We are officially in the series pickup stage of pilots season as NBC today kicked things off with orders to Chicago Med, Blindspot and Heartbreaker. Other frontrunners may soon follow suit, like Minority Report at Fox, the Jenna Bans drama at ABC and Cordon at the CW. Here is one final roundup of pilot buzz ahead of the onslaught of series orders (and passes) next week.
Even with the three series orders, I hear the NBC drama field is still wide open, with multiple other pilots in contention. That includes The Player, which, along with Blindspot and Heartbreaker, received a permission from the network to begin staffing earlier this week. Also said to be in the running are Warrior and Game of Silence, with Silvio Horta’s The Curse of the Fuentes Women as well as Love Is a Four Letter Word also having a shot. With today’s 3 orders NBC already has six drama series on tap for next season, including the straight-to series Shades of Blue and Emerald City as well as the event series Heroes Reborn, slated for fall.
NBC’s comedy field has been difficult to read with no clear frontrunners and a number of projects garnering some degree of traction, including Superstore, untitled Suzanne Martin, Strange Calls, People Are Talking, Problem Child and possibly How We Live and Cuckoo. Like on the drama side, NBC already has straight-to-series projects ordered for next season, Telenovela starring Eva Longoria and Coach.
No major changes in the standings as Fox, where dramas Minority Report, with Steven Spielberg now set to executive produce, Rosewood, which tested great, Studio City and possibly Frankenstein are all in contention. On the comedy side, the Rob Lowe and John Stamos starring vehicles Grinder and Grandpa continue to look strong, with young ensemble Cooper Barrett’s Guide to Surviving Life a viable possibility following promising testing and screening results.
Action drama Limitless is being viewed as a potential new Scorpion, it appears on brand and is owned by the network, giving it an edge. Supergirl has been getting solid early reviews, with some suggesting it for the Sunday 8 PM hour. The network has to make up its mind on the high-profile superhero show fast as it has an early pickup deadline. The other big Warner Bros. title at CBS, Rush Hour, has been quietly rising after a bumpy casting process. The two medical pilots, Code Black and LFE, also have been well received, with Code Black said to have an edge. There has been less talk about Sneaky Pete, which has a very big commitment to Sony, Doubt and For Justice. On the crime procedural side, the Criminal Minds spinoff has a shot.
The most talked about CBS comedy pilots are Life In Pieces, Angel From Hell starring Jane Lynch and The Half of It, with Greg Garcia’s Super Clyde a possibility and no input yet on a super late entry, the Dan O’Shannon half-hour.
The Jenna Bans project and The Catch seem to be leading the ABC drama field, with Runner and Boom also very much in the mix. There is a slew of other pilots which appear to have something going for them, including The Advocate, Mix, Broad Squad, Quantico, LA Crime and Adversaries. Kings and Prophets is working on 15 scripts.
The Muppets has been a fast riser, with the presentation, only filmed a couple of weeks ago, getting a great reception. Also talked about are Delores & Jermaine, NBA and Chev & Bev, with Uncle Buck, Dr. Ken, 46 Percenters, the Dan Savage project and The King of 7B also in various degrees of contention.
The most attention at the CW is going to Julie Plec’s Cordon and the Tales From the Darkside. And of course the Arrow-Flash spinoff series, which has a 3-minute presentation ready for the upfronts.