10:00am PT by Lesley Goldberg
'Castle' Grad Stana Katic to Star in AXN Crime Drama 'Absentia'
Castle leading lady Stana Katic is returning to TV.
The actress is in advanced talks to topline AXN's straight-to-series drama Absentia, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.
Owned by Sony Pictures Television, the premium cable/satellite and cable network has picked up 10 episodes of the crime thriller about an FBI agent (Katic) who disappears while hunting one of Boston's most notorious serial killers. Six years after being declared dead, she is found in a cabin in the woods, barely alive and with no memory of the years she was missing. Returning home to learn her husband has remarried and her son is being raised by another woman, she soon finds herself implicated in a new series of murders.
Absentia will be executive produced by writer Matt Cirulnick (South Beach). It is based on a script originally written by Gaia Violo. Oded Ruskin (Israeli series False Flag) will direct all 10 episodes. Tel Aviv-based Masha TV's Maria Feldman (Homeland, False Flag), Ruskin and Julie Glucksman will produce the series for AXN. Marie Jacobson, exec vp, programming and production at Sony Pictures Television Networks, commissioned the series for Sony’s AXN channels.
Production will start early next year for a premiere on AXN's worldwide channels in 2017. SPT will manage distribution rights in the U.S. and outside of AXN's channel footprint.
For Katic, the role marks her return to the small screen following her eight-season run as Detective Kate Beckett on ABC's Castle. The drama's cancelation was the most perplexing move to come out of ABC, which drew criticism from the show's loyal viewership for Katic's public firing as the network and sibling studio attempted to cut costs in a bid to bring back the series for a ninth season. The actress' credits include feature The Rendezvous, CBGB, Big Sur and The Spirit. She's repped by Gersh, Principal Entertainment and attorney Nelson Davis.
Absentia brings Katic back to AXN TV, which has found solid returns with syndicated repeats of Castle.