News Nuggets: Jimmy Fallon’s ‘Tonight Show’ dominating late night after one month

After just one month as new host of “The Tonight Show,” Jimmy Fallon is already dominating his late night competitors. He is regularly averaging 4.26 million viewers compared to 2.83 million for Jimmy Kimmel and $2.78 million for David Letterman. Kimmel has especially been putting up a strong fight, hosting a week of shows from the SXSW Festival in Austin, Texas. Those shows gave “Jimmy Kimmel Live” a slight uptick but nothing to match Fallon so far. Deadline.

Oscar-nominated director David Fincher (“The Social Network”) wants to helm the new Steve Jobs biopic, but there is one catch. He will take the job only if Christian Bale is cast in the lead role. The script is penned by Oscar and Emmy champ Aaron Sorkin and is based on the best-selling Walter Isaacson biography of the Apple visionary. Cinema Blend.

Will there be a “Game of Thrones” theatrical film? Author George R.R. Martin says he is considering that option since “the scope of later books may exceed the paramenters” of television. Martin added, “The books get bigger and bigger. It might need a feature to tie things up, something with a feature budget, like $100 million for two hours. Those dragons get real big, you know.” The fourth season debuts April 6 on HBO. TV Guide.

The Tony Awards administration committee determines the categories for a few more of the 2014 contenders. Jessie Mueller is now placed as a lead actress for “Beautiful” for her role as the famed singer/songwriter Carole King. Debra Messing and Brian F. O’Byrne are also contending as leads for the play “Outside Mullingar.” The Tony Awards will air on CBS and will be hosted by Hugh Jackman on June 8. Playbill.

NBC renews four more shows for the 2014 fall season. “Chicago Fire,” “Chicago P.D.,” and “Grimm” will all be returning next year. While they had unofficially said “Parks and Recreation” would be back a few weeks ago, the network made it official as well. Previous pick-ups included “The Blacklist,” “Celebrity Apprentice,” and “The Voice.” TV Line.

The film “Begin Again” (formerly known as “Can a Song Save Your Life?”) will highlight the closing night of the 2014 Tribeca Film Festival. Written and directed by John Carney, the movie stars Keira Knightley, Mark Ruffalo, Hailee Steinfeld, and Adam Levine. Carney previously won the Sundance Audience Award in 2006 for the film “Once.” The final night of Tribeca in New York will be April 26. Thompson on Hollywood.

Country music legend Merle Haggard is slated to receive the Crystal Milestone Award at the 49th ACM Awards on April 6. In his 50-year career, Haggard already won as Most Promising Vocalist in 1965 and then six Male Vocalist awards. He joined the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1994 and was a Kennedy Center honoree. Previous recipients of this award have included Jason Aldean, Garth Brooks, Kenny Chesney, and Taylor Swift. TV by the Numbers.

ASCAP will honor rocker Tom Petty with their Founders Award at the Pop Music Awards. The event will be held in Hollywood on April 23. A member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Petty is best known as the leader of Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers. Previous recipients of the award include Burt Bacharch and Hal David, Jackson Browne, Elvis Costello, Billy Joel, Paul McCartney, Smokey Robinson, Stevie Wonder, and Neil Young. Variety.

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