The third annual Tribeca TV Festival kicks off next month with looks at new series including Freeform’s Party of Five, Starz’s Leavenworth, Epix’s Godfather of Harlem and BET+’s First Wives Club, celebrations of old favorites like Friends, and a closing night world premiere screening of Amazon Prime’s Transparent series finale.
The festival runs Sept. 12-15 at the Regal Battery Park in Lower Manhattan. Tickets go on sale today. See the entire line-up below.
“We’re returning this year with a lineup that highlights the ever-changing ways audiences consume television,” said Paula Weinstein, EVP of Tribeca Enterprises. “Featuring selections from classic cable networks, to premium cable, to streaming entertainment, the Festival will always highlight the best storytelling in the medium.”
Among the expected programming highlights are a 25th anniversary celebration of Friends with two episodes curated by executive producers Marta Kauffman, David Crane, and Kevin Bright (all three will participate in a post-screening conversation), and an exclusive sneak preview of Freeform’s Party of Five pilot episode.
Among the new series premieres at the fest will be Starz’ true crime docu-series Leavenworth, executive produced by Steven Soderbergh; Epix’s Godfather of Harlem starring Forest Whitaker, Vincent D’Onofrio and Giancarlo Esposito; First Wives Club, the BET+ remake of the 1996 revenge comedy; CBS’ Evil from Executive Producers Robert and Michelle King; Hulu’s Looking for Alaska, the limited series based on John Green’s book; AMC’s docuseries Hip Hop: The Songs That Shook America featuring executive producer Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson and Tarik “Black Thought” Trotter; The CW’s Riverdale spin-off Katy Keene starring Lucy Hale; the season three premiere of HBO’s Room 104; the season two premiere of ABC’s Bless This Mess starring Lake Bell and Dax Shephard; and the season three return of Amazon’s Goliath starring Billy Bob Thornton.
The Tribeca Talks series this year will feature conversations with Hasan Minhaj and James Spader.
Said Cara Cusumano, Tribeca’s Festival Director, in a statement: “This year’s Tribeca TV Festival program, like TV itself, has something for everyone. We are bringing channel surfing to the big screen, as our audiences can experience – in just 4 days – the full spectrum of episodic storytelling, and we hope, discover their new favorite show along the way.”
Here’s the complete roster:
2019 TRIBECA TV FESTIVAL LINEUP
Bless This Mess (ABC) – Season 2 World Premiere
Executive Producers: Lake Bell, Liz Meriwether and Dax Shepard
After making the move from big city New York to rural Nebraska, newlyweds Rio (Lake Bell) and Mike (Dax Shepard) are getting accustomed to their new life as farmers. From neighborly feuds to a house full of chickens, Rio and Mike’s marriage and sanity are put to the test as they try to make the most out of their new life on the farm. Co-created by Liz Meriwether (New Girl), get an advance look at the hilarious Season 2 premiere, directed by co-star and co-creator Lake Bell.
● After the Screening: a conversation with co-creator and star Lake Bell, and co-stars Dax Shepard and Pam Grier.
● Event Details: Saturday, September 14th at 8 p.m.
Evil (CBS) – New Series Premiere
Executive Producers: Robert and Michelle King
The highly anticipated new series from Robert and Michelle King (The Good Wife, The Good Fight), Evil finds a skeptical female clinical psychologist as she joins a priest-in-training and a contractor as they investigate supposed miracles, demonic possession, and other extraordinary occurrences to see if there’s a scientific explanation or if something truly supernatural is at work.
● After the Screening: a conversation with executive producers Robert and Michelle King and cast members Katja Herbers, Mike Colter, Aasif Mandvi, and Michael Emerson
● Event Details: Saturday, September 14th at 6 p.m.
First Wives Club (BET+) – Special Screening
Executive Producer: Tracy Oliver
From Tracy Oliver, the co-writer of Girls Trip, comes a modern television remake of the classic 1996 revenge comedy First Wives Club. After neglecting their friendship, best friends Ari (Ryan Michelle Bathe), Hazel (Jill Scott) and Bree (Michelle Buteau) reunite to help each other through rough patches in their lives. Together, they navigate music superstar Hazel’s tabloid-ridden divorce, campaign manager Ari’s unsatisfying marriage to her political candidate husband, and orthopedic surgeon Bree’s cheating husband. Tired of always being the ones to make sacrifices in their lives, Ari, Hazel and Bree vow to prioritize their friendship and, along the way, the women learn that as long as they have each other, there’s nothing they can’t do.
● After the Screening: a conversation with creator and executive producer Tracy Oliver and star Michelle Buteau
● Event Details: Thursday, September 12th at 9 p.m.
Godfather of Harlem (Epix) – New Series World Premiere
Executive Producers: Chris Brancato and Paul Eckstein
Bumpy Johnson (Forest Whitaker) returns from Alcatraz after an eleven year absence to reunite with his family and reclaim his Harlem territory from Italian mob boss Vincent “Chin” Gigante (Vincent D’Onofrio). He finds an unlikely ally in his old friend Malcolm X (Nigel Thatch). From the creators of Narcos and starring Academy Award®-winner Forest Whitaker, don’t miss this early look at your new historical crime obsession.
● After the Screening: a conversation with executive producers Chris Brancato and Paul Eckstein, star Ilfenesh Hadera and star and executive producer Forest Whitaker
● Event Details: Thursday, September 12th at 6:30 p.m.
Goliath (Amazon Prime Video) – Season 3 World Premiere
Executive Producers: Lawrence Trilling, Geyer Kosinski, Jennifer Ames, and Steve Turner
In the third season of Goliath, the unexpected death of an old friend leads Billy McBride (Billy Bob Thornton) to take a case in the drought-stricken Central Valley where he comes face-to-face with a new Goliath: a billionaire rancher (Dennis Quaid) and his sister (Amy Brenneman). As Billy and his team pursue the truth, old enemies and personal demons resurface, forcing him to confront his own mortality.
● After the Screening: a conversation with executive producer Lawrence Trilling, stars Billy Bob Thornton, Nina Arianda, Tania Raymonde, Amy Brenneman and Dennis Quaid
● Event Details: Friday, September 13th at 7 p.m.
Hip Hop: The Songs that Shook America (AMC) – New Series Premiere
Executive Producers: Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson, Tariq “Black Thought” Trotter, and Alex Gibney
From Executive Producers Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson, Tariq “Black Thought” Trotter, Alex Gibney, and directors Erik Parker and One9, this documentary series focuses on six groundbreaking songs pivotal to the evolution of American music and culture. The premiere of episode 2, featuring Kendrick Lamar’s Alright, brings artists, collaborators, and other influential musical and cultural figures together as they deconstruct and examine the impact the song had on them personally, while dissecting the socio-economic and cultural conditions that inspired the landmark work and gave voice to a generation. In addition to Thompson, Trotter and Gibney, this project is also executive produced by Shawn Gee, Stacey Offman, Richard Perello, and Shea Serrano. Angie Day, Erik Parker and One9 also serve as co-executive producers.
● After the Screening: a conversation with directors and co-executive producers One9 and Erik Parker, executive producers Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson and Tarik “Black Thought” Trotter, and co-executive producer Angie Day.
● Event Details: Friday, September 13th at 8:15 p.m.
Katy Keene (The CW) – New Series World Premiere
Executive Producers: Greg Berlanti, Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, Michael Grassi, Sarah Schechter, and Jon Goldwater
A spinoff of the hit series Riverdale, Katy Keene follows the lives and loves of four iconic Archie Comics characters — fashion legend-to-be Katy Keene (Lucy Hale), singer/songwriter Josie McCoy (Ashleigh Murray), performer Jorge Lopez/Ginger (Jonny Beauchamp), and “It Girl” Pepper Smith (Julia Chan) — as they chase their twenty-something dreams in New York City…together. As these aspiring artists take on the runway, the recording studio, Broadway, and the NYC social scene, they will find more than just a career in the big city — they’ll find long-lasting friendship. Starring Lucy Hale, Ashleigh Murray, Katherine LaNasa, Julia Chan, Jonny Beauchamp, Lucien Laviscount, Zane Holtz and Camille Hyde.
● After the Screening: a conversation with executive producer Michael Grassi, and cast members Lucy Hale, Julia Chan, Jonny Beauchamp, Katherine LaNasa, Zane Holtz, Camille Hyde, Ashleigh Murray, and Lucien Laviscount.
● Event Details: Saturday, September 14th at 3 p.m.
Leavenworth (Starz) – New Series World Premiere
Executive Producers: Paul Pawlowski, David Check, and Steven Soderbergh
From executive producers Paul Pawlowski, David Check, and Academy Award®-winning filmmaker Steven Soderbergh, comes a controversial true-crime story playing out in the military justice system. Clint Lorance is serving a 19-year sentence for murder at The United States Penitentiary, Leavenworth. While deployed in Afghanistan in July 2012, the former lieutenant ordered fire on three local men riding a motorcycle, killing two of them and outraging his platoon. As determinations on Lorance’s fate unfold, questions probe the merits of his conviction, analyze the system at large and ultimately test the balance of guilt and innocence in the circumstances of today’s wars.
● After the Screening: a conversation with executive producers Steven Soderbergh and Paul Pawlowski, Platoon Soldier Mike McGuiness, New York Times National Correspondent David Philipps, and Lorance’s lawyer John Maher.
● Event Details: Sunday, September 15th at 5 p.m.
Looking for Alaska (Hulu) – New Series World Premiere
Executive Producers: Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage
Adapted from the first novel by John Green (The Fault in Our Stars), Looking for Alaska is an 8-episode limited series that centers around teenager Miles “Pudge” Halter (Charlie Plummer), as he enrolls in boarding school to try to gain a deeper perspective on life. He falls in love with Alaska Young (Kristine Froseth), and finds a group of loyal friends. But after an unexpected tragedy, Miles and his close friends attempt to make sense of what they’ve been through.
● After the Screening: a conversation with acclaimed author and executive producer John Green,
executive producers Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage, and stars Charlie Plummer, Kristine Froseth, Denny Love and Jay Lee.
● Event Details: Sunday, September 15th at 2:30 p.m.
Party of Five (Freeform) – New Series Sneak Preview in celebration of National Hispanic Heritage Month
Executive Producers: Amy Lip p.m.an, Christopher Keyser and Rodrigo Garcia
In this reimagining of the classic ‘90s series, Party of Five follows the five Acosta children — Emilio, Lucia, Beto, Valentina and baby Rafael — as they navigate the daily life struggles to survive as a family after their parents are suddenly deported to Mexico. Mixing family drama with incredibly relevant current events, Party of Five, from original series creators, Amy Lip p.m.an and Christopher Keyser along with executive producer Rodrigo Garcia and co-executive producer Michal Zebede, is a contemporary update for a whole new generation.
● After the Screening: a conversation with executive producer and writer Amy Lip p.m.an, co-executive producer and writer Michal Zebede, and cast members Brandon Larracuente, Niko Guardado, Emily Tosta, and Elle Paris Legaspi
● Event Details: Saturday, September 14th at 5:30 p.m.
Room 104 (HBO) – Season 3 World Premiere
Executive Producers: Mark and Jay Duplass
Created by Mark and Jay Duplass (HBO’s Animals and Togetherness), the late-night half-hour anthology series Room 104 returns with 12 new episodes, telling unique and unexpected tales of the characters who pass through an unassuming room of a typical American chain motel. While the room stays the same, every episode of the series features a different story, with the tone, plot, characters, and even the time period, changing with each installment. Filled with plenty of twists and surprises, Season 3 offers a new discovery from one episode to the next, telling tales of everyday people striving for connection and meaning inside a single room.
● After the Screening: a conversation with executive producers Mark Duplass and Sydney Fleischmann
● Event Details: Thursday, September 12th at 8 p.m.
CLOSING NIGHT EVENT
Transparent (Amazon Prime Video) – Series Musicale Finale
Executive Producers: Jill Soloway, Faith Soloway, Andrea Sperling, Joe Lewis
The Transparent “Musicale Finale” takes the beloved Emmy and Golden Globe award-winning series to new heights as a dazzling movie fantasia inspired by classic musicals that shaped our culture. When the Pfeffermans face a life-changing loss, they begin a journey hilarious and melancholy, brazen and bold. As they take on this new transition and confront their grief—with all of their extended family members by their side—they come together to celebrate connection, joy, and transformation.
● After the Screening: a conversation with executive producers Jill Soloway and Faith Soloway, and additional cast
● Event Details: Sunday, September 15th at 6 p.m.
25th Anniversary Celebration of Friends: A Conversation with the Series Executive Producers: David Crane, Marta Kauffman and Kevin Bright
On September 22, 1994, Friends debuted to more than 20 million viewers, and a close-knit group of 20-somethings nestled inside a New York City coffee shop entered the television airwaves. Produced by Warner Bros. Television for 10 acclaimed seasons, Friends upended the cultural landscape and created an indelible impact on American society through its iconic characters. But what resonated then — and continues today with a whole new generation of viewers — is the infectious chemistry and connection between Ross, Rachel, Joey, Monica, Chandler and Phoebe, and their honest depiction of friendship. To celebrate the show’s 25th anniversary, Tribeca TV is presenting Friends for the very first time in 4K digital restoration with two curated episodes — The One with the Embryos and The One Where Everybody Finds Out — hand-selected by the show’s creators and executive producers. This will kick off what will be a nationwide celebration of the series, with a theatrical release of producer-curated episodes throughout the United States. Following the Tribeca screenings, Friends executive producers, David Crane, Marta Kauffman, and Kevin Bright will come together to reflect on the series’ immeasurable legacy and pay tribute to the Friends who will always be there for us.
● Event Details: Friday, September 13th at 6 p.m.
Tribeca Talks: A Conversation with Hasan Minhaj
Acclaimed comedian, writer, producer, political commentator, actor and television host Hasan Minhaj will be in conversation to discuss his burgeoning career as one of the most incisive and poignant voices in television. Hasan rose to prominence in 2014 when he joined The Daily Show with Jon Stewart as a correspondent, where he was Stewart’s last hire, and continued on in that role after Trevor Noah took over as host the following year. Minhaj was the featured speaker at the 2017 White House Correspondents Dinner where his whip-smart commentary and political savvy garnered widespread attention. Minhaj went on to earn rave reviews and a 2018 Peabody Award for his one-hour Netflix comedy special Hasan Minhaj: Homecoming King. Currently, Minhaj is the host and creator of the weekly Peabody Award-winning comedy show Patriot Act with Hasan Minhaj, which explores the modern cultural and political landscape with depth and sincerity through his unique comedic voice. In 2019, Minhaj was listed among TIME’s 100 most influential people in the world. Tribeca is proud to host the accomplished, sharp-witted Hasan Minhaj as he illuminates his creative process and journey from stand-up comedy to television and beyond.
● Event Details: Sunday, September 15th at 4 p.m.
Tribeca Talks: A Conversation with James Spader
Versatile and acclaimed actor James Spader will be in conversation to discuss his accomplished and illustrious decades-spanning career as one of the most intoxicating and unique performers in both television and film. Spader burst onto the big screen with roles in such memorable 80’s films as Pretty and Pink and Less Than Zero. He went on to receive immense acclaim for his starring roles in the indie breakouts Sex, Lies and Videotape, for which he won the Best Actor Award at the Cannes Film Festival, and Steven Shainberg’s Secretary. Additional film roles include Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln and the titular villain in Marvel’s Avengers: Age of Ultron. Alongside his film work, Spader has made an indelible mark in television, winning three Emmy Awards for his seminal role as shameless attorney Alan Shore on The Practice and Boston Legal, making him the only actor to win consecutive Emmys playing the same character in two different series. Spader also co-starred on the beloved NBC comedyThe Office, and his astonishing, Golden Globe-nominated portrayal of criminal mastermind Raymond “Red” Reddington on the hit NBC show The Blacklist has brought him to the forefront of accomplished actors doing exciting and distinctive work in television. Tribeca is thrilled to host the remarkable James Spader for a unique opportunity to delve deep into the career of one of the industry’s most fearless storytellers.
● Event Details: Thursday, September 12th at 6 p.m.