Comedian Bert Kreischer is back, and shirtless once again, in his second Netflix Original comedy special, Bert Kreischer: Hey Big Boy. Bert candidly shares hilarious stories about his daughter’s period party, a pushy arms dealer, and an inside joke with a Starbucks barista.
Angry Birds: Summer Madness sees much-loved birds Red, Bomb and Chuck, as well as a cast of brand new feathered friends, as tween birds at summer camp under the questionable guidance of their counselor Mighty Eagle. Explosive antics, improbable pranks and crazy summertime adventures see the birds pushing boundaries and breaking all the rules while fending off the brash and obnoxious Pigs on the other side of the lake, who seem hell-bent on causing as much mayhem as possible!
Netflix and CAKE in partnership with Rovio Entertainment announce new animated series Angry Birds: Summer Madness based on the iconic world of the Angry Birds.
The 40 x 11 minute episode series will debut globally starting in 2021, taking its cue from the humor and tone of The Angry Birds Movie franchise while revealing a fresh new look.
This is the latest collaboration in a long-term partnership between CAKE and Rovio, which includes international distribution rights to Rovio’s expanding library of non-dialogue shorts.
Ed Galton, CCO & Managing Director, CAKE said, “Angry Birds are about to smash the small screen and we are thrilled to be making the journey with Netflix as our global partner.”
Ville Heijari, CMO, Rovio said, “Angry Birds animated content plays a key role in our long-term franchise strategy. After more than a decade in hit games, blockbuster movies and licensed products, this is the Angry Birds’ first foray into a long-form series. We’re delighted to continue our partnership with CAKE and can’t wait to unveil the world of Angry Birds: Summer Madness to viewers on Netflix.”
Curtis Lelash, Director of Original Animated Series, Netflix said, “Angry Birds have been a true phenomenon for kids around the world and we’re excited to bring them home to the nest at Netflix where they will be angrier and bird-ier than ever.”
CAKE is one of the world’s leading independent entertainment companies specialising in the production, distribution, development, financing and brand development of kids’ and family properties. CAKE works with renowned producers of animation and live-action content, including Rovio Entertainment Ltd, Fresh TV, Channel X and Animation Collective on the worldwide roll out of their brands. In addition, CAKE partners with production companies such as Triggerfish Animation (Mama K Team 4 for Netflix), Anima Estudios (Space Chickens in Space for Disney EMEA,) Paper Owl, (Pablo for CBeebies), TeamTO, (Angelo Rules, Mighty Mike) La Cabane and Thuristar (Mush-Mush and the Mushables) and Kickstart Productions co-producing exciting new entertainment properties and turning them into aspiring brands. An award-winning company, CAKE was most recently voted No 2 Distributor in Kidscreen’s 2019 Hot50. CAKE is based in London and is headed up by Ed Galton and Tom van Waveren. www.cakeentertainment.com
About Rovio Entertainment
Rovio Entertainment Corporation is a global, games-first entertainment company that creates, develops and publishes mobile games which have been downloaded 4.5 billion times so far. Rovio is best known for the global Angry Birds brand, which started as a popular mobile game in 2009 and has since evolved from games to various entertainment and consumer products in brand licensing. Today Rovio offers multiple mobile games and animations and has produced The Angry Birds Movie, which opened number one in theatres in 50 countries. Its sequel, The Angry Birds Movie 2, released worldwide in August 2019. Rovio is headquartered in Finland and the company’s shares are listed on the main list of NASDAQ Helsinki stock exchange with the trading code ROVIO. (www.rovio.com)
Express from the US every Monday
Currently the most popular show on IMDB, sci-fi drama Westworld is a dark wild west odyssey about the dawn of artificial consciousness and the birth of a new form of life on Earth. And this season, they’re knocking it “out of the park”.
Returning for season 3 are Golden Globe nominees Evan Rachel Wood (Dolores) and Thandie Newton (Maeve), Golden Globe winner Jeffrey Wright (Bernard/Arnold), People’s Choice nominee Tessa Thompson (Charlotte), Screen Actors Guild nominees Luke Hemsworth (Ashley) and Rodrigo Santoro (Hector), and Oscar nominee Ed Harris as The Man in Black.
New faces this season include Golden Globe nominee Aaron Paul (Breaking Bad), Vincent Cassel (Ocean’s Twelve, Black Swan), Emmy winner Lena Waithe (Ready Player One), Tommy Flanagan (Sons of Anarchy) and Grammy winner Kid Cudi. (Psst! Early trailers also feature certain as-yet-unannounced actors … Are they? Aren’t they? With Westworld, seeing is never believing.)
Westworld has won seven Emmys and been nominated for four Golden Globes, among other accolades.
Emmy and BAFTA-winning writer Andrew Davies (House of Cards, Bridget Jones’ Diary, Les Misérables) brings Jane Austen’s unfinished last novel vividly to life.
Sanditon’s a place that’s changing fast. This once-sleepy fishing village is transforming into a fashionable spa resort. Changing alongside it is the impulsive and unconventional Charlotte Heywood (Rose Williams from Reign), who swaps her quiet rural home for the intrigues and dalliances of a seaside town on the make.
As Indiewire put it, “Sanditon is sexy escapism for winter, tart and political, gorgeous and honest. Austen would have loved it.”
Imagine going out for a burger and coming home with $1 million. That’s the tantalising prize McDonald’s offered its US customers in the ‘90s, and who could resist, right? But when you play and play and never seem to win big, it can start to feel like the game is rigged. Of course, you know it isn’t. Or is it?
Mcmillion$ is the story of the biggest scam in the history of fast food. It ran for over a decade, had links to organised crime and netted $24 million worth of illegal profits. But it wasn’t until the FBI received an anonymous tip-off in 2001 that anyone began to suspect something was rotten over at McD’s. Dogged and unorthodox investigative work, undercover sting operations and fake interviews turned up a network of co-conspirators from ordinary folks to psychics, strip club owners, shifty ex-cons and even the Mafia. But despite the numbers involved, the trial was less sensational than it might have been, and received relatively little publicity. That was because of its start date – 10 September 2001, just one day before the 9/11 attacks, which would dominate the news in subsequent months. Now, McMillion$ constructs a detailed account of the scam and how it was uncovered.
McMillions has a 87% critics rating on Rotten Tomatoes: The Wall Street Journal calls it “a terrific story and a captivating, snowballing, six-part docuseries”, while The Hollywood Reporter says, “McMillion$ tells a quirky and frequently hilarious tale filled with enough twists and turns that you’ll swear it came from the keyboard of a Carl Hiaasen or Elmore Leonard.”
THE CASE AGAINST ADNAN SYED
Binge from 10 April
18 years after he was sentenced to life plus 30 years in jail, this true-crime investigation takes a fresh look into the case against Adnan Syed, who was convicted of the 1999 murder of his ex-girlfriend Hae Min Lee. The four-part HBO docuseries from Oscar, Emmy and Bafta-nominated director Amy Berg (Deliver Us from Evil) follows on from the breakout investigative journalism podcast Serial, which brought international attention to the trial and to Syed’s continued insistence that he did not kill Hae.
The Case Against Adnan Syed was nominated for a 2019 Emmy for Outstanding Writing for a Nonfiction Program and has an 82% critics rating on Rotten Tomatoes. As Daily Telegraph (UK) put it, “As testament to a tragedy, Berg’s documentary was wrenching. As a quiet indictment of true crime and its ghastly razzmatazz, it was devastating.”
First on Showmax | Binge from 13 April
From the creator behind the Emmy-winning series Samurai Jack, Genndy Tartakovsky, Primal follows a caveman at the dawn of evolution and a dinosaur on the brink of extinction. The two creatures, one on the way out and one on the way in, become each other’s only hope of survival in a treacherous world.
Primal has an 8.7/10 score on IMDB and a 100% critics’ score on Rotten Tomatoes, where the critics consensus is, “Epic in every sense, Genndy Tartakovsky’s Primal is a stunning feat of visual storytelling.”
“Epic yet intimate, Primal is awash in eye-popping imagery,” says Hollywood Reporter. “Primal is vicious stuff. It’s a rarely pausing saga of bone-breaking, head-severing, tooth-extracting, face-smashing brutality… Tartakovsky has long been a distinctive force in TV animation and this is another winner, a spare storytelling experiment that plays like nothing else in the current landscape.”
From 22:30, Mondays from 14 April
Created by A Black Lady Sketch Show exec producer Issa Rae and Black-ish exec producer Larry Wilmore, Insecure centres on friends Issa (Rae in a Golden Globe, Emmy and Critics Choice nominated performance) and Molly (Black Reel awards nominee Yvonne Orji). The show has a 97% critics rating on Rotten Tomatoes, where the critics consensus hails Insecure as “an insightful, raunchy, and hilarious journey through the life of a twentysomething black woman that cuts through stereotypes with sharp wit and an effusive spirit.”
As The Peabody Awards put it, “Rae delivers a ground-breaking series that captures the lives of everyday young black people in Los Angeles with a fresh and authentic take. Breaking away from tired and familiar representations of ‘diversity’ on television, this series offers a fun and intimate portrayal of work, relationships, and the ordinary experiences of the two young black women at its center.”
Insecure was nominated for two Emmys for cinematography and for Show of the Year at the MTV Movie and TV Awards. It was also named TV Program of the Year at the 2018 American Film Institute Awards.
NOUGHTS + CROSSES
From 2330 on Thursdays. Binge from 16 April
“Over 700 years ago, the Aprican Empire invaded Europe. Aprica colonised the continent and reached as far as Albion. Albion has been under Aprican rule ever since.”
So begins Noughts + Crosses, a controversial six-part BBC One series based on Malorie Blackman’s multi-award-winning novel.
South African Masali Baduza (Trackers) and BAFTA winner Jack Rowan (Born To Kill, Peaky Blinders) play Sephy and Callum, two star-crossed lovers in the tradition of Romeo and Juliet. Sephy is the privileged daughter of the Home Secretary, Kamal Hadley, while Callum’s mother, Meggie, is the Hadleys’ housekeeper. While Sephy and Callum grew up together, they may as well have lived in different worlds.
Shot largely in Cape Town, the series also stars Paterson Joseph (Peep Show, The Leftovers) and South African actress Bonnie Mbuli (Invictus, Wallander) as Sephy’s parents, Kamal and Jasmine, with BAFTA nominee Helen Baxendale (Cold Feet, Emily in Friends) and Tribeca winner Ian Hart (Professor Quirrell in Harry Potter) as Callum’s parents, as well as Josh Dylan (Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again, The End of the F***ing World) as his brother Jude.
From 23h30 on Thursdays, from 23 April
Repeatedly the most popular show on IMDB in March, HBO miniseries The Outsider is based on the best-selling novel by Stephen King and follows police detective Ralph Anderson (Ben Mendelsohn from Bloodline), who is still grieving the recent death of his own son when the mutilated body of 11-year-old Frankie Peterson is found in the Georgia woods.
The mysterious circumstances surrounding the horrifying crime lead Ralph to bring in unorthodox private investigator Holly Gibney (Cynthia Erivo, nominated for two Oscars and two Golden Globes this year for Harriet), whose uncanny abilities he hopes will help explain the unexplainable.
The cast also includes Golden Globe winner Jason Bateman (Ozark), Emmy nominee Bill Camp (Joker, The Night Of), Oscar nominee Mare Winningham (The Affair, American Horror Story), BAFTA winner Paddy Considine (In America), Critics Choice nominee Julianne Nicholson (Masters of Sex, I, Tonya), and Screen Actors Guild nominee Yul Vázquez (Russian Doll).
Bateman is also among the show’s directors, along with Emmy nominee Andrew Bernstein (The West Wing, Fear the Walking Dead, Ozark). Creator Richard Price was also behind the Emmy-winning The Night Of and was a writer for The Wire and The Deuce, among others.
BUT WAIT THERE’S MORE…
LOVE DAILY S1 – Romance anthology | 2019 Writers Guild of America nominee for Short Form New Media Original | Binge now
HACKERVILLE S1 – Crime | HBO’s first European co-production, from the creators of the Emmy-winning Deutschland 83 | Binge now
LOVE ISLAND UK S6 – Reality TV | The Cape Town edition of the BAFTA-winning hit show Rue from Euphoria is obsessed with | TBC
To see everything on Showmax in April, click here. Please note this release schedule is subject to change.
he first two episodes of the much-anticipated new local telenovela Gomora has got everyone in a spin. It’s thrilling storyline is pulling everyone in right from the start – and viewers just can’t wait for the next instalment.
Twitter blew up after the first episode, with #Gomora trending at number 1 on Monday – a clear indication of the nation’s need for distraction right now. These are some of the comments: “1st episode stole my heart, lit, ohm my gosh I’m so in love” and “shoooo the content we deserve!! Love it!!” and “#Gomora is going to be FIRE”, to mention just a few. People also loved the local music used, and the fact that Katlego Danke stars.
The series kicks off with the focus on the Ndaba family, consisting of Thathi (played by Katlego), an ultra-rich trophy wife living a life of luxury in Sandton, alongside her bank owner husband Mbongeni (Themba Ndaba) and two bratty, spoilt children Nobuhle (Amamkele Qamate) and Langa (Siyabonga Xaba). They treat their staff with disrespect and each other with disdain. Things are not always as they appear though, and it’s soon revealed that not only is Mbongeni having an affair with his secretary, he’s also been embezzling from the bank.
Meanwhile, the middle-class Dlamini family are living honest, down-to-earth lives with father Melusi (Zolisa Xaluva) being a hard-working, dedicated schoolteacher and mother Gladys (Thembi Seete) a social worker. Son Ntokozo (Ntobeko Sishi) however, is unhappy and feels undervalued and ignored in his own home. He’s also mixing with the wrong crowd, including his girlfriend Mazet (Siphesihle Ndaba) and Bara, a hardened criminal played by a very believable Fortune Thobejane.
Viewers are purposefully thrust into the undeniable contrast between two very different worlds – the wealthy suburbs of Sandton and the hustle and bustle of Alexandra. So close together and yet so very far apart.
Running the criminal underworld of Alex is the calm and cool gangster granny Mam’Sonto (Connie Chiume), but little does she know that in a wonderful plot twist her actions are going to have far-reaching effects on the people she loves the most.
And so set the scene for a collision of these two worlds that will change everyone’s lives forever. One fateful, terrifying night is all it takes ….
There’s one thing for sure – it’s going to keep you glued to your couch every weekday.
You can watch the episodes on DStv Now or watch the series as it airs on Mzansi Magic (DStv 161) every weeknight at 19:30.
Zog, co-directed by South African Daniel Snaddon (Stick Man) and two-time Oscar nominee Max Lang (The Gruffalo and Room On The Broom), won the International Emmy for Best Kids Animation yesterday. The 27-minute short film was animated in Cape Town by Triggerfish and produced by Magic Light Pictures.
Zog has already won the Children’s Programme Award from the Royal Television Society; Best Animation at the Shanghai International TV Festival; and the Audience Award for ages 3-6 at the New York International Children’s Film Festival. The short was also nominated for a Kidscreen Award for Best One-off, Special or TV Movie; and Best Special Production and Best Storyboarding at the Annie Awards in 2020.
The adorable short film is based on Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler’s much loved 2010 picture book, which sold over 1.5 million copies and won the Galaxy National Children’s Book of the Year Award in the UK. Zog is the keenest but clumsiest pupil in his class at Dragon School, where he longs to win a gold star as he learns how to fly, roar and breathe fire. He keeps meeting a kindly young girl who patches up his bumps and bruises, but can she help him with his trickiest school assignment yet: capturing a princess?
Hugh Skinner (Fleabag) voices the clumsy dragon; 2019 Olivier award winner Patsy Ferran (Jamestown) is the kindly young girl; Kit Harington (Jon Snow in Game of Thrones) is the bumbling knight Sir Gadabout; Sir Lenny Henry (Broadchurch) is the narrator; and Tracey Ullman is Madame Dragon.
Zog premiered on BBC One at Christmas 2018 to five-star reviews, 8.8m viewers and the highest share (37%) of any programme across Christmas week on British television. In South Africa, the short premiered at The Cape Town International Animation Festival in March 2019 and on Showmax in August.
The Telegraph praised Zog as a “hypnotising, inspiring tale for all the family”; Den of Geek called it “a thing of perfectly spherical loveliness; it is lovely from every conceivable angle”; The Guardian warned parents “once this has been added to iPlayer you may never be allowed to watch anything else again on your TV – ever!”; and Donaldson herself told The Herald that Zog was her favourite BBC adaptation to date.
Zog follows a string of acclaimed BBC Christmas adaptations produced by Magic Light Pictures. Zog is the fourth animated at Triggerfish, following the multi-award-winning Donaldson-Scheffler adaptations Stick Man (2015) and The Highway Rat (2017) as well as the Oscar-nominated Roald Dahl adaptation Revolting Rhymes (2016), which also won the International Emmy in 2018. A fifth, The Snail and The Whale, is now also streaming on Showmax, and recently won Best Voice Performance for Sally Hawkins at the 2020 British Animation Awards.
Magic Light Pictures have previously made the celebrated Donaldson-Scheffler adaptations: the Oscar-nominated The Gruffalo (2009) and Room On The Broom (2012) and Annecy winner The Gruffalo’s Child (2011). All eight family specials are now streaming on Showmax.
Triggerfish is currently in production on their third feature film, Seal Team, and the Netflix Original series, Mama K’s Team 4, with the studio currently working remotely during the South African lockdown.
“This is some very welcome good news at a challenging time,” says Triggerfish CEO Stuart Forrest. “The crew poured heart and soul into bringing to life a character that we all came to love, and to get one of the top TV prizes in the world is wonderful recognition for an incredible team.”
South Africans interested in exploring a career in animation during the country’s lockdown can find out more at Triggerfish’s free digital learning platform, supported by Goethe-Institut, the German Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development, and The Walt Disney Company.
Watch Zog on Showmax: