Skip to main content

Channel Surfing: Morena Baccarin Gets Scaly for "V," Hansen and Watros Get Early "Gossip," Ashlee Simpson-Wentz Moves into "Melrose Place," and More

Welcome to your Monday morning television briefing.

A slew of pilot castings were announced over the weekend, including former Firefly star Morena Baccarin landing the pivotal role of Anna in ABC's sci-fi pilot V, a remake of the 1980s cult series about an alien invasion. Baccarin will play the charismatic Anna, the leader of the Visitors who is able to manipulate the media very effectively and shows a breadth of knowledge about human culture. (Hollywood Reporter)

Ryan Hansen (Veronica Mars) and Cynthia Watros (Lost) have joined the cast of the untitled Gossip Girl prequel backdoor pilot, which will air May 11th. Watros will play Lily's mother CeCe, while Hansen will play Shep, a friend of Owen (Shiloh Fernandez), who has a thing for Lily's older sister Carol (Krysten Ritter). (Entertainment Weekly's Ausiello Files)

Ashlee Simpson-Wentz (Seventh Heaven) has been last in CW's drama pilot Melrose Place, an update of the 1990s FOX mainstay. She'll play Violet, a small-town girl recently transplanted to LA who arrives in own harboring a secret. Simpson-Wentz joins previously announced cast members Michael Rady and Katie Cassidy in the CBS Paramount Network Television-produced pilot. (Hollywood Reporter)

More casting announcements: Rupert Penry-Jones (Spooks) will play the lead in ABC's untitled Jerry Bruckheimer drama pilot; Nina Dobrev (Degrassi) has scored the lead role in the CW's supernatural drama pilot Vampire Diaries; Tony Hale (Arrested Development) will star in FOX comedy pilot Cop House; Eliza Coupe (Scrubs) has joined the cast of ABC comedy pilot No Heroics; Luke Mably (The Prince and Me), Gbenga Akinnagbe (The Wire), and Anna Rose Hopkins (CSI: Miami) will co-star in FOX drama pilot Maggie Hill; Robbie Jones (One Tree Hill) and Shannon Woodward (The Riches) will star in ABC drama pilot Limelight; Lana Parrilla (Swingtown) will star in CBS drama pilot Miami Trauma, Tammy Blanchard (Cadillac Records) and Mel Raido (Clubbed) have been cast in ABC drama pilot Empire State; and Justina Machado (ER) has landed a role in CBS drama pilot Three Rivers. (Hollywood Reporter)

Finally: Nate Corddry (Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip) and Molly Parker (Swingtown) will star opposite Sarah Michelle Gellar in HBO single-camera comedy pilot The Wonderful Maladys, about three adult siblings who lost their parents at a young age. Parker will play Mary, a therapist and older sister to Gellar's Alice; while Corddry will play their younger brother Neil, a grad student. Project, written by Charles Randolph, will be directed by Alan Taylor (Mad Men). (Hollywood Reporter)

Friday Night Lights star Scott Porter blogs about the latest episode of the NBC drama series, in which his character Jason Street leaves Dillon, Texas for good and how executive priducers Jason Katims and Peter Berg broke the news to him. (Entertainment Weekly's PopWatch)

ABC has handed out an official pilot order to single-camera comedy Pulling, a US remake of the UK comedy series about three women who move in together when one ends her engagement 24 hours before her wedding. Project, from ABC Studios, is written by Rob Hanning (Courting Alex) and will be directed by Elliot Hegarty. Stacy Traub will serve as showrunner/executive producer; also aboard to executive produce: Francie Calfo, Sharon Horgan, and Dennis Kelly. (Variety)

Entertainment Weekly's Michael Ausiello has some scoop for Smallville fans... as he indicates that not one, but TWO pivotal characters will die in the season finale this May. "These characters will die and they will stay dead," Ausiello's source tells him. "This is the real deal." (
Entertainment Weekly's Ausiello Files)

SoapNet has acquired all seven seasons of drama Gilmore Girls and is said to be developing two original scripted dramas as well: a US adaptation of Dutch soap Julia's Tango and Santa Monica, a dramedy about twenty-somethings living at the beach. (TV Week)

Stay tuned.

Comments

Anonymous said…
The Gossip Girl prequel is building up quite a cast. So far, I've been pretty impressed and I'm happy to see Ryan Hansen sign on.
Anonymous said…
Why remake Pulling? Are they in need of some pseudo SitC with darker overtones? Why not jump on a decent new idea - Most imported remakes don't survive.

Popular posts from this blog

Pilot Inspektor: CBS' "Smith"

I may just have to change my original "What I'll Be Watching This Fall" post, as I sat down and finally watched CBS' new crime drama Smith this weekend. (What? It's taken me a long time to make my way through the stack of pilot DVDs.) While it's on following Gilmore Girls and Veronica Mars on Tuesday nights (10 pm ET/PT, to be exact), I'm going to be sure to leave enough room on my TiVo to make sure that I catch this compelling, amoral drama. While one can't help but be impressed by what might just be the most marquee-friendly cast in primetime--Ray Liotta, Virginia Madsen, Jonny Lee Miller, Amy Smart, Simon Baker, and Franky G all star and Shohreh Aghdashloo has a recurring role--the pilot's premise alone earned major points in my book: it's a crime drama from the point of view of the criminals, who engage in high-stakes heists. But don't be alarmed; it's nothing like NBC's short-lived Heist . Instead, think of it as The Italian

The Daily Beast: "How The Killing Went Wrong"

While the uproar over the U.S. version of The Killing has quieted, the show is still a pale imitation of the Danish series on which it is based. Over at The Daily Beast, you can read my latest feature, "How The Killing Went Wrong," in which I look at how The Killing has handled itself during its second season, and compare it to the stunning and electrifying original Danish series, Forbrydelsen , on which it is based. (I recently watched all 20 episodes of Forbrydelsen over a few evenings.) The original is a mind-blowing and gut-wrenching work of genius. It’s not necessary to rehash the anger that followed in the wake of the conclusion last June of the first season of AMC’s mystery drama The Killing, based on Søren Sveistrup’s landmark Danish show Forbrydelsen, which follows the murder of a schoolgirl and its impact on the people whose lives the investigation touches upon. What followed were irate reviews, burnished with the “burning intensity of 10,000 white-hot suns

What's Done is Done: The Eternal Struggle Between Good and Evil on the Season Finale of "Lost"

Every story begins with thread. It's up to the storyteller to determine just how much they need to parcel out, what pattern they're making, and when to cut it short and tie it off. With last night's penultimate season finale of Lost ("The Incident, Parts One and Two"), written by Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse, we began to see the pattern that Lindelof and Cuse have been designing towards the last five seasons of this serpentine series. And it was only fitting that the two-hour finale, which pushes us on the road to the final season of Lost , should begin with thread, a loom, and a tapestry. Would Jack follow through on his plan to detonate the island and therefore reset their lives aboard Oceanic Flight 815 ? Why did Locke want to kill Jacob? What caused The Incident? What was in the box and just what lies in the shadow of the statue? We got the answers to these in a two-hour season finale that didn't quite pack the same emotional wallop of previous season