Saturday, January 19, 2008

News Brief

Sacramento Bee: Vince Oliver grew up in front of cameras. He was a child actor, working hard in Hollywood on several hit TV series. Billed as V.P. Oliver, he had a regular gig on Aaron Spelling's daytime soap opera, SUNSET BEACH (Jimmy). Usually, his characters were kids in trouble with complicated problems. "I played some tough roles," Oliver said. "It's something I enjoy doing – and I got to miss a little school, too." But his real passion is basketball. Oliver's current starring role anchors the UC Davis offense. The junior guard is the Aggies' leading scorer.

New York Times: Why is FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS such a bust? It hurts to pose the question. FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS, the NBC series about a high-school football team, is a luminous slow dance set in the smoldering landlock of fictional Dillon, Tex. Like a late-life romance, it induces both grief and euphoria and casts a kind of high-lonesome bluegrass spell. I love FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS. And it’s not just me. Grown-ups cry — DVR-owning grown-ups especially, according to Media Life magazine — while watching FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS. They also pine for more and deeply dread the show’s extinction. The fault of FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS is extrinsic: the program has steadfastly refused to become a franchise. It generates no tabloid features, cartoons, trading cards, board games, action figures or vibrating brooms.

Los Angeles Times: FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS stars know how to make a marriage work. "Don't whisper-yell at me," Coach Eric Taylor retorted during a recent episode of "Friday Night Lights," after his wife, Tami, proved once again during a quiet, intense fight that she's the wiser half. It was a funny line in its delivery, but it also highlighted a relationship that works for better and for worse, and has been heralded by critics and fans as the best portrayal of a marriage on television.

What's On TV: Actor Mohammed George is to leave EASTENDERS after six years as road sweeper Gus, according to reports. The Mirror says that his departure was by "mutual consent", following a turbulent year which saw him suspended the show, following an argument outside a diner with his girlfriend.

Contactmusic: Liz Dawn's 33-year association with CORNONATION STREET has come to an end with the unexpected death of her character Vera Duckworth. Vera, who the actress has played since the 1970s, was due to be written out of the show because of Dawn's ill-health, but fans had been kept guessing as to the manner of her exit. Three different endings had been filmed to keep viewers guessing. The estimated 12.5 million people who tuned into ITV1 last night watched Vera die in her sleep as she sat in her armchair.

Louisville Courier-Journal: The Hallmark Channel and Oxygen have dueling lightweight movies about romance tonight. They won't win any Emmys but do offer something fresh -- even if the themes are a bit stale. And AMC cable rolls out an edgy new series tomorrow night. Oxygen gets a head start at 8 p.m. with "Husband for Hire." The draw may be that Mark Consuelos (ALL MY CHILDREN) is the leading man with Mario Lopez (THE BOLD AND THE BEAUTIFUL) in a supporting role.

Creators Syndicate: 25-year-old, Nyack, New York-born Lawrence Saint-Victor, known to daytime viewers as GUIDING LIGHT's Remy Boudreau played the cute EMT on LAW & ORDER: SVU in the beginning of the show on Nov. 27. The son of two teachers, he is a graduate of the Conservatory of Theatre Arts and Film at SUNY Purchase. He married actress Shay Flake in September.

Truro Daily News: When Leah Johnston arrived at the outdoor set of GOSSIP GIRL, she knew her lifelong dream was coming true. Johnston, originally from Truro, graduated from New York University’s musical theatre program and quickly found a manager and agent. It took more than seven months to book a show, but it finally happened in the fall. “Although it was an anti-climactic first role, it gave me some momentum,” said Johnston of the one episode she filmed in which her character photographs an act of vandalism taking place on the street. She did not have any lines, but she had the perks of being an actress. Johnston then was booked for one episode of AS THE WORLD TURNS, a CBS soap opera, just before Christmas. It is set to air Jan. 23. “It was a minor guest role but with the possibility of recurring,” opportunities, she said. Plus, she worked with Jennifer Landon, daughter of legendary TV star Michael Landon, of LITTLE HOUSE ON THE PRAIRIE fame.

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