Ricky Gervais' Extremely Uncomfortable Golden Globes Monologue

The Golden Globes, Tullycast

Ricky Gervais’ Extremely Uncomfortable Golden Globes Monologue

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Andy Richter Joins Conan On TBS Show

Andy Richter


Conan O’Brien’s longtime sidekick Andy Richter will join him on O’Brien’s upcoming late-night talk show on TBS, which premieres on November 8. Richter rose to fame on Late Night with Conan O’Brien on NBC where he spent 7 years before leaving in 2000 to pursue acting career.

Richter reunited with O’Brien last year on The Tonight Show with Conan O’Brien and on this summer’s Legally Prohibited from Being Funny on Television Tour. He was recently seen on TBS hosting Team Coco Presents: The Conan Writers Live. “I’m thrilled to be going back to work with Conan, and very excited to start a whole new venture on TBS,” Richter said.

“However, I am mostly looking forward to getting out of the house again.” Conan O’Brien added, “This decision was made without my authority.  I will get to the bottom of this.” Conan will originate from Stage 15 at Warner Bros. Studios and will be produced by Conaco LLC.  Jeff Ross is the executive producer.

National Broadcasting Company Soon To Be Owned By Cable

Media, NBC, Television, Vivendi


Carter / Merced Reporting

November 30, 2009, 8:17 pm <!– — Updated: 8:33 pm –>

G.E. and Vivendi Agree on Value of NBC Universal

Update | 8:28 p.m. General Electric has reached a tentative agreement to buy Vivendi’s 20 percent stake in NBC Universal for about $5.8 billion, helping clear the path to a sale of the television and movie company to Comcast, people briefed on the matter told DealBook.

But much remains to be negotiated, these people warned. The Vivendi agreement values NBC Universal at $29 billion, less than the $30 billion or so that G.E. and Comcast had agreed to last month.

Harmonizing the two values, as in so much of the talks over NBC Universal, may take days to do, and these people cautioned that a deal may not be reached.

Still, many analysts and people close to the talks expect a deal to be forged soon, and with it a reshaping of the entertainment industry.

The groundwork for the tentative pact between G.E. and Vivendi was laid out last week, when G.E.’s chief executive, Jeffrey Immelt, met in person with his counterpart at Vivendi, Jean-Bernard Lévy, in Paris, these people said.

If it holds, the agreement would conclude weeks of hardball negotiations between G.E. and Vivendi over an alliance first forged in 2004. Resolving the issue of Vivendi’s stake is crucial to completing the G.E.-Comcast deal. But the French company took a tough stance, brandishing its option of holding an initial public offering for its stake rather than selling it back to G.E.

Under the current outlines of the agreement between G.E. and Comcast, NBC Universal would be put into a new joint venture, between the two giants. Comcast would pour billions of dollars in cash and its own cable channels for a 51 percent stake, while G.E. would hold an initial 49 percent and contribute about $12 billion in debt.

G.E., which has owned NBC for more than two decades, is expected to eventually sell its ownership interest to Comcast over the next several years.

Michael J. de la Merced and Bill Carter

Jonathan Storm: "FlashForward": Promising Sci-Fi Premise, With Answers and Seth MacFarlane

Family Guy, Flash Forward, Seth MacFarlane


By Jonathan Storm

Philadelphia Inquirer Television Critic

Poor little Charlie has had a bad dream. No, she wasn’t dreaming about her baby-sitter, Nicole, fooling around downstairs on the couch with her boyfriend. “I dreamt there are no more good days,” she tells Nicole, who has rushed upstairs after passing out while fooling around downstairs on the couch with her boyfriend.

Charlie is not alone in her dreaming, and Nicole is not alone in her passing out. In ABC’s new FlashForward, premiering at 8 tonight, everybody in the world, except maybe this one guy at the Tigers game in Detroit, goes night-night at precisely the same moment, for precisely two minutes and 17 seconds.

And they all have a vision of what they’ll be doing precisely at 10 p.m. (Pacific Daylight Time) next April 29, which, not coincidentally, is a Thursday. The producers hope a lot of them are discussing the pivotal FlashForward episode when the future becomes the present, pretty clever, since that would mean the show was still around and getting ready to finish its first season with a bang during the May “sweeps.”

FlashForward is pretty clever in general, one of the big buzz magnets for the fall season ever since the cast and crew turned up at Comic Con, the big sci-fi convention in San Diego, this summer, and brought along Dominic Monaghan, who played a male Charlie in Lost, and who will turn up later in the series as the single-named Simon in a role being kept all mysterious so as to lure in the fanboys.

Seth MacFarlane, creator of the notorious Family Guy, also plays a recurring character, right from tonight’s get-go. So between the Lost boy and the bad boy, the show has lots to excite that coveted young male audience.

Not that it will seem as crackpot confusing as Lost or as insulting as Family Guy for everybody else. After you take away the spectacular chaos caused when everyone passes out simultaneously, it’s still pretty fascinating. Well-made, too, with decent acting – and the promise that answers will come with reasonable alacrity (at least by the end of the first season, rather than never, which seems to be what happens with Lost).

Two major questions:

1. Why did this flash-forward happen? Nicole thinks it’s God punishing her for her sexual exploits; other possibilities are more sinister. The producers promise clues everywhere, including that kangaroo hopping around downtown Los Angeles. But you don’t have to be crazy-obsessive to enjoy the show. You can probably skip the clues completely, and simply be involved in:

2. How will people get to (or perhaps avoid) the personal future each one sees? As ABC states, “For some, the future will be joyous and hopeful; for others, shockingly unexpected; and for a few, it simply doesn’t seem to exist.”

It’s surprising nobody thought of this intriguing premise before. Oh, all right, somebody did. His name is Robert Sawyer, and he wrote a novel, FlashForward, 10 years ago, which set the producers to thinking, though they swear up and down the flagpole that you won’t learn much about what’s going to happen in the TV show if you read the book.

The characters include a recovering alcoholic FBI agent (Joseph Fiennes, not bad for a TV show) and his surgeon wife (Sonya Walger, another Lost refugee); the agent’s partner (John Cho from Star Trek) and boss (Courtney B. Vance from Law & Order: Criminal Intent); a doctor saved from suicide by the mass blackout; the randy baby-sitter; the mysterious Simon; and a prosecutor who also shows up later (Gabrielle Union from the sadly short-lived Life).

That’s a diverse enough crowd to interest almost anybody. Combine it with the fascinating plot and the action and emotional turmoil it promises, and you don’t need to flash forward to see a show finally giving Survivor a Thursday-night ratings run for the money.