'Lights,' 'Caprica' writers ink 20th TV deal


Two writer-producers from NBC's "Friday Night Lights" and Syfy's "Caprica" have signed a multiyear, overall deal with 20th Century Fox TV.

Longtime writing partners Patrick Masset and John Zinman have inked a two-year agreement with the studio, where they'll develop new ideas as well as staff upcoming dramas.

"They show tremendous flexibility and diversity in terms of the types of shows they've worked on," said Gary Newman, chairman of 20th TV. "On 'Friday Night Lights' they showed great skill writing character, and they spent time on 'Caprica' and showed they can write genre. We can push them in almost any direction, and they have the skill to knock it out of the park."

The producers could end up staffing one of several 20th TV pilots in contention for next season, with hot Fox drama pilots "Ride Along," "Midland" and "Breakout Kings" among titles that might be considered a good fit should they receive a series order.

"We're really excited to grow our business and find a home for our company," Zinman said.

The duo, repped by CAA, met at the Fountainhead Theatre Company in Los Angeles, with Masset acting in the early 1990s before switching to writing full time. The pair are finishing up the final episodes of "Friday Night Lights." The series-ending fifth season will test coach Eric Taylor's seemingly perfect marriage.