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CBS Greenlights “Training Day”

Julie To Co-Star In ‘”Training Day” CBS Pilot
Post Categories: News & Announcements March 11, 2016 • Leave a comment? / No Comments

Julie’s CBS pilot “Training Day” has been ordered to series!! Congratulations Julie!

CBS has greenlit a slew of series for the 2016-2017 season.

In the comedy department, the network has ordered projects starring Matt LeBlanc and Joel McHale. As for dramas, CBS will be rebooting “Training Day,” “MacGyver,” plus has picked up a medical drama from Jason Katims and a new show starring “NCIS” star Michael Weather

“Training Day” is based on the 2001 movie that starred Denzel Washington and Ethan Hawke. The series revival stars Bill Paxton and newcomer Justin Cornwell. A crime thriller that begins 15 years after the events of the feature film left, the show is about an idealistic young police officer (Cornwell) who is appointed to an elite squad of the LAPD where he is partnered with a seasoned, morally ambiguous detective (Paxton). Drew Van Acker, Katrina Law, Lex Scott Davis and Julie Benz star alongside Paxton and Cornwell.

The drama will be exec produced by Jerry Bruckheimer, Antoine Fuqua, Jonathan Littman , Will Beall, Barry Schindel and Danny Cannon, who directed the pilot. Jerry Bruckheimer Television and Fuqua Films are producing, in association with Warner Bros. Television. The original pic hails from Warner Bros. Pictures and Village Roadshow Pictures.

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Congratulations Julie!

Defiance star Julie Benz is set as a regular role opposite Bill Paxton in CBS’ drama pilot Training Day.

Written by Will Beall and directed by Danny Cannon, Training Day is a present-day reimagining of Antoine Fuqua’s acclaimed 2001 feature. Set 15 years after the film left off, the show centers on an idealistic young African-American police officer, Kyle Craig, who is appointed to an elite squad of the LAPD where he is partnered with seasoned, morally ambiguous detective Frank Rourke (Paxton).

Benz will play Holly McCabe, an unapologetic Hollywood madam who looks like a woman half her age and takes pride in how well she treats her girls. In addition to having a tacit understanding with Frank, they are also a couple. Drew Van Acker, Katrina Law and Lex Scott Davis also co-star.

Dexter alumna Benz is coming off a three-season stint as a lead on the Syfy series Defiance. She also is wrapping a recurring role on CBS’ Hawaii Five-0. Benz is repped by Paradigm, Vincent Cirrincione & Associates and Meyer & Downs.

Showrunner Barry Schindel, Fuqua and Beall executive produce Training Day with Jerry Bruckheimer and Jonathan Littman for WBTV, Fuqua Films and Jerry Bruckheimer TV. KristieAnne Reed is co-executive producing.

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Syfy has opted not to go forth with a fourth season of “Defiance,” Variety has learned.

The show’s cancellation comes just days after the cable network axed fantasy drama “Dominion.”

“Defiance” was Syfy’s big experiment with transmedia storytelling as the series’ storylines were specifically designed to mesh with the narrative of the video game of the same name, produced by Trion Worlds. The TV series revolved around the battles of seven alien races existing on a much-changed planet Earth.

Drama vet Kevin Murphy served as exec producer and showrunner of of “Defiance,” which wrapped its 13-episode third season late this summer.

“I got to collaborate with a group of stunning artists operating at the top of their game, and together we built a world. Because of that, there is no room for anything other than joy in my heart,” Murphy said.

In a statement, Syfy commented: “‘Defiance’ was a truly groundbreaking series, delivering an immersive, cross-platform experience that transcended the television screen in a way that viewers had never seen before. We are incredibly proud of the work of the extraordinary cast, writers, artists and designers — and especially showrunner Kevin Murphy — who together brought the rich world of ‘Defiance’ to life over its three season arc.”

After delivering good ratings on Mondays during its first season in 2013, “Defiance” fell off sharply in its move to Thursdays in 2014 and then again when it shifted to Fridays this summer. Its Aug. 28 finale averaged a 0.51 rating in adults 18-49 and 1.925 million viewers overall in Nielsen’s “live plus-3” estimates.

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I’m very sad that “Defiance” has been cancelled. At least we got three great seasons though. I will have the gallery caught up on the remaining “Defiance” captures & stills soon.


Congrats Julie!

Julie Benz has landed a multi-episode arc on Hawaii Five-0 as a potential love interest for Chin, EW has learned.

The Dexter alum will play Jennifer, a detective from San Francisco heading up a task force modeled after Five-0, who forms a strong connection with Chin (Daniel Dae Kim).

Benz, whose credits also include Defiance, No Ordinary Family and Angel, will recur in at least three episodes this fall.

Hawaii Five-0 returns Friday, Sept. 25 at 9 p.m. ET on CBS.


It’s official: Syfy is renewing two summer thrillers, including a pickup for supernatural freshman drama Dominion.

Post-apocalyptic angel-war drama Dominion will return for a second season and alien-colonized Earth drama Defiance is getting a third round. Both will receive 13-episode orders from Universal Cable Productions. Kevin Murphy (Caprica) will resume his role as executive producer and showrunner of Defiance while Vaun Wilmott (Sons of Anarchy) will continue to fill the same posts for Dominion. The shows have averaged the exact same viewership on Thursday nights—2.7 million viewers, and 1.2 million adults 18-49 (including seven days of DVR playback).


Somehow, the future never seems to be pretty in the world of science-fiction TV shows. And Julie Benz says there are good reasons for that.

“I think, with the sci-fi genre, we’re able to explore issues that we’re all faced with today,” the 42-year-old actress points out. “We’re able to explore them in a deeper, darker way.”

Benz is no stranger to the deeper, darker realm of the horror/thriller/sci-fi genre. Perhaps still best known for her role as Rita on Dexter, her TV credits also include such other gems as Roswell, Supernatural, Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Buffy’s spinoff/sequel, Angel.

“I love working in ‘genre’ material, I really do,” says Benz. “The given circumstances are so extreme that they really challenge you, as an actor, to bring them to life and make them believable. And that is exciting.”

Benz’s most recent “genre TV” job has been in the sci-fi adventure Defiance, returning for Season 2 on Syfy June 19 at 8pm ET. The series is set in a radically transformed Earth in the not-too-distant future, where the city of St. Louis has been renamed as Defiance, a town where humans and extraterrestrial species manage to live side by side.

Much of the core action in Defiance revolves around Joshua Nolan, played by New Zealand native Grant Bowler. Nolan is a former Marine who became the town’s chief lawkeeper during the show’s first season. At Nolan’s side for much of the show has been his adopted alien daughter, Irisa, played by English actress Stephanie Leonidas. Others in the cast include Canadian actors Graham Greene and Jesse Rath.

The Pittsburgh-born Benz plays Amanda Rosewater, the mayor of Defiance who ended up losing her bid for reelection as the series wrapped up its first season. The show’s season finale also saw the disappearance of Irisa, as well as Amanda’s sister, Kenya (Canadian actress Mia Kirshner).

The series kicks off its second season with the residents of Defiance in turmoil in the aftermath of the town election. (more…)

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