In a last-minute round of pilot pickups, ABC has ordered a two-hour movie/backdoor pilot about plane, train and automobile crashes, while Fox has greenlit a comedy from Bill Oakley and Josh Weinstein (“The Simpsons”).
Meanwhile, Fox also picked up the live-action action comedy “Monsignor Martinez,” which features a character first introduced as a Mexican telenovela star on the cartoon laffer “King of the Hill.”
The ABC movie, “Everything Rises,” focuses on the National Transportation Safety Board and its examination of an airline crash, as well as the personalities and drama behind such investigations. Script features two principal roles.
“Everything Rises” comes from exec producers Rob Scheidlinger (“Sports Night”) and Bill Cain (“Nothing Sacred”); Jeff Bleckner will direct.
Touchstone Television and Scheidlinger’s Omnibus production company will produce the project, which is being developed by both ABC’s telepic and drama departments. Scheidlinger is also producing the pilot “The Bench” for Touchstone and ABC.
The Oakley/Weinstein pilot, “The Ruling Class,” follows the exploits of the new kid in high school who quickly becomes a part of the gang. Oakley and Weinstein executive produce the skein for Imagine TV.
Oakley and Weinstein most recently served as consulting producers on “Futurama.” They also created and exec produced the short-lived animated WB comedy “Mission Hill” last season.
Prior to that, the duo spent years on “The Simpsons,” working their way up to executive producers on the hit series.
Oakley and Weinstein aren’t the only producers moving to the live-action world after cutting their teeth in animation: “King of the Hill’s” Jim Dauterive, Greg Daniels and Mike Judge are behind “Monsignor Martinez,” a single-camera comedy about a macho, ass-kicking priest of the Guanajuateno order who comes to America to fight drug lords.
The “Monsignor Martinez” title character has appeared in about a half-dozen episodes of “King of the Hill.” 20th Century Fox TV produces.