PRODUCTION & DEVELOPMENT
Gwyneth Paltrow is developing a series with Ben Silverman and his Propagate Content, reports TheWrap. Newsmagazine The Radical Wellness Show would be the first mainstream entertainment deal for digital content creator Goop.
American Alien, about a brother and sister who struggle with their working-class jobs when they’re not protecting aliens, is in development at NBC. Comedy comes from Superstore’s Sierra Teller Ornelas and American Ferrera, Teri Weinberg and Universal Television. NBC is also developing legal drama J.S.I.D., from Adam Mazer (You Don’t Know Jack), Craig Borten, Original Film and Sony Pictures Television.
The call for entries is open for In Development, a 2-day event focused on fast-tracking drama series productions on an international level, organized by MIPTV and Canneseries. After a first round by a pre-selection committee, an international jury will select the projects that will be pitched on stage April 10-11.
HBO gave a pilot order for Mexico City: Only Good Things Happen, from Fred Armisen, Broadway Video and Mas Mejor. Half-hour Spanish-language comedy follows a group of friends obsessed with horror films and monster makeup.
SEXUAL HARASSMENT IN THE MEDIA
Shortly after CBS This Morning’s Gayle King and Norah O’Donnell addressed the absence of suspended co-anchor Charlie Rose on Tuesday’s show – “This is a moment that demands a frank and honest assessment of where we stand and, more generally, the safety of women,” said O’Donnell – CBS fired Rose. In a letter, CBS News president David Rhodes called revelations about Rose’s behavior on his PBS program “extremely disturbing and intolerable,” adding, “CBS News has reported on extraordinary revelations at other media companies this year and last. Our credibility in that reporting requires managing basic standards of behavior.” On Monday, CBS said it was investigating allegations of lewd behavior and sexual harassment against the 75-year-old journalist.
PBS also terminated its relationship with Rose, cancelling distribution of interview show Charlie Rose, which debuted in 1991. “PBS expects all the producers we work with to provide a workplace where people feel safe and are treated with dignity and respect,” said PBS.
21st Century Fox agreed to establish a council to address workplace harassment and diversity issues at Fox News, as part of a settlement agreement with shareholders who accused the company of not doing enough to deal with sexual harassment and racial discrimination. “The Workplace Council gives our management team access to a brain trust of experts with deep and diverse experiences in workplace issues,” said Jack Abernethy, co-president of Fox News. “We look forward to benefiting from their collective guidance.”
Have you experienced sexual harassment in the workplace – and if so, did you report it? Let us know in the new Cynopsis poll: http://cynopsis.com/poll/.
While there are calls in many quarters for Senator Al Franken to resign after radio host Leeann Tweeden and a second woman accused him of groping, 36 of the Saturday Night Live alum’s female SNL co-workers signed a letter of support. After acknowledging that Franken’s behavior was “stupid and foolish” and the women involved deserved the apology he gave them, the letter said of Franken, who spent 15 years on the late night show, “We know Al as a devoted and dedicated family man, a wonderful comedic performer, and an honorable public servant. That is why we are moved to quickly and directly affirm that after years of working with him, we would like to acknowledge that not one of us ever experienced any inappropriate behavior; and mention our sincere appreciation that he treated each of us with the utmost respect and regard.”
NEW & RETURNING SERIES
ID has a premiere-packed week starting Tuesday, November 28 at 10p, when a tragic sequence of events at a seemingly cursed town comes to life in serialized form with Village of the Damned. The next night brings the debut of Murder in the Heartland, offering the collective viewpoints of townspeople to piece together what happened during homicides, at 11p, then Street Justice: The Bronx bows Thursday, November 30 at 10p. Happily-ever-afters go horribly wrong when Married with Secrets returns Friday, December 1 at 10p, and Your Worst Nightmare uses classic suspense film techniques to scare viewers silly starting Saturday, December 2 at 10p.
New Tyler Perry comedy The Paynes has its series premiere Tuesday, January 16 with back-to-back episodes starting at 10p on OWN. The House of Payne spin-off stars Cassi Davis and LaVan Davis, as well as Jackee Harry (227). Perry’s The Haves and the Have Nots returns for season 5 on Tuesday, January 9 at 9p, and drama If Loving You Is Wrong is back with new episodes as well as a new day and time on Wednesday, January 10 at 10p.
Fox’s LA to Vegas, from exec producers including Will Ferrell, Adam McKay and Modern Family’s Steve Levitan, will debut Tuesday, January 2 at 9p. The Mick slips into the 9:30p slot and Brooklyn Nine-Nine will go on its scheduled break. Medical drama The Resident makes its bow Sunday, January 21 at 10p, after the broadcast of the NFC Championship game.
Lifetime’s Little Women: Atlanta is back with new episodes on Wednesday, December 13 at 9p, followed by the series premiere of Little Women: Terra’s Big House at 10p.
Mysteries & Scandals, hosted by Soledad O’Brien, makes its Oxygen debut on Friday, January 5 at 9p. Hour-long series investigates legendary crimes and murders.
The Lost Tapes: Patty Hearst premieres Sunday, November 26 at 9p on Smithsonian Channel, and David Royle, EVP of Programming & Production, Smithsonian Channel, calls it “the most gripping account of a shocking event, and of an extraordinary time in American history.” What makes it stand out? “Director Tom Jennings has uncovered audio tapes and film that haven’t been seen or heard since the 1970s,” Royle tells Cynopsis. “I found it just chilling to hear Patricia Hearst, the kidnapped heiress’s own voice on audio tapes that were released by the Symbionese Liberation Army. It’s startling when you realize how young she was at the time, a mere sophomore at the University of California. The Lost Tapes approach to story-telling means that you are immersed in the events, watching them unfold in front of you – it’s left to you, the viewer, to connect the dots, decide what to think, and how to judge the participants in those intense times.”
Reelz documentary Charles Manson: The Final Words airs Sunday, December 3 at 9p, drawing from case files, photos and prison interviews with the twisted cult leader. Manson died November 19 at age 83.
The Paley Center for Media in Beverly Hills selected the season 3 premiere of Hulu’s The Path as the focus of the final PaleyLive program for 2017. The show goes on December 21, 2017 at 7p, with a screening, panel conversation, and audience Q&A with the cast and creative team.
Smithsonian Channel looks at animals’ struggle to survive in Panama’s Animal Highway on Wednesday, December 13 at 8p, and America’s Badlands on Wednesday, December 20 at 8p.
INTV, the Innovative TV Conference curated by Keshet Media Group, has been set for March 12-13 in Jerusalem. Among the speakers will be Fox’s Gary Newman, Showtime’s David Nevins, HBO’s Casey Bloys, Turner’s Kevin Reilly, CBS News’ David Rhodes, eOne’s Darren Throop and Hulu’s Joel Stillerman. The event focuses on the future of international content.
NBC’s Will & Grace airs on a special night Tuesday, December 5 for a holiday episode, “A Gay Olde Christmas,” at 9p. Leslie Jordan joins the gang as they visit early 20th century New York and realize the past wasn’t as open to diversity as they’d thought.
truTV kicks off holiday programming on Thanksgiving Day with its 3rd annual primetime “Carboloading Marathon” of episodes of The Carbonaro Effect, culminating at 10p with The Carbonaro Effect: Holiday Survival Guide. Black Friday brings Impractical Jokers: Humiliation for the Holidays at 10p. At Home with Amy Sedaris: “Holidays” airs Tuesday, November 28, with Jane Krakowski (30 Rock) stopping by after a hostess mishap.
Today’s Kathie Lee Gifford and Dean Cain (Lois & Clark) will host the 2017 National Christmas Tree Lighting taking place in D.C. on December 4. Hallmark Channel will be covering the event.
RFD-TV is serving a “Classic Country Thanksgiving Day Marathon” of Opry Encore and Hee Haw episodes, starting Thursday at 9a.
Among Shudder’s offerings during the holiday season is exclusive Better Watch Out, a thriller (babysitter, home invasion) arriving December 7.
The Federal Communications Commission will vote on December 14 on chairman Ajit Pai’s proposal to reclassify broadband as an information, rather than utility, service, which would lighten government oversight, and repeal common carrier rules that prevent providers from blocking traffic and charging for prioritized delivery. While Pai contends the move stops the government from “micromanaging the internet,” former FCC chairman Tom Wheeler isn’t a fan. “The only word that can describe the Trump FCC’s behavior is shameful,” Wheeler said. “They have given those they are supposed to regulate everything they want.”
Food Network is stuffing its Alexa skill with Thanksgiving features like an expanded recipe search feature for holiday fare, and “Conversation Starters” to get Aunt Joan to stop talking about Trump (or Hillary. Or Ajit Pai).
The Africa Channel’s SVOD platform Demand Africa will be free to watch from Thanksgiving through Monday, November 27. New customers will be able to sign up for the month of December for 50% off the regular subscription price of $6.99.
Alexander Skarsgard (Big Little Lies) will join Florence Pugh (Lady Macbeth), in The Little Drummer Girl, based on the best-selling novel by John le Carre. Production on the 6-part mini-series begins early next year. The series will be produced by The Ink Factory in partnership with 127 Wall and co-producers the BBC and AMC.
Actor/musician Alan Powell (Nashville) is joining season 3 of ABC’s Quantico as an undercover operator. Drama returns midseason….Billy Baldwin has boarded the cast of Amazon drama Too Old to Die….Michael Harney (Orange Is the New Black) and Ksenia Solo (TURN: Washington’s Spies) have landed at History scripted series Blue Book as series regulars.
Verizon and NBCUniversal expanded their partnership for a 360 livestream of Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade on Verizon’s YouTube page. The event will return for a second year with enhanced camera positions, including a traveling camera onboard the lead float. This year’s partnership also includes a Picture in Picture activation, giving audiences content in commercial time, and a special segment produced by Verizon. Campaign elements will also run on NBCUniversal strategic partners Apple News, BuzzFeed and Concert.
All3media struck a broadcast deal with UK’s BBC Four for UK-wide broadcast rights to upcoming gritty crime drama Hidden Craith, produced by Severn Screen and BBC Wales.
The International Academy of Television Arts & Sciences announced its Emmy winners, spanning 8 countries: Hip-Hop Evolution (Arts Programming), Kenneth Branagh (Best Performance by an Actor), Anna Friel (Best Performance by an Actress), Alan Partridge’s Scissored Isle (Comedy), EXODUS: Our Journey to Europe (Documentary), Mammon II (Drama Series), Sr. Avila(Non-English Language US Primetime Program), Sorry Voor Alles (Non-Scripted Entertainment), The Braun Family (Short-Form Series); Kara Sevda (Telenovela), and Don’t Leave Me (TV Movie/Mini-Series).
Pocket.watch, which has surpassed 1 billion viewer per month, struck deals with YouTube creators EvanTube and CaptainSparklez, and formed a partnership with Simon Spotlight to create books under the pocket.watch brand.
Hasbro’s animated series Stretch Armstrong and the Flex Fighters, following teens-turned-heroes, has started streaming on Netflix.