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<p>&quot;Game of Thrones&quot;</p>

"Game of Thrones"

Credit: HBO

'Game of Thrones' Season 4 finale falls short of series highs

'The Children' rises 32 percent from last year's finale

Sunday (June 15) night's fourth season finale for "Game of Thrones" was up significantly over last summer's finale, but fell short of delivering series highs for the acclaimed drama.

Titled "The Children," Sunday's season-ender drew an estimated 7.1 million viewers in its initial 9 p.m. airing, up by 32 percent over last season's finale. With two additional plays, the "Game of Thrones" finale rose to 9.3 million viewers for the night.

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Nicole Kidman and Keith Urban

Keith Urban and Nicole Kidman perform 'Amazing Grace' at Children's Hospital

Check out another time the couple sang together


Keith Urban and wife Nicole Kidman serenaded children at Monash Children’s Hospital in Victoria, Australia over the weekend.

Urban was born in New Zealand but grew up in Australia, while Kidman was born in Hawaii, but, like Urban, was raised in Australia.

Kidman, who showed she has a fine singing voice herself in “Moulin Rouge,” seldom sings with her Grammy-winning husband, but she can be clearly heard singing with the staff and her husband on “Amazing Grace.”

The Oscar winner traveled from Australia to Shanghai to receive an award from the Shanghai Film Festival, while Urban kicked off the Australian leg of his Light the Fuse tour June 14. The tour comes to the U.S. on July 17 and ends Sept. 13.

This isn’t the first time the two have performed together: a few years back, they sang a parody of Men At Work’s “Land Down Under” for at a tribute to fellow Aussie/“The Mentalist” star Simon Baker and Kidman was very playful and goofy. Check out that video below the Monash one.

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'Castle' creator exits as showrunner

“Castle” creator exits as showrunner
Andrew Marlowe will be replaced by exec producer David Amann, but he’ll continue to maintain a presence on the show.

The nephew of “Duck Dynasty's" Phil Robertson’s is running for Congress
Republican Zach Dasher, 36, hopes to represent Louisiana’s 5th district.

Meet Disney Channel’s “Descendants”
Here’s the first official cast photo of the children of Disney’s villains.

Aaron Paul plays prank pretending that “Breaking Bad” is coming back
"I didn't think that news was supposed to be public yet but yeah, we are doing another season,” he joked to The Huffington Post.

Anthony Anderson to host “Food Fest Nation” on Food Network
The “Fest” show will visit food festivals around the nation.

Which “Orange is the New Black” star kissed Kourtney Kardashian on E!?
In 2009, Jackie Cruz appeared on three episodes of "Kim & Kourtney Take Miami” as their bisexual friend.

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Maroon 5

Maroon 5 returns with driving new single, 'Maps'

First single from new album, 'V'

Maroon 5’s new single, “Maps,” may cover new terrain geographically as lead singer/“The Voice” coach Adam Levine vows to search the globe for his lost love, but musically it stays pretty much in the group’s sweet spot with catchy verses and a striking vocal performance from Levine.

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'Crouching Tiger,' 'Howards End,' 'Talk to Her': the best of Sony Pictures Classics
Credit: Sony Classics

'Crouching Tiger,' 'Howards End,' 'Talk to Her': the best of Sony Pictures Classics

With the company's honchos set to be feted at LAFF, we count off their greatest

Sony Pictures Classics honchos Michael Barker and Tom Bernard have been feted up one side and down the other lately. The duo celebrated 20 years of SPC in 2012 and have received awards from the Museum of the Moving Image and the Gotham Awards as of late. Tonight they will receive the Los Angeles Film Festival's Spirit of Independence Award as the love keeps pouring in.

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<p>Tim Duncan celebrates</p>

Tim Duncan celebrates

Credit: AP

TV Ratings: Spurs' NBA Finals clincher dominates Sunday night

'Game of Thrones' finale ratings will come later

Fast National ratings for Sunday, June 15, 2014.

Sorry, ABC. That's it for your NBA Finals summer ratings infusion.

The San Antonio Spurs dispatched the Miami Heat in only five games, with Sunday's series clincher doing the best numbers for this NBA Finals, dominating primetime in all measures and denying ABC what certainly would have been even bigger ratings for Game 6 and Game 7.

Sunday offered few other network notables -- "Game of Thrones" finale numbers will be available later -- with the "Believe" finale and "Crisis" whimpering weakly for NBC, but still far outperforming FOX's steady-but-tiny returns for "Enlisted." 

On to the results...

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'Game of Thrones' director: That book spoiler was never going to happen this season

“Game of Thrones” director: That book spoiler was never going to happen this season
"It is really sort of, what are we doing with that?” Alex Graves says of the spoiler the book fans have been buzzing about all season. "How does it play into the whole story in a way that we’re really going to like? It just didn’t end up being a part of what was going to happen this season. And finally one (more) reason: In case you didn’t notice, a lot happens this season … To add that in is something they opted out of. But what’s funny is that it was never going to be in the season, yet it took off on the Internet like it was going to happen.” PLUS: This proved the show is superior to the books, the cruel irony of book reader frustration, the biggest differences between the book and the show, characters are wilder on TV than in the books, costume designers stitch secrets into the actresses’ gowns, George R.R. Martin threw out the 1st pitch at a baseball game, Can “Game of Thrones” improve the disliked “A Feast for Crows"?, What is Arya’s iron poker chip?, listen to the choral version of the theme song from last night’s finale, watch a tribute to all the dead from this season, and why “Game of Thrones” can’t possibly have a satisfying ending.

“The Powerpuff Girls” to return in 2016, rebooted
The Cartoon Network is bringing back the animated series, which ran from 1998 to 2005. The announcement comes on the heels of a “Powerpuff” special earlier this year featuring Ringo Starr.

Food Network drops Paula Deen’s son
“Home for Dinner with Jamie Deen” is not being renewed.

NBA Finals end by dominating the ratings
Game 5 had a strong viewership, despite going up against the “Game of Thrones” finale.

“Game of Thrones’” Charles Dance joins Sam Worthington on WWI miniseries “Deadline Gallipoli”
Dance will play the commander of Britain's ill-fated World War I Gallipoli campaign.

Bill Cosby on a “Cosby Show” reunion: “No, thank you. Those people are too old now"
Cosby responded to a reunion question during a Father’s Day Q&A on Reddit.

Stephen Hawking made fun of John Oliver
Watch their interview from “Last Week Tonight."

David Hasselhoff: People know me more as “The Hoff” than as “David Hasselhoff
“Now The Hoff has eclipsed David Hasselhoff, so I just go with it,” he says.

“Alpha” star joins “Haven”
Laura Mennell will play an epidemiologist from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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'Game of Thrones’' Season 4 finale was 'more blow-up than clean-up,' says co-creator

“Game of Thrones’” Season 4 finale was “more blow-up than clean-up,” says co-creator
"In past seasons,” says D.B. Weiss, "our final episodes have often been clean-up  -- exciting in their own right, but primarily concerned with addressing the aftermath of the momentous events of the episode before. This isn't one of those. The finale of the fourth season is more blow-up than clean-up. In real life, blowing things up is usually a lot easier than cleaning them up, but on TV it's a lot more difficult.” PLUS: Why it’s a good thing the book spoiler didn’t happen, here's George R.R. Martin's explanation for what happened to Tyrion, It was refreshing that producers chose to end on an emotional moment instead of a cool one, producers made a misstep with Tyrion, Was there too much good stuff?, too many characters got shorter shrift, there was something for everyone in the finale, “The Children” is more an ellipsis than a period, Gwendoline Christie on Brienne’s finale showdown — “I was just knackered,” Maisie Williams is glad Arya Stark got that ending — “I don’t really think it was spiteful," Sibel Kekilli was shocked it didn’t happen to Shae last season, and read George R. Martin’s 1963 letter to Stan Lee and Jack Kirby.

Report: Malia Obama is working as a production assistant on CBS’ “Extant”
The oldest daughter of President and Mrs. Obama, who turns 16 on the 4th of July, was spotted working on the CBS Steven Spielberg-produced Halle Berry drama last week, according to The Wrap. “She helped with computer shop alignments and the director also let her slate a take,” says an insider.

TLC apologizes for airing a profanity-laced “Honey Boo Boo” episode in the UK
Last week’s “Here Comes Honey Boo Boo” contained five instances of the F-word, 11 instances of the S-word and one B-word.

Report: Katie Couric was hated at CBS
A new book "The News Sorority” tells how CBS staffers resented Couric’s arrival in 2006, including her hefty $15 million salary. PLUS: Couric talks about her daytime talk show struggles.

Jimmy Kimmel has his fans jump on their dads for Father’s Day
Check out Kimmel’s latest YouTube Challenge — “Hey Jimmy Kimmel, I Hopped on Pop.” PLUS: NBA stars read Mean Tweets.

“24” tonight hits Episode 200
"It's fantastic,” says co-creator Robert Cochran. "It's something that makes us very humble and very thankful for the fans around the world... that have supported us all these years. I can promise you when we started the show, this thing wasn't even in our minds. We were trying to get to Episode 2. We're very thankful for it."

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<p>Game of Thrones</p>

Game of Thrones

Credit: HBO

Season finale review: 'Game of Thrones' - 'The Children'

Jon Snow meets with Mance, the Hound has a rough outing and Tyrion and Tywin have a chat

A review of tonight's "Game of Thrones" coming up just as soon as I do a poor job hobbling the horses...

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Credit: FOX

Review: 'Enlisted' - 'Army Men'

Randy and Pete compete over Jill, and Derrick tries to impress Erin

A quick review of tonight's "Enlisted" coming up just as soon as I convince an old Jewish couple I'm their grandson Jeffrey...

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Casey Kasem

Thank you, Casey Kasem, for spending time with me every week

Kasem dies at 82 after a long illness

Second only to my father’s, Casey Kasem’s voice was one of the resounding male voices of my childhood and played a large part in shaping my dreams. That voice, which had been off the air for several years already, was silenced for good today when Kasem died at 82.

When people ask me how I got into music journalism, there is one story that I always tell and that is of loving listening to the radio. Growing up in Raleigh, N.C., the main Top 40 station was WKIX. It was my gateway drug into the music world. I bought singles and got into album-oriented rock as I got older, but from the start, I was a Top 40 girl. I listened to it all the time. I made my mom switch from WPTF, her station of choice, to WKIX whenever we were in the car together (my father, who loved classical music, wasn’t usually so compliant) and I listened to it on the radio in my bedroom when I was doing my homework. If I could get away with it, I would listen after I went to bed,  but I would be so excited to hear what the next song was that I couldn’t fall asleep, so my parents put an end to that.  The local DJs brought me the songs that informed my childhood, but every Sunday, Casey Kasem brought me the world.

The American Top 40 Countdown aired on WKIX every Sunday starting at noon. I would sit in church and fidget as it grew closer to 12 p.m. Church would finish and my parents — I’m convinced they did this just to torture me— would insist on chatting with friends or helping clean up the sanctuary while I would be dying inside, knowing I was missing the songs at No. 40, 39, 38, 37… on the radio. Usually, we’d get home by the time Kasem was declaring Song No. 35 or so and, as I did every week, I’d sit at my desk in my bedroom, take out purple, lined, notebook paper (sometimes it was pink) and I would write down the songs as he announced them. I’d leave space at the top for the songs I’d missed because I knew he’d recap them when he got to No. 30.  

This was in the days when local stations had more clout in determining what they played than they do now, so I might hear a song on AT40 that I’d never heard before on WKIX because the local program director didn’t want to play it. There was something magical and wonderfully comforting about knowing that I was hearing him count down to “the top song in the land,” as Kasem used to say, and that some kid in Sacramento or Milwaukee was listening to these songs too. Kasem had a warm voice that felt like it was caressing the words as he conspiratorially, softly revealed secrets behind the songs and the artists, pulling back the curtain on new artists I’d never heard of before or revealing the newest song from some act I loved before WKIX had put it in regular rotation.

My obsession with writing down the weekly chart numbers probably lasted for only a few years— probably from fifth to seventh grade or so… but Kasem and the American Top 40 Countdown introduced me to Billboard. For several years, AT40 used Billboard’s charts and that’s how I found out about the trade magazine. And then… a few short years later, I was interning for Billboard while in college, and ultimately worked for them for more than a dozen years. I feel like I have Kasem to thank. I’m sure I would have learned about Billboard somehow, but because of Kasem, from a very early age, Billboard held a mythical allure for me.

I had long weaned myself off of having to listen every Sunday, but when I went to Germany for my junior year of  college, Kasem came back into my life. I would find myself missing home and wanting to hear an American accent (this was was before the internet and Skype and international calling was expensive enough that I only talked to my parents once a month). Enter Armed Forces Radio Network. In addition to the 1,000 stations in the U.S. that aired AT40, the countdown was broadcast on 400 AFRN stations, including one that was near Regensburg, where I went to college. So once again, Kasem brought me the world— or more specifically— helped me go home each week, when I would hear what was hitting big in the U.S. while I was 4,000 miles away.

Kasem turned over hosting AT40 to Ryan Seacrest in 2004. Even though I hadn’t listened for awhile, I still felt nostalgic sadness that an icon from my childhood was no longer there for me every week.

SiriusXM Radio plays the American Top 40 Countdown on its 70s channel every week and if I’m in the car, I’ll tune in. It’s a trip to hear Kasem’s voice coming back at me through the speakers. The long distance dedications delivered with dripping sincerity sound hokey to me now in a way that they never did to that young girl growing up in Raleigh who took his weekly sign off of “Keep your feet on the ground and keep reaching for the stars”  very seriously.  I never met Kasem during my time at Billboard, but that didn’t make me sad because I felt like I already knew him already. After all, we spent every Sunday together for years.

It wasn't that long ago that Kasem and I were radio mates, but it was a very different time that feels like another era. Though Top 40 countdown shows still exist, there was something special about having a weekly listening date and knowing that if I missed hearing Kasem then, I couldn't just go online and see the chart or stream that week's countdown whenever I felt like. Technology has definitely given us more options, but when you have everything at your fingertips whenever you want it, it loses a little of its uniqueness and what make it special. I'm glad that I felt that urgency to get home every Sunday, even if my parents didn't understand the necessity, and I'm thankful that Kasem helped me understand from a very young age the power of dreams and music.

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2014 Emmy Nomination Contenders - Supporting Actor in a Drama Series

2014 Emmy Nomination Contenders - Supporting Actor in a Drama Series

Can Dean Norris break in? Will Josh Charles return? Big questions abound

Reminder: For our annual Emmy contenders coverage, Sepinwall does his personal preferences, while I handicap mostly in terms of likelihood of landing nominations. As usual, the first six slides in each gallery are my nomination predictions. The next eight or nine slides are the actors and shows most likely to sneak in, based on precedent, quality or something nebulous. And then at the end of each gallery, I tend to throw in a couple oddballs who have no chance at all of being nominated, but who I think deserve to be a part of the conversation, or might accidentally become part of the conversation, just because.

Our next category:


This is always one of the toughest categories on the ballot because of the depth of some of these ensemble casts. "Breaking Bad" could fill three or four slots. "Boardwalk Empire" could fill a whole field. "Game of Thrones" has a few actors worthy of consideration. And those are all shows that have been represented here in the past. Will a new show like "Ray Donovan" break the field? Will a past favorite like "Mad Men" or "The Good Wife" make their presence felt? Is this the year that Emmy voters notice "The Americans" or expand their notice of "Scandal"

The results could be amazingly boring and familiar (and not necessarily wrong) or they could make pundits look very silly.

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