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Tuning in to TV: ‘Dallas’ producers crafting send-off for Hagman’s J.R.
Question of the Day
J.R. Ewing may be getting a proper farewell.
With Larry Hagman's death Friday and TNT's "Dallas" returning early next year, producers will begin work on a way to give his iconic character a proper send-off, sources tell The Hollywood Reporter.
Mr. Hagman, who reprised his role as the scheming oil tycoon for the TNT update, filmed six episodes of the 15 ordered for the second season of the soap, and will appear when new episodes kick off Jan. 28. The first season closed out with J.R. and his son John Ross (Josh Henderson) teaming up and with a plan to destroy Christopher (Jesse Metcalfe) and Elena (Jordana Brewster). J.R. had spent some time in a nursing home for depression.
At the moment, there is no timeline on how production of "Dallas" will be affected, though Mr. Hagman's death is not expected to have an impact on the premiere.
On Friday evening, executive producers Cynthia Cidre and Michael M. Robin in a joint statement said Mr. Hagman was "a giant, larger-than-life personality" and loved playing "this globally recognized character."
Mr. Hagman, who also starred opposite Barbara Eden in the 1960s hit "I Dream of Jeannie," was diagnosed with cancer more than a year ago and continued to work on "Dallas" during treatment. He appeared in 10 episodes in the first season of the TNT series, which debuted in June.
'Downton Abbey' gets fourth season in Britain
British television channel ITV has confirmed that hit drama "Downton Abbey" will return for a fourth season.
Filming of eight new episodes for the award-winning period series will begin in southern England's Highclere Castle and London's Ealing Studios early next year.
ITV said Friday that as before, the opening and closing episodes will be feature-length, and that the series will continue the story of the Crawley family and their servants in the 1920s.
The channel said that an extended special episode for next Christmas is also planned.
"Downton Abbey" has won fans worldwide and an average of 11.9 million viewers in Britain watched its third season, which will premiere in the U.S. on PBS in January.
Food Network restaurant opens in Florida airport
The Food Network is getting into the restaurant business in a location not always associated with top-notch cuisine: an airport.
The channel has opened its first Food Network Kitchen at the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport in South Florida in the JetBlue terminal.
"The dynamic of food and travel has changed," said Sergei Kuharsky, general manager of Food Network's new business enterprises. "You used to never go in and think about eating at an airport."
Now, with passengers arriving early to get through security and limited options for in-flight food, there's a market for airport dining. "We are responding to that opportunity," Mr. Kuharsky said.
The Food Network Kitchen is the only eatery serving hot food at the JetBlue concourse, but the network's brand is a big attention-getter.
"I walked by and I said, 'Oh wow, look at that. Food Network restaurant.' So I came in," said Richard Wierzbicki of Austin, Texas. "And I would look for it again because I thought the sandwich was really good."
Since opening Nov. 8, the Food Network Kitchen has averaged 1,500 customers a day.
"Airport locations are very busy, but this one especially," said Jean-Pierre Turgot, general manager for Delaware North Companies Travel Hospitality Services, which partnered with the Food Network to provide chef-inspired meals at the airport and is also a partner in Food Network-branded food sold at concession stands and stadiums. "It's the highest revenue producer at the airport."
There are no waiters, so customers sit at tables after ordering at the counter or they can get takeout food, either made to order or ready-made items such as sandwiches and salads.
The menu promises organic and sustainable ingredients and offers dishes with connections to local ingredients and regional culture, such as a Florida shrimp po'boy ($13) and a salmon burger with Key lime mayo ($14).
South Florida's Latin culture is reflected in items such as the Cuban breakfast burrito ($8) and a black beans and rice burger with "mojo mayo" ($12). Also on the menu: fried pickles with Key lime mayo ($6); sweet potato fries with Key lime tartar sauce ($5); and a Cuban sandwich ($12) with cafe con leche mayo pressed on a ciabatta roll.
Wait times can back up when flights arrive and the airport gets busy, so it's best to arrive early if you plan to sit down.
"We really wanted to bring our culinary expertise to the forefront and bring the brand to life," Mr. Kuharsky said. "I think people are going to be drawn to the brand, but it also comes down to taste."
The Food Network and Delaware North Companies plan to open more outlets in the spring at the busy JetBlue terminal. Another Food Network Kitchen is scheduled to open at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport by the end of 2013.
Alicia Keys to perform Thursday on 'The X Factor'
"The X Factor" will welcome season-one finalist Josh Krajcik and R&B artist Alicia Keys to the stage for Thursday's elimination episode, Fox announced last week.
Mr. Krajcik, who finished in the top two last year, will perform his new single, "One Thing She'll Never Know," which is set for release in the spring. The Ohio native has been working on his debut CD all year, with tracks produced by Eg White (Adele, Pink, Florence and the Machine), Stephen Kipner (Christina Aguilera, Janet Jackson), Chris Seefried (Haley Reinhart, Lana Del Rey) and Steve Robson (Lily Allen, Rascal Flatts).
Miss Keys will preview a track from her forthcoming RCA Records record, "Girl on Fire," which will be released Tuesday. The 14-time Grammy-winning artist's album features appearances by Babyface, Maxwell and Bruno Mars.
"The X Factor's" remaining eight vocalists will perform Wednesday.
• Compiled from Web and wire reports.
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