Despite putting a halt on the “Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD” spinoff, which was proposed earlier this year, ABC is closing in on a deal to order a pilot for a project centered around Mockingbird, Variety has learned exclusively.
Titled “Marvel’s Most Wanted,” the drama will focus on popular “SHIELD” characters Adrianne Palicki‘s Bobbi Morse (also known as Mockingbird) and Nick Blood’s Lance Hunter. The two actors will topline the pilot and prospective series.
“SHIELD” producers Jeffrey Bell and Paul Zbyszewski co-created the project for Marvel and ABC Studios, co-writing the pilot. They will serve as showrunners and exec producers together with Marvel’s head of television Jeph Loeb also exec producing.
Insiders say the series is not a spinoff, per se, but rather an entirely new project solely focused on the two characters to continue their story. Though plot details are scarce at this point, “Marvel’s Most Wanted” will follow the pair and their adventures together.
At this time, ABC has not made any decisions regarding premiere date or a path of introduction, such as introducing the new show as a planted episode during “SHIELD.”
An “Agents of SHIELD” offshoot was originally reported in April, but was soon after shot down with the network deciding not to move forward. However, during New York Upfronts this spring, ABC president Paul Lee alluded to the possibility of the series being resurrected, teasing, “It certainly is a possibility of spinning them off.”
Lee added that “SHIELD” had hit its creative stride, suggesting that the net didn’t want to mess around with a formula that was working — which includes Palicki and Blood’s storylines. “We absolutely love those characters on ‘SHIELD,'” he said, at the time.
But with “SHIELD” coming back for Season 3, in addition to “Agent Carter” returning for Season 2, there’s still a large Marvel appetite at ABC. Also in the works at the network is a top-secret Marvel project helmed by “American Crime” creator John Ridley.