[04/18/08 - 06:01 PM] Development Update: Friday, April 18 By The Futon Critic Staff (TFC)
LOS ANGELES (thefutoncritic.com) -- The latest development news, culled from recent wire reports:
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ALEVY PRODUCTIONS PROJECTS (New!) - Howie Mandel's Alevy Productions has lined up several new projects around town in addition to today's series commitment from NBC for "Howie Do It" (read the story). Former Brillstein-Grey executive Mike Marks ("Samantha Who?") is shepherding the company's development. On the scripted front, there's "Kill Switch," a one-hour drama at Sci Fi from writer Don Mancini ("Child's Play"). The project, which was originally developed at ABC Studios with Marc Cherry, revolves around a woman who can jump into the bodies of people about to be murdered. Universal Media Studios and Blueprint Entertainment are co-producing the script alongside Mandel and Rick Kellard ("The Closer"). Alevy also has a one-hour dramedy in the works from scribe Scott Gimple about an insurance claims worker turned doctor however no network was mentioned. And back on the reality side, NBC is said to be close to ordering a pilot presentation for "Would You Rather," a game show in which people have to choose between two equally unappealing options. Zobmondo Entertainment, Scott St. John ("Deal or No Deal") and Imagination Television are producing the project with Alevy.
BATTLESTAR GALACTICA (Sci Fi) - Executive producer David Eick has inked a two-year, seven-figure overall deal with Universal Media Studios. The pact, which begins on June 1, covers his duties on his various studio-based projects, including the "Galactica" prequel "Caprica" for Sci Fi. Also in the works: "AKA," a family adventure described as "Little Miss Sunshine" meets "Thelma and Louise" from writer Kerry Ehrin ("Friday Night Lights") and an untitled hour from Dario Scardapane likened to a modern-day "Hart to Hart." It's not clear if a network is attached to the latter projects.
LAW & ORDER: SPECIAL VICTIMS UNIT (NBC) - Co-stars Adam Beach and Diane Neal won't be returning to the veteran drama next season, various sources confirmed this week. Both exits were believed to be mutual despite rumblings that the latter was fired. Nevertheless, it's not clear if casting will begin for new characters to fill the void in the ensemble. No mention was made about how their characters, Chester Lake and ADA Casey Novak, will be written out.
UNTITLED VICTORY FRESCO PROJECT (ABC) - Victor Fresco's untitled half-hour is the latest project to earn a presentation order from the network. The single-camera project, from 20th Century Fox Television, revolves around a moral guy trying to do the right thing in an amoral corporate world. Fresco penned the pilot and will executive produce.
THE UNUSUALS (ABC) - Stephen Hopkins ("24") has signed on to direct the pilot presentation for the project, a dramedy set at a New York police precinct. He'll work from a script by Noah Hawley. Said effort is set up at Sony Pictures Television with Peter Tolan also executive producing.