'Change' going to do Johnson good


Chris Johnson has landed a lead role on ABC's comedy pilot "The More Things Change …" for director Todd Phillips.

Meanwhile, Beth Riesgraf and Gina Bellman have joined the TNT drama pilot "Leverage," to be directed by Dean Devlin.

"Change," from Regency TV and writer Allan Loeb, is a single-camera comedy about a quartet of male friends who explore how male friendships endure through change. Johnson will play one of the four men. His character, Rick, is a young man who suddenly has an astounding revelation in his life that turns his friendships upside down.

Johnson's credits include the feature "XXX: State of the Union" and the UPN series "South Beach." He is repped by APA and Luber/Roklin Management.

"Leverage," written by John Rogers and Chris Downey, centers on Nate Ford (Timothy Hutton), a former insurance investigator-turned-thief who is the brains behind a team of accomplished hooligans and high-tech outlaws.

Riesgraf (Showtime's pilot "Insatiable") will play Parker, an accomplished burglar who exudes dorkiness, eccentricity and sexuality. She is repped by UTA, manager Matthew Lesher and attorney Ken Richman.

Bellman (BBC's "Coupling") will play Sophie, a dreadful community theater actress who doubles as a con artist. She is managed by Lesher.