Beth McCarthy-Miller has been a part of the "30 Rock" family almost since inception. She’s directed some of the show’s finest episodes, including both live ones and “TGS Hates Women,” so it was natural for co-showrunners Tina Fey and Robert Carlock to place her at the helm for their show’s two-part finale. “Hogcock!” and “Last Lunch” aired January 31 one right after the other, requiring McCarthy-Miller to meld two episodes into a cohesive whole and put a button on the series' seven-year run. HitFix spoke with her about this process as Emmy voters are casting ballots -- McCarthy-Miller has been nominated five times for her work on “30 Rock,” but never won.
Latest Blog Posts
"Under the Dome" attracts 13.1 million
The CBS series had the best broadcast TV summer debut since "The Singing Bee" in 2007.
NYC won't let Nik Wallenda walk across the skyline
The stuntman wanted to try walking from the Chrysler Building to the Empire State Building, but NYC police commissioner Ray Kelly isn't keen on the idea.
Paula Deen's sons deny their mom is a racist: This is "character assassination"
"That word," said Bobby Deen, "that horrifying, terrible word that exists and I abhor it coming from any person ... we weren't raised in a home where that word was used." PLUS: Late-night hosts take on Deen.
Introducing "So You Think You Can Prance"
America's new favorite competitive dance show, courtesy of Funny or Die.
"Mad Men's" Kevin Rahm reacts to the season finale
Will there be a Pete Campbell-Ted Chaough spinoff? PLUS: Don Draper's childhood home found in L.A.
Claim: "Sopranos" stars are upset with Joe Gannascoli for doing interviews about James Gandolfini
Gannascoli, who played gay mobster Vito Spatafore, was reportedly not close to Gandolfini, which upset many of his co-stars.
Jimmy Kimmel is sporting a black eye, thanks to a car door
Kimmel declined to wear makeup, but did show a "reenactment" of him getting bruised on last night's show.
"Homeland's" Damian Lewis is currently bald
Lewis shaved off all his hair not for the Showtime series, but for a new movie he's filming.
Part 7 of our journey through the Emmy ballot brings us to Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series. As always, Fienberg will attempt to rank the contenders from most likely to least likely to be nominated, throwing in a bunch of preferential wild cards along the way. And, as always, I will pretend that I am an actual Academy member who has a ballot and therefore has to narrow his choices down to six people.
Same rules apply: we are working off of the actual Emmy ballot, so we can't nominate people who didn't submit themselves (like if I wanted to nominate Tony Hale for "Arrested Development" rather than "Veep"), and we have to consider people in the category they submitted themselves for, even if that means supporting actors submitting as leads (Rob Lowe, every year) or vice versa (Amy Schumer as supporting for a show that's named after her). I also have to feel like I've seen enough of a representative sample to pick someone; I'm too far behind on "Veep," for instance, to seriously consider reigning Emmy winner Julia Louis-Dreyfus.
Dan's exhaustive analysis is here, and embedded below (click Launch Gallery to see it), and my picks are coming right up.
I published my review of CBS' Stephen King adaptation "Under the Dome" on Sunday. Now it's your turn. What did everybody else think of the pilot? Did a svelter Dean Norris work for you in a more prominent role than he usually has as Hank Schrader? Did you like Mike Vogel as the mysterious Barbie? Was Junior creepy or campy? And do you find this town and its inhabitants compelling enough to spend a summer watching?
I understand Brian K. Vaughan and company have made some significant departures from the book. Nevertheless, let's keep any book discussion as vague as possible, if not ignoring it altogether, rather than let this turn into a "Game of Thrones" situation. I haven't decided yet if I'm going to cover this weekly; I'll have to see what I feel about the next few episodes, but I can try to at least put up brief discussion posts about them.
In the meantime, have at it.
Pedro Almodóvar's cabin-crew comedy "I'm So Excited!" finally jets into US theaters on Friday, and as I suggested in my review, some of the kooky Spanish auteur's fans may want to brace themselves for a crash landing.
But you may disagree. The critical reception for his latest is cooler than Almodóvar has come to expect, but as many die-hard fans of the director have been tickled as have been dismayed. One thing both camps will agree on, however, is that it couldn't be the work of anyone else: from his recurring themes of fringe sexuality to his Crayola color palette, Almodóvar's films are arguably the most immediately and universally identifiable of anyone's in the current hierarchy of European auteurs -- to the point that even the Academy has embraced him and even Almodóvar himself has taken to parodying his own stylistic tics.
Earlier this month, the Canadian indie label Arts & Crafts celebrated its 10 years of existence by combining its biggest assets -- its artists -- on stage at the Field Trip Festival in hometown Toronto and on a genre-spanning compilation "X." A reunited Broken Social Scene performing classic "You Forgot It in People" headlined the former, while BSS and its members, Feist, Ra Ra Riot, The Hidden Cameras and other A&C acts collaborated for the latter.
Arts & Crafts has survived these 10 by expanding outward from "You Forgot It in People," starting with BSS and its solo and reformed offshoots, then to new original artists, then into different mediums and revenue sources. It's not just a label, but a management firm, merchandiser, and publisher; A&C has segued through the tumult of digital retail, the resurgence of vinyl and the advent of streaming services like Spotify to find new music audiences. But it doesn't stop at audio: they've partnered with visual artists like photographer Norman Wong and fashion designer Jeremy Laing for unique presentations of their artists' unique brands of indie rock.
The bachelors and Des are off to Munich, so… lots of beer, yodeling and sledding! Because "The Bachelorette" has never met a cultural cliche it doesn't like! This will be great fun, I'm sure, but the big nail biter in this episode is the dreaded two-on-one. As in seasons past, the most loathed creepazoid will be sharing the date with Des with a likable guy we doubt she'll pick.
Even though I'm fairly sure this will play out the way all of these dates play out (the creepazoid gets the rose and we scream at the television), I'm hoping against hope that Des fights back against producer manipulating her to follow the formula and actually kicks the jerk to the curb. And you know which jerk I mean -- Ben. It's not even anything I have against Ben (though I don't care for him a bit). I'd just like to think this show isn't as thoroughly predictable as it seems to be. Still, this episode starts throwing big curveballs before the first hour is over -- so I'll withhold judgment, briefly.
By now you may have heard the news of the unfortunate passing of author Richard Matheson, a titan in his field who leaves behind him a rich, vast, deep legacy of material that will continue to be enjoyed and mined for years to come. And his impact on cinema as we know it is nowhere near negligible. Indeed, consider the beginnings of Steven Spielberg's career, whose calling card adaptation of Matheson's short story "Duel" catapulted him to Hollywood's attention.
"Richard Matheson's ironic and iconic imagination created seminal science-fiction stories and gave me my first break when he wrote the short story and screenplay for 'Duel,'" the director said in a statement. "His 'Twilight Zones' were among my favorites, and he recently worked with us on 'Real Steel.' For me, he is in the same category as Bradbury and Asimov."
Matheson was set to receive the Visionary Award at the 39th annual Saturn Awards Wednesday night, presented by the Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror Films. Pity the award will now be presented posthumously, but the ceremony will now be dedicated to his memory.
Paula Deen's multi-million dollar empire is now riding on her "Today" interview
The former Food Network star hasn't lost all her endorsements -- Paula Deen Inc. in 2010 generated about $10 million from licensing agreements, speaking engagements and other deals. PLUS: Why Paula deserves her Food Net job back, many in the South are willing to forgive Paula, Smithfield under fire for dropping Paula, and why Paula's demise feels so sweet.
Netflix putting up "House of Cards" and "Arrested Development" lawn signs
Homeowners in upscale neighborhoods who display the signs can receive a six-month Netflix subscription, a $50 Red Cross donation in their name or a $50 AmEx gift card.
"Breaking Bad" releases a new promo
Where's the new footage?
Eva Longoria juggles being a prominent Latina voice while defending "Devious Maids"
Longoria has had to battle criticism from Latinas that her Lifetime show promotes stereotypes. PLUS: Meet the "Devious" amputee.
Are you hate-watching "Mistresses"?
The ABC summer drama could be the new "Smash."
Kurt Sutter: "At this point, I'll kick down the Emmy door any way I f*cking can"
Says the "Sons of Anarchy" creator: "T-Girls, Best Fake Tits, Most Profound Tongue Biting. I'm considering dressing Jax in a fur cap and replacing the Harleys with Golden Unicorns."
"Full House's" Jodie Sweetin is ending her 3rd marriage
The 31-year-old Sweetin has filed for legal separation from her husband and father of her 2-year-old daughter.
Report: There are 146 babies named Khaleesi in the United States
Babies named Khaleesi has jumped 450% since "Game of Thrones" debuted in 2011.
Jurnee Smollett-Bell did her "True Blood" audition from her in-laws' basement in Detroit
She also talks about playing vampire-rights activist Nicole.
Jon Lovitz launching a video podcast
"Lovitz or Leavitz's" 1st guest: Dana Carvey, his "SNL" pal.
Watch Chris O'Dowd take a fly out of his mouth on British TV
O'Dowd was trying to kill the fly while on Graham Norton with Steve Carell and Kristen Wiig.
Why Season 6 was "Mad Men's" best season yet
This was the season that "Mad Men" stopped being a period piece, says Troy Patterson. "Among the signs of artistic growth that mark the show's sixth season as its best to date," he says, "is that it is has stopped using the past as a crutch to prop up its scenarios." PLUS: Hershey's was "thrilled and incredibly flattered" by its cameo, "Mad Men" regressed and became simpler this season, and did the finale reveal America's aversion to telling the truth?
Did Kate Gosselin mock Asians?
The mother of eight half-Korean kids appears to be mocking Asians in a new photo that has surfaced.
Watch Comedy Central's "Drunk History"
The cable network has posted a full episode featuring Dave Grohl, Jack Black, Adam Scott and Bob Odenkirk.
Has "Duck Dynasty" jumped the shark?
The reality sitcom seems to be running out of ideas.
"Suits" casts Harvey's dad
"Rescue Me's" James McCaffrey will guest-star on the USA series.
Bethanny Frankel's estranged husband doesn't want their daughter on her talk show
It's the latest sticking point in their divorce battle.
What if John Lennon auditioned for "The Voice"?
He'd probably fail.
How Mt. Airy, North Carolina transformed itself into "Mayberry"
When textile plants shut down, the town of less than 10,000 transformed itself in 1990 into an "Andy Griffith Show" tourist destination.
HBO's "Luck" lives on in the art world
An artist teamed with a "Luck" writer for a web series based on the artist's "Luck"-inspired sketches.
Nudity wasn't part of the original "Naked and Afraid" plan
"Well, we didn't develop the show to be exploitative, ever," says the Discovery show's producer. "We always developed it with our filter being “how do we protect and it make it a pure survival experience?"
"The Descendants" casts Julianne Nicholson
The "Boardwalk Empire" and "Law & Order: CI" alum will play the female lead on the Sundance series.
"Under the Dome" hooks you in -- CBS is on to something
The Stephen King-Steven Spielberg limited series lives up to the hype with its "intriguing as hell" first hour, especially since CBS went big to make it an event, unlike many other summer series. PLUS: The first episode is so addictive it'll be hard to not watch the 2nd episode, and we've seen this story before.
Wale's new album "The Gifted" -- out tomorrow -- is looking to be fairly eclectic. As evidenced by three recent videos, he's gone the ratchet route, the comedy route and the soulful route.
We'll start with the first, the loveable and articulately cross-bred "LoveHate Thing," featuring crooner Sam Drew. The singer is the anchor for this Wale's cool-headed sonics and personal reflections.
And check out the Bruno Marsian influence on that instrumental ensemble:
We've already seen early images of Rob Lowe as JFK and Ginnifer Goodwin as Jacqueline Kennedy in NatGeo's "Killing Kennedy" (currently filming), and now we have the other couple at the center of the story -- Michelle Trachtenberg as Marina Oswald and Will Rothhaar as Lee Harvey Oswald. Do you think they measure up?
See the images below: