Posts Tagged ‘night’

Fox Is Bringing Metaphysics Back to the Masses With a Reboot of Cosmos

January 21, 2014  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

It’s an early January afternoon on the Upper West Side, just days after the Earth began heaving itself along on yet another elliptical voyage around the sun, and a polar vortex has stupefied New York with an interstellar chill. With about two hours of daylight left, sinuses are rimed with hoarfrost, the bare pate of the guy manning the lone hot dog cart is steaming, and the exhaust from passing cars looks as substantial as batting wool. From outside the main entrance to the Rose Center for Earth and Space on Manhattan’s West 81st Street, the great sphere of the Hayden Planetarium looms in its glass case like a scale model of the ice planet Hoth. Three stories above the northern axis of the planetarium, in an office that practically twinkles with the light from thousands of man-made stars (even his vest is festooned with flickering suns), Neil deGrasse Tyson is launching into what comic books might refer to as his “origin story.” As it so happens, the astrophysicist and host of Fox’s upcoming revival of storied PBS documentary series Cosmos got his first taste of the universe under the dome of the original Hayden Planetarium’s Sky Theater. “When you’re a New Yorker, there is no night sky,” he says. “You’ll see the moon, maybe a planet or two, but there’s no relationship with the night sky. So, I saw my first night sky at age 9 at the Hayden Planetarium. And it was so compelling and so much of a kind of mental baptism that I thought it was a hoax. But that was it—that was the night the universe chose me to study it.” Years in the making, Cosmos: A Space-Time Odyssey represents the kind of investment in science programming that hasn’t been a fixture of broadcast television since Carl Sagan brought metaphysics to the masses with the original Cosmos 34 years ago. Subtitled A Personal Journey, Sagan’s 13-part odyssey made abstruse concepts like black holes, wormholes and dark matter accessible to viewers who didn’t necessarily have an alphabet-soup jumble of academic abbreviations dangling from their surnames like so many comet tails. That Tyson was tapped to present the new Cosmos series is particularly apt, given his peripheral association with Sagan. As a 17-year-old student at Bronx Science, a college-bound Tyson was invited to meet Sagan at his laboratory at Cornell University. The visit made quite an impression on the budding scientist, and while ultimately he chose Harvard over the upstate New York Ivy, Tyson says the courtesy extended to him by Sagan wasn’t something he took lightly. “I said to myself that if I were ever as remotely influential as he was, I would treat students the way he treated me,” Tyson says. “With very high respect and regard for their ambitions.” Cosmos co-executive producer Seth MacFarlane says Tyson is the perfect host for the new series, being “the rare communicator who has the ability to talk to both sides of the room.” A space enthusiast since childhood, the Family Guy creator met Tyson through the Science & Entertainment Exchange, an initiative designed to encourage the development of more accurate scientific content in TV and film. (Tyson is seriously hyper-vigilant when quarantining science fact from science fiction. He good-naturedly tweaked Jon Stewart at the end of a 2012 appearance on The Daily Show by informing him that his “Earth is spinning in the wrong direction” in the opening credits. More recently, he took to Twitter to pick apart some of the sloppier gaffes in Gravity, a film he otherwise quite enjoyed.) Ann Druyan agrees with MacFarlane’s assessment, commenting that Tyson appears poised to continue the mission Sagan began so many years ago. A co-executive producer and writer of the new Cosmos, Druyan also wrote the PBS series with Sagan, her husband from 1981 until his death in 1996

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Golden Globes Rule Sunday Night

January 13, 2014  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

NBC on Sunday posted a 10-year high with its presentation of the

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Diversity Done Wrong: How ‘SNL’ Mishandled Casting a Black Woman

January 7, 2014  |  Variety  |  No Comments

NBC’s “Saturday Night Live” is being lauded this week for casting an African-American woman for the first time in many years. But the hiring of Sasheer Zamata leaves as much to condemn as there is to commend. Yes, there’s insufficient diversity of all kinds on TV. Anything that remedies that shortcoming deserves kudos. The prevailing whiteness... Read more

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‘Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones’ Scares Up $1.2 Million in Late Night Shows

January 3, 2014  |  Variety  |  No Comments

Paramount’s “Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones” materialized with a respectable $1.2 million in the U.S. in its first late night shows Thursday at about 1,600 locations. Initial estimates range for the opening weekend range from $15 million to $20 million. Paramount’s “The Devil Inside” grossed $2 million in its late night shows and went on... Read more

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NBC Ends Fall With Dominant Weekly Performance in Demos

December 24, 2013  |  Variety  |  No Comments

NBC closed out a strong fall last week with another victory in key demos, this time blowing away the competish behind “Sunday Night Football” and the cycle finale of “The Voice.” The Peacock also got solid perfs from limited-run series “The Sing-Off” and kept the lights on with encores of holiday faves like “SNL Christmas”... Read more

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Skolimowski, Coixet, Lafosse, Makhmalbaf Tap Eurimages Coin

December 23, 2013  |  Variety  |  No Comments

LONDON – Poland’s Jerzy Skolimowski “11 Minutes,” Spain’s Isabel Coixet “Nobody Wants the Night,” Belgium’s Joachim Lafosse “Les Chevaliers” and Iran’s Mohsen Makhmalbaf “The President” have won financing for new movies from Eurimages, Europe’s biggest co-production fund. Ranging up to around $750,000, and backed by the Council of Europe, Eurimages coin serves as vital completion... Read more

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America Still Loves ‘Lucy’ As 8.7 Million Watch Colorized CBS Special

December 21, 2013  |  Variety  |  No Comments

CBS dug into its vaults on Friday night and drew more than 8 million viewers for the “I Love Lucy Christmas Special.” The hourlong spec, featuring colorized versions of two episodes from the classic B&W series from the ’50s, averaged a 1.4 rating/5 share in adults 18-49, making it the top show of the night... Read more

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America Still Loves ‘Lucy’ As 8.7 Million Watch Colorized CBS Special

December 21, 2013  |  Variety  |  No Comments

CBS dug into its vaults on Friday night and drew more than 8 million viewers for the “I Love Lucy Christmas Special.” The hourlong spec, featuring colorized versions of two episodes from the classic B&W series from the ’50s, averaged a 1.4 rating/5 share in adults 18-49, making it the top show of the night... Read more

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Yep, It’s Looking Like an iPad Christmas

November 29, 2013  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

Apple isn’t known for its sales, so when it does one, it’s news. Today it unveiled its Black Friday deals available both on its online store and at its retail stores around most of the world in a promotional email to customers. Basically if you buy an iPad, Mac or iPod, and you get an Apple gift-card worth between $50 and $150. And if you buy online but live near an Apple store, you have the option of picking up your purchase at the store today. Otherwise you can skip the crowds and take advantage of free shipping. While technically they’re not discounts, you can apply the value of the gift card to your purchase, and thus turn it into one. I started the process of buying an iPad Air plus a smart cover today from within the Apple Store app on my iPhone and by default, the app applied a $75 reduction. Here’s the rundown: Buying any iPad Air gets you a $75 gift card, while an iPad mini gets you a $50 card. Buy a Mac, either an iMac, a MacBook Pro or MacBook Air, and you’ll get a $150 gift card. An iPod touch will get you a $50 a gift card; An iPod nano of Apple TV gets you a $25 gift card. The deal also applies for a few accessories, some Apple made, some from third parties. An Apple Time Capsule will get you a $50 gift card.

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Nokia Lumia 1520 Marks Giant Leap (In Screen Size) for Windows Phone

November 28, 2013  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

What’s big and red (or yellow, or white, or black), makes calls and plays movies, and doubles as a butter dish for Thanksgiving dinner? Why, it’s Nokia’s latest Windows Phone device, the Lumia 1520 , of course. And I’m just kidding about the butter dish part — sort of. The Lumia 1520, which is available now from AT&T for $200 on contract, is Nokia’s first foray into the world of “phablets” — those hybrid devices that try to be both smartphone and tablet. Till now, the largest screen to appear on a Windows Phone handset measured 4.5 inches. But the Lumia 1520 ups the ante with a six-inch full-HD display, which I found great for watching movies, reading text and even working on documents. But, as one would expect, it also makes for a large device. Not Samsung Galaxy Mega big, but big enough that it’s cumbersome to hold and carry

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