Tag Archives: Nashville

Hollywood Reporter’s 2013 Drama Actress Roundtable

30 May

It’s the time of year when The Hollywood Reporter produces Emmy related TV roundtable discussions and while the quality of the conversations varies, the drama actress one is always lively and is generally my favourite of the bunch. Once again they have a group of women from shows that cover both network and cable, with the added new platform of Netflix to discuss their roles on TV, the industry and their past experiences. This year the participants are Monica Potter (Parenthood), Kerry Washington (Scandal), Kate Mara (House of Cards), Connie Britton (Nashville), Anna Gunn (Breaking Bad) and Elisabeth Moss (Mad MenTop of the Lake).

Hollywood reporter cover

The nature of this kind of roundtable discussion means that some candid remarks are made, but the participants are also guarded as they tell stories of bad experiences but don’t fill in all of the details. Monica Potter discusses her first post-baby audition where she was considered “too fat” for the role and body image is a topic that comes up more than once (I’m intrigued as to whether the guys will cover this area, doubtful but you never know as Hollywood has body issues with both genders). Elisabeth Moss rightly mentions that “It’s not just actresses, it’s all women. We all have this perception of what we’re supposed to look like.”

Expectations of how an actress should look comes up later but in a different way as they mention the backhanded compliments that people give such as they look “younger/skinnier” in real life. So don’t ever say this, it’s bad. This is part of the notion of intimacy between the viewer and the characters that come into our living rooms on a weekly basis and how the relationship is different between movies and TV; there is an investment in TV that doesn’t exist in the same way as in movies that generally have a beginning, a middle and end (depending on how long running the franchise is).

One aspect that I enjoy about these discussions is how they try to dispel the idea that everyone hates each other and it’s a relentless competition; while I’m sure there are those factions they make a point of mentioning how supportive actresses can be. Monica Potter mentions that having successful women on TV “should be fun and celebrated” and Connie Britton reiterates this by saying that “It’s a lot more fun if you can share stories and make friends, and be in it together with people as opposed to if you isolate yourself.”

Several topics are covered including other audition woes (Kerry Washington talks about the lack of roles for women of color), social media, political involvement and if they contribute to the creative process of their character. One thing I would like to see with these roundtables is a change in some of the questions as I feel like the best advice/worst advice comes up every single time. The penultimate question is a fun one as they are asked if they could be on any show in history what would it be? I love that both Kate Mara and Elisabeth Moss geek out over My So-Called Life (and earlier Moss is very open about her love of Parenthood).

With any group discussion there are always some participants that are more vocal than the rest but at no point does it feel like one person is railroading the conversation. Elisabeth Moss comes across as very funny, something we don’t get to see that often on Mad Men and Connie Britton seems as wise as Tami Taylor. This is definitely a group of women I would like to go for drinks with.

Watch the whole interview below and head over to The Hollywood Reporter for behind the scenes photos of the group. The monochromatic styling of the cover is on trend and I much prefer this more casual approach they over last year’s gown affair. In unsurprising news I really want to find out the shades/brands of lipstick they are wearing (especially Elisabeth Moss’).

Now That’s What I Call TV Music (2012-2013 Season)

21 May

Since My So-Called Life and Dawson’s Creek, TV has been one way that I discover new music. Things have changed a lot since the mid-90s and now you can have access to a song within minutes of hearing it on a show. MTV no longer has the influence it once did and the days of spending hours watching music videos have long gone, though MTV is still represented on this 2012-2013 playlist. Some shows like GirlsNew Girl and The Carrie Diaries (it turns out I really like the music from the pilot) feature more than once on the list and there are 19 tracks that represent a variety of moments; some incidental while others might drastically change a relationship.

girls bad friends dancingWhile I’m not going to into specific reasons for each song choice some deserve explanation; “Stay” by Lisa Loeb has featured on both Girls and New Girl, Lisa Loeb ended up with Rufus Humphrey on Gossip Girl so this sealed its inclusion (plus I was a teen in the mid-90s so this song will always hold a special place). When I first saw The Americans pilot I mentioned on Twitter that I like the ‘jaunty’ opening track revealing that I know nothing about Fleetwood Mac (I’m hanging my head in shame), now I understand the power of “Tusk.” The LMFAO track is from one of my favorite moments on Parks and Recreation this season when Anne and Leslie had their impromptu dance party. Ellie Goulding earns her place for being part of a huge New Girl moment and the same applies for The Vaccines “I Always Knew.” Some tracks feature from shows that I haven’t seen all season (How I Met Your MotherAwkward) or only saw a few episodes (Nashville) but were suggestions from some lovely folk on Twitter.

I’m sure there are some great tracks that I haven’t included so what would be on your 2012-13 TV playlist?

Here are the tracks featured, including which show/episode they were on and you can click on the Spotify box below to listen. Enjoy!

1)      I Love It – Icona Pop ft. Charli XCX (Girls 2.03 “Bad Friend”)
2)     Blue Monday – New Order (The Carrie Diaries 1.01 “Pilot”)
3)     Tusk – Fleetwood Mac (The Americans 1.01 “Pilot”)
4)     I Always Knew – The Vaccines (New Girl 2.25 “Elaine’s Big Day”)
5)     Burning Down the House – Talking Heads (The Carrie Diaries 1.01 “Pilot”)
6)     Black Tambourine – Beck (The Good Wife 4.22 “What’s in the Box?”)
7)     Super Rich Kids – Frank Ocean ft. Earl Sweatshirt (Gossip Girl 6.05 “Monstrous Ball”)
8)     Party Rock Anthem – LMFAO ft. Lauren Bennett (Parks and Recreation 5.05 “Halloween Surprise”)
9)     Bad Girls – M.I.A. (The Mindy Project 1.01/1.24 “Pilot” and “Take me with You”)
10)  Anything Could Happen – Ellie Goulding (New Girl 2.23 “Virgins”)
11)   Don’t Leave Me (Ne Me Quitte Pas) – Regina Spektor (Girls 2.04 “It’s a Shame About Ray)
12)  22 – Taylor Swift (New Girl 2.13 “Table 34”)
13)  Simple Song – The Shins (How I Met Your Mother 8.24 “Something New”)
14)  Nancy From Now On – Father John Misty (Girls 2.05 “One Man’s Trash”)
15)  Stay – Lisa Loeb & Nine Stories (Girls 2.04 “It’s a Shame About Ray” and New Girl 2.23 “Virgins”)
16)  Girls Just Want To Have Fun – Greg Laswell (The Carrie Diaries 1.01 “Pilot”)
17)  Fade Into You – Clare Bowen and Sam Palladio (Nashville 1.03 “Someday You’ll Call My Name”)
18)  Gone – Olivia Broadfield (The Vampire Diaries 4.23 “Graduation”)
19)  I Was a Fool – Tegan and Sara (Awkward 3.05 “Indecent Exposure”)

New York Magazine TV Issue

13 May

There are several publications that produce an annual TV issue and one of my favorites hits newsstands today (both the physical and digital kind as you can also get it in the iTunes store) and this is New York magazine. The past few years have seen covers featuring Tracey Morgan with Betty White, Amy Poehler and Jessica Paré dressed as Megan Draper. This year sees Michael Douglas gracing the cover promoting the much anticipated HBO Liberace biopic Behind the Candelabra (airing May 26).

NY Mag TV Issue

This issue also contains an in-depth interview with Breaking Bad showrunner Vince Gilligan as he previews the final episodes and discusses a variety of topics including happy endings, the quality of cable shows and the negative reaction to Skyler. Matt Zoller Seitz explores TV as a director’s medium, Hayden Panettiere talks Nashville, the much hyped return of Arrested Development is featured and a whole slew of faces from TV (both from behind and in front of the camera) reveal their television habits. You can read most of these articles over at New York magazine’s site but as a magazine purist (even when I have to buy a digital version) it’s worth getting the whole thing.    

Julie Hammerle

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