TV Talk

Ewan McGregor in Talks for Disney+ Obi-Wan Kenobi Star Wars Series

Plus: trailers for Bourne-universe series Treadstone and American Horror Story: 1984, an NBCUniversal streaming service update, and casting news.

by | August 16, 2019 | Comments

This week in TV news includes a major Star Wars story, new trailers, a Hemingway adaptation, and plenty of casting news.

STAR WARS EPISODE II: ATTACK OF THE CLONES, Ewan McGregor, 2002, Copyright 2002 Lucasfilm Ltd., courtesy Everett Collection

Ewan McGregor is in talks to reprise his role as a younger version of Obi-Wan Kenobi in a potential event series for Disney+. The limited series could consist of up to six episodes, according to original source The story was subsequently confirmed by The Hollywood Reporter and other trade publications, which also reported that a film centered on the Jedi Master was originally planned in 2017, but scrapped following the poor box office performance for Solo: A Star Wars Story.

The Obi-Wan series is the third Star Wars series for Disney+, after the upcoming The Mandalorian and an as-yet-untitled prequel to Rogue One, starring Diego Luna. McGregor took over the role of Ben Kenobi in the Star Wars prequels from Alec Guinness, who played Luke Skywalker’s Jedi mentor in the original trilogy.

Related:Everything We Know About Disney+

Revisit the Bourne Trilogy With Treadstone Trailer

The first trailer for USA’s upcoming TV series set in the Bourne universe, Treadstone, introduces the new characters and timelines that the drama will cover. The series is a thriller “set amidst the CIA black ops program Operation: Treadstone,” according to the official description. “Exploring both the origin of the infamous covert program, as well as connecting to present-day special ops, Treadstone follows the action across the globe — from D.C. to Berlin to Paris and beyond. Using a mysterious behavior-modification protocol, Treadstone turns its recruits around the world into nearly-superhuman assassins, following sleeper agents as they’re mysteriously “awakened” to resume their dangerous missions.”

Meanwhile, the final trailer for the upcoming third season of Netflix’s 13 Reasons Why centers on the discovery of the body of a pivotal character (no spoilers here, though you’ll find out who just seconds into the trailer). The season will focus on the hunt for the person responsible for the death, and it appears nearly everyone at Liberty High could be a suspect.

You can also check out the following new trailers:

A teaser for the second season of FX’s Sons of Anarchy spinoff Mayans M.C.

The announcement for the highly anticipated third season of The Crown, which stars Olivia Colman as a slightly older version of Queen Elizabeth II

A teaser for the upcoming 1984 slasher-themed season of American Horror Story

The first promo for the Jennifer Aniston, Reese Witherspoon, and Steve Carell-fronted AppleTV+ drama The Morning Show

A teaser for the third and final season of HBO’s porn drama The Deuce

-Promos for the upcoming Invader Zim: Enter the Florpus, Fox’s new fall drama Almost Family, and the Netflix rom-com Falling Inn Love.

Drew Barrymore: Talk Show Host?

Drew Barrymore at arrivals for 2017 GLAMOUR Women of The Year Awards, Kings Theatre, Brooklyn, NY November 13, 2017. Photo By: Steven Ferdman/Everett Collection
(Photo by Steven Ferdman/Everett Collection)

According to Variety, Drew Barrymore has spent the week filming a pilot for a potential daytime talk show in New York City. Barrymore is reportedly an executive producer on the project, which is being made through CBS Television Distribution. The actress, who is also the author of two memoirs and has launched makeup, perfume, and eyewear lines, previously “circled” a talk show deal in 2016.

National Geographic Is Searching for Amelia Earhart

(Original Caption) Amelia Earhart, (1898-1937), American aviatrix, first woman to cross the Atlantic Ocean in an airplane. She stands next to the propeller of her plane. Undated photograph.

A new expedition helmed by Bob Ballard, the man who found the wreckage of the Titanic, is currently underway in an attempt to solve the mystery of the disappearance of famed aviator Amelia Earhart. The month-long journey departed from Samoa to a remote Pacific atoll called Nikumaroro in the Republic of Kiribati on Aug. 7. The results of the expedition, along with the clues gathered by Ric Gillespie and The International Group for Historic Aircraft Recovery (TIGHAR) that pointed Ballard in the direction of Nikumaroro, will air in a two-hour special on Sunday, Oct. 20 called Expedition Amelia.

Friends Is Heading to the Movies

FRIENDS, Matthew Perry, Courteney Cox Arquette, Matt LeBlanc, Lisa Kudrow, David Schwimmer, Jennifer Aniston, (Season 5), 1994-2004, © Warner Bros. / Courtesy: Everett Collection
(Photo by Warner Bros. / Courtesy: Everett Collection)

If watching Friends on Netflix every night before bed is starting to feel a little old, then you’ll want to check out your favorite New York City twentysomethings on the big screen. In celebration of the 25th anniversary of the sitcom’s premiere, 12 fan-favorite episodes are headed to a theater near you. Over the course of three nights — Sept. 23, Sept. 28, Oct. 2 — Friends 25th: The One With the Anniversary will bring four newly remastered episodes to more than 1,000 movie theaters across the country via Fathom Events. The episodes have all been remastered in 4k from the original 35mm camera negatives. All showings will begin at 7 p.m. local time, and tickets are available at

Taylor Swift Is Hosting a Livestream the Day Before Her Album Comes Out

The day before Taylor Swift’s latest album, Lover, comes out, the singer will sit down for a YouTube livestream event featuring a fan Q&A and performance of a new song from the album. “Taylor Swift – Lover’s Lounge (Live)” will premiere at 5 p.m. ET and also feature the singer revealing new details about her Lover-themed fashion collaboration with Stella McCartney, and the world premiere of her music video for the album’s title track. Leave your questions for Swift in this post, and tune in to Swift’s YouTube channel for the event.

NBCUniversal’s Streaming Service Should Arrive in April 2020

(Photo by NBC)

The upcoming streaming service from NBCUniversal, which is set to be the new home of The Office and many more series, is scheduled to launch in April 2020 according to CEO Steven Burke. The NBCU bigwig said in the company’s second-quarter earnings call that The Office will be a “tentpole” program, and the streaming service has set its target launch date. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the as-yet-unnamed service will also be the home of two series originally developed for cable: a Queer as Folk reboot meant for Bravo and a YA drama based on a novel, One of Us Is Lying, meant for E!. (Rotten Tomatoes is owned by NBCUniversal.)

The Latest Film-to-TV Adaptation: St. Elmo’s Fire

St. Elmo’s Fire is the next film that might make its way to the small screen. NBC is currently working on an adaptation of the 1985 Brat Pack classic that will put a modern spin on the story, which follows a group of close friends struggling with their careers, love lives, friendships, and the responsibilities of adulthood. Drop Dead Diva’s Josh Berman will write and executive produce.

The Latest Book-to-TV Adaptation: A Moveable Feast

Ernest Hemingway’s A Moveable Feast could make its way to TV: Actress Mariel Hemingway, the author’s granddaughter, has teamed up with a pair of producers for a “Hemingway origin story,” according to The Hollywood Reporter. The TV version of the memoir will focus on Hemingway’s years as a struggling journalist in Paris in the 1920s.

A Moveable Feast has been my favorite book since I was 11 years old when my father took me to Paris,” Mariel Hemingway said in a statement. “While reading the book together, he showed me where Papa lived (and daddy was raised), ate, wrote and dreamed of becoming a great writer. His deep love of my grandmother Hadley and his growing passion for art is an inspiring time at the beginning of his iconic career. I want to reveal on film the coming-of-age story that has captivated readers and burgeoning writers for several decades.”

Casting Updates

Jamie Dornan at arrivals for Hamilton Behind the Camera Awards, Exchange LA, Los Angeles, CA November 4, 2018. Photo By: Priscilla Grant/Everett Collection
(Photo by Priscilla Grant/Everett Collection)

Jamie Dornan will star in the upcoming limited series Dr. Death, based on the podcast of the same name about a Dallas neurosurgeon whose patients came in for routine spinal surgeries and frequently left maimed or dead. Rachel Dratch will star as Ian’s corrupt parole officer in season 10 of Showtime’s Shameless. Bryan Greenberg and Charles Michael Davis will vie for Lea Michele’s heart in the actress’ upcoming ABC Christmas movie Same Time, Next Christmas. Empire has added Lethal Weapon veteran Keesha Sharp as a no-nonsense, compassionate doctor named Paula Wick. Cicely Tyson will play a stage and screen luminary (sound familiar?) in Ava DuVernay’s upcoming OWN anthology, Cherish the Day.

Piper Perabo has joined the cast of Showtime’s Penny Dreadful spinoff, City of Angels, as a woman “disappointed with her husband and bored with her constrained suburban life.” Spectrum Originals’ Mad About You has cast Abby Quinn as Helen Hunt and Paul Reiser’s daughter, Mabel, in the rebooted version of the series. You’re the Worst’s Kether Donohue will star alongside Darren Criss in the actor’s upcoming musical comedy for short-form streaming service Quibi.

Jessica Williams, Phoebe Robinson in 2 Dope Queens Credit: Mindy Tucker/HBO
(Photo by Mindy Tucker/HBO)

Phoebe Robinson, a.k.a. one half of HBO’s Two Dope Queens (pictured: right), will star in her own 10-episode half-hour comedy series. The as-yet-untitled unscripted show will feature Robinson interviewing and sharing one-on-one “experiences” with her celebrity guests “that take us into their world and out of her comfort zone.” Denis Leary and Elizabeth Perkins are set to star in Fox’s adaptation of the Australian holiday-themed comedy A Moody Christmas. They’ll play the heads of a slightly dysfunctional family of five whose three children return home to Chicago for the holidays and hide secrets from one another. Scoot McNairy, Peter Vack, Zoe Chao, and Sasha Compere have joined the cast of Anna Kendrick’s upcoming HBO Max rom-com series Love Life. Martha Plimpton will play the late mother of Anna Paquin’s character on the Pop dramedy Flack, about a ruthless celebrity PR exec living in London. Jennifer Esposito will recur on Awkwafina’s upcoming Comedy Central sitcom as an art teacher who catches the eye of BD Wong’s character at a support group for single parents.

Arrow vet Katrina Law is joining Hawaii Five-0 as a series regular in the CBS procedural’s upcoming tenth season. She’ll play polyglot former Army Staff Sergeant Quinn Liu, who, according to TVLine, was recently demoted for insubordination and “has a deep understanding of military culture, a mysterious past and a deft ability to match wits with McGarrett.” Lifetime’s upcoming College Admissions Scandal movie will star Penelope Ann Miller and Mia Kirshner not as the big-name celebrity defendants in the real-life case on which it was based, but rather as two wealthy mothers who share an obsession with getting their teenagers into prestigious colleges. Tiffany Lonsdale joins the third season of Freeform’s Siren as Tia, an “extremely intelligent mermaid with a highly evolved knowledge of the human condition. She speaks several languages, understands advanced science and technology and was trained as a high level warrior.”

Development Updates: Disney+, HBO Max, More

LOVE, SIMON, Nick Robinson, 2018. ph: Ben Rothstein/Twentieth Century Fox Film Corp./Courtesy Everett Collection
(Photo by Ben Rothstein/Twentieth Century Fox Film Corp./Courtesy Everett Collection)

Production has begun on the Disney+ series Love, Simon, based on the film (and novel) of the same name. The TV series, from This Is Us showrunners Elizabeth Berger and Isaac Aptaker, who wrote the Greg Berlanti-directed film, will follow Victor, a new student at Creekwood High School “on his own journey of self-discovery, facing challenges at home, adjusting to a new city, and struggling with his sexual orientation. When it all seems too much, he reaches out to Simon to help him navigate the ups and downs of high school,” per the official series description. Michael Cimino will star as Victor alongside Ana Ortiz (Victor’s mother, Isabel), James Martinez (Victor’s father, Armando), Isabella Ferreira (Victor’s sister, Pilar), Mateo Fernandez (Victor’s little brother, Adrian), Johnny Sequoyah (Victor’s pal Mia), Bebe Wood (Mia’s BFF Lake), George Sear (Victor’s classmate Benji), Anthony Turpel (new neighbor Felix), and Mason Gooding (classmate Andrew).

HBO Max and BBC Three have ordered a comedy from Rose Matafeo that will follow a twentysomething millennial in London (Matafeo) who accidentally sleeps with a movie star and must deal with the fallout.

The true story at the heart of HBO’s Certified Fresh docuseries I Love You, Now Die: The Commonwealth V. Michelle Carter could become a scripted TV series: According to Deadline, Universal Cable Productions has optioned the GQ story The Girl from Plainville, about a Massachusetts teenager convicted of involuntary manslaughter for encouraging her boyfriend to commit suicide. Author Jesse Baron and I Love You, Now Die director Erin Lee Carr will both serve as executive producers on the new series.

AMC has commissioned a three-part drama based on the 2001 Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? cheating scandal. Quiz will be directed by Stephen Frears. Major Charles Ingram, his wife Diana, and accomplice Tecwen Whittock were accused of cheating their way to a million pounds by coughing in the audience at the correct answers. Matthew Macfadyen will star as Major Charles Ingram, Michael Sheen as TV presenter Chris Tarrant, and Sian Clifford as Diana Ingram. The drama is written by playwright, James Graham, (Brexit: An Uncivil War, Ink, This House, Labour of Love) and will be produced by Left Bank Pictures for AMC and ITV.

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