4TH UPDATE 6 PM: Also getting a pass is nearly frontrunner and Disney-friendly drama Big Thunder, based on the Disney Parks ride, and dramas Reckless and Doubt. Venice aka Westside is not going forward either. It started off well but was eventually overshadowed by fellow soap Betrayal. Also dead is multi-camera comedy Divorce, so ABC ended up passing on both of its multi-cam pilots, including King John, which will make it harder for such pitches next year. Comedy pilot Bad Management is not going for fall but is alive.
3RD UPDATE FRIDAY 5:30 PM: Welcome to Part 2 of ABC’s “pass” calls. Not going forward are comedies Spy, Middle Age Rage and Pulling. I hear Pulling was well liked but ABC brass felt it was too cable in sensibility. I hear ABC Studios plans to shop it elsewhere.
2ND UPDATE 7 PM: Dramedy Murder In Manhattan, about a mother-daughter sleuthing duo, also is not going forward. However, I hear that ABC Studios, which produced the pilot starring Bridget Regan and Annie Potts, is high on it and plans to shop it to cable. With its premise, Murder In Manhattan appears suitable for Lifetime, where ABC Studios successfully migrated another dramedy pilot that narrowly missed at the cut at ABC last year, Devious Maids. ABC is expected to continue with the pass calls tomorrow when it also will pick … Read More »
Flight Of The Conchords‘ Rhys Darby will co-star opposite Kelly Preston in ABC‘s comedy pilot Keep Calm And Karey On, from writer Andrea Abbate, 21 Laps/Adelstein and 20th Century Fox TV. It centers on Karey (Preston), the clean-nosed black sheep in a family of petty thieves, drug addicts, and narcissists. When her brother is sent to prison, she decides to raise his kids along with her adopted black son and give them the normal lives they deserve. Actor-comedian Darby, repped by CAA and Principato-Young, will play Karey’s husband. He is best known for playing Murray in HBO’s Conchords and most recently wrote, executive produced and starred in Short Poppies for TVNZ in his native New Zealand.
Rhys Wakefield has booked a series regular role on Bravo pilot Rita. He will play Rita’s (Anna Gunn) oldest son who has a close but complex relationship with his mother. Wakefield is repped by CAA and Anonymous Content.
Majandra Delfino has departed ABC’s comedy pilot Keep Calm And Karey On, from writer/executive producer Andrea Abbate, 20th Century Fox TV and 21 Laps/Adelstein. The project centers on Karey (Kelly Preston), the clean-nosed black sheep in a family of petty thieves, drug addicts, and narcissists. When her brother is sent to prison, she decides to raise his kids along with her adopted black son and give them the normal lives they deserve. Delfino was to play Kaerey’s sister Penny. Delfino is the third actress on an ABC comedy pilot to depart in the final stages of casting this season, joining Mercedes Masohn from Mixology and Mandy Moore from Pulling. In all three cases, the actresses were among the first hired in the projects, and, with casts coming together, the dynamic on the shows and some of the characters changed, leading to the exits. For instance, Delfino was cast long before Preston, who is older than the Karey character was originally envisioned and two decades older than Delfino.