[03/30/06 - 12:00 AM]
Development Update: March 30
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 branded "Devwatch" section. There visitors can view our listings by network, genre, studio and even development stage (ordered to pilot, cast-contingent, script, etc.). It's updated every day!

ANDY BARKER, P.I. (NBC) - Ion Overman (Viviana on "Love, Inc.") has joined the cast of the comedy pilot, about an accountant-turned-gumshoe (Andy Richter). Her involvement is likely in second position to her duties on the UPN comedy. Amy Farrington, Harve Presnell, Marshall Manesh and Tony Hale also star in the NBC Universal Television-based half-hour, which Jason Ensler is directing from a script by Conan O'Brien and Jonathan Groff. A.J. Morewitz, David Kissinger and Jeff Ross of O'Brien's Conaco Productions also serve as executive producers.

THE ANGRIEST MAN IN SUBURBIA (CBS) - Matthew Glave (Colonel Paul Emerson on "Stargate SG-1") is the latest addition to the comedy pilot, about a married stay-at-home father (Mitch Rouse) dealing with the pesky problems of everyday life. He'll play the neighbor of Rouse's character. Kiernan Shipka, Maria Pitillo and Ty Panitz also star in the Sony Pictures Television-based project, which comes from creator Ajay Sahgal, director Barnet Kellman and executive producers Gavin Polone and Jamie Tarses.

CHEERLEADER NATION (Lifetime) - The cable channel has quietly shifted the docu-reality series to Fridays at 7:00/6:00c. No specific reason was given for the change, which takes effect tomorrow night.

DRIFT (ABC) - Amy Carlson (A.D.A. Kelly Gaffney on "Law & Order: Trial by Jury") has joined the cast of the drama pilot, about a New York detective (Jason O'Mara) who loses his young daughter, an act which leaves him with a form of post-traumatic stress insomnia. Details on Carlson's character weren't released. She joins the previously cast Chazz Palminteri, Marcia Gay Harden, Naelee Rae and Vanessa Ferlito in the Touchstone Television-based hour, which Paul W.S. Anderson is directing from a script by creator John Glenn. Bert Salke, Chris Brancato and Jeremy Bolt also serve as executive producers.

EUREKA (Sci Fi) - Sales materials released by the network have confirmed the series will launch on Monday, July 17 at 9:00/8:00c with its two-hour pilot. Episodes will then air Mondays at 9:00/8:00c, marking the first time one of Sci Fi's scripted dramas has aired outside its "Sci Friday" block since its short-lived "Monday Prime" lineup in 2001.

EXTREME MAKEOVER: HOME EDITION (ABC) - Tom Forman, the show's executive producer/showrunner, has inked a two-year, low- to mid-seven figure overall deal with CBS Paramount Network Television. The pact calls for Forman, who will exit the Endemol USA-based "Home Edition" after this season, to develop new series for the studio.

HOUSE (FOX) - David Shore, the Emmy-winning creator of the series, has inked a two-year, seven-figure overall deal with the show's producer, NBC Universal Television. The pact will keep Shore attached as showrunner for the next two seasons as well as give him the option to develop new series projects for the studio. Separately, Shore has confirmed he'll make his directorial debut on the show's May 23 season finale.

INSEPARABLE (CBS) - Actor/writer Larry Wilmore (a guest star on "The Office") has booked a role on the comedy pilot, about a young couple who must deal with the wife's large extended family. He'll join the previously cast Chip Zien, Christine Baranski, Coby Ryan McLaughin, Ed O'Neill, Krysten Ritter, Rachel Boston and Rosa Blasi in the project, which is based at NBC Universal Television. Pamela Fryman is directing the half-hour from a script by co-creators Joe Port and Joe Wiseman with David Guarascio and Moses Port also serving as executive producers.

LOVE MONKEY (CBS) - The short-lived dramedy has found a new broadcast outlet as VH1 will begin running the five previously unaired installments of the series on Tuesdays at 9:00/8:00c beginning April 18. To catch viewers up, a marathon of the three episodes aired thus far will be shown on Tuesday, April 11 starting at 7:00/6:00c.

LOVESPRING (Lifetime) - Jennifer Elise Cox (Mary on "Six Feet Under"), Jane Lynch (Joyce Wischnia on "The L Word"), Wendi McLendon-Covey (Deputy Clementine Johnson on "Reno 911!"), Sam Pancake (Cameron on "Kitchen Confidential"), Mystro Clark (guest star on "The Shield") and Jack Plotnick (Steve Mamella on "Reno 911!") have reportedly been named the principal cast members of the upcoming comedy, about a matchmaking agency marketed to customers as an "elite Beverly Hills" company, despite its location in Tarzana, California. Details on their respective characters weren't given. The series, which is set to bow on Monday, June 12 at 11:00/10:00c, comes from Big Cattle Productions and Lionsgate Television with Brad Issacs, Eric McCormack, Guy Shalem and Michael Foreman serving as executive producers.

MORE, PATIENCE (FOX) - Alicia Witt has departed the comedy pilot, about a quirky 30-year-old New York therapist who has difficulty navigating her personal life. "Creative differences" was the only reason given for her exit. Jed Seidel is behind the Sony Pictures Television-based half-hour, which Arlene Sanford is directing. Pariah's Gavin Polone and Jamie Tarses also serve as executive producers.

PRISON BREAK (FOX) - Nick Santora and Zack Estrin, two of the show's supervising producers, have inked separate two-year, seven-figure overall deals with 20th Century Fox Television. The pact will cover the pair's duties on the show as well as promote them to co-executive producers next season. In addition, both will have the option to develop new series projects for the studio.

ROLLERGIRLS (A&E) - The cable network plans to burn off the show's remaining unaired installments as part of a three-hour block beginning this Sunday (April 2) at 12:00 p.m. EST. A&E pulled the series from its Monday, 10:00/9:00c slot last month, confirming its cancellation shortly thereafter (read the story).

SHARK (CBS) - Samuel Page (Jesse Parker on "Point Pleasant") has joined the cast of the drama pilot, about a celebrity defense attorney-turned-prosecutor (James Woods). He'll play Casey Flynn, an assistant district attorney. Alexis Cruz, Danielle Panabaker, Jeri Ryan, Romy Rosemont, Sarah Carter and Sophina Brown also star in the 20th Century Fox Television-based hour, which comes from creator Ian Biederman and director Spike Lee. Brian Grazer and David Nevins of Imagine Television also serve as executive producers.

THIEF (FX) - A somewhat lackluster - for FX anyway - 2.5 million viewers tuned into the show's debut on Tuesday, well behind the openers to fellow network dramas "The Shield" (4.8 million), "Rescue Me" (4.1 million), "Nip/Tuck" (4.1 million) and "Over There" (3.7 million). Among adults 18-49, "Thief" drew 1.4 million viewers (1.1 rating/3 share), just shy of "The Real World" on MTV (1.7 million, 1.3/3) and tied with Discovery Channel's "Deadliest Catch." Nevertheless, said numbers were on par with "The Shield's" average for its fifth season (2.8 million overall, 1.8 million in 18-49).

Sources: Variety, The Hollywood Reporter, Reuters

  [march 2006]  


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