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“ABC its not us, it’s you.” That’s probably what showrunner Shonda Rhimes probably said when she announced she was taking Shondaland to Netflix to create more original content for the streaming network!

Yep, you read right ABC and Shonda Rhimes have parted ways! This definitely comes as a shock, especially since Grey’s Anatomy is still the highest-rated show on the network.

via THR:

shondaland logo

Under the multiple-year deal, Rhimes and her Shondaland banner will create and produce new projects for the streaming giant. Rhimes’ longtime producing partner Betsy Beers will continue to head Shondaland in the move to Netflix. Under what is said to be a rich four-year pact, Rhimes is expected to score a percentage of the back-end on programming she creates for Netflix. 

“Shonda Rhimes is one of the greatest storytellers in the history of television,” Netflix chief content officer Ted Sarandos said. “Her work is gripping, inventive, pulse-pounding, heart-stopping, taboo-breaking television at its best. I’ve gotten the chance to know Shonda and she’s a true Netflixer at heart — she loves TV and films, she cares passionately about her work, and she delivers for her audience. We’re so excited to welcome her to Netflix.”

The move further aligns Rhimes with Netflix, which has featured the Grey’s Anatomy library that has helped elevate the veteran ABC medical soap to become the network’s most-watched drama — a rare feat for a show in its 13th season. The series heads into season 14 in the fall as it sets its sights on being the longest-running medical drama on television alongside ER. 

“Shondaland’s move to Netflix is the result of a shared plan Ted Sarandos and I built based on my vision for myself as a storyteller and for the evolution of my company,” Rhimes said. “Ted provides a clear, fearless space for creators at Netflix. He understood what I was looking for — the opportunity to build a vibrant new storytelling home for writers with the unique creative freedom and instantaneous global reach provided by Netflix’s singular sense of innovation. The future of Shondaland at Netflix has limitless possibilities.”

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ABC will continue to remain home to Grey’s Anatomy and its upcoming spinoff as well as Scandal, How to Get Away With Murder as well as the forthcoming drama For the People. Rhimes had been with ABC Studios for 15 years.

“Our current shows will continue to thrive on ABC and Shondaland will be there every step of the way,” Rhimes said. “I could not have asked for a better home to begin my career. I continue to be grateful to work with so many talented people — especially our studio gladiator Patrick Moran and our most powerful and brilliant champion Channing Dungey. Starting today, we are thrilled to begin creating new Shondaland stories with Netflix. Everyone at Shondaland is honored to expand both our audience and our creative identity with Ted and the entire team at Netflix.”

ABC Studios will remain the home to Shondaland disciples Pete Nowalk (How to Get Away With Murder), Krista Vernoff (Grey’s Anatomy), Stacy McKee (the Grey’s spinoff), Don Todd and Paul William Davies (For the People), Mark Fish (Scandal), Mark Wilding (Grey’s spinoff), Bill Harper (Grey’s Anatomy) and Allan Heinberg.

“We’re so proud of the work we’ve done with Shonda and Betsy throughout our long and productive relationship. From the worldwide success of Grey’s Anatomy to today, with five series, a pilot from Allan Heinberg and a number of projects in development, we will continue to shepherd that success together,” ABC Studios president Moran said. “The Shondaland imprint will always be an important part of ABC Studios and we wish them all the best in this new endeavor.”

Added ABC Entertainment president Channing Dungey, who previously headed drama at the network: “Shonda, Betsy and I started working together with the first episode of Grey’s Anatomy and those early days will forever remain one of the highlights of my professional life. We are happy to continue working with Shonda and her team at Shondaland on Grey’s, Scandal, How to Get Away with Murder and the upcoming For the People and Grey’s spinoff. I’m proud to have given a home to what have become some of the most celebrated and talked about shows on television. With the launch of a new season upon us, fans can rest assured that TGIT remains intact and will be as buzzed about as ever.”

Sources say Rhimes had been renegotiating her overall deal with ABC Studios for the past few months. That the prolific producer would exit the network’s studio sibling comes as a blow for broadcast and a hint of things to come in the arms race for talent. With more than 455 scripted originals, broadcast, cable and streaming platforms are turning to proven hit-makers like Rhimes for new material. Rhimes is the first African-American woman to notch the rare 100-episode milestone three times in her career (for Grey’s, Private Practice and Scandal). 

netflix logo

For Rhimes, it gives the star showrunner a new forum to tell richer stories that push the envelope as she has yet to explore the cable or streaming world. Scandal further solidified Rhimes as one of TV’s most powerful showrunners and helped ABC bolster its Thursday lineup. With the strength of Scandal and emergence of How to Get Away With Murder, the network moved Grey’s Anatomy to its formerly troubled 8 p.m. hour as it created a “TGIT”-branded night consisting of three Rhimes-produced dramas. Creatively, Scandal helped usher in a new era of diversity on the small screen when Rhimes cast Kerry Washington as fixer Olivia Pope. Washington picked up her first Emmy nomination in 2013 and became the first African American to be nominated for best drama actress in the past 18 years and fifth overal

The Rhimes deal — the streamer’s first overall — comes as free-spending Netflix has been aggressive when it comes to luring top talent. Last week, the streamer picked up a talk show hosted by David Letterman and acquired comic book publisher Millarworld as it pushes to own more of its content. (Last week, The Walking Dead creator Robert Kirkman moved from his home at AMC to Amazon under a rich overall deal as the streamer retail giant begins to do the same.)

I think I’ll be keeping my Netflix subscription now!

Written By: Michael “Hey Mikey” Fanning

michael j. fanning owner of hey mikey atl

Follow me on Twitter/IG @HeyMikeyATL

Television & Radio

Jaden Michael Cast As Young Colin Kaepernick in Netflix’s Scripted Series

Netflix’s scripted series based on the life of Colin Kaepernick has found its star in Colin in Black & White, Jaden Michael! The series, as you may recall, is being filmed by Ava DuVernay.

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Colin kaepernick and Jaden Michael Netflix series

Netflix’s scripted series based on the life of Colin Kaepernick has found its star in Colin in Black & White, Jaden Michael! The series, as you may recall, is being filmed by Ava DuVernay.

via People

Colin kaepernick and Jaden Michael Netflix series

Netflix’s Colin Kaepernick Series Casts Jaden Michael as Former NFL Star and Activist
Credit: Courtesy Netflix

Michael, 17, has previously appeared in Todd Haynes’ drama Wonderstruck, Baz Lurhmann’s The Get Down, and indie film Custody. Most recently, he starred in Lorne Michaels’ comedy, Vampires vs. The Bronx.

Michael Starrbury is executive producing and writing for Colin in Black & White, alongside DuVernay, 47, and Kaepernick, 32, who will also be the narrator.

The six-episode series was conceived in 2019 and its script was finished this year. According to Netflix, the series will explore Kaepernick’s years as a Black teen growing up with a white adoptive family and how it informed the person he is today.

Starrbury and DuVernay last worked together on Netflix’s limited series When They See Us, which received 16 Emmy nominations and was recently honored with a Peabody Award.

This is great casting as Jaden looks a lot like a young Colin Kaepernick and he is a great actor.

We cannot wait to see how the series plays out and what it reveal about Colin that may not know. We will keep you posted as more news about the series comes available.

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Television & Radio

CBS Has “Flashdance” Reboot TV Series in The Works!

The age of reboots continues, and this time we are talking Flashdance! As you may recall, Flashdance was the 1983 film that launched the career of Jennifer Beale, centering on a young girl with dreams of becoming a professional dancer.

CBS’s streaming network, CBS All-Access now has a series based on Flashdance film in the works! 

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flashdance reboot tv series

The age of reboots continues, and this time we are talking Flashdance! As you may recall, Flashdance was the 1983 film that launched the career of Jennifer Beale, centering on a young girl with dreams of becoming a professional dancer.

CBS’s streaming network, CBS All-Access now has a series based on Flashdance film in the works!

via Deadline

flashdance reboot tv series

Jennifer Beal in “Flashdance”

According to The Hollywood Reporter, the reboot will follow a young Black woman “with ballet dreams and a strip club reality” who is trying to find her place in the world “while navigating romance, money, art, friendship and how to love herself.” (In the original film, Beals’ character was a welder at a steel mill who dreamed of becoming a professional dancer.)

Lynda Obst, who served as an associate producer on the original Flashdance, is attached to exec-produce the potential series. Angela Robinson (The L Word, True Blood) is also on board as an EP and will direct the pilot, while Tracy McMillan (Good Girls Revolt) will write the script.

As previously reported, CBS All Access will rebrand as Paramount+ in early 2021, as part of a relaunch of the streaming service that will combine original content with shows from CBS and cable outlets MTV, Comedy Central, BET, Paramount Network and Nickelodeon. (Paramount Pictures was also Flashdance‘s original distributor.)

flashdance reboot tv series

We are excited to see a Flashdance reboot in the works! Basing it on a Black girl this time around definitely shows the streaming service’s commitment to more diverse and Black content. We are not sure who they will be casting in the lead role but we hope somehow Jennifer Beal is involved. Maybe she can be the character’s mother or even teacher.

What do you think of this reboot? Sound off in the comments’ section below! We hope CBS Access does it justice! Happy viewing!

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Television & Radio

A Lost Toy Searches For Home In New Netflix Family Series, “Lost Ollie!”

“Lost Ollie” is the story of a lost toy, searching across the countryside for the boy who lost him, and the story of the boy who lost more than a best friend.  An epic adventure to reunite in the face of all the dangers that childhood can throw at them.

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lost ollie series Netflix

“Lost Ollie” is the story of a lost toy, searching across the countryside for the boy who lost him, and the story of the boy who lost more than a best friend.  An epic adventure to reunite in the face of all the dangers that childhood can throw at them.

via Press Release

lost ollie series Netflix

I’ve been a toy collector my entire life. My personal collection consists of thousands of toys, some modern and sleek, and others vintage and worn from all the adventures I took them on as a kid. And though time has taken its toll, I have held onto them because of the special place they hold in my heart. We’ve all had a toy like that – a confidant, a protector, a sidekick, a best friend. And when we’ve lost a toy…it’s like we’ve lost a part of ourselves.

That’s the premise of Lost Ollie, the tale of a lost toy searching across the countryside for the boy who lost him, and the story of the boy who lost more than a best friend. This new live-action family series has been in the works for four years. It was one of the first projects I bought when I came to Netflix because I saw in it the universal story of loss that all of us, no matter how old, could relate to.  

The show is inspired by a story developed by Academy Award winners Brandon Oldenburg and William Joyce, which later became the book Ollie’s Odyssey – and has been artfully adapted by creator Shannon Tindle, whose Kubo and the Two Strings was one of my favorite animated films in recent years. Shannon found a deeply personal connection to the material and has brought Ollie to life with the same artistry and emotion that he did on Kubo, Coraline, and his Emmy-winning work on Fosters Home for Imaginary Friends.  

We are thrilled that Academy Award-winner Peter Ramsey is going to helm this epic adventure as director and executive producer. Peter previously adapted another of William Joyce’s works (The Guardians of Childhood) into the animated feature film Rise of The Guardians. Then of course he gave us all a stunning, new and vital vision of everything animation can be as the director of Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, which earned the Academy Award for Best Animated Feature in 2019.

Joining Shannon and Peter are Shawn Levy, Josh Barry and Emily Morris from 21 Laps Entertainment, some of the brilliant minds who brought us Stranger Things, and Academy Award winners Brandon Oldenburg and Lampton Enochs. And we’re so lucky to have the Emmy Award-winning artists at Industrial Light & Magic bringing Ollie and his friends to life.

Lost Ollie is truly an odyssey about two friends trying to reunite in the face of all the dangers that childhood can throw at them. I love this show because it taps into that well of emotion we all feel when we lose something or someone important to us, and the courage we have to find in ourselves to get it back, or to move on. 

I can’t wait for you to meet Ollie and to fall in love with him like we have. And until then, give your favorite toy an extra squeeze for me.

We have to say this is a project we are looking forward to. We are also familiar with the books centered around Ollie. It kind of feels like an even more heartwarming Toy Story. We will keep you posted as more information about Lost Ollie besomes available.

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