EXCLUSIVE: Tate Donovan is set as the male lead opposite Melissa Leo in the Fox pilot Blood Relative, a forensic genealogy-themed crime drama from writer-producer Chris Levinson and producer Liza Chasin, Paramount Television Studios and Anonymous Content, which will co-produce with Fox Entertainment.
Blood Relative is based on James Renner’s 2018 article “Beyond the Jungle of Bad: The True Story of Two Women from California Who Are Solving All the Mysteries,” about Dr. Colleen Fitzpatrick and Dr. Margaret Press, who have combined their genealogy expertise to push the boundaries of forensic science and help law enforcement identify Joe and Jane Does and track down serial killers.
Written by Levinson and Renner and to be directed by Phillip Noyce, Blood Relative centers on genetic genealogy, the best new tool in crime scene forensics, and nobody knows it like Louise Kelly (Leo). Too bad she’s impossible to deal with.
Donovan will play Lou’s brother, Detective John Kelly. Everybody likes John. What’s not to like? He’s done everything right. Married his high school sweetheart and had two kids. Followed in his father’s footsteps, as expected, and is now a detective on the force where his old man was lieutenant. When he’s compelled to work on a case with his genius sister Lou (Leo), little does he know that their unlikely working partnership will bring to the surface demons from long ago. John will do a deep dive into their shared past, asking questions about their childhood and their father. Questions he won’t be able to un-ask. And the idyllic life John has built for himself will threaten to crumble around him.
Levinson and Renner executive produce with Noyce and Chasin via her 3 Dot Productions.
Damages alum Donovan has been recurring on CBS’ MacGyver. In features, he recently co-starred in Rocketman. He stars in Worth, which premiered at Sundance last month, and next will be seen in the Aretha Franklin biopic Respect. He is repped by Gersh.