Tag: fantasy life

FOX | 2015/2016 Pilot Season: The Best & Worst

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Before FOX reveals its new schedule next Monday, here’s the best & worst of their pilot season ! Just my humble opinion.

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DRAMAS

1. LUCIFER – Ordered to series

It’s vivid, energetic and a lot of fun (…)  an almighty entertaining and funny as hell detective dramaFull preview here

2. STUDIO CITY – Dead but could be redeveloped

“I’m always suspicious when a show is officially described as a little bit of this mixed with a little it of that. But this time, they’re not playing with us: it really is The OC meets Shameless. With a bit of Nashville too.” Full preview here

3. FRANKENSTEIN – Ordered to series

“This pilot surprised me. In a good way! (…) It’s alive! It’s watchable! But a good pilot doesn’t always become a good series and I tend to think this one is more a good pilot than a good series. It could be really cool, if it was not meant to be a procedural in the end.” Full preview here

4. MINORITY REPORT – Ordered to series

definitely a hot property, with a honorable pilot script (…) It looks like a failure because those who liked the movie are not remotely excited by the project from what I understand and those who are not familar with it probably won’t find any good reason to give it a chance.” Full preview here

5.  ROSEWOOD – Ordered to series

“Dead on arrival. It’s boring and it has zero originality -except if you consider diversity as an originality of some sort.” Full preview here

Not reviewed: SCREAM QUEENS – Ordered to series

Not reviewed: THE X-FILES – Ordered to series

Not reviewed: HOUDINI & DOYLE – Ordered to series

Golden Globes Nominations

COMEDIES

1. THE GRINDER – Ordered to series

“This one made me laughed a lot on the page. And imagining Rob Lowe doing the crazy made me want it bad. I don’t know how long the show can maintain the fun but for now, it’s a huge YES!” 

2. THE GUIDE TO SURVIVING LIFE – Ordered to series

“Can’t say I liked everything about this pilot, but it certainly has a lot going for it, starting with a good appeal for the younger demo. I laughed a bit and I can see it last. Every episode is a lesson, and I want these guys to teach me some more”.

3. DETOUR – Officially Dead

“Your good ol’ coming of age story, but feels kinda fresh somehow. Sweet and funny, without being hilarious. Way broader than I expected.” 

4. THE PERFECT STANLEYS – Officially Dead

“Multicamera comedies and FOX don’t mix really well since… well, forever (the exception being “Married… with children”). This one, no surprise, has nothing that makes it special, except it feels quite authentic. The “sisters hate each” gets old really fast sadly.”

5. FANTASY LIFE – Officially Dead (but could be redeveloped for next year)

“Like The Pefect Stanleys, it’s another multicamera that starts with a character taking a selfie… All the sports jokes didn’t work for me. And there’s a ton of it. Regardless, it’s not that bad. Just not my thing and probably not the thing of enough people.”

6. 48 HOURS TIL MONDAY – Officially Dead

“The concept seemed original. The series is not. The concept was not, in fact. It’s just a pretext to make yet another family comedy that has nothing special going for it. It’s not horrible, but it adds nothing to the table”.

7. GRANDFATHERED – Ordered to series

“Maybe it’s just me but I found this script so pretentious! A total turn-off. Like the character John Stamos is playing in fact. But this guy is magical and I can totally see his performance improving the whole thing.”

What pilots are you rooting for?

Catches of the Week: it’ all about diversity! Vanessa Williams, Laverne Cox, Natalie Martinez…

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While the directors’ jobs are filled quickly, casting is tough this pilot season. Because of the increasing competition from cable and most importantly digital platforms like Netflix & Amazon, the talent pool of experienced actors is almost empty. The pressure over channels and talent agencies is higher than ever. So far, catches are not impressive. But most of them have something in common: diversity! 

NBC is very high on diversity, something they made pretty clear since their pick-ups of series Telenovela (Eva Longoria) and Shades Of Blue (Jennifer Lopez) and pilots Go, Jerrod Go!, The Curse of the Fuentes women, martial arts Warrior, and Love is a Four Letter Word. They all requires latinos, afro-americans and asian americans in lead roles.

This is how Nadine Velasquez and Cynthia McWilliams have been cast this week in the marriage drama Love is a Four Letter Word which chronicles the collision of race, sexuality and gender roles when three diverse couples put modern marriage to the test. The My Name is Earl alumna will play play Rebecca, a Cuban American who is deeply in love with Julie and very happy with their marriage, but doesn’t realize her wife is actively considering getting back together with her ex, Nick. McWilliams will play Tandi, one half of a happy couple with a young son who is experiencing difficulties fulfilling her dream of having another child. Hot Adan Canto, seen in The Following and Mixology, got the part of the mysterious man who brings the Curse to the Fuentes women in the pilot from Ugly Betty creator Silvio Horta. Natalie Martinez, most recently seen in Under The Dome, will star in Warrior as Kai Forrester, a damaged heroine who works undercover with physical and spiritual guidance from a mysterious martial arts master to bring down an international crime lord. Finally veteran S. Epatha Merkerson from Law & Order is reuniting with producer Dick Wolfe with a lead role in the Chicago Fire and Chicago PD planted spin-off Chicago Med. She will be the head of the hopistal.

LAVERNE

In other diversity casting news, Vanessa Williams from Ugly Betty and Desperate Housewives will play the bold and unapologetic new boss of Kevin Connolly (Entourage) in comedy pilot Fantasy Life for FOX, where Mitch (Connolly) lands his ultimate dream job hosting a fantasy football show, he’s forced to navigate office politics while becoming the star he never thought he could be. Asian American actor Daniel Henney has joined the Untitled Criminal Minds spin-off with Gary Sinise & Anna Gunn. Last but really not least, Laverne Cox, discovered in Orange is the new black, got the part of a transgender attorney in Reasonable Doubt for CBS. If the show is ordered to series, then she’ll become the first transgender regular character on broadcast TV, which is exciting and groundbreaking.

In other non-diversity news (!), cancelled Perception‘s star Eric McCormack, pursued for different roles, will star in musical drama pilot Studio City for FOX, where he’ll play the songwriter father of a young singer who’s trying to make it big in Hollywood, but the man turns out to be a drug dealer to the stars! Ex-Breaking Bad actress Betsy Brandt wants to prove she can be funny after the Michael J. Fox Show demise, so she accepted one of the female leads in CBS’ Life In Pieces comedy pilot, with Colin Hanks playing one of her siblings. David Lyons (Revolution, The Cape) toplines drama pilot Game Of Silence, which NBC is very high on. Sweet Zach Gildford (Friday Night Lights, Off The Map), coming off Stanistan‘s pilot USA Network sadly just decided not to pick-up to series, lands on ABC in soap pilot Flesh & Blood. Finally, excellent Annie Potts & John Carroll Lynch will play the heroine’s parents in comedy pilot Family Fortune for ABC, where the central character comes out to her family.