James Wolk to Lead NBC Drama 'Ordinary Joe'

James Wolk - Getty - H 2020
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NBC has found its Ordinary Joe in James Wolk.

The Mad Men and Watchmen actor has been tapped to play the title role in the network's drama pilot, a Sliding Doors-esque story that follows three parallel lives of the character after he makes a pivotal choice while at a crossroads in his life. The potential series would explore the question of what life might look like if Joe had made his decision based on love, loyalty or passion. 

The big decision comes as Joe Kimbrough graduates from college. The series would take place a number of years later and follow the results in parallel time.

The pilot, from 20th Century Fox TV, executive producer Matt Reeves' 6th & Idaho and 3 Arts Entertainment, has been a long time coming: Reeves (The Batman) originally developed it for ABC way back in 2006. It didn't go forward at the time, but it got new life in fall 2018 when NBC gave it a put-pilot order; development was subsequently rolled to the current cycle.

House and Smallville veterans Russel Friend and Garrett Lerner, who like Reeves have an overall deal at 20th, wrote the script. They executive produce with Reeves, Adam Kassan, Rafi Krohn and Howard Klein.

Wolk recurred on HBO's Watchmen earlier this season. Other recent credits are Tell Me a Story at CBS All Access, Amazon's Goliath and CBS' Zoo. He is repped by ICM Partners and Greenlight Management. 

NBC's other drama pilots are the X-Files-esque Debris, African American family story At That Age, high-concept procedural Echo, adventure/mystery La Brea and Langdon, based on the character from author Dan Brown's The Lost Symbol.