EXCLUSIVE: After making its first ever single-camera comedy pilot order last year to I’m Not Dead Yet, written by Frasier alum Jon Sherman and produced by Electus, the cable network is re-teaming with Sherman and Electus for a new comedy project, which has been put on fast-track development. The untitled workplace comedy revolves around a 30-something woman as she navigates the executive ranks among her old-school male counterparts while her 20-something male assistant tries to make it amid his female-dominated peers – two fish, a big corporate pond, and very little water. “Jon’s contemporary take on a workplace comedy is a universal concept that we are really excited to explore,” said TV Land EVP Keith Cox. “With him and the Electus team at the helm, we can’t wait to see the uncomfortable situations the characters will face and what comedic boundaries they will push.” Sherman executive produces the project with Electus’ Ben Silverman and Jimmy Fox. READ MORE »
EXCLUSIVE: Sofia Vergara and Luis Balaguer’s Latin World Entertainment and Ben Silverman’s Electus have teamed with Royal Pains co-creator Andrew Lenchewski and writer Benjamin Brand for Speak American, a half-hour comedy that has been sold to Fox. Universal Cable Prods, where Lenchewski is under an overall deal, is producing. Written by Brand (IFC’s Bollywood Hero), Speak American centers on America Aviles, a young accent-reduction teacher of Latin descent who hires a stranger with unconventional methods to teach her class. Brand and Lenchewski originally developed Speak American at USA with the lead of European heritage. The two then changed direction and approached Silverman and Modern Family star Vergara, who have extensive experience in Latino-themed projects. Silverman executive produced ABC’s Ugly Betty, based on a Colombian telenovela, and he and Vergara executive produce ABC’s upcoming drama Killer Women, based on an Argentine series. They also have partnered on their premium YouTube channel, NuevOn along with an Electus/LatinWE partnership to bring programming formats to the U.S.
Barry Poznick, co-founder and co-CEO of Zoo Prods, is going out on his own, launching Barracuda Television Prods. The new production company has entered a partnership with Electus to develop and produce unscripted programming. Poznick spent the last two decades at Zoo Prods., which he co-founded with …
Corie Henson was previously VP Alternative Series at ABC Entertainment, where she oversaw production for such series as Dancing With The Stars, Shark Tank and the Extreme Makeover franchise. In the newly created position, she will oversee all of …
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CW In Talks For ‘Wizard Of Oz’ Drama By ‘Heroes” Creator Tim Kring
By Nellie Andreeva - EXCLUSIVE: The summer of Wizard Of Oz continues with another sale of a high-profile Oz-themed drama project.
Ryan Seacrest Booed By Broncos Fans During NBC’s NFL Pregame Show: Video
By Lisa De Moraes - NBC continues its Overexposing Ryan Seacrest campaign — this time the network had The Man Who Can’t Say No open NBC’s regular-season NFL football franchise kickoff last night, in which he got loudly booed by Broncos fans in Denver’s Sports Authority Stadium.
Were Consumers The Biggest Losers In The CBS-Time Warner Cable Dispute?
By David Lieberman - It sure looks that way. Millions of Time Warner Cable customers lost CBS-owned stations and channels for a month, and will still probably see their monthly rates rise to accommodate the deal that the companies made last night.
Fired ‘Storage Wars’ Star Scores A Win Over A&E In Lawsuit
By Dominic Patten – Dave Hester can move forward with the wrongful termination portion of his wide-ranging lawsuit against A&E and the producers of Storage Wars, a judge ruled today.
NBC has inked a deal with Ben Silverman’s IAC-owned company Electus to develop three telenovelas with an eye toward airing one as a 13-episode series — with multiple episodes running each week, following telenovelas’ traditional air pattern. That would mark a rare stripped primetime run for an original scripted series on a U.S. English-language network. “We believe there is huge potential for telenovelas to be adapted and developed for American viewers,” said NBC Entertainment president Jennifer Salke. “These stories clearly have resonance across all cultures and nationalities.”
NBC and Electus have identified the first project to be developed under the pact, The Black Widow, from writer Sri Rao (General Hospital: Night Shift). It is an adaptation of the hit Venezuelan telenovela La Viuda Joven, which premiered in 2011 and aired 142 episodes around the world. (See the Spanish-language trailer below.) Created by Martin Hahn, it centers on the stunning Rojas aka Baroness, who is investigated in the mysterious deaths of all four of her husbands.
UPDATED: The Weinstein Co. and Electus‘ Marco Polo series is on the move. I’ve learned that Netflix has made an offer for a 9-episode order to the original drama about the 13th century explorer. According to sources close to the negotiations, there is no deal in place yet because Harvey Weinstein also is considering a feature version of the project, which is fully financed, and is deciding between the two options. Marco Polo originally was set up at Starz, which gave it a 10-episode straight-to-series order in January 2012. The series was supposed to film in China, something no other U.S. show has done, which proved a complex and difficult proposition. I hear the potential series will film in Malaysia. Seven scripts already have been written, with casting on track to begin right away for a production start in the first quarter. The Weinstein Co. and Electus took out the project after it was released to them by Starz, the pay cable network confirmed.With the delays caused by the efforts to film in China, Starz has built a full slate for 2014 with 50 hours of original programming, making it difficult to find space for another series.
CW To Adapt Venezuelan Telenovela ‘Juana La Virgen’ With Writer Jennie Snyder Urman And Producers Ben Silverman & Gary Pearl
EXCLUSIVE: In one of the first buys for this coming season, the CW has put in development Jane The Virgin, a drama based on the Venezuelan telenovela Juana La Virgen. Jennie Snyder Urman, creator of the CW’s drama series Emily Owens, MD, is set to write the adaptation for CBS TV Studios, where she is under an overall deal, and Ben Silverman’s Electus. Urman, Silverman, Gary Pearl and Jorge Granier executive produce. The CW project centers on Jane, a hard-working, religious girl who, due to a series of outrageous events, is accidentally artificially inseminated.
Juana La Virgen, created by Perla Farias, was a hit in its original run on Venezuelan broadcaster RCTV in 2002 where it drew an average of 39.1% share, topping the competition by a wide margin. It also did very well in Brazil, Spain, Colombia and Mexico and has been translated into 9 languages. In the U.S., Juana aired on Univision and is available on Hulu (get a glimpse of the first episode below).
New York, NY (May 6, 2013)–Multimedia entertainment studio Electus, an operating business of IAC (Nasdaq: IACI), today announced a strategic investment in Hud:sun Media, a production and entertainment company founded by Michael Rourke and MDC Partners in 2010. Helmed by CEO Rourke, Hud:sun Media will work closely with Electus to develop and produce programming for television, digital and content marketing, both domestically and internationally.
EXCLUSIVE: Dog The Bounty Hunter is back. CMT has greenlighted Dog (working title), a new unscripted series starring Duane “Dog” Chapman and his wife Beth Chapman. CMT has ordered 10 hourlong episodes of the project, from Ben Silverman’s Electus. Dog is set to begin production in early 2013 for a spring/summer premiere.
Dog showcases the next chapter in the lives of the Chapmans as they concentrate on helping other mom-and-pop bail bond agencies facing extinction due to bad legislation, untrained or ineffective bounty hunters, or just plain bad decisions. In what the producers describe as “action-packed, adrenaline-fueled adventure,” the duo will crisscross the U.S. training bounty hunters while looking for the most cunning, notorious and dangerous fugitive. CMT’s EVP Development and Programming Jayson Dinsmore called Dog “a game-changer for CMT,” adding, “We were aggressive in our pursuit of a show featuring Dog and Beth, one of the most bankable teams in television history.”
The duo were already game-changers for one basic cable network. Dog the Bounty Hunter, chronicling the Chapmans’ exploits chasing down fugitives, was a breakout hit for A&E when it launched in 2004 and helped establish the network as a place for docu-reality series. The show ended its run in June after eight seasons. “Dog and Beth are not only great television characters, they are the best bounty hunters in the world, and this show is a natural evolution of their life story,” Electus CEO Chris Grant said.
Will Arnett and Jason Bateman’s advertising and digital production company DumbDumb is behind the online talk show for Denny’s restaurants as well as campaigns for Orbit and Old Navy. They will produce up to six short-form comedy videos for TBS.com featuring sponsor integration and DumbDumb’s star power (Sarah Silverman, Amy Poehler, Will Forte and Kristen Bell have appeared in ads in the past) to push the video virally via Facebook, Twitter and YouTube among other platforms.
Yahoo announced today that it is launching a Yahoo Comedy Channel in February 2012 and has inked a deal with comedian Bill Maher to kick it off with a free, live stand-up performance. The content will include short-form videos and both licensed and original programming from the likes of Funny or Die, Broadway Video, Elecuts, and Yahoo! Studios, among others. The web giant recently launched a women’s slate that it said saw almost 10 million streams in its first month. Here’s a look a the content being prepared for the comedy launch; more programming will be added going forward, Yahoo said:
– CrazyStupidPolitics: Bill Maher Live from Silicon Valley – On February 23, 2012 at 7:30 p.m. PT Bill Maher will host a live comedy show exclusively broadcasted online on Yahoo!. This will be Maher’s first live online broadcast ever. For the last nineteen years, Maher has set the boundaries of where funny, political talk can go on American television. First on “Politically Incorrect on Comedy Central and ABC, and for the last nine years on HBO’s “Real Time, Maher’s combination of unflinching honesty and big laughs have garnered him twenty-seven Emmy nominations.
– Funny Or Die Presents “First Dates with Toby Harris” (Funny or Die) – starring Seth Morris, a series that takes us on a journey of ill-fated first dates with the lovable (sometimes deplorable) and always single Toby Harris. Set with Los Angeles as a back drop, each episode centers around a different woman and issue that will leave the audience bickering amongst themselves who was right and who was wrong, and how they would have handled it better! Love him or hate him, a date with Toby is a date you will always remember.