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Joel McHale on 'Community' costar Chevy Chase: 'My guess is he'll be back'

Community star Joel McHale expressed tentative optimism that NBC’s cult-favorite comedy would get a fourth season, while he attempted to laugh off Chevy Chase’s recent feud with showrunner Dan Harmon.

“There’s four more voice mails coming out that will make it a full series,” McHale told reporters at NBC’s summer press event in Pasadena on Wednesday. “It’s going to be a book on tape. It’s going to be read out loud by Samuel L. Jackson.”

Asked if Chase complaining that Community isn’t funny bothered him, McHale said, “He says that every day. And we say, ‘Well, it’s not Karate Dog,’” and later joked, “I don’t think it was actually him on those voice mails because I don’t think he could figure out voice mail.”

When asked if Chase will return to the show, however, McHale gave a more serious-sounding answer: “He obviously wasn’t very happy. But he loves the cast, my guess is he’ll be back if we’re back…. I’m assuming so if he gets the Bentley that he asked for.” READ FULL STORY

InsideTV Podcast: Are you Team Betty or Team Megan on 'Mad Men'? Plus: The big 'Community' spat and 'Shark Tank' tips

Whoa! What the heck happened to the former Betty Draper (now Betty Francis)? And who knew Megan Draper could sing? Or clean while half-naked? These were a few of the big questions raised after the first few episodes of Mad Men’s 5th season. And now Dan Snierson and I discuss and debate the other pertinent question everyone must ask him- or herself: Team Betty or Team Megan? Megan is looking pretty good right now, and Betty…well, not so good. But which is the best woman for Don (and for viewers)? We tackle that topic and more on the latest edition of the InsideTV Podcast. Was January Jones’ fat suit a stroke of genius or just plain distracting? Is Roger on the outs at the firm? And when are we gonna get more Cosgrove? We’ll talk all that and more (including Dan’s somewhat futile attempts to get show creator Matt Weiner to spill the beans on plot details).

Then we turn our attention to the big public Community spat between star Chevy Chase and creator Dan Harmon. Do off-screen shenanigans impact the on-screen enjoyment of the show? What should they do with Pierce if Chevy leaves the program? And who’s the most important character the comedy cannot afford to lose? (The Community portion of the podcast starts at 12:20.)

You think we’re done. But we’re not! Next, Dan and I take a dip in the Shark Tank to talk about all the infuriating things people do while negotiating with the investors. We offer a Public Service Announcement to said knuckleheads and offer up some negotiating rules that should be followed to the letter. (Shark Tank chat begins at 19:15)

To join in on the fun, just click on the audio player icon below. Or, since we’re on iTunes, you can subscribe for free and take the podcast with you on the go. No iTunes? No problem. You can also download the entire podcast right here. And to send a question to the InsideTV Podcast team, follow us on Twitter @InsideTVPodcast. But first let us know what you think: Are you Team Betty or Team Megan? Would you watch Community without Chevy Chase? And what’s your biggest Shark Tank pet peeve? The message boards are open for business!

From the EW Archive: 'He's Still Chevy Chase (And You're Not),' August 2004

SNL‘s first breakout star struck comedy gold with Caddyshack, Fletch, and Vacation, but then he crashed and burned. This week, as an angry voicemail Chase left for Community producer Dan Harmon went public, it looks like he might be heading down that path again. Can the funnyman come back from this serious misstep? We look to his 2004 interview with EW’s Daniel Fierman to see how he rebounded last time…

Chevy Chase recalls the precise moment he hit bottom. It happened in front of unflinching television cameras, as he sat alone on a dais with his eyes masked by tinted sunglasses. Offered a hundred grand by Comedy Central to do a televised Friars Club roast, Chase was introduced to his place in history. And it was brutal. READ FULL STORY

'Community': Will Troy and Abed build a blanket fort, a pillow fort, or... both? -- EXCLUSIVE VIDEO

Sure, it’s comforting to know that Community has finally returned to NBC. But do you know what’s even more comforting? The world’s biggest pillow fort. Or wait. Maybe it’s the world’s biggest blanket fort? This issue could wind up tearing Troy (Donald Glover) and Abed (Danny Pudi) apart in tonight’s episode, as they set about constructing competing masterpieces.

You can see how the tension begins in this clip from “Digital Exploration of Interior Design,” as Dean Pelton (Academy Award winner Jim Rash) urges the pair to put Greendale Community College on the map and set a world record with their previously established fort-building skills. In this high-stakes two-part saga — which will conclude next week — Abed is Team Pillow, while Troy represents Team Blanket.

In other news, Shirley (Yvette Nicole Brown), Pierce (Chevy Chase), and Britta (Gillian Jacobs) try to sabotage the new Subway shop in the caf, while Vice Dean Laybourne (John Goodman) makes another attempt to lure Troy over to the Dark (Air Conditioning Repair Annex) Side.

Click below to peek at the episode that answers the question: How pillow can you go? (And let us pray that we are never subjected to Dean P’s Google search history.)

READ FULL STORY

'Community' returns to TV 'war zone'! Yvette Nicole Brown promises more 'Jirley' -- EW VIDEO

The first few seconds of Yvette Nicole Brown’s interview with EW pretty much say it all: “Community‘s baccccckk!!! March 15!!!” Straight and to the point. But in case you’re the kind that appreciates elaboration:

Community returns tonight after a long and unexpected hiatus that started when NBC announced its midseason lineup in November, with one well-noted absence.

With all that unpleasantness behind them, Brown says the cast is looking ahead and simply glad to be back on the schedule. “Even though Thursday at 8 p.m. has become a war zone ratings-wise, with so many great shows in that one half-hour, I’m overjoyed that we got that timeslot back. It’s our battle-scarred [timeslot]. It’s our war zone,” she said.

So, to battle they go. (Against The Big Bang Theory and American Idol, no less.) The last original episode, which aired back in November, received a 7-percent uptick – garnering 3.6 million viewers — thanks most likely to legions of rallying fans.

Numbers aside, Brown is excited about what’s in store for the season’s remaining 12 episodes. As the cast teased at PaleyFest last week, there’s a wedding in the first episode back, an upcoming episode in which Annie (Alison Brie) and Abed (Danny Pudi) take to The Dreamatorium for most of the half-hour, and an epic battle in the finale. Brown also spoke highly of the episodes coming up that heavily feature Jeff and Shirley, an character combo the actress mistakenly called “Jirley.” (For the record, we support this…) “Shirley and Jeff are becoming friends. They became friends in the foosball episode, and their friendship is being deepened in these episodes,” she said. READ FULL STORY

'Community' promises return will be 'the entertainment event of the year' in new trailer

Community returns March 15 to NBC, and an appropriately epic trailer has been unveiled. It promises more drama, passion, and action — in the form of the possible separation of Troy and Abed, the potential drunken union of Jeff and Britta, and a massive pillow fight. Watch it below. Then send the link to your friends who’ve yet to watch the show. If this doesn’t get them… READ FULL STORY

'Community': Somebody's getting married! First look at next week's return -- EXCLUSIVE VIDEO

You huffed. You hollered. You harangued. And in the end, you got your wish: Community will return to NBC next Thursday after a three-month hiatus with an all-new episode. Nope, not part-new. All-new. In “Urban Matrimony and the Sandwich Arts,” Andre (Malcom Jamal Warner) re-proposes to Shirley (Yvette Nicole Brown), who also teams up with Pierce (Chevy Chase) to sell Dean Pelton (Academy Award winner Jim Rash!) on a sandwich shop for Greendale’s caf. In other words, Shirley has a lot going on. If you can’t wait until next Thursday — and who can? — check out this clip, in which the gang sit around a table, discussing Shirley’s big news. Come for the romance, stay for Britta (Gillian Jacobs) trying to define an analogy.

READ FULL STORY

'Community' boss 'confident' about season 4 chances. Plus, more scoop from Paleyfest!

Fans at Saturday night’s Community event during the annual PaleyFest got plenty of scoop on the remaining 12 episodes of the cult comedy — but if any news had them cheering, it was the hopeful message producers sent about the show’s chances of a fourth season.

“The people at NBC love the show. We’re feeling pretty confident,” Russ Krasnoff, one of the show’s executive producers, told the crowd, to cheers that were almost as big as the standing ovation given to recent Oscar winner Jim Rash when he walked on stage.

The cast and creative team (sans Chevy Chase and Donald Glover) were on hand to preview the surprises in store for the rest of the show’s current third season, which returns March 15, following its unexpected (and much criticized) hiatus. READ FULL STORY

'Community' cast starring in three new animated shorts

Community fans excited about the return of the beloved cult sitcom have something else to get excited about. According to an NBC announcement, the cast of Community will get animated in three new cartoon shorts that will debut on Hulu and NBC.com on Wednesday, March 7. The shorts form a three-part story called “Abed’s Master Key,” in which Dean Pelton (played by recent Oscar winner Jim Rash) hires Abed (Danny Pudi) as his assistant. As part of the job, Abed gets the Master Key for Greendale. Presumably, shenanigans ensue.

“The show fits into the web world very well,” Pudi told EW Saturday night before the Community panel during PaleyFest in Los Angeles. “[They are] almost like the tags we do at the end of an episode. Sometimes they might tie-in loosely [to the regular episodes], but it’s more about what other adventures these guys are up to.”

The animated shorts were written by Dave Seger and Tom Kauffman, who created the comedy web series Ikea Heights.

Check out a video preview below. READ FULL STORY

'Community' season finale: Rob Corddry to return... in Greendale Summer Fun Court! -- EXCLUSIVE

Community has finally been granted a return date to NBC’s Thursday night schedule (March 15, 8 p.m.), and in that welcome-back spirit, we will be saying hello to an old frenemy in the near future. EW has learned that Childrens Hospital‘s Rob Corddry will guest-star in the season 3 finale, reprising his season 2 role as Alan Connor, former law firm colleague of Jeff Winger (Joel McHale) who turned Jeff into the State Bar for having a “less than legitimate” degree. This time, Alan and Jeff square off in Greendale Summer Fun Court, with Alan representing Pierce (Chevy Chase) and Jeff representing Shirley (Yvette Nicole Brown) in a battle over a sandwich business started by the pair.

The episode, which is scheduled to air in late spring, also features the reappearance of Vice Dean Laybourne (John Goodman), as the Air Conditioning Repair Annex makes one last play for the soul of Troy (Donald Glover). READ FULL STORY

'Community' stars share their worst audition stories, and how to help save their show

If you’re a Community fan, you probably already know that show was unceremoniously yanked from NBC’s midseason lineup. I know, I know — and they were this close to regionals! Still, the harsh realities of our bleak, Community-less existence should be peppered with hope for a better tomorrow — the grim peacock hasn’t swung the ax just yet.

Ever optimists, the members of Greendale’s hottest study group (sans Chevy Chase and Donald Glover) gathered at the SAG Foundation Actors Center in Los Angeles last Sunday to give advice and tell behind-the-scenes tales to fellow actors, discussing everything from lame inside jokes (“We run around saying ‘kern kern’. No one knows what we’re talking about. The origin story of that was Chevy couldn’t say kettle corn.” — Joel McHale) to the unlikely beginnings of Troy and Abed (“Originally, [showrunner] Dan Harmon thought it would be a Troy and Pierce Beavis and Butthead thing.” — Gillian Jacobs).

And while the biggest shock of the night came when Danny Pudi admitted that he had never seen Cougar Town before shooting Critical Film Studies, the cast did manage to squeeze in some truly horrifying before-they-were-famous audition stories, as well as some foolproof tips on how to keep the struggling show alive. READ FULL STORY

'Community': Watch Jeff Winger as... Dean Pelton? -- EXCLUSIVE VIDEO

Soon, we will be living in the darkest timeline, as NBC’s Community has been temporarily pulled off the midseason schedule. (Don’t worry, it’s returning at some point.) But for the moment, let us bathe in the glow of tonight’s episode, “Documentary Filmmaking: Redux,” in which Dean Pelton makes a commercial for Greendale and taps our study group as his cast, while Abed films all of the Pelton-power-tripping action for another documentary. Yes, there will be an appearance by Magnitude. And Fat Neil. And Luis Guzman. But even better, you will bear witness to Jeff Winger doing his best/worst impression of the Dean. Press play and be transported to a magical place where “the students all look happy and you can’t smell that smell.” READ FULL STORY

NBC announces return of '30 Rock,' debut of 'The Firm' and 'Smash'

NBC revealed its midseason schedule today, which includes the return of 30 Rock and the debut of the new dramas Smash and The Firm.

It also revealed new day and time period changes for Whitney, Up All Night, Rock Center with Brian Williams and Harry’s Law. Community will be temporarily benched but is expected to return later this season. Prime Suspect tabled, too.

Here is the schedule: READ FULL STORY

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