[04/11/11 - 10:55 PM] Development Update: Monday, April 11 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!
DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES (ABC) - Teri Hatcher, Felicity Huffman, Marcia Cross and Eva Longoria are reportedly on track to sign new deals that will see the actresses return for an eighth season with an option for a ninth. The new pacts are said to be valued at $325,000 per episode each, up from their current salaries of about $275,000 per installment. Once back-end and bonuses are factored in, the quartet could ultimately take home as much as $350,000 per week. It's understood Hatcher negotiated separately, however received the same deal as the other actresses. Meanwhile, it's not clear if creator Marc Cherry will continue as showrunner for the proposed eighth season - executive producer Bob Daily took over day-to-day duties on the series while Cherry works on the pilot "Hallelujah," an arrangement that may continue if it's ordered to series.
GENIUSES (Comedy Central, New!) - Comedians Adam Nee and Ryan Judd are set to write, direct and star in a potential comedy at the cable channel about "two hapless friends, Johnny (Nee) and Sterling (Judd), who have been blissfully skating through life from job to job and vying for their neighbor Margot's attention. Realizing that life may be passing them by, they decide to grow up and become responsible adults." Said effort is based on a spec pilot the duo filmed last year and took to the network. No other auspices were given.
HOT IN CLEVELAND (TV Land) - Cedric the Entertainer has been tapped to guest star in an upcoming episode of the series that will serve as a backdoor pilot for a potential spin-off. He'll play "a minister who comes into contact with the four housemates," however no other specifics were released. Following said spot, which is set to air in August, "Cleveland" creator Suzanne Martin and Cedric will pen the pilot for the spin-off, the impetus being it could be ordered directly to series sans a traditional pilot.
LAW & ORDER: SPECIAL VICTIMS UNIT (NBC) - Writer/producer Warren Leight is set to return to the "Law & Order" franchise as the former "Criminal Intent" showrunner will succeed Neal Baer in said capacity for its 13th season. Baer, as previously reported, is departing the series to focus on development as part of a new three-year, seven-figure overall deal with CBS Television Studios. As for "SVU," the Peacock has yet to renew the series through the 2011-12 season and co-stars Mariska Hargitay and Christopher Meloni likewise remain unsigned.
MORE AS THE STORY DEVELOPS (HBO) - Alan Poul ("Six Feet Under") has joined the Aaron Sorkin-penned/Greg Mottola-directed drama pilot, set behind the scenes of a nightly cable news show, as an executive producer. Jeff Daniels recently closed his deal to topline said hour, which Poul will serve as in-house director on should it be ordered to series. Poul's involvement is part of a broader overall deal with the pay channel. He recently helmed the pilots to ABC's "Good Christian Bitches" and TNT's "Perception," the latter of which received a series commitment last month.
WORKING CLASS (CMT) - The cable channel has pulled the plug on the freshman comedy. "Unfortunately, CMT will not be pursuing a second season of Working Class," the network said in a statement posted to the show's Facebook page. "We're sad to see it go, but you can still catch Melissa Peterman in new episodes of The Singing Bee." Said development comes despite being the highest rated and most watched series debut in CMT history among adults 18-49 and total viewers (1.2 million).