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Matt Jones lands lead on TBS pilot

Mar 2, 2015

Andrea Anders, Jesse Metcalfe join pilots 
ABC's 'Sunshine,' NBC's 'Chase' among those adding cast 

Better Off Ted
 star Andrea Anders has landed the female lead opposite Matthew Perry on ABC's comedy pilot Mr. Sunshine. Nate Torrence also has been cast in Mr. Sunshine. Elsewhere, Jesse Metcalfe has been tapped to co-star on NBC's drama pilot Chase, Matt Jones has landed a lead opposite Gary Cole on TBS' hourlong pilot Uncle Nigel, and Eamonn Walker has joined ABC's drama pilot The Whole Truth. The single-camera Mr. Sunshine, from Sony TV, stars Perry as Ben, the manager of an aging San Diego stadium who realizes on his 40th birthday that he can no longer get by on just his charming, noncommittal ways.

Anders will play the cute and tomboyish Alice, who is in a friends-with-benefits relationship with Ben.

For her, the casting is formally in second position to ABC's sophomore comedy Ted, which is not expected to be renewed.

Torrence will play the clumsy son of Ben's boss (Allison Janney). This is his third project with Perry; they were together on NBC's Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip and Perry's pilot for Showtime, The End of Steve. Chase, from WBTV and producer Jerry Bruckheimer, centers on a high-priority fugitive apprehension team in South Texas. Desperate Housewives alum Metcalfe, repped by Gersh and Untitled, will play a preppy Marshal from D.C. newly assigned to the team.

Nigel centers on Nigel Wells (Cole), a veteran Philadelphia homicide detective who takes on his inexperienced, incompetent nephew (Jones) as a partner. Jones (Breaking Bad) is repped by Paradigm and manager Brian Ferrantino.

The Whole Truth, from Warner Bros. TV and Bruckheimer, chronicles the building of a case from the perspective of both the defense and prosecution. Walker (Kings) will play a senior assistant district attorney.
LA General

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Shannon O'Neill's PRISON FREAKS: A TALENT SHOW Reviewed on TheTicker

Mar 2, 2015


Prison Freaks Make Their Mark On Theater

The Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre in New York now houses Shannon O'Neill's "Prison Freaks: A Talent Show." Much of what we call entertainment these days is fused with nothing more than the stale air of banality. Horror movies inundate us with blood and gore, while dramatic movies aim to soak our Kleenex. Comedy shows often aim no higher than getting cheap laughs.

Not so with "Prison Freaks: A Talent Show," written and performed by Shannon O'Neill. The show is 30 minutes of nonstop comedic genius from O'Neill who portrays four different prison freaks performing at the annual Charlie Sheen Prison talent show. Do not be mistaken, the emphasis is not on the freaks' individual talents.

As O'Neill coyly points out, 'All the talents they perform are things I like to do, but most of them I personally am not very good at. That makes it sound like this show is a terrible talent show, but don't worry audience, I found a way to distract you from seeing that.'

'Distract' is to put it mildly. O'Neill succeeds in doing so much more. The show opens with a list of 'rules' the audience is recommended to follow so as not to upset or incite the prisoners to attack.
The first two rules instruct the audience to ignore the prisoners and to not look them in the eye.

The last two require the audience to both look the prisoners in the eye and interact with them. From there on, no one knows what to do or expect and that's just how O'Neill wants it.
'I love comedy with layers, where you really have to pay attention while you are watching because of all the different jokes and funny moments,' she said. 'Prison Freaks' certainly has twisted layers.

The first prisoner introduced is Brenda, who expresses her innermost feelings through song and leaves the audience torn between staying firmly planted in their seats and running away for dear life. Scared and confused? That's just the beginning.

Without giving away the surprise, 'Prison Freaks' showcases a wonderful medley of sketch and improvisational comedy that O'Neill has been honing for the last 10 years.
'I want to experience something they have never seen before and to remember it,' said O'Neill. 'Whether they remember it because they hated it, loved it or were freaked out.'

The show captures her unique style and sense of humor, something that is difficult to achieve in good comedy. Her advice for aspiring comedians is 'Do what you want to do, not what you think the audience wants you to do. Catering to an audience means you are serving dishes they selected. '

And if the long-held stereotype that women are not funny casts a shadow of doubt over seeing this show, don't bother.
"F--k that noise," counters O'Neill. "Only idiots still believe that ... some of the funniest people today are women: Tina Fey, Amy Poehler, Sarah Silverman, Kristin Wiig, et cetera. Dudes, be scared!" 

So when deciding on a ticket to a movie that may disappoint, instead, consider visiting the lovely inmates at the Charlie Sheen Prison who are eager to entertain and freak you the hell out. You are guaranteed to leave the theater laughing or promptly placing a knife beneath your pillow at night. 'Prison Freaks: A Talent Show' is scheduled for 8 p.m. shows on Feb. 11 and Feb. 25 at the Upright Citizens Brigade Theater, located at 307 W. 26th St.
For more information, go to
NY Shows

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Casey Wilson to star in ABC comedy pilot

Mar 2, 2015

'Past Life' actress to star in NBC's 'Chase' 

Kelli Giddish gets lead; Ben Chaplin, Casey Wilson join pilots

It's "Happy Endings" for Saturday Night Live alumna Casey Wilson, who landed a lead in the ABC comedy pilot six months after her ouster from NBC's late-night program.
Endings revolves around a couple who, after breaking up at the altar, must figure out how they and their four friends can maintain their relationship. Wilson will play one of the friends, who is bitterly single.
LA General

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