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Dec 19, 2002  •  Post A Comment

Posted Thursday, Dec. 19

Globes enthusiastic for HBO’s ‘Curb,’ Fox’s ‘Simpsons’

HBO’s “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” created by and starring Larry David, got a big promotional boost with nods for best comedy series and actor when nominations were announced for the 60th annual Golden Globe awards.

Tony Shalhoubs also received best actor nomination in the comedy category for USA Network’s “Monk.”

But the biggest Globe TV surprise was the nomination for best comedy series for Fox”s animated veteran “The Simpsons,” which elicited audible gasps from the audience of publicists and journalists gathered before dawn on Dec. 19 in Beverly Hills for the award announcements. The major Globe TV nominations follow:

The nominees for best drama are Fox’s “24,” FX’s “The Shield,” HBO’s “Six Feet Under,” HBO’s “The Sopranos” and NBC’s “West Wing.”

The nominees for best musical or comedy series are HBO’s “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” NBC’s “Friends,” HBO’s “Sex and the City,” Fox’s “The Simpsons” and NBC’s “Will and Grace.”

The nominees for best actress in a drama are Edie Falco for “The Sopranos,” Jennifer Garner for “Alias,” Rachel Griffiths for “Six Feet Under,” Marg Helgenberger for “C.S.I.” and Allison Janney for “West Wing.”

The nominees for best actor in a drama are Michael Chiklis for “The Shield,” James Gandolfini for “The Sopranos,” Peter Krause for “Six Feet Under,” Martin Sheen for “West Wing” and Dennis Haysbert for “24.”

The nominees for best actor in a comedy or musical series are Larry David for “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” Matt LeBlanc for “Friends,” Bernie Mac for “The Bernie Mac Show,” Eric McCormack for “Will & Grace” and Tony Shalhoub for “Monk.”

The nominees for best actress in a comedy or musical series are Jennifer Aniston for “Friends,” Bonnie Hunt for “Life with Bonnie,” Jane Kaczmarek for “Malcolm in the Middle,” Debra Messing for “Will & Grace” and Sarah Jessica Parker for “Sex and the City.”

The nominees for best miniseries or motion picture made for television are “The Gathering Storm” (HBO), “Live From Baghdad” (HBO), “Path to War” (HBO), “Shackleton” (A&E) A&E Network/Channel 4 Intl. I.A.W. Firstsight Films, “Steven Spielberg Presents: Taken” (Sci-Fi) DreamWorks TV.

The nominees for best performance by an actress in a miniseries or a motion picture made for television are Helena Bonham Carter “Live From Baghdad” and Shirley Maclaine, “Hell on Heels: The Battle of Mary Kay.”

Winners of the Globes, awarded by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, will be announced Jan. 19 in a televised ceremony in Los Angeles.

‘Dr. Phil’ locked through 2006: Dr. Phillip McGraw has signed on for two more years as host of his syndicated talk show “Dr. Phil.” He is now under contract through the 2005-06 season. “Dr Phil” debuted in September to strong ratings and consistently ranks among the top 10 of all syndicated strips.

“Dr. Phil is an incredible talent who has made a huge impact on the syndication business,” said Roger King, CEO of CBS Enterprises and King World Productions. “This is great news for us and the show’s affiliates, and we are thrilled to be working with Dr. Phil for many years to come.” “Dr Phil,” which is cleared in 97 percent of the country, is produced by Paramount Domestic Television, distributed by King World Productions and created by Harpo Productions.

Gannett exploring possible national cable net: Gannett, which owns 22 television stations and USA Today and 93 other newspapers, is exploring the viability of a nationwide cable network built around local newscasts.

A spokeswoman for Gannett said the channel, which would be called America Today, is not a done deal but is a prospect Gannett is raising during discussions about retransmission consent with major cable operators such as Comcast, Time Warner Cable and Charter Communications and satellite providers. According to a report in Thursday’s Washington Post, the talks began two weeks ago.

Smithberg leaving Comedy Central: Madeleine Smithberg, co-creator and executive producer of Comedy Central’s “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart,” is leaving the series, effective immediately.

Ms. Smithberg, who will not be replaced, is departing to spend more time with her husband and son, according to a network statement.

“They say you can have it all as a working mother, but clearly that doesn’t include food or sleep,” she said in the statement.

HDNet signs deal with Warner Bros.: HDNet signed a deal with Warner Bros. for the high-definition television rights to several of the studio’s feature films. The deal is HDNet’s first for a feature film package. Warner Bros. Domestic Cable Distribution will provide HDNet each month with about 30 films in HD. Titles include “A Clockwork Orange,” “Full Metal Jacket” and “Alice Doesn’t Live Here Anymore.”

Kerry Holmwood has been named VP, production and programming, ABC Family Channel: In this newly created position, Ms. Holmwood will oversee the production of prime-time original movies, scripted series, reality programming, alternative programming and specials. She will report to Linda Mancuso, senior VP, head of programming, ABC Family Channel.

NATAS demands arbitration on Latin Emmys: The New York-based National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences Thursday announced it does intend to establish a Latin Emmy Awards competition for Spanish-language programming and filed a demand for arbitration to force the Los Angeles-based Academy of Television Arts and Sciences to stop “impeding” the process.

“The time has come for major national and international recognition of distinction in Hispanic television — and there is no better platform thanthe distinguished Emmy Award,” NATAS President Peter Price said in announcing the decision to appeal to the American Arbitration Association in New York.

“The establishment of the Latin Emmys is a way for the National Television Academy to embrace Hispanic television and to create new and innovative ways to build for the future.”

NATAS had hoped to form a partnership with ATAS to jointly launch the Latin Emmys — and indeed is required under current rules to get the OK of ATAS to create any new Emmycast — but said it has been unable to get ATAS on board for Latin Emmys able despite having “tried repeatedly over the last six months to secure ATAS’s participation. Regrettably, ATAS has not only refused to commit to the project, it has used stalling tactics to obstruct the National Television Academy’s efforts to move forward with its plans to stage the Latin Emmys next year,” said the NATAS announcement about the surprise move.

The response from ATAS suggested that a colorful battle is ahead.”While NATAS was busy hiring lawyers and plotting arbitrations, ATAS has been actively soliciting the input of both the Hispanic community and Spanish-language broadcasters,” said ATAS President Todd Leavitt in a statement. “Even as today’s self-serving NATAS press release hit the media, our ATAS leaders were meeting with members of the Hispanic congressional caucus to hear their thoughts. If Mr. Price had done as much listening as he’s done talking, he would know that the Hispanic community is divided on this issue and interested in more dialogue before moving ahead.”

“The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences recognizes and will continue to salute the accomplishments of the Latino community,” said Mr. Leavitt. “ATAS will continue to stay involved in this issue, passionately believing in diversity and the honoring of all quality television, while at the same time protecting the rights of our organization’s leadership to make its own informed decisions on its own appropriate timetable,” said ATAS Chairman Bryce Zabel in a statement.

“We want to work with ATAS in making the Latin Emmy Awards a reality, but we simply cannot afford to wait any longer,” Mr. Price said. “It appears that we will have to move forward without ATAS if we want to create an Emmy Award that recognizes the importance of Hispanic culture in television and brings more diversity to the presentation of the Emmys. We had hoped that ATAS would join us in this important effort and have resorted to arbitration onl
y as a last resort.”

Path cleared for plug-and-play TV sets: Representatives of the cable TV and consumer electronics industries announced an agreement today that they said will clear the way for the manufacture of TV sets capable that can receive digital TV signals from cable systems without a special set-top box.

The so-called “plug-and-play” capability, according to industry representatives, will enable consumers to use their DTV sets virtually anywhere-or at least anywhere cable systems have built out to the necessary technical specifications. At a press conference in Washington, industry representatives also said the development would help spur the television industry’s transition to DTV, assuming that the Federal Communications Commission sets the technical standards in regulatory concrete.

“This will be a foundation for billions of dollars of commerce over the next few decades,” said Bob Perry, VP, marketing, for Mitsubishi Digital Electronics America. In a statement, Federal Communications Commission Chairman Michael Powell said the agency would move quickly to review the proposed regulations. “Plug-and-play will be good for the future of these industries, good for the digital transition and, most importantly, good for consumers,” Mr. Powell said.

Industry sources also said they hope the standards will be in place in time to allow the technology to be included in sets by July 2004, when agency regulations require many TV sets to begin including DTV broadcast tuners.

The cable TV companies that had agreed to the standards at deadline included: Advance/Newhouse Communications; Cable One; CSC Holdings (Cablevision Systems); Charter Communications; Comcast Cable Communications; Cox Communications; Insight Communications, and Time Warner Cable.

The technical agreement applies only to one-way cable DTV transmissions. Negotiations over compatibility standards for interactive digital TV are expected to begin in January.

Lund joins Emmis board of directors: Emmis Communications announced Peter Lund, the former president and CEO of CBS Inc., CBS Television and CBS Cable, has joined the Emmis board of directors. The board also declared a quarterly dividend of $.78125 per share of 6.25 percent convertible preferred stock.