Angelina Jolie is "Surprise! Boring in bed." Whaaaaaa? This alleged information comes from shade thrown by her ex, Billy Bob Thornton, who has said, "sometimes, with the model, the actress, the 'sexiest person in the world,' it may be literally like fucking the couch." FUCK YO COUCH, BILLY BOB!
If corporations can be people then so too can networks have personalities. Fox, for example, is youthful and brash, rife with protagonists who refuse to play by the rules, be they doctors, ten-year-olds, or megalomaniacal Brits. ABC has long been the Secret of networks, strong enough for a (sensitive) man but ph-balanced for women. While CBS is essentially what everyone down in Lower Manhattan is currently protesting: rich, old and crushingly successful. (#OccupyStudioCity!) NBC, however, is a bit more complicated.
It’s been ever so for the peacock, or at least since Chandler Bing snarked his last back in 2004. Back then, NBC was top bird in the demographics that mattered: hip young urbanites (and the strivers that wanted to be like them). Seinfeld, Friends, ER were all massive hits that projected an air of confidence and cutting-edge cool. Then somebody Zucked it all up: the last half decade has been a near-satirical spiral of dud shows, ill-advised “reinventions” and a crippling Leno addiction so powerful it would leave Charlie Sheen shaking his head and recommending rehab. In the midst of the macro, “NBC is a disaster” narrative, though, a smaller micro trend emerged: we media types mocked NBC with abandon but it also quietly became home to our most loved, least watched shows, comedies like Parks & Recreation and 30 Rock and touchy-feely hours Friday Night Lights (RIP!) and Parenthood. If you were to ask any casual industry watcher what NBC’s identity was, the answer would probably still involve the words “cool” and “Tina Fey.” But here’s the thing: making a show precisely for the commenters on the AV Club isn’t exactly profitable. This generous, art-endorsing era that bought The Office time to succeed and gave Coach Taylor five seasons of pep-talks and uplift was, in reality, an aberration, an almost accidental flowering of excellence while corporate eyes were busy putting out larger fires and taming wilder white tigers.
Dane Cook has landed a development deal at NBC, and will produce and star in a half-hour comedy with an eye on a fall 2012 premiere. The ever-divisive Cook’s movie career has mostly fizzled, but he’s still a huge stand-up pull, and, despite whatever personal aversion you may have, there’s no reason why Cook shouldn't be allowed to take a crack at a TV show. If this fails too, though, Dane should probably move to a small village in Southern Italy and start a new life as a kindly cobbler. Grade: D [Deadline]
Yesterday, the news about Antoine Fuqua was that he was directing a Suge Knight documentary for Showtime. Today, the news about Antoine Fuqua is that he’s in talks to direct Hunter Killer, an adaptation of George Wallace and Don Keith’s novel Firing Point, in which a Navy SEAL team has to rescue a Russian president, taken hostage during a coup, and stop a rogue general from starting international war. And with that, we bring to a thrilling conclusion the latest edition of our beloved feature, News About Antoine Fuqua. Grade: B+ [Showblitz]
Bruce Willis is negotiating to star in the increasingly weird-seeming G.I. Joe 2: Retaliation as Joe Colton, the original Joe. He'd join Dwayne Johnson, Adrianne Palicki, and RZA, and be inexplicably directed by Jon M. Chu, the guy who made the Step Up movies and Justin Bieber: Never Say Never. Grade: B [HR]
Oren Moverman (The Messenger) is writing and possibly directing The Terrorist Search Engine, a movie based on Wesley Yang's recent New York magazine profile of Evan Kohlmann, a young, Internet-savvy, counter-terrorism expert who earned the nickname "the Doogie Howser of Terrorism" for his testimony leading to the conviction of nearly 24 jihadists. Scott Rudin will produce and Jesse Eisenberg may star ("That's thousand. Twenty-four thousand jihadists"). Grade: A [Deadline]