Cooper brushes up his TV landscape

Prexy wants to make 'quality noise' with upcoming slate

HOLLYWOOD — A year after teaming with Canada’s CTV to form Landscape Entertainment, Bob Cooper has amassed a large slate of series, movies and miniseries in development at a variety of broadcast and cable nets.

The former HBO and DreamWorks exec is prepping projects at outlets including NBC, where the exec has agreed to produce three minis, and FX, where he has a deal to produce three telepics, plus CBS, ABC, Court TV, VH1, USA Network, TNT, Sci-Fi Channel, Lifetime and the Disney Channel.

“I love trying to create content that can try to brand a network,” Cooper said.

Cooper said he has a three-pronged strategy at Landscape: “Develop strategic partnerships, develop for other networks and do it with a signature, if you can.

Standing out

“I used an expression at HBO: ‘quality noise,’ ” he said. “That’s what I wanted to do (at Landscape). In the clutter of content out there, you have to figure out a way to make noise, but with quality.”

Cooper and his team — TV president Judy Ranan and veep Barbara Bloom — have focused mostly on longform projects but are interested in developing traditional series as well.

Projects on the roster include the FX pilot “Debbie Doesn’t Do It Anymore,” from novelist Walter Mosley, playwright Deborah Swisher and Jeff Wachtel, about a porn star who retires and tries to make it in the business world. Landscape also is developing the movie “Demon in the Freezer” for NBC, about a smallpox epidemic that spreads through the U.S., written by Carol Schreder.

Also in the works

Other potential movies, minis and series on the docket include:

  • “Speak Memory,” a two-hour telepic for CBS about a woman who rebuilds her life after a car crash. Based on a New York Times article; Ron Hutchinson will script, with Peter Landesman and Michael Birnbaum exec producing.

  • “Robert Kennedy,” a two-hour FX pic about Bobby Kennedy’s life after the assassination of his brother John, written by Hank Steinberg (“61*”). Also at FX, Landscape is developing Simon Nye-penned telepic “When the Gavel Falls,” about the art world’s exclusive auction houses.

  • “The Amnesty Project,” a two-hour Court TV movie written by Barbara Samuels, about a woman seeking political asylum in the U.S.

  • The four-hour mini “Antonine’s Wall” for ABC, based on a novel about forbidden love in ancient Rome, scripted by Paul McCudden.

  • “The Bonnie Knight Story,” a two-hour USA movie about a cop who finds out the FBI is hiding a sex offender in her neighborhood. Written by Nathalie Chaidez (“Judging Amy”) and exec produced by Madelon Rosenfeld.

  • “Borderlands,” a series pilot at Sci-Fi Channel based on a series of novels about a city populated by superhumans; Doris Egan writes and Jana Memel exec produces.

  • “The DJ Project,” a two-hour pic at VH1 about a radio shock jock, from writers Ron Parker and Eric Hughes and exec producer Jeff Wachtel.

  • “Intrusion,” a telepic at the Disney Channel about an alien who takes over an astronaut’s body, written by Charlie Cohen and exec produced by Tana Nugent Jamieson and Judy Ranan.

  • “Secret Life of Girls,” a Lifetime telepic based on a Talk magazine article about a mother who discovers her 14-year-old daughter is sexually active; exec produced by Tracey Alexander and written by Matthew McDuffie.

  • “Texas Seven,” a two-hour TNT movie about the band of seven convicts who escaped a Texas jail. Jason Saffron and Mike Pavone exec produce.

Previously announced projects include “Surviving Gilligan’s Island: The Incredibly True Story of the Longest Three-Hour Tour in History,” which CBS will air this coming season.

More TV

  • Kamala Harris

    Joe Biden and Kamala Harris Face Rematch in Next Democratic Debate

    Former Vice President Joe Biden and Senator Kamala Harris will have the opportunity to square off again in the second debate among Democratic hopefuls vying for their party’s nomination in the 2020 presidential election CNN, which will broadcast the next round of debates on July 30 and 31, televised a draw Thursday night that decided [...]

  • Jon Wax

    Jon Wax Joins Amazon Studios as Head of Genre Programming

    YouTube’s head of scripted programming Jon Wax is joining Amazon Studios as its head of genre programming, Variety has learned. Wax will take up the position recently vacated by Sharon Tal Yguado. He had joined YouTube in August 2017, heading up drama, unscripted and current programming for YouTube’s premium channel. Prior to that, he had [...]

  • South Park Donald Trump

    TV News Roundup: Comedy Central Sets 'South Park' Season 23 Premiere Date

    In today’s TV News roundup, Comedy Central announces the premiere date of “South Park” Season 23 and Netflix sets the premiere date and offers a first look at “Unbelievable.”  DATES Comedy Central announced that Season 23 of “South Park” will premiere Wednesday, Sept. 25 at 10 p.m. Because the episodes are written and animated so [...]

  • US actor Kevin Spacey (C) is

    Kevin Spacey Shouldn't Be Exonerated in Hollywood Even as Criminal Case Ends (Column)

    The news that criminal charges against Kevin Spacey in the Nantucket groping case have been dropped raises an inevitable question: does this mean he can claw his way back into Hollywood’s good graces? Or maybe more importantly: should it?  Spacey’s rapid descent was startling, even as it quickly followed that of the once untouchable producing [...]

  • Game of Thrones

    HBO's Return to Emmy Nomination Dominance May Be Short-Lived (Column)

    As Hollywood braces for the coming streaming wars, HBO’s huge Emmy nomination haul this week sent a new salvo Netflix’s way: The streamer may have the volume, but HBO still has the goods. At least this year. HBO’s record-breaking 137 nominations came on the strength of just 23 programs — led, of course, by “Game [...]

  • Lionsgate CEO Jon Feltheimer

    Starz Nears Realignment: Why Lionsgate Won't Hire a CEO to Replace Chris Albrecht

    Nearly six months after Starz CEO Chris Albrecht exited in February, Lionsgate brass is moving closer to a revamp of the premium TV network’s executive structure. According to insiders, at least one thing is clear: Albrecht is not expected to be replaced as CEO. Instead, Lionsgate chief executive Jon Feltheimer is taking a more active [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content