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David Walton To Star In NBC’s ‘Bent’, Ken Marino Joins CBS’ ‘Home Game’

By | Friday March 4, 2011 @ 6:21pm PST
Nellie Andreeva

David Walton has been tapped as the male lead opposite Amanda Peet in NBC’s single-camera comedy pilot Bent. The project, from writer-exec producer Tad Quill, is a romantic comedy about a recently divorced Type A single mother (Peet) who tries hard not to fall for the sexy surfer dude contractor (Walton) she’s hired to re-do her kitchen. For Walton, the casting is in second position to softly-rated midseason comedy Perfect Couples which shares the same network, NBC, and studio, UMS, as Bent. He is the second Perfect Couples star to book a pilot in second position, following Kyle Bornheimer’s casting in Fox’s comedy The Council of Dads. This is the third consecutive comedy pilot at NBC for Walton, repped by Gersh and Crestview, after 2009′s 100 Questions and 2010′s Perfect Couples.

Party Down alum Ken Marino is set to co-star opposite Rob Riggle in CBS’ comedy pilot Home Game. Loosely based on the experiences of former NFL star Mark Schlereth, it tells the story of Mark (Rob Riggle) as he retires and returns home to his wife Lisa (Constance Zimmer) and daughters to embark on the next chapter of his life. Marino will play Mark’s brother. Marino co-stars on the Adult Swim series Childrens Hospital. He is currently in post-production on the Universals feature Wanderlust, which he co-wrote and executive produces with director David Wain. Marino, … Read More »

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NBC’s ‘Grimm’ And ‘Smash’ Add To Casts

By | Friday February 25, 2011 @ 5:01pm PST
Nellie Andreeva

 Russell Hornsby (Meet the Parents) and Bitsie Tulloch (Lonelygirl15) have landed lead roles on NBC’s pilot Grimm,  a dark but fantastical cop drama about a world in which characters inspired by Grimm’s Fairy Tales exist. It centers on Nick Burckhardt (David Giuntoli), a good-looking detective who starts to see humans as  beast/animals and discovered that he has a legacy – to protect “humans” from these beasts. Hornsby, repped by ICM and the Collective, will play Nick’s police partner. Tulloch, repped by WME and Luber-Roklin, will play Nick’s live-in girlfriend.

Raza Jaffrey (Eastern Promises) has been added to another NBC drama pilot, Smash, which follows a cross section of characters who come together to put on a Marilyn Monroe musical on Broadway led by the musical’s composer Tom (Christian Borle) and lyricist Julia (Debra Messing). Jaffrey, repped by APA, Industry & Untitled Artists, will play the live-in boyfriend of the musical’s star, Karen (Katharine McPhee), who works in the Mayor’s office.

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Katharine McPhee Joins NBC Pilot ‘Smash’

By | Sunday February 13, 2011 @ 4:30pm PST
Nellie Andreeva

American Idol alumna-turned-actress Katharine McPhee has landed a co-starring role in the NBC hourlong pilot Smash, which will feature the Idol Season 5 runner-up sing. The pilot, from DreamWorks TV and UMS, is based on an idea by Steven Spielberg and follows a cross section of characters who come together to put on a Marilyn Monroe musical on Broadway led by the musical’s composer Tom and lyricist Julia (Debra Messing). McPhee will play a beautiful struggling actress who goes to all lengths to book the role of Marilyn Monroe in the musical. Read More »

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Four Actors Join Broadcast/Cable Pilots

Nellie Andreeva

Megan Hilty has joined the cast of NBC’s drama pilot Smash, which was based on an idea by Steven Spielberg. The pilot, from DreamWorks TV and UMS, follows a cross section of characters who come together to put on a Marilyn Monroe musical on Broadway led by the musical’s composer Tom and lyricist Julia (Debra Messing). Hilty, repped by Gersh and One Entertainment, will play Tom’s go-to girl for acting out scenes in progress who is hugely disappointed when she is told she is too old to play Marilyn and has to be part of the chorus. Hilty’s Broadway credits include Wicked and 9 to 5, which was produced by new NBC chief Bob Greenblatt.

Anthony Carrigan (The Forgotten) is the first actor cast in the USA pilot Over/Under.The project, from FtvS/UCP, centers on Paul, a day trader with a massive gambling problem fired from his job who settles in Brooklyn where he finds an unlikely partner, expectant father with a failing business Marino (Carrigan), to start a high-end bookie business. Carrigan, repped by Gersh and the Collective is recurring on Parenthood.

Lost alum Nestor Carbonell is set to co-star opposite Sarah Michelle Gellar in the CBS drama pilot Ringer. The project centers on troubled young woman Bridget (Gellar) who, while on the run from the mob, hides out by inhabiting the life of her wealthy … Read More »

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It’s January Spec Script Bonanza At The Broadcast Networks

Nellie Andreeva

“Got any specs?” has become a popular refrain around Hollywood these days as pilot spec scripts are thriving in a very unusual network executive environment – new top programmers at two of the major broadcast networks, NBC and ABC. With Paul Lee joining ABC in the end of summer when buying season was already underway, and especially Bob Greenblatt, who is just now taking over NBC, studios and producers had been betting that there would be strong demand for specs as the execs may not be that attached to projects they didn’t develop and may look outside for fresh scripts that are ready to shoot.

The gamble seems to be paying off. All 4 pilots Greenblatt greenlighted today were spec (though one, Michael Patrick King’s Mann’s World, was originally bought by NBC’s old regime in early November.) That includes the Steven Spielberg-produced musical Smash, from DreamWorks TV and UMS, which Greenblatt originally developed at Showtime, David E. Kelley/WBTV’s Wonder Woman, which was shopped earlier this month, and a comedy from writer Jhoni Marchiko and 20th TV, which was taken out earlier this week.

Meanwhile, ABC has been in talks about a Cirque … Read More »

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NBC Orders Steven Spielberg Musical Pilot

Nellie Andreeva

New NBC entertainment chairman Robert Greenblatt is putting his stamp on the network’s development with a pilot order for a project he originally developed while at Showtime. NBC just greenlighted Smash, an ambitious one-hour musical about the mounting of a Broadway musical based on an idea by Steven Spielberg. The pilot, which will be produced by DreamWorks TV and Universal Media Studios, follows a cross section of characters who come together to put on a Broadway musical. TV writer/playwright Theresa Rebeck wrote the script and is executive producing with Spielberg, Darryl Frank and Justin Falvey of DreamWorks TV, Hairspray producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron  and Grammy and Tony-winning songwriters Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman who will pen original songs for the show. Negotiations are underway  for Michael Mayer (American Idiot) to direct. Smash joins an expansive slate at DreamWorks TV, which includes 4 series, including the upcoming The Borgias on Showtime and Terra Nova on Fox. Musicals have been a hot genre on the broadcast networks this development season with in light of the success of Fox’s Glee, but Smash is the first such project to reach a pilot stage.

Also greenlighted to pilot at NBC under Greenblatt is the comedy spec I Hate That I Love You, from Will & Grace alumna Jhoni Marchinko and 20th Century Fox TV. It is described as a twisty single-camera romantic comedy in which a straight couple … Read More »

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