Nellie Andreeva

EXCLUSIVE: Mistresses, the drama soap from The Nine co-creator KJ Steinberg, which had been on the short list at ABC for a pilot order for fall, is getting a straight-to-series pickup for summer instead. The network has greenlighted the project to series targeted for summer 2013. Based on the British format, Mistresses, whose setup evokes ABC’s departing Desperate Housewives, is described as a provocative thrilling drama that finds four women with scandalous romantic lives, caught in storms of excitement and self-discovery, secrecy and betrayal, and at the mercy of the complex relationships they’ve created. Steinberg wrote the adaptation, which is being executive produced by Bob Sertner and Ecosse Films’ Douglas Rae for ABC Studios. The original series, which ran for 3 seasons on BBC One, is carried in the U.S. by BBC America. Produced by Ecosse, it was created by Rachel Anthony, S.J. Clarkson and Lowri Glain and starred Sarah Parish, Sharon Small, Orla Brady and Shelley Conn.

This marks the second pickup this season for WME-repped Steinberg, who also wrote ABC’s period drama pilot Gilded Lillys and is executive producing it with Shonda Rhimes. ABC has been the most aggressive among the broadcast networks in developing scripted series for summer. Its most recent effort, Missing, originally eyed for last summer, was shifted to a regular season launch after landing Ashley Judd for the lead. Previous ABC summer scripted series developed at the network include Scoundrels and The Gates.

TV Editor Nellie Andreeva - tip her here.

For all of Deadline's headlines, follow us @Deadline on Twitter.