- The Washington Times - Monday, December 13, 2004

Cable’s Golden glow

Yesterday’s Golden Globe Award nominations may be giving broadcast executives fits today as the grim news sinks in.

The Globes, best known for setting the Oscar nomination stage, gave a big boost to cable programmers by throwing the bulk of television nominations their way.

Leading the pack, of course, was “The Sopranos,” but a bevy of other cable originals joined that HBO stalwart.

The best-dramatic-series category features FX’s “Nip/Tuck” along with HBO’s “Deadwood” and the aforementioned mob series. Fox’s “24” and ABC’s “Lost” flesh out that group.

“Desperate Housewives” made a splashy showing for ABC, earning a nod as best comedy or musical as well as acting nominations for three of its cast members — Marcia Cross, Teri Hatcher and Felicity Huffman. The other nominees in that race are Debra Messing for NBC’s “Will & Grace” and Sarah Jessica Parker for HBO’s “Sex and the City.”

The broadcast channels held their own in the comedy category. This year’s winner will be picked from a strong group including Fox’s “Arrested Development,” “Desperate Housewives,” “Sex and the City” and 1the same network’s brilliant newcomer, “Entourage.” Inexplicably, “Will & Grace” — a show that has jumped the shark so often it’s like watching a marine-life demonstration — rounds out the top five comedies.

Nominations for best actor in a dramatic series went to Michael Chiklis for “The Shield” (FX) Denis Leary for FX’s “Rescue Me,” Julian McMahon for “Nip/Tuck” (also on FX), Ian McShane for “Deadwood” and James Spader for ABC’s “Boston Legal.”

Vying for best dramatic actress are Edie Falco, “The Sopranos”; Jennifer Garner, “Alias” (ABC); Mariska Hargitay, “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” (NBC); Christine Lahti, “Jack & Bobby” (The WB); and Joely Richardson, “Nip/Tuck.”

The actors squaring off in the comedy or musical series category are Jason Bateman, “Arrested Development”; Zach Braff, “Scrubs” (NBC); Larry David, “Curb Your Enthusiasm” (HBO); Matt LeBlanc, “Joey” (NBC); Tony Shalhoub, “Monk” (USA); and “Charlie Sheen, “Two and a Half Men” (CBS).

Best TV miniseries or movie nominees also feature a nearly all-cable lineup. The nominees are PBS’ “American Family: Journey of Dreams,” Showtime’s “The Lion in Winter” and, from HBO, “Iron Jawed Angels,” “The Life and Death of Peter Sellers” and “Something the Lord Made.”

The Golden Globes, selected by the international membership of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, will be awarded Jan. 16 during a live telecast on NBC.

Final ‘Survivor’

Sunday’s “Survivor” finale came down to a battle between two highway workers, but in the end, only one remained.

Chris Daugherty, 33, survived both a shaky start in the reality-show competition and a strong women’s alliance to walk away with the $1 million prize, Associated Press reports.

He beat out Twila Tanner, 41, in the final leg of the 39-day contest, receiving five of the seven-person jury’s votes.

At the start of the game, originally divided by gender, it seemed Mr. Daugherty would be the first player to go. His inability to cross a balance beam during an immunity challenge forced his tribe to vote out one of their own.

Mr. Daugherty said the women’s plan turned out well for him.

“They were the creators of their own demise,” Mr. Daugherty told AP about the all-female alliance. “When it got down to me and six women, I stepped back and watched them tear themselves apart.”

Mr. Daugherty, a resident of South Vienna, Ohio, works for the Ohio Department of Transportation. Miss Tanner works for the Missouri Department of Transportation.

This ninth edition of “Survivor” has been the most watched reality show currently on television, beating such competitors as “The Apprentice” and “The Amazing Race,” according to Nielsen Media Research.

Oprah, the hit-maker

Leave it to the queen of daytime TV to know what audiences want to hear.

That’s what executives at television syndicator King World must be thinking. The company is hiring Oprah Winfrey to develop two new talk shows, AP reports.

Details of the agreement were not disclosed, but her first effort is expected in 2006, Broadcasting & Cable magazine reported in this week’s edition.

Only one of King World’s last five talk shows was a hit: “Dr. Phil,” which was created by Miss Winfrey’s Harpo Productions. Host Phil McGraw — who gained fame when he advised Miss Winfrey in her court victory over a group of Texas cattle ranchers who challenged a negative claim made about beef on her show — has become a star in his own right.

“The person who develops the next hit will probably be Oprah Winfrey,” King World Chief Executive Officer Roger King told the trade publication.

Among the company’s misses were late-1990s talk shows with Roseanne Barr and Martin Short and the recently canceled “Living It Up!” with Jack Ford and Alexandra Wentworth.

Compiled by Christian Toto from staff and wire reports.

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