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TV News Roundup: Showtime Sets ‘Our Cartoon President’ Return Date

In today’s roundup, TLC has renewed “Trading Spaces” and Showtime has announced the return of “Our Cartoon President.”

CASTING

Maxwell Simkins and Elie Samouhi have joined season three of Disney Channel’s live-action comedy “Bizaardvark.” Simkins and Samadhi will star as tween bloggers Zane and Rodney, respectively, who have their own Vuuugle channels – Zane’s “Zane Unboxed” and Rodney’s “What’s in M’ Hair”  – that they each run with their moms. They will join the cast that includes Olivia Rodrigo, Madison Hu, and DeVore Ledridge.

RENEWALS

TLC has renewed home makeover show “Trading Spaces” for a second season, its 10th season overall. The series, which will air its current season finale on June 2, will resume production for the new season this summer with an expanded episode order. Homeowner casting is currently underway for the season, which will air in early 2019.

SundanceTV and BBC One announced that Abi Morgan’s original drama “The Split” will return for a second season, after season one premiered on SundanceTV May 23. The show, which explores modern marriage and divorce through a family of female lawyers, stars Nicola Walker, Meera Syal, Stephen Mangan, and Fiona Button.

DATES

Sundance Now announced six-part drama series “Next Of Kin” will premiere on June 21, with all episodes dropping at once. Starring Archie Panjabi and Jack Davenport, the show follows General Practitioner Mona Shirani (Panjabi) who lives a charmed life until her brother is brutally murdered while working for a medical charity overseas and family secrets are brought to light.

Showtime animated series “Our Cartoon President” will return with seven new episodes starting on July 15 at 10:30 p.m ET/PT. Executive produced by Stephen Colbert, R.J. Fried and Chris Licht, the show follows the misadventures of the 45th President of the United States, Donald J. Trump, and his merry band of advisors and family members.  

In honor of its 25th anniversary, Acorn TV will add miniseries “Tales of the City,” starring Laura Linney, Ian McKellen and Olympia Dukakis, to its streaming service on June 4. The show, which follows a colorful cast of characters living at 28 Barbary Lane in 1970s San Francisco, is currently in the process of getting a revival, with Netflix developing new episodes for 2019.

DEVELOPMENT

HBO Documentary Films is currently in production on a documentary investigating the rise and fall of Theranos, the one-time multibillion-dollar healthcare company founded by Elizabeth Holmes, who was once touted as the next Steve Jobs. Alex Gibney will direct the documentary with never-before-seen footage and interviews with insiders, which follows how Theranos, once valued at $9 billion, was just two years laters valued at less than zero and labeled a “massive fraud.”

Fox Sports Films announced “Q Ball” as the newest documentary in its Emmy-nominated “MAGNIFY” series, to be executive produced by NBA star Kevin Durant in conjunction with HEIST and Hunting Lane Films. Set to premiere in early 2019, the film follows the lives of the San Quentin Warriors — teammates and inmates at “The Q”, California’s San Quentin State Prison.  Durant and fellow Golden State Warriors team members’ previous visits to the prison helped kick-start the project.

EXECUTIVE NEWS

PromaxBDA, the global trade association for the entertainment marketing and design industry, announced that five new executives were elected to its Board of Directors for the upcoming 2018-19 term, including two representing streaming services. The incoming directors are from Amazon, Discovery, FOX, Viacom, and YouTube, with digital companies now holding one-third of all network seats. New board members are Angela Courtin, global head of YouTube TV and Originals Marketing at YouTube; Scott Edwards, senior vice president of on air promo and operations at Fox Broadcasting Company; Lara Richardson, group executive vice president of marketing for Discovery Channel and Science Channel at Discovery, Inc; Niels Schuurmans, chief marketing officer for Paramount Network, TV Land, and CMT at Viacom; and Jenny Whitlock, head of brand marketing at Amazon Prime Video.

Chad Matthews has been named vice president and news director of WABC-TV, where he will direct WABC’s Eyewitness News team. Matthews has served as WABC’s assistant news director since returning to the station last year. He started his career at WABC in 2000 and left in 2012 for a five-year stint as assistant news director at NBC-owned WTVJ in South Florida. 

FESTIVALS

Now in its fourth year, TV festival SeriesFest announced its initial line-up of world premieres, special events and executive panels for its June 22-27 run in Denver, Colo. Highlights include screenings and Q&As with talent and producers for NBC’s new drama “New Amsterdam,” AMC’s “Lodge 49” and Facebook Watch’s “Sacred Lies” under its theme of “Year of Impact.” The festival’s industry panels will also discuss topics such as female creatives, disability representation in media and the impact of VR. Debra Birnbaum, Variety’s Executive Editor of TV, will moderate panels for “Who Runs the Show? Women” and “The Golden Age of Television.”

AWARD SHOWS

PBS SoCal’s “American Graduate: Let’s Make it Happen” initiative was selected by the Television Academy’s LA Area Governors Award Committee as the recipient of the 70th Los Angeles Area Emmys Governors Award for its work tackling Southern California’s high school dropout crisis. The honor will be presented during the Los Angeles Area Emmy Awards ceremony on July 28 at the Television Academy’s Wolf Theatre at the Saban Media Center.

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