Hulu Acquires U.S. Rights to ‘Happiest Season’

Streaming service Hulu has acquired U.S. rights to Clea DuVall’s holiday romantic comedy Happiest Season, which will debut as a Hulu Original film on Nov. 25.

Sony Pictures and eOne co-financed the film and will retain distribution rights in Canada and the rest of the world. Overseas plans, including potential theatrical releases, will be finalized in the coming weeks.

The film stars Kristen Stewart, Mackenzie Davis, Alison Brie, Aubrey Plaza, Daniel Levy, Mary Holland, Burl Moseley, Victor Garber and Mary Steenburgen. In the film, when Abby (Stewart) learns that Harper (Davis) has kept their relationship a secret from her family, she begins to question the girlfriend she thought she knew.

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“This holiday season — more than any other — we could all use a little happiness. It was essential to Sony Pictures and to the filmmakers that Clea’s marvelous and fresh holiday-themed romantic comedy come out when the lights are on the trees,” said Nicole Brown, president of TriStar Pictures, in a statement. “We are excited that Hulu is geared up to make this happen in the U.S. and grateful that they love the movie as much as we do.”

“With its all-star cast and modern storytelling, Happiest Season brings yet another breakthrough film to Hulu that we know our viewers will love,” said Brian Kendig, Hulu director of content acquisition, in a statement. “We are honored to be the streaming home of this fresh and funny romantic comedy that explores love, family and acceptance this holiday season.”

“I am beyond grateful to Hulu for providing an incredible home for Happiest Season, and I’ll forever cherish my journey with Sony Pictures who felt just as strongly as I did about the value of bringing the first major LGBTQ+ holiday rom-com to audiences,” said director/writer DuVall in a statement. “I’m hopeful that this universal story, told through a unique lens, will join the long list of holiday classics that continue to bring all of us so much joy and happiness.”

‘Haunting of Bly Manor’ Top Binge on TV Time Charts

Netflix’s “The Haunting of Bly Manor” was the top binge on the TV Time charts for the week ended Oct. 18, while the French series “La Flamme” led the rising show chart.

From “The Haunting of Hill House” creator Mike Flanagan, “The Haunting of Bly Manor” is the next chapter of “The Haunting” anthology series. After an au pair’s tragic death, Henry Wingrave hires a young American nanny to care for his orphaned niece and nephew who reside at Bly Manor with the estate’s chef, groundskeeper and housekeeper. But all is not as it seems at the manor, and centuries of dark secrets are waiting to be unearthed. The series, which hit screens Oct. 9, also came in at No. 10 on the rising show chart.

Taking the silver on the binge chart was “Emily in Paris.” Created, written and executive produced by Darren Star (“Sex and the City”), “Emily in Paris,” which reigned a No. 1 for the previous two weeks, debuted Oct. 2 on Netflix. It follows Emily (Lily Collins), an ambitious 20-something marketing executive from Chicago, who unexpectedly lands her dream job in Paris when her company acquires a French luxury marketing company.

TV Time is a free TV viewership tracking app that tracks consumers’ viewing habits worldwide and is visited by more than 1 million consumers every day, according to the service. The weekly “Binge Report” ranks shows with the most binge sessions. A binge session is when four or more episodes of a show are watched and tracked in the app in a given day. The “Shows on the Rise” chart is calculated by determining the week-over-week growth in episodes watched for a given program. The network displayed is the network where the show first aired (e.g. “Friends” on NBC).

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Top Binge Shows Week Ended Oct. 18 by Share of Binges:

  1. “The Haunting of Bly Manor” (Netflix) — 5.53%
  2. “Emily in Paris” (Netflix) — 4.42%
  3. “Modern Family” (ABC) — 1.99%
  4. “How to Get Away With Murder” (ABC) — 1.94%
  5. “The Boys” (Amazon) — 1.57%
  6. “Lucifer” (Netflix) — 1.55%
  7. “Grey’s Anatomy” (ABC) — 1.51%
  8. “The Office” (NBC) — 1.50%
  9. “Friends” (NBC) — 1.35%
  10. “One Piece” (Fuji TV) — 1.33%

 

Top “Shows on the Rise” Week Ended Oct. 18 by Rise Ratio:

  1. “La Flamme” (Canal+) — 99.8%
  2. “Kipo and the Age of Wonderbeasts” (Netflix) — 94%
  3. “Doc in Your Hands” (Rai 1) — 92.5%
  4. “Star Trek: Discovery” (CBS All Access) — 81.4%
  5. “Fear the Walking Dead” (AMC) — 57.4%
  6. “black-ish” (ABC) — 51.5%
  7. “RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars” (VH1) — 50.3%
  8. “To the Lake” (THT) — 47.9%
  9. “Riverdale” (The CW) — 40.1%
  10. “The Haunting of Bly Manor” (Netflix) — 36.6%

Apple TV+ to Be Home for ‘Peanuts’

Apple TV+ will stream “Peanuts” original series and specials, along with the classic specials.

New animated “Peanuts” originals coming to Apple TV+ include a second season of the Daytime Emmy-nominated “Snoopy in Space,” and new specials that will find the “Peanuts” gang marking Mother’s Day, Earth Day, New Year’s Eve and going back to school — all to be produced by WildBrain’s animation studio. The new series and specials join the previously announced The Snoopy Show, a new “Peanuts” 70th anniversary documentary film from Imagine Documentaries and WildBrain, and “Peanuts in Space: Secrets of Apollo 10.”

The original programs and new specials will also soon stream globally alongside iconic “Peanuts” specials, including A Charlie Brown Christmas, A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving and It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown. The Halloween special will begin streaming globally on Apple TV+ Oct. 19, and will be available for free from Oct. 30 until Nov. 1 on Apple TV+. Apple TV+ will launch A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving on Nov. 18, and the special will be available for free from Nov. 25 until Nov. 27. A Charlie Brown Christmas will stream exclusively on Apple TV+ on Dec. 4.

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Apple TV+ is available on the Apple TV app on iPhone, iPad, Apple TV, iPod touch, Mac, select Samsung and LG smart TVs, Amazon Fire TV and Roku devices, as well as at tv.apple.com, at $4.99 per month with a seven-day free trial. The Apple TV app will be available on Sony and Vizio smart TVs later this year. For a limited time, customers who purchase a new iPhone, iPad, Apple TV, Mac or iPod touch can enjoy one year of Apple TV+ for free. This special offer is good for three months after the first activation of the eligible device. For more information, please visit apple.com/tvpr.

Ava DuVernay to Make Feature Based on Bestseller ‘Caste’ for Netflix

Under her Array Filmworks banner for Netflix, Academy Award and Golden Globe nominee Ava DuVernay will direct, write and produce a feature film adaptation based on The New York Times bestseller and Oprah’s Book Club selection Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents by Pulitzer Prize winner Isabel Wilkerson.

Through a multiple-story structure, Caste examines the unspoken system that has shaped America and chronicles how our lives today are defined by a hierarchy of human divisions dating back generations.

Caste marks DuVernay’s first feature film at Netflix, reuniting her with Netflix executive Tendo Nagenda. The pair worked together on Disney’s A Wrinkle in Time.

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The project continues Netflix’s relationship with DuVernay, who was the first Black woman feature director to be nominated for an Academy Award with her acclaimed documentary, 13th, garnering BAFTA, Emmy and Peabody Awards. Most recently, her limited series When They See Us received 16 Emmy nominations. DuVernay is currently producing a limited series for Netflix based on the adolescent life of athlete and activist Colin Kaepernick entitled Colin in Black & White.

DuVernay will produce alongside Sarah Bremner and Paul Garnes of Array Filmworks.

Kids’ Series ‘Karma’s World’ Created by Chris ‘Ludacris’ Bridges to Stream on Netflix

A new CG animated series, “Karma’s World,” created by rapper, actor and producer Chris “Ludacris” Bridges will stream in Netflix.

The series for children ages 6-9 is a coming of age story about a young Black girl finding her voice and using it to change her world. It was originally inspired by Chris’s oldest daughter Karma and is based on the interactive educational website of the same name created by Karma’s World Entertainment in 2009. The series follows 10-year-old Karma Grant, an aspiring musical artist and rapper with big talent and an even bigger heart. Smart, resilient, and deeply empathetic, Karma pours her soul into songwriting, channeling her feelings into rhymes with passion, courage and her signature brand of humor.

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The series will feature original songs that tackle issues such as self-esteem, body positivity, discrimination, creativity, expressing emotions, friendship, family, leadership and celebrating differences. Sound design and original music are created and supervised by Bridges and James Bennett Jr., and produced by Gerald Keys.

Executive producers include Vince Commisso, Cathal Gaffney, Darragh O’Connell, Angela C. Santomero, Wendy Harris and Jennie Stacey from 9 Story Media Group (“Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood,” “Blue’s Clues”). The series is produced in partnership with 9 Story’s Oscar-nominated, Dublin-based studio Brown Bag Films and its Emmy Award-winning creative affairs group as well as Karma’s World Entertainment, Bridges’s production company.

“I’ve had a lot of accomplishments in my life, but everything that I’ve experienced seems to have led up to this point to where I can leave a legacy for all my daughters,” said Bridges in a statement. “’Karma’s World’ is one of those legacies. I hope this series will show kids that there are many ways to overcome difficult situations. This show is going to move hip hop culture forward and show young girls that they have the power to change the world. This project has been a long time in the making and I can’t wait to bring Karma’s World to the entire world.”

“It has been an absolute privilege to work with Chris to bring his vision of Karma to life. Karma is a character who does not yet exist on kids’ TV,” said 9 Story’s Santomero in a statement. “She is a powerful, empowering role model who uses her words and music to bring about change in her community. Kids who watch ‘Karma’s World’ will be inspired to use creativity as a vehicle for self-expression, and the series furthers 9 Story’s commitment to creating diverse content for children that encourages them to find their voice and follow their dreams.”

Netflix’s ‘The Haunting of Bly Manor’ Top Rising Show, ‘Emily in Paris’ Top Binge on TV Time Charts

Netflix’s “The Haunting of Bly Manor” was the top rising show while the service’s “Emily in Paris” was again the top binge on the TV Time charts for the week ended Oct. 11.

Top rising show “The Haunting of Bly Manor” comes from “The Haunting of Hill House” creator Mike Flanagan and is the next chapter of “The Haunting” anthology series set in 1980s England. After an au pair’s tragic death, Henry Wingrave hires a young American nanny to care for his orphaned niece and nephew who reside at Bly Manor with the estate’s chef, groundskeeper and housekeeper. But all is not as it seems at the manor, and centuries of dark secrets are waiting to be unearthed in this chilling gothic romance. The show, which debuted Oct. 9, also took the silver on the binge chart.

Created, written and executive produced by Darren Star (“Sex and the City”), “Emily in Paris,” which was the top binge for a second consecutive week, follows Emily (Lily Collins), an ambitious 20-something marketing executive from Chicago, who unexpectedly lands her dream job in Paris when her company acquires a French luxury marketing company. The series debuted Oct. 2.

TV Time is a free TV viewership tracking app that tracks consumers’ viewing habits worldwide and is visited by more than 1 million consumers every day, according to the service. The weekly “Binge Report” ranks shows with the most binge sessions. A binge session is when four or more episodes of a show are watched and tracked in the app in a given day. The “Shows on the Rise” chart is calculated by determining the week-over-week growth in episodes watched for a given program. The network displayed is the network where the show first aired (e.g. “Friends” on NBC).

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Top Binge Shows Week Ended Oct. 11 by Share of Binges:

  1. “Emily in Paris” (Netflix) — 7.90%
  2. “The Haunting of Bly Manor” (Netflix) — 4.20%
  3. “How to Get Away With Murder” (ABC) — 2.29%
  4. “Modern Family” (ABC) — 1.96%
  5. “Lucifer” (Netflix) — 1.68%
  6. “The Boys” (Amazon) — 1.62%
  7. “Grey’s Anatomy” (ABC) — 1.55%
  8. “The Office” (NBC) — 1.46%
  9. “Friends” (NBC) — 1.32%
  10. “The 100” (The CW) — 1.32%

 

Top “Shows on the Rise” Week Ended Oct. 11 by Rise Ratio:

  1. “The Haunting of Bly Manor” (Netflix) — 97.5%
  2. “The Walking Dead: World Beyond” (AMC) — 78.4%
  3. “Al Nadam” (Al Jadeed) — 68.8%
  4. “The Walking Dead” (AMC) — 62.4%
  5. “Haikyu!!” (Tokyo Broadcasting System) — 55.1%
  6. “Jujutsu Kaisen” (MBS) — 50%
  7. “Emily in Paris” (Netflix) — 42.6%
  8. “Good Morning, Veronica” (Netflix) — 36.9%
  9. “Supernatural” (The CW) — 32%
  10. “Riverdale” (The CW) — 29.8%

‘The Power of We: A Sesame Street Special’ Addressing Racism to Stream on HBO Max, PBS Kids Oct. 15

Sesame Workshop, the nonprofit educational organization behind “Sesame Street,” will address racism — and model how children can stand up to it — in The Power of We: A Sesame Street Special to stream on HBO Max and PBS Kids starting Oct. 15.

Designed as a co-viewing experience for children and families, the special will also debut on PBS stations the same day and will re-air throughout October and November on PBS stations and the PBS Kids 24/7 channel.

“‘Sesame Street’ has the ability to entertain children while explaining complex issues like no other program and equips families and caregivers with the support they need to have empathetic conversations,” Kay Wilson Stallings, EVP of creative and production at Sesame Workshop, said in a statement. “We believe that this moment calls for a direct discussion about racism to help children grasp the issues and teach them that they are never too young to be ‘upstanders’ for themselves, one another, and their communities.”

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The Power of We features Elmo and Abby Cadabby, who are joined by 6-year-old Muppet Gabrielle and her cousin, 8-year-old Tamir, as they learn how to become “upstanders” to unfair treatment based on skin — or fur — color. Current and former “Sesame Street” human cast members Alan, Charlie, Chris, and Gordon take part in the special alongside celebrity and musical guests Yara Shahidi, Christopher Jackson and Andra Day. The Power of We includes two new songs, “How Do You Know?” and “Listen, Act, Unite!,” the latter written and performed by Jackson and featuring Day.

Sesame Workshop has also created a companion guide for families and caregivers to use as they discuss the special with children, available at SesameStreet.org/PowerofWe.

Chelsea Handler Stand-Up Special to Stream on HBO Max Oct. 22

Chelsea Handler makes a return to stand-up comedy after a six-year hiatus with HBO Max’s Chelsea Handler: Evolution debuting on the streamer Oct. 22.

During the hourlong special, Handler will share experiences about her family, friendships, and her first foray into therapy — where she unearthed why everyone on this planet annoys her so much. Handler reflects on her personal journey toward self-awareness, assisted by her reliable companion — cannabis.

A six-time No. 1 New York Times bestselling author, Handler filmed the special this summer from her home state of New Jersey on the heels of her most recent bestselling memoir, Life Will Be the Death of MeThe special was filmed in front of a live audience following social distancing and safety protocols.

Netflix streamed its first talk show in 2015 with Chelsea Handler, which lasted two seasons.

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Apple TV+ Orders Docuseries ‘The Supermodels’

Apple TV+ has ordered “The Supermodels,” a docuseries that will feature interviews with Naomi Campbell, Cindy Crawford, Linda Evangelista and Christy Turlington, who will revisit their iconic modeling careers and the ’90s fashion scene.

From Imagine Documentaries, the project will be directed and executive produced by two-time Academy Award winner Barbara Kopple (American Dream; Shut Up and Sing; Harlan County, USA) and executive produced by Brian Grazer and Ron Howard, along with Campbell, Crawford, Evangelista and Turlington.

“The Supermodels” travels back to the 1980s, when four women from different corners of the world united in New York. Their prestige was so extraordinary that it enabled the four to supersede the brands they showcased, making the names Naomi, Cindy, Linda and Christy as prominent as the designers who styled them. Today, the four supermodels remain on the frontlines of culture through activism, philanthropy and business prowess. As the fashion industry continues to redefine itself — and women’s roles within it — this is the story of power and how four women came together to claim it, paving the way for those to follow.

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The docuseries, which is produced under Apple’s exclusive first-look agreement with Imagine Documentaries, will also be executive produced by Sara Bernstein and Justin Wilkes.

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Apple TV+ is available on the Apple TV app on iPhone, iPad, Apple TV, iPod touch, Mac, select Samsung and LG smart TVs, Amazon Fire TV and Roku devices, as well as at tv.apple.com, for $4.99 per month with a seven-day free trial. The Apple TV app will be available on Sony and Vizio smart TVs later this year. For a limited time, customers who purchase a new iPhone, iPad, Apple TV, Mac or iPod touch can get one year of Apple TV+ for free. This special offer is good for three months after the first activation of the eligible device. For more information, visit apple.com/tvpr.

Netflix’s ‘Emily in Paris’ Tops TV Time Charts

Netflix’s “Emily in Paris” topped the TV Time charts for the week ended Oct. 4.

Created, written and executive produced by Darren Star (“Sex and the City”), the MTV Studios series follows Emily (Lily Collins), an ambitious 20-something marketing executive from Chicago, who unexpectedly lands her dream job in Paris when her company acquires a French luxury marketing company. The series debuted Oct. 2.

Coming in at No. 2 on the binge chart was perennial sitcom favorite “Modern Family,” while taking the bronze on the binge chart was “Lucifer,” season five of which hit Netflix Aug. 21. The fantasy series follows Lucifer’s exploits on Earth.

No. 2 on the rising show chart was the kids’ animated series “Carmen Sandiego,” season three of which hit Netflix Oct. 1. Coming in third was “The Worst Witch,” a children’s series based on the books, season four of which hit Netflix Oct. 1.

TV Time is a free TV viewership tracking app that tracks consumers’ viewing habits worldwide and is visited by more than 1 million consumers every day, according to the service. The weekly “Binge Report” ranks shows with the most binge sessions. A binge session is when four or more episodes of a show are watched and tracked in the app in a given day. The “Shows on the Rise” chart is calculated by determining the week-over-week growth in episodes watched for a given program. The network displayed is the network where the show first aired (e.g. “Friends” on NBC).

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Top Binge Shows Week Ended Oct. 4 by Share of Binges:

  1. “Emily in Paris” (Netflix) — 4.92%
  2. “Modern Family” (ABC) — 2.12%
  3. “Lucifer” (Netflix) — 2.05%
  4. “How to Get Away With Murder” (ABC) — 1.82%
  5. “Grey’s Anatomy” (ABC) — 1.74%
  6. “The Office” (NBC) — 1.61%
  7. “Ratched” (Netflix) — 1.58%
  8. “Friends” (NBC) — 1.43%
  9. “The 100” (The CW) — 1.42%
  10. “The Boys” (Amazon) — 1.31%

 

Top “Shows on the Rise” Week Ended Oct. 4 by Rise Ratio:

  1. “Emily in Paris” (Netflix) — 100%
  2. “Carmen Sandiego” (Netflix) — 94.3%
  3. “The Worst Witch” (CBBC) — 88.4%
  4. “Jujutsu Kaisen” (MBS) — 83.9%
  5. “Last Week Tonight With John Oliver” (HBO) — 82.3%
  6. “Fargo” (FX) — 78.3%
  7. “The Ladies’ Paradise” (Rai 1) — 73.5%
  8. “L’allieva” (Rai 1) — 67.2%
  9. “Bob Burgers” (Fox) — 60.8%
  10. “Tell Me a Story” (CBS All Access) — 58%