[10/06/14 - 11:56 PM]
Development Update: Monday, October 6
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!

BIG STOP (ABC, New!) - Jerry Collins ("Always Open") has sold a new multi-camera comedy to the Alphabet billed as "a modern take on family and today's current issues as seen through the lens of a bustling Kansas truck stop where stories and characters, like big rigs, come rolling in off the highway every day." "Modern Family" co-star Eric Stonestreet will also executive produce the half-hour, which likewise comes from "Modern" producer 20th Century Fox Television. (Deadline.com)

BLUNT TALK (Starz/MRC; W: Jonathan Ames; D: TBA) - Dolly Wells ("Doll & Em") has scored a role on the upcoming comedy series, about Walter Blunt (Patrick Stewart), a British import intent on conquering the world of American cable news. She'll play Sarah, "the head producer/writer of Walter's show. An idealist who believes in the power of the news, she comes from a family dominated by an unruly, charismatic alcoholic father, so her taste in men is hellish and in part explains her love and adoration for Walter." Jacki Weaver and Adrian Scarborough also star. (Deadline.com)

COLONY (USA/Legendary/UCP; W: Carlton Cuse & Ryan Condal; D: Juan José Campanella) - Sarah Wayne Callies ("The Walking Dead") has joined the cast of the drama pilot, about a family torn by opposing forces and making difficult choices as they balance staying together with surviving the struggle of the human race. She's set as Katie Bowman, "a mother of three who faces a daily struggle to keep her family safe and united in an occupied L.A." Josh Holloway also stars as her FBI agent husband, Will. (Deadline.com)

FIVE GHOSTS (Syfy, New!) - Evan Daugherty (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles) is developing a small screen take on Frank J. Barbiere and Chris Mooneyham's Image Comics series, which "chronicles the travels of treasure hunter Fabian Gray and his rare ability to harness the ghosts of five literary characters referred to as "The Wizard," "The Archer," "The Detective," "The Samurai" and "The Vampire."" Universal Cable Productions is behind the project with BenderSpink's Chris Bender and Jake Weiner also among the executive producers and Jake Wagner producing. (Deadline.com)

GRINDER, THE (FOX, New!) - Writers Andrew Mogel and Jarrad Paul ("Allen Gregory") are set to team with director Nick Stoller (Neighbors) for a potential single-camera comedy which revolves around two brothers. No other specifics were given about the 20th Century Fox Television-based project, which has a put pilot commitment. (Deadline.com)

HOW NOT TO CALM A CHILD ON A PLANE (CBS, New!) - Adam Barr ("Growing Up Fisher") has sold a potential comedy to the Eye about "a pair of unconventional parents trying to raise their child according to their own rules, not the rules imposed upon them by society at large." Said effort is based on Johanna Stein's book of the same name with Electric Avenue's Will Arnett and Principato-Young Entertainment's Peter Principato also serving as executive producers for CBS Television Studios. Stein herself will also receive a co-executive producer credit. (Deadline.com)

JUNIOR BENDER (NBC, New!) - Eddie Izzard is looking to bring Timothy Hallinan's critically acclaimed crime novels - about "the high-end thief with a taste for the finer things in life who sidelines as a private eye for criminals" - to the small screen at the Peacock. Jessica Ball ("Royal Pains") is on board to pen the script and executive produce alongside Ella Communications' Izzard and Sarah Townsend for Universal Television. Izzard is not currently attached to star in the project. (THR.com)

JUVIE (ABC, New!) - Sam Laybourne ("The Michael J. Fox Show") has booked a new single-camera comedy about "a privileged and naive golden boy, who takes a job at a juvenile hall and discovers he has more to learn than to teach." Former HBO executive Sue Naegle will also executive produce the half-hour via her Naegle Ink banner. No studio was indicated. (Deadline.com)

MAN IN THE HIGH CASTLE, THE (Amazon; W: Frank Spotnitz; D: David Semel) - Joel de la Fuente and Michael Rispoli are the latest to be cast in the drama pilot, based on Philip K. Dick's Hugo Award-winning novel - about an alternate history in which the Axis Powers occupy the United States, where fascism rules and the few surviving Jews hide under assumed names. They'll play Inspector Kido and Don Warren, respectively, in the project, which also stars Alexa Davalos, Cary Tagawa, Luke Kleintank and Rupert Evans. (Deadline.com)

SAY ANYTHING (NBC, New!) - Justin Adler ("Better Off Ted") is looking to bring Cameron Crowe's 1989 movie - about "the romance between average student Lloyd Dobler (John Cusack) and valedictorian Diane Court (Ione Skye) during the summer after their high-school graduation" - to the small screen as a single-camera comedy, set a decade after the events in the movie. 20th Century Fox Television is behind the half-hour, which has a penalty attached. Kapital Entertainment's Aaron Kaplan will also serve as an executive producer. (Deadline.com)

SHADES OF BLUE (NBC/Universal; W: Adi Hasak; D: Barry Levinson) - Barry Levinson (The Bay) has signed on to direct the debut installment of the 13-episode series, about Harlee McCord (Jennifer Lopez), a single mother and detective who is recruited to work undercover for the FBI's anti-corruption task force. Executive producing alongside Lopez and Hasak for Universal Television are Ryan Seacrest, Jack Orman, Elaine Goldsmith-Thomas, Nina Wass and Benny Medina. Production is slated to begin shooting next summer in New York. (Deadline.com)

SLAP, THE (NBC/Universal; W: Jon Robin Baitz; D: Lisa Cholodenko) - Makenzie Leigh has been cast in the limited series, a complex family drama that explodes from one small incident where a man slaps another couple's misbehaving child. She plays Connie, "a young babysitter who shares an intimate moment with Hector (Peter Sarsgaard), spurring a chain of consequences for both characters." Brian Cox, Mary-Louise Parker, Melissa George, Zachary Quinto and Thandie Newton also star. (Deadline.com)

ST. PATRICK (FOX, New!) - Len Wiseman ("Sleepy Hollow") is developing an event miniseries at the network which explores the retelling of another European legend, that of St. Patrick. The project, set up at Wiseman's 20th Century Fox Television-based Sketch Films, will follow his "dramatic transformation from a rebellious teenager into a legendary peacemaker and chronicles his story as a slave who becomes a priest, a priest who becomes a warrior, and ultimately a warrior who becomes a saint." Dan Frey and Russell Sommer are penning the script and will serve as supervising producers with Wiseman and David Bernardi as executive producers. (Deadline.com)

STUDIO CITY (FOX, New!) - Krista Vernoff ("Grey's Anatomy") has scored a put pilot commitment from the network for a potential drama inspired by her "real-life experience growing up as the daughter of a drug dealer to the stars." Warner Bros. Television-based John Wells Productions is behind the hour with the company's Wells and Andrew Stearn executive producing alongside Vernoff. (Deadline.com)

AND IN OTHER NEWS... - Paulina Rubio will guest on "Jane the Virgin" as Xiomara's (Andrea Navedo) favorite pop star, "whose unexpected connection to the family presents a bizarre plot twist" (EW.com); Nicholas Brendon will drop by the season finale of "Faking It" as "a professional artist and Hester High alum who interviews art students for a prestigious fellowship" (EW.com); Lisa Bonet will guest on "New Girl" as an education guru (TVLine.com); Tyler Hilton is bound for "Castle" as "a fun-loving resort guest privy to a scandalous secret" (TVLine.com); Yvette Nicole Brown has been upped to series regular on new multi-camera comedy "The Odd Couple", following her decision to leave single-camera comedy "Community" last week (TVLine.com); and Makenzie Leigh will guest on "Gotham" as Liza, "a wild child," and "Mozart in the Jungle" as Addison, "an aspiring ballet dancer who poses a threat to Hailey (Lola Kirke) and Alex's (Peter Vack) relationship" (Deadline.com).

  [october 2014]  


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