Julie and the Phantoms first look
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Source: Netflix

WIRE Buzz: Julie and the Phantoms trailer; Skywatch series to Peacock; Amazon cancels Culture

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Aug 26, 2020, 1:39 PM EDT

The only thing these ghosts might get busted for is rocking too hard: Netflix’s upcoming Julie and the Phantoms is all about a boy band from the great beyond and it’s just dropped its first trailer.

The series, from showrunners Dan Cross and Dave Hoge alongside executive producer Kenny Ortega (High School Musical), looks to give the high school coming-of-age drama a bit of a supernatural oomph. And one of the dead musicians is played by Jeremy Shada, voice of Finn from Adventure Time, so what’s not to like? Tunes, tragic backstories, and impossible romances await in the first footage.

Take a look:

The lead, played by Madison Reyes, is dealing with a death in the family and the boys, played by Charlie Gillespie, Shada, and Owen Patrick Joyner, are here to help. Think of it like Ghost for the YA crowd...but with even more pop music.

Julie and the Phantoms — which also stars Booboo Stewart, Cheyenne Jackson, Carlos Ponce, Sonny Bustamante, Jadah Marie, Sacha Carlson, and Savannah Lee May — has its nine episodes hit Netflix on Sept. 10.


Next, one of the next genre shows coming to NBCUniversal streamer Peacock will be based on a sci-fi short by an ex-Pixar artist.

According to Variety, Peacock has snapped up Skywatch from Colin Levy (Inside Out, Monsters University) to adapt into a show. Basically, they’re making a series based around the short below:

Sort of a drone dystopia, huh? Lotta Wall-E vibes, but with a much more serious conspiracy drama at its core. No word on whether the original cast (including Jude Law) will show up in the new series. Levy will direct and write alongside Mike Sundy, who was also co-writer on a feature script adaptation. The latter project will serve as more fleshed-out source material for the show.

No timeline has yet been set.


Finally, Amazon is scrapping plans to adapt Iain M. BanksCulture series — that of aliens, AIs, and boundless possibilities — which would have started with the sci-fi book Consider Phlebas.

The Verge reports that Dennis Kelly, who was leading the adaptation for Amazon, said that work has stopped on the project. “We’d talked about it for two or three years and it went a certain way along,” he said. “I’d written probably 20-30 pages of the bible, but once I got a sense that it wasn’t going to happen, I had to stop writing because you become emotionally attached to the work.”

“In the end, I just think the estate didn’t want to go through with it. It wasn’t the material,” Kelly explained, “it was just because I think they weren’t ready to do it, for whatever reason. I’m a little mystified myself, to be honest.” His instincts seem to be on the money, considering that the Banks estate (the author died of cancer in 2013) said that no, the “timing wasn’t quite right.” But that’s basically all the reasoning it gives.

No word on whether this means Amazon will transfer the rights elsewhere, hold onto them until the timing is right, or otherwise sit on the project. All fans know is that the 10-book series will remain off-screen for now.