12:45pm PT by Lesley Goldberg
Barry Levinson to Direct, Exec Produce NBC's Jennifer Lopez Drama 'Shades of Blue'
NBC has enlisted an Oscar winner to direct and exec produce its upcoming Jennifer Lopez drama, Shades of Blue.
Barry Levinson, who took home the Academy Award for directing Rain Man, will helm the pilot and exec produce the 13-episode drama series, The Hollywood Reporter has learned. Levinson, whose credits also include Academy Award nominations for his work on Bugsy, Avalon and Diner, will have a hands-on role in developing the series.
Shades of Blue centers on Harlee McCord (Lopez), a single mother and dirty cop recruited to work undercover for the FBI's anti-corruption task force. Part of a close-knit unit known for its conviction record, Harlee has become compromised by her colleagues — all of whom also pitch in to help raise her daughter — and finds herself faced with the moral dilemma of working against her cop brothers in order to redeem herself.
Adi Hasak (3 Days to Kill) is attached as the project's writer and executive producer alongside Lopez's American Idol colleague Ryan Seacrest and his Ryan Seacrest Productions exec Nina Wass. Joining them as fellow EPs are Lopez, her Nuyorican exec Elaine Goldsmith-Thomas and manager Benny Medina. Production is slated to begin in 2015 for broadcast during the 2015-16 season. Universal Television, Nuyorican Productions, RSP, EGTV and H's Films will produce.
"It's an exciting project to be working on with Jennifer," Levinson said. "Adi has written a police drama that gets into the fascinating dirt behind law enforcement with a female character we haven't really seen before."
Levinson (Wag the Dog, Sleepers) is repped by ICM Partners, manager Goldsmith-Thomas and Hirsch Wallerstein.
A premiere date has not yet been announced for Shades of Blue.