[03/05/10 - 11:10 AM]
Development Update: Friday, March 5 (Part 2)
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!

187 DETROIT (ABC) - James McDaniel ("NYPD Blue"), Shaun Majumder ("Unhitched") and Erin Cummings ("Spartacus: Blood and Sand") will round out of the cast of the drama pilot, about a top homicide division as seen through the lens of a fictional documentary crew. McDaniel will play Sgt. Jesse "Long Haul" Longford, a 30-year veteran, with Majumder as his partner, Det. Aman Majan, himself a seven-year vet. Cummings then is believed to be playing the sole remaining female role, Dr. Shelby Cork, "a pretty woman (35) but looks like 25... cat glasses, hipster vibe, last thing you're thinking is Medical Examiner." Aisha Hinds, D.J. Cotrona, John Michael Hill, Michael Imperioli and Natalie Martinez round out the ensemble. Jeff Nachmanoff is helming the ABC Studios-based hour from a script by Jason Richman.

AWKWARD SITUATIONS FOR MEN (ABC) - Newcomer Michael Braun ("Law & Order") has joined the cast of the Danny Wallace-led comedy pilot, about his experience moving to the U.S. with his wife, Meg (Laura Prepon), only to discover that his everyday behavior clashes with American values and gets him into trouble. He's expected to play Kevin, Meg's assistant at Smoothie Face. Andy Ackerman ("The New Adventures of Old Christine") has also signed on to direct the half-hour from a script by Wallace, Jackie Filgo and Jeff Filgo. Warner Bros. Television is producing while Matt Letscher and Tony Hale also star.

BREAKOUT KINGS (FOX) - Jimmi Simpson ("Virtuality") has joined the cast of the drama pilot, about ex-fugitives who are recruited to work as U.S. Marshals. He's on board as one of the cons, Lloyd Lowery, a former child prodigy who's nicknamed "The Professor" because, well, he used to be one. Brooke Nevin, Domenick Lombardozzi, Laz Alonso, Malcolm Goodwin and Nicole Steinwedell round out the show's ensemble. Gavin Hood is directing the 20th Century Fox Television-based hour from a script by co-creators Matt Olmstead and Nick Santora.

DEFENDERS (CBS) - Tanya Fischer ("Life on Mars") and Jurnee Smollett ("Friday Night Lights") have both joined the cast of the drama pilot, about two charismatic and fiery Las Vegas defense attorneys who go to the mat for their clients. Fischer will play Sophie, a "young, attractive" woman who "answers phones at reception in a very low cut blouse." Smollett then is believed to be set as Lisa Tyler ("attractive, nervous about her first day in court"), an ex-dancer who's now a lawyer for Mancini-Kaczmarek. It's not clear how Smollett's involvement relates to her status on "Lights." Jim Belushi also stars in the Davis Guggenheim-helmed hour, from co-creators Kevin Kennedy and Niels Mueller. CBS Television Studios is producing.

THE EVENT (NBC) - Wes Ramsey ("CSI: Miami") and Taylor Cole ("Heroes") have both landed roles on the drama pilot, a thriller about "a decent, regular fellow who battles against mysterious circumstances that envelope a larger conspiracy." While not indicated, they're believed to be playing Greg and Vicky, a couple who Sean (Jason Ritter) and Leila (Sarah Roemer) befriend while on vacation that may have ulterior motives. Also joining the project is Jeffrey Reiner ("Caprica") as director. Nick Wauters penned the Universal Media Studios-based hour, who also stars Blair Underwood, Ian Anthony Dale, Laura Innes, Scott Patterson and Zeljko Ivanek.

FUNNY IN FARSI (ABC) - Newcomer Kendra Jain has booked the lead role on the comedy pilot, which is based on Iranian-born author Firoozeh Dumas's memoir about growing up in the 1970s in Newport Beach, California. She'll play Firoozeh Jazayeri, said girl, who tries out a new American name every week. Also signing on are Sarah Shahi ("Life"), who will play Firoozeh as an adult (in voiceover, a la "The Wonder Years"), and David Gore ("Zeke and Luther") as Farshid (a.k.a. Chip), Firoozeh's older brother who's always dressed to look as American as possible. Hrach Titizian, Marjan Neshat and Maz Jobrani also star in the ABC Studios-based half-hour, which Barry Sonnenfeld is directing from a script by Jeffrey Hodes and Nastaran Dibai.

HAPPY ENDINGS (ABC) - Adam Pally ("Assassination of a High School President") has scored a role on the comedy pilot, about a couple that breaks up at the altar, forcing them and their group of friends to figure out how to maintain their friendships after the split. He's believed to be playing one of the groomsmen, Max ("hot, fast talking - like a gay Vince Vaughn"), in the half-hour, which is now a co-production of ABC Studios and Sony Pictures Television. Jonathan Groff ("Scrubs") has also been tapped to supervise the pilot, which was penned by David Caspe and will be directed by Anthony and Joe Russo. Casey Wilson, Eliza Coupe and Damon Wayans Jr. also star.

HOW TO BE A BETTER AMERICAN (ABC) - Emily Rose Everhard ("Jack and the Beanstalk") has joined the cast of the comedy pilot, about a father (Jason Jones) who embarks on a journey to be a better person and drags his family kicking and screaming along. She's believed to be playing Lola, the man's prickly daughter who "has purple lipstick, straight jet black hair over her eyes and purple and black striped stockings." Johnny Sneed and Missi Pyle co-star in the ABC Studios-based half-hour, which has tapped Adam Bernstein ("Worst Week") as director. Brian Bradley and Steven Cragg are the co-creators.

I, WITNESS (CBS) - The Eye has rolled the drama pilot, about a detective/professor who uses her psycho-physiological skills to solve crimes, to the current development cycle. Pam Veasey and Trey Callaway are behind the CBS Television Studios-based hour, which had trouble casting the lead role of Erin Bray last time out. CBS originally ordered the pilot back in February of 2009.

MIKE & MOLLY (CBS) - Newcomer Nyambi Nyambi ("In Praise of Shadows") has joined the cast of the comedy pilot, about "an overweight, charming police officer and a pretty and plump woman, who meet at Overeaters Anonymous." He'll play Samuel, "a handsome, twenty-something black man with a Senegalese accent and a booming laugh," who's Mike (Billy Gardell) and Carl's (Reno Wilson) regular waiter at Abe's Hot Beef, a greasy-spoon near Wrigleyville. In addition, sitcom guru James Burrows ("Gary Unmarried") has been tapped to direct the pilot, which was penned by Mark Roberts. Chuck Lorre Productions and Warner Bros. Television are co-producing.

NEVERMIND NIRVANA (FOX) - Sakina Jaffrey ("Third Watch") has scored a role on the comedy pilot, about two grown Indian-American brothers who clash with their controlling immigrant parents as they assimilate American culture. She's believed to be playing Dr. Sarita Mattoo, the boys' mother. Scott Ellis ("30 Rock") has also signed on to direct the half-hour, which was penned by Ajay Sahgal. Harish Patel, Rachael Leigh Cook, Ravi Patel and Utkarsh Ambudkar also star in the project, which comes from 20th Century Fox Television.

NO ORDINARY FAMILY (ABC) - Jimmy Bennett ("Star Trek") and Kay Panabaker ("Summerland") will round out the Powell clan in the drama pilot, about an average American family that develops extraordinary abilities. They'll play Stephanie (Julie Benz) and Jim's (Michael Chiklis) kids, JJ and Daphne. Greg Berlanti and Jon Harmon Feldman are behind the ABC Studios-based hour, which also stars Autumn Reeser, Christina Chang and Julie Benz. David Semel is directing.

THE ODDS (CBS) - Emily Swallow ("Southland") has booked a role on the drama pilot, about two cops - Tyler LaSalley (Donald Faison) and Wade Simms (Sullivan Stapleton) - in Las Vegas who are just as outrageous as the crimes they solve. She's on board as Becca Facelli ("beautiful and savvy"), Wade's ex - and the mother of his teenage daughter - who works as a bounty hunter. Jacob Vargas and Kelly Hu also star in the Warner Bros. Television-based hour, which comes from director Kenneth Fink and writer Jeff Wadlow.

OFF THE MAP (ABC) - Mamie Gummer ("The Good Wife") is the latest addition to the drama pilot, about three doctors who leave the comfort of the U.S. to work at an isolated tropical clinic. While not specified, she's believed to be playing Annie Fisher, a pregnant member of the Peace Corps who serves as the central case in the pilot. Daniel Minahan ("Grey's Anatomy") has also signed on to helm the ABC Studios-based hour from a script by Jenna Bans. Caroline Dhavernas, Enrique Murciano, Jason George, Martin Henderson and Valerie Cruz also star.

SECURITY (A.K.A. TITAN TEAM) (FOX) - Alphonso McAuley ("Chocolate News") has joined the cast of the Bret Harrison-led comedy pilot, about "Titan Team," a company of twentysomething geniuses who are tasked with cracking computer security systems. He'll play one of them, Calvin "Cash" Sparks, "an African-American hulk with a body tatted with Lord of the Rings characters." Seth Gordon is helming the Sony Pictures Television-based comedy from a script by Adam F. Goldberg.

TRUE LOVE (CBS) - Hal Williams ("227") is the latest addition to the comedy pilot, about four people in their 20s in New York looking for love. He'll play Earl Mumford, the show's narrator, who works on the observation deck of the Empire State Building. Ashley Austin Morris and Minka Kelly co-star in the half-hour, which has also added Pamela Fryman ("How I Met Your Mother") as director. Matt Tarses penned the project, a co-production of CBS Television Studios, FanFare Productions and Sony Pictures Television.

UNTITLED ANT HINES/LARRY CHARLES PROJECT (CBS) - Jason Mantzoukas ("I Hate Valentine's Day") and Matt Walsh ("Players") have each landed roles on the comedy presentation, about a dad (Paul Kaye) who re-enters the life of his now-famous daughter. Details about their characters however weren't specified. Nicollette Sheridan and Wayne Knight also star in the half-hour, which comes from writer Ant Hines and director Larry Charles. Sony Pictures Television-based Tantamount is producing.

Sources: Variety, The Hollywood Reporter, Reuters

  [march 2010]  

· 30 ROCK (NBC)

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