The Watchman: HBO Takes ‘Industry’ to the Bank; ‘Real Housewives’ Invades Salt Lake

HBO Takes ‘Industry’ to the Bank 

'Industry' premieres on HBO Nov. 9

(Image credit: HBO)

Industry premieres on HBO Nov. 9. The drama follows a group of young staffers at a massive international banking firm in London. It is inspired by the first job out of Oxford for creators Mickey Down and Konrad Kay. (See The Five Spot, page 32.). 

Neither one was suited for finance. “We were equally bad for different reasons,” said Kay. 

They reconnected and decided to give screenwriting a shot. “We like being in a room together all the time,” said Kay. “We sit in a room for eight hours and spend six of those talking absolute rubbish, and there will be two hours of productivity.” 

Myha’la Herrold plays Harper, an American woman learning the ropes in London. Down described the Industry ethos as “honoring the small moments of work success when you’re very young.” 

Lena Dunham directed the pilot. An HBO exec sent her scripts, and she was on board almost immediately. “She said, I don’t understand this world at all but I understand these relationships,” Down said. “She was incredibly supportive.” 

Industry is darkly funny, and offers a glimpse at office life you may not miss in work-from-home 2020. “We just hope people get a lot of vicarious enjoyment out of it,” said Kay. “Me and Mickey want it to be a rip-roaring, super-watchable, super-fun, great piece of entertainment.” 

‘Real Housewives’ Invades Salt Lake 

Cast of 'Housewives: Salt Lake City'

(Image credit: Bravo)

The Real Housewives of Salt Lake City is on Bravo Nov. 11. The show offers a peek at “six successful women who’ve created their own paradise filled with luxury homes, shopping sprees and multimillion-dollar businesses,” according to Bravo, along with “the undiscovered world of Salt Lake City.” 

“We weren’t looking for a new Housewives franchise,” Noah Samton, Bravo senior VP of current production, said. Then Bravo execs saw the pitch from the producers. “We saw the potential,” said Samton. “The cast was really interesting.” 

Shed Media produces. 

There are Mormons among the six cast members, along with others who are Jewish, Pentecostal and Muslim. “Put all that together and it feels unique and special and really compelling,” said Samton. “They all bring something special and amazing to the show.” 

The women are Lisa Barlow, who owns a tequila line and calls herself “Mormon 2.0”; Mary Cosby, a Pentecostal woman who inherited an empire of churches and restaurants; Heather Gay, who was born Mormon but distanced herself from the church after her divorce; Meredith Marks, a Jewish woman who designs jewelry; Whitney Rose, who descends from “Mormon royalty”; and Jen Shah, a CEO who converted from Mormonism to Islam. 

Real Housewives has been set in New York City, Beverly Hills, Miami and Dallas, among other locales. Add Salt Lake to the list. “The show uncovers a world the audience might not be familiar with,” Samton said.

Michael Malone

Michael Malone, senior content producer at B+C/Multichannel News, covers network programming, including entertainment, news and sports on broadcast, cable and streaming; and local broadcast television. He hosts the podcasts Busted Pilot, about what’s new in television, and Series Business, a chat with the creator of a new program, and writes the column “The Watchman.” He joined B+C in 2005. His journalism has also appeared in The New York Times, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Playboy and New York magazine.