Foxtel has confirmed the acquisition of the two most highly anticipated new US drama series of 2017, having secured the Australian television rights to the latest project from prolific television producer Ryan Murphy, FEUD: Bette and Joan starring Jessica Lange and Susan Sarandon, and the racially charged event drama Shots Fired, starring Sanaa Lathan, Stephan James, Helen Hunt, Richard Dreyfuss and Stephen Moyer.
FEUD: Bette and Joan, the new anthology television series from American Horror Story producer Murphy, will premiere March 12, Sundays at 8.30pm on showcase.
The eight episode drama tells the story of the legendary rivalry between Joan Crawford (Jessica Lange) and Bette Davis (Susan Sarandon) during their collaboration on the thriller What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? and well after the cameras stopped rolling. The series explores how the two women endured ageism, sexism, and misogyny while struggling to hang on to success and fame in the twilight of their careers.
In addition to Academy Award®-winners Lange and Sarandon, the cast includes Alfred Molina as the film’s director Robert Aldrich, Stanley Tucci as studio titan Jack Warner, Judy Davis as gossip columnist Hedda Hopper, Jackie Hoffman as Crawford’s housekeeper Mamacita, and Alison Wright as Aldrich’s assistant Pauline. Notable guest stars include Dominic Burgess as Crawford and Davis’ co-star Victor Buono, Catherine Zeta-Jones as film star Olivia de Havilland, Sarah Paulson as Geraldine Page, Kathy Bates as Joan Blondell and Kiernan Shipka as B.D., Bette Davis’ daughter.
Foxtel’s FOX Classics channel will set the stage for the series with multiple screenings of the 1962 film Whatever Happened to Baby Jane? on Sunday, March 5 at 8.30pm and Tuesday, March 14 at 8.35pm.
Shots Fired examines the dangerous aftermath of two racially charged shootings in a small Southern US town, providing an explosive autopsy of the criminal justice system. The 10 episode drama will premiere April 10, Mondays at 8.30pm on showcase, moving in to the timeslot the week following the conclusion of Big Little Lies.
When an African-American Sheriff’s deputy kills an unarmed white college student, a small town in North Carolina is turned upside-down. Before the town has a chance to grapple with this tragedy, the neglected murder of an African-American teen is brought to light, opening wounds that threaten to tear the community apart.
Leading the Department of Justice’s inquiry into these shootings is seasoned investigator Ashe Akino (Sanaa Lathan) and a young Special Prosecutor Preston Terry (Stephan James), both of whom are African-American. As they start to peel back the layers of both cases, they suspect a cover-up which may involve some of the state’s most powerful people, including fiercely political North Carolina Governor Patricia Eamons (guest star Academy®, Emmy® and Golden Globe® Award-winning actress Helen Hunt). She’s in a tough re-election fight, and the recent shootings in her state are making it even tougher. Meanwhile, real estate mogul and owner of a privatized prison Arlen Cox (Academy® and Golden Globe® Award-winning actor Richard Dreyfuss), is pulled into the volatile debate over policing in the town, and Lt. Calvert Breeland (Stephen Moyer), a seasoned veteran in the Sheriff’s Department, gets caught in the middle of the investigation.
As Ashe and Preston navigate the media attention, public debate and social unrest that come with such volatile cases, Shots Fired tackles the racial divide from every seat in the house.
Following the broadcast on showcase FEUD: Bette and Joan and Shots Fired will be available to watch on demand, via Foxtel Anytime on internet connected iQ boxes. Customers can also stream the series on demand on Foxtel Play or Foxtel Go. Foxtel Go is included with all Foxtel residential and Foxtel Play subscriptions at no extra cost.