Turner Upfront: TNT, TBS Load Up On Shows, Prep For ‘Daring’ Brand Makeovers

TNT and TBS will double the volume of original series offered during the next three years as Turner’s flagship entertainment cablers head in a more “daring” and “in-your-face” direction.

Kevin Reilly, who signed on in January as president of TNT and TBS and chief content officer of Turner Entertainment, is promising a big shift in tone for TBS, the comedy-centric channel that is now largely fueled by repeats of “The Big Bang Theory.”

Reilly is to outline the makeovers he intends to implement at TNT and TBS at Turner’s upfront presentation Wednesday morning at Madison Square Garden that for the first time featured all of the company’s cable channels, including CNN, Cartoon Network, Adult Swim, TruTV and Boomerang.

“The new TBS will have a huge slate of originals, awesomely in-your-face and effortlessly diverse live-action comedies, original animation, big unscripted ideas with attitude, latenight talk and, of course, championship sports,” Reilly said.

For TNT, the shifts will be less all-encompassing but still noticeable. “Viewers should expect some very daring shows – some of which will not appeal to all of our current viewers but will be a lightning rod to attract new viewers,” Reilly said.

At TBS, Reilly has given a 10-episode order to ensemble comedy “Wrecked,” from writers Justin Shipley and Jordan Shipley and showrunner Moses Port. The series revolves around a group of strangers forced to adapt when they’re stranded on a remote island. Jesse Hara also exec produces.

“The Office” exec producer Greg Daniels has landed a pilot order for a project dubbed “The Group,” about alien abductions from writer David Jenkins. It hails from Conan O’Brien’s Conaco banner and Warner Horizon Television. O’Brien, Jeff Ross and David Kissinger, Dan Halstead are exec producers.

TNT has ordered two pilots. “Animal Kingdom,” from John Wells and writer Jonathan Lisco, is a crime drama set in a surf community. The project is based on the 2010 Australian film of the same name. It was previously developed in 2012 at Showtime. Wells, Lisco, Andrew Stearn, David Michod and Liz Watts are exec producers.

“Will” was penned by film scribe Craig Pearce and takes a look at William Shakespeare’s wild early years. Vince Gerardis, Howard Braunstein and Louise Rosager exec produce with Pearce.

 

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