News Briefs: Microsoft and Steven Spielberg Are Making a Live-action Halo TV Series for Xbox

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HERE COMES THE FLOOD NEWS

... Of all the big news to come out of today's Xbox One announcement, the biggest announcement is that Call of Duty: Ghosts will feature dogs! But the second biggest, for TV fans at least, is that Microsoft is making a live-action television series based on the Halo franchise. We previously knew that that the company was getting into original programming for its console, but this came as a pleasant surprise. No, one-time Halo movie director Neill Blomkamp (District 9) won't be involved, but Steven Spielberg will. The famed director will produce the project, which will be exclusive to the new console. Spielberg has plenty of experience with aliens and space, having given us E.T. and Close Encounters of the Third Kind, but his recent alien activities, like Falling Skies (which he produces), leave a lot to be desired. Let's also not forget that he produced Smash. If Master Chief breaks out into song using an Energy Sword as a faux-microphone, I will personally hunt down Spielberg and shove an Assault Rifle up his ass. Currently, there are very few details available, but count me in. BTW I still play Halo 4 (nerd alert) and I kick 12-year-old ass. [Xbox via live press conference]


BUSINESS TIME

... Though stats had already predicted it, it's now almost definitely official: CBS has won the prized 18-49 ratings demo for the 2012-2013 season with a 2.9 average, breaking Fox's eight-year run as champ. CBS has won the overall viewers title for 10 out of the last 11 seasons, but hasn't won the demo title in over 20 years. Fox finished second with 2.5, NBC narrowly missed second with a 2.4, and ABC finished fourth with a 2.2. [EW]

... Discovery Channel has ordered Blood and Oil, a reality series following a family-run oil company in the Midwest as it struggles to stay operational alongside the big oil companies. It will debut on June 18 at 10pm. In other news, there are family-run oil companies!? [THR]

... TLC is reviving Lisa Kudrow's failed NBC reality series Who Do You Think You Are?, which pulled celebrities up on stage and revealed through extensive genealogy research that their great-great-grandparents owned slaves or invented the toothpick. Eight new one-hour episodes will debut on the home of Honey Boo Boo on July 23. Seriously, if they don't dig up the past of Honey Boo Boo's family, this is all a huge waste of time. I bet Great Great Grandma Boo Boo was royalty. [The Wrap]

... If you were hoping for a second season of Fox's The Goodwin Games, which debuted yesterday, stop. Only 1.6 million people watched Monday's series premiere. [TV By the Numbers]

... CMT has ordered 11 more episodes of Dog and Beth, the latest reality show starring Dog the Bounty Hunter. That brings the Season 1 total to 22 episodes. [CMT.com]

... Ricky Gervais's comedy Derek has a U.S. premiere date: September 12 on Netflix Instant. The series, about the title character who works in a retirement home, already aired in the U.K. where it has been picked up for a second season. [Netflix via press release]

... If you can't wait for Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and need your Avengers universe fix, you can give Marvel's Avengers Assemble a try. The animated series will debut on July 7 on Disney XD, but will show off a preview hour this Sunday, May 26 at 11am. Expect to see all the costume-wearing superdudes and superdudettes punching bad guys in the face. [Disney XD via press release]


SORTA CASTING NEWS

... Your hosts for the 2013 Miss Teen USA competition are: Nick Jonas and Giuliana Rancic! The competition will air live on NBC on Sunday, June 16. [NBC via press release]

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