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Streaming Roundup (3/17/21), Including ‘Rutherford Falls’ and ‘Poker Face’

Fern Siegel

Ed Helms (“The Office”) stars in Peacock’s “Rutherford Falls,” a comedy about two close friends who find themselves in a culture clash over history and relevance in their small town. The series also stars Jana Schmieding, Michael Greyeyes (“I Know This Much Is True”), Jesse Leigh (“Heathers”) and Dustin Milligan (“Schitt’s Creek”). The show boasts strong Native representation in front of and behind the camera. The original series premieres April 22.

The streamer also ordered the 10-episode “Poker Face,” Rian Johnson’s (“Knives Out”) first TV series. Natasha Lyonne (“Russian Doll”) will star in the hour-long mystery show, while Johnson triples as creator, writer and director.

Here’s a look at other deals and upcoming projects:

  • Epix and Blumhouse Television have teamed for eight horror/thriller movies, beginning with “A House on the Bayou,” the next film from director Alex McAulay (“Don’t Tell a Soul”). Jason Blum will serve as executive producer on all eight movies. The first film will debut in December 2021; the rest stream in 2022. Blumhouse streamed the “Welcome to the Blumhouse” movies for Amazon Prime Video and the “Into the Dark” anthology series for Hulu.

  • HBO Max will launch its interactive digital experience HBO Max Orbit at SXSW Online. It’s the streamer’s newest immersive venture. SXSW Online runs through March 20. The HBO Max Orbit experience at SXSW Online will respond to facial movements and voice prompts to allow audiences to explore and interact with thousands of iconic moments, characters and stories from its library. Users will be able to explore over 150,000 scenes from titles “Game of Thrones,” “The Big Bang Theory” and “Justice League.”

  • Tom Hiddleston, better known as Loki from the Marvel movies, co-stars with Claire Danes in Apple TV+’s drama series “The Essex Serpent,” based on the novel by Anna Symon. Danes plays a widow who relocates from Victorian London to a small village in Essex, intrigued by a local superstition that a mythical creature, the Essex Serpent, has returned. Hiddleston plays the leader of the rural community.

  • Annheuser-Busch is streaming the six-episode “Not a Sports Show” Thursdays in April with host/comedian Lil Rel Howery talking to athletes such as Celtics’ Paul Pierce and snowboarder Shaun White. The show will stream on Ficto, a free service. No beer ads, but the guests will be at a bar loaded with A-B drinks. It’s a new way to reach consumers who may be tired of advertising.

  • Will Forte will star and produce “Expiration Date,” a drama series in development at Peacock. It’s about a grieving man who finds a life-insurance policy that covers suicide, as long as the act happens after a year. The creative team is “The Missing” duo Harry and Jack Williams. Forte will also headline the streamer’s eight-episode “MacGruber” comedy.

  • NASCAR and Tubi announced their branded integration, kicking off the partnership with Chip Ganassi Racing (CGR) and the No. 42 team, led by driver Ross Chastain, in Atlanta on March 21. Tubi will also make an appearance on the No. 1 Chevrolet Camaro with former NASCAR Cup Series champion Kurt Busch, at Richmond Raceway on April 17. The partnership will feature Tubi as the primary partner on each car, in-car cameras and driver fire suits at Atlanta Motor Speedway and Richmond Raceway.

  • Cinedigm acquired the Films Around the World content library, one of the largest remaining independently owned rights managed classic film libraries. The FATW library includes remake rights to over 150 feature films. It counts classic dramas, thrillers, comedies and Westerns, horror films from 1940s to the 1980s exploitation films and cult films from 1970s. In addition, the library includes popular radio shows, such as Joe Pyne Radio, Norman Vincent and Jean Shepherd.

“Rutherford Falls” trailer

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