_rbdave73dj1_hires217After months of teasing, the highly anticipated 13th season premiere of FAMILY GUY airs tonight on Fox. A much touted collaboration between SETH MacFARLANE and MATT GROENING, the hour-long episode is titled THE SIMPSONS GUY and centers on the GRIFFIN family as they travel from their home in Quahog to Springfield where the meet and deal with the SIMPSONS.

Rumored for years to be feuding, series creators GROENING and McFARLANE put all that to rest in a recent Entertainment Weekly cover story. Still, a major mash-up was something fans never really expected to happen.

We recently sat down with YEARDLEY SMITH (the voice of Lisa Simpson for 25 years) and she gave us a hint of what fans can expect tonight.


Both FAMILY GUY and THE SIMPSONS have season premieres tonight on Fox.

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Posted by Bob Healy



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_rbdave73dj1_hires216They say that payback is a bitch and nowhere is it more evident than in THE EQUALIZER, a hard-boiled tale of revenge and restitution that goes so far over the top it’s almost comic book material. Centered on an ex-CIA agent who faked his own death to get a new start and is now reduced to working in a home-goods store, the story has him living an ostensibly quiet life. But when he sees a young hooker being roughed up by Russian gangsters, his old instincts kick in and he becomes an avenging angel taking on the entire mob.

A reunion for director ANTOINE FUQUA and star DENZEL WASHINGTON, the film is not as smooth as TRAINING DAY (their first outing in 2001) but it is every bit as action packed. Also in the cast are CHLOE GRACE MORETZ, MARTON CSOKAS, MELISSA LEO and BILL PULLMAN.

At a press conference to promote the film at the Toronto International Film Festival, WASHINGTON and FUQUA talked about reuniting for another collaboration. (CLICK ON THE MEDIA BAR FOR AUDIO)

THE EQUALIZER is in theaters now.

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Posted by Bob Healy


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_rbdave73dj1_hires215In theaters today, THE BOXTROLLS is another stop-motion animation film in the spirit of NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS and COROLINE. Set in underground 19th-century England and focused on a community of monsters so shy they wear cardboard boxes to hide their bodies, the story has them going to battle with a town villain intent on extermination.

Directed by GRAHAM ANNABLE and ANTHONY STACCHI, the top-notch voice talent includes BEN KINGSLEY, ELLE FANNING, TONI COLLETTE, TRACY MORGAN, JARED HARRIS and SIMON PEGG.

Earlier this year, we caught up with ELLE FANNING (who voices the character of WINNIE in the film) on the red carpet at ComicCon and she talked about why audiences are going to love THE BOXTROLLS.

THE BOXTROLLS opens in theaters today.

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Posted by Bob Healy



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_rbdave73dj1_hires214Arriving in theaters today, JIMI: ALL IS BY MY SIDE is a really terrific missed opportunity. Not exactly a traditional ’show biz biopic’, the film focuses on just a year in the life of JIMI HENDRIX, one of the most flamboyant and influential musical stars of the swingin’ sixties. It was the year that catapulted him from unknown back-up session guy to being one of the most talked about stars of the London music scene. Unfortunately, because of the epic shortsightedness of the Hendrix estate, music rights to his most important works couldn’t be secured and, for fans, that’s a real speed-bump.

Directed and written by JOHN RIDLEY, the film stars ANDRE BENJAMIN (aka ANDRE 3000 of OutKast fame) in a career defining performance. BENJAMIN doesn’t just ‘play’ the part of JIMI HENDRIX, he owns it. He becomes HENDRIX.

During a recent press conference to promote the film, BENJAMIN talked about playing this well documents musical giant and admitted it was a lot to take on. (CLICK ON THE MEDIA BAR FOR AUDIO)

JIMI: ALL IS BY MY SIDE opens in theaters today.

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Posted by Bob Healy


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_rbdave73dj1_hires213In what might possibly be an unprecedented move, ABC has turned over the entirety of its Thursday night programming to producer/writer SHONDA RHIMES.

Returning tonight for its 11th season, GREY’S ANATOMY kicks off the evening with the continuing exploits of the denizens of Seattle Grace Hospital. This long-running nighttime soap has proven year-after-year to be one of prime-time’s most popular and shows no sign of slowing up now.

Following that, SCANDAL returns to kick off season four. Expect more plot twists than ever as KERRY WASHINGTON steps back into the role of the most conflicted D.C. employee ever (and that’s saying a LOT).

Capping off the night is RHIMES’ latest entry in the strong woman sweepsteaks, HOW TO GET AWAY WITH MURDER. Academy Award-nominee VIOLA DAVIS stars as a tough attorney/law professor whose class carries the same name as this show. As provocative and edgy as you’ll find on network television, MURDER looks very promising.

One would think that producing an entire night of network programming would be a heady (if not outright daunting) prospect but, at a recent press conference to promote the shows, RHIMES seemed to take it all in stride. (CLICK ON THE MEDIA BAR FOR AUDIO)

The SHONDALAND ‘threeplay’ airs tonight on ABC.

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Posted by Bob Healy


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_rbdave73dj1_hires212Opening in theaters this weekend, PRIDE is set in 1984 and tells the true story of how a group of London based gay and lesbian activists joined together to financially aid striking mine workers in a small Welsh town. Under Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher’s iron thumb, the miners were being starved out and losing their houses until they put aside their prejudices and accepted help from their new unlikely ally.

Directed by Tony Award winner MATTHEW WARCHUS, the large cast of unknowns is joined by more familiar faces BILL NIGHY, DOMINIC WEST, PADDY CONSIDINE and IMELDA STAUNTON.

A truly heartwarming story of acceptance and compassion, the film is also hugely funny. It was the humor that was largely responsible for attracting the cast and, during a recent press conference in Toronto, BILL NIGHY went into detail about taking the role. (CLICK ON THE MEDIA BAR FOR AUDIO)


PRIDE opens in theaters 9/26

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_rbdave73dj1_hires211Premiering tonight on ABC, BLACK-ISH is an amusing sitcom focused on three generations of a wealthy African-American family living in an upscale neighborhood and the concerns of the patriarch that his kids might be losing touch with their cultural heritage. More about ‘culture’ than ‘race’, the series feels like something fresh but, for better or worse, original storylines and concepts can’t keep it from being reminiscent of such classics as THE COSBY SHOW, FRESH PRINCE and THE JEFFERSONS.

Written by KENYA BARRIS (who is also one of the producers), the cast includes ANTHONY ANDERSON, TRACEE ELLIS ROSS, YARA SHAHIDI, MARCUS SCRIBNER, MILES BROWN, MARSAI MARTIN and LAURENCE FISHBURNE.

At a press conference to promote the series, writer KENYA BARRIS explained what BLACK-ISH hopes to convey to the audience. (CLICK ON THE MEDIA BAR FOR AUDIO)

BLACK-ISH debuts tonight on ABC.

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Posted by Bob Healy


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_rbdave73dj1_hires29Probably one of the most successful and popular procedural franchises in TV history, NCIS is branching out to include the Big Easy in its gritty storytelling. Premiering tonight on CBS, NCIS: NEW ORLEANS takes full advantage of all that Louisiana locations have to offer and is a fine addition to the NCIS stable.

Executive Produced by MARK HARMON (who will be making occasional crossover appearances), the new cast features SCOTT BAKULA, LUCAS BLACK, ZOE McLELLAN, ROB KERKOVICH and C.C.H. POUNDER.

Always an actor of considerable charm, SCOTT BAKULA is following up his work in MEN OF A CERTAIN AGE and LOOKING by relocating his family to NOLA and totally committing to the new show. During a press conference to promote the series, he talked about taking on the role.(CLICK ON THE MEDIA BAR FOR AUDIO)

NCIS: NEW ORLEANS premieres tonight on CBS.

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Posted by Bob Healy


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_rbdave73dj1_hires28Arguably the most anticipated new series of the season, GOTHAM on Fox. A delightfully noirish prequel to the Batman legend, the show centers on the search by a young Detective Jim Gordon (BEN McKENZIE) and his hard-boiled partner Bullock (DONAL LOGUE) for the man who killed the wealthy parents of a very young Bruce Wayne (DAVID MAZOUZ). Along the way viewers will be treated to the origin stories of such iconic comic-book villains as The Riddler (CORY MICHAEL SMITH), The Penguin (ROBIN TAYLOR), Poison Ivy (CLARE FOLEY), Catwoman (CAMREN BICONDOVA) and newcomer Fish Moody (JADA PINKETT SMITH).

Obviously designed to appeal to the ComicCon crowd, the show is actually much more accessible to a wider demographic than it seems. During our recent interview with star BEN McKENZIE, he admitted that you don’t have to be a BATMAN fan to get drawn into the story.


GOTHAM air Monday nights on Fox.

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_rbdave73dj1_hires27In a nutshell, the general premise of the new CBS procedural SCORPION centers on an oddball band of socially inept genius outcasts (ELYES GABEL, ARI STIDHAM, EDDIE KAYE THOMAS, JADYN WONG) as well as the mom of a child with an abnormally high I.Q. (KATHERINE McPHEE) recruited by a G-man (ROBERT PATRICK) to work with the government solving all sorts of hi-tech crimes.

If the pilot is any indication, fans can expect plenty of action with SCORPION but, during a recent press conference to promote the show, series producer/writer NICK SANTORA couldn’t emphasize enough how much humor will be involved. (CLICK ON THE MEDIA BAR FOR AUDIO)

SCORPION premieres tonight on CBS.

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Posted by Bob Healy


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