[03/30/09 - 06:08 PM]
Development Update: Monday, March 30
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!

ACE IN THE HOLE (CBS) - Newcomers Skylar Astin and Darien Provost have joined the cast of the Adam Carolla-led comedy pilot, which stars Carolla as a husband and father who works as a driving instructor. Provost will play his nine-year son while Astin is set as his teenage stepson. Carolla and Kevin Hench co-created the half-hour, which is set up at CBS Paramount Network Television.

DIAMONDS (ABC, New!) - The Alphabet has picked up the broadcast rights to a new four-hour mini-series from Alchemy Television. The ensemble drama, featuring Judy Davis, James Purefoy, Derek Jacobi, Louise Rose and Joanne Kelly, tells five storylines linked to the "personal and political effects of the blood diamond trade on a global scale." Sienna Films is behind the $15 million production, which was originally filmed in South Africa and Canada for the CBC and the U.K. It's understood it will turn up here in late May following the sweeps period. As for specifics, Davis stars as "a U.S. senator who travels to Africa to find out why her daughter was killed at a diamond mine in Sierra Leone." Andy Wilson helmed the project from a script by David Vainola wrote.

HAPPINESS ISN'T EVERYTHING (CBS) - Mary Steenburgen ("Joan of Arcadia") is returning to the small screen, this time on the comedy front. She's been cast as Audrey Veill, the mother of Jason Biggs's character in the comedy pilot, about adult siblings (Biggs, Ben Schwartz) and their parents (Dreyfuss, Steenburgen) who are overly involved in one another's lives. James Vallely and Mitch Hurwitz are behind the project, which comes from the Sony Pictures Television-based Tantamount banner.

THE SHARK TANK (ABC) - The network has ordered seven episodes of the series, in which aspiring entrepreneurs pitch their business ventures to five multimillionaire tycoons each week. Mark Burnett is behind the project, which is based on a Japanese format. BBC America currently airs its U.K. incarnation, "The Dragon's Den." Production was completed on a pilot last fall, which featured such beefed up elements as "a huge auditorium and placing the investors behind an intimidating desk." Burnett however admits said changes took away from "the interpersonal tension between ambitious entrepreneurs struggling to convince five strangers to part with their money" and will now be dialed down. On board as "the sharks" then are Robert Herjavec (focus: internet), Kevin Harrington (infomercials), Barbara Corcoran (real estate), Kevin O'Leary (venture capitalist) and Daymond John (clothing). No air date has been set.

STATE OF ROMANCE (NBC) - "Mad TV" alum Bobby Lee has joined the cast of the comedy pilot, which is described as a modern day "Pride and Prejudice" set in Chicago. He'll play Andrew, an unspecified character. Barbara Wallace and Tom Wolfe are behind the half-hour, which is based at Universal Media Studios.

UNTITLED JUSTIN ADLER PROJECT (NBC) - Leslie Bibb ("Kings") and John Michael Higgins ("Kath & Kim") have both joined the cast of the comedy pilot, about adult siblings and their controlling mother. Bibb is set as Vanessa, the eldest child, a perfect domestic goddess. Higgins, whose casting is in second position to "Kath & Kim," then will play Charles, her husband, a wealthy professional polo player. Justin Adler penned the half-hour, which comes from the Sony Pictures Television-based Tantamount.

UNTITLED ANITA RENFROE PROJECT (ABC) - "The Drew Carey Show" alum Ryan Stiles is set to star opposite Anita Renfroe in the comedy pilot, about a couple raising kids. He'll play her husband Paul, the pastor of their town. Amy Welsh and Rob Hanning are behind the project, which likewise comes from the Sony Pictures Television-based Tantamount.

WAITING TO DIE (CBS) - T.J. Miller ("Carpoolers") and comedian Nick Thune have been tapped for the lead roles on the comedy pilot, about two simple guys who are happy with their lives - no matter how bad things might look from the outside. They'll play Lonnie Ponce and Jeff Helmut, respectively. Will Sasso and Chad Kultgen co-created the half-hour, which again comes from the ever-busy Sony Pictures Television-based Tantamount.

Sources: Variety, The Hollywood Reporter, Reuters

  [march 2009]  


[10/24/16 - 12:38 PM]
Food Network Gets Festive for the Holidays with the Return of "Cake Wars: Christmas"
Jonathan Bennett hosts the six hour-long episodes filled with the most over-the-top Christmas cake confections ever seen.

[10/24/16 - 11:21 AM]
Hallmark Movies & Mysteries' "Most Wonderful Movies of Christmas" 2016 Original Movie Premieres
"Love Always, Santa" will kick things off Sunday, November 6 on the cable channel.

[10/24/16 - 10:26 AM]
"Underfire: The Untold Story of PFC. Tony Vaccaro," Recounting the Life of a WWII Combat Infantryman and War Photographer, Debuts Nov. 14 on HBO
The film chronicles the life and vision of this remarkable man, exploring how photography defines the way the public perceives armed conflict, and revealing the sheer difficulty of survival while taking photos in a war zone.

[10/24/16 - 10:26 AM]
The CW Orders New Seasons of "Whose Line Is It Anyway?," "Penn & Teller: Fool Us," and "Masters of Illusion" for Summer 2017
The new seasons of these series will return as part of The CW's 2017 Summer schedule, with dates and times to be announced later.

[10/24/16 - 10:23 AM]
Video: Four New Promos for FX's New Drama Series "Taboo" Starring Tom Hardy
The new original series from Tom Hardy and Ridley Scott premieres early 2017.

[10/24/16 - 10:09 AM]
Video: Amazon Releases Retro 80s Commercial for "Red Oaks" Season 2
Look for the new season to premiere on Amazon Prime Video November 11.

[10/24/16 - 09:13 AM]
Amazon Original Series "The Grand Tour" Announces Studio Recording in Nashville, TN
"The Grand Tour" will launch in 4K on Friday, November 18 exclusively for Amazon Prime members.

[10/24/16 - 08:54 AM]
Seahawks-Cardinals "SNF" Leads Preliminary Results for the Night Among the Big 4 in Every Key Measure
NBC spins the numbers for Sunday, October 23.

[10/24/16 - 08:43 AM]
Sunday's Broadcast Ratings: "Sunday Night Football" Keeps NBC on Top
The Peacock once again leads the evening among total viewers and adults 18-49.

[10/24/16 - 07:55 AM]
Mike Tirico to Make Horse Racing Debut as Host of NBC's Primetime Coverage of the 2016 Breeders' Cup
"What a great event and venue for my maiden voyage with our incredibly talented horse racing team," Tirico said.

[10/24/16 - 07:03 AM]
Syfy's Award-Winning Reality Competition Series "Face Off" Returns for an All-Star Season on Tuesday, January 24
Hosted by make-up effects royalty McKenzie Westmore, the series returns with elaborate never-before-seen challenges to test their skills as they battle it out for a coveted second chance at victory.

[10/24/16 - 07:00 AM]
Sting to Receive "The American Music Award of Merit" and Perform at the "2016 American Music Awards(R)"
The iconic musician will take to the stage to perform a medley of songs, including the raucous first single, "I Can't Stop Thinking About You" off his new rock/pop album, "57th & 9th," as well as some of his greatest hits.

[10/24/16 - 06:15 AM]
"The Victoria's Secret Fashion Show" Heads to Paris for the First Time, for Broadcast Monday, Dec. 5, on CBS
The world's most celebrated fashion show will be seen in more than 190 countries.

[10/23/16 - 10:03 AM]
Saturday's Broadcast Ratings: ABC, College Football Top Viewers, Demos
The Alphabet wins said evening for the fourth consecutive week.

[10/23/16 - 09:43 AM]
"SNL" Hits Season Highs, Best October Overnights in 8 Years
NBC spins the numbers for Saturday, October 22.