[11/03/10 - 06:12 PM]
Development Update: Wednesday, November 3
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!

ARE YOU THERE VODKA? IT'S ME CHELSEA (NBC, New!) - Chelsea Handler's autobiography is being developed as a multi-camera comedy at the Peacock. Dottie Zicklin ("Dharma & Greg") and Julie Ann Larson ("Ruby & the Rockits") are penning the adaptation, which won't feature the comedian herself in the title role. Said half-hour, which has a put pilot commitment, will instead track "a twentysomething woman named Chelsea who won't have the same profession as comedian/author Handler but will carry a lot of the traits in her character." Handler will nevertheless executive produce alongside her Borderline Amazing Productions partner Tom Brunelle as well as Werner Entertainment's Tom Werner and Mike Clements for Warner Bros. Television.

COMMUNITY (NBC) - The Peacock has ordered two additional episodes for the show's sophomore season. Said pickup brings its season total to 24 episodes. Last week the series posted a season high 2.4 rating among adults 18-49 with its Halloween-themed episode.

DOCUMENTAL (HBO, New!) - "Tropic Thunder" alums Justin Theroux and Steve Coogan are set to topline a potential comedy at the pay channel about "a documentary filmmaker (Theroux) who tracks down his idol, an equally inept filmmaker (Coogan), and documents his return to his craft." Theroux is writing and directing the half-hour, which will be shot in London. Paul Simms ("Bored to Death"), Red Hour Films's Ben Stiller and 3 Arts Entertainment's Michael Rotenberg and Nick Frenkel will executive produce alongside Theroux and Coogan. Stuart Cornfeld, Stiller's producing partner, will also serve as a consultant.

FOURTH ESTATE (AMC, New!)/LONG GRAY LINE (ABC, New!) - Former MTV News correspondent Gideon Yago has sold a pair of drama projects, both of which he'll write and executive produce. The latter - "a sudsy drama set at West Point" - also comes from director/executive producer Gary Fleder. The former - a drama centering on an investigative journalist whose "world is upended when he takes on a major scandal - and some truths about the reporter himself are in danger of being exposed" - likewise comes from Landscape Entertainment's Robert Cooper and JJ Jamieson. No studios were listed as attached.

LUCK (HBO) - Three-time Oscar nominee Joan Allen ("The Contender") is set to recur on the upcoming Dustin Hoffman-led drama, "a provocative look at horse racing - the owners, gamblers, jockeys and diverse gaming industry players." She'll play "a woman who runs a program that uses prison inmates to care for broken-down racehorses." Production on the series is underway for a premiere date sometime in 2011.

REST (NBC, New!) - Milo Ventimiglia ("Heroes") is set to topline a potential new drama at the Peacock based on his comic of the same name, "a pulse-pounding sci-fi thriller" that "tells the tale of John Barret, a white-collar New Yoker whose life changes when he becomes addicted to a drug that prevents him from falling asleep!" Said hour comes from Storyline Entertainment's Craig Zadan and Neil Meron and Top Cow's Marc Silvestri and Matt Hawkins all of whom will executive produce alongside Ventimiglia and his Divide Pictures partner Russ Cundiff. Philip Levens ("Knight Rider") is on board to pen the hour and will likewise executive produce. The "Rest" comic was created by Mike O'Sullivan, written by Mark Powers and produced by Ventimiglia and Cudiff. No studio was indicated.

ROCCO'S DINNER PARTY (Bravo) - The Rocco DiSpirito-led project, "in which DiSpirito sizes up some of the country's most promising aspiring chefs to see if they have the chops to impress at a private dinner party attended by his discriminating guests," has reportedly been ordered to series. Chachi Senior, Dave Noll and Linda Lea are the executive producers with DiSpirito himself serving as a producer.

UNTITLED JOHN HAMBURG/IAN HELFER PROJECT (FOX, New!) - Feature writer/director John Hamburg ("I Love You, Man") has booked a single-camera comedy at the network about "a father and son, both recently divorced, who become roommates and explore the dating world together." 20th Century Fox Television and Chernin Entertainment are behind the half-hour, which Hamburg will co-write with Ian Helfer. Hamburg, Helfer, Peter Chernin and Katherine Pope then will executive produce the project, which was the result of a blind script deal Hamburg inked with the studio over the summer.

UNTITLED MICHAEL PATRICK KING PROJECT (NBC, New!) - "Sex and the City" franchise steward Michael Patrick King is reportedly close to a pilot commitment from the Peacock for a new "Shampoo"-esque dramedy about "a straight Beverly Hills hairdresser in his 50s who is struggling to stay young and relevant in a place where looks are everything." King wrote the project on spec and will executive produce for Warner Bros. Television, where is overall deal is based.

  [november 2010]  


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