Here's everything you need to know about the world of television for Monday, April 20th, 2020. I'm writing this from the Twin Cities, where AllYourScreens HQ is powered by coffee and nearly expired yogurt.
PROFESSIONAL FIGHTERS LEAGUE RESCHEDULES 2020 SEASON TO 2021
The upcoming PFL 2020 season has been rescheduled to Spring 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The PFL 2021 Season will again be distributed on ESPN platforms in the U.S. and to 160 countries by the league’s international media partners. Additionally, PFL announced that for 2020 it is creating new original programming for distribution across ESPN platforms and PFL channels. The PFL also announced it will pay its league fighters a monthly cash stipend to help support them and their families throughout 2020.
LOVEBIRDS' HEADED TO NETFLIX MAY 22ND
The Kumail Nanjiani & Issa Rae rom-com "The Lovebirds" was originally set to premiere in movie theaters April 3rd, but like all the other new movies was pulled from release after movie theaters were shut down last month. The movie was originally set to make its world premiere at SXSW, but after that festival's cancellation, the movie was sold to Netflix. And early Monday, Netflix announced it will premiere the film on the streaming service May 22nd.
Speaking of Netflix, the company is set to announce earnings after the markets close on Tuesday. So expect to see a lot of bad hot takes on what the results mean. Things to watch include overall subscriber numbers and whether Netflix executives offer any guidance on how the COVID-19 pandemic has affected subscriber growth and churn rates.
IT'S TIME TO OPEN DRIVE-IN MOVIE THEATERS
Traditional movie theaters are closed across the United States and it seems unlikely they'll open anytime soon. But weirdly, most of the nation's drive-in theaters are also closed. It turns out that fewer than 25 of the 320 or so drive-ins in the U.S. are open for business, primarily because most states have labeled them as non-essential businesses. But some owners have been asking for waivers, making the logical argument that people watching a movie in their individual vehicles are the definition of social distancing. Of course, it's not clear what the drive-ins will be showing, given Hollywood has halted their new movie release plans until at least August. But I certainly see no reason to keep drive-in movie theaters shut down.
TICKETMASTER REVERSES COURSE, WILL ISSUE REFUNDS FOR POSTPONED SHOWS
Under pressure from hundreds of thousands of fans and multiple members of U.S. Congress, Ticketmaster has agreed to change its refund policy on postponed shows. The company had come under fire for quietly changing its policy after the outbreak of COVID-19, which meant that only shows that had been officially canceled qualified for a refund.
Under the new policy, customers who purchased a ticket for one of the 20,000 postponed shows that run through July of 2020 will be able to request a full refund. There are some sizable caveats, however. Refund requests have to be made in a 30-day period beginning on May 1st. And shows slated to start on August 1st, 2020 or afterward aren't eligible for a refund at this point.
As an incentive to encourage customers not to ask for a refund, Ticketmaster will allow ticket-holders to convert the face value of their tickets into a 150% credit towards a future show.
Here is a rundown of the shows premiering today....
1) Balthazar (Acorn TV)
Suave, smart, and unconventional, forensic pathologist Raphaël Balthazar can make the dead speak like no one else to solve Paris’ most baffling crimes. But there’s one case that continues to haunt him—the murder of his wife over a decade ago. In the series premiere, Balthazar immediately clashes with no-nonsense chief inspector Hélène Bach as they work together to solve the double homicide of a public prosecutor and his wife, leaving behind their traumatized young daughter.
2) Cooked With Cannabis Series Premiere (Netflix)
Chefs compete to get the hosts and special guests high on elevated cannabis cuisine with their artful use of leafy herb, THC infusions and CBD sauces.
3) Dummy Series Premiere (Quibi)
An aspiring writer (Anna Kendrick) befriends her boyfriend’s sex doll and the two take on the world together.
4) Iron Sharpens Iron Series Premiere (Quibi)
Executive produced by Cam Newton, Iron Sharpens Iron shows fans their favorite star athletes paired up with another professional athlete from a completely different sport. For the first time ever, these athletes share the secrets of their individual training programs and take a deep dive into high-level sports science and fitness.
5) 90 Day Fiancé: Self-Quarantined (TLC)
Through a combination of self-shot footage and remote video interviews with producers, viewers will follow along as current and former couples navigate how to get through this time. The special episodes will include dozens of couples and individuals from current and past seasons.
6) Secret & Murder Season Finale (HLN)
Churchgoers knew something was up when pastor Matthew Winkler didn’t show up for services. After he’s found dead on his bedroom floor, twisted sex fantasies and dark family secrets start to surface.
7) The Midnight Gospel Series Premiere (Netflix)
Drawing on interviews from the “Duncan Trussell Family Hour” podcast, this animated series follows a spacecaster who travels the galaxy searching for the meaning of life.
For a rundown of all the new episodes of television premiering tonight, click here.
TOO MUCH TV REALLY IS A THING
This newsletter is called "Too Much TV" because....well, it's hard to keep track of all the new television premiering everyday. To help you prioritize your viewing, click here to see our list of more than 400 upcoming television premieres, movies and finales. You'll find listings from more than 70 networks, as well as streaming services and web shows.
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