After making his mark with FX’s The Shield, Shawn Ryan is returning to cable with a new project, this time on the premium cable side. The Last Resort co-creator/executive producer has teamed with the freshman ABC drama’s co-executive producer Ron Fitzgerald for the HBO project titled Badlands. Fitzgerald is writing the script based on a story he is writing with Rolin Jones. The two previously collaborated on The Knifeman adaptation for MRC, which had David Cronenberg attached to produce and direct. Badlands, produced by Sony TV where Ryan is under an overall deal, explores the challenges and joys of love and family, as well as the struggles of living in the blue-collar mining town of Tar River, Wyo, that’s fighting for its life during this economic hardship. Ryan, repped by WME and the Shuman Co., is now wrapping Last Resort, which didn’t receive a back order from ABC, and is working with Eddie Murphy on their Beverly Hills Cop pilot at CBS.
CBS‘ Beverly Hills Cop reboot has gotten another step closer to a formal greenlight, with actor-comedian Brandon T. Jackson closing a deal for the lead. The films’ star Eddie Murphy and The Shield creator Shawn Ryan executive produce the Sony TV-produced project, which already has a pilot production commitment. Its pilot order is considered a formality once the script written by Ryan is delivered.
Last Resort, the large-scale drama from The Shield creator …
EXCLUSIVE: Top literary managers David Lonner and Larry Shuman are in serious talks to merge their companies, Oasis Media Group and The Shuman Co, respectively. In the scenario being discussed, Shuman and Lonner and his Oasis partner John Mass would join forces under the Oasis umbrella, tied to an effort to secure financing to expand the business. If it closes, the merger would bring under the same roof such feature and TV heavyweights as JJ Abrams, Brad Silberling, Jon Turteltaub, Shawn Ryan and David Shore. While 2-year-old Oasis has some TV clients — crossover A-lister Abrams and ER and Detroit 1-8-7 showrunner David Zabel — the company skews heavily towards features with a client list that includes Abrams, Silberling, Turteltaub, Peter Sollett, Michael Tolkin, Audrey Wells and Rob Minkoff. Meanwhile, Shuman, who has run his boutique company for 20 years, has a TV-heavy roster that includes House creator Shore, The Shield creator Ryan, Hunt Baldwin & John Coveny (co-creators of A&E’s upcoming series Longmire) and The Inside and Drive co-creator Tim Minear. Among Shuman’s handful of crossover clients is TV writer Carl Ellsworth, who segued into features with Red Eye and Disturbia. But overall, there is little overlap between Oasis and the Shuman Co’s areas of coverage, making a merger one where the pieces fit and would give the combined company heft in both film and television.
EXCLUSIVE: In the latest quick and big sale this development season, a drama from The Shield creator Shawn Ryan and feature writer Karl Gajdusek just landed at ABC with a hefty pilot production commitment. The project, titled The Last Resort, was pitched to the networks on Friday with the deal at ABC closing in principal last night, though final points are still being ironed out. Sony Pictures TV, where Ryan is based with an overall deal, is producing. The Last Resort is described as a big swing and massive in scope. It is a thriller set in the near future when the country is very fractured and revolves around the crew of a U.S. nuclear submarine who become hunted after ignoring an order to shoot nuclear missiles. They escape to a NATO listening outpost where they publicly declare themselves to be the world’s smallest nuclear nation with 24 nuclear warheads. The show will explore the society the fugitives create, the natives they meet and how what they’ve done affects the group and its unity. “It also allows us to examine what is going on in this country in micro form,” Ryan said. The project came together when Marney Hockman, Ryan’s executive at his MiddKid Prods company, brought in Gajdusek, whom she had been pursuing for a couple of years. Ryan and Gajdusek then came up with the idea for The Last Resort and decided to write it together. This is the second project from Ryan, repped by WME and the Shuman Co, to land a major deal this development season, his first at Sony TV. His collaboration with Criminal Minds creator Simon Mirren, a crime procedural, was recently bought by CBS with a put pilot commitment. Gajdusek, repped by Verve and Management 360, is an in-demand feature writer.
In their first development season at Sony Pictures TV, showrunners Shawn Ryan and Simon Mirren have teamed for a crime drama. The untitled project has sold to CBS, where Mirren recently served as co-showrunner on Criminal Minds, with a put pilot commitment. The drama, which Mirren will write, does evoke Criminal Minds as well as Showtime’s drama Dexter. It is a procedural about a genetic scientist who uses his newfound discovery that he has the psychopath gene to help the FBI catch killers. The show, which Ryan and Mirren are executive producing, is inspired by the true story of UC Irvine Professor James Fallon, a brilliant but genetically flawed scientist who, while helping to unlock the mysteries of the genome code, discovered that he was a psychopath linked to a long line of serial killers, including axe murderer Lizzie Borden. The deal extends the trend this development season for the big put pilot commitment to go to A-list producers, including Ryan, Jerry Bruckheimer (the Aron Eli Coleite mom-turned-NY State Trouper drama at CBS), Dick Wolf (the Michael Brandt-Derek Haas firefighter drama at NBC) and Greg Berlanti (Marc Guggenheim’s legal drama at Fox).
EXCLUSIVE: After more than a decade at Fox, Shawn Ryan is moving to Sony. The Shield creator has closed a three-year overall deal with Sony Pictures Television, which will start June 1 when his current pact with 20th Century Fox TV expires.
Ryan is coming off two back-to-back 3-year deals at 20th TV. The studio made him an offer for a new pact but Ryan also recently took meetings with other companies, and Sony and Warner Bros. TV expressed strong interest. In a three-way race over the past few days, I hear Sony TV came up with the most lucrative offer and landed the top showrunner. Ryan has a pre-existing relationship with Sony TV, which co-produced his signature series, The Shield, with Fox TV Studios. The move is part of Sony TV’s new strategy of moving away from signing non-writing executive producers and bringing in experienced showrunners. At the studio, Ryan joins a talent roster that includes such heavy hitters as Peter Tolan, Ron Moore and Jack Orman.
FX is taking a jump on fall season, rolling out its fall premieres in the two weeks before the broadcast networks unleash their new/returning series. Biker drama Sons of Anarchy returns for Season 3 on Tuesday, Sept. 7, …