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Pilot Watch: Power Ranking 9 High-Profile Casting Choices

By Dustin Rowles | Trade News | February 22, 2013 | Comments ()


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Welcome to another edition of Pilot Watch, where we briefly run down the latest casting announcements. "Briefly," because, despite the considerable talent involved, many of the series will never see the light of day (pilots are picked up around 40 percent of the time). If you want to know more about the projects, click on the links.

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1. Charlie Cox -- Cox, late of "Boardwalk Empire," "Downton Abbey" and the phenomenal Stardust, joins the CBS family drama, "The Ordained," which revolves around Tom (Cox), the son of a Kennedy-esque family who leaves the priesthood and becomes a lawyer to prevent his politician sister from being assassinated.

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2. Kim Dickens -- Dickens, who was fantastic in the mostly dull Treme, is joining Jason Lee in CBS's "Second Sight," the gothic psychological thriller that "revolves around Ross Tanner (Lee), a detective who is suddenly afflicted with an autoimmune virus that causes hallucinations reflective of his subconscious. He discovers that catching the killer depends as much on insight as eyesight." Dickens will play a detective with an "offbeat" sense of humor.

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3. Steve Zahn -- Another "Treme" alum will play one of the leads in Kyle Killen's ("Awake") "Influence," a "provocative workplace ensemble centered on the complicated relationship between two brothers -- a bipolar genius in human psychology and a slick ex-con -- who head a unique agency designed to solve their clients' problems using the real science of human motivation and manipulation. "

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4. Ryan Hanson -- The "Party Down" and "Veronica Mars" alum is headed to Bad Teacher, based on the Cameron Diaz movie. Ari Graynor has already landed the Diaz part, and Hanson will come aboard as the P.E. teacher (who I believe was Jason Segel in the movie).

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5. Tom Ellis -- Ellis ("The Fades") had been strongly rumored to go to "Downton Abbey" as Mary's new love interest, but it turns out, he's headed to ABC's "Gothica," where he will play Frankenstein in a a modern-day Gothic soap that weaves together the mythologies of Dracula, Jekyll and Hyde, Frankenstein and Dorian Gray.

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6. Joey McIntrye -- McIntyre -- yes, the New Kid on the Block -- has joined "The McCarthys," a CBS single-camera sitcom directed by Fred Savage and executive produced by Will Gluck (Easy A). "The McCarthys" revolves around an Irish-Catholic, sports-crazed Boston clan and the gay son ("The Office's" Jake Lacy) whose greatest sin is not his sexuality but his desire to spend less time with his family. McIntyre will play Gerard McCarthy, the one short guy in the family who is mad about it. " Jacki Weaver will play the mom.

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7. Mira Sorvino -- Where the hell has Sorvino been? She'll play the wife to Jim Gaffigan's husband, in a sitcom about a family with five kids in a 2-bedroom New York apartment. Sorvino's Jeannie is "a super-wife and super-mom. The mother of five kids, she has a sixth child in the house: her husband Jim." The show comes from Gaffigan, and while I'd like to have hopes for it because I like him, that sounds a stereotypically dumb sitcom.

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8. Daniel Stern -- Stern (Home Alone, "Wonder Years") joins Girlfriend in a Coma, based on the Douglas Coupland novel and starring Christina Ricci as the title character, who wakes up after 17 years in a coma to discover she has a daughter from a pregnancy of which she was unaware. Stern will play her father.

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9. Tim Meadows -- The "SNL" vet joins "The Gabriels," which comes from Justin Hurwitz ("The League") and Andre Gurland, follows an introverted, neurotic Wisconsin family that lives in a community of over-sharers. Rob Riggle is the dad in the family, and Meadows will play "a straight-laced man with a "churchy smile" who is the Principal of the local middle school."







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Comments Are Welcome, Bigots and Trolls Are Not


  • e jerry powell

    Ye gods, I hate pilot season.

  • Uriah_Creep

    I didn't realize Kim Dickens had been in so many TV shows, but she'll always be Joanie Stubbs to me, bringing comfort to the many cocksuckers on the show.

  • Fabius_Maximus

    Tom Ellis was the most annoying person in The Fades. Good thing he's headed for a show I won't bother to watch if it's broadcasted.

  • I still can't believe that girl in a coma show (I refuse to dignify it with the term "pilot") is a real thing.

  • Frank Berrodin

    Why are a bunch of my favorite actors in CBS pilots? First Hank from BB, now Owen from BE. Please by all means, take Joey McIntyre but leave my faves be.

  • Leelee

    When I saw Tom Ellis' picture pop up I actually squealed "GARY!"
    I wonder if this means he won't be on Miranda anymore. I'm not sure I shall cope.

  • Bert_McGurt

    If Gaffigan's sitcom includes Jim dubbing ALL the family voices I'm in. Otherwise...

  • Mel C.

    Oh, Jackie Weaver. Don't do it.

  • lowercase_ryan

    No way in hell that header pic isn't a mannequin.

  • BlackRabbit

    I don't know him, but those pictures of him are is so punchable.

  • Drake

    If my P.E. teacher had looked like Ryan Hanson, I never would have left the showers.

  • VonnegutSlut

    WHHHHHYYYYY? Why, Jim Gaffigan? Are you attempting a sitcom as white bread as your skin is? NO! No, I say. You belong in a quirky "Arrested Development", "Party Down" project, not whatever the fuck that up there is!

  • Diiiiiiiiick! And Tristan!!!

    That sounds like a line from a horrible romance novel.

  • BWeaves

    ". . . in a sitcom about a family with five kids in a 2-bedroom New York apartment."

    What do you want to bet the "2-bedroom NY Apt" will be the size of the entire stage, instead of the 500 square feet it would be in real life.

  • Russell Duckett

    You left out Dean Norris as big Jim Rennie in Under the Dome. He is probaly the best actor in a new pilot.

  • pajiba

    Covered in an earlier Pilot Watch.

  • Rochelle

    I was planning to watch whatever Ryan Hansen was in as soon as I saw his picture on the header. He should be in more things.

  • Rochelle

    Auto correct needs to stop messing with me. Hanson!

  • dAvid

    Even though it's on CBS (barf), I will still watch “The McCarthys" because I can't get enough Jacki Weaver in my life.

  • Blake

    YAY for more Kim Dickens on TV! But BOO that she will be in a procedural.

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