It’s that time of year again. The time when US tv producers sit with bated breath to see whether their hard work is to be hailed as the next ‘Lost’ or ’24’… Or will be crushed under heel by evil network execs like so many budding TV shows before them. Yes, the 2012 US Fall pilot season is upon us…
Here’s our pick of the 2012 Fall pilots (bear in mind, there’s no guarantee all of these show will make it to series…)!
666 Park Ave (ABC)
Based on the novel ‘666 Park Avenue’ by Gabriella Pierce 666 Park Ave is a 1hr drama about a couple from the midwest who manage one of the most historic apartment buildings in New York City, and unwittingly experience supernatural occurrences that complicate and endanger the lives of everyone in the building.
Production: Writer & Producer is David Wilcox who is probably best know for his work on Fringe.
Stars: Terry O’Quinn (Lost, Hawaii Five-0), Vanessa Williams (Ugly Betty, Desperate Housewives), Dave Annable (Brothers & Sisters), Mercedes Masohn (The Finder), Rachael Taylor (Grey’s Anatomy, Charlie’s Angels), Robert Buckley (One Tree Hill), Helena Mattsson (Desperate Housewives), Erik Palladino (ER, Over There).
Why we’re interested: Interesting mix of cast and David Wilcox is an good writer.
Arrow (The CW)
With Smallville gone, The CW have been back to DC to raid its catalog of characters that haven’t yet been snapped up for the big screen. Having tried (and failed) to bring Aquaman to the small screen a few years ago, The CW have decided to play it a bit safer by nabbing Green Arrow. The Smallville version of the character is already well know to The CW audience, but this is very much a new take on emerald archer. This version of Green Arrow is being pitched as a “darker and harder-edged show” than Smallville, but with a “real, believable world in which Oliver Queen can do incredible things”.
Cast: Stephen Amell (Regenesis, The Vampire Diaries, Hung) take the title role of Oliver Queen, billionaire playboy by day, arrow shooting, vigilante superhero by night.
Production: Arrow’s exec producer/writer’s include Greg Berlanti & Marc Guggenheim (No Ordinary Family, Eli Stone), who are both familiar with the superhero genre and have worked with DC characters before. David Nutter is directing the pilot, and has a stunning track record of bringing genre show pilots to series, having directed the pilots for Supernatural, Terminator: TSCC, Roswell, and Smallville!
Why we’re interested: We’re huge DC fans. We loved No Ordinary Family, and Eli Stone, and David Nutter has proved time and again he knows how to handle this sort of material. We all know what The CW would really love to make is a dark, edgy Batman TV series, but DC are not going to let that happen for the foreseeable future, so a dark, edgy show about DC’s other billionaire playboy superhero, seems a good pick!
Beauty and the Beast (ABC) & Beauty and the Beast (The CW)
Last season it was the battle of the fairy tales (Grimm & Once Upon A Time), this season gets more fairy tale specific with 2 competing Beauty and the Beast projects.
The first comes from ABC and stars Darius Campbell… a man previously known to the UK as Darius Danesh… I know… THAT Darius? From Popstars/Pop Idol? The thing is, post pop Darius has spent the intervening years wowing audiences in the West End in shows such as Guys and Dolls, Gone with the Wind and Chicago, making a decent name for himself as an actor (although this will be his first major TV role). Darius will play Shiro, the beastly bodyguard of the beauty Grace, played by Primeval‘s Ruth Bradley. It’s described as ‘a fantasy re-imagining of the classic fairy tale set in a mythical, dangerous world’. The show is created by Jonathan E. Steinberg (Jericho).
The second Beauty and the Beast project comes from The CW and is a remake of the 80’s TV show of the same name. This version stars Smallville’s Kristin Kreuk as Beauty, and Jay Ryan (Terra Nova) as the Beast. On the surface it’s a police procedural set in present-day New York, but with the twist of a the city having a supernatural underworld of myth and monsters.
Why we’re interested: Both projects are intriguing. ABC’s for what looks to be a new original take on the Beauty and the Beast story, and The CW’s for a remake of a great 80’s show.
Beautiful People (NBC)
This pilot for NBC is a character-driven futuristic drama set in the near future, where the human population is serviced by “mechanical human beings”. All is well until some of these android servant begin to become self-aware, and don’t like their status as second class citizens…
Cast: James Murray (Primeval, CHAOS), Patrick Heusinger (Gossip Girl, Royal Pains), Frances Conroy (Six Feet Under, American Horror Story), Andrea Parker (Desperate Housewives, E.R.), Jud Tylor (That ’70s Show.)
Production: This will be the first foray into writing drama for series creator (comedian, actor, director, and producer!) Michael McDonald, who is probably best know for Cougar Town and MadTV. Stephen Hopkins (24, The Life and Death of Peter Sellers) directs the pilot.
Why we’re interested: Okay, so it’s not the most original idea (see A.I., I Robot, Battlestar Galactica, Millennium Man to name but a few…), but it’s near-future scifi, and there’s something about the whole ‘robot uprising’ problem that makes for a really interesting premise for a show.
L.A. Noir (TNT)
L.A. Noir is an adaptation of John Buntin’s book ‘L.A. Noir: The Struggle For The Soul Of America’s Most Seductive City’. It’s follows the story of Mickey Cohen, boxer turned mob enforcer for “Bugsy” Siegel, and LA police chief William H. Parker, who’s on a mission to clean up the LAPD. If this is all sounding familiar, that’s probably because this was the true story that was the inspiration for the movie L.A. Confidential.
Cast: Neal McDonough (Minority Report, Desperate Housewives, Justified) as Parker, Jon Bernthal (Shane in The Walking Dead) as Cohen, Milo Ventimiglia (Heroes), Jeremy Strong (The Good Wife).
Production: Writer/Producer and general driving force behind the show is The Walking Dead’s Frank Darabont.
Why we’re interested: It’s Frank Darabont, who generally adds awesome to everything he does. McDonough & Bernthal are great picks for the leads, and are both strong actors, so watching them face off against each other should be a blast! Add that to the setting of 50’s L.A., and it all should make for one spectacular tv show!
(The pilot formally know as) Revolution (NBC)
Developed for NBC, the show is a scifi/drama following a family struggling to reunite in a post-apocalyptic American landscape, where every single piece of technology, from computers to cars, and even lights, have mysteriously blacked out…
Cast: Billy Burke (Charlie Swan in the Twilight movies), David Lyons (E.R, The Cape), Giancarlo Esposito (Breaking Bad), Zak Orth (Fringe, Music and Lyrics), Andrea Roth (Rescue Me) and JD Pardo (Drive).
Production: Creators are Supernatural‘s Eric Kripke and geek legend JJ Abrams (Star Trek, Fringe, Lost, Alias). It’s also rumored the pilot is to be directed another geek legend, Jon Favreau (Iron Man, Cowboys & Aliens)!
Why we’re interested: Interesting premise and a decent cast, but the thing that really sells it to us, is Kripke and Abrams collaborating on the project. If it’s true Favreau is directing, this really will be a pilot to watch out for! All they need to do now is come up with a name…
So that’s the first half of our list. Part 2 coming soon!
Let you know in the comments what you’re looking forward to!