'Melrose,' 'Vampire' look likely at CW

Both new shows given permission to staff up

"Melrose Place" and "Vampire Diaries" continue to march to the CW's fall schedule.

Both projects on Thursday were given permission to begin staffing, the clearest indication yet by the network that both series will be picked up.

With its name recognition and built-in buzz factor, the updated "Melrose" was an instant favorite before a single page of the script was written.

Still, the CW execs waited to watch the CBS Par-produced pilot and liked what they saw.

For the WBTV-produced "Vampire Diaries," based on Alloy's series of books about a girl in a love triangle with two vampire brothers, the network hopes to catch the vampire pop-culture wave ignited by the success of the "Twilight" franchise and HBO's "True Blood."

But in the end, "Vampire" scored on its highly praised script and the execution of the pilot.

With "Melrose" and "Vampire" on the schedule, the battle is on for what is believed to be the last remaining spot among "Beautiful Life," "Life Unexpected" and bubble freshman "Privileged."

The "Gossip Girl" spinoff continues to be in contention for midseason.