What's Happening?


Now that @BET_Intl is in SA, here are some of the shows that you MUST watch

BET is back in SA (read previous post here) and we know a couple of great shows that are on the channel, thanks to StarSat. So with so many shows (some great, some bland) we decided to pick the shows you just HAVE to watch

106 & Park

The music and entertainment show hosted by musician and actor, Bow Wow alongside Keshia Chante. As per usual in music shows, they interview the hottest R&B and hip-hop stars in front of a live audience weeknights, everyday, at the show's New York City studios. Everyone, from Rihanna, J. Lo. JHud, Beyonce, Kanye West, Kerry Washington and more, have been interviewed on the show. 
Catch 106 & Park, weekdays at 7pm

The Wendy Williams Show

The Wendy Williams Show is one of the most successful daytime talk shows in the US. The syndicated talk show has catapulted Wendy Williams to stardom, infamy and the ability to be able to attract the cream of Hollywood to her couch. Wendy is never afraid to speak her mind on her show and her Hot Topics segment is popular and has gotten her into trouble many a times with celebrities like Beyonce, Mariah and Jay Z. Touted to be the next 'Oprah Winfrey', Wendy's popularity keeps her show on air and we love how she is not afraid to speak her mind. 
Catch The Wendy Williams Show, weekdays at 10pm

Sunday Best

So Sunday Best  is currently aired, Sundays on SABC 2 at 8pm. But it's still great that BET is bringing the show for the local audience. SABC 2 is currently showing season 6, which is judged by Donnie McClurkin, Cece Winans and Yolanda Adams and hosted by Kirk Franklin. Think Idols and you'll know what Sunday Best is all about, except this time it's gospel. It's a great show. BET will be showing season 7, with Kierra Sheard joining the judges panel. 
Catch Sunday Best Sundays at 5pm

Being Mary Jane

Being Mary Jane stars Gabrielle Union and her performance on the show, impressed many TV critics. After the success of Kerry Washington and her role on The Fixer, everyone was now on the search for the next series led by a African-American actress. The show premiered with had more than 4 million viewers, which was a success for the channel.  Being Mary Jane is about Mary Jane, a successful TV anchor, who is not so successful in her personal life.  As she juggles her life, her work and her commitment to her family, we find out how far she’s willing to go to find the puzzle pieces that she, and society, insist are missing from her life. 
Being Mary Jane returns next year for a second season. 

Catch DStv on Channel 135

We Welcome @VIMN_PR's @BET_Intl to @DStv South Africa. It's about time!

Finally. After years of trying to get Multichoice to bring BET back to SA screens, it's happening. 

We knew this was going to happen sometime this year, especially after the interview we had with Alex Okosi, head honcho at Viacom Africa. BET was available in SA, via StarSat, but not many people subscribe to the satellite service, compared to DStv. In our interview with Okosi, we had asked him if there were plans to bring the channel to South Africa. 
What’s next for Viacom International Media Network's Africa? Can we expect BET back on DStv?
We are looking into bringing in more VIMN brands. Comedy Central will be getting bigger as will Nickelodeon and BET. We are in talks with Multichoice to bring BET to DStv in South Africa. We currently only have it on StarSat and we need to be on DStv soon. We really want to localize and create content for Africans, by Africans to be consumed by Africans in the continent and abroad.  

BET launched today on DStv Family, Compact, Extra and Premium packages and is an entertainment channel for lovers of black culture, providing viewers with what’s hot, what’s next and what matters.  From talk shows, drama, reality, documentary, comedy to music, movies and more, BET is one of the most popular channels, worldwide. 

Some of the most popular programmes that local subscribers will now get on their screens will include The Wendy Williams Show, Being Mary Jane, Real Husbands of Hollywood,  106 & Park, Sunday Best, Comic View, The Real and Vindicated. 

But there's a problem with BET that we noticed on StarSAt, in that the African feed was directly from the UK/Europe feed, which then meant that all the good content was way past prime time and we have had to stay up longer so we can catch shows like The Wendy Williams Show, Being Mary Jane, etc. We asked Alex Okosi this in June and he promised that they are looking into it.

There are some programming ‘mistakes’ with BET. With the focus being on UK schedule, some shows like Being Mary Jane, The Wendy Williams Show and even 106 & Park, are not getting the mileage they deserve- any plans to change the times for BET Intl to suit the continent?
Yeah, there is. We are trying to localize most of our channels, so that our best shows are aired at a time that most of our viewers can access. It’s a problem that we are solving as we speak and soon we’ll have a schedule that suits the African audience and not just what show is being aired in the UK, which is mostly two hours behind. 
In August, DStv held it's bi-annual upfront, where they informed press of what to expect on the network this year. We asked Aletta Alberts if we can expect BET on the network soon. 
According to Aletta, there are a couple of channels that will soon be added onto the DStv bouquet. While she didn’t reveal which channels, she did mention that there are about 40. I asked if BET is one of the channels to be added, especially since the other African countries have it. She wouldn’t confirm nor deny, but said to wait until the end of August. In my June interview with Viacom Africa’s boss, Alex Okosi, he revealed that they were in talks with DStv to bring BET to the South African audience. So it wouldn’t be surprising if the popular channel is one of the new ones we can expect. 
So this is great news. We have been on the pulse of finding out when we will be getting BET on DStv and the time has come.  It's Channel 135! 

Check the next post to see the shows you can expect to enjoy on the channel. 


On @IdolsSA tonight on @MNet and @MzansiMagic

Tonight's Idols SA Season 10 Top 9 Spectacular will be another first in the history of Idols SA as, for the first time ever, this year Idols SA is combining the traditional weekly Results Show with the Spectacular in one tense, exciting, two-hour special, live from the State Theatre in Pretoria. 

That means the whole Top 11 group will step on the stage ready to perform on Sunday ... but two contestants will go home before the show even starts. 

The musical theme for this week’s performances is “How It Should Have Been Done” and the contestants will show Idols fans how some of this season’s most memorable Golden Mic audition numbers should have been performed. 
But before they even get to sing one note, Idols host ProVerb will first have the sad duty of announcing the results of this week’s voting, and for two of the contestants that will mean the end of their Idols dream. 
But in the meantime all 11 have rehearsed a performance, and – in alphabetical order – this is what they have prepared: 

This week’s Birthday Girl, Nelspruit’s Bongi Silinda (24), has prepared the Rihanna classic “Umbrella”, which was the audition song of Idols contestant Valdinah Mutakusi at the Pretoria audition.

Durbanvile singer Demi Lee (24) plans to perform the Beyoncé ballad “Halo” somewhat differently to how Raheela Abdool did it at the Durban auditions. 
Former Centurion hairdresser Ivan Roux (24) has rehearsed the Lighthouse song “You & Me”, which is maybe what Velly Sean Mashazi should have done more of before his Durban audition. 

Kyle Deutschmann (27), the chiropractor from Durban, wants to do Rihanna’s “Diamonds” in a way that has nothing to do with Nkosinphile Mbambo’s now-famous braai-inspired version in Durban.
Lize Mynhardt (21) from Stellenbosch is trying to rescue the Queen classic “Bohemian Rhapsody” from Gabsile Mahlangu’s interpretation at the Pretoria audition. 
Cape Town performer London Louw (24) intends to show Jozi contestant Tyson Baloyi how Madonna’s “Like A Virgin” should have been done. 
eMalahleni’s Musa Mashiane (27) has prepared Mattafix’s “Big City Life”, which was Luchan Carolus audition song in Cape Town. 
Adele’s “Someone Like You” was a popular audition song this year, and Cape Town music student Roxy McVean (19) plans to show how Collen Podile should have done it at the Cape Town auditions. 
Hopefully Tumi Morobane (21) has learned some skills in her Musical Theatre studies to do a better performance of Whitney Houston’s “Run To Me” than Godfrey Saul’s version at the Cape Town audition.

Vincent Bones (29) from Pietermaritzburg has prepared R. Kelly’s “When a Woman Loves”, which was Siyanda Maphumulo’s audition song in Durban.

And Vincent Verhoog (25) from Cape Town hopes to do better with Luther Vandross’s “Always And Forever” than Luchan Carolus did in Cape Town. 

Rap superstar AKA is this week’s musical mentor and guest artist.


Carl Hickman and his team are back. William Fichtner speaks exclusively to SMtv #CrossingLinesSA

Carl Hickman and his team are back for another season of busting criminals beyond borders. William Fichtner speaks exclusively to SMtv

The cast of Crossing Lines (PICTURE: Sony Pictures Television)

Crossing Lines is a TV show from the creator of Criminal Minds and it follows the ICC, a special police force operating across Europe. William Fichtner (Prison Break, Entourage) plays International Criminal Court investigator team member Carl Hickman, a former NYPD detective whose career and life were derailed by a serious hand injury. Carl is able to see and “read” things about criminals and crime scenes using exceptional deductive skills and, an almost sixth sense for clues and no border stops him and his team from solving crimes, no matter what lines they have to cross.

In the beginning of the show, Carl is in physical and mental pain, which sees him flee for Europe. Why do you think a man who is so highly respected and decorated would choose that option?
It’s a lot of things. Phillip Genovese, played by Kim Coates, who happens to be my best friend, effectively ended Carl’s career as a top detective in the NYPD. He is a criminal mastermind who has history with Carl and while chasing him, Carl’s hand get’s shot and wounded by Phillip.
He basically took away his life. I mean, he lost his job and he couldn’t perform his duties as a cop. At least not in New York City… So, he lost more than just his job, he lost a sense of identity. Being a cop is everything to him. I would imagine it just destroyed his life. So when the series began, we found Carl living in a trailer park in a carnival in Amsterdam, addicted to morphine. But then he is found by Louis and joins the team.
We see him in a dark place at the beginning of the second season. Why?
Where the show begins this season is where we find Carl at a pretty much low point in his life. He’s after something and putting pieces of his life back together. He’s after someone. What seems like bottom of the bowl for him may be that he’s certainly trying to look up and go after something. It’s a great place to begin, I think. As the first season unfolded, we got to understand why he’s there and some of the issues that brought him to that place – the reasons why he lives his life in that way. And the problem he has is that he’s a bit of a fractured guy.
William in a scene from Crossing LInes
The series is a high-impact action drama. What physical regime did you have to go through to get into the head space of Carl and what kind of law-enforcement training did you need to go through?
You know what, I’ve played so many cops and military personnel in my life. I really feel like I’ve got a pretty good understanding on what playing a cop entails including their mentality. It’s now more about who the guy is, the grittiness of the character. The cop part of it, I feel comfortable with because I’ve done it so many times.
I’ve been around so many real police officers. The more time you spend with them the more you’re able to absorb their rhythms. Those simple things such as knowing how to handle a gun – I mean, there are some people who are less experienced with those sort of things on the show. It’s more about how pick up and hold a gun, you know, and not just wave it around. I feel I’m more comfortable with all of that.
You moved permanently to Prague after filming the first season of Crossing Lines. What makes this city capture the dramatic theme of the series?
I’ve gone on location to so many different places. I like doing that! I usually go solo and move back and forth to my house, and do a family visit. But, Crossing Lines is different. Crossing Lines is literally a commitment to go to Prague. Iwasn’t going to do it unless I had my whole family, so, to say that I fell in love with Prague and Czech Republic would be an understatement. I’m actually speaking to you right now from Prague. Plus, my wife and I are just not done with our Prague experience, and mostly for our younger son, who is 12. He goes to the international school. It’s just been a remarkable two years that really changed him and we’re just not willing to stop that right now. So I’m back in beautiful Prague whether I’m doing the show or not.
Prague captures the themes of Crossing Lines, how do you feel the two align?
I’m sure the producers of the show picked Prague for several reasons, however, I wouldn’t know, but I wouldn’t be surprised if they did. Prague is a beautiful city. It was one of the places that were fairly untouched in World War II, it’s a city that gives you so many looks. But also, it has mystery to it. And you know, a crime drama could always do with a little bit of mystery.
You have played a wide diversity of roles, from Entourage to Prison Break, and you have also been described as one of the most versatile actors of our time. Where do you find the time?
I’m glad that appears that way – that I go back to back with TV series and movie roles, but that’s not always the case. Sometimes I have breaks in-between. But I’ll tell you, I don’t need any breaks. I like to finish a job on Friday and relax on Saturday, rest-up on Sundays, and start something new on Monday.
My wife would say to me, “Why don’t you chill out?” I’ll say to her, “Well honey, I don’t have the chill-out gene in my body.” I like to stay busy, it’s the doing that’s more exciting to me than the final product is. I love to act and I like to be able to prepare for things, and I like to be engaged. So, when something good comes along I always find the time.
The cast of Crossing Lines (Picture: Sony Pictures Television)
Outside of work, what do you do in your personal time?
I grew up in New York and now live in California… I like my old and classic muscle car, a 1970 Road Runner that I don’t take out too often, but when I do, I’m like a big kid in a candy shop. I’m a home body! When I’m back in LA I don’t go about the club scenes. I’m close to home, I’ve got two sons. The one plays a lot of baseball: I never miss a game if I can. I like to be involved as much as I can and work around the house. I tell all of my friends, “listen, you all come around and I’ll open you up a nice bottle of red”. But, I like to be home, I get all my buddies to come ’round my way.
What can we expect as the season and drama unfolds?
We get the opportunity to go back and find out more about where Carl came from including people who have played a major part in his life. He finds himself working with someone from his past, Detective Amanda Andrews (Carrie Ann Moss), who he worked with in New York and together they are forced to tackle their mutual enemy. He’s fond of his professional partner and as we discover, a bit more than that.

Catch Crossing Lines on Sony on Mondays, at 8.55pm 

Pictures: Sony Pictures Television 

Meet the cast of HistorySA's #PawnStarsSA

The cast of History's Pawn Stars SA, was revealed by the channel this morning. The popular reality show, which follows the lives of a pawn shop owner and his assistant and the amazing merchandise they have in the shop, finally has a a South Africa version. 

Pawn Stars has more than five editions around the world and has also birthed various copycat shows: American Pickers, Auction Hunters, Auction Kings, Hardcore Pawn and Pawn Queens.

The local edition of the show was filmed in Johannesburg at the Cash Inn Pawn Shop, owned by Roy Peretz, and his partners, Etyan and Liel. Irene and Solly are the shop assistants.  

The show has a double episode premiere on 14 October on History (DStv 186) at 8.30pm.

Check the show's  trailer below and after the jump, meet the cast

Roy Peretz

Roy “the Boss” Peretz is the shrewd, smooth business owner of the Cash Inn. He talks-the-talk and is a slick negotiator who usually gets the price he wants. Roy studied to become a chemical engineer, and successfully ran his own chemical factory. Then the day arrived when he decided to leave all this behind him to start out in the pawn industry in 1999. Roy certainly enjoys the ‘finer’ things in life and, from Cartier to Rolex, there’s no fake that will escape his appreciative eye. Roy has a passion for living and as a member of the Riviera Aquatic Club regularly visits the Vaal River for water sports with his family. His love of the water extends to him being an active environmentalist. Roy very quickly puts people at ease, and underneath that smooth exterior beats a genuine heart and he really looks out for his team. 

Liel Rimon

Liel “the Right Hand” Rimon has been working with Roy for 14 years. He grew up in a Kibbutz, Israel but moved to SA to make it on his own and has put all those early life lessons to good practice in his adopted country. A South African by ‘nurture’, Liel loves all things South African and is a big fan of braais and the fanfare of sporting events. Liel is Roy’s protégé: there’s no other person Roy trusts more with his business than Liel. This die-hard Liverpool supporter hits the back of the net with every negotiation and deal, especially when it comes to his passion for cars and diamonds. Liel is very confident with his appraisal skills and always has a witty one-liner when dealing with the sellers who come into the Cash Inn. 

Eytan Nadler

Eytan “the-Gentle-Giant” Nadler confesses that he followed a girl to South African shores! Unfortunately, they are no longer together but remain good friends. Eytan is a cricket fanatic and a loyal supporter of The Proteas and The Highveld Lions. With a playful nature, Eytan is truly respected by the rest of the team and although he is the eldest, he is a pop-culture connoisseur, is science fiction mad and a strong believer in aliens! From stamps to comic books, Eytan is armed with an unerring eye for appraising a range of items. A true gentleman in his negotiating techniques, he usually brings customers round to his way of thinking.

Solly Mabasa

Solly “the Funny Man” Mabasa met Roy while registering cars and licenses for the pawnshop. Always bubbling over with a quip or two, he’s never shy to make the guys the butt of his jokes but it’s all in good spirit. New to the pawn industry, Solly is still learning the trade but his sense of humour always carries him through. Liel treats Solly like a brother, but Solly also has a special bond with his fellow gentle giant, Eytan.

Irene Bower

Irene “the flower” Bower was taken under Roy’s wing and introduced to the pawn industry in 2011. Jewellery and fine watches are her best friends and she can spot a fake a mile away. Irene’s efficient running of the day-to-day administration of the shop means that Roy really depends on her. When she’s not hard at work, Irene enjoys the serenity of being in nature and she’s happiest in the bush, at a game reserve. Irene is like the younger sister to the guys and, along with Eytan, she has an unshakable belief in aliens - the force is with her!

We are really looking forward to this show. A worldwide hit, it's one of those excellent shows that have real reality moments, not the made up faux reality stuff we are used to. 

Let's hope it doesn't disappoint. Also, it's great that there's a lady in the cast. It makes things interesting and less of a boy's club. But then again, she's there for the 'lady' elements- jewellery and watches. 

We are interested in seeing exactly what South Africans pawn, how much they get  for it and how much is it sold for. The world of pawn shops is normally seen as a murky one, so it will be great to see whether our shops can compare to the US and UK shops.

Tune in from Tuesday, 14 October on History at 8.30pm 


Does #MatrixAvatorz have what it takes to win @etvSA's @SAsGotTalent?

e.TV held their upfront last week Friday at Havana Grill at Suncoast Casino and Entertainment World and the highlight was seeing the guys from Matrix Avatorz dance for the media guests. A mix of zombie and hip hop dancing, the group, made up of three dancers from PMB, is KZN's best hope at this year's SA's Got Talent. 

We sat down and spoke to them, while they were having lunch. 

The thing about talent shows, is that everyone thinks they are more talented than the other. Sometimes it's true, but sometimes talent is nothing without hard work. We have seen this with amazingly talented singers, yet they are not big stars because they either aren't working hard enough or their management team is the worst. 

Anyway, talent is also very subjective and by that I mean- I want to be entertained. It's no point having this amazing talent but you don't move me on stage. I mean? Who has time for time? 

That's why I liked Matrix Avatorz- they moved me. They made me think. They made me appreciate their dance moves and the story they were telling. I'll admit that the dance style is not so entertaining, but rather a "how the hell did they just do that" kinder vibe. I want to watch them perform, because I am impressed at how they can do that to their bodies. 

Anyway, enough with the deep stuff. I missed the show this past Sunday, as I was interviewing Holly at a tavern in Clermont. But having scene the guys perform at the upfront last week, I gathered that they had made it through to the next round, hence e.tv inviting them to the 'party'. 

The group is made up of Wiseman Mhlongo, Siyabonga Ndlovu and Tumelo Mohlaoli. According to the guys, their name is a play on The Matrix and the movie Avator. "Both those movies tell of worlds in different dimensions and that's what we present with out dancing and also our costumes," said Wiseman, who is basically the spokesman for the group. "We are fascinated by zombies, genetic mutation and the underworld  and we think it's a cool thing to add to our dancing. It gives it an extra edge." 

Edge, yes. But the thing that is cool about these guys, is the story telling in their dance, that noted photographer, Val Adamson, was really keen on taking their pictures. "I loved your movements. You are guys are great and amazing to photograph," she told them. 

But at the end of the day, it's still hip hop. "That's how we started, as hip hop dancers. We may have added a storytelling element to the dancing, but at the core of the group, we are telling a story." 

They've learnt ballroom and contemporary dance to be able to do some of the more 'body bending' dance moves and they hope the judges will like what they have in store for them- if they make it to the semi-finals. 

"The judges comments were very fair. They had some great constructive criticism for us and we are working very hard to make sure that they see that we listened to them and their advice." 

Will they make it? I don't know, but let's hope they do. But they are going to need an entertainment element to their performance, lest viewers fall asleep.

Oh and check out the Sunday Tribune SMtv on Sunday, for a cool interview with new judge, Lalla Hirayama. 


Gotham Grit- Why @MNet's #Gotham works.

The Batman story has been told over and over again; so Gotham – premiering hours after the US on M-Net's Express from the US on Tuesday (23 September) at 1am and on prime time on September 30 at 8.30pm – decided to remove the caped crusader from this town's tale.

The show focuses instead on the city that created Batman as seen through the eyes of young cop on the beat James Gordon (Ben McKenzie). Executive producer John Stephens calls the show a "crime opera", more serialised Mafia drama than superhero tale.
"I would say 75  percent of the episodes will have a procedural story," said Stephens. "But that will always be balanced by the serialised crime drama we'll be telling."
He cited Frank Miller's Batman, Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale's The Long Halloween and Dark Victory, and Ed Brubaker's Gotham Central as points of reference for the show. "It's a world that feels real, but heightened."

The pilot has a lot of the elements of a traditional "taking down the Mafia" story: Gung-ho newbie Gordon learns how to navigate the muddy waters of corruption with the help of his veteran partner Harvey Bullock, played with grizzled and biting wit by Donal Logue. Logue's Bullock walks the line between crime and the law with a welcome grace, setting the show's voice.

The arrogant swagger of Gotham's major crimes unit (Victoria Cartagena and Andrew Stewart-Jones) contrasts nicely with the tough but fair approach of Captain Essen (Zabryna Guevara).
On the other side of the blue line, Jada Pinkett Smith as a Mafia boss casts a violent counterpoint to her rival, the ominous, yet dignified head of the Falcone mob family played by John Doman.
The pilot's real MVP, however, is Robin Lord Taylor as a pre-Penguin Oswald Cobblepot. It's a slightly unhinged portrayal that resonates with the story's comic book origins without betraying the show's realism.

"He's a strange actor, God bless him, Robin. He's a genius," said director and executive producer Danny Cannon. "He turns something slightly odd into something very real."
The producers saw a lot of people for that role, "but Robin's take was fascinating. We wanted to learn more. We had a take on it, but he brought a take that we found ourselves drawn to".
The city itself, as the name implies, is the show's real star. It's a timeless Gotham, with elements of the late 1970s to early '80s New York of Mean Streets as well as the neon grittiness of Blade Runner.

The show's creator, Bruno Heller (Rome, The Mentalist), said: "It's a mash-up of different time periods; it's everybody's memory of 20 years ago. Even if you're 25 years old, you should get a sense that it's not ancient history, it's not tomorrow, and it's not today. It's a dream world."
One of the perceived weak points of the show is the young teen element. Many long-time comic fans fear some version of a high school romance between Bruce Wayne (David Mazouz) and Selina Kyle (newcomer Carmen Bicondova).
As Gotham's first episode goes, those fears are unfounded. By the end of the hour, we see Bruce Wayne already forming the inner resolve that will become his legacy.

SPOILER ALERT: In the last scene, Gordon comes to apologise to Wayne. He thought he had fulfilled his promise to catch the killer of Bruce's parents, only to find he had caught the wrong man.

Gordon is torn between the desire to do right by the law – reveal the deception, thus ending his career – and the desire to do right by this young boy by covering up the crime and delving deeper into Gotham's corruption to find the true culprit.
The power young Mazouz wields in those last moments is astonishing, more than holding his own against the grown-up actors.

"What he has is intense focus and internal strength," said Heller. "To find someone that young who has all the instincts of an intense actor is such a gift, because it means you can tell real stories, which you can't often do." – YahooTV

PIC:  Robin Lord Taylor, Jada Pinkett Smith, Cory Michael Smith, Clare Foley, Donal Logue, Ben McKenzie, Camren Bicondova, David Mazouz and Sean Pertwee.
Picture: Fox Broadcasting Co

Feeling the power of Fallon tonight on @MTVza at 6pm

Jimmy Fallon has breathed new life to The Tonight Show writes Frazier Moore

On the walls of Jimmy Fallon's office are photos. Lots of photos. Of his 2007 marriage to film producer Nancy Juvonen. Of their now year-old daughter, Winnie Rose. Of his mom and dad as newlyweds. 
But the dominant photo is a portrait of Johnny Carson, in front of his The Tonight Show drapes.

"I look at that every day," says Fallon, "and just go, 'Yeah – it's SO fun!'"
Already Fallon is immersed in this kind of fun. For five years he hosted NBC's Late Night with Jimmy Fallon a job he relinquished late last year. And now he's the host of the most popular late night TV show in the US.

"It's a big TV moment!" says Fallon. "Even if it wasn't me, I would tune in to watch."
When Jimmy Fallon was announced as Jay Leno's replacement in NBC's The Tonight Show, it was unanimously accepted by Hollywood and viewers of Tonight that he was the best person for the show. Even Leno approved. 

Leno suggested to Fallon that he expand his monologue from five minutes to 10 and make it more news-focused. The show has its South African premiere on Wednesday, on MTV at 6pm.

Fallon has brought the show back to New York and it's now under the same hallowed roof of NBC's 30 Rockefeller Center headquarters, which is home to Saturday Night Live. The show is also executive produced by Lorne Michaels, creator of SNL. 

The move has allowed Tonight to make a clean break from its turbulent post-Carson era under Jay Leno (and, fleetingly, Conan O'Brien), when the Carson-bequeathed formula of jokes, |celebs and chit-chat was, too |often, upstaged by behind-the-scenes soap opera.
Leno was consistently the late-night ratings winner, but never won much respect from the public, critics, or even his own network, which twice sent him packing from Tonight.
Now back in New York, where both The Tonight Show and Carson as its host made their start, this 60-year-old TV institution is poised to pick up the legend from where it languished after Carson's 1992 retirement – and it has. 

But even as Fallon waxes eagerness about the success of Tonight, he wants everyone to know it won't really be so different, after all: essentially an hour-earlier Late Night With Jimmy Fallon, including its house band, the Roots, its announcer-sidekick, Steve Higgins, and comic bits like "Slow Jam the News" and "Thank-you Notes."
"When we started Late Night, we were DOING Late Night," Fallon explains. "But over five years it's kind of grown, and blossomed into what it has become, which is The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon. We grew into it!"

Fallon first became popular during his six years on SNL where he displayed a chameleonic range of characters and impersonations, plus a musicality that grants him uncanny skill at mimicking numerous recording stars.

His 2004 departure from SNL to pursue a film career didn't pan out, particularly with the comedy flop Taxi, in which he co-starred with Queen Latifah.
"I definitely appreciate everything I get now, where I probably wouldn't have if that movie was a giant hit. I'm kind of happy that my film career didn't take off," he says.
Now a TV staple, Fallon declares that he's developed "a voice that people expect from us".
What is that voice?
"Fun. Nice. Absurd," he says reflectively. A thoughtful pause, then a laugh. "I'm still working on the list."

His key strength as host boils down to his unflagging engagement, says Tonight producer Josh Lieb.
"He's got genuine empathy for his guests and for the audience," he said. "He's trying to give them the best of himself.

His first show featured Will Smith dancing his way through a history of hip-hop, U2 playing on the top of the Rockefeller Centre and cameos from Robert De Niro, Tina Fey, Lindsay Lohan and Mike Tyson. 

Subsequent programmes have featured guest appearances from Michelle Obama – goofing around in a sketch with a dragged-up Fallon and Will Ferrell – Jerry Seinfeld, Justin Timberlake rapping, Halle Berry doing cartwheels, Paul Rudd miming to Tina Turner, Lady Gaga, Arcade Fire and Kristen Wiig impersonating Harry Styles. 

In the new season, starting on, Wednesday, we can expect a visit from Barbra Streisand, who will be making her first late night talk visit in 50 years. Yip, that's the power of Fallon. – AP/NBC

Colin Farrell, Vince Vaughn to star in 'True Detective'

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Actors,  Colin Farrell and Vince Vaughn will take leading roles in the second season of HBO's crime thriller "True Detective," Time Warner Inc's cable network said on Tuesday.

Irish actor Farrell, 38, will star as compromised detective Ray Velcoro and Vaughn, 44, will star as criminal mastermind Frank Semyon in the eight-part drama, HBO said.
The series will follow three police officers and a career criminal tackling a complex conspiracy after a murder, the network said, and will be written by Nic Pizzolatto. "Fast & Furious" director Justin Lin will direct the first two episodes. The series will go into production this fall in California.

The first season of "True Detective" starring Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson as detectives Rust Cohle and Martin Hart was a hit for HBO. The show won five Primetime Emmy awards last month, including best directing for Cary Fukunaga, who directed all eight episodes.

The series also made waves by pairing veteran film stars McConaughey and Harrelson. Its premiere in January helped drive the buzz around McConaughey before he won his first best actor Oscar in March for "Dallas Buyers Club."

Farrell has carved out an eclectic career with films such as 2002 thriller "Phone Booth," 2008 dark comedy "In Bruges" and 2012's ensemble "Seven Psychopaths." Vaughn is best known for his comedy work in movies such as 2005's "Wedding Crashers" and 2013's "The Internship."

The second season of "True Detective" faces the challenge of living up to the critical acclaim and buzz of the first, with a new cast, story line and director.

(Reporting by Piya Sinha-Roy; Editing by Mary Milliken and Tom Brown)


Don't Miss @The_XFactorSA Bootcamp Tonight at 6pm on @Offcial_SABC1

Having been to the judges and the boot camp auditions, let's just say the DRAMA will not only keep you tuned into the show, but it will make you either LOVE or HATE the judges. Or both. But trust us, there WILL be an emotional response to the decisions the judges make to either keep or boot out the contestants on the show. 

Of the 83 acts, the judges make a drastic cull to 36 acts. Also in this episode, the judges are assigned their categories as Arno, Oskido and Zonke find out if they have the following: Under 24s; Groups; or Over 24s. 

Then it’s down to the six chair challenge as the Under 24’s fight for a spot in the Top 6.

Tune in, tonight on SABC 1 at 6pm to find out which group the judges gets to mentor and who makes it through to the Under 24s Top 6. 

PIC: X-Factor SA/SABC1


Who will win @StrictlySA tonight on @SABC3?

The finalists: Jonathan, Leanne and Leandie... Who will it be???

After weeks of very dramatic TV, Strictly Come Dancing is ending tonight. And what a season it has been. 

The show has made more news about the shock eliminations and contestant and judge drama, then there has been good dancing. Compared to the past two seasons, this one has been sadly, rather left wanting in the quality of contestants and their dance skills. 

The drama about Ashish Gangerpersad overstaying his welcome on the show, thanks to overzealous fans, who refused to see how badly their idol was dancing; Ashish's dramatic antics about how he didn't like the way that Michael Wentik was critiquing him and also how he stayed on the show at the expense of better dancers, like Khanyi Mbau, Boity Thulo, Siv Ngesi and John Mametsa. 

But the drama HAS been good for the show, because it has provided a great talking point for everyone interested or not so much interested, in the show. Now tonight, the final three contestants, Jonathan, Leanne and Leandie will vie for the glitter ball. Who will it be? 

Jonathan Boyton-Lee and Hayley Bennet-Vreyden

Hayley has won the show before, while dancing with HHP in season 3. Does she have a chance to win the competition? YES! 
Jonathan is very popular with the ladies (how many times has that torso worked to his advantage?) and he actually has a great personality. Plus, he's the only remaining guy, is on Top Billing and has readily improved on his dancing. He was frequently on our bottom list, so if he wins, not only will it be a case of: "The Popular Guy won the Popularity Show" but also all about how he has improved as a dancer. 

Leanne Dlamini and Johannes Radebe

Johannes is a newbie on the show and Leanne is a not so famous face. How they lasted this long, is wonder. Yes, she dances really well, but who knew she even had a fan base? 
That aside, Leanne should be the one who lifts the glitter ball tonight. Not only has she been consistent, but she has done some very amazing dances. While her personality was very muted when the show started, it changed in week 4 when she sang just before her dance and she finally became a star on the dance floor. It would be great to see the not so famous, but talented celebrity win, but hey, it's all about the votes.

Leandie du Randt and Brandon Eilers Le Riche

Brandon should have won the show in the second season. He danced with Tamara Dey and my word, they were so excellent. Their cha cha cha to Justin Timberlake's Sexy Back, is still one of my favourite dance moments in the history of Strictly Come Dancing. 
For that, he deserves to win, especially since he tried to recreate that magic with Leandie, also a not so well known face in the entertainment industry, unless you watch kykNet. 
They, like Leanne, have been consistent on the show and they got the first full house fromt he judges last week. Brandon is an amazing dancer and he has shaped Leandie to be a whizz on the dance floor- fearless, beautiful, bold and yet still graceful. Their song choices were always inspired and at the end of the day, they entertained me better than the previous two.

So who shall it be? I think Leandie! 

Catch the Strictly Come Dancing finale tonight on SABC 3 at 8pm. 

BREAKING NEWS: @gwalax to present @MzansiMagic's @DragonsDenSA

Noted broadcaster and media personality, Xolani Gwala has been chosen as the presenter of the highly popular Dragons Den. The South African version of the show, will be broadcast on Mzansi Magic and is being produced by Rapid Blue Productions.

Currently presenting a radio show on Talk radio 702, Xolani has been in the TV and radio industry for quite some time, and has been an SABC 1 news anchor and also hosted SABC 1's current affairs show, Asikhulume, Let's Talk. 

It therefore comes as NO surprise that Mzansi Magic has chosen him to host the business reality competition show. The show starts on Tuesday at 7pm. 

On his new role on the show, Gwala said: "I’m thrilled to be joining the Dragons’ Den team. Entrepreneurship is something that I feel passionately about and it’s a subject that we frequently tackle on-air, from many different perspectives," he said.  "I can’t wait to see who succeeds in getting the chance to pitch their idea to our dragons and, of course, which business idea is convincing enough to secure funding or mentorship from some of the best business brains in the country."

Mzansi Magic announced last month that "aspirant entrepreneurs will have to convince business giants Lebo Gunguluza, Vusi Thembekwayo, Polo Leteka Radebe, Gil Oved and Vinny Lingham that their idea is a sure-fire win on the show, providing for superb entertainment with an outcome that has the potential to positively affect South Africa’s economy." 

Changes on @SABC_2 from 3rd November 2014

There are a couple of changes happening at the SABC in November, especially for news and actuality programmes. Die Nuus is coming back to the channel, after thousands of viewers (and a couple of TV writers) complained about the Afrikaans news bulletin moving from SABC 2 to SABC 3. So the move is expected to be widely accepted. 

Here are the full changes happening on the channel

From the 3rd of November 2014:

  • 5:30pm Shangaan and Venda News (broadcast on an alternate basis)
  • 6.30pm 7 de Laan
  • 7pm Die Nuus
  • 7.30pm Sesotho/Setswana News. (This is in line with audiences requesting this bulletin to be transmitted earlier in the evening).

Mooiloop moves to Thursdays 20:00
What’s Behind The Wall (Mondays-Tuesdays 20:30)
Ba Kae (Wednesday-Thursdays 20:30)
90 Plein Street (Wednesdays 21:30)
Interface (moves to Sundays 20:30)

It's the end of an era: Generations as we know it, is over.

I guess it shouldn't be much of a surprise that Generations as we know it, will soon be ending and we'll be off our screens for two months. 

After the main cast embarked on a strike in August, the show fired all 16 of them and this has led to the show being on a production break for more than a month and because of this, the series has run out of episodes. 

The show will be broadcast for the last time on September 30, 2014. There will be no new episodes  until early December. The show is being rebooted and will return, with a new story, cast and possibly a new name, in December. In it's place will be Skeem Sam, which is currently on SABC 1 at 6.30pm. 

The most watched TV show in the country, which has once crossed the 8 million threshold, is an institution on our screens and is as old as South Africa's democracy. Created by Mfundi Vundla in the early 90s, the show is one of the most iconic and has created many stars. 

Actors like Connie Ferguson, Fana Mokoena, Akin Omotoso, Sthandiwe Kgoroge, Lillian Dube, Rina Nienaber, Sello Maake ka Ncube, became household names. The sole original cast member remaining, Sophie Ndaba, is one of the most popular celebrities, thanks to the show.  Their roles were and still are iconic and most, if not all of them, are still called by their characters' names. 

For many young actors, being on Generations was hitting the big time and therefore became huge stars. But the time for being a star vs. being 'underpaid' had them questioning themselves and how they were basically getting 'screwed' over by the MMSV and the public broadcaster. 

The fired actors have taken MMSV Productions to the CCMA because they want to their jobs back. With the money and three year contracts that they want and was promised to them last year November. 

Our Hopes for the new Generations

  • They get a new set of writers. The show desperately needs new blood to whip it into shape. 
  • The actors they cast should be a mix of proven talent and new faces. There are so many great actors in SA that it would be a shame if they don't cast them on this show. That's if it's better than the current mess it is.
  • Kill the soapie and make it an edgy drama. Why not? It's a clean slate, surely they can afford to go back to the drawing board and create an amazing show? 
  • Get a new name. Generations without Queen Moroka is just not, well, Generations. A new name will give the show a new identity and we will soon forget there ever was a show called Generations on out screen.
It's an interesting time in the country's entertainment industry and this will not only go down in history as the year that SA actors took a stand, but also that the creator of the show would rather lose millions than to bow down to actors, who are also partly responsible for the success of the show, and give them better contracts and more money. 


New Series Alert: Murder in the First with Taye Diggs on @MNet

Producer excited about devoting 10-episode season to a single murder case, writes Jay Bobbin
Kathleen Robertson and Taye Diggs in Murder in the First.

Having made Hill Street Blues and NYPD Blue, the producer who has given television some of its most memorable police teams is attempting it again.

Steven Bochco is back in the series game with Murder in the  First (on M-Net, Fridays, 8.30pm), a drama that – not unlike his 1995-97 show Murder One – tracks one case over an entire season. Taye Diggs (Private Practice) and Kathleen Robertson (Boss) play San Francisco homicide partners who have determined that two killings have links to an aggressively self-assured young Silicon Valley tycoon (Tom Felton, alias Draco Malfoy in the Harry Potter movies).

“We spent a lot of time hanging with homicide detectives in San Francisco and it’s a different world from 15 or 20 years ago. The gender lines have blurred enormously,” says Bochco. 
“There’s a lot of easy back-and-forth between the men and women, and there’s not that sort of old-school mistrust that older male detectives had for women. That’s refreshing. There’s also more of an informality in the environment.”

Those aspects clearly inform the professional partnership of Terry English (Diggs) and Hildy Mulligan (Robertson) as each struggles with personal dilemmas. She’s a single mother trying to keep bill collectors at bay, while he has a critically ill wife at home. When it comes to doing their jobs, they try to be of one mind – but that doesn’t always work, as Murder in the First has proved right from the opening episode.

“Steven told me that it’s very important for him to know the person who’s playing a role”, says Robertson, also seen on Bates Motel and remembered as the willful Clare Arnold on Beverly Hills, 90210. 
“Then he can write to them, and he has the true essence of who they are. I’m sure when he met me and Taye separately, that was part of the decision… like, ‘These two would be a very interesting combination’.

“I approach things in a very specific way,” Robertson says. “My energy is different from Taye’s, since he’s very much a quiet observer. I’m much more the person who asks 101 questions. I’m a writer, so I look at things from that brain.”
Diggs, who spent six seasons on Private Practice, says he’s playing Terry in Murder in the First as being moody, with the occasional outburst. 

“I’ve come from the school of ‘less is more’, so it’s been great to sink into the stillness of this character, although he can fly off the handle when a situation taunts him. 
Generally speaking, this guy is deliberate and slow and concentrated, and it’s been a refreshing departure.”
So has the premise of a single story that spans a season. “It allows us to really take advantage of the opportunity to live and move in a character, without the broad strokes you have to have in a closed-end episode,” Diggs reflects.

Bochco finds it “really wonderful to watch” Diggs and Robertson together. “Kathleen is so forward, you can read her face; every moment, stuff is going on there, but Taye is kind of laidback. Emotionally, he plays his cards closer to the vest and doesn’t reveal  much of himself easily. 
“To explore the way two cops learn to be intimate with each other when they have such different personalities is really interesting.”
Another of Bochco’s joys in assembling the Murder in the First cast was in re-enlisting familiar faces he’s employed in other series, including Richard Schiff (Brooklyn South), Peter Onorati (Civil Wars) and Currie Graham (who appeared in NYPD Blue and Bochco’s previous show, Raising the Bar). 

“One of the things that’s so great about doing a show like Murder in the First, where you have a single story arc for one season, is that you can access actors who normally aren’t going to sign up for five years,” Bochco says.
By the same token, devising a10-episode cable season instead of a 22-episode broadcast order “eliminates pretty much all the dough. Sustaining 22 can be hard, especially when you don’t know where you’re going to end.”

“What’s different – and what I like so much about this one – is that it starts out as a police-driven murder mystery, and as it develops, it becomes a legal drama. And then, it becomes a police drama again.
“One of the things that’s so terrific about San Francisco for us, conceptually, is that the entire criminal justice system is housed in one building: the police department, court system, district attorney’s office, the jail, medical examiner. The way you can cross-pollinate and have everybody accessing everybody, at a moment’s notice, makes it really fun. San Francisco is unique that way.” – Zap2It

* This article first appeared on Zap2It