ABC Nabs Dramedy From Liz Heldens Based On ‘Big Ballet’ UK Reality Series
In a competitive situation, with multiple networks pursuing, ABC has landed ballet-themed dramedy written/executive produced by Deception and Mercy creator Liz Heldens and executive produced by Sue Naegle. The project, which has received a script commitment with a significant penalty, hails from Sony Pictures TV’s recently relaunched TriStar TV label.
The British reality series, which had a brief run on Channel 4 last year, featured 18 amateur, plus-sized dancers, many… Read
Steven Pasquale Cast As Male Lead In CBS’ New ‘Doubt’ Pilot
Steven Pasquale (The Good Wife) is set as the male lead opposite Katherine Heigl in CBS‘ new pilot for legal drama Doubt. The project, from writers Tony Phelan and Joan Rater, CBS TV Studios and Timberman/Beverly Prods, centers on Sadie Ellis (Heigl), a smart, chic, successful defense lawyer at a boutique firm who shockingly gets romantically involved with one of her clients, the decent, altruistic pediatric surgeon Billy (Pasquale), who may or may not be guilty of… Read
Richard Pryor Pic Set; Oprah Winfrey To Play His Brothel-Owner Grandma, Eddie Murphy “Uncle” Buck, Mike Epps And Kate Hudson As Pryor And Wife Jennifer
EXCLUSIVE: The Weinstein Company is ready to greenlight its Richard Pryor biopic, and my, have Harvey Weinstein and Lee Daniels put together a terrific cast. The new additions: Oprah Winfrey will play Pryor’s grandmother, who ran a brothel and raised the iconic comic there; Eddie Murphy will play Pryor’s father, Leroy “Buck Carter” Pryor. Kate Hudson is set to play Pryor’s widow, Jennifer Lee Pryor. And Mike Epps is now locked to play Pryor, a role coveted by a lot of… Read
‘The Jury’ Legal Drama Produced By Carol Mendelsohn Sold To ABC With Big Penalty
ABC is developing The Jury, a drama project written by Justified writer-producer VJ Boyd and Mark Bianculli (MTV pilot Self Promotion) and executive produced by CSI alumna Carol Mendelsohn. The project, from Sony Pictures TV, where Mendelsohn is under an overall deal, landed at ABC with a significant penalty. While the network is stopping short of categorizing it as a put pilot, I hear the size of the penalty is in a high-six-figure range that regularly qualifies as a… Read
‘We Are Your Friends’ Review: Zac Efron Takes On Sex, Drugs And Dance Music But Does He Score?
Sex, drugs, dance music, parties, girls and Zac Efron are the recipe for We Are Your Friends, a late-summer box office entry from Warner Bros that might find a hard time gaining traction (especially with a terrible title that is hard to remember) but is a likable-enough diversion before fall and more serious movies start bombarding us. As I say in my video review (click the link above), this film, thanks to Efron’s sincere performance and adeptness at convincing us he is… Read
‘Complications’ Cancelled By USA After One Season
USA Network has opted not to order a second season of Complications, its freshman drama starring Jason O’Mara. I hear the options on the cast had recently expired, but the network brass, still on the fence about a pickup, secured a four-day extension while pondering the show’s fate. It came down to the wire but, after lengthy deliberations, the network ultimately decided against a second season.
Complications, which finished its summer run earlier this month, comes from… Read
Bert Fields Talks Disney Ban, George Lucas, James Cameron, Harvey Weinstein, Napoleon & The Next Big Thing
EXCLUSIVE: It might not be too much of a stretch to say that Bert Fields has played a role in almost every great Hollywood legal battle of the last 30 years. The Cardinal Richelieu of Tinseltown attorneys, Fields counts among his accomplishments successfully taking on Disney and Michael Eisner to the tune of a $250 million payout for Jeffrey Katzenberg back in the late 1990s. He repped Star Wars creator George Lucas in negotiations with the House of Mouse as well. The… Read
Ryan Simpkins Joins ‘The House’ With Will Ferrell And Amy Poehler
Ryan Simpkins is moving into the upcoming comedy The House, also starring with Will Ferrell and Amy Poehler. The film is about a pair of cash strapped parents who accidentally blow the money intended to pay for their daughter’s college tuition. In desperation, they open an underground casino in their suburb and recruit locals to run the business. Simpkins will play Ferrell and Poehler’s daughter.
The House was the subject of a bidding war earlier this year, with New Line… Read
Armie Hammer Joins Tom Ford’s ‘Nocturnal Animals’
Armie Hammer has joined the cast of Nocturnal Animals, the book adaptation that Tom Ford is writing and directing. The Man From U.N.C.L.E. star joins a cast that includes Jake Gyllenhaal, Amy Adams, Michael Shannon, Kim Basinger and Aaron Taylor Johnson. He will play the role of Walker Morrow, Adams’ onscreen husband, in the film version of the 1993 Austin Wright novel Tony And Susan.
Focus Features landed worldwide rights to the film in one of the highest-profile deals… Read
Rebekah Brooks Will Return To Pre-Scandal Perch At News Corp UK: Reports
Rebekah Brooks and Rupert Murdoch appear to be thisclose again. British press reports Friday said that Brooks has agreed to return to her former post as head of News Corp’s newspaper division, and News Corp wasn’t denying it: “As we have said, we have been having discussions with Rebekah Brooks and when we have any announcements to make we will let you know,” a News Corp spokesman told the Financial Times today.
Brooks resigned four years ago in the wake of a hacking… Read
‘House Of Lies’ Star Don Cheadle On “Getting Back To The Fun” In Season 5 – Emmys
Don Cheadle’s viciously dishonest corporate consultant Marty Kaan on Showtime’s House Of Lies isn’t exactly a departure for the actor, but it might be the most fun he’s had in a role. Following a tense, dramatic season that saw Kaan clawing his way back after a stint in jail, Cheadle has nabbed his fourth Emmy nomination (and eighth overall) for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series for the part. Here, the Oscar-nominated actor (for Hotel Rwanda, and he also was a… Read
Pamela Adlon On Her New FX Series ‘Better Things’ And 10-Year Working Relationship With Louis C.K. – Emmys
Pamela Adlon has had a long and storied career on several TV series—including seven seasons on Californication—as a voice actress, and in such early-career movies as Say Anything and Sgt. Bilko. She's been at this since she was a kid, after all. But it really wasn't until she was cast as Louis C.K.'s friend and eventual love interest on FX's Louie that she's become more known. Adlon has three Emmy nominations for writing and producing on Louie, and one win—for voicing… Read