This week in TV news: Oscars choose host; Grammy, Writers Guild, and Cinematography nominations announced; a death in the Game of Thrones family; and more.
Awards season is in full swing with the Writers Guild announcing its nominees on Monday and the American Society of Cinematographers announcing TV nominees on Tuesday. HBO’s Game of Thrones, Westworld, and The Night Of turned up on both lists, as did Discovery Channel’s Harley and the Davidsons. The Oscars announced Jimmy Kimmel will host the Academy’s 89th show. Kimmel, who has been a late-night TV favorite since 2003, emceed the Emmys twice, garnering rave reviews from his most recent stint this past September. This will be the first time Kimmel has hosted the Oscars, and it was no secret that Disney/ABC Television Group chief Ben Sherwood wanted him for the job, having urged the Academy publicly to consider Kimmel for the honor. The show airs Feb. 26, 2017 on ABC. James Corden will also be taking on a coveted hosting gig this February, when he hosts the 59th annual Grammy Awards. The Recording Academy on Tuesday announced nominations across all 84 categories. Beyoncé leads the pack with nine nominations, including album of the year. Trailing narrowly behind her, Drake, Rihanna, and Kanye West scored eight nominations each, and Adele garnered five nominations across top categories. For a complete list of nominations, visit Grammy.org. The Grammy Awards air on Sunday, Feb. 12, 2017, live from Staples Center in Los Angeles on CBS from 8–11:30 pm ET/5–8:30 pm PT.
— Jimmy Kimmel (@jimmykimmel) December 5, 2016
Including its WGA and ASC award nominations, Game of Thrones has had an active news week. Ultimate Fighting champion Conor McGregor will appear in the show next season, a rumor confirmed by UFC boss Dana White on Fox Sports Live on Wednesday. Finn Jones, who played Loras Tyrell in the series — and stars in the upcoming Netflix superhero show Marvel’s Iron Fist — told Vulture that he expects mutually assured destruction in the ultimate battle of fire and ice. (“Shall we play a game – of Thrones?”) And fans were saddened to hear that the show’s Maester Aemon Targaryen, 93-year-old actor Peter Vaughan, died on Tuesday.
In development news this week, Cedric the Entertainer has signed with CBS to co-create and star in Tony Take the Wheel, a new 30-minute sitcom about brothers working in a car shop. Whoopi Goldberg may be returning to acting as she executive produces a contemporary drama for Bravo, in which a Harlem crime-boss reunites with the son she thought was dead, as he runs for mayor of New York City. Netflix will release “about 20” unscripted — or “reality” — shows in 2017, according to Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos, who addressed the UBS Global Media & Communications Conference this week. The streamer’s slate includes the previously announced Sylvester Stallone–produced competition show Ultimate Beastmaster. Also announced this week, Wonk Inc. picked up distribution for Studio City Kings, a new series by Kyle Newacheck, co-creator of Workaholics. The entire first season will be available on Saturday, Dec. 10 on Wonk Inc. SyFy has picked up straight-to-series project Superstition, produced by Mario Van Peebles‘ new production company MVPTV, along with XLrator Media. And Lifetime bought thriller Under the Bed, starring Black Sails’ Hannah New.
Get ready! In 2017, “O.G.” is going to stand for “old ghosts.” Join paranormal ghost hunting team, the O.P.O (Official Paranormal Operations) as they investigate some of the most haunted places in Los Angeles in WE tv’s newest docu-series Ghosts in the Hood, premiering at 10 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 5, 2017. The O.P.O. goes where other ghost hunters won’t dare — from the LBC to Altadena — to solve clients’ strangest and unexplained supernatural phenomena. Investigations will include Compton drive-thru funeral home Adam’s Mortuary, a possessed piñata factory, a former Korean brothel, and more. Can we be the first to suggest a crossover episode with YouTube’s Queer Ghost Hunters? Pretty paranormal please?