[05/13/11 - 10:45 PM] Development Update: Friday, May 13 By The Futon Critic Staff (TFC)
LOS ANGELES (thefutoncritic.com) -- The latest development news, culled from recent wire reports:
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CURB YOUR ENTHUSIASM/ENTOURAGE (HBO) - Broadcasting & Cablereports Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution has pulled the syndicated broadcasts of both series, citing low ratings. Said late-night runs, which were sold on an all-barter basis, had been averaging a 0.6 live plus same day household rating. Each however continues in off-cable: the former on TV Guide Channel, the latter on Spike TV.
EXIT STRATEGY (FOX) - Ken Olin ("Brothers & Sisters") has reportedly been brought aboard the drama pilot to retool the project for a potential midseason commitment. The 20th Century Fox Television-based hour, about a team of CIA agents who are sent in to fix operations gone bad, comes from creator David Guggenheim, director Antoine Fuqua and fellow executive producers Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci.
GOOD CHRISTIAN BELLES (ABC) - Gretchen Berg and Aaron Harberts ("Off the Map") have been tapped to run the newcomer, about Amanda Vaughn (Leslie Bibb), a widowed mother of two who - to get a fresh start - moves back to the affluent Dallas neighborhood where she grew up. Aaron Kaplan, Darren Star, director Alan Poul and writer Robert Harling executive produced the ABC Studios-based pilot, which is based on Kim Gatlin's book "Good Christian Bitches."
TREME (HBO) - The pay channel is moving forward with a third season of David Simon/Eric Overmyer-produced drama. Said pickup comes despite a significant ratings dip for its sophomore season: through three episodes the series is averaging just 561,000 viewers (and a 0.2 rating among adults 18-49), down from 904,000 viewers (and a 0.3 rating in the demo) over the same stretch a year ago. It's not clear how many installments were ordered.
THE WIZARD OF LIES (HBO, New!) - Oscar-winner Robert De Niro is reportedly in talks to star in a docudrama about convicted swindler Bernie Madoff. The project is based on Diane Henriques's recently published book of the same name, subtitled "Bernie Madoff and the Death of Trust." De Niro himself is no stranger to Ponzi-esque schemes: former New York City art dealer Lawrence Salander pled guilty to 29 felony counts of grand larceny last year, having bilked $88 million from various high-profile clients, including the actor. No auspices were given for the HBO project.