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The 32 Most Anticipated New TV Shows of 2019

2019 promises the return of great television talents like Jennifer Aniston and George Clooney, plus trips to Heaven and a galaxy far far away.

"Black Monday," "Shrill," "Tuca & Bertie," "City on a Hill"

“Black Monday,” “Shrill,” “Tuca & Bertie,” “City on a Hill”

Showtime/Hulu/Netflix

“Good Omens” (Amazon, Spring 2019)

Executive Producers: Neil Gaiman, Caroline Skinner, Chris Sussman, Rob Wilkins, Rod Brown
Stars: David Tennant, Michael Sheen, Anna Maxwell Martin, Jon Hamm, Josie Lawrence, Adria Arjona, Michael McKean, Jack Whitehall, Miranda Richardson, Nick Offerman, Frances McDormand

For fans of authors Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett, the 1990 novel “Good Omens” is almost a holy text of sorts, and not just because it presents a very unconventional take on the apocalypse. So when it was revealed that Gaiman took on the showrunning duties for a long-awaited screen adaptation, because of a promise he made to the now-deceased Pratchett, fans were given good reason to believe that this might be a truly loyal adaptation. And then a pitch perfect cast list was revealed, including Frances McDormand as the voice of God, and the stakes grew even higher. Focused on Aziraphale (Sheen) and Crowley (Tennant), an angel and a devil who team up to prevent the end of the world (because they’re too fond of Earth), the six-part limited series could be something truly special for lovers of the book, while also bringing the classic story to life for a whole new audience. — LSM

“Hanna” (Amazon, 2019)

Editorial use only. No book cover usage.Mandatory Credit: Photo by Fox Television/Kobal/REX/Shutterstock (5885977bl) Joel Kinnaman, Mireille Enos The Killing - 2011 Fox Television USA Television

Joel Kinnaman and Mireille Enos in “The Killing.”

Fox Television/Kobal/REX/Shutterstock

Executive Producers: JoAnn Alfano, Andrew Woodhead, Marty Adelstein Becky Clements, Tim Bevan, Eric Fellner
Cast: Esme Creed-Miles, Joel Kinnaman, Mireille Enos

Based on Joe Wright’s 2011 film of the same name, “Hanna” tells the story of a young girl whose unknown identity becomes the fixation of an off-book CIA agent. Taking over for the film’s Saoirse Ronan is newcomer Esme Creed-Miles in the lead role, while Joel Kinnaman and Mireille Enos reunite for the first time since “The Killing” — only this time, they’re not partners. They’re enemies. “Room 104” and “Legion” director Sarah Adina-Smith will helm the first season, but can “Hanna” break as big as Ronan did without the years of additional credits? — BT

“I Am the Night” (TNT, Jan. 28)

27475_003 One Day She'll Darken - 102 - CE

“I Am the Night.”

Clay Enos

Executive Producers: Patty Jenkins, Chris Pine, Carl Franklin, Michael Sugar, Sam Sheridan
Cast: Chris Pine, India Eisley, Jefferson Mays, Leland Orser, Connie Nielsen, Justin Cornwell

“Wonder Woman” collaborators Chris Pine and Patty Jenkins team-up as star and director again for TNT’s pulpy noir, “I Am the Night.” Pine plays Jay Singletary, a photographer and reporter sick of taking easy money for digging up meaningless dirt. When his path crosses with Fauna Hodel (India Eisley) he gets his shot at redemption. Lost in the big city, Fauna just wants to find her birth father, but the multi-racial young woman gets caught up with an evil gynecologist and even the legendary Black Dahlia murders. Jenkins directs two of the six episodes, while Pine plays up his manic charms — for the most part, the pilot works, and TNT could have an early year hit on its hands if audiences spark to the silly thrills and absorbing atmosphere of the pilot. — BT

“Les Miserables” (PBS, April 14)

Executive Producers: Andrew Davies, Faith Penhale, Bethan Jones, Mona Qureshi, Rebecca Eaton, Dominic West, David Oyelowo
Stars: Dominic West, David Oyelowo, Lily Collins, Adeel Akhtar, Olivia Colman, Erin Kellyman, Ellie Bamber, Josh O’ Connor, Johnny Flynn, Derek Jacobi, David Bradley

This is not another production of the musical, but an adaptation of Victor Hugo’s sweeping novel set during the Paris Uprising of 1832, an anti-monarchist insurrection that’s also known as the June Rebellion. “The Affair” star Dominic West plays the recently released ex-convict Jean Valjean, who struggles for a life of redemption after 19 years in prison. David Oyelowo portrays the ruthless Inspector Javert, Lily Collins is the tragic Fanzine, and Olivia Colman plays the abusive Madame Thénardier. Writer Andrew Davies has a long history of bringing classic novels to life, from “Pride & Prejudice” to “War and Peace,” and will adapt this tale of love, law, politics, justice, philosophy, and grace into a six-part series. — HN

“Lovecraft Country” (HBO, 2019)

jonathan majors jurnee smollett-bell

Jonathan Majors, Jurnee Smollett-Bell

Shutterstock

Executive Producers: Jordan Peele, Misha Green, J. J. Abrams, Ben Stephenson
Stars: Jonathan Majors, Jurnee Smollett-Bell, Wunmi Mosaku, Aunjanue Ellis, Elizabeth Debicki

Continuing to build on the momentum provided by his 2016 horror-dramedy “Get Out,” Jordan Peele and his Monkeypaw Productions add to a growing slate of big and small screen projects with a serial adaptation of Matt Ruff’s 2016 fantasy-horror novel “Lovecraft Country.” Set up at HBO, the series, co-created and written by Misha Green (“Underground”), follows 25-year-old Atticus Black, his friend Letitia and his Uncle George as they embark on a road trip across 1950s Jim Crow America to find Atticus’ missing father. As if the terrors of racism during this era aren’t scary enough, the trio also find themselves in a struggle for survival against Lovecraftian malevolent spirits. The cast is led by Green’s “Underground” star Jurnee Smollett-Bell as Letitia, Jonathan Majors as Atticus and Courtney B. Vance as Uncle George. Wunmi Mosaku, Aunjanue Ellis, Elizabeth Debicki and Michael Kenneth Williams round out the main cast. Promising another “social thriller,” what Peele and co-creator Green will do with the at-times unsettling material, and how the realism/fantasy hybridization translates from book to screen, is thrilling to imaging. Audiences should expect a better education on Sundown Towns (deliberately whites-only communities in the US) and the Jim Crow era African American survivalist travel guide, the Green Book, than the 2018 film “Green Book.” — TO

“The Mandalorian” (Disney Plus, 2019)

mandalorian

The Mandalorian

Courtesy of Disney

Executive Producers: Jon Favreau, Dave Filoni, Kathleen Kennedy, Colin Wilson
Stars: Pedro Pascal, Gina Carano, Nick Nolte, Giancarlo Esposito, Emily Swallow, Carl Weathers, Omid Abtahi, Werner Herzog

Disney is pushing its new upcoming streaming service hard with the announcement of this upcoming live-action series set in the “Star Wars” universe. Favreau both writes and executive produces the series, which is set three years after “Return of the Jedi” but before the rise of the First Order. The 10-part drama follows a lone gunfighter from Mandalore — known as a multi-species world full of warriors, mercenaries, and bounty hunters — living far from the authority of the New Republic. Announced directors for the episodes include Taika Waititi, Bryce Dallas Howard, Rick Famuyiwa, Deborah Chow, and Dave Filoni. — HN

“Miracle Workers” (TBS, Feb. 12)

Miracle Workers TBS

“Miracle Workers.”

TBS

Executive Producers: Lorne Michaels, Andrew Singer, Simon Rich, Daniel Radcliffe, Steve Buscemi
Stars: Daniel Radcliffe, Steve Buscemi, Geraldine Viswanathan, Jon Bass, Karan Soni, Sasha Compère, Lolly Adefope

Steve Buscemi is no stranger to TV (remember “Boardwalk Empire”…?) but it’s still a pleasure to see the veteran actor take on the role of a lifetime: God the Almighty. As introduced in “Man Seeking Woman” creator Simon Rich’s new comedy, he’s pretty bummed out by the state of things on Earth. His solution? Blow the whole thing up, which only the angels Craig (Daniel Radcliffe) and Maria (Geraldine Viswanathan) can stop from happening. Based on Rich’s own novel “What In God’s Name,” the series promises an unconventional take on religion, faith, and the meaning of life, especially given how life in this version of Heaven takes on a distinctly corporate feel. Plus, Radcliffe has been charming audiences for almost 20 years now — and it looks unlikely he’ll stop now. — LSM

“Modern Love” (Amazon, 2019)

Producers: John Carney, Todd Hoffman, Trish Hoffmann, Sam Dolnick, Choire Sicha, Daniel Jones
Stars: Anne Hathaway, Tina Fey, John Slattery, Catherine Keener, Dev Patel, Shea Whigham, Andy Garcia, Cristin Milioti, Brandon Victor Dixon, Olivia Cooke, Andrew Scott, Julia Garner, Gary Carr, John Gallagher, Jr., Sofia Boutella

Amazon’s last big swing with a massive ensemble cast and anthology format from a critically acclaimed creator may not have worked out as planned. But unlike “The Romanoffs,” this half-hour series from “Once” and “Sing Street” director John Carney will be working from some stellar source material as inspiration. The WBUR and New York Times podcast of the same name has brought in a regular rotation of household names to perform selections from the long-running newspaper column about love in all its forms. In addition to that powerhouse cast, the show will also boast an impressive lineup of directors, from Carney to Sharon Horgan to Emmy Rossum. — SG

“Mrs. Fletcher” (HBO, 2019)

Kathryn Hahn - Sundance 2017

Kathryn Hahn

Daniel Bergeron

Executive Producers: Tom Perrotta, Nicole Holofcener, Jessi Klein, Sarah Condon
Cast: Kathryn Hahn, Jackson White, Casey Wilson, Owen Teague, Jen Richards

After writing, producing, and co-creating HBO’s critically acclaimed drama “The Leftovers,” Tom Perrotta is taking on solo showrunning duties for the first time in “Mrs. Fletcher” (another adaptation of one of his novels). Kathryn Hahn stars as the eponymous Eve Fletcher, who fights empty nest syndrome by pushing herself into new public and private adventures — erotic and otherwise. Her son Brendan (Jackson White) tries to make the most of his newfound collegiate freedom, but his hormonal urges and limited perspective complicate matters while distracting him from his studies. With Nicole Holofcener (“Enough Said,” “One Mississippi”) directing and Jessi Klein (“Inside Amy Schumer,” “Big Mouth”) writing alongside him — not to mention Hahn leading the show and Casey Wilson supporting — Perrotta is surrounded with whip-smart female voices to help tell an intimate, exciting, and very funny woman’s story. Nora Durst would be proud. — BT

“Now Apocalypse” (Starz, Mar. 10)

Writer/director Gregg Araki attends a special screening of "White Bird In A Blizzard" at the Landmark Sunshine Theater, in New YorkNY Special Screening of "White Bird In A Blizzard", New York, USA - 15 Oct 2014

Gregg Araki

Evan Agostini/Invision/AP/REX/Shutterstock

Executive Producers: Gregg Araki, Steven Soderbergh, Gregory Jacobs
Stars: Avan Jogia, Kelli Berglund, Beau Mirchoff, Roxane Mesquida

Set to debut at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival, “Now Apocalypse” represents Gregg Araki’s biggest commitment to TV yet. While the famed indie director has directed a fair amount of TV over the last few years, Araki will direct as well as executive produce the Starz series (Steven Soderbergh and Gregory Jacobs are also executive producers), which focuses on the creative and romantic lives of a group of Los Angeles young folk who might be getting closer to uncovering a massive secret. The cast includes Avan Jogia, Kelli Berglund, Beau Mirchoff, Roxane Mesquida, Tyler Posey, Chris Aquilino, and RJ Mitte — based on Araki’s always unconventional approach to his subject matter, as well as his deeply empathic connection to how the chaos of becoming an adult has an apocalyptic feel, this could be one of the year’s wildest rides. — LSM

“Untitled Roger Ailes Series” (Showtime, 2019)

Roger Ailes, Russell Crowe

Roger Ailes, Russell Crowe

Shutterstock

Executive Producers: Tom McCarthy, Jason Blum, Alex Metcalf, Marci Wiseman, Jeremy Gold, Liza Chasin
Stars: Russell Crowe, Naomi Watts, Sienna Miller, Simon McBurney, Seth MacFarlane

Not to be confused with the upcoming movie project also centered on the architect of the Fox News network, this impending eight-part series will see Crowe step into the main role. This particular account of Ailes’ time at the helm of the most influential political outlets of the last two decades will be based on the 2014 book “The Loudest Voice in the Room.” Whether or not it keeps that title, author Gabriel Sherman has been one of the shrewdest chroniclers of the culture inside Fox News. It’ll also be worth tracking as Blumhouse Television continues its expansion into programming that goes outside its familiar horror genre homebase. — SG

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