NEWS: Adam Rodriguez, Sherri Saum, Jess Walton, Robert Knepper, Rob Lowe, 'AHS: Hotel' Poster

Guest star Chris "Ludacris" Bridges as Officer McKnight and Terrence
Howard as Lucious Lyon in Empire. ©2015 Fox Broadcasting Co.
Credit: Chuck Hodes/FOX.
Empire ratings dip in the fast nationals but still huge
FOX's Empire scored 13.7 million viewers and a 5.4 adults 18-49 rating (last week 16.2 million, 6.7 rating). ABC's Nashville was steady with 4.8 million viewers and a 1.2 A18-49 rating (last week 4.9 million, 1.2 rating).

I Ain’t No Snitch: The Worst Thing You Can Do on Empire Is Tell the Truth
Writes Dave Schilling: "It’s not a stretch to call the characters on Empire duplicitous. This is a soap opera, after all. On soaps, people lie like dogs lick themselves: whenever they have a free moment and a bit of privacy. But other than The Sopranos, I can’t think of a series more preoccupied with the unassailable benefit of deceit and the code of the streets. Lies, and the consequences of duplicity, are the fuel that makes this show move forward."

FX releases American Horror Story: Hotel poster
Writes Chris Harnick: "American Horror Story: Hotel has released its character poster featuring the tenants and employees of the creepy hotel at the center of the series. There's Lady Gaga's The Countess with her hair–dress combo, Angela Bassett's Ramona looking fierce, Kathy Bates' Iris tending the desk (probably plotting something nefarious), Matt Bomer and Finn Wittrock looking pretty damn fine, creepy kids, Denis O'Hare in a dress and so much more. We'll leave you alone for a few minutes to stare at the image."

Robert Knepper joins Twin Peaks
Knepper has been tapped for a recurring role on the new season for Showtime alongside fellow new addition Amanda Seyfried.

The Fosters star Sherri Saum to guest on How to Get Away with Murder
A HTGAWM rep confirmed Saum's casting, but declined to provide any details about her character. Saum previously starred in daytime soaps One Life to Live and Sunset Beach.

Rob Lowe on The Grinder, Why Network Comedies Can Compete With Cable, and the Objectification of Men
"We did a whole sequence of why he left The Grinder. And the reason he left is he felt objectified. People go on and on about the objectification of women, and rightly so. But what about the objectification of men? When was the last time you saw Grey’s Anatomy? So what I love about this show is these wry, insightful looks at contemporary culture in entertainment as seen through the eyes of a regular Idaho family because they have a conduit to it in my character."

HBO denies racy Westworld casting notice came from them, vows to rectify it
Background players on HBO’s Westworld have had to sign consent forms agreeing to participate in “graphic sexual situations”, including “genital-to-genital touching” and posing “on all fours while others who are fully nude ride on your back”. But HBO said the "document that the background actors were given was created by an outside extras casting vendor."

HBO’s statement comes after my colleague David Robb reported today that a rare explicit casting requirement resulted in the rare step of a SAG-AFTRA representative being on the set to monitor the situation and make sure it conformed to the union’s Television Agreement.

Genes medical soap based on a Michael Crichton script set at CBS as put pilot
Written by Rick Eid based on a screenplay by the late Crichton, Genes, from WBTV and CrichtonSun LLC, is described as a medical soap about a brilliant doctor who saves his dying patient’s life using a miraculous gene therapy — infused with his own DNA — only to realize the side effects have turned her into a dangerous sociopath. Making things more complicated, the doctor begins to fall madly in love with her.

British soap Emmerdale to air "Who Shot Robert Sugden?" flashback episode
In case you missed it, Robert got his just desserts after killing his brother Andy’s wife earlier this year, and it didn’t take long for a mystery character to decide that they’d had enough of his nasty ways - shooting him in the chest and leaving him fighting for life.

Rob Morrow and Kellli Williams join The Fosters
Williams will play Justina, a well-connected foster-care specialist who proposes a significant investment in Callie’s “Fost and Found” website. Morrow will play Will, a liberal-minded free-spirit who is introduced to the Adams Foster family through Stef’s mom, Sharon, played by Annie Potts.

Adam Rodriguez joins Jane the Virgin
The CSI: Miami alum will recur as Jane's critical writing professor.

Serial podcast is becoming a TV drama series
Chris Miller and Phil Lord — the duo behind The Lego Movie, 21 Jump Street and The Last Man on Earth — have optioned the rights to make a cable drama that would follow the making of the NPR podcast as it takes on a case. The Hae Min Lee case won’t, however, be part of the proposed TV series.

David Anders to return to Once Upon a Time as Dr. Whale, AKA Victor Frankenstein
The iZombie star tweeted that “The Doctor Will Be In."

The Young and the Restless star Jess Walton remains humble
Writes Roger Bluhm: "Most people who achieve fame remain humble. Jess Walton, the actress who played Patricia and married Buck Taylor's character, had me laughing hard in my interview with her prior to Wild West Fest. She was on a layover at an airport in Portland, Oregon and we talked for almost an hour. She's spent 30 years playing the same character on a soap opera and knows she's been fortunate in her career."

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