Which TV Drama Series Will Win the Golden Globe? (PHOTOS)

Steve Buscemi Bryan Cranston Michelle Dockery Claire Danes Jeff Daniels

No Mad Men? No Game of Thrones? Do you even recognize the Golden Globes Best TV Drama series category anymore?

It’s a strange category to handicap this year. Sunday’s ceremony will most likely see a face-off between Showtime’s Homeland and PBS’s Downton Abbey, both of which won in 2012.

How is that possible? Because Downton Abbey competed in the Mini-Series/TV Movie category last year. Jumping categories is a dangerous move, but if there’s one group of viewers as ardent as Homeland fans, it’s Downton Abbey fans.

What does that mean for the other contenders — AMC’s Breaking Bad and HBO’s Boardwalk Empire and The Newsroom? Find out by clicking through the gallery at the top of this article.

Want the skinny on the other top TV categories at the Globes? Read our predictions for Best Actor and Best Actress in a Drama Series, Best Mini-Series/TV Movie, and Best Comedy or Musical Series. Let us know what you think in the comments below. And be sure to visit Celebuzz on Jan. 13 for live coverage of all things Golden Globe.

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Which TV Comedy or Musical Series Will Win the Golden Globe? (PHOTOS)

Tina Fey and Amy Poehler Jim Parsons -- The Big Bang Theory Matt LeBlanc -- Episodes Lena Dunham -- Girls Sofia Vergara -- Modern Family Katharine McPhee -- Smash

What do the shows The Big Bang Theory, Episodes, Girls, Modern Family, and Smash have in common? Not much, except that this bunch of apples and oranges are competitors for a trophy for Best TV Comedy or Musical Series at the Golden Globes on Jan. 13.

That the category lumps in conventional three-camera laughtrack sitcoms (Big Bang) in with single-camera awkward-silence comedies (Episodes, Girls, Modern Family) and a musical drama (Smash) makes it hard to guess which one Globe voters will pick. The absence of many longtime awards favorites like 30 Rock, The Office, and Two and a Half Men also makes the category tough to handicap. Nonetheless, we’ll give it a shot.

Flip through our gallery above  and see if you agree with our TV Comedy/Musical category handicapping.

You can read our oddsmaking on other Globes TV categories here, here, and here. And come back to Celebuzz for our take on the Best TV Drama Series category.

The 70th Annual Golden Globe Awards air live Sunday at 8PM ET/5PM PT on NBC.

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Which TV Movie or Mini-Series Will Win the Golden Globe? (PHOTOS)

Golden Globe statuette Sigourney Weaver Dominic West Julianne Moore Kevin Costner Sienna Miller

When you’re handicapping the Golden Globes categories for made-for-TV movies and mini-series, there’s one simple rule. When in doubt, bet on HBO.

The premium cable channel has two of the five nominees in the Best TV Movie or Mini-Series category: Game Change and The Girl. That’s bad news for the other three nominees — History Channels Hatfields & McCoys, BBC America’s The Hour, and USA’s Political Animals.

What does HBO’s traditional domination of this field mean for this year’s slate of nominees when the awards are handed out on Jan. 13?

Click through the gallery at the top of this article for our breakdown of the odds in the Globes’ TV Movies/Mini-Series race.

Do you agree with our handicapping? Which of these movies and mini-series was your favorite? Let us know in the comments below.

Check back into Celebuzz all this week for more oddsmaking in the Golden Globes TV races.

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Who Will Win the Golden Globe for Best Actress in a TV Drama? (PHOTOS)

Connie Britton Michelle Dockery Claire Danes Glenn Close Julianna Margulies

The five actresses up for a Golden Globe this Sunday in the TV Drama category — Connie Britton (ABC’s Nashville), Glenn Close (Audience Network’s Damages), Claire Danes (Showtime’s Homeland), Michelle Dockery (PBS’ Downton Abbey) and Julianna Margulies (CBS’ The Good Wife) — are all about prestige. But prestige isn’t enough to win you a trophy.

These five are all acclaimed thespians on critically adored shows. Except for relative newcomer Dockery, they have long histories of awards-worthy work going back two decades or more. But the Globe voters like novelty and buzz, and in the end, those may prove more important than merit in this category.

Take a look at the gallery above and let us know in the comments below whether you think our predictions for Sunday’s Globes ceremony are on target. And keep an eye out every day this week for more handicapping in the Globes’ TV races.

The 70th Annual Golden Globe Awards airs live on Sunday at 5PM ET/8PM PT on NBC.

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Who Will Win the Golden Globe for Best Actor in a TV Drama? (PHOTOS)

Steve Buscemi Bryan Cranston Damian Lewis Jeff Daniels Jon Hamm

Five great actors, five great performances. How are Golden Globe voters to choose a winner in the Best Actor in a TV Drama Series category?

Whoever picks up the trophy on Sunday, his victory will probably be based on something less tangible than just merit. That would be buzz. The Globes like what’s hot, especially if they can recognize it before the Emmys get to do so.

On the other hand, no matter how good an actor is in his role, once the show has passed its freshness date, the Globe social butterflies will move on to the next budding bloom.

What does that mean for this year’s nominees — Steve Buscemi (HBO’s Boardwalk Empire), Bryan Cranston (AMC’s Breaking Bad), Jeff Daniels (HBO’s The Newsroom), Jon Hamm (AMC’s Mad Men) and Damian Lewis (Showtime’s Homeland)? Click on the gallery at the top of this article to see how Celebuzz has handicapped this race.

The 70th Annual Golden Globe Awards airs Sunday at 8PM ET/5PM PT on NBC.

How accurate do you think our predictions are? Let us know in the comments below. And check back every day this week for more oddsmaking in the Golden Globes TV races.

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10 New Year’s Resolutions for TV Networks

Admit it: As loyal a TV fan as you are, there were moments in 2012 where you felt like flinging a brick at your flatscreen in frustration. Favorite shows and actors went off the air or ended their seasons too soon, and networks tried to sell you shows and stars and movies you’d rather not watch.

Behind all these irritants were decisions by network and cable executives meant to draw viewers and improve ratings, but which often backfired and did the opposite.

If your favorite channels want to make amends and do better in the coming year, they should adopt Celebuzz’s list of 10 New Year’s Resolutions for TV Networks, which they can read in handy gallery form at the top of this article.

For instance, we all spent a lot of time in 2012 immersed in the backstage dramas among high-profile celebrity judges on talent competitions like NBC’s The Voice and Fox’s  The X-Factor and American Idol, and not enough time on the contestants. We’d like to see the TV networks resolve to put the focus back where it belongs, on the on-stage drama. On the other hand, we didn’t spend as much time as we’d like immersed in the scripted dramas we love on cable like AMC’s Walking Dead and Showtime’s Homeland. We’d like to see the programmers resolve to lengthen the too-brief seasons of those shows.

Read the rest of the list yourself and decide whether those changes would be enough to create a better year of TV viewing for you, or whether you have additional resolutions you’d like to suggest, in the comments below.

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‘The Hobbit’ Is Changing the Way You Watch Movies, So How Should You See Peter Jackson’s Prequel?

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey may be set in a mythical ancient past, but the new movie presents viewers with a 21st-century, cutting-edge, state-of-the-art technological dilemma.

If you’re planning to see the fantasy epic when it opens on Dec. 14, you may be faced with as many as six different 2D and 3D formats to choose from, thanks to director Peter Jackson’s controversial decision to shoot in a new format that truly alters the way we see movies, with results that you may find visually dazzling, dizzying, or disorienting.

HFR, 48 FPS, HFR IMAX 3D — if all this alphabet soup just looks like Elvish runes to you, then read on for our consumer guide to the six formats The Hobbit is screening in, from the familiar to the strange and brand new, along with the pros and cons of each viewing option.

What Is HFR?
If you read the movie listings this weekend to find The Hobbit at your multiplex, you may notice those three initials. They stand for High Frame Rate. It’s a new format for commercial film, resulting from Jackson’s decision to shoot the movie at 48 frames per second (FPS), or twice the rate of 24 FPS that’s been the standard in movies for 85 years, since the beginning of the sound era.

With HFR, twice as many frames means twice as much visual information stuffed into each second of the movie. It also means more fluid depiction of movement, nearly eliminating the strobe effect that’s more perceptible at 24 FPS. And it means sharper, clearer images, with less of the painterly grain that characterized celluloid film (and that digitally-shot movies often mimic).

Reviews of the new format have been mixed. To some viewers, HFR more fully immerses them into Jackson’s fantasy world; to others. the format takes them out of that world because it can’t help but call attention to itself. (After all, we’ve all been watching 24 FPS movies our whole lives.) Some liken the new look to that of videotape or videogames, and some liken it to seeing a stage play, where there’s more immediacy but also more apparent artifice in the sets, costumes, and makeup.

Complicating matters is the fact that not all digital projectors are programmed to play the movie in HFR; in fact, most will be playing it at 24 FPS, so you’ll have to seek out screening rooms that are HFR-ready if you want to experience the new format. Add to that the combinations made possible with 3D and IMAX, and you wind up with six possible formats vying for your ticket dollars. They are:

Standard: The usual 24 FPS, 2D screening method.
Pros: It’s what you’re used to. It’s also the only option where you won’t pay an enhanced-format surcharge.
Cons: You’re literally missing half the picture Jackson shot.

3D: The now-familiar stereoscopic format, requiring rental glasses.
Pros: Well, Jackson did shoot the movie in 3D, so you’re getting closer to his immersive vision.
Cons: You’re still seeing the movie at 24 FPS and not getting the full HFR effect.

IMAX: The large-screen format — in 2D, at the normal frame rate.
Pros: Bigger is better, right?
Cons: Not always. True IMAX screens aren’t just larger; they’re also a different shape, more squarish than regular screens, and many stories taller, so that they completely fill your field of vision. At your multiplex, however, you may be getting a slightly larger screen than usual but not necessarily a taller screen or one that’s the right shape. America’s movie theaters are full of such retrofitted “LieMAX” screens offering faux-IMAX that’s scarcely different from the standard 35MM projection in the room next door, even though you’re paying an extra $5 per ticket for it. For a fuller explanation of the vast differences between real and fake IMAX, as well as a relatively up-to-date list of true IMAX theaters nationwide, read this Slashfilm article.

IMAX 3D: Up until now, perhaps the ultimate immersive movie experience.
Pros: Even in a LieMAX theater, digital 3D is still a richer experience than 3D on a standard screen.
Cons: It’s the most expensive option for ticketbuyers — unless theaters start charging even more for HFR IMAX 3D (see below).

HFR 3D: The new format pioneered by Jackson’s Hobbit, running at 48 FPS, twice the old standard frame rate.
Pros: This is how Jackson meant viewers to see the film. Touted advantages included improved fluidity of motion, picture clarity, and visual intimacy, as discussed above.
Cons: The new format takes some getting used to and calls attention to itself, in ways that may take you out of the experience instead of plunging you deeper into Middle-earth, as discussed above. Also, if you were hoping for a 2D HFR experience, you’re out of luck, at least on this movie.

HFR IMAX 3D: The large-screen version of HFR 3D.
Pros: This ought to be the ultimate way to see the movie, right?
Cons: Not necessarily. Whether you’re seeing it in true IMAX or LieMAX, you’re not seeing it in the aspect ration Jackson shot in, so some of the picture will inevitably be cropped. The visual intimacy complaints that some critics have with HFR — that it reveals all the fantasy-world artifice of Jackson’s Middle-earth as blatantly fake — ought to be even more glaring and literally in-your-face. And of course, it’ll be the most expensive ticket, equal to or maybe even costlier than low frame rate IMAX 3D.

Have we helped you understand the difference between all of the film formats? Let us know how you will be watching The Hobbit in the comments below!

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Golden Globes 2013: Why Were ‘Game of Thrones’ and ‘The Walking Dead’ Snubbed? (INSIDE STORY)

Sharpen your swords, genre fans.

The Hollywood Foreign Press Association announced the Golden Globe nominations this morning, and two of your favorite shows — HBO’s Game of Thrones and AMC’s The Walking Dead — are nowhere to be found among the nominees.

How is that possible? Critics and fans alike consider these to be two of the best dramas on TV. Last year, ThronesPeter Dinklage even won a Best Supporting Actor trophy from the same HFPA that passed him over this year. Critics and fans tend to agree that the current seasons of both shows were even better than last year’s, so what gives?

Here are some theories:

1. The HFPA doesn’t like genre shows. It’s true, fantasy and horror and sci-fi haven’t always earned their due. Landmark shows like Lost and Battlestar Galactica were under-rewarded, so Dead and Thrones are in good company. On the other hand, both Dead and Thrones were nominated last year, as was American Horror StoryAHS: Asylum got a nod again this year (for Jessica Lange), so the snubs for Dead and Thrones have to have more than genre animus behind them.

2. Hollywood awards groups in general don’t like genre shows. A day ago, the Screen Actors Guild also snubbed Thrones and Dead. “They don’t get much love from the HFPA for the same reason that they don’t get much love from the Emmys, or why genre movies rarely get much love from the Oscars: Sci-fi or fantasy or horror are seen as childish things,” Marc Bernardin, an editor at The Hollywood Reporter and a genre-fare expert, told Celebuzz. “And, unless they’re rewarding a performance that ‘elevates’ the material, they’d just as soon keep ‘high-art’ on the pedestal. Which is, as anyone who watches these shows can attest, a short-sighted shame.” So maybe the Globe voters are just following the prevailing trend, even though…

3. The Globes prefer to be ahead of the curve. Globe voters like to be the first to recognize new TV shows and stars, and usually, they can because they’re handed out in January, just three months after the beginning of fall TV season, while the Emmys are given in September and don’t get to recognize network newcomers until a year after they debut. But cable shows, which may start at any time of year, have robbed the Globes of this advantage. The springtime premiere of Game of Thrones in 2011 allowed the Emmys to give a trophy to Dinklage before the Globes could. Now that they can’t be ahead of the curve with Thrones, maybe Globe voters have lost interest. Of course, they could still be the first to give a major prize to Dead, so why don’t they? Besides, the Globes finally nominated Breaking Bad for best drama this year, breaking their streak of years of Walt White snubs. They’re hoeplessly besotted with Homeland and Downton Abbey, like everyone else. So, the ahead-of-the-curve ship has definitely sailed.

4. The shows are too American for the foreigners in the Hollywood Foreign Press. Well, that could be true for Dead, which takes place in a postapocalyptic United States. But Thrones takes place in a fantasy realm clearly modeled after Europe and Asia, where many Globe voters come from.

5. The shows are too gory for Globe voters. Yeah, well, there’s that.

6. The Globes are more of a party than an awards ceremony. The cocktail party atmosphere, complete with free-flowing booze and a mix of TV and movie stars, makes the Globes unique among awards shows. In fact, the HFPA has been accused for decades of choosing nominees who will make for a more glittering guest list of boldface names than a credible roster of merit-worthy artists. And who would you rather invite to your party, Dead‘s Andrew Lincoln (who?) or Mad Men‘s Jon Hamm? And aside from Dinklage, there are no big names in the Thrones cast. (Insert joke here. No, don’t go there.) Now, mind you, there’s no evidence that the HFPA voters were thinking this way, but it wouldn’t be the first time Globe voters seem to have given more thought to the red carpet than to what follows.

7. There was an embarrassment of riches this year, dramatically speaking. There were a lot of great dramas this year, so many that even Mad Men failed to make the cut. So did perennial faves The Good Wife and Damages. So did Sons of Anarchy, whose long history of Emmy and Globe snubs is worse than anything Dead and Thrones fans have had to endure. Yes, watching either of these genre shows trains you to look for connections and conspiracies, but that doesn’t mean there’s malice afoot this time around.

Why do you suppose Game of Thrones and The Walking Dead were shut out of the Golden Globe nominations? Weigh in below in the comments.

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Daytime Talk Show Winners and Losers of 2012 (PHOTOS)

Après moi, le déluge,” said King Louis XV of France, predicting the anarchy of the French Revolution that followed not long after his demise.

Oprah Winfrey could have said the same thing. The end of her 25-year-old talk show last year left a power vacuum in daytime talk that many competitors scrambled to fill, unleashing chaos in the sunny realm of morning and afternoon chat. Some combatants were new to the arena, some returned after long absences, and some were battle-scarred veterans who had never left the field. At stake: the loyalties of viewers (many of them searching for a new daytime haven after Oprah’s departure) and the dollars of sponsors (ditto).

The battle began in earnest with the launching of no fewer than six new shows in September and October. By the end of November, however, ratings sweeps began to make clear who was on top, who was struggling, and who was on their way out.

Some stayed just above the fray — or just below it. The View is, by now, an institution, one that can survive any cast change to its panel and still land big, enviable “gets” like the Obamas. At the other end of the food chain, Maury Povich and Jerry Springer maintain an if-it-ain’t-broke-don’t-fix-it attitude to their long-running circus-freak sideshows, which will always have a loyal if not large following.

Here, then, is a gallery of the winners and losers of daytime talk in 2012. Relish their victories, lament their defeats, but always remember: behind all that happy chatter lie untold reserves of ruthless ambition.

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Angus T. Jones: Five Ways ‘Two and a Half Men’ Could Write the Badmouthing Star Off the Show (VIDEO)

In his now-infamous YouTube video, Angus T. Jones said he didn’t want to be on CBS’ Two and a Half Men anymore because the religiously-minded actor thinks the show is “filth” — and he may yet get his wish.

Though The Hollywood Reporter is citing sources saying Jones plans to finish out his contract and remain with the show to the end of the season, it’s possible producers could fire him for his disparaging behavior, much like they did Charlie Sheen two years ago.

Jones may not miss the show: His girlfriend, the Hollywood hanger-on known as “Stalker Sarah,” told Celebuzz that the 19-year-old had been itching to quit anyway in order to go to college and that the show is expected to end after the current tenth season anyway. But if the producers do decide to fire him early, they’ll face the dilemma of how to write Jones’ Jake Harper off the show.

Here are some possible scenarios.

1. Kill Him. That’s how they got rid of Sheen’s character, so you can’t put it past the Men team to do the same with Jake. It wouldn’t be hard; he is, after all, a recent Army enlistee. Then again, Charlie Harper was an aging reprobate with a history of bad behavior, so there was some karmic appropriateness to his demise. Jake is just a stupid kid. Killing him may be too cruel — or too real — even for this show.

2. Replace Him. Not with another actor (the Bewitched/Roseanne gambit doesn’t really work anymore) but with a similar character. Again, that’s sort of what they did when they replaced Sheen with Ashton Kutcher. Of course, it’s rare for a show to get away with that move twice, though Cheers did it twice, M*A*S*H did it three times, and ER (not a sitcom, of course) did it many times. It’s far from clear that Men fans have such an emotional attachment to any of the characters that they would be outraged to see them replaced.

3. Send Him Away. Jake has shown talent as a chef and a propensity for Jackass-like extreme stunts. Give him a career in either of those fields, and he can always be too busy traveling to appear on the show. Or have him date Rose’s (Melanie Lynskey) niece; maybe she’s a stalker just like her aunt (who hounded Charlie Harper to his death and sank her clutches into Kutcher’s naive Walden this season). And given that Jones is currently dating a teen known as Stalker Sarah, there’d be a shiver of the art-imitates-life meta-ness that the show has always thrived on.

4. End the Show. Not likely, since Men remains the third highest-rated comedy on TV (after The Big Bang Theory and Modern Family). Still, it’s an expensive show to produce (given its three top-earning stars), it’s generally assumed to be past its creative peak (no surprise, after 10 seasons), and it could be more headache than it’s worth.

5. Do nothing. Jake’s hardly on the show now anyway. His interaction with the other characters usually amounts to little more than one scene a week of Jake calling in from the Army base via Skype. (Yep, Jones is literally phoning in his performance.) It wouldn’t be hard for Jake to become just an unheard voice on the other end of the phone, someone often referred to but never seen, like Vera on Cheers, Maris on Frasier, or Stan on Will & Grace. If everyone involved in Men, both in front of and behind the camera, wants to save face, this might be the way to do it.

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Kenan Thompson May Be Leaving ‘Saturday Night Live’ for His Own Sitcom

Kenan Thompson leaving NBC’s Saturday Night Live? Oo-wee, what’s up with that?

According to TV Guide, the veteran SNL star is developing a sitcom to star in, a multi-generational family comedy about a man who moves in with his in-laws, that would take him away from the sketch comedy show where he’s been a mainstay for a decade.

He’d still be keeping it in the family, sort of. The show would air on NBC and be produced by SNL overseer Lorne Michaels, who also shepherded Tina Fey‘s transition from SNL to NBC primetime with 30 Rock. In fact, 30 Rock‘s Andrew Singer is also on board Thompson’s show as an exec producer, as is SNL scribe Bryan Tucker, who is crafting the script for Thompson’s pilot.

Thompson, 34, has been on SNL since 2003. His 10 seasons on the show make him one of the most durable stars in SNL history and tie him with Tim Meadows as the longest-tenured African-American star on the show. In fact, he’s been doing TV sketch comedy since he was a kid, working on Nickelodeon’s 1990s series All That.

As one of SNL‘s rare African-American performers — before Jay Pharoah came along a couple years ago, he was the only one on the show for a while — Thompson could be counted on to do impressions of black stars from Bill Cosby to Whoopi Goldberg. He also created a memorable original character, D’Andre Cole, the enthusiastically musical host of imaginary BET current-events talk show What’s Up With That.

Thompson’s departure would mark yet another sign that the guard has changed at SNL. Before the current season began, such seemingly indispensable performers as Kristen Wiig and Andy Samberg left, and Jason Sudeikis (who’s been at the show as long as Thompson) is also expected to leave mid-season. If Thompson leaves, then Fred Armisen, Bill Hader, and head writer Seth Meyers will be the only performers left from the 38-year-old show’s recent creative peak of the mid-2000s.

A source close to the situation confirmed to Celebuzz that NBC has picked up the script to the Thompson project. Beyond that, the source said, “It’s still in the early stages.” The source noted that Meyers also has a script deal at NBC but seems in no hurry to leave SNL. So any Thompson departure is likely a long way off.

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