Australian actress Indiana Evans, who toplined Lifetime’s Blue Lagoon reboot, rounds out the regular cast of ABC’s drama pilot Secrets & Lies, which has a series penalty. It centers on Ben (Phillippe), a family man who becomes the prime suspect in the murder of a young boy when he finds the body. Evans will play Natalie, Ben and Christy’s (KaDee Strickland) teenage daughter. Set as recurring in the project are Charles Dutton as Kevin Williams, one of the neighbors; and Steven Brand (Magic City) and Kate Ashfield (Shaun Of The Dead) as fellow neighbors, married couple Joseph and Vanessa Turner. Dutton is with Greene & Assoc. and Lighthouse, Brand is with Global Artists Agency; Ashfield by Resolution, iManage and UK’s 42.
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Actor-comedian-musician Nick Thune is set as the young male lead opposite Natasha Lyonne in NBC‘s single-camera comedy pilot Old Soul. Co-created by Amy Poehler, Josh Bycel and Jonathan Fener and directed by David Wain, Old Soul centers on a reformed wild child, Nadia (Lyonne), who has a business caring for the elderly and feels she has more in common with her colorful old clients than she does with people her age. Thune, repped by 3 Arts and WME, will play Nadia’s roommate and friend who shares her offbeat sense of humor.
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EXCLUSIVE: In his first regular TV gig since The Office, Oscar Nuñez has joined the cast of newly picked-up USA Network single-camera comedy series Benched, from ABC Signature and the Mark Gordon Co. The courtroom comedy focuses on Nina (Eliza Coupe), a dedicated, career-driven corporate attorney who has a very public nervous breakdown after getting passed up for an expected promotion, and finds herself working as a public defender. Nuñez will play a public defender and colleague in Nina’s new office. Jay Harrington co-stars. Groundlings alum Nuñez, repped by Stone Manners Salners and Omnipop, is best known for playing Oscar Martinez on NBC’s The Office for the series’ entire nine-season run. He will next be seen in The 33.
USA Network has given a series order to comedy pilot Benched starring Eliza Coupe and Jay Harrington. The single-camera project hails from ABC Signature, marking the first series for ABC Studios’ boutique division. “Benched is one of those unique series that creates an immediate connection with the audience,” said USA Network president Chris McCumber. “The lead is played brilliantly by Eliza Coupe, who has undeniable chemistry with Jay Harrington’s character. Benched is a half-hour courtroom comedy that focuses on Nina (Coupe), a dedicated, career-driven corporate attorney who has a very public nervous breakdown after getting passed up for an expected promotion, and finds herself working as a public defender. Harrington stars as Nina’s new colleague, Phil, a tall, dark and handsome, if not a little scruffy, public defender and avid gambler. With Happy Endings alumna Coupe, Benched brings to USA a piece of the cult comedy series that USA came close to acquiring last year following its cancellation by ABC. Benched was written by SNL alumna Michaela Watkins and Damon Jones who executive produce with Party Down co-creator John Enbom and Mark Gordon Co.’s Mark Gordon and Andrea Shay. Benched is part of USA’s push in original comedy series. The first show to come out of that effort, Denis Leary’s Sirens, debuts March 6.