The official word: Netflix, the world’s leading Internet TV network, will be the exclusive home of four feature films starring and produced by comic icon Adam Sandler, whose movies have delighted hundreds of millions of fans all over the world.
Sandler is a unique and prolific comic voice, whose films have grossed more than $3 billion globally at the box office and made him one of the world’s top movie stars. He is among the few actors in the world whose films consistently rank among the most viewed by Netflix members in the U.S. and across its global territories from Brazil to the U.K.
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The official word: TV Land has ordered 10-episode first seasons of two new single-camera comedies, “Impastor” and “Teachers,” it was announced today by TV Land President Larry W. Jones. Both series will premiere on TV Land in 2015.
“’Impastor’ and ‘Teachers’ are perfect examples of the type of comedies we’re looking for as TV Land evolves its original series – innovative, unconventional, and hilariously funny for an audience that enjoys smart humor with a hint of heart,” said Jones.
“Impastor,” a single-camera comedy from Christopher Vane (“Wings”), stars Michael Rosenbaum (“Smallville”), Sara Rue (“Less Than Perfect”), Aimee Garcia (“Dexter”), Mircea Monroe (“Episodes”), Mike Kosinski (The Second City Chicago), and David Rasche (“Ugly Betty”).
The series revolves around Buddy Dobbs (Rosenbaum), a gambling, pot-smoking slacker on the run from a loan shark, who steals a man’s identity and ends up posing as the new gay pastor in a small, tight-knit town. Though he’s tempted to immediately run off with the pastor’s money, Buddy has a change of heart when he realizes that the people there, including his prim church assistant Dora (Rue), actually like this new and semi-improved alter ego…and he kind of likes them back.
Other officials at Buddy’s new church include Alexa Cummings (Monroe), the gorgeous treasurer that has Buddy rethinking his whole con; Russell Kerry (Kosinski), the young secretary who’s very excited to have a gay pastor; and Alden Schmidt (Rasche), the church president and the only person who seems to be just a little suspicious of Buddy. As Buddy deals with his new life, his bartender ex-girlfriend Leanne (Garcia), has to deal with the huge mess he left behind.
“Impastor” is executive produced by Vane and Rosenbaum, along with Eric and Kim Tannenbaum (“Two and a Half Men”). Rob Greenberg (“How I Met Your Mother”) directed the pilot.
“Teachers” revolves around six elementary school teachers who are trying to mold the minds and lives of America’s youth, even though they don’t really seem to have their own lives together at all. From refusing to read fairytales because “sometimes Prince Charming wants to date other people” to hitting on the resident “hot dad,” these teachers are certainly changing the world, one student at a time. The series stars improv group The Katydids - Caitlin Barlow, Katy Colloton, Cate Freedman, Kate Lambert, Katie O’Brien and Katie Thomas – who also wrote and starred in the web hit that the TV series is based on. In addition to writing for and starring in “Teachers,” they will also serve as executive producers alongside Alison Brie (“Community”) and showrunners Ian Roberts and Jay Martel (“Key and Peele”).
Matt Miller and Cap Gun TV also serve as executive producers of “Teachers.”
Our two guys are tired of all the sexism and ageism. And get off their lawns!To read more or comment...
The official word: Fans will get a special new look at “Breaking Bad” prequel “Better Call Saul” this weekend, with the debut of a music video for the song “Better Call Saul,” co-written by “Better Call Saul” Executive Producers and Co-Showrunners Vince Gilligan & Peter Gould and series composer Dave Porter (who also created the opening theme and score for “Breaking Bad”). The song is performed by country artist Junior Brown.
The music video for “Better Call Saul” will premiere this Sunday, October 5th at 7:15pm ET/PT, during the final night of AMC’s “Breaking Bad” Binge, which began in August and concludes this Sunday night with the final six episodes of the Emmy® Award-winning series (beginning at 5pm ET/PT, through the series finale, “Felina,” which begins airing at 11:00pm ET/PT).
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The official word: Worldwide basketball star LeBron James and business partner Maverick Carter are set to executive produce ESPN Films' and Disney XD's new special "Becoming," a half-hour show for kids and families profiling the inspirational journeys of today's top athletes.
"Becoming" will debut SUNDAY, OCTOBER 26 (8:00 p.m., ET/PT) on Disney XD and is in development for an ongoing series. Produced in association with ESPN Films and LeBron James' Springhill Production Company, the pilot will tell the story of the NBA champion's trajectory to the top and reflect the spirit of his accomplishments, including some of the most defining and triumphant moments of his life.
"I'm really excited about helping develop 'Becoming' and bringing this kind of program to kids," said LeBron James. "Sports and athletes were my inspiration growing up. It was the stories about Michael Jordan, Deion Sanders, and Allen Iverson that kept me dreaming. When I learned that they had some of the same struggles and challenges I did, it made everything seem possible. That's what 'Becoming' is all about."
"This is a very exciting project for Springhill Production Company," said Maverick Carter, co-founder and partner of Springhill Production Company. "We are looking at a variety of projects and this was an obvious choice. It's so true to the type of content for kids we want to do. ESPN Films understands how to bring sports stories alive. We do a lot of work with different projects focusing on kids, and the demand for programming like this is obvious."
The official word: As part of its ongoing effort to enhance its diverse portfolio of premium content, Lionsgate (NYSE: LGF), a premier next generation global content leader, is teaming with Facebook, the prestigious Women In Film organization, the crowdsourcing platform Tongal and best-selling Twilight Saga author Stephenie Meyer to create and manage a social media campaign to develop and produce a series of short films directed by aspiring female filmmakers.
The campaign, called “The Storytellers – New Creative Voices of The Twilight Saga,” will include films based on a broad spectrum of characters from the Twilight universe, with guidance provided by Meyer’s encyclopedic The Twilight Saga: Official Illustrated Guide.
The campaign will center on a multiphase contest culminating in the selection of at least five aspiring female filmmakers to direct short films based on characters from the Twilight universe. The films will be produced and directed with the mentorship of a blue chip panel of advisors, which will ultimately select the winning shorts that will premiere exclusively on the Facebook platform next year. The star-studded group of female panelists will include Stephenie Meyer, actress Kristen Stewart, Academy Award winners Kate Winslet and Octavia Spencer, Jennifer Lee, the award-winning writer and one of the directors of Disney’s global blockbuster Frozen, Twilight director Catherine Hardwicke, Emmy Award-winning actress Julie Bowen, and Women In Film President Cathy Schulman.
Five winning shorts will be financed through production advances, and fans will help select a grand prize winning filmmaker who will receive a cash prize and career opportunities. The short film development and production process will involve extensive fan engagement on the Facebook and Tongal platforms.To read more or comment...
While I have made unhappy note of it before, I bring up the show once more because it premieres tonight at 10 on CBS. Some may see its portrayal of ugly, violent crimes as a reasonable companion to "Criminal Minds." I am not a fan of that show, either, but "Stalker" is even more extreme in its presentation, and especially in its misogyny.
I have been thinking a lot lately about violence in a more general way. I grew up watching TV westerns with their gunplay and fistfights, wallowed in the films of Peckinpah and Scorsese, was amused by the extremes in the climax of "Scarface." But instead of being numbed by all that violence, I seem to have become more sensitive to it, more uneasy when it feels excessive or gratuitous -- not explaning a character or a context but simply reveling in the extremes of it.
I have been reminded of Dan Fienberg's line about "Stalker," that it's for people who liked the awful violence of "The Following" but did care for Kevin Bacon or found the Edgar Allen Poe allusions too literary. Too much of the audience is now from Generation Slasher, schooled in "Friday the 13th" or the "Saw" films, and equating grotesqueness with art. I have been tilting the other way, and "Stalker" tilted me all the way over -- not because of its explicitness, which could be considered somewhat mild, but because of its smirking cruelty. .To read more or comment...