Jack Ryan Amazon

Amazon closed the Television Critics Association winter press tour with a bang, making many announcements. Amazon Studios head of originals Jennifer Salke and co-heads Vernon Sanders and Albert Cheng spoke with reporters, revealing news about Jack Ryan, A League of Their Own, Homecoming, The Expanse and Amazon’s Woody Allen deal.

Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan’s Early Pickup

Amazon’s Tom Clancy series has been blessed with early pickups. Season 2 was ordered before season one even premiered. Now it’s tradition. During her opening remarks to the Television Critics Association, Salke announced a third.

“We’re picking up season 3 of Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan,” Salke said. “Season 2 is looking incredibly strong and we saw no reason not to give it an early pickup. We know how much our global subscribers love it.”

We know that Noomi Rapace joins the second season as a new character, but we’ll see where it leaves CIA analyst Jack Ryan (John Krasinski) by the end.

A League of Their Own Pilot Will Have New Characters

Amazon greenlit a pilot for a series based on the 1992 movie A League of Their Own. We haven’t heard much about the show yet, as Sanders confirmed it’s still only a pilot. We have heard that it will be a modern take on the 1943 All American Girls Women’s Professional Baseball League.

So with a new take, will the movie’s characters like Dottie (Geena Davis), Kit (Lori Young) and Jimmy Dugan (Tom Hanks) be reinvented on the show, played by new actors?

“There will be a group of new characters, but there will be some nods to the original series that I think fans will appreciate,” Sanders said.

That’s a promising way to retell A League of Their Own. After all, there were other teams of women in the AAGPL. Even if they’re fictionalized, there are more stories to tell. A team on the outskirts of the Rockford Peaches would make for fun fun overlap.

Homecoming is Looking for a New Star

When Amazon renewed Homecoming for a second season, it was also revealed the show would be an anthology series and Julia Roberts would not return. Now Amazon is looking for an equally A-list star for season two. They’re at an advantage because they know how juicy the characters for season two are.

“We’ve heard the creative for season 2 and there are compelling parts,” Sanders said.

Salke added, “There’s an opportunity for a star role in it and there’s a list that’s being discussed with producers about what the strategy is moving forward on that.”

Roberts was never intended to star in more than one season.

“Julia was always intended to only be in the first season,” Salke said. “It was designed, written and conceived that way. It’s not like Julia’s stepping down. Julia’s just continuing in the capacity she had planned to from the beginning.”

It makes sense for Homecoming to be a vehicle for A-list movie stars to appear for one season at a time. That’s how American Horror Story gets Jessica Lange and Kathy Bates to pop in and out.

A Very Serious Question About Woody Allen

Director Woody Allen has sued Amazon for breaking their contract for five films. Amazon aired his series Crisis in Six Scenes and released his movies Cafe Society and Wonder Wheel. A Rainy Day In New York is unreleased and two more films have been cancelled. Because of the ongoing litigation, Salke was not allowed to comment.

“I really can’t comment on anything about that,” Salke said. “It predated me and now that it’s in litigation, I can’t make any comments on it at all.”

Salke came to Amazon last year, and Allen’s deal dates back to 2015. Previous Amazon execs were questioned about the decision to sign Allen to a deal. Now that the current regime decided to cancel the deal, it seems like those questions will be answered in court.

The Expanse Will Return This Year

Amazon picked up the fourth season of The Expanse after it was cancelled at Syfy. That was good news for the fans, but now they’ve also been waiting some time for the series’ return. Sanders offered them a somewhat firmer timeline.

“We are working towards having that new season before the end of the year,” Sanders said. “I’m proud to say the show’s come back strong and we can’t wait for the fans of that show to see what their love has helped us buy it. We’ll have a specific date in the future but we’re aiming for that show to come out before 2019 is over.”

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