[03/12/13 - 11:34 PM] Development Update: Tuesday, March 12 By The Futon Critic Staff (TFC)
LOS ANGELES (thefutoncritic.com) -- The latest development news, culled from recent wire reports:
Looking to keep track of all the various projects in development? Click here to visit our signature "Devwatch" section. There visitors can view our listings by network, genre, studio and even development stage (ordered to pilot, cast-contingent, script, etc.). It's updated every day!
BACKSTROM (CBS/20th; W: Hart Hanson; D: TBA) - Kristoffer Polaha ("Made in Jersey") has been cast in the drama pilot, based on Leif G.W. Persson's literary hero Everett Backstrom (yet to be cast), a homicide detective/equal-opportunity misanthrope. He'll play Forensics Liaison Sgt. Peter Niedermayer ("yoga-slim, triathlon fit, the Perfect Evolved Man") in the project, which also stars Dennis Haysbert as John Almond. (Deadline.com)BAD JUDGE (NBC/Universal; T: Chad Kultgen; D: TBA) - Chad Kultgen's comedy - about a hard-living, sexually unapologetic woman who plays with the law and whose life on the edge is constantly in balance as she also happens to be a judge in the Criminal Court system - is nearing a pilot order at the Peacock. Said commitment, likely off-cycle, is reportedly contingent on landing former "Private Practice" star Kate Walsh for the title role. The project is based on an idea brought to Adam McKay and Will Ferrell's Gary Sanchez Productions by Anne Heche. (Deadline.com)BELIEVE (NBC/Warner Bros.; W: Alfonso Cuarón & Mark Friedman; D: Alfonso Cuarón) - Arian Moayed ("The Following") has been cast in the drama pilot, about Bo (Johnny Sequoyah), a girl in possession of great powers, and Tate (Jake McLaughlin), the man sprung from prison to protect her from those trying to hunt her down. He's set as Corey ("nerd handsome"), the right-hand man to assassin Moore (Sienna Guillory) who's after Bo. Delroy Lindo, Jamie Chung and Kyle MacLachlan also star. (Deadline.com)BLACKLIST, THE (NBC/Sony; W: Jon Bokenkamp; D: Joe Carnahan) - James Spader ("The Office") has been tapped for the male lead on the drama pilot, about Raymond "Red" Reddington, the world's most wanted criminal, who turns himself into the FBI and offers to give up everyone he has ever worked with in exchange for working with Elizabeth Keen (Megan Boone), a newly minted agent whom he seemingly has no connection. He'll play said role ("dignified; worldly; carries himself with a sense of purpose") in the project, which also stars Ryan Eggold. (Deadline.com)CANCER VIXEN (HBO, New!) - Oscar-winner Cate Blanchett (The Aviator) is attached to star and executive produce a potential small screen take on Marisa Acocella Marchetto's memoir about her life as "a cartoonist for magazines like The New Yorker and Glamour with a supercharged Manhattan lifestyle who is about to get married but must re-examine her life through wit and her animation when she is diagnosed with breast cancer." Maven Pictures partners Trudie Styler and Celine Rattray are behind the project, which is currently searching for a writer. (Deadline.com)CLIPSTERS/UNTITLED DAVID KOHAN/MAX MUTCHNICK PROJECT (TBS/Showtime, New!) - David Kohan and Max Mutchnick ("Partners") have set up a pair of projects via their overall deal with Warner Horizon Television. At Showtime, said duo is in negotiations for an untitled single-camera comedy about "a self-made first generation American billionaire, his family, and the staff that serves them." Then at TBS there's "Clipsters," an ensemble multi-camera workplace comedy "set in a hipster barbershop in the not-so-hip town of Worcester, MA just outside of Boston." They'll both write and executive produce via their KoMut Entertainment banner. (Deadline.com)GANG RELATED (FOX/20th; W: Chris Morgan; D: Allen Hughes) - Emmy-winner Tom Berenger ("Hatfields & McCoys") has signed onto the drama pilot, about Ryan Lopez (Ramon Rodriguez), a gang member sent in to infiltrate the San Francisco Police Department only to be caught between his crime family ties and an increasing sense of loyalty to his new brothers in blue. He's on board as Sam Chapel, the tough, dynamic police captain heading up the Task Force. Shantel VanSanten plays his daughter Jessica Shaw, who's sleeping with Ryan. Cliff Curtis, Inbar Lavi, Jay Hernandez, RZA and Sung Kang co-star. (Deadline.com)GIRLFRIEND IN A COMA (NBC/Universal; W: Liz Brixius; D: TBA) - Ann Cusack ("Hart of Dixie") has joined the cast of the comedy pilot, about Karen McNeil (Christina Ricci), a woman who unexpectedly awakens from a coma after 17 years to find she has a teenage daughter, Evie (Miranda Cosgrove). She'll play Karen's mother Connie ("a homemaker who never lost hope") who along with her husband Tom (Daniel Stern) have been raising Evie. (Deadline.com)HALT & CATCH FIRE (AMC; W: Chris Cantwell & Chris Rodgers; D: Juan José Campanella) - Kerry Bishe (Argo) is the latest addition to the pilot, a period drama set in the early 1980s about the personal computing boom as told through the eyes of a visionary (Lee Pace), an engineer (Scoot McNairy) and a prodigy (Mackenzie Davis) whose innovations directly confront the corporate behemoths of the time. She'll play Donna, the wife of McNairy's character and "the backbone of their family who also is an experienced computer engineer." Bishe and McNairy also played husband and wife in the aforementioned Oscar-winning film. (Deadline.com)HOLDING PATTERNS (NBC/Universal; W: Justin Spitzer; D: TBA) - Kate Lang Johnson ("Persons Unknown") has boarded the comedy pilot, about a group of friends whose lives completely change after they survive a plane crash on their way to a destination wedding. She'll play Sabrina Page ("pretty, put together, perfect"), Griffin's (Humphrey Ker) bride to be. Chyler Leigh and Robert Buckley also star. (Deadline.com)HUNDRED, THE (The CW/Warner Bros.; W: Jason Rothenberg; D: Bharat Nalluri) - Kelly Hu ("Arrow") and newcomer Christopher Larkin have landed roles on the pilot, a post-apocalyptic drama about 100 juvenile delinquents that are sent from the remnants of the multi-ringed space stations that are all that left of humanity to the surface of a wildly changed. She'll play the Ark's Chief Communications Officer Callie Cartwig, whom everyone calls "Cece." Larkin then is set as Monty ("the furthest thing from a delinquent"), one of the 100 banished from the Ark, the son of pharmaceutical growers. The ensemble also includes Bob Morley, Eli Goree, Eliza Taylor, Henry Ian Cusick, Isaiah Washington, Marie Avgeropoulos, Paige Turco and Thomas McDonell. (Deadline.com)INTELLIGENCE (CBS/ABC Studios/CTS; W: Michael Seitzman; D: David Semel) - John Billingsley ("True Blood") has scored a role on the drama pilot, about the U.S. Cyber Command and its key agent (Josh Holloway) who has a microchip implanted in his brain that allows him to access the entire electromagnetic spectrum. He'll play said microchip's inventor Dr. William Crispin, who is kidnapped by the Chinese and forced to recreate the procedure. P.J. Byrne plays his son Nelson, who assists CyberCom, while James Martinez, Marg Helgenberger, Meghan Ory and Michael Rady also star. (Deadline.com)MIDDLE AGE RAGE (ABC/ABC Studios; W: Cheryl Holliday; D: TBA) - Kellee Stewart ("My Boys") has joined the cast of the single-camera comedy pilot, about Carol Bobeck (Annie Mumolo), a wife/mother/Oprah fan who is fed up with feeling invisible and begins to speak up and demand the respect she feels she's earned. She'll play Beth Ann Cooper ("she can out-Oprah any of you bitches, so don't even try"), the leader of Carol's book club. Will Sasso also stars as Carol's husband Leonard with Melanie Leishman and Wyatt Oleff as their kids. (Deadline.com)PULLING (ABC/ABC Studios; W: Gene Stupnitsky & Lee Eisenberg; D: Jason Moore) - Kristen Schaal ("The Daily Show with Jon Stewart") has joined the cast of the comedy pilot, based on the U.K. series of the same name about Donna (June Diane Raphael), who decides to move in with her best friends Louise (Schaal) and (Jenny Slate) Karen after breaking off her engagement the day before her wedding. She'll play the aforementioned Louise, who really, really wants to get married and will do whatever it takes. Mandy Moore had previously been tapped for said role. Matt Oberg also stars as Donna's fiance. (Deadline.com)RECKLESS (ABC/ABC Studios; W: Chris Black; D: Martin Campbell) - Stephen Lang ("Terra Nova") will round out of the cast of the drama pilot, about a resourceful engineer (Patrick Fugit) who will do anything - legal or otherwise - to get back his doctor wife (Eloise Mumford) after she's trapped in East Myanmar during a military coup. He'll play her father Tom Harrison ("old school, an ex-jock"), who built his high-tech manufacturing business by taking responsibility for himself and not taking crap from anybody. Bess Armstrong plays his wife with Lou Taylor Pucci and Lyndon Smith as his other children. Ashton Holmes, Ernie Hudson, Naveen Andrews and Parminder Nagra also star. (Deadline.com)SECOND SIGHT (CBS/CTS; W: Gerald Cuesta & Michael Cuesta; D: Michael Cuesta) - Christina Cole ("Chaos") has booked a lead role on the drama pilot, based on the U.K. series about Ross Tanner (Jason Lee), a New Orleans detective suffering from Azoors Syndrome, an ocular eye disorder that saddles him with regular hallucinations but also opens up his subconscious in a way that aids his job. She'll play Gemma Roan ("bookishly attractive, but not someone to mess with"), one of his fellow detectives. Also cast are Derek Luke, Erik Jensen, Jill Scott, Kim Dickens and Madison Moellers. (Deadline.com)SELECTION, THE (The CW/Warner Bros.; W: Elizabeth Craft & Sarah Fain; D: Alex Graves) - Louise Lombard ("CSI: Crime Scene Investigation") has boarded the pilot, a drama set 300 years in the future about a poor woman, America Singer (Yael Grobglas), who is chosen by lottery to compete to become the next queen of Illea, a war-torn nation. She'll set as the current queen, Amberly Shreave ("beautiful, regal"), in the project, while the previously cast Michael Malarkey plays her son, Prince Maxon. Celia Massingham, Lucien Laviscount, Peta Sergeant, Sarah Winter and Sean Patrick Thomas also star. (Deadline.com)SIXTH GUN, THE (NBC/Universal; W: Ryan Condal; D: Jeffrey Reiner) - Michiel Huisman ("Nashville") has been tapped for the male lead on the drama pilot, based on the comic book about Becky Montcrief (Laura Ramsey), an innocent girl swept up in the struggle over six mythical guns in the Old West. He'll play Drake Sinclair ("a deadly gunslinger, incorrigible rogue, and handsome bastard"), who's on a quest for the legendary Sixth Gun, which can "see" events just before they happen. Also starring are Aldis Hodge, Chin Han, Graham McTavish, James LeGros, Pedro Pascal and W. Earl Brown. (Deadline.com)UNTITLED JH WYMAN PROJECT (FOX) (FOX/Warner Bros.; W: J.H. Wyman; D: Brad Anderson) - Karl Urban (Star Trek) has been tapped for the lead role on the pilot, a drama set in 2048 Los Angeles where robots are widely used in law enforcement and follows human detective John Kennex and his android partner Dorian (Michael Ealy). He'll play the aforementioned Kennex, who's still haunted by the loss of his wife three years ago and openly distrustful of robots in general. Lili Taylor, Mackenzie Crook, Michael Irby and Minka Kelly also star. (Deadline.com)UNTITLED PARHAM & ST CLAIR PROJECT (USA/UCP; W: Jessica St. Clair & Lennon Parham; D: Jeffrey Blitz) - Keegan Michael Key ("Key & Peele") and Brad Morris ("Cougar Town") have both landed roles on the pilot presentation, about "a single parent, Maggie (Lennon Parham), who asks her single and career-minded best friend Emma (Jessica St. Clair) to raise her new baby." The former will play Mark, "a cop in Emma and Maggie's small town who has some resentment toward Emma because she turned down his proposal when they were 23 and split the following day"; while the latter is set as Bruce, "Maggie's husband, who is caught having online sex during her baby shower." Zach Woods also stars in the comedy. (Deadline.com)UNTITLED RAND RAVICH PROJECT (NBC/20th; W: Rand Ravich; D: TBA) - Max Schneider ("How to Rock") has landed a role on the drama pilot, about Marcus Finley (Lance Gross), an idealistic Secret Service agent who finds himself at the epicenter of an international crisis on his first day after the President's son and his schoolmates are kidnapped. He'll play one of said kids, Ian Martinez ("a skinny jeaned stringy kid heartbreaker"), alongside Stevie Lynn Jones as Beth Ann Gibson and Halston Sage as Amber Fitch. Gillian Anderson and Rachael Taylor also star. (Deadline.com)AND IN OTHER NEWS... - "Veronica Mars" creator Rob Thomas and star Kristen Bell have launched a Kickstarter campaign to fund a feature film based on the cult TV series (EW.com); Jennifer Esposito is set to topline a spin-off of E!'s upcoming series "Playing with Fire" featuring the actress/gluten-free bakery owner (Deadline.com); Dylan O'Brien will guest star in flashback on "New Girl" as Jess' (Zooey Deschanel) prom date, "a gorgeous, romantic, guitar-playing 18-year-old who promises a memorable "first time" for Jess" (TVGuide.com); Marion Ross is bound for "The Middle" as the vice principal of Brick's (Atticus Shaffer) elementary school (TVLine.com); Idina Menzel's Shelby Corcoran will return to "Glee" later this season (@MsLeaMichele); and Benedict Cumberbatch has announced that he and co-star Martin Freeman have signed up to make a fourth season of "Sherlock"(RadioTimes.com).