Spectrum Originals Dips Toe Into Docs With ‘Manhunt: Deadly Games’ Companion Series As Charter Division Eyes Asian-American Project

Spectrum Originals is making its first tentative move into docuseries ahead of the launch of Manhunt: Deadly Games and is eyeing its first Asian-American series.

Charter Communications’ original content division is prepping the launch of the Lionsgate-produced drama, which tells the story of the wrongly-accused Richard Jewell in this chronicle of the search for the 1996 Atlanta Olympics Bomber, on February 3.

To coincide with this, the broadcaster is set to launch a short-form documentary series, Hunted, to coincide with the drama, which stars Jack Huston, Judith Light, Gethin Anthony, Kelly Jenrette and Cameron Britton.

Katherine Pope, who oversees the content division, told Deadline that it is set to air a six-part, short-form docuseries, produced by digital news brand ATTN, consisting of episodes of six minutes to tell the “real story of the Atlanta bombing”. “That’s us dipping on our toes in [to docuseries] and we’d like to do more,” he said.

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In an interview with Deadline, the former NBCU exec Pope lifted the lid on what shows it is looking for, opened up about its Mad About You reboot and teased the return of L.A.’s Finest. This comes  after it emerged that Quarry co-creator Graham Gordy and Daniel Campbell were on board to pen its Courteney Cox-fronted drama based on the life of Last Chance U star Brittany Wagner.

She said, “We’re looking to slice up our audience, we’re looking for shows that other people aren’t making. We’re looking for a really great Asian-American story, ethnic groups that are underserved. We’re doing a couple of projects in terms of accessibility needs, we’re doing two shows set in the deaf community. Everybody talks about inclusion and different voices and we’re trying to be more inclusive.”

Spectrum’s latest bet was its reboot of Paul Reiser and Helen Hunt comedy Mad About You. The Sony Pictures Television-produced series launched its first six episodes on November 20 followed by the remaining six episodes on December 18. Pope said that it had performed “incredibly well” for the digital service but that it would remain limited. “Especially for something like this, you want to check back in with these people you love and we tell a beginning, middle and end story. Once you’ve checked back in, do you need to check back in again? I don’t think so. There was something special about it, a special moment in time,” she said.

The company is currently in production with season two of L.A.’s Finest, starring Gabrielle Union and Jessica Alba. Pope said the drama, which was created by Brandon Margolis and Brandon Sonnier and is produced by Jerry Bruckheimer Television and 2.0 Entertainment in association with Sony Pictures Television, “put us on the map”. She teased that there “might be more lightness” in season two, which will dig further into the relationship between the two female leads, but will continue with a serialized story.

Also coming up this spring is Southern gothic drama Paradise Lost starring Josh Hartnett. The Penny Dreadful star plays a man who moves back to Mississippi with his Palo Alto psychiatrist partner, played by Jane The Virgin’s Bridget Regan, and uncover a mystery that needs solving. The show, which was created by Rodes Fishburne, who exec produces with Arika Lisanne Mittman, is produced by Paramount Television and Anonymous Content. It will air on Paramount Network after its bow on Spectrum.

“We’re working with people who are, first and foremost, storytellers and aren’t chasing the biggest platform, they just want to tell great stories,” added Pope.

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