or


[01/16/06 - 12:00 AM]
Development Update: January 13-16
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 newly branded "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!

DUETS (FOX) - Simon Cowell and his production company, Syco, have inked a massive five-year, seven-to-eight figure overall production and development deal with Fox Television Studios. The pact calls for Cowell to develop programming exclusively for the studio, including the recently announced "Duets" for FOX. Said project received a cast-contingent series order earlier this month (read the story).

HALLMARK CHANNEL ORIGINAL MOVIES (Hallmark, New!) - The cable channel has provided several updates to its 2006 original programming schedule. In addition to the previously announced "Mystery Woman: At First Sight" (Saturday, January 21 a 9:00/8:00c), "Hidden Places" (Saturday, January 28 at 9:00/8:00c) and "Falling in Love with the Girl Next Door" (Saturday, February 4 at 9:00/8:00c), Hallmark has slated both "McBride: Fallen Idol" and the Doris Roberts/Judy Reyes-led original "Our House" for March with "Blackbeard" (featuring Angus MacFadyen) in June and "Desolation Canyon" (starring Stacy Keach and Patrick Duffy) in July. Meanwhile, the network is developing a mini-series remake of the 1940 Oscar-winning film "The Thief of Bagdad" from Robert Halmi Sr. as well as the Jerry Jenkins-penned ("Left Behind") original "Though None Go With Me" starring Cheryl Ladd and a fourth installment of the "Love's" movie franchise entitled "Love's Abiding Joy."

HUFF (Showtime) - The pay channel has confirmed the show's second season will bow on Sunday, April 1. There the series will take over the 10:00/9:00c hour from "The L Word," which wraps its third season the previous week.

LIPSTICK JUNGLE (NBC) - The Peacock is moving forward with its small-screen take on Candace Bushnell's book of the same name, about the lives of three powerful New York business women who would do anything to get ahead and stay on top. The NBC Universal Television-based project, which Bushnell co-wrote along with Robin Schiff, has been given the green light to produce a pilot. The news marks the first pilot order for NBC Entertainment's New York development unit. Bushnell and Schiff then will also serve as executive producers.

RUFFIAN (ABC/ESPN, New!) - ABC and ESPN are set to team for a new original movie about the true story of the racehorse hailed as the greatest thoroughbred of all time. Said project will premiere on ABC in June 2007 as part of the network's Belmont Stakes coverage, after which it will encore on the various ESPN networks - as well as air on the Internet via broadband on ESPN360, in high definition on ESPNHD, be available via video-on-demand and released on DVD - all within a four-day period. ESPN Original Entertainment will produce the project, which is set to begin principal photography in late February. No casting or producing details however were given.

THE RUNNER (ABC) - Former ABC chief Lloyd Braun, who currently heads the Yahoo! Media Group, is looking to revive the previously in the works concept as an Internet event for the web portal. Said project would follow the original concept, in which a designated operative ("the runner") has to elude capture by average folks as he or she travels across the country. Ben Affleck, Sean Bailey and Matt Damon, the trio behind the original ABC effort (along with Live Planet CEO Larry Tanz), are on board to executive produce the project, as is reality guru Mark Burnett. Originally developed in 2000 (and given a 13-episode order in 2001), the project was shelved due to production difficulties heightened by the aftermath of 9/11. As for specifics, it's believed the project will feature various clips (not half-hour or hour episodes as was the case for the ABC version) that will be uploaded daily to the site, all of which offer clues to the runner's whereabouts as well as feature an overarching story as to why this person is on the run. Additional clues will then also be given on the site and its various affiliates (think "Lost's" various web sites). One grand prize winner then is expected to receive a multi-million dollar prize with additional smaller prizes being offered throughout the event. Braun reportedly could have the one-to-two month long project ready by the summer, however Yahoo! CEO Terry Semel has yet to give "The Runner" the firm green light. Additional details, including the possibility of a TV special, are expected to be announced soon.

SECRETS OF A SMALL TOWN (ABC, New!) - Writer/producer Chuck Pratt ("Desperate Housewives") has scored a pilot order from ABC and Touchstone Television for a new drama about a murder mystery set in a small town. Said project, which Pratt is writing and executive producing along with Chris Brancato and Bert Salke ("North Shore"), would track the murder of a teenage girl and the disappearance of her sister - events which kick off a chain reaction that leads to both emotional and humorous discoveries that have been long buried.

VANISHED (FOX) - Feature director Antoine Fuqua ("Training Day") has signed on to direct the 20th Century Fox Television-based drama pilot, which chronicles the disappearance of a senator's wife over the course of the season. In addition, he'll serve as an executive producer along with creator Josh Berman. Last season, Fuqua helmed the failed FOX drama pilot "Murder Book." As for "Vanished," FOX has ordered a pilot and two additional scripts for the project.

UNTITLED BONNIE HUNT PROJECT (ABC, New!) - Bonnie Hunt ("Life With Bonnie") is returning to the Alphabet, as the writer/comedian has booked a pilot order at the network for a single-camera comedy about a divorced woman (Hunt) who works at a detective agency. She'll star, direct and co-write the Touchstone Television-based project along with her longtime collaborator Don Lake.

Sources: Variety, The Hollywood Reporter, Reuters





  [january 2006]  
S
M
T
W
T
F
S


· BLACKBEARD (HALLMARK)
· CELEBRITY DUETS (FOX)
· DESOLATION CANYON (HALLMARK)
· DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES (ABC)
· FALLING IN LOVE WITH THE GIRL NEXT DOOR (HALLMARK)
· HIDDEN PLACES (HALLMARK)
· HUFF (SHOWTIME)
· L WORD, THE (SHOWTIME)
· LET GO (ABC)
· LIFE WITH BONNIE (ABC)
· LIPSTICK JUNGLE (NBC)
· LOST (ABC)
· LOVE'S ABIDING JOY (HALLMARK)
· MCBRIDE (HALLMARK)
· MURDER BOOK (FOX)
· MYSTERY WOMAN (HALLMARK)
· NORTH SHORE (FOX)
· OUR HOUSE (HALLMARK)
· RUFFIAN (ABC)
· RUNNER, THE (ABC)
· SECRETS OF A SMALL TOWN (ABC)
· SON OF THE DRAGON (HALLMARK)
· THOUGH NONE GO WITH ME (HALLMARK)
· VANISHED (FOX)









[08/04/15 - 04:40 PM]
David Alan Grier Gives Paws to the Cowardly Lion in NBC's "The Wiz Live!"
Grier will play the Cowardly Lion, who asks Dorothy if he can join her in her journey down the Yellow Brick Road and ask the Wiz for some courage, which he is severely lacking.

[08/04/15 - 03:22 PM]
Floyd Mayweather to Face Andre Berto Saturday, Sept. 12 at MGM Grand Garden Arena Live on Showtime PPV(R)
If triumphant, Mayweather would match the record of the late heavyweight champion Rocky Marciano, who retired in April 1956 with a record of 49-0.

[08/04/15 - 02:08 PM]
Rousey Wave Swells Numbers for FOX Sports 1
FOX Sports spins the numbers for Saturday, August 1.

[08/04/15 - 12:54 PM]
Syfy and Universal Cable Productions' "The Magicians" Begins Season One Production in Vancouver
The 13 episode season will air in early 2016 on Syfy.

[08/04/15 - 12:07 PM]
Disney's "Descendants" Powers Disney Channel to Primetime Sweep and Over 1-Year Highs
Disney Channel spins the numbers for the week of July 27-August 2.

[08/04/15 - 12:02 PM]
Casting News: "DC's Legends of Tomorrow" Gets Savage
Danish actor Casper Crump has been cast as the immortal Vandal Savage.

[08/04/15 - 11:26 AM]
Animal Planet Runs 12-Hour Marathon of Lion Programming, Dedicated to Cecil the Lion, On August 10 -- World Lion Day
Animal Planet's roaring about World Lion Day to honor the majestic lion - one of the most revered species on the planet - whose numbers are in decline.

[08/04/15 - 11:20 AM]
ABC Announces Kristen Bell Will Host "It's Your 50th Christmas, Charlie Brown" Special, Airing November 30
The anniversary special will celebrate 50 years of the iconic classic that has brought joy and a television watching tradition at the holidays for generations of fans.

[08/04/15 - 11:07 AM]
"48 Hours: Fall from Grace" Is Saturday's #1 Program with Adults 25-54 and Viewers
CBS spins the numbers for Saturday, August 1.

[08/04/15 - 10:37 AM]
Showtime(R) Sets World Television Premiere Date for "Prophet's Prey"
The film, due on Saturday, October 10, focuses on the tyrannical cult leader Warren Jeffs.

[08/04/15 - 10:37 AM]
FOX Sports Telecasts Premier Boxing Champions Under Multi-Year Media Rights Deal
FOX Sports 1 premieres "Toe-to-Toe Tuesdays," a new, live primetime boxing series on Tuesday, Sept. 8 (9:00 PM ET), which continues for a total of 21 shows through the end of June.

[08/04/15 - 10:32 AM]
The Jackson Family Legacy Lives on in New Series, "The Jacksons: Next Generation," Premiering October 2nd on Lifetime
The series focuses on the third generation of the famed Jackson family - Taj, Taryll and TJ - Tito Jackson's sons and nephews of the famed Jackson 5.

[08/04/15 - 10:26 AM]
Video: "Sneaky Pete" Trailer Starring Giovanni Ribisi and Guest Starring Bryan Cranston!
The pilot is executive produced by David Shore, Bryan Cranston and Seth Gordon and will be available on Amazon for free for only 30 days beginning this Friday, August 7.

[08/04/15 - 10:11 AM]
Video: El Rey Network and Miramax(R) Release Robert Rodriguez Featurette from Season Two of the Supernatural Crime Saga "From Dusk Till Dawn: The Series"
Rodriguez gives viewers an exclusive glimpse at the new season.

[08/04/15 - 10:04 AM]
"Drunk History" Season 3 Premieres Tuesday, September 1 at 10:30 p.m. on Comedy Central
Tony Hale, Greg Kinnear, Justin Long, Christopher Meloni, Stephen Merchant and Jason Ritter guest star in the season opener.