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Development news: Nick dives for SpongeBob spinoffs, Paddington TV show in works with Ben Whishaw, more

By Josh Weiss
SpongeBob SquarePants

SpongeBob SquarePants is getting a shared universe, Paddington is coming to the small screen, and a small (yet effective) science fiction feature is getting release.

Here's the latest in genre development news...

As SpongeBob SquarePants turns 20 this year, Nickelodeon has some big plans for the porous fry cook who lives in a pineapple under the sea. 

Besides a new movie and TV special, the kid-centric network is also planning a number of spinoffs, Variety has confirmed

“That’s our Marvel Universe,” Brian Robbins, Nickelodeon president, told Variety. “You have this amazing show that’s run for almost 20 years... [We could] tell an original story about SpongeBob and Patrick, or maybe tell a Sandy Cheeks stand-alone story, or can Plankton have his own? I think the fans are clamoring for it.”

The third feature-length film, It's a Wonderful Sponge, opens in theaters May 22, 2020.

Nickelodeon is also working on a Paddington TV show alongside StudioCanal, which produced the two live-action movies in 2014 and 2017, respectively.

Moreover, Deadline reports that the cinematic voice behind the talking bear, Ben Whishaw (Q in Skyfall and Spectre), will reprise his voiceover role for the series, which is described as a prequel and will document Paddington's adventures as a younger bear. In addition, each episode will follow an epistolary-like format, beginning and ending with the titular character writing to his Aunt Lucy.  Harry Potter's David Heyman (of Heyday Films) is on board as a producer with StudioCanal.

Nickelodeon plans to begin airing the Paddington show in 2020. 

Screen Media has picked up the U.S. distribution rights to Clara, a science fiction movie from writer/director Akash Sherman, writes Deadline.

The film, which first premiered at the Toronto Film Festival in the fall, stars Patrick J. Adams and Troian Bellisario as an astronomer and artist who make a major scientific discovery.

“This is a film that aims to speak to both mind and heart, and which, I hope, challenges audiences to consider some big questions about science and space, and the cosmic nature of human connection," Sherman told Deadline.

Screen Media plans to release the movie in May in theaters and on VOD.

Lastly, BBC America has released a new teaser trailer for the second season of Killing Eve. The series stars Sandra Oh as an MI5 agent tracking a deadly assassin (Jodie Comer) all over Europe. As the game of cat and mouse continues, their obsession with each another becomes more and more pronounced.

Check out the new trailer below:

Addicted | Killing Eve Season 2 Teaser Trailer | BBC America

Killing Eve Season 2 premieres on BBC America on April 7 at 8/7c. It was revealed at the TCA winter press tour that the first episode of the new season would pick up 30 seconds after the Season 1 finale.