Evening News Update for Tuesday, 12/3/13.


Lionsgate, Stephen McPherson Option Anders de la Motte’s ‘MemoRandom’
TV is looking to internationally acclaimed author Anders de la Motte to fuel its next scripted series. Following a competitive situation, the studio has teamed with Steve McPherson to bring de la Motte’s forthcoming thriller MemoRandom to the small screen. MemoRandom, which will be released in spring 2014 in Sweden, is described as a noir story revolving around a policeman responsible for recruiting and handling secret informants. After suffering a stroke, he forgets everything that happened in the past year, including a special informant code-named Janus that everyone is interested in finding.

History Eyes Drama About Jesus’ “Lost Years” From Eli Roth, Eric Newman & Scott Kosar That May Involve Exorcism
is finalizing deals for the project, from feature writer Scott Kosar and producers Eli Roth and Eric Newman. Titled The Lost Years, the drama explores the undocumented years of Jesus’ life as a young adult. There is very little information about Jesus’ life from about the age of 13, following a pilgrimage to Jerusalem he took with his parents, to age 30, when he began his ministry and was baptized by John the Baptist. Because the project is in very early stages, it is unclear whether it would be developed as a regular series or a miniseries. I hear that The Lost Years was conceived in the horror genre, and it explores a theory about Jesus’ origins as an exorcist.

NBC’s ‘The Blacklist’ Renewed For Second Season
On the heels of a strong ratings finish of its fall run last night, NBC‘s hit freshman drama The Blacklist has been given an early second season renewal with a 22-episode order. The Sony TV-produced series starring James Spader is the No. 1 drama and the No. 2 scripted series on the Big 4 networks in the 18-49 demo, averaging a 4.9 rating/13 share (most current). It is the No. 1 new show in 18-49 and total viewers and NBC’s most watched new drama in 19 years, since Earth 2 in 1994.

Annaleigh Ashford Upped To Regular On ‘Masters Of Sex’, To Depart ‘Kinky Boots’
Masters Of Sex standout Annaleigh Ashford, who did an arc on the Showtime drama’s first season, is being promoted to regular for Season 2. As a result, Ashford will depart her Tony nominated role in the hit Broadway musical Kinky Boots sometime in March.

Duo Join Fox’s ‘Gracepoint’ As Regulars; FX’s ‘Braddock & Jackson’ Casts Daughter
Kevin Rankin
and Virginia Kull are set to co-star in Fox‘s event series Gracepoint, a U.S. remake of UK’s Broadchurch. Rankin will play Paul Coates, Gracepoint’s well-intentioned but inexperienced local minister who becomes the town’s defacto spokesperson in the wake of the tragedy. Kull will play Danny’s mother Beth. Anguished by her loss, Beth is hungry to discover the truth behind her son’s untimely death.

McKaley Miller has been cast as a regular in Braddock & Jackson, FX/Lionsgate’s 10-episode comedy series starring Kelsey Grammer and Martin Lawrence as Chicago lawyers from vastly different backgrounds who develop a partnership. Miller will play Grammer’s daughter Lizzie.

Matthew Goode Heads to The Good Wife
Matthew Goode has landed a recurring role on The Good Wife. Goode will play a prosecutor who befriends Alicia (Julianna Margulies) following a crisis of faith which leads him to pursue a new career path.

Castle Spies James Brolin Encore
titular Castle will get a second blast from his past when James Brolin puts in an encore as Rick’s father.


Michael Gracey Set to Direct Universal’s ‘Daughter of Smoke & Bone’ Adaptation
Michael Gracey, a former animator turned commercials director, has closed a deal to direct Daughter of Smoke & Bone, Universal’s adaptation of the young-adult fantasy book by Laini Taylor. Joe Roth is producing the project along with Palak Patel. Smoke & Bonetells the tale of a 17-year-old art student whose father occasionally sends her on errands around the world collecting human teeth for a mysterious purpose. The young woman gradually becomes aware that she is part of an ancient struggle between devils and angels and finds herself in a forbidden romance with a warrior angel.

‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ Adds Marcia Harden as Christian Grey’s Mother
Marcia Harden is the latest actor suiting up some leather and lace for Universal and Focus Features’ Fifty Shades of Grey. Harden will play the role of Dr. Grace Trevelyan Grey, the adoptive mother of Chrsitian Grey, Mia Grey (Rita Ora), and Elliot Grey (Luke Grimes). http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/fifty-shades-grey-adds-marcia-661732


Former MTV VJ Kennedy to Host Fox Business Network Show
Lisa Kennedy Montgomery
, the Los Angeles radio host and author perhaps best known by her maiden name, will host financial roundtable “The Independents“, a new program that intends to direct the financial network’s lens at the protection of economic and civil liberties.


Walt Disney’s Chicago Home to Become a Museum
Walt Disney‘s childhood Chicago home is being turned into a museum honoring to the legendary mogul. The home is owned by Brent Young and Dina Benadon. The restoration and preservation of the house in which Walt and his brother Roy were born, which was built by their father Elias Disney in 1893 and designed by their mother Flora, will kick off Thursday. After the house is restored, it will serve as a historical site, museum and community resource designed to enhance and explore childhood creativity.


Shonda Rhimes And Betsy Beers To Receive DGA Diversity Award
The Directors Guild of America today announced that it will honor Shonda Rhimes and Betsy Beers of Shondaland with the Guild’s 2014 Diversity Award. The Award is being given for their commitment to diversity hiring, their long record of providing jobs and opportunities to women and minorities in DGA-covered categories, and for the example they set for the rest of the industry. The Award will be presented at the 66th Annual DGA Awards on Saturday, January 25, 2014. The Diversity Award has only been given four times in its history: in 1997 to Bruce Paltrow, John Wells and Christopher Chulack; in 1999 to Steven Bochco; in 2000 to HBO; and in 2005 to Stephen McPherson.

(q&a) Turner President of Programming Michael Wright On Mob City, Falling Skies & The Pete Holmes Show
SSN: How are you bringing new fans to TNT original series? Social media?

Wright: Yes, and sampling. I can’t stress enough how important sampling is. The real symbiotic relationship evolving between traditional networks and digital distribution platforms has been perceived as a threat, but it’s also a huge opportunity. Look at Breaking Bad: the majority of people watching it in its final season didn’t start watching it until season three.


The John August School of Screenwriting
Hollywood Journal features an essay paying tribute to A-list screenwriter John August, whose assistants have taken their coveted positions with him on to greater success.