20th TV new home for man of ‘House’

Shankman's Offspring to develop, produce projects for studio

“Bringing Down the House” helmer Adam Shankman and his Offspring Entertainment are setting up shop at 20th Century Fox TV.

One-year overall deal sets up Shankman and production partner Jennifer Gibgot to develop and produce both half-hour and hourlong projects for the studio. Shankman, whose other feature credits include “A Walk to Remember” and “The Wedding Planner,” is also expected to direct at least one pilot.

Shankman took his first stab at pilot helming this spring, directing 20th’s drama pilot “Splitsville” for Fox Broadcasting. Project didn’t snag a greenlight, but studio chief Dana Walden was nonetheless sold on Shankman’s abilities.

“He has a very strong commercial sensibility, and he did a great job on the pilot,” Walden told Daily Variety. “The features he’s done represent the sensibility we’re trying to tap into on the TV side. He can tell a strong dramatic story but also incorporate the elements of comedy found in a half-hour show.”

Walden credited 20th drama development chief Jennifer Nicholson Salke for “leading the charge” in pursuing a relationship with Shankman, who said he’s looking forward to developing multiple projects for the studio with Gibgot (who’s also his sister.)

“One of the things that’s been true for at least 2 of my three movies is that they feel like they could be TV series,” he said. “I grew up with TV, I worked in TV as a choreographer and I just love television. I see no reason not to keep expanding (into the medium.)

Indeed, Shankman’s small screen choreography credits include the Emmy-nominated musical episode of “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” and episodes of “Friends.”

As a result, “I have relationships in both the film and TV world that will help us bring in writers (for projects at 20th),” Shankman said. “There’s such a great cross-pollination going on right now between TV and film, I think we’re ideally poised.”

Shankman said he hopes Offspring’s projects will “run the gamut,” from romantic comedies to skeins with “the tone of an ‘Ally McBeal’ or ‘Gilmore Girls.'”

“I’m hyper-energetic,” Shankman said. “I’ve got the will, and my sister’s got the brains.”

On the feature side, Shankman’s working on Disney’s fairy tale-come-to-life “Enchanted” and a big screen version of “The Jetsons” for Warner Bros. Offspring has a first-look film deal at Disney.

Deal was brokered by UTA and Brillstein-Grey.

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