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Virginia Madsen Joins NBC’s ‘The Event’

EXCLUSIVE: Oscar nominated actress Virginia Madsen (Sideways) is joining NBC’s freshman drama The Event as a recurring. The actress — who’s coming off of ABC’s summer series Scoundrels — will play Catherine Lewis, the widow of a U.S. senator from Alaska who has assumed her husband’s post. A former powerhouse attorney, the Harvard grad is determined to carry out her husband’s legacy at any cost. As Deadline told you back in November, the role was originally offered to Friday Night Lights MVP Connie Britton. The Event is currently on hiatus and is slated to return to the schedule on Feb. 28. Michael Ausiello is contributing to Deadline.com and Movieline.com as he preps for the January launch of TVLine.com, a new TV-centric website from MMC.

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NBC’s ‘The Event’ Wooing Connie Britton

EXCLUSIVE: Now this is what I would call an event: NBC’s freshman drama The Event – which was recently picked up for a full season despite eroding ratings – is pursuing Emmy-nominated Friday Night Lights star Connie Britton for a major recurring role. According to sources, producers – one of whom is Britton’s longtime FNL director, Jeffrey Reiner – put a feeler out to the actress to play a senator’s wife. When her husband suddenly dies, the Harvard grad and former powerhouse attorney is given 90 days to prove herself worthy of his seat. And let there be no doubt that Britton is their first choice for the role; the casting breakdown lists the name of the character in question as “Senator Britton.” Should she bite, this would be the MVP’s first TV gig since wrapping up her five-season stint on FNL last July; the show’s final episodes are currently airing on DirecTV. Michael Ausiello will be contributing to Deadline.com and Movieline.com as he  preps for the early 2011 launch of a new TV-centric website.

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