Vida (2018– )
Now that the Starz pay-tv group has been acquired by Lionsgate, the TV division’s roster is expanding still more with the goal of using Starz as the launch pad for programs that can be sold to buyers around the world.
Lionsgate Television chairman Kevin Beggs recently spoke with Variety about the new opportunities through Starz and the expansion of the studio’s activity in international markets.
At Miptv your distribution team will be shopping two new Starz series,
Warmer weather, budding trees, blooming flowers — spring (fingers crossed) finally seems to be here. To make good news even better, it has arrived with a bevy of TV series and projects from and about women. The next few months will see a ton of television narratives and docs centered on, created, written, and directed by women, and we’ve assembled some of the most promising titles here for your convenience.
The season kicks off April 8 with “Killing Eve,” the new series from “Fleabag” creator/star Phoebe Waller-Bridge. The BBC America thriller, based on Luke Jennings’ “Villanelle” novellas, is about two women in a very twisted relationship: Eve (Sandra Oh), an MI5 security officer longing for excitement, and Villanelle (Jodie Comer), the serial killer she becomes fixated upon.
Several other book adaptations are making their way to the small screen this spring. Hettie Macdonald’s “Howards End
The latest move for the network is “Now Apocalypse,” a ten-episode commitment to director Gregg Araki, produced by Steven Soderbergh. Per Monday’s announcement, the new series “explores identity, sexuality and artistry, while navigating the strange and oftentimes bewildering city of Los Angeles. Between sexual and romantic dating app adventures, Ulysses grows increasingly troubled as foreboding premonitory dreams make him wonder – is some kind of dark and monstrous conspiracy going on,
March 19 Update: Wes Anderson’s Isle Of Dogs was named Headliners audience award winner on Monday, after Olivia Newman’s First Match earned the Narrative Feature Competition award on Saturday night (March 17).
Gabriel Silverman and Fiona Dawson prevailed in the Documentary Feature Competition on Saturday with TransMilitary, while John Hyams’ All Square took audience award honours in the Narrative Spotlight Section, and The Dawn Wall by Josh Lowell and Peter Mortimer triumphed in Documentary Spotlight.
Timur Bekmambetov’s Profile won in Visions, Leigh Whannell’s Upgrade was declared winner in Midnighters, and Alonso Ruizpalacios
March 17 Update: Olivia Newman’s First Match was named audience award winner of the 2018 SXSW Narrative Feature Competition on Saturday night (March 17).
Gabriel Silverman and Fiona Dawson prevailed in the Documentary Feature Competition with TransMilitary, while John Hyams’ All Square took audience award honours in the Narrative Spotlight Section, and The Dawn Wall by Josh Lowell and Peter Mortimer triumphed in Documentary Spotlight.
Timur Bekmambetov’s Profile won in Visions, Leigh Whannell’s Upgrade was declared winner in Midnighters, and Alonso Ruizpalacios and So Yong Kim won in Episodic for Vida.
Of course, none of these are massive hits. “Ash” is easily the most successful, given that it’s still on the air, but all three (not to mention “Party Down”) earned strong reviews and certainly had anyone who did tune in talking. They’re provocative shows built to
“Vida,” which was created by Tanya Saracho, focuses on two Mexican-American sisters played by Mishel Prada and Melissa Barrera, on the Eastside of Los Angeles, Calif. “Sweetbitter,” based on the novel by Stephanie Danler, is a service-industry drama set in New York City. (Danler also serves as writer and executive producer on the series.
"...'Vida' follows two Mexican-American sisters, 'Emma' (Mishel Prada) and 'Lyn' (Melissa Barrera) from the Eastside of Los Angeles who couldn’t be more different or distanced from each other. Circumstances force them to return to their old neighborhood, where they are confronted by the past and shocking truth about their mother's identity..."
Click the images to enlarge and Sneak Peek "Vida"...
“Tanya Saracho’s unique voice brings a fresh and real perspective to Latinx programming,” said Carmi Zlotnik, Starz’s president of programming. “We’re thrilled to have an overall deal with this tenacious playwright-turned-tv writer/executive producer who doesn’t pull any punches when bringing these characters – who are not usually seen in mainstream media – to life.”
“Vida,” a half-hour series set to bow May 6, revolves around two very different Mexican-American sisters growing up in East Los Angeles. A native of Mexico, Saracho grew up along the Texas border and then moved to Chicago as a young adult. She gained notice as a playwright in Chicago, and has since produced plays in New York, Denver and via the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, among other venues. She founded the Teatro Luna theater company and is a co-founder
Friday March 9
HBO’s Barry Screening (6 p.m., Alamo Ritz 1)
SXSW attendees will be among the first to get a look at the premium cabler’s new dark comedy starring Bill Hader as a “depressed, low-rent hitman from the Midwest” who follows a “mark” into an acting class in Los Angeles, where he ends up finding an accepting community. Barry wants to start a new life as an actor, but his criminal past won’t let him walk away. The series, which was created, executive produced and written by Alec Berg and Hader
Ralph Macchio will guest star on two episodes of the CBS comedy “Kevin Can Wait” starring Kevin James and Leah Remini. He will play “Alviti,” the president of a company buying a property in Long Island with the intention of turning it into a parking lot, and is currently filming the role.
Epix announced that Felicity Huffman has joined the cast of original series “Get Shorty” as a recurring guest star. Huffman will play Clara Dillard, a mothering, high-level special agent for the FBI who takes over the investigation focusing on Amara and the crime organization in season two of the show.
Jake Allyn will play Navy Petty Officer Second Class James Sweeney in the March 6 episode of “NCIS.” Sweeney, currently deployed overseas, is poisoned
Bell Media’s The Movie Network Encore is to be rebranded next year, likely with Starz in the moniker although Bell Media did not get specific. The channel will also be made available as a standalone app for streaming.
As part of the deal, Starz parent Lionsgate has also set a theatrical pay TV output deal with Bell Media covering future releases. Lionsgate’s existing movie output pact in Canada is with Entertainment One.
“We’re delighted to bring Starz to Canada as part of our international channel rollout,” said Starz president-ceo Chris Albrecht. “Bell Media is one of North America’s elite content companies, and they bring great brand recognition, a massive consumer base, and unparalleled distribution skills to our alliance. This agreement creates the perfect foundation for the growth
Starz has filed a petition for emergency injunctive relief with the FCC. The complaint details the back-and-forth in negotiations between Starz and Altice that began in September but didn’t heat up until late December. The 17 Starz-Encore channels went dark on Altice systems as of Jan. 1.
“To our great disappointment, and to the disappointment of Altice customers, Starz and its affiliated channels continue to remain off the air in New York,” said Chris Albrecht, president-ceo of Starz, which was acquired in 2016 by Lionsgate. “This disruption has caused high-quality programming that promotes diversity in its production, talent and content, to be taken from viewers with no notice. More than that, Altice has continued
Deadline reports that the Mexico-born writer is developing a show titled Brujas that centers around the Bruja movement in Chicago, following four Afro-Latinas. The series is being produced by Big Beach, an independent production company responsible for films such as Little Miss Sunshine and Our Idiot Brother.
The Bruja movement has
The four-episode limited series “Howards End” will premiere Sunday, April 8, while both new half-hour dramas “Vida” and the adaptation of “Sweetbitter” will premiere on Sunday, May 6.
“Howards End” stars Hayley Atwell and Philippa Coulthard as two “independent and unconventional sisters seeking love and meaning” in an ever-changing world. The story based on E.M Forster’s masterpiece comes from Academy-Award winner Kenneth Lonergan, and is directed by BAFTA winner Hettie Macdonald. Matthew Macfadyen, Julia Ormond and Tracey Ullman also star in the Playground production in association with City Entertainment and KippSter Entertainment. See the key art for “Howards End” below:
“Vida” focuses on two Mexican-American sisters, Emma (Mishel Prada) and Lyn (Melissa Barrera), from the Eastside of Los Angeles who “couldn’t be more different or distanced from each
Playwright and TV scribe Tanya Saracho has a new project in the works. She’s tapped to serve as showrunner on “Brujas,” a series being developed by indie producer and financer Big Beach. Deadline reports that the series centers on four Chicago-based Afro-Caribbean/Latinx women and explores “the relationships and community born out of the growing identification with the Bruja movement.”
According to the source, “Brujas” will “use the brujería counter-culture as a foundation. The brujería culture is a means for Latinx feminists to reconnect with their heritage through music, style, nightlife, and art. It’s a powerful return to indigenous practices and a reclamation of feminine strength.”
Saracho will pen the series and serve as an exec producer.
“Obviously I’m obsessed with women and Latina women,” Saracho has said of the themes in her writing. “I think I’m on my seventh or eighth all-Latina play.
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