PRODUCTION & DEVELOPMENT
Warren Littlefield has signed an exclusive pod deal with Fox 21 Television Studios and 20th Century Fox Television. The new deal follows a two-year first-look pact with Fox 21.
Gunpowder & Sky is partnering with Zelda Williams to develop her short, Shrimp, into a weekly half-hour show. The series, written, directed, produced by and starring Williams, is also executive produced by Joshua Thurston.
SNL vet Vanessa Bayer will co-create, write and star in Big Deal, a comedy in development at Showtime, reports Deadline. Project comes from Annapurna Television, with Michael Showalter (The Big Sick) attached to direct.
Damon Wayans Jr. (Happy Together) has launched a production company, Two Shakes Entertainment, with a first-look deal with CBS Television Studios and its first broadcast project, Glamorous, sold to the CW. Two Shakes aims to work with diverse voices, focusing on protagonists not normally at the center of a show.
Michelle Yeoh (Crazy Rich Asians) is in talks to reprise the role of Star Trek Discovery’s Captain Emperor Georgiou in a CBS All Access spinoff, reports Deadline. Yeoh is appearing in a Discovery season two storyline.
Paramount Ranch, a setting for many TV shows and movies, including HBO’s Westworld, burned down on Friday in California’s devastating Woolsey fire. HBO said Westworld is not in production and, “Most importantly, our thoughts go out to all those affected by these horrible fires.”
Controversy over? Texas congressman-elect Dan Crenshaw, the former Navy SEAL who lost an eye while on duty in Afghanistan, accepted an on-air apology from SNL’s Pete Davidson, who the week before had joked about Crenshaw’s looks. Crenshaw also got a few jabs in himself (“Pete looks like if the meth from Breaking Bad were a person”), before urging Americans to “remember what brings up together as a country and still see the good in each other.”
Top 10 Weekend Domestic Box Office Estimates: November 9-11, 2018
Dr. Seuss’ The Grinch (Universal) $66.0 million, opening weekend
Bohemian Rhapsody (Fox) $30.9 million (week 2), cume revenue $100.0 million
Overlord (Paramount) $10.1 million, opening weekend
The Nutcracker and the Four Realms (Buena Vista) $9.6 million (week 2), cume revenue $35.3 million
The Girl in the Spider’s Web: A New Dragon Tattoo Story (Sony) $8.0 million, opening weekend
A Star Is Born (Warner Bros.) $8.0 million (week 6), cume revenue $178.0 million
Nobody’s Fool (Paramount) $6.5 million (week 2), cume revenue $24.3 million
Venom (Sony) $4.9 million (week 6), cume revenue $206.2 million
Halloween (Universal) $3.8 million (week 4), cume revenue $156.8 million
The Hate U Give (Fox) $2.1 million (week 6), cume revenue $18.3 million
The season six premiere of NBC’s The Blacklist is set for Friday, January 4, with a special two-hour episode that starts at 8p. Spy drama moves to its regular 9p slot the following week.
Ten contestants return to compete for a spot in the Drag Rage Hall of Fame on season four of RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars, premiering on VH1 on Friday, December 14 at 8p.
Freeform’s Grown-ish is back for season two on January 2 at 8p, with Zoey (Yara Shahidi) and friends heading into their sophomore year.
Lauren Alaina, Brad Paisley, Ricky Skaggs, and Chris Stapleton with Maren Morris and Mavis Staples have been added as performers for The 52nd Annual CMA Awards, airing live from Nashville Wednesday, November 14 at 8p on ABC.
History teamed with Cigna for a campaign to support Cigna’s free national Veteran Support Line. “Century of Courage,” a custom-branded content and short form series, was produced for Cigna and is running through the end of month across linear, digital and social platforms.
MSG Networks is launching “Food Week” today, with a full week of food-themed programming across MSG Networks’ linear and digital channel. Content will be integrated into pre-game show segments and in-game spots, as well as shorts that will air after every game this week. “By offering unique access into the New York sports scene through a new lens such as food, we can creatively tap into a wider audience,” said Kevin Marotta, SVP, marketing and content strategy.
A new app similar to Vine will launch in spring of 2019 as Byte, announced Vine co-founder Dom Hofmann in a tweet short on details. Vine was shuttered in 2016, four years after it was purchased by Twitter.
Facebook has amended its workplace policy, making arbitration a choice rather than a requirement in sexual harassment claims. The decision to allow employees to go to court if they choose follows backlash from tech employees upset by how companies have dealt with claims in the past; Google changed its policy last Thursday after a work walk-out protest.
Cinedigm added two digital-first channels, the martial arts platform COMBAT GO by JungoTV and esports network WHAM, as linear offerings on The Roku Channel. Both channels also feature a VOD component.
Net neutrality violations are rampant, according to researchers at Northeastern University, University of Massachusetts-Amherst and Stony Brook University. Based on data from over 100,000 people who use the Wehe app, the report found the major U.S. wireless carriers slowing streaming video traffic and creating “an unlevel playing field for video streaming providers while also imposing engineering challenges.” Among the factors that affected the throttled speeds were subscribers’ plans.
Privacy International is asking European data-protection authorities to investigate Acxiom, Oracle, Criteo, Quantcast, Tapad, Equifax and Experian to see if they are in compliance with GDPR. “These companies profit from the exploitation of the personal data of millions of people in the UK, in the rest of the European Union and further afield,” said the group in one of the complaints it has filed.
Among the insights from Pixability‘s fifth-annual report on beauty video: With over 349B total views, YouTube still reigns supreme, with a 60% year-over-year growth in views, with beauty influencers driving a 32X higher engagement rate than beauty brands. As for those beauty brands – they are investing more heavily in Instagram than Facebook, attracting audiences 58% more rapidly on Instagram than Facebook.
Bounce SVOD service Brown Sugar is now available on Comcast’s Xfinity X1. It’s the first US pay-TV provider to offer the streaming service featuring African-American movies.
A new report from the ANA counsel Reed Smith on the investigation by the FBI into possible fraudulent behavior in media buying said the FBI is on the lookout for possible mail and wire fraud, conspiracy and racketeering, and wants input from advertisers – but not until they’ve done their own internal check. “If and when you uncover indications of fraud, supported by actual evidence, then the FBI wants to hear from you,” the report advises advertisers. “The FBI wants concrete reasons supporting your belief that you may have been defrauded.”
The STARZPLAY premium streaming service will give UK’s Virgin TV the opportunity to watch STARZ series all in one place, with future STARZ Originals launching exclusively on STARZPLAY on the same day as the U.S., including season two of Counterpart.
DHX Media announced that seasons 1 and 2 of Waffle the Wonderdog have been picked up by Germany’s ZDF to transmit on their main channel and on KiKA, as well as 12 other networks internationally:
Matthew Modine (Stranger Things) will star opposite Sophia Bush in CBS drama pilot Surveillance….Anna Paquin (True Blood) will play the series regular role of Alison and Cole’s daughter Joanie in a flash-forward storyline on the fifth and final season of Showtime’s The Affair.
ABC Radio is launching a podcast hosted by ABC News correspondent Paula Faris. The first three episodes of Journey of Faith with Paula Faris will be released Wednesday, November 14, and include interviews with Robin Roberts, country music stars Luke Bryan and Hillary Scott, and political commentator Ben Shapiro.