arcs are Xosha Roquemore, Nicole Ari Parker, Stefania LaVie Owen and Brad Garrett as comedy legend Roy Martin, who arrives on the scene and drops bombs and wisdom on the comics at Goldie’s.

After having its world premiere at SXSW last year, the dark dramedy struggled to find a wide audience, but the premium cabler was intrigued enough by the premise and the cast to give it a renewal in September. Season 2 premieres May 6.

Flebotte executive produces with Jim Carrey, Michael Aguilar, Christina Wayne, Cindy Chupack, Adam Davidson and Endemol Shine Studio. Have a look at the trailer above, part your hair back down the middle, and tell us what you think.


Pacific Rim Uprising

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I’m writing this review in a hurry because every hour I wait makes it harder to remember “Pacific Rim Uprising.” 

On a craft level, this sequel to Guillermo del Toro’s monsters-versus-biomechanical warriors saga “Pacific Rim” isn’t terrible. At the very least, it doesn’t stint on images of huge things crashing into other huge things, as well as collateral damage in the form of cratering streets, collapsing buildings, and panicked civilians (who are shown racing away from the mayhem but rarely being hurt or killed). Set ten years later, the movie showcases giant gundam, or jägers, fighting a new kind of kaiju (I won’t go into details because it would spoil one of the film’s only surprises) and, for variety, jägers battling other jägers. Younger kids might like it, and it’s probably a safer bet for that age group than the “Transformers” films, which are strangely filled with racist and sexist images as well as a needlessly sleazy undertone.

And the cast is filled with actors doing everything they can to make their characters as memorable as possible even when the script (credited to four people) isn’t lending them the support they deserve. John Boyega, in particular, saves long stretches of the movie just by being his appealing self. Ever since “The Force Awakens,” he’s been honing a screen persona that owes a lot to the late James Garner—a funny, cynical survivor who makes a point of avoiding unnecessary fights and keeping one eye on the exit at all times, but who also has a buried streak of righteous honor that surfaces during dire moments. He’s operating in that mode here, playing Jake Pentecost, the pilot-turned-scrapper son of the original film’s inspirational warrior-guru Stacker Pentecost (Idris Elba). But there are two major problems, and the movie never manages to overcome either of them.

One is that the whole sequel storyline feels like a sad afterthought to the original, which saw various two-person crews of misfit eccentrics overcoming their animosities and neuroses to become one mind, operate their machines, and bash, smash and burn giant beasts who’d slipped through a dimensional portal at the bottom of the sea. To its credit, this sequel from director Steven S. DeKnight (TV’s “Spartacus“) doesn’t just decide, “Well, the portal that we thought we’d closed is open again, and there are more monsters, so everybody saddle up,” because that would’ve been as lame as the plot of the  “Independence Day” sequel. But what the movie does come up with has been built out in a halfhearted, clumsy manner that underlines the cynical nature of the exercise: a plot involving the rush to deploy jäger drones overseen by the shadowy Shao Corporation, which has been getting a little too close to the jäger brains that its top secret research depends on.

There are supporting turns by returning characters, including Mako Mori (Rinko Kikuchi), the “Pacific Rim” pilot who subsequently became an important world leader, and oddball scientists Hermann Gottlieb (Burn Gorman) and Dr. Newt Geiszler (Charlie Day). The latter moves to the center of the story thanks to his kaiju mind-meld in the first film. Now he’s the co-chief of the Shao Corporation’s drone development program alongside Liwen Shao (Jing Tian of “Kong: Skull Island” and “The Great Wall“). While Day doesn’t have the gravitas for what he’s been asked to do here, his oddball intensity is a welcome contrast with the earnestness displayed elsewhere (Scott Eastwood’s snarling pilot Nate Lambert being an especially one-note example). An orphaned street urchin turned juvenile pilot named Amara Namani (Cailee Spaeny) is also regrettably indistinct—essentially a retread of Mako Mori with a few years knocked off her age, ready-made for big brother-little sister or surrogate father-daughter bonding. It’s not the actress’ fault that the movie mistakes gritted teeth and cartoon spunk for a personality.

Which brings us to the second problem: no Del Toro. Even at their liveliest, these performers can only do so much without the originator at the helm. The project lacks the purplish intensity and explosions of juvenile poetry that made the original “Pacific Rim” so distinctive, whether you loved or hated it. I loved it. In fact, I like to tell people it’s the “Citizen Kane” of movies where robots smash dinosaurs in the face with boats. That film’s feverish commitment to every detail of the universe it created was admirable. From the names and powers it bestowed on its machines and creatures to the thought it put into what urban life and popular culture would look like in a world besieged by kaiju attacks, there was no doubt that it meant something to the people who made it. It was the work of true believers with childlike enthusiasm for the absurd. Del Toro even believed in the themes of personal redemption and collective effort that were baked into the details of the jäger’s mechanics. He got high on his own supply, and not only was that forgivable, it was exactly what a filmmaker was supposed to do in that kind of circumstance.

Here, with a few brief exceptions, it feels as if the studio and the filmmakers just held onto a lot of the CGI programs they’d used to create the effects in the original film and decided to give them one more lap around the track for box office’s sake, while making a point of pandering to the Chinese market that made the original film an international success after it did disappointing business elsewhere. (There’s nothing wrong with that last part, of course—I only mention it because, once you’ve seen the movie, it seems like a far better explanation for why “Uprising” exists than anything supplied by the script.) The fate of the world has rarely been decided in as rote a manner as it is here, although I’ll confess that the final act—a battle climaxing on the crest of Mt. Fuji, site of many a showdown in a golden era Japanese monster flick—has a flair for melodrama and grandiose imagery that the rest of the project sorely lacks.


Isle of Dogs

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The dogs are very furry. 

The look of the animal “actors” in “Isle of Dogs” is the film’s best feature. At times, it’s hard to resist the urge to muss the imperfect fur that has been painstakingly rendered by director Wes Anderson’s animators. Especially if you’re a dog lover. As in “Fantastic Mr. Fox,” the stop-motion creatures take on the facial characteristics of the actors who play them, adding a comfortable layer of familiarity. Unlike that Roald Dahl adaptation, “Isle of Dogs” does not have a compelling story, and even worse, it has the most egregious examples of its director’s privilege since “The Darjeeling Limited.” This movie really pissed me off, and the only thing I found soothing while watching it was silently repeating to myself “the dogs are very furry.” Reminding myself of the film’s best asset kept me from walking out.

Anderson has gone on record citing the influence of legendary Japanese animator Hiyao Miyazaki on “Isle of Dogs.” Films like “Spirited Away” and “My Neighbor Totoro” depict Miyazaki’s visions of Japan in ways that are both awe-inspiringly beautiful and terrifying. Even in his least successful ventures, the attention to world-building detail is staggering. You would think Anderson would be the perfect director to pay homage to this master of animation; no other director working today has a bigger compulsion for visuals than Anderson. But unlike the warm Miyazaki, Anderson is a very cold director. He keeps everything at an annoying hipster’s ironic distance, valuing aesthetics over meaning and context. This may work in the spaces of Anderson’s meticulously crafted universe of films like “Rushmore” and “The Royal Tenenbaums,” but “Isle of Dogs” is set in an actual foreign country whose culture and traditions Anderson unwisely commandeers. The results are cringe-worthy.

“Isle of Dogs” takes place in Anderson’s rather skewed interpretation of Japan. It’s a place where every explosion is rendered as a cutesy mushroom cloud and the public speeches always include haiku. It’s also a place where man’s best friend has been banished due to a dangerous outbreak of “dog flu,” which is apparently harmful to humankind. However, instead of being euthanized, each infected canine is dropped on a trash-filled island that evokes memories of “Wall-E.” As a show of solidarity with dismayed dog owners throughout the city of Megasaki, its mayor deports his own dog, Spots (voice of Liev Schreiber). Spots is the first of many dogs who will inhabit Trash Island, and he is the only one who’s privy to a rescue mission from the mainland.

12-year old Atari (voice of Koyu Rankin) is the mayor’s ward, an orphan whose parents were killed in a tragic accident. Spots was his companion and his security detail. He and Atari wore earpieces which served as a tracking device. Atari plans to use his earpiece to help him find his beloved pet. After crash landing his plane on the island, Atari meets the group of alpha dogs who serve as the film’s main characters. They’re a motley crew to say the least, and despite being born and raised in Japan, they don’t understand Japanese at all.

There’s the leader Chief (voice of Bryan Cranston) who fancies himself the group’s leader despite the group’s reliance on democratically deciding every decision. (Chief always takes the only contrarian vote, rendering him powerless.) There’s also former sports mascot Boss (voice of Bill Murray), who is still wearing his team’s jersey, and mustachioed former dog food commercial star King (voice of Bob Balaban). Scarlett Johannson shows up in a thankless role as the only female dog to have any dialogue. Chief calls her a bitch at one point, which I suppose is accurate as far as Webster’s is concerned.

Rounding out the alpha dog crew are Rex (voice of Edward Norton) and Duke (voice of Jeff Goldblum), who is so gossipy he puts Wendy Williams, Benita Butrell and TMZ to shame. When not getting information from a pug named Oracle, the dogs rely on gossip as their primary means of information. To quote “Pulp Fiction,” they’re “worse than a sewing circle.” Perhaps some of this potential misinformation will help Atari find Spots.

Back in Megasaki, a dog-loving scientist voiced by “The Last Samurai”’s Ken Watanabe is testing a dog flu antidote serum he’s created with his colleague Yoko (voiced by, you guessed it, Yoko Ono). The cat-loving mayor has nefarious reasons for keeping the serum from succeeding, and he isn’t above murder as a preventive method. Judging by this and “The Grand Budapest Hotel,” I get the feeling Wes Anderson doesn’t like cats. As a dog person myself, I understand. But cat lovers may find their scapegoating here a bit problematic.

Far, far more problematic is the character of Tracy (voice of Greta Gerwig). Tracy is an exchange student investigating the ouster of dogs for the school newspaper. She’s the only White person in “Isle of Dogs” and she is the film’s White savior. It is she who rallies the protesters against the mayor, raising her hand in what looks suspiciously like the Black Power salute (which, if you recall, Anderson last rendered on a wolf in “Fantastic Mr. Fox”). Speaking of Black Power, Tracy sports a hairstyle you’d normally find on Black people or, in a less extreme fashion, on Art Garfunkel. If Rankin-Bass were to do “The Rachel Dolezal Story,” they could hire Tracy, though in Ms. Dolezal’s defense, she’d at least know how to make an Afro look convincing.

Since most of the townspeople are against the mayor’s decree, this exchange student is a completely extraneous character who denies hometown residents the opportunity to be heard. The optics of her mere existence are disturbing in a film in 2018. The only time “Isle of Dogs” reaches for your sympathy is when Tracy is faced with deportation back to Cincinnati. And in the film’s most disgusting leverage of its privilege, Tracy physically assaults the grieving Yoko to get her to act against the crimes perpetrated upon her by the state.

“The dogs are very furry,” I said as this scene played out. “The dogs are very furry!”

There’s a lot of Japanese in “Isle of Dogs,” most of it untranslated by subtitles. When it is translated, it’s by an onscreen character voiced by Frances McDormand. Who wouldn’t want “Fargo”’s Marge Gundersen as their personal Babelfish? Perhaps a better question would be “why aren’t the Japanese people translated?” Atari, who is the catalyst for this story, remains untranslated until the very end, where most of his speech is in deference to how hot he finds Tracy, with whom he has had no prior interaction. I suppose Anderson thought he was being respectful toward Japanese speakers by giving them something only they could enjoy (much like Pixar does with Spanish in “Coco”). Instead, it only adds an “Otherness” to Atari and his compatriots. Why can we understand Atari’s canine cohort, but not him?

As always, the imagery is the best part of any Anderson film. “Isle of Dogs” is uglier and more devoid of color than Anderson’s prior works, but I liked the somewhat noirish appeal of the grunginess of Trash Island. The canine voice actors know how to speak Anderson’s dialogue and make it seem natural coming from their snouts. But as entertaining as it is to look at “Isle of Dogs,” I couldn’t get past Anderson’s usual clumsiness when dealing with minorities. This is a film where a character is literally whitewashed, an act that makes him more agreeable afterwards. “Isle of Dogs” treats this as a sight gag. It plays more like a confession.


‘The Crown’ & ‘Taboo’ Lead BAFTA TV Craft Nominations – Full List

Netflix’s The Crown and BBC/FX co-production Taboo are going head-to-head at the British Academy Television Craft Awards with the former scoring seven nominations and the latter nabbing six noms. Elsewhere, Peaky Blinders, Blue Planet II and Black Mirror have all secured five nominations.

This year’s awards, which honors the best behind-the-scenes talent working in television, will take place The Brewery in London on Sunday April 22 and will be hosted by Episodes star Stephen Mangan. For the first time, the British Academy Television Craft Awards will be live streamed on Twitter and YouTube.

The second series of Netflix drama The Crown, produced by Left Bank Pictures, has been nominated for Costume Design, Editing: Fiction, Photography & Lighting: Fiction, Production Design, Sound: Fiction and Special, Visual & Graphic Effects; as well as a Writer: Drama nomination for Peter Morgan.

Taboo, which stars Tom Hardy, is up for Costume Design, Make Up & Hair Design, Original Music, Photography & Lighting: Fiction, Sound: Fiction and Special, Visual & Graphic Effects.

The Crown’s Morgan will face competition in the drama writing category from Black Mirror creator Charlie Brooker, who is nominated for the Hang the DJ episode of the Netflix drama, while Peaky Blinders’ Steven Knight and Three Girls’ Nicole Taylor are also vying for the prize.

The Breakthrough Talent award will see This Country creators Daisy May Cooper and Charlie Cooper compete against Inspector George Gently writer Charlotte Wolf, Fighting Cancer: My Online Diary producer and director Tom Pursey and Bernard Macmahon and Allison McGourty, who wrote and directed BBC Four’s doc series American Epic, The Sessions.

The full list of nominations is below:

CHARLIE BROOKER Hang the DJ (Black Mirror) – House of Tomorrow / Netflix
NICOLE TAYLOR Three Girls – BBC Studios / Studio Lambert / BBC One
PETER MORGAN The Crown – Left Bank Pictures / Netflix
STEVEN KNIGHT Peaky Blinders – Caryn Mandabach Productions / Tiger Aspect Productions / BBC Two

PAUL COLEMAN, PETER KAY, SIAN GIBSON Peter Kay’s Car Share – Goodnight Vienna Productions / BBC One
SHARON HORGAN, ROB DELANEY Catastrophe – Avalon Television / Merman Films / Birdbath Productions / Channel 4

ALISON McCOSH Peaky Blinders – Caryn Mandabach Productions / Tiger Aspect Productions / BBC Two
JANE PETRIE The Crown – Left Bank Pictures / Netflix
JOANNA EATWELL Taboo – Scott Free London / Hardy, Son & Baker / BBC One
MICHELE CLAPTON Game of Thrones – HBO Programming / Bighead, Littlehead / Television 360 / Startling Television / Sky Atlantic

ANNA HALL Catching a Killer – True Vision / Channel 4
CHARLIE RUSSELL Chris Packham: Asperger’s and Me – Raw TV / BBC Two
WILL YAPP The Real Full Monty – Spun Gold TV / ITV
XAVIER ALFORD Drugsland: Heroin Love Story – BBC Studios / BBC Three

JANE CAMPION Top of the Lake: China Girl – See-Saw Films / BBC Two
MACKENZIE CROOK Detectorists – Channel X North / Treasure Trove Productions / Lola Entertainment / BBC Four
PAUL WHITTINGTON Little Boy Blue – ITV Studios / ITV
PHILIPPA LOWTHORPE Three Girls – BBC Studios / Studio Lambert / BBC One

CHRIS POWER Ant & Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway – ITV Studios / Mitre Television / ITV
JAMES MORGAN Wild Alaska Live – BBC Studios / BBC Natural History Unit / BBC One
JULIA KNOWLES World War One Remembered: Passchendaele – BBC Studios / BBC One
NIKKI PARSONS Strictly Come Dancing – BBC Studios / BBC One

ANNA PRICE Louis Theroux: Dark States – BBC Studios / BBC Two
GED MURPHY David Bowie: The Last Five Years – BBC Studios / BBC Two
MATT MEECH Blue Planet II (One Ocean) – BBC Studios / BBC Natural History Unit / BBC One
NIGEL BUCK Blue Planet II (The Deep) – BBC Studios / BBC Natural History Unit / BBC One
WILL GRAYBURN Chris Packham: Asperger’s and Me – Raw TV / BBC Two

ANDREW McCLELLAND Line of Duty – World Productions / BBC One
DAN ROBERTS Peaky Blinders – Caryn Mandabach Productions / Tiger Aspect Productions / BBC Two
PIA DI CIAULA The Crown (Episode 9) – Left Bank Pictures / Netflix
ÚNA NÍ DHONGHAÍLE  Three Girls – BBC Studios / Studio Lambert / BBC One

NIGEL CATMUR, DAVID COLE, KATE DAWKINS, KEVIN DUFF World War One Remembered: Passchendaele – BBC Studios / BBC Two

CHRISSIE BAKER The Miniaturist – The Forge / BBC One
JACQUELINE FOWLER Gunpowder – Kudos / Thriker Films / BBC One
JAN ARCHIBALD, ERIKA OKVIST, AUDREY DOYLE Taboo – Scott Free London / Hardy, Son & Baker / BBC One
LOZ SCHIAVO Peaky Blinders – Caryn Mandabach Productions / Tiger Aspect Productions / BBC Two

JOCELYN POOK King Charles III – Drama Republic / BBC Two
KATYA MIHAILOVA Born Free: Saving Russia’s Whales – Roast Beef Productions / Channel 4
MAX RICHTER Taboo – Scott Free London / Hardy, Son & Baker / BBC One
NICO MULHY Howards End – Playground Entertainment / BBC One

DANIEL VERNON, DANIEL DEWSBURY The Detectives: Murder on the Streets – Minnow Films / BBC Two
FADI AL-HALABI, HASAN KATTAN, THAER MUHAMAD Storyville, Last Men in Aleppo  – Larm Film / Aleppo Media Centre / Kloos & Co / Medien / BBC Four
OLIVIER SARBIL The Fight for Mosul (Dispatches) – Mongoose Pictures / Frontline PBS / Channel 4
TED GIFFORDS, ROGER MUNNS, ROGER HORROCKS Blue Planet II (One Ocean) – BBC Studios / BBC Natural History Unit / BBC One

ADRIANO GOLDMAN The Crown (Episode 4) – Left Bank Pictures / Netflix
JOHANN PERRY Against the Law – BBC Studios / BBC Two
MARK PATTEN Taboo – Scott Free London / Hardy, Son & Baker / BBC One
STEPHAN PEHRSSON USS Callister (Black Mirror) – House of Tomorrow / Netflix

DEBORAH RILEY, ROB CAMERON Game of Thrones – HBO Programming / Bighead, Littlehead / Television 360 / Startling Television / Sky Atlantic
JOEL COLLINS, PHIL SIMS USS Calllister (Black Mirror) – House of Tomorrow / Netflix
MARTIN CHILDS The Crown – Left Bank Pictures / Netflix
PAT CAMPBELL The State – Archery Pictures / Channel 4

ANDY DEACON, KEVIN DUFF, ANDY JAMES, MARK McLOUGHLIN World War One Remembered: Passchendaele – BBC Studios / BBC Two
GRAHAM WILD, GEORGE FRY, JAMES BURCHILL Mountain: Life at the Extreme – BBC Studios / BBC Natural History Unit / BBC Two
GRAHAM WILD, TIM OWENS, KATE HOPKINS Blue Planet II (Coral Reefs) – BBC Studios / BBC Natural History Unit / BBC One
RUSSELL EDWARDS The Grand Tour – W Chump and Sons / Amazon

FORBES NOONAN, BEN NORRINGTON, JIM GODDARD, GRANT BRIDGEMAN Peaky Blinders – Caryn Mandabach Productions / Tiger Aspect Productions / BBC Two
SOUND TEAM Sherlock – Hartswood Films / BBC One
SOUND TEAM Taboo – Scott Free London / Hardy, Son & Baker / BBC One
SOUND TEAM The Crown – Left Bank Pictures / Netflix
JOHN RODDA, TIM CAVAGIN, KENNY CLARK, MICHAEL MAROUSSAS USS Callister (Black Mirror) – House of Tomorrow / Netflix

BLUEBOLT, COLIN GORRY VX, GOLDCREST Taboo – Scott Free London / Hardy, Son & Baker / BBC One
DNEG TV, JEAN-CLEMENT SORET, RUSSELL MCLEAN Metalhead (Black Mirror) – House of Tomorrow / Netflix
ONE OF US, ASA SHOUL, CHRISTOPHER REYNOLDS The Crown – Left Bank Pictures / Netflix

BBC CREATIVE TEAM Blue Planet II – BBC Studios / BBC Natural History Unit / BBC One
LIQUID TV Have I Got News for You – Hat Trick Productions / BBC One
MORGAN BERINGER Top of the Lake: China Girl – See-Saw Films / BBC Two


‘Trainspotting’s Kelly Macdonald To Star In BBC One Legal Thriller ‘The Victim’

Trainspotting star Kelly Macdonald is to star in BBC One legal drama The Victim, created by The Man In The High Castle writer Rob Williams. Macdonald will be joined in the British thriller by Four Weddings and a Funeral star John Hannah and rising actor James Harkness.

Macdonald, who has also previously appeared in TV series including Black Mirror and Boardwalk Empire, will play Anna Dean, a Scottish mother whose nine-year old boy was murdered fifteen years ago by a 13 year old. Years later, having campaigned to be told of the killer’s new identity she is accused of revealing his new name online.

Harkness, who had small roles in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, Darkest Hour and Phantom Thread, plays Craig Myers, who is attacked after Macdonald’s Dean accuses him of being the child killer. Misfits and The Level star Karla Crome plays his wife Rebecca.

Meanwhile, Hannah, who has starred in BBC America’s Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency and ABC’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D, plays D.I. Steven Grover, the detective in charge of the case.

The drama is set in Edinburgh and Greenock, within Scotland’s unique legal system and is told through the eyes of the plaintiff and the accused, offering a surprising and twisting perspective on who is really ‘the victim’. Filming commenced this week on the four-part series, which is produced by STV Productions. It will be directed by Niall MacCormick (The Long Walk to Finchley, Complicit), produced by Jenny Frayn and executive produced by STV’s Sarah Brown and Rob Williams and Elizabeth Kilgarriff and Gaynor Holmes for the BBC.

Creator Williams says, “It’s incredibly exciting for me to see the story being brought to life by such a talented cast and crew.  I’m really grateful – and fortunate – to be working with people who care about the material as much as I do.”

Macdonald is repped by ICM and Independent Talent Group, Hannah is repped by Artist Rights Group and Harkness by Curtis Brown.


‘The Big Bang Theory’ Sets Jerry O’Connell To Play Sheldon’s Brother – PaleyFest

During the Big Bang Theory panel at PaleyFest, Johnny Galecki, Jim Parsons, Kaley Cuoco, and Kunal Nayyar were joined on stage by show producers Chuck Lorre, Steven Molaro, Steve Holland, and Bill Prady. The cast and producers talked about the forthcoming Bill Gates episode and remembering Stephen Hawking, who made a cameo on the show. But one of the biggest reveals of the night was the addition of Jerry O’Connell to the cast as Sheldon’s brother, Georgie whose younger counterpart is played by Montana Jordan in Young Sheldon.

“This is the first time it is being announced, so don’t tell anyone,” said executive producer Holland of the news.

Not much else was said about the future of the show, let alone an end game for the gang. However, they did give some hints about the season 11 finale.  Although it hasnt’ been written yet, it will be a wedding episode for Sheldon and Amy. In addition, there will be bachelor and bachelorette party fun — which is definitely something to look forward to.

A clip of the Gates episode was also shown during the panel and after asking how it was working with him, Galecki was fond of the experience and joked that if he had the chance, to ask a gift from Bill Gates, it would be a plane.

Another notable genius of a guest star to appear on the show was Stephen Hawking, who Cuoco says has been in the foreground of the show for a long time.

Parsons says of working with Hawking: “It was frightening! He is the smartest person you are ever going to meet. It was a true honor.” He also adds, “I always left the room fast before I said something stupid” every time he was in a room with him.

Nayyar said, “I mourned his death like Kunal and like Raj — his presence was a character on our show.”

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