Friday TV: The Artist Behind ‘Bambi’

AM_TyrusWONG_end-frame_blankUntil he died last year at age 106, Tyrus Wong was the oldest living Chinese American artist, whose work in film began in designing the bucolic, evocative scenes of Walt Disney’s “Bambi,” released 75 years ago. As recounted in Pamela Tom’s film tonight on “American Masters” (PBS, 9 p.m., check local listings), Wong then spent 26 years with Warner Bros., reading screenplays and creating paintings that art and set directors would then try to recreate for films as well known as “Rebel Without a Cause,” “The Wild Bunch,” “Sands of Iwo Jima” and “April in Paris.”

Wong was also a fine artist who exhibited with Picasso and Matisse, after emigrating to America from China at age nine and fighting early poverty and discrimination. The film is paired with a short documentary in which the makers of the 2014 film “The Dam Keeper” were influenced by him.

It seems about the time for a multi-network hurricane relief telethon. But the multi-network show tonight, “EIF Presents: XQ Super School Live” (ABC, CBS, Fox, NBC, 8 p.m.) is instead about high school innovation.

Two great online series return with new seasons today. The animated Hollywood tale, “Bojack Horseman” (Netflix, streaming) is back for its fourth season. And the second season of “One Mississippi” (Amazon, streaming) picks up on Tig Notaro’s droll, semi-autobiographical tale.

Ozzy Osbourne has nothing to do with the new seven-episode talk series “Third Rail with OZY” (PBS, 8:30 p.m., check local listings) that’s hosted by Carlos Watson of OZY Media. His first topic is the nature of truth and his guests include authors Roxane Gay and Malcolm Gladwell. It apparently has a live studio audience, as the other Friday talk show, where Ken Bone, S.E. Cupp, Adam Gopnik and Xiuhtezcatl Martinez are on “Real Time with Bill Maher” (HBO, 10 p.m.).

The History Channel moves into conspiracy theorizing with its special “The Dark Files” (History, 10 p.m.), an abandoned military base in Montauk, N.Y., that has been subject of rumors and myth.

Rapper Monie Love finds herself on “Million Dollar Matchmaker” (WeTV, 9 p.m.).

The four part docs-series “Fire Chasers” (Netflix, streaming) follows those fighting California wildfires.

The standup special “Gary Owen: I Got My Associates” (Showtime, 9 p.m.) stars the guy who is also the announcer on the new daytime Steve Harvey show.

“MTV Unplugged” (MTV, 8 p.m.) returns from mothballs with a performance by Shawn Mendes.

On “Raven’s Home” (Disney, 8 p.m.), she wonders if she’s being a good mom.

“Guy’s Family Road Trip” (Food, 9 p.m.) goes to the Alabama coastline.

Turner Classic Movies calls a cab tonight with “Taxi!” (8 p.m.), “The Catered Affair” (9:30 p.m.), “Carry on Cabby” (11:30 p.m.), “Taxi Driver” (1:30 a.m.) and “Night on Earth” (3:45 a.m.).

Baseball includes Tampa Bay at Boston (MLB, 8 p.m.).

College football includes Memphis at UCF (ESPNU, 6:30 p.m.), Oklahoma State at South Alabama (ESPN2, 8 p.m.) and Ohio at Purdue (Fox Sports 1, 8 p.m.).

And in the U.S. Open (ESPN2, noon; ESPN, 4 p.m.) the women’s doubles final is followed by the men’s semifinals.

Daytime Talk

Kelly Ripa and Ryan Seacrest: Jessica Alba, Gwendoline Christie, Fifth Harmony. The View: Toby Keith. The Talk: Ellen K, Kelsea Ballerini, Justin Hartley (rerun). Harry Connick: Anthony Anderson, Tracee Ellis Ross (rerun). Steve Harvey: Charlie Sheen, LeAnn Rimes. Ellen DeGeneres: Halle Berry, Ryan Adams. Wendy Williams: Rick Ross (rerun). The Real: Cheryl Burke, Remy Ma (rerun).

Late Talk

Stephen Colbert: Jessica Biel. Jimmy Kimmel: Jason Bateman, Richard Lewis, Jack Johnson. Jimmy Fallon: James Franco, Kendall Jenner, Pete Townshend, Alfie Boe. Seth Meyers: Bob Odenkirk, Florida Georgia Line, Roy Mayorga (rerun). James Corden: Taron Egerton, Damian Lillard. Carson Daly: Adrianne Palicki, the Shelters, Lauren Lapkus.

 

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