Freeform Channel Announces Two New Series for 2018-19

Freeform President Tom Ascheim and Executive Vice President of Programming and Development Karey Burke unveiled yesterday the new and returning projects for The Walt Disney Company’s young adult cable network at the combined Disney|ABC Television’s presentation for the national advertising community at Lincoln Center’s David Geffen Hall.

Freeform continues to dominate the young adult landscape in cable with the No. 1 comedy (“grown-ish”) and the No. 1 new drama (“Siren”) with young women (18-34 and 12-34). Also claiming the title of No. 1 most social cable network for the 7th year in a row and the No. 1 network in digital viewing, Freeform is delivering on its new tagline “A Little Forward.”

The recently re-branded network continues to build its roster of quality programming that speaks to the young adult consumer who has embraced its authenticity, evident in recent multi-platform hits “grown-ish,” “Siren” and the critically acclaimed “The Bold Type.” In addition to strong female representation on-screen, the network champions and has built an impressive, inclusive roster behind the scenes. Half of Freeform’s episodic directors are female, diverse, or LGBTQ, 60% of series writers are female or diverse, and every original series on the network has a female producer. The network also boasts placement as No. 1 in digital viewing, No. 5 entertainment network and the most social cable network for the seventh year in a row.

“In the past year, our commitment to quality has been reflected back to us with a rousing chorus of critical and fan acclaim,” says Ascheim. “Our young adult audience is the most important and influential generation in America and we want to be right there with them every step of the way.” Adds Burke, “We like changing the narrative at Freeform and are proud that our original programming resonates so strongly with this audience. We are grateful to all of our series creators who share our focus on challenging the status quo and telling stories with meaning.”

NEW SERIES PROGRAMMING

“BESTIES”
“Besties,” a half-hour multi camera comedy from co-creators Kenya Barris and Ranada Shepard has been ordered to series by Freeform following the enormous success of Barris’s breakout coming-of-age show, “grown-ish,” the No. 1 cable comedy season-to-date (women 18-34.) This multi-cam sitcom explores friendship, identity, race, and class as two lifelong best friends use each other to get through some of the toughest challenges that they will ever face – figuring out who they are and who they want to be. Kenya Barris and Ranada Shepard are executive producers; the series is produced by ABC Signature Studios.

“PRETTY LITTLE LIARS: THE PERFECTIONISTS”
                                                                   
I.  Marlene King will expand the universe of “Pretty Little Liars” for Freeform with a 10-episode series order for “Pretty Little Liars: The Perfectionists,” featuring returning fan favorites Sasha Pieterse as Alison and Janel Parrish as Mona and starring Sofia Carson (Disney’s “Descendants”) as Ava. The drama also welcomes Sydney Park (“The Walking Dead”) as Caitlin, newcomer Eli Brown as Dylan, Graeme Thomas King (“The Widow”) as Jeremy, Kelly Rutherford (“Gossip Girl”) as Claire, and Hayley Erin (“General Hospital”) in an undisclosed role. In Beacon Heights, a seemingly perfect town, a group of three college friends struggle with the stress of being overachievers. In the aftermath of the town’s first murder, each Perfectionist hides behind a secret, a lie and an alibi. Like its predecessor, “Pretty Little Liars,” which was No. 1 on the New York Times bestseller list, “The Perfectionists” is also based on a popular book series penned by Sara Shepard. “Pretty Little Liars: The Perfectionists” is produced by Alloy Entertainment and Long Lake Media, in association with Warner Horizon Scripted Television. I. Marlene King (“Pretty Little Liars,” “Famous in Love”) wrote the pilot and serves as executive producer on the series with Charlie Craig (“Pretty Little Liars,” “The 100”), Lisa Cochran-Neilan (“Pretty Little Liars,” “Famous in Love”), Leslie Morgenstein (“Pretty Little Liars,” “The Vampire Diaries”) and Gina Girolamo (“The 100,” “The Originals”). The pilot was directed and executive produced by Elizabeth Allen Rosenbaum (“Relationship Status”).

Take a first look at “Pretty Little Liars: The Perfectionists below.


Tickets Now On Sale for Pixar Pier Premiere Special Event at Disney California Adventure Park

How would you like to be one of the first guests to experience the all-new Pixar Pier at the Disneyland Resort? Tickets are on sale now for the exclusive, VIP-style premiere event on June 22 at Disney California Adventure park!

On June 22, Disney California Adventure Park will host the Pixar Pier Premiere, a VIP-style party offering Guests early access to newly reimagined attractions, entertainment, food venues, games and merchandise on Pixar Pier—the night before the general public.

This separately ticketed event also includes keepsakes, parking and themed menu selections at Pixar Pier as well as entry to the attractions and entertainment throughout the park. Plus, the party coincides with Pixar Fest and the June 15 theatrical release of Disney·Pixar’s action-packed animated adventure, Incredibles 2. So join the festivities and immerse yourself in a newly reimagined land that brings some of the best-loved Pixar tales to life!

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EVENT HIGHLIGHTS

Attractions
Experience the thrills of Pixar Pier’s Incredicoaster, an exhilarating ride starring The Incredibles’ Parr family as they make a mad dash to catch the chaos-causing—and downright adorable—baby Jack-Jack! Don’t forget to take a whirl on Toy Story Midway Mania! and Pixar Pal-A-Round too!

Character Appearances
Nab an autograph, share hugs or strike a pose with some of the best-loved Pixar pals—don’t forget those cameras!

Food and Beverage Offerings
Tickets include one food voucher to each of these select dining locations: Adorable Snowman Frosted Treats, Angry Dogs, Jack-Jack’s Cookie Num Num, Poultry Palace and Señor Buzz Churros.

Live Entertainment
Sing along as a live DJ spins some of Pixar’s most memorable tunes!

PhotoPass
Pose for pics against playfully themed décor and backdrops, then enjoy unlimited downloads of Disney PhotoPass photos taken during the event.

Special Access
Gain access to the second level outdoor patio of the newly revamped Lamplight Lounge, a waterfront eatery and bar with a seaside vibe—seating is first-come, first-served with limited availability.

Keepsakes
Commemorate your visit with a souvenir swag bag and event credential, included with each ticket. (Credentials are limited to one per ticketed person.)

Themed Merchandise
Be one of the first to purchase an incredible selection of apparel, gifts, toys and more for memories that last a lifetime. (While supplies last.)

Games of the Boardwalk
Put your skills to the test! Play midway-style games inspired by Pixar stories—including Bullseye Stallion Stampede, Heimlich Candy Corn Toss, WALL·E Space Race and La Luna Star Catcher.

EVENT DETAILS

  • Disney California Adventure Park
  • June 22, 2018
  • Pixar Pier Party – 3:00 PM to 9:00 PM
  • Disney California Adventure Park mix-in – 3:00 PM to 10:00 PM
  • $299 per person (available online starting May 16, 2018)
  • Tickets not required for children under 3 years of age
  • Limited ticket quantities—subject to availability
  • Standard parking included

A limited quantity of tickets will be available starting May 16, at Disneyland.com .

Event elements including, but not limited to, operation of attractions, experiences, entertainment, characters, menu items, merchandise, souvenirs, special offerings and services are subject to restrictions, change or cancellation without notice. No refunds given for any such changes or cancellations.

VIDEO: #DisneyParksLIVE: Together Forever – A Pixar Nighttime Spectacular

Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge Panel and Other Details Revealed for Galactic Nights on May 27

Star Wars: Galactic Nights returns to Disney’s Hollywood Studios on May 27, 2018, and offers Star Wars fans the ultimate party with out-of-this-world entertainment, special photo opportunities,  themed food and beverage offerings and event-exclusive merchandise.

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Today Disney unveiled the experts who are lined up to appear at this year’s “Inside Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge” panel discussion. Actor David Collins is hosting the panel with members of the Walt Disney Imagineering team. During this fascinating sneak peek, attendees will find out what it’s like to bring the epic Star Wars universe to life at Disney Parks. You’ll learn about the Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge design and development progress, including new details about the land and how Imagineers are creating real-life versions of iconic Star Wars elements.

Attend the “Inside Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge” panel discussion and you’ll be among the first to…

  • See new photos of the land’s progress, including construction updates
  • Learn more details about the planet Batuu
  • Plus, other special surprises!

On tap to appear at this event are:

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  • Scott Trowbridge, Portfolio Creative Executive, Walt Disney Imagineering – A global creative leader, Scott oversees the strategic concept development and production of the Star Wars franchise at Disney Parks, a first-of-its-kind franchise-based portfolio. He also oversees Star Wars content across all lines of business at Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, including merchandise, food & beverage, marketing and operations.
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  • Eric Baker, Creative Director, Walt Disney Imagineering – As a Creative Director for Walt Disney Imagineering, Eric is responsible for creating and developing stories and places for Disney theme parks and other Disney venues, as well as the implementation to bring these stories to life, from props to creatures. Some of Eric’s past projects include Tortuga Tavern, the extended Haunted Mansion queue and Star Tours – The Adventures Continue.
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  • Jon Georges, Executive Producer, Walt Disney Imagineering – With over 30 years of experience at Walt Disney Imagineering, Jon has produced many projects around the world, including the recent updates to Fantasyland at Magic Kingdom Park. Currently, Jon is producing Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.
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  • Margaret Kerrison, Managing Story Editor, Walt Disney Imagineering – Margaret is responsible for the overall story direction in the Star Wars portfolio and guides and manages Star Wars-related story initiatives throughout all Disney lands, resorts, and attractions. To create an authentic, compelling, and interconnected galaxy, she works collaboratively with other Imagineers and the Lucasfilm story team. Margaret has also worked on projects including Hyperspace Mountain in Disneyland, and Grand Avenue at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.
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Fan-favorite Star Wars actor Warwick Davis will also return as the official Galactic Nights event host. Join Warwick at various appearances throughout the night including a special introduction to the Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge panel. An established film and television actor, Davis is known for his role as Wicket the Ewok in Return of the Jedi, plus other Lucasfilm roles in Ewoks: Battle for Endor and Caravan of Courage. He recently played Wollivan in Star Wars: The Force Awakens, appeared in Star Wars: The Last Jedi and will appear in Solo: A Star Wars Story.

Guests can also receive the final set of Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge trading cards at the end of the evening as they exit the park.

Star Wars: Galactic Nights tickets cost $129, plus tax for adults and $124, plus tax for children ages 3-9.  Tickets can be purchased here.

For more information, please visit WaltDisneyWorld.com.


ABC Unveils 2018-19 Prime-Time Schedule

Coming on the heels of a tremendously successful 2017-18 season that boasts the No. 1 show on television (“Roseanne”), the No. 1 new drama (“The Good Doctor”) and the No. 1 reality show launch (“American Idol”), ABC is set to announce a stellar slate of programming for the 2018-19 season. Channing Dungey, president, ABC Entertainment, will unveil the network’s new lineup to the advertising and media communities this afternoon at Lincoln Center’s David Geffen Hall in New York City.

“We enter the new season bolstered by success and the stability that it affords us,” Dungey said. “The new shows we unveil today strengthen an already-vibrant schedule of some of the best television has to offer. These shows, with their compelling characters and aspirational storytelling, will keep our momentum going.”

A total of eight new series have been announced for ABC’s 2018-19 season, including the one-hour dramas “A Million Little Things,” “The Fix,” “Grand Hotel,” “The Rookie” and “Whiskey Cavalier,” and the half-hour comedies “The Kids Are Alright,” “Schooled” and “Single Parents.”

Additionally, “Dancing with the Stars: Juniors,” previously announced last year, will be on the fall schedule. A fresh take on an established favorite, the show will pair celebrity kids with professional junior ballroom dancers to perform choreographed routines, which will be judged by a panel that will include renowned ballroom experts. “Dancing with the Stars: Juniors” is produced by BBC Studios.

“The Alec Baldwin Show” (new title), which first debuted as a sneak preview in March, will also air this fall. Starring the three-time Emmy® winner, the one-hour show will showcase Baldwin’s in-depth conversations with compelling personalities. The show is executive produced by Jason Schrift, along with Baldwin and Mallory Schwartz via his El Dorado Pictures.

Fan favorites “American Housewife,” “black-ish,” “For The People,” “Fresh Off the Boat,” “How to Get Away with Murder,” “Speechless,” “Splitting Up Together,” and “Station 19” will also return, joining previously announced series “America’s Funniest Home Videos,” “American Idol,” “The Bachelor,” “The Bachelorette,” “Child Support,” “Dancing with the Stars,” “The Goldbergs,” “The Good Doctor,” “Grey’s Anatomy,” “Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.,” “Modern Family,” “Roseanne”  and “Shark Tank.”

On average since the conclusion of the Olympics in February, ABC is the No. 1 TV network among Adults 18-49. For the entire 2017-18 season, ABC ranks a strong No. 2 in entertainment programming, pacing within 100k Adults 18-49 of tying NBC for No. 1. The Network claims 3 of the Top 5 broadcast entertainment shows this season (“Roseanne,” “Grey’s Anatomy” and “The Good Doctor”), a network-leading 5 of the Top 10 comedies (“Roseanne,” “Modern Family,” “Splitting Up Together,” “The Middle” and “The Goldbergs”), the No. 1 freshman series (“The Good Doctor”) and the No. 1 TV show (“Roseanne”).

Fall premiere dates will be announced at a later time. Please note that shows picked up to series but not listed on the schedule below will debut later in the 2018-19 season.

ABC’s fall prime-time schedule is as follows (all times listed are Eastern/Pacific). New shows are in bold:

DAY                              TIME              SERIES

MONDAY:                  8:00 p.m.         “Dancing with the Stars”
10:00 p.m.       “The Good Doctor”

TUESDAY:                  8:00 p.m.         “Roseanne”
8:30 p.m.         “The Kids Are Alright”
9:00 p.m.         “black-ish”
9:30 p.m.         “Splitting Up Together”
10:00 p.m.       “The Rookie”

WEDNESDAY:           8:00 p.m.         “The Goldbergs”
8:30 p.m.         “American Housewife” (new time)
9:00 p.m.         “Modern Family”
9:30 p.m.         “Single Parents”
10:00 p.m.       “A Million Little Things”

THURSDAY:               8:00 p.m.         “Grey’s Anatomy”
9:00 p.m.         “Station 19”
10:00 p.m.       “How to Get Away with Murder”

FRIDAY:                      8:00 p.m.         “Fresh Off the Boat” (new day and time)
8:30 p.m.         “Speechless” (new day and time)
9:00 p.m.         “Child Support” (new time)
10:00 p.m.       “20/20”

SATURDAY:               8:00 p.m.         “Saturday Night Football”

SUNDAY:                    7:00 p.m.         “America’s Funniest Home Videos”
8:00 p.m.         “Dancing with the Stars: Juniors”
9:00 p.m.         “Shark Tank”
10:00 p.m.       “The Alec Baldwin Show” (new title)

NEW FALL AND MIDSEASON SERIES:

DRAMAS

“A MILLION LITTLE THINGS”
They say friendship isn’t one big thing, it’s a million little things; and that’s true for a group of friends from Boston who bonded under unexpected circumstances. Some have achieved success, others are struggling in their careers and relationships, but all of them feel stuck in life. After one of them dies unexpectedly, it’s just the wake-up call the others need to finally start living. Along the way, they discover that friends may be the one thing to save them from themselves.

“A Million Little Things” stars David Giuntoli as Eddie, Ron Livingston as Jon, Romany Malco as Rome, Allison Miller as Maggie, Christina Moses as Regina, Christina Ochoa as Ashley, James Roday as Gary, Stephanie Szostak as Delilah and Lizzy Greene as Sophie.

DJ Nash is writer and executive producer; Aaron Kaplan and Dana Honor are executive producers; and James Griffiths is the director on the pilot and an executive producer, from ABC Studios/Kapital Entertainment.

“THE FIX”
Attorney and author Marcia Clark co-writes and executive produces a new legal drama about Maya Travis, an L.A. district attorney who suffers a devastating defeat when prosecuting an A-list actor for double murder. With her high-profile career derailed, she flees for a quieter life in Washington. Eight years later when this same celebrity is under suspicion for another murder, Maya Travis is lured back to the DA’s office for another chance at justice. This legal thriller is executive produced/co-written by Clark, Liz Craft and Sarah Fain, and is from Mandeville TV and ABC Studios.

“The Fix” stars Robin Tunney as Maya Travis, Adam Rayner as Matthew Collier, Merrin Dungey as CJ, Breckin Meyer as Alan Wiest, Marc Blucas as Riv, Mouzam Makkar as Loni Kampoor, Alex Saxon as Gabriel Johnson, with Scott Cohen as Ezra Wolf and Adewale Akinnouye-Agbaje as Sevvy Johnson.

Elizabeth Craft & Sarah Fain and Marcia Clark are writers and executive producers. David Hoberman, Todd Lieberman and Laurie Zaks are executive producers (Mandeville). Larysa Kondracki directed the pilot.

“GRAND HOTEL”
Eva Longoria executive produces this bold, provocative drama set at the last family-owned hotel in multicultural Miami Beach. Charismatic Santiago Mendoza owns the hotel, while his glamorous second wife, Gigi, and their adult children enjoy the spoils of success. The hotel’s loyal staff round out a contemporary, fresh take on an upstairs/downstairs story. Wealthy and beautiful guests bask in luxury, but scandals, escalating debt and explosive secrets hide beneath the picture-perfect exterior. The show is based on the Spanish series.

The series stars Demian Bichir as Santiago Mendoza, Roselyn Sanchez as Gigi Mendoza, Denyse Tontz as Alicia Mendoza, Bryan Craig as Javi Mendoza, Wendy Raquel Robinson as Mrs. P, Lincoln Younes as Danny, Shalim Ortiz as Mateo, Anne Winters as Ingrid, Chris Warren as Jason, Feliz Ramirez as Carolina and Justina Adorno as Yoli.

Brian Tanen is the writer and executive producer; Eva Longoria and Ben Spector (UnbeliEVAble), Ramon Campos and Teresa Fernandez-Valdes (Beta) are executive producers of the series. Ken Olin directed the pilot. The series is produced by ABC Studios.

“THE ROOKIE”
Starting over isn’t easy, especially for small-town guy John Nolan who, after a life-altering incident, is pursuing his dream of being an LAPD officer. As the force’s oldest rookie, he’s met with skepticism from some higher-ups who see him as just a walking midlife crisis. If he can’t keep up with the young cops and the criminals, he’ll be risking lives including his own. But if he can use his life experience, determination and sense of humor to give him an edge, he may just become a success in this new chapter of his life.

The series stars Nathan Fillion as John Nolan, Alyssa Diaz as Angela Lopez, Richard T. Jones as Sergeant Wade Grey, Titus Makin as Jackson West, Mercedes Mason as Captain Zoe Andersen, Melissa O’Neil as Lucy Chen, Afton Williamson as Talia Bishop and Eric Winter as Tim Bradford.

Alexi Hawley is writer and executive producer; Mark Gordon, Nathan Fillion, Michelle Chapman and Jon Steinberg are executive producers on the series. Liz Friedlander directed and executive produced the first episode. Entertainment One (eOne) is the lead studio on “The Rookie,” a co-production with ABC Studios.

“WHISKEY CAVALIER”
“Whiskey Cavalier” is a high-octane, hour-long action dramedy that follows the adventures of tough but tender FBI super-agent Will Chase (codename: “Whiskey Cavalier”), played by Scott Foley. Following an emotional breakup, Chase is assigned to work with badass CIA operative Francesca “Frankie” Trowbridge (codename: “Fiery Tribune”), played by Lauren Cohan. Together, they lead an inter-agency team of flawed, funny and heroic spies who periodically save the world (and each other) while navigating the rocky roads of friendship, romance and office politics. The series is from writer/executive producer Dave Hemingson and executive producer Bill Lawrence with Warner Bros. Television.

The series stars Scott Foley as Will Chase, Lauren Cohan as Francesca “Frankie” Trowbridge, Ana Ortiz as Susan Sampson, Tyler James Williams as Edgar Standish and Vir Das as Jai Datta.

Dave Hemingson is writer and executive producer; Bill Lawrence and Jeff Ingold (Doozer Productions) are executive producers; Peter Atencio is director and executive producer (pilot), and Scott Foley is producer of the series from Warner Bros. Television.

COMEDIES

“THE KIDS ARE ALRIGHT”
Set in the 1970s, this ensemble comedy follows a traditional Irish-Catholic family, the Clearys, as they navigate big and small changes during one of America’s most turbulent decades. In a working-class neighborhood outside Los Angeles, Mike and Peggy raise eight boisterous boys who live out their days with little supervision. The household is turned upside down when oldest son Lawrence returns home and announces he’s quitting the seminary to go off and “save the world.” Times are changing and this family will never be the same. There are 10 people, three bedrooms, one bathroom and everyone in it for themselves.

The series stars Michael Cudlitz as Mike Cleary, Mary McCormack as Peggy Cleary, Sam Straley as Lawrence, Caleb Martin Foote as Eddie, Sawyer Barth as Frank, Christopher Paul Richards as Joey, Jack Gore as Timmy, Andy Walken as William and Santino Barnard as Pat.

The series is inspired by the childhood of writer/executive producer Tim Doyle.  Randall Einhorn directed and was an executive producer on the pilot. The series is from ABC Studios.

“SCHOOLED”
This spinoff of the hit series “The Goldbergs” will be set in 1990-something and follow the hilarious teachers of William Penn Academy – led by Tim Meadows (Principal Glascott), Bryan Callen (Coach Mellor) and AJ Michalka (Lainey Lewis) – who, despite their eccentricities and crazy personal lives, are heroes to their students.

Story by Marc Firek and Adam F. Goldberg. Teleplay by Marc Firek. The series is from Sony Pictures Television and ABC Studios. Adam F. Goldberg, Doug Robinson and Marc Firek are executive producers.

“SINGLE PARENTS” 
This ensemble comedy follows a group of single parents as they lean on each other to help raise their 7-year-old kids and maintain some kind of personal lives outside of parenthood. The series begins when the group meets Will, a 30-something guy who’s been so focused on raising his daughter that he’s lost sight of who he is as a man. When the other single parents see just how far down the rabbit hole of PTA, parenting and princesses Will has gone, they band together to get him out in the dating world and make him realize that being a great parent doesn’t mean sacrificing everything about your own identity.

The series stars Taran Killam as Will, Leighton Meester as Angie, Kimrie Lewis as Poppy, Jake Choi as Miggy, Marlow Barkley as Sophie, Tyler Wladis as Graham, Devin Trey Campbell as Rory, Grace Hazelett as Emma, Sadie Hazelett as Amy and Brad Garrett as Douglas.

The series is from 20th  Century Fox Television and ABC Studios. JJ Philbin and Liz Meriwether are creators and executive producers, and Katherine Pope is executive producer. The pilot was directed by Jason Winer, who is also an executive producer.

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