UPDATE 9 PM: A Locke & Key limited series/miniseries was a stretch, and it seems that it is not happening. The show is now heading to the death pile. And yes, comedy Outnumbered is dead too. Surprisingly, multi-family comedy Little In Common starring Rob Corddry and Kevin Hart, which had stayed largely under the radar, is still very much in the mix.
UPDATE 8 PM: With two high-profile drama pilots, the Ethan Hawke starrer Exit Strategy and Locke & Key, conspicuously missing from the list of series pickups or rejects, speculation started swirling as to their fate. I hear both are still in play. Word is Exit Strategy may be held for retooling. I hear Fox brass felt the pilot had a lot of action and not too much character in it, so they had been looking to shift the focus on the show. As for Locke & Key, there is a rumor that Fox wants to make it into a big-event limited series/miniseries, but it is unclear if that would be financially feasible. Comedy Family Album is still TBD but is not getting an order at this time and may get pushed.
UPDATE 7:30 PM: Fox has picked up a second new comedy series, I Hate My Teenage Daughter, on the same night its star, Jaime Pressly, appears on Fox’s Raising Hope. Meanwhile, three other pilots, medical drama Weekends at Bellevue and comedies Council of Dads and Iceland, are dead.
UPDATE … Read More »
The marathon pilot screenings at the broadcast networks are in full force. While they are rarely the deciding factor in the networks’ final series pickup decisions, they help solidify early standouts’ frontrunner positions and sometimes breathe life into pilots that might have been written off too soon. Here are some updates I heard today. (If some pilots, like ALCATRAZ and POE, are not mentioned in this update, they are in the one from yesterday, so check out that one too.)
The only element of uncertainly about GOOD CHRISTIAN BITCHES‘ future as a new ABC series next season seems to be what it will be called as it will definitely won’t be GCB. After a great screening today, the dramedy executive produced by Darren Star appears a sure thing, possibly as a companion to Desperate Housewives given that it’s been referred to as “Desperate Housewives in Dallas.” Probably the biggest surprise today was the mixed reaction to Shonda Rhimes’ drama SCANDAL, once considered a lock. But with Rhimes behind it, the project is still in the running. Also mixed was the reaction to family/dance drama GRACE, which once again got praise for its elaborate dance sequences and not so much for the narrative. Still a possibility to run behind Dancing With the Stars. Early comedy favorites, SUBURGATORY and SMOTHERED, continue to fly high after good screenings today and yesterday, respectively. Reaction to the Jenna Elfman-starring comedy BAD MOM was more mixed. … Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: In his first regular series role in almost a decade, Tom Sizemore is set to co-star opposite Ethan Hawke in Fox’s drama pilot Exit Strategy, a high-octane procedural about a team of five experts associated with the CIA led by Eric Shaw (Hawke) who are deployed when a CIA operation goes bad to extract the ones involved before it’s too late. Sizemore will play Jonathan Marks, a veteran CIA spymaster and mentor to Shaw who is the Exit Strategy unit’s LOGPAC (support officer). A man who has been everywhere and done everything, Marks is the man who can get you anything, anywhere, anytime. Sizemore, repped by Global Artists Agency, last did a pilot in 2002, the drama Robbery Homicide Division, which was picked up to series and had a brief run on CBS. He has since done arcs on CBS’ Dr. Vegas and Starz’s Crash.
Eric Winter, who has been recurring on CBS’ The Mentalist this season, has been cast in Fox’s drama pilot Weekends at Bellevue. Based on Julie Holland’s memoir, Bellevue centers on Ellie (Lauren Ambrose), the psychiatrist in charge of the weekend shift of Bellevue Hospital’s psychiatric unit. Winter, repped by ICM and Brillstein, will play a scruffy and sexy doctor attending in the ER.
ABC’s comedy comedy pilot has found the leads for its comedy pilot My Freakin’ Family: Ellen Woglom and Ravi Patel. Christopher Rich also has been cast in the project, which centers on two young parents, Anna (Woglom) and Raj (Patel), whose lives change after they have a baby and the four grandparents with very different cultural backgrounds descend upon their lives to fight for the soul of their grandchild. Rich will play Anna’s dad, an affable suburban cowboy. Harish Patel was previously cast as Raj’s dad. Ravi Patel, repped by TalentWorks and Seven Summits, played the lead in Fox’s comedy pilot Nevermind Nirvana last year.
Janet McTeer is set to co-star in the Fox drama pilot Weekends at Bellevue. Based on Dr. Julie Holland’s memoir, Bellevue centers on a psychiatrist in charge of the weekend shift of Bellevue Hospital psychiatric unit. McTeer, nominated for an Oscar in 2000 for Tumbleweeds, will play Diane, the head of psychiatry at Bellevue.
Zoe Lister-Jones has been cast in NBC’s untitled Whitney Cummings comedy pilot. The project, written by Cummings, centers on young couple Whitney (Cummings) and Alex (Chris D’Elia) who tackle the ups and downs of a committed relationship torn between their friends Lily (Lister-Jones) and Neal who think … Read More »
Lost director-producer Jack Bender has signed on to direct the Fox medical drama pilot Weekends at Bellevue. The project, which Fox got in turnaround, hails from the same studio, UMS, that produces Fox’s veteran medical drama House. Based on Dr. Julie Holland’s memoir, Bellevue, from former ER writer-producer Lisa Zwerling and BermanBraun, centers on a psychiatrist in charge of the weekend shift of Bellevue Hospital psychiatric unit. The project reunites Bender with BermanBraun. In the summer, he directed the company’s 90-minute SyFy pilot Alphas, which has been picked up to series. Bender spent the last six years as an executive producer and director on Lost, wrapping his stint by helming the series’ finale.
Liz Friedlander will make her pilot directing debut with the CW’s Secret Circle for Warner Bros. TV and Alloy Entertainment. Written by Andrew Miller and Kevin Williamson based on the book series from The Vampire Diaries author L.J. Smith, Secret Circle tells the story of a young woman who moves to a new town and discovers that not only is she a witch and part of a secret coven, but she’s also the key that will unlock a centuries-old battle of good versus evil. Gersh-repped Friedlander, who started off as a music video and commercial director, has helmed multiple episodes of several CW series, including The Vampire Diaries, One … Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: Fox has handed a late pilot order to Weekends at Bellevue, a medical drama from former ER writer-producer Lisa Zwerling and BermanBraun. The project, centered on a psychiatrist in charge of the weekend shift of Bellevue Hospital psychiatric unit, was originally set up at NBC and UMS earlier this season. After the network recently passed on the script, it was taken to Fox. UMS, which produces Fox’s hit drama House, will stay on as the studio. Weekends at Bellevue is based on Dr. Julie Holland’s memoir about her nine-year stint as the weekend physician in charge of the psychiatric emergency room at the oldest public hospital in the United States whose name has become synonymous with insanity. Zwerling, Gail Berman, Lloyd Braun and Gene Stein are executive producing.