[02/28/14 - 11:41 PM]
Development Update: Friday, February 28
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!

BATTLE CREEK (CBS/Sony; W: David Shore & Vince Gilligan; D: TBA) - Dean Winters, Aubrey Dollar and Edward Fordham, Jr. have all been cast in the drama pilot, about a detective and an FBI agent with very different world views who are teamed up to clean up the semi-mean streets of Battle Creek, Michigan. Winters will play the aforementioned detective, Russ Agnew, "a smart, tough, impatient, and pragmatic guy who gets results but whom no one wants to partner with because he prefers to cut through any nonsense, and this has earned him a reputation for being mean and gruff." Dollar then is set as Holly, "the office manager who shares mutual attraction with Russ"; with Fordham as Aaron Funkhauser, a "chubby detective." Janet McTeer and Kal Penn also star. (Deadline.com)

BLACK BOX (TNT, New!) - Feature writer Jason Fuchs (Ice Age: Continental Drift) has sold a potential drama to the cable channel which "centers on three strangers whose lives are forever changed after the accidental crash of a civilian airliner over the Long Island Sound when clues begin to emerge that the crash may not have been accidental." Said effort is set up at Steven Spielberg's Amblin Television with the company's Justin Falvey and Darryl Frank also serving as executive producers. (Deadline.com)

COERCION (NBC/Universal; W/D: George Nolfi) - Alexandra Peters (Sage Paints The Sky) is the latest addition to the drama pilot, about the O'Connor family and their son, Alex (Gavin Stenhouse), a decorated American war hero and CIA analyst who is a true patriot and loves his country and family. Unbeknownst to him, both of his parents (Hope Davis, TBA) and his sister (Margarita Levieva) are part of a dormant Russian sleeper cell that has just been reactivated. She's set as Sarah, "Alex's younger teenage sister who idolizes her older brother." Kenneth Choi also stars. (Deadline.com)

EXPOSED (ABC/Universal; W: Charles Randolph; D: TBA) - Brian F. O'Byrne ("Prime Suspect") has snagged a role on the drama pilot, about Anna Loach (yet to be cast), an investigative journalist who will stop at nothing to uncover the truth including making questionable alliances. He's on board as Quigg, "a very powerful, mysterious man who works for the Pentagon." Sandrine Holt, Pedro Pascal and Peter De Jersey also star. (Deadline.com)

HIEROGLYPH (FOX/20th; W: Travis Beacham; D: Miguel Sapochnik) - Max Brown ("Beauty and the Beast") has scored the lead role on the upcoming drama, about a notorious thief who is plucked from prison to serve the Pharoah (Reece Ritchie), navigating palace intrigue, seductive concubines, criminal underbellies and even a few divine sorcerers. He'll play said thief, Ambrose, in the project, which also stars Antony Bunsee, Caroline Ford, Condola Rashad, Kelsey Chow and John Rhys-Davies. (Deadline.com)

IRREVERSIBLE (ABC/Sony; W/D: Segahl Avin) - Jessica Knappett and Iris Bahr have both been cast in the David Schwimmer-led comedy pilot, about Andy (Schwimmer) and Sarah, "a somewhat eccentric, self-absorbed couple, and their trials and tribulations - most of which they bring upon themselves." The former will play the aforementioned Sarah, "a neurotic and feisty morning show host on a second-rate channel who dreams of becoming an important newswoman someday"; with the latter as Stacey, "Sarah's older, yet less mature sister." (Deadline.com)

MESSENGERS, THE (The CW/CTS; W: Eoghan O'Donnell; D: Stephen Williams) - British actor Jon Fletcher has joined the cast while Stephen Williams ("Zero Hour") is set to direct the drama pilot, about a group of unconnected strangers who seemingly die from an energy pulse, only to awaken to learn that they have been deemed responsible for preventing the impending Apocalypse. Fletcher will play Joshua Simmons Jr., "a charismatic and compelling pastor at a Texas mega-church." Black-D'Elia and Joel Courtney also star. (Deadline.com)

ODD COUPLE, THE (CBS/CTS; W: Joe Keenan & Matthew Perry; D: TBA) - Sarah Baker ("Go On") has scored a role on Matthew Perry's updated take on Neil Simon's classic play, about two mismatched roommates, the messy Oscar Madison (Perry) and the neat freak Felix Unger. She'll play Oscar's assistant Sam, "who spends most of her work day on the phone apologizing to assorted high-and-mighty people who have been offended by Oscar's latest rant." (Deadline.com)

SAINT FRANCIS (ABC/ABC Studios; W: Christopher Moynihan; D: TBA) - Henry Simmons ("Ravenswood") has joined the cast of the multi-camera comedy pilot, about Francis Quinlan (Michael Imperioli), a blue-collar, no-nonsense Long Island cop and family man who butts heads with the modern, liberal world when his 29-year-old sister gets pregnant out of wedlock. He'll play Peter, "Francis's business partner at the bar they own." Paget Brewster also stars. (Deadline.com)

UNTITLED KEVIN WILLIAMSON PROJECT (CBS/Warner Bros.; W: Kevin Williamson; D: Liz Friedlander) - Dylan McDermott ("Hostages") has been tapped for a lead role on the drama pilot, a psychological thriller centering around a pair of detectives who handle stalking incidents for the Threat Management Unit of the LAPD. He'll play one of them, Jack Larsen, "a recent transfer from the Threat Assessment Unit from New York; his healthy confidence and quick thinking has gotten him into trouble in the past - a past he hopes to leave behind." (Deadline.com)

AND IN OTHER NEWS... - Mason Cook has joined the cast of TNT's "Legends" where he'll succeed Lux Haney Jardine as Martin's (Sean Bean) son (Deadline.com); Ethan Suplee likewise has been added to TV Land's "Jennifer Falls" where he'll replace Joel David Moore as Jennifer's (Jaime Pressly) brother (Deadline.com); "Kirstie" creator Marco Pennette will bow out of the Kirstie Alley-led comedy should it return for a second season (Deadline.com); "Cougar Town" co-executive producers Chrissy Pietrosh and Jessica Goldstein have inked a two-year overall deal with Universal Television (Deadline.com); Riley Smith will recur on "True Blood" as "a sexy, rock 'n' roll vampire with a romantic side" (Deadline.com); Soleil Moon Frye is bound for "Mistresses" as "a potential celebrity client for Joss's (Jes Macallan) new party planning business" (EW.com); and Shohreh Aghdashloo will visit "Bones" as Arastoo's (Pej Vahdat) mother (THR.com).

  [october 2016]  


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