ABC kicks off U.S. version of 'Footballers'


ABC has given the green light to the drama pilot "Football Wives," based on the popular British primetime soap "Footballers' Wives."

Bryan Singer has come on board to potentially direct the project, which revolves around women whose lives are transformed when they marry NFL superstars. The original series, which ran on ITV for five seasons, was set in the world of soccer. In the U.S., it airs on BBC America.

Touchstone TV, the studio behind hit primetime soaps "Desperate Housewives," "Grey's Anatomy" and promising new entries to the genre "Ugly Betty" and "Brothers & Sisters," is producing "Football Wives" with the original series' producer, Shed Prods.

Marco Pennette penned the pilot script and is executive producing with Touchstone TV-based Chris Brancato and Bert Salke as well as Shed's Maureen Chadwick, Eileen Gallagher and Ann McManus.

Singer has a three-for-one deal with ABC, under which he might direct and executive produce another pilot for the network (HR 7/31).