Producer teaming with 'Cell' creators on show
Jerry Bruckheimer is embarking on a new race for long-lost treasure, this time at CBS.
Eye has handed out a put pilot commitment to Bruckheimer, who is teaming with “Sleeper Cell” creators Cyrus Voris and Ethan Reiff on an one-hour adventure drama. Untitled project will revolve around a globetrotting team of freelance treasure hunters, led by an ex-Navy SEAL turned archaeologist.
Potential skein encompasses genres Bruckheimer, the producer of both “National Treasure” and “The Amazing Race,” knows very well.
Warner Bros. TV and Jerry Bruckheimer Television are producing the pilot. Voris and Reiff will write the pilot and exec produce; Bruckheimer and Jonathan Littman are also exec producers.
Scribes said their goal is to create a skein that feels grounded in real-world politics, even as it captures some of the drama reality skeins like “Race” offer viewers. Their mission is to avoid the cliches and cheesiness associated with 1980s skeins such as “Tales of the Gold Monkey.”
“Those shows felt like tired retreads of ‘Raiders of the Lost Ark’ shot on a TV budget,” Reiff said. “We’ll die before we do that.”
Voris said he and his partner were intrigued by the idea of “taking that Indiana Jones paradigm and making it feel cool and real. “We want to make use of the current international situation as a backdrop,” he said.
Reiff is a history buff, and the scribes said the show will make frequent use of history to set up storylines and mysteries.
CBS developed another adventure-like skein last year with Warner Bros., but Voris and Reiff said their project is completely different. They said the project stemmed from conversations they had with Bruckheimer after the producer, a fan of their Showtime mini “Sleeper Cell,” summoned them to a meeting to discuss possible projects.
In addition to creating “Sleeper Cell,” Voris and Reiff sold their feature script “Nottingham” to Universal earlier this year. Ridley Scott is attached to direct, with Russell Crowe attached to star.
Scribes also wrote the DreamWorks Animation pic “Kung Fu Panda,” which will be released next year. Duo inked an overall deal with Warner Bros. TV earlier this year (Daily Variety, Feb. 20).
If the Voris and Reiff project goes to series, it will join a brigade of Bruckheimer skeins on the Eye, including “Without a Trace,” “Cold Case,” “The Amazing Race” and the three “CSI” skeins.