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Return dates announced for 'Under the Dome,' 'Big Brother'

For the second summer in a row, Big Brother will premiere in June and July to help kick off 90 hours of first-run programming through August.

BB will bow on June 25 with the first eviction occurring July 3. As usual, the show will air three times a week.

Starting June 29, CBS will air a three-hour block of original programming with BB, followed by  the new legal drama Reckless and a third season of Unforgettable. Under the Dome will return on June 30.

The new Halle Berry starrer Extant — which was originally scheduled to bow July 2 — will now premiere on July 9.

Here’s the entire summer schedule: READ FULL STORY

Comcast/Sony deal lets Comcast subscribers watch Netflix shows

Comcast today announced that it has signed an agreement with Sony Pictures Home Entertainment to sell the studio’s titles through the Xfinity On Demand digital store. In the coming weeks, Xfinity TV customers will be able to purchase Sony Pictures movies and TV shows to own and access anytime on any device, kicking off with American Hustle, timed to the film’s DVD release. Additional Sony Pictures movie and TV titles that will be available for purchase in the coming weeks include Breaking Bad, as well as popular movies such as Captain Phillips, Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2, The Amazing Spider-Man and 21 Jump Street.

“Sony Pictures is pleased that this agreement brings significant titles to Comcast customers,” said Man Jit Singh, Sony Pictures Home Entertainment president, in a release. “We deeply value our relationship with Comcast and look forward to working closely with them to meet the needs of all audiences.”

Most excitingly for TV fans, the Comcast/Sony deal will allow Comcast subscribers to purchase episodes of Netflix shows, even if they don’t have a Netflix subscription. At $1.99 an episode, it’s not exactly a steal compared to a monthly Netflix subscription, but it’s another option for fans who want to keep up with Frank Underwood’s exploits on House of Cards.

Fox cancels 'Raising Hope'

Raising Hope is saying goodbye. Fox announced Monday that it will air two back-to-back new episodes to end the comedy’s four-season run on April 4.

The series finale will begin with “How I Met Your Mullet” which will guest star Lesley Nicol (Downton Abbey), followed by “The Father Daughter Dance” featuring Jeffrey Tambor. It will also include a musical performance by Kenny Loggins.

Raising Hope has averaged 2.7 million viewers this season and a 1.0 rating in 18-49.

“On behalf of myself, Greg Garcia and Raising Hope‘s amazing cast and crew, I would like to thank our audience for tuning in and supporting us over the last four seasons,” said executive producer Mike Mariano in a statement. “We planned our Season 4 finale with this possibility in mind, and hope our loyal fans enjoy the way we’ve chosen to say goodbye to the Chances and to Natesville.  Thanks again, and we’ll see you in syndication.”

“Getting to know and love the Chance family on Raising Hope has been a sweet, hilarious ride,” added Fox chief Kevin Reilly in a statement. “Thanks to the incredibly talented cast – along with Greg, Mike and the entire crew – for making us laugh for four fantastic seasons.”

Raising Hope, which was created by Garcia, bowed in the fall of 2010 and stars Martha Plimpton, Cloris Leachman, Garret Dillahunt, Lucas Neff, Shannon Woodward and Gregg Binkley. New episodes begin airing this Friday at 9:30 p.m. on Fox.

'Looking': Creator Michael Lannan on the finale and plans for season two

HBO’s freshman dramedy Looking, about three gay best friends in San Francisco, wrapped up its first season tonight with some break-ups and hook ups. EW talked to the series creator Michael Lannan about all the drama as well as plans for the recently announced season two.

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: The big twist was that Kevin and Patrick hooked up. Did you always plan for that to happen?
MICHAEL LANNAN: I don’t think it was too pre-meditated. It was just something that came about as we were working through the room and just got through more episodes. I think Richie and Kevin both offer Patrick such different things and I think we always thought Patrick would be in this place where he’s so connected to Richie in this one way and so connected to Kevin in another and this was going to create big problems for him. So I think we were just excited to see how it would play out as we wrote it. Richie and Kevin just access Patrick in different ways and offer him different thigns and I think that’s really exciting for Patrick and also very problematic.

I was surprised they didn’t use one of those swinging chairs in the office for that scene.
That was a brilliant idea of our production designer Todd Fjelsted. That subconscious suggestion isn’t just in your head.

Good. I’m glad I’m not the only one.
Hardly.

One of the things that’s so different about Looking is that the sex on the show is very realistic.
That was always the goal. We made a decision early on that we wanted the show to be very frank and show sex as something really exciting and awesome and also sometimes awkward and much trickier than it can sometimes be on TV. So we just wanted to show all those sides of it and not just have it be punishing or humiliating or not just have it be amazing and super sweaty and hot. You can learn so much about a character by how they approach sex and how they do it and what they do afterwards. Along with that, we just decided we’d show sex for storytelling purposes. Really, half an hour is so short you don’t have much time so we just wanted it all to be very integrated into the story and always say something about the characters and the situation.

READ FULL STORY

Fox renews 'Mindy Project,' 'The Following,' more

Brooklyn Nine-Nine, The Mindy Project, and New Girl have all been renewed for new seasons, Fox announced Friday.

The network’s pickup of freshman comedy Brooklyn comes as no surprise, considering the Andy Samberg vehicle took a top prize at the Golden Globes in January, and both Mindy and New Girl, going into their third and fourth seasons respectively, were considered safe bets for renewal.

Fox has also renewed The Following, which will return for a third season.

“These shows are some of the best and acclaimed series on television, with influential, culture-driving stars, and some of the best, most creative talent behind the camera,” said bosses Kevin Reilly and Joe Earley in a joint statement. “All four are core assets within our 2014-15 portfolio of content, and we’re really happy to bring them back to our FOX fans for another season.”

The news comes a little over a month after Fox announced the renewal of Bones for a tenth season. Sleepy Hollow and Glee are also set to return, with the latter going into its sixth and final season.

The fates of drama Almost Human and comedies Dads, Raising Hope, and Enlisted remain undecided. For more on their odds, check out EW’s annual TV Death Watch.

FX renews 'Archer' for two more seasons

Everyone’s favorite full-of-himself spy will be around until at least 2016.

FX announced Thursday that its animated comedy Archer has been renewed for not one, but two 13-episode seasons.

Archer, which features the voices of H. Jon Benjamin (as the title character) and Aisha Tyler, is currently in the midst of its fifth season and is on track to have one of its most-viewed seasons yet. First-run episodes are up 2 percent in total viewers (1.93 million) and multi-run totals are averaging 3.86 million in total viewers, according to Nielsen figures provided by the net.

Archer creator Adam Reed said of the announcement, “I am figuratively over the moon.”

The show airs Mondays at 10 p.m. ET on FX.

E! orders its first drama -- about British royals

E! is getting into the scripted biz by ordering a series about a fictional British royal family.

Set in — and filmed in — modern London, The Royals will star Elizabeth Hurley as Queen Helena, who fiercely protects the family image. The cast also includes Vincent Regan, William Moseley, Alexandra Park, Tom Austen, Jake Maskall, Ukweli Roach and Oliver Milburn. Here’s the official network description: The Royals pits public perception of the royal family against the reality of life inside the castle walls, from the lavish parties and high stakes political summits, to the private family gatherings and secret romances.  However being born into this elite circle comes at a cost and the Royals’ lives are played out on a world stage where press is 24/7 and social media drives an insatiable appetite to follow their every move.”

The series will premiere in 2015, is executive produced, written and directed by Mark Schwahn (One Tree Hill). Brian Robbins and Joe Davola (One Tree Hill, Smallville) are also exec producers.

“We are excited that E!’s first original scripted series will transport viewers into a world that they are already intensely interested in, but reality cameras would never give them access to. ‘The Royals’ will offer a fictional look behind the very public gilded façade of the palace gates to imagine the private, lush, fun, sexy world of the most-watched celebrity family on the planet,” said Jeff Olde, exec vp of original programming & development, in a statement. “It’s a perfect series to introduce E! viewers to scripted pop culture programming on the network.”

'Kroll Show' renewed by Comedy Central

Nick Kroll will come back for a third season: Comedy Central has renewed his eponymous sketch show.

Kroll, who has appeared on Community, Childrens Hospital and Parks and Rec, plays characters like Bobby Bottleservice and Fabrice Fabrice.

Kroll Show, which airs Tuesdays at 10:30 p.m., has been averaging 1.1 million viewers. Its first episode premiered in January of 2013. Guests on the show have included Zach Galifianakis, Amy Poehler, Fred Armisen and Hannibal Buress.

'Glee': Frenemies Rachel and Santana battle on 'Flashdance' number -- EXCLUSIVE VIDEO

Last week, Glee‘s Rachel (Lea Michele) and Santana (Naya Rivera) basically ended their relationship as friends. Based on this exclusive clip from tonight’s episode, airing at 8 p.m. ET on Fox, things have not cooled down. The pair duet on Laura Branigan’s “Gloria,” which you may remember from Flashdance, along with Elliot (guest star Adam Lambert). READ FULL STORY

Fox relegates 'Rake' to Fridays

Fox’s ratings-challenged drama Rake will get a new berth on Fridays while Hell’s Kitchen will replace take over its old timeslot starting March 13.

The Gordon Ramsay show, now in its 12th season, will serve as a lead-in to the results show of American Idol, which will now air at 9.

Rake will bow on Fridays at 8 beginning March 14 and will be followed by original episodes of Enlisted and Raising Hope. An original of Rake will air this Thursday and is set to star Anthony Anderson as an old friend of Keegan (Kinnear).

Rake — not to mention Idol — got raked by the Olympics on NBC. Last week, Rake posted a 1.0 rating in 18-49 and a mere 4 million viewers. Idol, meanwhile, sank to a series low 2.9 rating and 9.1 million viewers.

When the Idol results shows scale back to half-hour installments beginning March 27, Fox will air Surviving Jack, a new comedy starring Chris Meloni, at 9:30.

'Grimm' bosses tease weddings, births, carnival episode and the 'scariest Wesen ever'

Grimm returns tonight with a brand-new episode to kick off the action-packed second half of the season — and if executive producers David Greenwalt and Jim Kouf are to be believed, Nick and Co. are in for a lot of drama.

For a look at what’s to come — including a birth, a wedding, and what they called the “scariest” Wesen yet — click below for six juicy scoops.

On the impending wedding between Rosalee (Bree Turner) and Monroe (Silas Weir Mitchell):
While Monroe and Rosalee couldn’t be happier about their upcoming nuptials, the same can’t be said for their families. So expect a lot of friction to evolve from that conflict, says Greenwalt. “A lot of hell is going to break loose on that,” he says. Troubles aside, fans can expect wedding bells at the very end of the season, he adds, with Kouf teasing that Nick’s involvement with the wedding could creates “its own set of problems” among the Wesen crowd. “It could make for some fireworks,” he says. READ FULL STORY

'Glee': Watch Santana do an epic 'Don't Rain on My Parade' -- VIDEO

Tuesday marks the return of Glee after their winter hiatus and a new night (Tuesday) and time (8 p.m. ET) for the Fox musical hit. The new episode, fittingly titled “Frenemies,” finds Santana (Naya Rivera) playing understudy to Rachel (Lea Michele) in the Broadway revival of Funny Girl. Naturally, this does not bring them closer. Watch Santana nail “Don’t Rain on My Parade” (which Rachel previously performed at Sectionals in season 1) in the clip below! READ FULL STORY

Netflix reaches deal with Comcast

Netflix has reached a deal with Comcast to ensure that its TV shows and movies are streamed smoothly to households, the first deal the online video streaming service has reached with an Internet service provider.

The two companies said in a joint statement Sunday they’re establishing a more direct connection to provide a better service to customers that will also allow for future growth in Netflix traffic. The companies say the arrangement is already giving customers a better experience.

Netflix had 33 million U.S. streaming subscribers at the start of the year and accounts for about one third of all traffic at peak times on the Internet, according to research firm Sandvine. As the video steaming company has grown, Internet service providers like Comcast have pushed the company for more structured deals to enable its content to be transmitted smoothly and reduce the strain on their networks.

READ FULL STORY

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