10 Promising Pilots: New Shows from Eddie Murphy, J.J. Abrams, Joss Whedon and Rebel Wilson
Eddie Murphy, Rebel Wilson, Andy Samberg | Photo Credits: Gabriel Olsen/FilmMagic/Getty Images; Jeffrey Mayer/WireImage/Getty Images; Michael Tran/FilmMagic/Getty Images
Before the networks unveil their fall lineups this month, TVGuide.com's Natalie Abrams poured over nearly 100 broadcast scripts, narrowing the contenders down to the 10 most promising pilots:
About a Boy (NBC)
Starring: David Walton, Minnie Driver
Summary: Based on the Nick Hornsby novel and Hugh Grant film, a loutish bachelor (Walton) finds his priorities in life shifting after he befriends the awkward son (Benjamin Stockham) of his neighbor (Driver).
Pedigree: Parenthood's Jason Katims will write and executive-produce the comedy with original Boy producers Robert DeNiro, Tim Bevan, Eric Fellner and Jane Rosenthal. Jon Favreau will helm the pilot.
Why we like it: Walton (Perfect Couples, Bent) is perfectly cast as a man-child in this heartwarming comedy that makes us want to be a kid again.
Why it has a shot: It already has a built-in fan base, which will make NBC's job easier. Plus: The network is hot on Katims, after giving Parenthood a full 22-episode season.
Starring: Jake McLaughlin, Kyle MacLachlan
Summary: An unlikely relationship develops between a young girl (Johnny Sequoyah) with a gift and a man (Jake McLaughlin) sprung from prison who has been tasked with protecting her from the evildoers who covet her power, among them Skouras (McLachlan), a mysterious billionaire.
Pedigree: Harry Potter's Alfonso Cuaron and The Forgotten's Mark Friedman will write and executive-produce the drama with Lost's J.J. Abrams and Bryan Burk.
Why we like it: The script was bursting with what will likely turn into visually stunning shots and effects at the hands of Cuaron.
Why it has a shot: The pedigree alone should be enough to land this drama a spot on the network's schedule, especially since Abrams' Bad Robot gave NBC its only bona fide hit last season with Revolution.
Beverly Hills Cop (CBS)
Starring: Eddie Murphy, Brandon T. Jackson, Christine Lahti
Summary: In a sorta-sequel to the movie franchise, the police officer son (Jackson) of Axel Foley (Murphy) patrols the rich and famous of Beverly Hills under the leadership of Lahti's Captain Chernick.
Pedigree: The Shield's Shawn Ryan will write and executive-produce the drama with Murphy.
Why we like it: Axel Foley's young son is just as hilarious — if not more so — than his legendary pops!
Why it has a shot: Even those who never saw the original films will be attracted to the lavish, gritty world of California's sunshine-noir. Plus: CBS isn't likely to pass up the opportunity to bring Murphy back to TV.
Brooklyn Nine-Nine (Fox)
Starring:, Andy Samberg, Andre Braugher, Terry Crews
Summary: A group of detectives — including Samberg, Braugher and Crews — form an odd family in a police precinct in an outermost neighborhood of New York City.
Pedigree: Parks and Recreation's Mike Schur and Dan Goor will write and executive-produce the comedy with 30 Rock's David Miner.
Why we like it: Samberg, the former SNL goofball, has a chance to prove he can navigate both comedy and tragedy, bringing to mind Hill Street Blues and M*A*S*H.
Why it has a shot: Schur, Goor and Samberg all know comedy cold.
Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (ABC)
Starring: Clark Gregg, Ming-Na
Summary: It's based on Marvel Universe's fictional and secret law-enforcement agency, Strategic Hazard Intervention Espionage Logistic Directorate.
Pedigree: The Avengers' Joss Whedon, Jed Whedon and Maurissa Tancharoen will write and executive-produce the drama.
Why we like it: An action-packed thrill ride that resurrects Agent Coulson (Gregg) and introduces Ming-Na as a steely new agent? Count us in!
Why it has a shot: The Avengers has grossed $1.5 billion worldwide. Need we say more? Fine, Whedon also brought Buffy, Angel and Firefly to our TV screens!