[09/03/09 - 06:49 PM] Development Update: Thursday, September 3 By The Futon Critic Staff (TFC)
LOS ANGELES (thefutoncritic.com) -- The latest development news, culled from recent wire reports:
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THE DEEP END (ABC) - Mehcad Brooks ("True Blood") has joined the cast of the upcoming drama, about first-year associates at a prestigious L.A. law firm. He'll play a new character, Malcolm Bennet, an associate at the firm. No other specifics about his character were given, nor how said commitment relates to his status on "Blood."
ENLIGHTENED (HBO) - The pay channel has commissioned a pilot for the single-camera comedy, about "a self-destructive woman who has a spiritual awakening and becomes determined to live an enlightened life, creating havoc at home and work." Laura Dern will topline the half-hour, which comes from filmmaker Mike White ("Year of the Dog"). Production is set to begin in December.
JACK & DAN (FOX, New!) - Fox Television Studios and "Burn Notice" creator Matt Nix are set to team for a new international co-production, a drama about Jack, "an ambitious, by-the-book cop who is partnered with Dan, a drunken, lecherous, wild-card cop who hangs onto his job only because of a heroic act years before." The news marks the fourth such endeavor by the studio, the others being ABC's "Defying Gravity," FOX's "Mental" and NBC's "Persons Unknown." FOX has already signed on for the U.S. broadcast window, an early partnership designed to help foster the creative input by the broadcaster. Production is also expected to take place in the U.S., albeit at a lower license fee as the studio will recoup the difference via potential international broadcasting partners. Casting and staffing are currently underway. Nix's manager, Mikkel Bondesen, will also serve as an executive producer.
MELROSE PLACE (The CW) - Rick Fox ("The Game") has scored a recurring role on the netlet's "Melrose" update. He'll play "the owner of the restaurant where all the aspiring actors on the show work." It's not clear when his first episode will air.
PRIME SUSPECT (NBC, New!) - Hank Steinberg ("Without a Trace") is looking to import Lynda La Plante's much-ballyhooed U.K. drama for U.S. audiences. The project is the result of a two-year, three-pilot deal the Peacock has inked with ITV Studios. Universal Media Studios-based Steinberg will write and executive produce the planned two-hour pilot, which will follow "a tough homicide investigator who found herself juggling her difficult job and equally harrowing personal life." Helen Mirren toplined the U.K. incarnation, which aired in seven parts between 1991 and 2006. Paul Buccieri will executive produce for ITV Studios.
UNTITLED BRET HARRISON PROJECT (CBS, New!) - "Reaper" alum Bret Harrison is set to write and star in a new multi-camera comedy at the Eye about "two district attorneys - one in his 20s (Harrison), the other in his 40s - and the woman between them." The project, which has a script commitment, is set up at Universal Media Studios and feature producer Scott Stuber's ("Love Happens") Stuber Productions banner. Robert Borden ("The George Lopez Show") is penning the half-hour off a story he co-wrote with Harrison. The writer/producer is also working on "Outsourced" for NBC and Universal Media Studios. The comedy, which he's executive producing with Ken Kwapis, and the Harrison project are part of a two-script deal Borden has with the studio.