Morning News Update for Thursday, October 9, 2014.

Hi all! Here’s your first news update for Thursday, 10/9/14:


ABC Buys Mother-Daughter Comedy From Kat Coiro & Eva Longoria
Splitting The Difference
, a comedy created by filmmaker Kat Coiro, has sold to ABC with penalty. It hails from Eva Longoria’s UnbeliEVAble Entertainment and Universal TV, where the company is under a first-look deal. The project is based on Tré Miller-Rodriguez’s memoir Splitting the Difference, which chronicles her life in New York as a 34-year-old widow who reunites with the daughter she gave up for adoption at 18. The ABC show, written by Coiro, centers on a buttoned-down 17-year-old who reunites with her recently widowed 36-year-old biological mom and they become the heart of a patchwork family bound by more than blood.

Amazon Orders Second Season of ‘Transparent’
wants more of its hit dark comedy Transparent. The tech giant has ordered a second season of the Jeffrey Tambor starrer, in which he plays a man transitioning to become a woman. The second season will air in 2015.

(animated) DHX To Adapt ‘Cloudy With A Chance Of Meatballs’ To TV, With Sony
DHX Media has signed a deal with Sony Pictures Animation to expand film franchise Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs into television with a new adaptation. DHX Media will develop and produce twenty-six 22-minute, traditionally animated small-screen episodes of the computer-generated animation feature films.


Atlantic: TV’s Renaissance for Strong Women Is Happening in a Surprising Place
Viola Davis’s
performance in ABC’s How to Get Away With Murder thrills in so many ways. Even more delightful is the fact that Davis has been cast in such a meaty, morally gray role. It’s more than just being a Strong Female Character. Keating doesn’t wear a white hat like her time-slot neighbor Olivia Pope of Scandal. She’s not a relatable mom like The Good Wife‘s Alicia Florrick. Instead, she has adulterous sex with a detective on her desk—then puts said detective on the witness stand to help her client in court. Keating is transgressive in a way TV audiences haven’t seen in many female characters—a Walter White among women. The days of female movie stars retreating to cable to find good work are coming to a close. Now, by the grace of, well, something, actresses can find plenty of exciting leading roles to play on the big four networks.

(review) Variety: ‘Cristela’
Cristela Alonzo
stars as the appealing heroine, who is determined to become a lawyer, without much encouragement from her family. Alonzo is plenty likable, but her shoulders don’t look quite big enough to carry an entire show.


‘The Flash’ casts Victor Garber as other half of Firestorm
Victor Garber
has landed a recurring role on The Flash.

Nickelodeon Taps Hot Comedian for ‘School of Rock’ Lead
Tony Cavalero
will take on the role played by Jack Black in the feature.

Cynthia Stevenson Joins ‘Your Family Or Mine’; Ana De La Reguera In ‘Narcos’
Cynthia Stevenson
has landed the last major role on TBS’ new comedy series Your Family Or Mine, from creator Greg Malins, Sony TV and Jamie Tarses’ Fanfare Prods. Ana De La Reguera has booked a role in Netflix’s drama series Narcos.


(sched) Darth Vader joins ‘Star Wars Rebels’ for special ABC airing
Darth Vader will appear in an upcoming special presentation of Disney’s new animated series Star Wars Rebels. The best part: He will be voiced by the iconic character’s original actor, James Earl Jones. Disney plans to re-air the Episode IV prequel on its flagship ABC broadcast network. But to make the event extra special, an additional scene is being added featuring the black helmeted Sith Lord. The special will air Sunday, Oct. 26 at 7 p.m. B

(sched) ‘Toy Story that Time Forgot’ Special Airs December 2 on ABC
Tom Hanks and Tim Allen Reprise Their Roles as Woody and Buzz.

‘Frozen’-Inspired Wedding Gown Makes Sparkling Debut
and Alfred Angelo are bringing princesses to life with new designs


VH1 Ups Trevor Rose To SVP Talent & Series Development
Longtime VH1 talent and development exec Trevor Rose has been promoted to SVP Talent and Series Development. He will continue to oversee all talent, responsible for talent relations, casting, and series development for the network, reporting to Susan Levison, EVP, Original Programming & Production.

Comedy Central’s Development Chief Talks Coping Without Colbert, the Depths of His Talent Pipeline
Comedy Central
has somewhat quietly become simultaneously hipper and more mainstream at the same time — and much of that credit is due to Kent Alterman, president of content development and original programming. With Alterman in the driver’s seat, Comedy Central boasts twice the original content than it had at any point in its history, including more stand-up and scripted shows.

Robert Simonds’ Next Generation Studio Announces Two More Hires
Rich Sullivan
joins as chief financial officer and Philip Goore will serve as executive vp of business and legal affairs

Adweek: Kevin Spacey Says Digital Platforms Are Killing the TV Pilot—and That’s a Great Thing
We spoke to Spacey about working on the Web series and test driving the upcoming Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare, which he stars in. Here are four things Frank Underwood wants you to know about how to play politics with online creative.

THR: TV Agents Smackdown: Four Top Sharks on "Destructive" Network Execs, Clients They’d Poach and What a Hit Showrunner Can Earn
In a candid conversation, CAA’s Adam Berkowitz, ICM Partners’ Ted Chervin, WME’s Ari Greenburg and UTA’s Matt Rice discuss what they’d change about the development process, why they don’t care how many people are watching shows on Netflix or Amazon, and how clients perceive broadcast vs. cable: "You’re not going to make $100 million from a cable show, though you can make $50 million"