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Premiere dates and trailers for Season 2 of The Magicians and The Expanse

by on Nov.10, 2016, under Television

Syfy has announced the Season 2 premiere dates for both The Magicians and The Expanse, two of the most intriguing series from the channel in a while.

Season two of The Magicians will premiere on Wednesday, January 25 at 9/8c. Based on the bestselling novels from Lev Grossman, Syfy’s hit drama The Magicians centers on Quentin Coldwater (Jason Ralph) and his 20-something friends as they discover their magical abilities at Brakebills University, a secret grad school specializing in magic. While there, they come to the realization that the fantasies they read about as children are all too real, and unwittingly invite a malevolent entity from the other side into their lives. Heading into Season 2, this group of unlikely heroes have been thrust into even more dangerous and unfamiliar territory, and must draw upon their novice skills to defeat a threat that could destroy the magical world itself. Driven by power, revenge and survival, they learn that those who entered the hauntingly beautiful world of Fillory will never be the same as those who leave.

Season two of The Expanse will begin with a double episode on Wednesday, February 8 at 10/9c. The story of The Expanse unfolds across a colonized galaxy 200 years in the future, when two strangers – a hardened detective, Joe Miller (Thomas Jane), and a rogue ship’s captain, James Holden (Steven Strait) – become unwittingly swept up in a vast conspiracy to cover up a horrific human experiment. As Season 2 kicks off with interplanetary tensions at an all-time high, the cold war between Earth and Mars is on the brink of an all-out battle. The series is based on the New York Times bestselling book series collectively known as “The Expanse,” written by Daniel Abraham and Ty Franck (under the pen name James S. A. Corey).


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Syfy renews The Magicians for 13 episode second season

by on Feb.08, 2016, under Television

Syfy today announced it has renewed hit drama series The Magicians for a second season of 13 episodes, expected to air in 2017. The Magicians is from Universal Cable Productions and is executive produced by John McNamara (Aquarius), Sera Gamble (Supernatural), Henry Alonso Myers (Covert Affairs) and Groundswell Productions’ Michael London and Janice Williams (Milk).

Based on the bestselling novels from Lev Grossman, The Magicians is currently airing its first season on Syfy on Mondays at 9PM ET/PT. The series’ fourth episode premieres tonight.

“Thanks to an extraordinarily gifted creative team of executive producers and our partners at Universal Cable Productions, The Magicians has become a buzzed-about hit, enchanting fans of the novels as well as attracting new and younger audiences to Syfy,” said Dave Howe, President, Syfy & Chiller.

During its first three episodes, The Magicians averaged 1.7 million viewers, 853K Adults 18-49 and 910K Adults 25-54 (based on L3 data). The series is also strong among younger viewers, with Adults 18-34 growing consecutively over each episode, averaging 180% above Syfy’s prime time delivery in that demo.

Digitally, the series’ first episode was sampled more than 6.7 million times during its pre-linear launch (January 8 to January 25) across Syfy.com and select partner sites, as well as On Demand cable, satellite and telco TV platforms. Additionally, an on-air sneak peek of the pilot, airing December 16 at 10PM ET/PT, drew 1.3 million total viewers (based on L+7 data).

Starring Jason Ralph (Quentin Coldwater), Stella Maeve (Julia), Olivia Taylor Dudley (Alice) Hale Appleman (Eliot), Arjun Gupta (Penny) and Summer Bishil (Margo), The Magicians centers on Quentin, a brilliant grad student chosen to attend Brakebills College for Magical Pedagogy, a secret upstate New York university specializing in magic. He and his 20-something friends soon discover that the magical fantasy world they read about as children is all too real when they unwittingly invite a malevolent entity from the other side into their world. Also reprising their roles for season two will be series regulars Rick Worthy (Dean Fogg) and Jade Tailor (Kady).


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Quickie review: The Magicians

by on Dec.15, 2015, under Television

Syfy has moved up the premiere episode of The Magicians to tomorrow (Wednesday, December 16th) with a special commercial-free preview airing…so I finally managed to squeeze some time to watch the screener they sent me – along with my acceptance letter to Brakebills University for Magical Pedagogy’s graduate program…so I wanted to give a brief spoiler-free review to know what to expect.

It likely can’t be helped that this is thought of as “Hogwarts for grown-ups”. But make no mistake – this isn’t Harry Potter’s wizarding world we’re talking about, although there may be similarities. This show – based on the series of books by Lev Grossman – takes itself seriously. And the show is definitely aimed at a more adult audience, although probably on the younger end of the demographic.

The Magicians centers on Quentin Coldwater, a brilliant grad student chosen to attend Brakebills University for Magical Pedagogy, a secret upstate New York university specializing in magic. He and his 20-something friends soon discover that the magical fantasy world they read about as children is all too real – and poses grave danger to humanity.

The series stars Jason Ralph (Aquarius) as Quentin Coldwater, Stella Maeve (Chicago PD) as Julia, Olivia Taylor Dudley (The Vatican Tapes) as Alice, Hale Appleman (Teeth) as Eliot, Arjun Gupta (Nurse Jackie) as Penny and Summer Bishil (Lucky 7) as Margo.

Each of the characters has an interesting skill in magic – but they all have issues as well. Some were considered losers in the outside world. Crazies. Loners. They had no idea what they were themselves. At Brakebills, they find others like them. But that does not make them safe. Quentin gets messages from who he thought was a fictional character in a book – and the message is that everyone at Brakebills could die – at the hands of one called The Beast. Who is he, and what does he want with Quentin? I suspect we’ll find out more when the series returns in January.


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Syfy’s The Magicians starts production in Vancouver, adds regular and guest cast

by on Aug.04, 2015, under Television

Syfy and Universal Cable Productions’ (UCP) latest scripted drama series, The Magicians, will commence season one production on August 4 in Vancouver, Canada. The 13 episode season will air in early 2016 on Syfy.

Starring Jason Ralph (Quentin Coldwater), Stella Maeve (Julia), Hale Appleman (Eliot), Arjun Gupta (Penny) and Summer Bishil (Margo), The Magicians is based on Lev Grossman’s best-selling novels. The series centers on Quentin, a brilliant grad student chosen to attend Brakebills College for Magical Pedagogy, a secret upstate New York university specializing in magic. He and his 20-something friends soon discover that the magical fantasy world they read about as children is all too real – and poses grave danger to humanity.

Olivia Taylor Dudley will also join the cast as a series regular, it was announced today. Dudley plays Alice, an intensely shy and delicately lovely young woman. Born of a magical but neglectful family, Alice is an outcast among her fellow students at Brakebills, but nonetheless emerges as the most brilliant magical practitioner in her class.

Dudley appears in the upcoming Lakeshore/Lionsgate film Vatican Tapes opposite Michael Pena, just wrapped production on Paranormal Activity 5 for Paramount, and can be seen in the feature Dude Bro Party Massacre III. She was a lead in Oren Peli’s ensemble horror film The Chernobyl Diaries, from Alcon/Warner Bros. and has also appeared in The Dictator, Moneyball and Just Go With It. Her TV credits include The Comedians, CSI: Miami, NCIS, Don’t Trust the B in Apt. 23 and The Mindy Project. Olivia is a founding member of the prolific online sketch comedy group, “5secondfilms.com” which has gained notoriety through their tireless efforts to post a new, original, sketch every single day.

Additionally, The Magicians announces the following recurring guest stars for season one:

· Rick Worthy as Dean Fogg, the formidable Dean of Brakebills — an exacting leader and a keeper of secrets, balancing a great sense of authority with dry wit. Worthy is best known for his roles in Battlestar Galactica as Simon and Supernatural as the Alpha Vampire. His other recurring roles include Aquarius, The Vampire Diaries, CSI, Heroes, Felicity and Star Trek: Enterprise and Star Trek: Voyager. His upcoming projects include a recurring role on The Man in the High Castle.

· Anne Dudek as Professor Sunderland, a smart, charmingly scatterbrained woman dedicated to teaching Brakebills students how to hone their magical skills. Dudek is best known for her series regular role on Covert Affairs, as well as recurring roles on House, Mad Men, Bones, Less Than Perfect, Those Who Kill and Big Love. Dudek’s film roles include Brad Silberling’s 10 Items or Less, Kurt Voelker’s Park and The Wayans Brothers’ White Chicks. She can be seen next in Jenji Kohan’s pilot, The Devil You Know.

· Jade Tailor as Kady, a tough, rebellious and sexy Brakebills student who attracts Penny’s attention in and out of the classroom. Jade previously worked with The Magicians’s John McNamara and Sera Gamble on their NBC series Aquarius. Jade also recurs on TNT’s Murder in the First. Other television credits include True Blood and Vegas. She has appeared in countless independent films including Wedding Day, Karma, Losing Control, Don’t Pass Me By, Cam2Cam as well as the upcoming Higher Power, Juke Box Hero, and Wild for the Night. She has also done numerous musical productions both in New York and LA.

· Esmé Bianco as Eliza, a paramedic who has a hand in initiating Quentin’s journey into real magic. Bianco is best known for her three season-long role of Ros in Game of Thrones. Her film credits include Burlesque Fairytales, Big I Am and Crowley. She will soon be seen in the movies Scorpion King 4, Living Among Us and Mind Puppets.

Groundswell Productions’ Michael London and Janice Williams (Milk) will executive produce The Magicians. John McNamara (Aquarius) and Sera Gamble (Supernatural), writers of the pilot, will serve as executive producers. Mike Cahill (I Origins) directed the pilot. Universal Cable Productions will serve as the studio.

Lev Grossman’s The Magicians trilogy is an international sensation, published and widely praised in more than twenty countries. The epic conclusion to the series, The Magician’s Land, opened at #1 last summer on the New York Times Hardcover Best Seller’s list, and was widely acclaimed as one of the best books of the year.


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See the trailer for Syfy’s The Magicians

by on Jun.10, 2015, under Television

Based upon Lev Grossman’s best-selling books, The Magicians stars Jason Ralph (A Most Violent Year, Aquarius) as Quentin Coldwater, a brilliant grad student who enrolls in Brakebills College for Magical Pedagogy, a secret upstate New York university specializing in magic. He and his 20-something friends soon discover that the magical fantasy world they read about as children is all too real – and poses grave danger to humanity. Stella Maeve (Chicago P.D.), Hale Appleman (Teeth), Arjun Gupta (Nurse Jackie) and Summer Bishil (Towelhead, Lucky 7) also star in this one hour drama.

Groundswell Productions’ Michael London and Janice Williams (Milk) will executive produce. John McNamara (Aquarius) and Sera Gamble (Supernatural), writers of the pilot, will serve as executive producers. Mike Cahill (I Origins) directed the pilot. Universal Cable Productions will serve as the studio.
(continue reading…)


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Syfy gives series green light to The Magicians

by on May.04, 2015, under Television

NEW YORK – May 4, 2015 – Continuing its commitment to developing bold, high profile scripted dramas, Syfy today announced it has greenlit The Magicians to series.

Based upon Lev Grossman’s best-selling books, The Magicians stars Jason Ralph (A Most Violent Year, Aquarius) as Quentin Coldwater, a brilliant grad student who enrolls in Brakebills College for Magical Pedagogy, a secret upstate New York university specializing in magic. He and his 20-something friends soon discover that the magical fantasy world they read about as children is all too real – and poses grave danger to humanity. Stella Maeve (Chicago P.D.), Hale Appleman (Teeth), Arjun Gupta (Nurse Jackie) and Summer Bishil (Towelhead, Lucky 7) also star in this one hour drama.

Groundswell Productions’ Michael London and Janice Williams (Milk) will executive produce. John McNamara (Aquarius) and Sera Gamble (Supernatural), writers of the pilot, will serve as executive producers. Mike Cahill (I Origins) directed the pilot. Universal Cable Productions will serve as the studio.

The Magicians pilot beautifully delivers a world filled with wonder, fantasy and intrigue,” said Dave Howe, President, Syfy. “We can’t wait to delve deeper into the lives of Quentin and his college friends, as they struggle with the enormity of their burgeoning powers – and unleash them upon the world.”

“Ever since ‘The Magicians’ was published I’ve wanted to see this story on screen,” said Lev Grossman. “The people, the school, the other worlds, the magic. I’m so thrilled that it’s finally happening, and I’m beyond thrilled that we found the right people to do it. Get ready; you’ve never seen anything like this.”

“Lev is a visionary world-creator. It’s an awesome responsibility to honor the novels’ core audience and also to translate that vision to the screen,” said Jeff Wachtel, President and Chief Content Officer, NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment. “We are lucky to have Sera Gamble, Michael London, John McNamara and Janice Williams as the team bringing this series to life.”

Lev Grossman’s “Magicians” trilogy is an international sensation, published and widely praised in more than twenty countries. The epic conclusion to the series, “The Magician’s Land,” opened at #1 last summer on the New York Times Hardcover Best Seller’s list, and was widely acclaimed as one of the best books of the year.

The twelve episode season will begin shooting in Vancouver in July.


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Aaron Jakubenko joins Shannara; Summer Bishil joins The Magicians

by on Dec.06, 2014, under Television

Australian actor Aaron Jakubenko (Neighbours, Spartacus: War of the Damned) will join the MTV straight-to-series fantasy series Shannara from Sonar Entertainment and Farah Films. Jakubenko will play Ander Elessedil, an Elven prince with the reputation for being the wild party boy who has yet to find his way in the world.

The fantasy drama is based on the popular Shannara series of novels by Terry Brooks. MTV has committed to 10 episodes.

At Syfy, another regular cast member for pilot The Magicians was announced, with Summer Bishil (Towelhead, The Last Airbender) playing Margo Hanson, a brilliant young student at the Brakebill’s Academy.

The Magicians is an adaptation of Lev Grossman’s best-selling fantasy book series from Universal Cable Productions, the pilot script was written by John McNamara (Prime Suspect) and Sera Gamble (Supernatural). The one-hour drama follows 20-somethings who, while studying magic in New York, discover that the magical fantasy world they read about as children is all too real and poses a grave danger to humanity.


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Syfy’s The Magicians gets leads in Jason Ralph & Sosie Bacon

by on Dec.03, 2014, under Television

Syfy has finally named the leads for its upcoming pilot The Magicians.

Jason Ralph will star as Quentin Coldwater, a brilliant, withdrawn yet strangely compelling young man who feels like an outsider among his accomplished peers – including beautiful Julia, upon whom he has had a hopeless crush since childhood. Dangerously depressed and disaffected, Quentin has always been a huge fan of a series of books set in the magical land of Fillory – books that still hold immense fascination for him, even though they are intended for children. When he’s recruited as a new student at the mysterious Brakebills College for Magical Pedagogy, he realizes that magic is very real, and that he himself is a potentially gifted practitioner. Versatile actor Ralph began his collegiate studies at the acclaimed theater program at Colin College in Plano, Texas. He is known for his roles in the feature films Brightest Star, I’m Obsessed With You (But You’ve Got to Leave Me Alone) and Those People. He has also appeared on HBO’s Looking and Blue Bloods, and will have a key recurring arc on NBC’s new series Aquarius opposite David Duchovny.

Sosie Bacon will portray Alice, an intensely shy and delicately lovely young woman. Born of a magical but neglectful family, Alice is an outcast among her fellow students at Brakebills, but nonetheless emerges as the most brilliant magical practitioner in her class. Bacon recently wrapped production on the independent film The Lost Boy, in which she stars opposite Virginia Madsen, as well as supporting role in the film Wishin’ And Hopin’ based on the novel of the same name by acclaimed writer Wally Lamb. Bacon began her acting career at the age of 11 when she appeared in the film Loverboy directed by father Kevin Bacon. She also appeared in a major arc on season five of the hit TNT series The Closer, opposite her mother Kyra Sedgwick. Bacon’s additional on camera credits include the thriller Off Seasons directed by Robert Cole. In 2013, Bacon was selected by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association as 2014 Miss Golden Globe.


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Key roles get actors in Syfy’s The Magicians pilot; Bridget Regan joins Agent Carter

by on Nov.06, 2014, under Television

A few casting additions were made today. First up, Syfy and Universal Cable Productions have cast Stella Maeve (Chicago PD), Hale Appleman (Teeth) and Arjun Gupta (Nurse Jackie) in key roles for the upcoming pilot The Magicians, an adaptation of Lev Grossman’s beloved #1 New York Times best-selling book series, which begins production in New Orleans this December. Acclaimed independent film producer Mike Cahill (I Origins, Another Earth) is signed on to direct.

Stella Maeve will play the beautiful and confident Julia, a wealthy and brilliant Ivy-Leaguer who seems destined for success. But Julia’s future plans are forever altered after she is denied admittance to the mysterious Brakebills College for Magical Pedagogy. Unaccustomed to failure, Julia finds life meaningless now that the possibilities of a previously unseen magical world have been denied to her. But she may get another chance to pursue a career in magic when she’s recruited by a secret society. Maeve can currently be seen in a recurring role on the NBC series Chicago PD. She most recently starred in the independent features Dark Summer opposite Keir Gilchrist, All Together Now, which premiered at the Los Angeles Film Festival, and Independent Spirit Award-winner Starlet. Previously, Maeve co-starred with Dakota Fanning and Kristen Stewart in The Runaways. Maeve is repped by Paradigm Agency and Principato-Young Entertainment.

Hale Appleman will portray Eliot, a student at the Brakebills who is an odd combination of a preppy with intrinsic coolness. Effortlessly hip, with his air of self-possession, Eliot is accustomed to commanding any clique, and he’s a natural leader of his fellow magical students. He will prove a sometimes frustrating ally in Quentin’s fortunes — and may soon factor into a series of perilous adventures. Appleman played Tobey Cobb in the 2007 film Teeth. He made his film debut in Chad Lowe’s feature Beautiful Ohio, and portrayed cartoonist Judd Winick in Pedro, Nick Oceano’s 2008 film dramatizing the life of AIDS educator Pedro Zamora. He also recurred on NBC’s Smash. His theater credits include Alex Timbers’ The Last Goodbye, which was at the Old Globe in San Diego, and Streamers on Broadway. He is represented by Innovative Artists and D2 Management.

Arjun Gupta will portray Penny, a young man with an edgy look and attitude. He’s deliberately intimidating to Quentin, his new roommate and fellow magic student at Brakebills. A reluctant telepath, he is bedeviled by voices that hint at pathways to other worlds. Gupta played Sam in the first three seasons of Nurse Jackie opposite Edie Falco, and currently recurs on ABC’s How to Get Away With Murder. Gupta is repped by Gersh and Untitled Entertainment.

Also announced is that Bridget Regan, who we loved in Legend of the Seeker and has also appeared in Beauty and the Beast, White Collar and most recently in Jane the Virgin, is joining Marvel’s Agent Carter in a recurring role as Dottie, a small town Iowan girl who will have a big impact on Agent Carter.


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Syfy greenlight’s pilot for series based on Lev Grossman’s The Magicians

by on Jul.10, 2014, under Television

At least one program from Syfy’s Spring development slate has made it to pilot…Syfy announced today that it has ordered a pilot for The Magicians, an adaptation of Lev Grossman’s best-selling fantasy book series which has been published in 22 countries.

From Universal Cable Productions, the pilot script was written by John McNamara (Prime Suspect) and Sera Gamble (Supernatural). Michael London (Milk) and Janice Williams (All Good Girls) are set to produce.

The one-hour drama follows 20-somethings who, while studying magic in New York, discover that the magical fantasy world they read about as children is all too real and poses a grave danger to humanity.

In making the announcement, Dave Howe, President, Syfy, said: “Lev Grossman’s dazzling blend of magic and realism will capture the imagination of a new generation of viewers and further strengthen Syfy’s ownership of premium quality sci-fi fantasy drama.”


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