Veteran pilot director Michael M. Robin has been tapped to helm the ABC drama pilot The Advocate, from Sheldon Turner and Jennifer Klein’s Vendetta Prods. and Warner Bros TV. Two British TV directors have been hired on other ABC drama pilots: Tom Shankland (Ripper Street) for LA Crime and Coky Giedroyc (The Hour) for Broad Squad.
Written by Turner, The Advocate was inspired by the real story of former talent agent Byrdie Lifson-Pompan who teamed with Valerie Ulene, a medical doctor and a health education specialist, to launch a healthcare consulting and case management company. Lifson-Pompan and Ulene serve as consulting producers on the project, which centers on a tough, resourceful, type-A businesswoman at the top of her game who has a medical scare, only to be dangerously misdiagnosed, and experiences firsthand the hazards of our healthcare system. Shocking her friends and family, she leaves her career behind, becoming instead a brilliant and relentless advocate for anyone caught in the chaotic and ever-changing maze that is modern medicine.
Robin has directed 12 pilots to date, including those for series The Closer, Rizzoli & Isles, Major Crimes and Dallas, all for Warner Bros’ cable unit.
L.A. Crime is a character-driven, “true-crime” procedural that explores sex, politics and popular culture across various noteworthy eras in Los Angeles history. In Season 1, two LA cops will be searching for a Bonnie & Clyde-esque serial-killing team amidst the coke-infused rock ‘n’ roll revelry of the 1980s Sunset Strip. The project was written by feature scribe Steven Baigelman (the upcoming biopic Miles Ahead starring Don Cheadle). It hails from ABC Studios and studio-based Mandeville, with Baigelman executive producing alongside Mandeville’s David Hoberman, Todd Lieberman and Laurie Zaks.
Period female-cop procedural Broad Squad is set in 1978. It is a fictionalized account of the graduating class of Boston’s first female patrol officers. Dubbed “The Broad Squad” by the local press, they arrived at a tumultuous time in Boston’s history, marked by corruption within the police force and a heightened organized crime presence in the city. Navigating rival neighborhoods as well as the conflicting attitudes toward them from everyone, they find themselves tested both on and off duty. Bess Wohl wrote the script and serves as co-executive producer. Aaron Kaplan executive produces alongside Fake Empire’s Josh Schwartz, Stephanie Savage and Len Goldstein.