Afternoon News Update for Thursday, August 21st, 2014.

Hi all! Here’s your afternoon news update for Thursday, 8/21/14:


Steven Spielberg Hiring ‘Godzilla’ Writer for ‘Minority Report’ TV Series
Steven Spielberg
is developing a TV series based on his 2002 hit sci-fi movie “Minority Report” that will be written by “Godzilla” scribe Max Borenstein and produced by Amblin Television. Based on a futuristic story by Philip K. Dick, “Minority Report” starred Tom Cruise as the head of “PreCrime,” a special police unit that uses three psychics (i.e. “precogs”) to identify and arrest murderers before they commit their crimes. The protagonist is forced to go on the run when he’s accused of a future murder himself.

Comedy Writer Lindsey Shockley Inks Overall Deal With ABC Studios
The two-year pact marks the first overall deal for young comedy writer Lindsey Shockley who will develop new projects and staff on series for ABC Studios. She is joining the studio’s new ABC comedy Blackish as a producer. The overall deal stems from Shockley’s stint on ABC Studios’ ABC comedy series Trophy Wife this past season.

(review) Variety: ‘A to Z’
Charm is a relatively scarce commodity among this year’s new comedies, and “A to Z” has it. A slightly cryptic narration says the show will follow Andrew and Zelda (get it?) and offer “the comprehensive account of their relationship.” Perhaps appropriately, “How I Met Your Mother’sCristin Milioti stars opposite Ben Feldman, since this feels — based on first impressions — like the logical heir to that just-departed sitcom in terms of intersplicing unabashed romance, whimsy and the smallest of mysteries into a promising package.

‘Agents of SHIELD’ Casts Villain Absorbing Man
Brian Patrick Wade
will play the foe for Coulson.

(video) ABC’s new promo proclaims “Thank God It’s Thursday”
The “TGIT” promo’s message: “I (heart) Shonda Rhimes."


‘Harry Potter’ Director David Yates Returning for Spinoff ‘Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them’
David Yates
, who directed half the movies in WB’s blockbuster “Harry Potter” franchise, is in negotiations to direct J.K. Rowling‘s spinoff “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” for the studio.

Michelle Dockery Joins Elisabeth Moss in ‘Queen of Earth’
Downton Abbey star Michelle Dockery will join Mad Men star Elisabeth Moss in the film, which is being directed by Alex Ross Perry. Perry wrote and will direct the psychological thriller, which centers on two women who retreat to a beach house to get a break from the pressures of the outside world. Although they grew up as best friends, they soon realize how disconnected from each other they have become, allowing their suspicions to bleed into reality.

‘Hunger Games’ and ‘Divergent’ Franchises Land at TNT
popular YA movie franchises start their TV run in winter 2015.


‘Sex Box’: WE tv’s New Dating Show Goes All the Way
WE tv
has ordered dating show Sex Box to series. The network has picked up nine hourlong episodes for a 2015 premiere.

Based on the U.K. show of the same name, Sex Box follows real couples whose relationships are on the rocks. The couples have sex in a soundproof box and immediately afterward, address their issues with a panel of experts for a series of emotionally honest conversations about intimacy.

‘The Chase’ Renewed for Season Four & ‘It Takes A Church’ Renewed for Season Two by GSN
, the leader in game shows and competitive entertainment, announced today it has picked up additional seasons of two original series.


AwesomenessTV Channel Launches on Roku
, the youth-oriented video network owned by DreamWorks Animation, has rolled out an app on the Roku set-top and other devices — a move that will expand its YouTube multichannel network to a new platform.


(q&a) Robert Rodriguez on Quentin Tarantino’s TV Aspirations and Plans for El Rey Network
Q: Why has TV been so slow to target and reflect the Latino audience?

A: We have to create storytelling that has universal appeal. That’s how I had to sell Miramax on Spy Kids. They asked me, "Why are you making them Hispanic? Why don’t you just make them American?" I said, "They are American! It’s based on my family." The more specific you can make them, the more universal. You can’t beat people with the Latin stick. Even Hispanics don’t want that. It’s so much easier to start your own network than to try to get the 8 p.m. time slot on ABC. If there are more than 10 people trying to get through the same door, you have to find a new door.

How To Go From Working At The Apple Genius Bar To Writing Comedy For TV
Matt Mira
reveals the steps on his path from Apple Store and inspiring the Nerdist podcast to writing for Comedy Central hit @midnight.


The Week: Internet piracy isn’t killing Hollywood, Hollywood is killing Hollywood
Women are not interested in seeing movies so generically masculine they’re tantamount to a two-hour Dr. Pepper Ten commercial. Summer 2014 was so brutal because Hollywood ignored the most profitable demographic — not because of The Pirate Bay.

North Carolina Douses Film Incentives After Tea Party Pushback
As California moves closer to quadrupling tax incentives for film production, North Carolina is moving in the opposite direction, cutting its program this week by two-thirds. Pushback from Tea Party ideologues who oppose all forms of tax incentives that favor one industry over another is largely responsible for the growing trend.