[01/28/09 - 06:27 PM] Development Update: Wednesday, January 28 By The Futon Critic Staff (TFC)
LOS ANGELES (thefutoncritic.com) -- The latest development news, culled from recent wire reports:
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AN AMERICAN FAMILY (ABC) - Jesse Tyler Ferguson ("Do Not Disturb") is the first to be cast in Steven Levitan and Christopher Lloyd's pilot, a comedy about three families who live in the same suburb. Ferguson will play part of a gay couple who have just adopted a Vietnamese baby. 20th Century Fox Television is behind the half-hour, which was written by Levitan and Lloyd.
CHOCOLATE NEWS (Comedy Central)/SOMEBODIES (BET) - Independent production and management company Generate has inked a multi-year overall deal with 20th Century Fox Television. The pact calls for the company, led by former TV executives Jordan Levin, the company's CEO, and president Pete Aronson, to develop new scripted projects for the studio. 20th will also have a first-look option on any of Generate's unscripted efforts. Generate, whose credits include the aforementioned comedies, recently raised $6 million in funding from such investors as MK Capital and Velocity Interactive Group.
HOW I MET YOUR MOTHER (CBS) - Twentieth Television has cleared the show's off-network run on stations covering 75% of the country. Due in the fall of 2010, "Mother" is a go in 23 out of the top 25 markets, including New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Philadelphia and Dallas.
OFF DUTY (NBC) - Bonnie Sommerville ("Cashmere Mafia") and Capethia Jenkins have both been cast in the comedy pilot, about a once-legendary police detective (Bradley Whitford) on his way down who complicates the life of his new partner (Romany Malco), a straight shooter on his way up. Sommerville will play the wife of Malco's character while Jenkins is set as their crusty police district chief. Universal Media Studios and American Work are behind the half-hour, which comes from creator Jason Mantzoukas.
PARENTHOOD (NBC, New!) - Jason Katims ("Friday Night Lights") and Imagine Television's Brian Grazer and Ron Howard are set to team for a new small screen take on the 1989 feature starring Steve Martin and Mary Steenburgen. The news marks the second time the Peacock has made such an attempt - Ed Begley Jr. and Jayne Atkinson toplined a short-lived incarnation in 1990. The updated take, which will feature all new characters, then will center on "the modern challenges that come with raising kids in this post-Facebook, post-iPod world." NBC has ordered a pilot to the Universal Media Studios-based project, which Katims will write and executive produce alongside Grazer and Howard. Imagine Television has an overall deal with 20th Century Fox Television however the company is free to produce series based on its feature titles with any studio (Universal Pictures distributed the original film).
SUPERNANNY (ABC) - The Style Network has acquired the off-network rights from Disney-ABC Domestic Television to the ABC staple, in which childcare expert Jo Frost helps parents with out-of-control children. The series will kick off this fall on the cable channel. No financial details were given.
THREESOME (ABC) - Ricky Blitt's multi-camera comedy, about a guy in his 30s who is caught between his girlfriend - a single mother - and his slacker best friend, has been given the go ahead to produce a pilot. ABC originally gave the Warner Bros. Television-based half-hour a put pilot commitment last week. Blitt penned the project and is executive producing.