ABC nears 'Mars' pickup

David E. Kelley pilot was shot last summer

ABC is close to picking up David E. Kelley's pilot "Life on Mars" to series.

"Mars," which had been dormant since the pilot was shot last summer, has been gaining momentum in the past week.

"October Road" creators Josh Appelbaum, Andre Nemec and Scott Rosenberg -- all repped by Endeavor -- are in talks to come on board as exec producers, and ABC Studios in talks with 20th TV to join as a co-producer.

However, sources indicated that no deals can be made without the blessing of Kelley, who created the U.S. version of the British series and owns the rights to it.

Meanwhile, Kelley is reevaluating his involvement in the project as it goes forward.

"Mars" stars Jason O'Mara as a 21st century detective who finds himself working as a cop in the 1970s.