TV SALES, PICK-UPS, ATTACHMENTS, RENEWALS & DEALS (2.13.15)
HBO is developing Will Strouse and Alan Poul’s one-hour drama, INCURABLE, about a support group for people with supernatural powers. Strouse wrote the script and will co-executive produce with Poul who is also set to direct the pilot. Strouse is repped by UTA. Poul is repped by WME.
Universal Cable Productions and Valhalla Entertainment are teaming up to adapt the Swedish series, Tusenbroder, into a U.S series titled BROTHERS IN CRIME. The crime drama will follow three old friends who turn to crime in order to save their construction company from financial ruin. Nick Cassavetes is set to direct and executive produce the TV series with Cliff Dorfman slated as writer and executive producer along with Glenn Lund and Peter Stormare.
ABC has picked up DR.KEN, a semi-autobiographical comedy starring Ken Jeong. The series centers around Jeong’s character, a frustrated HMO doctor, husband and father. The series, written by Jared Stern and produced by John Davis and John Fox, was previously in development at NBC. Jeong will star and co-executive produce along with Mike O’Connel. Mike Sikowitz will also executive produce.
CBS has tapped Ava DuVernay to direct and executive produce their pilot FOR JUSTICE. The pilot, based on James Patterson’s novel The Thomas Berryman Number, follows a female FBI agent working in the Department of Civil Rights Division who is caught between her radical family and her professional family. Robert De Niro, Jame Rosenthal, James Patterson, Bill Robinson, Leopoldo Gout will executive produce alongwith Rene Balcer who will pen the script as well. DuVernay is repped by Paradigm.
HBO’s GETTING ON, has been renewed for its third and final season. The hospital comedy follows the staff of a women’s geriatric long-term care ward as they take on medical bureaucracy. Mark V. Olsen and Will Scheffer created the series and executive produced alongside Jane Tranter, Julie Gardner, Geoff Atkinson, Jo Brand, Joanna Scanlon and Vicki Pepperdine.
IFC has renewed PORTLANDIA for two more seasons of 10 episodes each. The comedy was created and stars Fred Armisen and Carrie Brownstein and is executive produced by Lorne Michaels and Broadway Video.
ABC Family has officially cancelled MELISSA & JOEY after four seasons. The series, starring Melissa Joan Hart and Joey Lawrence, was the studio’s highest-rated comedy and the studio’s first sitcom to reach 100 episodes.
ABC has cast Paul Scheer in the new comedy series FRESH OFF THE BOAT. Scheer will play Mitch, the eccentric restaurant host hired by Mr. Huang in an effort to turn business around. Scheer has been credited for roles in The League, Year One and NTSF:SD:SUV. Scheer is repped by UTA and Principato Young Entertainment.
Fox and WBTV has cast Megalyn Echikunwoke in a recurring guest role on THE FOLLOWING. She will play Penny, a troubled addict who is Theo’s sister. Echinkunwoke recently starred opposite Don Cheadle in Showtime’s House of Lies an in the action film, A Good Day to Die Hard. She is repped by UTA and A Management.
Ben Stiller has been attached to executive produce and direct episodes of the hour-long drama comedy, SUPER SAD BUT TRUE LOVE STORY. The project, in the works at MRC, is an adaptation of Gary Shteyngart’s novel by the same name. The story is set in the near-future and explores the relationship between a bookish man stuck in a tech-obsessed society and a complex, materialistic young Korean-American woman. Sheteyngart will co write and executive produce with co-creator Karl Gajdusek. Stiller is repped by WME.
Ben Taylor will direct ABC‘s single comedy pilot CHEV & BEV starring Chevy Chase and Beverly D’Angelo who’s fun retirement comes to a screeching halt when they suddenly have to have their grandchildren. Brad Copeland wrote the script based on an original idea by Aaron Kaplan. The two will serve as co-executive producers. Taylor is repped by Curtis Brown Group.
Sanna Hamri, co-executive producer of Empire, will direct Fox’s drama pilot STUDIO CITY. The script is based on serie screator Krista Vernoff’s experiences as the daughter of a drug dealer to the stars. Hamri is repped by CAA and LKE.