This week in TV news, comic books are everywhere as the Walking Dead spinoff casts a lead, AMC orders a Preacher pilot from Seth Rogen, and Arrow soars in the ratings thanks to The Flash. HBO also makes news with Scorsese’s rock and roll series and a slew of WGA nominations.
Scorsese rock ‘n’ roll pilot ordered to series.
Though Boardwalk Empire is over forever, HBO will continue its relationship with Martin Scorsese and Terence Winter, announcing plans to develop their as-of-yet-unnamed rock and roll pilot into a series. Set in the 1970s, the Scorsese-Winter project will star Bobby Canavale (who won an Emmy as Boardwalk‘s Gyp Rosetti) as Richie Finestra, a music executive trying to run a rock label during the heyday of disco and punk music in New York City. The project also includes Andrew “Dice” Clay, Ray Romano, Olivia Wilde, and Juno Temple, and will be exec-produced by Scorsese, Winter (who will write the series), and Rolling Stones front man Mick Jagger. His son, James Jagger, will play the lead singer of a punk band named Nasty Bits. This long-gestating project began in 2010. Hopefully, both HBO and Finestra can find their next hit!
Cliff Curtis lands a leading role in Walking Dead spinoff.
According to Entertainment Weekly, Cliff Curtis (Gang Related, Trauma) will have a “male lead role” in AMC’s unnamed spinoff of The Walking Dead. Currently at the pilot stage (but a shoo-in to become a series on AMC), the project will take place in the The Walking Dead‘s zombie outbreak universe, but in a different location (and perhaps in a different time). Curtis joins already-announced cast members Alycia Debnam Carey (Into the Woods) and Frank Dillane (Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince). The pilot is being written by Robert Kirkman (The Walking Dead) and Dave Erickson (Sons of Anarchy), and while Fringe’s Anna Torv was rumored to be in the running for the female lead role until recently, the part is still up for grabs.
Writers Guild announces TV nominations.
The WGA unveiled its TV nominations Thursday, giving major props to HBO, while overlooking every network series except CBS’s The Good Wife. Among the drama nominees were HBO’s True Detective and Game of Thrones, while, in the comedy category, Silicon Valley and Veep scored noms. It was good news for Amazon Studios with the recognition of their break-out streaming hit Transparent, which was nominated in the comedy category for the first time, and newcomers The Affair (Showtime) and The Knick (Cinemax) were also recognized in the category for new series. FX’s Fargo didn’t make the cut in spite of being a critical darling this year. See the full list of WGA 2014 nominees here.
AMC orders Preacher pilot from Seth Rogen.
The controversial comic book Preacher will be adapted into a pilot for AMC by This Is the End writers/directors Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg. Sam Catlin (Breaking Bad), who wrote the script, will serve as showrunner. In Preacher, a small-town Texan preacher named Jesse Custer morphs with Genesis, a half-angel/half-demon from heaven, giving Custer the power to do pretty much anything. Along with his ex-girlfriend and an Irish vampire, Custer embarks on a journey to find God, who left heaven after the birth of Genesis. “Preacher has been our favorite comic since it first came out,” Rogen and Goldberg said in a statement. Based on a 1990s comic book series by Garth Ennis and Steve Dillon, Preacher will shoot in 2015 with the hopes of going to series in 2016.
The Flash gives Arrow‘s ratings a big boost.
With Wednesday night’s conclusion of the Arrow–Flash crossover (which started with Tuesday’s episode of The Flash), The CW’s Arrow enjoyed record-high ratings. The Dec. 3 episode of Arrow was its highest-rated episode ever in the 18-49 demographic, and had its second most-watched episode ever with 3.86 million viewers — behind only the Arrow series premiere on Oct. 12, 2012. The crossover also helped The CW to beat out Fox’s Hell’s Kitchen in the same hour. Perhaps these two should hang out more often.