As we enter the pilot screenings phase of pilot season, here is the latest installment of Deadline’s Pilot Panic 2018, which tracks buzz on broadcast pilots. While we are only two weeks away from the upfronts, information is still incomplete, with a number of high-profile pilots, like ABC’s Whiskey Cavalier, yet to be delivered. Here are some of the pilots that are making noise at the moment.
ABC’s Nathan Fillion starrer The Rookie, which has a straight-to-series order, DJ Nash ensemble A Million Little Things, and the Eva Longoria-produced Grand Hotel, toplined by Demian Bichir and Roselyn Sanchez, continue to garner strong buzz, joined by suburban drama False Profits starring Bellamy Young and Vanessa Williams. Beyond that things are murky. With rookie cop drama-comedy The Rookie looking assured of a slot of the schedule, the competition among the slew of other law & order pilots ordered by the network this year increases. That includes The Fix, The Mission, Staties and The Finest.
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Early standout on the comedy side Single Parents, starring Taran Killam and Brad Garrett, is still going strong, as is the untitled Tim Doyle 1970s family comedy. The Justin Noble workplace comedy starring Kat Dennings has been gaining momentum. Also getting attention is modern blended family comedy Steps starring Ginnifer Goodwin though its concept is said to be pretty similar to Single Parents, which could come into play in the pickup decisions. Among the rest, untitled Bobby Bowman is mentioned as a possibility. ABC already gave a series order to The Goldbergs spinoff for next season.
The retooled and improved The Passage pilot is going strong at Fox. The Untitled Ilene Chaiken/Melissa Scrivner Love drama, a sort of Homeland for broadcast with a strong-willed and flawed female FBI agent at the center, also is doing well, largely on the appeal of its star Katie Holmes. Reaction to early standout, Mixtape, has gotten a tad less enthusiastic but the romantic musical drama continues to have supporters and is considered a possibility, maybe for midseason. The Untitled Danny Strong/David Elliot also is an option as a Bones-type procedural Fox’s doesn’t have at the moment.
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In comedy, the multi-camera Rel, starring Lil Rel Howery remains strong, with the Tom Lennon starrer Dan the Weatherman and Daddy Issues, starring Erin Foster and Don Johnson, in the mix.
The CW’s two reboots, Charmed and Roswell, continue to march through the pilot process, along with football drama Spencer (aka untitled April Blair), executive produced by Greg Berlanti, and In the Dark, about a blind woman and her dog. Mortician drama Playing Dead is also considered a possibility as is the Supernatural spinoff Wayward Sisters, whose backdoor pilot did well. What also has been doing well is the final season of The Originals, which bodes well for the potential new The Vampire Diaries/The Originals universe show from Julie Plec centered around the character of Hope Mikaelson. it is in contention for next season.
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Dick Wolf’s drama F.B.I., which has a series order at CBS, continues to get warm reception, along with Magnum P.I. and God Friended Me, which is an outlier for procedural-minded CBS but has been testing well. Things are a little murky beyond that, with investigative drama Murder getting notices for its visual style, and The Code mentioned as a possibility.
In comedy, Welcome to the Neighborhood, co-starring Cedric the Entertainer, the Damon Wayans Jr. starrer untitled Austen Earl/Tim McAuliffe and Fam toplined by Nina Dobrev are garnering attention, with Gloria Calderon Kellett’s History of Them considered a possibility. The network has the Murphy Brown revival on tap for next fall.
NBC’s Bad Boys offshoot, L.A.’s Finest, headlined by Gabrielle Union and Jessica Alba, continues to get strong buzz, with medical drama New Amsterdam (fka Bellevue), Hitchcockian thriller No Way Back (fka Suspicion), and ensemble apartment building drama The Village also talked about. Outside of that, The Between (fka In Between Lives) and the high-concept Manifest are considered possibilities.
On the half-hour side, bar comedy Abby’s, young ensemble Bright Futures and much older ensemble Guess Who Died? are being talked about, with untitled Aseem Batra and Like Family also in the mix. NBC has a lot of bubble comedy series in play whose renewal will determine the number of new half-hour series pickups.