The current presidential race has inspired a drama project co-written and directed by filmmaker Roland Emmerich (Independence Day), which just received a pilot order by ABC. In the first pickup of the regular pilot season, ABC has given the green light to the untitled drama to be directed by Emmerich in his TV series debut and produced by Mark Gordon. Written by Emmerich and Harald Kloser on spec, the project is set in New York City against the backdrop of the Presidential race of 2012. It centers on a young astrophysics student who learns his destiny lies not in science but somewhere between Heaven and Hell. The Mark Gordon Co. and ABC Studios are producing. By picking up such high-concept project in its first drama pilot order this season, ABC brass are indicating that it won’t stick to conventional genres in their choices. That is not entirely surprising given that the network’s biggest drama success this season has been the fairytale-themed Once Upon A Time. This will be the second project set in 2012 for Emmerich and Kloser who also co-wrote the disaster movie 2012, which was directed by Emmerich. In addition to 2012, Emmerich is also behind such blockbusters as Independence Day, The Day After Tomorrow and The Patriot. This marks the first pilot order this season for Gordon, whose ABC Studios-based company was one of the top sellers this season with 14 projects set up. The deal also bodes well for the spec market, which was white-hot last year and is off to a strong start again this year.