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[04/12/06 - 12:00 AM]
Development Update: April 11-12
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 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!

10.5: APOCALYPSE (NBC) - The Peacock has booked the "10.5" sequel for Sunday, May 21 at 9:00/8:00c with part two airing Tuesday, May 23 at 9:00/8:00c. Here's how the network describes the project: "Two years ago, the west cost crumbled... the rest of the country is next. Beau Bridges and Kim Delaney star in an explosive, action-packed sequel to the movie that chilled a nation. Now, a desperate bid to save the entire country might be too little, too late when a series of catastrophic events leads to one, inescapable conclusion... the apocalypse is at hand."

20 GOOD YEARS (NBC) - Jake Sandvig (Lash on "Sky High") and Heather Burns (Cheryl on "Miss Congeniality 2: Armed and Fabulous") have both scored roles on the comedy pilot, about two New York men (John Lithgow, Jeffrey Tambor) in their 50s who decide to make the most of the next 20 years of their lives. Sandvig will play Hugh, the son of Tambor's character, while Burns's role wasn't specified. Marsh McCall and Michael Leeson are behind the Warner Bros. Television-based half-hour, which Terry Hughes is directing. Eric Gold, Jimmy Miller, Mike Clements and Tom Werner also serve as executive producers.

A.K.A. (A.K.A. EDISON) (CBS) - The John Leguizamo-led drama pilot, about an L.A. detective who relies on impersonations and disguises to solve crimes, is now apparently running under the title "A.K.A." Arija Bareikis, Currie Graham, Deidrie Henry, Jake T. Austin and Joe Manganiello also star in the CBS Paramount Network Television/Touchstone Television-based hour, which comes from creators Ron Milbauer and Terri Hughes. Kevin Rodney Sullivan is directing while Mandeville Films's David Hoberman and Leguizamo himself also serve as executive producers.

CABLE RATINGS ROUND-UP (Various) - HBO's "The Sopranos" once again led all cable programs for the week of April 3-9 with 8.6 million viewers tuning in while lead-out "Big Love" (4.2 million, #5) posted its best numbers since its premiere (4.6 million on 3/12/06). Two original movies - TNT's "Avenger" (3.5 million, #8) and Lifetime's "Fatal Desire" (3.1 million, #T9) - also finished in the top 15 as did a new "South Park" (3.0 million, #11) on Comedy Central and Sunday's repeat of "Family Guy" on Adult Swim (2.9 million, #T14). Over on FX, week two of "Thief" tumbled to 1.34 million viewers, where it lost nearly half of its premiere audience (2.54 million on 3/28/06).

DRIVE (FOX) - Filming on the drama pilot, about an underground road race across America, reportedly won't begin until June, likely bumping its series consideration until midseason 2007 at the earliest. Ben Queen and Tim Minear are behind the 20th Century Fox Television-based hour, which stars Alan Ruck, Emily Stone and Melanie Lynskey. Greg Yaitanes is directing.

FLIRT (The CW) - Tamala Jones (Tonya on "One on One") and Bree Turner (Marjorie on "Good Girls Don't...") have both joined the cast of the pilot, a workplace comedy about the sole man (Wayne Brady) working at a women's magazine. They'll play two of Brady's co-workers. Touchstone Television is behind the half-hour, which comes from creator Barry Wernick and executive producers Claudia Lonow, Kevin Kelly Brown and Lawrence Bender. Gary Halvorson is directing.

FREE RIDE (FOX) - Rob Roy Thomas, the show's creator, has inked a multi-year, seven-figure overall deal with producer Fox 21. The pact will keep Thomas aboard the series should it return for a second season as well as give him the option to develop new projects for the 20th Century Fox Television sibling.

UNTITLED SHANA GOLDBERG-MEEHAN PROJECT (ABC) - Andrew W. Walker (Scott on "Hot Properties") is the latest addition to the comedy pilot, about two sisters (Marisa Coughlan, Kaley Cuoco) who live together, despite having grown up under different circumstances. No details on his character were given. Brad Raider and Jane Lynch also star in the Warner Bros. Television-based half-hour, which Andy Ackerman is directing from a script by creator Shana Goldberg-Meehan.

WELCOME TO THE JUNGLE GYM (CBS) - Nadia Dajani (Reilly on "Emily's Reasons Why Not") has joined the cast of the comedy pilot, about three best friends with young kids - all with very different attitudes toward marriage, motherhood and their careers. She'll join Teri Polo and Jennifer Aspen as one of said moms in the Warner Bros. Television-based project, which John Pasquin is directing from a script by creator Gabrielle Allan.

YOU'VE REACHED THE ELLIOTTS (CBS) - Kyle Kaplan (Chad the Chomper on "Hannah Montana") is set to play son to Chris Elliott in his semi-autobiographical comedy pilot, which also stars Danielle Savre, Christopher McDonald and Cynthia Stevenson. Rob Des Hotel is behind the half-hour, which comes from Warner Bros. Television-based producers Eric Tannenbaum and Kim Tannenbaum.

Sources: Variety, The Hollywood Reporter, Reuters





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· 10.5 (NBC)
· 10.5: APOCALYPSE (NBC)
· 20 GOOD YEARS (NBC)
· AKA (CBS)
· AVENGER (TNT)
· BIG LOVE (HBO)
· DRIVE (FOX)
· EMILY'S REASONS WHY NOT (ABC)
· FAMILY GUY (FOX)
· FATAL DESIRE (LIFETIME)
· FLIRT (CW)
· FREE RIDE (FOX)
· GOOD GIRLS DON'T (OXYGEN)
· HOT PROPERTIES (ABC)
· ONE ON ONE (UPN)
· SEPARATED AT WORTH (ABC)
· SOPRANOS, THE (HBO)
· SOUTH PARK (COMEDY CENTRAL)
· THIEF (FX)
· WELCOME TO THE JUNGLE GYM (CBS)
· YOU'VE REACHED THE ELLIOTTS (CBS)









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