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News & Cast Updates(News section last update December 24, 2018)
Ethel Ayler Dies: Actress For Stage, Film And TV’s ‘Cosby Show’ Was 88(12/24/18) Ethel Ayler (Constance Small, Ryan’s Hope / Nurse Potter, Y&R) , whose career spanned prominent Broadway, film and TV roles for five decades, died at age 88 on Nov. 18 in Loma Linda, Calif., according to her family. The cause of death was not given.
Born on May 1, 1930 in Whistler, Alabama, Ayler attended Nashville’s Fisk University as a voice major. But the lure of show business overcame the academic life, and she moved to Chicago to pursue a singing career. Her breakthrough came as a member of a touring company of Porgy and Bess.
Langston Hughes’s musical Simply Heavenly marked Ayler’s Off-Broadway bow in 1957, and she soon moved on to a role as Lena Horne’s understudy in the Broadway play Jamaica. She also worked on other Broadway productions, including The Cool World, Kwamina, Black Picture Show and The First Breeze of Summer. Ayler was a long-standing member of the Negro Ensemble Company, and appeared with them many times. She also starred in the 1960s in Jean Genet’s off-Broadway play The Blacks: A Clown Show, as part of a cast that included Maya Angelou, James Earl Jones, Cicely Tyson, Godfrey Cambridge and Louis Gossett Jr.
Ayler may be best remembered for her role as Bill Cosby wife Clair Huxtable’s mother, Carrie Hanks, on The Cosby Show. She appeared on six episodes during the show’s run, offering sage advice to her daughter. Ayler said she named her character after her grandmother. Her other TV appearances included episodes of Family Ties, Martin, Friends, Brooklyn South, Six Feet Under and 7th Heaven.
In film, Ayler won a Spirit Award nomination as Best Supporting Female for her work in the 1990 film To Sleep With Anger, starring Danny Glover. She also appeared in 9½ Weeks (1986) and The Bodyguard (1992), and played voodoo believer Garn Mere in the critics favorite 1997 film Eve’s Bayou.
Ayler last appeared on Broadway in the Tony-nominated production The Little Foxes in 1997.
Philip Bosco, Tony-Winning Actor and ‘Working Girl’ Star, Dies at 88(12/7/18) Philip Bosco, a Tony and Emmy-winning character actor who also starred in such movies as “Working Girl,” died Monday at age 88, according to his grandson Luke Bosco.
Bosco received the first of his six Tony nominations for his Broadway debut, the 1960 drama “Rape of the Belt,” and his last for a 2004 revival of “Twelve Angry Men.” He won in 1989 for playing an outrageous opera company head in the comedy “Lend Me a Tenor.”
He also appeared in more than 50 Broadway productions over his storied career.
Though he told the New York Times in 1986 that he had turned down a seven-year contract with a Hollywood studio early in his career because he did not want to live in California, he did appear in many movies starting in the 1980s.
Bosco had small but crucial roles in films like Mike Nichols’ 1988 comedy “Working Girl,” where he played the corporate honcho who fires Sigourney Weaver’s scheming executive and hires Melanie Griffith’s ambitious secretary instead.
His other big-screen credits included Woody Allen’s 1997 film “Deconstructing Harry,” 1983’s “Trading Places,” the 1986 drama “Children of a Lesser God” and the 1997 rom-com “My Best Friend’s Wedding.”
He also made frequent appearances on TV, from soap operas like “Ryan’s Hope” and “As the World Turns” to “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” in which he had a recurring role as a judge. In 1987, he won a Daytime Emmy for an “ABC Afterschool Special” called “Read Between the Lines.”
Corbin Bernsen on Magnum P.I. 12/10/18(11/30/18) “Bad Day to be a Hero” – Magnum must help Rick’s crush, Toni (guest star Jamie-Lynn Sigler), after her illegal poker game, organized to pay back a mob debt, is robbed by masked gunmen, on MAGNUM P.I., Monday, Dec. 10 (9:00-10:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network. Corbin Bernsen guest stars as Icepick, an incarcerated father-type presence in Rick’s life.
Corbin Bernsen Cast on Magnum P.I. as [Spoiler]'s Degenerate Father Figure(11/21/18) A very familiar face is about to turn up on Magnum P.I.
TV vet Corbin Bernsen will appear in the next episode of the CBS reboot, airing Monday, Nov. 26, in what is now a recurring guest star role.
The L.A. Law and Psych alum will be playing Icepick, a grizzled, older prisoner/self-dubbed “criminal degenerate” who wields a sense of humor as well as some hard-earned wisdom. A longtime father figure to Rick (played by Zachary Knighton), who himself was once headed down the wrong path, Icepick shows some tough love when Rick comes to him with a problem.
In addition to his aforementioned runs as Arnie Becker and Henry Spencer, Bernsen’s TV credits include Billions, Hap and Leonard, American Gods, The Young and the Restless and The Glades. He also has guested on JAG (as a captain), Hawaii Five-0 and NCIS: New Orleans (as a Navy Admiral), so let that blow up your NCIS/Five-0/Magnum P.I. shared universe theories.
Bernsen also can be seen during Season 2 of Marvel’s The Punisher, playing an extremely wealthy man who liberally implements less-than-legal means to cement his power and legacy.
Magnum P.I. airs Mondays at 9/8c on CBS.
Talk Show Appearance(10/7/18) The Talk - CBS
Friday, Oct. 12 - Actor Grant Show discusses his drama on The CW, DYNASTY; actress Skyler Samuels; actress Roselyn Sanchez guest co-hosts
Nat Geo Moves Forward With Season 3 of ‘The Story of God’ Following Investigation Into Morgan Freeman Misconduct Claims(9/1/18) National Geographic will proceed with a third season of its Emmy-nominated series, The Story of God with Morgan Freeman, one of the Fox-owned cable network’s top-rated shows.
The future of the popular series came into question in May in the wake of a report in which eight women came forward to accuse the Oscar-winning actor of inappropriate behavior. None of the allegations pertained to Freeman’s work on The Story of God.
Nevertheless, Nat Geo at the time paused pre-production on Season 3, which had been greenlighted in January, with its parent company Fox launching an investigation.
“The results of this investigation revealed no incidents of concern during any of our work with Mr. Freeman,” Nat Geo said today in a statement to Deadline. “We have now made the decision to move forward with the production of season three of The Story of God. This series has expanded our understanding of religion and culture around the world and has touched many of our fans, and along with Morgan and the team at Revelations Entertainment, we look forward to resuming pre-production this September. As a company, we take all issues of harassment very seriously and we’re confidently assured by the results of the investigation. The new season will premiere globally on National Geographic Channels in 2019.”
The third season of the series will again follow Freeman on an international journey as he discovers the power of religion and how it touches all of our lives. Freeman will travel to some of the world’s holiest sites and speak with religious leaders, scientists, historians and archaeologists to try to shed light on questions about the puzzle of the divine laws. Each episode will focus on a different topic about the divine to help shed light on the questions that inspired mankind.
In the first two seasons, Freeman traveled to Jerusalem’s Wailing Wall, India’s Bodhi Tree, Mayan temples in Guatemala, the pyramids of Egypt, New Mexico to observe ancient Navajo rituals and the banks of the Ganges River.
As part of the series’ Season 3 renewal, National Geographic also signed an exclusive first-look partnership deal with Freeman’s Revelations Entertainment to expand the series franchise by developing more nonfiction content.
The news of The Story Of God‘s third season going forward was revealed earlier today by Courteney Monroe, CEO of National Geographic Global Networks, in an internal memo.
Here is Nat Geo’s full statement:
Through production on critically acclaimed series “The Story of God” and “The Story of Us,” we have valued a longstanding relationship with Morgan Freeman. When we learned of recent allegations surrounding Mr. Freeman completely unrelated to our work with him, as a precaution we paused production on our new season in order to complete a thorough investigation led by our parent company Fox, executed through an independent investigator. The results of this investigation revealed no incidents of concern during any of our work with Mr. Freeman. We have now made the decision to move forward with the production of season three of “The Story of God.” This series has expanded our understanding of religion and culture around the world and has touched many of our fans, and along with Morgan and the team at Revelations Entertainment, we look forward to resuming pre-production this September. As a company, we take all issues of harassment very seriously and we’re confidently assured by the results of the investigation. The new season will premiere globally on National Geographic Channels in 2019.
Mr. Robot to End With Season 4(8/30/18) Mr. Robot is powering down: The USA Network drama will end after its upcoming fourth season, TVLine has confirmed.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, which first broke the news of Mr. Robot‘s conclusion, the final season has been expanded to 12 episodes, up from an initial eight-episode order. (A representative for the series would not confirm the episode count for TVLine.)
Though the show’s Season 4 renewal was announced in December 2017, Mr. Robot is not expected to return until 2019.
Showrunner Sam Esmail addressed the series’ conclusion in the following statement to THR:
When I first created the world of Mr. Robot, I thought it would be a niche television series with a small, cult following. Over the past three years, it has become so much more, and I am continually humbled by the show’s recognition and by the amazing cast and crew that work tirelessly to help bring my vision to life. Since Day 1, I’ve been building toward one conclusion — and in breaking the next season of Mr. Robot, I have decided that conclusion is finally here. Everyone on the creative team, including the amazing people at USA and UCP, didn’t want to say goodbye, but we ultimately have too much respect for Elliot’s journey to extend past its inevitable ending. Therefore, Season 4 will serve as the final chapter of the Mr. Robot story. To fans of the show: Thank you for the past three years, and I can’t wait to share this exciting final season with you.
Mr. Robot, which stars Rami Malek as brilliant but troubled hacker Elliot Alderson, debuted in June 2015 to critical acclaim. In 2016, it won the Golden Globe for Best Drama Series, while Malek and co-star Christian Slater have respectively nabbed an Emmy and Golden Globe for their work.
Earlier this month, Slater hinted to Collider that Season 4 may be the series’ last, acknowledging that “Sam always said it was going to be somewhere in that zone, and he didn’t want to go further than what he could creatively contribute to that storyline.”
In last fall’s Season 3, the thriller averaged 530,000 weekly viewers and a 0.22 demo rating (in Live+SameDay numbers), down sharply from its sophomore run (742K/0.3). Season 1 averaged 1.4 million viewers and a 0.5 rating.
Morgan Freeman, Sarah Jessica Parker, Shailene Woodley To Be Feted At France’s Deauville Film Fest(8/24/18) Morgan Freeman, Sarah Jessica Parker, Shailene Woodley and director Jacques Audiard are among those set to be honored at the Deauville Film Festival (Aug 31 – Sept 9) later this month in France.
Oscar-winner Freeman will receive a career homage while Sex And The City star Parker will get Deauville’s Talent prize. Cannes Palme d’Or winner Jacques Audiard, who will be at the festival with Joaquin Phoenix and John C Reilly to introduce their Western The Sisters Brothers, will receive an honorary award.
Parker will join Kate Beckinsale and Jason Clarke as honorees for the festival’s Talent prize. Elle Fanning and Shailene Woodley will receive this year’s Rising Star award while writer John Grisham is getting the event’s literary prize.
Freeman’s honor comes just months after CNN ran a story in which eight women accused him of inappropriate behavior and sexual harassment. The Oscar-winning actor has denied all charges and has threatened to sue the network.
Deauville, which focuses on U.S. movies and talent, also revealed its Competition lineup today, with movies including Bart Layton’s heist drama American Animals, Reinaldo Marcus Green’s police violence drama Monsters And Men, A.J. Edward’s Friday’s Child, Debra Granik’s Leave No Trace, Marc Turtletaub’s Puzzle, Sara Colangelo’s The Kindergarten Teacher, and Jennifer Fox’s The Tale.
The event will wrap with Chris Weitz’s Operation Finale with Oscar Isaac and Ben Kingsley in attendance. Fest jury is headed by actress Sandrine Kiberlain with jury member comprising directors Stephane Brize, Xavier Legrand and Pierre Salvadori; actresses Leila Bekhti, Sabine Azema and Sara Giraudeau, singer Alex Beaupain and novelist Leila Slimani.
Dishing With Digest - 8/17/18 - Jon Lindstrom(8/18/18) (Listen / download) GENERAL HOSPITAL’s Jon Lindstrom chats with Soap Opera Digest’s Stephanie Sloane and Mara Levinsky about the resurrection of Ryan, his uptick in screen time, working with Genie Francis and more! Plus we discuss memorable dual roles in soap history.
Soap Alumni Unite For New Project(8/8/18) A sudsy new half-hour drama that wraps its three-day shoot today in Manhattan features a bevy of soap alumni: Morgan Fairchild (ex-Anjelica, DAYS, et al), Robert Newman (ex-Josh, GUIDING LIGHT), Darnell Williams (ex-Jesse, ALL MY CHILDREN), Kristen Alderson (ex-Starr, ONE LIFE TO LIVE), Ilene Kristen (ex-Roxy, OLTL, et al), Scott Evans (ex-Fish, OLTL), Diana DeGarmo (ex-Angelina, Y&R) and David A. Gregory (ex-Ford, OLTL) star alongside entertainment blogger Perez Hilton in the ensemble drama MÉLANGE, which Variety reports “will center on the fight over the ownership of an historic New York City gay bar, Mélange, after its proprietor has suddenly and mysteriously died.” Newman plays the late bar owner, Syd, and Fairchild plays his widow, Vivian.
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