Drama picked up for second season

TNT has given a second-season renewal to “Leverage.”

Turner has ordered another 15 episodes of the caper drama, which stars Timothy Hutton as the leader of a band of expert thieves who use their skills in a Robin Hood-like manner against criminals and corrupt business interests. Gina Bellman, Christian Kane, Beth Riesgraf and Aldis Hodge co-star.

“Leverage” is produced by Dean Devlin’s Electric Entertainment, with John Rogers and Chris Downey also serving as exec producers.

The series commitment is among TNT’s latest moves to ramp up its original programming slate. The network recently greenlit three series: medical drama “Time Heals,” starring Jada Pinkett Smith; the Jerry Bruckheimer-produced cop thriller “The Line,” starring Dylan McDermott; and “Men of a Certain Age,” starring Ray Romano.

The “Leverage” pilot bowed Dec. 7 to 5.6 million total viewers, running behind the latest installment of TNT’s “The Librarian” movie franchise. Both projects were helmed and exec produced by Devlin. Since then, “Leverage” has been the top-rated basic cable performer for its Tuesday 10 p.m. timeslot among total viewers, households and adults 25-54.

TNT execs are also closely monitoring the performance of rookie skein “Trust Me,” which bowed to 3.4 million viewers Jan. 26 leading out of a fresh episode of the network’s hit crime procedural “The Closer.”

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