NEW SERIES FROM SHOWRUNNER OF ‘THE BIG C’ LANDS AT NBC: The Big C showrunner Jenny Bicks is bringing her new untitled mermaid-themed sitcom to NBC. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Bicks will write and executive produce the comedy about a beached mermaid in search of adventures but ends up working at a bar/attraction in Miami with an eclectic group of people. Jenny previously attempted to create a TV follow-up of Heathers for Bravo.
HISTORY CHANNEL GIVES GREEN LIGHT TO ‘HOUDINI’: The History channel has ordered a four-hour miniseries called Houdini about magician Harry Houdini starring Adrien Brody and House of Cards star Kristen Connolly. The show will trace the arc of Houdini’s life from desperate poverty to worldwide fame. Production is scheduled to begin in the fall.
ABC IS STICKING WITH SHONDA RHIMES: ABC is developing a drama called How To Get Away With Murder from Shonda Rhimes and Betsy Beers’ production company Shondaland. This is the fourth project from the duo for this development season. The show is described as “a sexy, suspense-driven legal thriller about a group of ambitious law students and their brilliant, mysterious criminal defense professor who become entangled in a murder plot that will rock their entire university and change the course of their lives.”
KIM KARDASHIAN BLOGS ABOUT MISSING KYLIE JENNER’S SWEET 16: Kim Kardashian posted a new entry to her blog on Monday (August 19th) to address why she wasn’t in attendance at Kylie Jenner’s Sweet 16 over the weekend. Kim wrote, “I heard Kylie’s sweet 16 was the party of the year! Sadly, Kanye and I couldn’t attend as we were in Oklahoma for his grandfather’s funeral. I got phone calls about it afterwards and saw all of the videos on Keek and photos on Instagram. It looked like so much fun! Xo.”
LINDSAY LOHAN HAS TAKEN UP SOUL CYCLE: Lindsay Lohan’s quest to live a healthy post-rehab life apparently involves the trendy Soul Cycle exercise class. Lindsay was photographed exiting a cycle studio on Sunday (August 18th) — the same day her sit-down with Oprah aired on OWN. She attended the class with her sister Ali. Lilo was smoking a cigarette while recovering from the workout.
DICK VAN DYKE PULLED FROM FLAMING VEHICLE: Mary Poppins star Dick Van Dyke was pulled to safety by a passerby who found the 87-year-old hunched over the steering wheel of his Jaguar which was sitting on the side of an L.A. road with smoke spewing out of it. According to TMZ, the car burst into flames shortly after the rescue. Dick reportedly did not require any medical attention following the incident and his wife came to pick him up.
DAVID ARQUETTE ADMITS TO FALLING OFF THE WAGON: David Arquette chatted with Howard Stern on Monday (August 19th) and admitted that he has started hitting the bottle again after years of attempting sobriety. He revealed, “I’m drinking again…I’m a drinker, I drink a lot.” He explained that being sober didn’t feel like he was being true to himself. David went on to say, “Yeah, I’ll smoke a little weed. I’m a wild man, I do get out of control, I try to keep a cap on it. Whatever I do, I’m gonna do: I’m gonna go through this journey and figure out my life. I’m a responsible person, I have my daughter three days a week…I’m incredibly responsible. I’m living my life and I’m trying not to hurt people.”
MAN FOUND DEAD AT OLIVIA NEWTON-JOHN’S HOUSE: The dead body of a man was found on Monday (August 19th) at a Jupiter, Florida home belonging to Olivia Newton-John and her husband John Easterling. According to E! News, the cops were called shortly after noon to investigate a possible death and when they arrived at the house they found a 42-year-old man who had sustained a gun shot. The police department revealed that he was a contractor for the movie star but they were not present at the time of the incident. Local newspapers are reporting the death as a suicide but an autopsy will be performed today (August 20th) to uncover more details.
Former Disney Actor Dies
Former Disney star Lee Thompson Young is dead from an apparent suicide. He was 29. According to The New York Daily News, the actor was found unresponsive by cops at his North Hollywood apartment yesterday (August 19th). Cops were called to check on him after he missed call time on the set of the TNT drama Rizzoli & Isles. TMZ reports a different story — producers from the set of Rizzolli & Isles called Lee’s landlord after he didn’t show up to set, and his landlord was the one that found him dead. Sources say that he died of a self-inflicted gunshot. Lee was best known for his role in the Disney series The Famous Jett Jackson.
Thompson’s manager Johnathan Baruch said in a statement, “It is with great sadness that I announce that Lee Thompson Young tragically took his own life this morning. Lee was more than just a brilliant young actor. He was a wonderful and gentle soul who will be truly missed. We ask that you please respect the privacy of his family and friends as this very difficult time.”
Thompson’s mom Velma Love told the newspaper, “We’re still in shock. I’m in D.C. now and talking to his manager in Los Angeles, and we’re all just in total shock.”
- The executive producer of Rizzoli & Isles told TMZ, “Everyone at [the show] is devastated by the news of the passing of Lee Thompson Young. We are beyond heartbroken at the loss of this sweet, gentle, good-hearted, intelligent man. He was truly a member of our family. Lee will be cherished and remembered by all who knew and loved him, both on- and offscreen, for his positive energy, infectious smile and soulful grace. We send our deepest condolences and thoughts to his family, to his friends and, most especially, to his beloved mother.”