The Morning Update for Monday, January 30, 2017.

Hi all, here’s your Morning Update for Monday, January 30, 2017:


(from Fri) ‘Agent Carter’ Duo Return to ABC With ‘Gospel of Kevin’ Drama Pilot
ABC has handed out a pilot order to drama The Gospel of Kevin, from Agent Carter’s Michele Fazekas, Tara Butters and ABC Studios. The project is described as a light hourlong show about Kevin, a down-on-his-luck man who is tasked by God with a mission to save the world.

(from Fri) Paul Haggis-Warren Leight Medical Drama Lands NBC Pilot Pickup
NBC handed out a pilot order to an untitled drama from Warren Leight and Paul Haggis. Formerly known as Salvation, It is described as a real-time "extreme event" medical series that follows the nurses and doctors of an understaffed Brooklyn, N.Y., hospital that becomes the borough’s last viable trauma center after a catastrophic hurricane wreaks havoc on the city.

(from Fri) ‘Will and Grace’ Co-Creator Teams With ‘Friends’ Grad for NBC Sibling Comedy Pilot
NBC handed out a pilot order to Happy Peppers, a multicamera comedy from Will and Grace co-creator Max Mutchnick and Friends alum Jeff Astrof. Developed at CBS in 2015, the comedy centers on an adult brother and sister who wind up living together for the first time since they were kids after one of them suffers a big loss. The comedy hails from Warner Bros. Television.

(from Fri) Navy SEALs Drama Lands CBS Pilot Order
handed out a pilot order to an untitled Navy SEALs drama from writer Ben Cavell. The drama follows the lives of the elite Navy SEALs as they train, plan and execute the most dangerous, high-stakes missions the country can ask. Cavell will pen the script and exec produce alongside CBS Television Studios-based Sarah Timberman and Carl Beverly. Chris Chulack is also on board to exec produce and direct the pilot.

(from Fri) ‘Behind Enemy Lines’ Reboot Scores Fox Pilot Order
Fox handed out an official pilot order to its Behind Enemy Lines reboot. Loosely based on the movie of the same name, the Fox version is a military soap thriller where a group of U.S. soldiers find themselves trapped behind enemy lines. Nikki Toscano attached to write the new take — whose premise has also been updated from the original. McG will now direct the pilot and exec produce alongside Marty Bowen, Temple Hill’s Wyck Godfrey, The Blacklist’s John Davis and John Fox via Davis Entertainment with Albert Page set as a co-EP.

CW Takes Sky Adventure Series ‘Hooten & the Lady’ for U.S.
The CW has acquired Sky adventure series Hooten & the Lady for the U.S. Produced by Red Planet Productions and written by such U.K. writers as Jeff Povey and Sarah Phelps, the show has had one season consisting of eight hourlong episodes. It follows the escapades of American maverick adventurer and treasure hunter Hooten, played by Michael Landes, and a British historical expert, Lady Alexandra, portrayed by Ophelia Lovibond. Jane Seymour has a recurring role as her mother.

(from Fri) ‘Dynasty’ Reboot, Greg Berlanti’s ‘Searchers’ Land CW Pilot Pickups
The CW handed out official orders to its Dynasty reboot from Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage. Richard and Esther Shapiro are attached to the reboot, which is being penned by Sallie Patrick, Schwartz and Savage. The project hails from CBS Television Studios.

Also, the CW ordered the drama Searchers from prolific producer Greg Berlanti and The 100 creator Jason Rothenberg. Searchers follows a group of unlikely heroes and takes place 10 years after the death of their parents, when a pragmatic brother and free-spirited sister are forced to team when they learn that their mother’s terrifying and bizarre stories may be a road map to discovering the legends, myths and unexplainable mysteries of the world.

(from Fri) TV Pilot Season 2017: Trump TV Is Ushered In as Early Trends Emerge
With 36 orders already on the books (including four straight-to-series orders), dramas (20) and comedies (16) are almost evenly split. ABC has the biggest jump among the drama field with nine, compared with CBS (five), Fox and NBC (three each). On the comedy side, NBC leads the way with seven half-hours.

Deadline: Drama Off-Network Market Cools Off As Cable Networks Bet On Movies Instead
While the appetite overseas for high-end U.S. close-ended dramas remains healthy, that is no longer the case among domestic cable networks. With ratings for off-network procedurals not as strong as they used to be — leading to major financial losses by cable networks on existing syndication deals — interest in broadcast dramas has been on a decline.

‘Mozart In The Jungle’ Renewed For Season 4; ‘Red Oaks’ For Third & Final Season By Amazon
Amazon has renewed comedy series Red Oaks for a third and final season, and ordered a fourth season of Golden Globe-winning Mozart In The Jungle.

(review) Variety: ‘Santa Clarita Diet,’ With Drew Barrymore and Timothy Olyphant
“Santa Clarita Diet” is a treat for a very specific sense of humor — and a little unpleasant for everyone else. It’s B-movie camp, set in the Los Angeles suburbs; in between eating people, Sheila, with her devoted husband, Joel, sells ranch houses with plush-carpeted rooms. Both Drew Barrymore and Timothy Olyphant commit with deadpan brilliance to the ridiculous story, playing self-conscious camp with admirable balance.


(from Fri) Amanda Detmer Joins Marc Cherry ABC Drama Pilot; ‘Libby & Malcolm’ Adds Cast
Second Chance alumna Amanda Detmer has booked a series regular role on ABC’s Marc Cherry southern drama pilot. Feed the Beast alum Jahi Winston has been cast opposite Courtney B. Vance in ABC comedy pilot Libby & Malcolm.

(from Fri) ‘Conviction’s Manny Montana Cast In NBC Pilot ‘Good Girls’
A second cast member from ABC’s freshman drama series Conviction has booked a new series regular gig. Manny Montana has been cast in Good Girls, NBC’s drama pilot from The Family creator Jenna Bans.

(from Fri) Hulu’s ‘The Looming Tower’ Finds Lead in ‘Last Panthers’ Grad
Tahar Rahim will star in the series, based on Lawrence Wright’s Pulitzer Prize-winning 9/11 exposé.

(from Fri) Justine Lupe Joins Audience Network’s ‘Mr. Mercedes’ & ‘Snowfall’ On FX
Justine Lupe (Francis Ha) has been cast in a key series regular role in AT&T Audience Network’s upcoming drama series Mr. Mercedes, as well as a recurring role in John Singleton’s FX drama seriesSnowfall.

(from Fri) ‘Mr. Mercedes’: Breeda Wool Joins Audience Network Drama Series
UnReal alumna Breeda Wool has landed a series regular role in AT&T Audience Network‘s upcoming drama series Mr. Mercedes.

Variety: Early Casting Cuts Through Pilot Season ClutterFelicity Huffman, Courtney B. Vance, Zach Braff, Reba McEntire, Alan Cumming, Mark Feuerstein, Craig Robinson, and Adam Scott. These actors all signed onto network TV projects before pilot pickups — and now, their pilots have in fact all been given the green light. This development season saw a growing trend of casting stars well before pilot season began, giving the potential series a leg up against the hefty competition.


Megyn Kelly Likely to Take Over ‘Today’ Show Hour this Fall
As previously reported, Kelly is expected to take over the 9 a.m. hour of the Today show in the fall. Though there is a chance she could also take the 10 a.m. hour; if that happens, Hoda Kotb and Kathie Lee Gifford will move to 9 a.m.

‘The Voice’: Celine Dion, John Legend, DJ Khaled and Luke Bryan Join as Team Advisers
Dion will serve coach Gwen Stefani’s team, while Legend will work with Adam Levine’s squad.

Wanda Faces Hurdles in Closing Dick Clark Prods. Deal
The Dalian Wanda Group announced its eye-popping $1 billion deal to buy Dick Clark Prods. back on Nov. 4. But the transaction is taking longer than expected to close, stirring chatter in the media finance community as political conditions on both sides of the Pacific appear to pose hurdles for Chinese investment in Hollywood.


Andrea Giannetti Re-Ups As Exec VP Production For Columbia Pictures
Andrea Giannetti, who has been with Sony for about 25 years, has re-upped at Columbia Pictures in a long-term contract with the same title EVP Production.

Former MTV Exec Dane Reiley Tapped To Head NorthSouth Prods’ Comedy Division
NorthSouth Productions (Say Yes to the Dress: Atlanta, Impractical Jokers) has hired former MTV execDane Reiley as VP of Comedy Development & Production. Reiley will be charged with developing and producing unscripted, comedic driven formats and docuseries for broadcast and cable networks as well as digital outlets in the U.S. and UK.

Mark Gill Out as Millennium Films President
Mark Gill
, the president of Millennium Films, the independent film company behind such hits as “The Expendables,” is stepping down.

(q&a) Vulture: Talking to the Gatekeepers of TV Comedy
Q: Do you agree with my premise that the business model of comedy has changed? It used to be about making 100 episodes, and comedy was sort of a profit engine. Now, obviously most of you are in the business of making money, but it’s not a straight line. Is there a shift?
Samie Falvey
: It’s much more like the movie business: You have to break out pretty quickly or else you’re not in the game. In the old days, especially for broadcast comedies, you had time to grow. Famously, Seinfeld was on three years before it really took off. Now you have to event-ize a comedy in the way you do a drama because people have to show up.


Thanks to ‘Stranger Things,’ ‘Orange Is the New Black’ and ‘The Crown,’ Netflix dominates TV winners at the SAG Awards
The past was very much present Sunday night at the 23rd Screen Actors Guild Awards as two new Netflix period pieces and one veteran show took home the top honors in the television categories and carried the streaming service to the top of the small screen heap with four awards.

PGA Awards: ‘La La Land’ Wins Top Film Prize; ‘Stranger Things’ Lands Drama; ‘Atlanta’ Takes Comedy – Full List
La La Land continued its awards season surge, winning the Darryl F. Zanuck Award for Outstanding Producer of Theatrical Motion Pictures tonight at the 28th Annual PGA Awards. On the TV side, buzzy newcomer Netflix’s Stranger Things took the Outstanding Drama Series Producer award and FX breakout, Donald Glover’s Atlanta, took the comedy series honor.


Variety: Nielsen’s Cross-Platform TV Data to Get Limited Rollout in March
After several weeks of back-and-forth, Nielsen and the media companies it serves have agreed to a rather limited rollout of what has been known in the industry as “total content ratings,” or a measure of how TV programs are viewed across several different kinds of venues. On March 1, TV networks that have implemented technology that allows content to be measured on various platforms will be able to release that data about their own shows to the public.

THR: Sony Takes $962M Film Unit Write-DownThe impairment charge came due to a downward revision of future profit projections "primarily due to a lowering of previous expectations regarding the home entertainment business."

NYT: Uneasy About the Future, Readers Turn to Dystopian Classics
“The Handmaid’s Tale” is among several classic dystopian novels that seem to be resonating with readers at a moment of heightened anxiety about the state of American democracy. Sales have also risen drastically for George Orwell’s “Animal Farm” and “1984,” which shot to the top of Amazon’s best-seller list this week.

Variety: Fox Sets ‘24: Legacy’ Alarm With Amazon Alexa, Homepage Pact
Fox is bringing the trademark “24” ticking-clock sound effect to Amazon’s voice-activated Echo devices, in a unique promo with the ecommerce giant ahead of the premiere of the franchise’s “24: Legacy” reboot. Beginning Monday, Jan. 30, Amazon Echo users will be able to select the action-drama franchise’s reverberating “plink-plink” audio mnemonic as a personalized alarm tone for Alexa.

(books) Atlantic: How Culture Became a Powerful Political Weapon
When it comes to living in a democracy, Nato Thompson argues, nothing affects us more directly and more powerfully than culture. Culture suffuses the world we live in, from TV to music to advertising to sports. And all these things, Thompson writes in his new book, Culture as Weapon, “influence our emotions, our actions, and our very understanding of ourselves as citizens.” But comprehending how dominant culture has become also means thinking about the ways it can be, and has been, employed to manipulate consumers, by politicians, brands, and other powerful institutions.