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NEWS: CW'S REIGN & The Royal Baby; Michael French Returning To EASTENDERS; Cady McClain; Aaron Paul

The CW Targets Royal Baby Photos With Ads For REIGN
To promote its new fall show REIGN, The CW is slapping ads on photos of Prince William and Kate Middleton's newborn son.

Michael French returning to EASTENDERS
French will return to his role as David Wicks later this year. The popular character was last seen in January 2012, when he returned to Albert Square to see his mum, Pat, before she died of cancer. While back home, David reignited his romance with former flame, Carol, with whom he has a daughter, Bianca. But Carol was left angry and broken-hearted when David fled Walford alone on the night they were due to leave together. So how will Carol react when David finally shows his face again?

"It's an absolute honor to have Michael back in the show," says Lorraine Newman, executive producer of EASTENDERS. "Michael created an iconic character in David and with such rich history with Ian, Bianca and of course, Carol, there's plenty to explore in the future."

Five questions for Cady McClain on returning to the role of Dixie Cooney on the web's ALL MY CHILDREN
"My mom got cancer when I was 17. My dad wasn't around. And so, when she got sick, I was like, 'Oh my God! I need a regular job fast.' She died when I was 25. I took a couple years off after she died. I did some plays off-Broadway and all kinds of other stuff, but I missed the ritual of the work."

CORONATION STREET is suffering continuity issues after its set was hit by thunderstorms
The soap has come under attack from Mother Nature this week which has caused problems for show bosses who have been trying to finish filming scenes from last week that were shot amid a heatwave at the Manchester-based set.

A source said: "There are often continuity problems with filming when it comes to weather but it's rarely as extreme as this. Last week it was blazing sunshine and today it was horrible, humid and pouring with rain."

Lights, camera, action: MSUM's Straw Hat Players celebrate 50 years
The weekend’s activities highlighted the recent award-winning work of two MSUM alums. Jim Erickson won an Academy Award this year for set direction on Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln, and Bill Hulstrom earned a 2013 Emmy for art direction for THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS.

South Korean Soap Operas: Just Lowbrow Fun?
The recent survey by Seoul National University researchers of Chinese TV viewership shows the main audience for South Korean series tends to be less educated and have less income than viewers that prefer programs from other countries. The study, based on a poll of 400 people aged between 20 and 60 taken in China in January, divided viewers’ tastes into categories according to the levels of income and education.

The high-education-and-high-income group showed a preference for the subject matter’s novelty, fast pace and suspense — often found in U.S. TV shows, the report said. THE BIG BANG THEORY was the most popular feature for fans of American TV.

Cuba: New Soap Opera Gets Lukewarm Response
In an attempt to lure viewers back from satellite channels, Cuban state TV has launched a new soap opera. So far, though, it has only a lukewarm response. TIERRAS DE FUEGO (“Lands of Fire”) debuted in early June to much fanfare. Aired in the primetime 9 p.m. slot on TVC, it is a complex tale of love triangles and socialist zeal centered around a collective farm chairwoman. Despite attempting to incorporate topical storylines and realism, it has yet to grab viewers. The acting, script, set design and locations have all come in for criticism.

The series was commissioned by the Cuban Institute of Radio and Television. A former staff member at the institute's social research center, who asked not to be named, said Cuban soap operas had lost ground to foreign programs, which people watch via illegal cable connections or on pirate DVDs.

BREAKING BAD's Aaron Paul Reacts To His Acting On The Original BEVERLY HILLS, 90210
The latest installment of “Hey, Wasn’t Aaron Paul In That Thing?” comes courtesy of THE TONIGHT SHOW.

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