I hear AMC has set the roster for its semi-annual spring round of producer meetings where the writers/producers of scripts that had been identified by network brass as top pilot contenders lay out their vision for their shows. In many cases, those script showcases are followed by pilot pickups — though some editions, like the one held last fall, did not produce any orders. (AMC ended up greenlighting Preacher, which was not part of the producer meetings.)
Worth noting is that this time around the projects showcased include both drama, which has been AMC’s bread and butter, and comedy, a genre the network has pursued opportunistically. AMC is yet to launch an original comedy series, but it ordered half-hour pilot We Hate Paul Revere last year. (It did not go to series.) I hear the inclusion of two comedy scripts in the showcase is not an indication of a major push in the genre but underlines the network’s opportunistic approach.
Here are the projects I hear are in contention. They include dramas from Brad Pitt’s company Plan B, House creator David Shore, Paul Giamatti and Hemlock Grove creators Lee Shipman and Brian McGreevy, as well as comedies from the Preacher duo of Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg and Silicon Valley co-creators John Altschuler & Dave Krinsky.
Johnny Eck Project aka Balihoo
Writer: Brett Leonard
Producers: Joey Rappa, Caroline Thompson
The show is inspired by the story of freak show/artist performer Johnny Eck who was missing the lower half of his torso.
Deliver Us From Evil
Writer: Christian Torpe
About a group of townspeople who grow tired of their small-town lives and decide to take down the local bully, who has been holding them hostage.
Writer/producer: Dave Kajganich
Director: Sean Durkin (Martha Marcy May Marlene) is attached
Producers: DeDe Gardner, Jeremy Kleiner
Originally set up at HBO, the project is based on the book The Autobiography Of An Execution by David R. Dow.
Sony TV/ Shore Z/RicheProductions
Writers/producers: Jan Oxenberg & David Shore
Producers: Wendy Riche, Alan Riche, Peter Riche
Follows Dinah, a commitment-phobic artist, who cobbles together an unusual and very modern family when she moves in with her boyfriend, his daughter, and her estranged father Jerry, who has early-onset Alzheimer’s.
Writer: Jim Gavin
Producers: Paul Giamatti & Dan Carey
A young knucklehead from Long Beach joins a dusty old fraternal lodge.
Writers/producers: Philipp Meyer, Lee Shipman & Brian McGreevy
Producer: Michael Connolly
Based on the novel of the same name by Meyer, the project is a multi-generational epic telling of the story of America’s birth as a superpower through the bloody rise and fall of one Texas oil empire.
Writers-producers: Alex Fernie, Alex Berg, Todd Fasen
Producers: John Altschuler & Dave Krinsky
Three small-time thieves decide they’re ready to move into the big leagues. They’re wrong.
Writers-producers: Danny Comden & Barry Schwartz
Producers: Seth Rogen & Evan Goldberg, James Weaver
Series about Jonesy, a loveably washed-up pro surfer-turned-sober coach who works to help Jason, the privileged, ne’er-do-well son of a wealthy industrialist.