EXCLUSIVE: I hear ABC Family is set to pick up drama pilot Jane By Design (formerly What Would Jane Do) to series, with the order expected to come through as early as tonight. It will mark the fifth new series pickup for ABC Family this year, joining recently greenlighted comedy series State of Georgia (formerly The Great State of Georgia) and dramas The Nine Lives of Chloe King, Switched at Birth and The Lying Game.
In its most aggressive development season to date, ABC Family last fall ordered six pilots. Now, as part of the network’s rapid expansion in original programming, it has picked up five of them to series for what is its largest slate of new series ever. (Previously, the most new series ABC Family had picked up in a single year was three.) With so many scripted shows (ABC Family also has returning series The Secret Life of the American Teenager, Pretty Little Liars and Melissa & Joey), the network recently announced it was expanding its schedule to three nights of original programming.
Jane,written by April Blair, directed by Lev L. Spiro and produced by Gavin Polone, follows 16-year-old Jane (Erica Dasher), who lands a job at a hip retail company when they mistake her for an adult. ABC Family originally picked up three new shows — Georgia, Chloe King and Switched at Birth – in January. Three weeks later, the network greenlighted Lying Game, while also keeping Jane in contention by extending the options on the actors.