Tag Archives: “Royal Pains”

‘Royal Pains’ Paulo Costanzo Makes Long-Time Dream Come True

Paulo Costanzo — Evan Lawson to “Royal Pains” fans — cuts his teeth as a TV director with tomorrow night’s (8/29) episode, “Dancing With the Devil.”  The actor tells us he’s been wanting to direct since he was a 15-year-old student at a school for the arts and got an assignment to make his own VHS movie.  When he did, he recalls, he knew “This is what I want to do.”

So, what was the movie?

“It was called ‘The Outcast,’ about this dirty kid who was socially phobic.  Bullies beat up on him.  The girl he liked ignored him.  And then he found these magical glasses that made him cool.”

Costanzo was inspired by his own plight.  “I was very, debilitatingly shy in high school.  Maybe making the movie was the glasses, for me.  I found a voice.”

The handsome Canadian took a detour into acting as it turned out, of course, and began to amass his long list of credits including the big screen “Road Trip” and “50 Cent: Bulletproof” and small screen “Joey” as Matt LeBlanc’s nephew.

Now that he’s helmed an episode of his show, he is anxious to do more directing — despite a few extra challenges his first time around.  There was an unforeseen rain storm that disrupted shooting, a fire alarm going off amidst filming of a big dance club sequence, necessitating clearing of 150 extras from the building.  And then there was the Brinks truck that came to “unload this ATM, right in out shot.  The guards cleared everyone away.  They were yelling, ‘Get out of the way, NOW!’  And then they went as slow as possible.  If I had just been acting, it would have been funny,” Costanzo says, “but it’s different when you’re the one trying to keep everything on schedule.”

Gilles Marini Plans Gathering of ‘DWTS’ Pals to View His ‘Royal Pains’ Guesting

Gilles Marini, Reshma Shetty USA Network photos

PONDERS FUTURE OF ‘BROTHERS AND SISTERS’

The question of whether there’ll be a sixth season of ABC’s “Brothers and Sisters” has yet to be decided — but some are already starting a letter writing campaign.  That’s gratifying news to the show’s Gilles Marini, who points out, “I think the word as we speak is very positive.  You know, the network does not have to tell us tomorrow, ‘Oh, you guys are picked up.’  There is time.  They’ll crunch the numbers and see what their options are.

“I thank ABC/Disney for bringing us back for five seasons.  That is extremely rare,” he coninues.  “I hope that the show goes on and on, but whenever it is the end, I’d like to hear, ‘Guys, this is the last season.  Let’s ride it out the right way,’ and they allow us to close the storylines instead of abruptly stopping it.”  The Frenchman, whose romantic Luc Laurent character, love of Rachel Giffiths’ Sarah Walker, has become a “Brothers & Sisters” mainstay, adds, “The fan base around the world is massive.  The social network messages we get come from countries you’ve never even heard of before.  It’s very rewarding, and all that much more reason you don’t want to make the fans feel somehow let down.”

He also points out, “We’ve been pretty steady in the ratings, even against monsters like the Grammys.”

Sexy Marini plays “a choreographer who is very hard-headed” — who comes down with a life-threatening illness — on the season finale episode of the USA Network’s “Royal Pains” Feb. 24.  “Are they going to be able to save him?

Eh!  We’ll see,” says Marini.  He reports he’s going to have a big viewing party at home for the event.  “I think I’m going to invite Cheryl Burke and all my ‘Dancing With the Stars’ friends to come and check out my dancing on the show.   We are working on the tango for her wedding when my character gets extremely ill.”

Coincidentally, Marini was already friendly with “Royal Pains” lead Mark Feuerstein before his casting.  They shop at the same market in Studio City, he says, and “I see him there all the time.  I think he met my wife before I met him, talking about food.  I think we were by the tamales,” he jokes.  “He’s a very nice man.  It was a great group of people, doing this show.”

The “Royal Pains” guesting is Marini’s second such busman’s holiday this season.  He also played a magician involved in a murder case on “Castle” recently. “I had a month off ‘Brothers and Sisters,’ and as soon as a couple of producers heard that was the case, I got to do these other TV shows — two very good TV shows.  ‘Castle’ was such an event for me — from the wardrobe to the character, it was completely different from ‘Brothers and Sisters.'”

Barbra Streisand Universal photo

HITTING THE HIGH NOTES:  Besides “Glee’s” Lea Michelle getting to meet and interact with her idol, Barbra Streisand, behind the scenes at last Sunday’s Grammy show (wouldn’tcha love to see Streisand as Lea’s grandmother?  Wouldn’t it be the all-time cameo?) Streisand was in another little piece of show biz history.   While the audience showed its love with a standing ovation for Streisand’s performance of “Evergreen,” there was a love story in the orchestra behind her.   The conductor for this rendition of the song she had written for “A Star Is Born” and for which she won the Oscar as composer (the first female composer ever to win an Oscar in one of the musical categories) was the noted Ian Freebairn-Smith, who had conducted her recording of her song for the film and the eventual album three and a half decades before.   First violinist for the Grammy performance of the song was Sharon Freebairn-Smith who had filled the same position for the original recording session when she and Ian were first in love.  For Sunday night’s Emmy rendition of the song, their daughter, Vanessa, was a cellist.

MYTH AS GOOD AS A MILE?:  David E. Kelley’s much-talked-about “Wonder Woman” TV series reboot still needs its Wonder Woman/Diana Prince as this is being written, as well as her coworker and confidante, Mindy Mayer, and the acting CEO of Diana Prince’s company, Henry Demeter.  This version has the Amazonian super heroine as a corporate executive who keeps her crime-fighting persona secret.

OUT OF THIS WORLD:  While Stephen King fans are absorbed in the hot speculation over Ron Howard’s plans to adapt the novelist’s Dark Tower series for film AND television, Howard and co. are moving forward with casting for the first “Dark Tower” movie.  A potentially career-making role for an under-11-year-old boy is that of Jake Chambers, described as “the only child of an upper middle class Manhattan family who has visions of another world and is convinced he has something of cosmic importance to do” — while his family believes he’s mentally unhinged.  The flick is due to commence production in September in New York, with a 2013 release date already slated.

Still to be determined, of course, is who will fill the “Dark Tower” lead that will last through the feature and following mini-series.  Howard recently addressed internet reports that Javier Bardem and Viggo Mortensen are prospects, noting that getting such a long commitment from such big names would be complicated to say the least.

Henry Winkler’s ‘Royal Pains’ Character Mysterious Even to Him

Henry Winkler

Henry Winkler says even he doesn’t know whether his new series character — Eddie, the mysterious wayward father on the USA Network’s “Royal Pains” — is a good-hearted finagler or someone more sinister.

Eddie was talked about last season by his estranged sons (Mark Feuerstein and Paulo Costanzo) on the popular series about a concierge doctor to the very rich.  Viewers know that, thanks to his gullible younger son, Eddie has taken money from their HankMed company and claims he’ll give it back.  On Thursday’s (6/10) episode, he’ll get even deeper into his sons’ world.

“I was invited into the writers’ room to chat about the character.  Nobody knew who Eddie was; they had an impression of him,” Winkler tells us.  “We talked about him a little bit.  Now he grows as we watch the dailies.  I’ve found that is true of certain characters.  That happened with The Fonz, and with Barry Zuckerhorn,” he says, referring, of course, to his iconic “Happy Days” character and to his ineffectual, disinterested lawyer in “Arrested Development.”

Winkler doesn’t know how many episodes of “Royal Pains” he’ll wind up doing.  He does know he’s grown very fond of his onscreen offspring – Feuerstein, who “has more energy than 25 human beings and just astonishing creativity,” and Costanzo, who “is sensitive, funny, a genius at improvisation.  You never know where your scene is going to go with him.”

The beloved star has been headquartering in New York with wife Stacey while doing “Royal Pains” – but he’s also been traveling much of the time, as media spokesperson for a therapeutic use of Botox for upper limb spasticity, and on book tour appearances on behalf of his and Lin Oliver’s 17th and final Hank Zipzer kids’ tome.  In it, our learning-challenged hero at long last finds his key to success as he gets into performing arts school with none other than prolific producer-director Garry Marshall as his mentor.

“I had to make him Hank’s mentor because he was my mentor,” explains Winkler, who unknowingly struggled with dyslexia throughout his school days.  “I sent him the first copy.  He called up and said, in his Gary way, ‘This is very lovely — I’m in the book!’”  Readers can look forward to a new book series from Winkler launching this fall.

Best of Both Worlds for Mexico’s Ana de la Reguera

Ana de la Reguera

Drop-dead gorgeous Ana de la Reguera, who made a splash as the pretty nun in Jack Black’s “Nacho Libre” and as Gabriela in the recent Bruce Willis, Tracy Morgan “Cop Out,” has just left for Puerto Rico to begin working on USA Network’s popular “Royal Pains.”  Although she’s new to many moviegoers, she’s anything but an overnight success, bur rather a testimony to the power of grit and endurance.

The Veracruz-born de la Reguera is a star back home in Mexico, where she’s been seen in numerous features and TV shows, from telenovelas to hosting the MTV Video Music Awards Latin America.  She says, “I’ve had my career in Mexico.  I’m pretty well known there.  But when I came here four years ago I had to start over.  Out of 50 to 100 meetings I go to, I get one job.  They say, ‘You’re too Mexican,’ or ‘You’re too white,’ or whatever — you’re just not right for the part and you can’t take it personally.  You have to know it’s not about you.  Once I was very frustrated and my mom said, ‘This is like playing cards.  If you go out enough times, eventually you’ll get the perfect match, you’ll do the perfect job and you’ll get it.’”

The new season’s “Royal Pains” will have Mark Feuerstein’s character traveling to Cuba, where he’ll meet Ana’s character and begin a relationship.  She’ll be in Puerto Rico for a month to shoot, she reports.  The new season starts airing in June.

A Cover Girl spokesmodel, Ana has a full plate of other projects as well – HBO Latin America’s “Capadocia” series, a Diego Luna movie she’ll be making in Spain, and the September release “Hidalgo.” She wrapped the latter project, a period epic, in Mexico in January.   She intends to continue going back and forth between Spanish and English, Mexico and Hollywood.   “They have great opportunities all the time, roles for me to do,” she notes.

THE BIG SCREEN SCENE:   Ben Affleck, who filmed his writer-director-star vehicle, “The Town” in Boston last fall, is back to the cameras in downtown L.A. next week for some additional shooting.  The Warner Bros. feature adaptation of Chuck Hogan’s novel, “The Prince of Thieves” – about a career thief who falls for a beautiful manager of a bank – also stars Blake Lively, and we hear the two share some very steamy scenes.

HELLO, AGAIN:  “Saturday Night Live” alumna Cheri Oteri, who recently re-emerged on AMC’s “Life Coach” will be horsing around on the big screen soon as well, in “And They’re Off,” a mockumentary set in the world of thoroughbred racing.   Sean Astin and Martin Mull are also aboard the Rob Schiller comedy.

With reports by Emily-Fortune Feimster

A Hit at Last for Mark Feuerstein?

Mark Feuerstein

Mark Feuerstein

Mark Feuerstein has been on the cusp of having leading man status for several years now, but it looks like he may actually have a bonafide hit on his hands with the USA show “Royal Pains.” His co-star Reshma Shetty says he certainly deserves the success.

“Mark is such a charming man in real life and his character is so molded to him. I hope it’s his time. Sometimes projects that are really good don’t work out for whatever reason, but hopefully people will keep watching and be as excited about it as they are now,” says the British actress, who plays Feurestein’s onscreen physician’s assistant Divya Katdare.

So far the cast couldn’t be more pleased with the show’s numbers.  “It was like the second-highest USA networks premiere show.  For the first time ever in the network’s history, we got more people watching the second episode. Then the episode after that we got a million more viewers.  It’s been overwhelmingly positive, to say the least,” notes Shetty.  “I think it gets better with every episode, and what I like is that there’s something for everyone.  The show doesn’t only focus on the rich people in the Hamptons and the ideas that we have about what that life is like, but it also shows a doctor who wants to do the right thing.  He’s there to help everyone from the fishermen who work on the coast to the rich socialites.”

Emily-Fortune Feimster