EXCLUSIVE: Sherri Cooper and Jennifer Levin, who wrote and are executive producing the CW’s Beauty And The Beast reboot, have signed an overall deal with CBS TV Studios, the studio behind the freshman series. The two-year pact will include Cooper and Levin’s services as executive producers/co-showrunners on Beauty And The Beast, which they run with Kelly Souders and Brian Peterson.
A second Beauty and the Beast project is entering the fray this development season, this time based on the cult 1980s series starring Linda Hamilton and Ron Perlman, our sister site TVLine reports. CBS has the rights to the original series, and a Beauty and the Beast reboot was the first new project new CW president Mark Pedowitz and CBS TV Studios president David Stapf discussed after Pedowitz took the reins of the network in late spring. Described as modern day romantic love story with a procedural twist, the new Beauty and the Beast will be written by Jennifer Levin (Without A Trace) and Sherri Cooper (Brothers and Sisters), who will executive produce with the creator of the original series Ron Koslow, Paul Junger Witt and Tony Thomas’ Witt/Thomas Prods., which co-produced the 1980s series, and Bill Haber. The other Beauty and the Beast drama project in development for next season, which is set at ABC, is a re-imagening of the the public domain French classic fairy tale.
EXCLUSIVE: Writer/director Richard Shepard has teamed with producers Sean Furst and Bryan Furst to launch television production shingle Olé. The new company has already set up two series projects, including Corkscrew at Showtime, which Shepard is writing and directing. Both projects are produced by CBS TV Studios which will handle Olé’s development under Shepard’s overall deal there.
Shepard’s spec Corkscrew, which he describes as “a black comic look at marriage,” was one of the firsts script that new Showtime entertainment president David Nevins read after he joined the network 2 months ago. It represents Emmy-winning director Shepard’s first foray into TV writing. (On the feature side, he has written and directed such features as The Matadors and The Hunting Party). In fact, Corkscrew was first envisioned as a feature before Shepard converted it into a TV series project with the scripts for the first 2 episodes written on spec.
Olé ‘s other project is an untitled medical drama from writers Jennifer Levin and Sherri Cooper, which recently sold to CBS. Shepard, Sean and Bryan Furst are exec producing with Cooper and Levin.
Shepard, who won an Emmy for directing the pilot of Ugly Betty, has also helmed the pilots for CBS’ Criminal Minds, and its upcoming spinoff Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior. Shepard said he had been looking for awhile to parlay his experience directing pilots …
Brothers & Sisters writer-producers Sherri Cooper and Jennifer Levin left the long-running ABC drama to focus on development. And this summer, they inked a two-script deal with CBS TV Studios. In a development season in which the medical genre has been hot, Cooper and Levin are now 2-for-2. They’ve sold two medical dramas: one to CBS with director-producer Richard Shepard attached, and another to the CW with Carol Mendelsohn on board as executive producer.