Steve Howey has landed the male lead in True Lies, the CBS drama pilot adaptation of James Cameron’s 1994 action comedy movie starring Arnold Schwarzenegger and Jamie Lee Curtis. The casting of the Schwarzenegger role restarts the project after the network hit pause on the 20th Television-produced pilot in March, rolling it to off-cycle.
Written by Matt Nix and to be directed by Anthony Hemingway, the pilot’s plot is true to its movie roots: Shocked to discover that her bland and unremarkable computer consultant husband (Howey) is a skilled international spy, an unfulfilled suburban housewife is propelled into a life of danger and adventure when she’s recruited to work alongside him to save the world as they try to revitalize their passionless marriage.
Howey, who played Gallagher family friend Kevin Ball in all 11 seasons of Showtime’s Shameless, will play Harry, the benign, play-it-safe computer salesman and devoted family man — seemingly risk-averse and married with two kids. He is, in fact, an undercover operative, a first-class spy working for a covert U.S. intelligence organization.
Curtis played Harry’s wife Helen in the original movie.
Nix and Hemingway are executive producing the True Lies pilot with Lightstorm’s Cameron and Rae Sanchini; original pilot director McG, Mary Viola and Corey Marsh of Wonderland Sound and Vision; and Josh Levy via his and Nix’s Flying Glass of Milk Productions. Anthony Hemingway Productions’ Sean Hoagland and Whitney Davis will co-EP.
True Lies was the only new drama pilot CBS ordered for the 2021 pilot season, with the pickup coming relatively late (February 10). It was rolled off-cycle a month later with a summer shoot eyed.
Variety broke the casting news first today.