[08/23/13 - 11:38 PM] Development Update: Friday, August 23 By The Futon Critic Staff (TFC)
LOS ANGELES (thefutoncritic.com) -- The latest development news, culled from recent wire reports:
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EMERALD CITY (NBC, New!) - Matthew Arnold ("Siberia") has sold a new drama to the Peacock billed as "a dark reimagining of the classic tale of Oz in the vein of 'Game of Thrones,' drawing upon stories from L. Frank Baum's original 14 books." Universal Television is producing. (Deadline.com)FAKING IT (MTV; W: Carter Covington; D: TBA) - Gregg Sulkin, Katie Stevens, Rita Volk, Bailey Buntain and Michael Willett have been tapped for the principal roles on the comedy pilot, about two best friends who will do almost anything to fit in and be popular in high school, including pretending to be something they are not. Sulkin will play Liam, "a sexy high school artist who is tolerate, cares about the environment and is good with his hands"; with Stevens as Karma, "an upbeat and optimistic high school sophomore who is sick of spending her Friday nights watching Netflix with her best friend Amy"; Volk as Amy, "who unlike her longtime best friend, is cynical and a pessimist"; Buntain as Lauren, "the new girl in school and Amy's stepsister"; and Willett as Shane, "Liam's best friend and the most popular kid at school." (THR.com)IRREVERSIBLE (ABC, New!) - "Rescue Me" co-creator Peter Tolan has booked a domestic take on Reshet Television's Israeli series "Bilti Hafich" at the Alphabet with a seven-figure penalty attached. Segahl Avin, co-creator of the original series, will write and direct the presumably single-camera project, about Andy and Sarah, "a somewhat eccentric, self-absorbed couple, and their trials and tribulations - most of which they bring upon themselves." Tolan and Michael Wimer then will executive produce via their Sony Pictures Television-based Fedora Entertainment. (Deadline.com)KILL ZONE (FOX, New!) - Todd Harthan ("Psych") has landed a potential drama at the network "built around an intense, edgy, humor-laced relationship between Dole Green, a 10-year vet of the Secret Service, and his rookie partner, Chad Burke, as they protect the President of the United States from a very credible death threat." 20th Century Fox Television is producing. (Deadline.com)THE MCCARTHYS (CBS/Sony; W: Brian Gallivan; D: TBA) - Jack McGee and Joey McIntyre have closed deals to reprise their roles on the Eye's new multi-camera pilot for the project, about a sports-crazed Irish-Catholic family that shares a three decker house in Boston and the one member, Ronny, that dares to move out on his own. McGee plays patriarch Arthur, a "not always politically correct" high school basketball coach, with McIntyre as Ronny's brother Gerard ("competitive, very short"). The original single-camera incarnation also starred Jake Lacy, Jacki Weaver, Jessica Chaffin and Jimmy Dunn. (Deadline.com)ME AND MY NEEDS (NBC, New!) - Ryan Seacrest Productions has sold a revival of Cynthia Greenburg and the late Judy Toll's 2001 multi-camera comedy of the same name, about "a daytime talk producer who tackles the oddities and extremes of looking for love in New York," to the Peacock. Amy Farrington, Nicole Sullivan, Stephen Root and Tony Rock starred in the original ABC pilot, directed by Andy Cadiff. ABC Studios remains on board for the new incarnation, which will be formatted as single-camera by Greenburg. Gene Stein, Nina Wass, Adam Sher and Seacrest will also executive produce alongside BermanBraun's Lloyd Braun and Gail Berman. (THR.com)RICOCHET (NBC, New!) - Micah Barnett (The Rabbit) has booked a script order at the network for a new drama about "a professional hitman who is trapped in a coma and forced to serve as a guinea pig for a secret NSA espionage program; a project that uses technology discovered while researching near-death-experiences to send operatives into other people's bodies." Maria Grasso and Deborah Spera of One-Two Punch Productions are also on board as executive producers on the Universal Television-based hour, as is Tripp Vinson. Barnett then will serve as a co-executive producer. (Deadline.com)TIME TO TIME (NBC, New!) - Feature writers Byron Willinger and Phil Deblasi (Paradise Lost) have set up a new drama at the Peacock about "two star-crossed police officers, separated by 27 years in time, who work together to solve murders." Said effort is set up at the Universal Television-based Hypnotic with the company's Doug Liman and Dave Bartis executive producing alongside said duo. (Deadline.com)UNTITLED WIL CALHOUN PROJECT (NBC, New!) - Will Calhoun ("Whitney") is back in business with the Peacock for a new comedy about "an old school competitive college football coach who seeks redemption in the New South." Said effort comes from Scott Stuber and Quan Phung's Scott Stuber Productions and Universal Television. (Deadline.com)WAYWARD PINES (FOX/FX Productions; W: Chad Hodge; D: M. Night Shyamalan) - Lindsey Kraft has scored a role on the limited series, about Secret Service Agent Ethan Burke (Matt Dillon) who finds himself stranded in the seemingly bucolic town of Wayward Pines, Idaho while looking for two missing federal agents. She'll recur as Ethan's sister-in-law Darla, "a professional tweeter and life coach." The actress will also recur on HBO's "Getting On" as Marguerite, "a young nurse fresh out of school on her first round of rotations." "Pines" also stars Tim Griffin, Charlie Tahan, Shannyn Sossamon, Carla Gugino, Greta Lee, Juliette Lewis, Melissa Leo, Terrence Howard and Toby Jones. (Deadline.com)AND IN OTHER NEWS... - Scott Bakula will recur on HBO's new comedy "Looking" - formerly "Lorimer" - as "an attractive entrepreneur and pillar of the Castro community" (Deadline.com); writer Michael Patrick O'Brien is the latest name entered in the "Saturday Night Live" new featured player sweepstakes (Deadline.com); Sophia Bush and Patrick Flueger have joined the cast of NBC's "Chicago PD" as Erin Lindsay, "a member of the team with an unexpected past" and Kyle Ruzek, "a hotheaded rookie plucked by Voight (Jason Beghe) from the Academy for dangerous, delicate undercover work for the Intelligence unit" (Deadline.com); Amelia Rose Blaire's Willa Burrell has been upped to series regular on "True Blood"(Deadline.com);
Alexis Denisof has booked an arc on "Grimm" as "the cunning, smart, funny and ruthless first cousin to James Frain's Eric Renard" (Deadline.com); Phoebe Strole will recur on "Glee" as "a sophomore in college who wants to get into nursing school and who becomes Sam's (Chord Overstreet) new love interest" (Deadline.com); Michael Ian Black has been named series regular on FOX's "Us & Them" while Aasif Mandvi will recur as "Nessa's (Ashlie Atkinson) deviously tempting ex" (Deadline.com); Jaime Ray Newman has joined the cast of ABC's "Mind Games" as Anna Gordon, "a seasoned con woman who is trying to turn over a new leaf" (Deadline.com);
Rockmond Dunbar is bound for at least three episodes of "The Mentalist" as "a tough, no-nonsense cop who doesn't suffer fools and isn't overly impressed by Patrick Jane's skills or charm" (Deadline.com); Warren Kole will guest on "Person of Interest" as "a real lothario" targeted by the team (TVLine.com); Jim Beaver will drop by "Revolution" as "a hard-ass, whip smart Texas Ranger who allies with Miles" (TVLine.com); and Emma Fitzpatrick will visit "Covert Affairs" as "an innocent college student who has familial ties to the spy world" (THR.com).