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Upfronts 2016: Lifetime Taps Selena Gomez, Ronda Rousey For Original Projects

Lifetime is reaching out to top name female entertainers and sports personalities to develop new scripted series and movies as part of its 2016-17 programming slate.

The women’s targeted network has signed actress/singer Selena Gomez and House Of Cards star Kevin Spacey to executively produce a new drama based on Gomez’s life. The network has also pinned UFC star Ronda Rousey to a three-picture movie deal that will offer stories that “reflect her passions about empowerment to the screen,” said network officials.

Lifetime has also signed tennis star Serena Williams to executively produce an original movie Sister Dance, inspired by the annual dance-off competition she hosts with her sister Venus.

Pop music superstar Janet Jackson will serve as executive producer for a movie based on the 1920’s New York City mobster Queenie.

Other films include a project based on the life of R&B singer Michel’le and Paris Can Wait, starring Diane Lane and Alec Baldwin and based on Eleanor Coppola’s own life journeys in romance and travel. The movie, directed and written by Coppola, will have a theatrical premiere before debuting on Lifetime, said the network.

Other scripted series on the docket include A Midsummer’s Nightmare, an anthology series which each season takes a classic Shakespearean tale and twists it into a modern-day horror-mystery; None of The Above, a coming of age drama; Holly Brix Project, about a group of strangers who are brought together by an unknown puppet master, threatening to expose their past misdeeds and hidden lives; Breeders, from Jason Gann (Wilfred), which follows a support group for new parents who eventually reflect on their own high school experiences; and Deadline, a one-hour drama which follows a reporter in a world that values gossip over hard-hitting investigative news.

New unscripted shows include New unscripted series coming to Lifetime this year include competition series Fashion Inc. and Gold Medal Families, showcasing six Olympic hopefuls and their families.