LOS ANGELES (thefutoncritic.com) -- The latest development news, culled from recent wire reports:
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THE 12TH MAN (FOX) - Relative newcomer Natalie Garza (a guest star on "Half & Half") has joined the cast of the comedy pilot, about a pro basketball player who's not quite good enough to get much court time and feels marginalized as a result. No details about her character were given in the 20th Century Fox Television-based half-hour, which Chris Koch is directing from a script by Dan Fogelman. Andrew Katz and Jodi Lyn O'Keefe also star.
BECOMING GLEN (FOX) - Lenny Clarke (Uncle Teddy on "Rescue Me") has booked the final principal role on the comedy pilot, about a successful fortysomething guy who looks back on his life 10 years before, when he was a slacker (Rob Corddry) living with his parents. He'll play Glen's father, Ron Abbott, who's described in the casting notice as follows: "A recovering alcoholic in his late 50s. We get the feeling one more day of Glen's slackerdom or his wife's daffy enabling will lead Ron to break into the nearest Jim Beam plant and drink every bottle in the factory. Though he's often curt and short with his wife, he's redeemed somewhat by his compassion for his OCD ridden and slacker son. Ron frequently has violent fantasies about things he'd like to hit and bludgeon his wife with, but we can tell instantly he'll probably never do that. Ironically, he's the better and more sane parent, and can see with crystal clarity how his wife's frenetic smothering is keeping his adult son in an eternal crib. Though Ron is a little Archie Bunker crusty, his love for his son warms him up and let's us see he's really benign and never dangerous." Keir Gilchrist, Julie Hagerty and Erinn Hayes also star in the 20th Century Fox Television-based half-hour, which Terry Hughes is directing from a script by executive producers Ricky Blitt and Seth MacFarlane.
ENEMIES (ABC) - Peter Facinelli (Jimmy on "Six Feet Under") is set to star opposite Jeffrey Donovan in the drama pilot, about best friends who grow up to be rivals - one an F.B.I. agent, the other a mob boss (Donovan). He'll play the former role of John Graham, who's detailed in the casting notice as: "30s. He's a born leader, highly intelligent, incorruptible and street savvy. A working class cop dressed in off-the-rack wash-and-wear, Graham struggles to make ends meet, but is dedicated to his job - possibly because he is still carrying a lot of emotional freight around from his councilman father's gangland murder some years back. He has major demons that he struggles with. The fact that Graham's brother-in-law, Mickey Callaway, is an up-and-coming mobster, doesn't help matters. In childhood, Graham and Callaway were inseparable best friends, but in adulthood, the two have taken radically different paths that has slowly turned their former affection for one another into implacable hatred. Now, Graham has been offered a position with Chicago's elite organized crime division - but he hesitates in accepting the job, fearful that it will put his wife Susan in increasing conflict with her gangster brother. However, when Callaway's conscienceless maneuvers include an attack on Graham's police partner, Graham determines to take his bitter nemesis down, whatever it takes." Bruce McGilll, Amanda Righetti and Bess Wohl also star in the Touchstone Television-based hour, which comes from executive producers Sean Bailey, Ken Olin and the recently added Tony To ("Band of Brothers"). F. Gary Gray is directing from a script by Bailey.
A HOUSE DIVIDED (ABC) - Sarah Clarke (Nina Myers on "24"), Jason Wiles (Alex Williams on "Commander-In-Chief"), Tyress Allen (Gordon Dean on "Alias") and Alison Elliott ("Birth") have all joined the cast of the drama pilot, about a conflict between a Midwest farming community and the U.S. government that leads to the next America civil war. Clarke will play the wife of the central character, an instructor at West Point, who's yet to be cast. Details on Wiles, Allen and Elliott's characters weren't specified. Michael Rymer is directing the Touchstone Television-based hour from a script by creator Andrew David Chapman. Mark Gordon and Deb Spera also serve as executive producers via the former's self-titled banner. Shannon Lucio also stars.
IF YOU LIVED HERE, YOU'D BE HOME BY NOW (FOX) - Cameron Richardson (Paula Hargrove on "Point Pleasant"), Zac Efron (Cameron Bale on "Summerland"), Michael Simpson ("It's All About Love"), Reg Rogers ("Analyze That") and Boris Kodjoe (Damon Carter on "Soul Food") have all joined the cast of the comedy pilot, about a diverse group of people living at a temporary housing complex in Los Angeles. Richardson will play Amy, who's detailed in the casting notice as: "Early 20s. Amy is beautiful in a clean-cut, Midwestern way, Amy grew up on a small farm. She's smart, ambitious, and has dreams bigger than where she came from; but she's also a little na�ve, and has never spent much time in a city like L.A. She's principled and unfailingly polite, but no pushover. She's been castrating bulls since she was 6, something guys who hit on her would be smart to keep in mind." Efron then is set as Cody: "16-19 to play 16. Cody has grown up an only child in a solidly lower-middle class household somewhere in the rust belt. His dad has never been a part of his life, and his mom is a bit wild and unpredictable, so Cody has had to grow up somewhat fast. He's the responsible, practical one in the family, but he's also sweet and a little innocent. In response to his outgoing, exhibitionistic mom, who often ends up embarrassing him, Cody has learned to keep quiet and not draw attention to himself. He's smart, a good athlete, and cuter than he realizes."
Meanwhile, Simpson is playing Scott - "Late 20s-early 30s. Scott is an idealistic, happy-go lucky guy whose life has just collapsed around him. He had no idea any of this was about to happen-in fact, he's such an optimist by nature, such a believer in the basic goodness of people, that in the past it may have blinded him to other people's shortcomings (such as his wife's). Here, he's dealing with being betrayed for the first time, and doesn't know quite how to handle it: anger makes him manic and irrational. At heart, though, Scott wants to believe people are good again, and he wants to be happy again-it's just going to take him a little while to get there." - with Rogers as Curtis - "Early 30s-40s. Curtis has the disheveled appearance of Nick Nolte in his mug shot. Having lived like a hermit in Topanga Canyon for many years, he has forgotten many of the social graces that characterize most normal peoples' behavior. He's a bit gruff, and may come off curt, but is by no means a misanthrope. He's just guarding some secrets."
Finally, Kodjoe will play Brad: "Early-mid 30s. Brad works as a "firing consultant" for a huge management consulting firm with offices all over the country. Since taking the job after business school, Brad has moved from office to office, never spending more than a few months in each. Consequently he has no home of his own, no roots, no family to speak of. He's exceptionally good at his job, but even better at attracting the opposite sex. Charismatic, narcissistic, and perhaps a bit amoral, he's the kind of guy who effortlessly draws people to him." Yet to be cast is Sherry, the mother of Efron's character. Ted Cohen and Andrew Reich are behind the CBS Paramount Network Television-based half-hour, which has recently added Peter Lauer ("Arrested Development") as director.
IN CASE OF EMERGENCY (ABC) - David Arquette ("Scream") has joined the cast of the comedy project, about four high school friends who unexpectedly reunite during a crossroads in their lives. He'll play one of said friends, Jason Ventress, in the Touchstone Television-based half-hour, which comes from creator Howard J. Morris and executive producer Emile Levisetti's Bushwacker Productions. His character is described in the casting notice as: "Mid-late 30s, a slick, wealthy, smart; good looking guy. Jason is a successful businessman who's facing prison as the result of an Enron type corporate scandal, and so he's decided to kill himself - and winds up hospitalized when he manages to shoot himself in the foot instead. Horrified at what he tried to do and determined never to do it again, Jason is moved to tears when his good buddy, Harry (Jonathan Silverman), comes to pick him up at the hospital, learns of the impending corporate mess, and vows to stand by him no matter what (Harry changes his tune when he learns his own pension money has gone down the tubes as well)." Greg Germann and Kelly Hu also star in the pilot, which Jon Favreau is directing from a script by Morris.
NIGHT STALKER (ABC) - Frank Spotnitz, the man behind the short-lived "Night Stalker" remake this season, has inked a two-year, seven-figure overall deal at Touchstone Television. The pact, which begins this summer, calls for Spotnitz and his Big Light Productions to develop new projects for the studio.
RUFFIAN (ABC) - Sam Shepard ("Stealth") and Frank Whaley (Christopher Wey on "The Dead Zone") have both joined the cast of the original movie, about the famed horse of the same name. Shepard will play trainer Franky Whiteley while Whaley will play sportswriter Bill Nack in the project, which is set to begin production later this month for a June 2007 premiere during ABC's coverage of the Belmont Stakes. In addition, Yves Simoneau ("The 4,400") has been tapped to direct from a script by Jim Burnstein, Garrett K. Schiff and Ross Parker with Orly Adelson (via Orly Adelson Productions) serving as the executive producer.
SECRETS OF A SMALL TOWN (ABC) - Sean Patrick Flanery (Greg Stillson on "The Dead Zone") and Tyler Christopher (TNT's "Into the West") have both joined the cast of the drama pilot, about a popular TV reporter (Angie Harmon) who returns to her hometown to cover the murder of a high school cheerleader. They'll play Jimmy Lee and Grant respectively in the Touchstone Television-based hour, which also stars John L. Adams. Adam Davidson is directing from a script by Charles Pratt, Jr. Chris Brancato and Bert Salke also serve as executive producers.
UGLY BETTY (ABC) - Charlotte Ross (Annie on "Jake in Progress") is the latest addition to the drama pilot, a remake of a popular Spanish-language telenovela of the same name. Details on her character weren't specified. America Ferrera, Ashley Jensen, Eric Mabius, Becki Newton and Ana Ortiz also star. Richard Shepard is directing the Touchstone Television-based project from a script by Silvio Horta. Salma Hayek, Jose Tamez, Ben Silverman and Teri Weinberg also serve as executive producers.
Sources: Variety, The Hollywood Reporter, Reuters