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[03/02/16 - 11:44 PM]
Development Update: Wednesday, March 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!


ANASTASIA (Freeform, New!) - Daniel Mackey and Seth Fisher have sold a potential drama to the cable channel that "takes on one of the biggest mysteries of the early 20th century, that of Grand Duchess Anastasia Nikolaevna Romanova of Russia." Said effort will "follow Anastasia after her escape from Communist Russia. While her sights are set on avenging the death of her family, she joins forces with an elite espionage agency that's working to prevent another world war. By day, Anastasia is a former princess trying to blend into a normal life, but by night, she's acting as the world's first female spy, influencing some of the biggest events in the first part of the 20th century." Wonderland Sound and Vision's McG and Mary Viola will also serve as executive producers for ABC Signature. (Deadline.com)


CHUNK & BEAN (ABC/ABCS; W: Brian Donovan & Ed Herro; D: Chris Koch) - Cyrus Arnold and Simon Belz have scored the title roles on the single-camera comedy pilot, about the unlikely friendship of two misfits, Chunk and Bean, who benefit from having two very different sets of parents living next door to each other. Additionally, Sophia Gonzalez has been cast as Sarah Diamond, "the pretty, snarky high school guidance counselor who is Chunk and Bean's best hope at turning their teenage weirdo streak around. She loves her job, but she also hates it, and has to work at Chili's on weekends to pay rent." (Deadline.com)


COLONY (The CW/CTS; W: Doris Egan; D: TBA) - Neal Bledsoe ("The Mysteries of Laura") is the latest to be cast in the drama pilot, a thriller which follows a team of explorers who arrive on Mars to join the first human colony on the planet, only to discover that their predecessors have vanished. He's on board as David Lewis, "handsome, charming, brilliant and resolute, the clear first choice for the first colonizing expedition to Mars. Lewis is in charge of selecting the best to follow him to the Red Planet and winds up falling in love with one of them in the process." (Deadline.com)


DEATH OF EVA SOFIA VALDEZ, THE (ABC/ABCS; W: Charise Castro Smith; D: TBA) - Christina Pickles and Christian Ochoa have both boarded the pilot, a sexy revenge drama with a supernatural twist about a Cuban-American family on the rise as they navigate multiple business ventures in Miami, familial rivalries and dark secrets from the past that come back to haunt them. The former will play Astrid, "Blair's mother, a 90 pound ballbuster in a Chanel suit whose family has ruled the Miami roost for decades"; with the latter as Nicolas Valdez, "Eva Sofia's youngest son, a handsome lawyer and effortless prince who is his mother's undeniable favorite." (Deadline.com)


DREW (CBS/CTS; W: Joan Rater & Tony Phelan; D: James Strong) - Rob McClure (Noises Off) is the latest addition to the drama pilot, a contemporary take on Edward Stratemeyer's iconic literary character Nancy Drew (Sarah Shahi), now in her 30s, who is a detective for the NYPD where she investigates and solves crimes using her uncanny observational skills, all while navigating the complexities of life in a modern world. He's set as Dan Bennett, "a photographer and family man who Nancy investigated for murder." (Deadline.com)


EXORCIST, THE (FOX/20th; W: Jeremy Slater; D: Rupert Wyatt) - Alfonso Herrera and Ben Daniels have been tapped for the lead roles on the drama pilot, a propulsive, serialized psychological thriller following two very different men - Father Tomas Ortega (Herrera) and Father Marcus Lang (Daniels) - tackling one family's case of horrifying demonic possession, and confronting the face of true evil. The former is billed as "the warm, selfless and compassionate leader of a small but hearty little church" with the latter as "the intense holy warrior carrying out an occupation that the church no longer acknowledges in public." (Deadline.com)


FOUR STARS (CBS/CTS; W: Becky Mode; D: R.J. Cutler) - Ashley Zukerman ("Manhattan") has signed onto the drama pilot, about two powerful rival families in the military community of Tampa, Florida who make decisions at the highest levels in the interest of national security. He'll play Danny, "the son of four-star Special Ops legend General Buckley, who has all of his father's swagger and rough edges and none of the internal censor." (Deadline.com)


INTERESTINGS, THE (Amazon/TriStar; W: Lyn Greene & Richard Levine; D: Mike Newell) - Newcomer Sasha Frolova has booked a role on the drama pilot, based on Meg Wolitzer's bestselling book about a group of friends who meet at an arts camp when they're 15 in 1974 and their relationships throughout the next three decades. She'll play the young version of Jessica Collins' character, Cathy Kiplinger. (Variety.com)


MICK, THE (FOX/20th; W: Dave Chernin & John Chernin; D: Randall Einhorn) - Kaitlin Olson ("It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia") has been tapped as the title character in the single-camera comedy pilot, about Mickey, a hard-living, foul mouthed woman who moves to affluent Greenwich, CT to raise the spoiled kids of her wealthy sister who has fled the country to avoid a federal indictment. The actress, who will still continue on "Sunny," will also serve as a co-executive producer on the pilot. (Deadline.com)


NOTORIOUS (ABC/ABCS/Sony; W: Allie Hagan & Josh Berman; D: Michael Engler) - Piper Perabo ("Covert Affairs") has scored the female lead on the drama pilot, which follows the professional and personal relationship between charismatic attorney Jake Gregorian (Daniel Sunjata) and powerhouse television producer Julia George as they attempt to control the media, the justice system, and ultimately - each other. She'll play the latter role. (Deadline.com)


ONE DAY AT A TIME (Netflix/Sony; W: Gloria Calderon Kellett & Mike Royce; D: Pamela Fryman) - Stephen Tobolowsky has joined the cast of the streaming service's reimagining of the Norman Lear classic, centering on a Cuban-American family. He'll play "Penelope's (Justina Machado) boss Dr. Berkowitz, the widowed lead doctor where she works and a potential love interest for Abuela (Rita Moreno). Penelope keeps his office in order and often his personal life, too, because he is a sweet disaster." (Deadline.com)


PLEASE DON'T GO (ABC/ABCS; W: Meaghan Oppenheimer; D: TBA) - Penelope Ann Miller ("American Crime") has been cast in the drama pilot, about the personal and professional life of Gemma, a ruthless divorce attorney in Dallas, which begins to unravel when her emotionally damaged, love-addicted sister resurfaces triggering self-destructive tendencies and exposing long-hidden family secrets. She's set as Elizabeth Hamilton, "the wife of a Texas oil billionaire who is seeking revenge after having been left for a woman 20 years younger than she." (Deadline.com)


PROTOTYPE (Syfy; W: Tony Basgallop; D: Juan Carlos Fresnadillo) - Jack Davenport ("Smash") is set to star in the drama pilot, about three unlikely cohorts who inadvertently stumble upon an invention that challenges the very nature of quantum physics - a discovery which in turn puts their lives in grave danger. He'll play "the now aging playboy and former Silicon Valley wunderkind, Edward "Eddy" Conway, who has retreated from the tech world to return to UCLA as a physics professor. Eddy's lack of self-control, be it with coeds or sports cars, has made him familiar with some unsavory characters, but his latest project might prove to be his most dangerous endeavor to date." (Deadline.com)


SECOND FATTEST HOUSEWIFE IN WESTPORT, THE (ABC/ABCS; W: Sarah Dunn; D: Ruben Fleischer) - Comedian Ali Wong has booked a role on the single-camera comedy pilot, about Katie (Katy Mixon), a (slightly) larger wife and mother raising her flawed family of three in a wealthy town filled with perfect wives and their perfect offspring. She'll play Doris, "a responsible and hands-on mother who cares about things like throwing large Easter egg hunts and sending out the right Christmas cards. She doesn't fit in with the Westport Mombots, but they consistently abuse her good nature when they need help of any kind." (Deadline.com)


SIX (History/A+E; W: David Broyles & William Broyles; D: Lesli Linka Glatter) - Christopher Backushas has signed onto the drama series, which follows a brotherhood of modern American warriors, Navy SEAL Team Six, the best of the best, whose 2014 mission to eliminate a Taliban leader in Afghanistan goes awry when they uncover a U.S. citizen working with the terrorists. He'll play Sean, "a photojournalist documenting the situation on the ground in Africa." (Deadline.com)


TAKEN (NBC/Universal; W: Alexander Cary; D: Alex Graves) - Michael Irby ("True Detective") is the latest addition to the Peacock's prequel to the Liam Neeson-led film franchise, about a retired CIA operative on a one-man mission to save his kidnapped daughter which would follow a young Bryan Mills (Clive Standen) before he marries and has a daughter. He's set as Sam, "a member of Bryan's OPCON (Operational Control) team of elite operatives who take care of America's national security emergencies on the ground. He's a bit of a nerd who revels in pushing people's buttons." (Deadline.com)


TIME (NBC/Sony; W: Eric Kripke & Shawn Ryan; D: Neil Marshall) - Paterson Joseph and Malcolm Barrett have both been cast in the drama pilot, about an unlikely trio traveling through time to battle unknown criminals in order to protect history as we know it. Joseph will play "entrepreneurial legend and dedicated eccentric Mason Lark, who runs Lark Industries. He's developed a time machine in secrecy, previously hidden from the government until now. Knowing the implications of leaving a time machine in the wrong hands, Lark helps guide the recovery team." Barrett then is set as Rufus Carlin, "a brilliant engineer." (Deadline.com)


TRAINING DAY (CBS/WBT; W: Will Beall; D: Danny Cannon) - Katrina Law ("Arrow") has scored a role on the drama pilot, a reimagining of the feature of the same name about an idealistic young African-American police officer, Kyle Craig (yet to be cast), who is appointed to an elite squad of the LAPD where he is partnered with seasoned, morally ambiguous detective Frank Rourke (Bill Paxton). She's set as Rebecca Lee, "an LAPD officer with the LAPD's Special Investigation Section (S.I.S.). She was rescued from human traffickers by Frank when she was 4 years old and looks up to him as the father she never had." (Deadline.com)


Y'ALL IN THE FAMILY (CBS/CTS; W: Stephnie Weir; D: James Burrows) - Lenora Crichlow ("A to Z") has scored a role on the multi-camera comedy pilot, set in Texas and centering on a conservative, small town family who is forced to reconcile their family values when they discover their children's lives are less than perfect. She'll play Anna, "a whip-smart young woman who served in Afghanistan with Billy (Nick Zano), the golden boy of his family who gets her pregnant." Additionally, James Burrows has signed on to direct the pilot. (Variety.com)


ZOOBIQUITY (FOX/20th; W: Jonathan Collier & Stephen Nathan; D: Kevin Bray) - Peter Facinelli and Kim Raver have both scored roles on the drama pilot, which follows the unlikely pairing of Dr. Kara Martins (Marsha Thomason), a successful, driven cardiologist, as she risks career suicide by teaming with Dr. Lucas Cort, a socially-challenged veterinarian who relates better to animals than people. Facinelli will play the latter with Raver as Dr. Julia Fowler, "the chief of medicine at Chicago Hospital." Additionally, Kevin Bray has likewise come aboard to direct the pilot. (Deadline.com)


AND IN OTHER NEWS... - Becky Hartman Edwards has been tapped as the showrunner of NBC's drama pilot "Cruel Intentions" (Deadline.com); Phillip Noyce is on track to direct multiple episodes of HBO's Sean Penn-led Andrew Jackson mini-series "American Lion" (Deadline.com); Kyle Bornheimer will recur on Hulu's "Casual" as a major love interest for Michaela Watkins's character while Britt Lower is set as "Alex's (Tommy Dewey) smart and put-together ex-girlfriend who re-enters his life engaged to a new fiancé" (Deadline.com, THR.com);

J.R. Ramirez is likewise bound for "Rosewood" as a "former NYPD homicide detective now finds himself working out of the basement of the police station, heading up the East Miami PD Cold Case division" (Deadline.com); Tia Mowry has scored an arc on "Mistresses" as "an important, quick, cutting-wit literary agent who signs Karen (Yunjin Kim)" (Deadline.com); Alcon Entertainment has acquired the TV rights to James Dean's children's picture book series "Pete the Cat" (Deadline.com); Sarah Hyland has been cast as Lisa Houseman in ABC's "Dirty Dancing" remake (Deadline.com); and nine-time NHL All Star Jeremy Roenick will appear as himself in an upcoming episode of "Bones" (TVInsider.com).






  [march 2016]  
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· A TO Z (NBC)
· AMERICAN CRIME (ABC)
· AMERICAN HOUSEWIFE (ABC)
· AMERICAN LION (HBO)
· ANASTASIA (FREEFORM)
· ARROW (CW)
· BONES (FOX)
· BROKEN (ABC)
· CASUAL (HULU)
· CHUNK & BEAN (ABC)
· COLONY (CW)
· COVERT AFFAIRS (USA)
· CRUEL INTENTIONS (NBC)
· DEATH OF EVA SOFIA VALDEZ, THE (ABC)
· DEVELOPMENT UPDATE (TFC)
· DIRTY DANCING (ABC)
· DREW (CBS)
· EXORCIST, THE (FOX)
· FOUR STARS (CBS)
· INTERESTINGS, THE (AMAZON)
· IT'S ALWAYS SUNNY IN PHILADELPHIA (FXX)
· MANHATTAN (WGN)
· MICK, THE (FOX)
· MISTRESSES (ABC)
· MYSTERIES OF LAURA, THE (NBC)
· NOTORIOUS (ABC)
· ONE DAY AT A TIME (NETFLIX)
· PROTOTYPE (SYFY)
· REAL GOOD PEOPLE (CBS)
· ROSEWOOD (FOX)
· SIX (HISTORY)
· SMASH (NBC)
· TAKEN (NBC)
· TIMELESS (NBC)
· TRAINING DAY (CBS)
· TRUE DETECTIVE (HBO)
· ZOOBIQUITY (FOX)





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