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More “Men,” Less of Actor’s Memorable Voice

PASADENA, Calif. — Notes and quotes from the Left Coast, where it is colder than it is in Buffalo and on the East Coast. If you think that’s weird, look at some of these items.

You may not know actor Liev Schreiber (“X-Men Origins: Wolverine,” “Salt”) by face but you undoubtedly would recognize his voice. He has been the narrator of countless documentaries and sports documentaries carried by PBS (“American Experience”), HBO (“Sports of the 20th Century” and “Hard Knocks”) and other cable outlets. The subjects range from sports to war, to travel, to the environment.

You named it and Schreiber has narrated it.

Jonny Lee Miller

Jonny Lee Miller

So during a session for his next series about a guy who fixes things, Showtime’s upcoming “Ray Donovan,” one critic noted how smart he must have become doing all those narrations.

“I wish I could reminder 10 percent of things I’ve narrated,” replied Schreiber. “I really would be a genius if I could. People talk about things and I go, ‘oh that sounds familiar.’ And I go, ‘yeah I think I narrated a documentary once about that once.’ It’s a really spooky feeling.”

Schreiber’s voice won’t be heard much in “Donovan.” His character is the strong, silent type.

“The older I get, the more I look for less lines,” said Schreiber. “Probably one of the things that drew me to Ray as a character is he doesn’t talk much. It’s a nice quality.”

It looks like WNYers are going to be happy and they’re going to get another year of “Two and a Half Men.” “Men” remains one of the highest-rated CBS series on Channel 4. CBS Entertainment President Nina Tassler said here that the network “would like to have the show back” and expects  the production company that makes it wants to make a deal as well. She added that Angus T. Jones, who plays the half in the title, would return to the series. He got a lot of attention criticizing its racy content but since has apologized. Tassler said Ashton Kutcher hasn’t yet signed on for another season, but that shouldn’t be much of a problem considering the enormous salary he got for replacing Charlie Sheen.

Tassler also said the network is a few days away from announcing that “How I Met Your Mother” will return for a ninth season next fall.

The new spring drama that CBS is promoting this fall, “Golden Boy,” has a “Downton Abbey” and WNY angle. The star of the series about a young New York City police commissioner, Theo James, had 20 minutes of fame as Mr. Pamuk in “Downton” as the suitor who died in Lady Mary’s bed.

Meanwhile, Hamburg’s veteran actor William Sadler is one of the cast members. “He plays a corrupt present-day police commissioner,” explained executive producer Nicholas Wootton, who formerly worked on “NYPD Blue.” The “Golden” cast is an impressive one that includes Chi McBride, James Naughton, Richard Kind, Dan Hedaya, Michael Madsen and Robert John Burke.

Jonny Lee Miller, who plays Sherlock Holmes in the CBS hit series “Elementary,” looked noticeably thinner to one critic here. Actually, he was the same critic who loves Schreiber’s voice. The critic asked Miller what his secret was. “We spend a lot of time on our feet,” said Miller.

Finally, a critic asked CW President Mark Pedowitz Sunday why the lead of the prequel “The Carrie Diaries,” 19-year-old AnnaSophia Robb had to be so beautiful like everyone in CW series when we know the Carrie Bradshaw (Sarah Jessica Parker) of “Sex and the City” was more interesting looking than a babe in the 1980s when the new show is set. “We know what Carrie looks like in 1984 because we saw ‘Square Pegs,’” cracked USA Today critic Robert Bianco. Parker was the star of that CBS series, which ran for a season in 1982-83. Bianco’s line was funnier than anything in the pilot of “The Carrie Diairies.”

But I will hold judgment on the stylish-looking series — which premieres tonight on WNLO-TV — for a few weeks for two simple reasons: First, I’m not exactly in the demo the show is aiming for. And second, ‘HBO’s “Sex and the City” got very mixed reviews when it premiered and became one of pay-cable TV’s classic series.


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