Wednesday April 18, 2018

Mike tries (and fails) to distract Harvey with a case; Louis tries not to let emotion clout his judgement; Donna proves her worth to the firm. #SUITS

BET announced a new slate of programming.

Remembering Harry Anderson.

I don't think Roly T-Rex deserved to advance to the finals.  That pinup was jacked.

Netflix announced that season 2 of GLOW will be available on June 29.

An oral history of The Bob Newhart Show.

"Shonda Rhimes seems to be getting the tissues ready. Ahead of Scandal‘s series finale this Thursday, the über-producer posted a sentimental tribute today to Kerry Washington and the rest of the drama’s actors. 'Pure joy,' she writes. 'The respect and love I have for this woman and the rest of the cast is boundless. That #Scandal is coming to an end is starting to sink in.' The finale is titled Over the Cliff. Photos from the episode can be found here."

Speaking of which, Vanity Fair suggests that Olivia Pope is an antihero. "She’s an iconic character and a subversive one, not because she had an affair with a white president but because she’s an unapologetically greedy black woman in a culture that rarely casts people like her as a protagonist. All along, the show’s whiplash-inducing twists and stylish mien were working in the service of an antihero in chic clothing. But while TV’s Golden Age antihero boom gave rise to plenty of characters like Walter White and Claire Underwood, whose descents were simple and straightforward—without intermission, and without a need to justify their behavior to an audience rooting for them to 'just be nice'—Olivia has had to grapple with the expectations of being a black woman, of a black audience cheering for a black woman, and of those viewers who, at the end of the day, still want her and President Fitz to ride off into the sunset together, even if the cost is a trail of carcasses behind them. This will be Olivia’s legacy: how she, and the show, have grappled with the pressure to balance everything and to look flawless while doing so. How they’ve both managed to be simultaneously political and apolitical, to inspire without rocking the boat too much—and the messiness that results from all these conflicting pulls."

Scott Gimple talks about season 9 of The Walking Dead.  "I can say just, generally, that the show will evolve. The stories are evolving. The things that they’re facing are evolving. The stakes are even higher because of what they’re all trying to do, and how they come into conflict with big things. Yes, there’s some unfinished business from this season, but that isn’t the big, big drive. I’m just very excited to break some new ground, to see them tackle very, very different issues, problems, and conflicts than we’ve seen in the last eight years. It is just going to be a very, very different show."

OWN has given a straight-to-series order to Ambitions, "a multi-generational family drama about a woman who, intent on revitalizing her marriage, finds herself going head-to-head with some of the most powerful and deceitful players in the city." OWN also picked up the unscripted dating show Ready to Love, which reveals what men say about dating when women aren’t around. Both series are from producer Will Packer (Girls Trip, Straight Outta Compton).

Evan Rachel Wood says Westworld season 3 will be the first time she's paid the same as her male counterparts.

Cary Elwes and Jake Busey have joined the cast of Stranger Things.

"Netflix is going into business with Idris Elba. The streaming giant has handed out a straight-to-series, eight-episode order for half-hour entry Turn Up Charlie, an original comedy created by, starring and exec produced by the LutherEmmy nominee. Elba will star in the comedy as Charlie, a struggling DJ and eternal bachelor, who is given a final chance at success when he reluctantly becomes a manny to his famous best friend's problem-child daughter. Additional casting was not announced."

Here's a first look at Maniac, the Jonah Hill-Emma Stone Netflix thriller.

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Oh Sean Hannity.  Per The Atlantic, "Sean Hannity has had no shortage of lawyers. In court on Monday, his name was disclosed as the third “mystery client” of Donald Trump’s personal lawyer Michael Cohen. Though Hannity says he was never actually Cohen’s client, he does appear to have used the legal services of other well-connected Trump-world lawyers in a different matter a year ago.

"On May 25, 2017, KFAQ, a radio station based in Tulsa, Oklahoma, received a cease-and-desist letter signed by two lawyers for Hannity: Victoria Toensing and Jay Alan Sekulow. Toensing’s signature sits above her name and that of her husband Joseph E. diGenova, the members of diGenova and Toensing LLP, who are identified as 'Counsel for Sean Hannity,' according to a copy of the letter obtained by The Atlantic. Sekulow is also identified in the letter page as a 'Counsel for Sean Hannity.'

"Sekulow is now the only known personal attorney for President Trump working full-time on the response to Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s inquiry. Sekulow recently announced that diGenova and Toensing had been hired to join him, before reversing course. The letter to the radio station was sent before Sekulow joined Trump’s team.

"The letter was sent in response to accusations against Hannity made by the controversial conservative activist Debbie Schlussel. During an appearance on the Pat Campbell show on KFAQ last April, Schlussel said Hannity had been “creepy” towards her and had invited her to his hotel room.

"Hannity responded at the time by calling the allegations '100 percent false and a complete fabrication,' and said that he had hired lawyers to plan a response. 'This letter provides notice that Ms. Schlussel’s statements are false and defamatory,' the letter read. 'Continued publication will result in further exposure to liability because of continued harm to Mr. Hannity’s impeccable reputation.' [INSERT LAUGH]

"On Monday, Schlussel said she remembered that the radio station where she made the remarks had received a legal letter afterwards, but she didn’t know who the lawyer was. Reached by phone on Tuesday, Toensing acknowledged that 'at that time' she was acting as Hannity’s lawyer but wouldn’t comment on whether she still represents him.

“'I’ve just learned in the press that anybody who is Sean Hannity’s lawyer is going to be blasted so I think this phone call is over,' Toensing said. 'I’m wondering what attorney-client privilege means to anybody. I don’t say who my clients are, sometimes I do, and many times, most of the time, I do not.'

"Sekulow, diGenova, and Toensing have frequently appeared on Hannity’s program; diGenova appeared on the show as recently as Monday night. Asked for comment, Hannity sent a text consisting of NewsBusters and Daily Caller links to stories about ethical misconduct in the mainstream media and declined to offer further comment. 'I don’t have time for these silly questions,' he said.

"Sekulow didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment. After publication of this story, a Fox News spokesperson sent an example of Hannity mentioning Sekulow as his lawyer. On May 23, 2017, two days before the letter was sent, he said on his show that Sekulow had 'done legal work for me in the past.'

"The addition of Toensing and diGenova to Trump’s legal team was recently announced, but then swiftly reversed. 'The President is disappointed that conflicts prevent Joe diGenova and Victoria Toensing from joining the President’s Special Counsel legal team,' Sekulow said in a statement at the time. 'However, those conflicts do not prevent them from assisting the President in other legal matters. The President looks forward to working with them.'

"When the Cohen news came out, Hannity insisted that Cohen had not really been his lawyer and that he had only asked him for advice regarding real estate. 'I never retained his services, I never received an invoice, I never paid Michael Cohen for legal fees,' Hannity said on his show on Monday night. 'I did have occasional brief conversations with Michael Cohen—he’s a great attorney—about legal questions I had where I was looking for input and perspective. My discussions with Michael Cohen never rose to any level that I needed to tell anyone that I was asking him questions and to be absolutely clear, they never involved any matter, any—sorry to disappoint so many—matter between me, a third party, a third group, at all.' [INSERT LAUGH]

"On Monday night’s show, Hannity was criticized by the retired Harvard Law professor Alan Dershowitz, who told him he should have disclosed the relationship to his viewers when discussing Cohen-related matters. 'I’m on his show from time to time and I just thought I had an obligation to tell him I think it would have been appropriate for him to disclose that …' Dershowitz told me. 'When I’m on the show, I want to be on the show with someone who satisfies journalistic standards, and that would satisfy journalistic standards.'

"But it’s unclear whether Fox News, which gives Hannity broad autonomy, cares about these conflicts. It’s already well-known that Hannity champions the president publicly and advises him privately, although the breadth of his relationships with attorneys linked to the president wasn’t known before this week. 'I think he’s totally fine,' one Fox source who was not authorized to speak publicly said on Monday. 'I take Sean at his word that nothing’s there' in the relationship with Cohen, a former Hannity employee who also spoke on the condition of anonymity said, adding that Hannity normally uses David Limbaugh as his lawyer and agent for 'absolutely everything.'

"A Fox News spokesperson didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment."

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"Comedy Central continues to lean hard on the Broad City talent pool, ordering a new series from one cast member and developing projects from several of its scribes.

"The network unveiled its 2018-19 development slate on Tuesday, coinciding with cable upfronts, and it includes two series orders — one for a comedy vehicle from Broad City alum Arturo Castro and another for a weekly stand-up series set at New York's famous Comedy Cellar.

"Alternatino with Arturo Castro is described as a sketch show based on Castro's own experiences as a Latino millennial in the United States, while This Week at the Comedy Central aims to make a quicker turnaround than typical standup specials in offering up a mix of the week's most timely sets on a fairly short turnaround.

“'With an exciting mix of established and emerging talent, our current development slate continues Comedy Central’s rich legacy of working with the most distinct and talented comedic voices,' said Sarah Babineau and Jonas Larsen, executive vice presidents and co-heads of talent and development. 'Arturo’s abilities as an actor knows no bounds, which combined with his stellar comedic instincts and unique point of view, makes Alternatino with Arturo Castro a potent and hilarious series in the grand tradition of Comedy Central’s sketch shows. We’re thrilled to partner with The Comedy Cellar and provide fans of comedy a look at the hot button issues of the week through the lens of the best comics in the world straight from the legendary and beloved NYC comedy club.'

"As it often does, the network has also put out an aggressive development slate — with projects toplined by rapper Awkwafina (Awkwafina), David Spade (Verified With David Spade) and comedian Rory Scovel (Robbie), as well as ones created by Broad City writers Gave Liedman (Mall Town USA, previously announced) and Kevin Barnett and Josh Rabinowitz (Kevin vs. Josh).

"See the full rundown from Comedy Central below:

Series Orders

Alternatino with Arturo Castro - Created by and starring Arturo Castro (Broad City, Narcos) and directed by Nick Jasenovec (Detroiters, Broad City), Alternatino with Arturo Castro is a sketch show based on Arturo’s experiences as a Latino millennial in the United States.  The series is executive produced by Castro, Jasenovec and Sam Saifer for Avalon Television, with Avalon Television producing.

This Week at the Comedy Cellar - This Week at the Comedy Cellar takes an unprecedented look inside New York City’s hottest comedy club and the country’s top comedians as they tackle all the freshest topics of the week. Each 30-minute episode will showcase the best topical jokes generated in the Comedy Cellar in the days immediately leading up to premiere. Accompanying the stand-up is a one-of-a-kind behind the scenes look at the prestigious “comics’ table”, where comics debate the week’s topics and discuss the origins of their material. Plucked straight from the headlines and filtered through the eyes of the country’s best comedians, this is a front row seat to where the best stand-up comedy begins. Executive producers include Noam Dworman (for Comedy Cellar), Ray Ellin, Michael Hirschorn and Jessica Antonini, (both for Ish Entertainment) and Ian Gelfand. Christian McLaughlin and Anne Harris are the Executives in Charge of Production for Comedy Central.

Pilot Development (all working titles)

Mall Town USA, which was recently announced, is an animated comedy that follows the afterschool misadventures of a 13-year-old girl navigating the complexities of life in the classic microcosm of American culture that is The Mall. Mall Town USA is written and created by Gabe Liedman (Broad City, Brooklyn Nine-Nine) and executive produced by Abbi Jacobson and Ilana Glazer.

Awkwafina is a half hour scripted narrative inspired by Nora Lum’s experiences as a 20-something woman in Queens who strives for a larger than life existence. The show stars Nora, also known as rapper Awkwafina, and includes musical set pieces to embellish the story. Nora has a lead role in upcoming studio films Ocean’s 8 and Crazy Rich Asians. Awkwafina is written by Nora Lum and Teresa Hsiao and is showrun by Karey Dornetto. The series is executive produced by Lum, Dornetto, Peter Principato, Itay Reiss & Principato-Young Entertainment, and co-executive produced by Hsiao. Awkwafina is represented by Principato, UTA, Schreck Rose Dapello Adams Berlin & Dunham.

Robbie is a half hour scripted comedy about an overzealous church-league basketball coach who aspires to restore glory to his rural Georgia town by following in his father’s footsteps as the infamous coach who won two high school basketball championships in the nineties. Rory, who co-stars alongside Amy Schumer in the upcoming film I Feel Pretty will play the lead. Robbie is written by Scovel and Anthony King. Scovel, Scott Moran, Anthony King and Gary Sanchez Productions will executive produce.

Kevin vs. Josh is created, written by, and starring Kevin Barnett (Broad City, The Carmichael Show) & Josh Rabinowitz (Broad City, The Carmichael Show), and is executive produced by Jerrod Carmichael, Ari Katcher, Avi Gilbert, Barnett, and Rabinowitz. Based on the real life friendship of Kevin and Josh, the show follows two childhood best friends whose dreams are falling apart. Reunited by their separate but equal failure, they do everything they can to simply make sure their lives are at least better than the other. 

Verified with David Spade is a weekly comedy series that skewers pop culture and news all through the lens of social media. Relying on his legendary wit and sardonic worldview, David, in front of a small studio audience, utilizes a mix of original in-studio bits, panel discussion and field pieces to take viewers on a tour of the best (and worst) social media had to offer that week. The series is executive produced by David Spade, Free 90 Media’s Brad Wollack and Tom Brunelle and Brillstein Entertainment’s Alex Murray and Marc Gurvitz."

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Per Variety, "[i]t’s been six months since Kevin Spacey was ousted from House of Cards, the Netflix political potboiler that helped put the streaming service on the map when it launched five years ago. The cast and crew are now in production in Maryland on the sixth and final season — without the Emmy-nominated actor at the top of the call sheet.

"After allegations of sexual assault and harassment came to light against him, Netflix and studio Media Rights Capital first shut down production, then announced that they were severing ties with him. When production resumed in January, the new scripts featured Robin Wright’s Claire Underwood taking center stage in the Oval Office, alongside Michael Kelly’s chief of staff Doug Stamper. Diane Lane and Greg Kinnear also joined the cast, alongside Jayne Atkinson, Patricia Clarkson, Constance Zimmer, Derek Cecil, Campbell Scott and Boris McGiver.

"Here, Kelly — who’s been nominated three times for his role — talks for the first time about House of Cards since Spacey’s departure, saying he 'couldn’t be happier' that the show was able to resume production and put the crew back to work, getting to end the show on their own terms:

How is production going? Last season ended with Robin Wright installed as the new President, which I would imagine sets the stage for the new season. 

The crew was out of work for a long time, and when everything went down, it was sort of like, “How do we do it? How do we keep it going?” Thank God she was President at the end of last season or else we might have found ourselves doing pretty badly. But it all worked out, and Robin is so frigging talented. I don’t want to say effortless because she works her a– off, but the way she portrays that character, it just … you work with her, and now the two of us have a lot together, where everything before was with Francis (Underwood). Now everything is with Claire, and it’s really been an interesting time. To have all those years to have learned from Kevin, and now all this time to learn from Robin, it’s just like as an actor, you can’t ask for anything more than that, to learn under those two people. (It’s been) the greatest acting classes for the last six years.

What have you learned?

I think that it doesn’t have to be so damn hard. I’ve always been someone who pushes myself really hard, and it’s not that I try any less. It’s that I don’t put as much stress on myself anymore. I don’t make myself mentally go through the things that I used to go through, which was just torture. It was senseless torture, and it was added pressure at work. I saw how the two of them did their work, and you can’t help but to learn and take from what they’re doing. So I still do the same prep work. It’s just the mental prep that I do with myself on set is a little bit different now. I think that also comes with knowing and learning about a character, and growing with that character over these six years. It’s a combination of both, probably.

Is it going to be hard to say goodbye to Stamper?

I can’t even imagine. Robin and I both asked to be the last scene on the last day because we want to be there with our crew, but at the same time, now that I’ve asked them, I’m somewhat apprehensive. I know it’s going to be so hard to not just break down and cry. My son, he’s six now. He was born when we started that show, and I’ve watched all the crew have babies, and they’re my second family. My wife and kids stay in New York, and I drive back and forth to Baltimore, and I keep an apartment there. Just to say goodbye to that chapter of your life, it’ll be tough. To say goodbye to that character will be tough. I don’t know. I don’t think I’ll know what it’s going to be like until it actually happens.

What was it like coming back to the set after the news broke about Kevin Spacey?

It’s such a mixed bag of emotions because I was with that guy every single day. Almost the majority of my work other than the Rachel (Brosnahan) stuff, most of my stuff was with Kevin. To go back to the same stages, to the same sets, slightly altered with a new President obviously, but to go back to those sets and all of a sudden be with completely different people, it was a strange feeling. I don’t even know how to put it into words because you know one thing for so long and then all of a sudden it’s a completely different world you’re living in. There’s obviously a million emotions that I went through, that I processed during this whole thing. I don’t want to talk too much about it because it was heartbreaking in so many ways.

Do you still talk to him?

I haven’t, no. All I know is what I hear, but I don’t know. It’s tough. You go from talking to someone often to not at all, and in any profession, in anything, circumstances removed, what happened removed, it’s strange … and I’m still processing. I haven’t formulated any opinion, and I haven’t talked publicly about it. This is the first thing I’ve ever said. I think I’m still going through a lot, processing the whole thing. It’s tough.

What does the future hold? What are the next steps to be taken? 

How do we, as a country, as a people figure out what’s right for everybody, for the safety and well-being of all people, no matter what you are, no matter what your sexuality is, no matter what your race is? I think sometimes you have to take steps backward before you take steps forward. I can’t speak for the whole country, but with this current administration, it’s like we are seeing that good will rise to the top, that the right thing will happen. Sometimes you have to do the wrong thing for a little bit before the right thing happens. The youth proved with the marches after the shooting in Florida, the youth of this country I truly believe is going to save us. The old mentality of that whole “Make America Great Again” thing, that was offensive to me. This is the greatest country in the world, and to say we’re going to make it great again, is what you’re saying, “Make the 1950s great again?” Because that wasn’t great for all of us.

Well, it was for old white men.

I’m an old white guy, and it was fine for me, but not for the whole country. I think what the youth is saying in this country right now is it’s us, and that’s what we need. We need someone who can address all of us and care for all of us. It’s kind of why I want to throw my hat in the ring politically, but I’m not done acting yet.

Would you seriously do that? Are you going to go into politics?

I do spend time on the Hill. I lobby for seniors. I do a lot of work for seniors in the country. That’s a bipartisan issue. I’ve met with Republicans and Democrats every time I go down there, and what I see is that people have hearts. What I see is the biggest problem in this country right now is that Republicans and Democrats, voters, and senators and congressmen and women is that they’re just voting their party line. Sure, the Democrats might take the house in 2018, and they might take everything in 2020, but then what? Are the Republicans then just going to say no to everything that they put forward? When is this cycle going to end?

So what’s your solution?

One of the things that I’ve been thinking about these past few years is why don’t we have a third party? Let’s just say hypothetically, and I’m not saying it’s me, but why don’t we have someone who could get up and talk publicly, who could get in front of people and convey the message that I want to do what’s right for all of us as a country. So what if we had someone like Bill Gates that came along and found a candidate like Michael Kelly. I’m not saying I want to do it, but found someone like that who had a personality, who could speak to people honestly and openly, and hear them all, and runs as an independent. Then they get to put bills forth and the Republicans and Democrats don’t have to vote their party line. I can say, or that person can say, “Vote from your heart on this issue.”

We can all agree that AR-15s are bad machines and we don’t need them in this country. So just eliminate that. Sure, the NRA is always going to be in someone’s pocket, but just what if. I asked Mike Bloomberg at the (White House) Correspondents’ Dinner after party one year, I said, “Sir, would you run?” He said, “Why?” I said, “Because I think you’d make a great President, and I think you would be fiscally what a lot of people on the right want, and socially what a lot of people on the left want, and you could run as a true independent and pull the two sides together.” He said, “I think I’d be the first person to get one vote.” I was like, “No, you can do it.” I was like, “I’ll be your staffer.”

After so many years of playing Stamper, you’ve got on-the-job training.

Yeah, but right now I’m having so much fun acting and getting into things like House of Cards, and then getting to do something like The Long Road Home. I’m living the dream, man, and I don’t want to give that up for politics yet. Maybe one day."

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"Hall of Fame quarterback Brett Favre reportedly struggled in a recent audition to replace Jon Gruden as an analyst for Monday Night Football.  

"According to Andrew Marchand of the New York Post, sources said Favre was 'not great' during the ESPN tryout.

"Favre was reportedly told that he is no longer under consideration for the job.

"Per Marchand, several others are scheduled for auditions or have already taken part in them. The list includes former NFL head coach Rex Ryan, former NFL defensive tackle Booger McFarland, former NFL quarterbacks Kurt Warner and Matt Hasselbeck, former NFL executive Louis Riddick and recently retired NFL offensive tackle Joe Thomas.

"Current NFL tight ends Greg Olsen and Jason Witten were also brought in for tryouts.

"ESPN pushed hard for former Indianapolis Colts and Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning to take the role after Gruden left to become the Oakland Raiders' head coach, but Marchand reported in March that the future Hall of Famer declined.

"Although Favre has limited broadcasting experience, he is one of the most accomplished quarterbacks in NFL history."

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From The Hollywood Reporter: "Netflix is pushing deeper into the monster drama.

"The streaming giant has handed out a 10-episode, straight-to-series order for drama The Order. The series revolves around college freshman Jack Morton, who joins a fabled secret society, The Order, where he is thrust into a world of magic, monsters and intrigue. As Jack goes deeper, he uncovers dark family secrets and an underground battle between werewolves and the magical dark arts. The Order is described as a magical and terrifying journey to uncover everyone's true selves ... and the monsters that hide within.

"The cast includes Jake Manley (Heroes: Reborn) starring as Morton, with Sarah Grey (Legends of Tomorrow) set as the female lead and joined by Matt Frewer (Altered Carbon), Sam Trammell (True Blood) and Max Martini (Training DayRevenge).

"The drama was created by Dennis Heaton (Ghost Wars, Motive, feature Fido) and Shelley Eriksen (Flashpoint, Continuum, Somewhere Between), who will both co-write the series for producers Nomadic Pictures. The Canadian-set production company's Chad Oakes and Michael Frislev will exec produce alongside Heaton, David Von Ancken (Ghost Wars) and Eriksen.

"The news comes a day after Netflix handed out a straight-to-series order for 10-episode vampire drama V-Wars, starring The Vampire Diaries grad Ian Somerhalder. The Order arrives as Netflix continues to spend an estimated $8 billion annually on original programming."

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Per The Wall Street Journal, "[s]tatistics guru Nate Silver is leaving ESPN, but he’s staying under the Walt Disney Co. umbrella.

"FiveThirtyEight, the politics and news site Mr. Silver founded, is moving to Disney-owned ABC News after five years at the sports broadcaster, ESPN and ABC News said Tuesday.

"Taking on FiveThirtyEight is part of ABC News’s plans to fortify its political reporting in advance of the 2018 midterm elections, said James Goldston, ABC News president. He said the site’s partnership with ESPN had “run its course for both sides” and that ABC News would be a better fit for its emphasis on politics.

“'What’s really happening here is that FiveThirtyEight is moving to a home that’s better suited to what FiveThirtyEight does,' Mr. Goldston said. 'Obviously, FiveThirtyEight also does sports, but the balance of what FiveThirtyEight does is politics.'

"ABC News and ESPN declined to disclose the terms of the deal.

"In a statement, Connor Schell, the executive vice president of content at ESPN, said he is proud of the collaboration with FiveThirtyEight and pleased that it will remain part of Disney.

“'As storytelling around data and analytics remain an important way that ESPN serves sports fans every day, our team will continue to utilize Nate and the FiveThirtyEight experts to allow fans to benefit from their sports content,' Mr. Schell said.

"ESPN acquired FiveThirtyEight in 2013, but Mr. Silver retained ownership of the statistical models used in its journalism.

"The sports-media giant decided to cut ties with the site, in part because it wanted to increase ESPN’s focus on sports and because of cost pressures stemming from headwinds in its core cable-TV business, people familiar with the matter have said.

"FiveThirtyEight had been seeking a new home for months. ESPN held talks with multiple other suitors, including the subscription-focused sports startup The Athletic and The Atlantic, The Wall Street Journal has reported.

"ABC News was viewed as a logical home for FiveThirtyEight because it would offer Mr. Silver a platform for both political and sports journalism.

"Some of FiveThirtyEight’s sports content will continue to appear on ESPN, Mr. Silver said in statement.

“'This is an exciting move for FiveThirtyEight and our staff,' he said in the statement. 'With ABC we’ll be able to expand our political coverage at a crucial time, while maintaining a relationship with ESPN for our sports coverage.'

"FiveThirtyEight’s total head count will go up as a result of the transfer to ABC News, but there will be a small number of layoffs, according to a person familiar with the matter. The site, which had a staff of more than 30 journalists as of March, will make additional hires in politics and scale back its coverage of culture and economics, the person said.

"Potential buyers of FiveThirtyEight were told it was losing about $6 million annually on revenue of about $3 million, according to one person familiar with the sale discussions. A person close to ESPN said the company doesn’t break out FiveThirtyEight’s financials separately and believes the site has been valuable to ESPN as a whole."