The Morning Update for Tuesday, April 5, 2016.

Hi all, here’s your Morning Update for Tuesday, April 5, 2016:


Comedy ‘Famous’ Gets Straight-to-Series Order at Fox
The 10-episode summer run comes from Ralph Farquhar and Ty Hodges. The sitcom focuses on a young couple tested by the wife’s instant fame. Mockumentary style, told through couples therapy sessions, Famous’ central duo are Fred and Geneva. They’re both high school teachers who fancy themselves as Hollywood material, but it’s Geneva who hits stardom when a music video she puts online goes viral and lands her a record deal.

Freeform Developing Latina Empire Drama From Selena Gomez & Aaron Kaplan
Freeform has teamed with Selena Gomez and Aaron Kaplanfor a drama series project. Described as a Latina Empire, the untitled drama, now in development, is set in a low income Latino neighborhood and is told through the eyes of an 18-year-old girl destined for greatness. Gomez executive produces with Kaplan through his Kapital Entertainment and Mandy Teefey.

(mipTV) Pivot Takes U.S. Rights To ‘Capital’; BBC One/Kudos Drama Sold By Fremantle
FremantleMedia Internationalhas closed a trio of major deals on its London-set drama, Capital. Participant Media’s Pivothas acquired rights in the U.S., Shaw has taken Canada, and BBC Worldwide picked up Australia and New Zealand. The tense three-part series adaptation of the bestselling novel by John Lanchester revolves around the interconnected lives of a diverse group of Londoners who all reside on the same suburban street, Pepys Road. Each of the residents of Pepys Road receives an anonymous postcard through their front doors bearing the menacing message: “We Want What You Have.”

(sched) ABC Sets Season Finale Dates for ‘Grey’s Anatomy,’ ‘Agents of SHIELD’ and More
ABC announced on Monday season finale dates for its lengthy list of current primetime series, with three dramas — “Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD,” “Once Upon a Time” and newcomer “The Catch” — getting two-hour sendoffs.

(opinion) TVBTN: FOX Renew/Cancel standings, week 28: So long, ‘Bordertown’ and ‘Cooper Barrett’
The odds of renewal for “Bordertown” “Cooper Barrett’s Guide to Surviving Life” have never been great. But after last week, there is just about no chance they’ll be back.

(opinion) TVBTN: NBC Renew/Cancel standings, week 28: ‘Heartbeat’s’ prognosis is not very good
“Heartbeat” premiered to a semi-promising 1.4 rating following “The Voice.” If it could hold close to that number in its regular spot on Wednesdays, then it would have a decent chance of getting a second season. It hasn’t held that number. Two straight weeks of sub-1.0 ratings move the show down from a tossup to a likely cancellation.


NCIS Casts New, ‘No-Nonsense’ Agent Ahead of Michael Weatherly’s Exit
On the heels of adding 24 alum Sarah Clarke to its ranks, CBS’ NCIS has cast British actor Duane Henry to appear in the final two episodes of Season 13, with an option to be a series regular come Season 14.

Katey Sagal Boards ABC’s ‘Dirty Dancing’ Remake
She’ll take on the role of Vivian Pressman in the broadcast TV remake of the 1987 movie.

Mistresses Love Triangle Alert? Transgender Actor Ian Harvie Books Arc
Transgender actor and comic Ian Harvie has booked a multi-episode arc on Season 4 of Mistresses.

Cory Hardrict to Star in Hulu Pilot ‘When the Street Light Goes On’
“American Sniper” actor Cory Hardrict has signed on to star in the Hulu drama “When the Street Light Goes On.” Odessa Young is also set to topline the pilot.

Sir Elton John to Appear on ‘Nashville’
The legendary musician will play himself in the penultimate episode of season four.


Twitter and NFL partner to stream 10 Thursday Night Football games
Twitter has bought the rights to stream 10 games from NFL’s Thursday Night Football online. Twitter beat both Amazon and Verizon in securing for the global rights to the games, with sources close to the bidding process claiming that the social media company paid less than $10 million for all 10 games.

Starz Launches Standalone Streaming ServiceThe app is available for $8.99 a month and offers unlimited downloads, a first for a premium-cable channel app.

(sched) Hulu Makes Summer Dates With ‘Casual’, ‘Difficult People’ & ‘East Los High’
Hulu has unveiled summer premiere dates for a trio of its original series. The streaming service said today that the respective second seasons of comedies Casualand Difficult People will premiere June 7 and July 12, each with back-to-back episodes, and Season 4 of drama East Los High will bow July 15.

Amazon buys Red Rock soap opera
Amazon has picked up US rights to Red Rock, the soap opera that plays on Ireland’s TV3. Red Rock follows two feuding families –the The Kielys and the Hennessys – and life in a fictional Irish coastal town.

Elizabeth Banks launches website dedicated to women in comedy
Elizabeth Banks has launched a new website dedicated "to [shining] a spotlight on funny women." From Amy Schumer and Mindy Kaling, to "your 15 year old neighbor who just started her own Youtube channel," the site — named WhoHaha — aims to bring together the best female talent in comedy, but also foster rising stars.


Steve Harvey, Mark Burnett Team for ABC Seed-Funding Competition Series
Steve Harvey and Mark Burnett have teamed for an ABC reality series that will hand out seed funding to entrepreneurs. The untitled project will revolve around entrepreneurs pitching their ideas for new businesses in front of a studio audience. ABC said the series has a 13-episode order and would premiere sometime this year. MGM is producing and handling international distribution rights.

HBO Orders ‘Game of Thrones’ Aftershow From Bill Simmons’ Team
The show will be hosted by Andy Greenwald and Chris Ryan, alums of Grantland who now work for Simmons’ content site The Ringer. After the Thrones will offer weekly recaps of episodes and attempt to contextualize events into the increasingly hefty mythology around the series. Simmons is executive producing alongside Bill Simmons Media Group president Eric Weinberger.

Harry Connick Jr. Daytime Show Adds ‘Steve Harvey’ Vet
Jason Kurtz, who served as a co-EP on ‘Steve Harvey,’ has joined the upcoming program as an EP.

‘Daily Show With Trevor Noah’ Adds Michelle Wolf As On-Air Contributor & Writer
The Daily Show With Trevor Noahis expanding its “Best F#@ing News Team", adding New York-based writer and stand-up comedian Michelle Wolfas an on-air contributor and writer.

American Idol Creator Insists the Show "Will Be Coming Back For Sure"
After 15 years on the air, American Idolis slated to air its series finale this week – but not if creator Simon Fullerhas anything to say about it. Fuller described his plans to resuscitate Idol, despite it being canceled by Fox.


Haut et Court, Anonymous Content Team On Soccer Drama ‘United We Stand’
Paris-based Haut et Court, the talent-driven outfit behind French hit supernatural drama “The Returned,” is joining forces with U.S. powerhouse Anonymous Content to co-produce “United We Stand,” a European, English-language TV series exploring the world of soccer. An ensemble series, “United We Stand” follows the trajectories of several characters working in various fields of high-level football — from club managers to players, agents, medical teams, supporters and journalists.


Wrap: Disney Succession in Disarray: What COO Tom Staggs’ Sudden Exit Means
Staggs, who beat out then-CFO Jay Rasulo for the COO title and was elevated to the company’s No. 2 slot 14 months ago, seems to have lost the confidence of the Disney board. After the market closed on Monday, the board issued a statement that they planned to “broaden the scope of its succession planning process to identify and evaluate a robust slate of candidates for consideration.” A Disney executive told TheWrap that Staggs interpreted the announcement to mean he was not the favored candidate and chose to leave, effective next month.

Variety: From Sheryl Sandberg to Peter Chernin: Counting Down Potential Disney Successors
The shocking and sudden departure of Thomas Staggs as Walt Disney Company’s chief operating officer Monday has blown open the race to succeed Bob Iger atop the entertainment giant. It likely means that for the first time since the 1980s, Disney will look outside its ranks for a new leader to guide the company through an era of tremendous changes in the entertainment landscape.

Deadline: Will Disney Have To Keep Bob Iger To Resolve Its Succession Problem?
It’s shocking that Disney finds itself in a situation where it’s still wrestling with succession questions. Yet there’s a sense among company watchers that the best way to answer those questions is for Iger to extend his contract once again.

Fortune: The Leadership Quality that Truly Separates Disney’s Bob Iger From his Peers
In 2015, Bob Iger, CEO of Disney, told his top 400 executives, “The riskiest thing Disney can do is maintain the status quo.” Iger knows that simply leveraging the traditional Disney brands like Mickey Mouse and adding theme parks is insufficient to sustain the company’s growth. As organizations grow, their capacity for innovation tends to stagnate. Iger would not consider himself an innovator in the class of Walt Disney or Steve Jobs, but he is a master at identifying, motivating, and supporting creative leaders.

Disneyland Paris Worker Dies in Haunted House Attraction
One of Disneyland Paris’ maintenance workers died Saturday at the theme park’s Phantom Manor attraction. According to a report by French publication Le Parisien, the 45-year-old man was inside the haunted house-like attraction to fix a light fixture. It’s suspected that he died of accidental electrocution, but an autopsy will be conducted to confirm his cause of death.


Mark Pedowitz Signs New Deal to Stay at The CW
Mark Pedowitz is staying put at The CW, signing a new multiyear deal to continue serving as president of the network.

SSN: Exec Shuffle for 4/4/16Rachel Traub has been upped from Executive Assistant to Creative Executive of Film & Scripted Television at Warrior Poets in New York.

Cort Lane has been upped from VP of Animation Development & Partnerships to the SVP of Animation & Family Entertainment at Marvel.

Eli Kirschner has been upped from Director of Development to the VP of Development at Syfy.

Stacey Kleiger has been upped from Production Manager to the VP of Production at Warrior Poets.

Hillary Smotherman has been upped from Casting Producer to the Director of Casting at 44 Blue Productions.

Gaude Paez has been named the VP and Head of Corporate Communications at Hulu.

‘Criminal Minds’ Casting Director Out After Hollywood Reporter Story on Pay-to-Play Workshops
Scott David has been a controversial figure for his simultaneous ownership of casting workshop business The Actors Link.

Mark O’Connor Joins Sidney Kimmel Entertainment as Exec VP
Veteran film production executive Mark O’Connor is joining Sidney Kimmel Entertainment as executive VP of production.


THR: Why Florida May Lose ‘Ballers’ and ‘Bloodline’ to Other State
In 2006, Florida ranked as the third-largest filmmaking state in the U.S., behind California and New York. Now, Film L.A. research analyst Adrian McDonald says he’d be "stunned" if Florida made the top 10, noting that production spending within the state has plummeted in recent years, down from $366 million in 2011 to $175 million in 2015 in Miami alone.

THR: Women in Entertainment See Slow Gains, Research FindsThe fifth annual Report on the Status of Women and Girls in California, released March 30 by Mount Saint Mary’s University in Los Angeles, is a summary of gender-based research in key categories, including education, health and politics. Although there has been a gradual uptick in these jobs, fewer than one in five directors, writers or producers have been women over the last 15 years.