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Casting Roundup: 'Parenthood,' 'Hart of Dixie,' 'Glee,' 'The Office'

Matt Lauria

‘Friday Night Lights’ alum Matt Lauria joins ‘Parenthood’; Golden Brooks gets a grandfather on ‘Hart of Dixie’; ‘Glee’ continues to beef up its cast and more!

Matt Lauria‘Friday Night Lights’ alum Matt Lauria joins ‘Parenthood’; Golden Brooks gets a grandfather on ‘Hart of Dixie’; ‘Glee’ continues to beef up its cast and more!

Parenthood has signed Matt Lauria (The Chicago Code, Burn Notice, Friday Night Lights) for a recurring role on the family-centered NBC series. Reminiscent of how we left his FNL character when the show ended last year, Luke Cafferty (yes, I’m fangirling a bit), Lauria will play a soldier who has returned from Afghanistan and connects with Zeek, a fellow war veteran.

Lauria isn’t the first FNL alum to be cast by executive producer, Jason Katims. He joins former costars Michael B. Jordan (Vince Howard), Minka Kelly (Lyla Garrity), Angela Rawner (Regina Howard), and Derek Phillips (Billy Riggins). It’s always nice to see familiar faces outside Dillon, Texas.

Speaking of the south, Charlie Robinson (The Secret Life of the American Teenager, Night Court) will be showing up in BlueBell, Alabama on the CW’s Hart of Dixie. Robinson will play Ruby Jeffries’ (Golden Brooks of Girlfriends) surly grandfather. Ruby is a successful, witty woman, who returns home to BlueBell and becomes friends with Zoe Hart. Her grandfather will be coming along with her and the return to the south won’t be easy. She’ll have some unresolved issues with Lemon and Lavon.

Meanwhile, TV Line was the first to report that Fox’s Glee has cast Becca Tobin (Wiener & Wiener) and Melissa Benoist (Homeland, The Good Wife) as new McKinley high students, Kitty and Marley, for season four. This is part of the show’s attempt to bring new talent to the cast after losing many of its core to high school graduation. “They’re underdogs again,” said executive producer, Ian Brennan. “That room is half empty and they’re desperately trying to get 12 kids for Sectionals.” No official word yet on whether or not Kitty and Marley will be part of the new musical talent.

The Office is also rebooting itself for its ninth season. Jake Lacy (Better With You) will be a series regular along with Clark Duke (Greek) as the series rejuvenates itself amid changing cast members. Mindy Kaling and B.J. Novak will be returning for a handful of episodes with Novak continuing to write and direct episodes as well. Ed Helms, John Krasinski, and Jenna Fisher will all return to the show along with Catherine Tate, who was upped to a series regular for season 9 after a recurring spot in season 8. The series has also added two new executive producers, Dan Sterling and Brent Forrester after show runner Paul Lieberstein left to focus on other potential projects. The Office returns Thursday, September 20 at 9:30 p.m. on NBC.

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Amber Cunigan

Amber Cunigan is a sarcastic mid-twenties undergrad, extreme book hoarder, Netflix addict, and reality TV aficionado. She enjoys excessive amounts of chocolate and caffeine, tweeting, and all things Ezra Fitz and Ryan Gosling. When it comes to TV, she expects to be thoroughly entertained and when not, she will slam and mock you, but still tune in next week. She's a glutton for punishment. Basically, she's awesome.