PRODUCTION & DEVELOPMENT
Fox gave a push pilot commitment to Kung Fu, from Albert Kim (Sleepy Hollow), Berlanti Productions and Warner Bros. Television. The project is a sequel to the 1972-1975 series.
Showtime ordered a second season of Kidding, starring Jim Carrey. “Kidding has established itself as one of the most endearing and inventive shows on television,” said Gary Levine, president of programming, Showtime Networks. “I feel like I have been watching Mr. Pickles my whole life.” Season one airs Sundays at 10p.
Whites, set in an upstate New York restaurant, has been put in development at NBC. Comedy based on the UK format comes from Matt Tarses (Scrubs), Will Arnett (Arrested Development), and Sony Pictures Television.
Netflix renewed Ozark for season three. Season two of the drama starring director/exec producer Jason Bateman and Laura Linney dropped last month.
The stand-up winner of the Palm Springs International Comedy Festival will have the last laugh, with a half-hour comedy special on KTVA channel 35.10. Step1 TV, available on TV, OTR platforms and via its App, is now available to over 250 million homes.
Greg Plagemen is exiting as showrunner for CBS’s DickWolf drama, FBI, and being replaced by Chicago PD showrunner Rick Eid and Chicago Fire showrunner Derek Haas, who will continue on their Chicago shows. Plagemen was himself a replacement for Craig Turk.
TBS ordered comedy game show Misery Index, inspired by the card game Sh*t Happens. Comedy Troupe The Tenderloins, creators and stars of truTV’s Impractical Jokers, will offer comic relief as contestants compete to rank life events like getting fired or sexting your grandfather. Series isdeveloped by comedy writer Andy Breckman (Monk), along with Ben & Dan Newmark of Grandma’s House Entertainment, and exec produced by Breckman, the Newmarks, Adam Bold of Grandma’s House Entertainment, Howard Klein of 3 Arts Entertainment, and Rob Anderson, who will serve as showrunner.
United Talent Agency, Valence Media and its independent studio, Media Rights Capital (House of Cards) are teaming to develop, produce and finance TV series via a joint venture, Civic Center Media. UTA, which took on $200 million in private equity in August, will own a minority stake.
Call for Submissions: Cynopsis is producing its annual Holiday Programming Guide, which comes out on November 15 and will be sent to all Cynopsis subscribers. If your network has * holiday-themed * programming airing from November 15 through January 1, please send your listing to Lynn@Cynopsis.com and JanetDiLauro@gmail.com no later than Monday, November 6 with the subject line: Holiday Guide. To be included programs must be listed by date, title of program, and the start and end times each program will air on that date. A confirmation email will be sent following each submission (if you don’t receive a confirmation email, please resubmit).
NEW & RETURNING SERIES
Discovery’s Street Outlaws: Memphis has its two-hour season premiere on Monday, October 22 at 9p, with a team of Memphis racers gearing up to compete against the best in the country.
AXS TV’s WOW – Women of Wrestling steps into the ring on Friday, January 18. The series will feature bouts “with the theatrical flair of a blockbuster concert mixed with the hard-hitting action fans have come to expect.”
NBCU Cable Entertainment subscription service Bluprint launched the latest installment of its digital cooking series in partnership with Today Food. Each episode of Weeknight Cooking features two recipes, with help from restaurateur Curtis Stone and NBC weather anchor Dylan Dreyer.
T-Pain’s School of Business, following the rapper as he explores innovative start-ups by millennial entrepreneurs, debuts Tuesday, October 16 at 11p on Fuse.
Season two of Food Network’s Girl Meets Farm, offering a new spin on comfort food, launches Sunday, November 11 at 11a.
Amazon’s Patriot is back for season two on Friday, November 9. Hour-long comedy focuses on a U.S. intelligence officer played by Michael Dorman.
Tremor Video DSP announced it has tripled its supply-side platform integrations for premium desktop, in-app and OTT channels since its acquisition by Taptica last year. “The inventory landscape has become overly cluttered and Tremor Video DSP is uniquely positioned to identify the most advanced video partners that allow for the greatest supply differentiation,” said Ofer Druker, executive chairman, Tremor Video DSP. “We’re actively partnering with video SSPs that adhere to the highest transparency standards and offer unique audience data sets, so that we can provide our advertisers with safe and highly effective video campaigns.”
The Video Advertising Bureau report, “Risky Business: Exploring Brand Safety on YouTube,” analyzes why ensuring a brand safe environment remains a challenge for the platform. Among the findings: Accurate measurement of YouTube’s 50+ million channels is nearly impossible; the volume of long-tail channels is likely to be compromised by user-generated content; and less than a quarter of YouTube’s top influencers were deemed brand safe. The “safe haven” for advertisers: professionally produced TV and film content.
Digital video advertising spend will grow 30% this year, to $27.82 billion, according toeMarketer, with total digital video ad spending accounting for 25% of the entire U.S. digital ad spend. Facebook will grab $6.81 billion of the total, followed by $3.36 billion for YouTube, $633.3 million for Twitter and $397.3 million for Snapchat.
UPtv is celebrating Christmas with 55 days of cheery holiday programming, including seven holiday features, and a “GilMORE the Merrier” Gilmore Girls binge-a-thon hosted by Scott Patterson (Luke) from Monday, November 19 at 3p through Sunday, November 25 at midnight. Movies kick off with The Christmas Switch on Sunday, November 4 at 7p.
First up as guests on ABC’s The Alec Baldwin Show premiering Sunday, October 14 at 10p: Robert De Niro and Empire’s Taraji P. Henson. The following week, Kim Kardashian West will have the hour to herself.
Freeform’s new “Kickoff to Christmas” event starts Thursday, November 1 at 5p with the film, Christmas with the Kranks. Month-long stunt will include the premiere of original film The Truth About Christmas on Sunday, November 25 at 9p.
The Sentence, a filmmaker’s account of the aftermath of his sister’s 15-year prison sentence for crimes committed by her late boyfriend, airs on HBO Monday, October 15.
WarnerMedia has big plans to launch a direct-to-consumer streaming service, leveraging the company’s films, TV series (Game of Thrones, anyone?) and library. “We expect to create such a compelling product that it will help distributors increase consumer penetration of their current package and help us successfully reach more customers,” said WarnerMedia CEO John Stankey.
Netflix was the favorite streaming service among respondents in a survey from Cowen & Co. analyst John Blackledge, earning the top grade from 27% of those canvassed. Blackledge also reported the streamer released 676 hours of original programming in 3Q18, up 50% from the quarter prior, and rated the stock an “outperform.”
Snapchat announced the launch of Snap Originals and the debut of serialized Shows, including a slate of exclusive scripted Shows and docuseries. Thefirst slate of Snap Originals includes Co-Ed, a new comedy from the Duplass Brothers; mystery thriller Class of Lies; and Endless Summer, a docuseries following rising stars in Laguna Beach, from Bunim/Murray (Keeping Up with the Kardashians).
NBCUniversal launched WatchBack, the free streaming video app announced in August, aimed at making it easier for consumers for sample programs. Users agree to share some viewing data, but can opt out of Nielsen measurement if they want; watching shows qualifies them for a chance to win points that can be redeemed at retailers like Amazon and Best Buy.
Multi-platform video distribution company Future Today has partnered with Outfit7 Limited to bring Talking Tom and Friends video content to more global viewers – over 200 animated episodes will be available on OTT platforms, including Amazon Fire TV, Roku, and Apple TV.
Viacom Digital Studios is launching a dedicated Jersey Shore channel on Thursday, October 18, anchored by original digital series starring the MTV reality franchise’s cast and friends, show clips and behind-the-scenes moments. First up: Cooking in the Crib with Snooki & Joey.
Nickelodeon is bringing its Screen Up AR app to a special re-broadcast of Henry Danger, “Danger Things,” an homage to Stranger Things. Kids will be able to interact with the show’s star, using their screen to participate in live votes, polls, GIFS and more. Three specific AR moments take place during the airing on Saturday, October 13 at 8:30p.
LucasFilm’s ILMxLAB announced the release of an AR experience, “Star Wars: Project Porg.” Users feed and play with Porgs, free of charge on the Magic Leap One headset starting in December. The news was announced at Magic Leap’s L.E.A.P. developer conference on Wednesday.
Customer engagement platform Braze, which manages the interactions of over 500 companies, including ABC News, HBO and Microsoft, raised $80 million in a Series E funding.
Tech stocks took a tumble yesterday, with Netflix and Twitter sinking 8%, Snap and Amazon down 6% and Apple and Facebook both ending 4% lower. “This is a bull market correction,” a White House official told CNBC. “It’s probably healthy.” Overall, the Dow fell nearly 832 points.
MEASUREMENT AND DATA
Equifax launched a new marketing measurement capability, OptimaHub, aimed at helping brands optimize their campaign performance through multi-touch attribution and customer journey analytics. OptimaHub’s technology and analytics approach to attribution, paired with Equifax’s consumer economic insight, “provides marketers with deeper intelligence not currently available,” said Mykolas Rambus, general manager, Data-driven Marketing, Equifax. “This is a major breakthrough….Marketers across all industries are increasingly being pressured to prove campaign ROI and marketing value, and we’re thrilled to provide them with a differentiated measurement solution.”
OOH viewing for the Brett Kavanaugh Supreme Court hearings last Thursday averaged 4.035 million viewers from 10a-7p, Tunity Analytics head of research and analytics Paul Lindstrom told MediaPost, comparable to the Conference Finals of the NBC Playoffs. OOH usage was up almost 2.5 times, indexing at 247 over the week prior. CNN and Fox News received the bulk of the OOH increase, said Lindstrom, indexing 755 week over week for CNN versus 431 for Fox News.
Helen Hunt (Mad About You) will star in BBC One World War II drama World on Fire….Michael Kenneth Williams (The Wire) landed a lead role in HBO’s upcoming drama Lovecraft Country….Josh Radnor (How I Met Your Mother) will guest on ABC’s Grey’s Anatomy as a possible love interest for Meredith….James Cromwell (L.A. Confidential) will recur in a guest role on Epix’s Berlin Station, debuting Monday, December 3 at 9p….SNL alum Finesse Mitchell joined ABC’s The Middle spin-off pilot in a series regular role.
NBCUniversal International Formats is set to launch entertainment formats from Universal Television Alternative Studio, upcoming NBC competition series Songland and The Titan Games at MIPCOM.
About Premium Content secured deals for Nordic drama series Alex, including with Channel 4/Walter Presents (UK), ProSiebenSat.1 Media SE. and Polyband (Germany), Amazon Prime Video (France), MHZ (USA), My Nordic TV (China), Canal + (Poland) and Pop TV (Slovenia).
Anglo-Chinese TV producer and distributor IPCN struck deals for more than 100 short films, documentaries and music videos for its recently launched short form digital channel, Channel R. UK digital media platform Discover.film supplied short films and documentaries including the animation short The Bigger Picture and documentary short feature A Man and His Violin.
Breakthrough Entertainment announced the presale of two new titles: I Lived with a Killer and James Buddy Day’s Sex, Lies and Murder.
Veteran game show contestant Alfonso Ribeiro (Fresh Prince of Bel Air) will host UK trivia game show pilot Money Tree.
MarVista Entertainment concluded negotiations with multiple Eastern European broadcasters for over 120 of its movie titles airing on StoryTV in Hungary, bTV in Bulgaria, and TVP (TElewizja Polska) in Poland.
Surge Licensing struck a deal with Scholastic that expands Feisty Pets from its YouTube series and toy line into chapter books, collectors’ guide books, graphic novels and activity and novelty books. The first two titles, Get Feisty! and Official Feisty Pets Handbook, will be published in March 2019.
Sutikki inked a wordwide distribution agreement (excluding the US, UK and China) with 9 Story Distribution International, with plans to introduce new preschool series Moon and Me at MIPCOM.