David Hill

Celebrity

News

Jennifer Lopez, Keith Urban and Harry Connick, Jr. Expected to Return for American Idol XIV

Keith Urban, Jennifer Lopez and Harry Connick Jr.

It looks like American Idol will be keeping the band together. Pending final deals, Jennifer Lopez, Keith Urban and Harry Connick, Jr. are ... read more

How Harry Connick Jr. Saved American Idol

Harry Connick Jr.

Season 13 of American Idol sure caught a lucky break in new judge Harry Connick Jr. Since his debut in January, Connick has received rave reviews from both the show's fans and television critics — but he hasn't paid attention to any of them. "There's just a lot of noise that I don't listen to," Connick says. "I've heard some incredibly nice things, but it stops there. I've got a job to do."

That job would be to... read more

Reality TV's Growing Pains: What Will It Take to Find The Next Big Hit?

Phil Robertson

It's time for a reality-TV reality check. Even top executives and producers admit that the genre has become tired — an overload of singing battles, food challenges, screaming housewives and dating competitions. "We've been in a huge reality drought," says Greg Goldman, the new president of Studio Lambert USA, which produces Undercover Boss.

The broadcast networks continue to coast on the enduring success of veteran franchises like Survivor, but they're not minting many new hits. In cable, the success of docuseries like the Real Housewives franchise and Love & Hip Hop has led to a glut of such shows.

But a shake-up may finally be on the way. CBS recently named a new head of reality TV, Chris Castallo, while Fox is looking to fill the top job in its alternative department (which infamous reality kingpin Mike Darnell vacated at the end of July). There's also a new head of unscripted TV at AMC, while TruTV and A&E, both big reality networks, have new bosses. read more

ANP Judges’ Diary Blog: Episode #6

This is the episode I had dreaded watching and reliving. When I’ve followed reality-competition shows in the past (such as Project Runway and Top Chef, from the same Magical Elves production company as America’s Next Producer), I tend to hate it when everyone fails. I actually like to see the contestants produce impressive work, whether it’s fashion or food or even TV. The drama of failure can be memorable, but boy, is it painful to observe. And it’s even worse in person.The looks on our faces as we screen the late-night dating show “Click” (or as I retitled it: “Ick!”) aren’t made up for the camera. It’s genuine horror and dismay at realizing how the team was unable to keep this project, and themselves, from crashing and burning. Despite what you may have heard about professional critics, we take no joy in watching bad TV, even if ripping it can give cathartic pleasure to author and reader alike. We want what we see to be good. I ce... read more

ANP Judge’s Diary Blog: Episode # 4

The first thing I hear from one of the staff as I arrive at the stage on a Friday afternoon in May (exactly one week after the first elimination panel): “They behaved themselves in front of the children.”Well, that’s a relief. After the first few judging panels, in which many of the contestants acted like petulant children, sniping and fighting among each other like schoolyard brats, a little civility would be welcome. (Although as it turns out, taking too high a road would turn out to be one contestant’s downfall.)I get a sense today isn’t an ordinary one when I’m told the kids are upstairs “in school,” and they’re not talking about the wannabe producers for once. They’re talking actual kids, child performers, who took part in executing the latest challenge. (I don’t get to meet them, but that’s not a surprise, as the show’s producers tend to keep us away from the actual process.)As we get ready for the taping of the ... read more

Judges' Diary: Episode 3

The motto of this week's episode: Comedy is hard, but watching people make comedy can be even harder. Or not, depending.I can feel this round is going to be different when I arrive at the stage, three days after the last elimination (the longest time between challenges yet), and find a laptop on a table in the judges' green room. David Hill and I meet our guest judge, Regency Television's classy president Robin Schwartz (whose company produced such comedy hits as Malcolm in the Middle and The Bernie Mac Show), and we're instructed to play a DVD with video performances of two very different stand-up acts. (We see what the contestants saw on their field trip to the M Bar comedy club.)Major kudos, by the way, to Robin Schwartz for taking time away from one of the most intense periods of any TV year — the week before the network upfronts and schedule announcements in May — to help us out. In between camera set-ups, she's checking her Blackberry and returning calls, because she... read more

Judge's Diary: Episode 1

Being on the inside of a reality-competition show, as a judge for TV Guide Network’s America’s Next Producer, has one major disadvantage: As it’s happening, I’m only seeing half the show. When watching at home and seeing what went into the execution of each of these challenges, you may well come up with a different decision some weeks on who should stay and who should go. We on the judges’ panel only are able to see the final result and have to use that, as well as whatever info we glean from the Q&A on the stage, to make the tough call on who to send home.First elimination taping, and it’s a warm Friday afternoon in early May. The judges convene in a spartan green room. The regulars are myself and David Hill, the wonderfully outspoken CEO of Fox Sports. The guest judge is David Friedman, the boyish executive producer of NBC’s Last Call with Carson Daly. (The name seems familiar, and I soon discover his father is renowned news executive Paul Fr... read more

Episode No. 1

Whew! First elimination down! Sending someone home is, honestly, the worst part for me. I will say that I am so relieved to have such a talented and creative group of contestants on this show! You know, you never can tell what you might get when it comes to reality TV, and you know what I'm talking about. But we have 10 (well, now nine) smart, creative, fun people! Yay!!And still, as I’m sure you noticed, the drama has already begun. David H., Matt [Roush], David F. and I were downstairs deliberating and all of the sudden we heard "BOOM! CRASH!" upstairs, like there was a real fight going on. Then we find out: there was! Well, a verbal one, anyway, but it felt like it could've come to blows for a minute there. In case you didn’t see it, Gwen said to Sharon, "Shut the f--k up," which set Sharon off! Some people may not have gotten upset at this, but everyone is not the same. What's always been crazy to me is that we’re a nation made up of all these wonderfully d... read more

TV GUIDE Users' Most Popular