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TV News Roundup: Joey Lawrence to Guest Star on ‘Hawaii Five-0’

In today’s TV news roundup, Joey Lawrence will guest star on “Hawaii Five-0,” and Allison Williams lands her first television role since “Girls.”

CASTING

Joey Lawrence has been cast in a guest role on “Hawaii Five-0,” Variety has learned exclusively.

Lawrence will appear in two episodes in the upcoming eighth season, playing Aaron Wright, the brother of world-class hacker Ian Wright, who Five-0 encounters when he uses his computer to free a dangerous arsonist from prison — “Hawaii Five-0” fans will remember Ian Wright was played by Nick Jonas, before the character was killed off.

Known for his roles on “Blossom” and “Brotherly Love,” Lawrence most recently was an executive producer and starred in “Melissa & Joey,” which aired from 2010 to 2015. He also recently appeared on Pop’s “Return of the Mac.” As a musician, Joey and his brothers, Matthew and Andy Lawrence, recently released the single “Lose Myself.” Lawrence is also set to release a new solo project this fall.

No date has been set for Lawrence’s two episodes on “Hawaii Five-0.” Aside from Lawrence, the CBS drama will have other new faces this season, having recently cast Meaghan Rath and Beulah Koale, and promoting Ian Anthony Dale to a series regular, following the departure of Daniel Dae Kim and Grace Park over contract disputes.

Lawrence is repped by Link Entertainment.

Allison Williams will guest star in “Patrick Melrose,” the new Showtime and Sky Atlantic limited series starring and executive produced by Benedict Cumberbatch. Williams will play Marianne, an acquaintance who Patrick encounters during his playboy years in New York. She joins the previously announced cast of Jennifer Jason Leigh, Hugo Weaving, and Anna Madeley. This role marks Williams’ return to television since wrapping “Girls,” as well as her first new role since her film debut in “Get Out.” Based on the semi-autobiographical novels written by Edward St. Aubyn, “Patrick Melrose” is a comedy that skewers the upper class as it tracks Patrick’s journey from a deeply traumatic childhood through adult substance abuse, and ultimately toward recovery.

FIRST LOOKS

Netflix released the first look at “Mindhunter,” coming to the streaming service on Oct. 13. Jonathan Groff and Holt McCallany play two FBI agents set out on a sinister investigative odyssey to discover the brutal answers about “how crazy thinks.” The series is directed by David Fincher, Asif Kapadia, Tobias Lindholm. Andrew Douglas. Charlize Theron, Fincher, Joshua Donen, and Cean Chaffin are executive producers.

Netflix also released the first images from its upcoming series “Disjointed,” debuting Aug. 25. The comedy stars Kathy Bates as Ruth, a lifelong advocate for marijuana legalization who is finally living her dream as the owner of a Los Angeles cannabis dispensary called Ruth’s Alternative Caring. The sitcom comes from Emmy winners Chuck Lorre and David Javerbaum, and also features Tone Bell, Aaron Moten, Elizabeth Alderfer, Dougie Baldwin, and Elizabeth Ho.

PREMIERE DATES

We tv announced its newest unscripted series, “Love Blows,” will premiere on Aug. 25 at 10 p.m. ET. The show follows a successful Chicago-based matchmaking service, LuvBizChicago, run by a dysfunctional but loving family. The family business, headed by matchmakers Lisa and her ex-husband, Jim, is comprised of young, single matchmakers. In addition to Lisa and Jim’s own adult children who co-run the business, Jim’s former mistress also works at the company, creating drama for the employees and their clients. “Million Dollar Matchmaker’s” Patti Stanger will executive produce and appear in the show.

EXECUTIVE NEWS

Disney and ABC Home Entertainment and Television Distribution has named Vicky Free as senior vice president of marketing. Free will be based out of the company’s Burbank headquarters, reporting to president Janice Marinelli. In her new role, Free will oversee marketing responsibilities for both studio and television content, including in-home creative strategy, digital marketing, and customer relationship management to drive sales, ownership, and consumption of the company’s theatrical releases across all platforms. She will also lead the overall marketing strategy and execution for the company’s first-run and off-network syndicated television content ABC Studios, ABC Entertainment, WABC, Freeform, Disney Channel, Disney XD, and Disney Junior. Her team is responsible for all the creation and implementation of creative advertising and bonus content. Free joins Disney/ABC from Viacom’s BET Networks, where she served as executive vice president and chief marketing officer since 2011.

INITIATIVES

AARP launched its new entertainment initiative called TV for Grownups, which aims to connect 50-plus-year-old viewers with shows and the actors who star in them, as well as to demystify the technology associated with home entertainment. The initiative will encompass all platforms of television content, including broadcast, cable, and streaming. Current television programming includes more than 450 scripted series, and TVFG will help filter the choices for the more than 38 million AARP members.

PROGRAMMING

Leonardo DiCaprio, Heidi Klum, Adriana Lima, Cecily Strong, Freida Pinto, Kim Kardashian West, Chris Harrison, Mark Hamill, and Ellen DeGeneres are among the stars who have come out to support Global Tiger Day. The fashion brand Rag & Bone made shirts to promote Discovery’s Project C.A.T. (Conserving Acres for Tigers), a partnership with the World Wildlife Fund to help double the wild tiger population by 2022. As part of the alliance with WWF, Discovery agreed to fund efforts to conserve nearly one million acres of protected habitat in India and Bhutan to protect and increase the endangered wild tiger population. Discovery’s Animal Planet hosted on July 29 a six-hour block of programming dedicated to tigers to raise awareness.

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