As a prequel to one of the most revered horror movies of all time, A&E’s Bates Motel has some pretty big shoes to fill. And while it’s unlikely to reach the same iconic status, it’s heartening to see that the first trailer actually looks pretty good. (Unlike, say, the one for the ill-received 1987 pilot of the same title.)

The new series, by Carlton Cuse (Lost) and Kerry Ehrin (Friday Night Lights), follows Norman through adolescence in the present day. Freddie Highmore plays the future murderer as a sweet, shy teen, while Vera Farmiga plays the mother who literally drives him insane. The family is eager for the fresh start promised by the new motel she’s just purchased, but as we all know from Psycho, their plans don’t really go as planned. Watch the trailer after the jump.

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Today’s TV bits is stuffed to the brim with new project announcements, casting notices, trailers, and much more. After the jump:

  • Mike Judge and Scott Rudin team for Silicon Valley at HBO
  • FX is adapting J. Michael Feldman‘s show Fairy Tale Theater
  • Goonies co-stars Sean Astin and Corey Feldman reunite on TMNT
  • The Newsroom casts someone to play a Romney campaign staffer
  • Sean Bean replaces Brendan Fraser in TNT’s spy drama Legends
  • The CW gives freshman drama series Cult a February premiere date
  • Jon Hamm and John Slattery direct more episodes of Mad Men
  • Is Doctor Who uniting all 11 Doctors for an anniversary special?
  • How would you like to create a title sequence for A&E’s Bates Motel?
  • Read an in-depth oral history of beloved cult classic Freaks & Geeks
  • Hannah fails to get a job in a deleted scene from Season 1 of Girls
  • Laura Dern has big plans in the Enlightened Season 2 teaser
  • See a teaser for the Beyonce-directed documentary about Beyonce
  • Check out a production video from the Game of Thrones set
  • Showtime offers up a teaser for season 6 of Californication

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Today we have a nice mix of shows that don’t even exist yet, shows that have already been cancelled, and everything in between. After the jump:

  • Baz Luhrmann is making his first foray into television
  • Tina Fey plans tostick to television after 30 Rock ends
  • Carlton Cuse brings Richard Alpert to the Bates Motel
  • Christopher Guest adds old friends to his HBO comedy
  • Revolution star David Meunier will return to Justified
  • Rita Wilson will not go naked on Girls, if you were curious
  • Here’s what would’ve happened on Terra Nova Season 2
  • AMC offhandedly reveals The Walking Dead renewal
  • Fringe‘s final season gets an intense full-length trailer
  • See Haley Joel Osment in It’s Always Sunny ad

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These days, it seems everything Guillermo Del Toro touches turns to gold. While the director is firmly focused on his big budget film Pacific Rim, HBO recently option a property he’s attached to and FX order a pilot based on a book series he wrote. The FX pilot will be based on The Strain, a trilogy of vampire novels co-authored by Del Toro, which will be overseen by Lost executive producer and co-show-runner Carlton Cuse. Del Toro will direct the pilot.

Then there’s The Nutshell Studies of Unexplained Death by Corinne May Botz, which HBO optioned for a possible series with Del Toro to executive producer and possibly direct too. Read more about both projects after the jump. Read More »

Damon Lindelof’s spent the years since Lost racking up high-profile movie credits like Cowboys & Aliens, Prometheus, and Star Trek 2, but the other Lost showrunner, Carlton Cuse, has kept a pretty low profile for the most part. That could be about to change, however, as he has a few different things brewing at the moment.

Among the projects Cuse has been working on are a movie set up at Fox with Shawn Levy and Hugh Jackman attached and a Psycho-inspired TV series for A&E. Now we can add to that list San Andreas: 3D, the earthquake epic developing over at New Line. More details after the jump.

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The previously-announced Psycho-prequel TV show Bates Motel just got a huge, exciting vote of confidence from its network: A&E. While most shows shoot a pilot, which is then tested and possibly picked up for a full season, Bates Motel is skipping that step and going right into full production aimed at a 2013 premiere.

The show, which will be executive produced by Lost EP Carlton Cuse, along with Friday Night Lights alum Kerry Ehrin, deconstructs the “formative” years of Norman Bates’ childhood. It takes place well before Marion Crane arrived at the motel for her fateful shower, and is described as as “a cross between Twin Peaks and Smallville.” Casting and pre-production will begin immediately. Read more after the jump. Read More »

Lena Dunham and company may be having trouble finding lasting romance in HBO’s Girls, but they’ve still got it way easy compared to the tormented lovers of HBO’s Game of Thrones. For one thing, I’m betting love affairs in the former involve way fewer beheadings. After the jump:

  • Mad Men hints a look back to the ’50s
  • Carlton Cuse explores Norman Bates’ formative years
  • Game of Thrones drops a lovey-dovey new promo
  • Girls gets two more trailers and a glowing review
  • Showtime sets return dates for Dexter and Homeland

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The most disappointing, albeit it inevitable, part of attending Comic-Con is when you hear about something that happened you would have loved to see but totally missed. For me, that happened at Entertainment Weekly’s Totally Lost: One Year Later panel when show runners Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse made a surprise appearance with a “deleted scene” from the finale of the first season.

Here’s the set-up. Lindelof and Cuse take a lot of flack for saying they had everything in the series planned out even though very little of what actually happened – Jacob, the Man in Black, Candidates, light caves, etc – was never hinted at. This scene “proves” that they weren’t lying. The fact that it was shot specifically for Comic-Con, a year after the series finale aired, is insignificant. It would have been awesome to be in the room for this surprise, especially the big reveal at the end, but thanks to the magic of the Internet, we can all check it out now. Read More »

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