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'The Sound of Music': Stephen Moyer talks playing Capt. Von Trapp and tonight's live premiere

We’re only hours away from the highly anticipated premiere of NBC’s live adaptation of The Sound of Music. EW was on set for rehearsals a few weeks ago and got a chance to chat with True Blood star Stephen Moyer, who is playing the stern Captain Von Trapp. Moyer talked about working with Carrie Underwood and the perils of doing live television.

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: How did this come to you?
STEPHEN MOYER: Interestingly, I got the offer before. It came through at the end of the first week of rehearsals, so weird. I had just finished True Blood literally the week before. I was waiting on quite an interesting gig, and my agent rang me up and he said, “Hey, are you available for a minute for a chat?” I thought it was going to be something else completely and it was The Sound of Music Live! Not quite what I was expecting.
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'The Sound of Music': Carrie Underwood on tonight's live show and hate tweets from Julie Andrews fans

The hills are finally alive tonight with the premiere of NBC’s much-anticipated adaptation of The Sound of Music Live! EW was on set a few weeks ago to watch rehearsals for this live version of the Rodgers and Hammerstein 1959 Broadway musical, which stars Carrie Underwood as Maria and Stephen Moyer as Capt. Von Trapp. The production will be broadcast live from a warehouse in Long Island that houses Music‘s seven working sets, including the Von Trapp house and the abbey. There will be no second takes, no audience except for the ones watching at home. In between scenes, leading lady Underwood talked to us about tackling such an iconic character and the challenges of her biggest acting role to date.

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: What was it like getting the call for this? Producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron tell me you were their first choice.
CARRIE UNDERWOOD: Well, I mean, first I remembered hearing [about it], ’cause they announced they were going to do this before they had any idea where or how or who. I remember reading that press release and thinking, “Wow, like that’s ambitious like wow, how?” I had questions even before I knew they were interested in me. And then we got a phone call so I sat down with Neil and Craig and it all started coming together.
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'American Horror Story': Ryan Murphy on chopping off [SPOILER]'s head and even more Stevie Nicks -- EXCLUSIVE

[SPOILER ALERT IF YOU HAVEN'T SEEN THE LATEST AMERICAN HORROR STORY: COVEN!!!!!]

It was teased on EW’s recent American Horror Story: Coven cover but last night we saw Madame LaLaurie (Kathy Bates) literally lose her head. Marie Laveau (Angela Bassett) lopped off her archenemy’s noggin and sent it in a box to Fiona (Jessica Lange), payback for the death of her minotaur boyfriend. But that was just the tip of the iceberg in terms of dramatic events. Joan (Patti LuPone) gave her son a toxic enema. Queenie (Gabourey Sidibe) cut out the heart of a homeless man. And Fiona wore some really fabulous turbans. EW talked to co-creator Ryan Murphy about the latest AHS: Coven developments, including more Stevie Nicks!

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: When did you decide to chop off LaLaurie’s head? Was that decided from the beginning?
RYAN MURPHY: Well the interesting thing about that story was basically we’ve established that LaLaurie’s punishment is that she can live forever so she’s a character who can’t be killed. So at a certain point, as she even says in the episode, she learned like, “F*** you. You can do whatever you want.” So you’re like What could Marie do to her that would be heinous? And then what could we follow with that to make it even more heinous? So when we came up with the idea that she would definitely cut off her head, we decided that wasn’t enough and that Gabourey Sidibe had to do something that would make it even worse. Then we came up with that which is one of my favorite things we’ve ever done. Then we came up with a whole episode which is the winter cliffhanger called “Head” where we follow the travails of Kathy Bates’ head and things happen to other characters’ literal heads or intellects or brain power. She’s such a villain yet Kathy’s so empathetic so it’s become this weird thing where I’m shocked that people are rooting for Madame LaLaurie. I think what happens in the winter cliffhanger “Head” is beyond hilarious. READ FULL STORY

'American Horror Story': 'Fringe' star Lance Reddick joining 'Coven' -- EXCLUSIVE

The supernatural world of American Horror Story: Coven just got a little more crowded: EW has learned that Fringe‘s Lance Reddick will be joining the FX show as Papa Legba when the horror anthology returns in January. The character, described as Coven‘s version of “voodoo Satan,” plays a pivotal role in the life of Marie Laveau (Angela Bassett) and will be an important figure in the series’ remaining four episodes. Show co-creator Ryan Murphy teased Legba’s involvement in our recent EW AHS: Coven cover story: “You find out that’s how come Marie Laveau looks so good — because she sold her soul!”

'House of Cards' returns in February

Netflix announced today that the second season of House of Cards will bow Friday, Feb. 14. All 13-episodes of the season that stars Kevin Spacey and Robin Wright will be available for viewers to watch instantly on Netflix.

The political series is from director David Fincher and screenwriters Beau Willimon and Eric Roth. This is what Netflix says is in store for the second season: Francis (Spacey) and Claire (Wright) Underwood continue their ruthless rise to power as threats mount on all fronts. Zoe Barnes (Kate Mara), an up-and-coming reporter and Francis’s former paramour, is inching closer to the truth about his crimes. President Walker’s (Michel Gill) billionaire confidante Raymond Tusk (Gerald McRaney) demands that Francis reciprocate political favors or face retribution. And Claire must confront the increasing glare of the spotlight as it eats away at her and Francis’s once private existence. The Underwood’s must overcome these dangers — past and present — to avoid losing everything, regardless of collateral damage they leave in their wake.

Netflix does not receive streaming data on its original fare. The service reports that it has over 40 million members in more than 40 countries, who apparently enjoy more than one billion hours of TV shows and movies per month, including original series.

NBC orders second season of 'The Blacklist'

NBC has ordered a second season of The Blacklist, its hit drama that stars James Spader as a world-renowned terrorist.

The Peacock picked up 22 more episodes of the series that ranks as No. 1 drama on the Big 4 nets in the 18-49 demo, averaging a 4.9 rating/13 share. It is the No. 2 scripted series on the Big 4 in the 18-49 demo, and the No. 1 new show in 18-49 and total viewers.

“The success of The Blacklist demonstrates that inspired storytelling is alive and well in broadcast television, and I’m impressed on a daily basis by this creative team’s imagination and the extent to which they will go to capture this grand vision on film,” said NBC Chairman Bob Greenblatt in a statement. “With gratitude to both our partners at Sony Pictures Television and our NBC development executives who took a great script and shepherded it into a great series, I hope that Red Reddington never runs out of names to bring down on his list!”

In historical context, NBC says The Blacklist is NBC’s most-watched new drama eight weeks into its run in 19 years (since Earth 2 in 1994). The series also stars Megan Boone, Diego Klattenhoff, Harry Lennix, Ryan Eggold and Parminder Nagra.

'American Horror Story': Jessica Lange on why next season will be her last -- EXCLUSIVE

It’s hard to imagine American Horror Story without Jessica Lange—she has appeared in all three seasons after all. But Lange has confirmed that next year’s fourth season will be her last. “It ends up being a lot of time during the year being committed to something,” admits the actress. “I haven’t done that for a long time. It’s like doing a stage play between the rehearsal and the run. This is a 6-month commitment every year. That will be four years in a row. I want to have more time to myself I guess. Once it’s over and I have a full year ahead of me with nothing to do, who knows? It might not have been the best decision. But I think four years doing something is a sufficient amount of time.” READ FULL STORY

'American Horror Story': Ryan Murphy on the latest 'Coven' and what's next for Madame LaLaurie -- EXCLUSIVE

[SPOILER ALERT IF YOU HAVEN'T SEEN THE LATEST EPISODE OF AMERICAN HORROR STORY: COVEN!!!!!]

The latest installment of American Horror Story: Coven (which also happens to grace this week’s cover of EW) saw an immortal sadist having her first hamburger, a dead-dead-alive menage-a-trois, Angela Bassett handling fish heads and Denis O’Hare in a kimono. But there’s still even more to talk about so EW chatted with co-creator Ryan Murphy about the latest Coven developments and how Stevie Nicks fared with her guest-spot.
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'American Horror Story': Find out where and when next season will take place -- EXCLUSIVE

fall-tv-coven-the-originals

As American Horror Story: Coven begins to wrap up its bold and brilliant season, fans are starting to wonder what next year will be like. Co-creator Ryan Murphy tells EW that he will begin dropping hints about season 4 around episode 11, but he will say that, “It’s not contemporary.” He adds: “It’s either going to shoot in New Orleans or it’s going to shoot in Santa Fe.”

One thing viewers definitely won’t see is a rumored spin-off of Coven. Murphy told reporters earlier this fall that he and FX had discussed an AHS spin-off, centered on this season. But that project is dead as of now. Reveals Murphy, “We were starting to break episode 8 or 9 and we were like, ‘Well, we can’t kill that person off because we need them for the spin-off.’ As soon as those words were said, I was like, ‘There is no spin-off.’ Because it took away from the joy of the show. The reason the show is successful is no one is safe ever.”
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Anderson Cooper renews CNN contract through 2016

CNN’s chief silver fox is staying put, at least through the next presidential election.

EW can confirm that Anderson Cooper has renewed his CNN contract, inking a deal to stay with the cable news network through 2016’s presidential race. (The Hollywood Reporter first broke the news.)

The intrepid newsman came to CNN in 2001, after a stint at ABC News (and host of The Mole); he’s hosted his signature show, Anderson Cooper 360°, since 2003. From September 2011 through May of this year, Cooper also hosted a syndicated talk show called Anderson.

'Glee' First Look: Watch Tyra Banks mentor Chord Overstreet in modeling -- EXCLUSIVE VIDEO

Season five of Glee has already seen guest turns from stars like Demi Lovato and Adam Lambert. Now this week’s installment, “Moving Out,” features supermodel Tyra Banks as Bichette, the head of a New York modeling agency who may have interest in Sam (Chord Overstreet) after he graduates from McKinley. EW has an exclusive behind the scenes look at the episode, which is also a musical tribute to Billy Joel, airing Thursday, Nov. 21 at 9 p.m. on Fox.
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'American Horror Story': Ryan Murphy talks Stevie Nicks' guest spot and the latest 'Coven' -- EXCLUSIVE

[SPOILER ALERT IF YOU HAVEN'T SEEN THE LATEST AMERICAN HORROR STORY: COVEN!!!!!!]

Soooo much happened on last night’s American Horror Story: Coven…but it’s all sort of trumped by the news that Stevie Nicks is coming to the show! Yes, Misty Day’s idol will be visiting AHS: Coven in a future episode as series co-creator Ryan Murphy announced this week on Twitter. EW talked to Murphy for our exclusive weekly chats about details on Nicks’ appearance as well as the latest Coven episode, “The Axeman Cometh.”
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Hoda Kotb signs new deal to stay with NBC

Fans of Today‘s boozy fourth hour can breathe a little easier this morning: A source confirms to EW that Hoda Kotb has inked a new, multi-year deal with NBC News. The contract has Kotb staying on as co-host of the morning show’s concluding segment with Kathie Lee Gifford; she will continue contributing to NBC News’s other programs as well.

Earlier this year, it seemed as though Kotb was preparing to jump ship. EW reported that the anchor was taking meetings with other studios, signifying that she was considering leaving NBC. And according to Capital New York, Kotb was “hotly pursued” by ABC over the summer; NBC’s rival allegedly wanted her to join the panel on The View, which will undergo another major shakeup when Barbara Walters steps down in May 2014.

Kotb has had a presence on NBC since joining Dateline as a correspondent in 1998. She’s been co-hosting Today‘s fourth hour since the segment launched in 2007.

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