5:00pm PT by Lesley Goldberg
Marc Cherry's 'Cheerleader Death Squad' Ordered to Pilot at CW
The CW added to its pilot haul Tuesday, adding another genre series, from the producers behind Devious Maids, Under the Dome and Blue Bloods.
The network has picked up Cheerleader Death Squad, from Desperate Housewives' Marc Cherry and Under the Dome's Neal Baer, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.
The drama is described as Heathers meets Alias and centers on a disgraced CIA agent turned teacher at a Washington, D.C. prep school. After he realizes his students have high-level access to intelligence through personal connections, the teacher trains a select few to be his eyes and ears into the world of international espionage and help him earn his way back into the agency.
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The action-adventure mystery-drama will be co-written by Cherry, Baer and Blue Bloods executive producer Daniel Truly. From CBS Television Studios — where Baer is under an overall deal — Cherry's Cherry/Wind Productions partner Sabrina Wind will also exec produce.
Cheerleader reunites Baer and Truly, who worked together on NBC's Law & Order: SVU and who continue to produce CBS' summer drama Under the Dome together. The duo previously co-wrote a medical drama for CBS.
For Cherry, Cheerleader marks his return to broadcast television. He previously developed Devious Maids for ABC, but the drama was passed over before landing at Lifetime, where it recently earned a third-season renewal. The CW entry is one of two projects Cherry — who remains without an overall deal — sold this season. He also has a modern take on The Phantom of the Opera in development at ABC.
Last year, The CW developed six pilots, with four going on to series. Cheerleader joins Julie Plec's Cordon; Tom Kapinos' Bad Robot entry, Dead People; and an anthology Tales From the Darkside reboot at the network, which, with eight scripted series already renewed for 2015-2016, has little shelf space available.