Welcome Back, Alex Mack

The star of our favorite show about a super-powered kid is returning to the airwaves. Also today: Ricky Gervais stops by an American office, the 2012 film schedule shifts to accommodate the end of the world, and TV casting news.

Despite this morning's unpleasant Anna Hathaway bit, today might not be a wash, casting news wise. I mean, just look at this! Larisa Oleynik, known to history as the star of Nickelodeon's seminal science fiction series The Secret World of Alex Mack, has landed a steady TV gig. OK, sure, it's on Hawaii Five-O, which will be known to history as "Huh?", but it's just nice that an old childhood favorite has found work in adulthood. She'll be playing an ex-CIA blah blah who goes to Hawaii to blah blah. Also, another TV favorite, Melora "Jan from The Office" Hardin, has landed a lead role on the TBS pilot The Wedding Band, also starring Brian Austin Green. Good for her! Good for David Silver! Good for everyone. Oh, and, some guy from Heroes got cast on that J.J. Abrams Alcatraz show, which is apparently about cops tracking down escaped Alcatraz inmates who suddenly appear in the present day. Huh. Huhhh. [Deadline]

Speaking of Heroes (I wish we weren't!), that show's creator, Tim Kring, has successfully pitched a pilot called Touch to Fox. Sadly (or gladly, maybe) it is not based on the Elmore Leonard novel. Rather it is about "an autistic, mute boy who can predict future events." Hm... by touching people? If that's the case we should retitle it The Littlest Dead Zone and use the Alcatraz guys' time travel magic to go back to the early '80s and cast Anthony Michael Hall in it. [The Wrap]

Already planning your movie viewing schedule for 2012? Well, hold it right there! Things are changing. Disney has decided to push its Tim Burton stop-motion picture Frankenweenie, an X-rated documentary about a Minnesota senator exploring his sexuality, from March to October. Taking the now-vacant March slot will be their John Carter of Mars, a space Western about a Civil War soldier played by Taylor Kitsch (did they have clothes during the Civil War? please tell me they didn't have clothes) who wakes up on Mars in the future or something and, etc. So it's Cowboys and Aliens, but moved off-world. So now that space adventure will be competing with another space adventure, Ridley Scott's mysterious Prometheus. That picture is about a big machine terraforming a distant planet, and is rumored to be some sort of what became of an intended prequel to the Alien franchise. That one sounds way more exciting. Why can't Taylor Kitsch be in that one? I'd volunteer to play the alien that jumps on his face. [THR]

More interesting TV news! Ricky Gervais will film a short cameo on the American version of Skins The Office. Just a quick little pop-in. Apparently he runs into Michael Scott somewhere. Then Gervais and Steve Carell amble off into the sunset forever, rich as monkeys, while John Krasinkski looks at the camera and makes the saddest smirkface you've ever seen. [EW]

One more bit of TV casting news. Michael Clarke Duncan, Oscar nominated Green Mile giant, has been cast as a regular on a spin-off of Bones. Hyunnghhh. There's going to be a Bones spin-off? Bones II: More Bones. Bones: Miami. Have you ever seen Bones? It is... Look, I like that Boreanaz has a job. I like it when former Buffy people have jobs. But Bones... Well, I don't know. Apparently the Bones spin-off, Deep Space Bones, is based on a series of books too, so at least they'll have source material to pull from for a while. Clarke Duncan is going to play a "tough rawhide cowboy philosopher" (is that a thing?) who's partnered up with a former military policeman who can find anything. That role has not yet been cast. May I suggest David Boreanaz? Or, hell, Anthony Stewart Head? Let's get these people working! Blucas, even! [Deadline]