TV News Roundup: Nickelodeon Orders ‘SpongeBob SquarePants’ Season 12

In today’s roundup, Nickelodeon has ordered a 12th season of “SpongeBob SqaurePants,” The History Channel has commissioned a one-hour Watergate special, Investigation Discovery is airing a documentary special about Bill Cosby’s downfall, and production has begun on Cartoon Network’s “DC Super Hero Girls.”


Nickeloden has ordered Season 12 of “SpongeBob SquarePants,” the number-one animated series across all TV with kids. The 26-episode pick up will further the nautical adventures of SpongeBob and his Bikini Bottom friends Patrick, Sandy, Mr. Krabs, Plankton and Squidward, and is scheduled to premiere in 2019, the series’ 20th anniversary year. Season 11 debuts later this summer. Nickelodeon has also greenlit a third SpongeBob film for release in 2019 as well. “Spongebob Squarepants” is executive produced by creator Stephen Hillenburg.


Richard Kind has been cast in the guest starring role of Benny Konopka in Electric Entertainment’s series “The Librarians,” which will run for a fourth season on TNT this winter. “The Librarians” is a supernatural fantasy series that follows a group of “librarians” who fight supernatural forces and solve impossible mysteries. Kind has also starred in Amazon’s “Red Oaks” and is also known for roles in “Argo,” “A Serious Man,” and “Inside Out.” He is repped by Innovative Arts and Forster Entertainment.


Dorsey Pictures has finalized a deal with veteran unscripted TV producer Matt Assmus and his shingle MTA Media Company for the expansion of their development and current production team. Assmus has been a producer on shows such as “Fear Factor” and “Pimp My Ride.” Whitney Hayes was also upped to development coordinator for Dorsey Pictures after three years as casting producer.


PBS will return to live television with a three-part television event in conjunction with BBC titled “Wild Alaska Live,” which will air July 23, 26, and 30 at 8 p.m. ET as part of its “Summer of Adventure” lineup. The special will shed light on the natural spectacle of Alaska’s summer feast, in which orcas, bears, wolves, moose, and eagles all gather to take advantage of the summer bounty. “Wild Alaska Live” will be hosted by Emmy award-winning brothers and zoologists Chris Kratt and Martin Kratt. Liz Bonnin and Steve Backshall will join as on-air correspondents. The special will also explore the challenges of preserving Alaska’s wild frontier, with scientists, photographers, and other experts tell some the area’s wildest stories. All three broadcast episodes will live-stream simultaneously on PBS.org and will be simulcast on the new PBS KIDS 24/7 channel and live stream, which is provided by member stations across the country on TV and streaming on digital platforms.

Investigation Discovery‘s “Bill Cosby: An American Scandal” will premiere Monday, June 5 at 9/8c. The one-hour special takes a comprehensive look at Cosby’s rise to fame, his shocking family drama and the allegations that perpetuated his downward spiral. Notable interviewees include Sharon Brown, Cosby’s former girlfriend; Gloira Allred, an attorney representing 33 of Cosby’s accusers; Chuck Vinson, a director for “The Cosby Show;” and Beth Karas, a legal analyst. “Bill Cosby: An American Scandal” is produced for Investigation Discovery by Weinstein Television, American Media, Inc., and Jupiter Entertainment with Harvey Weinstein, Bob Weinstein, Patrick Reardon, Stephen Land, Allison Wallach, Matt Sprouse, David Pecker and Dylan Howard as Executive Producers. For Investigation Discovery, Pamela Deutsch is senior executive producer, Sara Kozak is senior vice president of production, Kevin Bennett is general manager, and Henry Schleiff is Group President of Investigation Discovery, American Heroes Channel and Destination America.


Production has begun on Warner Bros. Animation’s “DC Super Hero Girls,” an animated series for Cartoon Network that features characters from DC Entertainment like Wonder Woman, Supergirl, and Batgirl as they navigate their way through high school while simultaneously protecting the world from school-age supervillians. Produced by Lauren Faust, “DC Super Hero Girls” will come to Cartoon Network in 2018.

The History Channel has commissioned a documentary series about the Watergate scandal and its impact on American culture from Academy Award-winning director Charles Ferguson. “Watergate” will tell the full story of the conspiracy led by Richard Nixon and his administration, which ultimately resulted in the downfall of the presidency and jail time for over 40 people. The series will include new interviews with journalists, senior Nixon Administration officials, members of Congress, and prosecutors. This material will be combined with existing archival material including the taped conversations recorded by Nixon and other members of his administration, footage from Congressional hearings, interviews conducted during the investigation, transcripts from criminal trials and Supreme Court arguments other legal proceedings, and written first-person accounts from people involved in the scandal. “Watergate” is produced by Representational Pictures for History. Charles Ferguson is director and producer. Krista Parris is producer. Jana Bennett is executive producer. Molly Thompson and Michael Stiller are executive producers for History.

Gavin Purcell has signed on as showrunner and executive producer of the upcoming Sarah Silverman series “I Love You, America.” The ten-episode weekly half-hour show, produced by Funny Or Die, will stream on Hulu later this year. Silverman, Will Ferrell, Adam McKay, Amy Zvi are also executive producers. Silverman will use the series as an attempt to reach out to Americans via humor who may not share her personal political views and prove that Americans are all the same at heart. Purcell was most recently head of video at Vox Media. Prior to joining Vox, he was producer of “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon,” where he led all aspects of on-air production in addition to a special focus on interactive elements.


TCM and FilmStruck will celebrate Pride Month this June with extensive programming dedicated to highlighting LGBT cinema. TCM will spotlight “Gay Hollywood,” hosted by author and historian William Mann and entertainment journalist Dave Karger, every Thursday in June, honoring a number of actors and artists whose talents helped them overcome roadblocks they faced due to their orientation or gender identity. FilmStruck will present a “Gay and Lesbian Cinema Showcase” hosted by film critic Alonso Duralde, which will include films such as “The Watermelon Woman,” “Parting Glances,” and “Victim.”


Popular on Variety

More TV

  • Kirsten Dunst'On Becoming a God in

    Kirsten Dunst Talks 'Little Women,' 'Interview With a Vampire' Reboots

    Kirsten Dunst was just 11 years old when she skyrocketed into stardom as Claudia in “Interview with a Vampire,” but now Dunst says her age is the only thing keeping her from reprising the role in a hypothetical reboot. “I mean I’m too old, right?,” she told Variety at the premiere of “On Becoming a God [...]

  • A Planned Parenthood clinic is seen,

    Variety to Forgo Annual Emmy Party for Donation to Planned Parenthood

    Variety has decided to make a donation to Planned Parenthood in lieu of hosting this year’s annual Emmy Awards nominees party in partnership with Women In Film. The decision comes in response to Planned Parenthood’s Aug. 19 announcement that it will drop funding over the current administration’s “unethical” rule blocking the organization from discussing its [...]

  • Rebel Wilson Isn't It Romantic

    TV News Roundup: Rebel Wilson to Host First Australian Amazon Original Series

    In today’s TV news roundup, the NFL and Pluto TV announce the launch of a new channel, and Rebel Wilson is named as the host of the first Amazon original series to come out of Australia.  CASTING Rebel Wilson is set to host and executive produce the Australian Amazon original series “LOL: Last One Laughing,” the [...]

  • Moffatt Family with the Himba tribe

    U.K.’s Channel 4 Takes British Family to Africa in New Reality Show

    U.K. broadcaster Channel 4 has greenlit new factual entertainment format “The British Tribe Next Door,” which will see a British family spend four weeks with a remote tribe in Namibia. The twist in this format is that, unlike most adventurers, the participants don’t say goodbye to the comforts of their home — instead, they take them with [...]

  • Christian Serratos as Rosita Espinosa - The

    'Walking Dead' Star Christian Serratos in Talks for Selena Series at Netflix

    Christian Serratos is in negotiations to star in the upcoming Netflix series based on the life of Tejano music star Selena Quintanilla, Variety has confirmed with sources. The series was announced back in December and is described as a coming of age story following Selena (Serratos) as her dreams come true and all the heart-wrenching [...]

  • Songs for Screens Powered by Mac

    Songs for Screens: 'American Horror Story' Makes 'Suddenly Last Summer' Sizzle Again

    FX Network’s “American Horror Story” returns for a ninth season next month, and promos for the next chapter of the anticipated series, dubbed ‘AHS 1984,’ have been airing frequently across cable television throughout August. In the short yet effective spot (see below), the Motels’ melancholic, moody “Suddenly Last Summer” plays as aerial footage of an [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content