TV Talk

Mike Flanagan's The Fall of the House of Usher Series Enlists Frank Langella, Carla Gugino, Mark Hamill

Plus, Colin Farrell returns to Penguin role in The Batman spin-off series, Six Feet Under follow-up eyed, Nick Offerman joins video game adaptation The Last of Us, Kim Dickens returns to Fear the Walking Dead, and more top TV and streaming news.

by | December 11, 2021 | Comments

TAGGED AS: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Mike Flanagan’s next horror series finds its cast, Colin Farrell confirmed for The Batman feature film’s TV spin-off, The Boys gets an animated spinoff, and Six Feet Under revival (of some kind) is reportedly in the works. Plus, trailers for Cobra Kai season 4, Peacemaker, MacGruber, and 1883 drop, and in more casting, HBO’s The Last of Us puts Nick Offerman in the apocalypse, Amandla Stenberg eyes the lead role in Disney+’s Star Wars: The Acolyte series, Kim Dickens returns to Fear the Walking Dead, and more of the biggest TV and streaming news from the past week.

Mike Flanagan Announces Cast of The Fall of the House of Usher Adaptation

(Photo by John Lamparski/WireImage; Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images; Gregg DeGuire/FilmMagic; Jessica Miglio / © Warner Bros. / courtesy Everett Collection; Rachel Luna/FilmMagic; Rachel Luna/FilmMagic)

Doctor Sleep director and Midnight Mass series creator Mike Flanagan is putting the pieces together for his next gothic horror project at Netflix. The genre auteur is adapting Edgar Allen Poe’s The Fall of the House of Usher and announced on Twitter on Thursday the ensemble cast that’ll bring this iconic tale to life will include Frank Langella, Carla Gugino, Mary McDonnell, Carl Lumbly, and Mark Hamill.

Langella will step into the lead role as Roderick Usher, the patriarch of the Usher dynasty. Gugino, who previously appeared in Gerald’s Game, The Haunting of Hill House, and The Haunting of Bly Manor for Flanagan, will appear in an undisclosed role. McDonnell will play Roderick’s twin sister and the hidden hand of the Usher dynasty. Lumbly takes on the role of Poe’s legendary investigator C. Auguste Dupin. Hamill’s role is also currently undisclosed.

Continuing the casting announcement, Flanagan revealed on Friday that Michael Trucco, T’Nia Miller, Paola Nuñezm, and Henry Thomas will also be joining the Edgar Allen Poe-inspired series. The show’s epic supporting cast will include the likes of Kyleigh Curran, Samantha Sloyan, Rahul Kohli, Kate Siegel, Sauriyan Sapkota, Zach Gilford, Katie Parker, Malcolm Goodwin, Crystal Balint, Aya Furukawa, Daniel Jun, Matt Biedel, Ruth Codd, Annabeth Gish, Igby Rigney, and Robert Longstreet.

The Fall of the House of Usher was first published by Poe in 1839 and is one of the author’s famed short stories. The tale explores themes of family, isolation, madness, and identity. The eight-episode series will feature elements from it, and other iconic Poe stories, and is being described as, “an epic tale of greed, horror, and tragedy.”

This is the fifth series project for Flanagan and producing partner Trevor Macy at Netflix under their Intrepid Pictures overall deal with the streamer, which includes the two installments of The Haunting of series mentioned above, the recently released Midnight Mass, and their upcoming adaptation of Christopher Pike’s The Midnight Club.

New Trailers: Cobra Kai Season 4 Trailer Teases the Villainous Return of Karate Kid 3’s Thomas Ian Griffith

What happens when Daniel LaRusso (Ralph Macchio) and Johnny Lawrence (William Zabka) join forces to bring down the insidious John Kreese (Martin Kove) once and for all? That’s the main question leading into season 4 of Cobra Kai.

Conflict continues as Samantha (Mary Mouser) and Miguel (Xolo Maridueña) grapple with the composition of their new dojo while Robby (Tanner Buchanan) professes his loyalty to Cobra Kai. The return of baddie Terry Silver (Thomas Ian Griffith) will surely complicate matters, adding further connective tissue to Daniel’s traumatic past, while bolstering the strength of Kreese’s establishment.

The Karate Kid-sequel series ended its third season with the long-time enemies joining forces, combining their Miyagi-Do and Eagle Fang dojos, to prepare for battle against their common enemy at the All Valley Under 18 Karate Tournament. Whoever loses the competition must hang up their gi and walk away for good. Season 4 of Cobra Kai drops to Netflix on Dec. 31.

More trailers and teasers released this week:

  • MacGruber is back. A decade after the character Will Forte made famous on Saturday Night Live hit the big screen in his own action flick, the foul-mouthed patriot with a chip on his shoulder has returned with his own TV series. And how pals Dixon Piper (Ryan Philippe) and Vickie St. Elmo (Kristen Wiig) are joining him on another world-saving mission. Whether they like it or not. Premieres Dec. 16. (Peacock)
  • Peacemaker marks the return of John Cena’s brooding super patriot following the events of The Suicide Squad. To thwart jail-time for his traitorous behavior in the film, Peacemaker steps into the role of hired-hitman for the American government. But does he have the mettle to get the job done? The James Gunn-created series stars Danielle Brooks as Adebayo, Freddie Stroma as Vigilante, Jennifer Holland as Harcourt, Chukwudi Iquji as Mum, Steve Agee as Economous, and Robert Patrick as Auggie, his dad. Premieres Jan. 13 (HBO Max)
  • Winning Time: The Rise of the Lakers Dynasty finally gives us a first look at Adam McKay’s highly-anticipated drama series about the 1980s L.A. Lakers. The show is based on Jeff Pearlman’s book “Showtime: Magic, Kareem, Riley, and the Los Angeles Lakers Dynasty of the 1980s” and stars John C. Reilly, Quincy Isaiah, Jason Clarke, Adrien Brody, Gaby Hoffman, Tracy Letts, Jason Segel, Hadley Robinson, Dr. Solomon Hughes, Tamera Tomakili as Earletha “Cookie” Kelly and Sally Field. Premieres in March. (HBO)
  • The first 1883 trailer for the highly-anticipated Yellowstone prequel series follows the Dutton family as they trek through the Great Plains to seek a better future in Montana. Tim McGraw, Faith Hill, Sam Elliott, Isabel May, and Billy Bob Thornton star. Premieres Dec. 19. (Paramount+)
  • Raised By Wolves was a standout sci-fi hit for HBO Max when the platform first launched and the Ridley Scott-produced series just dropped its first season 2 teaser. What’s to be expected this time around? Emotionally unhinged robot parents, flying snake alien babies, and a sect of intergalactic space zealots, we’re guessing. You know, more of the same. Premieres Feb. 3. (HBO Max)
  • The Woman in the House Across the Street From the Girl in the Window stars Kristen Bell as Anna, a troubled woman who believes she witnesses a murder across the street from her home. But did she? Or was it all the wine and pills? The eight-episode series is being described as a “darkly comedic, wine-soaked, satirical slant on the psychological thriller that will have you guessing who, what, where, why and how in the hell?! until the very end.” Premieres Jan. 28. (Netflix)
  • Reacher is here to kick butt and take names. The new series, which is an adaptation of Lee Childs’ popular book series of the same name, follows investigator Jack Reacher (Alan Ritchson) as he finds himself in the midst of a small town conspiracy. It’s up to him to solve things — and clear his name in the process. Premieres Feb. 4. (Amazon Prime Video)
  • Snowpiercer season 3 continues where the show left off. Layton (Davis Diggs) and Ruth’s (Alison Wright) train revolution led to the separation of 10 cars in season 2, and now the core group is seeking a rumored warm place called “Eden” while Mr. Wilford (Sean Bean) consolidates his overall power, awaiting their next attack. Premieres Jan. 22 (TNT)
  • Station Eleven is a dystopian TV series based on Emily St. John Mandel’s award-winning novel. The program, which was created by Patrick Somerville (Maniac) and stars MacKenzie Davis (Halt and Catch Fire), explores society’s downfall after a flu pandemic decimates the population, and the ways art can bring hope and inspire perseverance in the face of tragedy. Premieres Dec. 16. (HBO Max)
  • Grand Crew is the wine-tasting comedy you never knew you needed. Nicole Byer (Nailed It!) and Echo Kellum (Arrow) lead the all-Black main cast in NBC’s newest from Brooklyn Nine-Nine‘s Phil Augusta Jackson and Dan Goor. Premieres Dec. 14. (NBC)
  • Stay Close is a British thriller based on the Harlan Corben book of the same name. The series stars Cush Jumbo and Richard Armitage and explores how secrets of past secrets can damage the present. Premieres Dec. 31. (Netflix)
  • NBC’s new comedy American Auto looks like The Office … but for cars. The series, which takes place in Detroit, comes from Justin Spitzer (Superstore) and explores the conflicts that arise at the fictional Payne Motors who are forced to either change with the times or be kicked to the curb as junkyard scrap. Ana Gasteyer leads the ensemble as Katherine Hastings, the company’s new CEO, whose business savvy is offset by her overall inexperience with cars. Premieres Dec. 13 (NBC)

For all the latest TV and streaming trailers subscribe to the Rotten Tomatoes TV YouTube channel.

Casting: Colin Farrell Will Return to the Penguin Role in HBO Max’s The Batman Spinoff Series

Colin Farrell

(Photo by Karwai Tang/Getty Images)

Colin Farrell isn’t giving up on Oswald Cobblepot, just yet. The actor has officially signed on to star in and executive produce a series spinoff of Matt Reeves’ highly-anticipated The Batman movie (scheduled to hit theaters on March 4, 2022), in which he plays the villainous role of The Penguin opposite Robert Pattinson’s Caped Crusader. The HBO Max project will reportedly tap into Cobblepot’s rise to power within Gotham City’s criminal underworld — a storyline that was previously explored in FOX’s series, Gotham, where Robin Lord Taylor played the iconic character. Danny DeVito and Burgess Meredith previously took on the role. Lauren LeFranc is set to write the script for the series and Farrell will executive produce, along with Reeves and the film’s producer Dylan Clark. If the show moves forward at the streamer, it’ll be the second The Batman spinoff series set for HBO Max, joining Gotham PD, a procedural drama set within the Gotham Police Department.

Nick Offerman is joining HBO’s The Last of Us. The Parks and Rec alum will guest star in the adaptation of Sony’s popular video game as Bill. He’s replacing Con O’Neill, who exited the project due to a scheduling conflict. Offerman will appear alongside Murray Bartlett’s Frank — two post-pandemic survivalists residing alone in their own isolated town. (Variety)

Amandla Stenberg is in talks to headline Disney+’s live-action Star Wars series, The Acolyte. The role she’d be playing is not yet known. However, in the Star Wars canon, an acolyte usually refers to a Sith who has begun training under an experienced Sith Lord. Disney and Lucasfilm previously confirmed the program would take place in the final days of the High Republic era — a period of time that ended roughly 50 years before the events of The Phantom Menace — and focus on the emergence of secretive dark side powers. (Variety)

Kim Dickens is returning to Fear the Walking Dead. The series, which has been renewed for season 8, will find the Deadwood alum reprising her role as Madison Clark — whom she played in the program’s first four seasons. Madison was last seen sacrificing herself in an explosion. Dickens’ return begins in the second half of season 7. (Variety)

Newcomer Aria Mia Loberti has landed the female lead role in All the Light We Cannot from Shawn Levy and Steven Knight. Loberti, who has no previous acting experience, will play Marie-Laure in the four-part limited series based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel of the same name. The blind teenager meets Werner, a German soldier, and together they attempt to survive the devastation of World War II in occupied France. (Deadline)

Graham Greene has joined the cast of Yellowstone prequel series 1883 at Paramount+. Greene will play Spotted Eagle, a Crow elder who happens across the Dutton family and tells James Dutton about Paradise Valley — the place he should settle his family. (Variety)

Michelle Monaghan, Jodie Turner-Smith, and Meredith Hagner have joined the cast of Apple TV+’s Bad Monkey. The series, which is written by Bill Lawrence (Ted Lasso, Scrubs) and will star Vince Vaughn, is based on Carl Hiassen’s 2013 book of the same name. The story follows former detective Andrew Yancy who gets demoted to restaurant inspector in Southern Florida.  A tourist fisherman’s discovery of a severed arm pulls Yancy into the world of greed and corruption that decimates the land and environment in both Florida and the Bahamas. (Variety)

HBO has filled out its cast for The Idol, a modern-day cult drama from Euphoria creator Sam Levinson, Reza Fahim, and Abel Tesfaye (better known as pop sensation The Weeknd). Juliebeth Gonzalez will be a series regular. Maya Eshet, Tyson Ritter, Kate Lyn Sheil, Liz Sierra, and Finley Rose Slater will all recur. The hour-long drama series — which will star The Weeknd alongside Lily-Rose Depp, Suzanna Son, Melanie Liburd, Tunde Adebimpe, Steve Zissis, Elizabeth Berkley Lauren, Nico Hiraga, Anne Heche and Australian electropop singer and actor Troye Sivan — centers on a self-help guru (and possible cult leader) who develops a relationship with a rising pop idol. (Variety)

AllBlk’s À La Carte has added Kandi Burruss, Robinne Lee, Kelly Price, and Dorien Wilson to its cast. The series stars Pauline Dyer, Jessie Woo, Kendall Kyndall, Jenna Nolen, and Courtney Burrell and follows Mahogany Rose (Dyer), who is described as “an overachiever in her 20’s who’s had high moral standards her entire life…until now.” After deciding to take a more liberal approach to her romantic life, she meets Kaleb (Burrell), the man of her dreams. Unfortunately, he’s spoken for. Complications will surely ensue. (Deadline)

Stephanie March (Law & Order: Special Victims Unit) has joined Ava DuVernay and Jill Blankenship’s DC superhero drama Naomi at the CW. Based on the comic series of the same name follows a teenage superhero whose life is disrupted when supernatural events begin to occur in her hometown. March will recur as Akira, a character originally from a faraway planet, who is not hiding out on Earth. (Variety)

Chris O’Dowd is getting top billing in Apple TV+’s upcoming comedy series, The Big Door Prize. The series 10-episode program is based on the M.O. Walsh novel of the same name and tells the story of a small town that is forever changed when a mysterious machine appears in the grocery store, promising to reveal each resident’s true life potential. O’Dowd will play Dusty, a good-natured teacher and family man whose deeply average life has followed a safe and predictable path until the appearance of the mystifying machine forces him to question his own happiness. (Variety)

Michael Shannon and Steve Zahn have joined Jessica Chastain in a limited series focusing on the tempestuous marriage of George Jones and Tammy Winette. Shannon will play Jones opposite Chastain’s Wynette. Zahn is in as George Richey, the country music couple’s manager. The six-episode limited series, which will be directed entirely by John Hillcoat, is based on the book The Three of Us: Growing Up with Tammy and George, which was penned by their daughter, Georgette Jones. (Deadline)

Julia Stiles, Marcus Scribner, Aimee Garcia, Ashley Liao, Lauren Tom, Keston John, Justina Machado, and D’Arcy Carden have all been announced as the main cast of Dragons: The Nine Realms — Hulu’s How to Train Your Dragon spinoff series. The six-episode series is set 1,300 years after the events of the original movies. The show hits Peacock and Hulu on Dec. 23. (Variety)

Production & Development: Amazon Prime Video Announces Surprise Animated The Boys Spinoff Series, Diabolical 

While we all wait for Amazon’s Prime Video to announce the release date of season 3 of The Boys, the streamer revealed a new series is on the horizon that will surely tide fans over. Diabolical is an eight-episode animated anthology that will feature a whole slew of untold stories within the crazy superhero world inspired by Garth Ennis and Darick Robinson’s iconic comic series as it currently exists in the live-action series from Eric Kripke, Seth Rogen, and Evan Goldberg. Diabolical features a collection of unique storytellers including Akwafina, Eliot and Ilana Glazer, Simon Racioppa, Justin Roiland and Ben Bayouth, Andy Samberg and Aisha Tyler, Rogen and Goldberg, and Ennis, himself. The program is the second spinoff of The Boys planned at Amazon — a YA superhero college series was previously ordered in September. Diabolical will premiere in early 2022. (Variety)

Original series creator Alan Ball is reportedly working on a Six Feet Under — something. The HBO series starred Michael C. Hall, Peter Krause, Lauren Ambrose, and Francis Conroy. Original executive producers Bob Greenblatt and David Janollari will executive produce the new project, which is in very early development. (Variety)

The Office is moving to Freeform. The network has struck a deal with NBCUniversal Global Distribution to own the non-exclusive rights to the popular Steve Carell–fronted sitcom. It will begin airing on the network on January 1. The entirety of the program is still available on NBC’s streaming platform, Peacock. (Deadline)

Jared Padalecki will executive produce a Walker prequel series for The CW titled, Walker: Independence. The origin story will take place in the late 1800s and follow Abby Walker, an affluent Bostonian, whose husband is murdered in front of her on their journey West. Fueled by vengeance, she soon partners with Hoyt Rawlins, who’s described as a “lovable rogue in search of a purpose” in the logline. The duo ends up in Independence, Texas, where they meet an eclectic array of citizens hiding their demons while chasing their dreams. (Variety)

Sylvester Stallone will star in a new mafia-themed drama series from Taylor Sheridan and Terence Winter. The Paramount+ show will follow Sal (Stallone), a legendary New York City mobster who is tasked with reestablishing his Italian mafia family in the straight-shooting town of Kansas City, Missouri. It’s there where he meets a slew of unsuspecting characters who agree to follow him along his unconventional path to power. (Variety)

Reservation Dogs co-creator Sterlin Harjo is developing a yet-to-be-titled miniseries with a Native female lead at FX. Harjo will direct, as well as co-write with bestselling novelist Jonathan Lee. Plot details are under wraps, but the project is described as a heist thriller centered around a Native woman. (Variety)

Henry Golding will star in and executive produce a TV adaptation of Dean Koontz’s Nameless. The program follows a man with amnesia who can’t remember anything beyond the mission he’s been assigned to, as he travels the country hunting down predators for a shadowy government agency. The Nameless series, which features a total of 12 short thrillers, was published by Amazon and held the top 10 positions on the Kindle Singles Best-Seller list in June, when the final story was published. No network is currently attached. (Hollywood Reporter)

Read Also: 27th Annual Critics Choice Awards TV Nominations

Freeform is moving into the animated space with Praise Petey, a project from SNL co-head writer Anna Drezen, Greg Daniels (The Office), and Mike Judge (Beavis and Butt-head). The show will revolve around Petey (played by Schitt’s Creek‘s Annie Murphy), a “New York City ‘it’ girl who has it all until her life comes crashing down.” That is until a mysterious gift from her father brings her hope as she “leans into” modernizing his small-town cult. John Cho plays cult member and potential love interest Bandit, Kiersey Clemons is Petey’s BFF, Christine Baranski voices Petey’s mother, Amy Hill is Bandit’s mother, and Stephen Root is Petey’s father. (Hollywood Reporter)

Peacock has picked up The Supernatural Academy, an animated series adaptation of the book series by Jaymin Eve. The series will chronicle the otherworldly adventures of sisters who were marked at birth — one raised in the Supernatural world, the other in the human one. As they’re reunited at the Supernatural Academy, the twins are forced to learn to get along and get past their conflicts in order to save the world. (Variety)

Most new titles from Universal Filmed Entertainment Group (UFEG) will stream exclusively on Peacock as early as 45 days after their theatrical and PVOD release, NBCUniversal announced. This distribution model will begin with the studio’s 2022 film slate which will include movies like The 355, the espionage drama starring Jessica Chastain, Penélope Cruz, Bingbing Fan, Diane Kruger, and Lupita Nyong’o; Ticket To Paradise, starring George Clooney and Julia Roberts; The Black Phone from Blumhouse Productions starring Ethan Hawke; Marry Me starring Jennifer Lopez and Owen Wilson; new movies from DreamWorks Animation including The Bad Guys; Downton Abbey: A New Era from Focus Features; Ambulance, the breakneck thriller from director-producer Michael Bay; the final installment of the Halloween franchise, Halloween Ends, and much more.

A one-hour drama series titled Hipster Death Rattle is in the works at The CW from Rafael Agustín, Marvin Lemus, and Wilmer Valderrama. Based on the novel by Richie Narvaez, the show is set in a historically Latino neighborhood that’s facing an aggressive wave of gentrification. As the logline says: “Someone is killing the ‘woke’ yet pretentious new hipsters. But who? And worse – do the locals even care? The victims were just hiking up rent anyway!’” (Deadline)

Only to Deceive, a contemporary TV series adaptation of Tasha Alexander’s novel And Only to Deceive, is being developed by Paul Sciarrota (BH90210), Milo Ventimiglia (This Is Us), and Russ Cundiff at ABC. The book, which is the first in the Lady Emily Mysteries, is set in Victorian England. The show, if it moves forward, will take place in modern-day America and follow Lady Emily Ashton, the toast of New York City’s high society, as she attempts to make sense of her late husband’s mysterious death. In the process, she cultivates a secret career as a private investigator alongside unlikely partner, Long Island ex-cop Colin Hargreaves. (Deadline)

Tyler Perry is developing Zatima, a spinoff of his popular drama Sistas, at BET+. The 10-episode drama features Sistas alums Devale Ellis and Crystal Renee Hayslett reprising their roles as Zac and Fatima, respectively. Zatima is the second spinoff of a Perry-created series at BET/BET+ and will join Ruthless, which is a spinoff of The Oval, on the streamer. (Hollywood Reporter)

HBO Max is making Bunny & Clyde, a half-hour comedy from Search Party alums Jeffery Self and Cole Escola, who star in the title roles. The program will follow two lost and codependent souls — Clyde (played by Self), a broken gay thirtysomething amid an unmedicated bipolar episode, and Bunny (Escola), a non-binary self-identifying cabaret star — as they face a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to reinvent themself and achieve a second chance at happiness. The only catch? Living in a dead man’s house, assuming new identities, and convincing an entire Palm Springs community that the guy is alive and kicking while they work to sell off his estate. (Deadline)

On an Apple device? Follow Rotten Tomatoes on Apple News.