CANNES — “Scream Queens” and “Glee” star Lea Michele and “Homeland’s” Claire Danes were surprise guests at an awards dinner at the Mipcom TV market in Cannes Wednesday held to pay tribute to the achievements of the chairmen and CEOs of Fox Television Group, Dana Walden and Gary Newman.
Walden and Newman, who were being honored as Mipcom’s Personalities of the Year, were also joined by Chris Carter, the creator of “The X-Files,” whose rebooted series had its world premiere at Mipcom on Tuesday.
Michele, who had flown from the New Orleans set of “Scream Queens,” said she felt very grateful to be working with Walden and Newman on her second show with Fox, and that she didn’t know how to say thank you, so would give them a gift of a few songs. Michele said she had been planning to wear her neck-brace from “Scream Queens” while she sang, but had been told it wasn’t a good idea. She sang three songs: “Maybe This Time” from “Cabaret,” “Glitter in the Air,” which was recorded by Pink, and Barbra Streisand song “My Man.”
Danes, who had come to Cannes on her way to Berlin, where she’s shooting “Homeland,” told the dinner’s attendees: “Dana Walden and Gary Newman have not only participated in TV’s renaissance, they are in many ways responsible for it.” She cited “Ally McBeal,” “The X-Files,” “The Simpsons,” “24,” “Homeland,” “Modern Family” and “Empire” as just some of the shows that have been produced by Fox under Walden and Newman’s stewardship. Danes described them as “the best team in the business.”
“They are genuinely driven by the thrill of discovering how to turn a good idea into great television, and how to turn that into great and lasting entertainment,” she said.
After accepting the award, Walden paid tribute to Newman. “I have had the great fortune of having really the best partner in business that you could possibly ask for. Gary, your thoughtfulness, your intelligence, how you help to temper my more impulsive instincts… You’ve just been a wonderful partner. I value our friendship.”
Newman said to Walden: “Sharing not only this award but all the ups and downs of our careers and our lives has been an incredible joy. Sixteen years into this partnership I still feel I learn things from you every day.”