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Peacock nabs Ellroy drama

'Peaks' thesp Ferrer set to star

NBC has made a late addition to its drama development roster, ordering a pilot presentation for a one-hour crime drama from novelist James Ellroy (“L.A. Confidential.”)

Miguel Ferrer (“Twin Peaks,” “Point of No Return”) is set to star in the project, which is being produced by Paramount Network Television in association with Kelsey Grammer’s Par-based Grammnet Prods. It’s the second pilot order this development season — and first-ever drama– for Grammnet, which also has the laffer “Girlfriends” in the works at UPN.

Former “Law & Order” scribe Robert Nathan, David Percelay, Michelle Brustin, Rudy Hornish and Grammer will serve as exec producers. Helmer Michael Fields (“Law & Order: Special Victims Unit,” “Sex and the City”) is set to direct.

Lensing will begin next month in and around Los Angeles.

On the griddle

Tentatively titled “L.A. Sheriff’s Homicide,” project has been in the works for nearly two years. Peacock originally purchased the show as a two-hour telepic-backdoor pilot in 1998, but the would-be skein was lost in the shuffle of management changes that hit NBC in the fall of that year.

The Peacock net had said that it was done with its drama pilot orders for the year, but ordered “L.A. Sheriff’s” after Par brought in Grammer as an exec producer. Web had a pilot commitment due to Grammnet.

New version of “L.A. Sheriff’s” will be shorter but still revolve around Ellroy’s dealings with the homicide division during his research for “My Dark Places,” the novelist’s autobiographical tome about the 1958 murder of his mother.

Ellroy’s “L.A. Confidential” inspired the Oscar-winning pic. Author’s other tomes include “White Jazz,” “The Black Dahlia” and “American Tabloid.”

In addition to serving as one of the original scribes on “Law & Order,” Nathan was a co-exec producer on “ER,” created the NBC drama “Prince Street” and exec produced CBS’ “The White Tiger.”

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