2/27 development news

TV Arts

from the futon critic

52 FIGHTS (ABC) - Christine Taylor (Sally Sitwell on "Arrested
Development") has joined the cast of the comedy pilot, about a newly
married couple's transition from dating to marriage. Her involvement
however doesn't life the cast contingency off the pilot's production.
Alex Taub is behind the Touchstone Television-based half-hour, which
is also executive produced by Brillstein-Grey Television's Peter

BEYOND (FOX) - Feature helmer Breck Eisner ("Sahara") has signed on to
direct the drama pilot, about the efforts of a group of scientists at
NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory to win the next space race, following
an unspecified global crisis. Jonah Lotan and Rachael Stirling star in
the 20th Century Fox Television/Imagine Television-based hour, which
comes from creator David Self and fellow executive producers Brian
Grazer and David Nevins.

DAY BREAK (ABC) - Adam Baldwin (Danny Love on "The Inside") is the
latest addition to the pilot, a serialized drama about a cop (Taye
Diggs) on the run after being framed for murder. He'll play Chad
Shelton, a grizzled police veteran, in the Touchstone Television-based
hour, which Rob S. Bowman is directing from a script by Paul
Zbyszewski. Moon Bloodgood, Meta Golding and Ramon Rodriguez also star
while Matthew Gross also serves as an executive producer.

THE GAME (The CW) - Tia Mowry (Kim on "Love, Inc.") has joined the
cast of the comedy pilot, where she'll take over the role of Melanie
from Cynthia Addai-Robinson. No reason was given for the change. Coby
Bell, Hosea Chanchez, Aldis Hodge and Wendy Raquel Robinson also star
in the CBS Paramount Network Television/Grammnet Productions-based
half-hour, about a group of women involved with professional football
players. Salim Akil is directing from a script by Mara Brock Akil, who
will also executive produce along with Dan Dugan, Kelsey Grammer and
Steve Stark. 

A HOUSE DIVIDED (ABC) - Shannon Lucio (Lindsay Gardner on "The O.C.")
is the first to be cast in the drama pilot, about the escalating
conflict between a Midwest farming community and the U.S. government
that sows the seeds of what will be the next Civil War in present-day
America. Andrew David Chapman is behind the hour, which also comes
from executive producer Mark Gordon, director Michael Rymer and
Touchstone Television.

IN CASE OF EMERGENCY (ABC) - Jonathan Silverman (Jonathan Eliot on
"The Single Guy") has been tapped for the lead role in the comedy
pilot, about four childhood friends who realize their lives didn't
turn out as expected. He'll play Harry Kennison in the Touchstone
Television-based half-hour, who's described in the casting notice as:
"Mid-late 30s, an attractive, slightly neurotic, nervous, lovable guy
(he was kicked off his high school debate team "for continually
debating himself"), Harry's a divorced father of a six year old boy,
whose promise as a writer has devolved into a career writing Hallmark
greeting cards. Fully aware that he's never become the person he
dreamed of being, Harry is nevertheless a fundamentally decent guy:
bright, caring, pragmatic, understanding. Terribly embarrassed when he
goes to a "massage parlor" for the first time only to find his hooker
is the former Valedictorian of his high school, Harry discovers
firsthand that two other high school friends are also having a tough
night and a tough time dealing with life: Sherman, a renowned diet
doctor who's just hijacked an Entenmann's pastry truck, and Jason,
who's unsuccessfully attempted suicide because of a corporate scandal.
Harry's the guy they call "in case of emergency," but Harry has to
wonder who he can call." Greg Germann and Kelly Hu also star in the
project, which Jon Favreau is directing from a script by Howard J.
Morris. Emile Levisetti also serves as an executive produce via
Bushwacker Productions.

INSEPARABLE (CBS) - Coby Ryan McLaughlin (Todd on "Undressed") and
Krysten Ritter (Gia Goodman on "Veronica Mars") have both joined the
cast of the comedy pilot, about a young couple who have to deal with
the wife's extended family. They'll play Brian and Melinda
respectively in the NBC Universal Television-based half-hour, which
also stars Rachel Boston. McLaughlin also stars in the lead role of
the FOX comedy pilot "Genetically Challenged." In addition, Pamela
Fryman ("How I Met Your Mother") has signed on to direct the project
from a script by creators Joe Port and Joe Wiseman. David Guarascio
and Moses Port also serve as executive producers.

OCTOBER ROAD (ABC) - Jay Paulson ("Imaginary Heroes") is the latest to
join the cast of the drama pilot, about a Manhattan-based screenwriter
who moves back home to his small New England hometown, where he
becomes a teacher and must readjust to life with his family and old
friends. No details were given about his character. Brad Henke, Evan
Jones and Geoff Stults also star in the Touchstone Television-based
hour, which Gary Fleder is directing from a script by executive
producers Josh Appelbaum, Andre Nemec and Scott Rosenberg.

OUR THIRTIES (ABC) - Rashida Jones (Carla Merced on "Wanted") has
joined the cast of the comedy pilot, about a group of San
Francisco-based thirtysomethings dealing with adulthood. Rachel
Blanchard, Sarah Lafleur, Heather Stephens and Dondre T. Whitfield
also star in the Touchstone Television-based project, which comes from
creator Dave Walpert and executive producer Warren Littlefield. Dennie
Gordon directs.

PRODIGY/BULLY (NBC, New!) - Hank Perlman ("New Jersey Turnpikes") and
Steve Elliott have scored a pilot order at the Peacock for a new
single-camera comedy about a family whose genius son uses his smarts
to get what he wants. The project is set up at John Wells's Warner
Bros. Television-based banner with Wells, Paris Barclay ("The West
Wing") and Jon Feldman ("Reunion") serving as executive producers.
Perlman will also direct from a script he co-wrote with Elliott.

RUNAWAY (The CW, New!) - Chad Hodge ("Tru Calling") has landed a pilot
commitment from the CW for a new drama about a family who become
fugitives in order to prove the innocence of the family's patriarch -
who's convicted of murder. The project, which was originally developed
by UPN, is set up at Darren Star's Sony Pictures Television-based
banner with Hodge writing and executive producing along with Star and
Ed Zuckerman. 

THE SINGLES TABLE (NBC) - Adam Bernstein ("Scrubs") has signed on to
direct the single-camera comedy pilot, about five single people who
meet at a wedding and develop bonds. Bill Martin and Mike Schiff are
behind the project, which is set up at 20th Century Fox Television.

SOUTHERN COMFORT (FOX) - Madeleine Stowe (CBS's "Saving Milly") has
been tapped for the lead role in the drama pilot, about the wife of a
mob boss who's thrust into running their Biloxi, Mississippi-based
organized crime operation. She'll play Charlotte, said woman, in the
project, which comes from 20th Century Fox Television and creators Joe
Gayton and Tony Gayton. Greg Yaitanes directs.

'TIL DEATH (FOX) - Brad Garrett (Robert Barone in "Everybody Loves
Raymond") and James Burrows ("Will & Grace") are both in talks to sign
onto the comedy pilot, about a just-married young couple who move in
next door to a long-married couple. Garrett would play the
long-married husband while Burrows would direct the Sony Pictures
Television-based half-hour, which comes from creators Josh Goldsmith
and Cathy Yuspa. Eddie Kaye Thomas also stars.

WOMEN IN LAW (ABC) - Regina King ("Miss Congeniality 2: Armed and
Fabulous") is in talks and Garcelle Beauvais-Nilon (Nora Gage on
"Eyes") and Jill Ritchie ("Herbie: Fully Loaded") are set to join the
cast of the drama pilot, about a group of women working at a law firm.
The trio would join the previously cast Kelli Williams in the Sony
Pictures Television-based hour, which comes from creators Steven Banks
and Claudia Grazioso. Carl Beverly and Sarah Timberman of 25C
Productions also serve as executive producers on the project, which
Robert Luketic is directing.

Sources: Variety, The Hollywood Reporter, Reuters