[02/26/10 - 12:06 AM] Development Update: Friday, February 26 By The Futon Critic Staff (TFC)
LOS ANGELES (thefutoncritic.com) -- The latest development news, culled from recent wire reports:
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90210 (The CW) - Gillian Zinser has been upped to series regular on the sophomore drama, which returns with new episodes on Tuesday, March 9. She'll continue on as tomboy surfer chick Ivy Sullivan on the teen soap, which was renewed for a third season earlier this month. It's not clear which episode will reflect her new status.
THE CAPE (NBC) - David Lyons ("ER") has been tapped as the lead role of the drama pilot, about "a former cop set up as a criminal who becomes a masked hero to clear his name and reunite with his eight-year-old son." He'll play Vince Faraday, the aforementioned cop. Simon West is helming the Universal Media Studios-based hour from a script by Tom Wheeler.
THE EVENT (NBC) - Fellow "ER" alum Laura Innes has scored a role on the drama pilot, about "a decent, regular fellow who battles against mysterious circumstances that envelope a larger conspiracy." She's believed to be playing the leader of the inmates at the Mount Inostranka Facility, a secret prison in Alaska. Said role, Neil McCann, was originally written as male. Ian Anthony Dale, Jason Ritter, Sarah Roemer, Scott Patterson and Zeljko Ivanek also star in the hour, which comes from Universal Media Studios, Steve Stark Productions and creator Nick Wauters.
FRESHMEN (ABC) - Tommy Dewey ("Roommates") and Suzy Nakamura ("Men of a Certain Age") have each landed roles on the comedy pilot, about "three first-year members of Congress (Ben Lawson, Sarah Chalke and Dewey) who live together in a Washington row house." He'll round out the trio as Cameron Graham, "an idealistic congressman from Illinois, is married to a demanding wife whose father financed his campaign and who is smitten with new roommate Jane." Nakamura then is set as Cameron's chief of staff, which was originally conceived as a man named Lance. Taran Killam also stars in the half-hour, which Pamela Fryman is directing from a script by Greg Malins. 20th Century Fox Television is producing.
LUCK (HBO) - Dennis Farina and John Ortiz are the first to be cast in the drama pilot, which is billed as "a provocative look at the worlds of horse racing and gambling told through a diverse group of characters surrounding a racetrack." Said hour centers on Chester "Ace" Bernstein, who, "after three years in prison, teams with Gus Economou (Farina), his longtime chauffeur and muscle, to craft a complex plan involving the track." Ortiz then is set as Turo Escalante, "a successful trainer with sordid reputation." Michael Mann is helming the hour from a script by David Milch. Both are executive producing alongside Carolyn Strauss and Henry Bronchtein.
MIDLAND (FOX) - Eloise Mumford ("Crash") has joined the cast of the drama pilot, about "a con artist (Jimmy Wolk) juggling two lives in two Texas cities with two different women." She's believed to be playing one of them, his girlfriend Lindsay, "the kind of approachable beauty who probably won't meet you for coffee, but will give you the nicest no you've ever heard." Kyle Killen penned the 20th Century Fox Television-based hour, to be directed by Marc Web..
MOST LIKELY TO SUCCEED (FOX) - Malcolm Barrett is the latest "Better Off Ted" co-star to land a comedy pilot. He's set to play Oliver in the half-hour, about "a group of friends who once were high school superstars but now face the reality of adulthood." Said character was "once voted 'most charming' but is now pathetic and terrible with the ladies." Barrett's involvement, like Jay Harrington on NBC's "Nathan vs. Nurture" and Andrea Anders on ABC's "Mr. Sunshine," is in second position to their duties on "Ted," which is considered unlikely to return. Kaitlin Doubleday and Kathryn Hahn also star in the 20th Century Fox Television-based comedy, which was penned by David Walpert.
NEVERMIND NIRVANA (FOX) - "Past Life" alum Ravi Patel has scored a lead role on the comedy pilot, about two brothers from a traditional Indian background who struggle with their parents' expectations. He'll play one of them, Sunil "Sonny" Mattoo, who lives - and is expecting a child - with his white girlfriend (Rachael Leigh Cook). Harish Patel and Utkarsh Ambudkar also star in the half-hour, which comes from creator Ajay Sahgal and 20th Century Fox Television.
NIKITA (The CW) - Shane West ("ER") has booked the male lead on the drama pilot, about an assassin for a top-secret government organization who goes rogue (Maggie Q) and the new assassin who is trained to replace her. He'll play Michael, the agent in charge of recruitment sent to bring in the rogue Nikita. Danny Cannon is helming the hour from a script by Craig Silverstein. Warner Bros. Television is producing.
OPEN BOOKS (CBS) - Patti LuPone ("Oz") is the latest addition to the comedy pilot, about June Gage (Laura Benanti), a book editor at a boutique New York publishing house and her circle of friends. She'll play Roz, June's "tough cookie" mom. Gail Lerner is behind the Warner Bros. Television-based comedy, which James Burrows is attached to direct.