PRIMETIME PILOT PANIC: NBC To Pick Up Conan O'Brien's Pilot 'Garza' To Series

I wrote the backstory here, The Improbable Rise of ‘Garza’. Now NBC’s legal drama pilot Garza, starring Jimmy Smits and produced by Conan O’Brien’s production company, is set to complete its dream “dark horse” run with a series pickup tomorrow. The network is expected to officially announce the pickups of Garza and another new legal drama, David E. Kelley’s Kindreds, which is being renamed. With Kindreds slated for midseason, Garza might launch in the fall. And with both shows picked up, NBC’s third legal drama pilot, Rex Is Not Your Lawyer, is not going forward. The Cape still has a good shot at a pickup. Garza’s pilot will be overhauled, with new senior-level producer(s) brought in to work with creator John Eisendrath. The pilot directed by Terry George will be reshot. I hear George had to cope with the death of his mother only days before having to start work on the pilot. What remains intact is Smits in the lead, which proved to be the project’s strongest weapon. Smits tested really well and was looking to front his own series as opposed to joining another one, like Law & Order: LA, which NBC seriously considered offering him.

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