Fantasy series Game Of Thrones (2011-current; see more on p38) has rebranded its companion talkshow for the final two seasons and made another small tweak. After The Thrones will be called Talk The Thrones from this season but won’t air on parent network HBO. Instead, it will stream live on Twitter and Periscope after episodes air in the US. “We jumped at the chance to blow out our show into an interactive multimedia experience,” says executive producer Bill Simmons. “Something that reacts immediately to what just happened – like Twitter and Game Of Thrones – is unparalleled right now.”
Paramount Network is working on a dark comedy based on the life of Tom Arnold, who is most famous for being married to Roseanne Barr from 1990 to 1994 and playing Arnold Schwarzenegger’s sidekick in 1994 action film True Lies. Tom has never been shy about his drug and alcohol addictions, so expect them to feature in storylines. There are conflicting stories about a second season of thriller drama Big Little Lies (2017current). While Nicole Kidman, who played Celeste, says that there are “absolutely no active plans for a second run” and “you always hope but there is no story or prospects right now,” the show creator has other ideas. David E Kelley (best known for drama series Boston Legal, 2004-2008) says that “we planned on seven episodes but there is the possibility that a second run would happen”. Meanwhile lead actress Reese Witherspoon (Madeline) has told fans “to do everything possible” to convince author Liane Moriarty to do a second book. National Geographic’s biographical drama Genius (2017- current) was such a hit investigating the life of Albert Einstein (Geoffrey Rush) that they’ve already announced season 2’s subject: Spanish artist Pablo Picasso. “We went through dozens of possible figures,” says exec producer Ken Biller. “Pablo Picasso was someone who saw the world in a completely different way, so it was important to us to make a declarative statement.” Production is expected to start later this year.
The writers and producers of drama show Sherlock (2010- current) are bringing another literary icon to life. Dracula will be flapping his way onto screens in a similar miniseries format made popular with Benedict Cumberbatch’s portrayal of consulting detective Sherlock Holmes, but it’s unclear if it will get a modern British setting like Sherlock or something older and more Eastern European.
Fans of period drama Downton Abbey (2010-2015) aren’t getting a spin- off anytime soon, but a movie is on the way. “It’s been in the works for some time already,” says Michael Edelstein, the president of the show’s distribution company NBC Universal. “We are working on getting the script right, then we’ve got to figure out how to get the cast together again. But we’re hopeful that we’ll be making it by sometime next year.”
Going in the reverse direction, 2009 sci-fi comic book adaptation Watchmen is being developed into a series by HBO, who brought Game Of Thrones to screens. Damon Lindelof, co-creator and writer of fantasy series The Leftovers (2014-2017) has been linked to the show after the movie’s director Zack Snyder was ruled out. HBO have so far refused to comment on the show.
The Hound (Rory McCann) from Game Of Thrones.
Big Little Lies’ Nicole Kidman.