With the bulk of broadcast pilots picked up, the networks and studios are already busy drawing up their casting wish lists and sending out offers to their top picks. As usual, there are a few names that keep cropping up.
Akerman co-stars on the Showtime drama series Billions as Lara, wife of Bobby Axelrod (Damian Lewis). The network confirmed to Deadline that her deal has been adjusted to enable her to pursue other series. She will no longer be a series regular but will continue to recur on Billions.
Also fielding multiple offers are Morena Baccarin, who is wrapping the final season of Gotham, The Walking Dead and Colony alumna Sarah Wayne Callies, former Lost star Matthew Fox, veteran Jimmy Smits, The Good Wife’s Josh Charles and Daredevil/The Punisher‘s Deborah Ann Woll.
It has now become regular practice for big-name actors to do sign one-year deals for broadcast series, making them available for pilots more frequently. That is currently the case with Sela Ward and Kelsey Grammer who both are fielding interest. They are one-season series regulars on freshman dramas FBI and Proven Innocent, respectively.
Also getting early offers are David Duchovny, Orange Is the New Black standout Uzo Aduba, It’s Always Sunny and The Mick’s Kaitlin Olson, Andy Garcia, former Suburgatory star Jane Levy, Kerry Bishe (Halt and Catch Fire), Allison Tolman (Fargo), How To Get Away with Murder‘s Alfred Enoch, Rosemarie DeWitt, New Girl alum Jake Johnson, Ari Graynor (I’m Dying Up Here), Rose Byrne, Josh Gad, Ramon Rodriguez, Tron‘s Garrett Hedlund, Gotham’s Donal Logue, Jada Pinkett-Smith, Walton Goggins, Girls’ Allison Williams, Elementary star Lucy Liu and Topher Grace.
The leading ladies of several successful shows that recently ended their runs are being courted to return to series TV, The Americans‘ Keri Russell, Orphan Black‘s Tatiana Maslany, New Girl’s Zooey Deschanel and The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt‘s Ellie Kemper.
With The Big Bang Theory coming to an end, co-star Melissa Rauch is being approached for pilots, with others, including Kaley Cuoco, also being talked about.
Meanwhile, three How I Met Your Mother alums are on pilot directors’ radar this year, Neil Patrick Harris, coming off Netflix’s A Series Of Unfortunate Events, Cobie Smulders and Cristin Milioti.
In another tradition, every pilot season, TV networks and studios go after movie stars, trying to lure them to do a broadcast series.
It usually is a long shot but here are some of the names getting attention this year: Rachel McAdams, Isla Fisher, Kate Hudson, Crazy Rich Asians breakout Henry Golding, Hilary Swank perennial pilot casting directors’ favorite Kevin Kline, Anne Hathaway, Rooney Mara and Michael Keaton.
Additionally, mentioned as possibilities this season are Jon Hamm, Bobby Cannavale, Josh Duhamel, Kylie Bunbury, Rosa Salazar Gugu Mbatha-Raw and Boyd Holbrook.