[06/30/03 - 12:00 AM]
Development Update: June 30
By The Futon Critic Staff (TFC)

CHICAGO (thefutoncritic.com) -- The latest development news, culled from recent wire reports:

BIG BROTHER 4 (CBS) - The Eye has revealed the latest twists and turns for the upcoming season of the reality series. First off, the number of contestants has been raised from 12 to 13 (seven men, six women). Secondly, in a move not known by the players until they actually meet on July 8, eight of the contestants will actually be former flames of each other (four pairs of ex-lovers). Producers hope the twist, deemed the "X Factor," will help create some additional drama to the proceedings. Finally, producers have added a second house in which voted off contestants will be sequestered, beginning with the fifth victim. The idea is to keep the seven players who will ultimately pick the show's winner from being swayed by the actual broadcast of the show. They'll only be allowed to see certain portions of the series but not segments from the "Diary Room" in which contestants reveal secrets about their respective strategies.

COLD CASE (CBS) - Shaun Cassidy ("The Agency") has signed a two-year overall development deal with Warner Bros. Television. As part of the pact, he'll come on board the Eye's upcoming drama as an executive producer. Cassidy will remain exclusive to "Case" for the series' first season after which he'll be free to develop new series for the studio as well as work on its other existing properties.

MI-5 (A&E, New!) - The cable channel has scheduled its co-production with the BBC, a new drama about the undercover world of the British Security Service MI-5. The series, which ran under the title "Spooks" in the United Kingdom, will begin with a re-edited, two-episode TV movie on Tuesday, July 22 at 9:00/8:00c (subsequent episodes air at 10:00/9:00c), followed by a weekly run of 14 episodes. Matthew Macfadyen ("Almost Strangers"), Keeley Hawes ("Tipping The Velvet"), David Oyelowo ("A Sound of Thunder"), Peter Firth ("Amistad," "Hunt For Red October") and Jenny Agutter ("A Respectable Trade") topline the drama. Both seasons of the British series will run as part of the stateside "first season."

SCRUBS (NBC) - Scott Foley ("A.U.S.A.") has signed on to appear in six episodes of the comedy's upcoming third season. He'll reprise his role as a fumbling, insecure patient who developed a crush on his doctor, Elliot Reid (Sarah Chalke).

Sources: Variety, The Hollywood Reporter, Reuters

  [june 2003]  


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