Feature scribes tackle TV 'Youth'

HOLLYWOOD — Feature scribes Tag Mendillo and Ric Roman Waugh have gone television, landing a drama script at ABC.

“Youth Crime Unit,” which comes from Gross Entertainment and Touchstone TV, revolves around an undercover police squadron devoted to catching criminals under the age of 25.

Duo said they hope to set their show apart from other youth-oriented copshows by not limiting the action to just high school. “Youth Crime Unit” will be set in New York City, where Mendillo and Waugh note kids don’t need a car to get into trouble.

Matt Gross will exec produce the project.

“These guys are some of the hottest writers in features right now,” Gross said. “They write with great style and adrenaline and are going to create a young, fun, turbo-charged pilot.”

Lots of work

Mendillo and Waugh will next write and co-produce the feature “The Last Apostle” at Sony; Paul Walker is already attached to star and Mark Gordon will produce. The duo’s credits include features “Hole Shot” (Disney), “Dragon Fire” (Revolution) and “Hammer Down” (DreamWorks).

Gross Entertainment, which has a pod set up at Touchstone, is behind the ABC development projects “The Middleman” (written by Chris McQuarrie) and “Cats & Dogs” (written by John Scott Shepherd).

Mendillo and Waugh are repped by ICM and Jason Sloane, while Gross is repped by Karl Austen.

(Josef Adalian contributed to this report.)

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