Morning News Update for Tuesday, April 14, 2015.

Hi all! Here’s your first news update for Tuesday, April 14, 2015:


Cary Fukunaga Behind Event TV Series ‘The Alienist’ Reteaming With Anonymous Content & Paramount
Cary Fukunaga
is reteaming with Anonymous Contentto direct and executive produce The Alienist, an event TV series inspired by Caleb Carr’s bestselling novel. Eric Roth has come aboard as executive producer. Hossein Amini, who wrote the pilot, will write and exec produce the series. Set in the tenements and mansions of Gilded Age New York City, Carr’s 1994 novel tells the story of Dr. Laszlo Kreizler who, with the help of newspaper reporter John Moore and police commissioner Theodore Roosevelt, uses the emerging discipline of psychology to track down one of New York City’s first serial killers.

Bad Robot Acquires Tavis Smiley’s Martin Luther King Book ‘Death Of A King’ For TV
Bad Robot
has acquired rights to the book about Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s final days in association with Warner Bros Television.

‘In Cold Blood’ Getting TV Event Series Treatment In Weinstein Co Deal
The Weinstein Company
has optioned TV rights to Truman Capote’s 1966 bestseller In Cold Blood with the aim of making it a TV event series. Gary Oldman and Douglas Urbanski’s Flying Studios will produce the project, with Kevin Hood attached to write.

Katee Sackhoff To Star In & Create Futuristic TV Series For Reunion PicturesBattlestar Galactica alumna Katee Sackhoff has teamed with Continuum producer Reunion Pictures for the project,Rain, which she wrote and is executive producing though her Fly Free Productions. Rain is described as an evolutionary parable that gives us a look into our possible future as a species viewed through the eyes of a soldier named Rain (Sackhoff).

McG To Direct ABC Family’s ‘Mortal Instruments’ Series ‘Shadowhunters’McGis set to direct the opening episode of Shadowhunters, the straight-to-series drama based on Cassandra Clare’s YA fantasy book series The Mortal Instruments, which was recently picked up by ABC Family.

Veep & Silicon Valley Renewed at HBO
has renewed the Julia Louis-Dreyfus comedy for a fifth season, the network announced Monday. The premium channel also renewed its tech-savvy comedy Silicon Valley for a third season.

TVBTN: NBC Predictions: ‘American Odyssey’ Is Certain To Be Canceled
American Odyssey
premiered with a low 1.1 rating, but that was still at the NBC 2015 scripted ratings average. Its second episode plunged to just a 0.8 rating. Even on NBC, that’s certain cancellation territory.

AdWeek: How ABC Got Its Groove Back (Only Partly Because of Shonda Rhimes)As the upfronts approach, ABC Entertainment president Paul Lee talked about how the network has reinvented itself—and why its recent success is only partially due to Queen Shonda. “…When you look at the ABC brand, it’s actually built not just by TGIT but by Once Upon a Time and by our Wednesday night comedies. And by Dancing [With the Stars] and Castle."


Sarah Paulson Joins Cast of ‘American Horror Story: Hotel’
American Horror Story
veteran Sarah Paulson is returning for the fifth installment Hotel, the next chapter in Ryan Murphy’s hit anthology series for FX.

J.Lo’s ‘Shades of Blue’ Adds Gino Pesi in Recurring Role
Gino Anthony Pesi
(“Dallas”) has booked a recurring role on the new NBC drama series “Shades of Blue,” which is exec produced by Jennifer Lopez.


‘Wonder Woman’ Movie Loses Director Michelle MacLarenCreative differences are being cited as the reason for MacLaren’s departure.

Steven Spielberg Takes First Directing Turn With Walt Disney Studios
Steven Spielberg’s
long and storied career as a director had one noticeably missing partner — Disney. That changed with the announcement that The Walt Disney Studios will co-produce and co-finance Spielberg’s “The BFG.” Set for a summer, 2016 release, “The BFG” tells the story of a young girl who sets out with the titular “Big Friendly Giant” to overcome evil, man-eating giants. The story is from Roald Dahl.


Chris Harrison Named New Host of ‘Who Wants To Be A Millionaire’
Chris Harrison
(ABC’s “The Bachelor” franchise) has been named the new host of the nationally syndicated game show “Who Wants To Be A Millionaire.”

VH1 Greenlights New Series ‘She’s Got Game’ Starring The Game
has given the greenlight to “She’s Got Game,” a one-hour weekly series starring Jayceon Taylor, better known as platinum-selling rap artist “The Game,” as he sets out on tour this summer ready to find love – with a little help from his celeb friends.

‘Ice & Coco’ Daytime Talk Show Lands Summer Test Run on Fox StationsReal-life couple and reality stars Ice-T and Coco have landed their own daytime talk show from Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution, which will air across Fox stations, as a three-week daily test run this summer.

MTV2 Orders Tyga, Charlamange Series, ‘Celebrity Deathmatch’ Pilot
has given series orders to projects revolving around rapper Tyga and comedian Charlamange. The cabler also hopes to revive “Celebrity Deathmatch.”


Sony Crackle Unveils Drama ‘Art of More,’ Bryan Cranston’s ‘SuperMansion’ at Upfront
Sony’s Crackle
Internet-streaming service revealed its upcoming slate of programming for 2015-16, highlighting its first hour-long scripted drama, “The Art of More,” and animated comedy “SuperMansion” from Bryan Cranston. “The Art of More,” starring Dennis Quaid, is written and exec produced by Gardner Stern and Chuck Rose and is about the cutthroat world of premium auction houses


Partners line up for new Agatha Christie dramaA raft of international broadcasters have prebought Partners in Crime, the new BBC Agatha Christie series. Partners in Crime will bow on BBC One later this year and Agatha Christie Productions and Red Arrow-owned prodco Endor are making the six-part series. It is a TV adaptation of the Tommy and Tuppence crime caper books. It follows the eponymous detective couple from Christie’s Partners in Crime series of books, which were the first and last penned by the author.

Gaumont, Eyeworks plot thriller drama
Gaumont Television Europe, Matador Film
and Eyeworks Scandi Fiction are to coproduce a 12x60mins thriller drama from Lars Lundström. 1001 follows a policewoman who is contacted by someone claiming to have committed a murder linked to a medical research project 30 years before. The person demands cash be transferred to their bank accounts or more people would be killed.

NBC, TF1, RTL ink drama procedurals pactThe international production arm of NBCUniversal has inked a deal with French commercial broadcaster TF1 and its German counterpart RTL, and the trio will jointly produce original US-style TV procedural dramas. The deal will yield up to three new procedurals over its two-year course. JoAnn Alfano, NBCU-ITVP’s executive VP of scripted programming, and her team in Los Angeles, will have responsibility for overseeing the development and creative aspects of the new show. The projects will be written, shot and cast in North America and run to 12 and 14 episodes per series.

Power sets up UK-Canada period tech drama
WhitePine Pictures, STV Productions
and Power are joining forces to produce Wire Men, a period drama about the invention of the telephone and the rivalry between Alexander Graham Bell and Thomas Edison.

Transatlantic drama venture unveiledCompanies from Germany, Canada and the US have set up a joint venture to develop and produce TV programming for the global market. The first production under the JV will be the one-hour supernatural drama series Incarnate, which Copperheart’s Steve Hoban and Remstar Studios’ Clark Peterson are executive producing with horror writer Clive Barker.


‘Sofia The First’ & ‘Doc McStuffins’ Renewed At Disney Junior
Disney Junior
has renewed Sofia The Firstand Doc McStuffins for fourth seasons.


Producer Mark Gordon to Be Honored at Fulfillment Fund Stars GalaFilm and TV producer Mark Gordon will be recognized with the Tom Sherak Award at the Fulfillment Fund’s Stars 2015 benefit gala on October 14. The nonprofit is devoted to helping Los Angeles students overcome obstacles to achieve a college education.

(from Fri) Disney/ABC TV Digital Czar Albert Cheng To Depart In May
Longtime Disney/ABC Television Group digital chief Albert Cheng is leaving the company. After 10 years as the the company’s digital media czar, Cheng informed his staff about his plans late Friday but will remain through May to ease the transition, ABC confirmed. Cheng said he felt it was time to move on after achieving goals of distributing Disney/ABC programming multiple platforms online and on demand.


Decline of TV viewing ‘accelerating,’ says AccentureAmong 14 to 17 year-olds, there was a 33% year-on-year decline in accessing TV shows and movies from TV screens on a daily and weekly basis. However, the same age group accessing the same type of content on laptops was up 16%, on tablets up 12% and on smartphones up 9%, according to Accenture. Similar trends emerged among those aged 18-34, with a 14% year-on-year decline in watching TV shows and movies on the TV and gains across other devices.