EXCLUSIVE: In his return to Fox, Emmy winner Michael Chiklis is set to headline the premiere episode of the network’s straight-to-series crime anthology drama, Accused, executive-produced by Howard Gordon, Alex Gansa and David Shore. Fellow Emmy winner Michael Cuesta (Homeland) has been tapped to direct the premiere, reuniting with Homeland executive producers Gordon and Gansa.
Accused, co-produced by Fox Entertainment and Sony Pictures Television, is based on the BBC’s BAFTA-winning crime anthology. It opens in a courtroom on the accused, with viewers knowing nothing about their crime or how they ended up on trial. Told from the defendant’s point of view through flashbacks, Accused depicts how an ordinary person gets caught up in an extraordinary situation, ultimately revealing how one wrong turn leads to another, until it’s too late to turn back.
Chiklis will play Dr. Scott Corbett, a successful brain surgeon with a seemingly perfect family. He faces the limits of unconditional love when he discovers his teenage son may be planning a violent attack at school.
“Michael Chiklis and Michael Cuesta, teamed with Howard Gordon, Alex Gansa and David Shore, make a powerful combination for Accused,” said Michael Thorn, President of Entertainment, Fox Entertainment. “They each are synonymous with high-stakes television, engaging drama and compelling performances, striking the perfect tone required for a series of this caliber.”
For Chiklis, this marks the return to Fox following his starring turn as Nathaniel Barnes on Gotham. The actor’s relationship with Sony Pictures TV dates back to his Emmy-winning turn in FX’s The Shield, which the indie studio co-produced. Their most recent collaboration was the 2021 CBS All Access drama series Coyote.
“We are thrilled to have Michael leading our first episode. He was the first actor we thought of when casting Accused,” said Dawn Steinberg, EVP Worldwide Talent & Casting, Sony Pictures Television. “He’s been a valued member of our Sony family since The Shield and we couldn’t be happier to be working with him again.”
Chiklis will next be seen in the cable drama Winning Time: The Rise of The Lakers Dynasty; and The Senior, a football drama from Rod Lurie. He also is in Adam McKay’s Netflix film Don’t Look Up. Chiklis is repped by Management 360, WME and Neil Meyer.
Cuesta has directed the pilot episodes of such hugely popular, long-running series as Homeland, Dexter and Blue Bloods. He recently directed episodes of Dopesick, City On A Hill, and Promised Land, including the latter two series’ pilots. Cuesta is repped by WME and Frankfurt, Kurnit, Klein & Selz.
Accused, which received a straight-to-series order last May for the 2022-23 broadcast season, is co-produced by Sony Pictures Television and Fox Entertainment, and executive-produced by Howard Gordon, Alex Gansa, David Shore, Glenn Geller, Erin Gunn, All3Media America’s Jacob Cohen-Holmes, and Jimmy McGovern, Sita Williams, Roxy Spencer and Louise Pedersen for All3Media International. Frank Siracusa and John Weber also serve as executive producers. Created by Jimmy McGovern, the original series debuted in 2010 on BBC One.
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