King of TV comedy Chuck Lorre has a new half-hour sitcom in the works. Already responsible for CBS hits such as Two and a Half Men, The Big Bang Theory and Mike & Molly, he’s now got the go-ahead to make a pilot called, rather uncreatively, Mom. It’s about a newly sober single mother who tries to get her life together in the Napa Valley, an odd place to choose given it’s the heart of Californian wine country. The show marks Lorre’s return to comedies with a female lead after his success in the 1990s with Grace Under Fire, Roseanne and Cybill. Casting for Mom is yet to be announced.
- After making some eye-wateringly bad movies in recent times (The Happening, anyone?), M Night Shyamalan has a new sci-fi thriller due out in June. Called After Earth, it stars Will Smith and his son Jaden – their second movie together after The Pursuit Of Happyness. The flick is set 1000 years after cataclysmic events forced humanity to escape from Earth and set up home on a planet called Nova Prime. Legendary general Cypher Raige (crazy name) returns from a tour of duty and is reunited with his 13-year-old son Kitai. An asteroid storm causes them to crash-land on a now unfamiliar and dangerous Earth and, with his father lying injured in the cockpit, the boy must trek across hostile terrain to recover their rescue beacon. Shyamalan, whose previous film was 2010’s The Last Airbender, will be hoping After Earth earns him the sort of kudos he got for The Sixth Sense way back in 1999.
- Michael Bay has chosen two relative unknowns to star in his fourth Transformers movie. Nicola Peltz will play the daughter of Mark Wahlberg’s character and Brenton Thwaites will play her biker boyfriend. Peltz, the daughter of a New York billionaire, is best known for her role as Katara in Shyamalan’s Airbender flick. Thwaites, an Australian who appeared in Home and Away, was in a recent TV movie of Blue Lagoon and has a significant role as the young prince in Angelina Jolie’s forthcoming Maleficent. Bay is also reportedly planning a Bad Boys 3, which would reunite Will Smith and Martin Lawrence 10 years after the sequel and 18 years since the original. Wahlberg, who starred in the unfortunate Happening and is also in Bay’s Pain & Gain, has a string of tough-guy flicks coming up, the titles of which say it all – Broken City, 2 Guns, Lone Survivor and Good Time Gang.