Black Sails, “Da Vinci,” “Outlander” Updates

Cable channel Starz used this year’s TCA presentation to give updates on all its major series for 2013 including two high profile new dramas, the second season of a cult genre series, and other shows in development.

Black Sails
Set during the Golden Age of piracy in a remote Bahamas outpost, this prequel to Robert Louis Stevenson’s “Treasure Island” aims to replace fantastical pirate lore with a more realistic vision of actual pirate life at the time.

The result is it’s more like a western at sea – everyone’s dirty, this world is vicious and brutally violent, and in regular Starz tradition – there’s graphic sexuality. The show, which premieres January 25th, has already been renewed for a second season which began production in November.

Da Vinci’s Demons
David Goyer’s fantastical take on the life of Leonardo returns for its second season on Saturday, March 22nd. A good portion of this season is set in South America. The show has also been extended to ten episodes from eight for the first season, and three photos from the new season have gone online.

Though a specific date for the new series has yet to be set, Starz is aiming for a third quarter airing. Also, and though it’s not official yet, CEO Chris Albrecht says he “would be shocked if we didn’t do the second book” indicating a second season is almost a certainty.

Showrunner Ron Moore says that this adaptation Diana Gabaldon’s popular time-travel romantic novels will follow the one book equals one season model. The first season of the story, about a WW2 combat nurse thrust back in time to 18th century Scotland, is slated to run sixteen episodes.

The books feature a lot of sex, and the show won’t shy away from it. He tells EW: “There is a fair amount. We don’t really have to add very much; there’s a lot of sex in the book. There’s a fair amount of violence, too, but it’s not a battle show – we’re not getting into the big slo-mo spurts of blood.”

The series will also feature the pivotal and confronting scene involving a bit of violence between the two leads, but one that’s absolutely necessary to the story and its moving forward. The network also released a new photo which you can see below.

The White Princess
While the limited series “The White Queen” did well for Starz, it didn’t fare so well for the BBC with the latter pulling out of doing a sequel. The network is now re-teaming with scribe Emma Frost to go forward anyway with a limited series adaptation of Philippa Gregory’s follow-up work “The White Princess”.

Contemporary crime underworld drama “Power” is targeting a late Spring premiere.

Having pulled out of “Fortitude,” the network is moving forward on three new series – “Survivor’s Remorse,” “Flesh And Bone” and “WonderWorld” – with one of them slated to premiere in the third quarter of this year.

“Spartacus” creator Steven S. DeKnight’s “Incursion,” an alien incursion drama, has been put back into development as Starz focuses on its current shows for now. An adaptation of Italian drama “Romanzo Criminale” is another project DeKnight has in development with the network.