Interview with Patton Oswalt

TV Interview!

 

Patton Oswalt, host of "The 1% Club" on Amazon Prime Video and FOX

Interview with Patton Oswalt, host of “The 1% Club” on Amazon Prime Video and FOX by Suzanne 4/30/24

This was a wonderful interview! I’ve enjoyed Patton’s work ever since I saw him in “Justified” (one of the best shows on TV), where he played Constable Bob. He’s done so many wonderful shows and movies, as well as his great standup act.   I don’t watch many game shows, but this new one is smart and funny. It’s very challenging. If you love “Jeopardy,” you should love this one, too. It airs tomorrow, May 23, on Prime Video, and then airs again on FOX, starting Monday, June 3.

They only gave me 6 minutes with him, so I was talking pretty fast. I hope you can understand me! Also, this was supposed to have me in the video as well, but the people in charge of recording it didn’t record the gallery view, for some reason. Oh, well!   If they send me a better version, I’ll put it up.

MORE INFO: Official Site  Trailer

Patton Oswalt, host of "The 1% Club" on Amazon Prime Video and FOX

The 1% Club

Coming to Prime Video On May 23, 2024* *All new episodes of The 1% Club will be available for Prime Video customers weekly starting May 23, and will also air on FOX, on Mondays beginning June 3. *US, CAN ONLY

‘The 1% Club’, where the questions have nothing to do with remembering little known facts, endless reams of dates or obscure quiz trivia, as instead they are all about applying logic, reasoning skills and common sense. The show begins with 100 contestants, who are then whittled down as they compete to make it to the end and answer a question only 1% of the country can get right, in hopes of winning up to 100,000 dollars.

 

Patton Oswalt, host of "The 1% Club" on Amazon Prime Video and FOXPatton Oswalt continues to leave his distinctive imprint across all areas of entertainment, from his award-winning comedy specials to his many guest roles on television. His most recent comedy special We All Scream (which also marked his directorial debut) launched on Netflix in late 2022 and Oswalt was nominated for a Grammy for his comedy album. Last year, he also starred in the Magnolia Pictures comedy I Love My Dad, winner of the Grand Jury and Audience awards at the 2022 SXSW Film Festival.  
 
Oswalt was nominated for a Critics Choice Award for his performance in Jason Reitman’s film Young Adult, starring opposite Charlize Theron. In 2009, he also received critical acclaim for his performance in Robert Siegel’s Big Fan; the film was nominated for an Independent Spirit Award and Oswalt earned a Gotham Award nomination for his performance. 
 
Oswalt has appeared in many films, including The Circle, alongside Tom Hanks, The Secret Life of Walter Mitty and Zoolander, both directed by Ben Stiller, Steven Soderbergh’s The Informant with Matt Damon, and alongside Seth Rogen in Jody Hill’s Observe and Report, as well as Paul Thomas Anderson’s Magnolia and Todd Phillips’ Starsky and Hutch.
 
Oswalt’s past television work includes memorable roles on Parks and Recreation, which brought him a TV Critics Choice Award, A.P. Bio, Veep, United States of Tara, Seinfeld (his TV acting debut), and many more. He is also very well known for playing ‘Spence’ on The King of Queens for nine seasons.  Oswalt is also the narrator on ABC’s hit comedy The Goldbergs.  He provided the voice for ‘Remy’ the rat in Pixar’s Oscar® winner Ratatouille, and his other voice credits include ‘Max’ in The Secret Life of Pets 2, Sorry To Bother You, the SYFY series Happy!, Rick and Morty, Archer, and BoJack Horseman
 
In 2020, Oswalt’s Emmy nominated Netflix special I Love Everything was widely applauded upon release, and he received a Grammy nomination for his comedy album of the same name. In 2017, he received Grammy and Emmy nominations for his album and Netflix special Annihilation, which addresses his own devastating loss and dealing with the unexplainable, while making it all painfully funny.  In 2016, he won the Emmy for ‘Outstanding Writing for a Variety Special’ for his sixth comedy special Talking for Clapping and a Grammy Award in 2017 for his comedy album. He has been nominated for a total of six Grammys and four Emmys.  Oswalt has shot eight TV specials and released seven critically acclaimed albums — in 2009, Patton received his first Grammy nomination for his album My Weakness Is Strong

Credits

Executive Producers
Wes Kauble
Ryan O’Dowd
Krystal Whitney
Dean Nabarro
Andy Auerbach
Patton Oswalt
Craig Brooks
Ronnie Hysten

Directors
Carrie Havel

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Interview with Mandela Van Peebles, Em Haine and Savannah Basley

TV Interview!

 

Mandela Van Peebles, Em Haine and Savannah Basley of "Reginald the Vampire" on Syfy

Interview with Mandela Van Peebles, Em Haine and Savannah Basley of “Reginald the Vampire” on Syfy by Suzanne 4/30/24

It was fun to speak to these actors again! Last time I spoke with them was for the TCA panel before season 1. This time I had more time with them, so that was great (although, not with the main star, Jacob Batalon, unfortunately). The show is a lot of fun. Even though it’s horror, it has a lot of humor. If you haven’t checked it out yet, you should. Enjoy these videos and don’t miss the season 2 premiere May 8 on Syfy!

Mandela Van Peebles

 

Em Haine

Savannah Basley

MORE INFO: Official Site Trailer

Coming Soon to SYFY 

Reginald Andres finally got his life together – when he was turned into a vampire. While he doesn’t fit into the stereotypical expectations of what a vampire looks like – he’s not chiseled or classically handsome – Reginald has found his place amongst an unlikely cohort that includes the cool vampire who sired him, the former vampire chieftain turned unexpected ally (or is she?), and his co-worker/former girlfriend. A show with a lot of heart and just enough blood, “Reginald the Vampire” proves the undead life is just as complicated as life itself.

“Reginald the Vampire” is produced by Great Pacific Media Inc., Modern Story Company, December Films and Cineflix Studios and executive produced by Harley Peyton, Jeremiah Chechik, Todd Berger, Lindsay Macadam, Brett Burlock and Peter Emerson. The series is based on the book series by Johnny B. Truant.

Mandela Van Peebles

Maurice Miller, “Reginald the Vampire”

Mandela Van Peebles will play Maurice Miller on the new SYFY series “Reginald the Vampire,” which premieres Oct. 5 at 10 p.m. ET/PT.

Van Peebles most recently recurred on Taylor Sheridan’s drama series “The Mayor of Kingstown.” He recently guest starred on season 2 of “Wu-Tang: An American Saga” and appeared in the biopic “Salt N Pepa.”

Past film work includes a starring role in “Jigsaw,” the latest installment of the “Saw” franchise, and USS Indianapolis: Men of Courage.”

Other television work includes the 2016 Emmy Award-nominated miniseries “Roots.”

REGINALD THE VAMPIRE -- "The Pompatus of Love" Episode 201 -- Pictured: (l-r) Em Haine as Sarah Kinney, Jacob Batalon as Reginald Andres -- (Photo by: James Dittiger/SYFY)

Em Haine

Sarah Kinney, “Reginald the Vampire”

Em Haine plays Sarah Kinney in the new SYFY series “Reginald the Vampire,” which premieres Oct. 5 at 10 p.m. ET/PT.

Born in Vancouver, B.C., Haine is the only child of an Austrian father and French-Canadian mother. They eventually moved to London to study the Meisner technique at the Actors Temple. While in both New York and Los Angeles, Haine took up Improv at the Upright Citizens Brigade.

Haine’s first break came with the role of oddball Noreen Vanderslice in the critically acclaimed miniseries “Fargo.” Other TV credits include “Chilling Adventures of Sabrina” and “The Mighty Ducks: Game Changers.”

On the film side, Haine has appeared in “Deadpool,” “Tully” and the indie “Gregoire.”

Savannah Basley

Angela Hibbert, “Reginald the Vampire”

Savannah Basley plays Angela Hibbert in the new SYFY series “Reginald the Vampire,” which premieres Oct. 5 at 10 p.m. ET/PT.

Basley’s first TV role was in “The Art of More and she has subsequently appeared in multiple series, including “Tales from the Hood,” “Coroner,” “Utopia Falls” and “Wynonna Earp.” She’ll soon return for the second season of “SurrealEstate.”

Her first film role was in the 2015 short “White Lock,” which won the Special Jury Prize at the Amsterdam Film Festival.

Basley is a dual Canadian-US citizen, the daughter of a Canadian mom and an American military veteran.

 

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Interview with Blake Crouch and Matt Tolmach

TV Interview!

 

Blake Crouch (Executive Producer, Writer, Showrunner) and Matt Tolmach (Executive Producer) of "Dark Matter" on Apple TV+

Interview with Blake Crouch (Executive Producer, Writer, Showrunner) and Matt Tolmach (Executive Producer) of “Dark Matter” on Apple TV+ by Suzanne 4/28/24

This is a really great scifi series with lots of twists and turns. The next-to-last episode is mind-bending, and the finale is very satisfying. You will enjoy it. The cast is phenomenal. I was honored to interview these two. Blake Crouch created the novel (and many others) that this show is based on, and he’s also the showrunner (that doesn’t happen too often).  He and Matt Tolmach are a great team. Enjoy the video below, but don’t miss this show!

MORE INFO: Official Site Trailer

"Dark Matter" key art

Hailed as one of the best sci-fi novels of the decade, “Dark Matter” is a story about the road not taken. The series will follow Jason Dessen (played by Joel Edgerton), a physicist, professor and family man who — one night while walking home on the streets of Chicago — is abducted into an alternate version of his life. Wonder quickly turns to nightmare when he tries to return to his reality amid the mind-bending landscape of lives he could have lived. In this labyrinth of realities, he embarks on a harrowing journey to get back to his true family and save them from the most terrifying, unbeatable foe imaginable: himself.

 

RELEASE DATE:

Wednesday, May 8, 2024 exclusively on Apple TV+

The nine-episode first season will premiere globally with the first two episodes on Wednesday, May 8, 2024 followed by one new episode weekly through Wednesday, June 26, 2024.

ABOUT APPLE TV+:

Apple TV+ is available on the Apple TV app in over 100 countries and regions, on over 1 billiEpisode 7. Joel Edgerton and Jennifer Connelly in "Dark Matter," premiering May 8, 2024 on Apple TV+.on screens, including iPhone, iPad, Apple TV, Apple Vision Pro, Mac, popular smart TVs from Samsung, LG, Sony, VIZIO, TCL and others, Roku and Amazon Fire TV devices, Chromecast with Google TV, PlayStation and Xbox gaming consoles, and at tv.apple.com, for $9.99 per month with a seven-day trial. For a limited time, customers who purchase and activate a new iPhone, iPad, Apple TV, Mac or iPod touch can enjoy three months of Apple TV+ for free.

For more information, visit apple.com/tvpr and see the full list of supported devices.

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Interview with Enrique Arrizon

TV Interview!

 

actor Enrique Arrizon, co-creator Austin Winsberg and showrunner Sam Laybourne of "Acapulco" on Apple TV+

Interview with actor Enrique Arrizon, co-creator Austin Winsberg and showrunner Sam Laybourne of “Acapulco” on Apple TV+ by Suzanne 4/12/24

I love this show because it’s very funny and has a lot of heart. It was my pleasure to interview Enrique again and to pick the brains of Austin and Sam. I hope you enjoy the show!

MORE INFO: Trailer Official Site

Key art for "Acapulco"

Acapulco,” the hit bilingual Apple Original comedy series starring and executive produced by Emmy and SAG-Award winner Eugenio Derbez, returns to Las Colinas for season three on Wednesday, May 1, 2024. 

In season three of “Acapulco,” it’s time to reconcile past mistakes and exciting new beginnings. In the present story, older Máximo (Derbez) finds himself returning to a Las Colinas he no longer recognizes. While in 1985, younger Máximo (Enrique Arrizon) continues his climb up the ladder of success while potentially jeopardizing all the relationships he’s worked so hard to build.

 

In addition to Derbez and Arrizon, the returning “Acapulco” ensemble cast includes Fernando Carsa, Damián Alcázar, Camila Perez, Vanessa Bauche, Regina Reynoso, Raphael Alejandro, Jessica Collins, Rafael Cebrián, Carlos Corona and Regina Orozco, with recurring guest stars Cristo Fernandez (“Ted Lasso”) and Jaime Camil (“Schmigadoon”).

Hailing from Lionsgate Television, “Acapulco” is inspired by 3Pas Studios and Pantelion Films’ box office hit “How to Be A Latin Lover,” and is produced for Apple by Lionsgate Television, 3Pas Studios, Zihuatanejo Productions and The Tannenbaum Company. In addition to starring in the series, Derbez serves as executive producer alongside Ben Odell. The series is created by Austin Winsberg, Eduardo Cisneros and Jason Shuman. Winsberg also executive produces with Sam Laybourne who serves as showrunner and executive producer. Jaime Eliezer Karas, as well as Eric and Kim Tannenbaum also executive produce along with Jason Wang on behalf of The Tannenbaum Company.

Cast & Crew

  • Eugenio Derbez
  • Enrique Arrizon
  • Fernando Carsa
  • Damián Alcázar
  • Camila Perez
  • Chord Overstreet
  • Vanessa Bauche
  • Jessica Collins
  • Raphael Alejandro
  • Regina Reynoso
  • Rafael Cebrián
  • Carlos Corona
  • Regina Orozco
  • Cristo Fernández
  • Jaime Camil

Executive Producers

  • Eugenio Derbez
  • Benjamin Odell
  • Eric Tannenbaum
  • Kim Tannenbaum
  • Jason Wang
  • Austin Winsberg
  • Jaime Eliezer Karas
  • Sam Laybourne

Enrique Arrizon (Born in Ciudad de México, December 8, 1993) is a Mexican television actor and conductor.​ He studied performance at the Shakespeare and CasAzul Forum. In cinema he stood out in the film “The Daughters of April,” a film production for which he obtained recognition at the Cannes Film Festival. He was also known for renowned programs produced for Televisa and Cartoon Network. On television, he debuted on the Televisa soap opera, entitled “The Champion’s Chief.” ​ Follow him on Instagram

Episode 1. Enrique Arrizon in "Acapulco," premiering May 1, 2024 on Apple TV+.

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Interview with Barbara Niven

TV Interview!

 

Hannah meets a new side of law & order as she investigates a murder and crosses paths with by-the-books prosecuting attorney Chad Norton. Photo: Barbara Niven Credit: ©2024 Hallmark Media/Photographer: Pooya Nabei

Interview with Barbara Niven of “One Bad Apple A Hannah Swensen Mystery” on Hallmark Mystery by Suzanne 4/3/24

Barbara Niven seems very sweet, and it was a delight to chat with her. I had a friend sitting nearby listening, and after the interview, she said, “Wow, she sounds really nice!” While it’s true that actors are good at hiding their feelings, and they’re paid to pretend, I think that Barbara’s real-life kindness comes through in her roles and interviews. She clearly has so much fun playing Delores in these movies. Delores is a little kooky, but she means well.  Make sure you watch the movie because it’s fun, and it’s a good mystery! It airs tonight, 4/5/24, as the 9th film in the series.

MORE INFO: Official Site  Preview Sneak Peek

Premieres Friday, April 5, 9/8c - Hannah meets a new side of law & order as she investigates a murder and crosses paths with by-the-books prosecuting attorney Chad Norton. Meanwhile, Delores has a secret.

Summary: Hannah meets a new side of law & order as she investigates a murder and crosses paths with by the books prosecuting attorney Chad Norton. Meanwhile, Delores has a secret.

Press Release: ALISON SWEENEY STARS IN, WRITES AND EXECUTIVE PRODUCES
ONE BAD APPLE: A HANNAH SWENSEN MYSTERY
PREMIERING LATER THIS YEAR ON HALLMARK MYSTERY
Sweeney Reunites On-Screen with Victor Webster Who Joins the Cast of the
Long-Running, Fan-Favorite Franchise
Gabriel Hogan, Barbara Niven, Tess Atkins and Lisa Durupt Also Star
Alison Sweeney (Love & Jane, Days of Our Lives)
returns as everyone’s favorite baker-turned amateur sleuth Hannah Swensen and reunites with
her “The Wedding Veil” trilogy co-star Victor Webster (Mystery on Mistletoe Lane, A Christmas Cookie Catastrophe) for One Bad Apple: A Hannah Swensen Mystery, premiering Friday, April 5 (9 p.m. ET/PT), on Hallmark Mystery. Sweeney wrote the script, which is based on the novel Apple Turnover Murder by Joanne Fluke, and is executive producer on the movie. Gabriel Hogan (Tacoma FD) Barbara Niven (Ms. Christmas Comes to Town), Tess Atkins (The Flash), and Lisa Durupt (Heartland) reprise their roles.

 

Hannah Swensen (Sweeney) has been asked to teach a baking class at the college in town, but her equipment is tampered with causing an explosion that the fire department rules an accident. Soon, a colleague ends up dead and Hannah begins to put together the puzzle of the mysterious circumstances surrounding the murder while being on the list of suspects herself. Hannah leans on her friends and family to collect the breadcrumbs of foul play and put them together, and meets a different side of law and order when she crosses paths with Lake Eden’s by-the book prosecuting attorney Chad Norton (Webster). “One Bad Apple: A Hannah Swensen Mystery” is from Lighthouse Pictures in association with Looking Glass Productions. Craig Baumgarten, Sweeney, Jamie Goehring and Shawn Williamson are executive producers. John J. Fluke serves as co-executive producer. The movie is produced by Kevin Leslie. B. F. Painter is associate producer. Shannon Kohli directed from a script by Sweeney, based on the book Apple Turnover Murder by Joanne Fluke. Hannah meets a new side of law & order as she investigates a murder and crosses paths with by-the-books prosecuting attorney Chad Norton. Photo: Alison Sweeney, Barbara Niven Credit: ©2024 Hallmark Media/Photographer: Bettina Strauss

BARBARA NIVEN (Delores) – Barbara Niven is an actor, producer and speaker. She’s also a fierce advocate for human and animal rights. As a mother and grandmother, she knows there is nothing more important than saving this planet and all the beings that live on it.

During her acting career, she has appeared in more than 100 film and TV roles and 2500 TV and radio commercials. She also served three years on the National Board of Directors for the Screen Actors Guild.

For six seasons, Niven starred in the Hallmark Channel original primetime series Chesapeake Shores. She has starred in the Hallmark movie original USS Christmas, four installments of Hallmark Channel’s Christmas in Evergreen movie franchise in addition to Hallmark Movies & Mysteries’ popular Crossword Mysteries, appearing in all installments. Niven starred with Alison Sweeney in the popular Murder She Baked franchise and reprised her role in Sweet Revenge: A Hannah Swensen Mystery in 2021 as well as Carrot Cake Murder: A Hannah Swensen Mystery, and A Zest for Death: A Hannah Swensen Mystery, both of which premiered last year. She also was in Hallmark Channel’s first original primetime series, Cedar Cove. Most recently, Niven starred the 2023 original movie Ms. Christmas Comes to Town, which was part of Hallmark Movies & Mysteries’ Miracles of Christmas programming event. Other credits including starring roles in Christmas at the Golden Dragon, The Christmas Contest and North to Home for Hallmark Movies & Mysteries. Her performance as Marilyn Monroe in HBO’s The Rat Pack continues to garner praise as “one of the top three portrayals of the blonde icon on Film & TV.”

Niven has also gained international acclaim as Hollywood’s Top Media Trainer and Video Marketing Coach. She created her Unleash Your Star Power!™ system so she could teach people how to hone their message, overcome fear and, use video and public speaking to dominate their niche.

Niven is also a celebrity speaker and best-selling author. Business and motivational topics include Unleash Your Star Power!, Be a Video Marketing Superstar, ACT As If, Live Your Dreams! And Eating Disorders and Pressures to be Perfect.

Niven is a huge animal welfare advocate, a National Ambassador for American Humane and was a regular presenter for Hallmark Channel’s televised American Humane American Hero Dog Awards\ each year. She currently has two rescued dogs named Norma Jean and Brando, and two rescued feral cats named George and Henry (named after her father, George Henry).

Her motto? “Live your passion, connect to your purpose, make a difference. And don’t give up five minutes before the miracle.”

Hannah meets a new side of law & order as she investigates a murder and crosses paths with by-the-books prosecuting attorney Chad Norton. Photo: Barbara Niven Credit: ©2024 Hallmark Media/Photographer: Bettina Strauss

 

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Interview with George Lopez, Selenis Leyva and Al Madrigal

TV Interview!

 

LOPEZ VS LOPEZ — Season: 2 -- Pictured: George Lopez as George, Selenis Leyva as Rosie and Al Madrigal as Oscar -- (Photo by: Carlos Eric Lopez/NBC)

Interview with George Lopez, Selenis Leyva and Al Madrigal of “Lopez Vs. Lopez” on NBC by Suzanne 3/28/24

This was a short interview, but it was a lot of fun. I was embarrassed that I had noted the wrong name for Selenis’ character, but Al made me feel better about it.  Then Al gave a completely non-serious deadpan answer to the question I asked him! George then intervened with a comment about “Green Acres” (not really sure what the relevance was). After I thanked them for their time, George asked me if I had watched the new “Shogun” miniseries, so I replied, “No.”I should have said, “Not yet,” or “I would love to talk to you any time about TV shows, but they only gave me 5 minutes! Sorry!” I had to leave in the middle while he was talking because I didn’t want the NBC PR to be annoyed with me…

MORE INFO: Trailer

LOPEZ VS LOPEZ -- Pictured: "Lopez vs Lopez" Key Art -- (Photo by: NBCUniversal)Lopez vs Lopez

Season 2 premiere: Tuesday, April 2 with back-to-back episodes at 8:00 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. 

George Lopez and his daughter, Mayan, return to NBC to put the fun back in dysfunctional family comedy. This time there will be big life changes for Mayan and the whole Lopez familia while George takes his first step in sobriety. Get ready for another season of Lopez vs Lopez that will have you laughing, crying and shouting ‘ta loca!

 

George Lopez

LOPEZ VS. LOPEZ -- Season: Pilot -- Pictured: George Lopez as George -- (Photo by: Chris Haston/NBC)

George Lopez/Executive Producer, “Lopez vs. Lopez”

George Lopez plays himself and serves as executive producer on the NBC comedy “Lopez vs. Lopez.”

Lopez’s illustrious and multi-faceted career encompasses television, film, stand-up comedy and late-night television. Lopez has broken ground for Latino comics by embracing his ethnicity, confronting racial stereotypes, and fighting for his community on and off the stage.

Lopez can be seen in Snoop Dogg’s sports comedy “The Underdoggs” and the indie “How the Gringo Stole Christmas,” directed by Angel Gracia. Lopez joined the DC Extended Universe last summer in “Blue Beetle.”

He will release the third installment of his middle-grade novel series, “Chupacarter and the Screaming Sombrero,” in March and is currently performing stand-up in arenas across the country on his “ALLLRIIIIGHHTTT!” comedy tour.

Lopez has four HBO specials: “The Wall,” “It’s Not Me, It’s You,” Tall, Dark and Chicano,” which was nominated for a Best Comedy Album Grammy Award, and “America’s Mexican.” His acclaimed comedy concert “Why You Crying?” debuted on Showtime in 2004. He released his third stand-up CD, the Grammy-nominated “El Mas Chingon,” in 2006 and was nominated for his first Grammy two years earlier for “Team Leader.”

Lopez produced and starred in “Lopez,” a semi-autobiographical sitcom for two seasons on TV Land. In 2014, Lopez co-created and starred in the multi-camera ensemble comedy “Saint George” for FX. He hosted TBS’ inaugural late-night talk show, “Lopez Tonight,” for two seasons, marking his return to series television after co-creating, writing, producing and starring in the groundbreaking hit sitcom “George Lopez,” which ran for six seasons on ABC.

Lopez’s film credits include “Walking with Herb,” “No Man’s Land,” “The Tax Collector,” “El Chicano,” “Valentine’s Day,” “The Spy Next Door” and “The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl.” He starred in and produced the drama “Spare Parts,” based on a true story about four undocumented Mexican American teens who team up to build a robot for a national competition. Lopez was the focus of the award-winning documentary “Brown Is the New Green: George Lopez and the American Dream,” as he struggles to stand for Latinos in a manner true to their realities and aspirations.

Lopez has lent his voice to a string of animated hit films, including “Gnome Alone,” “Escape From Planet Earth,” “Rio,” “Smurfs,” “Beverly Hills Chihuahua” and “Cats & Dogs.”

In 2004, Lopez’s autobiography “Why You Crying?” earned a spot on The New York Times bestseller List. Lopez released his second memoir in 2013, “I’m Not Gonna Lie and Other Lies You Tell When You Turn 50.”

Time magazine named him one of the 25 Most Influential Hispanics in America in 2005 and the Harris Poll named him one of the Top Ten Favorite Television Personalities. The following year, Lopez received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

Selenis Leyva

Rosie “Lopez vs. Lopez”

LOPEZ VS. LOPEZ -- Season: Pilot -- Pictured: Selenis Leyva as Rosie -- (Photo by: Chris Haston/NBC)

Selenis Leyva portrays Rosie on the NBC comedy “Lopez vs. Lopez.”

Leyva is best known for her role as Gloria Mendoza on the Netflix critically acclaimed series “Orange Is the New Black.” She recently appeared alongside Michael B. Jordan in the hit film “Creed III.”

Leyva starred alongside John Boyega and Connie Britton in the film “Breaking,” which was nominated for an NAACP Image Award (Best Indie Film) and won the Special Jury Award for Ensemble Cast in the U.S. Dramatic Competition. She also won a 2021 Gracie Award for her work on the Disney+ original series “Diary of a Future President,” which honors standout women in entertainment and news that addressed timely topics and social issues.

Leyva is an outspoken activist for LGBTQ+ rights and often is invited to college campuses to speak on diversity and inclusion. Selenis most recently promoted the release of her memoir, “My Sister: How One Sibling’s Transition Changes Us Both.”

Leyva was awarded the Anti-Violence Project’s 2016 Courage Award and the Stonewall Community Foundation’s Vision Award for inspiring visibility, advocacy and outspoken support for the transgender community. She has been featured in publications such as the Huffington Post, Time magazine’s Motto, People magazine’s Latina Love Project Series and Splinter.LOPEZ VS LOPEZ — Season: 2 -- Pictured: Al Madrigal as Oscar -- (Photo by: Carlos Eric Lopez/NBC)

Al Madrigal

Oscar, “Lopez vs. Lopez”

Al Madrigal stars as Oscar on the NBC comedy “Lopez vs. Lopez.”

Madrigal is best known as the senior Latino correspondent on “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart” and whose film credits include “The Way Back,” starring Ben Affleck, and “Night School,” alongside Kevin Hart and Tiffany Haddish.

Madrigal has written for multiple series, including “I’m Dying Up Here” and “Broke,” and is currently developing multiple projects within his current deal at CBS Studios.

In 2022, Madrigal teamed up with AWA and former Marvel Editor in Chief Axel Alonso to release “Primos.” As an entrepreneur, Madrigal and fellow comedian Bill Burr founded the podcast “All Things Comedy.” The ATC network is producing several films and series, including “Old Dads” for Netflix and “Drugstore June.”

 

LOPEZ VS LOPEZ — Season: 2 -- Pictured: (l-r) Selenis Leyva as Rosie, Al Madrigal as Oscar, George Lopez as George, Mayan Lopez as Mayan, Matt Shively as Quinten, Brice Gonzalez as Chance -- (Photo by: Carlos Eric Lopez/NBC)

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Interview with actors from “Star Trek: Discovery”

TV Interview!

 

The cast of "Star Trek: Discovery" at NY Comic-Con 2019

Interview with actors Sonequa Martin-Green, Doug Jones, David Ajala, Wilson Cruz, Mary Wiseman, and Blu del Barrio; and executive producers Alex Kurtzman and Michelle Paradise of “Star Trek: Discovery” on Paramount+ by Suzanne 3/10/24

This was so much fun! I’m a huge Trekkie (since the 60s!), so it was great to speak to these actors on this press roundtable. I’m sad that the show is ending, but it’s an exciting last season. You don’t want to miss it. FINAL SEASON STREAMING APRIL 4!

One note: One of the interviewers is edited out because she kept asking spoiler questions. I might put her back in after the season is over, if I have time.

Sonequa Martin-Green (Captain Michael Burnham)

Sonequa Martin-Green as Burnham of the CBS All Access series STAR TREK: DISCOVERY. Photo Cr: James Dimmock/CBS ©2019 CBS Interactive, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Doug Jones (Saru) and David Ajala (Cleveland “Book” Booker)

Doug Jones (Saru) and David Ajala (Cleveland “Book” Booker) of "Star Trek" Discovery on Paramount+

Wilson Cruz (Dr. Hugh Culber), Mary Wiseman (Sylvia Tilly), and Blu del Barrio (Adira)

Wilson Cruz (Dr. Hugh Culber), Mary Wiseman (Sylvia Tilly), and Blu del Barrio (Adira)

Alex Kurtzman and Michelle Paradise (co-showrunners/EPs)

Alex Kurtzman and Michelle Paradise (co-showrunners/EPs)

 

MORE INFO: Official Site  Trailer

Sonequa Martin-Green as Burnham in season 5 key art of the Paramount+ original series STAR TREK: DISCOVERY. Photo Credit: James Dimmock/Paramount+

The fifth and final season of STAR TREK: DISCOVERY finds Captain Burnham and the crew of the U.S.S. Discovery uncovering a mystery that will send them on an epic adventure across the galaxy to find an ancient power whose very existence has been deliberately hidden for centuries. But there are others on the hunt as well … dangerous foes who are desperate to claim the prize for themselves and will stop at nothing to get it.

STAR TREK: DISCOVERY season five stars Sonequa Martin-Green as Captain Michael Burnham, Doug Jones as Saru, Anthony Rapp as Paul Stamets, Mary Wiseman as Sylvia Tilly, Wilson Cruz as Dr. Hugh Culber, David Ajala as Cleveland “Book” Booker, Blu del Barrio as Adira, and Callum Keith Rennie as Rayner. Season five also features recurring guest stars’ Elias Toufexis as L’ak and Eve Harlow as Moll.

The series is produced by CBS Studios in association with Secret Hideout and Roddenberry Entertainment. Alex Kurtzman, Michelle Paradise, Heather Kadin, Aaron Baiers, Olatunde Osunsanmi, Frank Siracusa, John Weber, Rod Roddenberry and Trevor Roth serve as executive producers. Alex Kurtzman and Michelle Paradise serve as co-showrunners.

STAR TREK: DISCOVERY seasons one through four are currently streaming exclusively on Paramount+ in the U.S., the U.K., Switzerland, South Korea, Latin America, Germany, France, Italy, Australia and Austria. Seasons two and three are also available on the Pluto TV “Star Trek” channel in Switzerland, Germany and Austria. In Canada, it airs on Bell Media’s CTV Sci-Fi Channel. STAR TREK: DISCOVERY is distributed by Paramount Global Content Distribution.

"Star Trek: Discovery" key art

AVAILABILITY:

Premieres April 2024 on Paramount+ in the U.S. and international territories.

FORMAT:

Action/Sci-Fi (Filmed in HD)

STARRING:

Sonequa Martin-Green

(Captain Michael Burnham)

Doug Jones (Saru)
Anthony Rapp (Paul Stamets)
Mary Wiseman (Sylvia Tilly)
Wilson Cruz (Dr. Hugh Culber)
David Ajala (Cleveland “Book” Booker)
Blu del Barrio

 

Callum Keith Rennie

(Adira)

 

(Rayner)

RECURRING GUEST STARS: Elias Toufexis

 

Eve Harlow

 

Tig Notaro

 

David Cronenberg

(L’ak)

 

(Moll)

 

(Cmdr. Jett Reno)

 

(Kovich)

PRODUCED BY:

 

CBS Studios, Secret Hideout and Roddenberry Entertainment

EXECUTIVE PRODUCERS:

CO- SHOWRUNNERS:

Alex Kurtzman, Michelle Paradise, Heather Kadin, Aaron Baiers, Olatunde Osunsanmi, Frank Siracusa, John Weber, Rod Roddenberry and Trevor Roth

 

Alex Kurtzman and Michelle Paradise

 

Sonequa Martin-Green

Sonequa Martin-Green is a versatile actress who continues to evolve her impressive body of work with ground-breaking, complex roles and memorable performances across television, film and the stage.

Martin-Green will next be seen in Warner Brothers’ “Space Jam: A New Legacy,” starring alongside LeBron James and Don Cheadle. The film is a sequel to the 1996 film “Space Jam,” the highest-grossing basketball movie of all time.

Most recently, she starred in “The Outside Story,” a Brooklyn-based indie comedy-drama led by Brian Tyree Henry. “Billions” actor Asia Kate Dillon, Sunita Mani (“Glow”), Olivia Edward (“Better Things”) and Michael Cyril Creighton (“Spotlight”) also co-starred in the film, the directorial debut of writer/director Casimir Nozkowski. She also appeared in Netflix’s 2019 holiday film, “Holiday Rush.”

Martin-Green is widely known for her turn on AMC’s critically acclaimed, award-winning series “The Walking Dead,” where she captivated audiences in the role of the fierce and loyal Sasha Williams across five seasons. Additionally, she has taken many guest and recurring roles in fan-favorite television series. Most recently, she played prankster Rhonda on FOX’s “New Girl,” anti-magic Tamara on ABC’s “Once Upon a Time”and aspiring paralegal Courtney Wells on CBS’ Emmy and Golden Globe-winning drama “The Good Wife.” She has also been featured in the CBS cop drama “NYC 22,” Lifetime’s “Army Wives” and the CW’s “Gossip Girl.

Previously, Martin-Green received rave reviews for her starring role in Emily Abt’s Sundance hit “Toe To Toe,” in which she played Tosha Spinner, a highly driven inner-city high school teenager. She was also featured in Victoria Mahoney’s film “Yelling to the Sky”alongside Gabourey Sidibe and Zoe Kravitz.

On stage, she is best known for her critically acclaimed performances in Des McAnuff’s “Fetch Clay Make Man,” where she starred as Muhammad Ali’s first wife, Sonji Clay. She also starred in off-Broadway’s “Outside People” at New York City’s Vineyard Theatre.

Martin-Green currently resides in Los Angeles, Calif.

Doug Jones

While famous for working under prosthetics in iconic feature film roles, Doug Jones is also a versatile character actor who has performed as himself in guest star roles on shows like “Arrow,” “The Flash,” “Teen Wolf,” “Z-Nation,” “The Neighbors,” “Criminal Minds,” “C.S.I.” and NBC’s horror anthology “Fear Itself.” A veteran of over 100 commercials, Doug was Mac Tonight, the moon-headed piano player in the long-running 1990s McDonald’s campaign. He also starred as the lead villain in “Hush,” an Emmy-winning episode of “Buffy the Vampire Slayer,” long considered a fan favorite. Doug was also a semi-regular guest judge on the hit SyFy Net reality series “Face Off.”

In 2005 he played the title role of Pan (as well as the nightmare character known as The Pale Man) in Guillermo del Toro’s Oscar-winning Spanish language fantasy/horror feature “Pan’s Labyrinth.” But it was his sensitive and elegant performance as Abe Sapien in del Toro’s 2004 box office hit “Hellboy” that brought Doug’s unique work to a wider audience. He went on to voice that same character for the Emmy-nominated Cartoon Network animations “Hellboy: Sword of Storms” and “Hellboy: Blood and Iron.” In 2007 Doug’s title role performance in “Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer” was hailed by fans and critics alike. 2008 saw Doug reprise his starring role (as well as two other characters) in “Hellboy II: The Golden Army,” once more under the direction of del Toro. He also starred in “Gainsbourg,” a stylized biopic of the famous French poet/singer/composer Serge Gainsbourg, in which he plays Gainsbourg’s dark alter ego. The film has won three Cesar Awards. Doug has also had prominent creature roles in “Crimson Peak,” “The Watch,” “The Bye Bye Man,” “Legion,” “Hocus Pocus” and many others.

Jones was a series regular on three seasons of TNT’s Spielberg-produced sci-fi series “Falling Skies” and recurred on Guillermo del Toro’s FX series “The Strain.” Upcoming, Jones will star opposite Sally Hawkins in del Toro’s “The Shape of Water.

David Ajala

David Ajala most recently recurred on the CW’s “Supergirl” as iconic DC character Manchester Black, and starred in Syfy’s TV adaptation of George R.R. Martin’s 1980 novella Nightflyers. Past film credits include “The Fast & The Furious,” “Jupiter Ascending,” and “Starred Up”; past television credits include ABC’s “Black Box” opposite Kelly Reilly and USA’s “Falling Water.”

Ajala also appeared in the indie film “Kill Command.” Additional notable credits include “One Day,” starring Anne Hathaway and Jim Sturgess, “The Dark Knight,” starring Christian Bale and “Payback Season.”

Appearing in a wide range of television roles, Ajala was a rapper in the television series “Trexx and Flipside,” in addition to major guest roles in award-winning shows such as “Law & Order: UK,” “Death in Paradise,” “Silent Witness” and the wildly popular “Dr. Who.”

Ajala began his career performing with the Royal Shakespeare Company at the Courtyard Theater in Stratford-upon-Avon. He’s performed in productions of “The Witness,” “Hamlet” and “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” among others at The National Theatre, Royal Court Theatre and The Almeida Theatre.

Wilson Cruz

Triple threat, award-winning actor, activist, “actorvist” and humanitarian are just a few terms used to describe Wilson Cruz. He appeared on the Netflix series “Thirteen Reasons Why” and in Hulu’s breakthrough GLAAD Award-winning original animated kids’ series “The Bravest Knight.” He is also the executive producer of the critically lauded docuseries called “Visible: Out On Television” airing on Apple TV+.

In 1994 Cruz won the hearts of audiences across the world and forever changed the LBGT landscape playing the first openly gay teenager on network television in his award-winning performance as Rickie Vasquez on the hit ABC series “My So Called Life”. His seminal and critically acclaimed performance celebrated its 25th anniversary in August 2019. “My So Called Life” was honored with the GLAAD Media Award for Outstanding TV Drama, and Cruz received the Emery S. Hetrick Award from the Hetrick-Martin Institute for Outstanding Contributions to LGBTQ Youth for his contribution. Cruz is also known for starring as Angel in the Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award-winning musical “Rent” in its West Coast premiere which earned him both the Ovation and Drama Logue awards before his reprisal of the role on Broadway.

Always a trailblazer, Cruz is recognized for playing one of TVʼs first transgender characters in an Emmy-nominated episode of “Ally McBeal” and gave a heart-rendering performance as part of a gay couple fighting for marriage equality on “Greyʼs Anatomy.” Other TV credits include: “Red Band Society” starring Oscar winner Octavia Spencer, “Party of Five” (ALMA Award for Outstanding Emerging Actor), “Rick and Steve,” “The Happiest Gay Couple in the World,” “Shameless,” “The West Wing,” “Noahʼs Arc,” “Pushing Daisies” and more. Film credits include memorable roles in “Heʼs Just Not That into You,” “Nixon, Party Monster,” “Johns,” “All Over Me” and “After Louie,” with Alan Cumming. During the pandemic, he created a series called “What’s Up with Wilson Cruz” as a way to stay connected to fans and participated in numerous benefits to raise money for charity.

As an “actorvist,” Cruz has received the Rand Schrader Distinguished Achievement Award from the Los Angeles LGBTQ Center, the Liberty Award from Lambda Legal, the Visibilidad Award from GLAAD, the Fusion Achievement Award from Outfest, the Latino Spirit Award for Achievement in Entertainment and Advocacy from the California Latino Legislative Caucus, the Harvey Milk Equality Award, the Lincoln Aston Public Service Award, Aston-Brooks Award and the Advocate Award from AdColor. He served as the director of entertainment industry partnerships and national spokesperson for GLAAD, currently serves on the board of GLSEN and devotes considerable time supporting other LBGTQ organizations as well. Wilson is a first generation American of Puerto Rican descent.

Mary Wiseman

After graduating from Juilliard, Mary Wiseman quickly went on to star opposite Keira Knightley in the Broadway production of “Therese Raquin.”

She was recently seen in Noah Baumbach’s “Marriage Story” opposite Adam Driver and Scarlett Johansson.

Other television credits include the Netflix series “Longmire” and “The Characters” as well as Hulu’s “Difficult People.” She also appeared opposite Zach Galifianakis in the first two seasons of the FX series “Baskets.”

Other theater credits include starring in the world premiere of “Romance Novels for Dummies” at the Williamstown Theatre Festival. Prior to that, she starred in the Williamstown Theatre Festival’s production of “Off the Main Road” opposite Kyra Sedgwick, in the off-Broadway, Obie Award-winning production of “An Octoroon,” in which her performance was described as “delicious” and “comically inspired” and the off-Broadway production of “The Skin of Our Teeth” at the Theatre for a New Audience in Brooklyn.

Blu del Barrio

Blu del Barrio is a non-binary actor who uses they/them pronouns. Del Barrio was in their final year of studies at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art (LAMDA) when they auditioned for and booked the role of Adira. Blu has been acting in theater and short films since the age of 7, and they’re incredibly excited to make their television acting debut in season three of STAR TREK: DISCOVERY.

"Star Trek: Discovery" Season 5 - final season premieres April 4th on Paramount+ key art

 

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Interview with Ryan Hansen

TV Interview!

 

Ryan Hansen, who guest-stars on "Night Court" as Judge Abby's boyfriend this week.

Interview with Ryan Hansen of “Night Court” on NBC by Suzanne 3/22/24

It was so much fun to speak with Ryan! I learned that he’s from San Diego, among other things. It was one of my best interviews, I think. I look forward to seeing him again on the show, 3/26/24, the season finale. It sounds like a great episode! Check out our cool video!

MORE INFO: Official Site Promo (Instagram) or Promo (Twitter)

NIGHT COURT -- "The Best Dan" Episode 213 -- Pictured: (l-r) Melissa Rauch as Abby Stone, Ryan Hansen as Jake -- (Photo by: Nicole Weingart/NBC)Ryan Hansen is an American actor. He was born in Fountain Valley, California, and raised in El Cajon, California, but has since moved with his wife, Amy Hansen, to Los Angeles. His wife is a former roommate of Kristen Bell (star of Veronica Mars (2004)). Hansen is involved in the campaign, “Invisible Children”, and has appeared in the online series, “The LXD”, of which 50% of the profits are going to the Invisible Children Campaign.

He is best known for starring as Dick Casablancas on the noir drama series Veronica Mars (2004–2019), as Kyle Bradway on the Starz comedy series Party Down (2009–2010, 2023–present), and as Nolan in the horror remake film Friday the 13th (2009). Hansen also had a recurring role on the comedy series 2 Broke Girls (2012–2017) and the web series Burning Love (2012–2013).

 

Night Court

The eternally optimistic Abby Stone (Melissa Rauch) follows in the footsteps of her revered late father, Judge Harry Stone, as she takes on the challenge of overseeing the night shift of a Manhattan arraignment court.

Abby always sees the best in people and her passion for justice is undeniable. In her quest to bring order and dignity to the court and reign in its colorful crew of oddballs, she enlists former night court district attorney Dan Fielding (John Larroquette) to serve as the court’s public defender. Still exceedingly self-confident, Fielding must adjust to a new boss and a new job – defending the downtrodden. And, beneath his arrogant demeanor, there is an empathetic side to Fielding that Abby is determined to unearth.

They both must contend with Olivia (India de Beaufort), the court’s officious assistant district attorney. Driven and ambitious, she views the night court as a steppingstone on her way to bigger things. Donna “Gurgs” Gurganos (Lacretta) is the night court’s sharp-witted bailiff. Gurgs takes her job very seriously and is fiercely protective of her night court colleagues. Rounding out the staff is Wyatt Shaw (Nyambi Nyambi), the court’s new clerk. He’s a jack of all trades and devoted single dad trying to make it all work as a law student at the same time.

From executive producer and writer Dan Rubin (“Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt”), “Night Court” is based on the original hit series that ran for nine seasons on NBC. Melissa Rauch and Winston Rauch executive produce through their After January Productions. Mona Garcea oversees for After January Productions and John Larroquette serves as a executive producer.

“Night Court” is produced by Rauch’s After January Productions in association with Warner Bros. Television and Universal Television, a division of Universal Studio Group.

NIGHT COURT -- "The Best Dan" Episode 213 -- Pictured: (l-r) Melissa Rauch as Abby Stone, Ryan Hansen as Jake -- (Photo by: Nicole Weingart/NBC)

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NIGHT COURT -- "The Best Dan" Episode 213 -- Pictured: (l-r) Ryan Hansen as Jake, Julia Duffy as Susan, Melissa Rauch as Abby Stone -- (Photo by: Nicole Weingart/NBC)

Interview with Eddie Schmidt

TV Interview!

 

Eddie Schmidt, EP of the Peacock special, "Good One: A Show About Jokes," streaming March 26.

Interview with Eddie Schmidt, EP of the special, “Good One: A Show About Jokes” on Peacock by Suzanne 3/19/24

This was a fun chat! Don’t forget to check out the special, streaming exclusively on Peacock, starting tomorrow, March 26th!

MORE INFO:

Key art for the special, "Good One: A Show About Jokes," streaming March 26 on Peacock

A Peacock Original adaptation of the popular Vulture comedy podcast, Good One: A Show About Jokes highlights the journey of a comedian developing new material. This docu-special follows Mike Birbiglia from Providence, R.I. to Washington, D.C. as he builds jokes based on personal truths, mixing comedy with revelations and anecdotes from family and his fellow comedians.

Streaming exclusively on Peacock March 26, 2024.

Featuring: Mike Birbiglia with Seth Meyers, Joe Birbiglia, Hasan Minhaj, & Atsuko Okatsuka

Executive Producers: Eddie Schmidt, Jesse David Fox, Scoop Wasserstein, Pam Wasserstein, Seth Meyers, Michael Shoemaker, Jason Carden

Co-Executive Producers: Austin Flack, Jyllian Gunther

Directed By:Eddie Schmidt

Producers:Sarit G. Work, Maggie Contreras

Produced by: VoxMedia Studios + New York Magazine, Sethmaker Shoemeyers Productions, Eddie Schmidt Productions and Universal Television Alternative Studios, a division of Universal Studio Group

ABOUT EDDIE SCHMIDT (DIRECTOR/EXECUTIVE PRODUCER)

Eddie Schmidt is an Oscar- and Emmy-nominated producer, director, and showrunner. Schmidt produced six projects that premiered at the Sundance Film Festival: Chelsea Does, starring Chelsea Handler, for Netflix (which he directed); Valentine Road (nominated for two Emmy Awards), Twist of Faith (nominated for an Academy Award), and Chain Camera, all for HBO; This Film Is Not Yet Rated, for IFC, and Troubadours, which aired as part of an Emmy-winning season of PBS’ American Masters.

Other work as showrunner and director includes Netflix’s Ugly Delicious with David Chang; the reboot of In Search Of, starring Zachary Quinto, for History; and CBS’ true crime investigation, The Case Of: JonBenet Ramsey. Schmidt also served as Co-Executive Producer of MTV’s Catfish, and Director of NBC’s Who Do You Think You Are, among other series and specials. His short film Good Bread was part of GE’s Focus Forward initiative that enlisted a who’s who of international documentary filmmakers.

Schmidt’s films as Executive Producer include Gilbert: A Gilbert Gottfried Story, which premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival before streaming on Hulu and Peacock, and Beauty is Embarrassing, which premiered at South by Southwest before premiering on PBS’ Independent Lens and earning an Emmy nomination. Recently, Schmidt was Consulting Producer on Maestra, which premiered at Tribeca. Schmidt has also appeared on radio’s This American Life. Previously, he served a three-year term as President of the Board of Directors of the International Documentary Association (IDA).

GOOD ONE: A SHOW ABOUT JOKES -- Pictured: Seth Meyers -- (Photo by: PEACOCK)Seth Meyers

Host, “Late Night with Seth Meyers”; Executive Producer, “The Amber Ruffin Show”

Seth Meyers is an Emmy Award-winning writer, New York Times bestselling author and host of NBC’s “Late Night with Seth Meyers.”

“Late Night with Seth Meyers” received consecutive Emmy Award nominations in 2022 and 2023 for Outstanding Talk Series. Meyers and the writing staff have been Emmy nominated five times for Outstanding Writing for a Variety Series (2023; 2017-20). Meyers also received back-to-back Emmy nominations in 2021-22 for “Late Night’s” digital series, “Corrections,” for Outstanding Short Form Comedy, Drama or Variety Series. “Late Night with Seth Meyers” won the Critics’ Choice Award for Best Talk Show in 2020 and 2021, and was nominated in the same category in 2022 and 2023.

In 2019, Meyers released his debut standup special, “Lobby Baby,” on Netflix, which was Emmy nominated for Outstanding Writing for a Variety Special. In 2018 he hosted the Golden Globe Awards, which was Emmy nominated for Outstanding Variety Special. Meyers hosted the Primetime Emmy Awards in 2014.

In addition, Meyers was named one of the 2014 TIME 100, Time magazine’s 100 most influential people.

Meyers began his TV career with “Saturday Night Live” in 2001 where he was a cast member for 13 seasons. He served as head writer for nine seasons and “Weekend Update” anchor for eight. In 2011, Meyers won the Emmy for Outstanding Original Music and Lyrics for host Justin Timberlake’s musical monologue.

In all, Meyers has garnered 31 Emmy nominations for his work in television.

In addition to his onscreen acclaim, Meyers is a New York Times bestselling author with the publication of his first picture book, “I’m Not Scared, You’re Scared,” released in 2022.

Meyers is co-creator and executive producer alongside Fred Armisen and Bill Hader of IFC’s Emmy-nominated docu-parody series “Documentary Now!” and an executive producer of “The Amber Ruffin Show” for Peacock. He executive produced and lent his voice to Hulu’s animated superhero show “The Awesomes” and executive produced “A.P. Bio” for NBC and Peacock. Meyers and “Late Night” showrunner Mike Shoemaker established their production company, Sethmaker Shoemeyers Productions, in 2017.

Meyers hosted the 2010 and 2011 ESPY Awards on ESPN and headlined the 2011 White House Correspondents’ Assn. dinner to rave reviews.

Meyers is based in New York.

 

Eddie Schmidt at 2021 Oscars with others (from IMDB)

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Interview with Victor Levin

TV Interview!

 

Victor Levin, writer/creator of "Alice & Jack" on PBS and writer for "Extended Family" on CBS. Photo from Facebook.

Interview with Victor Levin, writer/creator of “Alice & Jack” on PBS and writer for “Extended Family” on NBC by Suzanne 2/22/24

It was very interesting to speak with Victor, who has written for so many wonderful shows. Tonight is the premiere of his miniseries “Alice & Jack,” which he created and has been working on for many years. I can tell, from this interview, that it was a labor of love. It’s not really my kind of show, but I will be sure to finish watching it. I did start watching “Extended Family,” on his recommendation here, and it is a very funny sitcom.  Check them both out for yourselves and enjoy the interview!

 

MORE INFO:

Victor Levin, the creator, writer and executive producer of PBS/Masterpiece’s upcoming series Alice & Jack with star Andrea Riseborough at tonight’s CAA screening.Victor Levin was born in 1961 in New York, had a traditional upbringing in the suburbs, and attended Amherst College. In the 1980s, Levin worked at advertising agency Young & Rubicam, writing commercials for Jell-O and Dr Pepper before moving to Los Angeles at the urging of a friend. While writing ads, he had been practicing writing screenplays, so once he was west, he wasted no time breaking in to television. His first show was “Baby Talk” (ABC, 1991-92), based on the film “Look Who’s Talking” (1989). From there he moved to “Dream On” (HBO, 1990-96), then to “The Larry Sanders Show” (HBO, 1992-98), where he earned his first Emmy® nomination. “Mad About You” (NBC, 1992-99) was the show that Levin credited with really teaching him how a TV series is run. Levin worked on the series from 1994 to ’99, eventually working his way up to Executive Producer and earning two more Emmy nominations. His first produced feature film was “Win a Date with Tad Hamilton” (2004) starring Kate Bosworth and Josh Duhamel. He re-teamed with his “Mad About You” star Helen Hunt for her feature directorial debut, “Then She Found Me” (2007), which Levin co-wrote and which starred Hunt and Bette Midler. He earned another Emmy nomination as co-executive producer on “Mad Men” (AMC, 2007-2015) in 2012. Levin’s directorial debut, “5 to 7” (2014) premiered at the 2014 Tribeca Film Festival to favorable reviews. The film was released by IFC Films in 2015. Alice & Jack key art

Alice & Jack reveals how love plays out between two very different people over 15 years. The story explores the seminal question of whether the bonds between us are stronger than the forces that would tear us apart. “It’s more honest about human behavior than most romances allow,” says RogerEbert.com, and “[asks] audiences to think about subjects they think they know well and look at them from a different angle.”

The miniseries is created by Mad Men award-winning writer Victor Levin (Mad Men, Mad About You) and features moving performances Andrea Riseborough (To Leslie, Birdman) as Alice, a single woman invested in her career while grappling with a childhood trauma, and Domhnall Gleeson (The Revenant, About Time) as the scientist she meets in a bar. The cast also includes Aisling Bea (This Way Up), Aimee Lou Wood (Sex Education), and Sunil Patel (Love at First Sight).

Still from "Alice & Jack" on PBSAbout Extended Family: Jim and Julia, after an amicable divorce, decide to continue to raise their kids at the family home while taking turns on who gets to stay with them. Navigating the waters of divorce and child-sharing gets more complicated for Jim when Trey, the owner of the Boston Celtics, enters the picture and wins Julia’s heart. Also streaming on Peacock.

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Interview with Beau Bridges and Rob Mayes

TV Interview!

 

Beau Bridges, Rob Mayes, Stratton Leopold and William Wages of the film "The Neon Highway," which premieres March 15.

Interviews with Beau Bridges, Rob Mayes, Stratton Leopold and William Wages of the film “The Neon Highway” by Suzanne 3/6/24

This is such a good movie, and the actors did an amazing job. It was really great to speak with them, and the writer/director and producer. I grew up watching Lloyd, Beau and Jeff Bridges, so it was an honor to speak to Beau. This is a role that seems meant for him, and he excels in it. I hope people remember it come Oscar time next year.  I can’t believe he hasn’t won one already! He should have won for “The Fabulous Baker Boys,” at least.  The focus of the movie is Rob’s character, Wayne, and then we meet Beau’s character, Claude, and the two carry the movie. I’m glad it was not too depressing, either, because so many indie movies are. I hope you can check it out because it’s a really inspiring and human story. It also has some outstanding music. Enjoy the videos!  Rob is much more handsome in real life than he is in the movie! “The Neon Highway” premieres tomorrow, March 15, 2024.

Rob Mayes stars in "The Neon Highway," premiering March 15 in select theaters.Beau Bridges stars in "The Neon Highway," premiering March 15 in select theaters.

Stars Rob Mayes and Beau Bridges

 

Lee Brice, Rob Mayes & Beau Bridges in THE NEON HIGHWAY (Credit: Daniel Delgado/ Mountain Movies)

Producer Stratton Leopold and writer/director William Wages

"The Neon Highway" key artMORE INFO: Official Site  Trailer

THE NEON HIGHWAY, STARRING EMMY®, GOLDEN GLOBE AND GRAMMY® WINNER BEAU BRIDGES AND ROB MAYES SETS HEARTLAND THEATRICAL RELEASE ON MARCH 15, 2024

Presented by Mountain Movies and produced by veteran filmmaker Stratton Leopold (The Sum Of All Fears, Mission: Impossible II), THE NEON HIGHWAY will release theatrically on March 15. Directed by William Wages (Yellowstone, Lethal Weapon) and co-written by Wages and Phillip Rob Bellury (A Ride To Heaven, Remember This), the film stars Emmy®, Golden Globe and GRAMMY® winner Beau Bridges (The Fabulous Baker Boys, Eden), who was recently honored with the Icon Award from The Family Film & TV Awards, recognizing the significance of family entertainment.

THE NEON HIGHWAY also stars Rob Mayes (Legends, NCIS), Sam Hennings (The Work and the Glory franchise), Sandra Lee-Oian Thomas (Mr. Mercedes, Superstition), T.J. Power (Eat Pray Love, Offspring), Brett Gentile (We’re The Millers, The Walking Dead) and Ezekiel Bridges (Spiral, Mr. Mayor) along with GRAMMY® and CMA winner Pam Tillis as herself and Curb recording artist Lee Brice as Lamont Johnson.

About The Film: Twenty years ago, Wayne (Mayes), an aspiring singer/songwriter, was a heartbeat away from making it in Nashville when a car accident derailed his ambitions. Now working a 9-5 job and struggling to support his family, Wayne has a fateful encounter with waning country music great Claude Allen (Bridges) who reignites Claude’s musical dreams. Together they go to Nashville with one of Wayne’s songs, believing that with Claude’s fame and contacts, they can make it big. The problem is the industry has Rob Mayes and Beau Bridges star in "The Neon Highway," out March 14 in select theaters. changed and no one is interested in the song – or Claude. Devastated and out of options, Wayne creates a way to get the song out to the public; not for himself, but for Claude.

“I couldn’t be more excited to bring THE NEON HIGHWAY to audiences throughout the country,” said Producer Stratton Leopold. “This film means a great deal to me, and after spending so much time working on mass entertainment it is a privilege to bring this film to audiences across the American Heartland, and to share a story about the music that fills our lives.”

Arturo Sandoval – Cuban-American jazz legend and multiple GRAMMY winner – composed the movie’s score with Curb Records releasing. The performance scenes were captured live as performed on set by musicians including Mayes, Brice and rising country newcomer, Grace Asbury.

The film’s first song and title track, “The Neon Highway” was released January 26th. The track was written by Dallas Davidson (“I Don’t Dance,” “Crash My Party”) and performed by two-time ACM winner and GRAMMY and CMA nominee, Brice.

THE NEON HIGHWAY opens March 15th in Los Angeles and in select markets including Atlanta, Austin, Charlotte, Dallas, Denver, Memphis, Nashville, Orlando, and San Antonio.

THE NEON HIGHWAY is a Mountain Movies production and is distributed by Freestyle Releasing. Stratton Leopold serves as producer with Lori Berlanga as Co-Producer. William Wages, Phillip Rob Bellury, and Craig Miller, Executive Produced.

Beau Bridges and Lloyd Bridges at the 44th Emmy Awards, August 1982 (photo credit Alan Light/Public domain)

From IMdB: Beau Bridges was born in Hollywood, and is the son of actor Lloyd Bridges and his wife, who was his college sweetheart, Dorothy Dean Bridges. Born just two days after the attack on Pearl Harbour, he was delivered by candlelight because of a power blackout. Named Lloyd Vernet Bridges III, his parents immediately started calling him Beau after Ashley Wilkes’ son in Gone with the Wind (1939), a book they were reading at the time. His younger brother, actor Jeff Bridges, was born in 1949 and a sister, Cindy Bridges, the following year.

Although only 5’10”, Beau played basketball for UCLA his freshman year. The following year he transferred to the University of Hawaii, but dropped out to pursue acting and got his first major role in 1967. During his first marriage to Julie Landifield, they adopted Casey Bridges and then had Jordan Bridges. He and his second wife, Wendy Treece Bridges, have three children from this marriage: Dylan Bridges (born 1985); Emily Bridges, (born 1987) and Ezekiel Jeffry Bridges.

Beau likes to play guitar and collects Native American percussion instruments. He also loves the ocean, including swimming and surfing. He is also active in environmental causes and handgun control.

From Wikipedia: Rob Mayes is an American actor, musician, and model. He is best known for starring as the title character in the 2012 horror comedy film John Dies at the End, as well as portraying Tommy Nutter in the short-lived comedy drama television series Jane by Design. He also played Barry in the 2019 film Maybe I’m FineVisit his website to hear and see more about this multi-talented actor/singer!

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Interviews with “Night Court” cast

TV Interview!

 

Nyambi Nyambi, India de Beaufort and Lacretta of "Night Court" on NBC

Interview with Nyambi Nyambi, India de Beaufort and Lacretta of “Night Court” on NBC by Suzanne 2/28Nyambi Nyambi, India de Beaufort and Lacretta of "Night Court" on NBC

It was great to speak with these actors. I never miss an episode of the show. I was a fan of the old series, too. I spoke with India before, and Lacretta not too long ago, but it was nice to catch up with them and meet Nyambi. Tomorrow night’s episode should be great fun! “Night Court” airs Tuesdays, 8/7c on NBC.

India de Beaufort (Olivia)

It was fun to speak with India again! She didn’t seem to have as much of a British accent as she did on our previous conversation. She is a great, multi-talented actress. We only had a few minutes, and she answered all of my questions very quickly.

Lacretta (Gurgs)

Lacretta is very sweet and fun!  We had a great chat, not only about her show but about “Star Trek!” She is down-to-earth, like talking to an old friend.

Nyambi Nyambi (Wyatt)

It was so nice to meet Nyambi, the “new guy,” and chat with him! They even let me go over the allotted time a little. He is a great addition to the cast.

 

MORE INFO: Official Site

New Photos for this week’s episode!

"Night Court" key art

The eternally optimistic Abby Stone (Melissa Rauch) follows in the footsteps of her revered late father, Judge Harry Stone, as she takes on the challenge of overseeing the night shift of a Manhattan arraignment court.

Abby always sees the best in people and her passion for justice is undeniable. In her quest to bring order and dignity to the court and reign in its colorful crew of oddballs, she enlists former night court district attorney Dan Fielding (John Larroquette) to serve as the court’s public defender. Still exceedingly self-confident, Fielding must adjust to a new boss and a new job – defending the downtrodden. And, beneath his arrogant demeanor, there is an empathetic side to Fielding that Abby is determined to unearth.

They both must contend with Olivia (India de Beaufort), the court’s officious assistant district attorney. Driven and ambitious, she views the night court as a steppingstone on her way to bigger things. Donna “Gurgs” Gurganos (Lacretta) is the night court’s sharp-witted bailiff. Gurgs takes her job very seriously and is fiercely protective of her night court colleagues. Rounding out the staff is Wyatt Shaw (Nyambi Nyambi), the court’s new clerk. He’s a jack of all trades and devoted single dad trying to make it all work as a law student at the same time.

From executive producer and writer Dan Rubin (“Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt”), “Night Court” is based on the original hit series that ran for nine seasons on NBC. Melissa Rauch and Winston Rauch executive produce through their After January Productions. Mona Garcea oversees for After January Productions and John Larroquette serves as a executive producer.

“Night Court” is produced by Rauch’s After January Productions in association with Warner Bros. Television and Universal Television, a division of Universal Studio Group.

 

India de Beaufort

Olivia, “Night Court”

NIGHT COURT -- Season 1 -- Pictured: India de Beaufort as Olivia -- (Photo by: Robert Trachtenberg/NBC/Warner Bros. Television)

India de Beaufort plays Olivia in the NBC comedy “Night Court.”

De Beaufort’s TV credits include “One Day at a Time,” “Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist,” “Younger,” “NCIS: LA,” “Chicago P.D.,” “Necessary Roughness” and “One Tree Hill.” Other projects include “Krod Mandoon and the Flaming Sword of Fire,” “Kevin Probably Saves the World,” “Blood & Oil” and “Jane by Design.”

Additionally, she will be seen recurring in Netflix’s hit series “Firefly Lane.”

Voice credits include series regular roles in “All Hail King Julien,” “It’s Pony” and Nickelodeon’s “Max & the Midknights.” Additional voice credits include an arc in “Fast & Furious: Spy Racers.”

Retaining her fashion influence, her jewelry line June Riot sold out. She continues to lean into her design education, having shown her first fashion collection at New York Fashion Week in 2012.

De Beaufort resides in Los Angeles with her husband actor, Todd Grinnell; their son, Crosby; and dog Kid.

Lacretta

Donna “Gurgs” Gurganous, “Night Court”

NIGHT COURT -- Season 1 -- Pictured: Lacretta as Gurgs -- (Photo by: Robert Trachtenberg/NBC/Warner Bros. Television)

Lacretta stars as Donna “Gurgs” Gurganous on the NBC comedy “Night Court.”

Born and raised in Kansas City, Mo., Lacretta made her stage debut at 14 at the Coterie Theater – an institution in which she holds great affection. It was there where she starred in numerous performances throughout the ’90s, such as “A Wrinkle in Time” and “101 Dalmatians.”

In 2011, she appeared in “Hairspray” at Broadway Rose in Portland. She then originated the role of Levora Verona in the Off-Broadway run of “Disaster!” in 2012 at the Triad in New York, and made her Broadway debut with the same role in 2016.

Following her on-stage success, Lacretta guest starred on “Law & Order,” “30 Rock,” “Broad City” and “Gotham.”

In film, Lacretta appeared in the romantic comedy “Second Act” before making her return to the stage in “Avenue Q” in the closing cast of their Off-Broadway run at New World Stages. She was also featured in the first national tour of “The Book of Mormon.”

In her off time, Lacretta loves gaming and is very active on Twitch TV. In 2022, she helped announce the first Streamers for Education Scholarship for Black Women going into the fields of STEM, Digital Media and film. She is also an avid cook and often shares recipes from “Cretta’s Kitchen” on her Instagram.

She currently resides in Los Angeles.

Nyambi Nyambi (Wyatt) of "Night Court" on NBCNyambi Nyambi

Wyatt Shaw, “Night Court”

Nyambi Stars as Wyatt Shaw on the NBC comedy “Night Court.”

Nyambi Nyambi most recently co-starred as investigator Jay DiPersia in Paramount+’s “The Good Fight.” He also co-starred alongside Billy Gardell and Melissa McCarthy in the CBS sitcom “Mike & Molly,” portraying Senegalese waiter/café owner Samuel. Nyambi can be also seen in the recently released Billy Crystal and Alan Zweibel film “Here Today” as well as starring in the new indie film “The Sleepless,” available on Amazon Prime.

Nyambi’s TV resume includes “Mercy Street,” “Blindspot,” digital series “American Koko” and “Titans.” Additionally, Nyambi had voiceover roles in “The Death of Superman” and “Reign of the Supermen.”

Nyambi has participated in New York’s Public Theater’s Shakespeare in the Park. Working alongside Al Pacino and Ruben Santiago-Hudson, Nyambi starred in “The Merchant of Venice” and “The Winter’s Tale.” His additional theater credits include the first Broadway revival of August Wilson’s “Joe Turner’s Come and Gone” and the Classic Stage Company’s “The Tempest,” opposite Mandy Patinkin. He has worked with the Classical Theatre of Harlem and the Williamstown Theater Festival. Nyambi is a proud member of the Labyrinth Theatre Company based in New York.

Alongside Danai Gurira, Nyambi serves on the board for Almasi Collaborative Arts, an organization dedicated to developing emerging African artists.

Nyambi is a first-generation Nigerian-American, born on the campus of the University of Oklahoma. He earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Bucknell University before earning his Masters of Fine Arts from the Graduate Acting Program at New York University. He played basketball for four years at Bucknell and made the ESPN Dick Vitale “All-Name Team,” which honors the best names in college basketball. Post-college, Nyambi took on the role of coach and led basketball teams at teen camps.

More info about this week’s episode!

Melissa Rauch, Nyambi Nyambi, India de Beaufort and Lacretta of "Night Court" on NBC

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Interview with Denise Richards

TV Interview!

 

Denise Richards, Kym Johnson Herjavec and Melyssa Ford speak about "Hunting Housewives", which premieres 3/9/24 on Lifetime

Interview with Denise Richards, Kym Johnson Herjavec and Melyssa Ford of “Hunting Housewives” on Lifetime by Suzanne 3/5/24Denise Richards, Kym Johnson Herjavec and Melyssa Ford of "Hunting Housewives" 3/9/24 on Lifetime

This was a Lifetime Press Panel for this fun new Lifetime movie, “Hunting Housewives.” It’s a thriller with a lot of tongue-in-cheek humor. If you watch the “Real Housewives” and shows like that, then you’re no doubt familiar with Denise Richards and perhaps some of the other actors in the movie, and the type of women they portray here. It’s worth watching, and it sounds like there might be a sequel in the future. I loved Denise Richards in “The Bold and The Beautiful” and other shows. She does a good job here, even though she’s basically playing herself. At least, that’s how it seems. I was able to ask the very last question on the video. Enjoy this video. The movie airs tonight, March 9.

MORE INFO: Trailer  Official Site

Key art for the film "Hunting Housewives", which premieres 3/9/24 on Lifetime

In Hunting Housewives, four friends Karla Dodds (Denise Richards), Rebel Carron-Whitman (NeNe Leakes), Joli Symons (Kym Johnson Herjavec) and Sharell Bouvier (Melyssa Ford) head for a much-needed spa retreat weekend away from their husbands, children and busy schedules when suddenly they find themselves downed in a plane crash. With no knowledge of basic survival, the housewives must use their wits and whatever is in their designer bags to try to survive in the rugged wilds. When they realize they are not alone, even frenemies must align to outwit their hunters.

Hunting Housewives is produced by Brain Power Studio in association with Nicely Entertainment for Lifetime. Beth Stevenson, Nancy Yeaman, Stan Hum and Vanessa Shapiro executive produce. Paula Tiberius wrote the script and Marco Deufemia directs.

 

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Denise Richards, Kym Johnson Herjavec and Melyssa Ford of "Hunting Housewives" 3/9/24 on Lifetime

Interview with Don McLeod

TV Interview!

 

Actor Don McLeod - photo by Andrew Gerard on IMdB

Interview with actor/writer Don McLeod of “Fox and Hunter” and “Christmas Cab Ride” by Suzanne 2/21/24

This was kind of a funny interview because I had researched the wrong actor! There’s another actor with the same name, and I stupidly chose the wrong one. Fortunately, we had a good laugh about it. I hope you enjoy the interview! Besides being an actor and writer, he’s also a singer/songwriter and goes by the name Donny Mac.

Another good interview with Don McLeod

MORE INFO:

Actor Don McLeod - photo by Andrew Gerard on IMdBBiography

When asked “where did you grow up” Don McLeod usually answers “I haven’t yet, but I’ve been getting older in Vancouver BC”. Don admits that he fell into the film and TV industry simply by wanting to try it out. In 2010, for the winter Olympics in Vancouver, he was asked to put on a songwriting contest and the city brought in actor Graham Wardle (from CBC’s long running TV series Heartland). They became good friends and Don credits Graham for opening his mind and the door to acting as a career. Graham also introduced Don to fellow actor Jesse Hutch who would eventually become Don’s business partner.

Don soon signed with an agent and would go on to book notable roles on series such as CBC’s hit “Heartland”, The CW’s “Tomorrow People”, “Arrow” and “Frequency”, Hallmark Channel’s “When Calls the Heart”, and Netflix’s “Travelers”. Most recently, Don has appeared in NBC’s “The Irrational” and History Channel’s “Project Blue Book”.

Before becoming an actor Don had a prolific career as a recording artist, writer and record producer. As a producer and award-winning song-writer he has worked with many amazing writers and artists including; Jim Vallance, Jim Riley, Vincent DeGiorgio, Brian Howes, Sean Hosien, Dane DeViller, Dallas Smith, Danny Craig, Dale Russell, Shaun Verreault, Trevor Guthrie, and Chin Injeti, to name a few. Don has crossed over his song-writing abilities to other mediums such as commercials and Film and TV soundtracks for such popular series’ such as “Highlander”, “Heartland” and “So You Think You Can Dance”. He has shared his ability with up-and-coming artists through record production, mentoring, teaching song- writing, performance coaching & artist development.

In late 2023 he finished recording his album titled: Donny Mac “A Journey Through The Story” which was produced by Jim Riley (Rascal Flatts) and mixed by GRAMMY-winning engineer Sean Neff.

Since meeting in 2012, Don joined forces with Jesse Hutch to create Stone Rabbits Productions. Together they have written 24 film and TV scripts/concepts. Two notable projects include a feature film titled “Christmas Cab Ride” which has been green lit for production and an episodic called “Fox and Hunter”, an undercover buddy cop action comedy starring Don McLeod as John Hunter and Jesse Hutch as Blake Fox. Both are slated to film in 2024.

Project

SERIES: FOX AND HUNTER

ABOUT THE SERIES: FOX AND HUNTER follows

the daily life of high energy BLAKE FOX (Jesse Hutch), and his veteran partner JOHN HUNTER (Don McLeod), along with a full undercover unit as they are repeatedly detoured from their work by discussions, explosions, foot races, car chases, personal issues and evidence.

CHARACTER: John Hunter

CHARACTER DESCRIPTION: John is a hard-edged, focussed, calculating, and efficient lone wolf. He has a mysterious and physical presence and keeps to himself. No one seems to know where he came from. He has a moral code, keeps his private life private and is definitely NOT interested in making friends. To say he’s pissed off and feels disrespected when the BOSS forces him to take a partner is a massive understatement.

When I was younger I was on multiple track and field teams, was captain of the wrestling team and wanted to be a professional athlete. I had no interest in acting or being a musician.

As much as I enjoy food and consider myself a foodie. I’m an extremely picky eater. That said, garlic mashed potatoes can be devoured almost any day. And unprocessed, home style REAL chocolate peanut butter ice cream… YES PLEASE!

April 20th 1992 I was pronounced dead after a serious car accident, then a little over an hour later discovered alive.

I have a weekly video series called “Prayer Walks”. Where I go to different locations to walk in nature, ask questions about faith, discus various challenges life has and of course pray. There are currently 72 episodes that occur in trails from Vancouver BC to Key West Florida and in-between.

To prepare for a role, I once locked myself in a warehouse and fasted for two days.

For other films and general self improvement. I trained weapons, tactics, survival and combat with military special forces operators for over 5 years.

I’ve trained in Krav Maga, Jeet Kun Do, Jujitsu, Kempo, Kali, sword fighting and knife fighting.

I went over 10 years without cooking a meal at home.

I almost never get sick. I get a sniffle for a week once every couple years.

SOCIAL

IG @donnymaccountry

IMDB Don McLeod

YouTube @DonnyMacMusic

www.donnymac.com

Actor Don McLeod - photo by Andrew Gerard on IMdB

Photos credit: Andrew Gerard

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Interview with David Morse and Cristiana Dell’Anna

TV Interview!

 

Alejandro Monteverde, Cristiana Dell’Anna and Daviid Morse of "Cabrinni," in theaters March 8.

Interview with Alejandro Monteverde, Cristiana Dell’Anna and David Morse of the film “Cabrini” by Suzanne 2/27/24

This is such a great movie. I hope you can see it! It premieres March 8 in theaters. The writing is good, the actors are amazing, and the cinematography, costumes, sets, etc. are just outstanding. They did a wonderful job with this historical piece about Mother Cabrini, the first American saint. It is not only educational and powerful, but it evokes feelings about some of the prejudice going on today against immigrants. You don’t want to miss this movie! It was really a thrill to speak with the stars and director.

MORE INFO: Trailer Official Site

About the Cast

Cristiana Dell'Anna

Cristiana Dell’Anna

Francesca Cabrini

Cristiana Dell’Anna was born in Naples, Italy, to Lidia Albero, a school teacher and Ettore Dell’Anna, a surgeon. Second of three children, she was expected to follow her father’s footstep and become a doctor, but her call for acting pushed her to follow her dreams and move to London at the age of 20 to study drama at the highly acclaimed Drama Studio London (DSL).

Bilingual since the age of 10, she began her acting career in London, debuting on stage in an English adaptation of the famous Italian play “A Woman Alone” – a fringe production that earned her the attention of London’s Time Out Magazine. When they were both graduating students, Dell’Anna was given the lead role in Moths – the award winning first short film by acclaimed director Rose Glass (Saint Maud). Before moving back to Italy to start shooting the HBO Max hit series, “Gomorrah,” Dell’Anna also appeared in “Third Contact” a critically acclaimed psychological thriller that had its world premiere at the BFI IMAX in 2013. Her role as ‘Patrizia’ in Gomorrah – streaming on Amazon Prime in the US and Canada – has brought her international success, the series being sold to 190 countries around the world.

Her latest Netflix movie “Toscana,” in which she plays the female lead, was the most watched film in the world for two consecutive weeks at the end of March 2022. In 2021, she played ‘Luisa De Filippo’ opposite Tony Servillo, as ‘Eduardo Scarpetta,’ in “The King of Laughter,” directed by Mario Martone. For her portrayal of a fragile woman in love with a man who would not legally recognize their children, she was nominated for a David di Donatello Award as Best Supporting Actress. Dell’Anna won the Ciak d’Oro award in 2022.

She also appeared in Paolo Sorrentino’s Oscar nominated film “The Hand of God.” Initially her role, although just a cameo, was written for an older woman, but when Paolo Sorrentino saw her, he insisted on having her in the cast and changed the schedule to meticulously accommodate her aging through the schedule of film.

Just recently, her talent did not go unnoticed by famous casting director Denise Chamian, who thought her perfect for the lead role in the up-coming US independent feature “Cabrini.” In “Cabrini,” Dell’Anna stars on the big screen across the world as an Italian nun who fought for equal rights in the New York of the late 1800s. The film, which boasts a stellar international cast, also stars John Lithgow and David Morse. It focuses in on female empowerment and on the very contemporary issues of immigration and assimilation.

Upcoming, Cristiana will star in the Italian Netflix series “Storia della mia Famiglia.” Written by Filippo Gravino and Elisa Dondi, and directed by Claudio Cupellini, the drama follows a man on the last day of his life.

David Morse

David Morse

Archbishop Corrigan

DAVID MORSE can currently be seen in the Apple+ series THE LAST THING HE TOLD ME, starring Jennifer Garner and executive produced by Reese Witherspoon. Other recent credits include Netflix’s THE CHAIR, Showtime’s THE GOOD LORD BIRD, Apple’s MORNING SHOW and HBO’s THE DEUCE. Morse has received Emmy® nominations for his roles on HOUSE and HBO’s JOHN ADAMS and has appeared in numerous television series, including Emmy-nominated ESCAPE AT DANNEMORA, HACK, TREME, TRUE DETECTIVE, OUTSIDERS, and ST. ELSEWHERE. Morse’s film credits include THE GREEN MILE, 16 BLOCKS, THE HURT LOCKER, WORLD WAR Z and CONCUSSION.. David can next be seen starring in the feature film LA GLORIA as well as the feature film CABRINI alongside John Lithgow and Christiana Dell’Anna.

A stage veteran, David received a 2022 Tony Award nomination for his second run of the Award-Winning play HOW I LEARNED TO DRIVE on Broadway. Morse’s previous stint on Broadway was in the 2018 revival of THE ICEMAN COMETH, for which he also received a Tony Award nomination. His other notable stage performances include the 1984 Los Angeles production of OF MICE AND MEN; Lanford Wilson’s REDWOOD CURTAIN, in which he originated the role of Lyman; Heather MacDonald’s AN ALMOST HOLY PICTURE; the Broadway production of THE SEAFARER; the Off-Broadway production of THE UNAVOIDABLE DISAPPEARANCE OF TOM DURNIN.

Alejandro Monteverde

Alejandro Monteverde

Director

Alejandro Monteverde is a Mexican filmmaker, best known for his work as a director, writer, and producer on the 2023 film Sound of Freedom and the 2006 film Bella, which won the People’s Choice Award at the Toronto International Film Festival and the Audience Award at the Heartland Film Festival.

Alejandro began his career as a film director with the short film The Last Goodbye in 2004, which won the Crystal Heart Award at the Heartland Film Festival. He went on to direct and write several other films, including Little Boy in 2015, which was also well-received by audiences.

Alejandro’s work is known for its focus on family and faith, and he has been vocal about his Catholic beliefs. In addition to his film work, Monteverde has also been involved in philanthropic efforts, including the founding of the nonprofit organization Esperanza para los Niños (Hope for Children) in 2010, which provides education and support to underprivileged children in Mexico.

About the Movie

Key art for "Cabrini," in theaters March 8.From Alejandro Monteverde, award-winning director of 𝘚𝘰𝘶𝘯𝘥 𝘰𝘧 𝘍𝘳𝘦𝘦𝘥𝘰𝘮, comes the powerful epic of Francesca Cabrini, an Italian immigrant who arrives in New York City in 1889 and is greeted by disease, crime, and impoverished children. Cabrini sets off on a daring mission to convince the hostile mayor to secure housing and healthcare for society’s most vulnerable. With broken English and poor health, Cabrini uses her entrepreneurial mind to build an empire of hope unlike anything the world had ever seen.

Logline

Based on the true story of one woman’s fight for the equality, health, and happiness of immigrant orphans.

Tagline

The world is too small for what I intend to do.

Fast Facts

  • From the director, producers and writers of Sound of Freedom, the 16th highest grossing independent film of all time. Sound of Freedom came in #10 in the US box office and made over $240 million worldwide

  • Starring Academy Award nominated and Tony award winning John Lithgow. Lithgow is best known for “The World According to Garp” (1982), “Terms of Endearment” (1983), “3rd Rock from the Sun” (NBC, 1996-2001), and “Dexter” (Showtime, 2006-2013).

  • Cabrini also stars Academy Emmy nominated actor David Morse

  • Cabrini is the first biopic about the Patron Saint of Immigrants

  • Francesca Cabrini was born in northern Italy in 1850. She and six of her Missionary Sisters set off for New York City in 1889.

  • Cabrini had aquaphobia. Cabrini nearly drowned as a child, which spurred her fear of water. However, she overcame it as an adult when she made 23 transatlantic trips to do missionary work around the world

  • Mother Cabrini became a naturalized citizen in Seattle Washington on October 9, 1909

  • She was canonized in 1946 by Pope Pius XII and became the first American citizen to be named a saint.

  • Four years later Cabrini was given the title of Patroness of Immigrants.

  • She died in Chicago on December 22, 1917 at the age of 67 of chronic endocarditis.

  • Over the course of 34 years she established an astonishing 67 hospitals, orphanages, and schools. Her energy was fueled by an intense focus on serving Jesus in whatever he asked of her and her legacy still stands today.

Social Media Accounts:

Cristiana Dell’Anna stars in "Cabrini," premiering at theaters March 8.

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Interview with Carrie Preston

TV Interview!

 

The cast of ELSBETH visit 1515 Broadway in celebration of the series premiere February 29 on CBS. Carrie Preston, Wendell Pierce and Carra Patterson. Photo from https://www.paramountpressexpress.com

Interview with Carrie Preston, Wendell Pierce, Carra Patterson, Robert King, Michelle King and Jonathan Tolins of “Elsbeth” on CBS by Suzanne 1/31/24

I enjoyed the first episode of this show, which they let us watch ahead of this press panel.  It was great to see everyone here. Unfortunately, I didn’t get to ask a question. Maybe next time! I hope you can check out the show because it’s very good.

This below is the transcript CBS sent me, edited heavily. I’m sorry for any mistakes or things that don’t make sense. I did the best I could!

Victoria Saavedra: Hi, everyone! I’m Victoria Savedra, and on behalf of myself and my partner at CBS studios, Liz Rollnick, we are pleased to welcome you to our panel for “Elsbeth.” “Elsbeth” premieres on Thursday, February 29 on CBS, and will be available to stream live, and On Demand on Paramount+. Elsbeth, a fan-favorite character on “The Good Wife” and “The Good Fight,”  is an astute but unconventional attorney who utilizes her unique tactics, logic, and compelling humor to corner brilliant criminals alongside the NYPD after leaving her successful legal career in Chicago to tackle a new investigative role in New York. Each week, viewers will get to see the crime up-front and follow along how Elspeth cleverly solves the case.

On today’s panel, we have the stars of “Elsbeth”: Emmy Award winner, Carrie Preston, who stars as Elsbeth Tascioni; Wendell Pierce, who stars as Captain C.W. Wagner; and Carra Patterson, who is celebrating a birthday today – Happy birthday, Carra! – and stars as Officer Kaya Blanke; as well as co-creators and executive producers, Robert King and Michelle King; and showrunner and executive producer, Jonathan Tolins.  Before I hand the virtual mic over to co-creator and executive producer, Robert King, for some opening remarks… just a reminder that if you would like to ask a question, please raise your hand in the chat feature, and I will call on you by your screen name when it is your turn.  Over to you, Robert.

Robert King and Michelle King: Thank you. Thanks so much for joining us for our favorite subject, which is us! So, one of the reasons we’re excited about doing, “Elsbeth” is we love the character of Elsbeth. We also love Carrie Preston, and we’re thrilled to work with her in person. [We have] John Tolins in the writers’ room. So it made it seem like a match made in heaven. And then, as if we didn’t want more, Wendell Pierce agreed to join that marriage. The metaphor is getting bad here. Carra Patterson also joined us, who we worked with in a episode of “Evil.” So it was really fun to all get back together, and then joining that marriage. The bed is getting very crowded, but we have guest stars like Stephen Moyer and Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Jane Krakowski, Linda Lavin and Blair Underwood. And that’s, you know, because we’re only on episode 5 or 6 now. So I also want to say that Wendell’s going to get a wife on the show. Wagner’s wife, who will be played by Gloria Rueben. That has been mentioned nowhere else. So anyway, that’s just to start. We wouldn’t mind doing the rest by listening to your questions and spouting off. So, let’s go, Victoria.

Victoria Saavedra: Thank you, Robert. All right. First question, Whitney Friedlander. Please unmute yourself and ask your question.

Whitney Friedlander: Hi, guys, did not know I was going to be the first question. So lucky me! I wanted to talk to how everyone wants to answer about the decision to set it up as like a “Columbo-style thing, where we know what happened first and then going on, and then Carrie. I wanna know about working with Steven Moyter again, after all these years.

Robert King and Michelle King: Sure.  The first half of the question, Michelle and I, o the pandemic…. I think we all discovered something about ourselves over the pandemic.  We realized that every night, we want to watch an episode of “Columbo” instead of the movies that were thrown our way.  And that just got us thinking, because we always wanted to work with Carrie again, that Elsbeth would make it very good. And you know about that “Columbo” build. It’s a very witty build that it’s not about “whodunnit” in that Agatha Christie way. It’s a HOWdunnit, which seems just as fascinating, if not even more fascinating, because it takes a wittier approach to, you know, puzzle-solving, or problem-solving, because the audience knows where this is headed, and then you could see the bad guy or bad woman reverse and try to get back at Carrie Preston’s character before she can solve it. So it just seemed like it wasn’t explored enough.

Robert King and Michelle King: And, Carrie, what was it like?Stephen Moyer guest stars on "Elsbeth" with series star Carrie Preston on CBS Thursdays.

Carrie Preston: Yeah. And then, it was interesting, right after they had sort of come up with this idea for “Columbo”, then there was this article in the New York Times, where there was this reporter, Elizabeth Vincentelli, and what she was watching during COVID was reruns of “Columbo.”  And then the last line of the article was, “We don’t need a reboot of ‘Columbo. Just give Elsbeth Tascioni her her own show.” So everybody it was in the zeitgeist, and so I am the lucky recipient ofmsaid Zeitgeist. And you know, Robert and Michelle, throughout the years had said, “Oh, we would love to do something with you. We would love to do something,” and then, with the timing, they would just bring me back, you know, periodically on “The Good Wife” and “The Good Fight,”. And then just all of that lined up  to this to this moment happening. And so I’m extremely grateful. And to answer your question about Stephen Moyer…You know, “”True Blood”,” I mean, it holds a special, special place in my heart. I mean, my career sort of took off in a way that it hadn’t before that show, and so we all bonded. You know, we made “True Blood” kind of in a vacuum, and then it started airing. We weren’t even together, so we all bonded over that show, and he in particular, was like a real cast leader – he and Anna together – real cast leaders.  And he’s such a personable person, you know… he’s so outgoing and everything. And so, when they were casting this role on “Elsbeth,” I kept thinking, gosh! He would be so perfect because he’s so charming, but he can also be, you know, really dark, obviously, but having him on set during the pilot was such a comfort to me, because the stakes are really high and we wanted the show to be amazing. And you know you’re nervous. And they wrote this gorgeous — Robert and Michelle wrote this gorgeous script with these epic scenes. This is a very dialogue-heavy show. And so I really wanted somebody who, could, you know, really do that kind of scene work, somebody who understood that, and that’s Steven times of the billion.  And so that just gave me such, you know, real security, you know, in in A, in a, sometimes like nerve wracking situation. It was never that on this this pilot, because of Robert and Michelle and Stephen. And you know, Wendell and Cara.  It was just a really beautiful experience, that pilot time of my life. Really.

Jonathan Tolins: I would just like to say one thing about the the form, the howdunnit form.  Tou know, one of the things that was a little bit scary when Robert and Michelle called me and asked me to take this job was, “Oh, my God! Putting together all those mysteries!” But it actually is a really fun form to work in, and in our writers room, we call it, “the one act play that we open an episode with.” And we see, “How interesting can we make these characters, and this crime, before Elsbeth comes into it?”  And it we play with, you know…. “What do we tell the audience? What do we not tell the audience? What clues do we establish that they can try to find themselves? And which ones are we gonna hide for Elsbeth to find?” So, It’s a wonderful puzzle, and I think that’s one of the reasons why shows like this are so fun to watch. It’s like what they say, “play along at home.”

Wendell Pierce: Picking back on what Jonathan was saying. It was like going over my head. I was so into the thriller and the the whodunnit and howdunnit of the story… It was months later, when we actually started filming. I was like, “Do you realize this is kind of like Columbo?” Because I was so into the crime stories, and the one acts that they put together. And then I said, “Well, this is funny, too, man. I hope people really see and hear the humor.” Columbo was 3 times as long as our show, so we have to really move to put the cases together.

Victoria Saavedra: Great. Vlada Gilman, please unmute yourself and ask your question.

Vlada Gelman – TVLine: Hi, everybody! Thanks for doing this. For the EP’s. There’s a couple of mentions of Carey’s name in the first episode. Can you talk about the decision to reference him, and whether we’ll see him or anybody else from “The Good Fight/Good Wife” universe, and your approach to balancing how much this is a standalone show versus a spin off?

List of panelists on the press panel Carrie Preston, Wendell Pierce, Carra Patterson, Robert King, Michelle King and Jonathan Tolins of "Elsbeth" on CBSRobert King and Michelle King: You’re talking about Carey Agos now, I assume?

Vlada Gelman – TVLine: Yes.

Robert King and Michelle King: Yes, he is referenced. We think about our friends in Chicago, but it’s not our expectation that they’re traveling to New York anytime soon. Elsbeth is is on her own in New York, which is kind of part of the fun that she’s really – she’s enjoying it, and enjoying it on her own.

Carrie Preston: I always say I have friends in Chicago. I rarely see them. Alicia is in New York, though.

Robert King and Michelle King: Yes, yes, she’s not, however, working with the NYPD solving crimes…That’s gonna be such a bad quote, that one, in so many ways.

Victoria Saavedra: A question just came in for you, Carra. How does Officer Blanke’s relationship with Elsbeth evolve beyond the premiere episode?

Carra Patterson: Oh, It evolves pretty quickly. I think she finds this unique bond that develops right away in Elsbeth. The way I look at it is, like, Elsbeth is this fun breath of fresh air that Kaya didn’t know that she needed.  She’s a very dedicated, by-the-book. you know, NYPD officer, hoping to get the approval of her superiors, and you know, she’s not thinking anything else. But this woman is gonna stick around, but as she does, she realizes that Elsbeth sees something in her, and and she respects that because she’s been, you know, trying to work her way up for a while, and I think a lot of people can relate to that. I know I’ve been in those positions where I think, like, if I just do the right thing, people will notice, and it takes a while ’cause most times, people are in their own world and sometimes don’t care, and Elsbeth, like, really, you know, sees something in Kaya. And so yeah, it’s really special. And they have this fun, interesting bond! That evolves pretty quickly right away. So I’m also looking forward it, but I’ve only read up to Episode 4. I haven’t even got the fifth script yet, so I’m curious to see how it continues to grow from there. But it’s already something really special.

Carrie Preston: Yeah, and I’ll I’ll jump in as well, and say, You know, both both Kaya and Elsbeth are underestimated by people around them, and I think that they bond in that way as well, and they see a mutual kind of support system and  relationship to– she’s not a police officer, to kind of justify her being there, and I  because Elsbeth has such a brilliant mind, I think, Kaya, you know, kind of being younger, sort of learns from that, you know unorthodox way of doing things.

Wendell Pierce: and I’m seeing the impact that it has on her, you know, as a commander. I see this thorn in my side, this woman who gives me anxiety. There’s these moments of epiphany where I ultimately see how she is having an impact on this young officer that I have, and it kind of spurs something in me to ask this young officer, “Well, what do you think about it? What is your investigative instinct on this? She’s obviously having an impact on you.” And I see their relationship evolve, and that kind of softens my edges and eases my concerns about who this woman is, investigating my department. I see the brilliance in her, and I love that epiphany and that observation of their relationship, and how it’s growing. It’s fun.

Victoria Saavedra: Amazing. Rob Owen, please unmute yourself and ask your question.

Rob Owen: Hi, for the producers, just a quick question.  Elsbeth had a child in “The Good Wife”. Will that ever be addressed, or should longtime fans just assume that Elsbeth’s ex-husband has custody.

Jonathan Tolins: Well, one of the first things I did was, I went back and watched every episode Elsbeth ever appeared in, and took notes on every bit of information that’s ever been mentioned. Her son was really only mentioned in the first episode, and we did the math. So, Teddy, which is, we have now named him, is in his twenties. It’s not a custody question at this point. We hope not. And he yes, we will hear more about him, and Elsbeth’s relationship with him as his mom.

Rob Owen: Thank you.

 

Victoria Saavedra: Abby Bernstein, please unmute yourself and ask your question.

Abbie Bernstein, Assignment X: Hi, there! This actually sort of follows on the previous question for both the writing producers and Ms. Preston. Had you known that Elsbeth was going to get her own series, is there anything you would have done differently with Elsbeth in the previous series to set this up?

Robert King and Michelle King: I’ll speak only for myself. No, and that sounds a touch arrogant again, like, “Oh, we did it all perfect,” but maybe better just say Carrie did it all perfect. No, I wouldn’t change a single thing. She is ready to walk into her new show exactly as she is. I would have given her an eye patch. Carrie.

Carrie Preston and Carra Patterson star in "Elsbeth" Thursdays on CBS.Carrie Preston: I will say. You know, one of my favorite sayings is, “if it ain’t on the page, it ain’t on the stage,” and so it’s always about the writing for me, and to have been trusted with this incredible role for years, never knowing when I was going to play it again, has been really a truly a gift every time it comes up. And so, when they came to me with this opportunity to play her, you know, all the time, you know, to be the the main course and not the side dish, you know, I found that to be a very delicious and exciting opportunity that I was ready to dive into, and also for myself, just as an actor, finding out more about this woman, you know. When you only have a certain number of scenes, there’s only so much information that you can get. But when you’re there all the time, you’re learning, I’m learning just as much about her new things, or I’m discovering new things. Especially the fact that she’s in this different situation, you know. So she’s a bit of a fish out of water. She’s very confident in the in the legal world, but you know she’s finding her way in this new world, and that’s that’s fun and exciting, too. And with Jonathan and the writers, I think it’s going to be a nice new thing. You know, this is decidedly not “The Good Wife”, and not “The Good Fight”. It’s its own world. It’s lighter, and it’s comedic in nature, I feel. And you know, you’ve got this case of the week, and it’s dealing with that and not politics. So we have a bunch of different new things. So it’s the same woman. But you don’t have to have watched those shows to dive into this show, I think.

Abbie Bernstein, Assignment X: Thank you.

Victoria Saavedra: Jim Halterman, please unmute yourself and ask your question.

Jim Halterman: Hey, everybody… Given what Carrie just said about the show being very comedic, What is the balance? As you’re writing the new scripts moving forward with comedy and drama… Do you want to instill dramatic moments in every episode, or is that more or an organic thing in the writers’ room.

Jonathan Tolins: I write everything funny. I can’t help it. I feel like we spent most of our lives trying to make each other laugh, so that kind of happens. But when you’re dealing with murder, obviously, and getting characters to the point where they will commit murder, there, absolutely, there is drama there… where we also have some investigation stuff going on in our precinct, with these characters that will lead to really dramatic stuff, you know, it’s all instinct. It’s all– I have a wonderful group of writers, and that room is very good at knowing when something feels right, when something feels too much or too little, and I trust that, you know?  You writing is not a conscious exercise. You have to at a certain point feel like you get into the vibe of these characters and let the show, you know, lead you.

Jim Halterman: Can I ask a question of Wendell while we’re on the subject? What do you enjoy doing more, drama or comedy?

Wendell Pierce: Wow! That’s a really good question. To nail something comedically is so difficult. I watch Carrie every day, and I’m just learning so much, you know?  And it’s so difficult, and that is so satisfying when you go, man, that’s great work, you know? So there’s that satisfaction of nailing something because I think that’s it’s more difficult.  To have the balance that I think we have in this show is really wonderful because it’s those dramatic moments where you find out when people lean on humor to feel comfortable or to break through, to deal with their fear, you know, to have the courage to do something. You know, we call it gallows humor. Sometime when they coexist is the Janus, you know, that face mask of comedy and tragedy that happens. That’s the great thing I really am enjoying about the show. I have become the Chatty Kathy on the cast. But no, and it’s because of the nature of the show, you know,  is all these great guest stars, and Carrie and Carra doing such great work. And and you know, I’m this guy, you know, who has to deal, be the commander, and the captain, and doing his political thing and trying to hide some of his history.  And I’m like a kid in a candy store, with all the opportunities that are given in this in the show. Elsbeth., to do drama to do comedy, to do really cinematic stuff, quiet, and at the same time deal with a lot of dialogue. So I’m enjoying the plethora of opportunities that you have given us, Robert.

Carrie Preston: They say – I think it was Robert, Michelle and Jonathan – they all say it’s as if Elsbeth is plopped down in the the middle of a very serious police procedural. So you have this dichotomy, you know, between their plan… They’re sort of in the the black, white, and grey tones of New York City. And then this very bright –I’m at work today. By the way — (wearing a bright outfit) this very bright character plops down into the middle of all that. And I think that creates a really fun tension between the drama and the comedy.

Jonathan Tolins: Yeah, as luck would have it, I worked, you know, I had the good fortune of working on “The Good Fight,” for Robert and Michelle, and became good friends with another producer on that show, Billy Finkelstein, and he asked me to work on his last show, which was “East New York,” which was a CBS New York procedural – go figure. But I worked on that show, not realizing it was putting me in very good stead to understand how to do a CBS procedural police show, and then, you know, be able to bring, you know, what I worked on in the last year. I worked on both “East New York” and “Schmigadoon!,” which, I think put me in the perfect spot.

Victoria Saavedra: Carrie, what do you love about this character? And why do you enjoy playing her?

Carrie Preston: Oh, my gosh! I love her mind! This is a brilliant woman who is so mercurial, so fast, so she’s like quicksilver. She can be saying one thing, thinking another, and her body is doing a third thing. And so that is really fun to navigate, to map out, to play. I spend more time in prep for this character than almost anything else I’ve ever played because of that, and that, you know, I really enjoy finding how, you know, how fast she is with everything, and figuring out what exactly it is that she is thinking, and why she’s saying a certain thing, and what’s making her turn this way and that, and the writing helps with that, of course. But that’s probably my favorite thing about her is her brain, you know?

Victoria Saavedra: Thank you. We have time for one last question. Megan Behnke, please unmute yourself and ask your question.

Megan Behnke: Hi, this question is really for anyone, but… with the show centering on a new case each week, is there anyone at the top of your list that you’d love to have guest star, on top of your current guest stars that are going to be appearing already?

Robert King and Michelle King: John.

Jonathan Tolins: I didn’t. My fear is that the minute you name someone, it’s never gonna happen. So I mean, there are people that I–

Carrie Preston:   Say, “Donald Trump.” Say, “Donald Trump!

Robert King and Michelle King: “The Good Fight,” is over.

Jonathan Tolins: We’ve stopped fighting that fight. Yeah, I don’t want to name anybody.  Although, there were- there are people that I’ve worked with in the past, whom, I’m excited that if the show, you know, launches well, and looks like a thing that people want to do, I am going to woo them like crazy. Because who wouldn’t want to work with this cast in New York? And I know the last thing I just want to say. I think we can keep attracting these great actors, because, you know, and I know this from working in the theater…. What actors want is they want parts with great subtext, aand these are parts where someone killed someone, and they don’t want to show it, and there’s nothing more fun to play than that.

Carrie Preston: Also, you know, we have these really juicy, meaty, meaty scenes. I mean, we’re not doing, like, little, short, one-eighth-of-a-page scenes, you know. We’re doing 7-page dialogue scenes sometimes, and that’s very attractive to actors, to be able to do that on television. You don’t usually get that opportunity.

Victoria Saavedra: Thank you to our panelists, and to all of you for joining. We are going to say goodbye with Carrie Preston, who has some final thoughts.

Carrie Preston: Hopefully, you all can just sense the enthusiasm that we all have for this project. It’s called “Elsbeth,” but there are hundreds of people lifting her up and getting her out into the world. And, you, as journalists, you know, are a gigantic part of that team. So I just wanna thank y’all, you know, from the bottom of my big, enthusiastic Elsbeth heart, you know, for spreading the word about the show. We’re nothing without an audience, and you know, y’all are our connection to that audience. So thank you for your time today, and for being so supportive of this incredible group of artists that I have  the privilege of working with every day. So thank you so very much for your time today.

Victoria Saavedra: Thank you, Carrie.

MORE INFO: Official Site  Trailer

Key art for "Elsbeth" on CBSELSBETH stars Emmy Award winner Carrie Preston as Elsbeth Tascioni, an astute but unconventional attorney who utilizes her singular point of view to make unique observations and corner brilliant criminals alongside the NYPD. After leaving her successful legal career in Chicago to tackle a new investigative role in New York City, Elsbeth finds herself jockeying with the toast of the NYPD, Captain C.W. Wagner (Wendell Pierce), a charismatic and revered leader. Working alongside Elsbeth is Officer Kaya Blanke (Carra Patterson), a stoic and ethical officer who quickly develops an appreciation for Elsbeth’s insightful and offbeat ways. ELSBETH is based on the character featured in THE GOOD WIFE and THE GOOD FIGHT.

Series premiere Thursday, Feb. 29 (10:00-11:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network and streaming on Paramount+ (live and on demand for Paramount+ with SHOWTIME subscribers, or on demand for Paramount+ Essential subscribers the day after the episode airs).

ON AIR:

ORIGINATION:

Thursday (10:00-11:00 PM, ET/PT)

New York

FORMAT:

Drama (Filmed in HD)

STARRING:

Carrie Preston

(Elsbeth Tascioni)

Wendell Pierce

(Captain C.W. Wagner)

Carra Patterson

(Officer Kaya Blanke)

PRODUCED BY:

CBS Studios

EXECUTIVE PRODUCERS:

Robert King, Michelle King, Liz Glotzer and Jonathan Tolins

Carrie Preston as Elsbeth Tascioni from the CBS original pilot ELSBETH. -- Photo: Elizabeth Fisher/CBS ©2023 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved.Carrie Preston is reprising her Emmy Award-winning role as the astute but unconventional attorney Elsbeth Tascioni in the new CBS drama ELSBETH. The beloved character was first introduced in the acclaimed series THE GOOD WIFE on the Network and appeared in THE GOOD FIGHT on Paramount+.

Preston recently spent four seasons starring as Polly in the TNT series “Claws.” Prior to that, she played Arlene Fowler for seven seasons on HBO’s “True Blood,” while also recurring for five seasons on the Network’s PERSON OF INTEREST – playing the love interest to her real-life husband, Michael Emerson.

Other major TV series include the co-leading role in the NBC sitcom “Crowded,” ABC’s LGBTQ rights-driven miniseries “When We Rise” and arcs opposite Hank Azaria in “Brockmire” and Joshua Jackson in “Dr. Death.” Her extensive list of guest star appearances includes ABC’s “Lost” and “Desperate Housewives.”

Preston made her feature film debut in Julia Roberts blockbuster “My Best Friend’s Wedding.” Other notable film roles include scene-stealing performances in “Duplicity,” “Vicky Cristina Barcelona,” the Oscar nominated “Transamerica” (as Felicity Huffman’s sister), “That Evening Sun” with Hal Holbrook, “One of These Days” with Joe Cole and “To the Bone” with Keanu Reeves and Lily Collins. She recently played Kevin Bacon’s wife in two films: the Kyra Sedgwick-helmed “Space Oddity” and “THEY/THEM.” She will soon be seen opposite Paul Giamatti in Alexander Payne’s “The Holdovers.”

Trained at Juilliard, Preston made her Broadway debut playing Miranda to Patrick Stewart’s Prospero in “The Tempest” and later played Honey with Stewart and Mercedes Ruehl in “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” at The Guthrie Theater. Other stage work includes “Festen” with Jeremy Sisto and Julianna Margulies, “The Rivals,” “Antony and Cleopatra” with Vanessa Redgrave, and playing Mia Farrow’s daughter in James Lapine’s “Fran’s Bed.”

Preston is also a sought-after director. Television credits include two episodes of THE GOOD FIGHT, two episodes of Showtime’s YOUR HONOR and two episodes of “Claws,” in which she also starred. She also directed the Sundance Film Festival feature “That’s What She Said” starring the late Anne Heche, Marcia DeBonis and Alia Shawkat.

Preston lives in New York City with her husband, Michael, and their adopted dog, Chumley. In her free time, Carrie supports LGBTQIA+ rights and GLAAD, is an honorary board member for the new play development organization The New Harmony Project and is a supporter of Parkinson’s disease research. Her birthday is June 21. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram @carriepreston.

Wendell Pierce as Captain C.W. Wagner from the CBS original pilot ELSBETH. -- Photo: Elizabeth Fisher/CBS ©2023 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved.Wendell Pierce has established himself as a prolific award-winning actor with a body of work on stage, television and film that spans more than three decades. Pierce will star as Captain C.W. Wagner, a charismatic and revered NYPD leader in the new CBS drama ELSBETH, based on the character featured in THE GOOD WIFE and THE GOOD FIGHT.

Universally hailed for his portrayal of Det. Bunk Moreland on HBO’s groundbreaking series “The Wire,” Pierce was also praised for his starring role as Antoine Baptiste on David Simon’s critically acclaimed series “Tremé.” Most recently, he starred as James Greer in “Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan” alongside John Krasinski, as well as in an episode of the new Fox anthology series “Accused.”

Pierce returned to Broadway in 2022 for a limited engagement to reprise his portrayal of Willy Loman in “Death of a Salesman,” for which he received a Tony Award nomination for Lead Actor in a Play. Pierce made his Broadway debut as Boy Willie in August Wilson’s “Piano Lesson.” His other Broadway credits include Carol Churchill’s “Serious Money” and John Pielmeier’s “Boys of Winter.” Other theater credits include “Cost of Living,” “Brokeology,” “‘Tis Pity She’s a Whore,” “Cymbeline,” “Two Gentleman of Verona,” “Tartuffe,” “Waiting for Godot,” “The Cherry Orchard” and “The Oedipus Cycle.”

In film, Pierce’s wide-ranging work includes Ava Duvernay’s “Selma,” Taylor Hackford’s “Ray,” Spike Lee’s “Malcom X” and “Get on the Bus,” Forest Whittaker’s “Waiting to Exhale,” Sundance Grand Jury Prize Winner “Clemency,” and the Bounce Original Film “Don’t Hang Up,” for which he received an NAACP Image Award nomination for Outstanding Male Actor in a Television Movie, Mini-Series or Limited Series.

On television, Pierce starred as Robert Zane on USA Network’s “Suits,” and had recurring roles on Showtime’s RAY DONOVAN and NBC’s “Chicago PD.” He appeared in HBO’s award-winning “Confirmation” as Clarence Thomas and “Between the World and Me,” based on the #1 New York Times bestseller by Ta-Nehisi Coates.

A Juilliard alum and a 1981 White House Presidential Scholar in the Arts, Pierce is the recipient of several awards, including the Obie Award for Sustained Excellence in the Theater; the Tribeca Film Festival Award for Best Actor for his portrayal of Rev. Tillman in the drama “Burning Cane,” for which he also received Independent Spirit and Gotham Award nominations; a Tony Award as a producer of “Clybourne Park”; and Outstanding Actor in a Television Movie, Mini-Series or Dramatic Special Image Award for his role of Slick in the HBO drama “Life Support,” opposite Queen Latifah.Carra Paterson as Officer Kaya Blanke from the CBS original pilot ELSBETH. -- Photo: Elizabeth Fisher/CBS ©2023 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Pierce is co-owner of Equity Media, the new ownership group of WBOK 1230AM, a 70-year-old legacy Black talk radio station in New Orleans and the oldest Black-owned radio station in Louisiana. Pierce is the author of his memoir, The Wind in the Reeds.

Currently, Pierce splits his residence between New York City and his native New Orleans. His birthday is Dec. 8. Follow him on Twitter @WendellPierce and Instagram @wendellpcg.

Carra Patterson will star as Officer Kaya Blanke, a stoic and ethical officer in the new CBS drama based on the character featured in THE GOOD WIFE and THE GOOD FIGHT, ELSBETH.

Most recently, Patterson starred in “Turner & Hooch” and “Servant.” Television guest appearances include EVIL, “Straight Outta Compton,” “Lovecraft Country,” “The Arrangement,” along with BLUE BLOODS and THE GOOD WIFE on the Network.

Additionally, Patterson will star as Coretta Scott King in the upcoming Higher Ground feature film “Rustin,” directed by George C. Wolfe, opposite Colman Domingo, Chris Rock and Audra McDonald.

Currently, Patterson resides in New York City. Her birthday is Jan. 31. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram @CarraPatterson.

 

Carrie Preston, Wendell Pierce, Carra Patterson, Robert King, Michelle King and Jonathan Tolins of "Elsbeth" on CBS

Proofread and Edited by Brenda

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Interview with Maahra Hill

TV Interview!

 

Maahra Hill stars in "The Irrational on NBC" (photo from her Instagram)

Interview with Maahra Hill of “THe Irrational” on NBC by Suzanne 2/13/24

This was a fun audio interview with the actress who plays FBI agent Marisa Clark on “The Irrational” (and ex-wife to star Jesse L. Martin’s Alec Mercer). I love this show, so it was fun to pick her brain about it (even though they haven’t started on season 2 yet). I hope you enjoy the season finale tonight! I know I will.

 

MORE INFO: Official Site  Season One Trailer   Season Finale Trailer

The Irrational

Mondays on NBC (10-11 p.m. ET/PT)

THE IRRATIONAL -- Pictured: "The Irrational" Key Art -- (Photo by: NBCUniversal)

“The Irrational” follows world-renowned professor of behavioral science Alec Mercer (Jesse L. Martin) as he lends his unique expertise on an array of high-stakes cases involving governments, law enforcement and corporations. His insight and unconventional approach to understanding human behavior lead him and the team on a series of intense, unexpected journeys to solve illogical puzzles and perplexing mysteries.

The cast also includes Maahra Hill as “Marisa,” Travina Springer as “Kylie,” Molly Kunz as “Phoebe,” and Arash DeMaxi as “Rizwan.”THE IRRATIONAL -- Season 1 -- Pictured: Maahra Hill as Marisa -- (Photo by: Sergei Bachlakov/NBC)

Arika Lisanne Mittman, Mark Goffman, Sam Baum and David Frankel executive produce. The show is based on best-selling author Dan Ariely’s book, “Predictably Irrational.”

The show is produced by Universal Television, a division of Universal Studio Group.

Maahra Hill

Marisa, “The Irrational”

Maahra Hill stars as Marisa on the new NBC drama “The Irrational.”

Hill starred as the title role in the OWN series “Delilah” from creator Craig Wright. She garnered rave reviews for her work and was included in Variety’s 2021 lead actress Emmy Awards contenders list.

Prior credits include guest starring on “Black-ish,” “The L Word: Generation,” “How to Get Away with Murder,” “Life in Pieces” and “Speechless.”

 

Maahra Hill stars in "The Irrational on NBC" (photo from her Instagram)

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Interview with Maria Russell

TV Interview!

 

Maria Russell played Inez in the hit reality comedy "Jury Duty" on Freevee. (photo from her Instagram)

Interview with Maria Russell of “Jury Duty” on Freevee by Suzanne 1/25/24

It was lovely to speak with Maria. I binge-watched the show, which I hadn’t really heard of, for some reason, even though it was a big hit last spring. I’m so glad I did because it’s hilarious and unique. I hope you can watch it if you haven’t already. I really hope that they find a way to have a second season, too.  Please watch and enjoy the video, too. This is an audio-only video, but I’ve made it into  a video slideshow of photos of Maria.

This transcript still needs more editing!

Maria: Hi, Suzanne.

Suzanne: Hi, uh, I watched the show last night. I somehow missed it last spring when everyone else was, I don’t know. So many shows to watch,

Maria: I know,

Suzanne: but it was great. I loved it. I enjoyed it. So unique and it’s funny.

Maria: So funny. Thank you so much. It was a wild ride.

Suzanne: I’ll bet. uh, when the, the press release I got said, uh, docu series, similar to the office. I’m like, uh, not at all like that. It’s way back. Yeah, exactly. It’s very unique indeed. And who would have known it would become part of pop culture. It’s. Really bizarre and amazing. It’s really, the only thing I could think of that was similar is there was a reality show years ago.  I don’t think it lasted more. And it wasn’t that successful called Joe Schmo where it was like a reality show. But the joke, I was the only one who didn’t know that everyone else was actors. But it wasn’t.

Maria: Yes. I, I heard of it. I never got to see it though.

Suzanne: Yes. I never saw it. I never saw it either. I just saw like the ads for it and I thought,

Maria: Oh, got it.

Suzanne: This is again, way better. So, so, uh, tell us about your character, uh, Inez.

Maria: Yes. Inez de Leon is fabulous. She’s this self-proclaimed boss babe with a real passion for fashion. And when she finds out that, that there’s a position for, foreperson, that’s her goal. She wants to be foreperson. and then she sadly loses that role to Ronald, no hard feelings, but then she ends up finding her new purpose in this courtroom, this jury and being the lunch-ordering queen, and also, the point-person to coordinate all of the outings like going to Margaritaville.

Suzanne: Right. And, uh, but you’re not, I mean, you’re playing the character, but….

Maria: Yes, that’s what’s weird about this show.  It’s like you’re playing the character, but then you’re really you. So it’s strange.

It is strange. And, and honestly, we have, I have this conversation many times that I always say that we’re all kind of like our characters in a way. And the beautiful thing about this show and even starting out with it is that the producers and directors and everybody involved really gave us carte blanche to really, create this, these, give us creative freedom to create these, these characters from the ground up.

Suzanne: Well, that’s good.

Maria: Yeah, no, it was wonderful because, one thing that they did say was that be careful of going way too far off because then we’re going to have to remember everything because, this went on for three and a half weeks. So what I, I had to, what I did was every night I would go home and write down everything that Ronald and Inez spoke about because I had to keep track of the lies. Or the not truth or what I told him, so I had to just be very wary of that because he caught on, he was really smart, he was really sharp, so he would remember a lot of things.  And I was, Inez and Ronald were very close, so I had to remember everything, like, on the show at the time I was married and in real life, Maria. And on the show, I was divorced, but I still had my wedding ring on because I, Maria couldn’t get it off because Maria gained weight during COVID. So I kind of use that as also as part of my, uh, part of my backstory.

Suzanne: Well, that’s cool. I noticed that in the last episode when they did a lot of flashbacks and talking about stuff that there were scenes we didn’t get to see in the show, and I hope that maybe they’ll do a DVD if they haven’t already, so that we can see a lot of the stuff that they cut out, because I’m sure there’s lots they cut out, because it’s a lot.

Maria: Oh my gosh. I think we were, yeah, I think we were saying it’s probably like more than 50 hours.

Suzanne: Yeah, when he wants to see the boring courtroom scenes that you had just to throw off the scent,

Maria: Yeah, exactly. Yeah, exactly. Exactly. Yeah. Yeah.

Suzanne: I read a good article yesterday. An interview with James Marsden.  So there was a lot of information there that I enjoyed reading. so was it, was it nerve wracking at all? Uh, I know you got to create your character and there was a lot of improv involved, right?

Maria: Oh, oh yeah. 90 percent of it was. Improvised because and then the rest of it, there were suggested lines or scenarios.  But again, we were, we were at the mercy of Ronald because we didn’t know what he was going to say or do. So, Ronald goes to the left, we have to go to the left, so a lot of it was the unknown.

Suzanne: Wow.

Maria: So. Yeah. It was, it was quite scary at moments because you didn’t want to be the one to, to blow them up.  Yes. To blow up the whole thing.

Suzanne: Oh my gosh. I can’t imagine what they would have done if you, if somebody had done that, it’s like, or what if Ronald had turned out not to be the, such a nice guy, that would have been all different.

Maria: Yes. Yes. I mean, literally at any given moment, the gig could have been up, the jig would be up.

Suzanne: Yeah. Well, you lucked out that it wasn’t. So had you done some improv before?

Maria: Yeah. So my, I’ve done a lot of, hidden camera shows. I did a lot of sketch. I had a Broadway show that it was, Thought of bright autobiographical called little Tina Christmas special. So I had improv in my background, but is as far as long form improv.  I didn’t, more of a comedic actress. That’s my, that’s my background really. But, sketch and creating characters.

Suzanne: Yes.

Maria: That’s my, that’s my, my, my space.

Suzanne: So, Are you all still keeping in touch? Good friends? You get together? What?

Maria: We do. I’m actually going to see Ronald over the weekend. Yeah. And, and Tricia, we’re going to go play pickleball.  So yes, we all very much love each other. We’re on different group text, uh, texting chains, and we all very much love and support one another. It’s, it’s like this little family. It’s like this little club too, because, doing the show. We had to have such a level of trust for one another and that we’re going to have each other’s back because it was scary.  Like, I think more than anything initially, it was scary because it was, everything was just the unknown and you really, the pressure of, of messing it up, of blowing it up, that was, scary, but at the same time there had to be. This, this part of yourself to surrender to the moment and just be in the moment.  And then that’s when the nerves would go away.

Suzanne: Oh, that’s, you sort of got lost in your character a little bit.

Maria: Yes, exactly. Exactly.

Suzanne: Yeah. You hear about all the time. Actors say, Oh, we were like a family. I don’t think it’s true most of the time, but you had such a unique experience that I think it probably is true.

Maria: Oh, it’s really true. Yeah, it’s like this club because this, we had to really have each other’s backs like completely and implicitly because like I said at any moment. Ronald would find out or, or, or be curious about something or question something. And so we were always, there for each other.  And yeah, that’s why, it’s a little bit different than any other show, because this one was like, we had to have this complete surrender to one another as well.

Suzanne: Yeah. Yeah, that’s it’d be kind of like making a movie, except you were on more and together more.

Maria: Yeah. Yeah, exactly. Exactly.

Suzanne: So, besides the sort of working without a net aspect, what was the hardest part of working, uh, making the show?

Maria: Wow. I think there’s a few things I think. as much as I, it was. really one of the most amazing experiences of my life. I think the most difficult part was, is that what you guys don’t get to see is that, is that after the show, after I’m sorry, not after the show, after each day, after we wrapped each day, it’s exhausting because our call time, we would have to show up at the Huntington Park court at around five or six Hair and makeup ready.   Okay camera ready So you couldn’t get ready there. We had to be ready, ready to rock and roll. And we would end around five or six, but it was, there was never a cut. There was never a break. So, not like in a regular show film where, there’s a break. Okay. Now you guys have, two hours for a break or whatever it is.  There’s no cuts. So it’s like you had to be completely present at all times. So I think that was the difficult time. Cause I remember I would be like. I don’t want to talk to anybody. I don’t want to see anybody and the weekends. I just want to go to sleep. I just want to like veg out because we would have to take notes.  What did Ronald say? Is there something important that we should know for the next day or we’re not, we’re no longer doing the scene because Ronald, Ronald. So we’re cutting this out and adding this. So it was literally, I mean, day to day, it would change.

Suzanne: That sounds very stressful and exhausting, but at least work paid off and you got a big successful show.  Very funny. And I don’t say that lightly because, although I do like to laugh, a lot of today’s comedies, I don’t find very funny. I’m older, so I like the old ones. I agree with you though. Very funny.

Maria: Thank you. I appreciate that.

Suzanne: So besides the fact that it was successful and you made these friends, what was the best part of making the show?

Maria: Oh gosh. I think the best part of it was, I mean, it’s going to sound so like Pollyanna. The friendships made. With all these wonderful actors and I think it, it shows because there was such chemistry with all of us and we didn’t test together either, by the way.

Suzanne: Wow.

Maria: We didn’t, we didn’t test. We met for the first time during rehearsal day one.   So it was, we, we all connected on so many levels and I think it’s, it’s such a rarity to have that, I mean, at least for me and I get along with everybody, but it’s just such, it’s such a deeper connection with, with your, with your cast mates just because of the nature of the show and, and it’s special.  So I would, and, and also I have to say with, with our producers and directors, they had our backs at all times. I mean, we were so lucky to have them so lucky to have them because we never felt like we were going to fall. whenever, I mean, we may not have known what we were doing at times. They’re like, do you know what you’re doing?  And they’re like, no, I’m like me too. I don’t know what, what are we doing? So, but we never felt like we weren’t taken care of. So that was really important. We didn’t feel alone.

Suzanne: Yeah. When they showed the people on behind the scenes, behind the cameras and everything, it looked like they were really had a tough job, but they were on the ball looked like,

Maria: Oh, 100%.  They were with us. 100%. So that was nice to know that there was. there. that you weren’t, you weren’t alone.

Suzanne: Yeah. Have you ever been in jury duty in real life?

Maria: No.

Suzanne: Wow.

Maria: I almost did. But then, so I got picked, but then they settled. Oh, so I never got to experience it.

Suzanne: Uh, yeah, you’re not missing much.

Maria: Yeah.

Suzanne: Well, I was unfortunately in a really bad experience. But the good thing about it is that now if they call me for jury duty, I just talk about how horrible it was. And they’re like, okay, you don’t have to. There you go. See, now you use my trauma.

Maria: Yes, I love it. I love it.

Suzanne: Do you think you might get a second season? You think they’ll be able to come up with something to do it?

Maria: Listen, the optimistic Maria says absolutely a hundred percent, but who knows, I know, part of me is like, yes, let’s do a second season. That would be amazing. And then the other side, the other part of me is like, We have something so special. I don’t know if we’d be able to recreate that again.  And I don’t know if I would want to, because it was so special. It was one of a kind and I don’t know.

Suzanne: Yeah. Yeah. It’s almost like I think in order to do a second season, they’d have to wait a while and then have a completely new group of people, because otherwise people would know.

Maria: And see, I wouldn’t, I wouldn’t want that.  I wouldn’t want that. I would want it to be me. No second season if it’s not all the same cast. Forget about it.

Suzanne: Well, it’s like an anthology show. Let’s call it that.

Maria: Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes.

Suzanne: So, are you, are you still in, Tacoma FD and are you working on season five yet?

Maria: So we did the fourth season. It’s now available on Netflix, which is really cool cause it was just on true TV.  Um, so fourth season we did. And is now airing and I didn’t, I haven’t heard anything about a season five yet. So I’m hoping, I’m hoping, but, I don’t know, right. Fingers crossed.

Suzanne: Yes. Now that’s a funny show, too. I haven’t had time to watch it very much, but the little bit I’ve seen of it, it’s been very good.

Maria: Oh, my God. It’s so fun. And it’s, oh, my God. Those guys are hilarious. My Lord.

Suzanne: So do you have anything else coming out that you’d like to tell us about?

Maria: Well, I can’t talk about it per se, but I am going to be working on a film in March, which is very exciting, but I’m not able to talk about it.

Suzanne: Yeah. But yeah, that’s good. I’m glad you have more, more to do.

Maria: Yes, it’s exciting. And, with the strike over, it’s kind of, it pushed everything. It kind of, with the award season too, it’s been, it’s been very busy on that front. So things are starting to pick up a little bit more now too, which is great because, the whole year basically was like,

Suzanne: Yeah, I know.  I didn’t have a lot of interviews. Yeah, you guys were all on strike.

Maria: We couldn’t talk about anything.

Suzanne: Yeah, no, I was, I had like directors and, and, uh, producers, writers. I mean, it was interesting. Don’t get me wrong, but I have very many. So, yeah. Okay. I’ve had enough of you. No, it’s just, I like, actually, I wish I got to speak with more writers because they’re the ones that like create the show and they know more about the stuff going on.  But, but I like to talk to actors. So it’s hard.

Maria: I know. I know. I know.

Suzanne: Well, I really appreciate you talking to me today

Maria: and of course it was so nice talking to you, Suzanne.

MORE INFO: Official Site  Trailer

"Jury Duty" key artMaria Russell (Mexican/Lithuanian descent) stands out in the comedic realm, gaining prominence through her role as the self-proclaimed boss babe ‘Inez De Leon’ in the acclaimed series “Jury Duty” on Amazon Freevee/Amazon Prime. Vying for the role of foreperson, she sadly loses to Ronald, but finds her purpose as the lunch ordering queen and coordinating all the fun outings for the jury.

This documentary-style show, a runaway hit starring James Marsden, offers a behind-the-scenes look into the American jury trial system. The series has garnered significant acclaim, earning numerous award nominations, including recognition at the Golden Globes (Best Musical/Comedy Series), Emmys (4 nominations), Independent Spirit Awards (Best New Scripted Series), and the prestigious honor of Best Ensemble Cast in a New Scripted Series. Additionally, the AFI Awards have recognized “Jury Duty” by including it in their top 10 television series of 2023 and winner of a 2023 TV Critics Award.

Maria has built an illustrious career in both television and film, earning her international acclaim, while establishing a solid foundation in Hollywood. On the television front, her versatile talent has graced hit series such as MTV’s “Teen Wolf,” ABC’s “Grey’s Anatomy,” CBS’ “Criminal Minds,” “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia,” and recurring roles in the award-winning soap operas “General Hospital” and “The Bold and the Beautiful,” among others. Recently, Maria showcased her comedic prowess in HBO Max’s “Tacoma FD,” portraying the loveable, yet assertive ‘Lt. Salazar’

In the film realm, Maria is best known for her role in the Warner Bros. award-winning horror film “Lights Out,” produced by James Wan. In this chilling production, she shared the screen with acclaimed actors Teresa Palmer, Gabriel Bateman, and Maria Bello. Up next, Maria stars in the film “In Flight,” alongside Cristo Fernández (Ted Lasso) and Tiffany Smith (Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3). Additionally, she has left her mark in the independent film circuit.

Annually, Maria graces the stage in the Off Broadway sensation, “The Latina Christmas Special,” a production she co-wrote and stars in at The Soho Playhouse in New York. Her captivating performance and the show itself have garnered widespread acclaim, earning Critics Choice recognition from the Los Angeles Times for five consecutive years.

Maria showcases a diverse array of talents, highlighting an acting range that spans from lighthearted and unconventional comedy to fearless, unapologetic humor, as well as compelling and intense dramatic performances. Throughout her career, Maria has consistently aimed to forge connections with people. Looking ahead, she aspires to extend her impact by venturing into producing and directing, driven by a passion for crafting characters intricately woven into meaningful stories, with a particular emphasis on narratives centered around redemption.

With a foundation in classical ballet, Maria brings a wealth of professional dancing experience that spans various genres, including ballet, jazz, Latin/salsa, and hip hop. Beyond the dance floor, she passionately engages in diverse forms of fitness, such as kickboxing, Bar Method, and pickleball. An avid globetrotter, Maria is on a mission to explore the world, having already visited 16 countries. As a bilingual (Spanish/English) actress, she not only expresses her love for the performing arts but also extends her affection to animals.

Maria currently calls Los Angeles home, sharing her space with her beloved Maltipoo and Schnoodle, affectionately named Boris and Natasha.

 

Transcript by Descript and video by Clideo

Maria Russell played Inez in the hit reality comedy "Jury Duty" on Freevee. (photo from her Instagram)

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Interview Eliza Bennett

TV Interview!

 

Eliza Bennett stars in "An American in Austin" on Hallmark Channel. (Photo from her Instagram)

Interview with Eliza Bennett of “An American in Austen” on Hallmark by Suzanne 2/15/24

This was a fun little chat with Eliza about her new Hallmark movie. It’s a thrill ride, it has time travel, and it has romance. What more could you want? I hope you watch and enjoy it Feb. 17 on Hallmark!

 

MORE INFO:

Cast: Eliza Bennett, Nicholas Bishop Synopsis: Harriet, who thinks that no real man compares to Mr. Darcy, is transported into Pride & Prejudice and gets an unexpected chance to find out. Genre: Romance, Romantic ComedyEliza will co-star in the Paramount + series, Sexy Beast alongside Sarah Greene, Tamsin Greig, Steven Moyer, and James McArdle. The show is a prequel to the 2000 film which delves into the origin tales of Gal, Teddy, and Don; it is now streaming worldwide.

Audiences may recognize her work from Netflix’s current hit feature, Do Revenge, with Sophie Turner and Camila Mendes. The film re-teamed Eliza with her Sweet/Vicious, writer/director, Jennifer Kaytin Robinson. She also starred as Amanda Carrington in two seasons of the CW’s reboot, Dynasty with Liz Gillies.

Other recent television work includes recurring on ABC’s The Conners opposite Sara Gilbert and John Goodman, Amazon’s comedy pilot, People Just Do Nothing from executive producer, Ash Atalia, and guest-starring with Sterling K. Brown on This Is Us.

Bennett’s breakout came when she played Jules, a college student living a double life, one as a typical sorority girl and the other as a campus vigilante committed to eliminating abusers in MTV’s dark comedy series, Sweet/Vicious.

Variety said: “Eliza Bennett plays Jules, a sorority girl who likes sunset pictures on Instagram and has a bedroom straight out of a pastel Pinterest page. Bennett is asked to sketch all the layers of an earnest character who is pretty square and conformist, but who is also full of confusion and rage and dryly funny from time to time. She pulls off all those rapid transitions without missing a beat”.

Bennett began her career in the United Kingdom on both stage and screen. Her feature credits include the lead role in the New Line’s Inkheart, alongside Brendan Fraser, Paul Bettany, Helen Mirren, and Andy Serkis, critically acclaimed, Nanny McPhee, opposite Emma Thompson, and the Julian Fellowes feature From Time to Time, with Maggie Smith and Dominic West.

Bennett is a seasoned theater performer having starred in numerous West End productions including the lead in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and the musical Loserville.

She is a singer/songwriter, having released singles Late Twenties, Visit Me In Georgia, and Hate to Love You in 2022 and a Christmas single, All I Want for Christmas is You with Liz Gillies in 2021.

Bennett splits her time between Los Angeles and the U.K.

 

An American in Austen

Cast: Eliza Bennett, Nicholas Bishop

Synopsis: Harriet, who thinks that no real man compares to Mr. Darcy, is transported into Pride & Prejudice and gets an unexpected chance to find out.
Genre: Romance, Romantic Comedy
Eliza Bennett stars as Harriet in "An American in Austin" on Hallmark Channel. (Photo from Hallmark's site)

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Interview with Reza Diako

TV Interview!

 

Reza Diako of "The Chosen" on The CW

Interview with Reza Diako of “The Chosen” on The CW by Suzanne 2/2/24

It was great to speak with Reza. He’s got a lovely voice, and he’s very handsome, but he’s also an amazing actor, and I think we’ll see even bigger things from him in the future. I hope you enjoy this interview, and his new role as Philip in “The Chosen.” You can watch it in theaters, and later it will be streaming on the Angel Studios site, on this website, or other sites, and probably on The CW.

 

MORE INFO: Trailer Official Site

"The Chosen" season 3 key artMeet a fisherman struggling with debt, a woman wrestling with demons, and a gifted accountant ostracized from his family and people. See how Jesus changes lives, works His first miracles, and embarks on His ministry to change the world. See Jesus through the eyes of those who knew Him. The Chosen is the first-ever multi-season series about the life of Jesus and the highest crowd-funded TV series project of all time. Watch the show that millions of people won’t stop talking about.

Mission

The Chosen, the first multi-season show about Jesus’s life, hopes to take you deeper into gospel stories by retelling and expounding on the character and intentions of Jesus and those who knew Him.

Reza Diako is an English/Persian actor of Austrian nationality and Iranian origin. He has taken over the role of ‘Apostle Philip’ in the worldwide influential TV series “The Chosen.” A historical drama based on the life of Jesus and those who knew him, the popular series returns in February via its fourth season with a singular viewing experience releasing bi-weekly in theaters. On the big screen, Reza has two upcoming projects: the indie film “The Astronaut” (Kate Mara and Laurence Fishburne) as ‘Ethan Marshall’ the director of NASA and “Reading Lolita in Tehran” alongside award-winning actress Golshifteh Farahani and Zar Mir Ebrahimi. The film is based on the best-selling memoir, and Reza portrays ‘Bahri’, an intellectual literature student caught in the middle of his role as a leading member of the student Islamic society at the University of Allameh Tabatabei in Tehran, and his deep love and respect for both literature for his professor, Azar Nafisi (Golshifteh Farahani), under the backdrop of the early days of Iranian Revolution and the Iran/Iraq War in the early 1980s.

 

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Photo of Philip (Reza Diako) and another character of "The Chosen" from the official Facebook page.

 

Interview with the cast of “Resident Alien”

TV Interview!

 

Sara Tomko, Alice Wetterlund, Corey Reynolds, Levi Fiehler and Meredith Garretson of "Resident Alien" on Syfy

Interview with Sara Tomko, Alice Wetterlund, Corey Reynolds, Levi Fiehler and Meredith Garretson of “Resident Alien” on Syfy by Suzanne 2/6/24

It’s always wonderful to speak this cast. I love everything about this show, especially the actors and the writers. It’s been great to speak with them the last few years. Unfortunately, I didn’t get an opportunity to speak with Alan Tudyk this time, but it’s fine. I’ve spoken to him several times before.  All of the actors are very kind and enjoy talking about their characters and the show. I know you’ll enjoy this upcoming season 3 as much as I have, and these videos. I can’t wait for you to see them!

Meredith Garretson (“Kate Hawthorne”) and Levi Fiehler (“Ben Hawthorne”)

Collage of Levi Fiehler and Meredith Garretson of "Resident Alien" on Syfy

I was originally paired with another reporter, Allison Hazzlett-Rose, but she had technical problems. I haven’t edited these videos, so you will hear me just chatting with the actors at the beginning, before we get to the actual questions. It was a lot of fun to have these 10 minutes.

Corey Reynolds (“Sheriff Mike Thompson”)

NEW YORK COMIC CON -- "Resident Alien World Premiere Screening & Panel" -- Pictured: Corey Reynolds -- (Photo by: Astrid Stawiarz/SYFY)

Originally, I was supposed to speak to Elizabeth Bowen (“Deputy Liv Baker”) and Reynolds, but Elizabeth couldn’t make it. Allison was still having technical problems. This meant I had the full 10 minutes with him. It was pure joy, I admit.

 

Sara Tomko (“Asta Twelvetrees”) and Alice Wetterlund (“D’Arcy Bloom”)

Sara Tomko and Alice Wetterlund of "Resident Alien" on Syfy. Photo from Tomko's Instagram.

Finally, Allison was able to be included in our chat with Sara and Alice. It was an awesome conversation. Both women are so entertaining and love to talk. We had 11 minutes, and the moderator had to cut off the actors because they were running out of time.

Sara Tomko, Alice Wetterlund and Meredith Garretson of "Resident Alien" (from Syfy's Facebook page)

MORE INFO:  Official Site   Trailer

RESIDENT ALIEN -- Pictured: "Resident Alien" Key Art -- (Photo by: SYFY)

Based on the Dark Horse comics, SYFY’s “Resident Alien” follows a crash-landed alien named Harry (Alan Tudyk) whose secret mission is to kill all humans. In season three, Harry is vowing to work with General McCallister (Linda Hamilton) to rid the Earth of the Grey aliens – a task made more difficult when he discovers that the Grey Hybrid Joseph (Enver Gjokaj) has taken a job in town as the new Deputy. Joseph isn’t Harry’s only obstacle – Harry struggles to balance business and his personal life when he falls in love for the first time. Meanwhile, Asta (Sara Tomko) and D’arcy (Alice Wetterlund) move in together and struggle to discover their purpose in the world, Sheriff Mike (Corey Reynolds) and Deputy Liv (Elizabeth Bowen) continue their quest to find out who killed the Alien Tracker, and Ben (Levi Fiehler) and Kate (Meredith Garretson) are forced to deal with the subconscious repercussions of their alien abductions.

From UCP, a division of Universal Studio Group, in association with Amblin TV and Dark Horse Entertainment, “Resident Alien” was adapted to television by executive producer Chris Sheridan. Mike Richardson and Keith Goldberg of Dark Horse Entertainment, Justin Falvey and Darryl Frank of Amblin TV, Robert Duncan McNeill, and Nastaran Dibai also executive produce.

NEW YORK COMIC CON -- "Resident Alien World Premiere Screening & Panel" -- Pictured: (l-r) Chris Sheridan, Executive Producer, Writer, Resident Alien; Alan Tudyk; Sara Tomko; Corey Reynolds -- (Photo by: Astrid Stawiarz/SYFY)

Sara Tomko

Asta Twelvetrees, “Resident Alien”

Sara Tomko stars in SYFY’s “Resident Alien” as Asta Twelvetrees. Strong and sarcastic, she works with Harry at the town’s health clinic.

Tomko is known for her recurring roles on “Sneaky Pete” and “Once Upon a Time,” as well as her appearances on “The Leftovers” and “The Son.”

She started her career in experimental theatre and musicals in Virginia, later moving to Los Angeles in 2007 to pursue film. Her first independent film roles aired on SYFY, and she is thrilled that her TV career has brought her full circle. She is an actor, singer, producer, poet an artist.

Tomko is represented by Bohemia Group and KMR Talent.

Alice Wetterlund

D’Arcy Bloom, “Resident Alien”

Alice Wetterlund stars in SYFY’s “Resident Alien” as “D’Arcy Bloom,” the charismatic bartender at the local pub who, as a former Olympic snowboarder, is also a part of the avalanche control team.

Wetterlund has performed her non-yelling brand of comedy nationally at colleges, clubs, and festivals such as Just for Laughs, Bridgetown, Moon Tower, Women in Comedy, SF Sketchfest, RIOT LA, Bonnaroo and more.

She is known for her character “Carla” on HBO’s “Silicon Valley” and played “Kelly Grady” on TBS’ “People of Earth.” She can also be seen in the movie “Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates” as “Cousin Terry.” She has performed her stand up on “Conan” and currently co-hosts the popular podcast “Treks and the City” with Veronica Osorio. She recently wrapped “Search & Destroy” for Hulu, produced by Carrie Brownstein. Wetterlund can currently be seen on the latest season of Netflix’s “Glow.” Her hourlong stand-up special premiered on Amazon in August.

Corey Reynolds

Sheriff Mike Thompson, “Resident Alien”

Corey Reynolds stars in the SYFY drama “Resident Alien” as Mike Thompson, the local sheriff who runs the town with a chip on his shoulder, a cowboy hat on his head and an iron fist.

Reynolds is best known for his role on “The Closer,” which he starred on for six seasons. He will next be seen as a guest star in Apple’s “The Afterparty.” He’s recurred on “All American,” “Red Line,” “Criminal Minds,” “NCIS: Los Angeles,” “Masters of Sex” and “Murder in the First.” He has guest starred on “Seal Team” and “Chicago P.D.”

On the film side, he was last seen on screen in “Straight Outta Compton” and also appeared in “Selma,” opposite David Oyelowo and Common.

Reynolds was nominated for a Tony Award for his performance in Broadway’s production of “Hairspray.”

Levi Fiehler

Mayor Ben Hawthorne, “Resident Alien”

Levi Fiehler stars in the SYFY drama “Resident Alien” as Ben Hawthorne, the naive town mayor whose 8-year-old son is suspicious that the new local doctor is an alien.

Fiehler was born in Juneau, Alaska where he trained as an actor at Perseverance Theatre. His career took off when he booked a lead role on “Fetching,” which was an original series for Michael Eisner’s company, Vuguru. Prior to “Fetching,” Fiehler was a series regular on Ron Howard’s series “Mars” for National Geographic. Other work includes “The Fosters,” “Ray Donovan,” “Murder in the First” and “CSI.”

Meredith Garretson is a theater, television and film actress based in New York and Los Angeles. She received her MFA from NYU’s prestigious Graduate Acting Program. She also trained for two years in Meisner Technique at the Maggie Flanigan Studio. In 2021, she starred as Ali MacGraw in the acclaimed limited series THE OFFER on Paramount Plus. She plays Kate Hawthorne in the hit series RESIDENT ALIEN on Syfy and Peacock. She is a founding member of SOCIETY Theatre Company in New York City.

 

Alan Tudyk, Sara Tomko, Corey Reynolds, Alice Wetterlund, Levi Fiehler, Elizabeth Bowen, and Chris Sheridan and San Diego Comic-Con (photo from Syfy's Facebook page)

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Interview with Justin Hartley

TV Interview!

 

"Tracker" cast list in the CBS press day 1/31/24

Interview with the cast and executive producer of “Tracker” on CBS by Suzanne 1/31/24

This was a CBS Winter press panel for two new shows, “Tracker” and “Elsbeth.” (The latter part is here.) Unfortunately, I didn’t get to ask a question, but it was fun to see all of them on camera and hear them talk about the new show. I hope it’s a big success! Don’t miss the premiere, right after the Super Bowl, 2/11. It’s an entertaining action/adventure show.

This is the second time I’ve been on a virtual panel with Justin Hartley, who stars as Colter Shaw. Colter tracks down missing people for the reward. He travels around in an Airstream and, of course, has a team of people helping him.  It’s not that straight-forward, though, as we learn he’s had a troubled childhood.  The last panel I was on with Hartley was for This Is Us a few years ago. I didn’t get to ask him a question then, either. I hope someday that I can speak with him! I’ve been a fan of his since he played Fox on “Passions,” and I also loved him in “Smallville” and “The Young and The Restless.”

Tracey Raab: Hi, everyone. I’m Tracy Raab with the CBS Network Communications team. Thank you for joining us today as we welcome the cast and producers from our new drama series Tracker, which premieres after the Super Bowl, and Elsbeth, which premieres. Thursday, February .  Thank you again for your support, and I will turn it over to Sienna Sanders to begin our Tracker session. Thank you.

Sienna Sanders: I’m Sienna Sanders from CBS publicity, and along with my colleagues, Erin Frailick, Chris Caspers and Susie Adurien, I would like to welcome you all to our winter press conference for a new series, Tracker to premiere on Sunday, February Eleventh, after the Super Bowl. Based on the best-selling Jeffrey Deaver novel, “The Never Game, Tracker follows Colter Shaw, a lone wolf survivalist, who roams the country as a reward seeker. joining us from the set of Tracker in Vancouver, we have star and executive producer, Justin Hartley; and cast members Fiona Renee; Robin Weigart, Abby McEnany, Eric Graise; and executive producer and director, Ken Olin.

Before we begin our Q&A, we would like to invite Justin to share a few opening remarks with all of you. Justin?

Justin Hartley: Hey, y’all. Well, thank you for joining us, and for those of you who watched the show, or several of the shows that were provided. Thank you very much for that. I know everyone’s so busy.  You know, Ken and I worked together, as you know, on This Is Us, and we had this really great culture and great experience together, and developed such a tight friendship, sort of like a family, that we sort of looked at each other, and we said, “We gotta do– we gotta keep doing this. We wanna do another show. And so we were on the lookout for something really great to do together, and we found this book, and we were able to luckily get our hands on it and develop it, and from there find this extraordinary cast to fill out our show. We’re so lucky. And we have, I think, continued that culture that we found on This Is Us in this really wonderful environment. So again, thank you and open up to whatever questions you might have.  Keep them appropriate if you can, you don’t have to. And simple.

Jim Halterman: Hey, guys, I’ll keep this appropriate. Ken, can you tell first just what you saw in the book? Because Justin told me you’re the one that gave him the book. What was it in the book that you saw as a series, and for Justin to kind of take on?

Ken Olin: I had been, I think, both Justin and I, after 6 years of babies and dogs, we wanted to do something that would be fun for us to do. Probably we were looking for something that was a little more story-driven… plot-driven. Justin, you know, wanted to carry a gun and get in fights. So I always– was in the mood to try to find something that maybe harkens back to the old PI shows that I grew up with, which was before most of these people were born, I think. But you know, shows like The Rockford files and Mannix and things like that. But I didn’t want to reboot a show. I wanted to find something that was based on a character who had a more contemporary psychological background. And then I read “The Never Game”. By Jeffrey Deaver, whose work I always have loved, and, I mean, the character is described…it’s like Justin. It’s a character who, I mean, this is a stretch, but looks like a movie star and is tall, and is underestimated– is always underestimated. And I’ve always felt Justin is– I love working with him. I think he’s incredibly talented, and I think he’s… often he surprises people with all of his skills.  I took it to Justin. I said, “Hey, man, I think this would be fun to do. I think we can do a real contemporary version of a PI show, and let’s do it together.” And Justin read it, said, “Good, I’m in. Let’s do it.” And then, yeah, Twentieth [Century Fox] I mean, I think they like the idea of us working together and doing this kind of show. So that was how it came about.

Jim Halterman: Alright, alright, thanks, guys.

Sienna Sanders: We’ll take our next question from Mark Berman.

Marc Berman: I thank you for doing this. My question is, for Justin or Ken, or anybody that wants to answer, actually… you know you. Of course, you mentioned you come off of 6 amazing years on This Is Us. Can you go back to the days of Thirty Something, so a lot of the work that you’ve done has evolved a story, a family element story. Can you talk to me about that? What’s the back story on this show with us? Supposedly this fractured family? What is this family? And why is it fractured?

Ken Olin: So let’s see….I’m exhausted.

Justin Hartley: So, Ken’s done. Yeah, I think I have one more in me. That’s a really good question, actually, and it’s sort of a driver for all of the stuff that you see this character do in his adult life. There’s an element, I think, to most, if not all, of the jobs that he takes… that, and his ability to solve– to find these people, and to get these positive outcomes that comes from the way that he was raised, and the way that he was raised is not necessarily always easy on the palate, I mean. His father was very, very difficult. He had a rough childhood, really unique– strange kind of childhood. But all of those things that he went through when he was younger are things that he was taught, and that he uses  in his current life. And you know, I think a lot of the stories that we tell open up and (correct me if I’m wrong), but I feel like they open up Colter a little bit, in the sense that he then kind of can reflect on his childhood. And oftentimes I think  the way that you remember things might not be actually the way they actually happened, right?  And I think Colter’s kind of figuring that out as well. So, but that’s a major part of our show is the backstory in the family, and he’s got a lot of questions about his, about his childhood and what he ends up, I guess, realizing our assumptions. That might not be true.

Ken Olin: With all of these shows there is some kind of a family created, in most of the procedurals. It’s called a team, and one of the things I found really appealing about this story was: he’s created a family. It’s just that. It’s a family that is, in some ways, I think, representative of a contemporary way of life. Now, where we communicate with our family on Zoom, on phone text, he has a family. It’s just that they’re not all in the same room, I mean, and they can’t all fit in the Airstream. So… but it’s still, I mean, he grew up, you know, he grew up with a very fractured family. There are secrets, mistrust… So you have a character at the center of the show. Who is he? He mistrusts intimacy. He mistrusts those bonds. And yet, at the same time, he’s created those bonds with all of these people that you see here, but they’re kept – in some ways – at a distance, and yet they all interact, and they interact the way a family does… but not in the way that we’re used to seeing, I think.

Sienna Sanders: Great. We’ll take our next question from Bruce Miller.

Bruce Miller: This is for Justin. How difficult is this workload? I’m assuming that on This Is Us you, like…

Ken Olin: Nothing, are you kidding? And This Is Us. It was like, “Justin, Wake up.  Come on, please come to work. Please come to work”, you know. Now, it’s like every day in the rain, the kid is…he’s 26 years old. Look at him.

Justin Hartley: I just remind you that the question was for me. Sorry I’m not warming up.  The workload is great. Look, here’s the thing.  I love it. I’ve always wanted this, and it’s not work. It’s a labor of love. I mean, you have a call time, and you show up. And gosh! People have written stuff for you, and people are lighting you. And I’ve got this amazing support group around me. These guys, I mean… it’s a team effort, for sure. And whether you’re on stage, or out in the middle of the forest in the middle of the night on a Saturday morning. Yeah, in 4 degrees by yourself, or whether it’s you, or whether it’s you guys on stage, or wherever you are. It’s the story that that matters. And when you watch the finished product, it all becomes worth it? So I don’t. I don’t really feel the workload. That’s …I mean, that’s bullshit. I do. It’s hard, it’s really hard. No, it’s not… Look, I mean, I’m not in the renegotiation. I’m not complaining. It’s been great when you get an opportunity to do something that you love and spend a lot of time doing it with people that you love. It’s a joy.

Sienna Sanders: Great. We’ll take our next question from Luaine Lee.

Luaine Lee: Justin, I like that fact that Ken said your character is underestimated, and I think actors are always underestimated at some point. Can you think of a point in your life when you are underestimated?

Justin Hartley: Yeah, I– sort of… gosh! Can I think of a point when I wasn’t? I like being underestimated. I think I think it’s a good place to be. In a place where people expect perfection, and then you don’t deliver, is a worse place to be than if you’re underestimated. I don’t mind being underestimated. It’s fine. I mean, I don’t know. Do you mind being underestimated? I never mind that.  I like low expectations, I guess, is what I know. Yeah, I think that it’s OK. I thrive on that. I don’t mind that at all. I get it, too. It’s all good. It’s all good.

Luaine Lee: Thank you.

Sienna Sanders: Okay, we’ll take our next question from Jamie Steinberg. Jamie?

Jamie Steinberg: Yes, and Justin, how much did the author influence the character you created? Were you close to what he created? Did he talk to you a little bit about fleshing out your version of this individual?

Justin Hartley: Yeah, I would say quite a bit… good question. I would say quite a bit. Ken and I talk about it all the time. It’s actually– you could probably answer that better than me. We worked on this character together, you know? Obviously Jeffrey wrote it, and then you have to figure out a way… What is it that’s so interesting about this character? First of all, what drew you to it? And then from there. How do you adapt it to the screen? Because it doesn’t– There are certain things in the book where this character, he does a lot of calculations and sort of talking to himself in his head.  You just can’t do that on screen. It would be very hard to watch. You’d be reading a lot, and it would be very hard to watch. So you have to figure out a way to show this guy and what’s going on in his head without just having him talking to himself all the time, which, sort of, is not the character. He’s not a weirdo. He’s not constantly talking to himself like Ken, and he’s not haunted. But yeah, we talked a lot about that. Actually, how do you get all of that stuff that we love about the character in the book translated to the screen without losing it, but also without kind of making it look like something it’s not? I think his skill set is very much his skill set: his physicality, his relationship to women. Those things are very similar to the book.

Ken Olin: I think probably the biggest adjustment that we made was to try to use Justin’s sense of humor and his ability. Justin’s. He’s so good with humor. The character in the book isn’t. He just isn’t the same that way. He’s a much more silent kind of character. So we wanted to use Justin’s facility. And also, I think it translates well, in television.  It’s something that’s really appealing, and it’s very appealing about Justin. So that would be, I think, the biggest difference between the character in the book and the character on the show.

Sienna Sanders: It’s great. We’ll take our next question from Mike Hughes.

Mike Hughes: Uh, Justin, when they talk about this character being not as silent as the book? He’s still really silent. He doesn’t talk very much. A strong and silent kind of guy. What’s it like to play that kind of thing after you played [the opposite] for 6 years? Where there was a lot of talk about everything.

Justin Hartley: That’s a great question. Well, in some sense it’s a relief, nd in some sense it’s a daunting task.  You know, when you’re still, and you’re on camera, and you’re still,and you’re not talking, you’re telling the story through your– well, your look, and what’s going on with your body? You’re not. It’s an interesting thing. It’s a bit scary, in a way, because you’re sitting there going. Ok? I’ve been still in silent for a good solid 40 seconds. Is that boring? Is that going to be interesting, I mean, is that going to, you know, make people think that I’m asleep, or something, or..?  But it’s really not. I mean, the writing is good, and the storytelling is great, and if Colter’s listening to something… and I firmly believe that, as far as acting goes…if you actually do what you say you’re doing, sounds like, you know, actually firing a gun or actually stabbing someone or actually punching someone. If you’re emotionally doing what you say that you’re doing, I think that’s very hard to deny or to say that that’s not true or honest. So I love it. I think it’s really cool, too. I love those characters, too. I love watching a character not necessarily talk all the time, but think. As an audience member just sitting here, watching what Bruce Willis might be thinking, and then you sit at the edge of your seat wondering what he’s going to say next. So I’ve always been a fan of those kind of characters. So for me it’s sort of a dream come true. And now we’ll stop talking.

Fiona Rene: And we’ll watch you.

Whitney Friedlander: Hi, there! Thanks everyone for doing this.  Not to bring it up. This Is Us: comparisons are too much. But there was a pivotal episode of This Is Us that aired after a super bowl. And you guys are premiering after a super bowl.  Is there any extra pressure – both because of those things to see how it goes? And also, I wanted to talk to Ken also about the decision to change the name. You said you didn’t want to do a reboot or anything like that. But also, you’re working with an IP that has a known property.  And why you went from calling it “The Never Game” to calling it Tracker.

Ken Olin: Because I can’t remember. Yeah, the Super Bowl part. Yeah. Well, listen. One of the great things for us was when Amy Rice, in fact. from CBS, gave us this time slot early on, with an impending strike and everything else. It was an incredible vote of confidence. Because, you know, there was a much better chance that we were going to have an incredible launch than there was that there was going to be a false schedule to begin with. So that was a huge thing. And yeah, there was pressure. A lot of the pressure became simply practical in that we had to create scripts, generate scripts, and be able to produce a certain number of shows, so we could stay on the air after the Super Bowl, you know, in the weeks coming up, because there was no point in launching a show after the Super Bowl, and then having nothing. So there’s that pressure. It’s better to have this pressure than not have this pressure.  You know, it’s an incredible opportunity, and there’s a tremendous amount of support. So that’s been great.

As far as changing the name goes…the biggest issue was that there’s IP.. with no game involved.  Where there are no games, and I think what we didn’t want was to have people watch the show and see this guy rescuing somebody in the desert and wonder when the game would start. What’s the game — fix the bone or whatever it was. I think that was a big– that was the basis of the decision  It was, look, there is no game involved it. It has to do with, also one of the books and one of the stories. It’s not actually pertinent to what he does or anything else. It was just the title of one of the books about Colter Shaw. And so the title… we did some research on the titles, and this title really stuck with people. So it was a practical decision, and I think a really smart one. Also. I don’t know how many games you wanted to play: Monopoly, not thrilling. That was why we changed the title.

Sienna Sanders: Question to Abby and Robin: How would you describe Teddy and Velma’s relationship to Colter, and with each other?

Abby McEnany: Oh, sure! I think our relationship– my relationship with Velma and Teddy is based on comfort and love and respect, and they’re very different.  But they work off each other their differences. They work off each other, and I think it’s quite lovely. It’s very lived-in to me. It’s very intimate in how small it can be, if that makes sense. And then our relationship with Colter, I think, originally, was like that. Velma was very motherly, and I think it’s come off that more. I’m always excited for Colter to find out like who you’re sleeping with, and like, are you always? Did you not get that? Okay? Maybe that’s something to talk about later. And I just think– I’m always very worried– Abby herself is very worried for him.  Long answer. Sorry, everybody. Anyways, I think he’s really lovely. I think that we consider– in my brain, it’s like, Colter is chosen family. And like, yeah, close, and we look out for him. And I think that he is [family], yeah. And we depend on each other. That’s my takeaway.

Robin Weigert: Yeah, the only thing I would add to that is, I may have, sort of, more the practical head in this duo, and I’m always looking for the job that will give us the most money for the least risk for our boy, you know, and it’s always– it’s never going to be as simple as I think it is, either because if it’s too simple of a job, so he’s not going to remain as excited by it. He’s just not going to be as excited by it. If I’m sending him to look for a car, it’s a safe, easy job, great reward. He may very well find a want ad and be uninterested in that car, and so I have to keep slicing it that way.  And I’m also I have an eye to her, because if he gets into a lot of danger, then it wreaks havoc on our relationship because she  gets concerned and is tempted to want to go and help him. And you know, I’m trying to keep our home intact, as well. So I kind of have a bit of that relationship to the whole thing. We both love him a lot, and I’m just trying to keep this train on the tracks.

Abby McEnany: I’m not allowed to leave the house… we’re not playing. He’s gonna try to leap into, I don’t know… a burning building to keep our home intact. So, yeah. We have a little bit of a different approach. But we have the same goal, and we both don’t tell him. But we both love this guy a lot.

Sienna Sanders: Okay, we’ll pick our next question from Rob Owen.

Rob Owen: For the producers: Will we ever get to see Colter in the same room as Velma and Teddy? And will we learn how they know each other, how they came to know each other?  And last, what happened to Mary McDonnell, and what’s the name of the actress who now plays Colter’s mom?

Ken Olin: Yes. yes, to those questions. Listen. The actress who now plays Colter’s mother is Wendy Crewson.  She’s fantastic. There were, basically– there were certain practical aspects to the character, and what we wanted to do going forward, and how much we would integrate that character into the storylines versus what we had originally thought when we did the pilot. And so the decision, which was mutual, was just…. This is a better situation, economically. It’s a better situation for all of us. Look, the character, and the way we’re going to use her, is changing. And so, therefore, it just made sense to change actors.

Rob Owen: Thank you.

Sienna Sanders: Alright. Now, Eric, are you as tech savvy as Bobby is?

Eric Graise: Oh, yeah. So, I spend most of my life working on hacking, and taking apart computers and stuff. No, Bobby, he’s… yeah. He’s way smarter than I am, different skill set. Yeah, but I identify with him more, on, you know, it’s kind of street level. I like his humor.  He’s definitely into a sense of fashion. That’s kind of my favorite thing about Bobby. But yeah, no,  I’m not the guy you call for computer stuff. I’m more of a Dungeons and Dragons kinda nerd.

Ken Olin:  I just have to tell you… The character that we originally created was about 55 years old… military guy.  This kid came in and did an audition that was so brilliant. We changed everything. And, by the way, we didn’t have anywhere near as clear an idea of who this character was until, you know, Eric came along. I just love working with him. He’s awesome. I don’t like working with anybody else on the show. [Laughter]

Sienna Sanders: Our next question will be from Rick Bentley.

Rick Bentley: Thank you. Hey, Justin? I know you guys have talked about that you’ve changed things from the book. But at the end of the day, you still have that book as a source material. Do you like that idea, or do you prefer, when you’re creating a character, to create your own bible to create your own backstory?

Justin Hartley: Good question. I like both. I think there are fun aspects of both. It’s great to have that source material, though, because week-to-week, as we get these new episodes, new story, new guest stars, new set of circumstances, new job… whatever it might be. You do have that source material. So if you have an acting technique, in a way, I find that you barely ever use it. But the fact that it’s there gives you comfort, right? So, as the stories change week to week, and like, I said, new characters come on in new… I don’t want to call them cases, but new jobs, new set of circumstances. You have that source material. You always have that, sort of, in the back of your head, “What would Colter do?” And you use that source material. At least I do… to decide for yourself, “What would Colter do?” Well, how would he react in this situation, given the source material. So I use it. And I find it’s good to have.

Sienna Sanders: Hey, Fiona, you have now played a lawyer on CBS shows back to back. How does Reenie Green compare to Rebecca Lee?

Ken Olin: Reenie’s alive?

Fiona Rene: What he said?  You know, I think they’re completely different. They’re both lawyers, and they both are a little hard-headed and smart. But Reenie has a lot more fire. She’s got a lot more fire in her, for sure… she’s sassy. She doesn’t take any of his bull. I think she likes to fight, and she doesn’t like to run away. And Rebecca was very much, run away from her problems. Girl, until the end. That answer your question?

Sienna Sanders: Yes, thank you, and we’ll take our last question from Megan Behnke.

Megan Behnke: Hi! My question is for Justin. How would you describe Colter’s personality, and his persistence to be a rewardist, since it’s such an odd career choice?

Justin Hartley: Yeah. I mean. I think he’s, you know…. what I love about him, I think he’s a good man. He’s a good man, and he wants to do good things for people in need. And I think we talk a lot about how he’s a restless guy. He can go in, you know, sort of help a situation. There’s an outcome, and then he leaves. He has a hard time, like you were saying, running away. He has a hard time not running away. I don’t think he intentionally runs away. I just think it’s how he is. He’s afraid of a lot of stuff, oddly enough. And I think that’s why he finds he’s trying to fill this void that is probably unfillable.  But he’s trying to fill it with. You know, these rewards and helping strangers. And, like Ken mentioned, he’s sort of created this family around him to try to fill all these voids that, like I said, I don’t think he can fill, and I also think, at a surface level, I think he enjoys the action and the fun and the excitement, and not being tied down, and the freedom.  But yeah, I think it’s definitely, when you look at his past, his childhood, the way he was brought up, what happened to his father, the questions that he has about his family, and the paranoia that he was surrounded by when he was younger. And then you look at what he does as an adult, it all makes sense, and you go, well, that he’s a product of his environment. What? What? You know, what happened to him as a youth. I hope I got that right, ’cause.e’ve already shot like episodes. [Laughter]

Justin’s Closing Remarks

Justin Hartley: Yeah, well, look, I mean, I’m really, really proud of the show that we put together. It’s a team effort. The culture that I found on This Is Us with that group – with Dan Fogelman, and with Ken, and the whole cast – that we had these lifelong friendships that’ve developed with Chrissy, and Sterling, and Mandy and Milo and everybody. I’m really proud of what we’ve done here, because that was a special time in my life, and I thought, “Man, I’m going to savor every flavor because you never get that back.” And I feel like, somehow, I was able to get a second shot at it, and I’m so happy to be with all of you, and thank you for watching our show. I think we have something really special.  We pour our hearts out or into it, and blood, sweat and tears. And I know everyone’s so busy. So thank you for watching, you will be entertained. And yeah, we do have guns and fighting, so it’s a fun one.

Sienna Sanders: Thank you so much.

MORE INFO: Trailer Official Site

CBS Presents TRACKER ©2024 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

TRACKER stars Justin Hartley as Colter Shaw, a lone-wolf survivalist who roams the country as a reward seeker, using his expert tracking skills to help private citizens and law enforcement solve all manner of mysteries while contending with his own fractured family. The series is based on the bestselling novel The Never Game by Jeffery Deaver.

Series premiere Sunday, Feb. 11 following SUPER BOWL LVIII on the CBS Television Network and streaming on Paramount+ (live and on demand for Paramount+ with SHOWTIME subscribers, or on demand for Paramount+ Essential subscribers the day after the episode airs).

ON AIR:

ORIGINATION:

Sundays (9:00-10:00 PM, ET/PT)

Vancouver

FORMAT:

Drama (Filmed in HD)

STARRING:

Justin Hartley

(Colter Shaw)

Fiona Rene (Reenie)

Robin Weigert (Teddi)

Abby McEnany (Velma)

Eric Graise (Bobby)

PRODUCED BY:

20th Television

EXECUTIVE PRODUCERS:

Justin Hartley, Ken Olin, Elwood Reid and Ben Winters

PRODUCERS:

Jeffrey Deaver

Proofread and Edited by Brenda

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"Tracker" cast list at the CBS press day 1/31/24 screenshot

 

Interview with Rekha Sharma

TV Interview!

 

Rekha Sharma plays Dr. Neeta Devi on the NBC drama “Transplant.” Screencap from video.

Interview with Rekha Sharma of “Transplant” on NBC by Suzanne 2/2/24

It was wonderful to speak with Rekha. She’s been in so many shows that I love, so it was great to see her join the cast of “Transplant” this year (season 3 for those of us in the U.S.).  She’s very nice and down-to-earth.  I hope you enjoy tonight’s finale of the show, and I look forward to season 4! It already aired in Canada, but not here yet.

MORE INFO: Preview

TRANSPLANT -- Season 3 Gallery -- Pictured: Rekha Sharma as Dr. Neeta Devi -- (Photo by: Yan Turcotte/Sphere Media/CTV)Rekha Sharma
Dr. Devi, “Transplant”

Rekha Sharma plays Dr. Neeta Devi on the NBC drama “Transplant.” Dr. Devi takes over as the Chief of Emergency Medicine and comes to York Memorial with big ideas but finds herself perched atop a glass cliff.

The Canadian actress is most widely known for her powerful and dynamic roles on the Peabody and Emmy Award-winning series “Battlestar Galactica” as well as CBS’s iconic “Star Trek: Discovery.” She most recently co-starred on the Emmy Award-nominated Showtime series “Yellowjackets.”

Her numerous past projects include “Roswell: New Mexico,” “The Imperfects,” “Bingemas,” “United States of Al,” “Another life,” “The 100,” “Supernatural,” “V,” “Smallville” and the feature film “The Core.”

 

Transplant

New Season Premiering Thursday, October 12 on NBC (9 p.m. ET)

The new season of “Transplant” finds Bashir “Bash” Hamed (Hamza Haq, “My Salinger Year”) continuing his journey to start over, but with each new milestone comes a new challenge. While pursuing Canadian citizenship for himself and his younger sister, Amira (Sirena Gulamgaus, “Orphan Black), Bash closely examines who he’s becoming in his adopted country.

Bash, still being asked repeatedly to prove himself, works closely with his colleagues as they move forward following the dramatic conclusion of season two. Everyone continues to find themselves looking to adapt to change and understand how they fit in, both within and beyond the walls of York Memorial Hospital.

After Dr. Bishop’s shocking departure, the team gains a new boss with the forward-thinking Dr. Neeta Devi (Rekha Sharma, “Yellowjackets”). Dr. Devi has big ideas when it comes to overhauling the emergency department at York Memorial.

“Transplant” also stars Laurence Leboeuf as Dr. Magalie “Mags” LeBlanc, Ayisha Issa as Dr. June Curtis, Jim Watson as Dr. Theo Hunter, Torri Higginson as head nurse Claire Malone, Gord Rand as Dr. Mark Novak and Sirena Gulamgaus as Amira.

Creator Joseph Kay serves as showrunner and executive producer. Rachel Langer, Josée Vallée, Jocelyn Deschênes, Bruno Dubé, and Stefan Pleszczynski also executive produce.

“Transplant” is produced by Sphere Media in association with CTV and Universal International Studios, a division of Universal Studio Group.

Please visit the official show site at: https://www.nbc.com/transplant.

For the latest “Transplant” news, videos, and photos, please like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter and Instagram:

https://www.facebook.com/NBCTransplant/
https://twitter.com/NBCTransplant #Transplant
https://www.instagram.com/nbctransplant/

Interview with creator Joseph Kay of “Transplant” on NBC 10/10/23

 

TRANSPLANT -- Season 3 Gallery -- Pictured: (l-r) Hamza Haq as Dr. Bashir Hamed, Rekha Sharma as Dr. Neeta Devi -- (Photo by: Yan Turcotte/Sphere Media/CTV)

Proofread and Edited by Brenda

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Popular shows of 2023

Interview with Megan Best

TV Interview!

 

Megan Best stars in "Confessions of a Cam Girl" on Lifetime - photo from IMDB.

Interview with Megan Best of “Confessions of a Cam Girl” on Lifetime by Suzanne 1/23/24

It was lovely to speak to Megan. You may know her from “The Watchful Eye” last year on Freeform, where she played the meeker of the two sisters, Darcy. She’s playing a very different character here.  She does very well as a young woman who thinks she knows what she wants and goes after it, even though she may be risking her life or reputation. It’s an exciting Lifetime drama, so you don’t want to miss it, Saturday, 1/27/24, 8/7c.

 

MORE INFO: Official Site Trailer

"Confessions of a Cam Girl" key artInspired by real stories, Confessions of a Cam Girl follows the eighteen-year-old fashion savant Kristen (Megan Best, Dawn) who is set to become the first in her family to graduate college. Her working-class parents are furious when she reveals a plan to attend fashion school instead of college. Her parents refuse to use her college fund for her farfetched dream. Determined to pay for it herself, Kristen secretly creates an online explicit content page to raise $10,000 for dream program. Confident that she can keep her side hustle under wraps, Kristen’s secret unravels and threatens not just her future, but the safety of her family as well.

Confessions of a Cam Girl is produced by Sepia Films for Lifetime. Sheri Singer serves as executive producer. Siobhan Devine directs from a script written by Miriam van Emst.

Megan Best is known for Nobody (2021), Seance (2021) and Vandits (2022). Visit her on Instagram

Proofread and Edited by Brenda

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Megan Best stars in "Confessions of a Cam Girl" on Lifetime