Amazon Studios has greenlit new shows from Greg Daniels (“The Office”), Nicole Kidman (“Big Little Lies”) and Lena Waithe (“The Chi”), the streaming service said Saturday at the Television Critics Association press tour. Waithe’s “Them,” a horror event series, got a two-season order.
For starters, “Upload” is a 10-episode sci-fi romantic satire from Daniels and his producing partner Howard Klein that stars Andy Allo and Robbie Amell. The sitcom takes place in the near future, where people who are near death can be “uploaded” into a virtual afterlife of their choice. In 2033, secretly romantic Brooklyn-born Nora works customer service for a luxurious virtual reality environment. When handsome L.A. party boy Nathan’s self-driving car crashes, his high-maintenance girlfriend uploads him permanently into Nora’s VR world.
“Upload” is created and written by Daniels, who also serves as showrunner, executive producer and will direct the pilot. Klein is also an executive producer.
Drama “The Expatriates” comes from Kidman’s Blossom Films. The show is based on the top-selling novel of the same name by Janice Y.K. Lee, which takes a look at the vibrant and often privileged community of expats in Hong Kong. “The Expatriates” will follow a group of women as they live as outsiders in Hong Kong, dealing with a myriad of issues — from marriage to living abroad to parenting to suffering loss.
“I’m so thrilled about the Blossom-Amazon collaboration,” Kidman said in a statement. “‘The Expatriates’ is just the beginning of our shared goal in making delicious stories with something meaningful to say about the world.”
Screenwriter Alice Bell (“The Beautiful Lie”) will work on the project. The show is executive produced by Kidman and Per Saari from Blossom Films and Theresa Park of POW! Productions. Lee is serving as consulting producer.
In addition to Waithe, “Them” will be executive produced by Little Marvin, Roy Lee, Miri Yoon and Michael Connelly from Vertigo Prime. The first season, “Them: Covenant,” centers on a black family moving from North Carolina to an all-white neighborhood in Los Angeles in 1953. Their tranquil new home soon becomes a hot spot for evil forces, both supernatural and real, seeking to upend their lives.
Waithe said in a statement that the first season will show how “frightening it was to be black in 1953. It will also remind us that being black in 2018 is just as horrifying.”
Little Marvin penned the script.