NBC this year picked five drama pilots to series, New Amsterdam, Manifest, The Village, The Enemy Within and The InBetween, and two comedy pilots to series, multi-cam Abby’s and single-cam I Feel Bad. The network’s surprise passes included Bad Boys offshoot drama L.A.’s Finest starring Gabrielle Union and Jessica Alba.
When the dust started to settle on Friday afternoon following the flurry of pickups and passes, word got around that NBC was leaving one comedy pilot alive. Than at 9 PM that night, the network announced that it was picking up a sixth season of Brooklyn Nine-Nine following its cancellation by Fox the previous day. That created confusion whether that potential last comedy slot went to the cop comedy starring Andy Samberg.
I hear that is not the case, and that the last NBC pilot standing is single-camera Bright Futures. I hear the network brass plan to discuss its prospects after the upfronts.
NBC landed the young ensemble comedy with a late pilot pickup in a turnaround — it had been initially set up for development at ABC, which did not proceed with a pilot order.
Bright Futures comes from Black-ish creator Kenya Barris and spinoff Grown-ish writers Hale Rothstein, Danny Segal and Isaac Schamis and hails from ABC Studios, where Barris has been under an overall deal. (He has been in talks about leaving the studio).
The pilot got some NBC DNA when former Friends star Lisa Kudrow was tapped as narrator. The cast includes Emily Ratajkowski, Shameik Moore, Lilly Singh. The pilot revolves around four roommates, all stumbling through the transition from the clueless, immature twentysomethings they are now to the successful professionals they’re destined to be.
To recap the pilot status at Fox and ABC — Fox is still considering the Ilene Chaiken drama starring Katie Holmes, Dan the Weatherman and the Erin Foster comedy; ABC has extended the cast, set up a writers room and ordered three additional scripts from drama False Profits for midseason consideration.