3:00pm PT by Lesley Goldberg
Fox Pushes Neal Baer Medical Drama 'The Beast' Off-Cycle
Fox has put The Beast back in its cage.
The network has rolled the Neal Baer medical drama pilot off-cycle, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.
Written by Law & Order: SVU grads Baer and Dawn DeNoon, The Beast would have featured three challenging medical cases per episode. In the end, two will live, one will die. Their doctor — with a clinical fear of death — never stops fighting the odds.
Sources note that the pilot had trouble casting its central lead role — the drama from 20th Century Fox Television had yet to cast anyone — and now will be re-evaluated after the broadcast networks wade through their pilots and a new pool of talent suddenly becomes available again. Further complicating the process was that The Beast was the last pilot ordered at Fox, which means that it was working on an even tighter timeline to begin with. Jessica Schulman and Stephen Hopkins are also attached to The Beast as exec producers with the latter set to direct.
This is Fox's second pilot that has been pushed off-cycle. The network also delayed drama The Passage, from 20th TV and writer Elizabeth Heldens (Friday Night Lights) and based on the best-selling trilogy by Justin Cronin. Matt Reeves was attached to exec produce alongside Ridley Scott, David W. Zucker and Adam Kassan, with Marcos Siega stepping in to direct for Reeves, who was attached to helm the pilot during development season.
This leaves Fox with four drama pilots (Behind Enemy Lines, the untitled university drama, The Resident and the Untitled Marvel project from Matt Nix) in contention for the 2017-18 broadcast season as well as its straight-to-series live-action Seth MacFarlane dramedy Orville.
Meanwhile, one of those four is another medical drama. The Resident, from writer Amy Holden Jones and exec producer Antoine Fuqua, revolves around an idealistic young doctor (Manish Dayal) who begins his first day under the supervision of a tough, brilliant senior resident who pulls the curtain back on all of the good and evil in modern-day medicine. Lives may be saved or lost, but expectations will always be shattered. Matt Czuchry, Bruce Greenwood and Shaunette Renee Wilson co-star.
Overall, The Beast is the third pilot that has been pushed off-cycle this season, with CBS' untitled Paul Attanasio cop drama also rolled to June.