Comic book stories get a boost on streaming, Covid-19 causes some talent to pass on jobs requiring air travel, new trailers include WandaVision and The Undoing, and more news from the world of TV and streaming.
(Photo by James Minchin/Amazon Prime Video)
Clearly fans cannot get enough of The Boys, so Amazon Studios has greenlit development of a spin-off series from Sony Pictures Television. Here’s the description: “Set at America’s only college exclusively for young adult superheroes (and run by Vought International), the Untitled Boys Spinoff is an irreverent, R-rated series that explores the lives of hormonal, competitive Supes as they put their physical, sexual, and moral boundaries to the test, competing for the best contracts in the best cities. Part college show, part Hunger Games — with all the heart, satire and raunch of The Boys.”
The spin-off is from Amazon Studios and Sony Pictures Television in association with Point Grey Pictures, Kripke Enterprises, and Original Film. The Boys is based on The New York Times best-selling comic by Garth Ennis and Darick Robertson, and season 2 of The Boys had the most-watched global launch of an Amazon Original series ever.
Craig Rosenberg is writing the pilot for the spinoff and set as showrunner/EP, falling under his overall deal with Sony Pictures Television. Rosenberg, Eric Kripke; Point Grey Pictures’ Seth Rogen, Evan Goldberg, and James Weaver; and Original Film’s Neal H. Moritz and Pavun Shetty are executive producers. Ennis and Robertson also serve as executive producers.
(Photo by HBO Max)
It’s an action-adventure-comedy about a man who wants peace so badly he’s willing to kill for it: meet Peacemaker! Wrestling champion-turned-actor John Cena is already playing the DC Comics character in the August 2021 big-screen The Suicide Squad movie, and now HBO Max is expanding Peacemaker’s world with an eight-episode series written and directed by The Suicide Squad movie writer and director James Gunn.
Specifics are scarce, but the streaming service confirms the series will explore the origins of Peacemaker, the “master of weapons” and a man who “believes in peace at any cost — no matter how many people he has to kill to get it.” The series is scheduled to begin production early in 2021, before Gunn turns his attention to production on the third Guardians of the Galaxy film.
“Peacemaker is an opportunity to delve into current world issues through the lens of this superhero/supervillain/and world’s biggest douchebag,” Gunn says. “I’m excited to expand The Suicide Squad and bring this character from the DC film universe to the full breadth of a series.”
(Photo by Paramount Network)
And Nick Fury makes eight! That’s the number of series Marvel Studios has in the works for Disney+, according to a new report that quotes unnamed sources who say that Samuel L. Jackson will reprise his role from the MCU films. “The exact plot details of the show are being kept under wraps, but multiple sources say Jackson is attached to star with Kyle Bradstreet attached to write and executive produce,” according to the Variety article.
(Photo by Walt Disney Pictures)
Tony Gilroy has dropped out as a director on the upcoming Disney+ Rogue One spin-off series. Gilroy, who will remain as showrunner and executive producer of the series, lives in New York, and didn’t feel comfortable travelling to the U.K. where the spin-off will be filmed. Instead, U.K.-based Toby Haynes will direct the first three episodes of the series starring Diego Luna reprising his movie role as Cassian Andor. Haynes, who directed the Emmy-winning “USS Callister” episode of Black Mirror, is also the lead director on Amazon’s upcoming John Cusack drama Utopia. (Deadline)
For similar reasons, Liv Tyler won’t return for season 2 of Fox’s hit drama 9-1-1: Lone Star. She commuted from her London home to Los Angeles for the first season, but concerns about transatlantic travel with her young children during the pandemic led her to end her run at one year. Gina Torres has joined the series as the new paramedic captain. (Deadline)
(Photo by Justin Stephens / © SCI-FI / Courtesy: Everett Collection)
Generous fans of Battlestar Galactica and actor Michael Hogan have raised nearly $250,000 for the BSG cast member, after a fall in February caused bleeding in his brain. The injury, which happened at a dinner following a fan convention in Vancouver, left Hogan with complete paralysis on his left side, memory loss, cognitive impairment and an inability to swallow, according to his wife, actress Susan Hogan. The pandemic then complicated his hospitalization and care even further, not only limiting Susan’s ability to have contact with her husband, but limiting certain medical professionals from treating him for months.
Hogan, who played Colonel Saul Tigh on BSG and most recently played the ex-convict father of Nathan Grant on the seventh season of Hallmark’s drama When Calls the Heart, is, of course, unable to work currently, and, months later, still faces a very long and expensive road to recovery. A friend and neighbor of the Hogans established a Go Fund Me page with the goal of raising $300,000 for Michael’s care, and donations from fans, BSG co-stars like Tricia Helfer and James Callis and When Calls the Heart director Peter DeLuise, and other industry professionals have helped in getting the ongoing effort close to that amount.
The Undoing is a miniseries written and produced by David E. Kelley and starring Nicole Kidman as a wealthy therapist whose personal life falls apart just as she’s about to reach a career high. Hugh Grant, Donald Sutherland, and Edgar Ramirez also star in the drama, which premieres on Oct. 25 (HBO)
More trailers and teasers released this week:
• The Trial of the Chicago 7 is a drama written and directed by Aaron Sorkin, produced by Steven Spielberg, telling the story of the trial that ensued after a group of peaceful protestors outside the 1968 Democratic Convention in Chicago clashed with the police. Sacha Baron Cohen, Jeremy Strong, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Frank Langella, Michael Keaton, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Eddie Redmayne, John Carroll Lynch, and William Hurt star, and the movie premieres Oct. 16 (Netflix)
• The Haunting of Bly Manor, the follow up to The Haunting of Hill House, is based on Henry James’ The Turn of the Screw and stars Henry Thomas and several other Hill House cast members, though the stories and characters will not be connected. The horror drama premieres on Oct. 9 (Netflix)
• Helstrom is the Marvel-inspired story of siblings Daimon and Ana Helstrom (Tom Austen and Sydney Lemmon), the children of a notorious serial killer, who themselves set out to hunt down and stop the worst demons. Premieres Oct. 16 (Hulu)
• Books of Blood is a horror movie directed by Brannon Braga and produced by Seth MacFarlane, stars Britt Robertson, Rafi Gavron, Anna Friel, Yul Vazquez, and Freda Foh Shen and is inspired by Clive Barker’s six-book series of the same name. The film premieres Oct. 7 (Hulu)
• Tehran is an eight-part espionage thriller, starring Niv Sultan as a young Mossad computer hacker and agent whose first mission, in her Iranian birthplace, fails, and has global implications. It premieres on Sept. 25 (Apple TV+)
• Small Axe is an anthology series created and directed by Steve McQueen, and starring Letitia Wright and John Boyega. It premieres on Nov. 20 (Amazon Video)
• Black Narcissus is the three-episode series, based on the novel of the same name by Rumer Godden, about a nun (Gemma Arterton) who leads a mission to a remote part of the Himalyas, where she is tempted by her feelings for a local war veteran. Alessandro Nivola, the late Diana Rigg, and Jim Broadbent also star. It premieres Nov. 23 (FX)
• WandaVision is the Marvel universe drama about Wanda Maximoff (Scarlet Witch) and Vision, with Elizabeth Olsen and Paul Bettany reprising their roles, respectively, from the Avengers movies. Kat Dennings, Teyonah Parris, Randall Park, and Kathryn Hahn also star. It premieres in December (Disney+)
• Soulmates is an anthology series about a futuristic world where people can take a test to find out who their soulmate is, with some unexpected consequences. Starring an ensemble cast including Sarah Snook, David Constabile, and Malin Akerman. Premieres Oct. 5 (AMC)
• Industry is a drama about a group of graduates competing for a limited number of jobs at a top London investment bank. Myha’la Herrold stars, and Lena Dunham is a director and producer on the series, which premieres on Nov. 9 (HBO)
• American Murder: The Family Next Door is a haunting documentary about Chris Watts, the man convicted of killing his pregnant wife and two daughters in Colorado in 2018. Premieres Sept. 30 (Netflix)
• Truth Seekers stars Simon Pegg and Nick Frost in a supernatural dramedy in which a group of paranormal investigators stumble upon a conspiracy that could wipe out the human race. Premieres Oct. 30 (Amazon Video)
• Deaf U is a docusoap that follows a group of friends at Gallaudet, a university in Washington, D.C. for deaf and hard of hearing students. Premieres Oct. 9 (Netflix)
• Ghostwriter season two is the Daytime Emmy-winning reimagining of the 1992 Sesame Workshop series, with new episodes from Oscar-winning writer and director Luke Matheny. Premieres Oct. 9 (Apple TV+)
• The Cabin with Bert Kreischer follows the titular comedian as he tries to soak up the refreshing vibes of the great outdoors with pals like Kaley Cuoco, Deon Cole, Anthony Anderson, Joel McHale, Caitlyn Jenner, Fortune Feimster, and Gabriel Iglesias. Premieres Oct. 13 (Netflix)
• Patton Oswalt: Keep Your Distance is the comedian’s virtual comedy special, riffing on all things pandemic (he jokes he was going to call it Fatty Fatty Sad Sad). Premieres Oct. 23 (OnLocationLive.com)
For all the latest TV and streaming trailers, subscribe to the Rotten Tomatoes TV YouTube channel
(Photo by Elizabeth Goodenough/Everett Collection)
Patricia Arquette will star in the Apple TV+ comedy High Desert, playing a former addict who decides to make a big life change and become a private investigator after her mom dies. Arquette will also be an executive producer on the half-hour show, along with Ben Stiller, who will direct the first episode. The project is the second Apple collaboration for the two; Arquette, who starred in the Stiller-created 2018 Showtime miniseries Escape at Dannemora, already signed on to star in and serve as EP on the upcoming Apple drama Severance, which Stiller will direct and executive produce.
Carey Mulligan will play Felicia, the wife of composer Leonard Bernstein in Maestro, the musical drama Bradley Cooper is writing and directing for Netflix. The movie, which Cooper is also producing, unfolds the 30-year love story between the legendary Bernstein and Felicia.
Sienna Miller, Michelle Dockery, and Rupert Friend will star in David E. Kelley’s Netflix drama Anatomy of a Scandal, a six-part adaptation of Sarah Vaughan’s novel about a scandal among wealthy Brits. Miller will play a wife whose ambitious husband (Friend) is accused of rape, and Dockery will play the prosecutor set on convicting him. (Deadline)
Alan Arkin will be MIA for the final season of Netflix’s The Kominsky Method. The actor, who earned Emmy and Golden Globe nominations for his role as agent Norman Newlander, chose not to return for season 3, and Norman’s absence will be written into the Michael Douglas series when it returns. (Deadline)
Michelle Obama, Lin-Manuel Miranda, and Bill Clinton will guest star in HBO Max’s Oct. 15 reunion A West Wing Special to Benefit When We All Vote, which brings back original cast members Rob Lowe, Richard Schiff, Dule Hill, Allison Janney, Martin Sheen, Bradley Whitford, and Janel Moloney to perform the Season 3 episode “Hartsfield’s Landing.”
Demi Moore is starring in Dirty Diana, an Amazon series adaptation of the podcast of the same name, in which Moore also stars. The podcast is loosely based on an experience in creator Shana Feste’s marriage, and revolves around a female perspective on how a broken relationship can be repaired through “perseverance, connection, and sex.” Feste is also set to direct and write the series, which could also include some of the podcast’s other stars, including Carmen Ejogo, Mackenzie Davis, Dayo Okeniyi, Betsy Brandt, Max Greenfield, Claes Bang, Gwendoline Christie, Lena Dunham, Melanie Griffith, Andrea Riseborough, and Chris Diamontopolus. (Deadline)
Kate Winslet and Priyanka Chopra Jonas have joined the roster of narrators for HBO Max’s A World of Calm, an anthology series that will feature celeb narration set to soothing imagery, “a timely antidote for our modern lives.” Produced by the creators of the app Calm, the series will premiere on Oct. 1 with additional episodes featuring the voiceovers of Idris Elba, Keanu Reeves, Nicole Kidman, Mahershala Ali, Oscar Isaac, Zoë Kravitz, Lucy Liu, and Cillian Murphy.
Midnight, Texas alum Parisa Fitz-Henley will star in the ABC medical drama pilot Triage, which follows a surgeon across three decades at the same hospital. Fitz-Henley will play the surgeon in all three time periods. The series is from Criminal Minds showrunner Erica Messer and Crazy Rich Asians director Jon M. Chu. (Deadline)
Empire alum Nicole Ari Parker will have a recurring role in the upcoming season of Chicago P.D., playing a deputy superintendent who is committed to police reform. She debuts in the season premiere. (TV Line)
Giovanni Ribisi, Sarah Jones, and Alexia Landeau are joining Elisabeth Shue and Julie Delpy in the Netflix dramedy On the Verge, about four female friends in their late forties determined to embrace the possibilities of midlife. Delpy also created the series.
Phillipa Soo (Hamilton) and Jake Dorman (What We Do in the Shadows) have joined the cast of Hulu’s opioid crisis drama Dopesick. Soo will play a Purdue Pharma sales rep who was on the first team who sold OxyContin, and Dorman will play a U.S. attorney prosecuting the case against Purdue and the company’s OxyContin marketing practices. The series also stars Michael Keaton, Kaitlyn Dever, Peter Sarsgaard, and Will Poulter, and is written by Danny Strong, based on Beth Macy’s book Dopesick. (Variety)
What We Do in the Shadows star Harvey Guillén will have a recurring role in Season 2 of NBC’s Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist. The GLAAD Award winner will play George, Zoey’s new co-worker who is extra thirsty for Zoey, and the rest of his fellow employees’, approval.
The Americans alum Holly Taylor has joined the cast of NBC’s Manifest, where she will play Flight 828 passenger Angelina, who has escaped scrutiny so far. “Her emergence will play an integral part in the lives of the Stone family this season,” reports Deadline.
First CBS All Access was announced for a rebranding to Paramount+. Now the Paramount Network is being rebranded as the Paramount Movie Network, with a shift in focus from original series to movies and miniseries. No worries: Yellowstone, the hit Kevin Costner drama, will remain. But otherwise, the new network will stock its schedule with made-for-TV movies, with a plan of one per week, along with a new miniseries or limited series every quarter. The news is bad for unscripted series like Wife Swap and Ink Master, which will be cancelled, though reality hits like Bar Rescue and Lip Sync Battle will be moved elsewhere (Paramount+, perhaps?). (Variety)
Country superstar and The Voice judge Blake Shelton is teaming up with Las Vegas creator and The Fast and the Furious writer Gary Scott Thompson for God’s Country, an NBC drama series based on Shelton’s 2019 triple platinum, Academy of Country Music Awards Single of the Year-winning song of the same name. Thompson will write the series, about a farming family who finds out the recently deceased patriarch had a deep secret that’s going to impact their lives.
David Letterman’s Netflix interview series, My Next Guest Needs No Introduction, will return for a third season on Oct. 21 with four episodes featuring Letterman’s chats with Dave Chappelle, Lizzo, Robert Downey Jr., and Kim Kardashian.
Carrie Underwood is celebrating her first holiday album, My Gift, with an HBO Max holiday special. Underwood will team with a live orchestra and a choir to perform traditional holiday tunes, as well as original songs from My Gift. The special, executive produced by Tom Hanks, will premiere on HBO Max later this year.
Discovery Channel will premiere Cal Fire, a docuseries with several cameras following the men and women who’ve been battling the 2020 California wildfires that have burned millions of acres, later this year. (Deadline)
If you have yet to check out last weekend’s charming Emmy champion, Schitt’s Creek, the comedy begins airing in syndication on Sept. 28, while Comedy Central will begin airing five episodes every Friday on Oct. 2. Meanwhile – holiday gift alert! – the complete series, all six seasons, will be released in a bonus-packed DVD box set on Nov. 10.
Rumor, or hint at something in the works? You decide; Prison Break star Dominic Purcell said in an Instagram post that a sixth season of the Fox drama will happen.
Natasha Lyonne and Alia Shawkat are teaming up for an Amazon drama, Desert People, about a group of Iraqi immigrants who operate a gentleman’s club in Palm Springs. Shawkat will star as the family’s daughter, and will be the show’s primary writer. She will also be an executive producer on the show, along with Lyonne and Maya Rudolph. (Variety)