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TV News Roundup: ‘Grandfathered’ Sets ‘Drake & Josh’ Reunion & More

“Drake & Josh” will reunite, as Drake Bell is set to guest star on Josh Peck’s show “Grandfathered,” plus Marvel’s upcoming Netflix series “Luke Cage” has cast Rosario Dawson’s mother in today’s TV news roundup . . .

Casting News:

Sonia Braga has been cast as Soledad Temple on “Marvel’s Luke Cage,” Variety has learned. Braga will play Rosario Dawson’s on-screen mother in the Netflix series. Dawson’s character Claire was introduced to fans in “Daredevil.”

Drake Bell will guest star on the John Stamos Fox comedy Grandfathered,” the network announced Tuesday. Though Stamos leads the show, Bell’s guest gig will reunite him with co-star Josh Peck, with whom he starred in Nickelodeon’s hit show “Drake & Josh” in the earlier 2000’s.

Bell will play a flashy tech investor to whom Gerald (Peck) and Vanessa (Christina Milian) are desperate to pitch their app idea. His episode is scheduled to air in spring 2016.

Quantico has added three recurring characters, who will first appear in the March 6 episode when the ABC drama returns from its midseason hiatus, Variety has learned.

Jay Armstrong Johnson will play Will Olsen, a brilliant working-class kid with no social skills who got his PhD from Harvard at 22 years old and worked for JPL, before being recruited by the FBI; Lenny Platt will play Drew Perales, a former NFL player who retired after two years to fight a class-action lawsuit against former employers; and Li Jun Li will play Iris Chang, a flirtatious “Queen Bee” type who was born in Shanghai to wealthy parents, and while she was a student at USC, she founded six start-ups and sold two to Google. 

Johnson is repped by Paradigm; Platt is repped by Abrams and Vanguard Management Group; and Li is repped by Nicolosi & Co and Schachter / Brown.

Holiday Specials:

NBC’s 83rd annual tree-lighting special “Christmas in Rockefeller Center” is set for Dec. 2. Hosted by “Today” show anchors Matt Lauer, Savannah Guthrie, Al Roker and Natalie Morales live from New York City’s Rockefeller Center, the world-famous Rockettes will put on a special performance. Sting, Mary J. Blige, Andrea Bocelli, The Band Perry, Andy Grammer, Carly Rae Jepsen, Pentatonix, Band of Merrymakers and James Taylor will also perform.

LL Cool J will host CBS’s 17th annual “A Home for the Holidays,” which brings music’s biggest artists together with children adopted from foster care and their new families. Christina Aguilera, Jason Derulo, Rascal Flatts and Ed Sheeran will perform at the Dec. 18 holiday special.


Last night’s telecast of ABC’s “Jimmy Kimmel Live,” featuring the cast of “Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” drew one of the program’s largest ever Monday audiences.

Nielsen estimates that an average audience of 3.29 million were watching the ABC program, ranking fourth among all Monday episodes in the program’s nearly 13-year history. Its adults 18-49 audience of 1.06 million was the show’s best on a Monday in 18 months (since March 2014). In both categories, “Kimmel” placed a competitive second to NBC’s “Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon” and well ahead of CBS’ “Late Show with Stephen Colbert.”

Guests included director J.J. Abrams and stars Carrie Fisher, Daisy Ridley and John Boyega. ABC said that it will rebroadcast Monday’s episode of “Jimmy Kimmel Live” in primetime Wednesday in place of a “Nashville” repeat at 10.

Premiere Dates:

“Dancing With the Stars” will return with Season 22 on Monday, March 21. The two-hour premiere on ABC will feature an all-new yet-to-be-announced cast of celebrities vying for the mirror ball trophy.


Rick Kissell contributed to this report.

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