[12/17/09 - 06:36 PM]
Development Update: Thursday, December 17
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 signature "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!

THE BEAUTIFUL LIFE (The CW) - The netlet has opted to put all five completed episodes of the series on YouTube.com with HP serving as its sponsor. "Life" was axed back in September, just two weeks into its run. At the time it was reported production was underway on its seventh episode however only five were completed. "When 'The Beautiful Life' concluded on broadcast television, we were deluged by fans imploring us to bring back 'TBL,'" executive producer Ashton Kutcher said in a statement released to the press. "Working with innovative companies like HP and YouTube, we are thrilled to be ending this year by releasing the remaining episodes of 'The Beautiful Life' and taking part in a unique marketing program that could only occur online."

CRIMINAL MINDS (CBS) - Richard Shepard, who helmed the show's 2005 pilot, has been tapped to do the same for its upcoming spin-off. In addition, he'll direct one other pilot for the Eye during the upcoming developing cycle. The spin-off, about another group of FBI profilers, is set to shoot in February and air as an episode of the parent series later this season. Ed Bernero and Chris Mundy are penning the script and executive producing alongside Mark Gordon and Deborah Spera.

DR. DONNA (USA, New!) - Liz Kruger and Craig Shapiro have booked a new drama at network billed as "a dramedy about a sports therapist." The pair will pen the script and executive produce for Sony Pictures Television. No other details however were released.

THE FRESHMAN (USA, New!) - The 1990 Matthew Broderick/Marlon Brando feature is being eyed for the small screen by the cable channel. Andrew Bergman, who wrote and directed the film, is developing a new small screen take which will once again center on "a wide-eyed NYU freshman (Broderick) who unwittingly becomes an errand boy for a Mafia boss (Brando)." The hour is set up at Sony Pictures Television with Bergman and Michael Edelstein executive producing. Sony is likewise behind three other potential remakes: "Heathers" and "Charlie's Angels" at ABC and of the film "St. Elmo's Fire" at Fox.

THE EVENT (NBC, New!) - Steve Stark ("Medium") is developing a new drama at the Peacock about "the unraveling of the greatest government cover-up in U.S. history." Nick Wauters penned the hour, which is set up at Universal Media Studios. Stark and Russ Buchholz then will also executive produce via the former's Steve Stark Productions. Also at NBC, the company is shepherding "a project based on chef Paula Deen's life story, which the two executive produce with Barry Weiner." Outside of the Peacock, Stark has an untitled hour at Lifetime about "an unconventional female psychologist embedded within the Dallas Police Department" and "Stick," about "a Chicago hockey player who, after getting suspended from the league for unruly conduct, discovers that he has a knack for helping people in trouble," at USA. Gay Walch is behind the former while Mark Altman and Steve Kriozere penned the latter.

SHAMELESS (Showtime) - Emmy Rossum, Allison Janney and Justin Chatwin have all landed roles on the pay channel's import of the veteran U.K. drama about the Gallaghers, "a working-class Chicago clan dealing with the recession." The previously cast William H. Macy plays the patriarch of said family who "usually ends up passed out on the living room floor, so their smart but unpredictable 18-year-old daughter Fiona (Rossum) is tasked with keeping her five younger brothers and sisters on the straight and narrow." Chatwin then is set as Steve, "a car thief who falls in love with Fiona," with Janney in the recurring role of "a pivotal character that will become a love interest for Macy." Mark Mylod is directing the Warner Bros. Television-based pilot from a script by Paul Abbott and John Wells.

Sources: Variety, The Hollywood Reporter, Reuters

  [december 2009]  


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