[02/16/12 - 10:45 PM] Development Update: Thursday, February 16 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!
BEAUTY AND THE BEAST (The CW) - Kristin Kreuk ("Smallville") and Austin Basis ("Life Unexpected") are the first to be cast in the drama pilot, about Catherine Chandler, a police detective who teams with Vincent Koslow, a genetically altered Afghanistan war veteran to solve crimes in New York City. She'll play said detective ("her pluck and sense of humor having gotten her through"), with Basis as J.T. Forbes, Vincent's former roommate, a medical researcher who aids him. Gary Fleder is helming the CBS Television Studios-based hour from a script by Jennifer Levin and Sherri Cooper. (Deadline.com)CHELSEA GENERAL (TNT) - Emily Swallow and Sarayu Rao are the latest additions to the drama pilot, about the lives of five surgeons as they push the limits of their abilities and confront their personal and professional failings. They'll play Michelle Robidaux, "a young resident at Chelsea General who is still learning the ropes," and Sydney Saxena, "a fast-talking, Olympic multi-tasker whose dedication to being a doctor consumes her 24/7, even to the detriment of her relationships," respectively. Also starring in the David E. Kelley-penned hour are Alfred Molina, Bill Irwin, Jamie Bamber, Jennifer Finnigan, Keong Sim and Ving Rhames. Bill D'Elia is directing. (Deadline.com)CHICAGO FIRE (NBC) - Eamonn Walker ("The Whole Truth") is the first to board the pilot, an "action-driven drama exploring the complex and heroic men and women of the Chicago Fire Department." He's set as Battalion Chief Walter Boden ("has kept himself in great shape, a fireman's fireman"), a former Golden Gloves champ who is mulling retirement. Derek Haas and Michael Brandt co-created the Universal Television-based hour, to be directed by Jeffrey Nachmanoff. (Deadline.com)DO NO HARM (NBC) - Mousa Kraish is the latest addition to the drama pilot, about Jeffrey Kohn (Steven Pasquale), a brilliant neurosurgeon who wrestles with his dangerous alter-ego Ian Price who threatens to wreak havoc on his personal and professional life. He's set as Amit Sarin, "the attending clinical pharmacologist, a man of science and religion who has a sharp wit and sharper mind." Alana De La Garza and Ruta Gedmintas co-star in the Universal Television-based hour, from director Michael Mayer and writer David Schulner. (Deadline.com)EL JEFE (FOX) - Ryan Hansen ("Friends With Benefits") has snagged the title role on the comedy pilot, about Josh Turkus, "an affable but lost 30-year-old (Hansen) who, tossed out of his Brentwood home, moves in with his longtime Latin American nanny and goes head to head with her strong-willed son and finds himself in a family and work life very different than the ones he grew up in." David Guarascio and Moses Port are behind the Sony Pictures Television-based half-hour, to be directed by Michael Patrick Jann. (Deadline.com)LIKE FATHER... (FOX) - Colin Ferguson ("Eureka") has booked the title role on the comedy pilot, about Van Lyons, a bombastic dad who, after his wife dies, moves into his son Will's campus apartment. He'll play said father ("a wear it on your sleeve guy; feels hard; loud; positive; full of love and an unapologetic handful"), in the Warner Bros. Television-based half-hour, which comes from creator Bill Lawrence. Also cast are Phill Lewis as Rick Street ("a stoic, quiet, rumpled, kind, bear of a man"), Van's best friend; and Kevin Michael Martin as Rob Ruby ("a high-energy, relentless human, and the world's most loyal friend"), Will's roommate. (Deadline.com)PARTNERS (CBS) - Michael Urie ("Ugly Betty") has scored a lead role on the pilot, a multi-camera comedy about two male architects - one straight, one gay - whose relationship itself resembles a marriage. He'll play Louis, the latter half of said duo, in the Warner Bros. Television-based half-hour, from director James Burrows and co-creators David Kohan and Max Mutchnick. Sophia Bush also stars. (Deadline.com)RAY DONOVAN (Showtime) - Pooch Hall ("The Game") and Katherine Moennig ("The L Word") have both been cast in the Liev Schreiber-led drama pilot, about Hollywood's best professional "fixer" - the one called in to solve the complicated, confidential and controversial problems of the city's elite. He'll play Daryll, "a young fighter who trains at Terry Donovan's Fite Club, a boxing gym owned by Ray's brother (Eddie Marsan)," with Moennig as Lena, "the titular sleuth's edgy and intense second in command." Dash Mihok, Elliott Gould, Jon Voight and Paula Malcomson also star in the project, from director Allen Coulter and writer Ann Biderman. (Deadline.com, (TVLine.com)SAVE ME (NBC) - Heather Burns ("Bored to Death") and Lamman Rucker ("Meet the Browns") are the latest additions to the Anne Heche-led comedy pilot, about Beth Harper (Heche), a woman who lets herself go while in a broken marriage goes through a transformation where she becomes the best version of herself and creates miracles along the way. Burns will play Beth's friend Jane Derring ("a plucky little southern wife in the Holly Hunter mode") with Rucker as John Wilkins, the doctor pal of Beth's husband Tom (Michael Landes). Alexandra Breckenridge also stars in the Sony Pictures Television-based half-hour, which Scott Winant is helming off a script by John Scott Shepherd. (Deadline.com)THE SMART ONE (ABC) - Malin Akerman ("Childrens Hospital") and Jean Smart ("$#*! My Dad Says") have both been cast in the comedy pilot, about Judith "Jude" Swann (Portia de Rossi), a brilliant and successful woman who has to go to work for her less brainy but more popular sister - a former beauty queen, weather girl and now big city mayor. The former will play said sister, Candy Cooper, with Smart as their mother, Helen ("youthful, elegant but firmly in charge"), who's actually described as Jean Smart-esque in the script. Michael Fresco is helming the Warner Bros. Television-based half-hour from a script by Don Todd. (Deadline.com)AND IN OTHER NEWS... - Giancarlo Esposito is bound for "Community" as a business associate of Pierce's (Chevy Chase) late father (Vulture.com); "Shameless" guest stars Emma Greenwell and Noel Fisher will be upped to series regulars for the show's third season (Variety.com); Science has ordered "Oddities: San Francisco," a West Coast spin-off of the parent series set at eccentric-goods store Loved to Death (Variety.com); Lauralee Bell will guest on "Castle" as the Paula Abdul-esque judge on a hit TV competition show called "A Night of Dance" (TVGuide.com); and Jacob Hopkins will recur on "True Blood" as Alexander Drew, "one of the Authority's chancellors who was turned to darkness at the age of 9-years-old" (THR.com).