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Thesps go to ‘Town’

Wahlberg runs to CW, Cole finds a place in 'Company'

Donnie Wahlberg (“Boomtown”) has joined the CW pilot “Runaways,” while Gary Cole (“The West Wing”) will play a CIA operative in the CBS drama project “Company Town.”

Elsewhere in pilot news Friday, Catherine Bell (“JAG”) also moved into “Company Town,” while CBS added one more comedy pilot to its roster, the Rich Appel project “My Ex Life.”

Wahlberg will play Paul Rader on “Runaways,” the skein from Darren Star and Ed Zuckerman about a family that become fugitives in order to prove the innocence of the family patriarch, who’s been convicted of murder. Sony Pictures TV produces.

Wahlberg’s recent credits include “Saw 2.” On TV, he also starred in “Band of Brothers” and “Big Apple.”

Cole, meanwhile, will star as Martin Amberson in “Company Town.” Pilot revolves around a suburban Washington, D.C., cul-de-sac that’s home to government officials. CBS Paramount Network TV produces.

Cole next will play Will Ferrell’s dad in the upcoming NASCAR comedy “Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby.” He’ll also appear in “Breach,” opposite Chris Cooper and Ryan Phillippe. Thesp has most recently played the vice president on “The West Wing” as well as appeared in TNT’s “Wanted.”

“My Ex Life” revolves around two best friends — who happen to be a divorced couple, sharing their children. Appel exec produces the comedy, from 20th Century Fox TV.

Other castings:

  • Bell will star opposite Cole, Blair Underwood, Sherry Stringfield and Michael Michele in “Company Town.” Role would rep Bell’s first regular series gig since “JAG” ended its run.

The actress recently starred in the Sci Fi mini “The Triangle.”

  • Alexis Cruz (“Eyes”) has been cast in the CBS drama pilot “Shark,” from Imagine TV and 20th Century Fox TV.

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