Queen Latifah-Led 'Equalizer' Reboot Nabs CBS Pilot Pickup

Queen Latifah-Tribeca Film Festival-Getty-H 2019
Gary Gershoff/WireImage

CBS is moving forward with The Equalizer. 

The network on Monday handed out a formal pilot pickup to its reboot of the classic series.

First put into development in November with a sizable pilot-production commitment, The Equalizer is described as a reimagining of the 1980s show, with Queen Latifah attached to portray an enigmatic figure who uses her extensive skills to help those with nowhere else to turn. (Latifah will take on the role that was originally played by Edward Woodward on the CBS drama that ran for four seasons in the mid- to late-1980s. The Equalizer also was rebooted as two feature films with Denzel Washington in 2014 and 2018.)

The new CBS take is written by Castle creators Andrew Marlowe and Terri Miller, with Latifah also attached as an executive producer though her Flavor Unit banner. The potential series is a co-production between CBS TV Studios and Universal Television. The Blacklist duo John Fox and John Davis, via Davis Entertainment, will also exec produce. Original Equalizer co-creator Richard Lindheim is also on board as an EP alongside Debra Martin Chase and her production company. Flavor Unit's Shakim Compere will also oversee for the company.

The Equalizer is CBS' second drama order of the young pilot season and joins the Silence of the Lambs sequel Clarice, with the latter receiving a hefty series commitment earlier this month.

It is also the second pilot order of the season for Harriet producer Martin Chase, who also exec produces the NBC drama At That Age. The latter, an exploration of a black family's legacy, has an entirely African-American team writing and producing the project. The Equalizer is also the third pilot order for Davis Entertainment, joining ABC's Rebel and NBC's high-concept procedural Echo.

For Marlowe and Miller, The Equalizer would be their second follow-up series to their Nathan Fillion-led ABC procedural Castle. The duo also created ABC's short-lived summer drama Take Two.

Should The Equalizer go to series, it would be the latest reboot to join a CBS schedule that currently features Hawaii Five-0, MacGyver, Magnum P.I., SEAL Team and SWAT.

Keep track of all of this season's pilot orders with THR's handy guide.