Category: Oxygen

TV dances with ballet shows, from 'Bunheads' to 'Breaking Pointe'

Sutton foster bunheads

As an aspiring ballerina, Amy Sherman-Palladino spent the first 20 years of her life with her hair tucked into a tidy bun. She has joked that if television writing hadn’t come along, she might have ended up playing Rumpelteazer in a bus and truck tour of “Cats.”

As creator of the beloved drama “Gilmore Girls,” Sherman-Palladino modeled a town gathering spot, Miss Patty’s Dance Studio, on the place she spent countless hours as a kid working on pirouettes and plies.

Now she’s leaping fully into the dance world with “Bunheads,” an ABC Family series starring Tony-winner Sutton Foster in which tutus and toe shoes are as much in the spotlight as her signature strong female characters and quip-filled dialogue.

PHOTOS: Meet the summer TV shows

But the dramedy, launching June 11, won’t be going solo this summer. It’s one of a number of upcoming TV shows that center on classical dance, so there are plenty more bunheads (and their male counterparts) on the horizon.

The CW, looking for a reality hit, is tonight premiering “Breaking Pointe,” a peek behind the scenes of Salt Lake City’s celebrated Ballet West. Arts cable channel Ovation plans “A Chance to Dance” in August from dance impresario Nigel Lythgoe and his son, Simon. The docuseries follows a couple of former Royal Ballet dancers, dubbed the BalletBoyz, as they build an American dance company.

The shows join Australian import “Dance Academy,” a ballet drama airing since February on Nickelodeon, and several projects in development, including Oxygen’s “All the Right Moves,” which will center on “So You Think You Can Dance” choreographer Travis Wall’s attempt to start a new dance troupe.

The sudden interest in classical dance doesn’t surprise many industry watchers, since the dial is already loaded with celebrity dancing shows, urban-flavored competitions and talent searches.

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3 reality shows 'Jersey Shore' producer SallyAnn Salsano wishes she'd created

Salsano Sure, SallyAnn Salsano is the creator-producer of MTV’s hit show “Jersey Shore,” which returns to MTV for a new season August 4th, but she can’t help but be a little envious that she didn’t dream up other shows.

Here are three she wishes she had created:

“Sister Wives” (TLC)

“I love it more than anything. I just want to get in there and interview those [women] and see what’s going on in their heads. Cause, for me, I’m like, ‘Seriously, how is this OK?’ I’ve never missed an episode. I’m insane about it.”

“Vanished With Beth Holloway” (Lifetime)

   “It’s the one with Natalee Holloway’s mother. I always grew up watching all the [‘America’s Most Wanted’ host] John Walsh stuff. I was so into it. And it was interesting because, yes, he was the host of the show, but also he was the whole reason behind it. I love to see [Beth Holloway] out there literally going through it and helping others in her situation.... I’m nerdy like that.”

Bad girls “Bad Girls Club” (Oxygen)

“I love me some ‘Bad Girls Club.’ Those girls have bad behavior and they don’t apologize for it. When doing a reality show, you’re always trying to find people with no rap sheet and no problem background and people who won’t cause problems — but that show is like the calling card for crazies.”


On the set with "Jersey Shore" season 2

Viacom likes the Situation with "Jersey Shore"

"Glee"'s Lea Michele, Chris Colfer and Cory Monteith won't be back?

— Yvonne Villarreal

Photo: Top: SallyAnn Salsano in January 2011. Credit: Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images. Bottom: "Bad Girls Club." Credit: Oxygen.

Ryan Murphy on the (non-) 'Glee' news: 'Nobody wants to see a high school senior with a bald spot'

Murphy “Hello! I’ve been saying that for a year!”— that’s Ryan Murphy’s response to everyone going Internet crazy about his interview Monday on Ryan Seacrest's radio show in which the “Glee” creator said that some of the characters would be moving on from their New Direction days in keeping with the natural progression of their characters.

“A year ago, I said I think the best thing you can do on a show like this is not have eight-year seniors,” Murphy told ShowTracker. “Nobody wants to see a high school senior with a bald spot. We want to stay true to what ‘Glee’ is about, which is finding your voice and your place in the world;  to stretch that out for eight seasons — though that might be lucrative for us — I don’t think would be fair to the fans. They expect growth in those characters.”

“It’s certainly sad in many ways, but it’s also exciting,” Murphy added. “Last year we brought in two new people, Chord Overstreet and Darren Criss, both of whom have gone on to do great things to the show. It was a test for me: Will audiences embrace new people? I think if the stories and the songs are good, they absolutely will."

Besides graduation, how does Murphy plan to have the characters make their exit? Perhaps Rachel Berry [Lea Michele] can audition for a spot on “American Idol” or “The Voice”?

“I think Rachel Berry should go on and get the lead in the new 'Funny Girl' show that’s being cast,” Murphy joked. “Let’s take her to Broadway!  But, no, I'm not thinking about goodbyes. I’m thinking about hellos. We’re writing the first 10 scripts so we’re not there yet.”

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Paris Hilton: Getting kicked while she's down by Anderson Cooper and others [Video]

Poor Paris Hilton. She can't catch a break these days.

"The World According to Paris," her new reality show on Oxygen that features what she calls the true, grown-up and honest Paris Hilton, premieres to poor ratings. The hosts of "The View" upset her with pointed questions about her self-absorbed persona. Reese Witherspoon takes a veiled shot at her during the MTV Movie Awards.

The latest scathing salvo came from CNN's Anderson Cooper, who blasted the heiress Monday during his newscast. Cooper lowered the boom during his RidicuList segment, targeting Hilton's claim that her show would demonstrate her wish to be taken more seriously and that she wanted to be "as real as possible."

"Paris Hilton has changed — she's changed her heart," Cooper smirked before showing several clips from the premiere. In one, Hilton complained about having to do community service due to "a little incident in Las Vegas." Cooper pointed out that the incident, which was not specified in the show, was cocaine possession.

A scene showing a nude Hilton taking a bath and photographed from the back spotlighted the difference between the old Paris and new Paris, added Cooper as he referenced Hilton's infamous sex tape. "There's clear evidence that the new Paris is nothing like the old Paris. "She's naked in a tub, but she's not doing full-frontal. The old Paris, full frontal."

He also made fun of Hilton calling desperate people who crave attention "hungry tigers" during a scene in which she is posing for papparazi.

Said Cooper: "New Paris, on behalf of the nation, I apologize. I'm sorry we ever doubted you."

— Greg Braxton




Will the 'real' Paris Hilton stand up in 'The World According to Paris'?

Paris Yes, you've seen Paris Hilton on "The Simple Life." You've watched her trying to choose "best friends" on other reality shows. And we've seen her in less-flattering situations -- being carted off to jail, lying about drug possession, making a spectacle of herself at parties. And then there are those news reports about her saying unflattering things about black men.

Paris would like you to wipe that from your mind. "The World According to Paris," the upcoming Oxygen series providing an all-access "voyueristic" look into the everyday life of the heiress, is "the real deal," according to Hilton.

"On 'The Simple Life," I played a character," Hilton said Friday during NBC/Universal's Summer Press Day. "This is not a competiton show. Now people will see my real world."

The series, which will premiere June 1, will feature Hilton as she moves through her professional and personal life. Her mother Kathy Hilton and her boyfriend Cy Waits figure prominently.

"This is the real Paris," said executive producer Arthur Smith. "People will be really, really surprised. Her fans will be blown away."

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Oxygen announces new projects, premiere date for 'The Glee Project'

Oxygen is looking to beef up its program offerings with some brides, Paris Hilton and some “Glee” wannabes.

The network announced Monday the premiere dates for two upcoming series: “The World According to Paris,” which follows the life of socialite Paris Hilton, will make it’s debut June 1, and “The Glee Project,” which sees “Glee” hopefuls competing for a guest-starring role on the hit Fox show, will premiere June 12.

But those aren’t the only shows the network has in its pipeline. The cabler has three new titles in development: “Maids of Drama” (working title) gives viewers a glimpse at bridal parties gone nuts in the days leading up to the big wedding. “My Post Grad Life” (working title) features young women tackling what comes after college graduation. And “Lost Angels” (working titles) will follow the life of Chloe Lattanzi, daughter of singer Olivia Newton-John and onetime actor Matt Lattanzi.

The show’s join previously announced “Best Ink,” a tattoo competition series; “Love Scout,” a matchmaking show; and “Bachelorette Party: Las Vegas,” which follows brides-to-be on a V.I.P. fanatsy weekend in Sin City.

The network also announced the return of its succesful freshman series “Hair Battle Spectacular” for a second season this summer; model/actor Eva Marcille is onboard as the show’s new host.

--Yvonne Villarreal

Did Paris Hilton say 'I can't stand black guys' in new book? [Updated]

Paris Paris Hilton has a new reality show this summer on Oxygen titled "The World According To Paris" and focusing on her daily whirlwind life. But Hilton sparks controversy, and a new book may turn the heat up.

"Everyone Loves You When You're Dead: Journeys Into Fame and Madness" by pop culture journalist Neil Strauss contains an encounter where Strauss quotes the heiresss as saying, "I can't stand black guys. I would never touch one. It's gross."

Portions of the interview, which Strauss said took place in 1999 when he was partying with Hilton, have been posted on several websites, including Gawker and LA Weekly.

Strauss said he was discussing several subjects with Hilton when she started talking about a guy she had been out with the previous evening.

Pointing to an unnamed actor in "Saving Private Ryan," Hilton was quoted as saying, "We were making out, but then we went somewhere where it was bright and I saw that he was black and made an excuse and left. I can't stand black guys. I would never touch one. It's gross."

When Strauss asked Hilton, "How black does a guy have to be?" he quotes her response, "One percent is enough for me."

Executives for Oxygen, which is owned by NBC-Universal, and representatives for Hilton were not immediately available for comment.

[Updated at 10:45 p.m.] Spokespersons for Paris Hilton said in a statement: "These allegations are absolutely untrue and ridiculous. We have sent these claims to Miss Hilton's lawyers to respond further. It's another example of someone making false claims for financial gain."

-- Greg Braxton

Photo: Paris Hilton. Credit: Jason Merritt / Getty Images

Tweeters' Digest: The week in TV tweets

In between the self-promotion (watch my show!), the responses to fans (thanks for watching my show!) and the revelations of personal minutiae (I'm going to the gym before I watch my show!), famous people take to Twitter to comment on the news of the world.

With Rob Lowe and Anderson Cooper on the revolution in Egypt, Donald Glover and Adrian Grenier anticipating the SuperBowl and Damon Lindelof still defending the final episode of "Lost," here are some highlights of the week — after the jump — as captured in tweets from actors, show runners, TV anchors and reality stars.

— Joy Press

Photo: Rob Lowe. Credit: Al Seib / Los Angeles Times.

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TCA Press Tour 2011: 'The Glee Project' is no joking matter

Ryan Put the slushies away! For the Gleeks out there who were secretly wishing to scoff at the silly audition process (a la “American Idol”) when “The Glee Project” makes its debut on Oxygen, think again.

“I didn’t want there to be any joke auditions,” said casting director Robert J. Ulrich during the show’s panel Thursday at the TCA press tour. “It’s all about a positive outlook.”

No joke auditions? See, this is where Sue Sylvester (Jane Lynch) could have been useful with her one-liners! Hey, if Ryan Murphy can be (belatedly) added as an executive producer of “The Glee Project,” we’re sure Lynch can hop on board in her favorite track suit.

The 10-episode reality competition spinoff of the hit Fox series premieres in June and aims to find someone (from a pool of more than 40,00 people) worthy to mingle -- in a seven-episode guest-starring role -- with the plucky singers at McKinley High during “Glee’s” third season. 

-- Yvonne Villarreal 

Photo: "Glee" creator Ryan Murphy. Credit: Getty Images

TCA Press Tour: Mel B dances her way to hosting gig

After her stint on "Dancing with the Stars," former Spice Girl Mel B can dance with the best of them. She's foxtrotted. Done the samba. The tango? That too. 

Now she's taking part in a different dance competition. This time as host of the second season of Oxygen's "Dance Your Ass Off."  

'I'm just so excited to be a part of it," she said.  "Dance has always been a big part of my life. ... [It] helped me lose my baby weight."

The songstress -- who replaces another "Stars' alum Marissa Jaret Winokour as host -- revealed that she shed 90 pounds while competing on "Dancing with the Stars." Now she'll watch as a bevy of full-figured contestants get light on their toes in the dance/weight-loss competition. 

"We wanted to find a host that really, really connected with our audience," said executive producer Dan Cutforth. 

The second season will air this summer.

-- Yvonne Villarreal


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