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woensdag 4 juli 2012

Gordon Ramsay's 'Behind Bars' a hit for Channel 4 on Tuesday nights

Gordon Ramsay's new Channel 4 format has become a popular destination for viewers on Tuesday nights.

Gordon Behind Bars interested 2.48m (10.9%) in the 9pm hour, adding 411k (2.3%) on Channel 4 +1.

Meanwhile, Line of Duty retained over 90% of its premiere audience, logging an impressive 3.12m (13.6%) on BBC Two.

Both shows beat ITV1's Second World War documentary Bomber Command, which took 2.46m (10.8%) and 168k (0.9%) on timeshift.

BBC One's Turn Back Time: The Family edged into the lead of the 9pm terrestrial battle with 3.08m (13.5%).

Love Your Garden continued to perform well for ITV1 in a difficult 8pm hour versus Holby City, rising to the occasion with 3.16m (14.5%) and 166k (0.7%) on +1.

At the same time, Today at Wimbledon drew 1.88m (8.6%) for BBC Two, while 1.47m (6.7%) watched Channel 4's Embarrassing Bodies as well as 335k (1.5%) an hour later.

Elsewhere, Channel 5 landed improved figures for World's Toughest Prison (1.29m/5.9%), CSI (1.87m/8.2%) and Big Brother (1.36m/7.6%). Only CSI passed the 100k mark on Channel 5 +1, grabbing 180k (1%).

Overall, BBC One topped primetime with 18.7% versus ITV1's 15% (+1: 0.7%). BBC Two earned third place with 9.3%, ahead of Channel 4's 6.7% (+1: 1.2%), and Channel 5's 5.8% (+1: 0.4%).

Ratings: 'Glass House' Inches Up as NBC Wins Night With Olympic Trials, 'Talent'

ABC's controversial new reality series "The Glass House" saw a minor improvement Monday night, while NBC took an overall win with the combination of the U.S. Olympic trials and "America's Got Talent," according to preliminary numbers.

NBC took first place in ratings with an average 2.7 rating/8 share in the advertiser-friendly 18-49 demographic and also took top honors in total viewers with an average 9.7 million.

"U.S. Olympic Trials '12: Swimming Finals" was down slightly from its 2008 counterpart with a 1.8/6, and drew 7.3 million total viewers. "America's Got Talent" the following hour was the highest-rated and most-watched show of the night with a 2.9/9 and 10.2 million total viewers.

Fox grabbed second place in ratings and third in total viewers with an average 2.3/7 and 6 million. Its slate of Gordon Ramsay-related programming hed mostly steady with last week, starting with "Hell's Kitchen" at 8, which drew even in ratings with a 2.4/8 and inched up slightly in total viewers with 5.8 million.

"MasterChef" the following hour saw a minor uptick in ratings with a 2.3/6, and also saw small growth in total viewers with 5.4 million.

ABC took third place in ratings with a 2.1/6 and second in total viewers with 6 million. Its primetime slate showed modest ratings improvement across the board, with "The Bachelorette" climbing 9 percent to a 2.5/8 and drawing 7.4 million total viewers.

"The Glass House" the following hour, which sparked a lawsuit from CBS due to its apparent similarities to that network's "Big Brother" and has floundered in the ratings since its soft premiere last month, was also up 9 percent in the demo, posting a 1.2/3 and taking 3.3 million total viewers.

Univision grabbed fourth place in ratings and fifth in total viewers with an average 1.3/4 and 3.4 million.

CBS, which ran repeats throughout the night, took fifth in ratings and fourth in total viewers with an average 0.9/3 and 4.2 million.

Development Update: the 4th of July

CASSANDRA FRENCH'S FINISHING SCHOOL FOR BOYS (MTV) - Steve Talley, Lyndon Smith and Abby Pivaronas are the first to be cast in the drama pilot, based on Eric Garcia's book of the same name. Talley will presumably play Owen, the boyfriend of the title character (yet to be cast), whom she locks up in her basement in order to train him to become the perfect gentleman. Smith and Pivaronas then will play her best friends: studio exec Claire, who's sleeping with her shrink, and Lexi, a blond man-magnet of a yoga instructor. Michael Lehmann is helming the hour from a script by Garcia. Krysten Ritter also serves as an executive producer. (

CRASH & BERNSTEIN (Disney XD) - Cole Jensen ("The Defenders") has booked the lead role on the upcoming comedy, about 14-year-old Wyatt Bernstein, the only son among four kids, who finally gets his dream of having a loud-mouthed brother when his puppet, Crash (Tim Lagasse), comes to life. Bruce Leddy helmed the pilot from a script by Eric Friedman for It's A Laugh Productions. The multi-camera project premieres this fall. (

WENDELL & VINNIE (Nickelodeon) - Nicole Sullivan ("Cougar Town") has scored a role on the comedy pilot, about Vinnie (Jerry Trainor), an irresponsible goofball who becomes the guardian to his conservative genius 12-year-old nephew Wendell (Buddy Handelson). She'll play Vinnie's sister Wilma in the multi-camera project, which comes from creator Jay Kogen and fellow executive producer Aaron Kaplan. (

EVIL TWINS (Investigation Discovery)
- The original series, first announced back in April, is set to premiere Thursday, July 26 at 10:00/9:00c. Here's the network's description: "There's something oddly fascinating about twins. Maybe it's the secret languages they create, their identical facade, or the rumors about how one can feel when the other is hurt. But when one twin turns bad, does the other stay pure of heart? Channeling sibling rivalries and deadly childhood pacts, EVIL TWINS follows true-crime mysteries surrounding real-life cases of these evil archetypes. Each episode reveals shocking stories of twins on the edge, from those who sleep with their twin's husband and set them up for murder to those who steal their identities and even come back from the dead."

HAPPILY NEVER AFTER (Investigation Discovery, New!) - The cable channel will roll out the newcomer on Saturday, July 21 at 10:00/9:00c, bumping current time period holder "Wicked Attraction" to 9:00/8:00c. Here's how the network describes the show: "For most people, their wedding day ignites dreams of a bright future and the hope of fading into the sunset with the one they love. But for some brides and grooms, the reality of "til death do you part" hits come sooner than expected. Narrated by Emmy Award-winner Marlo Thomas, HAPPILY NEVER AFTER tells the true stories of people who meet untimely ends on or around their wedding days. Leading viewers through these tales of romance, sex, greed and betrayal is Dr. Wendy Walsh, a clinical psychologist and relationship expert. As this new series suggests, perhaps love found is not always happily ever after."

STOLEN VOICES, BURIED SECRETS (Investigation Discovery) - The show's third season is set to kick off on Monday, July 9 at 10:00/9:00c. The channel details the new season as follows: "Investigation Discovery's captivating series STOLEN VOICES, BURIED SECRETS revisits mysterious murders through the lens of the fictionalized, first-person perspectives of the victims. As investigators, family, and friends peel back the layers and facts of each case for viewers, the otherworldly narrator already knows how their story ends and supplies all-knowing observations hinting at breaks to come in the case."

- 20th Century Fox Television-based Imagine Television is developing a fairytale-themed drama series described as a re-imagining of the Peter Pan mythology. Newcomer Brian McCauley Johnson is behind the present-day hour, which "centers around the Lost Boys and takes place 10 years after they've left Neverland." Executive producers Ron Howard and Brian Grazer are currently looking for a showrunner to co-write the script and supervise the project prior to taking it out to the networks. (

THE LEFTOVERS (HBO, New!) - "Lost" co-creator Damon Lindelof is spearheading a small screen take on Tom Perrotta's 2011 book of the same name, which asks what would happen if The Rapture actually took place and millions of people just disappeared from the Earth. Stephen King heralded the novel in the New York Times Book Review as "the best 'Twilight Zone' episode you never saw." Lindelof will co-write the script to the potential drama alongside Perrotta and executive produce via his overall deal with Warner Bros. Television. Ron Yerxa and Albert Berger also serve as executive producers. (

BROTHERS-IN-LAW (TV Land) - Josh Cooke ("Dexter") is the first to be cast in the comedy pilot, about the family dynamic between a husband and the eccentric fiancé of his wife's twin sister. He'll play said fellow, Neil, "a regular Joe who is repeatedly forced to spend time with the eccentric fiancé of his wife's twin sister, even though the guys share nothing in common." Bill Martin and Mike Schiff are behind the project, which is set up at Quan Phang and Scott Stuber's Stuber Productions. (

THE FARM (NBC) - The Peac*ck has issued character descriptions for the potential Dwight Schrute-led spin-off of "The Office." Joining Rainn Wilson's Dwight at his family farm/bed-and-breakfast are his younger sister Fannie ("attractive, urban and in her late 20s/early 30s"), now divorced with a nine-year-old son, Cameron Whitman ("a cosmopolitan lad who nevertheless feels the pull of his Schrute heritage"); his thirtysomething brother Jeb ("hasn't done well in any of the career paths he's followed but has found some success with a pot farm"); and his great uncle Heinrich Manheim ("charming, greedy, manipulative"). Paul Lieberstein and Wilson himself are behind the half-hour, from Universal Television. (

GUILTY (FOX) - Producer Warner Bros. Television has picked up the options on co-stars Cuba Gooding Jr., Jay Harrington, Eva Amurri Martino and Julian Morris, opening the door for a potential midseason or fall 2013 series order. Not making the cut was Sharon Leal, who played the estranged wife of Gooding Jr.'s character. Greg Berlanti, Marc Guggenheim, McG and Peter Johnson are all behind the project, which McG directed from a script by Guggenheim. (

REVOLUTION (NBC) - Daniella Alonso ("My Generation") has joined the cast of the Peac*ck's upcoming Monday drama, about a group of people struggling to survive and reunite with loved ones in a world where all forms of energy have mysteriously ceased to exist. She'll play a new character, Nora, "a rebel fighter, battling against the militia that controls North America [who] likes to blow up stuff, and she has a lot of rough water under the bridge with Miles (Billy Burke)." David Lyons, Giancarlo Esposito, Graham Rogers, J.D. Pardo, Maria Howell, Tim Guinee, Tracy Spiradakos and Zak Orth starred in the pilot. Elizabeth Mitchell ("V") is the latest addition to the Peacock's new drama, about a group of people struggling to survive and reunite with loved ones in a world where all forms of energy have mysteriously ceased to exist. She'll play Rachel Matheson, the mother of Tracy Spiridakos's and Graham Rogers's characters, who abandoned them in the years following the blackout. Andrea Roth originated the role in the pilot, but was subsequently recast. Daniella Alonso, David Lyons, Giancarlo Esposito, J.D. Pardo, Maria Howell, Tim Guinee and Zak Orth also star in the project, due on Monday nights this fall. (

- Kandyse McClure and Lili Taylor have both landed roles on the upcoming original series, "a gripping tale of murder, mystery and monsters set in a ravaged Pennsylvania steel town." The former will play Dr. Chausser, "an animal behaviorist with a PHD with a history of self destruction," while Taylor will recur as the Gypsy mother of Landon Liboiron's Peter, a suspect in the murder of a young girl. Bill Skarsgard, Dougray Scott, Famke Janssen, Freya Tingley and Penelope Mitchell also star in the project, which is based on Brian McGreevy's novel of the same name. (,

'Doctor Who' Comic-Con details confirmed: New footage will be revealed

Doctor Who is one of the final shows to confirm its plans for San Diego's Comic-Con event.

The cult comics, TV, games and movies convention will be visited by stars Matt Smith, Arthur Darvill and Karen Gillan and producers Steven Moffat and Caroline Skinner for a panel discussion with fans on Sunday, July 15.

Arthur Darvill, Matt Smith and Karen Gillan on location in Central Park, filming another episode of 'Doctor Who' New York City

New footage from the show's upcoming series - the last to feature Gillan and Darvill - will also premiere at the event.

Doctor Who will return to BBC One and BBC America in August. The first episode, 'Asylum of the Daleks', will be screened for the first time at BFI Southbank in London on August 14.

Dame Diana Rigg, Rachael Stirling, David Warner (Titanic), Liam Cunningham (Game of Thrones), Jessica Raine (Call the Midwife) and Dougray Scott will all make guest appearances in the new series.

Other new additions to the San Diego Comic-Con event include a Fringe panel to celebrate the sci-fi show's upcoming final season and a Buffy the Vampire Slayer retrospective to salute the franchise's 20th birthday.

TV Tonight 4th of July 2012

The daily list in alphabetical order, of all the new episodes airing.

    24 Hours in A&E S02E08: "Series 2, Episode 8"
    A Short History of Everything Else S01E04: "Series 1, Episode 4"
    Australia's Got Talent S06E18: "Season 6 Finale"
    Avondetappe, De S08E05: "Season 8, Episode 5"
    Bedlam S02E05: "Dare"
    Big Brother (UK) S14E31: "BB 13, Episode 31"
    Big Brother's Bit on the Side S04E30: "Series 4, Show 30"
    Blockbusters (2012) S01E38: "Series 1, Show 38"
    Come Dine With Me S19E16: "Series 19, Episode 13"
    Coming Home (US) S02E10: "Daddy's Little Dancer"
    Coronation Street S53E127: "Wed July 4, 2012"
    Dallas (2012) S01E05: "Truth and Consequences"
    Days of our Lives S47E167: "Ep. #11877"
    Deal Or No Deal (UK) S07E280: "Episode 1960"
    Dickinson's Real Deal S08E121: "Series 8, Episode 121"
    EastEnders S28E104: "July 4, 2012"
    Emergency Bikers S04E08: "Series 4, Episode 8"
    Emmerdale S41E153: "July 4, 2012"
    Figure It Out S04E18: "Featuring Matt Bennett"
    Final Witness S01E02: "Graveyard Love"
    Four In A Bed S03E43: "The Glenwalden Hotel"
    Futurama S07E04: "The Thief of Baghead"
    Goede Tijden, Slechte Tijden S22E218: "Season 22, Episode 218"
    Hollyoaks S18E133: "July 4, 2012"
    Hollywood Exes S01E03: "Season 1, Episode 3"
    Hollywood Heights S01E13: "Loren's Proven Innocent"
    Home and Away (AU) S25E118: "Episode 5553"
    House Hunters S50E08
    House Hunters International S34E03
    Jeopardy! S28E208: "Show #6413"
    Live with Kelly S29E221
    Masterchef Australia S04E52
    Myf Warhurst's Nice S01E04: "Nice and Arty"
    Neighbours S28E128: "Episode 6438"
    Offspring S03E12: "Season 3, Episode 12"
    Operation Repo S10E06: "TBA"
    Property Brothers: Supersized S04E06
    Real Rescues S08E18: "Series 8, Episode 18"
    Shaun the Sheep Championsheeps S01E05: "Diving"
    Shaun the Sheep Championsheeps S01E06: "Fencing"
    The Bold and the Beautiful S26E73: "Ep. #6357"
    The Chase (2009) S05E87: "Series 5, Episode 87"
    The Culture Show S17E03: "Series 17, Episode 3"
    The Exes S02E03: "Cool Hand Lutz"
    The Jeremy Kyle Show S07E201: "July 4, 2012"
    The Listener S03E06: "She Sells Sanctuary"
    The Next Big Thing: NY S01E04: "Stage Mommy Dearest"
    The Project S04E158: "Season 4, Episode 158"
    The Real Housewives of Vancouver S01E15: "Reunion, Part 2"
    The Real World S27E02: "99 Problems But the Beach Ain't One"
    The Revolution (2012) S01E103: "Season 1, Episode 103"
    The Soul Man S01E03: "The Ballentine Hands"
    The Soup S09E27: "July 4"
    The Strange Case Of The Law S01E03: "Episode 3"
    The Young and the Restless S40E72: "Ep. #9941"

Only Way Is Essex Jessica Wright: 'Ricky and I aren't Mark and Lauren'

The Only Way is Essex star Jessica Wright has claimed that she and Ricky Rayment are not interested in becoming "the show's biggest love story".

The aspiring popstar, who got together with Rayment in the ITV2 show's fifth series, said that she is not trying to emulate the turbulent relationship of her brother Mark and his ex-fiancée Lauren Goodger.

"We're not interested in being the show's biggest love story," she told Closer. "We want to keep parts of our relationship private.

"We're not the new Mark and Lauren. The 'Mark and Lauren' thing is boring."

However, Jessica did say that she is pleased Rayment has received the approval of her Hollywood Nights sibling.

"He couldn't fault Ricky and gave him a massive thumbs up," she revealed.

Wright debuted her first solo single 'Dance All Night' earlier this month.

Andy Griffith Dead at 86

Television icon Andy Griffith, known for playing characters who wore their decency like a badge, has died. He was 86.

The Dare County, N.C., sheriff's office confirmed that the star of "The Andy Griffith Show" and "Matlock" had died, soon after his friend, former University of North Carolina president Bill Friday, broke the news to local news station WITN.

The actor came to be known as America's sheriff for personifying small-town values with their emphasis on family and community.

"Andy was a person of incredibly strong Christian faith and was prepared for the day he would be called Home to his Lord," said his wife, Cindi, in a statement. "He is the love of my life, my constant companion, my partner, and my best friend. I cannot imagine life without Andy, but I take comfort and strength in God’s Grace and in the knowledge that Andy is at peace and with God.”

Ron Howard, who played Griffith's son on "The Andy Griffith Show" before starring in "Happy Days" and becoming an Oscar winning director, paid tribute to his television dad on Twitter.

"His pursuit of excellence and the joy he took in creating served generations & shaped my life. I'm forever grateful. RIP Andy," Howard wrote.

President Obama expressed his sorrow as well.

"Michelle and I were saddened to hear about the passing of Andy Griffith this morning," he said. "A performer of extraordinary talent, Andy was beloved by generations of fans and revered by entertainers who followed in his footsteps. He brought us characters from Sheriff Andy Taylor to Ben Matlock, and in the process, warmed the hearts of Americans everywhere.  Our thoughts and prayers are with Andy’s family."

Griffith first came to prominence on Broadway in the 1950s in the army comedy "No Time for Sergeants"  and the musical version of "Destry Rides Again."

He would reprise his country bumpkin role in "Sergeants" for the 1958 film version, earning rave reviews and propelling the film to the top of that year's box office winners.

But his film debut in 1957's "A Face in the Crowd" (pictured, right) mined a darker side of Griffith, one that he largely abandoned in favor of more mainstream entertainment.

Working with legendary director Elia Kazan, Griffith gave his finest dramatic performance as  Larry "Lonesome" Rhodes, a drifter who is discovered by an ambitious producer and transformed into a national television phenomenon. With his folksy bromides and populist rhetoric, Rhodes seemed to presage such modern boob tube bloviators as Glenn Beck and Keith Olbermann. The film itself was a sly commentary on the power of television that was way ahead of its time.

Yet it was television that would launch Griffith into the pop culture pantheon. Playing Sheriff Andy Taylor, a widower trying to raise a young son, on the long-running "The Andy Griffith Show," the actor found the perfect vehicle for his easy-going delivery and comic talents.

'Eastbound & Down' Gets 4th Season From HBO

"Eastbound & Down" is going into extra innings.

HBO's "Eastbound & Down," which stars Danny McBride as self-destructive former pro pitcher Kenny Powers, has received the green light for a fourth season.

HBO has picked up the series for an eight additional episodes.

The pick-up comes as something as a surprise, as it was widely believed that last year's third season would be its last, with co-creator Jody Hill admitting, "we always pictured the show as lasting three seasons. It's a kind of trilogy ... We think it's going to be the last one, but never say never."

Gordon Ramsay's Recipe for Anger Management

In addition to overseeing a slew of restaurants and authoring bestselling cookbooks, the Scottish-born Gordon Ramsay juggles three programs on FOX — "Hell’s Kitchen," "MasterChef "and  "Kitchen Nightmares." A fourth, due out later this year also on FOX, is "Hotel Hell," which will unleash the irascible host on failing hotels and inns in an effort to rescue them from ruin.

Here, the enfant terrible of cooking shows holds forth on what’s wrong with most restaurants, why people should avoid honeymoon suites and what leaves him foaming at the mouth.

You have a reputation for having a terrible temper. Do you think the image of you as this angry person is deserved?
Very few chefs would do what I do, because they want to keep this cool facade so their customers will keep buying that $20,000 bottle of wine. Every top chef in the world has a fiery temper and a passion that is second to none. I’m one of the very few that doesn’t have an agenda when it comes to TV.

Have you mellowed at all?
I don’t think I’ve mellowed. I still get upset. A lot of people like to smile for the camera, and they’re like total assholes when the cameras are gone. I don’t give a fuck. I am what I am, and that’s what it is. You know, I have a rough side. I have a smooth side. But underlining all that is an honest side. I have an earnest desire to get things absolutely right.

Is it part of your method on shows like "Hell’s Kitchen" to break down contestants and then build them back up again?
Yes, I motivate them and become a mentor, but at the same time you have a firm hand on them.

Do you ever worry that you’re too hard on the people that come on your show?
Definitely. I wouldn’t have a conscience if I didn’t.

What bothers you? Why do you find yourself exploding sometimes?
Laziness. There’s laziness everywhere, whether it’s JPMorgan not checking where its $2 billion went or whether it’s a waiter taking for granted his 20 percent tip so he doesn’t have to bust his ass at his tables.

How successful are the restaurants that you rehabilitate on "Kitchen Nightmares?" Do most make it?
Between 65 and 70 percent of them last. I treat these places like my own. I show up, I get rid of the dead wood and I motivate the talent. Whatever happens inside these places, we leave them with the remedy.

You came under fire in 2010 after a former "Hell’s Kitchen" contestant Joseph Cerniglia committed suicide. Do you think that was fair?
When you get blamed for the sadness and deaths like that—individuals taking their own lives—it really hurts, because it’s a tragedy. But it’s also a very selfish thing to do—to jump off a bridge and to leave that restaurant and your family behind with all the mes

You’ve talked frankly about your father’s alcoholism and your brother’s drug addiction. Do you ever worry you’re sharing too much?
I’m just fed up with all the bad influences out there. I want to try to turn a negative into a positive. Growing up in Glasgow, at the time I thought it was an amazing upbringing because there was always food on the table. Now I look at it and it was a shit storm, and I was fighting to get out of there. I got dealt a dysfunctional card. Not just my father being an alcoholic, but the level of potential failure going against me.

How were you able to overcome that rough upbringing?
I found myself at a very fortunate position at the age of 22, where I got my ass kicked in France and learned how to cook. And I always say to my young chefs wherever they may be, become vulnerable. Get yourself out of your comfort zone. It’s a great learning experience. I think today everyone plays it safe too much.

"Hotel Hell" looks at failing inns and hotels. Any advice for travelers?
If they turn around and say, “Mr. and Mrs. Ramsay, we’re going to upgrade you to the honeymoon suite,” decline it. For some bizarre reason everyone thinks it’s the most romantic place. I did a black light search [for germs] on the honeymoon suite at one of these hotels. I swear to God, it was like a fucking galaxy.

What about restaurants? Is there anything that we should be concerned about?
The American public should have the right at any time to walk into the kitchen and see how the food is being prepared. You go into a dentist’s office and you look around and you’re so comfortable with the pristineness. Kitchens should be the same way.

The biggest problem today is that anybody can open up a restaurant with no qualifications. It’s just ridiculous, and there should be stringent laws. You can’t just open up a restaurant because you have these stupid little dinner parties and all your mates blow smoke up your backside and say, “Hey this is great, you should open a restaurant.” Running a restaurant and having a dinner party is fucking night and day.

How do you think the recession has changed the food industry?
It was a breath of fresh air, because it removed the arrogance. We were saying to the customers, “We will do [what we want].” Now the customers are saying, “We will tell you,” and that’s the way it should be. The customers are king. They vote with their feet. At the end of the day, it all comes down to what’s happening on that plate.

What would winning an Emmy mean to you? I’m happy with what we’ve just produced on a phenomenal season of "MasterChef," but the Emmys to me would be like a Michelin star.
It’s the Oscars of the TV world. For me it’s the shining jewel in the crown I haven’t got yet.

Nicola McLean: 'Big Brother unfairly edited me, I'm not a cow'

Nicola McLean has criticised Celebrity Big Brother for the way she was edited on the show.

The model competed on the Channel 5 series earlier this year.

She later said that joining the lineup was the "worst decision" of her life.

Talking about her time on the show, she said: "They unfairly edited me and made me out to look like a cow when I'm not.

"I was feeling really insecure in the house, and whenever I feel like that I act bolshy, but if they'd shown the rest of it people would know I'm not like that really.

"I think they're annoyed with me for speaking out but they should have thought about that before editing it!"

McLean was speaking at the launch of the Virgin Active London Triathlon, where she is part of Sir Richard Branson's celebrity team.

Louie Spence, Jeff Brazier and Chelsee Healey are also among the stars who will take part in the event in September.

'The Newsroom,' 'True Blood' Renewed by HBO

Will McAvoy and the rest of the journos on HBO's "The Newsroom" just received a bulletin they have to be smiling about.

The Aaron Sorkin drama "The Newsroom" has been renewed for a second season, just a little over a week after its June 24 premiere.

The network also renewed its vampire hit "True Blood" for a sixth season on Monday.

"The Newsroom," which stars Jeff Daniels as news anchor McAvoy, got off to a promising start with its premiere, drawing 2.1 million total viewers with its initial airing -- better than the series premieres of "True Blood" and "Luck," and just shy of the series premiere for "Game of Thrones," which has become a huge hit for HBO.

"True Blood," meanwhile, will go into its sixth season with a new showrunner in the form of Mark Hudis, a co-executive producer of the series. Hudis will take the showrunner reins from creator Alan Ball, who is stepping aside as showrunner after the current fifth season in order to pursue other projects.

Eric Sykes, legendary comedy TV star, dies aged 89

The legendary British TV actor and comedian Eric Sykes has passed away following a short battle with illness, aged 89.

Sykes's entertainment career as a writer for TV and radio, actor and director spanned seven decades and included work with comedy greats such as Tony Hancock, Spike Milligan, Peter Sellers and Hattie Jacques.

The TV star's manager Norma Farnes said this morning (July 4): "Eric Sykes, star of TV, stage and films, died peacefully this morning after a short illness. His family were with him."

Sykes, who was born in Oldham, first began working in entertainment while in the RAF Special Liaison Unit during World War 2. When the war ended, Sykes moved to London and thanks to a chance meeting with actor and former air force colleague Bill Fraser, he managed to land work writing for television and radio.

He went on to write for Frankie Howerd, Educating Archie and began teaming up with Spike Milligan on the iconic radio series The Goons. One of his best loved comedy works was the 1967 silent film The Plank, which featured Tommy Cooper, Roy Castle, Bill Oddie and Jimmy Tarbuck.

Sykes is best remembered for his TV work in the 1960s and '70s, when he regularly teamed up with Hattie Jacques in the sitcoms and sketch shows Sykes and a..., Sykes and a Big Big Show and Sykes.

He also branched out into movies appearing in films such as Monte Carlo Or Bust, Absolute Beginners, Those Magnificent Men In Their Flying Machines and more recently The Others with Nicole Kidman and British comedy Son of Rambow.

Sykes continued to work on TV shows and movies late into his career, providing voiceovers for the children's series Teletubbies, appearing in TV shows such as Gormenghast, Victoria Wood's Dinnerladies, My Family and even appeared as Frank Bryce in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.

His last TV role came in 2010 when he appeared in a cameo role as Mr Fullerton in ITV's adaptation of Agatha Christie's Hallowe'en Party.

Sykes's had to cope with being deap from his early '30s and his famous thick-ripped glasses were actually a hearing-aid then worked through vibrations. Later in his career, he also had to battle with blindness, but neither deterred him from his showbiz career.

Big Brother Arron threatens to 'f**k s**t up' following nominations

Big Brother housemate Arron Lowe has responded angrily to the latest nominations results, threatening to "f**k s**t up" after getting put up for eviction again.

The male model is up against Conor McIntyre, Becky Hannon and Deana Uppal in the public vote this week.

Arron retreated to the bedroom with Conor after the nomination results were announced and ranted: "That's why a whole group of people haven't spoken to me all day... As long as [Conor] stays in I'm good!"

Conor replied: "We're not f**king weirdos. I'm not f**king worried."

An angry Arron said: "My own friends nominated me… some f**king friends they are. It's time to cause some s**t.

"I'm going to spend the week f**king s**t up."

Later, he poured a glass of water on Becky's bed, commenting: "F**king two-faced b**tards!"

Euro 2012: A look at the broadcast technology

Goal-line sensors may still be a pipe dream but everything from the Adidas Tango 12 ball (perfectly spherical, forged from butyl rubber, tested in eight countries) to the record numbers of viewers watching in eye-popping HD or online and on the move made Euro 2012 an event infused with impressive tech advancements.

BBC Sport declared: "It's turned out to be a high-quality tournament, the football's been very good." But the technological aspects of this huge event needed to be rather special, too.

In January 2011, UEFA announced Orange as its official technology partner and the immense task of utilising the latest generation ROADM transmission network (an advanced-capability fibre optic system) began.

A general view of the National Stadium with the roof closed during the friendly soccer match between Sevilla FC and Legia Warszawa in Warsaw

The challenge? To transmit audio and video images from the pitches back to an International Broadcast Centre in Warsaw, for broadcast into millions of homes around the world. A tournament of this size is not just a test for footballers, but for telecoms companies as well: UEFA predicted a global viewing figure of 250 million for the final in Kiev.

"It is true to say that there is no football without television," said UEFA President Michel Platini, underlining the critical importance of getting things right at the IBC's opening ceremony.

Digital Spy was fortunate to go deep within the high-security building, usually used as an exhibition centre. The IBC's 'Master Control Room' receives TV signals from all eight stadiums in Poland and Ukraine via fibre networks, and distributes them to broadcast partners.

Orange's cutting-edge technology means that data transmission from the Polish-Ukranian border to the IBC can hit staggering speeds of 130Gb/s: enough to upload an entire Blu-ray movie in one second and more than enough to cope with the 32 HD match cameras.

Broadcasters from various nations rely on these feeds and are based within neighbouring but separate erected wooden units within the IBC, including the BBC, Al Jazeera and ITV. Each is then able to send their unique final content back to viewers at home, complete with graphics and presentation.

Unsurprisingly for an operation of this magnitude, the official equipment required at various locations forms a sizeable list:

    Data transmission services included over 6,000 hot spots and network access points

    2,500 km of optical cabling

    Almost 1,300 TV monitors for commentators

    1,400 IT support staff

    1,300 ISDN lines, 1,757 SIM cards

    7,000 networking ports

    Over 1,000 laptops

Changing public viewing habits and demand has driven this technological advancement: a recent survey by Everything Everywhere stated that 42% of men used their smartphone to follow Euro 2012, through browsing the internet for results or following live scores and news feeds.

For the first time ever, the Spain versus Italy final was filmed in 3D by 11 dedicated cameras at the behest of UEFA's partner broadcasters.

Excitingly too, UEFA is working on an iPad and Android app which would allow viewers raw access to the multiple feeds from cameras, enabling users to define what they watch and when, including almost-instant replays from any vantage point.

Users will be able to select viewing angles from outside of the stadium to inside the goal mouth, giving an unprecedented and unique viewing experience. It's likely that a commercial or broadcast partner would make the app available to viewers within each country, topping off the video content with instant match statistics, scores, photos, player info and more, for a comprehensive - and no doubt thrilling - service.

A&E Orders 'Bates Motel' From 'Lost,' 'Friday Night Lights' Producers

A&E Network has ordered ten episodes of "Bates Motel" from Universal Television, with Carlton Cuse ("Lost") and Kerry Ehrin ("Friday Night Lights" and "Parenthood") executive producing.

That means the series will bypass the pilot stage and go straight to series, with pre-production and casting starting immediately, A&E said.

Inspired by Alfred Hitchcock's "Psycho" (left), "Bates Motel" will be set in the present day and explore the formative years of Norman Bates and his relationship with his mother, Norma -- as well as how Norman became a serial killer. It will premiere in 2013.

"Bates Motel" is produced by Universal Television and Carlton Cuse Productions.

Alec Baldwin Gets Hitched, Quits Twitter, Wanted to Gut Harvey Levin Like a Fish

Not only did he marry yoga instructor Hilaria Thomas, the "30 Rock" star found time to shut down his amusing, if frequently vitriolic, Twitter account.

Oh, and he also admitted to harboring a homicidal rage toward TMZ honcho Harvey Levin.

Baldwin, who's used his Twitter account to bash everyone from the American Airlines flight attendant who told him to turn off his cell phone before a flight to the paparazzo he had a run-in with in New York last month, powered down his account sometime over the weekend, leaving fans of ill-tempered digital outbursts hanging high and dry.

While the actor's account is now inaccessible, according to the New York Post, Baldwin tweeted, "It's been fun" before deactivating his account.

Baldwin has quit Twitter once before -- namely, in December, after his feud with American Airlines reached a fever pitch, he decided to "crash" his account and start anew.

"Let's play a game called Mass Unfollowing," one of Baldwin's last tweets read. "I want to crash this acct and start again. But, tonight at 10PM, NY time, unfollow me."

However, while Baldwin's Twitter followers might be deprived -- however temporarily -- of his rage-fueled musings, the newlywed is making up for it in the pages of Vanity Fair.

Recalling the embarrassing voicemail that leaked on TMZ -- which featured Baldwin calling his then-11-year-old daughter Ireland a "rude, thoughtless little pig" -- Baldwin admits to the magazine that he wanted to exact revenge on TMZ's Harvey Levin.

And in typical Baldwin fashion, he doesn't spare the graphic details.

“I wanted to stick a knife in him and gut him and kill him and I wanted him to die breathing his last breath looking into my eyes," Baldwin tells the magazine.

Wow -- hopefully his new bride can teach him some yoga moves that can relieve some of that rage.

Despite his vivid description of his desire to eviscerate Harvey Levin, Baldwin tells Vanity Fair that he's learning to control his anger.

“You have to let that go,” he says. “Enough time -- I mean, it does heal wounds.”

Anderson Cooper: 'I'm Gay'

Anderson Cooper has come out in perhaps the most low-key way any celebrity has so far: by letting someone else make the announcement for him.

The CNN newsman and talk show host, whose homosexuality has long been an almost open secret, confirmed it in an email to friend Andrew Sullivan, which he gave the Daily Beast columnist permission to post. A representative for Cooper confirmed to TheWrap that the email was authentic.

"The fact is, I'm gay, always have been, always will be, and I couldn’t be any more happy, comfortable with myself, and proud," Cooper said in the email.

The announcement makes Cooper, host of CNN's "Anderson Cooper 360" and the syndicated "Anderson," the most prominent gay news anchor on television.

Cooper said he has kept his sexuality private until now to maintain his privacy, and because it was irrelevant to his reporting. But he said he had recently become concerned "that by remaining silent on certain aspects of my personal life for so long, I have given some the mistaken impression that I am trying to hide something - something that makes me uncomfortable, ashamed or even afraid. This is distressing because it is simply not true."

Cooper, who was out of the country on assignment Monday, was unavailable to comment on his announcement, his rep said.

For a column, Sullivan asked Cooper for his thoughts on an emerging trend of high-profile figures coming out in undertstated ways. Sullivan said it was in many ways "a great development: we're evolved enough not to be gob-smacked when we find out someone's gay."

But Sullivan, who is gay, also argued that it was imporant that people put their sexuality "on the record" to set an example for others, including bullied gay kids.

"We still have pastors calling for the death of gay people, bullying incidents and suicides among gay kids, and one major political party dedicated to ending the basic civil right to marry the person you love. So these 'non-events' are still also events of a kind; and they matter. The visibility of gay people is one of the core means for our equality," Sullivan said.

He said he reached out to Cooper for his thoughts on the matter, "for reasons that are probably obvious to most," and received this lengthy response:

Andrew, as you know, the issue you raise is one that I've thought about for years. Even though my job puts me in the public eye, I have tried to maintain some level of privacy in my life. Part of that has been for purely personal reasons. I think most people want some privacy for themselves and the people they are close to.

But I've also wanted to retain some privacy for professional reasons. Since I started as a reporter in war zones 20 years ago, I've often found myself in some very dangerous places. For my safety and the safety of those I work with, I try to blend in as much as possible, and prefer to stick to my job of telling other people’s stories, and not my own.

I have found that sometimes the less an interview subject knows about me, the better I can safely and effectively do my job as a journalist.

I've always believed that who a reporter votes for, what religion they are, who they love, should not be something they have to discuss publicly. As long as a journalist shows fairness and honesty in his or her work, their private life shouldn't matter. I’ve stuck to those principles for my entire professional career, even when I’ve been directly asked “the gay question,” which happens occasionally. I did not address my sexual orientation in the memoir I wrote several years ago because it was a book focused on war, disasters, loss and survival. I didn't set out to write about other aspects of my life.

Recently, however, I’ve begun to consider whether the unintended outcomes of maintaining my privacy outweigh personal and professional principle. It’s become clear to me that by remaining silent on certain aspects of my personal life for so long, I have given some the mistaken impression that I am trying to hide something - something that makes me uncomfortable, ashamed or even afraid. This is distressing because it is simply not true.

I’ve also been reminded recently that while as a society we are moving toward greater inclusion and equality for all people, the tide of history only advances when people make themselves fully visible. There continue to be far too many incidences of bullying of young people, as well as discrimination and violence against people of all ages, based on their sexual orientation, and I believe there is value in making clear where I stand.

The fact is, I'm gay, always have been, always will be, and I couldn’t be any more happy, comfortable with myself, and proud.

I have always been very open and honest about this part of my life with my friends, my family, and my colleagues. In a perfect world, I don't think it's anyone else's business, but I do think there is value in standing up and being counted. I’m not an activist, but I am a human being and I don't give that up by being a journalist.

Since my early days as a reporter, I have worked hard to accurately and fairly portray gay and lesbian people in the media - and to fairly and accurately portray those who for whatever reason disapprove of them. It is not part of my job to push an agenda, but rather to be relentlessly honest in everything I see, say and do. I’ve never wanted to be any kind of reporter other than a good one, and I do not desire to promote any cause other than the truth.

Being a journalist, traveling to remote places, trying to understand people from all walks of life, telling their stories, has been the greatest joy of my professional career, and I hope to continue doing it for a long time to come.

But while I feel very blessed to have had so many opportunities as a journalist, I am also blessed far beyond having a great career.

I love, and I am loved.

In my opinion, the ability to love another person is one of God’s greatest gifts, and I thank God every day for enabling me to give and share love with the people in my life. I appreciate your asking me to weigh in on this, and I would be happy for you to share my thoughts with your readers. I still consider myself a reserved person and I hope this doesn’t mean an end to a small amount of personal space. But I do think visibility is important, more important than preserving my reporter’s shield of privacy.