Jul 28 (TheWrap.com) - Former “Tonight Show” host Jay Leno will return to NBC this week to mentor comedians on “Last Comic Standing.”
As the five final comics face off Thursday, Leno will provide counsel on the ins and out of standup. Host JB Smoove introduces Leno to the comics by telling them they're about to meet “one of the funniest comedians in the world.”
Leno continued to perform standup regularly even while hosting “The Tonight Show” each night for two decades. NBC entertainment chief Bob Greenblatt has said he hopes Leno will continue a relationship with the network, and that hope is coming to fruition with Leno's appearance on the competition show.
NEW YORK (TheWrap.com) - Before Comic-Con, "Sons of Anarchy" creator Kurt Sutter teased some big guest casting news. On Monday, the name of the big guest star was revealed when "Glee" star Lea Michele tweeted that she'll be "appearing on an episode of my favorite show."
FX confirmed the casting to TheWrap, adding that Michele will play Gertie, "an empathetic truck-stop waitress and single mother, who connects with Gemma (Katey Sagal) during a difficult time." lt's a dramatic departure from Rachel Berry, the sunny singer she's played on "Glee" since 2009. She'll appear in the sixth episode, airing Oct. 14.
If "Glee" and "SoA" seem like strange bedfellows, remember that Katey Sagal played the role of Artie's mom on the musical dramadey, so there's already an established connection. If Lea breaks out into song while hanging with SAMCRO, though, then all bets are off... though Sutter may be thinking of something interesting, according to his response.
Jul 28 (TheWrap.com) - WGN America's new drama “Manhattan” — premiering Sunday at 9 p.m. — takes a fictional look back at the birth of the atomic bomb during the top-secret Manhattan Project in Los Alamos, NM. In the process, the show takes a fictionalized look at the personal lives of the workers at Los Alamos as they raced to create a weapon that would alter the world forever.
Series creator-executive producer Sam Shaw (below right) and director-executive producer Thomas Schlamme took time out from filming the season finale to discuss mankind's fascination with the apocalypse, the fear of nuclear war versus the fear of terrorism, and how the creation of a devastating weapon gave birth to suburbia.
TheWrap: What made the Manhattan Project an attractive topic for a television series?
LOS ANGELES (TheWrap.com) - As Marvel finalizes surprises for its Comic-Con panel on Saturday, the rumor mill regarding "Doctor Strange" has reached a fever pitch and the actor who has been mentioned most often for the coveted superhero role is none other than three-time Oscar nominee Joaquin Phoenix, multiple individuals close to the casting process have told TheWrap.
On July 18, Twitter user @KevinInChains revealed that Joaquin Phoenix had been spotted buying "Doctor Strange" comics at a comic book store in Connecticut. Phoenix is in New England filming the Woody Allen movie.
Representatives for Marvel and Phoenix had no comment.
LOS ANGELES (TheWrap.com) - Nine seasons and two movies later, people still can't enough of "The X-Files." Now, it seems neither can original creator Chris Carter.
In a new interview with Vulture, Carter has once again hinted that there may be more to come, and it could be an even more likely possibility than ever with the recent change in leadership over at 20th Century Fox TV and the Fox network, the production company and network on which the original "X-Files" series aired.
"I'm very friendly with Gary and Dana," Carter says when asked if the new Fox bosses would mean a new version of the David Duchovny-Gillian Anderson series, whether a sequel or reboot, could happen. "Dana and I basically cut our teeth at the same time. She was a publicist. It's nice to go through your career with someone you have respect for and were in the trenches with. Dana and I sat in the same room during the first market testing of The 'X-Files.' She was like a junior publicist, and I was this unproven producer. She was there at the beginning. So I owe her a lot. And certainly she and I have talked a lot about this.
Jul 25 (TheWrap.com) - “Community” creator Dan Harmon was joined by castmembers Joel McHale, Gillian Jacobs, Jim Rash, and Dino Stamatopoulos, as well as writer Chris McKenna, for a panel discussion on the show's upcoming sixth season on Yahoo TV. He even teased the “and a movie” portion of the show's signature hashtag: #sixseasonsandamovie
While Yahoo TV had previous teased a possible fall return for the show, Harmon told the assembled audience that it was more likely going to be “probably sometime after Christmas.” He said the plan was to start writing in the fall, according to the Associated Press.
As for that process, Harmon isn't planning anything as ambitious as “Arrested Development” did when it put together its latest season for Netflix. “My philosophy is: Attempt to make the same show, and let the lack of boundaries kind of make themselves felt, instead of just going, ‘We can make the episode 49 minutes long, and say the f-word the whole time,'” he said in the panel.
Jessica Biel is coming to Fox's "New Girl" as "the hottest scientist in the world," TheWrap has learned.
The stint is just for one episode, the Season 4 premiere.
Here's Fox's full description of this fall's first half-hour: "It's the last wedding of the season, and the gang challenges each other to see if each of them can get lucky at the big event. Jess (Zooey Deschanel) sets her sights on a cute guy at the wedding - only to be taken on by Kat (Biel), the hottest scientist in the world."
Jul 24 (TheWrap.com) - It's good news for the ladies of Litchfield, but bad news for fans of “Orange Is the New Black.” Corrections officer George Mendez aka “Pornstache,” portrayed by Pablo Schreiber, will not be returning for the third season of the hit Netflix drama.
Schreiber confirmed his departure in an interview with the New York Post. “I'm a member of a show called ‘The Brink’ that's going to be on HBO,” he told the Post. “It's a half-hour comedy with Jack Black and Tim Robbins and me [as] the three leads. I'm really excited about it.”
While he was a prominent character on Jenji Kohan's “Orange,” Schreiber was only a guest star through the first two seasons. He said that it was “a no brainer” to jump on board a starring role opportunity. “It was a better move for me as an actor,” he explained.