RATINGS RAT RACE: MDA Telethon Even, ‘Big Brother’ Down & ‘Reckless’ Surges As CBS Wins Night
NBC, Fox and the CW aired encores last night, but the last Sunday of summer was not a languid night in primetime. Back for a second year in its new two-hour, single-network format, the MDA Show of Strength Telethon (0.2/1) dominated ABC's night. The 9-11 PM show had the crew from the recently completed Rising Star plus performances from Fall Out Boy, Rascal Flatts, LeAnn Rimes, and Poison frontman and reality show love-looker Bret Michaels. Raising more than $52 million… Read
N Korea Warns UK Over C4 Political Thriller: “Anti-DPRK Hysteria” Would Bring “Disgrace And Self-Destruction”
The Western entertainment industry has angered North Korea, again. A vitriolic statement from Pyongyang on Sunday took aim at British broadcaster Channel 4 - and the UK government - over planned political thriller Opposite Number, saying it "malignantly" slanders the DPRK and warning, “Reckless anti-DPRK hysteria would only bring disgrace and self-destruction.” I wrote about the 10-part action series by Matt Charman from the Edinburgh TV Festival last month. It kicks off… Read
Union-Crazy Hollywood Hearts Labor Day
Hollywood might be the most unionized town in America, with one of the few remaining industries where there's a shop collecting dues from almost everyone. So as we celebrate this Labor Day, it's worth remembering that unions created the middle class; crusaded for Social Security and Medicare; pushed through the 40-hour week, overtime pay, the minimum wage and paid vacations; campaigned for civil rights; won the right to collectively bargain and the right to strike; fought… Read
Venice: Lars Von Trier Speaks, Sort Of; Helmer Prepping English-Language TV Series, Eyes “Huge Cast”
UPDATE: TrustNordisk has released further details of Lars von Trier's TV series project which was first mooted during a press conference in Venice this morning. A “huge” international cast will star in The House That Jack Built with von Trier to start working on the script this fall for a 2016 shoot. Plot details are being kept close to the vest, but exec producer Peter Aalbæk Jensen said the series will be “without precedent” and cautioned, “You better hold your breath."… Read
‘X Factor UK’ With Returning Simon Cowell Sheds 1M+ Viewers On Sunday (Video)
The Sunday episode of X Factor UK was down 1.7M viewers on last year's equivalent installment, according to overnight ratings. And that's with Simon Cowell back on the judging panel. After Saturday night's debut scored the best series launch since 2011, last night's viewers tallied 8.2M and a 34.9 share. That was a drop of 1.3M viewers from Saturday's 9.5M in overnights. The Sunday edition of X Factor was nevertheless the most watched show of the night, peaking with 9.4M… Read
‘Meet The Press’ Introduces Chuck Todd: Video
NBC News this morning began warming up the Meet The Press audience for its new host Chuck Todd, who debuts a week from today.
The canned piece features Brian Williams, Todd's wife and mother, Savannah Guthrie and Tom Brokaw — who said he not only wants to extend good wishes to Todd, but also to David Gregory, the guy NBC News dumped to give him the slot. Aw, snap!
Watch the video… Read
UPDATE: FT Vet Rona Fairhead Named First Woman Chair Of BBC Trust
UPDATE, SUNDAY 12:19 PM PT: It's official: The British government has confirmed that former publishing executive Rona Fairhead has been named as next chair of the BBC Trust, the governing body of the BBC, one of the world's largest and most influential broadcasters.
PREVIOUS, SATURDAY 11:18 PM PT: Former Financial Times Group chief executive Rona Fairhead is understood to have been selected by the British government as the next chair of the BBC Trust, the body that… Read
UPDATE: Joan Rivers Remains In Serious Condition Following Thursday Cardiac Arrest
UPDATE, Sunday, Aug. 31, 12 PM: Melissa Rivers issued a brief statement today, saying her mother Joan remains in serious condition at Mt. Sinai Hospital after going into cardiac arrest Thursday during throat surgery, but “our fingers are crossed.” Melissa Rivers also thanked fans for their thoughts and prayers.
UPDATE, Saturday, Aug. 30, 5:44 PM: Mt. Sinai Hospital had no further official updates on Joan Rivers' physical condition today when reached by Deadline, nor did… Read
‘Doctor Who’ Down 1.59M UK Viewers In Sophomore Outing
Into The Dalek, the second episode of Doctor Who's new season averaged 5.2M viewers on BBC One on Saturday night from 7:30-8:15PM local. The sophomore turn by Peter Capaldi as the 12th Time Lord earned a 24.7 share. It was BBC One's most watched show of the day, but 1.59M, or 23.4%, down on last week's season 8 launch. Its lead-in, gymnastics competition show Tumble, fell to 2.74M viewers, its lowest rating of the series, but Doctor Who is expected to increase with… Read
Simon Cowell’s Return To ‘X Factor UK’ Scores Best Launch Since 2011 With 9.5M Viewers
In a much ballyhooed return, creator Simon Cowell is back on the judging panel of ITV's singing competition show The X Factor UK. The 11th cycle kicked off last night with 9.49M viewers and a 43 share from 8-9:25PM local. (It peaked with 10.6M viewers and a 47 share.) Over the last decade, the show's best debut rating was in 2011 with 11.3M viewers; the low end of the scale was the 2004 kickoff with 4.9M. Last night's bow is tied with 2007 for the No. 5 best perf.
‘The Voice’ Season 7 Contestants Have A New Advisor: Taylor Swift
Taylor Swift will be joining season 7 of NBC's The Voice which debuts on Sept. 22 and will be advising contestants across all four teams in a role similar to Coldplay's Chris Martin last season. Swift will be working with Voice vets Adam Levine, Blake Shelton, as well as new coach Gwen Stefani and Pharrell Williams in addition to previously announced advisors Steve Wonder (on team Levine), Gavin Rossdale (working with wife Stefani), Little Big Town (with Shelton) and… Read
Hot TV Trailer: ‘Downton Abbey’ Season 5; UK Premiere Set For September 21
ITV has set a premiere date for the next trip to the Grantham estate. Season 5 of Downton Abbey will debut in the UK on September 21 at 9PM local. (The U.S. premiere was previously announced for January 4, 2015 on PBS Masterpiece.) Season 5 kicks off in 1924 as Ramsay MacDonald becomes Britain's first ever Labour Prime Minister. As I've previously reported, Lady Mary, who dealt with the demise of her husband Matthew in S4, will deal with defining how her life moves… Read