Monday March 11, 2019

I was very disappointed to learn that HBO has canceled Crashing after 3 seasons.

Hours 1 and 2 of the 4-hour Bachelor finale air tonight.

Season finales also airing tonight for The Passage (Fox) and The Good Doctor (ABC).

Docuseries Punk premieres on Epix tonight.

How was YOUR weekend Jussie Smollett?

Maryland’s Court of Appeals has reinstated Serial podcast subject Adnan Syed’s conviction and will not grant him a new trial. The ruling comes two days before HBO will debut its new docuseries titled The Case Against Adnan Syed. According to the ruling obtained by TheWrap, the Maryland Court of Appeals stated that Syed received ‘deficient performance’ by his defense attorney, Cristina Gutierrez, but that the evidence still pointed towards Syed’s guilt. The ruling stated that there was not ‘a significant or substantial possibility that the jury would have reached a different verdict had his trial counsel presented the alibi witness.’ The court reinstated the conviction by a 4-3 vote.”

Tone Bell’s (Fam) Showtime stand up special is worth a watch.

Showtime has canceled SMILF, and rightfully so. This season has been pretty much unwatchable.

I’m fought my way through Ricky Gervais’ new Netflix series After Life.

Ditto for YouTube’s Weird City. This is Jordan Peele’s show, which is like a slightly stripped down Black Mirror. Each episode is stand alone, and while the cameos are great, you needn’t waste your time unless Black Mirror is absolutely your favorite show.

Here’s the trailer for season 3 of Santa Clarita Diet.

“In season 4, Arrested Development cast some notable names to play a younger Lucille and George Sr.: Kristen Wiig and Seth Rogen. During the second half of season 5, you’ll once again see a pair of familiar faces assume the role of the Bluth grand matriarch and patriarch: Cobie Smulders and Taran Killam. The How I Met Your Mother alum and former Saturday Night Live cast member — and real-life spouses — will guest-star in multiple episodes of Netflix’s ultra-dysfunctional family comedy, EW has learned. The exact circumstances in which you’ll meet this version of younger Lucille and George Sr. — who are played in present day by Jessica Walter and Jeffrey Tambor — is being kept under wraps. Smulders starred in the Netflix comedy Friends from College and hits the big screen in Spider-Man: Far From Home, while Killam, whose recent credits include Angie Tribeca and Documentary Now!, stars in the ABC comedy Single Parents.”

For those who cannot wait for the return of The Hills, here ya go.

A-Rod and J. Lo are engaged.

“At a SXSW panel hosted by CNN’s Jake Tapper, Trevor Noah described how the acceleration of culture has really fucked late-night comedy: ‘When we started…the news cycle had a certain cadence to it. There was a rhythm. You knew that at a certain time there’d be no news, so you could compile your stories and create your show,’ he said. ‘Now, there’s the 5:30 curse, we call it. At 5:30 pm, somebody’s getting indicted, some tweet is coming out, somebody is getting into some scandal. Something is going to happen.’ This has been a constant in the Trump administration, late-in-the-day newsdumps. Every day is that season 1 West Wing episode, Take Out the Trash Day for Sarah Huckabee Sanders. The Daily Show’s solution is to lean into the problem, throw out what they’d spent that day writing, and come up with something new when crazy news hits. An example cited at the panel was when the Jussie Smollett news broke, according to DeadlineDuring the 2020 election, Noah said that the show will focus on policy rather than any particular outrage of the day. ‘Going into 2020, [we’re going to be] giving you an accurate representation of what is happening in the race, and what the candidates actually stand for, and how it will affect your life,’ he said.”

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Per Deadline, “Quibi founder Jeffrey Katzenberg and CEO Meg Whitman took the stage at SXSW to discuss their forthcoming short-form mobile streaming service. More accurately, they were defending it — and they unveiled new high-profile projects in the pipeline to sell it.

“The platform launches next April and Katzenberg said they are going to release a new series every Monday. The two pulled back the curtain to give us more insight to what we can expect from the platform which already has names  This includes an origin series for Telemundo’s wildly popular film El Señor de los Cielos, a music competition show hosted by Scooter Braun as well as a reality series from Jennifer Lopez’s Nuyorican Productions titled Thanks a Million which will feature people literally paying it forward to people who have changed their life. Quibi will also have a docuseries called The Frat Boy Genius which will follow the story of Snapchat creator Evan Spiegel.  They also mentioned Sam Raimi’s 50 State of Fear which will feature the scariest story in every state in the country.

“In addition, Quibi will feature short-form news programming from a millennial-friendly host as well as global news at noon from the BBC. They will also feature music news and a ‘best of late night’ program. Katzenberg looks to ‘make information convenient as Spotify made music convenient.’

“Even though they have grand plans to change the short-form content consumption game, the panel’s moderator NBC News & MSNBC’s Dylan Byers was questioning whether or not the platform would be successful. At one point, Katzenberg jokingly said, ‘we’re selling our ass off here!’ while trying to convince Byers of its viability. The two have been on a Quibi hustle and Austin was one of three cities they have been in today just to talk about the buzzy platform.

“Despite Byers’s doubt, the pair, gave an argument for why Quibi will be synonymous with short-form content like Kleenex is synonymous with tissue and Google is with search engines. 

“‘We are bringing the best of Silicon Valley and the best of Hollywood,’ said Whitman. She adds that it is the first entertainment platform of its kind and is quick bite content (hence the name) created by Hollywood’s top talent.

“‘It makes video on mobile devices engaging,’ she said.

“The platform takes long-form content and breaks it into little bits. Essentially, it will be one long story told in chapters and Katzenberg understands Quibi is ‘improbable and impossible’ but remains confident in the product, saying that he lives at the intersection of improbable and impossible. Nothing like this has been done before and he says it’s tough to be judgmental about its success because there is nothing to compare it to. ‘It’s hard to ask someone’s opinion about something they haven’t experienced.’

“With Whitman and Katzenberg leading the charge and eight entertainment studios investing, things are looking optimistic for Quibi. Katzenberg says that the studios are going to give the best showrunning talent and promises that the content will  ‘attain a level of quality that has never been seen before.’

“‘Five years from now we want to come back to this stage and have it be the era of Quibi,’ said Katzenberg.”

Man, that is some wishful thinking, I don’t care who you are.

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Per Realscreen, “NBCUniversal will launch a Project Runway ‘extension series’ on its digital lifestyle learning platform and streaming service Bluprint.

Runway Remake will launch in conjunction with Project Runway, on NBCUniversal’s Bravo. The companion project is hosted by Project Runway‘s season 8 runner up and winner of Project Runway All Stars Mondo Guerra, and will help viewers re-create their own favourite fashion-forward runway looks at home.

“Instructors will be on hand to interpret Project Runway design challenges and offer DIY tips. Instructors include actress and sewist Marcy Harriell, sculptor and interior designer James Worsham and master crafter Jo Gick from NBC’s Making It

“Additionally, Bluprint is relaunching their Project Runway Sewing Box for the season, which includes all of the tools, patterns and notions needed for viewers to create their own runway looks.

“Meanwhile, Bluprint is one of the prizing sponsors for Project Runway, offering the show’s winning designer $50,000 to put toward their design studio, along with their own Bluprint digital series.

Runway Remake premieres March 14, with new episodes airing every Thursday through May 9.

Project Runway also premieres March 14 at 8 p.m. ET/PT on Bravo.”

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Per The Hollywood Reporter, “Rob Delaney and Sharon Horgan's Emmy-nominated comedy Catastrophe, about the unexpected and life-changing ramifications of a six-day love affair, has been charming and surprising audiences since it debuted 2015. Now it's headed to Amazon for its last season, which will offer up more of the bleak humor, relatable awkwardness and brutal realism that have made it a cult hit. The formidable writing team also stars in the show, which focuses on an Irish school teacher (Horgan) and American ad exec (Delaney) who have a brief fling while the latter is on a business trip, only to end up with a baby on the way and a whole new life staring them in the face.

“It feels like a rare thing to see an honest and often negative view on parenthood, but Delaney and Horgan managed to craft just that with Catastrophe, so far dealing with everything from cervical dysplasia to alcoholism, marriage and suicide while still managing to be funny.

“In 2016 the pair won a BAFTA Award for the show's writing, and were also nominated for a Peabody Award. Originally airing on the U.K.'s Channel 4, the British show gained a wider following due to the fact that the first three seasons also starred Carrie Fisher as Rob's acerbic mother Mia. The series would come to be the last thing that Fisher ever filmed, with the finale of season three dedicated to her.

Season four looks to continue the tradition of bleak yet relatable hilarity, as Rob is recuperating after his accident at the end of season three. His life now consists of AA, community service in a local thrift store and a snazzy-looking neck brace. Rob and Sharon are also dealing with the loss of Rob's mother, but despite all of that the trailer reminds audiences that things can still be beautiful, funny and tender, even in the face of depressive episodes, substance abuse and massive loss. There's also a brief first look at new cast member Michaela Watkins (Casual) as Rob's sister Sydney.

“The final season of Catastrophe will be back on screens on March 15th. Amazon will likely be hoping that Catastrophe's cult status spreads with its return, and that might just happen because honest, authentic and kind shows like this seem more relevant than ever in 2019.”

From EW: “There are now two documentaries about a shady entrepreneur who’s not what they appeared to be. Sound familiar?

“It’s not like the rivalry between Netflix’s Fyre and Hulu’s Fyre Fraud, but, as HBO’s The Inventor: Out for Blood at Silicon Valley made its way to the SXSW Film Festival this week, ABC News and 20/20 set their own special chronicling Elizabeth Holmes.

The Dropout, a two-hour special coming after ABC News and Nightline‘s The Dropout podcast, will air on Friday, March 15 at 9 p.m. ET with new interviews and footage of Holmes’ deposition.

“Alex Gibney, the Oscar-winning documentarian behind Taxi to the Dark Side, as well as the Going Clear Scientology documentary, will then get a release for The Inventor on Monday, March 18 on HBO.

“The story of Holmes, once considered ‘the next Steve Jobs,’ has some parallels with Billy McFarland, the notorious co-founder of the disastrous Fyre Festival.

“The 35-year-old dropped out of Stanford University at the age of 20 to start Theranos, a medical company with the goal of revolutionizing the field. The claim? Their technology could run multiple tests simultaneously to scan for a platitude of potential STDs and conditions from a single drop of blood. The reality? It didn’t work.

“Holmes denies all wrongdoing in the matter, but these false claims raised the company’s value to $9 billion.

“Following an investigation by the Wall Street Journal, Holmes settled multiple ‘massive fraud charges’ with the Securities and Exchange Commission that came with a $500,000 fine, stripped her of majority control of Theranos, and required her to return millions of shares to the company, according to Reuters.

“The drama around Holmes also caught the eye of Hollywood. Filmmaker and screenwriter Adam McKay, behind Vice and The Big Short, is developing a feature-length film called Bad Blood with Jennifer Lawrence in the starring role. We can already see Taylor Swift all over that future trailer.”