If Batman isn’t going to show up in Fox’s upcoming fall series Gotham, and if the show largely deals with the origins of future Police Commissioner James Gordon, well then, shouldn’t the show more aptly be titled Gordon? Such weighty questions about how Gotham will expand on the Batman universe, not to mention the show’s potential resonance with fans, were at the heart of the series panel at Sunday’s TCAs. One issue that was raised was how Gotham would create tension, especially if it doesn’t plan to kill off such legendary villains such as The Riddler and The Penguin, which would mess with Batman mythology.
Gotham executive producer Bruno Heller sarcastically responded, “It’s a sad thing when you can’t bring tension by killing people. One of the show’s great advantages with this world is that people know where it’s going, there are people who are invested in the story.”
Ben McKenzie, who plays Gordon, equated Gotham to “Greek tragedy. The fate comes in the first act. The series is about the interesting journey and how the city falls into disrepair and total anarchy.” Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: Top TV director David Nutter has picked his 2013 pilot, signing on to direct and executive produce Bruno Heller’s CBS legal drama The Advocates from Warner Bros TV. It was one of two pilots the network picked up yesterday. Written/executive produced by The Mentalist creator Heller, Advocates centers on a female lawyer and a male ex-con who team up as “victim advocates,” going to the edge of the law to right wrongs and fight for the underdog. This marks a reunion for Nutter and Heller — Nutter also directed the pilot and second episode for Heller’s CBS/Warner Bros TV series Mentalist. Last season, WME-repped Nutter directed the pilot of the CW’s Arrow, one of the fall’s very few breakout hits. Of the 18 pilots he has directed, 17 have gone to series.
CBS has handed two more pilot orders to comedy Bad Teacher, from Hilary Winston, Gene Stupnitsky and Lee Eisenberg; and drama The Advocates, from The Mentalist creator Bruno Heller.
Bad Teacher, a single-camera comedy series adaptation of the hit 2011 movie, was written by Winston (Happy Endings, Community) and produced by the film’s writers-producers Stupnitsky and Eisenberg. The TV adaptation, about a sexy, foul-mouthed divorcee who becomes a teacher to find her next husband, is being produced by Sony Pictures TV, where Winston is under a deal, Mosaic and Stupnitsky and Eisenberg’s Quantity Entertainment. Winston, Stupnitsky and Eisenberg executive produce, with Winston set to showrun. Bad Teacher‘s pickup increases single-camera comedies’ advantage at CBS to 5 pilots vs. 3 multi-camera ones as the network appears determined to launch multiple single-camera comedies next season. This marks the second pilot for Winston, repped by UTA and Mosaic, who also has comedy Girls On Film at NBC. It has been a great season for ABC Studios-based Eisenberg and Stupnitsky. The duo, repped by WME and Mosaic, has three broadcast pilots, Bad Teacher and Pulling and Trophy Wife at ABC. They also have new series Hello Ladies at HBO.
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EXCLUSIVE: The Mentalist creator/executive producer Bruno Heller and the series’ executive producers Ashley Gable and Tom Szentgyorgyi have set up a new crime drama at CBS. Titled Murder Bitches, it centers on two young female detectives who are complete opposites, their relationship made more complicated by the fact that one of them suffered a stroke two years ago at age 27. They’re known on the force, in admiration and envy, as the Murder Bitches. Gable and Szentgyorgyi will write the script and executive produce with Heller. Mentalist producer Warner Bros TV, where Heller is under an overall deal, is producing. Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: CBS is expanding its relationship with The Mentalist creator Bruno Heller. The network has handed out a pilot production commitment to The Advocates, a legal drama written and executive produced by Heller. It centers on a female lawyer and a male ex-con who team up as “victim advocates,” going to the edge of the law to right wrongs and fight for the underdog. Warner Bros TV, the studio behind The Mentalist, also produces the new project.
The Mentalist was a breakout for CBS when it launched in 2008 and netted a record off-network sale for Warner Bros TV a year into its run. After airing in the Thursday 10 PM slot for its first four seasons, the series starring Simon Baker is moving to Sunday at 10 PM this fall. Before Mentalist, WME-repped Heller co-created and executive produced HBO’s Rome.