Tuesday, March 31, 2009

More L&O in the news: Filming at the United Nations

No new revelations -- but expect scenes from the United Nations in an upcoming episode. This, from CNN today (full article here):

The U.N. recently opened the gates of its New York headquarters to the NBC Universal show "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit" for the filming of an episode scheduled to air Tuesday. The taping marked the first time in its nearly 60-year history that the United Nations has allowed its iconic location to be used as a setting in a major network television production.

Series stars Stephanie March, who plays Assistant District Attorney Alexandra Cabot, and Christopher Meloni, along with nearly 200 other cast and crew members, came to the U.N. on March 7 to film an episode revolving around child soldiers, refugees, warlords and the International Criminal Court.

Meloni described how the U.N. episode "really does kind of revolve around child soldiers, how they've been brainwashed, the horrible journeys that they've had to endure and how they can be assimilated back and be productive. And I think in this particular episode, we're trying to carry on with whatever clout we may possess. We have the medium to shine the light out there and tell this story."

Considering the "ripped-from-the-headlines" and complicated themes regarding conflict in Africa and the ICC, "Special Victims Unit" writers and actors relied on Enough Project co-founder John Prendergast as a consultant throughout the filming.

The Enough Project is an advocacy group committed to preventing genocide, crimes against humanity and other atrocities in six historically tumultuous African nations.

Prendergast explained that he perceived the episode as "one where reality dovetailed quite neatly with fiction, and hopefully more people will understand now what is happening in real life with President Bashir and Sudan, and then the accountability for war crimes because they saw it on 'Law & Order.' "

The "Special Victims Unit" filming was the first official project within Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon's newly formed Creative Community Outreach Initiative. The intent of the program is to establish a relationship with international film and television industries to enhance the image of the United Nations and to "raise the profile of critical global issues," according to a U.N. representative.

Eric Falt, director of the U.N.'s outreach initiative, elaborated: "We're starting a program where we're going to say to filmmakers, people who produce television series, that we are essentially open for business. You want to come to the U.N.? Talk to us. We'll make it happen."

Labels: , , , ,

Monday, March 30, 2009

Michaela McManus out at SVU, Plus Lots of Speculation

Over at E! Online, they got some great scoopage from SVU's Neal Baer, who reports that Michaela McManus is out, the season finale won't be until June 2 -- and that somebody's getting killed. Key excerpts:

Someone's going to die on the Law & Order: Special Victims Unit finale..... When we asked Neal if we'd be losing a series regular, he would only say this: "It's a castmember." .... For some reason, Detective Munch's (Richard Belzer) name always comes up whenever the talk turns to SVU departures. Could it finally be time? Being the slick exec that he is, when asked if Munch were leaving, Neal played coy, saying, "I hope not. Well, we'll see." .... When we asked Neal about Stephanie March's future on SVU, he told us: "Stephanie is in the next-to-the-last episode; she's not in the last episode." .... Neal did confirm that Michaela McManus won't be back on SVU, but also that the door is not entirely closed on that other A.D.A. we all love, Diane Neal's Casey Novak. "Well, she was disbarred for a year but as I said, life is unpredictable." ..... One last thing, Neal mentioned another very special guest star coming up. We can't name names just yet, but he reveals that "an Oscar-winning performer is coming on in the next-to-the-last episode."

Labels: , , , , , ,

Thursday, March 12, 2009

How real does SVU need to be?

An interesting discussion of "SVU" surfaced on the great blog Jezebel" the other day.


The discussion presented there is fair; the blog it links to (which started the discussion) seems to paint very broad strokes about the show and is clearly written by someone who hasn't exactly seen every episode.

What do you think?

Also, speaking of "SVU" -- who was happy about the return the other night of Stephanie March?

Labels: , ,