REGULARLY UPDATED WITH NEW INFORMATION: With pilots starting to be delivered, more information is trickling in for the 2010-2011 season. Remember, it’s still very early and many pilots have not been screened yet. This is Round 2, updating my previous, PRIMETIME PILOT PANIC: Early Hot List, with polling from agents, executives, showrunners, producers, directors, writers, etc:
FBC is looking to pick up 3 to 5 new drama series and 3 comedies.
BREAKOUT KINGS: The breakout pilot so far this season with sky-high testing marks. For instance, the character played by Jimmi Simpson scored higher than any character ever tested at 20th TV, which produces the pilot.
MIDLAND: Testing was just OK. But it’s a favorite of both Fox and 20th TV. Those who’ve seen it tell me it could be a critical darling and awards contender.
RIDE-ALONG: Took a long time to cast, but Shawn Ryan’s cop drama still looks solid.
PLEADING GUILTY: There has been very little buzz on the legal drama starring Jason Isaacs. Neither the studio nor the network has seen a cut yet.
TERRA NOVA: Practically given a 13-episode order with Brannon Braga on board as showrunner.
TRAFFIC LIGHT: It’s been a solid green light for this Israeli import throughout pilot season. Still the frontrunner.
KEEP HOPE ALIVE: Greg Garcia’s new comedy is a go.
WILDE KINGDOM & SECURITY: Both look good on the strength of the performances of their stars, Will Arnett and Christian Slater. Wilde has not been seen by Fox yet.
MOST LIKELY TO SUCCEED: Tested well but hasn’t generated a lot of buzz at the network.
TAXMAN: I hear Martin Short is very good in it. Feedback on the pilot overall has not been strong, though several characters tested well on Friday night. Fox brass hasn’t seen it yet.
STRANGE BREW: Max Mutchnick and David Kohan’s pilot was converted from multi- to single-camera. Still shooting.
THE STATION: Doesn’t look good.
NIRVANA: Not going.
This network’s needs are to pick up 5 to 7 new dramas & 4-5 comedies.
UNDERCOVERS: The adjective people use who’ve seen J.J. Abrams’ pilot is “fantastic”. A go.
CHASE: The Jerry Bruckheimer-produced drama also looks like a lock.
KINDREDS: David E. Kelley’s new drama has a lot of supporters who call the project a “vintage Kelley” legal show and hail the great lead performance by Kathy Bates. It has a little less heat than the other two Warner Bros pilots, Undercovers and Chase, but still considered a likely go.
ROCKFORD FILES: NBC has been very high on this for obvious reasons (well-known franchise … David Shore as creator). The network only received the pilot this weekend, early feedback from people who have seen the cut is positive.
LOVE BITES: Cindy Chupack’s anthology series starring Becki Newton and Jordana Spiro is still hot, with NBC already trying to get freelance writers lined up in case of a series order.
THE CAPE & THE EVENT: Somehow, the high-concept drama about a former cop-turned-superhero and the conspiracy thriller got lumped together from the get-go. The network is looking to pick up only one of them. The Cape seems to have the edge at the moment.
REX IS NOT YOUR LAWYER: This off-cycle pilot staged a comeback after being pronounced dead when the network didn’t pick it up for midseason. The legal drama’s producers did more work on the pilot they had originally rushed, including adding voiceover. The reworked pilot tested well, and the project has received an order for two back-up scripts.
UNTITLED JOHN EISENDRATH: Not going.
LOLA: The Law & Order spinoff is picked up for fall.
OUTSOURCED & PERFECT COUPLES: The frontrunners.
THIS LITTLE PIGGY: Still hot too.
FRIENDS WITH BENEFITS: Looking for a showrunner for the potential series. Well-liked at the studio. Testing went well.
NEXT: Paul Reiser’s semi-autobiographical comedy came out OK. Reiser has 7 backup scripts written — which is an advantage.
THE ADAM CAROLLA SHOW: Actually, doesn’t look too bad, according to people who’ve seen it.
NATHAN VS. NURTURE: Doesn’t look very promising.
THE PINK HOUSE: Not likely to go.
BEACH LANE: After a major recasting, with Nick Thune replacing Patton Oswalt, and the negative buzz that created, this Matthew Broderick starrer had a decent run-through. The taping is tonight.
Looking to pick up 3 to 5 new drama series and 2-3 new comedies
HAWAII-FIVE-O & CRIMINAL MINDS SPINOFF: Continue strong.
DEFENDERS: The legal drama starring Jim Belushi and Jerry O’Connell is lurking right behind the above pair as a major contender.
CHAOS: The CIA drama directed by Brett Ratner still has buzz.
ATF: The procedural has been gaining buzz.
QUINTUPLETS: The adaptation of the Israeli series has supporters. The script was strong. But people tell me the concept – about grownup quintuplets – remains somewhat risky.
UNTITLED MEDICAL DRAMA: A maybe. Has John Wells as executive producer and a strong cast led by Sissy Spacek and Skeet Ulrich going for it.
MIKE & MOLLY: The Chuck Lorre-produced pilot had a great taping. Looks like a go.
TRUE LOVE: This ensemble relationship comedy looks very good.
BLEEP MY DAD SAID: The Twitter transplant starring William Shatner also looks very good and had a great testing.
TEAM SPITZ: Coming off a strong taping.
LIVIN’ ON A PRAYER: There were last minute punch-ups to increase the comedy quotien. And the script had to be tightened after the table read ran over by 15 minutes. But with How I Met Your Mother creators Carter Bays and Craig Thomas behind it, the pilot is still considered a lead contender. Hasn’t been completed yet.
HITCHED: A high-profile lead recasting is among rumored issues with the pilot. But it just finished editing and the network has not seen it yet. Early buzz from the set is that the new female lead Sara Fletcher actually was quite good and that the show is work in progress but has potential.
OPEN BOOKS: Still shooting.
Looking to pick up 3-4 new drama series and 2-4 new comedies.
The network is way behind on getting its drama pilots, so it’s almost impossible to get a good read. But there hasn’t been a clear standout like last year’s FlashForward.
MATADORS & NO ORDINARY FAMILY & 187 DETROIT & THE WHOLE TRUTH & TRUE BLUE & BODY OF EVIDENCE & OFF THE MAP & BOSTON’S FINEST: All look good sight unseen.
GENERATION Y: Heating up again after cooling off a bit last week.
MR. SUNSHINE: The Matthew Perry starrer came in strong. Looks good for a pickup.
WRIGHT VS. WRONG: The Debra Messing comedy had early buzz and still looks good, but hasn’t been delivered yet.
COUPLES: Shana Goldberg-Meehan’s comedy came out well.
IT TAKES A VILLAGE: The Leah Remini starrer has potential.
FRESHMAN: ABC didn’t like the first cut but still has hopes for the project while ordering major reshoots.
SOUTHERN DISCOMFORT: Hired comedy veterans Jay Scherick and David Ronn as showrunners. There have been rewrites, and the pilot is still shooting.
HAPPY ENDINGS: Some good buzz.
WHO GETS THE PARENTS: Warming up
UNTITLED DANA GOULD: Not a perfect pilot but has potential. May not be given a chance though.
AWKWARD SITUATIONS FOR MEN: A maybe.
HOW TO BE A BETTER AMERICAN: Not looking good.
FUNNY IN FARSI: Not going.
NIKITA & HELLCATS: Both look very strong, very on-brand.
NOMADS: Dailies came in surprisingly strong, but the more male-skewing globe-trotting adventure may be hard to fit into the CW brand. The project is still hot, and I heard there may be a series future for it, with an international co-production model as a possibility. (The pilot filmed in Thailand).
THE WYOMING PROJECT: A lot of anticipation for this latest project from Gilmore Girls creator Amy Sherman-Palladino. But the network hasn’t seen it yet.
BETWIXT & UNTITLED AMY HOLDEN JONES: Cooling off at the moment.
The cable network’s current pilot cycle coincides with the broadcast networks’. TBS is expected to announce its new series at its upfront during the same week in May just like the broadcast networks.
FRANKLIN & BASH & UNCLE NIGEL & IN SECURITY & GLORY : Of the four hour-long pilots TBS ordered, Franklin & Bash, starring Breckin Meyer and Mark-Paul Gosselaar, and the Monk-esque Uncle Nigel, starring Gary Cole, have the strongest buzz. Though, with a young male appeal similar to Conan O’Brien’s, fraternity comedy Glory Daze might be considered for a lead-in.
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