Jeffrey Reiner signs Universal deal

'Friday Night Lights' alum seals pact for new projects

“Friday Night Lights” alum Jeffrey Reiner has sealed an overall deal to direct, develop and exec produce new projects with Universal Media Studios.

As part of the deal, Reiner is set to direct NBC pilot “The Event,” as well as serve as an exec producer on the project, which revolves around a conspiracy to assassinate the U.S. president.

Reiner will continue as an exec producer and director on “The Event” should it go to series.

Reiner has been working closely with Universal and NBC in recent years, particularly through Peter Berg and Sarah Aubrey’s Film 44.

Besides directing and exec producing Film 44’s “Friday Night Lights,” Reiner was also a director and exec producer on the shingle’s NBC drama “Trauma.”

“We’ve known Jeff for a while, having first hired him on ‘Hawaii,'” said NBC primetime entertainment prexy Angela Bromstad. “We introduced him to Pete Berg on ‘Friday Night Lights,’ and that developed into a great working relationship with Film 44. We saw Jeff as a talent that we wanted to cultivate and keep working with.”

Bromstad said she was particularly impressed with Reiner’s ability to both direct and produce while keeping shows on budget.

“Actors also love him,” Bromstad said. “He so shined on ‘Friday Night Lights’ and helped make that show what it was. That was what cemented our relationship.”

In the case of “The Event,” Reiner said he quickly took to the script, written by Nick Wauters, calling it a “page turner.”

“The Event” had a “really big canvas and interesting plot,” he said. “It goes to a place you don’t see going. Nick’s script was one of the more original, gripping pilots that I have read.”

Steve Stark is the exec producer on “The Event.”

Beyond that project, Reiner said he’s eager to develop with some of the scribes he’s worked with in the past.

Reiner said he’s already kicking around ideas with “Trauma’s” Dario Scardapane. “And I’d love to work with (‘FNL’s’) Jason Katims again,” he added.

Reiner’s recent credits include directing the pilot to Syfy’s “Caprica,” from Universal Cable Prods.Back at NBC, Reiner said he believed the Peacock now “has the potential to get its ratings back, and it’s fun to be a part of that.”

Reiner is repped by WME, manager Peter Meyer and lawyer Gregg Gellman.

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