House of Cards Creator: Our Show Isn't About Politics at All

Norman Weiss

House of Cards creator: Our show isn't about politics at all
"I don't think House of Cards is about politics at all. It's about power," says Beau Willimon, who answers burning questions on Season 3, including how he kept one role secret while filming openly in Baltimore, how he got Stephen Colbert to make a cameo, and his reaction to the Sesame Street parody. Willimon adds: "Here you have two people who are thinking constantly about power. Power infuses itself into our lives in all sorts of ways, particularly in a marriage." PLUS: House of Cards achieved greatness by abandoning politics, linguists explains Kevin Spacey's bizarre Southern accent, the problem this season is House of Cards can't walk itself back from murder and adultery, it's less entertaining when the Underwoods are on top, and "House of Cards" would be better off if it believed in its ridiculousness.

Cartoon Network's Adventure Time is headed to the big screen
Finn and his dog Jake are set to star together in a movie.

Sarah Chalke to play Rob Riggle's wife on Fox's 48 Hours 'Til Monday
She'll also play Jane Curtin's daughter on the comedy pilot about one husband's quest to live every weekend to the fullest.

Christopher Meloni to star in WGN America slavery drama Underground — Kanye West may contribute music
Kanye is reportedly in talks to become a major music contributor to the drama about a slave rebellion in Georgia.

E!: No decisions have been made on Kelly Osbourne's Fashion Police replacement
Fashion Police returns without Osbourne on March 30.

Laura Dern to visit The Mindy Project
She'll play an OB-GYN. But it's not clear if she'll play Mindy's OB-GYN.

Lost alum Terry O'Quinn joins ABC's The Adversaries
O'Quinn will play the patriarch of a New York legal dynasty. MORE CASTING NEWS: Ving Rhames joins ABC's NBA pilot, Patrick Warburton to star in NBC comedy pilot, Elliott Gould added to CBS' Doubt, Mean Girl Lacey Chabert reunites with Tina Fey on ABC's Family Fortune, JoAnna Garcia Swisher joins a CBS comedy pilot, Cougar Town's Ian Gomez will be part of ABC's The 46 Percenters, David Annable to play Melissa George's boyfriend on NBC's Heart Matters, and Daniel Stern will co-star with Danny Pudi on Strange Calls.

Remembering Leonard Nimoy's non-Star Trek TV roles
From The Big Bang Theory to Mission Impossible.

Congressman reimburses the gov't for his Downton Abbey-themed office renovation
Rep. Aaron Schock of Illinois repaid $40,000 from his personal checking account for the Downton-inspired redecoration.

David Hasselhoff's daughter joins Rich Kids of Beverly Hills
Taylor-Ann Hasselhoff, 24, has been cast on Season 3 of the E! reality show.

Fresh Off the Boat's Constance Wu: Nobody writes jokes about Jessica Huang's accent
"People think that Jessica's accent is funny but no one writes jokes about her accent," she says. "The humor comes from the writers giving me very funny situations and lines. What makes her so refreshing is that she has an accent and doesn't know perfect English but she doesn't think that's a reason for her not to have a voice and a very loud one at that."

Empire co-creator recalls chatting up his local video store employee, Quentin Tarantino
"I was 10, 11, 12, and I would go to this local video store," says Danny Strong, "and I would spend a lot of time with him. I would spend 45 minutes, an hour, because I was a movie buff, even as a kid. He would recommend all these different movies to me, and I was in there so much they called me Lil' Quentin." PLUS: Terrence Howard thinks the N-word should be allowed to be used on Empire, and Jussie Smollett gets emotional over the response he's received.

What's next for The Good Wife?
Producers talk Kalinda's exit and promise tension between Alicia and Diane.

Parks and Rec: Behind the scenes on the last day of filming
Amy Poehler let out a "Whewwwww!" after filming of her final scene on the series finale was completed.

The Americans is upending the sexy-spy fantasy cliché
Philip's "date" this week with Kimberly proved to be one of the most unsettling sequences in a season with many disturbing scenes.

The Simpsons inspires the production of Mr. Burns, a Post-Electric Play
The post apocalyptic Bay Area play takes place 82 years after the last TV set has died, as survivors try to recount the Cape Feare episode of The Simpsons.

Tea Leoni: Madam Secretary rejected a storyline for being too unrealistic — then it happened in real life!
"There was a one-liner on the smart board in the writers' room a week before something broke — it was absolutely freakish," Leoni says. "We didn't develop the storyline because it was too unrealistic."

Rosie O'Donnell files for divorce
O'Donnell and her wife Michelle Rounds have been married since 2012.

Which Friday Night Lights alum has had the most successful post-show career?
Michael B. Jordan or Connie Britton?

Meet Downton Abbey's food stylist
Lisa Heathcote is Downton's entire kitchen staff rolled into one.

Does Emma go to the dark side when Once Upon a Time returns?
Producers preview Sunday's return.

Seinfeld's George Costanza named the greatest Second Banana
Jason Alexander says of his coming up on top in Grantland's Second Banana Bracket: "I'm so pround...eh."

Will Forte's Last Man on Earth is creative, nuanced and inspired
"I can't remember the last time I watched a half-hour sitcom and thought, 'I've never seen anything like this,'" says Tim Goodman, adding: "Above and beyond all the joy I got from watching the first three episodes of The Last Man On Earth, it was the frame of mind the series put me in that was really memorable. I watched the first one and then simply paused it and tried to remember the last time I felt struck hard by such originality or witnessed such a significant deviation from the safe comedic norm of television." PLUS: Forte turns in a "Bill Murray-esque" performance, a concept that shouldn't work ends up working pretty well, it's a joke in search of a punchline, it's an idea so insane it just has to work, it's the best and most easily enjoyable network comedy in years, and go behind the scenes with Forte.

Kobe Bryant tells his story in Kobe Bryant's Muse
In the Kobe-produced Showtime documentary, he explains why decided to embrace the villain role.

Watch Children's Hospital's Season 6 trailer
Guest-stars include Nick Offerman, Tony Hale and Key & Peele.

Whatever happens inside Sex Box stays inside Sex Box
The problem with WEtv's new reality show is that there's no hint of actual sex taking place, plus it takes itself too seriously. As Willa Paskin points out, "The salient piece of information about Sex Box … is that viewers of it will see and hear absolutely no sex. This is both a reassuring and disappointing tidbit of information: What is the world coming to if couples are having sex in a box on basic cable for our titillation? But what is the point of a show called 'Sex Box' if there is no sex in it?" PLUS: British Sex Box was a failure, and there is zero insight into the couples' sexual relationships.

CBS' Battle Creek is a solid cop show with a quirky sense of humor
The police drama from the creators of Breaking Bad and House isn't like your usual CBS procedurals, says Alan Sepinwall. "It's not really a laugh out loud kind of show," he says, "but it's clever, understands the strengths of its actors — even if it doesn't always have room to give supporting castmembers like Kal Penn, Janet McTeer and Damon Herriman (Dewey Crowe!) enough to do — and lets its mysteries feel twisty in a fun way, rather than one just meant to string the audience along through the final commercial break." PLUS: Battle Creek suffers from "reverse predictability," it's a network show with a cable sensibility, a refreshing spin on the police procedural, and the only thing that's missing is the city of Battle Creek.

ABC's Secrets and Lies: We've seen it all before
The latest series revolving around the murder of a young kid, debuting Sunday, doesn't stand out, even with star Ryan Phillippe. As Diane Werts notes, What should seem spellbinding feels more like The Same Old. Of course the neighbors turn against him, and of course his adoring younger daughter still loves him, and there's that moody music, crescendoing to commercial again." PLUS: It's better than Gracepoint but not as good as Broadchurch, and it's as unoriginal as they come.

What's it like on stage when someone wins $1 million?
It's unbelievable. There's no word for it. And this week's winner is a new grandma. She was three stations away from Go and she landed on Chance, and had to pick one of four cards. One card said "go to jail," the other two were money prizes. But there was a card in that four that said, "advance to Go and win $1 million." She couldn't pick and I said, "You have a new grandson, do any of these numbers mean anything?" She said, "He was born on the 3rd." So she picked card number 3 and won $1 million. You couldn't have written it better."

How much of the game is luck?
A lot of this game is luck and chance, that's what makes it fun. It has the Vegas atmosphere about it, and there's always a decision: Stay or go. There's some big money prizes.

Why are so many comedians interested in doing a game show?
It's just an easy transition for us. The first thing you learn to do in a comedy club is host a show. That's how you get paid, to emcee a show. You talk to the audience. It makes an easy transition for us to game shows because it's kind of a similar arena.

Did you play Monopoly growing up?
I think there's still a game we haven't finish, it's still on the kitchen table in my father's house from 1978. We played it a lot. In my house, whoever was the banker won. Wink, nudge.

Any Monopoly game tips?
My goal was always to get the corner by Just Visiting and jail. I would get the blues and the tans and then all four railroads. You could pretty much whittle people down to nothing.

Talk about Mike & Molly, which was picked up for Season 6.
It's tremendous. For a sitcom to go six years these days is such an astounding feat. Truly feel grateful for it.

Monopoly Millionaire's Club is syndicated; times and stations vary. Check here for your local listings.

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