What could possibly go wrong? One of the most uninhibited personalities in show business, Russell Brand, is getting to do an hour on TV live every week. Luckily for censors, it’s in late night and on cable. FX said that the upcoming 13-episode batch of BrandX With Russell Brand will air in a new live format. The show has expanded from half-hour to one-hour ahead of its return on Thursday, February 7. It will air at 11:30 PM after Totally Biased With W. Kamau Bell for a couple of weeks and move to 11 beginning February 28. Upcoming guests include live TV provocateur Kathy Griffin, who recently kissed Anderson Cooper’s crotch live on CNN (February 14), and Dermot Mulroney (February 28).
For a taste of what may be in store, here are some uncensored Brand comments about Sarah Palin at the summer TCA. “What would I ask her? Well I’d go straight for the subtext,” he said. “She’s popular because people want to fuck her, don’t they? That’s why they tolerate the other stuff….OK, that is a mad thing to say about seeing Russia out your window — but the dick don’t lie.”
Ray Richmond contributes to Deadline’s TV coverage.
Russell Brand kept his reputation intact for being the most free-spirited participant in TCA — perhaps ever — this morning, fresh from a renewal for a second crop of episodes of his idiosyncratic FX late-night talker BrandX With Russell Brand. As with his last appearance at TCA in January, Brand was part entertainer, part spiritual leader, ranting and cross-referencing with abandon in a display of barely controlled civility. Waltzing in wearing jeans torn at both knees, shimmering beads and barefoot — and sporting a black armband — Brand spoke about comedians, homophobia, the consumption of chicken (he finds it a terrible thing to do to a chicken) and, reluctantly, the announced creative changes coming to his show in Season 2 (as teased earlier by FX chief John Landgraf). “The show will look a little more like a conventional late-night show,” he said. Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: In separate deals, 30 Rock star Alec Baldwin is reuniting with his To Rome With Love helmer Woody Allen, and his Rock Of Ages co-star Russell Brand. I’m told that Baldwin will be part of the cast of Allen’s … Read More »
FX is setting up a two-and-a-half-hour comedy block on Thursdays, which will be bookended by Charlie Sheen’s new comedy Anger Management and Russell Brand’s new late-night series titled Strangely Uplifting. The block, which will premiere June 28, also will include … Read More »
The working title of Russell Brand’s upcoming late-night series for FX is Strangely Uplifting, he and the series executive producer Troy Miller revealed during the show’s TCA session today. The British comedian sure lived up to first part of the title with his behavior, jumping from topic to topic in a stream-of-consciousness style. Strangely Uplifting, billed as showcasing Brand’s unfiltered view on things, will shoot in front of live audience 2-3 days before air, with the premiere slated for April. Miller stressed that the show will be very stripped-down, with Brand giving his take on hard and soft news and anything that interests him. “I’d like this show to be news and topical comedy, stripped of all nonsense, stripped of all subterfuge,” Brand said. “These people in the news, they’re filling our minds with shit glitter.” What if Brand himself is in the news? “If I’ve done something actually newsworthy, then I’d cover it,” he said. Read More »
It’s been a busy day for Russell Brand. Fox has picked up an an animated comedy co-created and voiced by the British actor-comedian, the same day cable sibling FX announced that Brand signed a deal for an unscripted late-night … Read More »
FX had long been talking about getting into late-night, now the cable network is doing it with an unscripted comedy series starring British actor/comedian Russell Brand. The untitled six-episode, half-hour series will premiere in the spring. The concept is … Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: Adam Shankman will be set by New Line Cinema to direct The Nutcracker, a new take on the classic fairy tale that is being eyed as a tent pole family holiday film for late 2013. The script was written … Read More »
Catherine Zeta-Jones has closed her deal to star in Broken City, joining Mark Wahlberg and Russell Crowe in the Allen Hughes-directed drama. Zeta-Jones will play the philandering wife of the mayor of New York (Crowe). When a Brooklyn detective (Wahlberg) … Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: New Line has acquired Pregnancy Pact, a comedy pitch that Sam Pitman and Adam Cole-Kelly will write for Red Hour Productions. The comedy follows three lifelong best friends who make an ill-conceived pact to get the women in their … Read More »
Mandate Pictures has set Footloose‘s Julianne Hough and Russell Brand to star in Juno scribe Diablo Cody’s directing debut. The film is untitled and Mason Novick will produce. Cody will be exec producer with Nathan Kahane. Production starts in the … Read More »
Deadline broke the news in April that Russell Brand was making a first-look producing deal at Warner Bros, a studio that has stocked the lot with star-based companies featuring the likes of Robert Downey Jr, Ben Affleck/Matt Damon, Zac … Read More »
Former American Idol contestant Constantine Maroulis originated the lead role of Drew Boley in Rock of Ages‘ off-Broadway and Broadway musical incarnations. He’s not playing that role in the movie version that Adam Shankman is directing for New Line (Diego … Read More »
Is Alec Baldwin in or out of New Line’s Rock of Ages? We might have a better idea today after Baldwin takes part in a full run-through of the ’80s-flavored rock musical being held in an hour or so on … Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: While Arthur was a box office flop, Russell Brand has been staked to a first-look producing deal by Warner Bros. That studio has cut back as hard in recent years as any with its number of producer overhead deals, and slashed the ones that remain. But Brand becomes the latest case where the studio gives pacts to actors it primarily wants populating Warner Bros films. Warner Bros got aggressive on that front last year when it added deals with Robert Downey Jr., Ben Affleck/Matt Damon and Zac Efron, to go along with pacts previously given to Steve Carell, Leonardo DiCaprio and a few others. It has become reminiscent of those days when the studio had a star stable with the likes of Kevin Costner, Mel Gibson and Clint Eastwood (who, amazingly, is still there).
Brand will have a modest deal, but Warner Bros apparently hasn’t lost faith in him despite the disappointing returns on Arthur. The studio is bullish on two other comic vehicles that were acquired as star vehicles for Brand while the studio was making Arthur. One is an untitled laffer being scripted by William and Scott Bindley that would cast Brand as a David Beckham-like soccer player/playboy who gets arrested in Texas and draws the community-service gig of coaching the awful local high school team. The other is a remake of the British comedy show Rentaghost, in which Brand would play a spirit who starts a temp agency for the dead. One thing the studio has learned is that an entirely likable version of Brand isn’t necessarily the one audiences respond to. In the original Arthur, Dudley Moore was drunk the whole movie and picked up hookers. Brand played that kind of rascal in Get Him To The Greek and Forgetting Sarah Marshall, but his Arthur was sanitized by comparison. Better off turning him loose next time and perhaps pairing him with another star. Read More »
Adam Shankman has tweeted that he got Russell Brand to play Lonny in the New Line musical Rock of Ages. But Shankman’s pursuit of Amy Adams didn’t work out. He wanted her to play the role of the journalist … Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: Alec Baldwin has committed to star in Woody Allen’s next film. And where will the quintessential New York actor and Gotham’s arguably most famous director be filming? Try Rome. Allen has chosen that city as the site of his … Read More »