Director expands, extends overall deal

Helmer Gary Fleder is increasing his TV presence, having expanded and extended his overall deal at ABC Studios.

Under his Mojo Films shingle, Fleder is developing a project with “Jericho” creator Jonathan Steinberg. He’s also set to exec produce and direct the CW pilot “Light Years” (Daily Variety, Sept. 24).

“Light Years,” which was penned by fellow exec producer Liz Tigelaar, will rep the third pilot a busy Fleder has shot in the past six months.

Fleder directed the frosh ABC drama “Life on Mars,” which bows Oct. 9, and the Alphabet pilot “Finnegan.” He also recently exec produced and directed the net’s “October Road.”

“ABC and ABC Studios support me as a filmmaker,” Felder said. “In the past six months alone, I’ve been able to shift gears three times: I got to shoot a passion project in ‘October Road,’ a period piece in ‘Life on Mars,’ and now I’m ready to dig in on a clever female drama with ‘Light Years.’ “

The director is also behind the Universal feature “The Express,” which opens next week.

Mojo Films is run by Mary Beth Basile, who will help oversee Fleder’s added development presence.

As for the new projects, the Steinberg entry centers on a 25-year-old who becomes a senator. And “Light Years” follows a 16-year-old who discovers that her birth parents were teens who split after a one-night stand resulted in pregnancy.

In TV, Fleder’s credits also include “The Evidence,” “Blind Justice” and “Falcone.” He also directed segs of “From the Earth to the Moon” and “Homicide: Life on the Street.”

In film, Fleder helmed “Runaway Jury,” “Imposter,” “Don’t Say a Word,” “Kiss the Girl” and “Things to Do in Denver When You’re Dead.”

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