According to Variety, Showtime has picked up a four-part documentary series ‘The Reagans, ’ which is directed by Matt Tyrnauer. The series is scheduled to premiere later on this year.
The coronavirus pandemic has halted film and television production indefinitely. This rare occurrence influenced Showtime to shift its programming. They are set to plug in their documentary series and features on Sunday nights, which is the network’s most-watched time block.
“While we’re waiting on [production to resume], I think that it’s been a terrific opportunity to continue to raise the profile of nonfiction and to highlight some of the tremendous work and storytelling that’s taking place out there,” stated Vinnie Malhotra, Showtimes executive vice president of nonfiction programming.
“We were already in discussion about strategies along these lines,” he added. “But this has kind of accelerated the idea that we are going to take some of our really strong, really exciting upcoming nonfiction projects, whether they’re series or features, and start to move them into scheduling slots that I think had traditionally been reserved for scripted dramas or comedies. And I think now on Sunday nights in primetime, moving through the year, we’ll start to see some really great opportunities for series like ‘Outcry.’”
Starting on July 5, the network will shift docuseries and documentary features into the Sunday night block that currently is held by popular shows, including “Billions” and “Penny Dreadful: City of Angels.” The first to be featured this summer will be “Outcry,” which is a five-part series delving into the controversial conviction of Greg Kelley, who is a high school football star.
Other documentaries slated for Sunday nights are “Love Fraud” (Aug. 30), which is a four-part series and “Belushi” (Sept. 27), which is described to be a feature-length series.
It is not clear if “The Reagans” docuseries, which shares the same name as Showtime’s 2003 scripted series, will join the Sunday night block.
Tyrnauer, who is also the former Vanity Fair editor that directed “Where’s My Roy Cohn?” and “Studio 54,” will present Ronald and Nancy Reagan’s story with “a different type of spirit and life,” said Malhotra.
“You’re going to get the palace intrigue, as much as you’re going to get the nuts and bolts of what happened through those years,” he said. “And so, it is a very human look at the years of the Reagans and what led up to those years, what took place in behind the walls during those eight years and really told through a lot of the inner circle and the people that I think were a part of all of the highs and lows of that time period in American politics.”