9:00am PT by Lesley Goldberg
Paula Patton to Star in ABC's Drug Cartel Drama 'Runner'
Following an extensive casting search that spanned two seasons and now two networks, ABC's Runner has found its leading lady.
Precious alum Paula Patton has been tapped to star in ABC's drug cartel drama pilot Runner, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.
Based on the Turkish series Son, the drama revolves around Lauren Marks (Patton), who believes she is leading a perfect life, which is ripped apart when, in search of the truth, she must follow a trail of lies that takes her into the world of cartels and the illegal gun trade between the U.S. and Mexico.
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Patton's Lauren is described as an architect, a caring wife and mother living
peacefully with her husband, Adam, and their son, Jackson.
When a commercial plane with Adam on it goes down, Lauren feels her life crashing down along with it — until she's told that her husband never boarded the plane. Now hell-bent on figuring out what her husband is up to, she goes to great lengths to find him, winding up in the middle of a cartel war and forced to work with someone she had hoped never to see again.
Originally developed by Fox last season under former network topper Kevin Reilly's no-pilots process, the cast-contingent drama made offers to several actresses, including Christina Applegate, Katie Holmes, Mireille Enos and Jessica Biel, but did not move forward until this season when it earned an official pilot order at ABC in January.
Runner marks Patton's first TV series regular foray after roles in films such as HItch, Precious, Mission: Impossible — Ghost Protocol, 2 Guns and About Last Night. She next has Warcraft due in 2016. She's repped by CAA, More/Medavoy Management and Sloane Offer.
Michael Cooney (Identity) will pen the script for 20th Century Fox Television/ABC Studios and exec produce alongside Peter Horton, Ian Sander and Kim Moses; Jon Cowan is set as showrunner, with Michael Offer on board to direct the pilot.