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Capitol Hill Buzz: Russian news site interrupts C-SPAN

Moscow, we have a problem.

Web surfers expecting to tune into C-SPAN's online feed of debate in the House on Thursday instead saw images supplied by the Russian news site RT, which briefly interrupted programming on the network's website.

Spokesman Howard Mortman said the website, www.c-span.org , was replaced by RT for about 10 minutes. The problem was likely a routing issue, since RT is one of the networks that C-SPAN regularly monitors, he said.

The network is "investigating and troubleshooting this occurrence," Mortman said. The network later said it doesn't believe it was hacked.

The programming glitch came hours after a power outage interrupted a Senate confirmation hearing for Rep. Mike Pompeo, R-Kan., to head the CIA. The hearing reconvened in a different room.

The Architect of the Capitol's office said a local power company "de-energized" a system that feeds power to the Hart Senate Office Building. The office said the power company, Pepco, quickly restored the lost power.

The architect's office said it is examining the surge-breaker that was unexpectedly affected by the planned Pepco work.

Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., later said she found it curious that she had just begun criticizing a Republican bill she contended would damage the regulatory authority of the Securities and Exchange Commission when the RT programming broke in. She also was criticizing President-elect Donald Trump for choosing someone with deep ties to Wall Street to lead the SEC.

"Placed in the context of current events concerning cyberattacks and foreign interference in our elections, it is very important that C-SPAN provide a clear and concise explanation for the interruption of its online broadcast before we can reach any conclusions or establish the basis for additional inquiry," Waters said in a statement.

Josh Holloway: The stakes get higher on season 2 of 'Colony'

Josh Holloway says he's terrible at keeping secrets, which is ironic because the actor has starred in two TV shows where it's key to keep plot points quiet: ABC's "Lost" and now USA's "Colony," premiering its second season Thursday at 10 p.m. EST.

"My wife laughs at me all the time. She's like, 'God, you'd be the dead-est spy,'" Holloway said in a recent interview.

"It's true, I'm terrible at hiding."

So what was the biggest secret he recalls having to keep on "Lost"?

"When I finally hooked up with Kate in the cages," he laughed. "I knew that was gonna be a good one. And then we kind of did the time-travel thing, I was like, 'Ooh, they're goin' wild now.' But, it was great."

"Colony" is set in the near future, where extraterrestrials have taken over and formed a military occupation. Walls have been erected to keep people out (sounds oddly timely) and also block people in.

Holloway and co-star Sarah Wayne Callies play a husband and wife who are trying to reunite their family, separated by the colonization.

He talks about the show's current themes and how he stays creative off camera.

___

The Associated Press: Talk about season two of "Colony."

Holloway: Season two is very exciting. Rarely do shows elevate the second season. They normally take a little dip second season and then third season find their stride but I'm really proud of this season. It delves a lot deeper into what colonization really is and the darker side of that.

AP: The show is oddly timely with talks of government and walls.

Holloway: Colonization is the oldest trick in the book. We've been doing it to each other since the beginning of human existence but it's very current. We have a president now that wants to put up walls. We have a country divided. Some want to collaborate, some want to exist. It's not only current in America but globally.

AP: How do you spend your time off?

Holloway: I'm writing. We'll see where it goes but I've written an animated script and a comedy and pitched them and done all that stuff. That's a lot of fun for me, whether it goes anywhere or not doesn't really matter to me. The biggest gift is when you finish it and you're like, 'Wow, I did it. There it is.'

AP: Is it hard to find that time to sit down and write?

Holloway: Very. Now I have two children and they're wild so now I've got to get away from the house. I was like, 'Where can I have an office and then I discovered it. The library! No one goes to the library anymore! I'm gonna be in the library writing! (Laughs.)

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Follow Alicia Rancilio at http://www.twitter.com/aliciar

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Online:

http://www.usanetwork.com/colony

Canadian 'SNL' and 'SCTV' alum Tony Rosato dies at age 62

Canadian actor Tony Rosato has died at age 62.

He was a veteran of comedy shows including "Saturday Night Live" and Canada's homegrown "SCTV."

Rosato's former agent Larry Goldhar has confirmed that Rosato died Tuesday. Goldhar says an autopsy is being done.

The Italian-born actor joined Martin Short and Robin Duke as the only three performers to have been cast members of "Saturday Night Live" and "SCTV," which was spun out of Second City shortly after "SNL" launched in the mid-1970s.

In 2005, Rosato was charged with criminally harassing his wife. He spent two years in prison awaiting trial before he was diagnosed with Capgras syndrome, a condition that made him believe his wife and daughter had been replaced by impostors. He was committed to a mental institution.

Don Draper and 'Mad Men' archive land at University of Texas

The last America saw of Don Draper, he was meditating on a Pacific hillside, imagining one of the most iconic ads in television history.

What's left of the flawed protagonist of "Mad Men" has now gone to Texas.

Show creator Matthew Weiner and production company Lionsgate have donated the "Mad Men" archive — including scripts, drafts, notes, props, costumes, digital video and reams of research materials that went into creating the show's richly detailed presentation of the American 1960s — to the University of Texas' Harry Ransom Center humanities library.

Weiner, who also wrote and directed many episodes, said he donated the archive to the Ransom Center because he couldn't stand the thought of the material being dispersed at auction or lost forever.

"There is a record here of mid-century America that digs so deep," Weiner said. "It would have been sad to let that go."

The donation was scheduled to be announced Thursday.

Weiner chose the Ransom Center as the resting place for a show about Madison Avenue advertising professionals almost by chance. He was in Austin to attend a film festival when a visit to the Ransom Center's "Gone With the Wind" exhibit inspired him to donate the "Mad Men" archive for preservation and research.

The "Mad Men" collection from its 2007-2015 run starring Jon Hamm and Elisabeth Moss includes a selection of costumes and props. They include Draper's terms of re-employment letter (meticulously typed in a size of font typical of the time), Betty Draper's medical file, advertising poster boards, rolodexes full of phone numbers, and even a fictitious "Star Trek" episode that one of the show's characters had hoped to get produced.

Boxes of research materials show how deeply show writers dug to preserve an authentic feel, even before the first episode was aired. "Look books" of period fashion and style were laid out for each character, home and office design, with details from the average kitchen toaster to re-creating a checkbook or men's suits. Magazines of the times were scoured to research the news and language of the era, such as when the word "groovy" would first be used

"We would take things from the Sears catalog, not just the cover of Vogue," Weiner said.

Kevin Beggs, Lionsgate television group chairman, said "Mad Men" is more than a great show. "It is part of American television history, a ground-breaking classic worthy of the scholarly research the Ransom Center supports."

If the collection holds any secrets about the characters or stories, Weiner said they reside in the rough drafts, rewrites, screen tests and Weiner's own notes that show how episodes or seasons evolved before they aired.

"It often didn't start the way it came out. You will get to see the origin of everything, from what a character was supposed to be like, to how a story was originally supposed to work. It's all there," Weiner said.

Weiner's personal notes also reveal production battles, such as his yearslong efforts to be allowed to use Beatles music in the show, or archive news footage of CBS news anchor Walter Cronkite covering the 1969 moon landing.

"My argument was, my show is fake until I get a Beatles song in there," Weiner said.

Steve Wilson, the Ransom Center's film curator, said it will take about a year to catalog the entire collection. Some pieces will be put on display and the collection will be available to researchers and the university's radio, television and film students.

Weiner wants the students and researchers to see all the work behind the show, including the burps and missteps that went into crafting the final product.

"Artists have traditionally hidden the long road of mistakes," Weiner said. "When you see a finished work, it can be intimidating. Showing all the brush strokes hopefully is very encouraging to people."

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This story has been corrected to show that the Lionsgate chairman's name is Kevin Beggs, not Biggs.

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Follow Jim Vertuno on Twitter: www.twitter.com/JimVertuno

Coen brothers to make their first TV series

The Coen brothers will make their first TV show, a miniseries titled "The Ballad of Buster Scruggs."

Joel and Ethan Coen will write and direct the project, set in the Old West, Annapurna Television announced late Tuesday. The production company said it plans to make "The Ballad of Buster Scruggs" with "an innovative television and theatrical integrated approach."

Though the Coens' film "Fargo" was adapted into an FX series, the filmmaking brothers had no involvement in that show.

They have previously voiced disinterest in television. In 2015 at the Cannes Film Festival, Ethan said he hadn't watched a TV show "in decades."

"It's not that I don't like TV," he said. "It's alien to me."

Star of '24' sequel welcomes chance to create black hero

The clock is ticking and the nation's fate again is at stake in "24: Legacy," a sequel to Fox's white-knuckle drama series. But this time the hero is African-American and that matters, says the show's star and producers.

"In television, to be a hero and look like I look, that really stuck with me," said Corey Hawkins, who plays Eric Carter, an ex-Army Ranger who's drawn into a fierce new battle at home.

Now that he's helping create a character that's not typically black, the actor said, Carter's ethnicity will be more than skin deep.

We have to honor "where he comes from, not just his skin color but where's he's from," the southeast area of Washington, D.C., said Hawkins, who's also a native of the city. "That's the authenticity."

There's pressure in taking over the lead from longtime "24" franchise lead Kiefer Sutherland, who played U.S. counter-terrorism agent Jack Bauer, Hawkins acknowledged during a Q&A session with TV critics Wednesday.

"Uh, yeah. I'd be crazy to say there wasn't any pressure," he said. "If the challenge wasn't there, there's no reason to say 'yes' to the role."

The series' two-night debut is set for Feb. 5, following the Super Bowl, and Feb. 6.

The first edition of "24" was more than a groundbreaker in format when it arrived in 2001. It featured black actor Dennis Haysbert as the U.S. president, well before Barack Obama was elected in 2008.

"If you show it's possible, it can become possible," said Brian Grazer, among the executive producers of "24: Legacy."

Anna Diop, who plays Carter's wife, said all viewers should find the couple familiar, race notwithstanding.

"I'm hoping people see this and see themselves in these characters and it transcends us being black," Diop said, adding that her character, Nicole, is trying to support her husband and remain true to her own beliefs.

Other cast members include Jimmy Smits as a U.S. senator and presidential hopeful, Miranda Otto as a former counter-terrorism unit head and Ashley Thomas as Carter's drug-dealer brother.

The familiar elements, including episodes that play out by the clock, are there for good reason, the show's producers said. The approach remains "a brilliant propulsive engine," said series creator Evan Katz.

"24: Legacy" also is bringing back the character of Tony Almeida, played by Carlos Bernard.

Katz said that reflects what a "dynamic" actor and presence Bernard is and his character's compelling nature. When he asked himself which of the former characters he wanted to see again, Katz said, "it was Tony."

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Lynn Elber can be reached at lelber@ap.org and on Twitter at http://twitter.com/lynnelber .

Obama not slipping away quietly from presidency

Barack Obama is not leaving his presidency quietly.

Besides his farewell address to the nation Tuesday night, Obama has been on a media blitz during his final weeks in office. The biggest broadcast networks have all been granted interviews, culminating in a full-circle talk Sunday on CBS' "60 Minutes." The History network airs a two-hour interview special on Sunday and next week CNN shows its own two-hour film, "The End: Inside the Last Days of the Obama White House."

Obama also gave lengthy interviews to historian Doris Kearns Goodwin for a Vanity Fair feature and to Jann Wenner for his 10th Rolling Stone magazine cover. First Lady Michelle Obama gave Oprah Winfrey an exit interview and she'll appear on NBC's "The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon" on Wednesday.

"I don't remember (an exit) that has been as orchestrated and fulsome as this one," said David Gergen, co-director of the Center for Public Leadership at Harvard University's Kennedy School and an aide to four presidents.

Gergen also can't recall a president-elect who so forcefully promised to undo the achievements of his predecessor, so he understands Obama's motivation to get his message across.

Obama was the 10th president to deliver a formal farewell address, and his speech in Chicago was the first one before a public audience, said Gleaves Whitney, director of Grand Valley State University's Center for Presidential Studies.

The first three farewell messages weren't speeches at all — they were written and submitted to the press, Whitney said. Harry Truman began the modern tradition of televised addresses, which have been intermittently followed.

Historically, farewells by George Washington and Dwight Eisenhower are considered the most impactful because they offered warnings to the country. Washington, in a message published in 1796, talked about how excessive political factionalism could threaten the nation's unity. Former World War II commander Eisenhower, speaking in 1961, spoke about the danger of giving the military-industrial complex too much power. Obama spoke about dangers to democracy from within.

But the traditional farewell is far from the only way Obama is trying to leave an impression.

"President Obama has taken the legacy theme to a new level," Whitney said on Wednesday. "The election of Donald Trump is the biggest rebuttal and rebuke that anyone can imagine. No one saw it coming. I think he and many people in his party are stunned by the rebuke.

"He wants to squeeze every opportunity with the bully pulpit to make his case that, you know, the last eight years were not that bad," he said.

Obama is benefiting from the media's sense of nostalgia that is common for exiting two-term presidents, said Gergen, also a CNN commentator. He's leaves on a high note in popularity: a Quinnipiac University poll released Tuesday showed him with a 55 percent approval rating, compared to 37 percent for Trump.

The president is also intent on spreading his viewpoint "because in the next few weeks there's going to be a deluge coming the other way," Gergen said.

ABC's George Stephanopoulos featured his Obama interview on his Sunday political talk show, "This Week." NBC's Lester Holt interviewed Obama on Air Force One and in a restaurant in Chicago's Hyde Park on Tuesday. The network is already showing portions of the interview, with the bulk reserved for a prime-time hour on Friday, "Barack Obama: The Reality of Hope."

Television's most popular newsmagazine, "60 Minutes," will devote its full hour on Sunday to Steve Kroft's interview with Obama that took place Monday in the White House. Kroft and Obama have a history: Obama gave him the first television interview after he was elected in 2008.

"60 Minutes" also landed Trump's first postelection interview, with Lesley Stahl.

British TV trailer shows Joseph Fiennes as Michael Jackson

Sky Arts has released a trailer for its upcoming "Urban Myths" series, which it says looks at "remarkable stories from well-known historical, artistic and cultural figures, which may or may not have happened in real life."

In the preview, Fiennes is shown wearing Jackson's signature hat while seated in a car driven by Elizabeth Taylor, who is played by Stockard Channing. The network says one episode will detail a supposed road trip taken by Jackson, Taylor and Marlon Brando in 2001.

The casting of Fiennes, who is white, as Jackson was criticized when it was announced. Fiennes defended himself to The Associated Press last year, saying the project doesn't promote stereotyping.

Jamie Foxx to host 'Beat Shazam,' an app-based game show

Jamie Foxx is turning game-show host.

The Oscar-winning actor will host Fox TV's "Beat Shazam," an interactive game show based on the song-identification app Shazam.

The game show's producers include Mark Burnett of "Survivor" and "The Voice."

Foxx will preside over "Beat Shazam" as teams of two compete against the clock and other contestants to identify hit songs. The team with the highest score will end up competing with the Shazam app for a cash prize.

"Beat Shazam" is intended to be a "big summer event" for Fox this year, Fox Television Group chief executive Gary Newman told a TV critics' meeting Wednesday.

Lithuanian TV apologizes for Nazi gestures by actress

Lithuania's public television apologized Wednesday for a live show in which a popular actress made gestures to represent Adolf Hitler's moustache while raising her arm in a Nazi-style salute.

Virginija Buneviciute, a spokeswoman for Lithuanian National Radio and Television LRT, told The Associated Press the contract with the production company behind the popular "Guess the Melody" show was immediately terminated.

During Friday's contest, which actress Asta Baukute was about to win, she jumped off her seat when recognizing a melody by a Lithuanian composer of Jewish heritage. She then made the gestures and yelled "Jew, Jew, Jew" in Lithuanian.

Hours after the show was aired, LRT's deputy manager Rimvydas Paleckis said on the channel's Facebook page he was shocked, adding "this is in no way compatible with our values."

"The show is closed," he added.

Buneviciute said in an email: "As a public broadcaster, we stick to the policy of non-censorship, yet I can hardly imagine a situation (in which) she would be invited to one of our programs now."

Local media said Baukute, a former lawmaker with a populist party in Lithuania, later apologized and said she didn't want to hurt anyone. She was not immediately available for comments.

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