[12/12/11 - 10:46 PM] Development Update: Monday, December 12 By The Futon Critic Staff (TFC)
LOS ANGELES (thefutoncritic.com) -- The latest development news, culled from recent wire reports:
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AMERICAN HOUSEWIFE (Lifetime) - Azie Tesfai and Jonathan Del Arco have both landed roles on the drama pilot, which explores the presumably idyllic life of a homemaker (Melanie Griffith) who is overwhelmed by being the perfect wife and mother to her well-to-do family and is constantly distracted by the ongoing conversation she holds with her inner voice. Tesfai will play her Somali adopted daughter while Del Arco is on board as her gay neighbor. David Slade is directing the Erik Jendresen-penned hour for Fox Television Studios. Jeffrey Nordling, Kacey Rohl, Ken Luckey and Matthew MacCaull also star. (Deadline.com)BEHIND THE SEAMS (ABC, New!) - Ernie Bustamante ("Cashmere Mafia") has booked a new single-camera comedy at the Alphabet about "two Latina sisters - one a hard-working fashion designer, the other a party-going ex-runway model - who open a bridal boutique after their careers fall apart." He'll write the half-hour and serve as a co-executive producer. Eva Longoria is also on board as an executive producer via her UnbeliEVA-ble Entertainment banner. (Variety.com)COPPER (BBC America) - Anastasia Griffith ("Once Upon a Time") is the first to be cast in the upcoming drama, set in 19th century New York, about a rugged young Irish cop who has to navigate the unruly and sometimes violent currents of his immigrant neighborhood, while simultaneously interacting with uptown Manhattan high society and the emerging black community in Harlem. She'll play the man's wife. Tom Fontana and Will Rokos are behind the 10-episode series, from Cineflix Studios. Barry Levinson and Christina Wayne also serve as executive producers. (Deadline.com)HEMLOCK GROVE (Netflix, New!) - Feature helmer Eli Roth ("Hostel") is on track for a 13-episode order from the digital distributor for a new drama based on Brian McGreevy's upcoming werewolf novel of the same name, which "re-imagines everything it means to be a monster as reflected in the struggle to be human." Said effort is set up at Gaumont International Television with McGreevy and Lee Shipman penning the script and executive produce alongside Roth. Strike Entertainment's Eric Newman will also serve as a producer and Mad Hatter Entertainment's Michael Connolly as a co-executive producer. (Deadline.com)RUBY (Style) - The cable channel has passed on ordering a fifth season of its veteran reality series. "We thank Ruby for sharing her inspirational journey with the Style viewers, and we look forward to her serving as a 'Fight with Style' Ambassador in the fight against obesity," the network said in a statement. Season four, which ran this past spring, opened to 473,000 viewers. (EW.com)UNTITLED DAN FOGELMAN PROJECT (ABC) - Jami Gertz, Simon Templeman, Toks Olagundoye and Tim Jo are the first to be cast in the comedy pilot, about "a family that moves into a highly desirable gated community in New Jersey only to discover that the entire neighborhood is made up of aliens disguised as humans." Gertz is on board as Debbie Weaver, the matriarch of the human family; with Templeman as Wilt Chamberlain, the leader of the aliens; Olagundoye as Jackie Joyner Kersee, the matriarch of the lead alien family; and Jo as Joe Montana, son of the alien family. Chris Koch is directing the ABC Studios-based half-hour from a script by Dan Fogelman, which they'll also executive produce alongside Kapital Entertainment's Aaron Kaplan. (Deadline.com)UNTITLED JEFF EASTIN PROJECT (USA) - Manny Montana ("The Chicago Code") is the latest addition to the Jeff Eastin-penned drama pilot, about "four agents from various federal and local agencies (DEA, FBI, LAPD) who live at a former ganglord's mansion-turned-safe house for undercover agents in Southern California." He'll round out the quartet - which also includes Aaron Tveit, Brandon Jay McLaren and Vanessa Ferlito - as an undercover FBI agent. Fox Television Studios is producing. (Deadline.com)VEGA VS. VEGA (The CW, New!) - Yahlin Chang ("Pan Am") has snagged a script order from the netlet for a new drama about "a young, successful lawyer who suddenly finds herself forced to go into practice with her mother, a pioneering female attorney with whom she has a love/hate relationship." She'll write and executive produce the hour for Warner Bros. Television alongside George W. Perkins, Sunta Izzicupo and UnbeliEVA-ble Entertainment's Eva Longoria with Elizabeth Bradley serving as a producer. (Variety.com)AND IN OTHER NEWS... - Daryl Sabara and Hannah Marks are set as Hanson and Gracie in an upcoming "Hansel and Gretel"-themed episode of NBC's "Grimm"(EW.com); Ed Asner will reunite with his "Mary Tyler Moore Show" co-star Betty White on "Hot in Cleveland" as the president of the an old-money country club who has a long history with White's Elka (EW.com); Mark Moses is bound for AMC's "The Killing" in an eight-episode arc as a new detective who joins the Seattle police department (THR.com); Diane Farr, Bonnie Somerville, Kathryn Joosten and James Frain will all visit "The Mentalist" in a February sweeps episode about a murder at a small winery (TVLine.com); plus Jennifer Beals has booked a two-episode arc on "Castle" as "a smart, commanding and sexy CIA operative" who has a complicated history with Nathan Fillion's title character (TVGuide.com).