A 'Samurai' in ABC Family

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ABC Family has picked up "Samurai Girl," which the cable network plans to air as a "major programming event" consisting of three two-hour episodes.

"Samurai," from ABC Studios, is to start production in the spring in Vancouver and is slated to air during one weekend in August; the strategy is similar to one the network took with "Fallen."

"Samurai," based on Alloy Entertainment's series of popular young-adult novels, centers on a 19-year-old Japanese girl named Heaven (Jamie Chung) who discovers that the wealthy businessman who adopted her as an infant is really the head of the Yakuza, the Japanese mafia, and that he had her brother brutally murdered. She breaks from her family and begins training to become a samurai, and with the help of a group of new American friends, she sets out to take down her father's evil empire.

"Samurai" also stars Brendan Fehr, Saige Thompson, Kyle Labine, Anthony Brandon Wong, Steven Brand and Kenneth Choi.

"Samurai" was brought to ABC Family through Alloy; the company's Leslie Morgenstein and Bob Levy are executive producing. Frank Spotnitz ("The X-Files") also executive produced the pilot.

Luke McMullen wrote the hourlong pilot, which is being expanded to two hours. McMullen also is co-executive producing.

The pickup of "Samurai" comes on the heels of ABC Family's series order for "Roommates" (HR 1/31).
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