Oct 8, 2015
12:59 pm

Celebrity Chef Dead at 75 (CNN)

A chef who was celebrated for his cooking well before the current crop of TV chefs became known as celebrities has died. CNN reports that Paul Prudhomme died today in New Orleans following a brief illness. He was 75

His death was announced by K-Paul’s, the restaurant he owned in New Orleans.

Prudhomme is widely associated with Cajun and Creole cooking, and is credited with popularizing the Louisiana-based cuisines.

The report quotes Poppy Tooker, host of the “Louisiana Eats!” radio program, saying: “Paul was the one who not only put Louisiana food, our food, Cajun and Creole food, on the map, but he was also the one who started the American food revolution that flourishes today.”

CNN adds: “Prudhomme was one of the nation’s first celebrity chefs, and his restaurants attracted huge crowds and widespread acclaim. He hosted several cooking shows and authored nine cookbooks, some of them bestsellers.”

Prudhomme was a part of five cooking shows produced by the PBS New Orleans affiliate WYES, including “Fork in the Road” in 1995, “Fiery Foods” in 1996 and “Always Cooking” in 2007. His books included “Chef Paul Prudhomme’s Louisiana Kitchen” (1984), “Chef Paul Prudhomme’s Seasoned America” (1991) and “Chef Paul Prudhomme’s Louisiana Tastes” (2000).

chef paul prudhomme's seasond america-book cover

Oct 8, 2015
12:44 pm

James Corden Posts Funny Outtake Video From His ‘Carpool Karaoke’ Drive With Stevie Wonder — Here It Is (CBS, YouTube)

Following up on a well-received video clip in which CBS late-night host James Corden and music legend Stevie Wonder drove around filming a “Carpool Karaoke” session for “The Late Late Show with James Corden,” the show posted an outtake video that may be even better than the original.

See for yourself:

Oct 8, 2015
12:31 pm

Selena Gomez Reveals She Has Devastating Disease (Billboard)

Pop singer and former Disney Channel star Selena Gomez revealed that she has been diagnosed with the autoimmune disease lupus. The former “Wizards of Waverly Place” star made the revelation in an interview for the cover story in the current issue of Billboard.

The disease strikes mainly women, and typically between the ages of 15 and 44. Rumors have circulated about her health situation — including rumors of possible addiction issues — since Gomez, now 23, canceled part of a concert tour in 2013.

Gomez told Billboard: “I was diagnosed with lupus, and I’ve been through chemotherapy. That’s what my break was really about. I could’ve had a stroke. I wanted so badly to say, ‘You guys have no idea. I’m in chemotherapy. You’re assholes.’ I locked myself away until I was confident and comfortable again.”

Gomez also opens up about recently being targeted by online body shaming. “I was in a bikini and got publicly ripped for being overweight,” she tells Billboard. “That was the first time I’d experienced body shaming like that. I believed some of the words they were saying. When somebody else has your self-esteem in their hands …”

The pop star says she has turned the online hate into the motivation she needed to pour energy into her music, including her latest album “Revival” (see cover below).

revival-selena gomez-2015-std edition cover“Revival”

Oct 8, 2015
12:21 pm

Fox Dominates Wednesday Ratings Even as ‘Empire’ Slips (TVbytheNumbers, Variety)

Fox had a pretty easy time of it in the broadcast prime-time ratings Wednesday night, clobbering its competition even as its juggernaut drama series “Empire” saw some slippage.

TVbytheNumbers.com reports that Fox averaged a 3.4 rating for prime time in the key 18-49 demo, based on Nielsen live+same day data. The closest the competition could get was a 1.8 for ABC, followed by CBS with a 1.6, NBC with a 1.4 and CW with a 1.0.

Things were a lot closer in total viewers, where Fox took a narrow win with 8.43 million, followed by CBS with 8.23 million, then NBC (6.86 million), ABC (6.07 million) and CW (2.31 million).

“Empire” had a 5.0 average rating in 18-49, by far the best number of the night on any of the broadcast networks. But Variety notes that the preliminary number was off 9% from a week ago, when the season’s second episode aired.

Variety points out that “Empire” faced some tough competition on cable last night, with TBS televising the Major League Baseball Wild Card Game between the Pirates and Cubs and FX launching “American Horror Story: Hotel.”

empire-fox-season 2

Oct 8, 2015
12:17 pm

Drama Series Picked Up for Third Season (TVWeek)

A drama series that recently wrapped its second season on cable just got word from FX that it will be back. The channel ordered a 10-episode third season of “Tyrant,” from Emmy- and Golden Globe-winning producer Howard Gordon.

Eric Schrier and Nick Grad, Presidents of Original Programming, FX Networks and FX Productions, made the announcement today. Season three is slated for 2016.

Along with executive producer and showrunner Gordon, the production team includes Glenn Gordon Caron, Chris Keyser, David Fury, Gideon Raff, Avi Nir and Hugh Fitzpatrick. The show is produced by Fox 21 Television Studios and FX Productions.

In the announcement, Schrier said: “Tyrant’s second season took the show to a new level thanks to the skill and direction of Howard, Chris and Glenn and their creative team, the exceptional cast and a story steeped in family, loyalty and intrigue. We look forward to the next chapter and a sensational third season of Tyrant.”

Season two averaged 2.47 million total viewers and 1.05 million in the 18-49 demo, based on Live+7 figures.

The announcement notes: “‘Tyrant’ is the story of an unassuming American family drawn into the inner workings of a turbulent Middle Eastern nation. Bassam ‘Barry’ Al-Fayeed (Adam Rayner), the youngest son of a war-torn country’s controversial dictator, returns to his homeland after a self-imposed 20-year exile in America, only to be forced back into the treacherous familial and national politics of his youth. When his brother, Jamal (Ashraf Barhom), assumes the presidency, Barry becomes a powerful force within the government, fueled by visions of bringing humanitarian freedoms to his homeland.”

tyrant-fx“Tyrant” (FX)

Oct 8, 2015
12:01 pm

Fallon Widens the Gap on Colbert in Late-Night (TVWeek)

NBC’s “Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon” put some ratings distance between itself and its new CBS competitor, “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.”

“Fallon” topped “Colbert” by 41% for the week of Sept. 28-Oct. 2 in the key 18-49 demo, with NBC announcing that it was Fallon’s biggest margin of victory to date over Colbert, who debuted Sept. 8.

Fallon averaged a 1.03 rating for the week in the demo, to a 0.73 for Colbert. Their ABC competition, “Jimmy Kimmel Live!,” trailed with a 0.55.

Fallon’s show also led total viewers, averaging 3.728 million to 3.122 million for Colbert and 2.334 million for Kimmel.

In the clash between the CBS and NBC lead-outs at 12:35 a.m., NBC’s “Late Night with Seth Meyers” topped CBS’s “Late Late Show with James Corden,” with Meyers delivering a 0.55 average rating in 18-49 — equaling Kimmel’s number in the earlier time slot — to a 0.39 for Corden. Meyers averaged 1.795 million total viewers to 1.441 million for Corden.

ABC’s half-hour 12:35 a.m. entry “Nightline” pulled a 0.37 average in 18-49 with 1.531 million total viewers.

The figures are based on Nielsen Media Research “live plus same day” data.

tonight show starring jimmy fallon-title

Oct 8, 2015
9:12 am

U.S. Man Who Was Hailed as a Hero for Role in Stopping Terrorist Attack on French Train Is Stabbed Multiple Times in Sacramento (USA Today)

A California man who helped stop a terrorist attack in France in August was the victim of a stabbing early today in downtown Sacramento, Calif., USA Today reports.

Spencer Stone, 23, from the Northern California town of Carmichael, was reportedly in stable condition at a local hospital after receiving multiple stab wounds.

Stone is part of a group of Americans credited with stopping a terrorist attack on a French train. The Americans have been hailed as heroes for their role in the incident, in which a Moroccan man, Ayoub El-Khazzani, 25, was arrested.

“ABC10 in Sacramento reports that Stone was the victim in an assault near 21st and K streets in downtown Sacramento around 12:45 a.m. and that police were looking for a suspect,” USA Today reports. “ABC News has learned Stone may have been protecting a friend at the time of the stabbing.”

Stone was hospitalized in August following the incident in France, in which he and two other Americans tackled and subdued El-Khazzani, who was reportedly armed with a Kalashnikov and an automatic Luger, on a train bound for Paris.

“The three Americans, hailed as heroes, said they acted out of instinct and were ready to fight to the death to stop the attack,” the publication reports. “They were awarded the French Legion of Honor and met last month in the Oval Office with President Obama.”

Oct 8, 2015
8:09 am

Channel Announces Layoffs, Cancels Programs (Miami Herald)

A multiplatform TV channel that is a joint venture of The Walt Disney Co. and Univision has laid off 30 full-time employees and is revamping its television lineup. The Miami Herald reports that the moves are taking place at the Florida-based cable and satellite channel Fusion.

The moves follow up on a shift in Fusion’s programming priorities that was unveiled about a month ago.

“In a memo sent to staff on Sept. 10, Fusion CEO Isaac Lee announced ‘we have recently spent time examining our TV operations and programming strategy’ and settled on three priorities for 2016: the presidential election, investigative specials and topical comedy,” the paper reports. “In the works are 12 new enterprise projects and an eight-hour miniseries about the global black market, tentatively titled ‘Traffic.'”

Lee warned of the coming layoffs in the email, writing: “Ultimately these changes mean we’ll be saying goodbye to some of our colleagues.”

The Herald reports that Fusion has canceled “Come Here and Say That,” a pop culture program hosted by Alicia Menendez. Menendez will reportedly stay on at the network, covering the election and immigration issues.

Also canceled is the weekday sports show “Soccer Gods,” hosted by Simon Carr and Nando Vila, which will continue as a podcast and online program. Still undecided is the fate of “The Cannabusiness Report with Ryan Nerz,” which recently wrapped up its second season.

come here and say that-fusion-alicia menendez

Oct 8, 2015
7:44 am

Veteran TV Anchor Steps Down at Major-Market Station (Adweek)

A veteran news anchor gave a surprising reason for resigning after a 33-year run at Philadelphia station KYW-TV — but maybe less surprising than it would have been prior to House Speaker John Boehner’s recent Pope-inspired resignation.

Adweek reports that longtime anchor Pat Ciarrocchi also credited the Pope when she told colleagues she was exiting her post at the CBS O&O in the nation’s No. 4 TV market.

Ciarrocchi reportedly wrote in a message to KYW staffers: “On September 27th, just before 8PM, Pope Francis and Shepherd One were wheels up bound for the next chapter in his Papacy. As I watched in that moment, I felt my wheels lift up too… bound for the next chapter in a career that has had me anchored here for more than 33 years.”

Ciarrocchi announced that the noon show on Oct. 15 would be her last. She also wrote: “I so want to do more with my life. And I need freedom to do that. The Francis visit has empowered me with the strength to forge a path that is certain to use my voice. I believe it includes new business and community opportunities.”


Oct 8, 2015
7:29 am

Jay Leno Explains How His Feud With Jimmy Kimmel Got Started — Then There’s Also That Letterman Thing … (E! Online, TV Insider, Mediaite)

Jay Leno has been wagging his formidable chin this week, and one subject that keeps coming up is his famous feud with former late-night rival Jimmy Kimmel. E! Online reports that Leno laid out some of the particulars of the ongoing beef during a number of media encounters.

According to Jay, it’s Kimmel who has the problem with Leno, not the other way around.

The story notes that Leno said during an appearance Wednesday on NBC’s “Today” show that Kimmel “comes from radio … where you find an enemy and then you make up a phony battle. I never had any problems with the guy, but he chose to go after me. And that’s fine, welcome to show business.”

But that doesn’t mean Jay is at a loss for something negative to say about Kimmel. In an interview with TV Insider back in August the subject came up of Kimmel’s low ratings. Jay attributed it to Kimmel’s shortage of what Leno believes is one of the most important ingredients in a late-night host: kindness.

Leno told TV Insider: “The show makes you arrogant. I think that’s Jimmy Kimmel’s problem. I think he’s a talented guy, I think he’s funny. But he has a mean streak, and it comes across. He does this thing where he takes Halloween candy from kids and the kids cry. What am I missing here? It is funny I guess, but it’s mean-based. I think that’s why he’s not higher in the ratings.”

Mediaite notes that Leno and Kimmel had a pivotal encounter back in 2010, when, as the report puts it, “Leno was poised to steal the ‘Tonight Show’ back from Conan O’Brien.”

Mediaite reports: “Kimmel famously did his entire monologue as Leno, making joke after joke at the host’s expense. Then, during an appearance on Leno’s short-lived primetime show, Kimmel relentlessly went after him for his treatment of O’Brien.”

Mediaite also notes that Leno mentioned his even more famous feud with Letterman this week, reiterating that “he only refused to appear on one of David Letterman’s final shows because Letterman declined an invite to do a bit on his last ‘Tonight Show.'”

jimmy kimmel live-logo

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