BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. — “The Simpsons” is doubling down with an hour-long episode in January.
It will be the first time the half-hour animated series has expanded to a full hour, Fox said Monday.
Al Jean, executive producer of the series that revels in daring humor, included a political shot in announcing the episode.
“I just pray it won’t be the last thing people see before a Trump inauguration,” Jean said in a statement.
Taraji P. Henson, who plays Cookie on Fox’s “Empire,” and Keegan-Michael Key will guest star. Henson voices Praline, the former wife of a music mogul who has conned Mr. Burns into bankruptcy. Key voices a rapper, Jazzy James, who joins with Praline, Homer and Bart to help Mr. Burns seek revenge.
The airdate for the episode, titled “The Great Phatsby,” a play on the classic “The Great Gatsby,” was not announced. “The Simpsons” begins its 28th season on Sept. 25, and will reach its 600-episode milestone Oct. 16.
Schumer to guest voice on Fox’s animation block
BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. — An upcoming Sunday night on Fox in September will be Amy Schumer night.
The comedian will voice characters on “The Simpsons,” ”Bob’s Burgers” and “Family Guy” on the episodes airing Sept. 25, Fox confirmed Monday at a biannual press event for TV critics.
In each show, she plays someone different.
Fox said Schumer has already recorded her appearances and completed them in one session.
Network chairman Dana Walden said the idea was to have the same actor bring a “connective tissue throughout the night.”
‘Ipanema’ song jumps after Olympics ceremony
NEW YORK — “The Girl from Ipanema” has won a gold medal in music streaming following the opening ceremony of the Summer Olympics.
Spotify says the song was streamed more than 40,000 times a day after the Olympics kicked off Friday night in Rio de Janeiro. It is 1,200 percent rise for the track, which was typically streamed about 3,000 times a day before the Olympics, the streaming service said.
Supermodel Gisele Bundchen walked onstage during the opening ceremony while “The Girl from Ipanema” played. The Grammy-winning song was released in 1964.
Antonio Carlos Jobim wrote the song as a tribute to a girl he fell in love with as she left Ipanema Beach, one of Rio’s iconic beaches. It is arguably Brazil’s most recognizable song internationally.
Mariah Carey to guest star as superstar singer
BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. — After two seasons of teasing viewers about whether it would happen, Mariah Carey has set a date to guest star on Fox’s “Empire.”
Carey will appear on the Oct. 5 episode, the network confirmed Monday at a TV critics bi-annual press tour.
She will play a superstar singer named Kitty, who collaborates with Jussie Smollett’s character, Jamal Lyon, on a new song. Lyon has a creative block until Kitty helps him deal with some personal issues to make the song work.
“Mariah loves the show” and has long made a point of sharing her passion for it when they have met at events, said Dana Walden, chairman and CEO of the Fox Television Group.
Carey filmed the episodes last week, Walden said.
Other guest stars confirmed for season three, which debuts Sept. 21, include actor Taye Diggs and rapper French Montana.