[03/04/04 - 12:00 AM]
Development Update: March 4
By The Futon Critic Staff (TFC)

CHICAGO (thefutoncritic.com) -- The latest development news, culled from recent wire reports:

Looking to keep track of all the various pilots and other projects in development? Be sure to check out our detailed production chart listings by clicking here.

BEHIND THE COUNTER WITH MUSSOLINI (FX, New!) - Brothers Joe and Anthony Russo ("Lucky") are developing a single-camera comedy series which tells the stories of the residents of a diverse area in the Bronx through the eyes of an Italian family that owns the local deli. The project is based on the award-winning one-man play of the same name by Marco Greco. The Russo brothers will write the script with Greco and Nick Santora ("The Guardian") and executive produce along with Joe Freis and Joe Rappa of Pelagius Films and Santora.

BLOW OUT (Bravo) - American Express, LensCrafters and Revlon have been announced as the primary sponsors of the upcoming reality series, which follows celebrity hairstylist Jonathan Antin as he works to open the Jonathan Salon: Beverly Hills. The trio will partner with "Blow Out's" producers MAGNA Global Entertainment and Reveille to finance the project, a la NBC's "The Restaurant." In return the series will "naturally and organically introduce sponsors into the television show through the beauty salon environment, the clientele and surrounding storylines," according to a company press release. "Blow Out," which has a six episode order, is set to bow in June on the cable channel.

DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES (ABC) - Andrea Bowen ("Strong Medicine") and Kyle Searles ("Malcolm in the Middle") are the latest to join the bulging cast of the drama pilot, a darkly humorous look at the secretive lives of four women (Eva Longoria, Teri Hatcher, Felicity Huffman and Marcia Cross) living in an Anytown, U.S.A., cul-de-sac. Bowen is set in the role of Jenna Meyer while Searles will star as John in the Touchstone Television project, which also stars Sheryl Lee, Mark Moses, Cody Kasch, Jamie Denton and Ricardo Chavira.

FEAR FACTOR (NBC) - Stations in the Acme, Clear Channel, Meredith and Viacom station groups as well as the Fox owned-and-operated stations have signed on for the series' off-network syndicated run, set to roll out this fall. The clearances mean "Fear" is a go on local stations covering 70% of the country. The pacts aren't exclusive however, as NBC Enterprises previously sold the cable rights to FX last month, in a four-year deal valued at $30 million (read the story). To differentiate the runs, FX and the local stations won't air the same episodes each day. FX nevertheless will get a head start airing the series, as its run begins this summer while the local stations will wait until the fall. NBCE's deal with the stations is straight barter as seven minutes of ad time will go to the station with the other seven going to the distributor.

THE FURST FAMILY (A.K.A. THE FIRST FAMILY) (ABC) - Marissa Jaret Winokur ("Beautiful Girl") has joined the cast of the Alphabet's take on the British series "The Royle Family," a topical comedy from the point of view of a blue-collar family. She'll play the 23-year-old daughter of said family who causes a stir as she gets ready to be married. Winokur's involvement is due to a talent holding deal the actress signed with ABC and Touchstone Television last season (read the story). Touchstone and Granada Television are behind the project, which comes from writer/producer Alan Zweibel ("Curb Your Enthusiasm").

HUFF (Showtime) - Scott Winant has been named the executive producer/showrunner of the series, which stars Hank Azaria as a psychiatrist suffering through a midlife crisis. Winant helmed the project's pilot episode, which has since been given a 13-episode order. He'll executive produce alongside Mike Newell, Cam Jones and creator Bob Lowry.

THE LONG WAY AROUND (Bravo, New!) - The cable channel has reportedly given a six-episode order for a new reality series which will track actor Ewan McGregor ("Big Fish") as he rides his motorcycle around the world with his best friend, actor Charley Boorman, son of director John Boorman. McGregor is an avid racer, owning several motorcycles and is also involved with a racing team in England. Bravo is expected to unveil the project, which is currently shooting McGregor's training for the trek, as part of its upfront presentation for the advertising community later this year. Production is expected to be completed in time for a fourth-quarter 2004 or first-quarter 2005 air date.

UNTITLED JASON HORWITCH PROJECT (NBC) - Kelli Williams ("The Practice") has joined the cast of the untitled medical mystery drama pilot, which also stars Neal McDonough, Christopher Gorham and Anna Belknap. Jason Horwitch ("The Pentagon Papers") is behind the project, a co-production of NBC Studios-based Landscape Entertainment and Paramount Network Television.

UNTITLED SECTION EIGHT PROJECT (HBO, New!) - The pay channel has committed to five half-hour episodes of a new improv comedy from George Clooney and Steven Soderbergh's production company, Section Eight ("K Street"). The project revolves around a trio of struggling actors - Krista Allen ("Anger Management"), Bryan Greenberg ("The Perfect Score") and Jennifer Hall ("Confessions of a Dangerous Mind") - trying to make it big in Hollywood. Clooney and Soderbergh have been actively working with HBO to develop a new project since the mutual ending of "K Street" last year (read the story). Clooney himself is on board to direct all five episodes, production of which is underway in Los Angeles.

Sources: Variety, The Hollywood Reporter, Reuters

  [march 2004]  


[10/25/16 - 02:18 PM]
VH1's Highly Anticipated "Martha & Snoop's Potluck Dinner Party" to Premiere Monday, November 7 at 10PM ET/PT
Guests include Seth Rogen, Wiz Khalifa, Rick Ross, Jamie Chung, 2 Chainz, Naya Rivera, Ashley Graham, Jason Derulo, 50 Cent, Fat Joe, Mike Epps, Kathy Griffin, Kelis, Ashlee Simpson & Evan Ross, Keke Palmer, Robin Thicke and Bella Thorne.

[10/25/16 - 01:16 PM]
Comedy Central Sets Election Night Programming
Highlights include a live one-hour telecast of "The Daily Show with Trevor Noah" airing at 11:00/10:00c.

[10/25/16 - 01:00 PM]
CMT's Annual "Artists of the Year" Celebration Continues to Rise Attracting Nearly 2 Million Viewers with Ratings Soaring More Than 20%
CMT spins the numbers for Thursday, October 20.

[10/25/16 - 12:38 PM]
Showtime(R) Accelerates World Television Premiere Date for "Zero Days" to Saturday, Nov. 5 at 9PM ET/PT
As the subject continues to make headlines across the U.S and world, this film becomes more relevant and powerful documentary as viewers are being confronted by these issues in their daily lives.

[10/25/16 - 12:01 PM]
"The 2016 SNL Election Special" Revisits Unpredictable Presidential Campaign
The hour-long telecast is set to air Monday, November 7 at 10:00/9:00c.

[10/25/16 - 11:26 AM]
Discovery Cruises Into SEMA to Find the Next Motor Monday Star
Discovery Casting will be scouting for new talent at the SEMA Auto show taking place November 1-4 at the Las Vegas Convention Center.

[10/25/16 - 10:59 AM]
FYI Orders Season Five of "Married at First Sight" in Chicago
Production has already begun in Chicago, Illinois with the new season slated to air in 2017.

[10/25/16 - 10:14 AM]
TV One Joins Lexus for a Special Presentation of "Lexus Verses and Flow" Airing Wednesday, October 26 at 11 PM ET/8 PM PT
Dondré T. Whitfield hosts the special evening that blends music performances by chart-topping artists with spoken word presentations from top slam poetry artists.

[10/25/16 - 10:11 AM]
Video: Key Art and Trailer for Season Two of Original Scripted Drama, "The Art of More" Released
Returning for the new season are stars Dennis Quaid, who also serves as executive producer, Kate Bosworth, Cary Elwes and Christian Cooke.

[10/25/16 - 10:01 AM]
History's New Military Drama Series "Six" Premieres Wednesday, January 18 at 10PM ET/PT
The eight episode first season follows members of Navy SEAL Team Six, modern American warriors, whose covert mission to eliminate a Taliban leader in Afghanistan goes awry when they uncover a U.S. citizen working with terrorists.

[10/25/16 - 09:01 AM]
International Icon Lady Gaga to Perform at the "2016 American Music Awards(R)"
Lady Gaga is a nine-time American Music Award nominee and took home the win in 2010 for Favorite Female Artist - Pop/Rock.

[10/25/16 - 08:48 AM]
Bravo Media Goes Behind the Scenes of the Ultra Exclusive "Timber Creek Lodge" Premiering Monday, December 5 at 10PM ET/PT
It's all work and a lot of play at "Timber Creek Lodge," where viewers will go behind the doors of a five-star mountain retreat to see the on-and-off duty shenanigans of the resort staff working around the clock to provide the ultimate vacation experience.

[10/25/16 - 08:46 AM]
Monday's Broadcast Ratings: NBC Tops Charts with "The Voice"
The Peacock stakes claim to the most-watched network among total viewers and adults 18-49.

[10/25/16 - 08:36 AM]
Jennifer Nettles to Host "CMA Country Christmas," Airing Monday, November 28, on ABC
Nettles, who is hosting the special for the seventh time this year, will release her first holiday album, "To Celebrate Christmas," October 28, on Big Machine Records.

[10/25/16 - 08:00 AM]
Video: Oy with the Poodles Already! Netflix's "Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life" Trailer Is Here!
"Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life" launches Friday, November 25, everywhere that Netflix is available.