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'Sons of Anarchy' at Comic-Con: One SAMCRO story ends, others begin?

As the close of Comic-Con 2014 neared, the Sons of Anarchy family assembled in Hall H to discuss the FX show’s upcoming seventh and final season with EW‘s own Sons authority Mandi Bierly. On the panel were creator Kurt Sutter, executive producer/director Paris Barclay, and stars Katey Sagal, Kim Coates, Mark Boone Junior, Tommy Flanagan, Theo Rossi, Dayton Callie, David Labrava, Niko Nicotera, and Drea de Matteo. Absent was Charlie Hunnam, who was unable to attend because he’s “doing important service for Vogue magazine,” as Sutter put it. But thanks to a crowd-pleasing video greeting Hunnam shot for Comic-Con, the afternoon wasn’t an entirely Jax-free affair.

(We’ll post the video as soon as it’s available online.)

Later in the session the opening sequence from season seven was screened, prompting Callie to say, “That just scared the hell out of me,” and prompting the crowd to lose its shit. The panel was equal parts emotional (Sutter teared up as Barclay described how rare it is to find a production, and show, as good as Sons) and interesting, with the discussion stoking plenty of anticipation for the roads ahead.  READ FULL STORY

Syfy greenlights pilot based on Lev Grossman's 'The Magicians'

The-Magicians

Syfy announced on Wednesday that it is moving forward with a pilot for The Magicians, an adaptation of Lev Grossman’s fantasy series, Deadline reports. The pilot was written by John McNamara (Prime Suspect) and Sera Gamble (Supernatural), with Michael London and Janice Williams onboard to produce.

Perhaps best described as Harry Potter for adults, The Magicians is the first book in a series focused on high-schooler Quentin Coldwater, who is surprised when he’s admitted to an exclusive college to study magic in upstate New York. While studying at the prestigious magic school, he and his friends indulge in drugs, sex, and alcohol. Upon graduation, Quentin and his friends move to New York City, where they find out that the Narnia-like world they read about as children is in fact very real.

This is the second time that a network has attempted to adapt Grossman’s best-selling series. In 2011, a pilot was in the works at Fox with London signed on as producer, but Fox decided to not pick up the series.

The Magician’s Land, the third and final installment in the series, is due to be published on August 5.

Gillian Flynn's 'Sharp Objects' is coming to television

With Gone Girl well on its way to the big screen, Gillian Flynn has now set her sights on television.

EW has confirmed that Entertainment One Television is currently working to turn Flynn’s debut novel, Sharp Objects, into a one-hour serialized drama. Sharp Objects follows Camille Preaker, a reporter who leaves her stay at a mental hospital and is immediately thrust back into the world with a tough assignment that forces her to return home to cover a murder involving two preteen girls. Suddenly back in her old room, surrounded by a mother and half-sister she hasn’t exactly kept up with, Camille has to look into her own past to discover the story in front of her.

Flynn will executive produce the show alongside Jason Blum and Charles Layton. Buffy the Vampire Slayer‘s Marti Noxon will write the script and serve as showrunner.

'The Leftovers' TV Book Club: What changed from page to screen

Seen HBO’s The Leftovers, and want to chat about how it compares to Tom Perrotta’s original novel? You’re in luck—so do EW‘s Hillary Busis and Neil Janowitz. Their spoiler-heavy conversation—filled with thoughts on bleakness, the new Kevin, and creepy bronze baby statues—is below. READ FULL STORY

J.K. Rowling's 'Casual Vacancy' miniseries announces cast

Dumbledore and J.K. Rowling are reunited once again! Well, kind of.

The BBC and HBO have announced the cast for the upcoming miniseries adaptation of J.K. Rowling’s novel The Casual Vacancy. Leading the cast is Michael Gambon (Harry Potter) as Howard Mollison, as well as Keeley Hawes (Line of Duty, Ashes To Ashes), Rory Kinnear (Skyfall, Penny Dreadful), Monica Dolan (Alan Partridge: Alpha Papa), Julia McKenzie (Notes on a Scandal), and newcomer Abigail Lawrie.

The story focuses on a local election in Pagford after a sudden death. READ FULL STORY

J.K. Rowling's 'Casual Vacancy' adaptation will come to HBO

Muggles on both sides of the pond will be able to watch the upcoming Casual Vacancy miniseries.

HBO has come on board as a co-producer of BBC’s previously announced miniseries adaptation of J.K. Rowling’s novel The Casual Vacancy, EW has confirmed. The three-hour miniseries will be written by Sarah Phelps (EastEnders) and will be directed by Jonny Campbell (In the Flesh). READ FULL STORY

Pluto.TV: Is this the new world of online video?

It started with Elmo. A little over a year ago, web entrepreneur Ilya Pozin was working on his computer with his two-year-old daughter perched in his lap. To keep her entertained, he was searching for online Sesame Street videos. He’d put one on, but after each one ended, his daughter would yell out, “More Elmo, Daddy!” —  and Pozin would have to go on the hunt for another video. “I’m sitting there thinking, ‘Why am I having to DJ for her every three minutes?'” Pozin says, laughing. “I should be able to just throw on a channel for my daughter that plays videos she loves constantly.”

So he and co-founders Nick Grouf and Tom Ryan built a new web platform, Pluto.TV, to do just that. The platform, which launched today, March 31, essentially sifts through the millions of online videos available on Youtube and elsewhere, finds the best ones, and then put them into channels, and shows on those channels, that run 24/7. It’s like a cable menu for online video. So, for instance, if you’re really, really into cute cat videos (and let’s face it, who isn’t), you can click on Pluto’s Cats channel, and watch a curated list of the best of those  —  everything from shows on “Big Cats” to “Kitten Zone” — all.day.long., for free. You can also DVR stuff and invite friends via Facebook to watch videos with you (and chat about them) live.

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Brit comedian Steve Delaney talks about his new Hulu sitcom 'Count Arthur Strong'

Never heard of veteran vaudeville star Count Arthur Strong? Don’t feel bad. He was never exactly a household name in his native U.K. Also? He doesn’t exist.

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'Walking Dead' exec producer Robert Kirkman talks about new cast member Michael Cudlitz

The big news out of the The Walking Dead panel at this weekend’s New York Comic-Con was the announcement of three new cast members: Josh McDermitt, Christian Serratos, and Southland actor Michael Cudlitz, who will play Sgt. Abraham Ford. The latter character is a favorite among fans of the Walking Dead comic, which is written by Robert Kirkman, one of the TV show’s executive producers. So why did he and his fellow zombie overlords think Cudlitz was right for the role of the hyper-capable military man?

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'Walking Dead' executive producer Robert Kirkman talks about tonight's season premiere

Watching the season 4 premiere of The Walking Dead, it was easy to imagine you had fallen into a Rick Grimes-esque coma and missed a few shows. When did Andrew Lincoln’s much-tortured cop become so handy with a hoe? When was David Morrissey‘s depth perception-challenged maniac The Governor going to make an appearance? And, perhaps most bewilderingly, when did it become okay for Carol to call Daryl “Pookie”?

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'Orange Is the New Black': 'Weeds' creator Jenji Kohan talks about her women-in-prison Netflix show

In writer-producer Jenji Kohan’s new show Orange Is the New Black, a woman gets in trouble because of drugs. Sound familiar? That may be because because Kohan’s previous show, Weeds, was also about a woman getting into trouble because of, uh, drugs.

“I love it when people screw up and try to make things better,” says Kohan. “I think some of the sensibilities are the same because there’s a certain tone that I have. But Orange is its own beast.”

A caged beast, in fact. The largely prison-set Orange is based on Piper Kerman’s 2010 memoir of the same name, which details the 13 months the Smith College graduate served behind bars as a result of having, years previously, transported cash for her then-girlfriend, an international drug smuggler. Taylor Schilling (The Lucky One) stars as Piper Chapman, and Laura Prepon plays Chapman’s ex-lover and fellow inmate. Other prisoners are portrayed by Kate Mulgrew and Natasha Lyonne, while Jason Biggs is Chapman’s fiancé.

The latter character is an echo of the real-life boyfriend to whom Piper Kerman became engaged after growing out of her wild, female drug smuggler-dating ways, although Kohan says the pair’s onscreen relationship is a fictionalization: “We made all that sh-t up. But what was interesting is we would make stuff up and then Piper would sometimes tell us, ‘Wow, that was a little close.’ Which we felt meant we were doing something right.”

Below, Kohan talks more about Orange is the New Black, the entire first season of which is now available on Netflix.
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Lauren Graham novel being adapted for TV

Lauren Graham’s debut novel is getting adapted for TV.

EW has confirmed a Deadline report that the Parenthood actress’ book, Someday, Someday, Maybe, which was released earlier this year, is in the early stages of development, with Ellen DeGeneres’ A Very Good Production and Warner Bros. TV set to produce.

Graham will pen the script and executive produce the hour-long drama, which is about a young woman with six months left on her three-year plan to have a career as an actress in New York City.

Read more:
Lauren Graham parents a first novel
‘Big Bang Theory’ and HBO are big winners at Critics’ Choice Television Awards
‘The Americans,’ ‘Breaking Bad’ lead TCA Awards nominations

'Orange Is the New Black': Check out the trailer for Netflix's women's prison drama

It isn’t often you get to utter the words, “Hey, I’ve stood in that women’s prison shower!” But that’s exactly what I said while watching the trailer for the Netflix dramedy Orange Is The New Black, whose set in Queens, NY, I visited earlier this year.

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