NBC‘s first batch of new series pickups answered some questions, mainly taking care of five slots on NBC’s schedule next season. But they also raised a slew of new questions, mainly related to the pilots that have not been picked up yet. (There may not be more new series orders today BTW.) The biggest hole on NBC’s initial list of five new series — comedies Sean Saves The World, About A Boy and Family Guide and dramas Crisis and Believe — is what is believed to be NBC’s top pilot this season, drama Blacklist. It comes from Sony TV, which has four major pieces in play — Blacklist, hot comedy pilot Welcome To The Family, medical drama pilot Night Shift and bubble comedy Community, which is eying a pickup, possibly for 13 episodes. (technically, Sony’s comedy pilot Brenda Forever is also alive with a possibility for a reshoot.) Maneuvering and give-and-take is expected, and when the dust settles with Sony, NBC will probably know how many slots it has available for the remaining pilots.
One of the drama pilots that could be affected by the number of pickups at Sony is Uni TV’s I Am Victor starring John Stamos. Meanwhile, I hear a series pickup of the Universal TV-produced Ironside starring Blair Underwood is contingent on Ken Sanzel, who is under a deal at Uni TV, coming on board as showrunner. This is a pretty rare showrunner contingency at a series pickup stage. Universal TV is yet to get on the board with a new drama series, so one of those two could do that. Also curiously missing from the list of today’s pickups is Bill Lawrence/Warner Bros. TV’s comedy pilot Undateable, which stars Whitney star Chris D’Elia, so the fate of Whitney seems to be closely tied to that of Undateable as NBC already picked up another pilot form WBTV this morning, drama Believe. NBC just started notifying its bubble series of their fate, click here for that. UPDATE: Whitney has been cancelled.
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