I had heard the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences made the decision to move the event, a major one during the Oscar season, to the Ray Dolby Ballroom at Hollywood and Highland on Monday January 27. That is where the Governors Ball is traditionally held, as well as the Governors Awards which were held there just last Sunday. The Oscar Nominees Luncheon has been exclusively at the Beverly Hilton since its inception in 1982, but circumstances surrounding the February 9 date for this year's 92nd annual Academy Awards, the earliest ever,forced the Academy's hand since the AMPAS team will have already begun preparations at the Dolby Theatre for the show itself, and will be doing the press preview for the Governors Ball the same week as the luncheon. A spokesperson for the Academy has confirmed the move.
This all means a radical rethink for press outlets who normally book cabanas alongside the Hilton pool for one-on-one interviews with nominated stars attending the luncheon. Here is my advice: don't book those cabanas. I am told the Academy is working on an ernate plan to help accommodate those interview opps. Perhaps they could even enlist the Lowes hotel next door for this purpose. They have a rooftop pool. Just sayin'.
Everyone has had to adjust to the realities of the earlier season. Hard to believe but we are just two months away from voting for nominations, as balloting will start literally on the heels of the New Year from January 2-7, a short five-day window which is forcing Oscar strategists to figure out how to get their movies seen in significant numbers with such a condensed season. Just yesterday the Academy sent a letter to members informing them that the streaming platform similar to what the Television Academy has long offered its members as promised was now in operation and several films from Sony Pictures Classics, Roadside Attractions, Focus Features, and Netflix are now posted and available for home viewing including current box office hits like Judy, Downton Abbey, and Pain and Glory.Of course firsttech-challenged members will have to figure out just how to stream them.
Because of the Oscar move two weeks earlier than usual to February 9th, BAFTA also had to adjust and move their date just one week ahead of the Oscars, instead of the usual two weeks, to February 2nd, further jamming already hectic travel schedules for those lucky enough to be nominated. Part of the reason for that is the nominees luncheon, which normally would be three weeks ahead of the big night last year it was Feb 4 had to get out of the way of BAFTA, so the Academy coordinated with the Brits to insure that it would not conflict as there is so much overlap between nominees, and getting from London after a late Sunday night at the BAFTAs to Los Angeles for a Monday lunch would be impossible. Thus BAFTA moved its awards show up a week to avoid conflicting with the nominees lunch.
Will this just be a one-time thing? The Academy has already announced things will be back to normal for at least 2021 and 2022 when the Oscars return to dates at the end of February. The Nominees Luncheon could indeed go back to Beverly Hills, or maybe, just maybe,how about the brand new Academy Museum Of Motion Pictures which AMPAS President David Rubin guaranteed at Sunday's Governors Awards would be open in 2020? Now that would be a hell of a way to celebrate the 40th anniversary of this storied and much-loved luncheon, one of the few events during the season where no one walks away a loser.
Anna Chlumsky, six-time Emmy nominee for Veep, and Julia Garner, coming off an Emmy win for Ozark, will lead the cast of Inventing Anna, Netflix's upcoming 10-episode limited drama series from Grey's Anatomy creator Shonda Rhimes. It marks the first series created by Rhimes since Scandal, and the top showrunner has recruited one of the stars of the ABC series , Katie Lowes for it, along with Laverne Cox Orange is the New Black and Alexis Floyd The Bold Type.
David Frankel The Devil Wears Prada is attached to direct and executive produce two episodes, including the first, of the Shondaland-produced Inventing Anna, inspired by Jessica Pressler's viral New York Magazine article “How Anna Delvey Tricked New York's Party People.”
Written byRhimes, in Inventing Anna, a journalist Chlumsky with a lot to prove investigates the case of Anna Delvey Garner, the Instagram-legendary German heiress who stole the hearts of New York's social scene — and stole their money as well. But is Anna New York's biggest con woman or is she simply the new portrait of the American dream? Anna and the reporter form a dark funny love-hate bond as Anna awaits trial and our reporter fights the clock to answer the biggest question in NYC: who is Anna Delvey?
Chlumsky's Vivian is a reporter working to salvage her career with just the right story. The Anna Delvey story is her golden ticket — she is willing to face any problem to get it. But as she works on the Anna story, there is one problem she never expected — Anna herself. The more Vivian pursues the truth about Anna, the more attached to Anna she becomes.
Garner is Anna Delvey, a young woman in her mid-20s with a hard to place European accent who takes New York by storm. Either a brilliant businesswoman or a scammer extraordinaire, Anna in turn inspires loyalty, compassion, contempt, and obsession — all while leaving behind an emotional body count.
Lowes will portray Rachel, a natural born follower whose blind worship of Anna almost destroys her job, her credit and her life. But while her relationship with Anna is her greatest regret, the woman she becomes because of Anna may be Anna's greatest creation.
Cox will play Kacy Duke. As a celebrity trainer and life coach, Kacy gets sucked into the Anna whirlwind but is mature and centered enough to stay out of any real trouble. When she least expects it, in the wake of Anna's crimes, Kacy finds herself becoming a coach to more than just Anna.
Floyd will portray Neff. An aspiring filmmaker working as a hotel concierge, Neff knows New York and its people. Neff's all style, all substance — more complex than most. She's drawn in by Anna's charm, but while passionate and loyal, she's nobody's fool.
Rhimes executive produces with Shondaland's Betsy Beers. Pressler also serves as a producer.
Inventing Anna is one of eight-series Netflix slate — scripted and documentary — announced in July 2018 under Rhimes' blockbuster deal at the streamer.
The Pressler article chronicles the incredible rise and fall of now-infamous Anna Delvey real name Anna Sorokin who, through web of lies, scammed her way into becoming an “it” girl on the New York social scene and nearly launched a Soho House—type club. She had an unwitting partner in crime, luring former 11 Howard concierge Neffatari “Neff” Davis into her schemes.
In October 2018, Sorokin, who had claimed to be a wealthy German heiress, was accused of instead being a con artist who had scammed money from banks, businesses and friends. Earlier this year, she was convicted of multiple counts of larceny andtheftand is currently behind bars.
Chlumsky is a six-time Emmy nominee for her supporting role as Amy Brookheimer on Veep, which recently wrapped its seventh and final season on HBO. She has been in great demand since, fielding interest from a number of TV projects and ultimately picking Inventing Anna as her followup series. The actress, who will be seen in the Apple feature Hala, is repped by WME, Liebman Entertainment and Schreck Rose.
Garner won a 2019 lead actress in a drama series Emmy for her portrayal of Ruth Langmore in Ozark in her first ever Emmy nomination . She also has a major role in the first season of Dirty John. She is repped by UTA, Anonymous Content and Sloane Offer.
Lowes starred as Quinn Perkins' on all seven seasons of Shondaland's Scandal.Her extensive voice work includes animated features Ralph Breaks the Internet, Zootopia, Wreck-It-Ralph, and Big Hero 6 among others. She is repped by Gersh, Framework Entertainment and Schreck Rose.
Cox is known for her role as Sophia on Orange is the New Black, which earned her an Emmy nomination, and recently appeared on Dear White People. She is repped by ICM Partners and Peikoff Mahan.
Floyd, who portrays Tia on Freeform's The Bold Type, is with Innovative and Industry Entertainment.
Just in time for Halloween, Hulu is finalizing deals on Books of Blood, an original film based on Clive Barker's horror anthology, from The Orville duo of Brannon Braga, who is co-writing, executive producing and will direct in his feature directorial debut, and Seth MacFarlane, who is exec producing.Anna Friel Marcella stars in the moving alongside Britt Robertson For the People, Rafi Gavron A Star Is Born and Yul Vazquez Midnight, Texas. The film, which hails from Fox 21 Television Studios and MacFarlane's Fuzzy Door Productions, is slated for premiere in fall 2020.
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The project had been in the works at Hulu for over a year, long before the streamer became The Orville's new home this past summer.
Written by Braga and Adam Simon Salem, The Haunting in Connecticut based on a short story by Barker with contributing original material, Books of Blood takes a journey into uncharted and forbidden territory through three tales tangled in space and time.Barker's Books of Blood is a six-book series of horror fiction collections, which mix in fantasy themes as well. The tales take place in a contemporary setting, usually featuring everyday people who become embroiled in terrifying or mysterious events.
Friel will play Mary, a brilliant, beautiful psychologist who has gained fame as a skeptic that debunks all theories or beliefs that are not solely scientifically based. She loses her 7-year-old son to leukemia and then meets Simon Gavron who becomes her lover and convinces her that he speaks for her dead child.
Robertson will portray Jenna, a hypersensitive girl who suffers from “misphonia” — an abhorrence of sound. As she learns her mother is about to send her back to the “Farm,” she steals her mother's cash and sets out for Los Angeles.
Gavron's Simon is a handsome, charismatic young man who convinces Mary that he is a “ghost whisperer” who speaks for her dead child.
Vazquez will play Bennett, a professional killer who's latest “hit” clues him in on a priceless book that may allow him and his wife to permanently retire. On his search for the tome, his quest leads him straight into supernatural territory.
Braga and Simon executive produce with Fuzzy Door's MacFarlane and Erica Huggins, Alana Kleiman, Brian Witten, Jeff Kwatinetz, Josh Barry and Barker. Mark Miller is co-executive producer. Joe Micucci, Jason Clark and Michael Mahoney are producers.
Braga was one of the key creative forces of the Star Trek franchise, for which he wrote or co-wrote more episodes than any other writer and received an Emmy nomination. He went on to exec produce and direct the award-winning Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey and created/exec produced WGN America's first original drama series Salem. He is currently an executive producer on MacFarlane's space adventure series The Orville, which is moving from Fox to Hulu,and the upcoming installment to the Cosmos franchise Cosmos: Possible Worlds.
Susanna Dinnage, Global President of Animal Planet, is out at Discovery. Deadline understands the Brit, who has been with the factual giant for over ten years, is leaving as part of a restructure that will see Animal Planet brought under Nancy Daniels' purview.
Dinnage took charge of the animal-focused cable network in September 2017 when it became the first Discovery network to be managed globally. The network will now revert to the company's factual division, which is managed by Daniels, Chief Brand Officer, Discovery & Factual, where she runs Discovery Channel and Science Channel, as well as overseeing the content strategy of Discovery's upcoming factual streaming service.
Fulham FC fan Dinnage, who will leave at the end of the year, has overseen the growth of the Pit Bulls and Parolees and Alaska Law channel, apart a brief flirtation with taking the top job at the English Premier League in 2018. In 2017, she narrowly lost out to former Shine Group boss Alex Mahon in the race to become Chief Executive of British broadcaster Channel 4.
Before taking on the Animal Planet role, she was President of Discovery Networks UK and Ireland and Chief Content Officer, International, where she was responsible for the management and strategic direction of the company's 14 brands including Discovery Channel, Eurosport, TLC and Quest. She also led the International Content Group, Discovery's London based production and development department, and was on the board of directors at All3Media, the Discovery and Liberty Global-backed superindie.
Prior to joining Discovery in January 2009, she helped launched Channel 5, which was later bought by Viacom, and worked at MTV Networks.
Discovery Inc. President & CEO David Zaslav said, in an internal note to staff seen by Deadline, that Dinnage had made an “enormous contribution” to the company.
He said, “As we thought about this new structure, we arrived at the difficult conclusion that there is no longer a need for a standalone president role for Animal Planet. Susanna Dinnage, who has been an integral and deeply valued member of our leadership team for a decade, is supportive of this decision and will step down from her role as Global President of Animal Planet and leave Discovery at the end of the year,”
“Susanna has made enormous contributions here, first in her role overseeing Discovery's 14 UK brands and businesses and steering the London-based production and development department and, most recently, leading Animal Planet. Animal Planet will still very much exist as a linear network, just as Discovery Channel and Science do, but will now be part of this larger group. Over the next few weeks, Nancy and Susanna will work together to create a smooth transition and ensure that the Animal Planet team is set up to succeed in this new structure. Please join me in thanking Susanna for her outstanding leadership across so many parts of our global business and wishing her all the best,” he added.
EXCLUSIVE: NBC Sports has acquired and set a premiere date for The Russian Five,a feature documentary about the first five Russians to play hockey together in the NHL.The film will air on November 6, following NBCSN's Wednesday Night Hockeygame between the Detroit Red Wings and New York Rangers.
Federov stalks the net, left, and Konstantinov battles future Hall of Famer Eric Lindros. NBC Sports
The Russian Five tells the story of how Sergei Fedorov, Slava Fetisov, Vladimir Konstatinov, Slava Kozlov and Igor Larionov defected and then helped transform the Red Wings from perennial losers to back-to-back Stanley Cup Champions. Toward the end of the Cold War in the late '80s, the Red Wings hatched an audacious plan to draft the best Soviet players from behind the Iron Curtain and help them defect to Detroit. The team snuck them out under cover of night and whisking them to the Motor City where they won the fans' hearts and changed the way hockey is played in North America forever.
Under legendary coach Scotty Bowman, the Red Wings would win the Stanley Cup in 1996-7 and 1997-98. The pic features home videos, vintage game footage and interviews with several Hockey Hall of Famers.
Fetisov hoists the Stanley Cup NBC Sports
“As the home of hockey in the U.S., we are always looking for ways to further serve the sport's passionate fan base,” said Michael Perman, VP Programming at NBC Sports. “The Russian Five is a perfect fit, as it documents the unconventional and dramatic way one of NHL's most-memorable dynasties was built. Hockey fans will love this film.”
Gold Star released the film theatrically in March, with co-distributors by Lucky Hat Entertainment and Muse Production House. It grossed nearly a half-million dollars.
The Russian Five — which has a 100% fresh score on Rotten Tomatoes — is directed by Joshua Riehl, executive produced by Daniel Milstein, and produced by Jenny Feterovich, Steve Bannatyne and Jason Wehling.
“The Russian Five left a lasting legacy on the game of hockey,” Riehl said, “and this documentary dives into not only what they accomplished on the ice to bring the Stanley Cup back to Detroit but also the human side of the story including their incredible journey from the Soviet Union to Detroit that required cloak-and-dagger efforts worthy of your favorite Cold War spy novel.”.
For those concerned that the 4-hour CBS Studios miniseries based on James Comey’s book A Higher Loyalty might be a glowing portrait of the ex-FBI Director fired by Donald Trump: the series will include the embarrassing incident where FBI agent Peter Strzok and FBI lawyer Lisa Page - who were reportedly engaged in an extramarital affair - exchanged texts when Strzok was spearheading the Russia probe that reportedly disparaged Trump and favored Hillary Clinton during the presidential elections. It was a major embarrassment to the bureau Comey oversaw.
Rescue Me‘s Steven Pasquale has just been set to play Strzok and Oona Chaplin Game of Thrones to play Page. They join Jeff Daniels Comey, Brendan Gleeson Trump, Holly Hunter Acting Attorney General Sally Yates, Michael Kelly Acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe, Jennifer Ehle Patrice Comey, and Peter Coyote Robert Mueller.
Billy Ray adapted and is directing the limited series, which begins shooting next month. The seventh director of the FBI, Comey served from 2013-17, and his book covered his role in helping to change the Bush administration's policies on torture and electronic surveillance to overseeing the Hillary Clinton email investigation as well as possible ties between the Trump campaign and Russia, and before that his tenure as a prosecutor of terrorists, mobsters and Martha Stewart. Of course, a big part of the narrative and focus of the mini is his testy relationship with and eventual firing by President Trump.
Comey has publicly said that the duo damaged the bureau and Strzok was fired. He recently filed a wrongful termination suit against the FBI and Department of Justice, arguing that his text messages - sent through his FBI issued phone - were protected free speech. Strzok believes he is protected on First Amendment grounds and should be awarded back pay and reinstated.
Said Ray: “Lisa Page and Peter Strzok are complicated people who were central to a complicated moment in our history. I feel lucky to have such brilliant actors playing them.”
CBS will set an airdate and decide whether to broadcast it on Showtime, CBS All Access or both. Alex Kurtzman, Shane Salerno and Heather Kadin are the executive producers. The mini is produced by Secret Hideout, The Story Factory and Home Run Productions in association with CBS Television Studios.
Pasquale, who is repped by UTA and Brookside Artist Management, most recently starred opposite Kerry Washington in Kenny Leon's Broadway production of American Son, and has reprised his role for the upcoming Netflix adaptation. He’ll next be seen on stage in Stephen Sondheim and John Weidman's Assassins revival.
Chaplin recently wrapped shooting a starring role in James Cameron's Avatar franchise for Fox, and was last seen starring opposite Jamie Dornan and Peter Dinklage in HBO's Sacha Gervasi-directed My Dinner with Herve. She also starred as Rob Stark’s wife in Game of Thrones, until that dreaded Red Wedding episode. Chaplin is repped by Troika and Magnolia Entertainment.