Sorry, Christian Bale and Michael Keaton, but Will Arnett’s version of Batman (he voiced the Caped Crusader in The Lego Movie) is my favorite cinematic take on it yet.
At TCA summer press tour, I spoke again with Arnett, this time for Today.com, about The Lego Movie — and how his kids are just as obsessed with it as everyone else’s are.
“My kids are super into it too, nonstop,” said Arnett, who voices Batman in the hit film. “In fact, a couple of mornings ago, my son got into my bed at 6 a.m., turned on my iPad, and started watching ‘The Lego Movie.’ So I woke up to ‘Everything is awesome!’ and was like, ‘Oh my God!’”
We also spoke about the upcoming Lego Movie sequel, which he’s not yet signed for, and the second season of his sitcom The Millers.
While speaking with Jeff Eastin for an upcoming story about his show Graceland, I also slipped in a few questions about the upcoming final season of his other show, White Collar, which I was able to turn into this item for EW.com (my first time writing for a Time Inc. publication other than People):
“The really nice thing about six episodes is that it almost feels like a limited series,” says Eastin, whose other USA drama, Graceland, returns for its second season on June 11. “We’ve got just enough room for one really beautiful plot: What is the last adventure these guys go on?”
While Eastin has no hesitation about calling this last season of White Collar, USA hasn’t made an official announcement yet, nor has the network announced when the show’s sixth season will air.
How I Met Your Mother signs off tonight after nine seasons on the air. I spoke with Alyson Hannigan for this piece at Today.com, where she talked about her next movie: shooting a CBS sitcom pilot, More Time With Family.
“I’ve been incredibly blessed that I’ve gotten two wonderful shows, but when I signed onto this, this was a hybrid show. It was going to be partially pre-taped, and partially in front of an audience,” Hannigan, 40, said of “Mother,” which ended up being entirely shot without one. (The laugh track is added in later.) “Well, we’ve yet to have the audience! So my next one is definitely an audience multi-cam.”
I made one final visit to The A.V. Club to do one of their Random Roles features, in which they ask an actor with a lengthy resume to talk about several of their roles over the years. It was thrilling to do this with John Goodman, who often seems to appear in every film and TV show (including his latest film, The Monuments Men).
Why does Goodman say yes to so many roles? “They were just too good to pass up,” he tells The A.V. Club. “Or, they seemed that way at the time!”
This was a fun trip down memory lane, helping Goodman — who is often a man of few words, at least when it comes to doing interviews — recount a fraction of his memorable TV and film performances. I’ve loved reading these Random Roles stories for years, so it was nice to close out my A.V. Club writing by putting together one of them myself.
Jay Leno is signing off from The Tonight Show Thursday — for good this time, he swears — and he said he’s had “all kinds of offers” for his next TV job. He says he has nothing planned yet, but as I note at NBCNews.com:
But a notorious workaholic like Leno — who squeezed in 100 stand-up gigs last year in addition to his regular ‘”Tonight Show” hosting duties — won’t simply be putting his feet up in retirement.
I suggest seven different networks that might be a good fit for him — and why.
I returned to The A.V. Club for a story about how much the depiction of political leaders have changed on TV from the days of The West Wing’s Josiah Bartlet. As I wrote,
Seven years after The West Wing ended its run, audiences now gravitate toward political shows like House Of Cards, Scandal, Veep, and the new Alpha House, which are all marvelous (okay, maybe not Alpha House, though John Goodman provides the hope that it might find its way), but revolve around presidents and other leaders who are either despicable, incompetent, or both. In other words, they’re just as selfish, sleazy, and/or stupid as we perceive many contemporary leaders to be.
But why stop there? “Sound of Music” was the first live presentation of a musical on TV in more than 50 years, but there are plenty of other productions that could be resurrected as similar live spectaculars for audiences.
I came up with four more ideas, including casting suggestions. [Update: One of my picks, Peter Pan, is indeed going to be NBC’s next live special for December 2014, while Fox announced plans for Grease Live.]
I made my debut at The A.V. Club for my latest story, a look at how long-running shows lean on their supporting characters for a fresh burst of comedic energy that they can no longer get from their leads. I focused on Modern Family, which has turned Lily Tucker-Pritchett (Aubrey Anderson-Emmons) into the show’s MVP. As I wrote,
This is the latest example of a sitcom reaching way down its supporting bench, plucking out an underused actor, and relying on their unique, refreshing comic flavor to ride out a rough patch. It’s an essential asset, especially for sitcoms, which thrive on repetition.