EXCLUSIVE: Hocus shmocus: Disney is in early development with Tina Fey on a supernatural-themed feature, but a knowledgeable source tells me it’s not the Hocus Pocus sequel that’s being wrongly buzzed about all over town. The film, currently known as Untitled Witch Project, will be produced by Fey and Cinderella producer Allison Shearmur in what’s described as falling in the vein of Ghostbusters, with 30 Rock Golden Globe winner Fey also attached to star. Sorry to break it to fans of the 1993 Bette Midler horror-comedy: No Hocus Pocus 2 project is currently in the works at the Mouse House – yet. Stay tuned to see if the nostalgic wave of online buzz conjures a return for the Sanderson Sisters.
EXCLUSIVE: Wrestling superstar John Cena is dropkicking his way into The Nest, Universal’s Tina Fey-Amy Poehler comedy about two sisters who throw one last party in their parents’ soon-to-be-sold house. Character details are under wraps but I hear the Cenation Leader is playing what could mark his first villain role after spending over a dozen years as the WWE’s All-American hero.
Pitch Perfect‘s Jason Moore is directing from a screenplay by Paula Pell, with Fey producing for her Little Stranger, Inc. banner alongside Jay Roach and his Everyman Pictures and John Lyons. Poehler is exec producing with Jeff Richmond and Brian Bell. Fey and Poehler anchor the cast which also includes James Brolin, Ike Barinholtz, Maya Rudolph and John Leguizamo.
EXCLUSIVE: Golden Globe winner James Brolin is joining Tina Fey and Amy Poehler in Universal’s comedy The Nest, about two sisters who throw one last rager before their parents’ house is sold. Brolin will play Fey and Poehler’s father in a cast that also includes Ike Barinholtz (The Mindy Project, Eastbound & Down). Tony-nominated Jason Moore (Pitch Perfect) is directing The Nest from an original script by Saturday Night Live writer Paula Pell. Fey will produce for her Little Stranger Inc. banner alongside Jay Roach for Everyman Pictures and John Lyons. Poehler is exec producer alongside Jeff Richmond and Brian Bell. Universal’s Erik Baiers and Chloe Yellin will oversee for the studio. Pic will get a Christmas-timed release on December 18, 2015.
EXCLUSIVE: Harvey Weinstein has some choice words for the whiners who used the New York Post and the Daily News in recent days to complain about Jennifer Hudson‘s appearance on tonight’s Tony Awards broadcast. Unfortunately, he didn’t use any of them when he called me. Instead, he was downright diplomatic. “We are passionate about being involved on Broadway and being a part of tonight,” he said.
On the other hand, he was also passionate in his defense of Hudson’s appearance, responding to the anonymous assertions that he had “muscled” his way onto the CBS telecast to promote Finding Neverland, the musical he has been developing for Broadway next spring and in which Hudson will not appear. One story had him calling CBS chief Les Moonves and demanding a slot on the Hugh Jackman-hosted show. Another quoted Broadway sources complaining that the appearance of a star on the Tonys who isn’t connected to a show is “unprecedented.” Which is, of course, a lotta Tony baloney.
“I never called Les, and he never called me,” Weinstein said. Tony broadcast co-producer Ricky Kirshner attended a recent workshop of the show with music stars Alicia Keyes and Taylor Swift present. Weinstein says that the idea of a star doing a number from the show on the Tonys came out of that performance. Hudson, you may recall, played one of Broadway’s ultimate diva roles in the …
It’s a 30 Rock reunion! I’ve learned that 30 Rock alumna Jane Krakowski has joined the cast of upcoming NBC comedy series Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, from 30 Rock creator/star/executive producer Tina Fey and executive producer Robert Carlock. Krakowski will recur on the project, starring Ellie Kemper as the wide-eyed Kimmy who, after 15 years of living in a cult, decides it’s time to reclaim her life and heads to New York. Krakowski will play a rich Upper West Side mom who hires Kimmy as a nanny. I hear the casting came together very quickly after Fox last Wednesday opted not to proceed with Krakowski’s comedy pilot Dead Boss. The character only has one scene in the pilot where it was played by Megan Dodds. After swiftly closing a deal with Krakowski, I hear the scene was reshot and will be featured in the trailer for the series at today’s NBC upfront presentation. (The pilot also is expected to undergo other tweaks.) Coincidentally, Krakowski also joined 30 Rock after the pilot, replacing Rachel Dratch. She went on to earn four Emmy nominations for her role. She is with UTA and Brillstein Entertainment.
The comedy starring Tina Fey and Amy Poehler will hit theaters on December 18, 2015. Pitch Perfect helmer Jason Moore directs The Nest, about two disconnected sisters cleaning out their parents’ family home who throw one last high school rager for their now-grown former classmates. Universal hopes it’ll serve as a counterprogramming option to Disney/Lucasfilm’s Star Wars: Episode VII, which also opens that weekend along with Sony’s thriller Inferno. Jay Roach is producing The Nest alongside Fey, with Poehler exec producing. SNL and 30 Rock scribe Paula Pell penned the script.
The once and future Golden Globes hosts are teaming up again, this time for the big screen. Amy Poehler is in final negotiations to star alongside Tina Fey in Universal’s comedy The Nest. They’ll play sisters who come home to find their parents’ house has been put up for sale. They spend a last wild weekend together, bonding and feuding and finally growing up. Fey is producing through her Little Stranger banner along with Jay Roach and his Everyman Pictures. Poehler also will executive produce. Pitch Perfect helmer Jason Moore will direct The Nest from a screenplay by Paula Pell. SVP Production Erik Baiers and creative executive Chloe Yellin are overseeing for the studio.
Sara Chase and Lauren Adams have joined NBC comedy series Tooken from 30 Rock’s Tina Fey and Robert Carlock. It centers on Kimmy (Ellie Kemper), who escapes from a doomsday cult and starts life over in New York. Chase, repped by TalentWorks and Perennial Entertainment, will play Cyndee, Kimmy’s best friend from the cult. Adams will play Gretchen, a member of the cult for the past 10 years and the only member who has been successfully brainwashed and believes everything she was told. Adams is with CESD, Luber/Rocklin and attorney Jeffrey Hynick.
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The Hollywood Foreign Press Association and dick clark productions said they will air the 72nd Golden Globe Awards on Sunday, January 11, 2015, and confirmed that hosts Tina Fey and Amy Poehler will return for a third year in a row. NBC will air the ceremony live on both coasts (5 PM PT/8 PM ET) from the Beverly Hilton.
In October, Fey and Poehler inked a two-year deal to host the 2014 and 2015 Globes after their first turn in January 2013 drew strong critical praise and more importantly 19.7 million viewers, a 17% bump over the year before. Last month, Fey and Poehler returned and the broadcast did even better, drawing 20.9 million viewers (the biggest audience since 2004) and a 6.5 rating (a seven-year high).
The 2015 date was set without mention of the pending lawsuit between the HFPA and dcp. Both sides are awaiting a ruling on the appeal of aspects of the press group’s unsuccessful 2012 suit over who owns the lucrative TV rights to the ceremony. Once that’s ruling comes down, a new phase of the case will begin that challenges digital rights, pre-show rights and dcp’s accounting methods.
Brandon Jones has been cast in Fox‘s multi-camera comedy pilot/soon-to-be-series created/executive produced by Matt Hubbard and exec produced by Tina Fey and Robert Carlock. Directed/exec produced by Pam Fryman, the comedy is set at a women’s college that begins accepting men for the first time. Jones, repped by Greene & Associates and Velocity Entertainment, will play Gerald White, one of the four male students at the college — strapping, handsome, corn-fed, incredibly naive, from a town of 300 in Utah and a devoutly Mormon family.
Chelsea Lately regular and writer Fortune Feimster has been cast in Fox‘s multi-camera comedy pilot/soon-to-be-series created/executive produced by Matt Hubbard and exec produced by Tina Fey and Robert Carlock. Directed/exec produced by Pam Fryman, the comedy, which has a series penalty, is set at a women’s college that begins accepting men for the first time in its history. Feimster, repped by Gersh and Truhett-Garcia Management and attorney Lev Ginsburg, will play Becca, a popular sophomore at the college, an out-of-the-closet lesbian who is not tortured by her sexual orientation in the least. A three-sport varsity athlete, she is outgoing, extremely loud and a raucous partier.
Tina Fey and Amy Poehler once again made it look easy to rain down snark on the entertainment industry and get them to like it. “Welcome to the annual Tina Fey and Amy Poehler’s Lee Daniels The Butler’s Golden Globe Awards,” Fey opened — a nod to Warner Bros mockable battle with The Weinstein Company over the right to name a movie The Butler, in which WB insisted it had the right to the title dating back to its 1916 silent comedy short of same name.
Like Ricky Gervais, the guy they replaced, Fey and Poehler seemed to suffer from Second-Year Slump, though sartorially things went much better his year for the First Women of Comedy. They’ll “keep doing it until everybody hates it,” they promised — they’ve already been signed for next year.
Hollywood males got a special skewering this year:
“Matt Damon is here for being in Behind The Candelabra. Any other night in any other room you’d be a big deal. Tonight you’re basically a garbage person.”
Best film nominee Gravity is about “how George Clooney would rather float away into space and die rather than spend another minute with a woman his own age,” Fey said moments later.
“And now, like a supermodel’s vagina, let’s give a warm welcome to Leonardo DiCaprio,” Fey snarked as the Wolf Of Wall Street star came out to present an award.
“Matthew McConaughey did amazing work this year. He lost 40 pounds for his role in Dallas Buyers Club – or what actresses call Being In A Movie.”
Funny ladies Tina Fey and Amy Poehler returned to the Beverly Hilton to emcee their second Golden Globes. Watch the celeb-roasting monologue that kicked off the night’s awards and weigh in on Fey & Poehler’s sophomore turn hosting this year’s relatively tame booze-a-palooza:
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EXCLUSIVE: Third Watch and Guiding Light alumna Bonnie Dennison has landed a lead role in Fox‘s multi-camera comedy pilot created/executive produced by 30 Rock co-executive producer Matt Hubbard and exec producer by 30 Rock creator/co-showrunner Tina Fey and co-showrunner Robert Carlock. Directed/exec produced by Pam Fryman, the untitled comedy is set at a women’s college that begins accepting men for the first time in its history. Dennison, repped by Don Buchwald & Associates and manager Rob Gomez, will play Thena (originally named Callie), a pretty but uptight sophomore, a hard-core feminist and leader of the sizable population of Cabot College that does not want men on campus. However, her militance masks a vulnerable and romantic side that pops up in unexpected ways. Universal TV is producing, with 3 Arts’ David Miner also exec producing.
EXCLUSIVE: A multi-camera comedy from 30 Rock co-executive producer Matt Hubbard, creator/co-showrunner Tina Fey and co-showrunner Robert Carlock already had a series commitment from Fox where it landed in August in a bidding war. Now the project has received a formal pilot green light, with Pam Fryman set to direct and executive produce. It is one of two high-profile comedy pilots for next fall Fryman is already slated to direct and exec produce, along with the How I Met Your Mother proposed spinoff, How I Met Your Dad. Fryman directed the pilot for the mothership CBS series and has served as director and executive producer for its entire nine-season run.
The Hubbard/Fey project is set at a women’s college that, for the first time in its history, begins accepting men. It hails from Universal Television where Hubbard, Fey and Carlock are under overall deals, and Fey’s Little Stranger. Hubbard wrote the script and is executive producing with Fey, Carlock and 3 Arts’ David Miner. This marks the second greenlight for Little Stranger in its first development season under a four-year deal Fey inked with Uni TV last fall. The company has a straight-to-series 13-episode order at NBC for a comedy penned by Fey and Carlock and starring Ellie Kemper. It also has a script by Colleen McGuinness in contention at NBC. Uni TV has two comedy series on …
Because of the discrepancy between the broadcast TV season (September-May) and the eligibility period for the SAG Awards (calendar year), broadcast series get an extra shot at SAG Awards for the January-May portion of their final seasons. NBC’s 30 Rock did one better today, landing three SAG nominations despite airing only five episodes during the 2013 calendar year — the series’ final five installments.
According to the SAG Awards rule book, eligible on the comedy side are “30 minute comedy series (with a minimum 21-23 minutes of actual programming content) with an ongoing theme and storyline in a minimum of six continuous episodes (reducible to a storyline of four continuous episodes in the cases in which the series is subject to a “short order.”) 30 Rock was not a subject of a short order; its final season included 13 episodes. But it qualified as SAG Awards’ eligibility rules are different for final seasons, said SAG Awards executive producer Kathy Connell. “In a final season, we allow a show to wrap as long it is in the calendar year,” and the six-episode minimum does not apply, she said.
Shawn Levy‘s ensemble dramedy about a dysfunctional family reluctantly brought together for the funeral of its patriarch will hit theaters September 12, Warners said tonight. This Is Where I Leave You stars Jason Bateman, Tina Fey, Adam Driver, Jane Fonda, Rose Byrne, Ben Schwartz, Corey Stoll, Dax Shepard, Timothy Olyphant and Kathryn Hahn and was scripted by Jonathan Tropper from his 2009 book. The pic’s competition that weekend will include the Sony-Screen Gems thriller No Good Deed and the Universal comedy Search Party.
Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), Democratic leader of the House of Representatives, will present the Top Ten List on the Late Show With David Letterman on Election Day, Tuesday, November 5, CBS announced this morning. This will be Pelosi’s second visit to the late night program. She last visited the broadcast seven years ago on August 22, 2006, ahead of the fall elections that made her the first female Speaker of the House. That same night, Kathy Griffin is booked to be on the show, as is Bruce McCall, who co-authored with Letterman the book This Land Was Made For You And Me (But Mostly Me): Billionaires In The Wild, which will be released Tuesday; and a performance from musical guest J. Cole.
Pelosi is known, among other things, as being game to make the rounds on daytime and nighttime talk shows including The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Rachael Ray, Late Night With Jimmy Fallon, The Tonight Show With Jay Leno, Late Show With David Letterman, The Daily Show With Jon Stewart and The Colbert Report. She also was a guest judge on the reality series Top Chef when the show was set in Washington in August 2010. But she made headlines when she played herself on 30 Rock‘s series finale, telling the then-Washington Post’s — now Deadline’s — Lisa de Moraes, “I would do almost anything Tina Fey asked me to do.”
NBC Picks Up Comedy Series From ‘30 Rock’s Tina Fey & Robert Carlock Starring Ellie Kemper With 13-Episode Order
30 Rock executive producers/showrunners Tina Fey and Robert Carlock will be back on NBC next fall with a new New York-based single-camera series starring another familiar NBC face, The Office alumna Ellie Kemper. The network has given a straight-to-series 13-episode order to the untitled project, written by Fey and Carlock. It will center on a woman (Kemper) who escapes from a doomsday cult and starts life over in New York City. Universal TV and Fey’s studio-based Little Stranger are producing, with Fey, Carlock and 3 Arts’ David Miner executive producing.
“Tina and Robert, who cemented their partnership on 30 Rock, have created a new signature comedy for us that is audacious, emotional, and clever,” said NBC Entertainment chairman Robert Greenblatt. Added Entertainment President Jennifer Salke, “Original voices like Tina and Robert don’t come along very often, and we wanted them back on the air as soon as possible. And to have them working with Ellie Kemper — who we watched grow up on The Office from supporting player to leading actress — puts the whole package together.”