TV Talk

Ryan Murphy Turns to Jeffrey Dahmer for His Next Series

Serial killer limited series will focus on the victims and police disinterest. Plus, Witcher season 2 first-look, new Christopher Meloni Law & Order delay, Game Of Thrones prequel casting, and more top TV and streaming news.

by | October 8, 2020 | Comments

American Horror Story creator turns to a real-life monster for his next project for Netflix, Game of Thrones prequel gets its first star, The Witcher season 2 first-look, premiere dates and trailers from New York Comic-Con, and more of the week’s top TV and streaming news.


Ryan Murphy’s Monster Limited Series Will Focus on the Victims of the Late Serial Killer Jeffrey Dahmer

Serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer

(Photo by Curt Borgwardt/Sygma/Sygma via Getty Images)

Ryan Murphy has never been afraid to get into dark subject matter, and it doesn’t get much darker than his next limited series for Netflix: Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story.

Murphy and his producing partner Ian Brennan are shepherding the project to the streaming service, and Richard Jenkins has already signed on to play Dahmer’s father, Lionel. The search is on to play Dahmer, who was most notably played on screen previously by Jeremy Renner in the 2002 movie Dahmer.

Director Carl Franklin (The Leftovers) and director/writer Janet Mock (Pose) will also serve as executive producers on Monster, as well as writing and directing several episodes.

In addition to focusing on Dahmer’s victims, Monster will examine how police disinterest in the case allowed Dahmer to not only go undetected for a long time, but allowed him to get away without being caught nearly a dozen times. As for his chemist father, he is the one who showed his son how to use chemicals to preserve animal bones. (Deadline)

Chris Meloni’s Law & Order: SVU Spin-Off Will Miss Fall Season to Find a New Showrunner

Christopher Meloni in 2018

(Photo by Mike Coppola/NBCUniversal/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images)

It was one of the most anticipated new series of the season, but Elliot Stabler fans will have to wait until next year to get a look at Law & Order: Organized Crime, the Law & Order: SVU spin-off that will revolve around Chris Meloni’s beloved character.

Matt Olmstead, who was set to serve as Organized Crime showrunner as part of a three-year deal with Universal Television, is leaving the show, because he had trouble “cracking the show’s creative,” reports. He previously worked with Dick Wolf’s Wolf Entertainment, where he was showrunner on Chicago Fire, co-created and ran Chicago P.D., and helped develop Chicago Med. He also helped launch Stumptown at ABC.

While Olmstead is expected to work on another Wolf series, the search for a replacement showrunner, as well as the inherent delays associated with pandemic-era production, mean there is not yet a new date for Law & Order: Organized Crime to make its premiere, though it is still expected to hit the NBC schedule before the end of the 2020-21 season.

NEW TRAILERS: The Expanse Returns for Season 5 in December

Fans of its space opera The Expanse got an early Halloween treat with a NYCC announcement that the series would return for season 5 on December 15 with three episodes, then an episode a week thereafter until its February 3 finale. (Amazon Prime Video)

More trailers and teasers released this week:

• Cobra Kai, season 3, apparently will waste no time solving that huge season 2 finale cliffhanger (because it apparently solves it right in the trailer). Premieres Jan. 8, and a fourth season was just announced as being a go, too. (Netflix)
Snowpiercer, starring Jennifer Connelly and Daveed Diggs, adds Sean Bean and Rowan Blanchard to the cast and returns for season 2 on January 25. (TNT)
• Dickinson, starring Hailee Steinfeld, returns for season 2 on January 8. (Apple TV+)
InvincibleRobert Kirkman’s upcoming, hour-long adult animated series, tells the story of a super teen and stars The Walking Dead’s Steve Yeun. (Amazon Prime Video)
• Grand Army is a teen drama, based on Katie Cappiello’s play Slut, about racism, sexism, and other stark issues facing teens at a New York City high school. Premieres Oct. 16 (Netflix)
• Selena: The Series is a drama series about the life of late Tejano pop star Selena, played by The Walking Dead star Christian Serratos. Premieres Dec. 4 (Netflix)
• Bad Hair is a horror satire movie about an ambitious young woman who gets a weave to play the style game while working at an MTV-like company, only to find out her hair may be haunted. Written, directed, and produced by Justin Simien (Dear White People), and starring Lena Waithe, Jay Pharoah, Kelly Rowland, Laverne Cox, Blair Underwood, Vanessa Williams, and James Van Der Beek. Premieres Oct. 23 (Hulu)
• Marvel’s 616 is a docuseries about Marvel fan culture, storytelling, and creatives. Premieres Nov. 20 (Disney+)
• My Next Guest Needs No Introduction, season 3, sees David Letterman returning to interview Dave Chappelle, Lizzo, Robert Downey Jr., and Kim Kardashian. Premieres Oct. 21 (Netflix)
• The Snoopy Show is a new cartoon series celebrating the 70th anniversary of the titular beagle and the Peanuts gang. Premieres Feb. 5 (Apple TV+)
• 537 Votes is Oscar winner Adam McKay’s documentary about the 2000 election. Premieres Oct. 21 (HBO)
• Blood of Zeus is an animated drama series about the son of Zeus trying to save heaven and earth from evil giants. Stars Chris Diamantopoulos, Jason O’Mara, Mamie Gummer, and Derek Phillips. Premieres Oct. 27 (Netflix)
• Chelsea Handler: Evolution is the comedian’s first stand-up special in six years, filmed in New Jersey during the pandemic. Premieres Oct. 22 (Netflix)

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

CASTING: Game of Thrones Prequel House of the Dragon Names Its First Star: The Outsider’s Paddy Considine

Paddy Considine in January 2020

Game of Thrones prequel House of the Dragon has cast its first leading man: The Outsider star Paddy Considine, who will play King Viserys Targaryen, a nice man, but possibly not a good king. The series is based on GoT creator George R.R. Martin’s Fire & Blood, and is set 300 years before the action in GoT. Read more: “Everything We Know About Game of Thrones Prequel Series House of the Dragon.”

With production on season 2 of Apple TV+’s The Morning Show scheduled to begin on Oct. 19, Deadline reports that Steve Carell will return, alongside Reese Witherspoon, Jennifer Aniston, Mark Duplass, Billy Crudup, Nestor Carbonell, Bel Powley, Karen Pittman, and Desean Terry. The sophomore season will also find the pandemic woven into the storyline.

Downton Abbey star Joanne Froggatt will star in the Spectrum Originals series Angela Black, a thriller about a suburban mom whose seemingly perfect life hides the fact that she’s the victim of domestic abuse. She meets a stranger who offers her a way out, but she’s unsure if it’s wise to trust him. Game of Thrones alum Michiel Huisman plays her dangerous husband, and the series is produced by Harry and Jack Williams, who created another Froggatt series, Liar, and were producers on Fleabag.

Sterling K. Brown will play White House chief of staff Leo McGarry in the Oct. 15 reunion A West Wing Special to Benefit When We All Vote on HBO Max. The late John Spencer won an Emmy for his portrayal of McGarry in the series.

Busy Philipps and A.P. Bio star Paula Pell have joined the cast of Girls5Eva, the Tina Fey Peacock comedy about a ‘90s girl band who want to reunite. The two play band members, alongside Sara Bareilles and Renée Elise Goldsberry.

Noah Galvin (The Real O’Neals), Bria Samoné Henderson (Mrs. America), Brian Marc (The Kill Team), and newcomer Summer Brown are joining the cast of ABC’s The Good Doctor for season 4, where they will play first-year residents who will be part of a major season-long storyline. (Deadline)

Natalie Zea, who reunited with her Justified co-star Walton Goggins in CBS’s The Unicorn season 1 finale, will be a recurring character in the show’s second season, as Shannon, the woman Goggins’ Wade is attracted to, but whose life turns out to be very complicated.

Chloë Grace Moretz will star in Amazon’s The Peripheral, an adaptation of the William Gibson futuristic novel of the same name, at Amazon. She’s playing Flynn, who gets caught up in a possible murder, in a story that involves multiple future worlds. The Deuce star Gary Carr has joined the cast as Wilf, a publicist who lives in a future several decades ahead of Flynn. (Variety)

Bex Taylor-Kraus (The Killing) has joined the cast of ABC’s Triage, playing gender fluid first-year intern Leonora/Leo at New York Trinity hospital. Taylor-Kraus will play the character in two different decades in the multi-decade series. (Deadline)

Andie MacDowell will join her daughter, Margaret Qualley, in the Netflix dramedy series Maid. The duo will play mother and daughter in the series, about a single mom who becomes a housekeeper to try to break out of poverty and pay her bills. The series is based on Stephanie Land’s autobiographical, bestselling book Maid: Hard Work, Low Pay, and a Mother’s Will to Survive. (Deadline)

Christian Slater, Joe Manganiello, Harry Lennix, Ross Butler, Vanessa Hudgens, and Jena Malone are joining Dave Bautista, Tig Notaro, and Omari Hardwick in Army of the Dead: Lost Vegas, Zack Snyder’s Netflix anime series that will be the prequel for Snyder’s Army of the Dead movie.

PRODUCTION & DEVELOPMENT: Kate Mulgrew Returns to the Star Trek Universe for New Nickelodeon Series Prodigy

Kate Mulgrew will return to her role as Captain Kathryn Janeway for Nickelodeon’s upcoming animated series Star Trek: Prodigy, which will follow a group of “lawless teens who discover a derelict Starfleet ship and use it to search for adventure, meaning and salvation.” The first Trek series aimed at younger audiences on Nickelodeon, Prodigy will debut in 2021. Alex Kurtzman, Heather Kadin, Katie Krentz, Rod Roddenberry, and Trevor Roth are executive producers alongside series creators and co-showrunners Kevin and Dan Hageman.

Mulgrew is also one of 19 Trek stars to participate in Joe Biden’s “Trek the Vote to Victory” virtual campaign event. On Oct. 13, she will be joined by Patrick Stewart, George Takei, LeVar Burton, Anthony Rapp, Sonequa Martin-Green, Brent Spiner, Jonathan Frakes, Santiago Cabrera, Wil Wheaton, Wilson Cruz, Alison Pill, Evan Evagora, Gates McFadden, Isa Briones, Jeri Ryan, Jonathan Del Arco, Michelle Hurd, and Marina Sirtis for the fundraiser, which fans can join in.

Monica Barbaro, who will be the only female fighter pilot in the upcoming Top Gun: Maverick movie, has signed on to play Arnold Schwarzenegger’s daughter in a spy adventure series from Skydance Television. The still-untitled series was created by Nick Santora, who is also the executive producer and showrunner for Amazon’s upcoming Jack Reacher series. (Deadline) 

Very busy Handmaid’s Tale star Elisabeth Moss has added another project to her schedule: she’ll play former Congresswoman Katie Hill in an adaptation of Hill’s recently released memoir, She Will Rise: Becoming a Warrior in the Battle for True Equality. Blumhouse Television is developing the project as a movie for a streaming service, and both Moss and Hill will be producers on the movie. Hill’s book unfolds the story of her 2019 resignation from Congress after a scandal involving an alleged affair with one of her staffers, and the leaking of nude photos she has called a revenge porn campaign.

The next DC Comics TV stars: the crime-fighting vehicles of Gotham City. Warner Bros. Animation announced a new series aimed at preschoolers – Batwheels – for HBO Max and Cartoon Network. The stars are the talking cars, created by the Batcomputer, who help Batman and friends stop evildoing: Bat (the Batmobile), Bibi (the Batgirl Cycle), Red (the Redbird), Jet (the Batwing), and Buff (the Bat Truck).

Disney+ has announced High School Musical: The Musical: The Holiday Special, featuring the cast of High School Musical: The Musical: The Series singing their favorite Christmas, Hanukkah, and New Year’s songs and sharing their fondest holiday memories. The 45-minute special, premiering on December 11, will also include a peek at a performance from the upcoming second season of the series.

Apple TV+ will release its Bruce Springsteen’s Letter to You documentary, which chronicles the rock legend’s creative process behind his upcoming album of the same name, on Oct. 23, the same day the album will be released.

The Last Dance has been one of the TV delights of the year, and an upcoming docuseries on L.A. Lakers Hall of Fame superstar Magic Johnson is being compared to the Michael Jordan doc. Dope and The Mandalorian writer and director Rick Famuyiwa will direct the untitled series, which will include interviews with Johnson, and is scheduled to be ready for 2021. (Variety)

Apple TV+ has ordered Ron Howard and Brian Grazer’s The Supermodels, a docuseries about how supermodels Cindy Crawford, Naomi Campbell, Christy Turlington, and Linda Evangelista became cultural icons. All four women will participate in the four-part series.

Godzilla: Singular Point, a new anime series, will premiere on Netflix in 2021. The series will be unrelated to other animated Godzilla projects on Netflix, and will feature a newly designed Godzilla, courtesy of Studio Ghibli animator Eiji Yamamori.

Amazon and executive producer Orlando Bloom are developing The Cleaners, a series based on writer Ken Liu’s short story about a future world where inanimate objects hold the memories of people’s experiences. Some people can touch the object to remember their pasts, while cleaners are hired to sweep the objects and relieve the emotional weight of the memories. Liu’s story is loosely based on Hans Christian Anderson’s The Princess and The Pea and will be published as a collection of retold fairy tales by Amazon Original Stories in December. (Deadline)

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