What Matters In Hollywood Today

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Spike rebrands on Thursday, when Viacom launches its general entertainment destination Paramount Network. At TCA, the executives, showrunners and stars from the cabler's first four scripted shows previewed what's to come, writes Lesley Goldberg:

"We want to be the definitive new home for premium storytelling," said president Kevin Kay. "Our goal is to change the game of how viewers experience high-end scripted on basic cable. … We're a premium network without the premium subscription price."

Paramount Network will officially launch Thursday at 9 p.m. with a live, Michael Jackson-themed installment of

Lip Sync Battle

, Spike's signature show. Its unscripted offerings also include Spike holdovers

Ink

Master

and

Bar Rescue

.

On the scripted side, its first offering will be

Waco

, the six-part miniseries about David Koresh and the Branch Davidians starring Michael Shannon and Taylor Kitsch. That will be followed by

Heathers

, an hourlong dark comedic reboot of the cult hit 1988 movie; the half-hour 1970s-set feminist comedy

American

Woman

starring Alicia Silverstone and Mena Suvari; and Kevin Costner starrer

Yellowstone

. Read more.

Elsewhere in TV...

HLN host slams Aziz Ansari accuser. Ashleigh Banfield had some harsh words for the anonymous woman: "The #MeToo movement has righted a lot of wrongs and it has made your career path much smoother ... what a gift. Yet, you looked that gift horse in the mouth and chiseled away at that powerful movement with your public accusation …  The only sentence a guy like that deserves is a bad case of blue balls.” Watch her speech here.

+ Two Ansari-defending op-eds are also adding fire to the issue: "The humiliation of Aziz Ansari" by Caitlin Flanagan in The Atlantic and "Aziz Ansari is guilty. Of not being a mind reader" by Bari Weiss in the New York Times.

Margaret Atwood faces backlash over "bad feminist" op-ed: Writing in Canada's Globe and Mail newspaper, Atwood outlined her concerns regarding the #MeToo movement: that it might overreach and override legal avenues and due process. Reaction was swift, and after relentless criticism, Atwood tweeted that she would be stepping away from social media for awhile.

 Versace primer: How the FX drama tackles homophobia — and the family's main point of contention. Writer Tom Rob Smith weighs in on Maureen Orth's reporting (which the Versace family is contesting), while Edgar Ramirez and Ricky Martin sound off on the institutionalized homophobia that led to Versace's murder. Full story.

^

Black

Lightning

, reviewed: "The pleasant surprise is that CW's Black Lightning, based on yet another DC Comics property, is smart and relevant and full of an attitude that's all its own," writes Daniel Fienberg. "It takes its characters and their world seriously, but thus far doesn't take itself too seriously." Full review.

Snapchat's scripted plan: "I'm fascinated by how serialized is going to work on Snapchat," head of original series Sean Mills told TCA, adding that the app — known for its disappearing messages and Shows that only last 24 hours — will make it possible for users to rewatch episodes. "We're just at the very beginning. We're learning alongside our partners."

Lifetime announces a Prince Harry-Meghan Markle movie. The movie, to be titled Harry & Meghan: The Royal Love Story, promises to “chronicle the courtship and love story between a beloved prince and his new fiancée.” The network has yet to cast the royal duo.

Comedy Central re-ups The Jim Jeffries Show: The Australian comedian’s late-night series will return with a 20-episode second season.

+

The network also announced that it will be launching You Up With Nikki Glaser, its first-ever live daily morning show on SiriusXM's Comedy Central Radio. The show, which will feature Glaser and her best friend and touring buddy Tom Thakkar oversharing about their personal lives, will premiere in February.

The Carol Burnett Show is set to stream: CBS Television Distribution has inked a deal to acquire digital multicast rights to the series' entire 11-season run. That's 276 hours worth of the celebrated CBS variety show, many of which have not seen the light of day since their original air date.

+ Burnett: “I’m thrilled to be back home at CBS, and I’m so happy that future generations will be able to see and enjoy the fun we had in those 11 wonderful years,” the comedian said.

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Source : https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/lists/what-matters-hollywood-today-today-entertainment-newsletter-1-16-2018-1074894

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