Ramon Fernandez (Sons Of Anarchy) has booked a potentially recurring role on NBC’s freshman drama Revolution. Fernandez, repped by Steve Rodriguez at McGowan Management, will play Capt. Franklin, a trusted soldier in Monroe’s inner circle… Newcomer Kaley Ronayne is set for a recurring role on the upcoming season of Army Wives playing the 20-year-old go-getter daughter of Colonel Kat Young (Brooke Shields). Repped by AC Management & Abrams, she recently guest starred on Carrie’s Diaries.
EXCLUSIVE: The cast of Lifetime‘s veteran drama Army Wives continues to staff up for the upcoming seventh season. Brant Daugherty has landed a major recurring role. He will play 2nd Lt. Patrick Clark, son of Jackie (Kelli Williams) and Kevin (Robert John Burke). An intelligent, capable infantry officer freshly minted from West Point, Patrick is eager to prove himself in combat. I hear the role, eyed as a potential love interest for Gloria (Alyssa Diaz), may become a regular next season. Daugherty, repped by AKA Talent and Sweeney Entertainment, has a major recurring role on ABC Family’s Pretty Little Liars as Lucy Hale’s former love interest and recently completed the male co-lead in the comedy spoof The Starving Games. He is also a recurring on Days Of Our Lives.
Brooke Shields has joined the upcoming seventh season of Lifetime’s drama series Army Wives as a recurring. She will play brash and brilliant Air Force Colonel Katherine “Kat” Young. A crack C-17 pilot who can hold her own in the boys’ club atmosphere of the military, she’s hardly touched down in her new assignment at Joint Base Marshall Bring before she clashes with Army General Michael Holden (Brian McNamara). Never one to step away from a fight, Kat is a fierce advocate for the Air Force as she and Holden jockey for their respective branches at the highest levels of power on base. Only after their initial skirmishes does Holden learn of Kat’s tragic past, discovering they have more in common than he thought.
EXCLUSIVE: Army Wives star Catherine Bell has signed a new two-year deal with ABC Studios, which produces the veteran Lifetime drama series. The deal is qualified as a talent holding one as Army Wives has not been officially renewed beyond the current supersized sixth season. It would cover Bell’s services on the show for two more seasons, and I hear it includes a big salary bump from the actress’ current paycheck, which is in the high five figures per episode. While yet to pull the trigger on a Season 7, Lifetime has been actively exploring its options, including applying for the California TV tax credit lottery, which will be held Friday. I hear keeping the show in South Carolina for one more season and moving production to Los Angeles for two more seasons are among the discussed scenarios. None of the original cast members of Army Wives have deals beyond Season 6, and locking in Bell is a major step towards a potential renewal.
EXCLUSIVE: Lifetime has picked up 10 more episodes of its flagship drama Army Wives. The series is currently in production on its 13-episode sixth-season order. I hear Lifetime’s decision to stockpile more episodes was made now so the show could stay in continuous production. It comes after both of the network’s new series launched this past summer, The Protector and Against The Wall, underperformed. By not branding the pickup as a new season, Lifetime can have all original cast members locked in. The actresses don’t have deals beyond Season 6 but their contracts requires them to do all episodes produced, which would include a 23-episode sixth season.
The 23-episode order will likely be split into two batches but, from a contractual standpoint, Lifetime could make the stars of the show return for the 10 episodes at their current salary. While legal, such a move is generally frowned upon. I hear that Lifetime, which is currently deficit financing the ABC Studios/Mark Gordon Co-produced Army Wives, has offered the main cast members a raise of $10,000 per episode. That represents an increase of 10%-20% for the actresses, whose salaries vary but are all in the 5-figure range, but is far less than what they would get if they have to negotiate new contracts for a seventh season.
Disney’s announcement with Netflix this morning extends and expands a current deal, giving the streaming service rights to several shows 30 days after the last episode of the season airs. The one with Amazon is new and includes more than 800 library episodes. Both include prior seasons of Grey’s Anatomy and all episodes of Lost. They also both landed ABC Family’s The Secret Life Of The American Teenager and Phineas and Ferb. Beyond that there are a lot of differences, with Amazon landing prior seasons of Marvel’s animated shows including X-Men Evolution and Netflix getting ABC Studios’ Army Wives. Here’s the release for Netflix:
BEVERLY HILLS and BURBANK, Calif., Oct. 31, 2011 — Netflix, Inc. (NASDAQ: NFLX) and Disney-ABC Television Group today announced that they recently entered into an extension of their previous existing licensing agreement. The extension allows Netflix to continue to stream hundreds of library episodes from ABC Studios, Disney Channel and ABC Family over the Internet. As part of the deal, Netflix is also adding new content to its lineup of Disney-ABC series and TV movies.
The agreement adds to the growing selection of content that can be streamed from Netflix in the United States. Episodes from new seasons of current Disney-ABC series will be made available to Netflix 30-days after the last episode of each season airs. Among the series and TV movies extended as part of the deal include:
EXCLUSIVE: Army Wives star Sally Pressman is moving on from the Lifetime drama series after its upcoming sixth season. Pressman has signed a talent holding deal with NBC. Under the pact, the broadcast network will cast the actress in a project it has in development for next fall or have her join an on-air series. Like the rest of the Army Wives cast, Pressman is set to return to the set of the series next month to begin filming the sixth season. But the lead actresses have no deals beyond Season 6, and there have not been any overtures yet from the network or producing studio ABC Studios, making the women available to take other series regular jobs. Fellow Army Wives star Catherine Bell last month signed on to headline the TNT movie Good Morning, Killer which is being eyed as potential backdoor pilot, so Bell has a series option behind it while also exploring possibilities on the broadcast side, where she made her mark as the star of CBS’ JAG. Lifetime has not announced its plans for Army Wives
Which nitwit thought it would be a swell idea to invite Army Wives actress Kim Delaney to a ceremony this week honoring former U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates at Philadelphia’s National Constitution Center? She was kicked off stage after stumbling through this highly inappropriate speech during which she confused playing an Army …
A plan for a series of public service announcements targeting first lady Michelle Obama’s “Joining Forces” initiative was unveiled today during a panel sponsored by the Hollywood guilds designed to create a dialogue about ways to share the stories of military families through film, television and digital media. Nearly 500 members of the Hollywood creative community attended the event at the Writers Guild Theater in Beverly Hills; the panel was moderated by J.J. Abrams and featured Obama as well as Army Wives creator Katherine Fugate. From the press release on the PSAs:
UPDATED: Gail Berman and Lloyd Braun’s three-year effort to turn the New York Times‘ column Modern Love into a TV series is bearing fruit: the project has received a pilot order at Lifetime. Additionally, the network’s resurgent drama series Army Wives will extend its five-year run – it is being renewed for a sixth season with a 13-episode order. On the unscripted side, the network has picked up 6 new series, including an all-star edition of Project Runway.
Created and executive produced by Sex and the City alumna Jenny Bicks, dramedy Modern Love will weave actual stories from NYT‘s column to explore the state of modern relationships. It follows newspaper science editor Simon McElvane as he faces a deteriorating marriage, the ramifications of potentially starting over and balancing his relationship with his adopted 15-year-old daughter. Unexpectedly handed the job of editor of the newspaper’s Modern Love column, Simon discovers he has a lot to learn about life and love. Berman and Braun optioned rights to the column in 2008. A year later, they set up an adaptation at HBO with Bicks attached to write and Alan Poul to direct. Because of Bicks’ deal at Sony Pictures TV, the studio came on board to produce with BermanBraun. The project, executive produced by Bicks, Berman, Braun, Gene Stein and Poul, was subsequently set up at Lifetime with all original auspices attached. Filming is expected to begin in the summer.
Veteran Army Wives has enjoyed a ratings resurgence in its current Season 5, which continues with Episode 9 this Sunday. Its season premiere averaged 4.2 million viewers, up 27% from the fourth-season debut last April. A month ago, Army Wives posted a series high in total viewers with 4.8 million viewers. Season to date, the series is averaging 3.7 million viewers and ranks as the top-rated drama on cable among women 18-49.
Lifetime TV Network’s military family drama Army Wives is in its 5th season airing Sunday nights. But veteran TV producer Jeff Melvoin, whose lengthy credits include stints overseeing the series Alias, Picket Fences, Northern Exposure and Remington Steele, was underwhelmed when his agent asked him to consider doing triage duty during its debut back in 2007. Created by Katherine Fugate based on Tanya Biank’s book about the lives of five couples on a Charleston, S.C. military base, Army Wives enjoyed the largest series premiere in Lifetime’s 23-year history. But by the time Melvoin showed up for Episode 3, the series had been shut down. He ran the show for one season, then left for the second season so other showrunners took oversight. Then he returned for Season 3 and is still on board. This interview by Deadline TV contributor Diane Haithman took place in Melvoin’s office at Raleigh Studios in Hollywood:
DEADLINE: How badly did you not want to be the showrunner on Army Wives?
JEFF MELVOIN: My agent said: ‘There’s a show on Lifetime called Army Wives that’s interested in you,’ and I said, ‘Well, I’m not interested.’ All the connotations I had were negative, at least for me: Lifetime is a women’s network, and Army Wives sounded just too close to Desperate Housewives. I thought it would be an over-the-top type of show, which is not the kind of stuff that I’ve done. But my agent said: “Please, just look at the pilot.” And I thought, this is really good. This was a show about real people, who were in a situation that I’d never seen before, written with intelligence and heart and humor, and in an area that I thought was very significant considering the all-volunteer army we have. And most Americans aren’t touched by these conflicts in Iraq and whatever comes next. In a curious way, not since Northern Exposure did I feel there was a chance to work with people in a drama that was unpredictable. I never looked at it as a soap opera. It’s a serial drama, it’s a family drama, but mostly I just saw it as a bunch of good stories about people I was interested in.
DEADLINE: You were brought in to fix the show. What was wrong with it?
MELVOIN: It’s something that a lot of people in my position would be hesitant to characterize, but I don’t really know what was going on behind the scenes. I know the situation that I inherited was that they only had one script ready and no other scripts in the hopper, and they didn’t think it was shootable, and they wanted it fixed.