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Richard Madden

 Richard Madden

Credit: Discovery Channel

Interview: Richard Madden talks 'Klondike,' Prince Charming

The 'Game of Thrones' star says one scene gave him 'nightmares'

Watching the expansive three-part miniseries "Klondike," Discovery's Channel's first scripted project (starting Mon. Jan. 20 at 9:00 p.m.) will leave you cold. Literally. Thanks to cinematic imagery, storylines that highlight the high stakes (and fleeting rewards) of the Klondike Gold Rush of the 1890s, and three nights of avalanches, typhus and murder (yup, it's all there -- the miniseries is based on Charlotte Gray's 2011 book "Gold Diggers: Striking It Rich in the Klondike"), you'll not only feel the cold, the intensely dangerous plight of these adventurers will send a chill through your veins. 

Bill Haskell is our intrepid main character, and his journey from naive optimist to hardened warrior is made all the more real by "Game of Thrones" star Richard Madden, who knows a little something about wearing heavy, muddy costumes and facing deadly odds. Madden may finally get to ditch the dirt for his next role as Prince Charming in "Cinderella," but the Scottish actor approaches every role with the same enthusiasm -- even when particularly dangerous scenes like one he faced on "Klondike" give him "nightmares." Shortly after binge-watching "Klondike," I spoke to Madden over the phone about rolling in the mud, speaking "American" for three months straight, and why he loves having homework. 

In the movie, your character develops a wonderful friendship with Meeker (Tim Blake Nelson). 

That's what's so nice, really, is you don't expect this relationship to come together at all, actually, then these two men come together and find a real, proper and true friendship, which is wonderful, really.

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<p>In &quot;Klondike,&quot;&nbsp;Richard Madden from &quot;Game of Thrones&quot;&nbsp;goes prospecting.</p>

In "Klondike," Richard Madden from "Game of Thrones" goes prospecting.

Credit: Discovery

Review: Discovery's 'Klondike' a familiar but exciting adventure

Richard Madden from 'Game of Thrones' heads to the Yukon to seek his fortune

"Klondike," Discovery's first scripted miniseries, traffics in a lot of cliches and hoaky dialogue and takes a few strange detours in dramatizing the Yukon gold rush of the late 19th Century. But it also nails by far the most important part of the story: the unforgiving frozen terrain that made this particular gold rush as much a battle for survival as a hunt for fortune.

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<p>Aubrey, you have something on your face.</p>

Aubrey, you have something on your face.

Credit: Sundance Film Festival

Review: Aubrey Plaza stretches in gory horror-comedy 'Life After Beth'

And Dane DeHaan's funny... who knew?

PARK CITY - Well, at least now I know why smooth jazz exists.

It's uncommon to see more than one good horror-comedy in a year, much less two within 24 hours, but "Life After Beth" proved to be a fascinating follow-up to "Cooties," both films ostensibly building off of the current fascination with zombies in pop culture, but each approaching the subject in totally different ways.

"Cooties" really does want to scare you and freak you out, and the humor is mainly from watching those particular characters handle an otherwise not particularly funny situation. "Life After Beth," on the other hand, is a comedy first and foremost, and it showcases a great cast, including two leads who both seem to be stretching here in ways that are exciting to see.

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<p>&quot;Web Junkie&quot;</p>

"Web Junkie"

Credit: Sundance

Sundance Review: 'Web Junkie' explores Internet addiction in China

Since we're all probably web junkies, this doc is pretty universal
Everybody has their Sundance Film Festival goals, whether it's to see all of the eventual Jury winners or to see all of the eventual Oscar nominees or just to make sure that you've never missed a single cinematic second of Brit Marling or Elizabeth Olsen.
 
This year, I have a much more restrained goal: I just want to complete the documentary trifecta I'm going to call The Oy Vey The Internet Is Freaky Trilogy.
 
It's a slate that includes the open access tragedy "The Internet's Own Boy," the South Korean online gaming horror story "Love Child" and the Chinese cautionary tale "Web Junkie." It's a subject matter that isn't new to Sundance, what with "Wikileaks" and "Google and the World Brain" premiering here just last year, but when the original 2014 Festival schedule was first announced, it was the first trend I was going to isolate as being on the verge of a Park City explosion.
 
The first of the three documentaries on my docket is Shosh Shlam and Hilla Medalia's internationally diverse China-set, Israeli-American co-production playing here in the World Documentary Competition.
 
At a only-slightly-too-brisk 75 minutes, "Web Junkie" is, on its surface, a harrowing look at a seemingly ordinary behavior taken to extremes and the stifling culture going to equal extremes to combat it. Looking very close below the surface, though, "Web Junkie" isn't such a foreign tale at all. It's about a generational clash that repeats itself over and over across the decades and also across international boundaries. 
 
The narrative transition from alien to universal is what will likely help "Web Junkie" find an audience, but at times I felt it went too much for relatability at the expense of some of the things that make the story unique. 
 
More after the break...
 
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<p>The producers of &quot;Gravity&quot;&nbsp;and &quot;12 Years a Slave&quot; at the 25th annual Producers Guild of American&nbsp;(PGA)&nbsp;Awards</p>

The producers of "Gravity" and "12 Years a Slave" at the 25th annual Producers Guild of American (PGA) Awards

Credit: AP Photo

'Gravity' and '12 Years a Slave' tie at the 2014 PGA Awards

'Frozen' and 'We Steal Secrets' take honors for animation and documentaries

Heading into today's Producers Guild of America (PGA) Awards announcement, it was "12 Years a Slave" and "American Hustle" that appeared to have the momentum. The former had landed some major media prizes in the form of Golden Globe and Critics' Choice wins, while the latter added a Screen Actors Guild ensemble award to its own Golden Globe prize last night. But, well, Alfonso Cuarón's "Gravity" had a little something to say about all of that. And the season itself had something to say about calling this thing just yet, as the final award of the night ended up split down the middle in a tie between Cuarón's opus and Steve McQueen's "12 Years a Slave."

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"The Real Housewives of Atlanta"

 "The Real Housewives of Atlanta"

Credit: Bravo

'Real Housewives of Atlanta': Would Kenya be a good mom?

Plus, Kandi deflates an argument in the best way possible

Didn't you love the resounding silence that met Kenya's announcement she was going to have a baby? Somehow? It seems her aunts Lisa and Lori know Kenya about as well as we do, and I bet they're thinking they're going to have to call Child Protective Services if, in fact, Kenya does manage to get herself knocked up with some batch of mystery sperm as yet to be determined.

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<p>Frankie J. Alvarez, Jonathan Groff and Murray Bartlett in HBO's &quot;Looking.&quot;</p>

Frankie J. Alvarez, Jonathan Groff and Murray Bartlett in HBO's "Looking."

Credit: HBO

Review: 'Looking' - 'Looking for Now'

Who wants to move to San Francisco?

HBO's highly anticipated new series "Looking" finally debuted tonight and my biggest fear is there will now be a deluge of gay men who decide that San Francisco is now the city for them. We'll only be talking about the first episode in this post, but the overall series is so good that guys who really shouldn't be heading to the Bay Area will pack up that truck, er, KIA and head west in hopes of finding their own Patrick (Jonathan Groff). Wait until they find out how much he's paying in rent.

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"Downton Abbey"

 "Downton Abbey" 

Credit: PBS

'Downton Abbey' recap: Mary makes a tough decision

Secrets and lies create problems upstairs and downstairs

This week, if you didn't have a horrible secret or a pretty crafty lie, you really weren't a part of the action at "Downton Abbey." For all the sneaking around, swallowing of feelings and blathering of half-truths, you'd think you were watching "Falcon Crest." There wasn't a lot of justice to be had for some of the nastier secrets, but what little we got was a welcome relief, if a little too pat and easily resolved, if you ask me.

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<p>Gaby Hoffmann as Caroline in &quot;Girls.&quot;</p>

Gaby Hoffmann as Caroline in "Girls."

Credit: HBO

Review: 'Girls' - 'She Said OK'

Adam's sister shows up right in time for Hannah's big birthday party

A review of tonight's "Girls" coming up just as soon as I explain the logic of the queue to you...

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<p>Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson in &quot;True Detective.&quot;</p>

Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson in "True Detective."

Credit: HBO

Review: 'True Detective' - 'Seeing Things'

Cohle investigates further, while Hart has trouble on the home front

A review of tonight's "True Detective" coming up just as soon as I've got some self-loathing to do this morning...

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Seth Meyers: 2 more 'SNL' episodes, and I'm done after 13 seasons


Seth Meyers: 2 more "SNL" episodes, and I'm done after 13 seasons
The Feb. 1 Melissa McCarthy episode will be Meyers' last on "Saturday Night Live," ending "SNL's" 2nd-longest tenure (Darrell Hammond is No. 1, serving 14 seasons.) "We feel pretty strongly that I'm two shows away from cutting ties," Meyers tells TheWrap. "I mostly just think its too hard to try to do two of these things at the same time." PLUS: Meyers confirms that Amy Poehler will be his first "Late Night" guest, that he'll have a very long monologue, and Meyers reacts to Sasheer Zamata's first episode.


Jimmy Fallon's 1st "Tonight Show" guests: Will Smith and U2

Fallon also told critics today he'll bring the show to Los Angeles a few weeks a year, that his first three weeks are booked, and why he's bringing back "starring" to the title. He also jokingly suggested that Jay Leno play a detective on "The Blacklist."


Jimmy Fallon: I gave Chris Christie advanced warning of my song with Bruce Springsteen
Fallon gave warning to the New Jersey governor in part because he's been a guest on the show, plus Fallon knew the sketch would sting. "First of all, the bit was funny," says Fallon "Secondly, I let Chris Christie know that we were gonna do it. And I said the silver lining: Bruce Springsteen says your name."


"Chicago Fire," "Chicago PD" and "SVU" are doing a crossover

"PD" star Sophia Bush is heading to New York to film a "Law & Order: SVU" episode. PLUS: NBC releases new trailers for "About a Boy," "Believe," "Crisis" and "Growing Up Fisher."


"About a Boy" and "Parenthood" are also doing a crossover
David Walton was on "Parenthood" last week, and Dax Shepard will make a cameo on "About a Boy," says Jason Katims, who produces both shows.


Ed O'Neill inappropriately jokes about "Modern Family" co--star Ariel Winter's mom problems

When a journalist asked the female stars about advice they picked up from their mothers, O'Neill joked that "Ariel should take that one." Winter, of course, has been estranged from her mom.


"RuPaul's Drag Race" tackles the "Duck Dynasty" controversy

"We don't give a duck."

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<p>Yeah, that's probably how I'd react, too.</p>

Yeah, that's probably how I'd react, too.

Credit: Sundance Film Festival

Review: Elijah Wood and Rainn Wilson battle elementary school zombies in 'Cooties'

Can this lunatic horror-comedy find the right audience?

PARK CITY - Ten years to the day after "Saw" made its midnight premiere at the Egyptian Theater as part of Sundance's midnight lineup, co-writer Leigh Whannell showed up with a whole different team of collaborators to premiere "Cooties," a horror-comedy that manages the very difficult trick of fulfilling both halves of that equation with equal skill.

Directed by Jonathan Milott and Cary Murnion (collectively known as "Honest" when they co-direct) and written by Ian Brennan & Leigh Whannell, "Cooties" tells the story of a rapdily-spreading infection that turns all the kids at an elementary school into rabid little flesh-eating monsters, and what happens on the day the situation spins out of control. Clint (Elijah Wood) is a substitute who actually went to that same elementary school when he was a kid. He's only teaching for a little while as he works on his first novel, "Keel Them All," a story about a haunted boat. He's delighted to see that one of his childhood friends Lucy (Allison Pill) is also teaching at the school, but slightly less delighted when he meets her current boyfriend, PE coach Wade (Rainn Wilson). For the first twenty minutes or so, "Cooties" is basically just a comedy about a guy who isn't where he wants to be in his life trying to cope with returning to his elementary school, but in a new role, while also trying to navigate the bizarre social hierarchy of the teachers who are there full-time.

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