Complete Series of ‘American Gods’ Due March 1 From Lionsgate

American Gods — Seasons 1–3: The Complete Series is being released on DVD March 1 from Lionsgate.

Set in a hidden world where magic is real and gods exist on earth, “American Gods” chronicles the brewing war between Old Gods and New Gods, as the traditional gods of mythology are steadily losing believers to a burgeoning pantheon of modern gods focused on technology and money. The story across three seasons centers around ex-convict Shadow Moon, bodyguard for the mysterious Mr. Wednesday, an Old God trying to rebuild the power and influence the Old Gods once had. As events unfold and Shadow struggles with his identity and place in the world, the series examines humanity’s conflicted relationship with faith and the unknown.

The series is based on the best-selling novel by Neil Gaiman and created by Bryan Fuller (“Star Trek: Discovery,” “Hannibal,” “Dead Like Me”) and Michael Green (“Heroes,” Logan, Blade Runner 2049). Stars include Ian McShane, Ricky Whittle, Emily Browning, Orlando Jones, Pablo Schreiber and Crispin Glover.  

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Special features include “The Road to ‘American Gods'”; “Title Gods”; “God Squad Video Commentary”; “American Gods” origins; “Old Gods”; “New Gods”; “What Is ‘American Gods’?”; “Book vs. Show”; “Explore the Crocodile Bar in 360 Degrees” with commentary by cast and crew, including with Bryan Fuller, Ian McShane, Ricky Whittle and Pablo Schreiber; audio commentaries with cast and crew; “The House on the Rock: Setting the Stage”; “The Second Coming,”Neil Gaiman on season two; “Gods and Ends: Random Musings from the Cast”; “Meet the New Gods of Season Three”; “Road to Epiphany: The Season Three Journey”; and “Five Questions for the Cast.”

While Growing, TV and Movie Viewing Grabs Smaller Portion of Consumers’ Entertainment Time

TV and movie viewing has become a smaller portion of consumers’ overall weekly entertainment time over the past two years while the share of weekly time spent on other entertainment pursuits, particularly digital activities, has increased, according to new research by Interpret.

Interpret’s study, Holistic Entertainment 2021: The Complete Consumer, found that the average weekly time spent on entertainment overall has increased by an average of five hours between 2019 and 2021. While TV and movie viewing hours increased, their growth has been significantly outpaced by other forms of entertainment.

“Overall, consumers’ time spent on entertainment is becoming more diverse,” Brett Sappington, VP at Interpret, said in a statement. “Movies and TV programming still represent the largest share of entertainment time, but other activities are rapidly encroaching. Young consumers in particular see gaming, short form video, and live-streaming as valid, even preferable, alternatives to premium video content. The industry must continue to push the boundaries of entertainment in order to engage with consumers and remain relevant over time.”

Other results include:

  • Broadcast and cable network viewing fell by approximately one hour per week during the period.
  • Hours spent on streaming services offset the decline in broadcast and cable TV viewing.
  • Music, gaming, and podcasts have become a larger share of consumer entertainment. Mobile gaming in particular has increased, with U.S. consumers spending more than two hours more per week on mobile games in 2021 than in 2019.
  • Reading physical media (printed books, newspapers, and magazines) declined in entertainment share, as did, not surprisingly, attendance at live events.

 

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Interpret’s Holistic Entertainment 2021: The Complete Consumer is a syndicated consumer research study that examines consumer entertainment habits and spending over time. The study is based on online surveys of 9,000 U.S. consumers from 2019 to 2021, and measures entertainment consumption across varying media and free time activities, including TV and movies, online activities, digital entertainment, physical media, exercise and outdoor activities, event attendance, social media and other areas. It also explores differences in consumption among particular segments, including pay-TV subscribers, OTT subscribers, gamers and differing age cohorts, including digital natives, millennials and boomers.

New Original Mystery Series ‘The Tower’ Headed to Britbox Dec. 1

Gemma Whelan (“Game of Thrones,” “Killing Eve”) is headlining a new original drama on the British streaming service Britbox called “The Tower.” All episodes premiere Dec. 1.

The series — based on the novel by Kate London, a former U.K. detective who spent eight years on the force — is written and executive produced by Patrick Harbison of “Homeland” and “24.”

In “The Tower,” Whelan plays a detective brought in to investigate a shocking event in London’s East End in which a veteran cop and teenage girl are killed and a rookie cop and 5-year-old boy go missing. Seemingly their only connection is the tower where the incident took place. 

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The series co-stars Jimmy Akingbola (“Kate & Koji,” upcoming “Bel-Air”), Emmett J Scanlan (“Peaky Blinders,” “Gangs of London”) and Tahirah Sharif (“Casualty,” “The Haunting of Bly Manor”).

Sky Comedy ‘Bloods’ Heading to Hulu Dec. 9

The first season of the Sky comedy “Bloods” will start streaming on Hulu Dec. 9 as part of a multi-series deal.

The British series follows tough-acting loner Maleek (BAFTA nominated Samson Kayo) and over-friendly divorcee Wendy (Golden Globe nominated Jane Horrocks) as a pair of mismatched paramedics and their fellow ambulance station colleagues through the life-saving world of a south London emergency service.

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The show’s cast also includes Lucy Punch (“Motherland”) as boisterous station boss Jo and Julian Barratt (“Mighty Boosh”) as grieving widower Lawrence. Adrian Scarborough (“Gavin and Stacey”) and Aasiya Shah (“Raised By Wolves”) are Gary and Kareshma, paramedics with diametrically apposing career outlooks, and Kevin Garry (“Ted Lasso”) and Sam Campbell (Melbourne International Comedy Festival Barry Award winner) as the glued-to-the-hip duo of paramedics Darrell and Darryl.

‘Sex and the City’ Relaunch ‘And Just Like That …’ to Debut Dec. 9 on HBO Max

The 10-episode Max original series “And Just Like That …” will debut with two episodes Dec. 9 on HBO Max.

The following eight episodes will premiere weekly on subsequent Thursdays.

The new chapter of the HBO series “Sex and the City,” from executive producer Michael Patrick King, follows Carrie (Sarah Jessica Parker), Miranda (Cynthia Nixon) and Charlotte (Kristin Davis) as they navigate the journey from the complicated reality of life and friendship in their 30s to the even more complicated reality of life and friendship in their 50s. 

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The series also includes previously announced cast members Sara Ramírez, Sarita Choudhury, Nicole Ari Parker, Karen Pittman, Chris Noth, Mario Cantone, David Eigenberg, Willie Garson and Evan Handler.
 
The HBO series “Sex and the City” was created by Darren Star and based on the book “Sex and the City” by Candace Bushnell.

 

‘Evil Dead Groovy Collection’ Due Nov. 16 From Lionsgate

The original two “Evil Dead” films, as well as the three-season “Ash vs. Evil Dead” series will be released in The Evil Dead Groovy Collection, arriving Nov. 16 on 4K Ultra HD plus Blu-ray plus digital from Lionsgate.

Wisecracking ladies’ man Ash Williams (Bruce Campbell, Army of Darkness, Bubba Ho-Tep, TV’s “The Last Kids on Earth”) is reborn as a slayer of Deadites in The Evil Dead (4K plus Blu-ray) after a vacation in the country is ruined by the reading of an ancient demon-summoning text. In Evil Dead II (4K plus Blu-ray), a chainsaw-armed Ash is pushed to the brink of madness by unhinged evil yet again, while the series “Ash vs. Evil Dead” (Blu-ray) follows an older, grayer Ash over three seasons as he reckons with his bloody past in the face of a Deadite plague.

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The release includes The Evil Dead bonus content DVD, with more than three hours of features revisiting the film’s cast, crew and legacy. The Evil Dead 4K Blu-ray includes audio Commentary with writer-director Sam Raimi, producer Robert G. Tapert and Campbell. Evil Dead II includes audio commentary with Raimi, Campbell, cowriter Scott Spiegel and special makeup effects artist Greg Nicotero, as well as numerous Blu-ray special features. “Ash vs Evil Dead” includes numerous extras for each season.

Whip Media and NATPE Launch New Report on Domestic Consumption of International TV Series

Software platform and data provider Whip Media and the National Association of Television Program Executives (NATPE) have announced a partnership to provide a new data report on how U.S. audiences are consuming international TV series.

The new NATPE Navigator report highlights what original content produced outside the U.S. is among the most viewed domestically, according to Whip. It is available every other week on the NATPE, and Whip Media websites and will be distributed in the NATPE newsletter.

Netflix’s Spanish series “Money Heist” topped the first report for Sept. 6-19.

The NATPE report is compiled utilizing Whip Media’s proprietary global panel of consumers who report what programs they follow and watch and, further, how they feel about those shows, according to Whip. The panel is made up of 18 million viewers in more than 170 countries and provides data on more than 4.5 million movie and TV episodes on 1,100 global platforms.

The NATPE Navigator ranks the top 10 most viewed non-U.S. TV series among U.S. viewers. According to Whip, the report also provides a snapshot of a specific global title, including who is watching it, how people feel about it, what else they are watching, and where that title is available on SVOD services globally based on real-time streaming availability data provided by Whip Media’s partner, BB, a media intelligence and content distribution researcher.

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“We at NATPE are proud of our position as a resource for this industry that has seen countless changes to the global content marketplace and are always looking for new ways to provide additional insights and guidance to our members,” J.P. Bommel, president and CEO of NATPE, said in a statement. “This partnership with Whip Media will do just that, and we are eager to see the results of their study as we continue to navigate the shifts our industry is going through.”

“With the growing consumer demand for new TV series and movies, content is no longer staying within its originating territories, but it’s still difficult to predict hits and what content will resonate with local viewers,” Carol Hanley, president of Whip Media, said in a statement. “We’re excited to partner with NATPE to provide this new actionable data to the industry along with insights on how to fill gaps in their programming in a marketplace now unbound by geography.”

‘Sex and the City’ Series and Movies Due in Blu-ray Boxed Set Nov. 2

Warner Bros. Home Entertainment will release all six seasons of the HBO comedy series “Sex and the City” plus both feature films based on the show as a Blu-ray Disc collection for the first time on Nov. 2.

“Sex and The City: The Complete Series + 2 Movie Collection” features 96 episodes of the series plus Sex and the City: The Movie and Sex and the City 2 in one boxed set. It arrives in time for the next chapter “And Just Like That …,” which debuts on HBO Max later this year.

Winner of seven Emmy Awards, and the first cable show to win Outstanding Comedy Series, “Sex and the City” celebrates the bond of female friendship. It stars Sarah Jessica Parker as Carrie Bradshaw, a New York-based writer who explores and experiences the unique world of Manhattan’s dating scene, chronicling the mating habits of single New Yorkers. The series also stars cast regulars Kim Cattrall as PR executive Samantha Jones, who’s seen — and done — it all; Kristin Davis as Charlotte York, still trying to hold on to the idea of happily ever after; and Cynthia Nixon as corporate lawyer and mother Miranda Hobbes, a pragmatist trying to balance the idea of love with the realities of life.

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The release includes more than three hours of previously released special features, including “Inside Sex and the City,” “Meet the Cast of Sex and the City,” “The Writers of Sex and the City,” “The Fashion of Sex and the City Sex and the City: Real New Yorkers,” and many more.

Sex and the City: The Complete Series, Sex and the City: The Movie and Sex and the City 2 are also available to own on digital via purchase from digital retailers, and to stream on HBO Max.

Netflix Picks Ups Fourth, Final Season of ‘Manifest’

Netflix has made a habit of rescuing canceled network TV series for a second life on SVOD. The latest is shuttered NBC supernatural airplane disaster show “Manifest,” which the Peacock network ended last June after three seasons.

The series plotline revolves around the passengers and crew of a commercial airliner who suddenly reappear after being presumed dead for more than five years. As those aboard reintegrate into society, they experience guiding voices and visions of events yet to occur, and soon a deeper mystery unfolds. The show’s cast includes Melissa Roxburgh, Josh Dallas, Athena Karkanis and J.R. Ramirez, among others.

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Netflix Aug. 30 announced it has picked up a fourth and final season of the show, which has been a ratings winner for the SVOD behemoth, according to Nielsen. Indeed, the series tracked nearly 11 billion minutes streamed across 29 episodes (two seasons) over a seven-week period between July and August. The numbers bested Netflix original programming, in addition to high-profile competitors, including Disney+ original series “Loki,” among others.

Netflix will likely stream season three ahead of the fourth season, which reportedly will include 20 episodes divided over two seasons. A release date for all-new “Manifest” episodes on Netflix has not been announced.

Other shuttered TV series Netflix has rescued and/or re-imagined include: “Designated Survivor,” “Lucifer,” “Arrested Development,” “Longmire,” “The Killing,” “Gilmore Girls,” “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt” and “Fuller House,” among others.

All Seasons of ‘Seaside Hotel’ Streaming on PBS Masterpiece Prime Video Channel

All eight seasons (40 episodes) of the Danish TV series “Seaside Hotel” are becoming available to stream on the PBS Masterpiece Prime Video Channel in September, with season eight debuting Sept. 17.

The subscription rate for the PBS Masterpiece Prime Video Channel is $5.99 per month with an Amazon Prime or Prime Video subscription.

Fondly known as “Danish Downton-by-the-sea,” the series follows the drama of the guests and employees of a seaside hotel. “Downton Abbey” meets “Agatha Christie” in this sleeper hit that began its first season in 2013, set in 1920s Denmark. Seasons one through five each follow a summer hotel season in the years 1928 though 1932. Seasons six through eight each follow a summer season in the years 1939 through 1941.

In the series, when an 18-year-old girl from a working-class family starts work at this rural beach hotel, her father warns her not to fraternize with the bourgeois guests, but as secrets about each guest begin to unravel, the seemingly idyllic rural life is much more dramatic than Fie expected. The hotel owner is immediately charmed by her good looks and quickly promotes her to chambermaid, which causes shockwaves through the normally strictly conventional hotel. The owner’s wife is wary, the other maids are jealous and the local young farmer is intrigued by this pretty new addition to his client’s staff. As the annual visitors settle into their rooms, Fie begins to learn about old habits and new secrets, as their chambermaid unwittingly becomes party to betrayal, murder and unexpected desires.

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When the seaside hotel opens its doors in season eight, the year is 1941 and WWII becomes harder to dismiss from everyone’s mind. A life with rationing marks, scarcity of goods and German soldiers in the street has long since become commonplace. The Germans have moved closer and have now taken over the neighboring hotels only 1 kilometer from the beach hotel. However, this does not stop the spa hotel’s regulars from packing their suitcases and checking in as usual.