AMC doing INTERVIEW WITH A VAMPIRE series
AMAZON sets Steve Carell movie / BUZZFEED going public, buying COMPLEX / New TV & Movies to watch this weekend
Mornin! This is Sean McNulty and here’s the Hollywood + Media news to know on FRIDAY June 25, 2021.
Where “Supernatural” star Jensen Ackles is developing a prequel to the hit CW show, called “The Winchesters”. But… apparently Jensen did not tell his longtime “Supernatural” co-star, Jared Padalecki that he was doing so. 🥶
ALSO: The FOO FIGHTERS are gonna also re-open the LA Forum on July 17. Tickets on sale today at 10am PST and based on the FOO MSG reviews from this past weekend… may be worth checking out this link for tix (esp since it’s on a Saturday and not a Sunday like it was in NYC).
📽 THE SILVER SCREEN
AMAZON sets Steve Carell for adaptation of Finnish novel
A dark comedy called “The Rabbit Factor”, Steve will play an insurance mathemetician who loses his job, but inherits an adventure park from his brother… who apparently had accepted some shady loans to keep it afloat, and those shady loan-owners are looking for the return on their investment.
No word on a director, timeline, etc. /Deadline
Lena Dunham writing/directing MATTEL movie about micro-doll “Polly Pocket” at MGM
Lily James will star in the titular role, no real take on the property described or timeline set other than Lena’s gonna now write the script so… may be an AMAZON movie by the time it hits screens. Exact kind of screen TBD. /Variety
ALSO IN MOVIES
Olivia Wilde, Tobey Maguire, and Spike Jonze join Damien Chazelle’s next movie “Babylon” at PARAMOUNT with Brad Pittt & Margot Robbie set in the transition from silent films in the 1920’s. /THR
📺 THE TV SET
HBOMAX orders Amy Schumer unscripted series “Amy Learns to…”
She’ll learn a new skill from someone on her husband’s hometown island of Martha’s Vineyard each episode - like how to dive for clams, sell real estate, or pretend to be from something called “Old Money”. Ok maybe I added that last one. But hopefully one of them isn’t “learns how to cook” since she already did that on the FOOD NETWORK in the pandemic.
No episode count or timeline given. /Variety
AMC doing “Interview with a Vampire” TV series
Rolin Jones (co-creator of HBO’s “Perry Mason”) will be the showrunner here, Mark Johnson will produce (“Breaking Bad”, “Better Call Saul”).
First season will be 8 episodes, will launch in 2022 TBD. Let the casting speculation begin… /THR
FX orders limited series starring Andrew Garfield & Daisy Edgar-Jones from OSCAR winner Dustin Lance Black (“Milk”)
Called “Under The Banner Of Heaven”, based on a book about a Mormon detective whose investigation of a murder leads to an esteemed Utah family.
David Mackenzie (“Hell or High Water”) directing. Lance previously tried to make the book into a film with Ron Howard (who is an Exec Producer here). No word on episode count or timeline. /Deadline
ALSO IN TV
“Ted Lasso” co-star Juno Temple (plays “Keely Jones”) joins PARAMOUNT+ making of “The Godfather” limited series “The Offer”. Will play the assistant to the central character - producer Al Ruddy, played by Miles Teller. /Deadline
PEACOCK sets Dean Winters as “Jeff Lowe” in their “Joe Exotic” series, starring Kate McKinnon and John Cameron Mitchell. /Deadline
“The Blacklist” creator Jon Bokenkamp departs the show after 8 seasons. #FunFact: he has run the show from his home in Kearny, Nebraska - famously known of course as the “Sandhill Crane Capital of the World”. /Deadline
NETFLIX renews Mike Epps / Wanda Sykes / Kim Fields sitcom “The Upshaws” for Season 2. Season will be 16 episodes… dropped in 2 batches of 8 episodes, continuing that theme this week in series renewals. /Deadline
“How I Met Your Mother” director Pam Fryman to direct HULU’s upcoming “How I Met Your Father” series with Hilary Duff. /THR
HULU promotes Sasha Silver to Head of Drama, reporting into new Head of Scripted, Jordan Hellman. /THR
💻 THE MEDIA BIZ
BUZZFEED (officially) going public via SPAC
This deal has been rumored for quite some time, the SPAC is called 890 5th AVENUE PARTNERS… which yes, was chosen after watching “The Avengers”.
BUZZFEED is valued at $1.5 Billion in the deal, and the SPAC is gonna buy COMPLEX as well for about $300 Million from co-owners HEARST & VERIZON. BUZZFEED of course also somewhat recently acquired HUFF POST from VERIZON.
BUZZFEED & COMPLEX will have about $520 Million in revenue combined in 2021, highly dependent upon advertising revenue - 76% of BUZZFEED’s revenue alone will come from advertising next year.
The head of the SPAC, Adam Rothstein said the new company plans on being a “Mergers & Acquisition machine”… which is definitely a line of dialog I would write for a character in a script featuring the head of a SPAC.
So, expect more purchases… presumably in the digital content business but who knows for sure. But BUZZFEED head Jonah Peretti is not expecting layoffs when the two companies in very similar businesses merge. I mean - no one ever expects them… /Deadline
GOOGLE decided to track what sites you go to using CHROME for another 2 years using cookies
Basically… they couldn’t figure out a way to still do it that was as effective as cookies, while also allowing them to say they were eliminating cookies. So, that 2021 cookie elimination plan is now by “late 2023”. #DontBeEvil
Sure the new FTC head Lina Khan who is leading tech anti-trust efforts was really happy to read about this. via DuckDuckGo. /WSJ
ALSO IN MEDIA
The LA TIMES now has about 400k digital subscribers. Or far less than 10% of the NY TIMES number. CNN’s Brian Stelter sits down with billionaire owner Patrick Soon-Shiong and new LAT Editor in Chief Kevin Merida in his podcast if you’re interested to hear their vision of tranforming the LAT into a media brand. /CNN
Winston Marshall, a founding member of MUMFORD AND SONS is leaving the band so he can speak his political beliefs more freely without damaging the band. /Variety
🏦 STOCK NOTES:
A positive day overall yesterday but no big movers in Media stocks.
👩💻 THE FSS FEED:
(new Stuff to Watch this weekend)
UNIVERSAL“F9” - Only in movie theaters
APPLE TV+ “Central Park” Season 2. Watch or Add to your List here
HULU “False Positive” - Thriller/Horror starring Ilana Glazer and Justin Theroux as a couple who find success conceiving with the help of Dr. Pierce Brosnan… who uhh… is kinda not what he seems. Watch or Add to your List here
DISNEY+ “The Mysterious Benedict Society” - First 2 episodes of the Tony Hale led series based on the YA books about four gifted orphans recruited to save the world from a global crisis. Watch or Add to your List here
NETFLIX “The Ice Road” - Liam Neeson with a very particular set of ice road driving skills from the writer of “Armageddon” and “Die Hard with a Vengeance”. Watch or Add to your List here.
NETFLIX “Sex/Life” - A long ago hottie from the past comes back into the life of a married woman, and a summer beach read comes to life. 8 episodes. Watch or Add to your List here
AMAZON “Bosch” - 7th and final season, all 8 episodes drop today. Watch or Add to your List here
AMAZON “Mary J. Blige’s My Life” documentary. Watch or Add to your List here
DISNEY+ “Wolfgang” - Documentary on chef Wolfgang Puck. Watch or Add to your List here
APPLE TV+ “Who are you Charlie Brown?” - Documentary on Peanuts and Charles Schultz. Watch or Add to your List here
And if you wanna watch CONAN O’BRIEN’s final 15 minutes of his late night show, here’s the YouTube link.
DAYTIME EMMY AWARDS on CBS at 8p.
FUSE “End of the Line: The Women of Standing Rock” - Documentary about the efforts to stop the Dakota Access oil pipeline. Airs at 9p
SPRINGSTEEN returns to Broadway
CNN “LADY BOSS: The Jackie Collins Story” - Documentary airs at 9p.
If you’re new to THE WAKEUP - perhaps send the newsletter to a co-worker who might like it?
All word of mouth is greatly appreciated. Especially as it’s my current marketing budget.
🎥 TRAILER HOUSE
HBO “The White Lotus” full trailer. Limited satire series from Mike White (“Enlightened”) set at a Hawaii resort for… basically privileged white folks. Premieres Sun July 11.
APPLE TV+ “CODA” movie trailer. Aka the movie APPLE paid $25 Million for at SUNDANCE this year, about a high school girl who is the only person in her fisherman family who can hear… and who also is a very talented singer. I’m in for this one, nice work APPLE Marketing. Premieres Fri Aug 13.
DISNEY/MARVEL “Shang-Chi And The Legend of The Ten Rings” 2nd trailer. More on the action, arm rings, and father issues…. less on the Awkwafina comedy in this new spot. Hits theaters Fri Sept 3.
UNIVERSAL PICTURES “Halloween Kills” trailer. David Gordon Green returns to direct the sequel to his 2018 “Halloween” movie that made $250+ Million globally. This one hits theaters Fri Oct 15.
ILLUMINATION/UNIVERSAL “Sing 2” trailer. Hits theaters Dec 22.
🎧 PLAYING ME OFF
Brand new ED SHEERAN - “Bad Habits”. Less guitar and more… kinda 80’s synth. And glitter. and fangs.
Listen to the song here on Spotify or:
If you need new tunes:
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