[07/21/03 - 12:00 AM]
Development Update: July 21
By The Futon Critic Staff (TFC)

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

CAVEDWELLER (Showtime) - Aidan Quinn, singer Jill Scott and Sherilyn Fenn will join Kyra Sedgwick and Kevin Bacon in the pay channel's latest original movie. The project, an adaptation of Dorothy Allison's novel of the same name, centers on Delia (Sedgwick), a woman who leaves her abusive husband (Quinn) and their two young daughters to join a rock group as a singer-songwriter and starts a new life. Grammy-nominated Scott will play another member of the rock group and a close friend of Delia's while Fenn will play Delia's hometown friend. Lisa Cholodenko is set to direct "Cavedweller" from a script by Anne Meredith. Sedgwick is executive producing the film with Orly Adelson and David Yudain.

HACK (CBS) - Matt Czuchry ("Young Americans") and Jacqueline Torres ("F/X: The Series") have joined the cast of the drama, both in recurring roles. Czuchry will play a young hustler who occasionally helps Mike Olshansky (David Morse) with his investigations while Torres will play Olshansky's next-door neighbor, a nun-turned-probation officer.

LAW & ORDER: CRIMINAL INTENT (NBC) - Samantha Buck ("Third Watch") is set to appear in six episodes of the series' upcoming third season. She'll take over for Kathryn Erbe as Vincent D'Onofrio's partner on the "Law & Order" spin-off while the actress takes time off to give birth to her second child. Erbe's pregnancy will be worked into the storyline and the actress has already filmed four episodes of the new season. Buck will then make her debut in the fifth episode this season as Det. Bishop, an ambitious detective who sees the Major Case Squad as a stepping stone in her career. It follows then that Erbe will return for the 11th installment this season.

THE RESTAURANT (NBC) - American Express, Mitsubishi Motors and Coors Brewing Co. will all be featured advertisers on the Peacock's latest reality series as their products will be integrated into the on-camera proceedings. The arrangement allowed NBC to produce the show at no cost and half of its ad revenue will go straight to the Peacock.

UNTITLED JOHN STAMOS PROJECT - Actor John Stamos ("Thieves") has inked a one-year development deal with Brad Gray TV and 20th Century Fox Television to star in and possibly produce a comedy show developed for him targeted for a fall 2004 launch.

UNTITLED RYAN SEACREST PROJECT (Syndication) - The "American Idol" host's upcoming syndicated talk show has been cleared in all the top markets, including New York, Los Angeles and Chicago, raising its overall clearance rate to 65% of the country. The project, from 20 Century Fox Television, is set for a January launch. The company also announced it has added Adam Freeman ("Total Request Live") as a co-executive producer on the series.

THE WINNING SEASON (A.K.A. HONUS AND ME) (TNT) - Matthew Modine ("Expert Witness") is set to play Honus Wager in the cable channel's latest partnership with Johnson & Johnson. Based on Dan Gutman's book "Honus and Me," the project centers on a 12-year-old baseball fan who finds a magic, mint-condition Honus Wagner baseball card. Through it, Wagner visits the boy in the present, and the two go back in time to the 1909 World Series. John Kent Harrison ("You Know My Name") is on board to direct the movie from a script by Steven L. Bloom. The project, from Rosemont Prods., Magna Global Entertainment and Viacom Prods., is scheduled to premiere in the spring.

UNTITLED WWII PACIFIC THEATRE PROJECT (HBO) - The "Band of Brothers" team of Steven Spielberg, Tom Hanks and Gary Goetzman are close to finalizing a deal for a new 10-hour mini-series about World War II's battles in the Pacific theater. The project, expected to have a $100 million plus budget, is still in the early stages of development at the network. Screenwriter Bruce McKenna, who wrote several installments of "Band of Brothers," is said to be interested in rejoining the "Brothers'" team. The new mini-series is not based on any existing source material but is expected to follow a company of soldiers through the island campaign, much like the European campaign in "Brothers."

Sources: Variety, The Hollywood Reporter, Reuters

  [july 2003]  


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