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[03/13/15 - 11:49 PM]
Development Update: Friday, March 13
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!


ALL STARS (ABC/20th; W: Judah Miller; D: TBA) - Greg Grunberg ("Masters of Sex") has scored the male lead on the single-camera comedy pilot, about a Tony Award-winning mother, Irene (Megan Hilty), and Gary, a cerebral, risk-averse father blessed with a natural-born athlete for a son. He'll play the aforementioned Gary in the project, "a geriatric doctor and a cautious and practical father and husband." Efren Ramirez and Tony Rock also star. (Deadline.com)


BRAINY BUNCH, THE (ABC/20th; W: Lizzie & Wendy Molyneux; D: Jamie Travis) - Majandra Delfino ("Friends with Better Lives") is set to star opposite James Roday in the comedy pilot, in which parents Kip and MonaLisa Mitchell find themselves raising their extraordinarily intelligent kids with limited life and social skills. She'll play the latter, "a teacher with PH.D. in literature who believes that everyone on Earth is born with a special gift." Zoe Colletti, Spencer Tomich and Harrison Holzer also star as three of their seven brilliant kids with Melanie Griffith as MonaLisa's mother. (Deadline.com)


CODE BLACK (CBS/ABCS/CBSP; W: Michael Seitzman; D: David Semel) - Bonnie Somerville ("Golden Boy") has signed onto the drama pilot, set in the busiest and most notorious ER in the nation - LA County Hospital - where the extraordinary staff confronts a broken system in order to protect their ideals and the patients who need them the most. She'll play Christa Hardin, succeeding Marcia Gay Harden; who in turn will now play Leanne Royer, taking over for Maggie Grace, who exited the project earlier this week. (Deadline.com)


DEVIL YOU KNOW, THE (HBO/Lionsgate; W: Bruce Miller, Jenji Kohan & Tracy Miller; D: Gus Van Sant) - Ever Carradine, Damien Molony, Julian Rhind Tutt, Matthew James Thomas, Nigel Lindsay, Ewen Bremner, Karen Gillan, Hannah Nordberg, Naian Gonzalez Norvind and Zawe Ashton have all boarded the drama pilot, which explores the circumstances surrounding one of the most compelling chapters in American history: the Salem Witch Trials. Carradine will play Ann Putnam Sr., Thomas' (Eddie Izzard) wife, "who is sickly but strong among her peers"; with Molony as Robert Putnam, Thomas' eldest son; Tutt as Samuel Parris, "a hard-line Puritan, who isn't very popular, until the accusations start"; Thomas as Henry Paine, "a newcomer from England"; Lindsay plays Dr. Griggs, "a man of science and reason"; Bremner as Israel Porter, "patriarch of the powerful Porter clan"; Gillan as Jane Porter, youngest daughter of Israel Porter; Nordberg as Betty Parris, Samuel Parris' daughter; Norvind as Samuel Parris' niece; Ashton as the Parris' slave brought from Barbados, who "truly loves Betty, whom she's cared for since birth." Also set to recur are Will Pullen as Moses Cooper, Kate Nash as Bridget Bishop, Seana Kofoed as TBA, Mary Mouser as Earth Fenn and Beanie Feldstein as Lydia Harris. Ismenia Mendes and Nadia Alexander also star. (Deadline.com)


FANTASY LIFE (FOX/20th; W: Tim McAuliffe; D: TBA) - Chaz Lamar Shepherd ("The Game") has scored a role on the comedy pilot, about Mitch (Kevin Connolly), a hard-working guy who lands his ultimate dream job hosting a fantasy football show where he's forced to navigate office politics while becoming the star he never thought he could be. He's set as Michael Coleman II a.k.a. MC2, "a pro football player and one of the analysts on Mitch's show." Kimberley Crossman, Utkarsh Ambudkar and Vanessa Williams also star. (Deadline.com)


FOR JUSTICE (CBS/CBSP; W: Rene Balcer; D: Ava DuVernay) - Rachel Boston ("Witches of East End") has joined the cast of the drama pilot, about Natalia "Nat" Chappel (Anika Noni Rose), an FBI agent who works in the Criminal Section of the Department of Justice Civil Rights Division investigating crimes based on civil rights violations across the country. She'll play Lisa Ashworth, "everyone's favorite kid sister and another DOJ lawyer with Nat's team." Phylicia Rashad and Shawn Hatosy also star. (Deadline.com)


HALF OF IT, THE (CBS/CBSP; W: Mike Gibbons; D: James Burrows) - Morgan Krantz ("Switched at Birth") has booked a role on the comedy pilot, about Mike (Jon Dore), a newly divorced dad who revels in the fact that he now gets to keep half his stuff, which is more than he ever had when he was married. He's on board as Trevor, "Mike's Bohemian hipster neighbor." Christine Ko also stars. (Deadline.com)


HEART MATTERS (NBC/Universal; W: Jill Gordon; D: Robert Duncan McNeill) - Jamie Kennedy has been tapped for 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. He'll play Dr. Callahan, "a great surgeon despite his obnoxious manner." Dave Annable, Don Hany, Maya Erskine and Shelley Conn also star. (Deadline.com)


KING OF 7B, THE (ABC/ABCS; W: Howard Franklin; D: David Frankel) - Marin Hinkle ("Two and a Half Men") 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. She'll play his sister Charlotte Porter Armstrong, "formerly a stylish deb and now a PETA zealot who eschews beauty products and wears only natural fabrics." Amir Talai, Carla Jimenez and Kirby Howell-Baptiste also star. (Deadline.com)


KINGMAKERS, THE (ABC/ABCS; W: Sallie Patrick; D: TBA) - Newcomer Gus Halper has been tapped for the lead role on the drama pilot, about Eli Hennessy, a young man who adopts the identity of Jacob Darlow to infiltrate the murder of his sister, Julia, at an elite Ivy League school and its century-old secret society. He'll play said fellow in the project, which also stars Colm Feore and Parminder Nagra. (Deadline.com)


RORSCHACH & AWE (HBO, New!) - Writer/director Scott Z. Burns (Contagion) is spearheading a new docudrama at the pay channel which "will explore how the CIA hired two psychologists to build a torture program with the full knowledge and cooperation of the American Psychological Association." Said effort is based on the 2007 Vanity Fair article of the same name by investigative reporter Katherine Eban, which "shed light on the roles of psychologists James Elmer Mitchell and Bruce Jessen as architects of the coercive interrogation tactics." Anonymous Content's Michael Sugar will executive produce alongside Burn through his Wandering Jew banner. American human rights investigator Nathaniel Raymond serves as consultant. (Deadline.com)


RUNNER (ABC/20th; W: Michael Cooney; D: Michael Offer) - Chris Johnson, Megan Dodds and Matthew LeNeve are the latest additions to the drama pilot, about Lauren Marks (Paula Patton), who - after a simple twist of fate - learns her husband is not the person she believed him to be. Faced with the harsh reality that her life is forever changed, she goes on a truth seeking journey that entrenches her in a US/Mexican war over weapons and terrorism. Johnson will play Josh, "a handsome and artistic architect and Lauren's business partner"; with Dodds as Simon's (Brent Sexton) wife Emily; and LeNevez as Adam Marks, Lauren's husband, "a pediatric surgeon." Adam Rodriguez also stars. (Deadline.com)


RUSH HOUR (CBS/WBT; W: Bill Lawrence & Blake McCormick; D: Jon Turteltaub) - Comedian Justin Hires is set to star opposite Jon Foo in the drama pilot, a small screen take on the film franchise about a stoic, by-the-book Hong Kong police officer (Jon Foo) assigned to a case in Los Angeles, where he's forced to work with a cocky black LAPD officer. He's set as the latter's Carter, the role originated by Chris Tucker in the features, "an irreverent and wildly confident bad-boy detective, a maverick who uses unorthodox methods to get things done, often causing the top brass to look the other way." Aimee Garcia and Jessika Van also star. (Deadline.com)


SUPERSTORE (NBC/Universal; W: Justin Spitzer; D: Ruben Fleischer) - Ben Feldman ("A to Z") has joined the cast of the drama pilot, about a group of employees at a big box store and examines love, friendship, and the beauty of every day moments. He'll play Jonah, "a boyish college grad who's never had a job before and wants a taste of the real world. His unwittingly elitist behavior initially alienates him from his floor manager and co-workers, but his charisma, zest for life, and eternal optimism is contagious and endears him to his fellow staffers." Colton Dunn, Lauren Ash, Mark McKinney, Nichole Bloom and Nico Santos also star. (Deadline.com)


AND IN OTHER NEWS... - Oliver Hudson has signed onto FOX's "Scream Queens" where he'll succeed Joe Manganiello in his role (Deadline.com); Sylvester Stallone has joined NBC's "S.T.R.O.N.G." as an executive producer (Deadline.com); "A to Z" creator Ben Queen has inked a two-year overall deal with Warner Bros. Television (Deadline.com); Cheryl Ladd will visit "Ray Donovan" as "a game show hostess" (Variety.com); and "Law & Order: SVU" showrunner Warren Leight has signed a three-year overall deal with Sony Pictures Television to develop new series projects for the studio (Variety.com).






  [march 2015]  
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W
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F
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· A TO Z (NBC)
· BRAINY (ABC)
· CODE BLACK (CBS)
· DEVELOPMENT UPDATE (TFC)
· DEVIL YOU KNOW, THE (HBO)
· DIVA THE DOC AND THE JOC, THE (ABC)
· FANTASY LIFE (FOX)
· FOR JUSTICE (CBS)
· FRIENDS WITH BETTER LIVES (CBS)
· GAME, THE (BET)
· GOLDEN BOY (CBS)
· HALF OF IT, THE (CBS)
· HEARTBEAT (NBC)
· KING OF 7B, THE (ABC)
· KINGMAKERS (ABC)
· LAW & ORDER: SPECIAL VICTIMS UNIT (NBC)
· MASTERS OF SEX (SHOWTIME)
· RAY DONOVAN (SHOWTIME)
· RORSCHACH & AWE (HBO)
· RUNNER (ABC)
· RUSH HOUR (CBS)
· SCREAM QUEENS (FOX)
· STRONG (NBC)
· SUPERSTORE (NBC)
· SWITCHED AT BIRTH (FREEFORM)
· TWO AND A HALF MEN (CBS)
· WITCHES OF EAST END (LIFETIME)





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