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Hulu’s Pam & Tommy series releases a teaser trailer to announce its premiere date. Plus, a Harry Potter cast reunion celebrating the 20th anniversary of the franchise is coming to HBO Max. Starz is bringing Party Down back with most of the original actors returning for the revival. Netflix’s Avatar: The Last Airbender live-action series adds more to its cast, Paramount Plus’s first teaser trailer for its Halo TV series, and more of the biggest news in TV and streaming this week.
Hulu dropped the first official trailer for its Pam & Tommy series, which hails from Craig Gillespie, the director behind movies I, Tonya, and Cruella. The six-part series digs into the lesser-known aspects of the notorious sex tape stolen from Baywatch star Pamela Anderson (played here by Lily James) and her then-husband, Mötley Crüe drummer Tommy Lee (Sebastian Stan).
The two actors look nearly identical to the celebrities they’re playing, a detail that helps immerse viewers in the trailer and — if they weren’t already fans of the actors or their real-life characters —immediately become invested in the story. The trailer opens, however, on Seth Rogen as Rand Gauthier, the man who installed a security system in the Lees’ home, before stealing the intimate tape taken by the couple during their honeymoon. And then there’s Nick Offerman bringing the sleaze as slick-haired adult film producer known simply as Uncle Miltie.
“It’s so private,” Offerman says after Rogen guides him to the damning scene in question. “Which is kind of what makes it so hot.”
Pam & Tommy explores the scandal that unfolded once the notorious sex tape went public. The program will surely dig into the themes of celebrity privacy, the media’s overreach, and how public opinion can easily be altered by merely clicking play on an intimate video that was never meant for prying eyes. As James’ Anderson knowingly hints to in the trailer, the aftermath of the tape’s release will impact her personal and professional life. And, as those who remember the way things went down, the scandal’s effect on her was way more negative and damaging than that of Tommy Lee.
Taylor Schilling, Andrew Dice Clay, Pepi Sonuga, Spencer Granese, and Mozhan Marnò also star. Pam & Tommy will premiere its first three episodes on Wednesday, February 2 on Hulu.
Two decades after audiences first watched young Mr. Potter walk through the hallowed halls of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, the original Harry Potter trio will reunite on-screen for a special celebration of the film franchise. Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint, and Emma Watson, who starred as Harry Potter, Hermoine Granger, and Ron Weasley, respectively, will join filmmaker Chris Columbus and cast members from all eight movies for the first time in an HBO Max retrospective special to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the first film, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone.
Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts will, according to HBO Max, “tell an enchanting making-of-story through all-new, in-depth interviews and cast conversations.” Other Harry Potter franchise alumni set to appear in the special include Helena Bonham Carter, Robbie Coltrane, Ralph Fiennes, Jason Isaacs, Gary Oldman, Imelda Staunton, Tom Felton, James Phelps, Oliver Phelps, Mark Williams, Bonnie Wright, Alfred Enoch, Matthew Lewis, Evanna Lynch, and Ian Hart.
J.K. Rowling, the author of the celebrated book series, is not scheduled to appear in the special.
Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts will drop on New Year’s Day, January 1, 2022, to HBO Max. The special will also air on TBS and Cartoon Network in spring 2022 in time for the theatrical debut of Fantastic Beasts: The Secret of Dumbledore.
Nearly three years after Showtime announced plans to develop a live-action Halo TV series based on the popular XBOX video game franchise, the first official teaser for the series is here. The program has since moved to Paramount Plus, as a part of the platform’s rebrand, and by the looks of things, video game fans have a lot to look forward to.
The clip is a short one but gives enough of a glimpse of Pablo Schreiber (American Gods, Orange Is the New Black) as Spartan 117 (better known as Master Chief) as he suits up in the iconic super soldier armor. “Hello, Master Chief,” a familiar voice says. Yes, that’s Jen Taylor reprising her role as AI Cortana from the video games. Pretty cool. Halo will premiere on Paramount+ in 2022.
More trailers and teasers released this week:
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(Photo by Netflix)
Netflix is continuing to fill out the roster for its Avatar: The Last Airbender live-action series, which is currently in production. Paul Sun-Hyung Lee (Kim’s Convenience, The Mandalorian) has been cast as retired Fire Nation general, Uncle Iroh, who is the nurturing and wise mentor to Prince Zuko, his hot-headed nephew. Lim Kay Siu (Anna and The King, Nightwatch) will play the kind and caring Air Nomad monk, Gyatso — the guardian, father figure and best friend to Aang. And Ken Leung (Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Old) will be playing the ambitious Fire Nation officer, Commander Zhao, a scheming individual who is eager to leverage an unexpected encounter with a desperate Prince Zuko to advance his personal goals. Previously announced cast members for the series are Gordon Cormier as Aang, Kiawentiio as Katara, Ian Ousley as Sokka, Dallas Liu as Zuko, and Daniel Dae Kim as Fire Lord Ozai. Original series creators Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko exited the series in 2020 and are now working with Nickelodeon to establish Avatar Studios, an animation house that will develop new animated programs and movies set within the Avatar universe.
Modern Family alum Julie Bowen is set to star in a single-camera comedy, the first project to come from that actress’s first-look deal with Universal Television. The series, which has landed at NBC with a pilot commitment, follows Lulu Wallace (Bowen), who returns home after losing her PR business in a messy divorce, to lick her wounds and help her aging magician father save the storied Magic Manor from closure. (Deadline)
Sesame Street introduced its first Asian American muppet on Monday. Ji-Young is a 7-year-old Korean American character and the latest addition to the longstanding children’s program’s attention to diversifying its family. A TV special celebrating the diversity of the Asian and Pacific Islander community called See Us Coming Together: A Sesame Street Special, will premiere on Thanksgiving to HBO Max, PBS Kids, and Sesame Street‘s YouTube, Facebook, and Instagram pages. (Variety)
Zach Gilford, Amanda Crew, Alisha Wainwright, Carlos Santos, and newcomers Briella Guiza and David Mattle will make up the cast for There’s Something Wrong With the Children. Blumhouse Television and Epix are teaming on the horror film, which, according to Variety, follows Margaret (Wainwright) and Ben (Gilford) who are on a weekend trip with longtime friends Ellie (Crew) and Thomas (Santos) and their two young children (Guiza and Mattle). Eventually, Ben begins to suspect something supernatural is occurring when the kids behave strangely after disappearing into the woods overnight.”
HBO Max’s comedy series Minx — which centers on Joyce (Ophelia Lovibond), who sets out in 1970s Los Angeles to create the first-ever erotic magazine for women, thanks to the help of a low-rent publisher (Jake Johnson) — has added five recurring roles to its cast, along with two notable guest stars. Alicia Hannah-Kim (Grey’s Anatomy, White Collar) will play best-selling feminist author Wendy Mah; Amy Landecker (Transparent, Your Honor) is playing conservative councilwoman Bridget Westbury; Gillian Jacobs (Community, Fear Street) will be Maggie, a friend from Joyce’s New York days; Austin Nichols (Walker, Ray Donovan) plays hotshot bad-boy quarterback Billy “The Goat” Brunson; and Rich Sommer (Mad Men, Run) is Lenny, Joyce’s brother-in-law. Hope Davis (Love Life, Your Honor) and Stephen Tobolowsky (One Day at a Time, Silicon Valley) will guest star. (Deadline)
NBC’s upcoming Annie Live! has added Broadway’s original Annie, Andrea McArdle to the cast. She will play Eleanor Roosevelt alongside Alan Troy, who is the first polio survivor to ever play Franklin Delano Roosevelt. (Deadline)
(Photo by Paramount+)
Taylor Sheridan‘s highly-anticipated Yellowstone prequel series, 1883, has announced its full cast joining Sam Elliott, Tim McGraw, Faith Hill, Billy Bob Thornton, Isabel May, and LaMonica Garret ahead of the December 19 premiere on Paramount+:
Senan West, the real-life son of actor Dominic West, has been tapped to play Prince William in the next season of Netflix’s fifth season of The Crown. The 13-year-old boy will play a slightly older Prince William, portraying him as he begins to mature into a young man. He will make his on-screen debut in the final episodes of the season. (Variety)
White Lotus star Jennifer Coolidge has joined Bobby Cannavale and Naomi Watts for Ryan Murphy’s The Watcher at Netflix. The limited series, which hasn’t officially been announced by the streamer, is said to follow Watts and Cannavale, a married couple who moves into their dream home only to be terrorized by threatening letters from a stalker known simply as “The Watcher.” (Deadline)
Lizzy Caplan will star in FX on Hulu’s upcoming limited series, Fleishman Is in Trouble opposite Jesse Eisenberg, who steps into the title role as Toby Fleishman. Caplan is Libby, the narrator of the nine-episode series and Toby’s friend. The series is an adaptation of the Taffy Brodesser-Akner novel of the same name which Toby Fleishman, a 40-something divorcé who enjoys using dating apps until his ex-wife Rachel goes missing. To find her, he will need to go back and re-examine why their marriage didn’t work out in the first place. (Variety)
Arianna Williams and Jimmy Gonzales have been added to the cast of Amazon’s drama series Once Upon a Time in Aztlan in leading roles. They join previously announced talent George Lopez, Jesse Garcia, and Annie Gonzalez. Williams will play Angela, an independent and fiercely loyal Gen-Z Afro Latina, who is being described as “always adapting” to the face of modern Los Angeles. Gonzales will be Hector, a morally compromised young man whose “get rich or die trying” dreams landed his partner Arturo Duran in prison for 13 years. The program will center on a Chicano family in the deep suburbs of Los Angeles as they come to terms with the falsehoods of the American dream, and their ability to defy expectations. (Deadline)
Two-time Oscar nominee Jacki Weaver will star opposite Billy Crudup in Apple TV+ original series Hello Tomorrow! Set in a retro-future world, the series will center on a group of traveling salesmen as they work to hawk lunar timeshares. Crudup will star as Jack, a talented and ambitious salesman whose unshakeable faith in a better tomorrow inspires his coworkers and customers while threatening to leave him “dangerously lost” in the utopian dream that sustains him. Weaver will counteract this unwavering positivity as Barbara Billings, his caustic and manipulative mother. Hank Azaria, Haneefah Wood, Alison Pill, Nick Podany, and Dewshane Williams round out the program’s ensemble cast. (Deadline)
Justin Bieber, Darren Criss, Kane Brown, and Alessia Cara will perform live on CBS’s 23rd Annual A Home for the Holidays at the Grove. The entertainment special, which features uplifting stories of adoption from foster care and raises awareness of this important social issue, will air on Sunday, December 5 at 9:30 PM ET/ 9 PM PT on CBS.
Walker Hayes, Italian rock band Måneskin, Tyler, the Creator, and Diplo have been added to the performance lineup for the 2021 American Music Awards. Previously announced performers for the event, which will be hosted by Cardi B, include Bad Bunny, Tainy and Julieta Venegas, BTS with Megan Thee Stallion (the two are joining forces for the world television premiere of the “Butter” remix), Olivia Rodrigo, Carrie Underwood with Jason Aldean, Kane Brown, New Edition, and New Kids on the Block. The American Music Awards airs Sunday, November 21 at 5 PM PT on ABC, and will stream the next day on Hulu. (Variety)
(Photo by Starz)
The Party Down gang is getting back together for a revival series at Starz. Original series stars Adam Scott, Jane Lynch, Ken Marino, Martin Starr, Ryan Hansen, and Megan Mullally have all signed on to return to the six-episode limited series. Lizzy Caplan will not return due to scheduling conflicts, as she is currently attached to lead Paramount Plus’s Fatal Attraction series and Fleishman Is in Trouble at FX on Hulu.
The original half-hour comedy series, which aired for two seasons during the 2009-2010 season, followed a Los Angeles catering team – a group of struggling artists and Hollywood wannabes stuck working for tips while constantly striving for their “big break.” Each episode found the catering crew working a new event and inevitably getting involved with the quirky guests and their lives. Original series creators and executive producers Rob Thomas, John Enbom, Paul Rudd, and Dan Etheridge are back as executive producers on the revival, with Enbom stepping up as showrunner. (Variety)
Doctor Who, Strictly Come Dancing, MasterChef, Top Gear, The Apprentice, and Antiques Roadshow will get special episodes as a part of the 100th birthday celebration of the BBC in 2022. BBC Three’s relaunch as a broadcast channel focusing on drama series will coincide with the ongoing celebration that will feature documentary specials, live music events, informative children’s shows, as well as the Queen’s platinum jubilee celebrations, soccer via the Women’s Euros, and the World Cup, and the Commonwealth Games. (Variety)
How I Met Your Father, the upcoming spinoff of the CBS comedy How I Met Your Mother will premiere on Jan. 18, 2022, on Hulu. The program centers on Hilary Duff‘s Sophie, who, in the near future, tells her son the story of how she met his father in the year 2021 while navigating young adulthood with her friends. (Variety)
Jumanji and Avengers star Karen Gillan is attached to star in Disney+’s Rhona Who Lives by the River. The animated musical series hails from Suburgatory creator Emily Kapnek. Stoopid Buddy Stoodios will provide the animation and four-time Oscar nominee Danny Elfman will take on the music duties for the project, as well as serve as executive producer alongside Kapnek and Gillan. (Deadline)
Netflix has given a 10-episode series order to Blockbuster, a single-camera workplace comedy starring Randall Park, which is set in the last remaining Blockbuster video store. The ensemble series, which was originally set up at NBC by creator Vanessa Ramos (Superstore, Brooklyn Nine-Nine), explores what it takes – and more specifically who it takes – for a small business to succeed against all odds. Happy Endings creator David Caspe and Jackie Clarke (Superstore, Happy Endings) will serve as writers/executive producers on the series. (Deadline)
(Photo by Amazon Studios)
Ready for more Marvelous Mrs. Maisel? Amazon has released two new images as a first look at the upcoming fourth season of the Emmy-winning series. The first shows Midge (Rachel Brosnahan), looking pensive amid a show-biz flurry backstage The second gives a look at Abe (Tony Shalhoub) and Rose (Marin Hinkle) as they eat off of TV trays in front of the television, teasing the continuing storyline of their financial struggles which was introduced in season 3. The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel season 4 will premiere sometime early 2022 on Amazon Prime Video. (Deadline)
(Photo by Amazon Studios)
CBS has partnered with SEAL Team star Max Thieriot in developing Cal Fire, a drama series inspired by Thieriot’s experiences growing up in Northern California fire country. The program follows young convict Bode Donovan who seeks a shorter prison sentence by joining a firefighting program that brings him back to his small Northern California hometown. Along his journey to redemption, Donoval and other inmates partner with elite firefighters to battle blazes across the region. The program is inspired by an original idea by Thieriot. (Deadline)
SAS: Rogue Heroes, the BBC One wartime drama from Peaky Blinders creator Steven Knight has been acquired by US network Epix. The six-part series tells the story of how the SAS was formed during World War Two and stars Dominic West, Jack O’Connell, Sex Education‘s Connor Swindells, and Game of Thrones alum Alfie Allen. (Deadline)
Apple TV+’s The Afterparty is an ensemble comedy series about a murder mystery that takes place at a high school reunion. Each episode will dig into the alibi of different characters with visual pop culture references to match their perspectives. The series hails from Chris Miller, who serves as creator, director and showrunner, and stars Tiffany Haddish, Sam Richardson, Zoë Chao, Ben Schwartz, Ike Barinholtz, Ilana Glazer, Jamie Demetriou, and Dave Franco, and will drop its first three episodes to the streamer on Friday, January 28th.
Starz has greenlighted a BMF docuseries from Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson, the executive producer and creative force behind the breakout hit drama series BMF (aka Black Mafia Family). The scripted program is inspired by the true story of brothers Demetrius “Big Meech” Flenory and Terry “Southwest T” Flenory. According to Jackson, “The docuseries will offer an inside look at different perspectives from all of those involved, BMF — Blowing Money Fast.”
Lena Waithe is developing Hoop Dreams, a scripted drama inspired by the landmark documentary film of the same name. According to Deadline, the coming-of-age drama will follow “two African American teenage boys in 1990s Chicago experiencing the privileges and pitfalls of being high school basketball phenoms at the height of the Jordan era, and the start of high school players turning pro. Through their friendship and rivalry, the boys must learn to empower themselves in a world that considers them commodities before they can legally drive.”
Classic trivia game Trivial Pursuit is being developed into a game show by Entertainment One and LeVar Burton (Star Trek: The Next Generation, Reading Rainbow) is set to host. Burton will also executive produce the series. No network is attached, yet, to the series. (Variety)
Dame Helen Mirren has been named the 57th recipient of SAG-AFTRA’s highest tribute: the SAG Life Achievement Award for career achievement and humanitarian accomplishment. Mirren will be presented the performers union’s top accolade at the 28th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards, which will be simulcast live on TNT and TBS on Sunday, Feb. 27, 2022, at 8 p.m. ET / 5 p.m. PT from The Barker Hangar in Santa Monica.