TV Talk

Steven Spielberg's Amazing Stories, Julian Fellowes' Belgravia Get Premiere Dates

Apple TV+ releases a first look at the reimagining of Spielberg's anthology series. Plus, Hank Azaria no longer voicing Apu on The Simpsons, Central Park creator Loren Bouchard addresses casting concerns, and more top TV news.

by | January 19, 2020 | Comments

The final day of the winter Television Critics Association press day was devoted to new streaming service Apple TV+, where critics got an premiere date and official first-look image of the revamped Amazing Stories, as well as details about new shows like animated musical series Central Park, featuring the voices of Josh Gad and Kristen Bell.



Amazing Stories (Apple TV+)

(Photo by Apple TV+)

Apple TV+ has announced that its eagerly-anticipated reimagining of Steven Spielberg anthology series Amazing Stories will premiere March 6 on the streaming platform. The news series, from showrunners Eddy Kitsis and Adam Horowitz, will premiere with five episodes, starting with “The Rift” (pictured), which is directed by Mark Mylod and stars Kerry Lynn Bishe, Whitney Coleman, Trisha Mashburn, Austin Stowell, Edward Burns, and Juliana Canfield.

Episode directors include Chris Long (The Americans), Mark Mylod (Succession), Michael Dinner (Unbelievable), Susanna Fogel (Utopia), and Sylvain White (Stomp The Yard).

Apple TV+ also announced dates for comedy Trying, which launches May 1, dramedy “Dear…,” out June 5, and crime drama Defending Jacob, which stars Chris Evans and Michelle Dockery and premieres April 24.

On Saturday, Epix announced that period drama Belgravia from Downton Abbey creator Julian Fellowes will premiere April 12, while Oxygen announced docu-series Kim Kardashian West: The Justice Project will premiere April 5.



(Photo by APPLE TV+)

Bob’s Burgers creator Loren Bouchard’s new Apple TV+ show Central Park, due this summer, is animated musical TV series that follows the Tillerman family. Dad Owen is the park’s manager and mom Paige is his journalist wife, who is not respected at work. Meanwhile, the villainess heiress Bitsy Brandenham, along with her put-upon assistant Helen, wants to destroy the park and turn it into condos. The cast includes Josh Gad — who executive produces along with Bouchard and Nora Smith — Leslie Odom Jr., Kristen Bell, Kathryn Hahn, Tituss Burgess, Daveed Diggs and Stanley Tucci.

During the show’s panel, journalists noted that Diggs and Tucci voice female characters. Bouchard, who has dealt with this issue before as John Roberts and Dan Mintz play female characters on Bob’s Burgers, attempted to address the topic at TCA.

“Animation just makes you want to take this voice and have it come out of this face. It’s so delicious that I just can’t stop myself,” Bouchard told journalists. “Daveed playing Helen, we knew it early on it was gonna be so fun to do it. So we couldn’t look away once we imagined that. And the same for Stanley Tucci, playing this tiny lady with white hair. It’s like Margaret Thatcher glued onto a little dog. It’s this strange character that with his voice came together for us. Once you think of that, it is impossible not to get excited about it. Here I am, yet again taking away two roles from women. It’s something that I have on my mind all the time, trying to keep balancing things out.”

There’s also the fact that Bell plays Owen and Paige’s biracial daughter, Molly.

“We’re always trying to both honor the urge to fool around and have fun with animation and also just balance that s— out,” Bouchard added. “Get women of color in the cast, in the writers room, so that you feel at least that you’re always giving into the urge because you think there’s something there, some spark. She’s gonna honor that character. Kristen needed to be Molly. We couldn’t not make her Molly. But then we couldn’t make Molly white, and we couldn’t make Kristen mixed race, so we just had to go forward. So then you arrive there and say, ‘Well, we gotta just keep doing as best we can to balance, to turn around and give somebody an opportunity who wasn’t getting it.’”

Outside of this discussion, the panel also offered the revelation that Bell’s love of musicals started early — in part thanks to the musical CatsThe Good Place star confessed she hasn’t seen the movie version yet, but she says she plans to see it twice, once with her kids and once, she informed the audience as she mimed smoking a joint, “with my adult friends.”


THE SIMPSONS. Apu Nahasapeemapetilon. TM and Copyright © 20th Century Fox Film Corp. All rights reserved.

(Photo by 20th Century Fox Film Corp.)

In related news, actor Hank Azaria confirmed Friday that will no longer voice the The Simpsons character Apu Nahasapeemapetilon after years of accusations that the depiction of Homer Simpson’s confidant at the neighborhood Kwik-E-Mart is racist — particularly as it’s voiced by a white actor.

“All we know there is I won’t be doing the voice anymore, unless there’s some way to transition it or something,” Azaria told Slashfilm on Friday at TCA, while he was there to promote his IFC series Brockmire.

The depiction of Apu has been a source of animosity for many, hitting a fever pitch in 2017 with the release of comedian Hari Kondabolu’s truTV documentary The Problem with Apu.

When asked about the film and the character at the winter 2018 TCA panel for Brockmire, Azaria said “the idea that anybody, young or old, past or present, was bullied or teased or worse based on the character of Apu on The Simpsons, the voice or any other tropes of the character is distressing. And especially in post-9/11 America, the idea that anybody was marginalized based on it or had a hard time was very upsetting to me personally and professionally.

“As far as what is going to happen with the character going forward,” he added, “it’s really not just up to me. I think it’s really important when people express themselves about racial issues, what they feel is unfair or upsetting or distressing or makes them angry, upset, hurt, the most important thing to do is listen, try to understand, try to sympathize, which is what I’m doing. I know that The Simpsons guys are doing that too.”

The Simpsons’ official response to the film seemed to come with the April 2018 episode, “No Good Read Goes Unpunished.” The episode involves Marge Simpson re-exploring a classic novel from her childhood with her daughter, Lisa, and realizing that it’s subject now reads as problematic. “Something that started decades ago and was applauded and inoffensive, is now politically incorrect. What can you do?” Lisa responded.


Home Before Dark (Apple TV+)

(Photo by Apple TV+)

Apple TV+ has given an early second-season renewal to Home Before Dark, a series based on a child journalist who uncovers a cover up in her small town and stars The Florida Project’s Brooklynn Prince and premieres April 3. The streaming network has also released a first-look image of the show, which is featured above.

Apple TV+ has also renewed Little America and Mythic Quest: Raven’s Banquet. (Although Mythic Quest star and co-creator Rob McElhenney did have this to say in regards to his long-running FXX comedy, It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia: “We’ll keep doing it forever.”)

In other news, Facebook Watch canceled Sorry for Your Loss and Limetown on Friday.

Like this? Subscribe to our newsletter and get more features, news, and guides in your inbox every week.

Tag Cloud

stoner FOX Disney streaming service Bravo Quiz Sundance Now Binge Guide Peacock Disney Channel Certified Fresh A&E The Arrangement crime drama Mudbound Britbox IFC MCU critics universal monsters Apple TV Plus Interview TCM Epix cancelled twilight Captain marvel Turner Classic Movies NYCC canceled Super Bowl revenge History YA series Nominations television stop motion BBC America movies game show based on movie Infographic Chilling Adventures of Sabrina Shudder Crackle cars scorecard 2020 Black Mirror Cosplay Amazon Sneak Peek 2019 The Walking Dead period drama renewed TV shows psychological thriller Marvel Studios Polls and Games screenings ABC Family Podcast franchise Television Academy social media 007 HBO indiana jones singing competition FXX kids Sundance football a nightmare on elm street anthology police drama slashers harry potter diversity tv talk Avengers witnail animated The Academy anime 2016 DGA Toys sequel TCA Awards Marvel TLC Musical blockbuster stand-up comedy criterion comics asian-american Mindy Kaling Nickelodeon Fox Searchlight Hear Us Out Tumblr RT21 psycho screen actors guild X-Men WGN TCA Rock aliens zombie robots Sony Pictures spanish Dark Horse Comics toronto Drama TCA 2017 hispanic FX reviews batman GLAAD Film Festival First Look Film Election Lifetime Christmas movies HBO Max rotten foreign scary movies richard e. Grant OneApp natural history Musicals Netflix Tarantino adventure National Geographic unscripted quibi spanish language Anna Paquin dceu CMT Funimation Turner Discovery Channel cooking streaming AMC Walt Disney Pictures comic Pop TV award winner Family nature Women's History Month toy story TV GIFs justice league Mary Poppins Returns crime thriller YouTube Premium halloween Music canceled TV shows NBC latino spinoff teaser Countdown Video Games documentaries Masterpiece travel DC streaming service President El Rey Photos docudrama mutant BAFTA CBS theme song Valentine's Day 24 frames hist free movies Opinion children's TV Paramount VH1 Disney Biopics Extras Action Lifetime PaleyFest sag awards spain USA Network Amazon Prime Apple festival CNN Pride Month crossover science fiction golden globes dramedy comiccon VICE 45 Netflix Christmas movies CW Seed disaster San Diego Comic-Con Superheroe 71st Emmy Awards WarnerMedia Martial Arts films concert emmy awards TV renewals American Society of Cinematographers Hallmark Christmas movies all-time dogs die hard transformers elevated horror 20th Century Fox Holidays mission: impossible Writers Guild of America PBS Baby Yoda Stephen King Vudu halloween tv BBC Emmy Nominations Sci-Fi The CW Tubi Reality TV Land archives BET Horror reboot GoT 2018 facebook Columbia Pictures what to watch Fantasy casting parents politics cults Food Network blaxploitation Acorn TV Kids & Family FX on Hulu Black History Month dark rotten movies we love Red Carpet 21st Century Fox Universal Endgame Paramount Network Disney Plus TCA Winter 2020 cartoon werewolf Reality Competition Elton John Creative Arts Emmys Mary poppins Comedy Central Summer dc venice comedies zero dark thirty cats Fox News supernatural zombies technology romantic comedy Spectrum Originals Song of Ice and Fire book Marathons Cartoon Network festivals Disney+ Disney Plus Emmys Spring TV APB video on demand Mary Tyler Moore Showtime 4/20 Lionsgate nfl game of thrones joker DC Universe TIFF Mystery Rocky Chernobyl space serial killer vampires remakes hollywood medical drama Warner Bros. TruTV Syfy movie strong female leads cops sequels cancelled TV shows Classic Film christmas movies 2017 IFC Films historical drama Teen Star Wars Lucasfilm Superheroes ESPN composers YouTube Winter TV news Arrowverse Comedy Pixar Thanksgiving Tomatazos Trivia Star Trek Schedule A24 Awards Tour romance Watching Series Set visit 2015 Trophy Talk Nat Geo Marvel Television DirecTV binge Grammys fast and furious boxoffice Pirates Travel Channel satire obituary New York Comic Con YouTube Red Cannes The Witch Adult Swim mockumentary USA spy thriller Pet Sematary talk show Comics on TV thriller Ellie Kemper SDCC Television Critics Association SXSW classics Shondaland nbcuniversal DC Comics sitcom Year in Review BET Awards Rocketman Freeform See It Skip It ABC Spike video Hulu TNT indie green book Trailer Winners laika doctor who Calendar sports adaptation cancelled television breaking bad SundanceTV Box Office cancelled TV series MTV Amazon Prime Video directors Academy Awards best 72 Emmy Awards Country The Purge ratings HBO Go documentary Animation VOD RT History CBS All Access political drama Starz crime south america discovery Crunchyroll LGBT E! Western biography Pop ITV Holiday Fall TV BBC One Oscars Amazon Studios miniseries OWN spider-man Logo MSNBC Christmas First Reviews Brie Larson independent french PlayStation superhero Character Guide E3 Comic Book Heroines jamie lee curtis LGBTQ Best and Worst italian Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt Ovation dragons Ghostbusters Apple TV+ worst movies child's play cinemax true crime chucky worst finale ghosts Awards Rom-Com Esquire Hallmark name the review Sundance TV TBS war versus Premiere Dates