January 31, 2012 12:15pm PT by Lacey Rose, Lesley Goldberg
CW Orders Dramas from J.J. Abrams, Mark Harmon and 'Vampire Diaries' Producer
In a bid to broaden its reach, the CW has picked up three hourlong dramas from established industry players including J.J. Abrams, Mark Harmon and Kim and Eric Tannenbaum.
Abrams' Shelter hails from the Lost creator and One Tree Hill creator Mark Schwahn and is set at an historic New England summer resort where the new and returning staff attend to the practical, emotional and often comical needs of the guests while navigating friendships, rivalries and romances of their own.
Schwahn, whose One Tree Hill is currently airing its ninth and final season, will write the project and executive produce Maine via his Mastermind shingle, with Abrams and Bryan Burk's Warner Bros. Television-based Bad Robot also exec producing.
Shelter reunites Abrams with CW president Mark Pedowitz and executive vp drama development Thom Sherman, all of whom worked together on ABC/ABC Studios' Lost. The project marks Abrams' return to the network where he started. One half of the former WB Network was home to his first series, the Keri Russell starrer Felicity, which ran from 1998-2002. Abrams, who is also behind Fox newcomer Alcatraz, has the adventure-thriller Revolution set up at NBC with Supernatural creator Eric Kripke.
For its part, The Selection, based on the forthcoming series of books by Kiera Cass, is an epic romance set 300 years in the future. The project, set up at Warner Bros. TV, centers on a poor young woman who is chosen by lottery to participate in a competition to become the next queen of a war-torn nation at a crossroads.
Elizabeth Craft and Sarah Fain, whose credits include Vampire Diaries, Dollhouse and Secret Circle, are on board to write and executive produce the hourlong drama. They have drama project Beautiful Girls in development at Fox.
Finally, Joey Dakota hails from Easy A scribe Bert Royal and is based on the Israeli format Danny Hollywood. The romantic-time travel musical revolves around a documentary filmmakerk who travels back in time to the 1990s where she meets and falls in love with the rock star subject of her film. When she unexpectedly returns to present day, she must find her way back to the past to reunite with her love and prevent his untimely death.
NCIS star Harmon is attached to executive produce the project, from CBS Television Studios in association with Harmon/Tannenbaum, alongside Eric and Kim Tannenbaum (CBS' Rob) and Martha Haight (Chaos).
For the Tannenbaums, the project is their second ordered to pilot this season behind CBS' Find Me.
This brings the CW's hourlong picks to a total of eight. Others high-profile projects include Arrow, from Greg Berlanti, and Carrie Diaries from Gossip Girl's Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage.