Fox and its 20th Century Fox TV studio have suffered a setback in its trademark legal dispute with the owner of a small chain of independent stand-up comedy clubs in the UK. Mark Tughan, whose Comic Enterprises owns four Glee Clubs, registered the trademark in 1999, and in 2011 he filed a lawsuit against Fox over musical dramedy Glee, claiming the name of the show infringes on his trademark, creating a confusion that his venues are somehow associated with the series. Earlier today, a British judge ruled in Tughan’s favor on the infringement and “tarnishment” issues while rejecting his claim of harm being caused to him by the Glee series, which airs in the UK on Sky Broadcasting, partly owned by Fox. While handing a victory to Tughan, the judge expressed an opinion rather than ordering actions such as an injunction banning the series from airing in the UK, something Tughan had sought. Fox will request an appeal, which, if granted, could drag on for as long as a year, during which time Glee would continue to air in the UK.
As Sundance continues in Park City, the 20th annual Slamdance Film Festival wrapped tonight with its awards ceremony. The fest handed its Audience Award for Narrative Feature going to Mark Raso’s Copenhagen and the documentary nod to Kate S. Logan’s Kidnapped For Christ. The Jury Awards went to Fernando Frias De La Parra’s Rezeta (Narrative) and Matthew Bauckman and Jaret Belliveau’s Elliot (Documentary). And The Spirit Of Slamdance Award went to The Greggs, from directors Bruce Bundy, Nigel DeFriez, Rob Malone, Kira Pearson, Alex Mechanik, Jessie Levandov, Jonathan Rosenblit. The feature competition films in the Documentary and Narrative Programs are limited to first-time filmmakers working with production budgets of less than $1 million. Here is the full list of winners and special mentions:
Slamdance: ‘Magic Mike’s Joe Manganiello’s Male Strip Docu ‘La Bare’ Is Well Endowed By Main Street Films Distribution Deal
Jack Black’s Electric Dynamite To Remake Slamdance Pic ‘Wizard’s Way’
20th Annual SAG Awards: ‘American Hustle’ Wins Best Motion Picture Ensemble, Matthew McConaughey & Cate Blanchett Best Actors; ‘Breaking Bad’, Bryan Cranston And ‘Modern Family’ Take Top TV Honors
Related: SAG Awards Winners (Full List)
UPDATED WITH WINNERS AND BACKSTAGE REACTIONS: American Hustle cemented its status as on Oscar Best Picture frontrunner tonight, taking the top ensemble award at the 20th Annual SAG Awards, which were handed at LA’s Shrine Auditorium. The actor races also gained further clarity with more wins for Matthew McConaughey and his Dallas Buyers Club co-star Jared Leto, and Blue Jasmine‘s Cate Blanchett. (A mild upset came in Supporting Actress, when 12 Years A Slave‘s Lupita Nyong’o won over a field that included Golden Globes winner Jennifer Lawrence.) On the TV side, Breaking Bad ended its final season on the air by taking the Best Ensemble Drama Series crown for the first time, with Bryan Cranston winning Best Drama Actor for a second consecutive year. In comedy, Modern Family won its fourth consecutive ensemble award, and Ty Burrell became the first individual winner from the series. There were a few good one liners over the two-hour-plus ceremony (organizers eventually asked winners to pare their speeches to 45 seconds — some did, some didn’t). Among the cracks were Burrell’s 5 Simple Steps to Success in Acting; Rita Moreno’s F-bomb (caught by the censors) at the beginning of her Lifetime Achievement Award acceptance speech; and Blanchett brushing off an off-camera clock during her time onstage, saying of McConaughey’s, er, wide-ranging speech just before hers: “Matthew McConaughey just spoke about Neptune, so I think I can have an extra 5 seconds.”
Actor statuettes up for grabs in 13 categories — five for film and eight for TV. There also are TV and film stunt ensemble categories, with those winners unveiled ahead of the main ceremony simulcast live on TNT and TBS. Final voting by the Screen Actors Guild’s eligible membership — that’s about 100,000 actors — was due yesterday, which gave ballot-casters a chance to soak in the Golden Globe winners last weekend.
Deadline had all the SAG scoops in our live-blog of the ceremony. Jen Yamato and Ross Lincoln were on the ground at the Shrine, and Film Editor Anita Busch, TV Editor Nellie Andreeva and Awards Columnist Pete Hammond provided analysis. Here’s how it went down:
Brian Brooks is a Deadline contributor.
2014 is kicking into gear with a number of new Specialty titles hitting theaters, though heavy-weight titles in the caliber of August: Osage County and Inside Llewyn Davis, for instance, have yet to make their debuts in the New Year. Kino Lorber will roll out its Tribeca winner The Rocket in limited runs with an explosive story set in Southeast Asia, while IFC Midnight will bow its genre title Raze. Distribution (somewhat) newcomer Big World Pictures will bring Georgia’s foreign-language Oscar entry In Bloom to a pair of New York theaters, while Icarus will open documentary The Great Flood at one downtown Manhattan location. And the director (and a star) of SXSW’s Loves Her Gun will open day and date with a unique DIY strategy for the film’s limited theatrical run beginning this Friday.
Writer/director Kim Mordaunt penned The Rocket over 2009 – ’10. The drama centers on a boy who is thought to bring bad luck to everyone around him and leads his family and two new friends through Laos to find a new home. After a disaster-filled journey, he proves he’s not bad luck by building a giant rocket to enter the year’s most exciting and dangerous event, the Rocket Festival. Mordaunt’s previous documentary effort, Bomb Harvest, looked at the legacy of war in Laos and provided a good amount of background in the form of history as well as the mythology from the Southeast Asian country that formed the backbone of The Rocket.
Glee co-creator Ryan Murphy has confirmed what we had already figured out — that the “happily ever after” for Rachel and Finn that Lea Michele laid out in the Cory Monteith tribute episode is how he planned to end Glee after six seasons. “Rachel was going to have become a big Broadway star, the role she was born to play,” Ryan said in his eulogy at Monteith’s July private memorial service, an excerpt of which was published by Entertainment Weekly. “Finn was going to have become a teacher, settled down happily in Ohio, at peace with his choice and no longer feeling like a Lima loser. The very last line of dialogue was to be this: Rachel comes back to Ohio, fulfilled and yet not, and walks into Finn’s glee club. “What are you doing here?” he would ask. “I’m home,” she would reply. Fade out. The end.” That is exactly what Rachel described in her tearful monologue during “The Quarterback.”
Turner Classic Movies last night premiered its annual In Memoriam video, TCM Remembers, in advance of the crush of In Memoriams that are unveiled during trophy-show season. Unlike those often controversial televised in memoriam segments – including, most loudly, this year’s Emmycast – TCM’s is not subject to the same time constraints, or politics. That said, it’s already been chided, in comments made by YouTube viewers, for not including Cory Monteith or Paul Walker. This year’s video was shot at The Lyric Fine Arts Theatre in Birmingham, Ala, which was built in 1914 and is currently undergoing a major restoration, for which a fundraising campaign just reached its $7 million fundraising goal, TCM reports.
Fall Status Report: Solid New Dramas, Soft Comedies, Where Do Networks Stand, Does Tracking Matter, Will NBC Keep Must See TV
Seven weeks into the 2013-14 season, the dust has started to settle, the strongest new shows have been renewed, the biggest duds have been cancelled, and the borderline performers have been getting a mix of both. Some anticipated time slot wars materialized, like the Tuesday 8 PM hour where incumbent NCIS and newcomers Marvel’s Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D. and The Originals all have been competitive, and some didn’t, like the hyped Blacklist-Hostages showdown, which turned to be a lopsided match. Which leads us to one of the lessons of this fall, that pre-launch tracking is not that reliable.
Until the very start of the fall season, CBS’ Hostages was tracking on par with NBC’s The Blacklist. But when ratings for premiere night were in, Blacklist more than doubled Hostages‘ demo tally. While boosted by DVR viewing, Hostages never became the breakout hit it was tipped to be.
What has mattered in a big way this fall are lead-ins, even with DVR penetration at 48%. NBC’s Blacklist and hot sophomore drama Chicago Fire have been helped tremendously by The Voice. CBS’ new Thursday comedies The Millers and The Crazy Ones owe their well being (and back orders) to The Big Bang Theory. When Big Bang switched to a repeat, the newbies’ fortunes plunged. (list of all new fall shows with their status after the jump)
On the surface, a whopping nine new comedy series have been given back orders on the Big 4 networks (all but ABC’s Super Fun Night and NBC’s Sean Saves The World have received full-season pickups), along with NBC’s The Michael J. Fox Show, which had a 22-episode order, vs. three new dramas, including the Season 2 pickup for Fox’s Sleepy Hollow. But the three dramas – Blacklist, Sleepy Hollow and Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D. — are the freshmen that have shown breakout potential this fall while comedies had another off year. That is not terribly alarming to network brass as some comedy hits have taken time to grow, such as Cheers, Seinfeld and more recently The Office, The Big Bang Theory and How I Met Your Mother. Problem is that we haven’t seen much of that in the past couple of years. Instead, there have been a ton of comedies that started promisingly (like 2 Broke Girls and Suburgatory) and then lost their way or started off soft and never went to another level before the cancellation ae fell on them after 1, 2 or 3 seasons, like ABC’s Happy Endings and Don’t Trust The B—- In Apt 23, NBC’s Whitney and Fox’s Ben & Kate.
There has been an increase in the comedy volume put out by the networks in the past couple of years. That, combined with the lack of half-hour breakouts, has led to many but weakened comedy blocks. We have the most two-hour comedy blocks on the Big 4 — five — in a decade.
Fox denied Ryan Murphy had a Glee spinoff in the works for Lea Michele yesterday afternoon – hours after the Radar report had spread like wildfire among Gleeks. Murphy had already announced he would honor the series’ two-season order in the wake of star Cory Monteith’s death, and that next season would be its last. Murphy had also said he had originally envisioned Glee’s series-final scene with Monteith and Lea Michele’s characters – a plan that was dashed when Monteith died of an accidental heroin and alcohol overdose last summer. Before the spinoff report broke out, there had been some speculation Murphy would focus the final season of Glee on Michele’s character moving forward after Finn’s death. Murphy, meanwhile, is at work on his pilot, Open, for HBO, creating a new character in order to add Cheyenne Jackson, as a series regular, playing a handsome meth addict; filming is set to begin in February.
TV Academy Leadership To Stay Put As Chair Bruce Rosenblum & Fellow Board Of Governors Officers Run Unopposed
Last Thursday was the deadline for candidates seeking Television Academy‘s Board of Governors Officers positions for the 2014 – 2015 term to file paperwork. The results are in, and the list of officers will remain virtually unchanged, with the Secretary position the only one contested as current Secretary Marcelino Ford has termed out. All other incumbents, led by chairman Bruce Rosenblum, are getting another term as they are running unopposed. The repeat indicates that the board is happy with the TV Academy’s direction under Rosenblum and the cultural change he has installed. As for Rosenblum, as we reported, his motivation to run again was prompted by a desire to finish initiatives he had put in motion. Remaining on his To Do list for the second term are a rebranding of the TV Academy,embracing all forms of content from iconic creative talent to broadband/digital distributors and looking for ways to further engage the membership through increased live as well as digital/live stream events.
Here is the list:
Ryan Murphy Confirms Plan To End ‘Glee’ Next Season, Talks Final Season Storyline Change Following Cory Monteith Death
Was the “happily ever after” for Rachel and Finn that Lea Michele laid out in the Cory Monteith tribute episode last week how Glee was supposed to end? With Rachel making it on Broadway (and maybe doing a Woody Allen movie) before returning to Ohio and walking into McKinley High where Finn was a teacher to tell him she was home. Talking to reporters at an FX event at the Paley Center last night, Ryan Murphy confirmed that the current two-year pickup of the musical dramedy is indeed designed to be its last, with the next and final sixth season originally built around Rachel and Finn’s story, according to TV Line. “I always knew that, I always knew how it would end. I knew what the last shot was — (Finn) was in it. I knew what the last line was — (Rachel) said it to him.” Monteith’s untimely death has changed all that. Murphy said he has a idea about a new ending that would be “kind of in (Cory’s) honor)”, which he is getting ready to pitch to Fox. Glee started its fifth season low before ratings rebounded with the episode dedicated to Monteith.
The CW has ordered three additional scripts of each of its three new fall series — dramas The Originals, The Tomorrow People and Reign. The script pickups come after two airings of The Vampire Diaries spinoff The Originals, one of The Tomorrow People and a week ahead of Reign‘s premiere next Thursday. (It was pushed because of tonight’s Cory Monteith episode of Glee.) They also come as the writers of the three series are completing work on the original 13-episode orders. The script orders follow solid showings from The Originals, which premiered to a solid 0.9 rating in adults 18-49 and 1.9 million total viewers in its regular Tuesday 8 PM slot this week after a launch behind TVD, and from The Tomorrow People, which logged a 0.9 and 2.7 million viewers in its debut last night (adjusted up in the finals), matching its lead-in, the Arrow second season premiere.
The episode’s three-hankie music covers have been released, media polls have been created so you can vote which made you cry hardest, the creator has spoken of weeping cast members shooting excruciatingly emotional scenes, the tabloids have written about the mysterious exclusion from the episode of the actress who played his original love interest – it’s time for Fox to air the Cory Monteith tribute episode of Glee tonight and see how America reacts.
Fox and the show creators had decided, shortly after Monteith’s death, to air a couple of original episodes first, followed by a Monteith tribute episode this week, which got the episode away from the crush of new-show premieres and returning show debuts. Among Fox competitors this week, talk seemed to be split between those who think this episode will pack a wallop, and those who expressed surprise the episode hasn’t generated more buzz and wonder if Fox waited too long to deal on-air with the actor’s death.
Here’s the first glimpse at Glee‘s tribute to Cory Monteith, who died in July. Set to Adele’s version of “Make You Feel My Love,” the clip shows McKinley High students solemnly putting together a shrine around Finn Hudson’s locker. The episode, titled “The Quarterback,” airs October 10 on Fox: