The Morning Update for Tuesday, March 28, 2017.

Hi all, here’s your Morning Update for Tuesday, March 28, 2017:


Barry Jenkins’ Limited Series ‘The Underground Railroad’ Lands at Amazon
Barry Jenkins
is headed to television to write and direct a limited series based on Colson Whitehead’s award-winning novel The Underground Railroad for Amazon. The hourlong drama will be executive produced by Jenkins’ Pastel and Brad Pitt’s Plan B. In addition to selling over 825,000 copies in the U.S., The Underground Railroad chronicles a young woman’s journey as she makes a desperate bid for freedom in the antebellum South.

‘Humans’ Renewed For Season 3 By AMC & Channel 4AMC and Channel 4 have picked up an eight-episode third season of sci-fi drama series Humans for premiere in 2018.

‘True Detective’ Season 3 in the Works With David MilchThe ‘Deadwood’ grad is working with series creator Nic Pizzolatto. The duo are said to be in the early stages of writing a possible third season, which has not yet received a series order.

Pilot Season 2017: Network Ownership & In-Season Stacking Rights Cast ShadowThis season, in-season stacking rights made an appearance much earlier, at the pilot pickup stage, with networks requiring them to hand out an order, and ABC and NBC again being particularly aggressive. The two networks have been in lockstep, offering $50,000-$100,000 an episode for in-season stacking rights, while CBS has not been offering additional compensation for obtaining the in-season rights.

(sched) CBS Sets Season Finale DatesCBS has announced season finale airdates for its primetime comedy, drama and unscripted series. Freshman dramas MacGyver and Ransom will wrap their seasons in April, followed by comedies Kevin Can Wait, Superior Donuts, Man With a Plan and The Great Indoors in May. First-year dramas Training Day and Bullwill wrap in late May.

(review) THR: ‘Harlots’ on HuluBy removing the sexy from its portrayal of sex workers, Hulu’s ‘Harlots’ reaches beyond cliche and toward realism. …Two episodes are not a definitive indication of the tone to come, but Harlots is already entertaining, and there are enough hints here to suggest that it could be intriguingly unique, too.

(review) THR: ’13 Reasons Why’ on Netflix
teen suicide drama ’13 Reasons Why’ tackles tough material in a thoughtful and interesting way and boasts strong performances from Dylan Minnette and Katherine Langford.

(review) Variety: BET’s ‘Rebel,’ From John Singleton
is a pulp detective story set in modern-day Oakland that hands the role of brooding private eye to a black woman. In its premise, it is brilliant… In execution, unfortunately, “Rebel” is less brilliant. The 120-minute pilot released to critics is bloated and sometimes melodramatic; most of it is spent waiting for the inevitable to happen — for the good stuff to start.


Matthew Morrison Is Checking Into ‘Grey’s Anatomy’
Matthew Morrison
is joining ABC’s medical drama Grey’s Anatomy in a guest starring role.

‘Spaced Out’: Matt Shively & Christine Woods To Topline NBC Comedy PilotThe Real O’Neals co-star Matt Shively has been set as the lead and Christine Woods as the female lead in NBC‘s space-travel comedy pilot Spaced Out. For Shively, the casting is in second position to ABC’s series The Real O’Neals.

Katie Cassidy Returning to ‘Arrow’ for Good as Black Siren
Katie Cassidy
is returning to “Arrow” in a big way. The “Arrow” alum will be back as a series regular in Season 6, playing Black Siren.

Miles Teller Cast in Nicolas Winding Refn’s Amazon Drama
Miles Teller
is hitting the world of streaming TV. Amazon Studios has cast Teller in drama series “Too Old to Die Young,” from “Drive” director Nicolas Winding Refn and scribe Ed Brubaker. Teller will play Martin, a police officer entangled in the world of assassins.

‘Westworld’: Louis Herthum Upped To Series Regular For Season 2 On HBO
Louis Herthum
is joining the cast of HBO’s Westworld as a regular in Season 2.

‘Stitchers’: YouTube Star Anna Akana To Recur On Season 3Anna Akana (Miss 2059) is set for a recurring role opposite Emma Ishta and Allison Scagliotti on the upcoming third season of Freeform’s hit drama series Stitchers.


Netflix: The Monster That’s Eating HollywoodThe streaming-video service is hogging talent and pushing up prices, spurring pushback from rival TV producers who once saw it as a partner; 70 new titles this year. …Netflix’s spending on original and acquired programming this year is expected to be more than $6 billion, up from $5 billion last year, more than double what Time Warner Inc.’s HBO spends and five times as much as 21st Century Fox’s FX or CBS Corp.’s Showtime. …Its shock-and-awe spending — combined with that of Amazon and other new players — is driving up costs industrywide and creating a scarcity of people and equipment.

BitTorrent Gets New CEO, Prepares to Spin Off Live TV Streaming UnitMore changes are afoot at BitTorrent: The San Francisco-based P2P technology company has hired Rogelio Choy as its new CEO, and is now looking to spin off its BitTorrent Live service as a separate, venture-funded company.


Hulu Sets Sarah Silverman Variety Show ‘I Love You, America’The show will follow Silverman as she looks to connect with people who may not agree with her personal opinions through honesty, humor, genuine interest in others and not taking herself too seriously. Hulu has given the project, which hails from Funny or Die, a 10-episode order. Silverman, Will Ferrell, Adam McKay and Amy Zvi will executive produce. The 10-episode pickup marks the streaming service’s foray into the talk-variety arena.

‘Big Bang Theory’ Star Johnny Galecki Teams With Science Channel For ‘SciJinks’
Science Channel
has ordered eight half-hour episodes of SciJinks prank series from The Big Bang Theory star Johnny Galecki, for premiere in 4th quarter 2017. Galecki, via his Alcide Bava Productions, will appear in and executive produce the series, which uses cutting-edge science as the foundation for outrageous stunts and practical jokes.

Animal Planet on the Hunt for Mysterious Creatures in New Series ‘Expedition Mungo’ The show, focusing on adventure cameraman Paul "Mungo" Mungeam, premieres May 28.

‘Cash Cab’ Revived at Discovery Channel Comedian David Steinberg is on board to EP and Lion USA is returning to produce the series, set to debut later this year, which features a new twist as stars from the worlds of comedy, film and TV get behind the wheel this time around.

FYI’s 2017 Programming Slate Includes Nine New Series, Five Returning Series
A+E Networks
-owned lifestyle network FYI has unveiled its 2017 programming slate, which includes over 100 hours of programming with nine new original series and five returning series. Its 2017 line-up of unscripted content focuses on three lifestyle genres: food, relationships and home.

Harry Connick Jr. Talk Show Renewed for Season Two
Harry Connick Jr
. is staying put in daytime. NBCUniversal Domestic TV and Fox Television Stations have renewed the syndicated daytime strip “Harry” for a second season this fall.


Archie Panjabi, Jack Davenport Wedded To ITV Family Thriller ‘Next Of Kin’Archie Panjabi and Jack Davenport have been set to star in ITV’s upcoming family thriller, Next Of Kin. From Mammoth Screen, the contemporary drama is created by BAFTA-nominated Paul Rutman in his first collaboration with wife, Natasha Narayan. Emmy and BAFTA nominee Justin Chadwick is directing. The six-part series follows whip-smart GP Mona Shirani (Panjabi) who lives in London with political lobbyist husband Guy Harcourt (Davenport). Their family life is shattered when Mona’s brother is brutally murdered while working for a medical charity abroad.

Filmax Develops Pau Freixas Dramedy ‘Welcome To The Family’
Julio Fernández’s
Barcelona-based Filmax Ent. is developing its next big TV play, the 13-hour TV series “Welcome to the Family.” A choral dramedy, “Family” centers on Angela, a victim of Spain’s recent economical turndown, who sees how the bank forecloses on her house. A solution might be her estranged multimillionaire father, Eduardo. But the reunion ends in a bitter row, her father collapsing and dying. Fearful that they will see nothing from him, Angela and her family set out to locate his will. Meanwhile, just in case, they hide the corpse.

Haut et Court TV, ‘False Flag’ Co-Creator Team on ‘Fertile Crescent’
Haut et Court TV
is teaming with Eitan Mansuri’s Israel-Based Spiro Films and Maria Feldman on “Fertile Crescent,” a politically-minded series weaving family drama and spy thriller. “Fertile Crescent” centers on a seemingly picture-perfect French family shattered by the death of their estranged daughter in a suicide bombing in Jerusalem. Years after her tragic death, Antoine, her younger brother, is convinced he saw her in a TV program showing footage of female Kurdish fighters.

Fulwell, Sony spin Ibiza drama
and Drop the Mic producer Fulwell 73 are developing a TV drama to be written by Trainspotting’s Irvine Welsh that explores the rise of Ibiza as a cultural and music destination. Ibiza87 chronicles how a group of friends from South London became global DJ stars during the late 1980s.

Second Swedish-French drama copro on horizonStockholm-based Dramacorp and Isolani Pictures are behind Rare, which is planned as a 8x45mins sci-fi series.Set in a parallel, mid-distant future in which Earth is running out of oxygen, the plot follows healthy humans cryogenically frozen for two centuries under a government programme.The writer is Alex Haridi, with French director Thierry Poiraud (France 2’s Zone Blanche) also attached.


NBC Revamps Alternative; Ups Jenny Groom To Oversee Department
has restructured its alternative department with the promotions of Jenny Groom, who will remain SVP, Alternative Programming and Development but will now oversee the department; Lesley Cerwin, who most recently oversaw publicity for NBC’s unscripted operations, to SVP, Current Programming; and Shelby Shaftel to VP, Alternative Programming and Development.

Jim Gianopulos to Run Paramount Pictures for ViacomHe will arrive as chairman and CEO less than a year after exiting 20th Century Fox Film.

IM Global Television Expands Unscripted & Alternative Development TeamIM Global Television announced the hiring of Jennifer Colbert, Tim Rosenmanand Casey Kelly, in efforts to ramp up its Unscripted & Alternative division.

CMO Angela Courtin to Depart FoxThe Relativity vet had been with the broadcast network for a year and a half.


‘Planet Earth II,’ ‘The Crown’ Rule Over BAFTA TV Craft Nominations
wildlife show “Planet Earth II” ruled the factual roost after nominations for the British Academy of Film and Television Arts’ Television Craft Awards were revealed Tuesday, while Netflix’s royal saga “The Crown” courted the most nominations among drama series.


Deadline: WGA West’s Board Votes To Send Strike-Authorization Ballots To MembersHollywood moved a step closer to an industry-crippling writers’ strike Monday night when the WGA West’s board of directors approved sending strike authorization ballots to the guild’s members. The vote came at the unanimous recommendation of the WGA negotiating committee, which broke off contract talks with management’s AMPTP on Friday. The WGA East’s council will vote Tueaday to send strike authorization ballots to their members.

TVI: 5 Young Adult Novels That Would Make Great TV ShowsWith ‘TVD’ gone and ‘PLL’ leaving soon, what other teen novels should get the small-screen treatment?
The Luxe (Anna Godbersen)
Dorothy Must Die (Danielle Paige)
Geography Club (Brent Hartinger)
Monument 14 (Emmy Laybourne)
Will Grayson, Will Grayson (John Green and David Levithan)