News Briefs: Bones Officially Has a Return Date

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SCHEDULES N' THINGS

... Bones will return from hiatus on April 5 at 9pm, TVLine reports, replacing the outgoing The Finder. Only seven episodes remain in Bones' seventh season, which was cut short due to Emily Deschanel’s pregnancy. However, there are also four “bonus” episodes kicking around that will either run into the summer season or be added to Season 8. [TVLine]

... America’s Next Top Model returns Feb. 29, with a new spin: ANTM: British Invasion will pit seven American hopefuls against seven "determined imports." Models: They are a commodity, just like automobiles! [The CW, via press release]

... The 2012 Sports Illustrated swimsuit cover will be debuted on the Monday, Feb. 13 broadcast of Late Show with David Letterman. Not only will the cover model be revealed and interviewed by the old guy, but 10 other models will present that evening's Top 10. [CBS, via press release]


INKED DEALS

... Gavin O’Connor, who directed Warrior, has been tapped to direct FX’s Cold War drama The Americans. Get it? “Tapped?” As in phones? Because it’s a Cold War drama? Never mind. [Deadline]

... Courteney Cox will direct Tall Hot Blonde, a trashy Lifetime movie about “two people falling in love on the internet, but no one's who they're supposed to be.” [USA Today]

... Breaking Bad creator Vince Gilligan has extended his deal with Sony TV, ensuring he will guide the show for the rest of its 16-episode order, until its series finale. [Variety]

... Bravo has officially ordered a second season of The Real Housewives of Miami. Yes, Marysol Patton will be back, which means so will her terrifying-looking mother. [WashPo]

... Mike & Molly’s Melissa McCarthy has sold CBS on a comedy pilot co-written and starring her husband, Ben Falcone. It’s about a guy who has to move back in with his parents after losing his shirt in the real estate market. McCarthy and Falcone met as members of The Groundlings sketch comedy theater in LA. [TVLine]

... Syfy is developing a spec pilot called Bob From Corporate, with Jamie Paglia and James Middleton, the guys behind Eureka, on board to executive produce. [Variety]

... Oprah will bring her day-after-the-Oscars special to OWN, in a two-hour broadcast that will feature interviews with The Help's Viola Davis and Octavia Spencer and Moneyball's Jonah Hill. We can practically feel you tingling with anticipation from here. [Deadline]

... BBC America has announced commencement of production on Copper, the network's first original scripted drama. It's a "gripping crime series set in 1860s New York City, centered on Kevin Corcoran, an intense, rugged Irish-American cop working the city’s notorious Five Points neighborhood." It stars MI-5's Tom Weston-Jones. [BBC America, via press release]


CAST AWAY

... Bridget Regan, who starred in the syndicated fantasy series Legend of the Seeker, has been cast opposite Ethan Embry and Jack McLaughlin in NBC’s The Frontier, a Western drama set in the early 1800s. [TVLine]

... Mercedes Ruehl has joined the cast of HBO’s Luck for its second season. She’ll play Julietta Caligari, mother to Renzo. You’ll become acquainted with Julietta in an upcoming episode. [Deadline]

... Mike O’Malley, a.k.a. Kurt’s dad on Glee, will co-star in the Fox pilot he wrote and is co-executive producing. Called Prodigal Bully, it's about “a young boy genius who uses his brains and brawn to get whatever he wants.” O’Malley will play the dad. [Deadline]

... Angelina Jolie’s estranged dad, a.k.a. Jon Voight, and Elliott Gould have joined the cast of Ray Donovan, a Showtime pilot about “a professional ‘fixer’ for the rich and famous in Los Angeles.” [THR]

... Ellen Barkin is close to signing on for The New Normal, the NBC comedy pilot from Ryan Murphy and Allison Adler about a a gay couple and their surrogate. Barkin plays the surrogate’s mom. [Deadline]


LAWSUITS, PROTESTS, AND OTHER BAD BEHAVIOR

... The man who created the world of The Walking Dead, comic book writer Robert Kirkman, is being sued by a childhood friend who claims he was tricked years ago into relinquishing all ownership of the material, which he says he co-created. [THR]

... JCPenney has pledged its support to new company spokesperson Ellen DeGeneres, after a bigoted group calling itself “One Million Moms” threatened to boycott the clothing retailer because she’s an out lesbian. Seriously? What year is this? Get a life. [CBS News]

... Jersey City is refusing to let Jersey Shore shoot unless four police officers are stationed at “JWOWW and Snooki's home at all times.” [TMZ]

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