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Key dates set for network, cable shows

GrimmThere’s a lot of news being released about network and cable TV shows. Here’s a quick update.

NBC has renewed the dramas “Chicago Fire,” “Chicago P.D.” and “Grimm” for the 2014-15 season. It will be the fourth season for “Grimm,” the third for “Chicago Fire” and the second for “Chicago P.D.”

FX has ordered 13 episodes of the comedy series “The Comedians” starring Billy Crystal and Josh Gad. Crystal plays a superstar veteran comedian who is reluctantly paired with Gad, an edgier up-and-coming star, in a behind-the-scenes look at a late night sketch comedy show.

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A funny thing happened to Malin Akerman

MALIN AKERMAN, BRADLEY WHITFORDIt should be rather obvious to those who have seen Malin Akerman’s work in the feature films “Watchmen” and “Rock of Ages”or her ABC comedy series “Trophy Wife” why at the age of 17 she won the “Ford Supermodel of Canada” search. What you wouldn’t know without the opportunity to sit and talk with her — or at least have seen some episodes of “Children’s Hospital” — is that Akerman is one of the funniest actors on TV or film.

Akerman loves that she’s starring in two very different comedies with “Trophy Wife” and “Children’s Hospital.” One has her at the center of a family comedy while the other puts her in the middle of medical madness.

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Acting a ‘Miracle’ job for Eddie Cahill

Not every actor grew up thinking that someday they would make a living starring on TV shows or in films. Eddie Cahill has become a TV star with his work as Detective Don Flack on the CBS procedural drama “CSI: NY.” But, when he was growing up in New York, Cahill wanted to one day either be a police officer or a famous hockey player.

In one way, he’s done both.

“Getting to play a cop satisfies a fantasy in one way,” Cahill tells me at a CBS press party. “My job and what a real police officer does couldn’t be more different. But, I love playing this character because he’s really grown through the years.”

On a show like “CSI:NY,” the majority of the program is devoted to examining clues. Cahill’s role is one of the few on the show where the writers have explored his home life. That gives the actor more to use in playing the character.

As for the hockey part, Cahill portrayed Jim Craig in the 2004 feature film “Miracle,” the story of the win by the United States hockey team over the Russians in the 1980 Winter Olympics.

“I always wanted to play hockey when I was growing up. ‘Miracle’ satisfied my hockey fantasy,” Cahill says.

Cahill didn’t start playing hockey until he was in his mid-20s and it happened almost by accident. He was working in Canada on “Glory Days” and the costume designer on the show had a bag of hockey gear left over from working on “Slap Shot 2.” Cahill bought some of the extra gear and continues to use it today.

“Miracle” also gave Cahill an experience he’ll never have on the TV show. For one scene in the movie, 5,000 extras were crammed into a small arena. As Cahill and his fellow actors took the ice as members of that now historic Olympic team, the crowd greeted them with a thunderous ovation.

“It took me a good five minutes to get my knees right,” Cahill says. “I was really breathing deep.”

This is final season of ‘House’

house.JPG The end is near for “House.” The producers have decided this season, the eighth, will be the last. The final show – number 177 – will be broadcast on FOX in April.

Here is part of the statement released by executive producers David Shore, Katie Jacobs and Hugh Laurie.

“The decision to end the show now, or ever, is a painful one, as it risks putting asunder hundreds of close friendships that have developed over the last eight years – but also because the show itself has been a source of great pride to everyone involved.

“Since it began, House has aspired to offer a coherent and satisfying world in which everlasting human questions of ethics and emotion, logic and truth, could be examined, played out, and occasionally answered. This sounds like fancy talk, but it really isn’t. House has, in its time, intrigued audiences around the world in vast numbers, and has shown that there is a strong appetite for television drama that relies on more than prettiness or gun play.

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