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[01/18/07 - 12:41 AM]
Development Update: Thursday, January 18
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!


ALL FALL DOWN (ABC) - Rina Mimoun's ("Everwood") drama project - about a successful female attorney who leaves her high-powered big-city law firm to move home to Savannah, Georgia, where her crazy relatives live, and winds up joining her father's family law practice - has been given a pilot commitment from the Alphabet. The Warner Bros. Television-based hour had previously received a put pilot order in September.

Commitment: Ordered to pilot (previously put pilot)
Cast: TBA
Writer: Rina Mimoun
Director: TBA
Executive Producers: Rina Mimoun
Studio: Warner Bros. Television


AMERICAN FAMILY (ABC, New!) - Jay Scherick and Dave Ronn ("Norbit") have landed a pilot order from the network for a new single-camera comedy about a modern family that does what it takes to maintain appearances for the neighbors despite the chaos and challenges that are part of raising a family. The pair will write and executive produce the half-hour for Sony Pictures Television.

Commitment: Ordered to pilot
Cast: TBA
Writers: Dave Ronn, Jay Scherick
Director: TBA
Executive Producers: Dave Ronn, Jay Scherick
Studio: Sony Pictures Television


AREA 52 (NBC, New!) - Mike Armstrong ("Snitch") and Dean Parisot ("Fun With Dick and Jane") are set to team for a new workplace comedy at the Peacock set at a remote location in the Nevada desert, where the U.S. government houses an extraterrestrial. NBC has given a pilot order to the NBC Universal Television-based hour, which Parisot will direct from a script by Armstrong. The pair will also executive produce alongside David Latt.

Commitment: Ordered to pilot
Cast: TBA
Writer: Mike Armstrong
Director: Dean Parisot
Executive Producers: David Latt, Dean Parisot, Mike Armstrong
Studio: NBC Universal Television Studio


CALIFORNIACTION (Showtime) - Evan Handler ("Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip") and Natascha McElhone ("Revelations") have both joined the cast of the David Duchovny-led comedy pilot, about a novelist (Duchovny) trying to raise a kid on his own while battling addictions to sex and drugs. McElhone will play the ex-wife of Duchovny's character while Handler is set as his best friend, a literary agent.

Commitment: Ordered to pilot
Cast: David Duchovny (Hank Moody), Evan Handler, Natascha McElhone
Writer: Tom Kapinos
Director: Stephen Hopkins
Executive Producers: David Duchovny, Stephen Hopkins, Tom Kapinos
Co-Executive Producer: Melanie Greene
Co-Producer: Kate Garwood
Studio: TBA


THE CLOSER (TNT) - Kyra Sedgwick, fresh off her Golden Globe win this past weekend, has reupped her deal to star on the series through its seventh season. The new pact will give her a producing credit on the series as well as bring her per episode salary into the $250,000-$300,000 range, making her one of the highest-paid actresses on television. She'll also receive an unspecified one-time bonus. The series, which returns this summer for a third season, is produced by Warner Bros. Television and the Shephard/Robin Co.


LAW & ORDER: SPECIAL VICTIMS UNIT (NBC) - Recent guest star Adam Beach is reportedly in talks to become a series regular on the veteran drama. Beach played Brooklyn detective Chester Lake on the show's most-recent installment and is expected to appear again later this season.


M.O.N.Y. (NBC, New!) - "The Bedford Diaries" alums Tom Fontana and Barry Levinson have scored a cast-contingent pilot order from the network for a new drama about a socially conscious New York public advocate who is thrust into the uncomfortable position of becoming interim mayor and struggles to balance his moral center with the hardball realities of New York politics. The pair wrote and will executive produce the hour, which is based at NBC Universal Television. It's not clear if Levinson plans to direct the pilot should it go into production.

Commitment: Cast-contingent pilot order
Cast: TBA
Writers: Barry Levinson, Tom Fontana
Director: TBA
Executive Producers: Barry Levinson (The Levinson-Fontana Company), Tom Fontana (The Levinson-Fontana Company)
Studio: NBC Universal Television Studio


THE RULES OF STARTING OVER (FOX) - FOX has given a pilot order to Chris Pappas and Mike Bernier's comedy project, about a 35-year-old and his buddies - all newly single after years of marriage - who jump back into the dating scene and learn the painful rules of starting over. Bobby Farrelly is on board to direct the 20th Century Fox Television-based half-hour, which he'll executive produce alongside Peter Farrelly, Brad Johnson and Bradley Thomas.

Commitment: Ordered to pilot (previously script with penalty)
Cast: TBA
Writers: Chris Pappas, Mike Bernier
Director: Bobby Farrelly
Executive Producers: Bobby Farrelly (Conundrum Entertainment), Brad Johnson (Watson Pond Productions), Bradley Thomas (Conundrum Entertainment), Peter Farrelly (Conundrum Entertainment)
Co-Executive Producers: Chris Pappas, Mike Bernier
Producer: Katy McCaffrey, Kevin Barnett
Studio: 20th Century Fox Television


THE SARAH CONNOR CHRONICLES (FOX) - Richard T. Jones ("Judging Amy") is the latest addition to FOX's small screen take on the "Terminator" film franchise. He'll play an F.B.I. agent who is tasked with tracking down Sarah Connor and her son, John.

Commitment: Ordered to pilot
Cast: Lena Headey (Sarah Connor), Richard T. Jones, Thomas Dekker (John Connor)
Writer: Josh Friedman
Director: David Nutter
Executive Producers: Andrew G. Vajna (C2 Pictures), David Nutter, Josh Friedman, Mario Kassar (C2 Pictures)
Producer: James Middleton
Studio: Warner Bros. Television


THE WEDDING BELLS (FOX) - Fyvush Finkel ("Boston Public"), Delta Burke ("Boston Legal"), Sherri Shephard ("Less Than Perfect"), Costas Mandylor ("Saw III") and Matthew Settle ("Brothers & Sisters") have all booked multi-episode arcs on the upcoming drama series, about a family-owned wedding-planning business dubbed the Wedding Palace. In addition, Chris Williams ("Scary Movie 4") has been tapped as a series regular. He'll play Ralph Snow, the Wedding Palace's wedding singer who has dreams of musical stardom. As for the guests - Finkel will play an elderly member of the Wedding Palace board seeking to produce weddings on the cheap in order to improve the bottom line; Burke is set as the bossy, opinionated mother of the bride who bullies the Bell sisters into giving her exactly what she wants; Shephard will play an abrasive, no-nonsense assistant who keeps the brides in line with an iron tongue; Mandylor then is set as the Greek head chef at the Wedding Palace who is full of life and gusto; and Settle will appear as a guy hired by the board to oversee the Wedding Palace's financials.

Commitment: Ordered to series (13 episodes)
Cast: Chris Williams (Ralph Snow), Benjamin King (Russell Hawkins), KaDee Strickland (Annie Bell), Michael Landes (David Conlon), Sarah Jones (Sammy Bell), Teri Polo (Jane Bell)
Writers: David E. Kelley, Jason Katims
Director: Jon Amiel
Executive Producers: David E. Kelley (David E. Kelley Productions), Jon Amiel, Jonathan Pontell
Studio: 20th Century Fox Television


Sources: Variety, The Hollywood Reporter, Reuters





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· ALL FALL DOWN (ABC)
· AMERICAN FAMILY (ABC)
· AREA 57 (NBC)
· BEDFORD DIARIES, THE (WB)
· BOSTON LEGAL (ABC)
· BOSTON PUBLIC (FOX)
· BROTHERS & SISTERS (ABC)
· CALIFORNICATION (SHOWTIME)
· CLOSER, THE (TNT)
· DEVELOPMENT UPDATE (TFC)
· EVERWOOD (WB)
· JUDGING AMY (CBS)
· LAW & ORDER: SPECIAL VICTIMS UNIT (NBC)
· LESS THAN PERFECT (ABC)
· MONY (NBC)
· REVELATIONS (NBC)
· STUDIO 60 ON THE SUNSET STRIP (NBC)
· TERMINATOR: THE SARAH CONNOR CHRONICLES (FOX)
· UNHITCHED (FOX)
· WEDDING BELLS, THE (FOX)









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