January 29, 2014 4:00pm PT by Lesley Goldberg
'Supernatural' Spinoff, Rob Thomas' 'iZombie,' 'Flash' Ordered to Pilot at CW
The CW is doubling down on Veronica Mars creator Rob Thomas and Supernatural.
The network has picked up to pilot Thomas' DC Comics adaptation iZombie, the rumored Supernatural spinoff, and made official its pilot order for fellow DC entry Flash, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.
Supernatural: Tribes will explore the clashing hunter and monster cultures of Chicago and hails from Supernatural's writer Andrew Dabb, who will exec produce alongside Eric Kripke, Robert Singer, showrunner Jeremy Carver and McG. Singer will direct the Warner Bros. Television entry.
iZombie is described as a supernatural crime procedural that centers on a medical-student-turned-zombie who takes a job in the coroner's office in order to gain access to the brains she must reluctantly eat to maintain her humanity. However, with every brain she eats, she inherits the corpse's memories. With the help of her medical examiner boss and a police detective, she solves homicide cases in order to quiet the disturbing voices in her head.
Thomas and Veronica Mars' Diane Ruggiero will pen the script and executive produce the Warner Bros. Television and Rob Thomas Productions entry alongside frequent collaborators Danielle Stokdyk and Dan Etheridge. The drama is based on the characters created by Chris Robertson and Michael Allred and published in the comic from DC's Vertigo imprint.
Finally, the network confirmed its pilot order for Arrow spinoff The Flash, which was formerly intended to be a planted episode but will now be filmed as a stand-alone. Grant Gustin stars as scientist Barry Allen who is given the power of super speed, which transforms him into the Fastest Man Alive. Arrow's Greg Berlanti, Andrew Kreisberg and DC's Geoff Johns will pen the script and executive produce alongside David Nutter, who will direct the pilot. Berlanti Productions' Melissa Kellner Berman will co-EP. The previously announced Jesse L. Martin, Danielle Panabaker and Rick Cosnett will co-star.
The pickups come after Supernatural notched a three-year high Wednesday and continue the network's recent track record with spinoffs. This season, The CW successfully launched The Vampire Diaries spinoff The Originals and, should both Supernatural: Tribes and Flash move forward, the network will have three spinoffs on the air, as The Originals is considered very likely to return for a second season.
For Thomas, the project extends his relationship with The CW after the network picked up a Veronica Mars web series spinoff that the prolific producer also will oversee for the network's digital platform CW Seed.
iZombie and Flash bring to four the number of DC Comics titles to earn a pilot order this season; Fox has Batman prequel Gotham and NBC has Hellblazer adaptation Constantine. The zombie story arrives as AMC's The Walking Dead continues to break records for the network, ranking as TV's No. 1 scripted drama among adults 18-49. The series is based on the Image Comics title created by Robert Kirkman. NBC also is prepping Babylon Fields, which explores what happens when the dead rise in New York, and ABC has Forever, a procedural about an immortal medical examiner.
The trio of pilot orders brings The CW's haul to five so far this pilot season and continues its love affair with sci-fi under president Mark Pedowitz.