08/27/20: OWN sets new series from Greenleaf team; Peacock scores Skywatch series rights; hosts for People mag syndicated show revealed

Cynopsis Medias First Morning Read
Thursday August 27, 2020


Breakout game shows and talent competitions are at the top of Netflix’s wish list as the streamer looks to bolster its non-scripted roster. This according to Nat Grouille and Sean Hancock, directors of unscripted originals and acquisitions, who spoke at the Edinburgh International TV Festival. On the heels of recent hits like Love Is Blind, the streamer seeks to land on a reality show with decades of longevity, the execs said. “Do we have a big game show? Not yet. Do we have a talent singing show? Not yet,” said Grouille.

CBS is adding Star Trek: Discovery (September 24, 9p), One Day At A Time (Oct. 12, 9p) and Spectrum’s Manhunt: Deadly Games (September 21, 10p) to its early fall schedule as it pivots plans in the face of pandemic disruption. Also in the mix for September-October is a documentary spin-off of FBI, The FBI Declassified (October 13, 10p) as it tees up its previously announced schedule of scripted dramas and comedies for November. The production shutdown delayed the debuts of non-scripted series began airing much later than usual, which means original eps of Love Island and Big Brother will air through to the end of October.

Fifty percent of consumers say online TV platforms are their first stop for TV viewing, surpassing traditional pay TV, according to new data from Hub Entertainment Research. In particular, the company notes, Netflix has continued its steady climb as consumers’ TV “default,” and live TV has continued its steep drop over the past four years.

Sci-fi drama Altered Carbon will not be back for a third season on Netflix. Eight-ep second season of the series from Skydance Television debuted February 27.

Katy Perry will make an appearance as she accepts the Gracie’s Impact Award at the 45th annual awards show, which is virtual this year and will air live on the Alliance for Women in Media Foundation’s Facebook page September 10 at 7p. Also on deck for the event: Dr. Sanjay Gupta will make a tribute to frontline journalists covering Covid-19 and Black Lives Matter and a tribute to a Grey’s Anatomy episode. Honorees include Gayle King, Danai Gurira, Michelle Williams, Naomi Watts, Natasha Lyonne, Amy Poehler, Tamron Hall and Angela Yee.

Cynopsis Presents: That Big TV [Virtual Experience]



Savvy brands + agencies are shifting budgets to OTT & CTV to reach high value audiences at scale. This session on Tuesday 9/22, will be led by Premion’s VP/Head of Sales, John Vilade. He’ll focus on the following key topics: importance of a localized audience targeting strategy, content quality considerations, power of optimizing OTT & local TV, and the state of attribution/measurement.




OWN gave a straight-to-series order to Delilah, a drama from the same creative team behind Greenleaf, which just completed its five-year run. Creator Craig Wright, Warner Bros. Television and Oprah Winfrey’s Harpo Films are behind the project, which will feature Maahra Hill (Black-ish, How To Get Away With Murder) in the title role. Series follows a headstrong lawyer in Charlotte, NC, who takes on cases big law firms ignore while raising her two children.

Peacock is adapting sci-fi project Skywatch into a series, with UCP and Seth MacFarlane’s Fuzzy Door on board to produce. Based on a short film by ex-Pixar artist Colin Levy that came into existence via Kickstarter contributions, the story centers on an outcast teen who hacks into a drone delivery system and unwittingly finds himself entangled in a heavy conspiracy.

The events of spring 2020—including a virus that has disproportionately affected minorities—have translated to a call for change throughout America, and that change includes the media industry. That’s why Cynopsis, together with Entertainment Studios’ Byron Allen and TheGrio’s Natasha Alford, is presenting a webinar today at 1p ET on how to create a better marketplace for all players in the media space in order to grow a larger, healthier business community. Sign up and join us this afternoon (it’s free to attend)!

Twenty Four Seven, a drama from Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson starring T.I., is in the works at CBS All Access. Inspired by the book Notorious C.O.P.: The Inside Story of the Tupac, Biggie, and Jam Master Jay Investigations, series is being penned by Dallas Jackson based on the book by Derrick Parker and Matt Diehl and centers on Derrick Parker, who worked on some of rap music’s biggest criminal cases.

Justin Hartley (This Is Us) is set to exec produce and star in The Noel Diary, a film adaptation of Richard Paul Evans’ novel of the same name, for Netflix. Bonnie Bedelia (Die Hard, Parenthood) and Treat Williams (Everwood, Hair) also are on board the project, about a best-selling author who discovers a mysterious diary when he returns home at Christmas to settle his estranged mother’s estate.


Earth To Ned, a late-night talk show hosted by alien commander Ned and his lieutenant Cornelius, debuts on Disney+ on Wednesday, September 2. After they fall in love with human culture, the duo calls off their invasion of Earth and instead interview Earth’s greatest resource, celebrities.

TV One’s edgy autobiographical series Uncensored returns for season 3 on Sunday, September 6 at 10p. Among those in the spotlight this run are actor Larenz Tate, singer/actor Tyrese, and rapper/TV personality Eve.

Crackle original series Spides, which follows a murder investigation that takes a darker than the police expect, debuts Thursday, September 17. The streamer also is launching several new channels next month: Emmy Winners, Crime Time, Trapped Channel, Because Aliens Channel, and Sam, Snakes, and Planes Channel.

Lizzy Hale, frontwoman of Grammy-winning rock band Halestorm, will host season 3 of AXS TV series Year In Music, premiering Sunday, October 4 at 9:30p. Twelve new eps will feature profiles of the music and culture that defined 2001, 1998, 2008 and 1986, among other years.

Apple TV+ is lining up three new docuseries for the fall, narrated respectively by Olivia Colman, Tom Hiddleston and Paul Rudd. Tiny World, premiering Friday, October 2 and narrated by Rudd, examines the smallest animals on the planet. Becoming You, narrated by Colman and premiering Friday, November 13, is a global child development series; and Hiddleston-narrated Earth at Night in Color, debuting Friday, December 4, uses nocturnal cameras to capture wildlife at night.

The new season of PBS’ documentary series Independent Lens will kick off Monday, October 19 at 10p with the broadcast premiere of Sundance hit Feels Good Man. Season also will feature the directorial debut of HGTV personality Jonathan Scott, who travels across the country to explore the obstacles and opportunities for achieving energy freedom in Jonathan Scott’s Power Trip.

Acorn TV acquired US and Canadian rights to BBC One Irish detective drama Bloodlands, and will debut the series in the fall after its BBC One premiere. From exec producer Jed Mercurio (Line of Duty, Bodyguard), four-part crime thriller follows a veteran detective who delves into his own dark past to try solve a cold case.

Nickelodeon is adding Young Sheldon to its Nick at Nite programming lineup this fall. Beginning in November, series will join comedies including Friends, George Lopez and Mom.


On Friday August 28, the 57th anniversary of the 1963 March on Washington, ABC’s 20/20 will present The March, narrated by Denzel Washington, at 9p. Film features interviews with civil rights proponents including Rep. John Lewis, Harry Belafonte, Sidney Poitier, and Rachelle Horowitz, transportation coordinator for the March.

NBC Sports will recount unprecedented moments from the 2019-20 PGA Tour season in an hourlong show Sunday, August 30, at 2p… In related news, NBCU sister Peacock is going green as it expands sports offerings to coverage of the US Open golf championship in September. Along with NBC and Golf Channel, the platform will stream two hours of live tournament coverage each day, September 17-20.

Beginning Monday, August 31, AccuWeather Network and accuweather.com will feature curated content/programming surrounding back to school in 2020. Programming will air Monday through Friday at 8a and 8p.

Two upcoming Biography sessions from A&E. On Monday, September 7 at 9p the net will premiere Biography: The Nine Lives of Ozzy Osbourne. Then Tuesday, September 8 at 9p is the premiere of Biography: I Want My MTV.

Bravo’s The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills’ virtual three-part reunion is set for three consecutive Wednesdays beginning September 2 at 9p. Following the reunion, the net will air a Secrets Revealed special on Wednesday, September 23 at 9p.

Feature doc Human Nature, which debuts on PBS Wednesday, September 9, is exec-produced by Dan Rather and traces the origins of gene-editing technology Crispr, examines the tool’s potential and reckons with its ethical implications.

Shark Attack: The Paige Winter Story with Robin Roberts is slated for Thursday, September 10 at 10p on ABC. From Rock’n Robin Production and ABC news, special delves into the recovery story of Winter, who was swimming in waist-deep water when she was attacked by a shark.

Habla Now, the latest installment of the HBO Latino series Habla, debuts Friday, September 18 at 9p. One-hour doc features chef and humanitarian Jose Andres, Olympian Laurie Hernandez and actress Diane Guerrero. Doc will be available on HBO Latino and HBO Max.

Netflix will debut The Forty-Year-Old Version on Friday, October 9. Written and directed by Radha Blank, autobiographical story is about a down-on-her-luck NY playwright, desperate for a breakthrough before 40, who reinvents herself as rapper RadhaMUSPrime.


Live With Kelly and Ryan will return for its 33rd season in national syndication the week of September 7. “Live @Home” is the continuing theme as Ripa and Seacrest return to their New York studio. Show heads into the 2020-21 season after finishing last season as the top-rated show in Daytime in all key demos.

Meredith has set its hosts and a premiere date for People magazine’s new daily syndicated series People (the Show!). Kay Adams and Lawrence K. Jackson will serve as co-hosts for the show, which will draw on content from the company’s lifestyle magazine including human-interest, entertainment, beauty and style stories. Series will premiere Monday, September 14 and air in all 12 Meredith markets including Atlanta, Nashville and Phoenix.


Tubi and TiVo renewed and expanded their agreement that now will see Tubi’s library of more than 23,000 movies and shows available on the new TiVo Stream 4K device and streaming on the TiVo+ content network.

Facebook launched a suite of tools and features designed to expand commerce across its social media platforms. Facebook Shop, a dedicated space on the flagship Facebook app is among the new offerings in the company’s bid to make all things shoppable on its platform.

Angling to optimize pent-up demand for returning to movie theaters, Snapchat and Atom Tickets launched Movie Tickets By Atom. The app, under the Snap Minis umbrella, serves up trailers and tickets to users in the US and Canada and links their movie plans with their personal networks. As theaters gradually are starting to reopen, Atom said its survey of 16,000 moviegoers found 74 percent are ready to return to theaters in the next month.

As an advocate for our industry, we’re delighted to shine a spotlight on those who are making a difference in the digital media supply chain with our Adtech Awards program. Finalists were announced last week… go check them – and their amazing work – out: ow.ly/EzRs50B6Vxm


Ad management firm Viamedia received a patent for its QTT platform, a cloud-based television advertising solution aimed at bridging the gap between linear TV and digital advertising. QTT requests and receives ads from programmatic digital ad exchanges to enable real-time linear cable TV ad insertion using existing cable TV infrastructure.


Schitt’s Creek alums Tim Rozon and Sarah Levy, plus Adam Korson, Maurice Dean Wint, Savannah Basley and Tennille Read are in as series regulars for Syfy’s upcoming drama The Surrealtor… Trevor Tordjman will join the cast of Disney Channel sitcom Bunk’d for its fifth season.

Netflix has set the cast for its quarantine series Social Distance. Danielle Brooks, Mike Colter, Oscar Nunez, Guillermo Diaz, Asante Blackk, Peter Scanavino, Lachlan Watson and Marsha Stephanie Blake are on board, and select cast members’ real-life relatives also will make appearances.

HBO announced the second wave of featured performers for Between the World and Me. Joining the cast are Jharrel Jerome, Marc Bamuthi Joseph, Janet Mock, Jason Moran, Wendell Pierce, Mj Rodriguez, Kendrick Sampson, Yara Shahidi and Michelle Wilson.


MTV International is launching a 10-part short-form series to support Black Lives Matter. Featuring Little Mix star Leigh-Anne Pinnock and other talent, MTV Generation Change: Black Lives Matter will explore issues impacting Black youth and the road to positive change.

Idris Elba will offer seven disadvantaged young people lessons in discipline and determination under the auspices of an experimental boxing school for new BBC Two series Idris Elba’s Fight School.

Nippon TV acquired Japanese broadcast and streaming rights to Turkish drama series Anne. Series will air on BS Nippon TV and on Hulu in Japan beginning Thursday, September 3.

The 2020 Cynopsis Top Women in Media Awards
Breaking down barriers and enlivening our industry…these are the women getting things done!


Join us Oct 13–16 for a virtual awards event celebrating the trailblazers who are powering through a pandemic with breakout campaigns, creative strategies and motivational content. Hear from our honorees who are taking on the “new normal” world of media with style. We guarantee you’ll walk away feeling inspired.


Sponsored by: Turnkey Search


TV Time’s Binge Report for the week of August 17
1. Lucifer (Netflix) – 9.31%
2. The Umbrella Academy (Netflix) – 3.39%
3. Modern Family (ABC) – 2.15%
4. The Office (US) (NBC) – 1.39%
5. Friends (NBC) – 1.37%
6. One Piece (Fuji TV) – 1.21%
7. Grey’s Anatomy (ABC) – 1.18%
8. Brooklyn Nine-Nine (NBC) – 1.04%
9. Good Girls (NBC) – .98%
10. The Rain (Netflix) – .98%
*The weekly Binge Report ranks shows with the most binge sessions. A binge session is when four or more episodes of a show are watched and tracked in our TV Time app within a given day.

Broadcast Nielsen Ratings for Tuesday, August 25
Show, P2+ 0000s, (A18-49)
ABC: Modern Family 2.35 (0.4), Modern Family 1.72 (0.3), What Would You Do? 2.14 (0.4), Republican National Convention 1.74 (0.3)
CBS: NCIS 4.50 (0.4), Love Island 1.59 (0.3), Republican National Convention 1.30 (0.2)
CW: Dead Pixels 0.43 (0.1), Dead Pixels 0.26 (0.1), Tell Me A Story 0.33 (0.1)
FOX: Hell’s Kitchen 1.39 (0.4), Prodigal Son 0.89 (0.2)
NBC: America’s Got Talent 5.62 (0.7), America’s Got Talent 5.53 (0.7), Republican National Convention 2.42 (0.3)
TELE: Exatlon 1.15 (0.2), Cennet 1.29 (0.3), Enemgo Intimo II 0.88 (0.2)
Source: Nielsen live + same day time period averages


Nielsen elevated Scott Brown to the role of GM, audience measurement. Previously, Brown served as chief technology officer for Nielsen’s measurement products.

This Day in History
2008 – Barack Obama was nominated for president by the Democratic National Convention in Denver.

Answer to Our Last Trivia Question
Who wrote the original calypso song heard in the pilot for Gilligan’s Island? John Wiliams. Kudos to: Charles Lore/NY; Samantha Salvatore-WNET/NY; Tom Veltre-TheReallyInterestingPictureCompany.com/NY; Rev. Mark Wajda/Clermont, FL; Tom Moore-Kalt Productions/LA; Lorrie Shilling/El Segundo, CA; Dale Warshaw-KMSB/KTTU/Tucson; David Westberg-SAG*AFTRA Credit Union/Burbank

Today’s Trivia Question
Every main character in How I Met Your Mother (2005-14) had their own musical number except for one. Who was it? (Email trivia@cynopsis.com with your answer and be sure to include your name, company, city and time zone. Unofficial rules: a limit of four per time zone.)

Cynopsis Team

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Editorial Director
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Albert Nassour

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Check out more jobs in Cynopsis Classifieds »
Job of the day

Seeking an individual who is looking for the opportunity to learn and grow in an exciting, evolving research environment supporting ELG Research team. Min 2 yrs exp in research, advertising, or media outlet. Prefer exp at a cable network. Full info HERE.

MAGNOLIA/NY, KNOXVILLE, AUSTIN: Strong content leader with a mix of linear & digital experience to create & produce original programming for Magnolia alongside Chip & Joanna Gaines. Guide creative & editorial decisions across varying platforms. Min 10yrs exp req’d. Full info HERE. (9/9)

GLASS ENTERTAINMENT GRP/PHILA, PA: Seeking full-time, in-house legal counsel. Must have min 5yrs of legal exp with 3 yrs of entertainment law exp. Responsibilities include overseeing all legal matters, working directly with the management team on all business legal affairs, as well as tracking and completing all contracts with networks, talent and clients. Full Info HERE (9/4)

FUTURE TODAY INC/CHICAGO, LA, NYC: Seeking salespeople to represent our CTV portfolio spanning kids/family, entertainment and lifestyle content. Ideal candidate will have exp within Retail, Insurance, and/or CPG verticals as well as existing relationships with major agencies. Minne relationships are essential for the IL role. Full info HERE. (9/1)

NBCUNIVERSAL/NY, NY: Seeking an individual who is looking for the opportunity to learn and grow in an exciting, evolving research environment supporting ELG Research team. Min 2 yrs exp in research, advertising, or media outlet. Prefer exp at a cable network. Full info HERE (8/28)

TWIN CITIES PBS/ST. PAUL, MN: New, FT position, that will design and implement a holistic and enterprise-wide inclusion, diversity, equity, and accessibility (IDEA) strategy into all of our programs and business initiatives. Min 10ys exp in IDEA in a nonprofit, educ and/or media preferred. Full info HERE. (8/28)

GLASS ENTERTAINMENT GRP/Phila, PA: Seeking motivated, self-starter to join our podcast team. This individual will be responsible for securing ad campaigns across our slate of podcasts. Must have podcast, audio or digital ad sales experience. Full info HERE (8/28)

A+E/NY: Support Int’l, Corp Dev and Corp Divisions, incl domestic & int’l mergers & acquisitions and general corp matters in addition to support of relationships with int’l channel partners & int’l content sales. YOU NEED: JD, min 7 yrs legal exp at a major law firm or in-house counsel at a media company, exp in an active M&A practice, content licensing exp & strong negotiation & drafting skills. Full info HERE (8/28)

Magnolia/New York, Knoxville, Austin: CD w/a strong eye to oversee dev of original programming for Magnolia partnering with Chip & Joanna Gaines. Build new talent and concepts across varying platforms. 7+ yrs network/production exp req’d. Full info HERE (8/28)

Newsmax Media/Washington D.C.: Seeking proven on-air reporter, in possession of an already-developed contact list, including many “who’s who” leaders in Congress, and related government agencies. Min 3 yrs exp with outstanding writing/production skills. Full info HERE (8/28)

Newsmax Media/NYC:
Responsible for the production and execution of live political news programming, and recorded video segments for television, and digital platforms. 3+ yrs experience line producing. Full info HERE (8/28)

Newsmax Media/NYC: Responsible for designing and building prime time show, managing show hosts and production team, identifying and integrating guests, overseeing and executing the production of key video & graphic elements. 3+ yrs EP exp or political news & talk programming. Full info HERE (8/28)

Newsmax Media/NYC: Responsible for designing and building shows, managing show hosts and production team, identifying and integrating guests, overseeing and executing the production of key video & graphic elements. 3+ yrs EP exp or political news & talk programming. Full info HERE (8/28)

Newsmax Media/NYC: Write for fast paced news and opinion show. You are an exceptional storyteller with a command of political news and cultural trends. At least 3 years of national or large market local news experience. Full info HERE (8/28)

Newsmax Media/NYC:
Responsible for the production of live news & talk show, and recorded video segments for television, and digital platforms. 3+ yrs in TV news and/or talk production. Full info HERE (8/28)

ABC: Modern Family, What Would You Do?, Republican National Committee
CBS: NCIS, Love Island, The Republican National Convention
CW: Dead Pixels, Tell Me A Story
FOX: Hell’s kitchen, Prodigal Son
NBC: America’s Got Talent, Republican National Convention
PBS: PBS NewsHour Convention Coverage
Telemundo: Exatlon Estados Unidos, Cennet, Enimigo Intimo
Univision: La Rosa de Guadelupe, Medicos Linea de Vida


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