Lie to Me

New J.J. Abrams pilot picked up

J.J. Abrams new drama pilot Alcatraz has been picked up by Fox in the US. The series, which follows a group of prisoners who escape from the island prison, features Lost actor Jorge Garcia and New Zealander Sam Neill. 

Lie To Me and Human Target cancelled

Lie To Me and Human Target have been cancelled by their US network this week. The Tim Roth-starring Lie To Me ran for three seasons while Human Target ran for just two.

Pressly’s comedy pilot picked up

Jamie Pressly’s new comedy pilot was also picked up by Fox. Pressly and Katie Finneran feature as a pair of mothers who discover their daughters are similar to the bullies they encountered when they were at school.

Mos Def joins Dexter cast

Hip hop artist Mos Def is joining the cast of  Dexter for a multi-episode arc on the show’s sixth season. He will play an ex-con who claims to have found religion yet seems to continually find himself surrounded by violence.

The BOX – Wednesdays from 27 April, 7.30pm

Revisit the brilliant first season of Lie To Me, starring Tim Roth (The Incredible Hulk, Reservoir Dogs)

Dr. Cal Lightman can detect the truth by analysing a person’s face, body, voice and speech. When someone shrugs his shoulder, rotates his hand or raises his lower lip, Lightman knows he’s lying.

But as Lightman well knows, his scientific ability is both a blessing and a curse in his personal life, where family and friends deceive each other as readily as criminals and strangers do.

Trivia: Tim Roth originally auditioned for the part of Dr Lightman in an American accent before the creators decided to make the character British.

8:30pm – Wednesday, September 29 on TV 3

It’s a The Shield reunion when Catherine Dent, Kenny Johnson, David Marciano, Benito Martinez, Cathy Cahlin Ryan, and David Rees Snell descend upon Lie to Me, screening on Wednesday, September 29th at 8:30pm on 3.

This week’s Lie To Me instalment, titled “Pied Piper”, will see the actors behind The Shield’s Captain David Aceveda (Benito Martinez) and Officer Danny Sofer (Catherine Dent) as a long-time couple – as well as some other The Shield alums together again.

“It’s just a fun alternate universe with all these people you’re accustomed to seeing in a certain environment,” The Shield creator and Lie to Me executive producer Shawn Ryan explains of the episode.

Ryan says he immediately began looking for ways to bring The Shield actors to his new show when Lie To Me’s second season began, but then got greedy. “I started thinking, ‘Why am I looking to just get one or two of them if I could maybe get more?'” he explains.

A member of his writing team then came up with a story that could support the extra faces. At the centre of the episode are Benito Martinez and Catherine Dent as Charlie and Faye Sheridan, a married couple whose son was murdered 17 years earlier. When the couple join Lightman (Tim Roth) and Zoe (Jennifer Beals) to witness the execution of their son’s murderer (David Marciano), Lightman suddenly suspects they’re about to watch the wrong man die.

When the Sheridans are targeted again, Lightman turns to the executed man’s younger brother (David Rees Snell) and ex-girlfriend (Cathy Cahlin Ryan) for answers. All roads lead to a mysterious photographer (Kenny Johnson), who becomes the key suspect.

“It was fun to find a new chemistry,” Martinez says of the experience. “We found a whole new, completely different vocabulary and relationship that was organic to these characters. What was instant was our trust for each other. With Catherine, we knew each other in and out, and that trust was there.”

“He’s one of the good guys,” Martinez continues, explaining why he once again welcomed the opportunity to work with his former boss, the actor also guest starred in Ryan’s The Unit.

“If Shawn asked me to pull cable on a show, I’d probably do it. He’s that kind of guy. He has talent, and he cares about taking the journey together, as crazy as it might be. His talent takes you places that are outside the norm, and as an actor, it’s fantastic; it’s risky.”

Ryan promises that Lie to Me fans won’t see the regular characters get short shrift to make room for the guest stars. “We also find out the past of how Zoe and Lightman fell in love and how their daughter Emily came into the world,” he says. “There’s a lot of juicy stuff.”

Make sure not to miss this when Lie To Me continues its latest season on Wednesday, September 29th at 8:30pm on 3.

Abrams working on Alcatraz series

J.J. Abrams is currently developing a new drama series based around the infamous prison island Alcatraz. Abrams will team up with a former Lost producer on the project who will also write the pilot episode.

Lie To Me loses Phifer

Lie To Me will be without series regular Mekhi Phifer for the show’s third season after the actor was forced to leave for creative reasons. Phifer’s character Special Agent Ben Reynolds will no longer be involved due to a shift in the direction of the storyline.

The Stig to go?

Following tradition, Top Gear could axe The Stig in favour of a new test driver after his identity was officially revealed yesterday following the BBC’s failed court case against HarperCollins and racing driver Ben Collins. There are rumours a new driver would be installed to keep viewers guessing.

The Office chasing Kietel

The Office’s producer Paul Lieberstein has announced his ideal pick to replace Steve Carell on the comedy series: Harvey Keitel. Lieberstein told E! Online that Kietel is “probably the only guy who could do it” and also pointed out that the veteran film actor is now doing TV.

Entourage producers developing new series

Entourage producers Mark Wahlberg and Stephen Levinson are reportedly developing a new HBO series based around the adult entertainment industry. The pilot episode is set to be written by controversial author James Frey, of A Million Little Pieces fame.

Chelsea Handler to host MTV VMAs

Chelsea Handler will take up hosting duties for the upcoming MTV Video Music Awards on September 12. Handler, who hosts E! show Chelsea Lately, will be the first woman to host the awards since 1994.

Brothers & Sisters casting

Brothers & Sisters has acquired Stephen Collins for the show’s upcoming season, with the actor set to play a character called Charlie who gets close to Saul (Ron Rifkin).

Breaking Bad actress joins Lie To Me

Breaking Bad actress Anna Gunn, who plays the role of Skyler White in the drama series, has signed on for a guest role in Lie To me. Gunn will join the Tim Roth series as an ambitious Internal Affairs detective.

8:30pm – Wednesday, August 18 on TV 3

Melissa George, who recently appeared on Grey’s Anatomy, is joining Tim Roth’s Cal Lightman when she guest stars in Lie To Me, screening on Wednesday, August 18th at 8:30pm on 3.

George will play Clara Martin, the sassy younger wife of a murdered billionaire. After being exonerated for the murder, Clara assumes control of her husband’s empire. Though she goes toe-to-toe with Lightman, they bond over their shared eccentricities.

Make sure not to miss this Anna Nicole Smith-like character when Melissa George guest stars in Lie To Me screening on Wednesday, August 18th at 8:30pm on 3.

8:30pm – Wednesday, August 4 on TV 3

Human lie detector Cal Lightman (Tim Roth) returns to our screens in the highly anticipated continuation of Lie to Me’s second season, screening on Wednesday, August 4th 8:30pm on 3.

After a six-month hiatus, this week sees Lie to Me kicking off the second half of Season Two with a thrill: “It gets wilder and wilder really,” Tim Roth tells Zap2it.

“It gets more and more eccentric, which I enjoy. We look into his relationship with his daughter. We look at his relationship with Foster and how that came about. And we go into his background as well, just independently of that. So we open up another new territory.”

Roth continues, explaining this new territory: “The aim of the character is someone that dances around in sort of the edge of the law, and even in his relationships with women,” Roth explains.

“It’s a very hard thing for a man that has that scientific kind of ability to have a relationship, and so we’re exploring that – what it’s like for him, and what it’s like for the women around him.”

Roth says he really got interested in his character during the second season, around the time he started to find out more about the man behind the intriguing scientific ability.

“What I liked in the second season was, there was one episode for example where a friend of his came in from London… and when we started to look into his background and look into, you know, his childhood and that aspect of him, I started to get interested,” Roth explains.

“I started to feel there was some real potential there. And then we did an episode, which I don’t think we’ve shown, where we see Foster and Lightman, where they met for the first time… So, character driven but science driven at the same time is the kind of stuff that appeals to me.”

And it’s these two aspects that make the series such a unique watch. Make sure not to miss it when Lie to Me returns on Wednesday, August 4th 8:30pm on 3.

According to a post on twitter, the announcement that season 3 of Lie to Me would go to air in the US on the 10th of November 2010 was made prior to the producers, the studio or the network execs overseeing the show being informed of it.

Lie to Me Producer Daniel Sackheim said

Nov 10th is now the official season 3 premier date. The Fox schedule execs issued a press release but they neglected to tell the Producers, the studio that makes the show or the Network execs that oversee it. I’ve never had this happen before

Bear Grylls in Australia

British survival expert Bear Grylls is currently shooting a new episode of Man Vs Wild on Murray Island off the coast of Australia. The episode is one of two to be filmed down under with no word yet as to where the other location will be. Grylls will be swimming in crocodile-infested waters and scaling rock-faces during his time on Murray Island.

Lie To Me renewed

Lie To Me’s American network has renewed the drama series for another season. The series, which stars Tim Roth as genius psychologist Dr. Cal Lightman, will continue for a third season despite losing its showrunner Shawn Ryan earlier in the week.

John Grisham novel heading to TV

John Grisham’s novel The Firm is being developed into a TV series. The series has been pitched to US networks NBC, FOX, FX, A&E and TNT and is expected to get picked up. It will be only the third Grisham novel to make it to TV while seven have been turned into movies.

Coro in HD

Long-running English soap Coronation Street is finally entering the High Definition era with its British broadcaster ITV confirming the series will be shot in HD. The news comes ahead of the soap’s 50th birthday this coming December.

Sarah Silverman canned

Comedy Central has canned comedian Sarah Silverman’s s show The Sarah Silverman Program. The show barely managed to gain a third season last year and although a spirited Twitter campaign backed another season this year, the network has decided to end its run for good. Silverman will now concentrate on promoting her autobiography The Bedwetter.

Sam Neill’s series pulled

Kiwi Sam Neill’s new American TV show has been pulled by ABC following only two episodes. Neill stars in the show entitled Happy Town which centres on a small Minnesota town where several kidnappings have taken place. Word is the network will run the show during the American summer when there are less viewers.

Trinny and Susannah’s new web series

Style gurus Trinny and Susannah are launching their own online reality show. The show is said to be along the line of Curb Your Enthusiasm and will be both entertaining and revealing, according to the pair.  The show, which is partially funded by shopping mall empire Westfield, will screen on the website iVillage and will comprise of 16-minute episodes.

8 nominations for Ellen

TV presenter Ellen DeGeneres has received 8 nominations for the Daytime Emmy Awards announced earlier today. Her show is up for the major Outstanding Talk Show/Entertainment award but not Best Talk Show Host as the host decided not to submit herself for that, joking her “steroid use gives [her] an unfair advantage.”

Charlie Sheen

The only thing larger than the worldwide audience for American sitcom Two and a Half Men is the size of Charlie Sheen’s pay cheque for the show. TMZ is reporting that the actor stands to earn between $60-100m for the next two years should he continue work on the sitcom. Comparatively, co-star Jon Cryer will earn a meagre $20m.

8:30pm – Wednesday, February 24 on TV 3

Eric Matheson (guest star Garret Dillahunt), a man suspected of killing his wife, takes over the offices of the Lightman Group, and holds everyone hostage in this week’s action-packed instalment of Lie To Me, screening on Wednesday, February 24th at 8:30pm on 3.

“There’s definitely a few moments in that episode that Foster really feels for [Carl] Lightman (Tim Roth) and falls apart,” says Kelli Williams, who portrays Dr. Gillian Foster on the series.

This however does not mean Gillian and Carl will be getting together any time soon, as Williams explains; “They’ve been stuck with each other for years, and they’ve been really supportive of each other. They care for each other a great deal, but I don’t know if it makes sense to get them together.”

“We can care for each other and be supportive and have those more tender moments and not need to become a couple,” she continues. “Sometimes it’s more fun to keep that flirtation there. Personally, I’m not ready to consummate anything.”

But according to the actress, Carl is going to need Gillian’s support in the coming episodes. “Lightman is going to get into a lot of scrapes. He gets his butt kicked for reading people,” she explains. “It’s fun to see that the truth can truly hurt.”

These are just some of the changes taking place in Lie To Me’s second season, thanks to the addition of new executive producer Shawn Ryan. Williams says she welcomes the changes, which have opened numerous possibilities for her character’s future.

“Foster was in a much heavier place at the end of last year with her marriage falling apart,” she explains.

“This season there’s a little bit more levity in the office. And since I’m no longer with my husband, there are a lot of places they can take Foster.”

For one thing, the writers chose to make Foster less of a stickler. When investigating a cult-like religious group for tax fraud earlier this season, Foster was less interested in making a case for the IRS and more focused on helping one of the families escape from the group’s leader.

“I like that my character is doing things that she wouldn’t otherwise do,” Williams says. “Because Lightman is always breaking the rules, Foster has always been in the position of having to be the one that is the rule follower. It’s so much more fun to break the rules!”

Don’t miss this new and improved Dr. Gillian Foster when Lie To Me continues on Wednesday, February 24th at 8:30pm on 3.