TV Nerd News #12
Welcome to another (late) edition of iGR‘s TV Nerd News, where yours truly provides you with the week’s best news in TV. This is the first time I’ve done the TVNN article since the 2013-14 Upfronts and well, with that out of the way and the summer upon is, there isn’t a whole lot of TV news. I was able to gather enough for a pretty good article this week but going forward, keep in mind that we’re in the TV dead zone for the next couple of months. Anyways, enough of me making excuses for the future, let’s get to the news!
5/20 – THE STRAIN finds a female lead
- Guillermo del Toro‘s (Hellboy franchise) first foray into TV is shaping up to pretty interesting, as last week it was announced that Mia Maestro (Alias) was joining the previously cast Corey Stoll (House of Cards) and Kevin Durand (Real Steel) in the FX pilot The Strain. Based on the novel trilogy in which del Toro co-wrote, The Strain centers on a mysterious viral outbreak that resembles vampirism. It’s an extremely high profile pilot that is very likely to get picked up, given who’s involved. Other than del Toro, Chuck Hogan (co-author of The Strain) and Carlton Cuse (Lost) are also producers on the project.
5/21 – HALO gets the TV treatment for Microsoft
- After years of rumors centered on a film adaptation of the popular game franchise, Microsoft announced at last week’s Xbox One reveal (read over full coverage here) that they were finally able to crack an adaptation of Bungie‘s Halo series. And you know who will be bringing the series to live? Steven Spielberg (Lincoln)! Spielberg is no stranger to TV, as his Amblin Television production banner is responsible for TNT‘s Falling Skies and the upcoming CBS event series Under the Dome, as well as canceled series Fox‘s Terra Nova and ABC‘s The River. Obviously, he hasn’t been as successful in TV as he has been in features but his name still carries a lot of weight that should provide a level of excitement that most producers would not be able to garner. I’m holding off on my excitement until I see who will be in charge of writing and running the show but Microsoft certainly has something that could be huge on their hands.
5/22 – FX orders high profile pilot THE COMEDIANS
- In a somewhat bizarre marriage of talents, FX has order the pilot for The Comedians produced and written by Matt Nix (Burn Notice), Larry Charles (Borat), Ben Wexler (Community) and Billy Crystal (Monsters, Inc.). Crystal will also star in the series which centers on an older, big name comedian (Crystal) who is reluctantly paired with a younger, edgier comedian (yet to be cast) for a late night sketch show. It’ll be interesting to see what kind of show comes out of this as Crystal’s career has largely been family friendly lately while the rest of the producers have varying degrees of success with edgier comedy.
5/22 – QUARRY finds its sniper
- After finding some relative amount of success with its original programming in the past couple of years, Cinemax continues to branch out with new scripted projects. Among them is Quarry, a post-Vietnam drama centered on an American sniper who returns home only to be shunned by everybody he knows, causing him to be recruited into a network of contract killers along the Mississippi. Well, last week, they found said sniper in Logan Marshall-Green (Prometheus). Marshall-Green has had various amounts of success on TV before, with a recurring role on The O.C., as well as a one of the leads in TNT’s short-lived undercover cop series Dark Blue. Because of their recent success with original programming, Cinemax has started to attract some pretty great talent, Quarry included because in addition to Marshall-Green, John Hillcoat (Lawless) is on board to produce and direct the series.
5/27 – Could COMMUNITY bring back its creator?
- The internet went a little berserk over the weekend after Dan Harmon (Community) let it spill at a taping of his podcast Harmontown, that he was being asked back for the fifth season of NBC‘s Community. Not only that but writer/producer Chris McKenna (Community), Harmon’s second in command when he ran the show, was also asked back. This development stems from a couple of things, the first of which is that the showrunners for the fourth season, Moses Port and David Guarascio (Just Shoot Me!) were only signed to a one year deal and have declined to return to the series. The other factor is that the upcoming fifth season of Community is likely to be it’s last and Sony and/or NBC be willing to ask him back so that the series can end on a high note, in the process placating a very rabid fanbase. Adding to all of that is the fact that Chevy Chase (Vacation franchise) left the show late last year and he and Harmon constantly butted heads while Harmon was in charge of the show.
That’s all for this week! If you haven’t gotten a chance yet, be sure to take a look at this week’s FNN and Trailer Tuesday. And don’t forget to follow me on Twitter @kyle_igr and the site @igresponsibly!