The City of Angels no longer has any teams in this year’s NBA playoffs, but there is still some old-skool showtime to be had on the small screen this week.
Which then begs the question, what is the show you have to watch? No surprise, or maybe actually a big surprise, the answer is in my video review above.
Speaking of basketball and Los Angeles, Apple TV+ debuted its They Call Me Magic docuseries Friday. As the title makes obvious, the four-parter focuses on the great Magic Johnson, the man who on and off the court brought the glamor of the Showtime Era and a dynasty perch to the Los Angeles Lakers. Along with Magic himself and his wife Cookie, the Rick Famuyiwa-directed series, which previewed at SXSW, features the likes of Larry Bird, LL Cool J, Snoop Dogg, Samuel L. Jackson, Michael Jordan, Shaquille O’Neal, Barack Obama, Dwyane Wade and Jerry West.
They Call Me Magic is produced by XTR and New Slate Ventures, in association with H.Wood Media and Delirio Films. Bryn Mooser exec produced with Christina Arquette, Jeremy Allen, Rafael Marmor and John Terzian.
Premiering on Showtime on April 24, The Man Who Fell to Earth the TV series is not a remake of the cult-classic Nicolas Roeg flick from the 1970s starring the late and great David Bowie. Instead, Jenny Lumet and Alex Kurtzman set their 10-part series in today’s troubled world with a new alien among us, played by Chiwetel Ejiofor.
In that journey of discovery, the Oscar nominee is joined by fellow Academy Award nominee Naomie Harris. Jimmi Simpson, Rob Delaney, Sonya Cassidy, Joana Ribeiro, Annelle Olaleye, Kate Mulgrew, Clarke Peters and Bill Nighy also star.
The series is executive produced by Kurtzman and Lumet along with Ejiofor, John Hlavin, Sarah Timberman, Carl Beverly, Heather Kadin, Aaron Baiers, and StudioCanal’s Rola Bauer and Françoise Guyonnet. It hails from CBS Studios in association with Secret Hideout and Timberman/Beverly.
Also debuting April 25 is Starz’s Watergate limited series Gaslit, starring Julia Roberts, Sean Penn and Downton Abby alum Dan Stevens.
This latest addition to the cottage industry that has existed the last almost 50 years around the scandal that bought down Richard Nixon spotlights the story of the outspoken Martha Mitchell, portrayed by Oscar winner Roberts, the wife of Tricky Dick’s loyal Attorney General John Mitchell, played by Oscar winner Penn. Almost forgotten today, Martha Mitchell was the administration insider who publicly sounded the alarm on Nixon’s involvement in Watergate. Stevens plays loyal and then not so loyal White House aide John Dean, with a cast that also includes Betty Gilpin as his wife Mo Dean, Shea Whigham as G. Gordon Liddy, and Darby Camp as Marty Mitchell.
Matt Ross directed and executive produced Gaslit, which is showrun by Robbie Pickering. Sam Esmail via his overall deal with UCP and Chad Hamilton served as executive producers under their production banner Esmail Corp. Roberts executive produced under her banner Red Om Films along with co-executive producers Lisa Gillan and Marisa Yeres Gill. Anonymous Content and Slate’s Gabriel Roth and Josh Levin also executive produced. Leon Neyfakh, who created the podcast on which the series is based, consulted on the project. Gaslit is produced by UCP.
The Wire alums David Simons and George Pelecanos are back in Baltimore in HBO’s We Own This City, which starts April 25 on the premium cabler.
Featuring a cast that includes Jon Bernthal, Wunmi Mosaku, Jamie Hector, McKinley Belcher III, Darrell Britt-Gibson and Josh Charles, the limited series is based on Baltimore Sun reporter Justin Fenton’s book of the same name. Like the book, We Own This City the TV series chronicles corruption in the police force over the past few decades and the corrosive effect that has had on a great American city and its citizens.
We Own This City is created and EP’d by Pelecanos and Simon. The six-parter also featuring Treat Williams, Gabrielle Carteris, Tray Chaney and Domenick Lombardozzi is directed and executive produced by Reinaldo Marcus Green. Nina K. Noble, Ed Burns and Kary Antholis also serve as EPs, with co-executive producer Bill Zorzi.
So, which one do you have to see? Watch the video above.