The official word: From its debut presentation at the Television Critics' Association (TCA) Winter Press Tour, Hulu today announced its original programming slate for the first half of 2012.
The line-up kicks off on February 14 with the launch of Hulu's first original scripted series, "Battleground," executive produced by JD Walsh, Hagai Shaham and Marc Webb ("The Amazing Spiderman," "500 Days of Summer"). On the heels of a successful season as Hulu's first original series, Morgan Spurlock's "A Day in the Life" will premiere its second season in March. And this summer, Hulu audiences will get exclusive access to acclaimed writer/director Richard Linklater's first episodic documentary series, "Up to Speed." All three shows will be available exclusively on the free, ad-supported Hulu service and the Hulu Plus subscription service.
"JD Walsh, Morgan Spurlock and Richard Linklater are each smart and distinctive storytellers with very specific points of view. Their creative chops are what make for great TV - each have that certain something that makes viewers not just love their shows but also tell their friends to go and watch them. Couple this extraordinary storytelling with the Hulu platform - which has proven to be an efficient way of connecting engaged audiences with shows they truly love - and it pays off in a big way for creators, viewers and advertisers alike," said Andy Forssell, Hulu's senior vice president of content.
Details about the shows after the jump.
Hulu's first original scripted series "Battleground" is set in the world of political campaigns in the battleground state of Wisconsin. Advancing the faux documentary-style workplace dramedy, "Battleground" explores the behind-the-scenes chaos of an unruly band of campaign workers and volunteers who leave behind ordinary lives for the madhouse. It's about life on the campaign trail and the people who are drawn to it. Running the campaign of a distant third-place candidate, campaign manager Chris "Tak" Davis needs a team that is aggressive, smart and driven...or available. As the Wisconsin senate race begins to take on national implications, Tak must overcome corrupt politicians, staff in fighting, and his own personal vices to win the primary - all while a camera crew follows his every move. "Battleground" premieres Tuesday, February 14, 2012 - right in the heart of the GOP primary season. New episodes will launch every Tuesday on http://www.hulu.com/battleground.
Said executive producer JD Walsh, "People hate politics but they love elections. Campaigns are about good versus evil, our team versus yours, relationships, temptations, power, unimaginable triumphs and heartbreaking defeats. I'm interested in the people behind the people. What makes them leave ordinary lives and enter the madhouse? It is their emotional journey that I find incredibly compelling."
Cast includes: Jay Hayden ("Chris 'Tak' Davis"); Teri Reeves ("Kara 'KJ' Jamison"); Jack De Sena ("Cole Graner"); Ben Samuel ("Ben Werner"); Lindsey Payne ("Lindsey Cutter"); Jordan T. Maxwell ("Jordan T. Mosley") and Alison Haislip ("Ali Laurents").
"A Day In The Life"
The first season of Morgan Spurlock's "A Day in the Life" documented the ordinary lives of extraordinary people, from multi-platinum musician will.i.am and music sensation Girl Talk to street artist Mr. Brainwash and mogul Sir Richard Branson. Hulu renews its successful first original series to deliver 10 new episodes of "A Day in the Life." For season two, Spurlock captures the daily routines of highly motivated individuals as they follow their passions, including actor Joel McHale, comedian Marc Maron and UFC fighter Jason "Mayhem" Miller, among others. Spurlock and his producing partner Jeremy Chilnick produced "A Day In The Life" through Spurlock's production company, Warrior Poets. For more, visit http://www.hulu.com/a-day-in-the-life.
Said executive producer Morgan Spurlock, "As a filmmaker, I think the partnership with Hulu has been an innovative and valuable way for me to connect my stories with an engaged and passionate audience. The response to the first season of "A Day in the Life" on Hulu was overwhelmingly positive, and I am thrilled I get the chance to share more 24-hour snapshots of extraordinary people in a second season."
"Up To Speed"
Filmmaker Richard Linklater, best known for his movies "Dazed and Confused," "School of Rock," "Waking Life," and Oscar-nominated "Before Sunset," has created a new docu-series for Hulu called "Up to Speed." The show represents Linklater's first foray into episodic storytelling. Each week "Up to Speed" follows tour guide, historian and flaneur Timothy "Speed" Levitch ("The Cruise") as he visits the monumentally ignored monuments of America's cities, from the shoe gardens of San Francisco to the luckiest subway grate in New York City. John Sloss and Dana O'Keefe will serve as executive producers of "Up To Speed" on behalf of Cinetic Media.
Said Richard Linklater, "Speed Levitch is one of the most effusive, articulate people I know, and one of America's funniest freethinkers. Hulu has a highly engaged and intellectually curious audience, and I'm excited to give them a glimpse of Speed's unique and idiosyncratic worldview as we take the concept of a travel show and turn it on its head."