Skip to main content

Channel Surfing: ABC to Revamp Edgar Floats, Undercovers Recasts, Weatherly to Return to NCIS, Criminal Minds Cuts Female Cast, and More

Welcome to your Tuesday morning television briefing.

Entertainment Weekly's Michael Ausiello is reporting that Rand Ravich's ABC drama pilot Edgar Floats, which recently received an order for six additional scripts, will be completely reconceived, with nearly all of the original cast--including series leads Tom Cavanagh and Alicia Witt and supporting players Derek Webster, Alex Solowitz, and Raoul Trujillo--getting the axe. (Only Robert Patrick will remain.) Deadline's Nellie Andreeva, meanwhile, has some further insight into the decision made by ABC. "People have been divided on Cavanagh's performance, while Patrick has been almost universally hailed as the pilot's scene stealer," she writes. "I hear ABC brass like the idea of Edgar Floats and the central character but the project is being re-conceived, with the six additional scripts still being written." [Editor: seeing as Edgar Floats was my favorite broadcast pilot of the development cycle, I'm gutted by this news.] (Entertainment Weekly's Ausiello Files, Deadline)

Mekia Cox (90210) has been cast in JJ Abrams and Josh Reims' upcoming NBC drama series Undercovers, where she will play Lizzy, the sister of Gugu Mbatha-Raw's Samantha, who is unaware of her sister's professional capacity as a CIA agent. Cox replaces Jessica Parker Kennedy, who appeared in the role in the pilot. [Editor: while I have nothing against Kennedy, per se, I did think that Lizzy and the catering company was the weakest and most labored part of Undercovers pilot.] (Hollywood Reporter)

It's official: Michael Weatherly has closed his deal to return to CBS' NCIS next season, following a successful renegotiation for Season Eight of the crime procedural. Of the four actors who went into the summer without a deal in place--Pauley Perrette, David McCallum, Michael Weatherly, and Sean Murray--only Murray has yet to finish renegotiating, however, Deadline's Nellie Andreeva said that the two sides are "optimistic" that a deal can be reached. (Deadline, Entertainment Weekly's Ausiello Files)

Deadline's Nellie Andreeva is reporting that CBS' Criminal Minds is gutting most of its female cast for financial reasons, opting not to pick up the option of series regular A.J. Cook, while Paget Brewster will be appearing in a "reduced number of episodes next season." Cook may reprise her role as Jennifer Jereau next season so that the writers can wrap up her storyline, though no deal has been made. Move means that Kristen Vangsness will be the only female cast member to appear in all episodes next season. (Deadline)

Entertainment Weekly's Michael Ausiello is reporting that Adrianne Palicki and Taylor Kitsch have signed on to appear in multiple episodes of Season Five of Friday Night Lights. Ausiello, citing unnamed sources, writes that Palicki will guest star in the final two episodes of the season (likely the series' end), while Kitsch will appear in the final four. (Also set to return, at least for one episode: Scott Porter, Zach Gilford--who will be in four installments--and likely Jesse Plemons.) (Entertainment Weekly's Ausiello Files)

Brian Kirk (Dexter) will direct two episodes of HBO's upcoming fantasy drama Game of Thrones. Production is slated to begin July 26th in Northern Ireland. (Hollywood Reporter)

Christopher Eccleston has broken his silence about why he left Doctor Who after just one season in a new interview with Radio Times. "I was open-minded but I decided after my experience on the first series that I didn't want to do any more," said Eccleston. "I didn't enjoy the environment and the culture that we, the cast and crew, had to work in. I thought if I stay in this job, I'm going to have to blind myself to certain things that I thought were wrong." (BBC News)

SPOILER! TV Guide Magazine's Will Keck is reporting that Fringe producers are looking to cast the role of the mother of Olivia Dunham (Anna Torv), who would appear in a story arc that would last roughly three or four episodes next season. "The character is described as loving, stable and sweet," writes Keck. "She dotes on Olivia since her other daughter died at birth." [Editor: I would assume that this role would be taking place "over there," in the other dimension, since Olivia's sister Rachel is, uh, alive and well in "our" world.] (TV Guide Magazine)

Faran Tahir (Star Trek) is set to guest star in two episodes of Syfy's Warehouse 13 this summer, as the series returns for its second season. Tahir will play Regent Adwin Kosan, described as "one of the mysterious and powerful Regents, the shadowy governing body charged with keeping the Warehouse safe," who turns up at the Warehouse in the midst of a crisis. (via press release)

In other Warehouse 13-related news, TV Guide Magazine's Will Keck has more details about the role that former Bionic Woman Lindsay Wagner will be playing when she guest stars on the Syfy dramedy as Dr. Vanessa Calder. "She's the official doctor for Warehouse agents. She is quite worldly and knows lots of secrets," Wagner told Keck. (TV Guide Magazine)

Stay tuned.

Comments

Amber Simpson said…
You've seen the Undercovers pilot? Is it any good? Would love to hear your thoughts!
Westeros said…
Small mistake: the Game of Thrones director is Brian Kirk, not Brian Keck (I suspect the news item about Will Keck threw you).

Baffling about Edward Floats. I'm guessing the "has people divided" line means that it was actually an interesting cast but it was "too" interesting and so they're going back to aiming at bland to satisfy the lowest common denominator...

Bah. Network TV.

Popular posts from this blog

Katie Lee Packs Her Knives: Breaking News from Bravo's "Top Chef"

The android has left the building. Or the test kitchen, anyway. Top Chef 's robotic host Katie Lee Joel, the veritable "Uptown Girl" herself (pictured at left), will NOT be sticking around for a second course of Bravo's hit culinary competition. According to a well-placed insider, Joel will "not be returning" to the show. No reason for her departure was cited. Unfortunately, the perfect replacement for Joel, Top Chef judge and professional chef Tom Colicchio, will not be taking over as the reality series' host (damn!). Instead, the show's producers are currently scouring to find a replacement for Joel. Top Chef 's second season was announced by Bravo last month, but no return date has been set for the series' ten-episode sophomore season. Stay tuned as this story develops. UPDATE (6/27): Bravo has now confirmed the above story .

BuzzFeed: Meet The TV Successor To "Serial"

HBO's stranger-than-fiction true crime documentary The Jinx   — about real estate heir Robert Durst — brings the chills and thrills missing since Serial   wrapped up its first season. Serial   obsessives: HBO's latest documentary series is exactly what you've been waiting for.   The Jinx: The Life and Deaths of Robert Durst , like Sarah Koenig's beloved podcast, sifts through old documents, finds new leads from fresh interviews, and seeks to determine just what happened on a fateful day in which the most foul murder was committed. And, also like  Serial  before it,  The Jinx may also hold no ultimate answer to innocence or guilt. But that seems almost beside the point; such investigations often remain murky and unclear, and guilt is not so easy a thing to be judged. Instead, this upcoming six-part tantalizing murder mystery, from director Andrew Jarecki ( Capturing the Friedmans ), is a gripping true crime story that unfolds with all of the speed of a page-turner; it

BBC Culture: Matthew Weiner: Mad Men’s creator on its final episodes

The creative force behind the period drama talks about where his characters are as his show begins its final episodes. “We left off with everyone’s material needs being met in an extreme way,” says Mad Men creator Matthew Weiner of where we last saw the characters on his critically acclaimed period drama when the show went on hiatus 10 months ago. “Then the issue is, what else is there?” That is the central question with the return to US TV of the AMC hit, one demanding to be answered by both the show’s characters, and its creator whose success is the envy of the television industry. Mad Men has been a defining part of Weiner’s life for the last 15 years. He wrote the pilot script on spec while he was a staff writer on CBS’ Ted Danson sitcom Becker in 1999, using it to land a writing gig on HBO’s The Sopranos in 2002. It would take another five years, filled with multiple rejections, before the first episode of Mad Men would make it on the air. Someone with less determination or vision