[03/24/05 - 12:00 AM]
Development Update: March 24
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 newly revamped "Series in Development" charts. Visitors can now filter our listings by network, genre and even development stage (ordered to pilot, cast-contingent, script, etc.). It's updated every day!

3 LBS. (CBS) - Mary Lou ("Unfabulous") has joined the cast of the pilot, a medical drama revolving around a group of brain surgeons in Los Angeles. She'll play Charlotte Hanson, the daughter of Dylan McDermott's character in the Paramount Network Television-based project, which also stars Mark Feuerstein and Reiko Aylesworth. Barry Levinson is directing the pilot from a script by Peter Ocko with the pair also executive producing alongside Paul Stupin and Tom Fontana.

ALL IN (NBC) - Geoff Pierson ("24") has joined the cast of the comedy pilot, about a single mother (Janeane Garofalo) of three in Las Vegas who earns a living as a professional poker player. He'll play the father of Garofalo's character in the project, which comes from creator Jack Burditt, Lisa Kudrow & Dan Bucatinsky's Is or Isn't Entertainment and Warner Bros. Television.

DA VINCI'S INQUEST (Syndication) - Program Partners has cleared the veteran Canadian drama on stations covering 70% of the U.S. for a fall 2005 debut. Among those stations signing on (each for two years, for no cash in exchange for seven minutes of ad time for national sales by Program Partners) are WCBS New York, KCBS Los Angeles, KYW Philadelphia, KPIX San Francisco, WBZ Boston, WSB Atlanta, WWJ Detroit, KOMO Seattle, WFOR Miami and WCCO Minneapolis. It's understood two episodes will run each weekend, with many pairing the series with "C.S.I.: Crime Scene Investigation's" syndicated run after the late news on Saturday and Sunday nights. Once full clearance is secured, the company plans to pitch a weekday run to various cable channels, including Spike TV, USA, A&E and TNT.

DON'T ASK (FOX) - Tim Doyle ("Jake in Progress") has joined the comedy pilot, about a married father (Alan Ruck) of two teenage sons who announces he's gay and in love with his wife's (Kristen Johnston) shrink, as an executive producer. He'll serve alongside fellow executive producers Nicky Silver, Sandy Grushow and Paul Shapiro. Lev Spiro is directing the pilot, which is set up at 20th Century Fox Television and Grushow's Phase Two banner.

JOINT CUSTODY (ABC) - Kurt Fuller ("Alias") has joined the cast of the comedy pilot, where he'll play Walter, the husband of Marilu Henner's character. The 20th Century Fox Television-based project revolves around a recent college graduate (Nick D'Agosto) who returns home and find his parents (Henner, Fuller) divorced and must now take care of his eccentric family. Will McCormack also stars in the pilot, which comes from executive producers Joel Stein, Regina Stewart and Shawn Levy.

LOST (ABC) - Emmy-nominated writer/producer Craig Wright ("Six Feet Under") has inked a two-year overall deal with Touchstone Television. The seven-figure pact calls for him to serve as a supervising producer on "Lost" next season as well as develop new drama projects for the studio. In addition to his TV work, Wright was nominated for the 2005 Helen Hayes/Charles MacArthur Best New Play Awards for his two plays, "Grace" and "Melissa Arctic."

NEIGHBORS (A.K.A. UNTITLED MICHAEL CALEO PROJECT) (ABC) - Melinda McGraw ("Center of the Universe") has joined the cast of the comedy pilot, which apparently has reverted back to its original title of "Neighbors." She'll reportedly play the wife of Brian Benben's character in the project, about dueling neighbors (Lenny Clarke, Benben) who have to contend with one another when their wives (Ann Cusack, McGraw) and kids become friends. Sarah Steele also stars in the Touchstone Television-based project, which comes from executive producers Michael Caleo and Matt Gross.

THICK & THIN (NBC) - Martin Mull ("The Ellen Show") has joined the cast of the comedy pilot, about a former fat woman (Jessica Capshaw) who struggles with her new image. No details were given about Mull's character in the project, which comes from creator Paula Pell, Lorne Michaels & Joann Alfano's Broadway Video and NBC Universal Television.

UNTITLED DAVID DIAMOND/DAVID WEISSMAN PROJECT (CBS) - John Leguizamo ("Assault on Precinct 13") has been tapped to star in the drama pilot, about the lives of a sports agent (Leguizamo) and his wife, a magazine editor, as they juggle parenthood. In addition, he (along with his manager, Jeff Golenberg) will serve as producers on the project, which comes from 20th Century Fox Television, Paramount Network Television and Ratner Entertainment. Brett Ratner is directing the pilot from a script by creators/executive producers David Diamond and David Weissman ("The Family Man").

UNTITLED JERRY BRUCKHEIMER/MARSH MCCALL PROJECT (CBS) - Jonathan Silverman ("The Single Guy") has been cast in one of the lead roles in the comedy pilot, about three adult siblings who rally to support their eccentric professor father. He'll play one of said siblings in the project, which comes from creator/executive producer Marsh McCall ("Just Shoot Me") and is set up at Warner Bros. Television and Jerry Bruckheimer and Jonathan Littman's Bruckheimer Television.

UNTITLED JOSH GOLDSMITH/CATHY YUSPA PROJECT (CBS) - Newcomer Darren Ritchie has joined the cast of the comedy pilot, about a young New York couple (Tiffani Thiessen, Ritchie) adjusting to life as new parents. No other details were given about his character in the project, which comes from Sony Pictures Television, Paramount Network Television and creators Josh Goldsmith and Cathy Yuspa ("The King of Queens").

Sources: Variety, The Hollywood Reporter, Reuters

  [march 2005]  

· 24 (FOX)
· 3 LBS. (CBS)

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