In Chrisley Knows Best, USA Network found its first unscripted breakout. Now the cable network has renewed the half-hour reality series for a 12-episode second season ahead of the April 22 Season 1 finale. Described as a real-life family comedy, it follows Atlanta-based self-made multimillionaire Todd Chrisley, his wife Julie, and their five children who live a seemingly picture-perfect Southern life with everything money can buy. Paired with USA’s off-network family comedy Modern Family, Chrisley Knows Best hit a season high with last Tuesday’s episode, pulling in 823,000 P18-49, 742,000 P25-54 and 1.2 million total viewers P2+. That was up 34% in adults 18-49 and up 10% in total viewers from the previous week. Chrisley Knows Best is produced by Maverick TV and All3Media America, with Adam Greener, Jim Sayer, and Stephanie Bloch Chambers, Eli Holzman and Stephen Lambert serving as executive producers.
WE tv‘s slate of unscripted original programming for 2014-2015 includes a one-hour pilot of Charlie Sheen’s Bad Influence, a relationship-based competition show in which Sheen puts engaged couples to the ultimate test by challenging how well they think they know their intended. The pilot is currently in production in Los Angeles and was announced today during WEtv’s upfront presentation. The network also greenlighted the new series Match Made In Heaven, Mystery Millionaire and David Tutera’s CELEBrations and renewed the popular shows Kendra On Top, Marriage Boot Camp and the Braxton Family Values spinoff Tamar & Vince. In addition to the network’s growing unscripted efforts, WE tv will debut its first original scripted series, The Divide, this July. The network previously announced the fourth season of Braxton Family Values, second season of SWV Reunited, and the new series Love Thy Sister debuting this summer. Here’s a complete description of its slate:
Paramount TV Unveils First Development Slate That Includes Series Takes On ‘Narc’ & ‘Truman Show’, Firms Up Executive Team
A year after Paramount Studios signaled its re-entry in TV with the relaunch of Paramount Television, the start-up division has set its first development slate. As expected, it includes mining well-known properties from the Paramount movie library. That includes a crime drama with roots in Joe Carnahan’s Narc, with Carnahan writing and directing the pilot, and a re-imagination of the Jim Carrey hit The Truman Show. Additionally, Paramount has boarded the Terminator TV series, joining Skydance Television and Annapurna Pictures, who announced the project back in December. Paramount TV also has in the works an adaptation of hit feature Ghost with filmmakers Akiva Goldsman and Jeff Pinkner.
Other projects on Paramount TV’s inaugural slate include a drama series inspired by Caleb Carr’s best-selling novel The Alienist, with Anonymous Content (True Detective) executive producing; a limited series event based on A. Scott Berg’s Pulitzer-winning biography Lindbergh; and an adaptation of Peter Moffat’s BBC series The Village with Sundance Productions and All3Media. They join previously announced mutli-project deal with Craig Brewer for original scripted dramas. “While we are just getting started, there has been a terrific amount of momentum at Paramount TV as we look to develop new ideas as well as harness some of the studio’s most iconic titles,” said Paramount TV president Amy Powell.
UPDATE: CNBC Orders More ‘The Profit’, Beefs Up Reality Slate; ‘Restaurant Kickstart’ Looks “Under The Hood”
UPDATE, 11:40 AM: One of CNBC‘s new series Restaurant Kickstart adds to the business network’s roster of reality-competition fare. Debuting in July, it follows wannabe restaurateurs launching pop-up establishments with $7,500 in seed money, on Melrose Avenue. Start-ups, chef and co-star Tim Love said today at the network’s NBC Press Day panel, are getting to be “more and more focused,” he said, citing The Meatball Shops that have opened up around New York, and one of this show’s would-be restaurateurs who wanted to serve all her meals in waffle cones — “she thinks that’s the next big thing,” he said. In this new program, competitors must create and open a pop-up restaurant almost overnight. Love and show host Joe Bastianich then decide, based on the results, whether to invest more heavily in the entrepreneur. Unlike the pantheon of food competition series on TV these days, “it’s not a restaurant show — it’s an investment show,” Love insisted. “It really looks under the hood,” chimed in exec producer Eden Gaha.
PREVIOUS, 8:51 AM: Coming off its best quarter among adults 25-54 in more than a decade, CNBC today announced an extended order of episodes for Season 2 of The Profit. The series, which airs Tuesdays at 10 PM, follows serial entrepreneur Marcus Lemonis who saves struggling businesses while investing his own cash in the process. Last Tuesday’s episode of The Profit was the most-watched original series telecast ever for the network among P25-54 and total viewers. And among P25-54, season two is up +115% from last year’s first season. CNBC added eight additional episodes to season two for a total of 16 one-hour episodes. The additional episodes, which have yet to be shot, will air in October. The Profit is produced by Machete Productions with Amber Mazzola as executive producer. The network also greenlit two new primetime summer series, Restaurant Kickstart with restaurateur Joe Bastianich, and celebrity chef, Tim Love set for July; and Filthy Rich Guide to debut in August. In addition, CNBC unveiled three series in development: Restaurant Confidential: New York (working title), Hard Money (working title) and More Money More Problems (working title). The announcements were made today by Jim Ackerman, SVP, Primetime Alternative, CNBC. Here are descriptions of the new greenlit series and projects in development:
Bravo Media has unveiled its slate of original programming at its upfront including 15 new series (two scripted), 16 returning series and three new projects in development. That includes Bravo’s first scripted comedy, Odd Mom Out, a half-hour series based on the life of author and fashionista Jill Kargman which captures the outrageous world of uber-wealthy momzillas of New York’s Upper East Side. It joins Bravo’s first scripted series, the recently greenlighted hourlong dramedy Girlfriend’s Guide To Divorce. The upcoming unscripted slate includes offshoots of Bravo mainstays Real Housewives and Top Chef. Among returning series, the network has confirmed a second season of Below Deck, a third season of Don’t Be Tardy, a seventh season of Million Dollar Listing Los Angeles and Season 6 for The Real Housewives Of New Jersey. Returning this fall also is a 12th season of the Emmy Award-winning culinary competition series Top Chef, season 8 of The Millionaire Matchmaker, The Real Housewives of Atlanta Season 7, and The Real Housewives Of Beverly Hills Season 5. Here are descriptions of Bravo’s new series and projects in development:
The consolidation of independent unscripted production companies continues, with FremantleMedia buying a 75% stake in SallyAnn Salsano‘s 495 Prods. with the option to acquire the remaining 25%g in the future. Founded in 2006 by Salsano, 495 Prods. is behind such unscripted series as MTV’s Jersey Shore and spinoffs Snooki And JWOWW, The Show With Vinny and The Pauly D Project; Spike TV’s Tattoo Nightmares, which FremantleMedia distributes internationally, and Repo Games; MTV’s dating show Friendzone and the daytime syndicated talk show The Real. The company also produces Jerks With Cameras for MTV, Tattoos After Dark for Oxygen and CMT breakout hit Party Down South. “Our ambition is to continue to grow 495 Productions in the U.S. and to broaden its global footprint even further through our extensive distribution and production network,” FremantleMedia CEO Cécile Frot-Coutaz said.
In a sign of the ongoing pull of the UK as a filming location, Disney Channel‘s new multi-part movie Evermoor is gearing up to shoot in Britain. Disney Europe, Middle East & Africa (EMEA) has co-commissioned the longform live-action mystery/adventure/comedy with Disney U.S. It will air on Disney Channel in 160 global territories from the fall. Liverpool-based The Only Way Is Essex producer Lime Pictures, which is owned by All3Media, will make Evermoor for Disney. The story follows Tara Bailey, an American teen who is uprooted from her city home in the U.S. and brought to a beautiful but isolated village on the edge of some very creepy moors in middle England. As her famous novelist mom and step-dad are busy unpacking at Evermoor Manor, Tara, her brother, and her British step-siblings try to adjust to life in their new home. It’s not long before danger, mystery and intrigue unfurl.
Evermoor breaks new ground for Disney, becoming its first live-action movie produced in the UK for broadcast on Disney Channel in the U.S. But it’s no surprise such a Disney project would land in Britain. Already, the movie studio consistently films big features at Pinewood — including the next Star Wars installment later this year. And Marvel titles are regularly shot at Shepperton. But overall, new and expanded TV and film tax credits have made Hollywood sit up — and in some cases line up — to access the market which has a skilled crew base and great facilities.
A rash of acquisitions of European and U.S. independent production companies has been steadily spreading over the past year and a bit. One exec says, “We joke that there’s a transaction a day.” Leading the charge is the UK’s ITV, which has been on a shopping spree since it first bought a controlling stake in Duck Dynasty maker Gurney Productions in late 2012. Also acquisitive has been the Pro Sieben-owned Red Arrow, which recently bought Say Yes To The Dress maker Half Yard Prods. But it’s a two-way street: NBCUniversal already owns Downton Abbey producer Carnival Films in the UK as well as Monkey Kingdom and Chocolate Media, among others. Warner Bros last month entered an agreement to take over the global interests, outside the U.S., of Dutch company Eyeworks, and has a majority stake in UK production group Shed Media. Core Media is also known to have its eyes open to UK purchases. What’s more, many of these outfits also own companies in the hot Nordic region. And now there’s word that giant FremantleMedia may be moving in on vast group All3Media. A TV industry exec says, “We had the super-indies and now there’s a new breed of mega-indies.” If FremantleMedia acquires All3Media, it would create what an observer describes as “a very big beast.” Fremantle is a large group with significant turnover and some of their properties are getting older, an exec suggests. “It’s very difficult to replace that scale just through new productions.” However, I’m cautioned that should a deal be done, it won’t be in the imminent future.
So what’s been driving all this consolidation and cross-pollination? For one, with TV channels proliferating in the U.S., whether it be via basic cable or digital platforms, foreign outfits see a prime opportunity to establish a foothold and build scale. In the reverse, U.S. companies moving into the booming UK production sector know that broadcasters are doling out a lot of cash for original content.
Former Ryan Seacrest SVP Development and Current Unscripted Programming Heather Schuster has launched her own reality production company, Morocco Junction Entertainment, which is being backed by All3Media. It will be based out of All3Media America’s Los Angeles offices. During her tenure with RSP, Schuster oversaw such series as the recently announced Dream Date for Fox, Girls In The Game for Vh1, Go Viral for Nickelodeon, as well as The Wanted Life for E! and How I Rock It for Esquire. Before that, Schuster spent four years at Reveille and worked as a producer on the first five seasons of The Apprentice. Morocco marks the first company to join Studio Lambert USA under the umbrella of All3Media America, which was established last year.
Global Showbiz Briefs: British Film Institute Taps 3 For Governing Board; BBC Two Drama ‘Banished’ Adds 4 To Cast; More
British Film Institute Add 3 To Governing Board
The British Film Institute has appointed three new members to its Governing Board: Sony’s Andrea Wong, Blueprint Pictures’ Pete Czernin and UK TV host Jonathan Ross. Wong is President of International Production at Sony Pictures Television and President of International for Sony Pictures Entertainment. Among other duties, the London-based exec oversees Sony’s creative teams outside the U.S. as well as the 18 owned and joint venture international production companies around the world. Czernin co-founded London-based film producer Blueprint Pictures, whose titles include The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, Seven Psychopaths and In Bruges. Czernin is prepping the release of Lone Sherfig’s Posh and is in production on Marigold Hotel 2, which is shooting in India with Maggie Smith, Judi Dench, Richard Gere and others. Ross is a veteran of the BBC and now presents The Jonathan Ross Show on ITV. The BFI Board of Governors is chaired by Greg Dyke and co-chaired by Libby Savill. The other governors include Warner Bros’ Josh Berger and director Tom Hooper.
Starz has partnered with the BBC on the British broadcaster’s eight-episode limited drama series The Missing. Starz will co-produce the project, starring James Nesbitt (The Hobbit trilogy), which has begun filming in Brussels. Written by Harry and Jack Williams and directed by Tom Shankland, the thriller will air on BBC One in the UK and Starz in the U.S. in fall 2014. It is produced by New Pictures and Company Pictures in association with Two Brothers Pictures and Colin Callender’s Playground. All3media International has funded development of The Missing and retains all U.S. rights not obtained by Starz. Missing reunites the auspices behind The White Queen limited series, which was a success for Starz; it also hailed from BBC One, Company Pictures, Playground and all3media.
EXCLUSIVE: Objective Productions, the All3Media-owned, London-based production company behind Channel 4’s hit comedy series Peep Show and TLC’s Secret Princes, is ramping up its U.S. operation, bringing in Electus’ Head of Creative Development Jimmy Fox to run it. Fox has been named EVP of Objective USA, overseeing all aspects of unscripted and scripted development and reporting to Objective Productions founder Andrew O’Connor. He starts in February and will be based at All3Media America‘s offices in Los Angeles. “Jimmy Fox has a proven record of success in delivering outstanding programming across a variety of genres,” O’Connor said. Added Eli Holzman, president of All3Media America: “Jimmy is one of the most talented creative executives working in television today. He is exactly the kind of producer we have been looking to recruit to lead the U.S. operation of the brilliant and prolific Objective Productions.”
Fox joins Objective from IAC-owned Electus, where he had been since the company’s 2009 launch, following founder Ben Silverman after working for him at NBC. As Head Of Creative Development, Fox oversaw Electus’ scripted and unscripted portfolio. He co-created and executive produced hit TBS reality series King Of The Nerds, ABC’s Bet On Your Baby – which just got renewed …
Hulu will premiere its new supernatural comedy Deadbeat on April 9. Directed by Troy Miller, the series is Hulu’s first co-production with Lionsgate TV. Hulu also announced today it is re-upping teen drama East Los High for a second season and will distribute reality TV satire The Hotwives Of Orlando from Paramount Digital Entertainment. Casey Wilson, Angela Kinsey, Kristen Schaal, Tymberlee Hill, Danielle Schneider, and Andrea Savage star as six of Orlando, Florida’s hottest housewives who are ready to drink, fight, and cry, sometimes all at the same time. In addition, Hulu will release the original Scandinavian version of the drama series The Bridge, recently adapted for U.S. audiences by FX, as well as the Canadian reality-style dance drama The Next Step, acquired from BBC Worldwide North America. And the second season of Chris O’Dowd’s semi-autobiographical comedy Moone Boy will make a return in the spring.
In the second half of 2014, Hulu will release second seasons of Seth Meyers and Mike Shoemaker’s animated The Awesomes, Josh Greenbaum’s docu-series Behind The Mask and John Lehr and Nancy Hower’s Western comedy Quick Draw. Tom Hollander also returns in season three of Rev. Click over for the full lineup:
TBS successfully paired a reality series, game show King Of The Nerds, with its prized off-network comedy The Big Bang Theory. USA Network is looking to do the same with its marquee off-network comedy, Modern Family. The cable network has given an eight-episode order to Chrisley Knows Best (working title), a half-hour original reality series. Described as a real-life family comedy, it follows Atlanta-based self-made multimillionaire Todd Chrisley, his devoted wife Julie, and their five children who live a seemingly picture-perfect Southern life with everything money can buy. (Watch a promo below.) The series, produced by Maverick TV and All3Media America, is slated to premiere with two back-to-back episodes on Tuesday, March 11 at 10 PM, immediately following Modern Family. In a synergy move, USA sibling E! will air repeats of each episodes on Sundays at 10:30 beginning March 16. “Chrisley Knows Best is a broad family comedy that is a modern version of Father Knows Best with the volume turned way up,” said Heather Olander, SVP, alternative programming for USA Network. “While their lifestyle is over-the-top and their personalities are larger-than-life, the Chrisleys are a very close-knit family who are refreshingly honest and genuinely funny.” The series is executive produced by Adam Greener, Jim Sayer, and Stephanie Chambers.
Global Showbiz Briefs: Egypt Extends Canadian Filmmaker’s Detention; Helen Flint Launches Little Island Productions; More
Egypt Extends Detention Of Canadian Filmmaker Held Since August
Egyptian authorities have extended the detention of Canadian filmmaker John Greyson and his colleague Tarek Loubani, who have been held since August without being charged. Officials say they are being held during an investigating of items found in the men’s hotel room, including a camera attached to a small plane. The Canadian government has called for the release of Greyson and Loubani, who have been on a hunger strike in jail for the past two weeks. There also were several shows of support during the Toronto Film Festival. They were en route to Gaza on a humanitarian mission August 14 when they asked Cairo police for directions and were arrested. Amnesty International says scores of those arrested since have been deprived of their basic legal rights.
Helen Flint Launches TV Company Little Island Productions
Former Company Pictures exec Helen Flint has formed Little Island Productions with a view to producing scripted drama for the UK and global markets. Flint spent eight years with All3Media’s Company Pictures (The White Queen) and produced 2006 award winner Longford. Company’s Alex Protherough is joining Flint at Little Island as Production Executive. Little Island will also sport a production services arm to aid international and UK domestic companies seeking to benefit from the new UK TV tax credit.
Global Showbiz Briefs: Rome Fest Adds Four To Competition Lineup; ‘The Returned’ Sells To Canada, Australia; More
Rome Fest Adds ‘Dallas Buyers Club,’ 3 Others To Competition Lineup
The Rome Film Festival last week scored a Continental premiere of The Hunger Games: Catching Fire and now has added four high-profile indie titles to its competition roster. Isabel Coixet’s Another Me, Matthew McConaughey starrer Dallas Buyers Club, Spike Jonze’s Her and Scott Cooper’s Out Of The Furnace are the first films to be unveiled in the competition section. Rome runs from November 8-17.
Zodiak Sells ‘The Returned’ To Canada, Australia
Zodiak Rights has closed new deals for its popular French supernatural series The Returned (aka Rebound). Canada’s Bell Media has taken broadcast rights to the drama that first aired on France’s Canal Plus. Also picking it up is SBS in Australia, where it will air at the end of the year. Universal Pictures just released the DVD in the UK. Produced by Haut et Court, The Returned was the highest-rated original drama of all time on Canal Plus. Since then, it has aired in the UK on Channel 4 and recently was acquired for the U.S. by Sundance Channel and Music Box. It’s also getting an English-language remake courtesy of Paul Abbot.
HBO, ‘Behind The Candelabra’ Lead Creative Arts Emmy Awards; Bob Newhart, Dan Bucatinsky, Melissa Leo, Carrie Preston, Heidi Klum & Tim Gunn, ‘Undercover Boss’, ‘South Park’ & Tony Awards Among Winners
The first 2013 Primetime Emmy Awards were handed out this afternoon at the Creative Arts Emmy Awards ceremony at the Nokia Theatre L.A. Live in Los Angeles. HBO led with 20 Emmys, followed by CBS with 15 and NBC’s with 11. HBO’s Behind the Candelabra was the most awarded program with 8 Emmys. CBS’ Undercover Boss won best reality show, South Park was named best animated show, while Project Runway‘s Heidi Klum and Tim Gunn took best reality hosts. The Guest Actor/Actress categories were the highlight of the ceremony with emotional wins for comedy great Bob Newhart, who snagged his first Emmy for The Big Bang Theory, Dan Bucatinsky (Scandal), Melissa Leo (Louie) and Carrie Preston (The Good Wife). A new 45-second rule imposed on winners’ walk to the stage and acceptance speeches created quite a stir at the ceremony, which still ran for almost 4 hours, clocking in at 3 hr 49 min. A two-hour, edited version will air Saturday, September 21st on FXX.
Diane Haithman, Ray Richmond and Anthony D’Alessandro were on the scene at the Nokia for Deadline: Balmier weather than last year’s 100-degree heat made for a livelier Red Carpet. Matt Weiner, whose Mad Men suffered a historic shutout last year with 17 nominations and no wins, was optimistic heading into the ceremony. “Ya know what, anything would be great,” he said. “I would love to see one of our (guest) actors recognized. Linda (Cardellini), Harry (Hamlin), Robert Morse. None of our actors have been recognized (with wins). We’ve never won an editing or cinematography award.” Asked whether Mad Men would possibly do a Season 8 if the price was right, Weiner said: “No, no, it’s not about the deal. I want to wrap the show up. I have a good vibe for what we’re doing in this last piece and that’s the way to go. Will there be more TV and film in my life? I hope so. I’ve written a play. I don’t expect this (the Emmy sensation) to happen again. That would be greedy.”
Some 88 awards were given away today. To try to get it done in a reasonable time, Creative Arts Emmys producer Spike Jones Jr. appeared onstage before show time to urge winners to keep it short, announcing a 45-seconds limit from the moment the winner’s name is announced. “You have 45 seconds to get from your seat all the way down the aisle, up the steps, and do your acceptance speech. I’m not kidding. Forty-five seconds. We’ve found that you can say a lot in a very short period of time. Everybody in this room will thank you for it.”
2013 Creative Arts Emmy Winners
The never-shy Community showrunner Dan Harmon and star Joel McHale set an outrageous tone at the outset as presenters of the first four awards, channeling infamous Golden Globes host Ricky Gervais. “Tonight we honor all of the people in primetime television who are contractually obligated not to make eye contact with me,” said McHale. Harmon, the combative fired and then reinstated boss of Community, then made a quip about how he’d soon be fired by FXX, the new network telecasting a truncated edition of the ceremony. “We’re going to show those frauds (in TV) that these people (here tonight) are the real celebrities,” he said.
Outstanding Casting for a Drama Series
House Of Cards • Netflix • Donen/Fincher/Roth and Trigger Street Productions, Inc. in association with Media Rights Capital for Netflix
Laray Mayfield, CSA, Casting Director
Julie Schubert, CSA, Casting Director
Outstanding Casting for a Miniseries, Movie or Special
Behind The Candelabra • HBO • Jerry Weintraub Productions in association with HBO Films
Carmen Cuba, CSA, Casting Director
Outstanding Casting for a Comedy Series
30 Rock • NBC • Broadway Video and Little Stranger, Inc. in association with Universal Television
Jennifer McNamara-Shroff, Casting Director
Blichfeld + Daniels, Casting Directors
EXCLUSIVE: Bravo Media has greenlighted limited half-hour unscripted series The People’s Couch to air Sundays at 11:30 PM on October 6, October 13 and October 20. Based on the UK show, Gogglebox (trailer below), The People’s Couch features real people watching and commenting on popular shows and news from the past week. The series will focus on the Fall television season by showcasing avid TV watchers in their homes, as they laugh, cry, talk, gasp, and scream at their TVs watching the network’s new and returning shows. Each episode will feature the same homes — whether it is a group of sorority sisters doing their nails or grandparents watching with their technology-obsessed grandchildren. “The People’s Couch is a funny, unfiltered comment on America’s current TV viewing habits,” said Bravo’s VP development Lara Spotts. The People’s Couch is produced by Studio Lambert and All3Media America with Executive Producers: Stephen Lambert, Eli Holzman, Tania Alexander and Aliyah Silverstein.
Building on the success of its international hits Lost Girl and Continuum, Syfy has acquired the first two seasons (23 episodes) of New Zealand scripted series The Almighty Johnsons from All3Media International. Season 1, consisting of 10 episodes, will premiere on Syfy in 2014. The Almighty Johnsons follows the Johnson boys, four typical fun-loving guys – who have inherited the power of Norse Gods. But these four brothers are no flashy superheroes. Everyday Gods have everyday struggles – searching for love, overcoming sibling rivalry and fulfilling their God-like destiny – while still enjoying a few beers with their mates. The Almighty Johnsons is a production of South Pacific Pictures.