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ABC has teamed with “Felicity” co-creator Matt Reeves for “Ordinary Joe,” a high-concept character drama based on a British concept.
The network has given a put-pilot commitment to the project, which is being produced by Sony Pictures TV and Kudos Film & Television, the British independent production company behind such BBC hits as “Spooks,” “Hustle” and “Life on Mars.”
In the vein of “Sliding Doors,” “Ordinary ” centers on a guy who at 21 wondered whether to go after a girl he was secretly in love with or to get together with the girl that had been after him.
The show joins the guy a dozen years later, chronicling the three different lives he would have had if he’d ended up with one girl or the other or had remained single.
Each episode will follow the three versions of the main character in three separate stories, which will be linked thematically.
“It’s about the choices in your life and how little things can lead to big consequences,” said Kudos’ Jane Featherstone, who is executive producing “Ordinary” with her producing partner Stephen Garrett, Reeves and manager Howard Klein. “There are a lot of universal elements in it like life, love, the choices you make, regrets.”
Reeves echoed her sentiment.
“It’s a swirling mix of choices you make, faith, accidents and things that you have no control over,” he said. “Your choices can take you in many different ways, and each way has its own imperfections and things that are meaningful.”
Reeves, who was looking to develop a character-driven drama, was introduced to the concept for “Ordinary” by ABC executives Stephen McPherson, Francie Calfo and Suzanne Patmore-Gibbs, with whom Reeves has a long-standing relationship going back to his days on “Felicity” and the trio’s tenure at Touchstone TV, the studio that produced the WB series.
“What interested me is the way the lives can have this kind of a parallel dance where one informs the other and resonates through the other,” Reeves said.
Separately, ABC has a relationship with Kudos, which co- produces with 20th Century Fox TV David E. Kelley’s American version of “Mars” for ABC. The network brass jumped at the idea for “Ordinary,” from British writer Caleb Ranson, who is developing it as a series for ITV.
In addition to writing the script, Reeves is attached to direct “Ordinary” if it goes to pilot.
Reeves created “Felicity” with J.J. Abrams. He also directed the pilot and served as an executive producer on the series starring Keri Russell.
Reeves’ directing credits also include the pilots for ABC’s “Gideon’s Crossing” and “Miracles” and NBC’s “Conviction.”
On the feature side, he co-wrote and directed “The Pallbearer.” He also penned and is attached to direct the drama “The Invisible Woman” for Greene-Street Films. The film is eyed for a fall production start date.
Reeves is repped by WMA and attorney Karl Austen.
Kudos is repped by WMA and attorney Jamie Mandelbaum.
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