Afternoon News Update for Thursday, 5/1/14.


MTV Orders Coming of Age Comedy Pilot
Andy St. Clair
and Paul O’Toole developed the concept for the comedy, which is cast contingent. The untitled entry revolves around 22-year-old Andy, who after he catches his girlfriend cheating, accidentally rear ends a celebrity. Taking pity on Andy, the celebrity takes it upon himself to teach him how to man up. Odenkirk Provissiero’s Marc Provissiero will executive produce the project. The pilot order is contingent on MTV casting a celebrity to star in the comedy.

Fox developing series about Boston Marathon tragedy
is developing an event series about the bombings that took place at the 2013 Boston Marathon. Rod Lurie will serve as writer, director, and executive producer of the untitled project, based on the book Long Mile Home: Boston Under Attack, the City’s Courageous Recovery, and the Epic Hunt for Justice by Boston Globe reporters Scott Helman and Jenna Russell.

Basil Iwanyk and Kent Kubena of Thunder Road Pictures will serve as executive producers.

TV Land Renews ‘Hot in Cleveland’ for Season 6
The Betty White sitcom has received a 24-episode order ahead of its 100th episode milestone.

‘Childrens Hospital’ Renewed for Sixth Season at Adult Swim
The Emmy-winning live-action comedy, originally a web series, resumes filming in the summer for a 2015 return to the cable network.

ABC Family’s Tennis Drama Pilot Fills Two Main Roles
Chanel Celaya
and Sofia Mattsson have been cast in the one-hour project "Unstrung."

CBS’ ‘Extant’ Adds Tyler Hilton
The "One Tree Hill" alum will recur on the summer drama from exec producer Steven Spielberg.

USA’s ‘Dig’ Event Series Adds Trio in Recurring Roles
Regina Taylor, David Costabile
and Omar Metwally join Jason Isaacs and Anne Heche in the six-episode drama.

Kristin Chenoweth to Play Maleficent in Disney Channel’s ‘Descendants’
Kristin Chenoweth
has been tapped to play the mother of the villain from the Sleeping Beauty saga in the Disney Channel telepic “Descendants,” which revolves around the offspring of famous Mouse House villains.

(video) USA’s new drama ‘Satisfaction’
Matt Passmore and Stephanie Szostak play a married couple at a crossroads in USA’s new drama, Satisfaction.

(video) Take a Stab at TNT’s Murder in the First
is taking a stab at a new, dark and very creepy homicide mystery with Murder in the First. The upcoming drama stars Taye Diggs and Kathleen Robertson as homicide detectives investigating two seemingly unrelated murders. But the mystery expands when the duo realizes that both murders have a common denominator in a Silicon Valley wunderkind (Harry Potter’s Tom Felton). NYPD Blue creator Steven Bochco and Eric Lodal are executive-producing.


Connie Britton Replaces Sharon Stone in Kristen Stewart Comedy ‘American Ultra’
Connie Britton
has replaced Sharon Stone in Lionsgate’s action comedy film “American Ultra,” which recently began shooting in New Orleans. Jesse Eisenberg will portray a stoner and Kristen Stewart will play his girlfriend in a small town. His life takes an unexpected turn when his past comes back to haunt him as a sleeper agent in a government operation created by Britton’s character.


Rob Roy update in works
Scotland’s STV Productions has teamed up with FremantleMedia to develop an action-adventure series based on iconic Scottish figure Rob Roy. The drama, from writer Caleb Ranson, takes the historical truth of Robert Roy MacGregor’s story and gives it a contemporary twist, according to STV. Set in a Scotland populated by mythical creatures, the series takes Roy and his companions on a dangerous quest to find the true king of Scotland and bring peace to his native land.


TV Studios America Taps Tom Lane As SVP Business & Legal Affairs
Tom Lane
has joined ITV Studios America as SVP Business & Legal Affairs. Based in LA, he will oversee the company’s scripted and nonscripted business and legal affairs activity, including compliance, litigation, distribution and all deals from development through to production.

National Geographic Channel Bolsters East Coast Development Team With Exec Hires
National Geographic Channel
is expanding its East Coast development team, adding Nicole Reed as VP development and Igal Svet director, development. In addition, Naimah Holmes is relocating to New York as director, development.

(q&a) History’s Dirk Hoogstra on the Network’s Scripted Push, Jay Leno and the Lack of Creativity in Unscripted
Q: How much scripted material would you like to have on History?

A: We’re looking at roughly 30 hours a year of scripted. It’s not set in stone, but that’s probably going to end up being two series and two minis. Going into any given upfront season, we want to have one big, scripted event that we can talk about and sell. Money falling out of broadcast [network advertising] is earmarked as premium dollars. And without scripted projects, you can’t [get those dollars], even with the biggest hit reality show.


AT&T Eyeing $40B DirecTV Acquisition: Report
The Wall Street Journal reported that AT&T has approached DirecTV about a possible acquisition, which likely would be worth $40 billion, the paper said.

Atlantic: An Algorithm Knows Who Liked the How I Met Your Mother Finale
Canvs, which formally launched last week, uses sentiment analysis to figure out how people feel about TV shows and other entertainment. That analysis is then combined with scary-specific data profiling, so Canvs can tell its clients not just how people feel about what they’re watching but what kinds of people feel certain ways. The viewers who thought the How I Met Your Motherfinale was "sad," for example, were also more likely than the average Twitter user to be teenaged girls interested in Taco Bell.