Cosby: His Life and Times, Mark Whitaker's comprehensive biography of Bill Cosby, hits stores Tuesday. The absorbing read chronicles the comedian's rise from the Philadelphia projects to stand-up king, his groundbreaking role on I Spy — as TV's first black leading man — and TV's most beloved dad on The Cosby Show. But for every high, there were plenty of lows: his near-bankruptcy, his scandalous affairs that resulted in an extortion trial, his estrangement from a daughter and the bizarre murder of his only son.
Fall TV: Scoop on must-see new shows
Here are 10 things we learned from the book:
Stephen Colbert, David Letterman
The Late Show will continue broadcasting from the Ed Sullivan Theater in New York once Stephen Colbert takes the reins in 2015, CBS announced this week.
The Baltimore Ravens Stadium
1. How do you solve a problem like Thursday Night Football?
CBS won the bidding war against NBC, ABC and ESPN to broadcast the NFL's Thursday schedule and will begin airing the games September 11 for seven weeks, delaying the launch of the Eye's Thursday lineup. For CEO Les Moonves and CBS Entertainment chairman Nina Tassler, the no-brainer course of action would be to shift monster hit The Big Bang Theory to Mondays during that period to help launch new comedy How I Met Your Dad, then send it back to Thursdays after the Chargers face the Broncos in the final matchup on October 23.
Looks like that #CancelColbert campaign paid off ... sort of.
Stephen Colbert will replace David Letterman as host of The Late Show, CBS announcedThursday. The host of The Colbert Report signed a five-year deal with CBS to host the show.
Tina Fey, Jay Leno
With David Letterman officially announcing his retirement from the late-night stage, the question on everyone's mind is "Who will replace him?" Many names have been bandied about, and NBC Universal CEO Steve Burke isn't taking former The Tonight Show host Jay Leno and former 30 Rock star Tina Fey out of the pool of potential candidates despite their past connection to NBC...
David Letterman will retire from The Late Show in 2015, he announced during his Thursday night show.
"I phoned [CBS President and CEO Leslie Mooves] just before the program, and I said 'Leslie, it's been great, you've been great, and the network has been great, but...
Rake star Greg Kinnear says he's nothing like his disheveled, broke, womanizing character, but executive producer Peter Tolan begs to differ.
"[On Day 1], Kinnear showed up drunk with a hooker named Tammy on his arm, claiming it was a part of his process," Tolan joked Monday at Fox's Television Critics Association winter TV previews, reading from his "journal" that also poked fun at the controversy over Girls' nudity, dining at Les Moonves' house and not ever speaking of Dads. (This, by the way, comes from the guy who previously took off his pants at a TCA panel.)
David Letterman has extended his contract to continue hosting the Late Show through 2015, CBS announced Friday.
The No. 1 broadcast network delivered a welcome jolt of energy to its day in the TCA press-tour spotlight when CBS CEO Leslie Moonves, one of network TV's most boisterous showmen and champions, took the stage Monday morning for the first time since 2005 (filling in at the last minute for entertainment president Nina Tassler, called away for a friend's funeral). Bluntly bullish on CBS's prospects for the new season ("We're confident we're going to be up this year"), Moonves credited stability as a primary factor for the network's long-term success.
"It's great to be able to renew 20 shows. It really is. ... When you can do that, it makes it easier to launch shows when you're launching them in positions that are behind successful shows. Obviously, it doesn't work all the time [RIP, Vegas and Golden Boy], but it leads to a degree of being able to win year after year." Moonves suggested the streak won't last forever, pointing to NBC's fall from grace when it couldn't find new hits to replace Friends and ER. But given the lackluster state of so much of this new fall season, it's hard to imagine any rival unseating CBS anytime soon.
Michael Weatherly, Cote de Pablo
CBS CEO Leslie Moonves wants to make one thing clear: The network didn't let NCIS' Cote de Pablo leave the show without putting up a fight.
"We offered Cote de Pablo a lot of money, and then we offered her even more money," Moonves told reporters at the Television Critics Association fall TV previews Monday. "We really didn't want to lose her. We love her; we think she was terrific. ... Ultimately she decided she didn't want to do the show."
Cote de Pablo exiting NCIS
De Pablo announced her exit earlier this month, one week before the show was scheduled to begin production on its upcoming 11th season. She expressed her gratitude to the show and its cast and crew and said she would return for a few episodes to end her character's story. But how could CBS lose the leading lady of the No. 1 show on television?
"It was purely her decision," Moonves continued. "NCIS was the highest-rated show on television last year. We don't like losing anybody, but we did everything humanly possible. We feel like we exhausted every opportunity, and she just decided she didn't want to do the show."
Some other highlights from Moonves' executive session....