Helmer Thomas Carter and scribe David Mills are resurrecting Denzel Washington’s detective character from 1995’s “Devil in a Blue Dress” for a one-hour urban detective drama in development at ABC.
Alphabet has given a pilot commitment to the project, which is being produced inhouse by Touchstone Television and targeted for the 2000-2001 season. Carter (“Equal Justice,” “Miami Vice”) will exec produce and direct the pilot, with Mills (“ER,” “Homicide: Life on the Street”) penning the script.
Released by Col TriStar in 1995, “Devil” featured Washington as Ezikeal “Easy” Rawlins, a black detective in 1948 Los Angeles who becomes entangled in a web of politics and racism as he tracks down a wealthy white woman who’s mysteriously disappeared. Carl Franklin (“One False Move”) helmed the pic, which was based on a Walter Mosley novel.
Washington is not attached to the skein, but the show will feature a black thesp in the lead and retain the strong African-American themes of the pic. With the major webs under attack for a lack of minorities in their fall shows, the Carter-Mills project could rep a significant step forward toward addressing those concerns.
In addition to serving as exec producer of “Equal Justice,” Carter exec produced HBO’s “Don King: Only in America,” which won the Emmy in 1998 for best telepic. Carter also exec produced and wrote the short-lived drama “Divas” in 1995.
A former journo, Mills has served as a co-producer on “ER” and “NYPD Blue” and also wrote for the NBC detective drama “Homicide: Life on the Street.”
Carter and Mills are repped by CAA.