6:45am PT by Lesley Goldberg
TV Pilots 2019: The Complete Guide
Following another prolonged development season, the broadcast networks are gearing up for a busy pilot season as they compete with not only one another, but also with basic and premium cable and streaming services new and old including Apple, WarnerMedia, Disney+, Netflix, Amazon and Hulu — all of which are making multibillion-dollar scripted pushes. As in the past few years, the networks continue to look to reboots, family fare and procedurals to help cut through the increasing clutter.
Here's a look at the pilots in contention for the 2019-2020 television season, as ABC, CBS, NBC, Fox and The CW sift through hundreds of scripts and march forward in a bid to find the next breakout comedies and dramas. Bookmark THR.com/PilotSeason as well as this page, as The Hollywood Reporter will update this guide throughout the season with the latest pilot orders, castings and eventual series pickups.
* Denotes casting has been completed.
The Hypnotist's Love Story
Logline: After a string of failed romances, successful hypnotherapist Ellen is optimistic about her current boyfriend. But then he reveals a disturbing truth: a stalker ex-girlfriend (Heather Graham) has been following him for years. Ellen finds herself intrigued — and oddly thrilled by the stalker, entirely unaware that they've already met. Based on the book of the same name by Liana Moriarty (Big Little Lies).
Cast: Heather Graham
Team: W/EP Katie Wech; EP Heather Graham, David Hoberman, Todd Lieberman, Laurie Zaks
Studio: ABC Studios, Mandeville Television
New York Undercover
Logline: A reboot of the 1990s Fox procedural about detectives in New York's Fourth Precinct.
Team: W/EP Ben Watkins (Amazon's Hand of God); EP Dick Wolf, Arthur Forney, Peter Jankowski
Studio: Universal TV, ABC Studios
Logline: follows Andy Sipowicz's (original star Dennis Franz) son, Theo (Fabien Frankel), as he tries to earn his detective shield and work in the 15th squad while investigating his father's murder.
Cast: Fabien Frankel, Alona Tal (Supernatural), Kim Delaney, Bill Brochtrup
Team: W/EP Matt Olmstead, Nick Wootton; EP Jesse Bochco, Dayna Bochco; D Jesse Bochco
Studio: 20th Century Fox TV, ABC Studios
Logline: A reboot of the 1960s sitcom about Samantha, a hard-working, black, single mom who happens to be a witch, who marries Darren, a white mortal who happens to be a bit of a slacker. They struggle to navigate their differences as she discovers that even when a black girl is literally magic, she's still not as powerful as a decently tall white man with a full head of hair in America.
Team: W/EP Kenya Barris, Yamara Taylor (Black-ish); John Davis, John Fox
Studio: ABC Studios, Sony Pictures TV, Khalabo Ink Society, Davis Entertainment
Logline: Revolves around two Pittsburgh families — a father (Matt Walsh) with three adult daughters and a hotel lounge singer with her med student son — who are forced together after a decades-old secret is revealed.
Cast: Matt Walsh (Veep)
Team: W/EP Jon Pollack, Abraham Higginbotham (Modern Family); EP/D Kat Coiro
Studio: 20th Century Fox TV, ABC Studios
Logline: A drama about the battle between science and religion, Evil focuses on a skeptical female clinical psychologist who joins a priest-in-training and a blue-collar contractor as they investigate supposed miracles, demonic possessions and other extraordinary occurrences to see if there's a scientific explanation or if something truly supernatural is at work.
Team: W/EP Robert and Michelle King (The Good Fight); EP Liz Glotzer
Studio: CBS TV Studios
Logline: A spy thriller about around the head of communications for the NSA (Sophia Bush), a charming operative who finds her loyalties torn between protecting the government's secrets and her own.
Cast: Sophia Bush, Dennis Haysbert, Catalina Sandino Moreno, Matthew Modine, Allen Leech, Raphael Acloque
Team: W/co-EP David C. White (Sons of Liberty); EP Matt Reeves (The Passage); D/EP Patricia Riggen (Jack Ryan)
Studio: 20th Century Fox TV, CBS TV Studios, 6th & Idaho
Bob Hearts Abishola
Logline: Follows Bob (Mike and Molly grad Billy Gardell) who, after having a heart attack, falls in love with his Nigerian nurse (Folake Olowofoyeku, Transparent) and sets his sights on getting her to give him a chance.
Cast: Billy Gardell, Folake Olowofoyeku, Christine Ebersole, Maribeth Monroe, Shola Adewusi, Barry Shabaka Henley, Matt Jones
Team: W/EP Chuck Lorre, Eddie Gorodetsky (Mike and Molly), Al Higgins, Gina Yashere
Studio: Warner Bros. TV
The Story of Us
Logline: Explores how an unlikely couple becomes an unlikely family, as told through interviews and vignettes spanning 10 years.
Team: W/EP Mike Royce (One Day at a Time); EP Nick Stoller, Conor Welch
Studio: Sony Pictures Television, CBS Television Studios
Logline: A Southern Gothic dramedy revolving around two strong, sharp women who will go to any length to protect their loved ones and get their due. When the wealthy CEO of the world's largest Christian network dies in a plane crash, his wife and adult children are stunned to discover he has grown, illegitimate kids who are also in his will. When the steel azalea matriarch of the family tries to pay them to go away, these newly legitimized heirs have very different ideas and insist on not only staying in town, but becoming part of the family empire.
Team: W/D/EP Tate Taylor; EP Brian Grazer, Francie Calfo, John Norris
Studio: 20th Century Fox Television, Imagine Television
Bless the Harts — ANIMATED STRAIGHT-TO-SERIES ORDER
Logline: Follows a group of Southerners who are always broke as a joke and struggling for the American dream of status and wealth. What they don't realize is that they're already rich in friends, family and laughter.
Voice cast: Kristen Wiig, Maya Rudolph, Jillian Bell, Ike Barinholtz
Team: W/EP Emily Spivey; EP Phil Lord, Chris Miller, Kristen Wiig, Seth Cohen, Aubrey Lee
Studio: 20th Century Fox TV, Lord & Miller Productions
Duncanville — ANIMATED STRAIGHT-TO-SERIES ORDER
Logline: Revolves around a 15-year-old boy named Duncan and his friends and family, including his mother, Annie, who is constantly trying to prevent her son from ruining his life.
Voice cast: Amy Poehler, Rashida Jones, Wiz Khalifa
Team: W/EP Mike and Julie Scully (The Simpsons); EP Amy Poehler, Dave Becky
Studio: 20th Century Fox TV, Universal Television, Paper Kite Productions, 3 Arts
Bluff City Law
Logline: A character-driven legal drama that follows the lawyers of an elite Memphis law firm that specializes in the most controversial landmark civil rights cases. Led by legendary lawyer Elijah Strait and his brilliant daughter, Sydney Keller, they take on the toughest David-and-Goliath cases while navigating their complicated relationship.
Team: W/EP Dean Georgaris (The Brave); EP David Janollari, Michael Aguliar
Studio: Universal Television, David Janollari Entertainment
Council of Dads
Logline: Based on Bruce Feiler's memoir of the same name, the drama revolves around a father whose life is thrown into upheaval when he is diagnosed with a terminal illness. Facing his morality, he and his wife assemble a group of friends to support his family and guide them through life's challenges.
Team: W/EP Tony Phelan and Joan Rater (Grey's Anatomy, Doubt); EP Jerry Bruckheimer, Jonathan Littman, KristieAnne Reed; P James Oh, Bruce Feiler
Studio: Universal Television, Jerry Bruckheimer Television, Midwest Livestock Productions
Logline: A character-driven genre thriller that centers around a sheriff who takes in a young child that she finds near the site of a mysterious accident who has no memory of what has happened. The investigation draws her into a conspiracy larger than she ever imagined, and the child’s identity is at the center of it all.
Team: W/EP Michele Fazekas, Tara Butters (Agent Carter); EP/D Paul McGuigan; P Robert Atwood
Studio: ABC Studios
Law & Order: Hate Crimes — STRAIGHT-TO-SERIES ORDER
Logline: Based on the real-life Hate Crimes Task Force within the New York Police Department. The unit works under the Special Victims Unit (the basis for SVU) within the department and often borrows SVU detectives for help with investigations.
Team: EP Dick Wolf, Warren Leight; EP Peter Jankowski, Arthur Forney, Michael Chernuchin, Julie Martin, Mariska Hargitay, Alex Chapple
Studio: Universal Television, Wolf Films
Logline: Based on the bestselling Bone Collector book series, the drama follows legendary forensic criminologist Lincoln Rhyme (played in the movie by Denzel Washington), who was seriously injured during his hunt for the diabolic serial killer known as the Bone Collector. Called back into action when the killer re-emerges, Lincoln forms a unique partnership with Amelia Sachs (Angelina Jolie in the film), a young beat cop who helps him hunt the deadly mastermind while also taking on the most high-profile cases in the NYPD.
Team: W/EP VJ Boyd (Justified), Mark Bianculli; EP Avi Nir, Alon Shtruzman, Peter Traugott, Rachel Kaplan
Studio: Sony Pictures Television, Universal Television
Logline: A provocative exploration of a murder trial in which every episode is told through the perspective of a different key person involved. Each new version of the facts ratchets up the mystery and the suspense, calling into question everything we have seen so far and asking is the right person on trial? Driven by an ensemble of complicated characters, the show lets the audience ask if truth matters less than who can tell the most compelling story.
Team: W/EP/D Daniel Barnz (Cake); EP Carol Mendelsohn (CSI), Julie Weitz, Ben Barnz
Studio: Universal Television, Carol Mendelsohn Productions, We're Not Brothers
Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist
Logline: An innovative musical dramedy about a whip-smart but socially awkward girl in her late 20s who is suddenly able to hear the innermost thoughts of people around her as songs and even big musical numbers that they perform just for her. With this new ability at her disposal, she is able to use her "gift" to not only help herself understand people in her life, but also to help others around her.
Team: W/EP Austin Winsberg (Gossip Girl); EP/D Paul Feig, Jesse Henderson, Kim Tannenbaum, Eric Tannenbaum, Jason Wang
Studio: Lionsgate TV, the Tannenbaum Co., FeigCo., Universal Music Group
No orders yet.
Logline: Revolves around Kate Kane (Ruby Rose), who, armed with a passion for social justice and flair for speaking her mind, soars onto the streets of Gotham as Batwoman, an out lesbian and highly trained street fighter primed to snuff out the failing city's criminal resurgence. But don't call her a hero yet — in a city desperate for a savior, Kate must overcome her own demons before embracing the call to be Gotham's symbol of hope.
Cast: Ruby Rose (Orange Is the New Black)
Team: W/EP: Caroline Dries (The Vampire Diaries); EP Greg Berlanti, Sarah Schechter, Geoff Johns; EP/D David Nutter
Studio: Warner Bros. TV, Berlanti Productions