Kelly Ripa now has a ‘Gap’ in her work


Kelly Ripa

Q: With doing a talk show every weekday, how does Kelly Ripa have the time to host “Generation Gap,” too? — Barbara Steves, via email

A: As we’ve mentioned before, primetime game shows often record an entire season in the space of a couple of weeks, in large part to accommodate hosts who also have other jobs … as also is the case with Michael Strahan (“The $100,000 Pyramid”), Sara Haines (“The View’) and others. That’s how Ripa has been able to do her new game as well as “Live With Kelly and Ryan”); since they’re both ABC ventures, that also is a help in working out the schedules for her.

Q: Was Caitlin Stasey of “Bridge and Tunnel” also on “Reign”? — Casey Platt, Boulder, Colo.

A: She was, and not only was that a much different kind of show, she had a very different accent in it. The Australia native mastered a Long Island sound for her work with filmmaker Edward Burns on the movie “Summer Days, Summer Nights,” then he asked her to reprise it by offering her the part of Jill on the very similarly themed “Bridge and Tunnel,” which now is in the midst of its second season on EPIX.

Caitlin Stasey

Q: It was nice to see a “Remington Steele” marathon on Decades. Did Pierce Brosnan get the part of James Bond because of it? — Mark Wall, via email

A: His visibility from the series certainly helped him land the part, but it also stood in his way for a while. Brosnan (who had been around 007 producer Albert R. Broccoli when his late wife, Cassandra Harris, had a role in “For Your Eyes Only”) initially was hired to play Bond in 1987’s “The Living Daylights,” when it appeared that “Remington Steele” was ending … but at the last minute, NBC exercised an option to continue the show. Brosnan still was contractually bound to it, plus Broccoli didn’t want someone playing Bond and Steele at the same time, so that ultimately meant no Bond for the actor then.

The chance came around for Brosnan again several years later, after Timothy Dalton had played 007 in two movies. Financial complications involving parent studio MGM had put the franchise on hold for a while, and with Dalton not returning by the time it was revived, Brosnan got the call to assume the iconic part again. He made his Bond debut in 1995’s “GoldenEye,” then stayed for three more films before the mantle was passed to Daniel Craig (who recently wrapped up his own Bond tenure).

Q: Will there be a permanent replacement for Chris Wallace on “Fox News Sunday”? —Normand Messier, Woonsocket, R.I.

A: That was the declared intention when Wallace left the program, but so far, those behind the show have seemed content to keep using a rotating bench of anchors — providing an extra outlet to showcase Fox News Channel regulars from Bret Baier and Martha MacCallum to John Roberts and Harris Faulkner. As of this writing, there’s been no indication of timing for the choosing of any one anchor to guide “Fox News Sunday” on a weekly basis.

Q: Will “The Time Traveler’s Wife” be back? — Eve Conway, via email

A: Unfortunately for fans of the HBO series inspired by Audrey Niffenegger bestseller, it’s one season and done for the fantasy-drama that starred Rose Leslie and Theo James. Lukewarm reviews and ratings ultimately spelled a relatively brief life for the show, making it another casualty at a time when cable networks and streaming services appear to be more reticent to renew shows that seem to have little upside by continuing.

Q: What ever happened to the country-music drama that Trace Adkins was making for Fox? — Jeff Lean, Columbus, Ohio

A: It’s coming. “Monarch” was pulled from the schedule at almost the last minute last January, since the network ultimately felt it stood a better chance for success by being held until fall. Thus, Fox finally will launch the show Sept. 11, following a Sunday NFL doubleheader (the first time, it was slated to follow a football conference final). Then, the series — which also stars Susan Sarandon and Anna Friel — will start in its regular Tuesday slot Sept. 20.

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Jay Bobbin

Jay Bobbin has decades of experience covering the television and movie businesses, winning Tribune Media Services’ Crown Jewel Award in 2008 for his performance in the company. Over those many years of interviewing and writing, he has spoken with everyone from Robert De Niro and John Travolta to Paul McCartney and Tony Bennett … from Meryl Streep and Julie Andrews to Taylor Swift and Carrie Underwood.

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