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[03/12/15 - 11:40 PM]
Development Update: Thursday, March 12
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!


ADVERSARIES, THE (ABC/ABCS; W: David Zabel; D: TBA) - Kristen Hager ("Being Human") and Christine Evangelista ("Chicago Fire") have both been cast in the drama pilot, about Charlie Fisher (Terry O'Quinn), the patriarch of a New York legal dynasty who becomes embroiled in a trial of his own, and his federal prosecutor daughter must decide which side she will fight on. Hager will play said daughter, Jess, with Evangelista as "her younger sister Emma who works at her dad's law firm as a paralegal." Christine Lahti and Lenny Platt also star. (Deadline.com)


BOOM (ABC/ABCS; W: Josh Pate & Rodes Fishburne; D: Jonas Pate) - Amber Valletta ("Legends") has been tapped for a role on the drama pilot, about a young couple (Chace Crawford, Rebecca Rittenhouse) who moves to a contemporary boomtown in North Dakota in pursuit of the American dream and are seduced by the sudden wealth of frontier life. She'll play Darla Boyd, "oil tycoon Hap's (Don Johnson) glamorous, brilliant young new wife, an ex-Goldman Sachs oil-desk type with a masters from Wharton who also is his sharp-as-ice business partner." Caitlin Carver, Delroy Lindo, India de Beaufort, Scott Michael Foster and Yani Gellman also star. (Deadline.com)


BRAINY BUNCH, THE (ABC/20th; W: Lizzie & Wendy Molyneux; D: Jamie Travis) - James Roday ("Psych") is set to star in the single-camera comedy pilot, in which parents Kip and Mona Lisa Mitchell find themselves raising their extraordinarily intelligent kids with limited life and social skills. He'll play the aforementioned Kip in the project, "a former Special Forces Operations sergeant, now a stay-at-home father to his seven brilliant children." Said involvement includes a blind script commitment from the studio to write and/or direct a future pilot. Melanie Griffith also stars. (Deadline.com)


CONFIRMATION (HBO, New!) - Kerry Washington ("Scandal") is attached to star as Anita Hill in a docudrama at the pay channel which will "detail the explosive 1991 Clarence Thomas Supreme Court nomination hearings (at which Hill testified), which brought the country to a standstill and forever changed the way people think about sexual harassment, victims' rights and modern-day race relations." Susannah Grant is penning the script the project, with Rick Famuyiwa in talks to direct. Groundswell Productions' Michael London and Janice Williams are the executive producers for ABC Signature. (THR.com)


DR. KEN (ABC/ABCS/Sony; W: Jared Stern; D: Scott Ellis) - Jonathan Slavin and Krista Marie Yu have both scored roles on the Ken Jeong-led multi-camera comedy, about a brilliant physician with zero bedside manner. He'll play Hector, "a dim-witted but big-hearted nurse who is loyal to his boss and friend, Ken"; while Yu is Molly, "Ken's daughter who is trying to rebel." Albert Tsai, Dave Foley, Suzy Nakamura and Tisha Campbell-Martin also star. (Deadline.com)


FALLING WATER (USA, New!) - The cable channel has given a pilot order to a new drama from Blake Masters, Gale Anne Hurd and the late Henry Bromell. The project revolves around "three unrelated people, who slowly realize that they are dreaming separate parts of a single common dream. Each is on a quest for something that can only be found in their subconscious - a missing girlfriend, a son, a way to communicate with a catatonic mother. However, the more they begin to use the dream world as a tool to advance their hidden agendas, they realize that their visions are trying to tell them something and that their very real lives are at stake." Juan Carlos Fresnadillo (28 Weeks Later) is attached to direct the hour from a script by Masters and Bromell for Hurd's Universal Cable Productions-based Valhalla Entertainment. Hurd, Masters and Fresnadillo will likewise executive produce with Bromell also receiving a posthumous credit. (Deadline.com)


FLESH & BLOOD (ABC/ABCS; W: Jenna Bans; D: Paul McGuigan) - Australian actor Rarmian Newton has been tapped for a role on the drama pilot, about Claire Warren (Joan Allen), the Mayor of Red Pines, California, whose young son, Adam Warren (Liam James), returns after being presumed dead after disappearing over a decade earlier, sending shockwaves throughout their tight knit community. He'll play young Danny Warren, "the wise-ass, abrasive athlete Zach Gilford's character was 12 years ago." Alison Pill, Andrew McCarthy, Floriana Lima, Margot Bingham and Zach Gilford also star. (Deadline.com)


GRANDPA (FOX/ABCS; W: Danny Chun; D: TBA) - Kelly Jenrette has joined the cast of the single-camera comedy pilot, about Jimmy (John Stamos), a charismatic longtime bachelor whose life is upended when he discovers he's a father - and a grandfather. She will play Annelise, "the assistant manager at Jimmy's restaurant." Christina Milian, Paget Brewster and Josh Peck also star. (Deadline.com)


HEART MATTERS (NBC/Universal; W: Jill Gordon; D: Robert Duncan McNeill) - Maya Erskine ("Man Seeking Women") has scored a role on the drama pilot, a medical soap that follows the outspoken Alex Panttiere (Melissa George), one of the rare female heart transplant surgeons. Alex brings an innovative eye to treating patients week to week while also balancing the complications of her professional and romantic life. She'll play Gi Sung, "a nurse with a dry wit who works closely with Dr. Panttiere and is probably the only female staff member who gets along with her." Don Hany, Dave Annable and Shelley Conn also star. (Deadline.com)


KING OF 7B, THE (ABC/ABCS; W: Howard Franklin; D: David Frankel) - Amir Talai (Harold & Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay) is the latest to be cast in the comedy pilot, about Prentiss Porter (Craig Ferguson), an agoraphobic recluse who ventures outside for the first time in 20 years when he spies what could be his soulmate moving into the building across the street. He'll play Darsh Mehta, "the deluded millennial owner of the bodega in the building where Porter lives." Carla Jimenez and Kirby Howell-Baptiste also star. (Deadline.com)


LA CRIME (ABC/ABCS; W: Steven Baigelman; D: Tom Shankland) - Ed Westwick ("Gossip Girl") is set to star in the anthology series pilot, about two LA cops as they track a Bonnie & Clyde-esque serial killer team amidst the rock-and-roll, coke-infused revelry of the 1980s Sunset Strip. He'll play Clark Gallagher, "a twisted serial killer who preys on young women who have come to L.A. to become famous." Adam Rothenberg, Anne Winters, Darrell Britt-Gibson, Erika Christensen, Gabriel Luna, Holley Fain, Karolina Wydra and Taissa Farmiga. also star. (Deadline.com)


LIMITLESS (CBS/CBSP; W: Craig Sweeny; D: Marc Webb) - Jennifer Carpenter ("Dexter") has booked the female lead on the drama pilot, based on the 2011 feature, which follows Brian Sinclair (Jake McDorman, succeeding Bradley Cooper) as he discovers the power of the mysterious drug NZT and is coerced into using his newfound drug enhanced abilities for good. She'll play Rebecca Tate, "a dynamic investigator who has risen quickly within the FBI, but hasn't come to terms yet with her background that initially drove her into a career in law enforcement." (Deadline.com)


LUCIFER (FOX/WBT; W: Tom Kapinos; D: Len Wiseman) - D.B. Woodside, Rachael Harris and Nicholas Gonzalez have all been cast in the drama pilot, about Lucifer (Tom Ellis) who, bored and unhappy as the Lord of Hell, resigns his throne and abandons his kingdom for the gorgeous, shimmering insanity of Los Angeles, where he gets his kicks helping the LAPD punish criminals. Woodside will play Amenadiel, "an angel sent to L.A. to persuade Lucifer to return to hell"; with Harris as Kim Martin, "a therapist Lucifer initially encounters when working with Chloe (Lauren German) to solve a case"; and Gonzalez as Dan, "a gruff LAPD homicide detective, who is wary of Lucifer's involvement with his wife and daughter." Lina Esco also stars. (Deadline.com)


PROBLEM CHILD (NBC/Universal; W: Scot Armstrong; D: TBA) - Anna Deavere Smith ("Nurse Jackie") has joined the cast of the single-camera comedy pilot, inspired by the film about the cat-and-mouse game between a set of parents (Matthew Lillard, Erinn Hayes) and their brilliant but mischievous child (Jack Gore). Smith will play Principal France, a role originally conceived as a male. (THR.com)


S.T.R.O.N.G. (NBC, New!) - "The Biggest Loser" creator Dave Broome has sold a new 10-episode fitness-focused reality series to the Peacock which "will follow six men and six women looking to reach their full potential by getting fit, not losing weight." Said moniker stands for Start to Realize Our Natural Greatness. Sony Pictures Television is behind the project, which Broome will executive produce via his 25/7 Productions banner. As for specifics, "each of the 12 contestants will be paired with their own trainer - also six men and six women - creating mixed-gender teams of two." (THR.com)


STUDIO CITY (FOX/WBT; W: Krista Vernoff; D: Sanaa Hamri) - Samantha Logan, Jordan Calloway and Timothy Granaderos have all been tapped for roles on the drama pilot, about a young singer, Catalina "Cat" Evans (Florence Pugh), as she comes of age living with her songwriter father, Rob (Eric McCormack) - who turns out to be a drug dealer to the stars. Logan will play Emma, "Cat's half-sister, Rob's daughter from a previous marriage"; with Calloway as Griffin, "a local skateboarder who connects with Cat upon her arrival"; with Granaderos as Mateo, "the teenaged son of Stevie (Heather Graham), and an accomplished graffiti artist who is not afraid to go to juvie for his art." Jeanine Mason and Riley Smith also star. (Deadline.com)


SUPERSTORE (NBC/Universal; W: Justin Spitzer; D: Ruben Fleischer) - Nichole Bloom ("Shameless") has been added to the cast of the single-camera comedy pilot, about a group of employees at a big box store and examines love, friendship, and the beauty of every day moments. She'll play Cheyenne, "a very pregnant teenage employee who's sweet, unsophisticated, and naive - as evidenced by the fact that she allows customers to purchase laptop computers for the mismarked price of 25 cents." Colton Dunn, Lauren Ash, Mark McKinney and Nico Santos also star. (Deadline.com)


TAKE IT FROM US (NBC/Sony; W: Barry Schwartz & Greg Malins; D: TBA) - Andy Ridings ("Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt") is the latest to be cast in the comedy pilot, about a couple that tells their son the lessons they learned growing up in the '90s in hopes he and his fiancée can avoid making the same mistakes. He'll play Spencer, "a cocky, self-proclaimed genius who is really not that bright." Stacey Farber also stars. (Deadline.com)


TELENOVELA (NBC/Universal; W: Chrissy Pietrosh & Jessica Goldstein; D: Steve Pink) - Alex Meneses (Selena) has booked a role on the Eva Longoria-led comedy, about the willful but popular diva Ana Maria, star of Latin America's most beloved telenovela who strives to stay on top in a world where the drama on-camera is nothing compared to the drama off-camera. She'll play Isabella, "an aging but beautiful actress trying to pass for 28. She's bitter about getting older and blames Ana (Longoria) for the fact that she is no longer a leading lady." Amaury Nolasco, Jencarlos Canela, Jose Moreno Brooks and Diana Maria Riva also star. (Deadline.com)


UNDERGROUND (WGN America/Sony; W: Joe Pokaski & Misha Green; D: Anthony Hemingway) - Alano Miller ("Jane the Virgin") is the latest addition to the period drama, set in the pre-Civil War South and following the slaves who set foot on the fabled Underground Railroad, the secret network of men and women who risked their lives aiding them, and the mercenaries tasked with hunting them down at any cost. He'll play Cato, "a striking, cunning and oddly charismatic slave on the plantation who is despised and feared by the other slaves." Christopher Meloni, Jurnee Smollett-Bell, Aldis Hodge and Jessica De Gouw also star. (Deadline.com)


AND IN OTHER NEWS... - NBC has quietly renamed its upcoming drama "Odyssey," premiering April 5, to "American Odyssey" (Variety.com); Mythology Entertainment has inked a first-look deal with 20th Century Fox Television (Deadline.com); Izabella Miko will recur on "Chicago Fire" as "a sexy, alluring, and flirtatious stripper from Eastern Europe who dreams of a future beyond working at a club but gets in a dark situation" (Deadline.com); Tania Raymonde is bound for "The Last Ship" as "a genius, edgy and attractive hacker who has lived off the grid and will become an asset to the crew of the ship" (Deadline.com);

James Hiroyuki Liao will reprise his role of Jay Lee on A&E's revival of "Unforgettable" (Deadline.com); Kristine Leahy has been tapped as the new co-host of "American Ninja Warrior," replacing Jenn Brown (THR.com); Cristin Milioti has been cast in the new season of "Fargo" as Betsy, "Lou's (Patrick Wilson) wife and the daughter of Rock County Sheriff Hank Larsson (Ted Danson)" (Deadline.com); and Clifford "Method Man" Smith will be featured in the two-part season finale of "Blue Bloods" as "a major badass with the Warrior Kings street gang and the prime suspect in the murder of the Gang Division Chief and his wife" (TVLine.com).






  [march 2015]  
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· ADVERSARIES, THE (ABC)
· AMERICAN NINJA WARRIOR (NBC)
· AMERICAN ODYSSEY (NBC)
· BEING HUMAN (SYFY)
· BLOOD & OIL (ABC)
· BLUE BLOODS (CBS)
· BRAINY (ABC)
· CHICAGO FIRE (NBC)
· CONFIRMATION (HBO)
· DEVELOPMENT UPDATE (TFC)
· DEXTER (SHOWTIME)
· DR KEN (ABC)
· FALLING WATER (USA)
· FAMILY, THE (ABC)
· FARGO (FX)
· GOSSIP GIRL (CW)
· GRANDFATHERED (FOX)
· HEARTBEAT (NBC)
· JANE THE VIRGIN (CW)
· KING OF 7B, THE (ABC)
· LAST SHIP, THE (TNT)
· LEGENDS (TNT)
· LIMITLESS (CBS)
· LUCIFER (FOX)
· MAN SEEKING WOMAN (FXX)
· NURSE JACKIE (SHOWTIME)
· PROBLEM CHILD (NBC)
· PSYCH (USA)
· REVENGE (ABC)
· SCANDAL (ABC)
· SHAMELESS (SHOWTIME)
· STRONG (NBC)
· STUDIO CITY (FOX)
· SUPERSTORE (NBC)
· TAKE IT FROM US (NBC)
· TELENOVELA (NBC)
· UNBREAKABLE KIMMY SCHMIDT (NETFLIX)
· UNDERGROUND (WGN)
· UNFORGETTABLE (A AND E)
· WICKED CITY (ABC)





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