PRODUCTION & DEVELOPMENT
NBC issued a pilot order to Lincoln, a drama based on Jeffery Deaver’s bestselling book series that was the basis for the 1999 movie starring Denzel Washington and Angelina Jolie. Project hails from writers VJ Boyd and Mark Bianculli (S.W.A.T.), Universal Television and Sony Pictures Television.
Dynamic Television acquired the television adaptation rights to Trophy Boy, the short film from Emrhys Cooper (Vanity, Mamma Mia) following a riches-to-rags story of a hot sought-after Instagram star in high society and the illusionary world created by social media. The series is created and directed by Cooper, who will also star in the drama.
The BBC, Smithsonian Channel and international broadcasters have teamed on a major documentary series about the origins of Brexit, reports Deadline. Inside Europe: 10 Years of Turmoil hails from Brook Lapping Productions, is produced by Norma Percy, will explore the current political crisis in the UK and is set to air in the UK on BBC Two on Monday, January 28, and later this spring on Smithsonian.
For the eighth year in a row, Cynopsis Sports will shine a light on exceptional initiatives on behalf of networks, leagues and brands, saluting work that drove audiences and turned sports viewers into fans. Entries for the Sports Media Awards are due by January 25, so get started today.
EPIX is moving forward with Laurel Canyon, a feature-length documentary that pulls back the curtain on a mythical world and the lives of musicians who inhabited it. Via newly unearthed footage and audio recordings, the doc will reveal an intimate portrait of Joni Mitchell, Jackson Browne, Linda Ronstadt and others. Project is set to premiere in 2019.
NEW & RETURNING SERIES
Buddy Valastro (Cake Boss) and Duff Goldman (Ace of Cakes) face off in a baking battle on Food Network’s Buddy vs. Duff, premiering Sunday, March 10, at 9p.
Animal Planet’s The Zoo returns for a third season on Sunday, February 10, at 8p. This year, the series will feature animals and staff at all five Wildlife Conservation Society parks in New York City: Bronx Zoo, Central Park Zoo, Prospect Park Zoo, Queens Zoo and New York Aquarium.
Hallmark Channel’s When Calls the Heart returns Sunday, February 24, at 8p, followed by the season premiere of Meet the Peetes at 9p
NBC airs its annual international ninja competition special USA Vs. the World on Sunday, January 27, at 8p. Top U.S. competitors from last season’s American Ninja Warrior will go head-to-head with ninjas and skilled athletes from around the globe in the two-hour special.
TCM celebrates the Screen Actors Guild Awards silver anniversary by airing 48 hours of films starring SAG Life Achievement Award honorees. It begins Friday, January 25, at 8p and culminates with this year’s honoree Alan Alda’s film California Suite on Sunday, January 27, at 6p, just before the SAG Awards air on TNT and TBS at 8p.
Hallmark Channel celebrates Valentine’s Day with four new romance-themed movies premiering every Saturday night. Valentine in the Vineyard bows February 2 at 8p, followed by The Story of Us on February 9 at 8p, Love, Romance & Chocolate on February 16 at 8p and Love on the Menu on February 23 at 8p. The net also debuts a trio of pet-rescue shows next month: Cat Bowl on Saturday, February 2, at 10p, Kitten Bowl VI on Sunday, February 3, at 2p and 2019 American Rescue Dog Show, a two-night special event airing Sunday, February 17, and Monday, February 18, at 8p.
HDNET Movies released its full schedule for its third annual “And the Oscar Goes to … Presented by Richard Roeper” month-long event, which kicks off Friday, February 1, and runs through the 90th Academy Awards on Sunday, February 24. Highlights include Apocalypse Now, No Country for Old Men, Schindler’s List, Some Like It Hot, Witness, a Sidney Poitier birthday block and more.
Fox News presents a special edition of Cavuto Live on Saturday, January 19, at 10a to celebrate the show’s one-year anniversary. Anchor Neil Cavuto will present interviews with Sen. Mike Rounds (R-SD) and Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-CA).
British actor Fabien Frankel landed the lead of Theo Sipowicz in ABC’s pilot NYPD Blue, a new iteration of the iconic cop drama… On the straight-to-series front, Peter Sarsgaard (The Looming Tower) will star in CBS All Access’ true-crime drama Interrogation, while TNT sci-fi drama Raised by Wolves added regulars Amanda Collin, Abubakar Salim, Winta McGrath, Niamh Algar, Felix Jamieson, Ethan Hazzard, Jordan Loughran, Aasiya Shah and Ivy Wong… Cameron Boyce (Descendants) joined the cast of HBO’s upcoming comedy Mrs. Fletcher, as per Deadline.
PPI Releasing announced the availability of The Listener and Forensic Factor for syndication in fall 2019. Both series will be offered on a barter basis. Based on true crimes, Forensic Factor is shot in documentary form with reenactments that put the viewer at the center of the detective work. The Listener features Craig Olejnik as a paramedic who uses his telepathic powers to help officers of the Integrated Investigative Bureau crack cases.
New research from The Diffusion Group finds that while subscriber reaction to Netflix’s recent price increase varies relative to degree, even minor variations may have significant implications. At $1 more per month, 16% of subscribers are likely to either downgrade to a lower tier or cancel Netflix, according to TDG’s ninth iteration of Quantum Viewing Behavior, a survey of 1,940 U.S. adult broadband users completed in December 2018. Netflix announced on January 15 that it was raising the price of its Basic tier from $8 to $9 a month. The Standard tier now costs $2 more per month, up from $11 to $13, while Premium tier is up from $14 to $16.
Microsoft and Verizon Media have teamed on an updated search advertising partnership. The deal was announced at the Bing Ads Next event in Redmond, WA, and gives marketing one global platform to create search advertising campaigns, reaching consumers across Bing, Yahoo and AOL networks. All advertising will be exclusively served by Bing Ads.
Inscape, Vizio’s automatic content-recognition research unit, which gets its data largely from smart TVs, reports that it now monitors some 10 million connected TV devices. Used by TV networks, media agencies, ad tech and research companies, Inscape says it’s the largest single-source opt-in smart TV viewing research in the U.S.
BritBox, the subscription video-on-demand streaming service operated by ITV and BBC Studios, has hit 500,000 subscribers, doubling year-on-year as it ends its 22nd month in the U.S. and 11th month in Canada. The service, home to the largest collection of British streaming content in both countries, was considered the fastest-growing subscription on-demand streaming service in the U.S. from Q4 2017 through Q3 2018.
FuboTV is increasing its tennis coverage just in time for the Australian Open. The TV streaming service is adding Tennis Channel to its fubo Extra tier and Sports Plus add-on package.
Key Media Distribution secured international rights, excluding the UK and U.S., for Leaving Neverland. The two-part documentary features two men who recount their experiences of being sexually abused by Michael Jackson.
After five seasons and two specials in France (France 2) and having traveled to Italy (Rai 1) and Albania (TV Flan), Endemol Shine’s Prodigies is set to debut on Spain’s public broadcaster TVE, produced by Shine Iberia, part of Endemol Shine Iberia. The musical talent show searches for the best talent in classical music among kids 7 to 16.
France will be MIPTV 2019’s Country of Honour at the Cannes, France, event from April 8 to 11, 2019. In September, the country’s export promotional association TV France International reported impressive figures for French TV programming in foreign markets in 2017, with total revenue of 235 million euros – the second-best performance in the past 20 years.
Smithsonian Networks and Blue Ant Media teamed to expand the distribution of Smithsonian Channel in Asia-Pacific, Turkey, Israel, the Middle East and Africa. The agreement is the latest development in the partnership between the two companies and involves Blue Ant Media operating the network’s HD and 4K SVOD platforms, free-to-air and pay TV linear television services and branded programming blocks in the territories.