Today in show business news: Zombies are beating football in certain key areas, Saved by the Bell returns to the airwaves, and a new BBC show is headed our way.
Another Monday ratings report, another look at just how big The Walking Dead has become. In the crucial 18-49 demographic, last night's episode of AMC's zombithon beat NBC's Sunday Night Football (Colts at Houston), 8.7 million to 8.1 million. It did basically the same thing last week. That's a pretty big deal! More people overall still watched football, but advertisers don't care about old people and children. And among the people with real buying power, The Walking Dead won. Imagine that. We now have a new emblem of Americanness. "Oh, Cody was like the typical all-American kid in high school. Blonde hair, blue eyes, was president of the Walking Dead fan club." Goodbye quarterback, hello zombie LARPing. Well, OK, that might be jumping the gun a little bit, but we're almost there. We're getting there. Eventually, if Frontline has its way, football will be gone and everyone will be talkin' about zombies instead. Can you believe it? I hardly can. [Deadline]
No doubt hoping to get in on the whole BuzzFeed/Thought Catalog nostalgia racket, NBCUniversal will start airing Saved by the Bell reruns on E!, in two-hour daily blocks. That's four episodes every day! They're going to air from 7-9 AM, so you can watch them while getting ready for work, or if you're in college before/while skipping class, or you can be a weirdo and record them and watch them when you're home at night. However you want! The point is, there will be a lot of Saved by the Bell on, just like there used to be back in the '90s. Like sixteen, seventeen years ago. That many years ago. It's been that many years. You are that old. We are all that old. [The Hollywood Reporter]
The Weinstein Company has bought TV and On Demand rights for the BBC period crime series Peaky Blinders. The show, starring Cillian Murphy, is about "Birmingham, England in 1919 where the Shelby family lead the Peaky Blinders – a feared gang named for their practice of sewing razor blades into the peaks of their caps." OK, so that does sort of explain the title, but it's still gonna be a hard sell in America. "Peaky Blinders" means absolutely nothing here. Also, I haven't checked recently, but I'm pretty Harvey Weinstein doesn't have his own TV network, so they'll have to figure out where to put it. Seems like a good USA show to me. Or maybe TNT. No, I'm just kidding! A&E? Why isn't it on BBC America? Isn't that why they invented BBC America, to show BBC shows, in America? Maybe I'm missing something here. Anyway, Cillian Murphy! On a TV show! About crime! Should be a good time. [Deadline]
The White House — well not just the White House, the President himself — is hosting a screening of the upcoming Nelson Mandela biopic Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom. That's the one that stars Idris Elba as Nelson and Naomie Harris as Winnie, not the one with Terrence Howard as Nelson and Jennifer Hudson as Winnie. That one had a screening at a white house somewhere, at like a producer's friend's house or something, but not at the White House. The screening is on Thursday, following the film's premiere in South Africa yesterday. So this thing is getting the real red carpet roll-out. I guess it pays to have the Weinsteins behind you, as this movie does. There was a guy named Weinstein, Art Weinstein, who saw the Jennifer Hudson movie with his wife Barb and liked it, but it's not the same thing, I'm afraid. Oh well. Support is support. [The Hollywood Reporter]
Breaking Bad Emmy winner Anna Gunn will guest star on an episode of The Mindy Project, playing "the Tory Burch of Manhattan OB/GYNs" who tries to poach Mindy away from her current practice. A sort of "girl crush" situation develops, which sounds about right for that show. So, that could be interesting, seeing Anna Gunn do comedy. I'd rather see her doing something more substantial, comedy or not, but she's earned a little break, just a quick one-off like this. Why not. Enjoy it. [E! via Vulture]
Jody from Center Stage will be in Syfy's upcoming 12 Monkeys pilot. Meaning Eva from Center Stage continues to be the winner, though Jody is not losing. Cooper is running the National Ballet in New Zealand, and Charlie is a soloist with ABT. I don't know. I'm a little worried that Sergei is losing. I gotta be honest. What do you think? [Entertainment Weekly]