2013-14 The CW New Series
The Originals – Family is power. The Original Vampire family swore it to each other a thousand years ago. They pledged to remain together, always and forever. Now, centuries have passed and the bonds of family are broken. Time, tragedy and hunger for power have torn the Original Family apart. When Klaus Mikaelson, the original vampire-werewolf hybrid, receives a mysterious tip that a plot is brewing against him in the supernatural melting pot that is the French Quarter of New Orleans, he returns to the city his family helped build. Klaus’ questions lead him to a reunion with his diabolical former protégé, Marcel, a charismatic vampire who has total control over the human and supernatural inhabitants of New Orleans. Determined to help his brother find redemption, Elijah follows Klaus and soon learns that the werewolf Hayley has also come to the French Quarter searching for clues to her family history, and has fallen into the hands of a powerful witch named Sophie. Tensions between the town’s supernatural factions are nearing a breaking point as Marcel commands his devoted followers and rules with absolute power. For Klaus, the thought of answering to his powerful protégé is unthinkable, and he vows to reclaim what was once his – the power, the city and his family. While they wait to see if their sister Rebekah will leave Mystic Falls and join them, Klaus and Elijah form an uneasy alliance with the witches to … Read More »
Steven Soderbergh tonight unveils what he says is his final feature film Behind The Candelabra. The film explores the secret father/son/lover relationship between Liberace (Michael Douglas) and his valet Scott Thorson. It’s playing in competition here at Cannes, even though HBO will premiere it in the U.S. on Sunday before it gets a traditional overseas theatrical release. If that seems complex, it fits Soderbergh, a true maverick who has always been up for putting himself on the line for disruptive, groundbreaking fare. That began with sex, lies, and videotape. The movie won the Audience Award at Sundance and the Palme d’Or at Cannes before grossing nearly $25 million in 1989 and earning him an original screenplay Oscar nom. It is viewed as the picture that turned indie film into a viable business. “He is the father of this movement,” said Harvey Weinstein, who distributed the film. “Before him, there was no independent movie that did more than $5 million. This was the one that went out, almost wide, in the summer — where they said these films could not play — and broke the art house ghetto.” An Oscar (for directing Traffic) later, and a career that spanned every genre and enterprising release strategy (he aroused the ire of theater owners by road testing the day-and-date release platform that is now a Sundance deal staple), the 50-year-old Soderbergh talks with Deadline about Behind The Candelabra, indie economics and more.
Related: Steven Soderbergh’s State Of Cinema Talk
DEADLINE: All week, I’ve heard people here debate whether Michael Douglas and Matt Damon will lose possible Oscar nominations because the film plays first on HBO, before a more traditional international theatrical rollout. You intended it originally to be an indie feature. Explain the gyrations that ended up with this unusual release strategy.
SODERBERGH: We were trying to get the last $5 million to finish it off. The movie cost $22 million and change. We’d raised $18 million foreign and we just needed this piece. Superficially it would seem like a no-brainer, but when you look at the realities of the economics of putting a movie into wide release, you have to gross $65 million-$75 million just to get out. People just didn’t have that appetite for this kind of material.
DEADLINE: How different were things back when you conceived it as an indie and took several years to get to it and get a script by Richard LaGravanese?
SODERBERGH: There’s no question in my mind that if it had been five years earlier that we’d probably would have gotten it. But the pressure has gotten so extreme. I talk to people at the studios about it all the time. Somebody told me last week that they are doing a better job controlling movie costs but that marketing costs keep moving at a trajectory faster than everything else. Another terrifying thing is, you used to be able to bank on stars. If you had certain elements in a certain kind of movie, you could bank on doing X. Now you are guaranteed nothing. Read More »
Brian Brooks is a Deadline contributor.
After co-writing last summer’s animated box office hit Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted, Noah Baumbach returns to the Specialty realm with Frances Ha, which debuts this weekend theatrically. Baumbach co-wrote with Greta Gerwig, who also stars in the film. Also opening is veteran TV director Craig Zisk’s The English Teacher, starring Julianne Moore. French period drama Augustine joins Friday’s newcomers, starring Chiara Mastroianni, while Sundance Midnight thriller Black Rock also joins the fray along with Venice Golden Lion winner Pieta and Guy Pearce starter, 33 Postcards.
The English Teacher
Director: Craig Zisk
Writers: Dan Chariton, Stacy Chariton
Cast: Lily Collins, Julianne Moore, Michael Angarano, Greg Kinnear, Nathan Lane
The feature, directed by Craig Zisk had its World Premiere at the recent Tribeca Film Festival, though distributor Cinedigm caught a private sneak of the film last fall in New York. “We fell in love with the playful wit of the screenplay, the polished direction by Craig Zisk and the terrific performances by the stellar cast, including Julianne Moore, Greg Kinnear, Nathan Lane, Michael Angarano and Lilly Collins”, noted Cinedigm’s co-president entertainment Susan Margolins. “We chose this weekend to follow closely on the heels of the film’s premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival.” The comedy-drama stars Moore as a high school English teacher who lives in a small town living a simple existence. A former pupil (Angarano) returns after failing to succeed as a playwright in New York, and she convinces him to produce his play at the school. But his overbearing father has other plans. Read More »
The CW schedule features far more sweeping changes than any network this year. Like last fall, the CW is introducing three new series this fall — The Vampire Diaries spinoff The Originals, costume drama Reign and sci-fi drama The Tomorrow People — with three more series — dramas The 100; Star-Crossed; and reality show Famous In 12, from the TMZ team — on tap for midseason. For a second year in a row, the CW will hold its fall launches until October to avoid the blitz of new shows and allow for more uninterrupted originals. Here is the schedule, followed by analysis and descriptions of the CW’s new series:
Related: CW New Series First Looks: Video
CW FALL 2013-2014 SCHEDULE
(New programs in UPPER CASE; NN=New Night)
8-9 PM – Hart Of Dixie (NN)
9-10 PM – Beauty And The Beast (NN)
8-9 PM – THE ORIGINALS
9-10 PM – Supernatural (NN)
8-9 PM – Arrow
9-10 PM – THE TOMORROW PEOPLE
8-9 PM – The Vampire Diaries
9-10 PM – REIGN
8-9 PM – The Carrie Diaries (NN)
9-10 PM – America’s Next Top Model
The CW is shaking up its schedule big time, with changes on every night. In all, only the network’s two top series, The Vampire Diaries and Arrow, are staying put. They are being used to launch two of the CW’s highest-profile new series, the Mary, Queen of Scots drama Reign and the Greg Berlanti-Julie Plec produced futuristic The Tomorrow People. CW brass has high hopes for female-centered reign, so it opted to launch the series behind the network’s series with the highest concentration of female viewers, Vampire Diaries.
Related: ‘Nikita’ To End Run With Final Six-Episode Installment Read More »
BREAKING: Park Pictures Features signed Philip Seymour Hoffman to star in God’s Pocket, the upcoming film directorial debut from John Slattery, who adapted the Pete Dexter novel with Alex Metcalf. Richard Jenkins, Christina Hendricks and John Turturro will co-star. Gersh is selling. Park Pictures Features is producing with Hoffman’s Cooper’s Town Productions and Slattery’s Shoestring Pictures, which makes its producing debut. Producing is Sam Bisbee, Jackie Kelman Bisbee, Slattery, Lance Acord and Galt Niederhoffer for Park Pictures and Emily Ziff and Hoffman for Cooper’s Town. Read More »
BBC Three Takes ‘Orphan Black’
In a west-to-east move, Britain’s BBC Three has acquired the BBC America original series Orphan Black. The 10-part drama, co-created by Graeme Manson (Flashpoint) and John Fawcett (Spartacus), centers on a street-wise chameleon whose life changes dramatically after witnessing the suicide of a woman who looks just like her. Taking on the woman’s identity, boyfriend and bank account, she is thrust into a kaleidoscopic mystery. Tatiana Maslany stars. BBC America just renewed the series in the U.S. It’s produced by Temple Street Prods in association with BBC America and Space.
‘The Face’ UK Names Models To Join Naomi Campbell
Sky Living has added supermodels Erin O’Connor and Caroline Winberg alongside Naomi Campbell for the UK version of model reality show The Face. The U.S. version, produced by Shine America, launched on Oxygen in February. The local UK format will be co-produced by Princess Productions and Shine TV. The three models will mentor three teams of four girls over eight weeks as they compete in photo shoots, runway shows and commercials. The last girl standing will be crowned the face of a globally known brand. Production starts in the spring. Campbell is exec producing. Read More »
As expected, ABC has cancelled Happy Endings after three seasons. But not all is lost for the cult comedy. Sony TV, the leading studio behind the underrated comedy series, had reached out to a couple of networks, including USA, about the possibility of continuing the comedy there if ABC did not renew it. USA, which has been looking to break into the half-hour original series space, had expressed interest and has had discussions about picking up Happy Endings in case of a cancellation. No real conversations had been held, with the series now officially available, such are expected to begin.
If the financials can be worked out, a Happy Endings pickup would be fortuitous for USA, which has been actively developing half-hour comedies and has ordered several pilots but has yet to greenlight a half-hour series. USA had been looking to have an original comedy on tap for the fall premiere of its marquee off-network series Modern Family. Happy Endings would be a suitable companion for Modern Family as it already spent two seasons on ABC paired with the Emmy-winning family comedy. Happy Endings did well behind Modern Family, but its fortunes changed this past fall when it was moved to Tuesday to form a comedy block with Don’t Trust The B—- At Apt. 23 in a crowded comedy hour. Despite strong cult following and critical praise, Happy Endings struggled mightily on Tuesday and in its last Friday slot. ABC brass had been strongly supporting the show … Read More »
I hear that there is a strong possibility the current third season of Showtime‘s Borgias is the papal drama’s last as a regular series. No final decisions have been made, with Showtime brass expected to wait until Season 3 ends its run, but I hear the drama, created by Neil Jordan, is considering wrapping its story with a two-hour movie.
The Borgias producers originally envisioned the series starring Jeremy Irons as the cunning Pope Alexander VI as going for four seasons, matching the run of Showtime predecessor The Tudors. But during the recent launch campaign for Season 3, Jordan indicated that he had changed plans. “I would like to finish it with a two-hour movie,” he told the British press. “Another 10 episodes is kind of exhausting. I’ve mapped out a movie, which, if (Showtime brass) agree, will shoot in June with the same cast, and finally the Pope will die horribly.” I hear at the moment Showtime toppers are leaning toward not doing a fourth season of Borgias, though that may change as the series is gaining ratings momentum, The 10-episode third season launched on Showtime last month to 582,000 viewers, down slightly (4%) from the 2012 second season opener. But the most recent Episode 3 drew the biggest audience (674,000 viewers) and largest total night viewership (918,000) of the season. Some continuation of Borgias beyond Season 3 would be in line with Showtime entertainment president David … Read More »
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Ed Westwick Has A ‘Bone In The Throat’
EXCLUSIVE: Ed Westwick will play the lead in the film adaptation of Anthony Bourdain’s foodie noir thriller novel Bone In The Throat. Burn Gorman (The Dark Knight Rises, Revenge) and Liam Cunningham (Game Of Thrones) have also joined the cast of the film to be helmed by commercials director Graham Henman in his feature debut. He co-wrote the screenplay with Mark Townend. Lenny Beckerman and Peter Heslop are producing the story of a sous-chef at the hottest restaurant in London’s East End who becomes embroiled in his uncle’s underground mob activity when he witnesses him commit a murder. Executive producer Maggie Monteith of Dignity Film Finance is backing the picture set to shoot in London in the fall. Westwick is repped by Michael Hallett at Emptage Hallet. Cunningham and Gorman are repped by Management 360 and the UK’s Independent Talent.
Fox, Bulgari Roll Out Red Carpet For Cannes ‘Cleopatra’
Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment is partnering with jeweler Bulgari to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Joseph L. Mankiewicz’s legendary Cleopatra. A restored 243-minute version will have its world premiere at the Cannes Film Festival on May 21, hosted by Jessica Chastain and attended by members of the families of stars Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton. The screening will be followed by a reception featuring pieces on display from Taylor’s personal jewelry collection. The exhibition also will include original costumes from the film which are on loan from Cinecittà. Following the Cannes premiere, Twentieth Century Fox will release Cleopatra in limited theatrical engagements in more than 200 theaters around the world. The 50th anniversary Blu-ray Cleopatra debuts May 28. Read More »
Sutton Foster and Jesse Tyler Ferguson unveiled the nominations for the 2013 Tony Awards this morning. Here are the nominees in the categories Deadline readers might care about. BTW, nothing for Bette Midler as Sue Mengers, and Al Pacino and Jessica Chastain were among those also snubbed:
Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike
The Testament of Mary
The Assembled Parties
Bring It On: The Musical
A Christmas Story, The Musical
Matilda The Musical Read More »
Johnny Depp and Meryl Streep filming together and singing. Who can resist? Not Disney any longer. It’s taken 16 months to get off the ground — ever since January 2012, when the studio sent out a press release announcing Rob Marshall (Chicago, Nine) would be directing Stephen Sondheim’s iconic 1987 Broadway musical Into The Woods as a feature film for Disney. A table read was held in NYC this past October featuring Donna Murphy, Megan Hilty, Christine Baranski, Allison Janney and quite a few other Broadway stars. Buzz of Streep’s interest first surfaced last summer and this past week Marshall confirmed in an interview to Playbill that she was “in” to the play the witch. Today Variety reported Depp’s interest. Now I’ve confirmed that Johnny and Meryl “almost have their deals wrapped up for the film,” according to sources. Marshall directed 2011’s Pirates Of The Caribbean 4 (which might have been more palatable as a musical because it stunk as the franchise’s fourquel) so he’s already Mouse friendly. The original musical with music and lyrics by Sondheim and book by James Lapine is about a childless baker and his wife who attempt to lift a family curse by journeying into the woods to confront the witch that put the spell on them. Along the way, they encounter classic fairy tale characters. Depp previously starred in the DreamWorks … Read More »
J.J. Abrams‘ Bad Robot is in negotiations for the rights to Stephen King‘s bestselling 2011 novel 11/22/63. The deal is being done through Warner Bros TV, where Bad Robot is under a deal. I hear the plan is to adapt the book as a TV series or miniseries, likely for cable. 11/22/63 centers on Jake, an unassuming divorced English teacher who stumbles upon a time portal that leads to 9/9/1958 and goes on a quest to try and prevent the assassination of John F. Kennedy, which occurred on November 22, 1963. Bad Robot, which received an early renewal for NBC’s Revolution earlier today, had been looking to expand its TV business to cable. In addition to Revolution, the company has CBS drama Person Of Interest also renewed for next season. The deal for 11/22/63 comes on the heels of CBS’ green light for a drama series based on King’s novel Under The Dome, which will air this summer.
SAG-AFTRA announced today that the deal reached with the ad industry April 7 on new television and radio commercials contracts was approved unanimously after National Board meetings this weekend. Next, it will be sent to the full membership of 160,000 for ratification. For the first time, the SAG-AFTRA single union has included the documents about what the tentative commercials contract says: They are located here and here.
LOS ANGELES (April 21, 2013) – The SAG-AFTRA National Board of Directors met in Los Angeles April 20 and 21 and took action on several items including approval of the recently negotiated commercials agreements.
The National Board unanimously approved the deal reached with the ad industry Apr. 7 on new television and radio commercials contracts. The contracts will result in $238 million in wage increases and other payments for all categories of performers, improvements in cable use fees, increases in payments for work on the Internet and new media platforms, and an increase in the late payment fee. Formal negotiations between SAG-AFTRA and the advertising industry began on Feb. 14 and concluded April 6.
Summary of New Provisions 2013 SAG-AFTRA Commercials Contract
Summary of New Provisions 2013 SAG-AFTRA Radio Recorded Commercials Contract
Read More »
It’s over for NBC’s new dating series Ready For Love after two low-rated airings, while underrated Friday drama Grimm is getting an upgrade. Beginning April 30, Grimm will move to the Tuesday 10 PM slot, airing behind a two-hour episode of The Voice, and will remain on Tuesday through May 21. Grimm will have a two-hour Voice lead-in for two more weeks, while it is unclear what will air in the Tuesday 9 PM hour on May 14 and May 21. Grimm will be replaced in the Friday 9 PM hour by newsmagazine Dateline, which will be leading into Rock Center. It is unclear when or where (or if) the remaining episodes of Ready For Love will air. The dating reality series executive produced by Eva Longoria was originally slated to air on Sundays this midseason. When Smash crashed and burned in its Season 2 return, NBC opted to launch Ready For Love on Tuesday instead, with the show getting a plum Voice lead-in. But after a slow start, Ready For Love dropped to a 1.3/4 in adults 18-49 in its second airing this week despite a huge Voice lead-in.
For its second original drama series, DirecTV will be keeping company with Neil LaBute. The satcaster formally announced a 10-episode order to drama Full Circle, which is described as a modern day La Ronde meets My Dinner With André. The director, screenwriter and playwright’s unconventionally structured TV series debut will examine the human condition through conversations between 11 people whose lives, unbeknownst to them, are intertwined. The project, which had been in the works at DirecTV for months, was developed as a low budget miniseries, and is expected to be made for under $1 million total for all 10 episodes.
Nick Hamm of Momentum TV, executive producer of DirecTV’s first original series, Rogue, also exec produces Full Circle. LaBute is series creator and serves as writer and co-executive producer. Production will start in LA this summer for air on DirecTV’s Audience in the fall. FremantleMedia International is handling global distribution.
The addition of a 13th season of NBC‘s 1:35 AM show comes amid speculation of big changes in the network’s late-night lineup that started with official word that Jimmy Fallon is taking over The Tonight Show from Jay Leno in 2014. Yesterday there were reports that NBC was in talks with Alec Baldwin about taking on the slot now occupied by Last Call With Carson Daly. That appears to be off the front burner now — at least for this year. Here’s NBC’s release:
UNIVERSAL CITY, Calif. — April 10, 2013 — NBC has renewed its innovative late-night series “Last Call with Carson Daly,” acclaimed as TV’s unofficial music tastemaker, for a 13th season, it was announced by Paul Telegdy, President, Alternative and Late Night Programming, NBC.
“We are thrilled to continue our relationship with Carson who has broken the mold, creating his own unique late-night show format with ‘Last Call,’“ said Telegdy. “The show has become a platform for emerging artists – and Carson’s engaging interview style has made it the place for insightful conversations with an eclectic group of new stars as well as established icons and news makers.”
Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: Barbara Marshall has been brought on to write Summit Entertainment’s Exorcism Diaries. The log line is being kept under wraps, but the film is inspired by the book The Real Story Behind The Exorcist by Mark Opsasnick. Exorcism Diaries is being produced by Roy Lee, Sonny Mallhi and Doug Davison. The project was originally acquired by Summit as a pitch by Adam Simon and Tim Metcalfe. John Sacchi will oversee the project for the studio.
Marshall’s breakthrough came when she made the 2012 Black List script Peste, which is being put together at IM Global. She recently sold her pilot, The Lisa Jones Club in a bidding war to ABC. Marshall began her career as part of the NBC Diversity Program before staffing on Terra Nova for Fox. She is repped by APA, Industry Entertainment, and Gendler & Kelly.
EXCLUSIVE: Here’s why I still love movies, even though it has been so many years since I moved from the vaudeville beat at Variety to cover the talkies. Nobodies can become somebodies in the blink of an eye and it happens often enough to give anybody with talent a puncher’s chance. Warner Bros has just made a deal with Tom Shepherd to rewrite Cicero. Since this film has Tom Hardy attached to play Al Capone and is a priority studio project, this is a pretty big break for Shepherd. He has been making a living as a waiter, waiting for his writing career to take off.
John Lesher is producing Cicero, and Adam Kassan is exec producing with Leonard Ackerman. It takes a bold new look at the life of an American icon, chronicling the rise of Capone from lowly pimp to the feared gangster called Scarface, who consolidated control over Chicago, avenges the death of his brother, and attempts to protect the safety and innocence of his family.
All this good fortune happened after Shepherd wrote the script Hey, Stella!, which made last year’s Black List. Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: Despite ratings hardship and real and clear danger of cancellation, Happy Endings may live up to its title even if ABC opts not to order a fourth season. I hear that Sony TV, the leading studio behind the underrated comedy series, has quietly reached out to a couple of networks, including USA Network and NBC, about the possibility of continuing the comedy there if ABC does not renew it. I hear USA, which has been looking to break into the half-hour original series space, has expressed interest and has had discussions about picking up Happy Endings in case of a cancellation by ABC.
If the financials can be worked out, a Happy Endings pickup would be fortuitous for USA, which has been actively developing half-hour comedies and has ordered several pilots but has yet to greenlight a half-hour series. USA had been looking to have an original comedy on tap for the fall premiere of its marquee off-network series Modern Family. Happy Endings would be a suitable companion for Modern Family as it already spent two seasons on ABC paired with the Emmy-winning family comedy. Happy Endings did well behind Modern Family, but its fortunes changed this past fall when it was moved to Tuesday to form a comedy block with Don’t Trust The B—- At Apt. 23 in a crowded comedy hour. Despite strong cult following and critical praise, Happy Endings struggled mightily on Tuesday and was recently relocated to Fridays. ABC brass had been strongly supporting the show from Day 1, but they will likely won’t be able to keep the series on broadcast TV at these ratings levels. In a last-ditch effort, the network recently launched a Save The Show-themed promo campaign for Happy Endings‘ move to Friday. The call to arms didn’t help, with the two back-to-back Friday originals drawing a 0.9/3 and a 0.7/3 in adults 18-49, down 25% and 46% from the show’s last Tuesday airings on January 29.
Related: ABC’s Bid To Save ‘Happy Endings’: Video Read More »