The Pacific

band-of-brothersSteven Spielberg and Tom Hanks are having another crack at a WWII miniseries.

The pair, who worked on Band of Brothers (2001) and The Pacific (2010), are developing a new HBO series that will explore the aerial battles of the time.

The untitled project will use the non-fiction book ‘Masters of the Air: America’s Bomber Boys Who Fought the Air War Against Nazi Germany’ by Donald L. Miller as source material.

Both Spielberg and Hanks will serve as executive producers with Hanks’ Playtone and Spielberg’s Amblin Television production houses. Continue reading »

The winners from today’s 2010 Primetime Emmy Awards.

 

COMEDY

Outstanding Comedy Series – Modern Family

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series – Eric Stonestreet, Modern Family

Outstanding Supporting Actress, Comedy Series – Jane Lynch, Glee

Outstanding Guest Actor In A Comedy Series – Neil Patrick Harris, Glee

Outstanding Guest Actress In A Comedy Series – Betty White, Saturday Night Live

Outstanding Directing for Comedy Series – Ryan Murphy, Glee

Outstanding Actor In A Comedy – Jim Parsons, The Big Bang Theory

Outstanding Actress In A Comedy – Edie Falco, Nurse Jackie

 

REALITY

Outstanding Reality Show Host – Jeff Probst

Outstanding Reality Show Competition – Top Chef

Outstanding Reality Program – Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution

 

DRAMA

Outstanding Drama – Mad Men

Outstanding Supporting Actor In A Drama – Aaron Paul, Breaking Bad

Outstanding Supporting Actress In A Drama – Archie Panjabi, The Good Wife

Outstanding Guest Actor In A Drama Series – John Lithgow, Dexter

Outstanding Guest Actress In A Drama Series – Ann-Margret, Law and Order: Special Victims Unit – List On Just Jared

Outstanding Lead Actor In A Drama – Bryan Cranston, Breaking Bad

Outstanding Directing for a Drama Series – Steve Shill, Dexter

Outstanding Lead Actress In A Drama Series – Kyra Sedwick, The Closer

 

VARIETY, MUSIC, COMEDY

Outstanding Variety, Music or Comedy Series – The Daily Show with Jon Stewart

Outstanding Writing For A Variety, Music Or Comedy Special – David Boone, Paul Greenberg, Tony Awards

 

Bob Hope Humanitarian Award – George Clooney

 

MINISERIES or TV MOVIE

Miniseries Or Movie – The Pacific

Oustanding TV Movie – Temple Grandin

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Miniseries or Movie – Julia Ormond, Temple Grandin

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Miniseries or Movie – David Strathairn,, Temple Grandin

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Miniseries Or Movie – Claire Danes, Temple Grandin

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Miniseries or a Movie – Al Pacino, You Don’t Know Jack

Outstanding Directing for a Miniseries, Movie, or a Dramatic Special – Mick Jackson, Temple Grandin

 

WRITING

Outstanding Writing For A Comedy Series – Modern Family, Steven Levitan, Christopher Lloyd, “Pilot”

Outstanding Writing For A Drama Series – Mad Men, Matthew Weiner, Erin Levy, “Shut The Door. Have A Sear”

Outstanding Writing For A Miniseries, Movie Or A Dramatic Special – You Don’t Know Jack, Adam Mazer

Outstanding Writing For A Variety, Music Or Comedy Series – The Colbert Report

The Pacific and Glee lead Emmy Awards nominations

The nominees for the 2010 Primetime Emmy Awards have been announced with Glee, Mad Men and The Pacific leading the nominations. The Pacific garnered a whopping 24 nomination with Glee pulling 19 and Mad Men close behind with 17. New sitcom Modern Family received 14 nods.

Brothers & Sisters future uncertain

The future of family drama series Brothers & Sisters is uncertain with rumours suggesting the show may not progress past a fifth season. Several factors are contributing to the speculation including the fact the fifth series order has been reduced and that several key cast members are not returning.

Lost star lands Weeds role

Former Lost actor Eric Lange has landed a role on the upcoming season of Weeds. Lange, who played Stuart Radzinsky on Lost, has signed on for a recurring role where he is expected to play Nancy’s (Mary-Louise Parker) old classmate Ellis. Lange joins fellow guests Richard Dreyfuss and Alanis Morissette on the Weeds’ cast next season.

CSI regular re-signs

CSI regular Marg Helgenberger has signed on for another season on the crime drama in the character of Catherine. Several other key cast members are still in contractual negotiations over returning.

Snoop heading to Corrie?

In quite possibly the oddest piece of TV news in a long while, rapper Snoop Dogg has admitted he is a big fan of Coronation Street and would love to make an appearance. It turns out Snoop has asked his people to enquire as to the possibility of a guest appearance for the rapper on the English soap.

 

After we posed the question “When can a New Zealand TV show stand on its own feet?” South Pacific Pictures, the makers of Outrageous Fortune, Go Girls and Shortland Street, emailed us with the following response:

There has been a bit of correspondence of late on Throng about funding for New Zealand drama and we thought you might be interested in some of the background realities of producing drama in this country.

a) the ad revenue generated from an hour of prime time drama  (8.30pm/9.30pm) on TVONE, TV2 & TV3 is about $120-150,000 gross before commissions and discounts, and about $70-90,000 net to the network per hour.

b) Overseas programmes (eg. Lost, Desperate Housewives, The Pacific, House, Greys Anatomy, etc) can be bought by TVNZ/TV3 for about $20-30000 per hour, Clearly this means that these programmes, (which say nothing about us), are very profitable for local broadcasters.

c) Local drama regardless of whether it is well made and popular (eg. Outrageous Fortune, Go Girls) or poorly made and unpopular, costs $500-600,000 per hour.

This means that the broadcasters can’t afford to make local drama without NZOnAir assistance, and in the absence of that there would be no New Zealand drama

If this is truly the case and New Zealand drama simply cannot be produced without a handout from the taxpayer, then perhaps new options need to be looked at.

In Canada, for example, there are growing co-productions between Canadian producers and US networks.  Sure, the markets might be bigger but why can’t some collaborations be done with Australia?  Producers like South Pacific Pictures have the integrity and reputation of being producers of world class television so why not work with some Australian networks to offset the cost?  Surely this would mean more opporunities, and ultimately more revenue and more local content.

There is an enormous opportunity for southern hemisphere content producers to collaborate and dominate prime time television during our winter months with quality local shows in a similar way to what the Canadians have been trying to do with shows like Flashpoint and The Bridge.

How awesome would it be to have a New Zealand production airing simultaneously in Australia? Perhaps a collaboration on the ANZACs might be a good place to start.

Bring it on, I say!

8:30pm Monday, June 14 on TV One

Tom Hanks, Steven Spielberg and Gary Goetzman, the producing team behind the Emmy and Golden Globe award-winning miniseries Band Of Brothers present HBO’s The Pacific, an epic ten-part miniseries event. Filmed on location in Australia, the series is based on the true stories of World War II Marines who fought in the less-told story of the war in the Pacific. Tonight’s episode in the last in the series (at 8.30pm on TV ONE).

After the Japanese surrender, Leckie (James Badge Dale), healed from his wounds, leaves the hospital and returns home, while Sledge (Joe Mazzello) heads back to Alabama to be reunited with his family and Sid Phillips (Ashton Holmes).

Lena (Annie Parisse) visits Basilone’s (Jon Seda) home and has an emotional meeting with his family. Leckie adjusts to post-war life by resuming his old job and starting a new relationship, but for Sledge, unsure why he survived the war seemingly unscathed, adjustment will require more time.

Missed an episode of The Pacific – full episodes are available online. Go to tvnz.co.nz and click the ‘Ondemand’ button.

Spielberg eyes down under

Steven Spielberg is eyeing up Queensland as the filming location of his new big budget series Terra Nova. The Hollywood heavyweight sang the praises of Australia after shooting war drama The Pacific in Melbourne and is looking at the far North this time to provide the backdrop for his new dinosaur series which is said to cost around $150 million.

Pro-whaling comedian says more on the way

The comedian who duped Breakfast host Paul Henry earlier in the week pretending to be a pro-whaling supporter has sent out a gentle warning of more pranks on the horizon. Guy Williams is a part of C4 show The Jono Project whose goal it was to make it onto a live interview on the rival broadcaster’s news and current affairs show as a joke.

Vinnie Jones lands TV role

British tough guy Vinnie Jones has signed on for his first regular TV role in the new superhero series The Cape. The footballer-turned-actor will play a powerful criminal called Scales whose rare condition causes his body to look as though it is covered in green and gold scales.

Skins “unrealistic”

Teen drama Skins has been voted the most unrealistic representation of student life on TV in a poll carried out by a UK website. The results showed that 67% of those polled agreed that the British series was the most unrealistic with fellow British soap Hollyoaks second and Gossip Girl third.

DeWyze signs record deal

American Idol winner Lee DeWyze has signed a record deal with 19 Recordings/RCA Records. The 24-year-old singer will release his album in spring this year.

Grey’s promotes actress

Grey’s Anatomy has promoted another character to a full-time role with news that Sarah Drew will become a regular next season. Drew plays April on the show and will join the recently promoted Jesse Williams in beefed-up roles in season 7 of the medical drama.

8:30pm Monday, May 31 on TV One

Tom Hanks, Steven Spielberg and Gary Goetzman, the producing team behind the Emmy and Golden Globe award-winning miniseries Band Of Brothers present HBO’s The Pacific, an epic ten-part miniseries event. Filmed on location in Australia, the series is based on the true stories of World War II Marines who fought in the less-told story of the war in the Pacific.

Talking on the red carpet at the premiere of The Pacific, to Access Hollywood, Steven Speilberg says of the cast and crew, “god bless the actors who really immersed themselves, including our six directors and all of the writers. The actors really took it seriously; when there were veterans they were playing who were still alive, they met them; they read everything they could about the Pacific war, and they really took a lot of responsibility to not only equip the dialogue but to bring themselves and all of their intuitive talents into it – that’s why I think all the acting in this was really exemplary, because they went beyond the call of a job to honour the stories of the veterans.”

Asked about his motivation for making the series Spielberg says, “I used to say to my dad, ‘dad, you’re telling me all these war stories and I’m watching all these war movies on television but John Wayne saw much more action than you ever did’ and my dad said ‘yeah, but they don’t make movies about the tedium and the boredom, and the terror, and the sweaty nights with the malaria’ and all of those horrible things that happened just based of the organism of the jungle and I think in this series we really make the jungle a character.”

Did Spielberg find the actors treated him and Tom Hanks like heroes when they had the chance to work with them. He responds, “I think the actors at the very beginning were impressed that Tom and I were doing this together, like we did Band Of Brothers, but the second they learned who they were portraying and what it was all about, we played second fiddle to those boys who fought in that war, those were their new heroes no longer me and Tom.”

On tonight’s episode of The Pacific, increasingly frustrated by his role campaigning for war bonds, Basilone (Jon Seda) convinces the Marines to allow him to train troops headed for combat. Transferred to Camp Pendleton, he enjoys a whirlwind romance with an initially reluctant female Marine, Lena Riggi (Annie Parisse, How To Lose A Guy In 10 Days). But the couple know they are living on borrowed time, as Basilone is soon to take part in the Marine landing on Iwo Jima.

Missed an episode of The Pacific – full episodes are available online. Go to tvnz.co.nz and click the ‘Ondemand’ button.

8:30pm Monday, May 24 on TV One

Tom Hanks, Steven Spielberg and Gary Goetzman, the producing team behind the Emmy and Golden Globe award-winning miniseries Band Of Brothers present HBO’s The Pacific, an epic ten-part miniseries event. Filmed on location in Australia, the series is based on the true stories of World War II Marines who fought in the less-told story of the war in the Pacific.

On tonight’s episode of The Pacific, the Marines, including the newly christened ‘Sledgehammer’, continue the battle of Peleliu against an enemy determined to fight to the last man. Devastated by the loss of a revered leader, and witnessing unimaginable barbarity on both sides, Eugene Sledge (Joe Mazzello) veers to the very edge of moral collapse. Their objective finally secured, the Marines return to Pavuvu fundamentally changed by their experience on Peleliu.

Missed an episode of The Pacific – full episodes are available online. Go to tvnz.co.nz and click the ‘Ondemand’ button.

8:30pm Monday, May 17 on TV One

Tom Hanks, Steven Spielberg and Gary Goetzman, the producing team behind the Emmy and Golden Globe award-winning miniseries Band Of Brothe

rs present HBO’s The Pacific (tonight on TV ONE at 8.30pm), an epic ten-part miniseries event. Filmed on location in Australia, the series is based on the true stories of World War II Marines who fought in the less-told story of the war in the Pacific.

For James Badge Dale, the actor who plays Private First Class John Leckie, landing the part after a considerable wait was a dream come true. “There was about a six month audition process, I was actually off doing a play in New York and I hadn’t heard from them for a long time, and the play was nearly over and I didn’t know what I was going to do, I didn’t have a job. It was the normal actor moment where you’re wondering ‘how am I going to pay my rent’, and then I got a phone call from HBO asking if I wanted to come to Australia,” he says.

Initially intimated by the thought of meeting Steven Spielberg, Badge Dale says he was thrilled to learn he was a really genuine person. “The nerves beforehand were worse than when I actually meet [Spielberg], he’s actually a really kind, nice man.”

For Badge Dale, loves scenes are a common occurrence throughout the series and compared to combat scenes he says they don’t come quite as naturally: “[Love scenes] are always hard to prepare for. I worked with Claire Van Der Boom, she’s an incredibly talented, professional actress and by that time also I knew the crew pretty well. I mean those are awkward situations, when you’ve got to drop your [trousers] in front of 50 people. It’s really not the sexiest time. But I run around naked all the time on set. I signed about seven nudity wavers for this show,” he continues.

On tonight’s episode of The Pacific, despite the suffocating 115-degree heat and a lack of clean drinking water, Eugene B Sledge (Joe Mazzello), Robert Leckie and the other marines confront the highly-fortified enemy as they attempt to capture the Peleliu airfield. After seeing his comrades badly injured, Leckie is then wounded himself and evacuated from the island. Sledge witnesses the shocking truth about what is sometimes required to survive and fight another day.

Missed an episode of The Pacific – full episodes are available online. Go to tvnz.co.nz and click the ‘Ondemand’ button.

8:30pm Monday, May 10 on TV One

Tom Hanks, Steven Spielberg and Gary Goetzman, the producing team behind the Emmy and Golden Globe award-winning miniseries Band Of Brothers present HBO’s The Pacific, tonight on TV ONE at 8.30pm, an epic ten-part miniseries event. Filmed on location in Australia, the series is based on the true stories of World War II Marines who fought in the less-told story of the war in the Pacific.

For John Seda, who plays marine sergeant John Basilone, a real life marine who fought in the war, having the opportunity to work on the series with Hanks, Spielberg and Goetzman was the opportunity of a lifetime. “It was intimidating because you just know what they’ve done, and it really is every actors dream to be able to work with them. And then on a project like this, where the nature of the project is so important and has such a heart, it’s just absolutely incredible,” he says.

Impressed with the skill of the producers and their dedication to the series, Seda says, “we were shooting in Australia, and of course [the producers] have other projects going on as well…but they were hands on with every aspect of the filming. Everything would be sent to them for their approval. There were times when we would re-shoot something or add a line here or change a line there and it was coming directly from them.”

Waiting for the show to reach television screens has been a bitter-sweet process says Seda, whose sense of accomplishment has grown in the lead up to the launch of The Pacific. “We’ve been living with [the series] for a little while now and the truth is that we could probably go on and make 50 more projects, but this will always have a special place and I think this has left a mark on all of us,” he says.

On tonight’s episode, John Basilone’s (Seda) celebrity grows as he travels across the country on the war bonds tour. On Pavuvu, Eugene Sledge (Joe Mazzello), assigned to the 5th Marines, 1st Marine Division, is briefly reunited with Sidney Phillips (Ashton Holmes) and Robert Leckie (James Badge Dale) rejoins his company. Sledge then gets his first taste of combat as he, Leckie, and the rest of the 1st Marine Division meet fierce Japanese resistance while landing on the intricately and heavily defended coral island of Peleliu.