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Larry Charles And Mark Piznarski Get Pilot Directing Gigs

Nellie Andreeva

EXCLUSIVE: Borat and Bruno helmer Larry Charles has been tapped to direct Fox’s off-cycle comedy pilot Outnumbered. Meanwhile, Mark Piznarski, who directed the pilot for Gossip Girl, is set to direct another drama pilot based on an Alloy book series, ABC Family’s The Lying Game.

Outnumbered, an U.S. version of the British comedy series of the same name and revolves around one set of parents who are often overwhelmed by their three children. Barbara Wallace and Thomas R. Wolfe wrote the pilot, with 20th TV, Chernin Entertainment, and Hat Trick producing. Last pilot season, Charles directed 2 pilots, his Our Show at NBC and an Ant Hines project at CBS. He also has a project in the works at Epix.  The Lying Game follows two identical twin sisters separated at birth, one going through the foster system and one adopted by wealthy parents who suddenly goes missing. Charles Pratt, Jr. penned the script; Warner Horizon is producing. In addition to Gossip Girl, Piznarski also directed the pilots for UPN’s Veronica Mars and USA’s In Plain Sight. Charles and Piznarski are with WME.

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Medical Drama Pilot ‘HMS’ Still In Contention At The CW As Actors’ Options Expire

Nellie Andreeva

Medical drama presentation HMS is not flatlining just yet even though the options on its cast have expired. The options on the actors originally expired on June 30 but were extended by 7 days to give the network more time to make a decision on a possible midseason order. After another 24-hour extension granted by the actors on Wednesday night, the options finally expired yesterday. There is still no final word from the CW but I hear producer Warner Bros. TV is not giving up and is still hoping for a series order for the project, written/executive produced by Amy Holden Jones, co-executive produced by Hayden Panettiere and directed by Mark Piznarski. The actors are aware of the studio’s efforts and appear willing to return if there is a pickup soon. The CW, which has already picked up 2 new series from WBTV for next season, Nikita and Hellcats (Hellcats and HMS are co-productions with CBS Studios), has been taking its time making a final decision on HMS, the only pilot of this year’s crop remaining in contention. The network has no scripted backup series for midseason. However, for the first time in its history, it announced an all-original Monday-Friday lineup for fall, so it could presumably revert to a Top Model return on Friday and move one of veterans Smallville or Supernatural to plug a hole if a new series fails. HMS, about bright freshmen at Harvard Medical School, stars Megan Boone, Sarah Jones, Jai Rodriguez, Tasso Feldman, Steven Strait, … Read More »

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