^^^ Fixed, thanks.
Winter TCA Tour Notes (Broadcast)
‘Taken’: TV’s Bryan Mills Isn’t Just Another Guy With A Particular Set Of Skills
By Anthony D'Alessandro, Deadline.com
- Jan. 18, 2017
“We’re watching the planting of the seed and watching the plant grow.”
That’s Taken co-star Jennifer Beals’ take on the TV series origin story of Bryan Mills, the CIA agent with a particular set of skills made famous by Liam Neeson on the big screen but played in the upcoming Europa/NBC show by Clive Standen.
“It’s not about his set of skills,” EP Matt Gross said about the differences between the film and TV versions of the franchise, “It’s about understanding him as a character. It’s about how he becomes a hero.”
Added EP Alex Cary: “It was never about making a Taken prequel but a modern origin story set in modern-day times. Creating this character from the ground up is what attracted me to the project.”
The show follows how Mills morphs into the killing machine that he is. You could say his sister’s death is the straw that breaks the camel’s back (and she’s not the only thing that is ‘taken’ from him this season). He’s mentored by Beals’ assassin Christina Hart.
“If you were to interview Bryan Mills and the people who defined him, this woman would be at the top of the list,” said Cary. “He welcomes her guidance and leadership, but he doesn’t have an easy relationship with authority.”
Taken was produced by Luc Besson’s EuropaCorp. The filmmaker, who is busy in post on his sci-fi opus Valerian, never was involved in the TV versions of La Femme Nikita nor Transporter; he licensed the latter property out to other producers. “With Taken he wanted to be creatively involved with the content and genre,” said Gross.
During the NBC TCA session this afternoon, Standen defined Mills against some of the great big-screen action heroes: James Bond “has the perfect suit and the cool line to the villain and the girl,” said the leading man. Jason Bourne “is cold, calculated, doesn’t know his past, not an everyman,” while Mission: Impossible‘s Ethan Hunt is “tech savvy” and “larger than life.”
But for Standen, “Bryan Mills is just a man.”
Taken premieres at 10 PM Monday, February 27, on NBC.
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Winter TCA Tour Notes (Broadcast)
‘Trial & Error’ Mockumentary Series To Feature New Case Each Season
By Lisa de Moreas, Deadline.com
- Jan. 18, 2017
Jeff Astrof, who wrote, with Matt Miller, NBC’s upcoming mockumentary Trial & Error, said he came up with the idea about five years ago in the early days of the super-hot murder-docu genre, when watching the documentary The Staircase, about a novelist tried for murder after his wife was found dead at the bottom of the staircase in their Durham, NC mansion. At TCA today, Astrof says he commented to his wife, “if this guy was played by Steve Carell it would be the funniest thing I’d ever seen.”
Nick D’Agosto stars as a bright-eyed New York lawyer who heads to a tiny Southern town to defend an eccentric, “rollercizing” poetry professor (John Lithgow) accused of the bizarre murder of his beloved wife.
While the show is played as a spoof of the documentary genre, and Jeffrey Blitz, who is best known for his work on NBC’s mockumentary The Office and the spelling-bee doc Spellbound, Astrof described the trial episodes as playing like episodes of Law & Order “just turned 15 degrees.”
Trial & Error is envisioned as a sort of anthology series. This season wraps with the verdict and a where-are-they-now finish. Future seasons would tackle different crimes, but the main characters and the town will be back. Future seasons might be inspired by The Jinx or Making A Murderer. “Thankfully a lot of people have killed other people,” Astrof said.
Lithgow famously played alien-in-chief Dick Solomon on NBC’s long-running comedy series 3rd Rock from the Sun and, more recently, was the Trinity Killer on Showtime’s Dexter. These days he is playing Winston Churchill In Netflix’s The Crown. When one TV critic suggested his having played Trinity Killer clinched this role for him, Lithgow countered it was the “unexpected combinations of characters” he has played in his career that was “a tremendous asset” in taking this role of Larry Henderson.
“People just don’t know where I’m going to go,” he smiled. “People who commit murder are people who can turn on a dime and I turned on a dime many times.”
Henderson is “completely driven by his id,” and “has no sense of priority or proportion,” Lithgow said. The series begins with a recording of a 911 call Henderson makes to police to report his wife is dead. Only he hangs up abruptly when a second call comes in, because it’s the cable company, which he has “been waiting for all day.”
When one TV critic asked Lithgow to describe the similarities between Henderson and Churchill – yes, that happened – Lithgow replied smoothly that the two characters “are very similar.”
“They’re both beautifully written parts,” he added.
Trial & Error will debut following a 90-minute telecast of The Voice on Tuesday, March 7
before settling into its regular 9 PM time period the following week with back-to-back episodes.