- Shawn Ryan (THE SHIELD) has re-upped at Sony Pictures TV for another 3 years. (Remember when Shawn was relevant? In the days before LAST RESORT and the never-to-be-seen BEVERLY HILLS COP pilot? Sigh…)
- Jeff Lowell (TWO AND A HALF MEN) is writing an untitled ABC comedy pilot that “exposes the unfiltered internal monologues of a young couple embarking on a new relationship. (Which sounds pretty cool until you realize that TV networks think that the only way to “expose…internal monologues” is to do those stultifying “interview” scenes ala THE OFFICE and MODERN FAMILY and a zillion others shows. Sigh…)
- DENIS LEARY (RESCUE ME) is writing and ultimately starring in SEX&DRUGS&ROCK&ROLL, a comedy pilot for FX. (And I’m grinning from ear to ear here kids, just from the title – and, yeppers, Mr. Leary. Nothing to sigh about with this one!)
- LaKendra Tookes (newbie) has joined the writing staff of SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE. (She’s black, she’s a woman, she’s a writer…oh, Lord, it’s a Whole New World at last! And no, I’m not being sarcastic. I think this is great.)
- Leslie Jones (newbie) has also joined the SNL writing team and is also an African-American woman. (And I’m lovin’ on this as well. Big thanks to old pal Lorne Michaels. Yeah, that’s right, I’m tight with the Lornester. You didn’t know your friendly neighborhood munchman was so well-connected, didja?)
- Sylvia Day’s romance novel series Crossfire has been optioned by Lionsgate for a TV series. So if that’s your kind of thing, time to have your agent get to working for you. (And don’t forget to tell us when you get the development gig so we can go viral by breaking the news.)
- Chris Alberghini & Mike Chessler (90210 reboot) are the new showrunners of MTV’s AWKWARD, which was renewed last week. (Hmm, if we’d posted this news then would we have been a viral sensation? Guess that would depend on whether anybody cares about MTV anymore.)
- Speaking of AWKWARD, creator and ex-showrunner Lauren Iumgerich has made a deal with Warner Brothers TV to develop a new comedy series for the studio. (Nothing is set up at a network yet, but from what we’ve heard about Lauren’s relationship with MTV we’re pretty darn sure that she’s happy as a clam to be in a new home.)
- Karl Gajdusek & Shawn Ryan (LAST RESORT) are developing FREEDOM, an ABC drama pilot about a group of genius rebels out to save the U.S. (This sounds so ’70s to us that we don’t know whether to look forward to the show or just…cringe.)
- Kevin Wade (BLUEBLOODS) has a new overall deal with CBS TV Studios, where he’ll continue to run BLUEBLOODS and develop new primetime drama. (We’ve been sitting for half an hour trying to think of something funny to say about this deal but we ain’t got nuthin’. Damn BLUEBLOODS is just too dull to even make fun of.)
- Dana Calvo (MADE IN JERSEY) is writing an untitled ABC drama pilot about an eccentric detective and his “methodical female Partner” who work cases in Miami. (Actually, the announcement notes that “they solve cases that only seem to happen in the neon wilds of one of America’s most eclectic and vibrant cities,” which made us think, “Oh, MIAMI VICE.” Which in turn pushed that ’70s button again so excuse us while we slip into cringe mode early, just to be safe.)
- Glen Mazzara (THE WALKING DEAD) is recovering from being tossed off that show via an overall deal with Fox Television Studios to develop cable projects. (Which has got to be better than staying on DEAD and having to answer to a, you know, comic book guy. Read between the lines of his departure, kiddies.)
- Amy Poehler’s (PARKS & RECREATION) web series BROAD CITY is moving to the bigger small screen via Comedy Central, with Amy writing a new pilot for the TV version. (Because web-to-TV is very, very in, hip and trendy now…especially if you’re already a, erm, star.)
- HBO is looking for writers for a TV movie based on Marisa Acocella Marchetto’s graphic novel, Cancer Visen: A True Story. (Because the project already just happens to have a producer/star named Cate Blanchett, and working with Oscar winning stars will always be as in, hip and trendy as can be.)
- Inspired by the Kickstarter success of the new VERONICA MARS movie, which, if you’ve been hiding inside a vacuum cleaner, raised $2 mil in about 24 hours and as a result has been greenlighted by WB), Bryan Fuller, Shawn Ryan, and Mike Royce (writer-creators of PUSHING DAISIES, TERRIERS, and MEN OF A CERTAIN AGE respectively) are talking about getting their own piece of rabid fan action to resurrect their cult shows’ beloved corpses. (As huge Kickstarter boosters as TVWriter™ is, we can’t help but get a little testy, however, at the idea of fans bankrolling major studio productions without getting anything but some T-shirts or other souvenirs in return. Hmm, do we smell a new business model developing?)
- Brian Buckner (TRUE BLOOD) is moving up to showrunner of TRUE BLOOD, replacing Mark Hudis, who replaced Alan Ball. (Which tells us that this isn’t an easy show to take charge of. But at least there’s no Robert Kirkman prob.)
At least one critic thinks so:
Review: ABC’s ‘Last Resort’ is the fall’s best new drama
ANDRE BRAUGHER PLUS SHAWN RYAN PLUS NUKES EQUALS THRILLS – by Alan Sepinwall
In the first episode of ABC’s exciting new drama series “Last Resort,” Navy submarine captain Marcus Chaplin refuses a sketchy order to nuke Pakistan, evades an attack by his own countryman, and takes over an island in French Polynesia, threatening America and the rest of the world with his boat’s nuclear arsenal if they don’t leave him alone.
This is, to put it mildly, a messy situation — one where the stakes and players and rules seem to be constantly shifting, and where Marcus and his executive officer Sam Kendal have to keep making things up as they go.
It’s also a messy premise for a weekly television show. There’s no formula for a series like “Last Resort,” which combines a bunch of elements that you don’t ordinarily see together — part Tom Clancy thriller, part “Lord of the Flies”/”Lost,” part psychological drama, among other pieces — in a way that doesn’t suggest a clear structure for how stories will be told each week, or how on Earth this fragile situation can be maintained for the seasons on end required of a successful TV show.
Read it all
Do we love series creator Shawn Ryan? Sometimes. Will we love him after we see this? Sure hope so.
…After all, nobody’s shy about asking that question about TV. Well, if you’ve always wanted to know, we read the article below as addressing the Kickstarter even though it doesn’t directly come out with it. Instead, it just jumps at our faces like a, well, terrier:
Exclusive: Shawn Ryan in talks to revive Terriers via Kickstarte – by Peter White
Shawn Ryan, creator of The Shield and executive producer of forthcoming ABC drama Last Resort, is in talks to produce a two hour movie based on cancelled FX comedy drama Terriers through crowd funding site Kickstarter.
He would become the most high profile TV producer to raise funds through the nascent funding service.
The show which was created by Ted Griffin, was cancelled in December 2010 after its first season on the US cable network.
However, Ryan told TBI that he doesn’t think the stories “have been rung out” and following surprisingly high viewing figures from online video service Netflix, would like to try and work with Griffin to close it off via a two hour TV movie.
See, to us here’s the thing: TERRIERS was possible the most insufferably smug, self-satisfied piece of police procedural poop to ever be flung in our faces, and the attitude of snatching money from Kickstarter’s legions to continue crapping on audiences is just more of the same. So although we’ve never done this before, we have a recommendation to make about this project. Shawn Ryan has plenty of money of his own and even more contacts. We say, “Pass.”