Sep 30, 2016
4:31 pm

Classic Prime-Time Soap Getting a Reboot (Variety, TVWeek, YouTube)

In good news for fans of a certain classic prime-time soap opera — but bad news for people who think TV is doing too many reboots — Variety reports that the CW is developing a reboot of “Dynasty.”

The original “Dynasty” was a huge hit on ABC throughout the 1980s, running for nine seasons and 220 episodes and keeping fans tuned in to follow the exploits of the Carrington family. Produced by Aaron Spelling, the show starred John Forsythe, Linda Evans and Joan Collins.

The new project, which is in script development, “hails from CBS Television Studios in association with Fake Empire and executive producers and writers Josh Schwartz, Stephanie Savage and Sallie Patrick,” Variety notes.

The creators of the original “Dynasty,” Esther Shapiro and Richard Shapiro, are also on board as executive producers.

“The new series will be told primarily through the perspectives of two female characters locked in conflict — Fallon Carrington, daughter of billionaire Blake Carrington, and her soon-to-be stepmother, Cristal, a Hispanic woman marrying into this WASP family and America’s most powerful class,” Variety notes.

The original “Dynasty” had more than its share of catfights. Here’s one of them …

Sep 30, 2016
3:47 pm

FX Orders Cocaine Series (TVWeek)

FX has given a series order to a drama project about the crack cocaine epidemic in Los Angeles in the early 1980s. “Snowfall” has an order for a 10-episode first season, to premiere in 2017.

The project is executive produced by Dave Andron, Thomas Schlamme, John Singleton, Eric Amadio, Michael London and Trevor Engelson, with Andron to serve as showrunner.

The series order was announced today by Eric Schrier and Nick Grad, Presidents of Original Programming for FX Networks and FX Productions, which is producing.

Production is set to begin in October.

In the announcement, Schrier said: “We are excited to add Snowfall to our original series lineup. Dave Andron, Tommy Schlamme, John Singleton and Eric Amadio have delivered a riveting and beautiful pilot and we can’t wait to start work on the series.”

Click here for more details.


Sep 30, 2016
3:11 pm

PR Chief Exits ABC (Variety)

ABC Entertainment is losing its longtime senior VP of communications, effective today. Variety reports that Hope Hartman, who has been in the position since 2009, is stepping down.

“Hartman is departing PR to focus on her film career,” Variety reports. “Her upcoming projects are ‘The Judy Effect,’ about feminist trailblazer and global humanitarian Judy Miller, and ‘Booked,’ about the world of book tours where some of the most memorable characters aren’t actually in the books.”

Hartman, who has been with ABC since 2006, has overseen communications strategy for ABC Entertainment and ABC Studios, working with ABC Entertainment President Channing Dungey and ABC Studios President Patrick Moran, Variety notes.

“Prior to joining ABC, Hartman headed her own PR firm, Fingers Crossed Communications, where she worked with clients including UCLA, Conrad N. Hilton Foundation, ABC Family and ABC Daytime,” the report notes.

abc entertainment logo

Sep 30, 2016
2:44 pm

Fox Developing AI Thriller From Jessica Alba (THR)

With HBO about to roll out “Westworld,” artificial intelligence is hot — and Jessica Alba is trying to make it even hotter. The Hollywood Reporter’s Live Feed reports that Alba’s “Girl 10” has received a script commitment with penalty attached from Fox.

The project will be written by “Gotham’s” Ken Woodruff, who will also executive produce along with Alba.

“‘Girl 10’ is set in the very near future and revolves around Elle, one of only 10 synthetic humans in existence who is being investigated for murder while trying to stop an evil cabal from weaponizing the technology behind artificial intelligence,” THR reports.

Fox has explored the AI landscape before, with “Almost Human,” which lasted one season before being canceled in 2014. Other networks are also exploring the genre, including AMC, where “Humans” has been renewed, and Syfy, which just ordered a pilot for “The Machine.”

fox logo

Sep 30, 2016
12:57 pm

‘CBS This Morning’ Launches New Platform (Bet You Didn’t Know What Today Is …) (TVWeek)

Timing its launch to coincide with a “National Day” most viewers probably didn’t know about, CBS today announced that “CBS This Morning” is launching a daily podcast. That’s right, today is National Podcast Day.

“Posted each day following ‘CBS This Morning,’ the podcast will include news of the day, extended interviews and original content just for listeners,” the network says in the announcement. “The inaugural special edition will feature a conversation between Vladimir Duthiers and ‘CBS This Morning’ co-hosts Charlie Rose, Norah O’Donnell and Gayle King about what they love about the show and who their dream interview subjects are, among other topics.”

Ryan Kadro, executive producer of ‘CBS This Morning,’ says in the announcement:

“As ‘CBS This Morning’ continues to increase viewership and set records, we are constantly looking for fresh ways to reach new audiences. Today’s exciting launch is one more way to bring ‘CBS This Morning’s’ great storytelling to audiences and extend our reach.”

The podcast is being distributed on platforms including iTunes, GooglePlay and Stitcher, and is available on computers and mobile devices, with additional details at cbsthismorning.com/podcast.

cbs-this-morning“CBS This Morning”

Sep 30, 2016
11:11 am

Which Late-Night Host Is More Popular Than Fallon, Kimmel or Colbert Among Men 18-34? (Hint: He’s Not on Broadcast, and He’s Probably Not Who You’re Thinking Of) (AP)

A late-night host whose show is unlike the others has been carving out a strong following in the past year — especially among young male viewers.

“To a certain segment of the population, Scott Van Pelt is a more popular late-night television star than Jimmy Fallon, Jimmy Kimmel and Stephen Colbert,” the AP reports. “That segment — young men aged 18-to-34 — may be small, but it’s an elusive one for television advertisers and vital to Van Pelt’s bosses at ESPN. He’s one year into an experiment to broaden the appeal of ‘SportsCenter’ at the midnight hour.”

Van Pelt’s take on “SportsCenter” is almost as different from the franchise’s shows airing in other dayparts as it is from his late-night talk competition.

“While Van Pelt doesn’t yuk it up with monologue jokes, the midnight ‘SportsCenter’ he hosts incorporates elements from the late-night comedy shows, including a greater emphasis on interviews and bite-sized pieces of material that can live online independent of the television show,” the AP notes.

The report quotes Van Pelt, who was previously working mainly in radio and as a golf reporter for ESPN, saying of the move to the new show: “I resisted it for quite a while simply because I liked the radio world I was in. I just never thought they’d give me the latitude to be myself. I never believed that they would just give me the easel and say, ‘Paint what you want.'”

We encourage readers to click on the link above to the AP story to read the full report.


Sep 30, 2016
10:59 am

Why Former Super Agent Michael Ovitz Is Apologizing (THR)

Michael Ovitz, the former chairman of CAA and former president of The Walt Disney Co., offered a number of apologies Thursday night to his former partner Ron Meyer, according to The Hollywood Reporter. The two men were reunited at the Directors Guild of America in L.A., where they talked about building the Creative Artists Agency together and the conflicts that drove them apart.

“Ovitz, 69, who has not had a major involvement in the entertainment business since he was forced out as president of The Walt Disney Co. in 1997, less than two years after exiting CAA, extended multiple olive branches to Meyer, 72, now vice chairman of NBCUniversal,” THR reports. “Once best friends, the two men have barely spoken in years.”

The report quotes Ovitz saying: “When I started building those kinds of [other business] relationships, I didn’t realize I was sacrificing relationships that were actually more important to me, because I was completely engrossed in what I was doing. I wish I [had a close adviser to caution me], but I didn’t.”

Ovitz later added: “We were on such a roll, in every aspect of the business, that I was oblivious and insensitive to a lot of the people issues. And the reason was, there weren’t enough hours in the day. I was flying [around the world for] 600 hours a year to do these deals. The economics were huge for us. It helped us. And I was basically myopic in my drive.”

We encourage readers to click on the link to THR near the top of this story to read the publication’s full report.


Sep 30, 2016
10:44 am

Debate Commission Admits There Was Something Wrong With Trump’s Audio (TVWeek)

The Commission on Presidential Debates has issued a statement acknowledging that something was going on with Donald Trump’s audio inside the hall during the recent debate between Trump and Hillary Clinton.

The one-sentence statement reads: “Regarding the first debate, there were issues regarding Donald Trump’s audio that affected the sound level in the debate hall.”

Trump complained after the event that he had a “defective mic” and went so far as to ask: “Was that on purpose?”

The “issues” did not appear to affect the television feed for the debate.


Sep 30, 2016
10:37 am

First Choice for the Next James Bond Is … the Old James Bond, According to Producer (Deadline)

The producers of the James Bond film franchise have their next James Bond in mind, and it’s Daniel Craig. Craig, who has played Bond in the four most recent 007 movies — “Casino Royale” in 2006; “Quantum of Solace,” 2008; “Skyfall,” 2012; and “Spectre,” 2015 — is the “first choice” of Eon Productions, according to Deadline.com, which quotes a senior production executive on the franchise.

Asked whether Craig will be back for the next title in the series, executive producer Callum McDougall is quoted saying: “I wish I knew. We love Daniel. We would love Daniel to return as Bond. Without any question he is absolutely Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli’s first choice. I know they’re hoping for him to come back.”

After Craig declined to commit to the next installment, names including Idris Elba, Tom Hiddleston and Jamie Bell began circulating as possible replacements — although Deadline notes that they’re “merely rumors,” adding: “Eon is renowned for being incredibly tight-lipped about any developments of their projects.”


Sep 30, 2016
9:59 am

What Joe Biden Had to Say About Donald Trump on ‘The Tonight Show’ (TVWeek, NBC)

Vice President Joe Biden opened up about Donald Trump during an appearance on NBC’s “Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon.” Among other things he offered his reactions to the recent presidential debate and talked about being surprised by Trump’s success.

“I’ve never known of a candidate who knows as little about the world as this man does,” Biden said of Trump, adding: “I don’t even think he understands how much damage he does by what he’s already said.”

Here are a couple of clips from the appearance, posted by NBC:

Biden on the presidential debate …

On being surprised by Trump’s success …

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