Actress Serinda Swan arrives at the 3rd Annual Unlikely Heroes Awards Dinner and Gala at the Sofitel Hotel on November 9, 2014 in Los Angeles, California.
Serinda Swan attends 2014 Hope North Benefit Gala at City Winery on November 1, 2014 in New York City.
CarterMatt.com – Kelly Severide has been on quite the romantic journey so far on “Chicago Fire” season 3, and at this given moment, we are not being given a whole lot of indication that this is going to slow down anytime soon.
Instead, the last episode before Thanksgiving on November 25 will allow him to finally learn a little bit more about the arrival of Brittany (Serinda Swan) in the Windy City, and how there may have been a few reasons why she wanted to run away with him so quickly. This episode is entitled “Arrest in Transit,” and you can take a look at just what you can expect in the official synopsis:
“When the team responds to a semi-truck leaking hydrochloric acid in a busy intersection, Casey (Jesse Spencer) and Dawson (Monica Raymund) find their relationship being put to the test. Meanwhile, Severide (Taylor Kinney) learns more about Brittany’s (guest star Serinda Swan) past and Mouch (Christian Stolte) has some difficulties in his dating life.”
Clearly, this is going to be an episode that really emphasizes relationships all across the board, and we feel right now for Casey and Dawson especially. While these two may be together, the way in which they’ve been forced to navigate the tricky waters of their relationship at the moment cannot be easy. Maybe that will change as we get a little bit further into the season, but for the time being, it does not look good.
Variety.com – USA is heading back to the beach. The network has announced a 13-episode third season order for drama series “Graceland,” currently slated for a summer 2015 premiere.
From “White Collar” creator Jeff Eastin and Fox Television Studios, “Graceland” follows a group of undercover agents from the FBI, Customs and Drug Enforcement Agency, who live together in a Malibu abode: the titular “Graceland.”
“This season of Graceland took viewers on a wild ride with unexpected character twists, and a heart-stopping cliffhanger that left a lead character’s fate in question,” said USA Network prexy Chris McCumber. “Jeff Eastin and the talented ensemble cast deliver on all levels, and season three will undoubtedly continue to keep us on the edge of our seats.”
Season two of “Graceland” saw Mike Warren (Aaron Tveit) return to Graceland on a mission to bring down a drug cartel, only to get himself entrenched in a series of lies that left him being smothered to death in a hospital bed by a member of the drug ring as Briggs (Daniel Sunjata) raced to save him.
Added Nancy Cotton, senior VP of programming at Fox Television Studios, “FTVS truly values the long and fruitful relationship we have with Jeff and USA. We could not be more excited to bring USA viewers another thrilling season of ‘Graceland.’ ”
USA has also recently renewed series “Suits,” “Satisfaction” and “Royal Pains” for new seasons.
Severide – all smiles for the first time in a long while – marches into Firehouse 51 with some important news from his trip to Las Vegas… he got married! He shares the details to prove the marriage actually occurred, but everyone remains skeptical. Even Casey – who offers to let the newlyweds stay at the apartment – places a bet on how long this impulsive marriage will last.
But when a worried Dawson confronts Severide one-on-one, he stays steadfast in his decision, refuting her assertion that he’s hiding his unsettled emotions about Shay’s death behind the marriage. He points out that not only is he happy, but that Dawson and Casey are the ones hiding. This strikes a chord with Dawson and it’s not until she sees Severide with new wife Brittany Baker that she feels at ease. Brittany manages to address the craziness of the situation head-on and impresses the whole gang with her personality (and donuts). At first angry with Casey for offering up their apartment to someone they hardly know, Dawson soon admits to liking Brittany and, indeed, that the newlyweds appear happy.
That being said, in private Severide and Brittany express their uncertainty to each other. Are they doing the right thing? Is this happening too fast? In either case, they confess their love for each other and agree that meeting and marrying in Vegas saved their lives. They kiss, both emotional, both ready to take on the world together.
VIEW: Career > Television Series > Guest Starring Roles > Chicago Fire > Episodic Photography: 3.07 – Nobody Touches Anything (2014)
VIEW: Career > Television Series > Guest Starring Roles > Chicago Fire > Screencaps: 3.07 – Nobody Touches Anything (2014)
TVGuide.com – What happens in Vegas won’t stay in Vegas on Chicago Fire.
Luck was on Severide’s side on the most recent episode, when he met a beautiful blonde (Graceland’s Serinda Swan) at a craps table in Sin City. Severide (Taylor Kinney) stole a kiss from the mysterious woman after she rolled two eights in a row, and the fireworks are just getting started.
“She follows him back to Chicago, to everybody’s amazement,” showrunner Matt Olmstead tells TVGuide.com.
However, Severide’s new romance isn’t exactly well received by his friends at Firehouse 51, particularly in light of his recent nights out on the town in the wake of Shay’s death. “It’s all, ‘Let’s just keep the party going, and keep the action going. I’m dancing as fast as I can so I don’t have to deal with this grief,'” Olmstead says. “That sends him to Vegas and they make an impetuous choice for her to come back and she does come back with him to Chicago. Is all this a manifestation of his reluctance to deal with this kind of floating grief from the loss of Shay? Is he making these choices because he just doesn’t want to deal with it? Absolutely.”
Severide isn’t the only one struggling to cope with a loss. As viewers will come to learn, Swan’s character, Brittany Baker, “went to Vegas to also escape some grief,” Olmstead says. “So they are only able to look at it down the road, in retrospect, that there’s a reason [they] were brought together. [They] were kind of guided to be together though [they] didn’t know at the time because only through the other are they able to patch each other up.”
The somber storyline was an important one for Olmstead to tell. “The story came from my brother-in-law who after 9/11 lost a lot of friends. He went to Vegas for three weeks and was just on a bender,” he says. “It was too much for him as it was for a lot of people in that situation. On the fictional side here, we’re playing the same angle for these characters. They can’t deal with it. … Only down the road do they look back when [both characters] finally have their feet on the ground from dealing with the grief of each one’s individual loss and realize they were only able to deal with it through the other.”
When Brittany comes to the Windy City to follow Severide — and perhaps to escape her own grief — the couple will be crashing with Casey (Jesse Spencer) and Dawson (Monica Raymund), who have very different opinions about Severide’s newfound happiness. “Everybody else is trying to interpret it or counsel him or figure it out. Casey’s like, ‘It doesn’t make a difference to me. He’s happy, I’m happy.’ And he goes to Severide and says as much,” Olmstead says. “Dawson has a different reaction, which then drives a little bit of a wedge between Casey and Dawson. It kind of shines a light on their relationship.”
Not helping matters is the recent strain on Casey and Dawson’s engagement due to her assignment to Firehouse 51 as a candidate. “Casey, as he admits, is a little jealous because here he is in this relationship where they have to kind of play ‘Don’t ask, don’t tell,’ and hide it from people and be covert,” Olmstead says. “Then you look at two people who just met each other and now they’re living together and they ran off. Why can’t he do that?”
Chicago Fire airs Tuesdays at 10/9c on NBC.
Hollywoodreporter.com – Unlikely Heroes, an organization founded to fight sex trafficking, used its annual fundraising dinner in Bevelry Hills Saturday to honor a group of like-minded Hollywood activists and artists.
Longtime entertainment industry activist Bonnie Abaunza, founder of Amnesty International’s Artists for Amnesty program, received the group’s lifetime achievement award for her more than 30 years of work on behalf of civil and human rights.
Other honorees at the star-studded event at the Sofitel Los Angeles in Beverly Hills included Graceland actress Serinda Swan, Call + Response director Justin Dillon, Bridget’s Dream founder Leah Albright-Byrd and Runaway Girl founder Carissa Phelps. Attendees and presenters included Selena Gomez; Nikki Reed and her boyfriend, Vampire Diaries star Ian Somerhalder; Best of Me actress Liana Liberato; environmental activist Kelly Meyer; Erika Williams, director for brand marketing and communications at PMK-BNC; actresses Azie Tesfai and Francia Raisa; and Jesse McCartney, who performed.
Swan told the crowd that her life was profoundly changed several years ago during a trip to Cambodia, where she met a 6-year-old girl who had been sold to traffickers. As the girl talked about her horrific experiences, Swan said she had to step away for a moment so the girl wouldn’t see her cry.
“I didn’t want my emotions to affect her,” Swan told the crowd. “I felt a little tug on my pant leg. I looked down at her. She put her hands on my cheeks and she started wiping away my tears. She said, ‘Sister don’t cry.’ She was a 6-year-old and I was crying for her and she was worried about me. In that moment I told her, ‘Your voice will become my voice, my platform is your platform, my spotlight is your spotlight.'”
After Swan returned to the United States, she founded the group called Friends to Mankind to raise awareness about human trafficking by enlisting celebrities to jump out of airplanes and tweet about it. Some 75 million people have been reached as a result of the effort.
“Standing on this podium, using my voice, having these spotlights, I can tell her that I’m trying,” Swan said. “I’m trying my best to let people know.”
In accepting her lifetime achievement award, Abaunza called human trafficking “the scourge of humanity.”
“Twenty-seven million people are trapped in a life of modern and slavery but organizations like Unlikely Heroes will not allow this societal horror to go unchallenged,” said Abaunza, who is currently working with the United Nations agency, the International Labour Organization, spearheading campaigns against slavery, human trafficking and child labor. She quoted the Talmud: “Do not be daunted by the enormity of the world’s grief: do justly now, love mercy now, walk humbly now. You are not obligated to complete the work, but neither are you free to abandon it.”
Unlikely Heroes was founded by Bay Area activist Erica Greve, who has dedicated her life to rescue children who were previously sold for sex in the U.S. and abroad. Proceeds from Saturday’s gala will support the Unlikely Heroes home in the Philippines, which provides shelter, education, job training and therapeutic treatment services to the child survivors of sex slavery. The fundraiser will also help to support the Unlikely Heroes outreach project in Oakland, Calif., that provides help at street-level to children trapped in commercial sexual exploitation in the San Francisco Bay Area, as well as additional international restoration projects.
Stableytimes.com – Graceland season three, you have some explaining to do. Spoiler alert: season two ends with the presumed death of Mike Warren, one of the two lead characters of the show. It’s not the usual “Is he dead or not?” television cliffhanger, but instead we watch Mike, played by actor Aaron Tveit, die in a hospital. The stunning revelation has fans up in arms, and of course has the rest of the Graceland characters and house in shambles, most of all Paige. But is Mike really dead?
Here’s why we think not. The entire premise of Graceland is Mike Warren and Paul Briggs, two FBI alpha dogs at very different points in their career, struggling to coexist in the same undercover house. Without Mike, the premise of the show is fundamentally altered to the point that Graceland is no longer Graceland, even if most of the agents living in the house return. The show could be opting to go in an entirely different direction, in which Briggs reasserts himself as house leader and the focus shifts to solving undercover cases. After all, there is some sense that the show might have been better off with that premise to begin with, instead of adding the cumbersomeness of the agents spying on each other and selling each other out.
But this all comes down to one word: ratings. Graceland is getting less than a third of the audience that it had at the beginning of season one, and barely half of what it had at the beginning of season two. This season veered off course not only by making Mike Warren increasingly unlikable, but also by pushing Paul Briggs into the background and limiting the screen time that the two had together.
The best way to fix that is to shake up the landscape for season three in a manner which puts the two back together but under vastly different circumstances. And what better way to usher than in than to get the remaining audience to tune in for the season premiere to find out whether Mike is still alive? It also allows the characters to have new tension to chew through, even as Mike decides whether to forgive Paige for selling him out.
But at this point there could be no worse way to try to keep the remaining audience around than by killing off Mike Warren. It certainly wouldn’t bring back any former viewers, or bring in any new ones. So the only way producer Jeff Eastin and company would really go through with it is if Aaron Tveit wanted off the show. As there is no indication of that, we’re willing to place a slight wager on Mike surviving. But don’t be surprised if he uses his presumed death as part of an opportunity to go undercover or start a new mission.
We’re half expecting Season three of Graceland to open with the premise that Mike is dead, then gradually drop more clues throughout the episode that he might still be alive before finally revealing it a week or two later. But fans will have to spend the entire fall wondering if that’s the plan or if Graceland really has offed itself by offing its lead character.