The Morning Update for Thursday, November 17, 2016.

Hi all, here’s your Morning Update for Thursday, November 17, 2016:


Fox Developing Dance Drama ‘The Cut’ Produced By McG
Fox is developing dance-themed drama series The Cut, from McG’s Wonderland Sound & Vision. The project, which has received a script commitment plus penalty, hails from 20th TV. Written by Joe Sofranko & Lili Fuller, The Cut is described as Friday Night Lights meets Center Stage. It is an aspirational ensemble drama set in the Manhattan School of Dance, the most renowned dance conservatory in New York City.

Fox Buys Legal Drama From ‘Rosewood’ Duo
has put in development legal drama Hawk from Rosewood executive producer Andy Berman and creator/executive producer Todd Harthan. Written by Berman, Hawk is described as a law show with a twist. It centers on Johnny “Hawk” Jr., a con man with special skills, who tries to reconcile his criminal past when he becomes the in-house legal investigator for the glossy LA firm he almost took down.

Fox Developing Fantasy Drama Series ‘The Building’ From Neil Gaiman & Angry Films
Fox has put in development The Building, a drama series from fantasy novelist Neil Gaiman and Angry Films. 20th Century Fox TV is the studio. The Building is based on a digital film called Parallels which has had great success on Netflix. The original film was written and directed by Chris Leone. Written by Albert Kim and Leone, The Building involves a large skyscraper that moves between alternate realities and a group of young urban explorers who are in the building and suddenly find themselves on an Earth wherein Reagan was not elected and Russia dropped the bomb.

Damon Wayans Jr. to Star in Fox ‘Henchman’ Comedy From Jake Johnson
Damon Wayans Jr. is reteaming with New Girl’s Jake Johnson and Fox. The two are now developing The Henchman, a new comedy poised to star Wayans. The single-camera comedy — written by Wayans and Johnson — would star Wayans as Norris, a man fighting to find the balance between his family and pursuing his dream of being a successful henchman. Vali Chandrasekaran is set to supervise and serve as showrunner on the 20th Century Fox TV comedy via his overall deal with the studio.

‘Dr. Mirage’ TV Series Based On Comic Set At The CW From ‘Annabelle’ Writer & DMG
The CW, which has six on-air series based on comic books, is looking to add to its portfolio with a drama based on the Valiant graphic novel Dr. Mirage. The project marks DMG Entertainment and Valiant’s first foray into television. Writer Gary Dauberman will write the TV adaptation and executive produce the project. CBS TV Studios is the studio. Dr. Mirage centers on a female paranormal investigator who can communicate with dead souls except the one she most wants to reach — the love of her life.

Robert Downey Jr, Anthony Michael Hall Team for ‘Singularity’ TV Series
Robert Downey Jr. will produce and direct a new television series starring Anthony Michael Hall, titled “Singularity.” The “Iron Man” star and his veteran producer wife, Susan Downey, announced the show as part of a new first look deal with Sonar Entertainment and their Team Downey Productions. Plot details are currently unknown, but Hall will topline the project and Downey Jr. will direct the pilot.

Berlin Station and Graves Both Renewed for Season 2 by Epix
Epix’s first two scripted series are both getting a Season 2. Berlin Station and Graves have both been renewed for a second season, Epix announced.

‘Henry Danger’ & ‘Game Shakers’ Renewed By Nickelodeon
On the heels of record network ratings, Nickelodeon has picked up a fourth season of top-rated kids series Henry Danger and a third season of Game Shakers, both from Dan Schneider.

(sched) The CW Dates ‘Riverdale’; Freshmen ‘No Tomorrow,’ ‘Frequency’ Not Getting More Episodes
The network also has shifted ‘Supernatural’ and ‘Legends of Tomorrow’ and announced the finale date for ‘The Vampire Diaries.’

(sched) Tyler Perry’s ‘Too Close To Home’ Season 2 Gets Midseason Premiere Date On TLC
TLC will launch the second season of its first scripted series, Too Close To Home on Wednesday, January 4 at 10 PM ET/PT.

‘Queen of the South’ Showrunner Moves From UCP to Fox 21
Natlaie Chaidez is moving from her longtime home at Universal Cable Productions to Fox 21 Television Studios, where she has signed a new two-year overall deal. Under the pact, she will serve as showrunner on USA Network’s UCP/Fox 21 co-production Queen of the South. She will also develop new projects for the studio.


‘Empire’ Taps Rumer Willis for Recurring RoleThe actress will play a singer-songwriter working closely with Jamal.

‘Gilmore Girls’ Grad Keiko Agena Joins ‘Colony’ Season 2
‘The Last Ship’ alum Paolo Andino and former ‘Boy Meets World’ star William Russ will recur on the USA Network drama.

Jim True-Frost Joins Rod Lurie’s TNT Drama Pilot ‘Monsters Of God’
The Wire alum Jim True-Frost, Alicia Sixtos and Efren Ramirez have signed on as series regulars opposite Garret Dillahunt in Rod Lurie’s post-Civil War drama pilot Monsters of God for TNT.

Tyler Hilton, Kurt Fuller & More Join ‘His Wives & Daughters’ CMT’s Soapy Pilot
One Tree Hill alumTyler Hilton, Kurt Fuller, Molly McCook, Christina Moore and Talia Tabin have joined the cast of CMT‘s soapy, comedic pilot His Wives and Daughters.

‘Billions’ Season 2 Casts Mary-Louise Parker in Guest Role
“Billions” Season 2 has cast Emmy- and Golden Globe-winning actress Mary Louise Parker in a guest starring role.


Netflix Circling Jared Leto Crime Thriller ‘The Outsider’
Netflix is in talks to acquire global rights to “The Outsider,” an action-crime drama with Jared Leto. The deal has yet to close, but if it does, it would represent another showy acquisition for the streaming giant as it moves aggressively into the film space.


Freeform Launches ‘Party Girl,’ Shortform Series Starring YouTuber Lisa Schwartz
Freeform has gone live with Party Girl, a 10-episode original shortform series from New Form and Maker Studios now available on its website and Hulu. The comedy was co-created by YouTube personality Lisa Schwartz and The Goldbergs writer Lacey Friedman. Schwartz also stars. Loosely based on Schwartz’s experiences, Party Girl follows a twentysomething (Schwartz) as she navigates adulthood while working with a band of quirky co-workers at a Los Angeles party company that specializes in themed birthdays.

(sched) Hulu Sets Midseason Bows For ‘Handmaid’s Tale,’ ‘Harlots,’ & 3 Returning Series
Hulu will bow The Handmaid’s Tale, starring Elisabeth Moss and Joseph Fiennes, in April and fellow rookie drama Harlots on March 29. It also set Season 2 of cult-based drama The Path for January 25, the second half of Season 5 of The Mindy Project for February 14 and Season 3 of comedy Casual for May 23.

Apple’s video strategy has Hollywood confused
Apple recently tried to work out an exclusive video deal with Chris Rock, but walked away from the discussions and let the comedian’s two stand-up specials go to Netflix instead. This latest chapter in Apple’s scattered efforts to acquire exclusive video content has added to the confusion in Hollywood over what types of media Apple has an interest in acquiring. After meeting with TV producers and movie studios about developing original content for iTunes, Eddy Cue was quoted as saying Apple is “not in the business of trying to create TV shows,” adding that the company is more interested in offering suggestions and guidance.


Samantha Bee’s ‘Full Frontal’ Renewed by TBS Through 2017
Time Warner’s TBS said Wednesday that it picked up her scathing comedy program, “Full Frontal,” for a second season, which will start next year. The show will move to Wednesdays at 10:30 p.m.

E! Renews ‘Total Bellas’ for Season 2
The ‘Total Divas’ spinoff recently wrapped its first season with series-high viewership.

‘WAGS’ & ‘WAGS Miami’ Renewed By E!
has picked up a third season of its popular reality series WAGS and a second season for spinoff WAGS Miami. Both eight-episode seasons will air in 2017.

‘Duck Dynasty’ to End on A&EThe 11th season of the reality franchise will be its last.


(animated) ‘Doc McStuffins’ Renewed for Fifth Season at Disney Junior
The series aims to teach compassion and good health for kids ages two to seven.

Disney will fly 300 drones simultaneously every night this winter in Orlando
Disney will send 300 drones into the air every night over Orlando, Florida this winter to create a holiday-themed light show in the night sky. The entertainment giant is using Intel’s Shooting Star drone, designed to fly in unison with hundreds of other drones, all controlled by a single operator.


Megan Ellison’s Executive Poaching Spree Sparks Talk of Big Plans
Fox’s marketing chief and Sony games execs join Annapurna amid a ramp-up in film, digital and possibly much more. Ellison is said to be seeking to move aggressively into the mobile game and VR space and will leverage relationships with Hollywood auteurs to create content.

TBS & TNT Set Strategy and Innovation Unit Led By David Beck & Jesse Redniss
Kevin Reilly, president of TBS & TNT and chief creative officer for Turner Entertainment, has launched a new business strategy unit led by David Beck and Jesse Redniss, the co-founding partners of BRaVe Ventures, a strategic advisory and investment firm specializing in the technology, media and entertainment “(r)evolution.”


THR: Robert De Niro’s Making How Much?! TV Is Becoming an ATM for Top Talent
Meryl Streep is getting $825,000 an episode for ‘The Nix’ as competition from Netflix and Amazon has overheated the market for A-list stars and creators willing to forgo traditional backends.

Deadline: Roma Downey, Mark Burnett And MGM Launch Light TV With Fox Stations On Board
Light TV, a new, 24-hour faith and family entertainment network designed to tap into MGM’s library of titles, is being launched next month by Roma Downey, Mark Burnett and MGM in partnership with a number of Fox stations and affiliates.

LinkedIn: DraftKings and FanDuel have agreed to merge; DraftKings CEO Jason Robins to run new company as FanDuel CEO Nigel Eccles becomes chairman
Daily fantasy sports sites DraftKings and FanDuel have agreed to merge, according to three sources familiar with the situation.

Deadline: AOL To Layoff 5% Of Workforce As It Sharpens Focus On Media And Platforms
About 500 AOL employees, accounting for 5% of its workforce, are about to lose their jobs. Tim Armstrong, who’s CEO of the Verizon-owned company, disclosed the news to staffers today as he announced a restructuring to focus on two business units: Media, which will include Search and Communications, and Platforms.