×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Elizabeth Banks’ Brownstone Prods. Makes Mark on TV, Developing With ABC, CW, CBS and NBC (EXCLUSIVE)

Following their box-office success with the “Pitch Perfect” franchise, Elizabeth Banks and Max Handelman’s Brownstone Productions is now making a splash on the small screen.

Brownstone Prods., founded by the husband-and-wife team, inked an overall television deal at Warner Bros. last summer, and has since sold projects to four different broadcast networks this development season. The booming shingle is developing new series with ABC and the CW, plus is negotiating another unannounced series with a cable network, Variety has learned exclusively.

ABC bought a script for a buddy cop action comedy, “The Trustee,” hailing from “Smurfs” and “Baywatch” scribes Jay Sherick and David Ronn, which will be executive produced by Banks and Handelman. The project follows a very good, but slightly reckless narcotics detective who finds out that her police station’s “trustee” — a nonviolent felon assigned to help cops with odd jobs, filing, custodial work — has insight into a case she’s trying to crack, and the two women are forced to team up.

Brownstone is also developing “Feral” at the CW from writer Daegan Fryklind. The drama centers around 20-year-old Trident Marven, who steps out of the woods after years of isolation, unaware that she carries a secret which puts her at the center of an unfurling conspiracy.

The two new development projects mark an expansion into new genres for the banner, following work in the comedy space. Last year — which was Brownstone’s first development season after the Warner Bros. TV deal — Fox gave a hefty pilot production commitment to a comedy from “Suburgatory” writer Emily Kapnek, though it never went to series. This year, Brownstone’s chances for getting a show on the air are far greater, with four projects across broadcast, including previously announced comedies “Something to Celebrate” at CBS and “Everybody Knows Best” at NBC.

The company is also branching out beyond broadcast. Aside from the in-the-works cable project, the company has optioned the rights to this year’s novel “Shrill: Notes From A Loud Woman” and intends to develop the feminist story as a half-hour series, Variety has learned.

The growing development slate comes more than a year after Brownstone expanded their staff, bringing on new hires to both the film and television divisions, which is led by Renate Radford. She will shepherd all of the TV projects currently in the works, all of which are being produced by Warner Bros. TV and will be exec produced by Banks and Handelman.

Brownstone’s film side is also staying busy. The company has a handful of movies in various stages, including the hotly anticipated “Pitch Perfect 3” and the “Charlie’s Angels” reboot, which Banks is directing. While Banks is gearing up to star in the “Power Rangers” revival, the multi-hyphenate has no current plans to appear on-screen in any of her TV projects.

Banks, Handelman and Brownstone are repped by UTA, Untitled and Ziffren Brittenham.

More TV

  • 'Death Stranding' is a 'Playground of

    'Death Stranding' is a 'Playground of Possibilities,' Will Make You Cry

    The Thursday evening conversation between game-making auteur Hideo Kojima and “Walking Dead” actor Norman Reedus about highly-anticipated PlayStation 4 game “Death Stranding” was filled with interesting anecdotes, but little in the way of hard fact. Instead, Kojima made a promise of sorts to the audience and seemingly fans everywhere waiting for more news on the [...]

  • Ariana Grande Olivia Munn Michael Che

    Celebrities vs. Critics: Why This Battle Has No Winners (Column)

    When actor Olivia Munn tweeted a “short essay on…ugly behaviors” late Wednesday night, she insisted that a blog had been unfairly maligning her for years. She wrote that she wanted to confront the idea that baseless critiques, particularly those aimed at women, are never okay no matter how famous the target may be. On the [...]

  • ‘Peaky Blinders’ Virtual Reality Game in

    ‘Peaky Blinders’ Virtual Reality Game Will Pitch Players Into the Action

    “Peaky Blinders” fans will be able to join the gang – virtually – in a new VR game that will allow players to interact with characters from the hit series. Start-up immersive studio Maze Theory teamed with the show’s producers and is making the game, which will launch in 2020. Artificial intelligence technology means characters [...]

  • TV News Roundup: HBO's 'Deadwood: The

    TV News Roundup: HBO Releases 'Deadwood: The Movie' Trailer

    In today’s TV news roundup, HBO released the trailer for the “Deadwood” film, and CNN announced a premiere date for “Apollo 11.”  DATES The documentary “Apollo 11” from director/producer Todd Douglas Miller will premiere on CNN Sunday, June 23 at 9 p.m. Using only archival sources, the film captures NASA’s 1969 Apollo 11 mission. FIRST [...]

  • shannon ryan

    Shannon Ryan Joins Disney TV, ABC as Marketing Chief

    Former Fox Television chief marketing officer Shannon Ryan has been tapped as the new president of marketing for ABC Entertainment and Disney Television Studios. The announcement was made by Karey Burke, president of ABC Entertainment, and Craig Hunegs, president of Disney Television Studios, to whom she will report. Rumours had been circling for a while [...]

  • Dan Lin's Rideback, MRC Announce Writers

    Dan Lin's Rideback, MRC Announce First Class of Writers and Mentors for TV Incubator

    Rideback, Dan Lin’s production company, and MRC have announced the inaugural class of writers and mentors for their TV incubator.  The new TV writers residency program, which was launched in February, offers a paid, eight-month residency program to a group of writers who have each previously been staffed on series and want to create their [...]

  • CBS Viacom

    CBS and Viacom Move Closer to Merger Talks

    The CBS Corp. board of directors is moving closer to initiating acquisition discussions with Viacom, according to multiple sources close to the situation. The move has been expected for months, although there may still be obstacles on the road to a reunion for the two sides of the Redstone media empire. Price could still be [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content