Nearly two decades after Julia Roberts made Erin Brockovich a household name with an Oscar-winning film, Grey’s Anatomy showrunner Krista Vernoff is working to bring the activist’s life to the small screen.
Vernoff and Brockovich are teaming on an ABC drama titled Rebel that dramatizes the legal consultant’s life 20 years after she was portrayed by Roberts in the Steven Soderbergh-directed movie Erin Brockovich. The Hollywood Reporter first reported the news; EW has reached out to ABC for additional comment.
Rebel is inspired by Brockovich’s life today, and finds Annie “Rebel” Rebelsky still working as a legal consultant without a law degree. According to ABC, Annie is a “funny, messy, brilliant, and fearless real-life superhero who cares desperately about the causes she fights for and the people she loves — when Rebel applies herself to a fight she believes in, she will win at almost any cost.”
ABC has given the project a put-pilot commitment, indicating that the network is pretty confident about its appeal to viewers. Vernoff is set to write the script and executive-produce the show alongside Brockovich. The project still needs to survive the development stage to make it on air.
Erin Brockovich recounted the true story of how Brockovich successfully fought against the Pacific Gas and Electric Company without any formal legal training. For her performance, Roberts nabbed an Oscar and a Golden Globe, among numerous other accolades. Brockovich has continued to act as an advocate and legal consultant, and has gotten involved in injustices like the Flint water crisis.
This project is Vernoff’s first to come from the multiyear overall deal she signed with ABC Studios earlier this year. She has also been hired to act as showrunner for season 3 of Station 19, the Grey’s Anatomy spin-off. Meanwhile, Grey’s just entered its 16th season and is renewed for a 17th.