Chip and Joanna Gaines Make Like the Big O With Network of Their Own

Big news out of Waco: Chip and Joanna Gaines just announced plans for their own lifestyle TV network! It doesn’t get any bigger than that! Just ask Oprah.

I knew their hiatus from television wouldn’t last long. Friday night on  The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, Chip announced to his mom (and the world) that they were returning to TV in a big way, and later, Magnolia spokesman John Marsicano clarified:

“We’re excited to share that we are currently in the early stages of talking with Discovery about a lifestyle-focused media network for Magnolia,” he said. “The details surrounding this opportunity remain a work in progress, but together, our hope is to build a different kind of platform for unique, inspiring and family-friendly content.”

Discovery recently purchased HGTV’s parent company, in case you were wondering about the connection.

I’ll keep you posted on the details as they develop.

Shaq and Ken Jeong to Star in “Unqualified” TV Series

TBS is making an unscripted a comedy pilot titled Unqualified (working title) which will star Shaquille O’Neal and Ken Jeong taking on different odd jobs.

You might be wondering how that pairing came to be. It the result of their insanely popular showdown on the network’s rap battle series Drop the Mic, where their chemistry was undeniable.

They’re both Renaissance men, with Shaq  shifting from court to courtside commentary and Jeong, a medical doctor in real life, also playing one on TV. But can they be scuba instructors? Line cooks? Dental hygienists? Nude art class models? All in one day?

Summoned to temporary employment by unsuspecting people via a digital portal, Unqualified follows their antics as they try their hands at jobs that have always intrigued them, along with a few they’d rather avoid.

“We are built to hustle.” said O’Neal and Jeong. “We’re thankful to TBS for giving us the opportunity to embrace any challenge that comes our way and we hope to surprise everyone with our ability to learn the ropes on the fly.”

Unqualified Shaq Kim Jeong

 

Deadwood the Movie Coming to a Theater Near You

I was never a huge fan of HBO western Deadwood. But those who are will be thrilled to find out that they’re making a movie of it, and that most of its stars are returning.

That would include Ian McShane, Timothy Olyphant, Molly Parker, Paula Malcomson, John Hawkes, Anna Gunn, W. Earl Brown, Dayton Callie, Brad Dourif, Robin Weigert, William Sanderson, Kim Dickens and Gerald McRaney.

The movie, written by series creator David Milch, takes place 10 years after the events of Deadwood‘s third season, with the characters reuniting to celebrate South Dakota’s statehood. Former rivalries are reignited, alliances are tested and old wounds reopened, with everyone trying to deal with the new, “modern” world.

Get more info at HollywoodReporter.com.

The Latest on the Brady Bunch House

The Brady Bunch kids reunited for the first time in almost 15 years to kick off HGTV’s upcoming series, tentatively titled A Very Brady Renovation.

Barry WilliamsMaureen McCormickChristopher KnightEve PlumbMike Lookinland and Susan Olsen checked in for an on-camera walk-through of the Studio City house that was used in the sitcom’s exterior shots and will be getting a ‘70s-inspired redo.

Lookinland is actually a skilled builder, and I’d love to see him have a hand in the restoration. Also, Property Brothers Jonathan and Drew Scott have also expressed an interest. I’d watch them renovate an outhouse.

The limited Brady Bunch house renovation series is scheduled to premiere in September 2019.

Who Bought the Brady Brady Bunch House

Cate Blanchett Moves to the Small Screen to Star in ‘Mrs. America’

It seems that all the A-List movie stars are signing up for TV these days. Now Cate Blanchett has been cast as Equal Rights Amendment opposer Phyllis Schlafly, in a nine episode limited series entitled in Mrs. America.

The series, to air on FX and was created and written by Dahvi Waller  of Mad Men fameBlanchett will also executive-produce, along with Stacey Sher, Waller and Coco Francini. Production will begin next year.

Gear Up for a Huge Week in Television

It’s time to set your DVRs and make sure your subscriptions are up to date. Check out this amazing roster of shows starting new seasons this week:

Sunday:

Ray Donovan — Burned out in California, Ray et al are taking a bite out of the Big Apple this season. And the studio exec played by Susan Sarandon is paying him to do it.

Outlander — Season 4 finds Jamie (Sam Heughan) and Claire (Caitriona Balfe) in antebellum America,

Monday:

A Very Wicked Halloween: Idina Menzel and Kristin Chenoweth reunite to celebrate 15 years of Wicked on Broadway (10 p.m. Monday, NBC). The concert special also features Ariana Grande and the current Wicked cast.

Friday:

Homecoming: This is Julia Robert’s first TV series-regular role. She stars as a counselor for veterans transitioning back to civilian life. Something goes terribly wrong, and the show moves back and forth in time to track what happened. Find it on Amazon.

The Romanoffs — Also on Amazon, a new episode of that fabulous series from Matthew Wiener, drops, as it does each Friday for the next month or so.

House of Cards  The final season, in which Claire Underwood (Robin Wright) become President and deals with a power couple played by Diane Lane and Greg Kinnear, premiers on Netflix.

See more on The HollywoodReporter.com.

TV Dream Team: Carell, Aniston, Witherspoon and More

How can you lose with Steve Carell, Jennifer Aniston and Reese Witherspoon together on the same project? They’re joining forces in a drama about a morning news show, and as much as we love us some Candice Bergen, we hope this series, to run on Apple TV, will be a damned sight better than Murphy Brown.

Carell will play Mitch Kessler, a morning show anchor who is struggling to maintain relevance in a changing media landscape. Production on the show is set to begin next week in Los Angeles.

Aniston and Witherspoon will both executive produce and star. This is another one that would probably be worth figuring out how to watch Apple TV for, if you don’t already know.

Update: Nestor Carbonell (Lost, Bates Motel) and Mark Duplass (Togetherness,The Mindy Project) have also joined the series.

Carbonell will play Yanko Flores, the morning show’s weatherman. Charming and with an artist’s soul, he thinks of meteorology as poetry. Duplass will play the show’s executive producer, Chip Black.

Gugu Mbatha-Raw has also been added as the show’s head talent booker and Billy Crudup is also on board as the head of the news division at the network.

Get more details from The Hollywood Reporter.

In Case You Can’t Get Enough of CRAZY RICH ASIANS…

…And who can? CBS has given a pilot order to the multi-camera sitcom The Emperor of Malibu written and produced by  Crazy Rich Asians author Kevin Kwan and David Sangalli.

The show focuses on two very different families, one from Shanghai with new money and one from the East Coast of the U.S. with old money, who must learn to co-exist when their children get married. The dueling in-laws theme never gets old (and I’m not being sarcastic).

I hope this makes it to series, as I absolutely adore anything that comes from Kwan. While you’re waiting for it, why not read the next two books in his trilogy, China Rich Girlfriend and Rich People Problems. There are already plans for a sequel film of CRG.
Read more on TheWrap.com.
Crazy Rich Asians Review

Get Ready for ‘The Passage’ — It’s Gonna Be a Killer

If you haven’t read Justin Cronin’s remarkable best-selling book trilogy The Passage, there’s no time like the present. It’s ideal Halloween fare, and there’s enough time to have the entire trilogy finished by Monday, January 14, when Fox premieres the thriller drama series based on the books.

The series stars Mark-Paul Gosselaar and Saniyya Sidney.  Watch the trailer to see what it’s all about:

Want to See Something Scary?

The new Hulu series Into the Dark is a daring dive into the streaming world by Blumhouse Productions because unlike most anthology series, these installments span the length of a feature film. This means bloodthirsty horror fans will be treated to a brand new, full-on scary movie the first Friday of every month courtesy of Hulu. Each episode is holiday-themed, which makes it twice the fun.

The first one out the gate, just in time for Halloween on October 5, is called The Body. It’s a real wild, whacky and wonderful concept—the tale follows a high-class hitman known as Wilkes (Tom Bateman) who does his best work on All Hallows Eve. It’s the perfect cover: He can drag a bloody body from the killing floor to its makeshift resting place without anyone even raising an eyebrow.

Read more here.

The Body Review

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