Pilots cleared at CW, CBS


In the latest round of pilot pickups, the CW has ordered the dramas "Vampire Diaries" and "Body Politics," and CBS has given the green light to the comedy "Big D."

On the pilot-casting front, Krysten Ritter has been tapped to co-star on the CW's "Gossip Girl" spinoff, marking the first casting on the project, and Loretta Devine has reunited with David E. Kelley on "Legally Mad," his new dramedy at NBC.

"Vampire," from WBTV and Alloy, is based on Alloy's 15-year-old series of novels, which are enjoying a resurgence with their reprinting in the wake of the success of "Twilight." It centers on a tragic young heroine who is the object of passion for two vampire brothers — one good, one evil — who are at war for her soul and those of her friends, family and other residents of a small town.

Kevin Williamson, creator of "Dawson's Creek" and the "Scream" feature franchise, wrote the script with Julie Plec. He is executive producing with Plec and Alloy's Les Morgenstein and Bob Levy.

"Politics," from CBS Par, takes a look at Washington politics through the eyes of optimistic young staffers, revolving around a woman who moves to the capital to work for a senator and the other up-and-comers she befriends.

Jason Rothenberg and Bill Robinson penned the script and will executive produce with Peter Horton.

"Politics" is the second Capitol Hill-set pilot this season, joining the CBS drama "House Rules," about freshman congressmen. The CW tried the arena last year with Rod Lurie's drama pilot "I'm Paige Wilson."

The multicamera "Big D," from writer/executive producers Jackie and Jeff Filgo and WBTV, revolves around a New York couple who move to the man's hometown of Dallas, where his Southern belle mother makes life complicated for his East Coast wife.

"Big D" is close in concept to another multicamera pilot at CBS, Linwood Boomer's "The Karenskys," about a woman who returns to her hometown when her husband's job relocates them.

The "Gossip" spinoff is a prequel chronicling the wild teen years of Lily van der Woodsen (Kelly Rutherford) in Los Angeles during the 1980s.

It centers on then-Lily Rhodes, who, after a falling-out with her parents, is forced to move in with her sister, Carol (Ritter), the black sheep of the family.

The backdoor pilot for the spinoff, from WBTV, Alloy, College Hill and CBS Par, will air May 11 as a "Gossip" episode.

Ritter ("Veronica Mars") co-stars in the upcoming comedy feature "Confessions of a Shopaholic." She is repped by Endeavor and Sanders & Armstrong.

The WBTV-produced "Mad" centers on Brady (Charity Wakefield), a twentysomething woman who takes a job at a law firm run by her father (Hugh Bonneville). Devine will play Jeanette, an attorney at the firm constantly on the verge of a nervous breakdown.

Devine, repped by Innovative and Essential, was a regular on Kelley's "Boston Public." (partialdiff)