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ABC Orders Pilot for Shondaland’s Romeo & Juliet Sequel Series ‘Still Star-Crossed’

ABC is further continuing its relationship with powerhouse producer Shonda Rhimes, ordering a pilot for a new drama hailing from her Shondaland shingle, Variety has learned.

“Still Star-Crossed,” based on the 2013 book of the same name, is a period drama that picks up where Romeo and Juliet left off, charting the treachery, palace intrigue and ill-fated romances of the Montagues and Capulets in the wake of the young lovers’ tragic fate. The pilot is based on the book by Melinda Taub.

Rhimes and Shondaland’s Betsy Beers will exec produce the pilot, penned by Heather Mitchell who will also be an EP, along with Michael Goldstein. ABC Studios will produce.

If ordered to series, “Still Star-Crossed” — a departure for Rhimes, given the period piece and young romance elements — would potentially be Shondaland’s fifth show on ABC’s slate, joining “Grey’s Anatomy,” “Scandal,” “How To Get Away With Murder” and “The Catch,” which debuts this March.

For ABC, “Still Star-Crossed” is the fourth drama on the network’s pilot slate, joining “The Jury” produced by Carol Mendelsohn, “Presence” from John Ridley and the “Agents of SHIELD” spinoff, “Marvel’s Most Wanted.” As for comedies, ABC has picked up a pilot from “The Goldberg’s” creator Adam F. Goldberg about an imaginary friend; “Downward Dog,” starring Allison Tolman; cancer-themed comedy “Pearl;” and “Speechless,” which revolves around a family with a special-needs child.

Mitchell and Beers are repped by UTA. Rhimes and Goldstein are repped by ICM Partners.

For detailed information on all of this year’s pilots, see Variety’s Pilot Scorecard.

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