Monday, January 19, 2015

TCA Winter 2015 Press Tour: NBC, Fox and FX, Includes Eva Longoria Comedy on NBC

NBC

It's a busy recap day today. NBC was up at the TCA Winter 2015 Press Tour on Friday, followed by Fox on Saturday and FX on Sunday...and we have the full scoop! Let's start with NBC. In her return to a starring role on primetime television, NBC is teaming with SAG Award winner and multi-nominee Eva Longoria on the half-hour comedy series Telenovela. NBC has ordered 13 episodes of the singlecam comedy that will star and be executive produced by Longoria. From Universal Television and Unbelievable Entertainment, Telenovela captures the hilarious behind-the-scenes craziness of a popular Spanish telenovela. Longoria will play the willful but popular diva Ana Maria, star of Latin America's most beloved telenovela who strives to stay on top in a world where the drama on-camera is nothing compared to the drama off-camera. Stay with us for info as it will launch in 2015-16. Next, NBC is bringing both the heartbreaking and uplifting stories during one of America's most tumultuous periods to television in adapting author and Pulitzer Prize finalist Betty DeRamus' acclaimed book Forbidden Fruit: Love Stories From the Underground Railroad as an epic eight-hour miniseries titled Freedom Run. It will focus on three specific epic journeys and love stories, each based on actual people. Iconic musician Stevie Wonder will serve as an executive producer.

Zachary Levi is making his long-awaited return to television in NBC's upcoming event miniseries Heroes Reborn to play a key yet undisclosed role. Jack Coleman, who played Noah Bennet in the original Heroes series, has previously been cast to reprise his role as "HRG" for Heroes Reborn. With the return of Heroes Reborn, NBC will launch a digital series prior to the premiere that will introduce the characters and new storylines. This leveraging of social media is a way for fans to re-engage with what was one for the true pioneers in multiplatform storytelling. Still no premiere date has been given. And finally for NBC, they have signed a development deal with Dolly Parton, one of the most honored female country musicians of all time and an American icon. In conjunction with production partner Sam Haskell of Magnolia Hill Entertainment and Warner Bros. Television, NBC will develop a slate of two-hour TV movies based on the songs, stories, and inspiring life of Dolly Parton. This extraordinarily prolific country music artist and movie star will produce these projects that are meant to appeal to an inclusive family audience.


Fox

On to Fox, well that was fast. After just two episodes, Empire is coming back. Fox has renewed hit drama series Empire for a second season. The second episode grew from its already big premiere rating. It is the only new broadcast drama this season to grow from week one to week two. Fox has also ordered a third season of the award-winning comedy Brooklyn Nine-Nine. And if two renewals weren't enough, Fox has also renewed hit drama series Gotham for a second season. Get ready to scream. Joe Manganiello (True Blood), Emmy Award and Golden Globe Award nominee Lea Michele (Glee), Academy Award nominee Abigail Breslin (Little Miss Sunshine) and Keke Palmer (Masters of Sex) have been cast as series regulars in Scream Queens, a new comedy-horror anthology series from Ryan Murphy, Brad Falchuk, Ian Brennan and Dante Di Loreto, the executive producers of Glee and American Horror Story. Additionally, Grammy Award nominee and actress Ariana Grande will guest-star in a recurring role. Jamie Lee Curtis (Halloween) and Emma Roberts (American Horror Story: Freak Show) were previously announced in starring roles in the limited series. The first installment in the new anthology series revolves around a college campus which is rocked by a series of murders. Fifteen one-hour episodes have been ordered, which are scheduled to begin production in the spring, and premiere in Fall 2015 on Fox.

Fox Broadcasting Company (FOX) and Paramount Television announced that superstar singers, dancers and actresses Julianne Hough (Safe Haven, Rock of Ages, Dancing with the Stars) and Vanessa Hudgens (High School Musical, Spring Breakers, Gigi on Broadway) have been cast in leading roles in Grease: Live (working title). With Hough as the angelic Sandy - Rydell High's most talked-about newcomer - and Hudgens as iconic bad girl Rizzo, this first-ever live television production of Grease will re-imagine the hit crossover musical for an entirely new generation. Airing LIVE Sunday, Jan. 31, 2016 from 7:00-10:00 PM ET live/PT tape-delayed on Fox, Grease: Live (wt) will be executive-produced by acclaimed film, television and theater producer Marc Platt. Grease: Live (wt) is based on the original musical Grease by Jim Jacobs and Warren Casey, and Paramount Pictures' 1978 feature adaptation. It will be a Paramount Television production.

FX

Moving on to cable network FX, they have set the premiere date of Thursday, April 9 for the series premiere of the new comedy series The Comedians starring Billy Crystal and Josh Gad and the fifth season of the Emmy(R) Award winning comedy series Louie starring Louie C.K. The Comedians will air at 10:00 PM ET/PT, followed by Louie at 10:30 PM ET/PT. Also, FX has acquired the television rights to Emmy Award winner Louis C.K.'s next standup comedy special, Louis C.K. Live From the Comedy Store. C.K. will make the special available to fans first on his website, LouisCK.net, in coming weeks after his record-breaking run of shows at Madison Square Garden. C.K. is the first comedian to sell out three shows for the same tour in Madison Square Garden history. Tickets for the fourth Madison Square Garden show on January 27 went on sale Saturday. The hour-long comedy special will subsequently air on FX this spring. C.K. will write and direct the special. And the third piece of FX news also has Louie C.K. involved. FX Networks has ordered the comedy pilot Better Things, created by and starring Pamela Adlon and directed by fellow Louie star Louis C.K. Better Things is the fifth comedy series pilot produced or ordered by FX Networks within the past year, including the comedy series pilots Atlanta, created by and starring Donald Glover, and Pariah, starring Bill Burr for Rob McElhenney, Charlie Day and Glenn Howerton. These projects reinforce FX Networks' position as the leading comedy brand in television. Let's see which of these make it to series. Stay with us.


New on DVD/Blu-ray (September)

The Big Bang Theory - The Complete Ninth Season Newhart - The Complete Sixth Season 2 Broke Girls - The Complete Fifth Season Family Matters - The Complete Eighth Season Modern Family - The Complete Season 7

09/06 - Coach - Season One (Mill Creek) / Season Two / Seasons One and Two
09/06 - South Park - The Complete Ninteenth Season (Blu-ray)
09/13 - The Big Bang Theory - The Complete Ninth Season (Blu-ray)
09/13 - Newhart - The Complete Sixth Season
09/20 - 2 Broke Girls - The Complete Fifth Season
09/20 - Family Matters - The Complete Eighth Season
09/20 - Modern Family - The Complete Season 7
09/20 - Veep - Season 5
09/27 - The Wonder Years - Season Six
More TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest


Sitcoms Airing Tonight

Saturday, September 24

Henry Danger - "Love Muffin" (Nickelodeon, 8:00PM ET/PT)
When Captain Man suddenly announces he's getting married, Henry and Charlotte go searching for answers only to discover that things are not as they seem.

Game Shakers - "Secret Level" (Nickelodeon, 8:30PM ET/PT)
When Hudson releases false information about a secret level in a Game Shakers' game, Game Shakers is besieged by angry, crazy fans. Babe uses the secret level to go on a date with Mason Kendal.

School of Rock - "Wouldn't It Be Nice?" (Nickelodeon, 9:00PM ET/PT)
Summer's failed attempt to share a locker with Freddy sets off a chain reaction of locker-switching that puts the entire band out of sync. Guest Star: Brec Bassinger

Complete TV Listings


Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of September 26)

Saturday, September 24

  • Norm Macdonald (Norm) - Watch Norm on CBS This Morning sometime between 7-9am.
Sunday, September 25
  • Mark Consuelos (Hope & Faith) - Catch Mark on Watch What Happens: Live at 11pm on Bravo.
Monday, September 26
  • Zach Galifianakis (Baskets) - Watch Zach on on Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
  • Rob Lowe (The Grinder/Parks and Recreation) - Rob appears on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert at 11:35pm on CBS. He also talks about Code Black on CBS This Morning sometime between 7-9am and on LIVE! with Kelly, so check your listings. He will be on New York Live on WNBC in New York at 12:30pm ET.
  • Kal Penn (We Are Men/How I Met Your Mother) - Kal is a guest on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert at 11:35pm on CBS.
  • Will Forte (The Last Man on Earth) - Will visits Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC. He will also be on LIVE! with Kelly, so check your listings.
  • Norm Macdonald (Norm) - Norm stops by The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Margaret Cho (All-American Girl) - Margaret appears on @midnight on Comedy Central at midnight.
  • Jaleel White (Family Matters/Grown Ups) - Jaleel is a guest on @midnight on Comedy Central at midnight.
  • Patton Oswalt (The Goldbergs/The King of Queens) - Patton visits Conan at 11pm on TBS.
  • Whoopi Goldberg (Whoopi/Bagdad Cafe) - Whoopi drops by Harry, so check your local listings.
  • Kristin Chenoweth (Kristin) - Kristin performs live on NBC's Today sometime between 7-9am. She also talks about her new album on the AOL Build Show at 3pm.
  • Sutton Foster (Younger) - Sutton talks about Younger on NBC's Today in the 10am hour.
  • The Cast of Younger) - Sutton Foster, Debi Mazar, Hilary Duff, Nico Tortorella, Peter Hermann, Miriam Shor and Molly Bernard are guests on the AOL Build Show at 2:15pm.