PRODUCTION & DEVELOPMENT
OWN renewed Greenleaf for a fourth season. Megachurch drama, airing Wednesdays at 10p, delivered a season time period high on September 12 with over 2.3 million viewers (up 8% year-over-year in Live+3) and a 1.9 rating among W25-54 (up 7%).
FX’s Snowfall will be back for season three. “It has been great to see Snowfall’s audience and critical acclaim grow in its second season,” said Eric Schrier, president of original programming for FX Networks and FX Productions. “We have high hopes for season three.” Sophomore run wraps tonight at 10p.
Director Reed Morano (The Handmaid’s Tale) signed an overall TV deal with Amazon Studios that calls for her to work exclusively with the studio to create original series for Amazon Prime Video.
NEW & RETURNING SERIES
Season two of TBS anthology comedy series The Guest Book launches Tuesday, October 23 at 10p with back-to-back episodes. Series regulars Jimmy Tatro (American Vandal), Kimiko Glenn (Orange Is the New Black), and Dan Beirne (Fargo) play workers at oceanside Bare Feet Retreat.
Social news publisher NowThis named managing editor Versha Sharma as host of upcoming Facebook Watch news show, NowThis Morning. Former CNN Digital Correspondent Dan Lieberman joins as Senior Correspondent, and Zinhle Essamuah will be a political correspondent. Show starts streaming Monday, September 24.
Just in time for Halloween: Travel Channel’s new Monster Encounters premieres Tuesday, October 30 at 10p. Wildlife expert Casey Anderson collects clues and connects the dots to track down scary creatures – starting with vampire bats in Mexico that appear to be feeding off humans (spoiler alert: They are).
Post-apocalyptic drama Day 5 makes its TV premiere on El Rey Network Tuesday, October 30 at 10p, then will air Tuesdays at 8p. Unscripted series Rebel Without a Crew, following amateur filmmakers creating a movie with a budget of only $7000, premieres Sunday, November 18 at 7p.
Celebrity contestants try to predict what happens in viral videos from the motor world in new Discovery Channel game show, Brake Room. Comedian Nick Stevens hosts the late nighter, launching Monday, October 1 at 11p.
PBS doc God Knows Where I Am, telling the story of a New Hampshire mother diagnosed with severe bipolar disorder, premieres Monday, October 15 at 10p (check local listings).
Among the first round of presenters for the fan-voted 2018 American Music Awards are Carrie Underwood, Imagine Dragons and Tyga Dolla $ign. Black-ish’s Tracee Ellis Ross hosts the show, airing Tuesday, October 9 at 8p on ABC.
Telemundo Puerto Rico/WKAQ-TV will air Together We Are Great (Juntos Somos Grandes), a live program tonight at 7p. Three-hour special pays tribute to the strength and resiliency of Puerto Ricans one year after Hurricane Maria made landfall in the island.
The Miss Universe Puerto Rico pageant airs live tonight at 8p on WAPA America and Television Dominicana. Twenty-nine contestants compete for the crown.
Instagram is introducing its Shopping in Stories feature, in testing since June, to all users, and is adding a Shopping Channel in Explore that personalizes to users’ tastes. The new channel offers posts from brands users follow, as well as suggested brands.
A group of job seekers filed charges with the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission accusing Facebook and nine employers of using targeting technology to exclude female candidates from recruiting campaigns. “There is no place for discrimination on Facebook,” said a company spokesperson. “We are reviewing the complaint and look forward to defending our practices.”
After a complaint was filed with the FTC accusing YouTube of collecting information from children under 13, lawmakers David Cicilline (D-Rhode Island) and Jeff Fortenberry (R-Nebraska) wrote to Google CEO Sundar Pichai warning that the data collection practices of YouTube “may not be in compliance with the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act.” The act requires a website to obtain parental consent before getting information from kids under 13. While YouTube’s terms of service makes clear the site is not intended for young children, child advocates point out that 44% of parents say their children watch videos on the site.
With an anticipated $4.61 billion in digital ad revenue, Amazon will place third, behind Facebook and Google, this year, according to eMarketer, accounting for 4.1% of all U.S. digital spending. Still, Amazon has a lot of catching up to do – Google’s share of ad spend is 35.1%, followed by Facebook’s 20.8%.
AlphaNetworks closed a $10 million funding round, led by Alphabit Digital Currency Fund and joined by other crypto investors, to launch its blockchain-based entertainment platform by 2Q19. “It’s fashionable to talk about how much the media business is being disrupted – as if this was something new. The truth is the media business has always been disrupted by new technology – from broadcast to cable, and cable to broadband,” said AlphaNetworks founder and CEO Seth Shapiro. “The next era of media will be defined by forces like blockchain and distributed ledger technology, AI and cognitive science, which will unleash unprecedented opportunities for creators, consumers, and advertisers.”
There’s an untapped TV audience of 112.5 million consumers who are frequent consumers of international TV channels, but who fall outside of the top income segment that advertisers usually target through ad campaigns on international TV channels, according to research by the International Television Research Group, a cooperative group of independent channels, and market research firm GlobalWebIndex. The study shows that the characteristics and attitudes of frequent viewers of international TV are not dependent on income, suggesting that the desire to watch international TV is driven by a state of mind rather than income levels alone. “This research has been eye-opening,” said Sonia Marguin, chair of the inTV Group and head of research at Euronews. “While international TV channels will always remain a valuable source of affluent consumers for upscale brands, we can now see that there is also huge potential for other premium brands who are looking for highly active consumers, but who had seen international TV channels as the bastion for top-end luxury brands before.”
There’s champagne, and then there’s beer. As part of Dos Equis’ recently launched “Keep it Interesante” campaign, the brand has partnered with the streetwear creators of the “Mexico is the Shit” jacket for a series of pop-up shops and events curated by MITS; the program will also include sponsored content, and a special edition Dos Equis & “Mexico is the Shit” can. “As we were looking for new ways to create a relationship with consumers, we realized the powerful message behind the iconic brand’s personality,” said Karla Flores, Dos Equis Brand Director. “As a Proud Mexican Brand, now more than ever, we want to align with partners who are making bold moves in their community.”
Barbara J. Murrer, senior director of marketplace insights for Levi Strauss & Co., has been named Chairperson of the Board for the Advertising Research Foundation. Murrer is the first female marketer to serve as Chair in the ARF’s 82-year history and the 6th woman overall. She succeeds Jed Meyer, director, brand measurement, Google, who has held the position since 2016. “Barb’s appointment is truly reflective of the evolution underway at the ARF,” said Scott McDonald, ARF CEO and president. “Her being the first Chair based on the West Coast corresponds to the ever-increasing importance of companies based in California, Oregon and Washington. Barb’s position as a marketer will keep the role brands play front and center at the ARF. Her work and expertise here will enhance the ARF’s role as a primary provider of consumer insights.”
A new survey from the Video Advertising Bureau suggests emotional responses to content, like causing viewers to laugh, get upset or cry, is more often elicited from TV programming than YouTube shows. In addition, 40% of survey respondents said they watch their favorite TV programming live, versus 29% of their top YouTube shows. But the number of those surveyed who make an effort to watch every episode of their favorite TV shows about equals the number of those who try to catch every episode of their top YouTube shows.
Machine learning technology boosts ad effectiveness, according to the study, “The Humans vs. The Machines,” conducted by MAGNA, IPG Media Lab, and true[X]. The study analyzed three live ad campaigns to determine if more impact is delivered when the campaign is managed with or without the assistance of machine learning. And machines won. Machines working with humans bested humans alone in virtually every category measured, including raising brand familiarity, brand interest and purchase consideration. “The goal of right message, right person, right time is a lot more complex than marketers realize, with dimensions like platform, location, duration, and live vs. on demand viewing all factoring in,” said David Cohen, president, NA, MAGNA. “It is a market that necessitates real-time optimization and the use of machine learning to deliver the best results for marketers.”
Hassie Harrison joins truTV’s upcoming comedy Tacoma FD as a series regular, reports Deadline, replacing Kirby Bliss-Blanton, who played Lucy in the pilot.
Sandra Bernhard is joining the season two cast of FX’s Pose as a series regular. She’ll reprise her season one guest role as Nurse Judy Katz.
Will Viacom be part of the possible VOD service under discussion that would include content from networks like the BBC, ITV, Channel 4, as well as NBCU net shows? “We think that’s very interesting and something we’re putting some thought into,” said Viacom CEO Bob Backish at a London breakfast for the Broadcasting Press Guild. “I’m highly confident we will be part of it.” Meanwhile, Viacom-owned Channel 5 announced a scripted slate including drama Clink, set in a female prison; 15 Days, based on a Welsh crime thriller; and a feature length murder mystery.
Lineup Industries format Radio Gaga, which follows a hyper-local radio station, has been commissioned by Japanese public broadcaster NHK. The feel-good social experiment show, which has been adapted in the Netherlands and Denmark, has also been recommissioned for a third season by Movistar in Spain, and a second season by TSR in Switzerland.
UK producer Synchronicity acquired the rights to the book The Tattooist of Auschwitz, for adaptation into an international drama series.
BET Networks announced its multi-platform campaign, BET Goes Pink, dedicated to raising awareness and encouraging early detection of breast cancer, including BET Her’s first original film, Her Only Choice, and the second annual BET Her Fights Breast Cancer, hosted by comedian/talk show host Loni Love. “BET Networks is dedicated to reducing breast cancer health disparities among African American women and ensuring that Black women are included in the conversation about this disease, said Nneka Norville, director of corporate social responsibility, BET Networks.