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Apple continues to hand out second-season pickups to its crop of original scripted series. The latest to get a Season 2 renewal is drama Truth Be Told, starring an executive produced by Octavia Spencer. The series is created by Nichelle Tramble Spellman and is produced by Hello Sunshine, Chernin Entertainment and Endeavor Content.
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Truth Be Told was billed as a limited series but had been designed for a multi-season run. It will be a quasi-anthology in the vein of USA drama The Sinner and NBC comedy Trial & Error where there is a central protagonists that carries over as each season focuses on a new story with new characters.
Spencer will reprise her role as Poppy Parnell in season two, which will unfold around a new case. The first season of Truth Be Told follows podcaster Parnell as she is compelled to reopen the murder case that made her a national sensation, and comes face-to-face with the man she may have mistakenly helped to put behind bars.
“Working with Octavia Spencer has been a dream come true for me. I am honored to continue to build the character of Poppy Parnell with her, and my partners at Hello Sunshine and Chernin Entertainment,” said Tramble Spellman. “Apple continues to show their tremendous support for us and the show. I am thrilled to dive back into exploring our national obsession with true crime and how it plays out with our rich canvas of compelling characters.”
There has been a divide in the reaction to Truth Be Told, with lukewarm reviews by critics and high marks by regular viewers. The series recently landed two NAACP Image Award nominations, for Spencer and Tramble Spellman, with the latter going on to win.
“Octavia's performance and Nichelle's story struck a chord with audiences,” said Matt Cherniss, head of development, Apple Worldwide Video. “We are proud of this powerful show and the incredible team behind it, and look forward to a second season.”
Truth Be Told is executive produced by Spencer, alongside writer and executive producer Tramble Spellman, Reese Witherspoon and Lauren Neustadter for Hello Sunshine, Peter Chernin and Jenno Topping for Chernin Entertainment, and Mikkel Norgaard.
Truth Be Told joins the other original Apple scripted series that have debuted or are pending, all of which have been renewed for a second season. That includes Home Before Dark, Little America, Mythic Quest: Raven's Banquet, Dickinson, See, Servant and For All Mankind. The Morning Show also is returning for a second season.
U.S. streaming service BritBox is to co-produce ITV crime drama The Pembrokeshire Murders starring Murder Mystery and The Alienist star Luke Evans.
The SVOD service, which is a joint venture between the BBC and ITV, will take U.S. and Canadian rights to the three-part series, produced by Bodyguard producer World Productions.
Evans plays police officer Steve Wilkins in the drama, which depicts the pursuit of a cold-blooded serial killer and is based on true-crime book Catching the Bullseye Killer, written by Senior Investigating Officer Steve Wilkins and ITV news journalist Jonathan Hill.
Filming kicked off in January on the series, which was originally commissioned by ITV's Head of Drama Polly Hill and is written by In Plain Sight's Nick Stevens. The series comes from ITV-owned Bodyguard and Line of Duty producer World Productions and is produced by Hinterland's Ed Talfan for Wales-based Severn Screen.
Kingsman: The Golden Circle's Keith Allen plays John Cooper, Game of Thrones' Owen Teale plays Gerard Elias, The End of the F***ing World's Alexandria Riley stars as Jackie Richards, Requiem's Caroline Berry plays Pat Cooper, All the Money in the World's Oliver Ryan stars as Andrew Cooper and Undateable's David Fynn plays ITV News journalist Jonathan Hill.
ITV Studios will distribute with production support from the Welsh Government.
The story centers around two unsolved double murders from the 1980s that cast a shadow over the work of the Dyfed Powys police force. In 2006, newly promoted Detective Superintendent Steve Wilkins decided to reopen both cases. Employing pioneering forensic methods, Wilkins and his team found microscopic DNA and fibers that potentially linked the murders to a string of burglaries committed in the '80s and '90s. The perpetrator of those robberies was nearing the end of his prison sentence, but if Steve Wilkins was right, he was also a serial killer. Could Steve and his team find enough forensic evidence to charge their suspect before he was released to potentially kill again?
It is the latest original to be added to BritBox, which also has Mum starring Lesley Manville, There She Goes starring David Tennant, The Bletchley Circle: San Francisco.
“With a strong cast and suspenseful writing, The Pembrokeshire Murders is a perfect combination of classic crime drama and modern storytelling that is a perfect fit for BritBox,” said BritBox President and CEO Soumya Sriraman.
SPOILER ALERT: If you are among the few who haven’t actually watched Netflix’s Tiger King docuseries, this review contains a lot of details about what goes down in the sad big cat saga.
With Netflix poised in the coming days to cash in and crank the base up a notch with more Tiger King, it's time to come out and say it: I hate the Red State porn that is the crash and burn of Joe Exotic
The initial seven episodes of this septic and shallow patchwork of trademark infringement, sex, guns, labor exploitation, song, drugs, mullets, betrayal, animal activism, revenge, and a lot of big cats may be much binged over these weeks of coronavirus lockdown, but that doesn't mean it's actually worth watching.
Now, I get it, I sound like I'm just a dour critic who hates anything that isn't prestige premium cable or aspirational. C'mon man, you want to say, Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness is just so unbelievable, I can't look away.
I respectfully disagree, and in fact, propose Tiger King isn't just bad, but dangerous in a divided America persistently looking to reduce the other side to caricature.
In a presently ailing nation where TV is more voluminous and vital than ever, the truth is the March 20 launched Tiger King is a clawed white trash misery index. Gawking at some clearly fragile and damaged people like would-be reality TV star Exotic and their below the Mason-Dixon line antics, the series subsequently provides a cultural circus for those smug bicoastals under stay at home orders and screaming to rise up in moral superiority.
Essentially, the tale of big cat collector, self-styled Oklahoma zoo proprietor and 2016 Presidential candidate Exotic AKA Joseph Maldonado-Passage and his ultimately unsuccessful attempt to have rival Carole Baskin knocked off by a hitman hired for $3,000, Tiger King is in that context more a zero-sum game, literally and figuratively, than hitting the zeitgeist.
Obviously, Netflix are pretty damn good at gauging and dragging the public mood over the years, as the likes of the then phenomenon of 2015's Making A Murderer or 2018’s Wild Wild Country prove. Yet, for all the attention it has drawn, this unfocused murder for hire exploration of sorts emerges as a bastard child of Cops, a million Dateline segments from the 1990s and Fox’s short-lived Murder in Small Town X reality show from 2001.
Not exactly the prestige product that the home of Roma, The Irishman and American Factory likes to brag about at award shows. Then again, with the knowledge that the Romans sold out the Colosseum every night feeding Christians to the lions, the bottom line based House of Hastings surely loves the subscription sign up that the currently incarcerated Maldonado-Passage and the accompanying motley gaggle of...
On Friday, April 3, Apple TV+ releases all 10 episodes of the first season of its mystery-thriller “Home Before Dark.” Inspired by the life of Hilde Lysiak, a young journalist who gained national notoriety at age nine when she scooped a local homicide case in her Pennsylvania hometown, the Jon M. Chu-directed and executive produced series has already been renewed for a second season.
Created and executive produced by Dana Fox and Dara Resnick, “Home Before Dark” follows Brooklynn Prince as Hilde Lysko, a nine-year-old journalist whose family's cross-country move from New York to her father's Jim Sturgess small Washington hometown leads her to investigate a dark, deeply buried mystery from decades ago.
IndieWire spoke with “Home Before Dark” co-showrunner and co-creator Dana Fox about the series, from the process of making a bingeable mystery-thriller she hadn’t seen before to her transition from comedy to drama to the unexpected “Justified” reunion.
This interview has been edited and condensed for length and clarity.
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IndieWire: How exactly did you come to co-create “Home Before Dark”? How did you come to Hilde Lysiak’s story?
Fox: Basically, my dear friend Joy Gorman Wettels, who’s an amazing producer — she was my manager for a long time and then she started producing, as well — she was at the Tribeca Awards, and there were a bunch of adults winning awards for cool things. And then, this little nine-year-old girl stood up and gave this incredible speech and was incredibly poised. She started talking about the need for journalists and how important it was to try to find the truth, and it really resonated with Joy. We weren’t even deeply in the times that we are in now, but it’s something that was feeling important already.
And so Joy was talking to the people next to her about how extraordinary this little girl was, and it turned out to be Hilde’s parents. So she joked, “I have a five-year-old, can you come move in with me, and help me raise my daughter, because this girl is amazing.” And so they struck up a conversation, they got along, and eventually, Hilde was featured in the New York Times for essentially scooping her local paper on a murder.
Joy was in a very competitive situation with a lot of other producers and they were all talking to Hilde and her parents on the phone and they had all these conversations. Joy ended up winning the rights and when she did, afterwards she said, “Why did you pick me?” And Hilde’s...