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Primetime Pilot Panic: ABC & CBS Updates

Nellie Andreeva

With Fox done with its series orders and NBC pretty much done too, attention is focusing on ABC and CBS. ABC is expected to make its series pickups tomorrow. Here is the latest buzz on the two networks:

ABC

Assured to get series orders are early frontrunners GOOD CHRISTIAN BITCHES and CHARLIE’S ANGELS, along with the modern fairy tale ONCE UPON A TIME. Shonda Rhimes’ PR drama SCANDAL looks solid, with one or both of PAN AM and procedural IDENTITY also expected to get a green light. Thriller THE RIVER is rumored for an order, though it’s unclear if it will be a regular or limited-series one. Other possibilities on the drama side include the Hamptons-set REVENGE, which has been gathering momentum, and Marc Cherry’s HALLELUJAH, possibly for midseason with some retooling, while 1840s detective show POE has been fading.

On the comedy side, the TIM ALLEN pilot, APT. 23 and SUBURGATORY are considered a go, with SMOTHERED, WORK IT and BAD MOM as possibilities.

CBS

With CBS’ most guarded secret — who will replace Charlie Sheen — out, a lot of the intrigue surrounding CBS’ presentation next week is gone. Luckily, we still have series pickups and schedule to try to figure out. On the drama side, the rise of the J.J. Abrams/Jonah Nolan crime drama PERSON OF INTEREST remains in what is considered a frontrunner status. Ensemble cop drama ROOKIES and procedural THE REMEMBERER also appear strong. PI … Read More »

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Primetime Pilot Panic: Screenings Updates

Nellie Andreeva

The marathon pilot screenings at the broadcast networks are in full force. While they are rarely the deciding factor in the networks’ final series pickup decisions, they help solidify early standouts’ frontrunner positions and sometimes breathe life into pilots that might have been written off too soon. Here are some updates I heard today. (If some pilots, like ALCATRAZ and POE, are not mentioned in this update, they are in the one from yesterday, so check out that one too.)

The only element of uncertainly about GOOD CHRISTIAN BITCHES‘ future as a new ABC series next season seems to be what it will be called as it will definitely won’t be GCB. After a great screening today, the dramedy executive produced by Darren Star appears a sure thing, possibly as a companion to Desperate Housewives given that it’s been referred to as “Desperate Housewives in Dallas.” Probably the biggest surprise today was the mixed reaction to Shonda Rhimes’ drama SCANDAL, once considered a lock. But with Rhimes behind it, the project is still in the running. Also mixed was the reaction to family/dance drama GRACE, which once again got praise for its elaborate dance sequences and not so much for the narrative. Still a possibility to run behind Dancing With the Stars. Early comedy favorites, SUBURGATORY and SMOTHERED, continue to fly high after good screenings today and yesterday, respectively. Reaction to the Jenna Elfman-starring comedy BAD MOM was more mixed. … Read More »

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Tom Everett Scott, Esai Morales Among Latest Pilot Cast Additions

By | Friday March 18, 2011 @ 12:41pm PDT
Nellie Andreeva

Tom Everett Scott has landed the male lead opposite Jenna Elfman in ABC’s comedy pilot Bad Mom. The project, from writer-actress Sharon Horgan, centers on Julia Lacey (Elfman), a working mom struggling to juggle her job and raising her kids who is thrown a curveball when her mother tells her she’ll no longer be available for regular babysitting. Scott, repped by Paradigm and john Carrabino, will play Julia’s husband, who is working for a very demanding new boss and is often forced to work overtime.

Esai Morales has joined the cast of Ron Moore’s NBC drama pilot 17th Precinct. Set in a city ruled by magic, it revolves around the workings of the 17th, headed by Detective Chief Inspector Wilder Blanks (Eamonn Walker). Morales, repped Innovative and Brillstein, will play his second in command, Lt. Liam Butterfield.

Kevin Rahm and Chad Coleman (The Green Hornet) have been added to the Fox comedy pilot I Hate My Teenage Daughter. The multicamera project centers on two divorced mothers, Nikki (Katie Finneran) and Annie (Jaime Pressly), who must raise daughters who are exactly like the girls who picked on them in high school. Rahm, repped by Gersh and Forward, will play a potential love interest for Annie. Coleman, repped by TalentWorks and Vanguard, will play Nikki’s ex-husband. Also cast in the pilot in a guest-starring role is Rosa Blasi. She is with Bresler Kelly and … Read More »

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Frances Conroy To Co-Star In ABC Comedy Pilot ‘Bad Mom’

By | Tuesday March 15, 2011 @ 9:17am PDT
Nellie Andreeva

EXCLUSIVE: Six Feet Under alumna Frances Conroy is set to co-star opposite Jenna Elfman in ABC’s comedy pilot Bad Mom. The project, from ABC Studios and Kapital Entertainment, centers on Julia (Elfman), a mom whose two kids had been raised largely by her mom (Conroy). When her mom decides to get her life back, Julia has to do it alone. Bad Mom was created by British writer-actress-comedienne Sharon Horgan who is also co-starring in the pilot. On ABC, ICM-repped Conroy recently co-starred on drama series Happy Town and did a guest stint on Grey’s Anatomy.

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Ashley Judd & Jenna Elfman Now Set For Starring Roles In ABC Projects

Nellie Andreeva

Ashley Judd and Jenna Elfman who had been in negotiations to topline ABC’s action drama series Missing and comedy pilot Bad Mom, respectively, have now closed their deals for the projects. Missing, which eyes an early fall launch, centers on Becca Winstone (Judd), a devoted single mom who, after her 18-year-old son disappears in Italy, takes it upon herself to travel to Europe and track him down. It soon becomes clear that Winstone is a former CIA agent who will stop at nothing to bring her son home alive. Steve Shill is on board to direct multiple episodes of the series, including the opener. He will also executive produce with writer Poirier, Grant Scharbo and Gina Matthews. Production is scheduled to begin late next month in Rome, Vienna and Prague.

Bad Mom, from ABC Studios and Kapital Entertainment, centers on Julia (Elfman), a mom whose two kids had been raised largely by her mom. When her mom decides to get her life back, Julia has to do it alone. Bad Mom was created by British writer-actress-comedienne Sharon Horgan who is executive producing with Aaron Kaplan as well as co-starring. Jen Crittenden and Gabrielle Allan recently joined the pilot as executive producers/showrunners.

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Jen Crittenden & Gabrielle Allan Ink Overall Deal With ABC Studios, Join ‘Bad Mom’

By | Friday February 25, 2011 @ 9:25am PST
Nellie Andreeva

EXCLUSIVE: Each of them enjoyed a solid TV writing career before they partnered to write features. Now Jen Crittenden and Gabrielle Allan are returning to television as a team and, after being pursued by several studios, signed an exclusive overall deal with ABC Studios. The two-year pact, said to be well into the seven figures, starts in June. Outside of it, the duo is already working at ABC Studios – they just signed on to serve as executive producers/showrunners on the studio’s comedy pilot for ABC Bad Mom. Jenna Elfman is in talks to star in the project created by British writer-actress-comedienne Sharon Horgan. It centers on Julia, a single mom whose two kids had been raised largely by her mom. When her mom decides to get her life back, Julia has to do it alone. Crittenden and Allan will serve as executive producers on the pilot alongside Horgan and Aaron Kaplan.

Crittenden, who worked on Seinfeld, Everybody Loves Raymond and The New Adventure of Old Christine, teamed with former Scrubs writer-producer Allan to write a feature comedy script, Twenty Times a Lady, based on the book by Karyn Bosnak. It made the 2008 Black List of unproduced screenplays and was made into a film titled What’s Your Number?. Directed by Mark Mylod and starring Anna Faris, Chris Evans, Zachary Quinto and Joel McHale,  the movie opens in … Read More »

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Jenna Elfman Closing In On Starring Role In ABC Comedy Pilot ‘Bad Mom’

By | Wednesday February 23, 2011 @ 7:16am PST
Nellie Andreeva

Jenna Elfman is in negotiations for the lead in ABC’s single-camera comedy pilot Bad Mom. The project, from ABC Studios and Kapital Entertainment, centers on Julia (Elfman), a single mom whose two kids had been raised largely by her mom. When her mom decides to get her life back, Julia has to do it alone. Bad Mom was created by British writer-actress-comedienne Sharon Horgan who is executive producing with Aaron Kaplan.

Former Dharma & Greg star Elfman headlined CBS’ multicamera comedy Accidentally on Purpose last season. The actress, repped by CAA and Brillstein Entertainment, next co-stars in the feature Friends with Benefits.

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UPDATE: ABC Orders Two Family Comedy Pilots From Female Creators

Nellie Andreeva

UPDATED: Modern Family, meet Frickin’ Family. ABC has handed out a pilot order to My Frickin’ Family (previously Cowboys and Indians), a single-camera comedy from writer Erica Rivinoja. Additionally, the network has handed a pilot order to another single-camera family comedy, Bad Mom, from British writer-actress-comedienne Sharon Horgan and producer Aaron Kaplan.

Frickin’ Family, from ABC Studios and Brillstein Entertainment Partners, centers on two young parents whose lives change after they have a baby and the four grandparents with very different cultural backgrounds descend upon their lives to fight for the soul of their grandchild. Brillstein’s  Peter Traugott is executive producing. Rivinoja’s credits include Grounded for Life and South Park.

Bad Mom, from ABC Studios and Kapital Entertainment, centers on Julia, a single mom whose two kids had been raised largely by her mom. When her mom decides to get her life back, Julia has to do it alone. Horgan, co-creator/star of the BBC comedy series Pulling, is executive producing with Aaron Kaplan. She is also expected to play a co-lead on the show. This marks the fifth pilot order for Kaplan’s 19-month old Kapital Entertainment.

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