Remember the good ratings for David Blaine’s ABC magic special a couple of weeks ago that we felt would spur more magic programs? A&E Network picked up Don’t Trust Andrew Mayne, a new unscripted series featuring magician Andrew Mayne. The series, which will premiere January 13 at 10 PM with back-to-back episodes, has Mayne performing illusions designed to help people get even by teaching a lesson to those who’ve wronged them. Mayne employs anything from explosions to disappearing cars and slight-of-hand, with one large illusion and five smaller illusions per episode. They include cars “melting away”, iPhones winding up in a “pickle” and someone’s precious motorcycle getting shot out of the sky. Don’t Trust Andrew Mayne is produced by Joke Prods., with Joke Fincioen, Biagio Messina, Mayne and Mary Jaras exec producing.
EXCLUSIVE: A&E Network’s upcoming drama Those Who Kill doesn’t debut until March, but this weekend there’ll be sneak peek shown during the network’s two-part Bonnie & Clyde miniseries. Why wait until then to see Chloë Sevigny as police detective Catherine Jensen in the series from Imagine TV and Fox 21. …
It took awhile but A&E and Warner Horizon finally closed a deal for a 10-episode third season of the network’s most-watched drama series ever, Longmire. The announcement comes after Longmire executive producer John Coveny tweeted back in August, shortly after the series’ second-season finale: “The call just came: SEASON 3 for .” is a GO!In its second season, Longmire averaged 3.7 million total viewers with the season finale episode August 26 delivering a season high of 4.4 million total viewers. “Longmire has become one of the most compelling dramas on television with a devoted audience and we are so proud of the show,” said A&E GM David McKillop.
A&E Network announced today it will roll out a new brand identity and new tagline: “Be Original” on December 11, during its Duck Dynasty Christmas special. In its announcement, the network noted its programming is 100% original in primetime — compared to, say, USA Network (11% original), TNT (20% original), FX (14% original) and TBS (7% original). “As the A&E brand continues to evolve, it has become increasingly important to let both the consumer and trade know what A&E stands for,” said Guy Slattery, EVP Marketing, A&E Network. “Our new tagline embodies who we are and not just what we do,” chimed in David McKillop, General Manager & EVP of A&E Network. “From Duck Dynasty to Bates Motel, we are 100% original with the most unique characters and content in television. ‘Be Original’ is much more than a tagline, it’s a rallying cry for our programmers and marketers to always take creative risks, perpetually innovate, inspire and engage the next generation of viewers.” Wish we had a buck….
Anyway, see if you can remember which networks had these taglines:
EXCLUSIVE: Hit French series The Returned (Les Revenants) is getting an American remake. A&E Network has nabbed rights to the supernatural/suspense drama, which will be developed as a co-production between A+E Studios and FremantleMedia North America. There is no writer in place but I hear the network is in discussions with Carlton Cuse, executive producer/co-showrunner of A&E’s breakout hit Bates Motel to take on the adaptation.
Created by Fabrice Gobert, Les Revenants was inspired by the 2004 feature film by the same name directed by Robin Campillo (English-language title They Came Back). It focuses on a small town that is turned upside down when several local people who have been long presumed dead suddenly reappear, having not aged and unaware of their own fatality. As they attempt to resume their lives, strange phenomena and gruesome murders begin to occur. “The Returned takes an incredibly unique approach, filled with suspense and twists and turns, to the subject of the living dead,” said A&E’s EVP and general manager David McKillop. Added FMNA CEO Thom Beers, “Having seen Fabrice Gobert’s original version and the success the series has had in France, we’re thrilled to be partnering with the team at A+E to bring this enigmatic thriller to U.S. audiences.”
Fans’ prayers seem to have been answered. A&E‘s most-watched drama series, Longmire, is getting a third season. “Thanks to the 5 million plus weekly fans (live+7),” Longmire executive producer John Coveny wrote on Twitter this afternoon. “Young and older skewing alike! The call just came: SEASON 3 for ” A&E and producing studio Warner BrosTV had no comment, though insiders cautioned that the two sides have yet to finalize a deal for a third season. There had been speculation that such a deal could include A&E taking ownership in the show. However, everyone seems to agree that Longmire will return to A&E for a third season. The renewal buzz comes on the heels of is a GO!big ratings for Longmire‘s second-season finale earlier this week, which posted a season-high 4.4 million total viewers, 1.1 million adults 18-49 and 1.5 million adults 25-54. For the season, Longmire averaged 5.4 million viewers (Live+7, most current) and, while older skewing than A&E’s other series, it was up from Season 1 in the key younger demos.
EXCLUSIVE: Agnes Bruckner, who plays Anna Nicole Smith in Lifetime’s upcoming biopic of the former Playboy model, has been cast in another A+E Networks project. Bruckner is set to co-star opposite Josh Lucas and Lynn Collins in A&E‘s drama pilot Occult, produced by Transformers helmer Michael Bay and written by veteran genre writer and The X-Files alum James Wong. Occult, which draws parallels to X-Files and Fringe, centers on Dolan (Lucas), an FBI agent who returns from administrative leave after going off the deep end while investigating his wife’s disappearance.
EXCLUSIVE: A&E has given a six-episode order to an untitled docu-reality series executive produced by Mark Wahlberg, which is set in his native Boston. This marks the first unscripted series for Wahlberg, who is executive producing through his Closest to the Hole Prods along with frequent collaborator Stephen Levinson of Leverage, Bill Thompson of Bill Thompson Prods. and veteran reality producer Stephanie Drachkovitch of 44 Blue Prods as well as Jennifer Colbert who serves as showrunner.
The initial impetus for the project, which was first ordered as a pilot by A&E in November, came from the tough, hard-as-nails female characters in Wahlberg‘s Oscar-nominated feature The Fighter. Wahlberg and Thompson were inspired by the women’s spirit and set out to find a group of those types of Boston girls going through challenging times and tell their story.
Global Showbiz Briefs: ‘Bates Motel’ In UK; ‘Not Another Happy Ending’ To Close Edinburgh; BBC Worldwide & Foxtel
In a significant first-run deal, Universal Channel has acquired A&E Network‘s Bates Motel for the UK. Handled overseas by NBCUniversal International Television Distribution, the series is a contemporary prequel to the Alfred Hitchcock feature Psycho and stars Vera Farmiga, Freddie Highmore, Max Thieriot, Olivia Cooke, Nicola Peltz and Nestor Carbonel. It debuted in the U.S. on March 18 and was renewed for a second run last week. Universal Channel acquired both seasons. Bates Motel is produced by Universal Television for A&E. Carlton Cruse, and Kerry Ehrin are exec producers.
UPDATED: Lifetime‘s soapy mystery dramedy Devious Maids, executive produced by Desperate Housewives‘ Marc Cherry and Eva Longoria, will premiere on Sunday, June 23, at 10 PM. The project, originally developed and piloted by ABC last season, stars Ana Ortiz, Dania Ramirez, Roselyn Sanchez, Edy Ganem and Judy Reyes as five maids with ambition and dreams who work for the rich and famous in Beverly Hills, where murder and mayhem collide in the mansions of some of the wealthiest and most powerful families.