[05/01/14 - 11:28 PM]
Development Update: Thursday, May 1
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!

BESSIE (HBO, New!) - Queen Latifah is set to play iconic blues singer Bessie Smith in a proposed biopic at the pay channel, which "chronicles how Smith overcame her tempestuous personal life to become one of the most acclaimed performing and recording artists of the 1920s and '30s, earning the nickname Empress of the Blues." Dee Rees (Pariah) wrote and will direct the project, which is based on the biography "Bessie" written by Chris Albertson. Latifah will also executive produce alongside Shakim Compere, Lili Fini Zanuck, Richard Zanuck, Shelby Stone and Randi Michel with Hallie Foote as co-executive producer and Ron Schmidt as producer for Flavor Unit Entertainment and the Zanuck Company. (Deadline.com)

DIG (USA/UCP; W: Gideon Raff & Tim Kring; D: S.J. Clarkson) - Regina Taylor and Omar Metwally have both booked roles on the event series, about an FBI agent stationed in Jerusalem (Jason Isaacs) who, while investigating a murder of a young female archeologist, uncovers a conspiracy 2000 years in the making. She'll play Ruth Ridell, "the U.S. ambassador to Israel who has little time for problems that Peter creates for her with the local authorities"; while he's set as Yussef Khalid, "an American who disappeared after being accused of murder." Alison Loren Sudol, Anne Heche and David Costabile also star. (THR.com)

HOW AND WHY (FX/FXP; W/D: Charlie Kaufman) - Marcella Plunkett (Dark Touch) has joined the cast of the comedy pilot, the story of a man, Goodman Hesselman (John Hawkes), who can explain how and why a nuclear reactor works, but is clueless about life. She'll play two roles, "Cynthia, a photographer at Goodman's new TV station in Murfreesboro, and Magda, Mendelson's (Michael Cera) secretary, whose day is spent in a cramped, tiny room, not much bigger than her desk." Sally Hawkins and Catherine Keener also star. (Deadline.com)

UNSTRUNG (ABC Family; W: Emily Whitesell; D: TBA) - Chanel Celaya and Sofia Mattsson are the first to be cast in the drama pilot, which explores the sexy, cutthroat, and emotional stakes of the professional world tour of tennis as brother and sister Luke and Ellie Holt compete to move up the ranks. Celaya will play the aforementioned Ellie, "an athletic, spunky beauty with great talent but not-so-great discipline"; with Mattsson as Ninotchka Andropov, "a diva ranked 3rd in the world but first in looks." (THR.com)

UNTITLED ANDY ST. CLAIR/PAUL O'TOOLE PROJECT (MTV, New!) - Andy St. Clair and Paul O'Toole have scored a cast-contingent pilot order from the network for a new comedy about "22-year-old Andy, who after he catches his girlfriend cheating, accidentally rear-ends a celebrity. Taking pity on Andy, the celebrity takes it upon himself to teach him how to man up." Odenkirk Provissiero's Marc Provissiero will executive produce the project with St. Clair and O'Toole serving as co-executive producers. (THR.com)

AND IN OTHER NEWS... - Brian Percival has bowed out of helming the AMC drama pilot "Knifeman" for personal reasons (Deadline.com); "Nashville" executive producer R.J. Cutler has signed a first-look development deal with CBS Television Studios for scripted projects, ending his run at Lionsgate Television (Deadline.com); Kristin Chenoweth has been cast as Maleficent in Disney Channel's "Descendants," "who butts horns with her daughter Mal (Dove Cameron)" (Deadline.com); Nestor Serrano and Brit Morgan will both recur on the new season of "Graceland" (TVLine.com); and Tyler Hilton is bound for the upcoming CBS drama "Extant" as "the chief coder on the Humanichs Project at the center of the story" (THR.com).

  [october 2016]  


[10/20/16 - 12:27 PM]
BBC America Debuts New Original Co-Production "Undercover" with Two-Night Premiere Event in November
Look for said event on Wednesday, November 16 and Thursday, November 17 at 8:00/7:00c.

[10/20/16 - 11:47 AM]
TLC's "Little People, Big World" Returns with the Roloffs Facing a Whole New Reality
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[10/20/16 - 11:45 AM]
GSN Adds "Wheel of Fortune" to Daytime Schedule Beginning Monday, October 24
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[10/20/16 - 11:14 AM]
A&E Network to Premiere New Season of Hit Series "Wahlburgers" November 16
Look for back-to-back episodes on Wednesday nights beginning at 10:00/9:00c.

[10/20/16 - 11:04 AM]
Bravo Media's "Top Chef" Announces 8 Returning Chefs Vying for Redemption on the New Season Premiering Thursday, Dec. 1 at 10PM ET/PT
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[10/20/16 - 09:31 AM]
CBS Orders "Salvation," A New Event Series for Broadcast in Summer 2017
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[10/20/16 - 09:07 AM]
Rise and 'Shine... Discovery's "Moonshiners" Returns Tuesday, November 15 at 9PM ET/PT
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[10/20/16 - 08:48 AM]
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[10/20/16 - 08:33 AM]
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[10/20/16 - 07:35 AM]
OneRepublic to Rock Rotterdam at the 2016 MTV EMAs
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[10/20/16 - 07:14 AM]
"RuPaul's Drag Race All Stars" Season 2 Slays Records as the Most Viewed Season of a Logo Original Series to Date
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[10/20/16 - 07:05 AM]
Video: Netflix's "The Crown" Personal Relationships Trailer Reveals the Impact of Being Queen
"The Crown" launches exclusively on Netflix on Friday, November 4, everywhere that Netflix is available.

[10/20/16 - 06:18 AM]
SundanceTV to Feature Iconic TV Classics in New Daytime Programming Block
Said lineup will feature "M*A*S*H," "All In The Family," "The Bob Newhart Show," "The Mary Tyler Moore Show," and "The Andy Griffith Show."

[10/20/16 - 05:31 AM]
Netflix Announces Acclaimed Film Barry Will Be Available on December 16
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[10/20/16 - 03:01 AM]
Production Begins on "A Worthwhile Life," Hallmark Channel New, Original Movie Starring Adrian Grenier and Amy Smart
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