Morning News Update for Wednesday, 10/16/13.


Cult Drama ‘Babylon Fields’ Resurrected With Pilot Order At NBC, Michael Cuesta Inks Overall Deal With 20th Century Fox TV
Babylon Fields
is getting a second chance at NBC, which has ordered a new pilot. Michael and Gerald Cuesta and Michael Atkinson are back in their original roles as writers (Gerald Cuesta, Atkinson) and director (Michael Cuesta). The three will executive produce for 20th Century Fox TV. As part of the pilot order, Michael Cuesta has inked a two-year overall deal with the studio. Described as a sardonic drama, in Babylon Fields, the dead are rising in Babylon, NY, and as a result, lives are regained, old wounds are reopened and families are restored — for better or worse. The newly regenerated bodies are healing faster and growing stronger than anyone else leading to the suspicion that they might be the next step in human evolution.

Drama Starring America Ferrera As Justice- Seeking Nun Lands At CBS As Put Pilot
America Ferrera
is ready to return to television full-time as the star of another hourlong project. Titled Damascus, the drama pitch sparked a heated bidding, landing at CBS with a put pilot commitment. Ferrera also will executive produce alongside Teri Weinberg, with CBS TV Studios coming on board as studio. Written by producer Nick Osborne, Damascus is the story of a crusading nun (Ferrera) who practices law on behalf of the least fortunate, and has her beliefs tested when her life collides with an elitist corporate lawyer. As the two set out to help those in need of justice, they come up against a secretive and powerful organization that is determined to destroy them.

HBO Announces Dates for Girls Season 3, Jonathan Groff’s Gay Dramedy Looking
Girls will resume having angsty, awkward fun this January. HBO on Wednesday announced that Season 3 of Lena Dunham’s comedy will premiere on Sunday, Jan. 12 with two back-to-back episodes (beginning 10/9c). That same night, the cabler will launch its Matthew McConaughey-Woody Harrelson limited series True Detective (9/8c). Meanwhile, on Sunday, Jan. 19, Jonathan Groff’s new gay-centric dramedy Looking will take over the post-Girls slot at 10:30/9:30c.


John Leguizamo’s One-Man Show ‘Ghetto Klown’ To Become HBO Special
After an 11-year break, John Leguizamo is back at HBO for another comedy special. The pay cable network will tape Leguizamo’s latest one-man show, Ghetto Klown, on November 16 at the Victoria Theatre, NJPAC for debut next spring. This is Leguizamo’s fifth one-man show, all of which have become specials on HBO. Ghetto Klown, for which Luguizamo received a Drama Desk Award, is a semi-authobiographical show about his path to stardom based on his memoir Pimps, Hos, Playa Hatas, And All The Rest Of My Hollywood Friends.

Kerry Washington to Host Saturday Night Live
Things will get a bit Scandalous in Studio 8H when Kerry Washington makes her debut as a Saturday Night Live host. TV’s “It” girl will lord over the long-running sketch comedy series on Nov. 2, NBC has announced. Joining her will be Eminem, with his sixth turn as an SNL musical guest.


Awesomeness TV, Hearst Join for Seventeen Channel
and Hearst Corp. are collaborating on a new channel for YouTube based on Heart’s Seventeen magazine, as well as a multichannel network that will invite teen girls to produce and share their own channels. AwesomenessTV will program the channel and manage the Seventeen MCN. The Seventeen YouTube channel will feature original shows, videos and tutorials about fashion, beauty, entertainment, relationships and more.


eOne shopping drama series based on Brit flick Skeletons
Entertainment One is pitching a TV series to broadcasters based on the 2010 UK movie Skeletons. The film, billed as a surreal comedy, followed two travelling salesmen who remove [figurative] skeletons from closets. It starred Ed Gaughan (Black Mirror), Andrew Buckley (Extras) and Jason Isaacs (Harry Potter). The project is eOne’s second movie-to-television project. It is also working up a TV version of the Sylvester Stallone movie Rambo.


Disney XD Orders Animated Adventure Series ‘Penn Zero’
Disney XD is adding another animated series to its slate. The kids network has greenlighted comedy adventure series Penn Zero: Part Time Hero, about a boy who inherits the coolest job ever. From Jared Bush (All of Us, Zootopia) and Sam Levine (Wreck-It Ralph, Bolt), Penn Zero follows suburban boy Penn who suddenly lands a job as a part-time hero and leader of a team of good guys who zap to other worlds to save the day.

‘Lion King’ Is Broadway’s First $1 Billion Show
musical relies on consistency, not sky-high prices, to hit a historic milestone.

23 Rarely-Seen Photos From The Disney Archives
As the studio marks its 90th anniversary today, Disney opened up its vault and gave BuzzFeed images and inside stories on some of its most iconic and important moments.


The Hollywood Reporter Names the 50 Power Showrunners of 2013
THR’s annual list of TV’s top writer-producers reveals the latest swings in the revolving door of who’s on top — and what it takes to stay there.
Bill Lawrence:
Steve Levitan and Christopher Lloyd:
Marc Cherry:
Adam Horowitz and Edward Kitsis:
Shonda Rimes and Betsy Beers:

NBCU & Comcast Hire SVP for Strategic Integration
and Comcast have appointed Maggie McLean Suniewick as senior VP of strategic integration, reporting to both Steve Burke, the CEO of NBCU, and Neil Smit, the president and CEO of Comcast Cable and executive VP of Comcast Corporation. Suniewick will be spearheading NBCU’s key "Symphony" initiative, a company-wide marketing effort that promotes upcoming NBCU programming, movies and events and Comcast’s products and services.

Christian Barcellos Tops Lifestyle And Reality Programming At Fox International Channels
The exec producer of five Real Housewives spinoffs has been tapped as the first EVP of the new unit, overseeing original development, production and acquisitions. Christian Barcellos also will develop and implement a long-term programming plan for Fox International Channels’ global lifestyle brand, Fox Life, and deliver a lifestyle and reality slate.

Eyeworks USA picks president
Eyeworks USA
has promoted veteran television exec Brant Pinvidic to the newly created position of president. Pinvidic, Eyeworks’ exec VP of development since 2009, has developed dozens of shows for the company, including ABC’s Extreme Weight Loss, Spike TV’s Bar Rescue and Oxygen’s My Big Fat Revenge.