CHICAGO (thefutoncritic.com) -- The latest telefilm news, culled from recent wire reports:
BROOKLYN (HBO, New!) - HBO has given a greenlight to a new telefilm about the interactions among the diverse group of visitors and workers at a struggling Brooklyn diner during a single day. Jim McKay ("Our Song") will write and direct the project, which was inspired by personal experiences submitted by viewers via e-mail. Cast in the ensemble drama are Reg E. Cathey ("Oz"), Iris Little-Thomas ("Boycott"), Bridget Barkan, Ron Butler, Jordan Gelber ("Riding in Cars With Boys"), Billoah Greene ("Levity"), Stephen Henderson, muMs ("Oz") and Sydnee Stewart. The telefilm, which has begun production for a 2004 air date, is executive produced by Nelson George, Sean Daniel and Caldecot Chubb with Effie T. Brown producing.
THE GOODBYE GIRL (TNT) - Richard Benjamin ("Laughter on the 23rd Floor") is set to direct Neil Simon's remake of his 1977 Oscar winning film. Patricia Heaton and Jeff Daniels will take over for the Marsha Mason and Richard Dreyfuss roles in the new version which will still concern a woebegone divorcee (Heaton) sharing her New York apartment with a would-be actor (Daniels). Production is set to start on June 2 for an early 2004 air date.
HELEN OF TROY (USA) - The cable channel's epic mini-series averaged 4.1 million viewers for its four-hour run (4.3 million on April 20 and 3.9 million on April 21). That's on par with the network's recent telefilm "Rudy!" (4.3 million on March 30) but a far cry from its last mini-series: 2001's "Attila," which nabbed 7 million viewers on average for its two parts. Among adults 18-49, "Troy" averaged 2.1 million viewers.
WUTHERING HEIGHTS (MTV) - Erika Christensen ("Traffic"), Mike Vogel and Katherine Heigl ("Roswell") are in final negotiations to star in MTV's musical adaptation of Emily Bronte's classic novel. Written by Max Enscoe and Annie deYoung ("Prince William"), the telefilm centers on the saucy and selfish Catherine Earnshaw (Christensen), who falls in love with Heathcliff (Vogel), an orphan adopted by the Earnshaws, but marries her neighbor Edgar Linton instead. Meanwhile, Linton's sister Isabella (Heigl) marries Heathcliff but escapes after his ill temper makes her life miserable. Suri Krishnamma ("New Year's Day") will direct the project with Jim Steinman and Paul Mason producing.
Sources: Variety, The Hollywood Reporter, Reuters