ABC Family tries out new ‘Act’ in originals

Cabler to pick up 13 episodes

ABC Family has made a series commitment to the family drama “Balancing Act” from exec producer Seth Freeman (“American Dreamer”).

Cabler is in final negotiations to pick up 13 episodes.

Order gives the network four original scripted hours, putting it in league with cablers FX, USA and Sci Fi Channel in the drama department.

Show revolves around a young cop who moves his family back to the inner-city neighborhood where he was raised in hopes of making a difference in the community.

Russell Hornsby, Nicki Micheaux, Rhyon Brown, Erica Hubbard and Mishon Ratliff starred in the pilot directed by Kevin Hooks (“Lost”). A studio is not yet attached.

“Balancing Act” will premiere next year, joining recently greenlit one-hour “Kyle XY,” about the family that adopts a mysterious teen naive to the world around him. Also coming back next year are second seasons of “Wildfire” and “Beautiful People” (Daily Variety, Oct. 18).

On the original comedy front, ABC Family has two pilots under series consideration: “Breadwinners,” about career women and their successful significant others, and “Just a Phase,” focused on a teen beginning to question his sexual preferences. Cabler also has a deal for an animated series from the New Yorker cartoonist Roz Chast and a script about disgruntled circus performers from Sandy Chanley and Doug Shaffer.

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