A&E already has one of the most twisted mother/son relationship dramas in their Psycho reboot Bates Motel. Now, the network is about to debut their most disturbing and scariest series to date, the serial killer thriller Those Who Kill, starring Chloe Sevigny (American Horror Story: Asylum) and James D’Arcy (Cloud Atlas). The show, which premieres on March 3 at 10pm and is executive produced by The X-Files’ Glen Morgan, follows detective Catherine Jensen (Sevigny) and forensic psychologist Thomas Schaeffer (D’Arcy) hunting murderers in Pittsburgh. EW has the exclusive new trailer. Don’t watch alone.
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Might Sherlock fans one day get to see Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman sleuthing it up on the big screen? Given the episodes of the Conan Doyle update are already feature-length and Sherlock now boasts two genuine film stars, that seemed like a reasonable question to ask cocreator Steven Moffat when EW visited the show last year for this week’s cover story. “We don’t rule anything out,” Moffat replied.
A Ewing is coming to Port Charles!
Donna Mills — best known for playing villainess Abby Ewing on Knot’s Landing — is joining the cast of General Hospital. EW has learned that Mills was the only choice to play a new (see: big) character — particularly because the writers are major fans of her old primetime soap.
Sadly, insiders won’t spill details about her character. She is expected to start appearing on the sudser in late February.
The addition of Mills caps off a big year for casting on GH, which celebrated its 50th anniversary last April. Executive Producer Frank Valentini lured back former stars like Genie Francis, Rick Springfield and even Richard Simmons to help celebrate the milestone.
Mills’ other, more recent credits include GCB and Nip/Tuck.
[SPOILER ALERT IF YOU HAVEN'T SEEN THE LATEST AMERICAN HORROR STORY: COVEN!!!!!]
On the latest American Horror Story: Coven, we learned what makes Madame LaLaurie tick, and it wasn’t pretty. Meanwhile, Spalding introduced her to the magical powers of antihistamines, and Fiona got all ax-happy on the witch hunters. EW talked to co-creator Ryan Murphy about the latest Coven as well as the easter eggs for season 4 he’s begun hiding in these episodes.
READ FULL STORY
A version of Veronica Mars will return to the small screen … very small screen.
The CW announced today that a spinoff of the long-running show that’s about to hit the big screen will air online. It’s from Rob Thomas, the creator of the series and the upcoming movie.
The show will post on CW Seed, the network’s home for original digital series. Sadly, the CW had very few details to share with the press today at the annual Television Critics Tour in Pasadena because the deal was just done. CW Entertainment President Mark Pedowitz said Thomas is “thrilled” with what CW Seed is doing and already has some ideas about what characters could be featured in the spinoff.
“I told him we’ll take it whenever its ready,” Pedowitz said.
None of the actors are currently attached, but Pedowitz said he isn’t worried. “I have faith in Rob,” he said. “If [the actors are] there, they’re there, if they’re not, they’re not … I have great faith in Rob he will turn it into something fantastic, and should it ever turn into a TV series again I hope he’ll think of us.”
The idea to develop a digital series came from Warner Bros. TV, which produced the original series for UPN and, later, CW. It’s likely the webisodes will average 6 to 8 minutes in length for Seed, which was designed to test new talent and series. The goal was to release the spinoff around the March 14 premiere of the Veronica Mars movie, but that seems unlikely.
The CW is jumping into the trend of airing event miniseries by acquiring the period piece Labyrinth, which will star Jessica Brown-Findlay of Downton Abbey fame.
The four-hour series will also feature John Hurt (Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy) Sebastian Stan (Captain America: The First Avenger) and Tom Felton (the Harry Potter films). The miniseries will jump back and forth between modern and medieval France by following the lives of two women who are separated by centuries, but united in their search for the Holy Grail.
Brown-Findlay, who played Lady Sybil Crawley in Abbey, will portray Alaïs, a character who is given a book by her father that contains the secret of the Grail.
All the broadcast networks have event series — their new way to describe miniseries — in development for the next several years.
American Horror Story: Coven is beginning to wrap up its phenomenal season (Wednesday’s episode is a doozy) but co-creator Ryan Murphy has already begun plotting and planning his fourth installment of the FX franchise…as well as peppering the final episodes with tiny hints as to next year’s plot. “It’s set in 1950,” Murphy reveals exclusively to EW. “If you look historically what happened in the year 1950, there’s some more clues in that year. It’s a period piece. We try and do the opposite of what we’ve done before. Jessica Lange has already started practicing her German accent so I’m very excited!”
Hmmm. 1950. German accent. Start guessing, AHS fans!!!
Check back to EW.com after tonight’s West Coast airing of AHS: Coven for more from our weekly chat with Ryan Murphy.
CBS announced today that it has renewed all of its daytime shows like The Talk and The Young and the Restless for the 2014-15 season.
The pickups also involve additional seasons of Let’s Make a Deal, The Price is Right and The Bold and the Beautiful.
Y&R remains the most-watched daytime drama, and Price is Right is daytime TV’s most-watched show, period. The Talk, CBS says, just delivered its best-ever fourth quarter in viewers and women 25-54.
FX just lured another big-time funny man to bolster its comedy lineup.
The cable network has ordered a comedy pilot that’ll star Zach Galifianakis (The Hangover franchise). He’ll also co-write the project with the Emmy-winning Louis C.K., who recently signed an overall deal with FX Prods. Louis C.K. will begin a fourth season of Louie in May.
Sadly, FX won’t say for now what the pilot is about. (We vote for a half-hour version of Darrell’s House!) READ FULL STORY
Showtime’s new horror-drama, Penny Dreadful, premiering this Spring, posits that Victorian London was one helluva town, in which characters from classic novels like Frankenstein and Dracula crossed paths with each other—and with an American sharpshooter (Josh Hartnett) and a mysterious woman (Eva Green) who’s battling her own demons (the pair can be seen in the above exclusive image) .
Creator John Logan (Skyfall) says he drew inspiration from ’40s monster mash-up movies. Says Logan, “I thought there was incredible excitement to slamming all those myths together so that’s what we’re embracing in Penny Dreadful.” Though his take has a premium-cable bent — “It’s highly erotic, very bloody” — there’s a humanity to the horror. “It’s about building a family,” says Logan. “Admittedly, the creepiest family you can imagine.”
READ FULL STORY
Flanked by two larges screens that read “RIP Pilot Season, 1986-2013,” Fox Entertainment Topper Kevin Reilly told reporters today that the network will ditch the traditional development season from fall to winter and focus more on developing series year-round.
“The broadcasting development and scheduling system was built in a different era, when there were three networks monopolizing all the talent and all the audience,” Reilly told reporters Monday. Typically, he added, the networks currently make 80 to 100 pilots in the course of a few months, which ends up diluting the talent pool and a show’s chances of going the distance.
“We screen them and schedule them, and they’re announced in a compressed and crazy 2-week period, he continued. “They have six weeks to get into production. It’s nothing short of a miracle that talent can produce anything of quality. Every first season show needs a course correction.”
Developing throughout the year “creates a better, more talent-friendly way” to cultivate potential hits. As an example, Reilly cited nine shows that the network currently has in the works, including the 24 reboot and the American version of Broadchurch that’s called Gracepoint. In the meantime, current shows like Sleepy Hollow will begin production on their second season in two months, not July when dramas typically return to work. “We’ll be way ahead of everybody else.”
Though Fox is set to debut a new season of 24 on May 5, star Kiefer Sutherland says this doesn’t kill chances for a big-screen version of the long-running franchise.
“The script for the film is very different,” Sutherland told reporters Monday in Pasadena. “The film is an ongoing situation. There’s always an opportunity to do that. But Howard (Gordon) came up for 12 episode run of this and this opportunity presented to us first. It’s a fantastic idea. If this ends up causing a film to be made, so be it.”
24: Live Another Day will debut with a two-hour launch. The action picks up four years after the drama’s final season and will progress as it always did by operating in real time, though hours will be skipped it fit into the shorter season. Jack Bauer (Sutherland) remains a fugitive on a run, and CIA agent Kate Morgan (Yvonne Strahovski) is hot on his trail. “In the minds of the CIA, he’s not quite Osama bin Laden but he’s a fugitive of a high order,” explains Exec Producer Evan Katz. “We will learn he has a mission. Whether it’s good or dark we don’t know, but the CIA is determined to catch him.”
The inimitable Chloe (Mary Lynn Rajskub) will enter the picture as a Edward Snowden-type radical who has turned against the government. “Jack and her try to stop what he is after … a secret,” Katz continued.
Other characters that will return to the reboot are Kim Raver as Jack’s former lover Audrey and William Devane, who, as James Heller, is now the president. The producers joked about not always knowing who could return because of the show’s reputation for killing off so many characters.
“Sometime we had to check Wikipedia,” said Katz. “Wouldn’t it be great if Heller was president? Turns out he lived.”
Sutherland, who remains very humble about how his name is synonymous with the franchise, said he was very anxious about starting production. (It begins in London next month). “I’m very nervous without putting ourselves out there. We made eight very strong years. There’s always something in every year that we wish we did better, but I was very proud. To open that up again and make 12 episodes and not make them the best 12 we have ever made is frightening. I’m about as anxious and wound up as I’ve been in a long time.”
Another cable net is going biblical in an effort to score big ratings. WGN America announced that it has ordered a “Ten Commandments” 10-parter that will offer multiple takes on each precept.
This is where it could get interesting: filmmakers like Gus Van Sant (Good Will Hunting), Lee Daniels (The Butler), Jim Sheridan (The Boxer), Wes Craven (A Nightmare on Elm Street) and Michael Cera (Superbad) will helm each installment. Bruce Cohen (American Beauty) and Bob Weinstein will produce.
“We are thrilled and honored to have filmmakers of this caliber as a part of this ambitious project, and thank Bruce Cohen and The Weinstein Company for bringing this diverse group of directors together,” said Matt Cherniss, WGN America President and GM, in a statement. “The unique structure of the ‘Ten Commandments’ project and the stature of directors involved reflects the creative and bold approach to quality programming that we aspire to as we move towards making WGN America a destination network. We look forward to seeing what each of these talented filmmakers has in store for the audience.”
Added Craven in a statement, “I’m extremely excited to become part of this project. Working with Bob and Harvey has been a huge part of my career for more than a decade, and this project absolutely fascinates me. The chance to put my own personal spin in a contemporary manner on these ancient commands is priceless, as is the chance to work alongside so many other directors whose work has inspired me over the years.”
“I have great respect for most of the ‘Ten Commandments,’ and I look forward to keeping within the rules as best I can,” said Sheridan.
WGN America is available in 75 million homes.
Last March, History scored big ratings for airing The Bible, a scripted 10-parter from Mark Burnett and Roma Downey. It received more than 100 million cumulative views and prompted a follow-up miniseries that’ll focus on the life of Jesus and air on NBC in spring of 2015.
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