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Channel Surfing: Sarah Chalke in at Mad Love, BTS at Parks and Rec, Jason O'Mara in Talks for Terra Nova, and More

Welcome to your Monday morning television briefing.

There is major recasting underway at CBS' comedy Mad Love, which is allegedly thisclose to scoring a thirteen-episode midseason order from the network. According to Deadline's Nellie Andreeva, Sarah Chalke (Scrubs) is said to be in talks to come aboard the comedy, where she would replace Minka Kelly (Friday Night Lights) as Kate on the Sony Pictures Television and CBS Studios-produced project. Meanwhile, Lizzy Caplan (Party Down) has backed out of the project after she couldn't commit to the series and her role, Connie, will also be recast. (It's the second wave of recastings on the pilot as Dan Fogler and Ashley Austin Morris were previously replaced by Tyler Labine and Lizzy Caplan respectively.) (Deadline)

Hollywood Reporter's Carita Rizzo offers an insightful behind-the-scenes look at NBC's critically acclaimed comedy Parks and Recreation, which recently wrapped its second season, by spending the day with the talented writing staff of the Universal Media Studios-produced series as the team--which includes Mike Schur, Greg Daniels, Emily Spivey, Dan Goor, Katie Dippold, Norm Hiscock, Aisha Muharrar, Harris Wittels, Alan Yang, and Emily Kapnek--attempts to break a script. (Hollywood Reporter)

Deadline's Nellie Andreeva is reporting that Jason O'Mara (Life on Mars) is said to be in talks to star in FOX's upcoming prehistoric/time-travel drama Terra Nova, which revolves around a family from the future who travels back to pre-historic times in an effort to save the human Race. O'Mara would play Jim Shannon, who is described as "a devoted father with a checkered past who guides his family through this new land of limitless beauty, mystery and terror." Andreeva reports that two actors were previously offered roles on the series but neither negotiation got off the ground. Pilot episode will be directed by Alex Graves (Fringe). (Deadline)

Entertainment Weekly's Michael Ausiello is reporting that Pauley Perrette has signed a new multi-year deal to remain aboard CBS' NCIS. Pertte's successful contract renegotiation now means that only two actors--Michael Weatherly and Sean Murray--have yet to close deals to return to the procedural drama, however Ausiello's unnamed source indicates that both are likely to close deals soon. (Entertainment Weekly's Ausiello Files)

Variety's Michael Schneider is reporting that a stalemate has been reached between CBS and 20th Century Fox Television over the fate of the Brett Ratner-executive produced action series Chaos, which had originally been given an eight-episode series order from the network (which 20th turned down) and then ordered a thirteen-episode order, albeit at a reduced license fee. "That may still be a difficult go for 20th, however, as the studio has already reduced costs on the project, including shooting it in Dallas, where the studio already built the tax incentives into the show's budget," writes Schneider. "From the Eye's perspective, the network doesn't really need Chaos, given that it already has a jam-packed schedule, including the net's previously announced midseason Criminal Minds pickup. What's more, the humor-laced Chaos is a departure for the net, which airs mostly straight-ahead procedurals like the CSI, NCIS and Criminal Minds franchises." If the two sides can't reach a deal over Chaos, CBS could still opt to grant a series order to the John Wells and Hannah Shakespeare-executive produced medical drama Gimme Shelter... or it may not order anything else. (Variety)

Could Disney be putting ABC on the block? The Hollywood Reporter's Elizabeth Guider takes a look at the current rumors, which have Disney mulling its options over whether to keep ABC in its portfolio or attempt to find a buyer for the broadcast network. "The wearying recession also has reshaped the thinking at media companies, making everyone with decision-making roles more ruthless in, or resigned to, cutting loose whatever doesn't appear to be easily or consistently monetizable," writes Guider. (Hollywood Reporter)

Cabler Nicktoons is resurrecting classic 1980s animated series Voltron, ordering 26 half-hour episodes of Voltron Force, which will focus on "five space explorers who pilot robotic lions that combine to form Voltron, an invincible guardian sworn to defend the Universe." Further more, Variety's Marc Graser indicates that the series will "remain faithful to the old show, while introducing new recruits to fight alongside the original characters." (Variety)

Broadcasting & Cable's Melissa Grego has an interview with 20th Century Fox Television chairmen Dana Walden and Gary Newman in which the duo discuss a number of topics, including Simon Cowell, Ryan Murphy, and how they are positioning Glee in order to avoid overexposure, as they feel it is destined to become television's highest-rated series. "I don't worry that the novelty is going to wear off quickly," said Walden. "We are careful and sober about the potential shortcomings of something that's burning this brightly. As brand managers on this particular show, we turn down a lot of opportunities. It might not seem like it, but you can only imagine [it] if you see the opportunities that we have exploited so far. We have a truncated tour. There was an opportunity to take this show around the country, right now, and sell out arenas... [Ryan has] already pitched out the next 13 episodes of the next season, and the storytelling and the characters and the new characters that are being introduced to keep things feeling fresh. He's a very contemporary storyteller, and that's one of reasons why I think the show is connecting with audiences, that these stories accelerate at a very quick pace. There's no navel-gazing. This is not soap opera of years before where one moment is mined over several episodes. It's how a younger demo consumes content and he's tapped into that." (Broadcasting & Cable)

Katalyst Media has signed a new two-year overall deal with Warner Horizon Television, under which they will develop and produce new unscripted programming for the studio arm. (Hollywood Reporter)

Disney XD has renewed animated series Kick Buttowski: Suburban Daredevil for a second season, set to launch next spring. (Hollywood Reporter)

Stay tuned.


Ally said…
I don't really know much about Mad Love, but I'll take Sarah Chalke over Minka Kelly ANY day.
Anonymous said…
I thought Chalke was connected with another fall series that was ordered!?!?
Jace Lacob said…

Sarah Chalke's ABC pilot was not ordered to series.

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