Participant Media‘s network Pivot today announced the pickup of Sky Atlantic’s 12-episode drama series Fortitude starring Stanley Tucci and Michael Gambon. The series became available in the U.S. in December when Starz, which originally had committed to the project, pulled out. Pivot is designed as a younger skewing network than Starz, with its target demo being 18-34. As part of its upfront presentation, Pivot also announced an overhaul of its nightly topical series, TakePart Live. Beginning Monday, May 12, the hour-long late-night program will move to primetime (10 PM) with a new producer, Michael Davies’ Embassy Row, which is behind Bravo’s Watch What Happens Live and AMC’s Talking Dead/Bad. Also undergoing makeover is the hosting team of Jacob Soboroff and Cara Santa Maria, with only Soboroff coming back, joined by Sen. John McCain’s daughter Meghan McCain and comedian Eddie Huang.
Pivot also unveiled a development slate that includes eleven projects from production companies including IAC’s Electus, Universal Cable Prods., FremantleMedia North America/Pukeko Pictures, Funny or Die, and Eyeworks, and revealed premiere 2014-15 dates, including an August 8 debut for the sophomore season of coming-of-age comedy, Please Like Me, and the comedy Human Resources. “Our second slate demonstrates our significant investment in, and commitment to, groundbreaking content for the thought-leading segment of Generation Y we call ‘Upstanders,’” said Pivot president Evan Shapiro. Here is Pivot’s full slate: Read More »
Mia Kirshner (The L Word) and Waleed Zuaiter (Revolution, Homeland) have booked recurring roles on Netflix’s untitled psychological thriller drama from Sony Pictures TV. Written and executive produced by Damages creators Todd A. Kessler, Daniel Zelman and Glenn Kessler (KZK), the 13-episode series centers on a close-knit family of four adult siblings (Kyle Chandler, Ben Mendelsohn, Linda Cardellini, Norbert Leo Butz) whose secrets and scars are revealed when their black sheep brother (Mendelsohn) returns home. Kirshner, repped by APA, Wishlab and Characters, most recently shot a guest role on ABC pilot Clementine. Zuaiter, repped by Stone Manners Salners Agency and Ramos Management, will play Major Eckhardt, a mysterious authority figure in the Florida Keys who is having an affair with Meg Rayburn (Linda Cardellini). Zuaiter is coming off a starring role in the Oscar-nominated film Omar.
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Here’s a rundown of shows that will hit the airwaves for the first time between June 1 and the start of the 2014-15 TV season, along with those returning for new seasons or coming off hiatus. We will update when new dates are announced:
Related: Midseason Premiere Dates For New And Returning Series On Broadcast And Cable (January Through May)
Halt & Catch Fire (AMC, series premiere)
Mistresses (ABC, Season 2 premiere)
Beauty And The Beast (The CW, Season 2B premiere)
Famous In 12 (The CW, series premiere)
Jennifer Falls (TV Land, series premiere)
Orange Is The New Black (Netflix, Season 2 premiere)
Power (Starz, series premiere)
Murder In The First (TNT, series premiere)
Major Crimes (TNT, Season 3 premiere)
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UPDATE, 3:30 PM: The network has now announced its full summer schedule joining the series premieres of The Last Ship and Legends. It includes the series premiere of Steven Bochco’s new crime drama Murder In The First on Monday, June 9 at 1o PM, following the Season 3 premiere of Major Crimes at 9 PM. The full schedule and the newly released Murder In The First trailer is below the original story.
PREVIOUS, MONDAY AM: The series premiere of TNT‘s action drama The Last Ship from Michael Bay will premiere on Sunday, June 22 at 9 PM, followed by the Season 4 bow of the network’s sci-fi drama Falling Skies at 10 PM. TNT’s other new drama, Legends, has been given a 9 PM Wednesday, August 20 launch date. The trio join returning summer runs for Major Crimes, Rizzoli & Isles, Perception and Franklin & Bash, new episodes of Dallas, and the launch of Stephen Bochco’s new crime drama Murder In The First — those dates have yet to be announced. Today’s news was announced during TNT’s panel at SXSW, which includes a sneak peek of Last Ship, which stars Eric Dane and Rhona Mitra and centers on a Navy vessel that may be humanity’s last hope in the wake of a worldwide catastrophe. Check out the sneak below as well as trailers for the other two series: Read More »
UPDATED: Richard Cabral and Johnny Ortiz have joined the ensemble cast of John Ridley’s American Crime pilot for ABC Studios. The ABC project centers on the home invasion and murder of a young war veteran and his beauty queen wife in Modesto, CA. APA-repped Cabral will play Hector Tonz, a hustler and occasional drug dealer who is implicated in the murder and attack of the young couple. Ortiz will play Tony Gutierrez, Alonzo’s son who is eager for independence and sick of his dad’s rules.
Related: 2014 ABC Pilots
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EXCLUSIVE: Actress Garcelle Beauvais has signed with APA across the board. The NYPD Blue and Jamie Foxx Show alum and former Franklin & Bash regular, who departed the TNT legal dramedy in 2012, guest-starred recently on Necessary Roughness, Psych, and Arrested Development and made big screen appearances in Flight and White House Down. She next stars in indie drama And Then There Was You, from helmer Leila Djansi. Beauvais is additionally repped by Luber Roklin Management and Edelstein, Laird & Sobel.
The Gersh Agency has signed writer-director Eric England (Madison County), whose low-budget STD horror flick Contracted was released by IFC Midnight last fall. The helmer is next set to direct TJ Cimfel-scripted Hellbent, about a woman who joins a rescue crew to look for her husband after a mining accident and instead discovers a demonic presence. England is also developing horror pic The Sirens with Barbed Wire Films’ Brad Douglas, in which a group of deep-sea fishermen encounter four mysterious young women and get hooked into a ritual sacrifice. He’s repped by Vol. Unlimited Entertainment and Miloknay Weiner, LLP.
Related: IFC Midnight Acquires STD Horror ‘Contracted’
Toni Trucks (The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 2) has been tapped for a regular role on TNT’s legal dramedy Franklin & Bash. Trucks will play Anita Herrera, the new recruit Attorney for the Franklin & Bash offices, a tough, smart and attractive Georgetown lawyer with a great sense of humor who can hold her own with the big boys. Trucks appeared as a recurring on CBS’ Hostages and next will be seen in Disney’s Alexander And The Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day. She is repped by Greene & Associates and Rugolo Entertainment. Read More »
Malcolm McDowell (Franklin & Bash) is set to co-star opposite Gael García Bernal in Amazon’s comedy pilot Mozart In The Jungle, directed by Paul Weitz. Based on the memoir by Blair Tindal, the project, written by Roman Coppola, Jason Schwartzman and Alex Timbers, is all about sex, drugs and classical music and shows that what happens behind the curtains at the symphony can be just as captivating as what happens onstage. McDowell plays Thomas, a seasoned conductor being forced into retirement by the arrival of hotshot new conductor Rodrigo (Bernal). Also cast in the pilot are Lola Kirke (Reaching For The Moon) as the impressionable oboist Hailey, Bernadette Peters (Smash) as Gloria, the Chairwoman of the Board of the symphony, Saffron Burrows (Law And Order: CI) as Cynthia, a cellist in the middle of an affair with Thomas, Peter Vack (CBGB) as Joshua, a talented dancer out of Juilliard who becomes Hailey’s love interest, and Hannah Dunne (This Is It) as Lizzie, Hailey’s friend and roommate.
Brianne Howey has landed a recurring role on ABC Family’s teen drama Twisted. She will play Whitney, a free spirit who is full of life and takes chances. She comes to Green Grove to live with her father (Ivan Sergei) for a fresh start. Howey’s TV credits include Revenge, The Middle, NCIS and 90210. She is repped by Untitled Entertainment.
TNT‘s Franklin & Bash has snagged another late renewal. The legal dramedy has become the last of the cable network’s summer scripted series to learn its fate, scoring a 10-episode fourth-season pickup. In Season 3, stars Breckin Meyer and Mark-Paul Gosselaar were joined by Heather Locklear, who had a one-year deal, so I hear a new agreement needs to be ironed out for her to return for Season 4. Franklin & Bash opened its third season in the new Wednesday 9 PM slot with 2 million Live+Same Day viewers and closed it out with 2.2 million for the finale. Created by Kevin Falls and Bill Chais, the buddy show is produced by FanFare Prods in association with Sony Pictures TV. Franklin & Bash joins TNT’s recently renewed Rizzoli & Isles, Major Crimes, Perception and Falling Skies, while King & Maxwell was cancelled.
There will be no second season for TNT drama King & Maxwell. The procedural, starring Rebecca Romijn and Jon Tenney as Secret Service agents-turned-private investigators, was pretty stable during his run, opening with 3.5 million viewers in June and closing out its first season with the same viewership. But it followed Major Crimes, which consistently drew 5 million-plus. With the cancellation of King & Maxwell, the only one remaining TNT bubble series is Franklin & Bash. The cable net last month renewed Rizzoli & Isles, Major Crimes, Perception and Falling Skies.
EXCLUSIVE: Actor Breckin Meyer is establishing himself as an in-demand series creator. Thursdays, an ensemble single-camera from the Men At Work creator, has landed at NBC with a script order plus penalty. The project, from Sony TV, where Meyer is under an overall deal, and studio-based Fanfare, revolves around a group of male friends and a weekly Thursday guys dinner that has become a tradition in their busy, chaotic lives. Meyer is co-writing the script with Jesse Stern (NCIS) and will executive produce alongside Fanfare’s Jamie Tarses. Thursdays further expands Meyer’s relationship with Sony TV and Fanfare which are also behind his starring vehicle as an actor, TNT dramedy Franklin & Bash, as well as his first series as a creator, TBS comedy Men At Work, which was recently renewed for a third season. Meyer, repped by ICM Partners, Thruline and David Weber, previously worked as a writer on Adult Swim’s Robot Chicken, on which he also is a voice cast member. He also co-wrote an episode of Franklin & Bash last year.
EXCLUSIVE: 24 alumna Sarah Clarke has been cast as the female lead in AMC’s drama pilot Line Of Sight. The project, from creator Blake Masters, director Jonathan Demme, Fox TV Studios and AMC Studios, tells the story of Lewis Bernt, a National Transportation Safety Board investigator who survives a mysterious plane crash, bringing him on an emotionally disorienting quest to discover the accident’s cause. Clarke will play Lewis’ wife Dot, an emotionally complicated woman trying to save her marriage and the life with her husband. Clarke, repped by Gersh and Michael Levine Management, is recurring on the new CW series Tomorrow People and just finished indie The Signal opposite Laurence Fishburne. Read More »
TNT has ordered 15-episode new seasons of three of its highest performing original summer series, Rizzoli & Isles, The Closer spinoff Major Crimes and Perception, for next summer. The three join recently renewed Falling Skies. No decisions have been made yet on freshman King & Maxwell and Franklin & Bash, whose future is uncertain, as is that of the 2 reality series TNT launched in the summer, The Hero and 72 Hours.
The four renewed TNT dramas rank among basic cable’s Top 10 series with total viewers this summer, with Rizzoli & Isles leading the pack at No.1. Falling Skies and Rizzoli & Isles are two of basic cable’s Top 5 dramas with adults 18-49. “With the renewals of Rizzoli & Isles, Major Crimes, Falling Skies and Perception, TNT has built an incredibly strong arsenal of scripted series,” Michael Wright said. “And it’s only going to get stronger with the addition of Mob City and the return of Dallas this winter, not to mention the debuts of The Last Ship and Legends next summer.” Read More »
UPDATE: The Jersey Boys movie has cast its Bob Gaudio. And they’ve plucked him right off the stage. Erich Bergen will reprise his role of the Four Seasons singer in the film after playing Gaudio in the Tony-winning Broadway show’s first national tour and onstage in LA and Las Vegas. The real Gaudio has a music credit on the film and in real life also wrote songs for Neil Diamond, Nancy Sinatra, Diana Ross, and Michael Jackson. Bergen makes his feature debut this Fall in How Sweet It Is with Paul Sorvino and Erika Christensen. His TV credits include appearances on Gossip Girl, Person Of Interest, Desperate Housewives, Franklin & Bash, and the CW pilot Joey Dakota. Onstage Bergen recently starred as Billy Crocker in the National Tour of Roundabout Theatre Company’s Anything Goes, and appeared in Hero at the Marriott Lincolnshire and Rudi Gernreich in the LA premiere of The Temperamentals. He’s repped by Don Buchwald & Associates and Persona Management.
PREVIOUS: Clint Eastwood‘s Jersey Boys adaptation keeps filling out the cast of its jukebox musical cast. Deadline hears that Mike Doyle (Shameless, A Gifted Man, Law & Order: SVU) has closed a deal to play Bob Crewe, the music producer who helps mold Frankie Valli and his bandmates into the Four Seasons, in a non-singing role. … Read More »
Things are looking up a bit production-wise in LA County says FilmLA. On-location production rose 8.6% over the same period last year said the non-profit permitting group in a second quarter report released Tuesday. While features production inched up just half of a percentage from last year, the biggest bump was in the TV category which rose 26.6% from 2Q 2012 to 4,310 PPD. “Television is the really the growth area this quarter. In the case of TV Dramas, it’s just getting us back to where we were before the disaster that was 2012. We’re also seeing growth in new areas, like Web TV. We’re happy to have these new projects here, but we recognize that the job and spending impacts aren’t the same,” FilmLA President Paul Audley told me today. On his inaugural address upon being sworn into office on June 30, new LA Mayor Eric Garcetti pledged to curb runaway productions taking work out of LA and appoint a Film Czar to coordinate the film industry’s relationship with the city. Back in February, LA CIty Council unanimously passed a measures to eliminating fees that TV pilots pay to film in the city and waive similar fees for the first year for any LA-filmed pilot that is picked up to series. Garcetti first introduced the measures back in 2012.
Overall, FilmLA’s report estimates that there were 12,173 PPD in the second quarter of 2013 as compared to 11,209 PPD during … Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: Nerdist Industries and Octagon have announced the hosts and correspondents of this year’s Course Of The Force Olympic-style Lightsaber relay race leading into 2013′s San Diego Comic-Con. VH1′s Carrie Keagan, Ahsoka Tano (Clone Wars), Ashley Eckstein and Nerdist Industries founder Chris Hardwick have been tapped for the 2nd annual Lucasfilm-backed event raising money for the Make-A-Wish foundation, along with fellow geek-friendy TV and online personalities Jessica Chobot, Alison Haislip, Alex Albrecht and What’s Trending‘s Shira Lazar. The Star Wars-themed race winds down the California coast from Skywalker Ranch in Marin County on July 9 to LA and San Diego, where it ends July 16 ahead of Comic-Con’s preview night. Read More »
The Entourage movie, the fourth season of MTV’s Teen Wolf, the fifth season of Justified, the upcoming CBS Studios-produced King And Maxwell and Pretty Little Liars Season 5 are among the 31 projects picked this year in the state’s $100 million film and TV tax credit lottery, the California Film Commission announced today. Also on the list of winners is a previously unannounced sequel of Blumhouse’s upcoming horror/thriller feature The Purge, which debuts on June 7 from Universal.
Given the green light by Warner Bros back in January, the feature version of HBO’s eight season Hollywood series was always going to film a portion of its big screen debut in California but now they have a 20% tax credit to use. Among the others selected, Shane Brennan’s P.I. series King and Maxwell is one of the few new TV series to get subsidies this year and with a 25% tax credit, a move to California as a Relocating Series. Ordered earlier this year for 10-episode season by TNT, the pilot for the series, which stars Rebecca Romijn and Jon Tenney, was shot in Canada. There were a lot of familiar names this year too. This is the second year that Teen Wolf has received an allocation from the state program. It was selected as a Relocating TV Series in 2012, which made it automatically eligible this year under the Film Commission’s rules. TV series Justified and Pretty Little Liars, who already film in the Golden State and received tax credits last year as well, were re-eligible this year under regulations that place previously selected TV series at the top of the queue for future seasons. See the names of all of the winners of the 2013 California Production Tax Credit Lottery after the jump. Read More »
2013-14 NBC New Series
About A Boy – Based on the best-selling Nick Hornby (“High Fidelity,” “An Education”) novel, writer Jason Katims (“Friday Night Lights,” “Parenthood”) and director Jon Favreau (“Iron Man,” “Revolution”) present a different kind of coming-of-age story. Will Freeman (David Walton, “Bent,” “Perfect Couples”) lives a charmed existence as the ultimate man-child. After writing a hit song, he was granted a life of free time, free love and freedom from financial woes. He’s single, unemployed and loving it. So imagine his surprise when Fiona (Minnie Driver, “Good Will Hunting,” “Barney’s Version”), a needy single mom and her oddly charming 11-year-old son, Marcus (Benjamin Stockham, “1600 Penn”), move in next door and disrupt his perfect world. When Marcus begins dropping by his home unannounced, Will’s not so sure about being a kid’s new best friend, until, of course, Will discovers that women find single dads irresistible. That changes everything and a deal is struck: Marcus will pretend to be Will’s son and, in return, Marcus is allowed to chill at Will’s house. Before he realizes it, Will starts to enjoy the visits and even finds himself looking out for the kid. In fact, this newfound friendship may very well teach him a thing or two that he never imagined possible — about himself and caring for others. Writer Jason Katims, director Jon Favreau, Tim Bevan (“Les Misérables,” “About a Boy”), Eric Fellner (“Les Misérables,” “About a Boy”), Liza Chasin (“Les Misérables,” “About … Read More »