The Morning Update for Wednesday, January 6, 2015.

Hi all, here’s your Morning Update for Wednesday, January 6, 2016:

SCRIPTED NEWS:

Simon Cowell’s Syco To Develop Emma Sayle’s Sex Club Memoir ‘Behind The Mask’ As TV SeriesSimon Cowell’s Syco Entertainment has bought Behind The Maskmemoir by Killing Kittens sex club founder Emma Saylefor development as a TV series. Published by Harper Collins in 2014, the book details the outlandish lifestyle of Sayle, who runs ‘Killing Kittens,’ sex club, a business that organizes decadent events in secret locations for the world’s elite. Veteran scribe Tim Prager will act as a consulting producer. http://deadline.com/2016/01/simon-cowell-syco-emma-sayle-behind-the-mask-killing-kittens-tv-1201671049/

Netflix Orders Psychological Thriller ‘Gypsy’ to Series
Netflix has picked up psychological thriller Gypsy to series. From writer/exec producer Lisa Rubin, the drama follows the journey of Jean Holloway, a therapist who begins to develop dangerous and intimate relationships with the people in her patients’ lives. Working Title president Liza Chasin and Rubin will exec produce. The 10-episode drama, which also hails from Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner, will premiere in 2017. The series hails from Universal Television. http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/live-feed/netflix-orders-psychological-thriller-gypsy-852403

Dwayne Johnson to Produce Car-Focused Cop Show ‘Boost Unit’ for Fox
‘Boost Unit’
is described as ‘Fast and the Furious’ meets ‘Rescue Me,’ and hails from exec producer Tim Kring. Jonny Umansky and Zach Hyatt will pen the script and also exec produce. http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/live-feed/dwayne-johnson-produce-car-focused-852240

E! Renews ‘The Royals’ for Third SeasonThe renewal comes ahead of the drama’s second-season finale. The Royals is created, written and directed by Mark Schwahn, who also executive produces with Brian Robbins, Joe Davola and Shauna Phelan. The series is co-produced by Lionsgate and Universal Cable Productions. http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/live-feed/e-renews-royals-third-season-852073

HBO’s ‘Girls’ to End After Season 6Sources confirm that the Lena DunhamJudd Apatow comedy will conclude after its not-yet-announced sixth season. http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/live-feed/hbos-girls-end-season-6-852340

(review) Hitfix: Jennifer Lopez’s ‘Shades of Blue’ has shades of much better cable dramas
Created by Adi Hasak, with the first two episodes directed by Barry Levinson, is competent but uninspired, and often more concerned with flattering its glamorous star than telling the best possible version of this story. http://www.hitfix.com/whats-alan-watching/review-jennifer-lopezs-shades-of-blue-has-shades-of-much-better-cable-dramas

TCA NEWS:

THR: TCA Journal No. 1: It’s End of Days in the Land of Cable
With so many (in both the industry and consumers) pushing or pleading for change, and with streaming services making that change happen faster than anyone expected, we’re not far from the end of the way the cable industry used to do business and the beginning of some alternative that, soon enough, won’t be able to support cable channels nobody watches. http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/bastard-machine/tca-journal-no-1-end-852405

CASTING NEWS:

‘Grandfathered’ Casts Paul Sorvino to Play John Stamos’ Dad
“Grandfathered”
is about to introduce a great-grandfather. “Goodfellas” star Paul Sorvino has been cast to play the father of John Stamos‘ character. http://www.thewrap.com/grandfathered-casts-paul-sorvino-to-play-john-stamos-dad-exclusive/

FX’s ‘X-Men’ Take ‘Legion’ Taps ‘Fargo’ Favorite to Star
Rachel Keller
will play the female lead and reunite with showrunner Noah Hawley. http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/live-feed/fxs-x-men-take-legion-852293

Alexander Skarsgard, James Tupper Join HBO’s Nicole Kidman-Reese Witherspoon DramaThe premium cable network also confirms Shailene Woodley’s co-starring role and announces the limited series’ supporting cast. http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/live-feed/alexander-skarsgard-james-tupper-join-852315

Jenna Fischer Joins NBC’s ‘The Mysteries Of Laura’ As RecurringThe Office alum Jenna Fischerhas booked a recurring a role on NBC’s comedy-drama series The Mysteries Of Laura. http://deadline.com/2016/01/jenna-fischer-the-mysteries-of-laura-recurring-the-office-1201676616/

Michael Weatherly to Exit ‘NCIS’Broadcast TV’s most-watched drama will see one of its original stars exit at season’s end. http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/live-feed/michael-weatherly-exit-ncis-852332

FEATURE NEWS:

Jason Mantzoukas Set To Write ‘Battling Boy’ For Plan B And ParamountJason Mantzoukashas been set to write Battling Boyat Paramount, with Plan Bproducing and Patrick Osbornedirecting. The live-action/animated hybrid project is an adaptation of Paul Pope’s acclaimed graphic novel set in the city of Arcopolis, where monsters roam the streets and swallow children into the underworld. Into this world come two young protagonists as their paths cross as they battle to save the city. http://deadline.com/2016/01/jason-mantzoukas-battling-boy-paramount-plan-b-1201676745/

Disney’s 2016 Slate: 13 Titles Include ‘Alice’ Sequel, ‘Star Wars’ Spinoff
Disney’s
complete movie calendar for 2016, released with synopses and artwork Tuesday, is highlighted by “Star Wars” spinoff “Rogue One,” along with potential powerhouses from its Pixar and Marvel subsidiaries. http://variety.com/2016/film/news/disney-2016-slate-star-wars-rogue-one-marvel-civil-war-alice-1201672833/

NEW MEDIA NEWS:

(animated) Netflix, DreamWorks Animation Expand Streaming Deal
Netflix
is planning to launch several new DWA series in 2016, including a reimagining of 1980s sci-fi cartoon ‘Voltron’ and ‘Trollhunters,’ a fantasy series from Oscar-nominated director Guillermo del Toro. http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/netflix-dreamworks-animation-expand-streaming-852151

INTERNATIONAL NEWS:

ITV Cancels ‘Jekyll & Hyde’ After One SeasonRatings for the retelling of Robert Louis Stevenson’s novel fell to 1.8 million viewers, while it had drawn complaints that it was "too scary" for its early time slot. http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/itv-cancels-jekyll-hyde-852460

TWDC NEWS:

Disney Animation Contract Talks Begin This WeekNegotiations for a new three-year contract covering hundreds of feature film animators at the Walt Disney Animation Studioswill get underway Wednesday. http://deadline.com/2016/01/disney-animation-studios-contract-talks-begin-this-week-1201676362/

Disney & ABC Promote the Importance of Reading
Disney
and ABC have partnered to raise awareness about the importance of reading with the nonprofit First Book through the Magic of Storytelling campaign. The Magic of Storytelling is a collaboration between Disney Publishing Worldwide and Disney/ABC Television Group to help First Book provide brand-new books for children in communities around the U.S. http://worldscreen.com/articles/display/54275

EXECUTIVE / TALENT NEWS:

Alcon TV Taps NBC Drama Vet as President
Laura Lancaster
is filling a position formerly held by Sharon Hall. http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/alcon-tv-taps-nbc-drama-852220

CBS Television Distribution Promotes 2 to EVP RolesSales executives Jonathan Bingaman and Robert Schildhouse have been promoted to executive vice president roles at CBS Television Distribution (CTD). Bingaman was promoted to executive vice president of domestic cable sales, and Schildhouse was named executive vice president of digital licensing and distribution. http://www.thewrap.com/cbs-television-distribution-promotes-2-to-evp-roles/

NBC Names Allison Rawlings Senior VP Corporate Communications
Rawlings
joins her former DreamWorks Animation colleague Chip Sullivan at the network. http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/nbc-names-allison-rawlings-senior-852305

ESPN Veteran David Preshlack Joins NBC Sports In Senior Role
ESPN’s
loss is NBC Sports’ gain. David Preshlack, a veteran of ESPN, has been hired by NBC Sports to oversee both the NBCUniversal unit’s portfolio of regional sports networks as well as digital distribution of its content. http://variety.com/2016/tv/news/david-preshlack-nbc-sports-espn-1201673222/

Variety’s Digital Entertainment Execs to Watch 2016The goal is to throw a spotlight on the executives uniquely poised to make some noise in 2016, whether they’re undertaking a new initiative deserving of attention or stepping into a new job with a mandate for innovation. http://variety.com/gallery/digital-entertainment-execs-to-watch/

MISCELLANEOUS NEWS:

AdWeek: Disney Renames ABC Family and Hopes ‘Freeform’ Will Better Reflect Its Edgier Content
In network surveys, "we only overindex on two variables with nonviewers: ‘family-friendly’ and ‘wholesome,’" said ABC Family president Tom Ascheim. "We needed to make it feel like there’s less cognitive dissonance between what you’re seeing and what we’re called." So on Jan. 12, ABC Family is going away, as the network sheds its moniker for a new name,Freeform. http://www.adweek.com/news/television/disney-drops-abc-family-freeform-fully-embrace-its-audience-becomers-168779

(video) TED: How to use data to make a hit TV show | Sebastian Wernicke
Data and data analysis, no matter how powerful, can only help you taking a problem apart and understanding its pieces. It’s not suited to put those pieces back together again and then to come to a conclusion. And that’s why I believe that Netflix was so successful, because they used data and brains where they belong in the process.” http://www.ted.com/talks/sebastian_wernicke_how_to_use_data_to_make_a_hit_tv_show

(tech) CES: Sony Announces 4K Video Storefront ‘Ultra’ At Keynote
Sony president and COO Mike Fasulo announced Ultra, a new 4K video app that allows users to buy and stream 4K movies on Sony Android TVs. http://variety.com/2016/digital/news/sony-ces-2016-ultra-app-1201672918/

(tech) The Price for the Oculus Rift Virtual Reality Headset: $599
Facebook-owned Oculus opened preorders for its new virtual reality headset, Oculus Rift, on Wednesday morning. Buying an Oculus Rift headset will cost you a cool $599, according to the preorder website, and the devices are set to ship in March of this year. http://recode.net/2016/01/06/the-price-for-the-oculus-rift-virtual-reality-headset-599/

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