Showtime's hit comedy series 'Nurse Jackie' starring Edie Falco returns for a third season this week, and brings with it Anna Deavere Smith, who comes back to play Gloria Akalitus, the old-guard, by-the-book ER administrator.
The Baltimore native and noted playwright, whose career spans more than 20 years and has included several critically acclaimed one-woman shows, such as 'Fires in the Mirror' and 'Twilight: Los Angeles,' is currently midrun with 'Let Me Down Easy' at the Philadelphia Theater Company.
The play tells the human side of the health-care story now unwinding in politics, by bringing to light questions about the human body, the resilience of the spirit and the price of care.
S. Epatha Merkerson, who spent 17 seasons playing NYPD Lieutenant Anita Van Buren on the long-running NBC police procedural drama series 'Law & Order' until the show was cancelled in 2010, will be returning to TV on CBS' untitled Susannah Grant supernatural medical drama pilot.
Jonathan Demme ('Beloved,' 'The Manchurian Candidate') is directing the pilot, which centers on Michael (played by Patrick Wilson), an ultra-competitive surgeon whose life is changed forever when his ex-wife (played by Jennifer Ehle), a doctor running a free clinic, dies and begins teaching him what life is all about from the hereafter. Merkerson will play Michael's assistant, Rita, stated Deadline.com.
Comedy legend Eddie Murphy will be honored as the recipient of the inaugural Comedy Icon Award at The Comedy Awards, the first-ever multinetwork, multiplatform event dedicated to honoring and celebrating the world of comedy.
The distinguished award will be presented annually to a modern icon -- an individual who has made an extraordinary contribution to comedy and whose impact and innovations have changed the landscape and inspired future generations of entertainers.
Murphy will be honored for his work in stand-up, sketch, film and television, among other numerous pioneering achievements.
Boris Kodjoe has been cast in the ABC pilot 'Georgetown,' an ensemble drama about young staffers on Capitol Hill.
The hour-long project, written by Will Fetters, is described as a sexy soap centered around the young people behind the power brokers of Washington, D.C. It centers on Andrew Pierce (played by Jimmy Wolk), an effortlessly charming and brilliant Yale graduate and the youngest presidential speech writer on record who was once idealistic but is now cynical as he sees how compromise has eroded the administration's promise.
Kodjoe will play the Democratic president's fiercely intelligent senior adviser, stated Deadline.com.
Kodjoe's last TV series, the J.J Abrams' NBC spy drama 'Undercovers,' which paired him with Gugu Mbatha-Raw, was canceled in 2010 after low ratings. Only 11 of 13 episodes aired.
HBO has picked up the U.S. TV rights for the documentary 'Sing Your Song,' which tells the rich story of the life of Harry Belafonte.
Directed by filmmaker Susanne Rostock, the film will debut in Fall 2011, exclusively on HBO.
Inspired by singer and actor Paul Robeson, Belafonte rose to fame as a singer, despite trying tours across a segregated country, and his provocative crossover into mainstream Hollywood. Belafonte's groundbreaking career personifies the American civil rights movement, while impacting many other developments in social justice.
'Sing Your Song' reveals Belafonte as a tenacious hands-on activist, who worked intimately with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., mobilized celebrities for social justice, participated in the struggle against apartheid in South Africa and took action to counter gang violence, prisons and the incarceration of youth.
Actor Brandon T. Jackson, who's currently gracing the big screen opposite Martin Lawrence in 'Big Mommas: Like Father, Like Son,' has been tapped as the male lead opposite Minnie Driver in CBS' buddy P.I. pilot 'Hail Mary.'
The series centers on Mary Beth Baker (played by Driver), a suburban single mom in Atlanta who, after her teen son gets killed, teams up with her son's best friend, KZ (played by Jackson), a fast-talking con artist from the streets, to solve her son's murder and other crimes, stated Deadline.com.
Grammy-winning recording artist and actor Marc Anthony, who appeared as a guest star in two episodes of TNT's 'Hawthorne,' has now been added to the cast as a regular, joining Jada Pinkett Smith.
Anthony will reprise the newly expanded role of police detective Nick Renata in the powerful drama series, which stars and is executive-produced by Pinkett Smith.
Anthony joins the the third season of the show just as Pinkett Smith's Christina Hawthorne, chief nursing officer of James River Hospital, struggles with news that she is pregnant. The two developed a strong bond last season while Renata investigated a pair of criminal cases involving the hospital. But Christina, whose on-again, off-again romance with Dr. Tom Wakefield (played by Michael Vartan), has been a mess of mixed signals and bad timing, told Nick she was not ready to jump into a new relationship.
For some actors, stardom comes either on their very first film, which may have been in a blockbuster, or in a lead role. For others, fame comes gradually, after some growing pains and paying their dues in the business.
After appearing in small roles on sitcoms and films, such as 'Jarhead,' 'Stomp The Yard,' and 'This Christmas,' actor Laz Alonso finally got his big break when Spike Lee cast him opposite Michael Ealy and Derek Luke in the war film, 'Miracle at St. Anna.'
While the film didn't do big numbers at the box office, it was enough for Alonso to be seen in a bigger spotlight than his previous gigs.
Maybe it's the economy, or maybe it's just actors diversifying their portfolio, but there seems to be a growing trend of Academy Award-caliber thespians -- such as Laurence Fishburne (CSI: Crime Scene Investigation), Terrence Howard (Law & Order: Los Angeles), Kathy Bates ('Harry's Law') and Forest Whitaker ('Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior' ) -- taking jobs on television.
Taraji P. Henson is the latest acclaimed actress to sign up for the boob tube.
The 'Curious Case of Benjamin Button' star has been cast in producer J.J Abrams' new CBS drama series, 'Person of Interest.'
According to New York magazine, the series tells the story of an ex-CIA agent who is recruited by a crazy billionaire to help fight crime in New York City.
Already cast in the series is Michael Emerson, who last starred in Abram' other show, 'Lost.' He will play the billionaire, while Henson will play a female detective named Carter on the series.
Kerry Washington and Columbus Short are set to star in 'Grey's Anatomy's creator Shonda Rhimes' new pilot for ABC, 'In Crisis.'
The pilot will based on the career of famous crisis management consultant Judy Smith. It revolves around the life and work of professional fixer Olivia Price (played by Washington) and her dysfunctional staff. Olivia Price is described as something of a legend, a formidable, driven, insightful, intuitive and fearless woman. Short will play a lawyer on her team, stated Deadline.com.