[12/10/04 - 12:00 AM]
Development Update: December 9-10
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 pilots and other projects in development? Be sure to check out our detailed production chart listings by clicking here.

THE 4,400 (USA) - USA's sister channel Sci Fi will rebroadcast the show's first season over the course of three nights from Tuesday, February 22 to Thursday, February 24. Two episodes will air each night at 9:00/8:00c and 10:00/9:00c with encores at 1:00 and 2:00 a.m. eastern.

ELVIS (CBS) - Randy Quaid ("The Brotherhood of Poland, N.H.") has signed on to play Col. Tom Parker, Elvis' infamous manager, in the Eye's upcoming four-hour mini-series from Jaffe/Braunstein Films. The project, which is executive produced by Robert Greenblatt and David Janollari ("Six Feet Under") and Howard Braunstein and Michael Jaffe ("10.5"), is the first small screen effort to use master recordings of some of Elvis Presley's biggest hits. Production is set to begin next month on the mini-series with additional casting announcements expected in the next few weeks.

GASTINEAU GIRLS (E!) - The cable channel has committed to 10 episodes of the reality series, which revolves around the real-life mother and daughter team of Lisa and Brittny Gastineau as they search for true love across the country. The pair are the ex-wife and daughter, respectively, of New York Jets football player Mark Gastineau. True Entertainment is behind the project, which was originally announced by the company four months ago (read the story), with Steven Weinstock and Glenda Hersh executive producing. "Girls" bows Tuesday, February 1 on the network.

GLOBAL FREQUENCY (The WB) - J. Michael Straczynski ("Babylon 5") revealed in the "rec.arts.sf.tv.babylon5.moderated" newsgroup earlier this week that he had been in talks to come aboard the drama as an executive producer should it have gone to series: "I'd met with the people involved, been approved by the network, went by to meet Warren [Ellis] during filming in Vancouver, who seemed like a very nice sort, and was waiting for the next round of serious conversations... but the show has not been picked up by WB. I know they're shopping it elsewhere, so we'll see, but for now, at least, that's that. (I have to say, by the way, that the pilot script is probably the smartest script I've ever read. It could really be one hell of a series.)" To read the complete post click here.

LAGUNA BEACH: THE REAL ORANGE COUNTY (MTV) - MTV is moving forward with a second season of the reality series, which closed its inaugural season on Tuesday to the tune of nearly 3 million viewers. Overall, "Laguna" averaged 2.2 million viewers during its 11-episode run and ranked among the top five series on basic cable among viewers 12-34. Production on the new season, which will pick up with several cast members returning for their senior year, is set to begin this month for a summer 2005 launch. In addition, a DVD of the show's first season is on track to be released in conjunction with the new season. Liz Gateley, Tony DiSanto and Gary Auerbach are the executive producers.

THE OTHER MALL (FOX, New!) - Director Danny Salles ("My Big Fat Obnoxious Fiance") and actors David Hornsby ("Six Feet Under") and Lance Krall ("The Downer Channel") have scored a pilot presentation order for a new Christopher Guest-esque comedy set at an aging Midwest shopping mall. Said project will then track a young go-getter (Hornsby) who's put in charge of the mall after it's sold to a big corporation and must deal with its many wacky retailers. Krall's role wasn't specified in the pilot, which also featured Ralph Garman. The trio, all of whom worked on Spike TV's "The Joe Schmo Show," co-created the series and took the extra step of shooting a short presentation tape of their own to pitch the networks with. FOX has commissioned a new pilot presentation as well as a full pilot script which will feature a few minor changes as well as upgraded production values. Susan Dickes ("Just Shoot Me") has also been brought on as an executive producer of the project, which is set up at Regency Television.

OVER THERE (FX) - Erik Palladino ("ER") and newcomer Josh Henderson are set to topline the drama pilot, about a sergeant and his platoon stationed in Iraq and the lives of their families at home. Also joining the show's ensemble cast are Keith Robinson ("American Dreams"), Luke MacFarlane ("Kinsey"), Sticky Fingaz ("The Shield"), Lizette Carrion ("N.Y.P.D. Blue"), Nicki Aycox ("Ed") and Sprague Grayden ("Joan of Arcadia"). Steven Bochco and Chris Gerolmo are behind the project, which is set up at the former's Steven Bochco Productions and 20th Century Fox Television. Production is set to begin in mid-January with Gerolmo directing from a script by the pair.

SHE GETS WHAT SHE WANTS (ABC Family) - The cable channel's latest telefilm, which stars Piper Perabo and Michael McKean, has been scheduled to air Sunday, January 9 at 8:00/7:00c.

TWO BLIND MIKES (Showtime, New!) - "Eyes Wide Shut" co-writer Frederic Raphael is spearheading a new telefilm at the cable channel about the doomed relationship between Disney executives Michael Eisner and Mike Ovitz. The pair's relationship has been the focus of a recent courtroom battle between Disney shareholders and its board of directors over the alleged lack of sufficient consideration of the financial impact involved with the hiring and firing Ovitz. Richard Waltzer ("Coast to Coast") and Jerry Leider ("Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen") are on board to executive produce along with Raphael.

UNTITLED WAYNE BRADY PROJECT (NBC, New!) - Wayne Brady is making the move to scripted comedy as the comedian/talk show host is set to topline a new project for 20th Century Fox Television and Brad Grey Television. NBC has given a script commitment with significant penalty attached to the project, which stars Brady as an ethics-challenged personal injury lawyer. Saladin Patterson ("Frasier") is on board to write and executive produce the project along with Brady and his manager Bernie Brillstein.

Sources: Variety, The Hollywood Reporter, Reuters

  [december 2004]  

· 10.5 (NBC)
· 4400, THE (USA)
· ED (NBC)
· ER (NBC)

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