CBS has greenlit a slew of series for the 2016-2017 season.
In the comedy department, the network has ordered projects starring Matt LeBlanc and Joel McHale. As for dramas, CBS will be rebooting “Training Day,” “MacGyver,” plus has picked up a medical drama from Jason Katims and a new show starring “NCIS” star Michael Weatherly.
“Training Day” is based on the 2001 movie that starred Denzel Washington and Ethan Hawke. The series revival stars Bill Paxton and newcomer Justin Cornwell. A crime thriller that begins 15 years after the events of the feature film left, the show is about an idealistic young police officer (Cornwell) who is appointed to an elite squad of the LAPD where he is partnered with a seasoned, morally ambiguous detective (Paxton). Drew Van Acker, Katrina Law, Lex Scott Davis and Julie Benz star alongside Paxton and Cornwell.
The drama will be exec produced by Jerry Bruckheimer, Antoine Fuqua, Jonathan Littman , Will Beall, Barry Schindel and Danny Cannon, who directed the pilot. Jerry Bruckheimer Television and Fuqua Films are producing, in association with Warner Bros. Television. The original pic hails from Warner Bros. Pictures and Village Roadshow Pictures.
“MacGyver” is a reimagining of the original ’80s television series. Starring Lucas Till in the title role, the reboot centers around a 20-something MacGyver as he creates a clandestine organization where he uses his knack for solving problems in unconventional ways to help prevent disasters from happening. George Eads (“CSI”) co-stars.
Henry Winkler, who produced the original “MacGyver” is back on board as an exec producer, along with Peter Lenkov, Lee Zlotoff, James Wan and Michael Clear. David Von Ancken is exec producer and directed the pilot, and Paul Downs Colaizzo penned the pilot. CBS Television Studios and Lionsgate are producing.
“Bull” stars Weatherly, who will depart CBS’s procedural “NCIS” next week. The drama is inspired by the early career of Dr. Phil McGraw as the founder of one of the most prolific trial consulting firms of all time. Brilliant, brash and charming, Dr. Bull (Weatherly) is the ultimate puppet master as he combines psychology, human intuition and high tech data to learn what makes jurors, attorneys, witnesses and the accused tick.
Dr. Phil will serve as an exec producer, along with his son Jay McGraw via their Stage 29 Productions, Paul Attanasio, and Amblin TV’s Steven Spielberg, Justin Falvey and Darryl Frank. CBS Television Studios is producing. Freddy Rodriguez, Geneva Carr, Chris Jackson, Jaime Lee Kirchner and Annabelle Attanasio round out the cast.
“Pure Genius,” formerly titled “Bunker Hill,” hails from “Parenthood’s” Jason Katims, who will exec produce with Michelle Lee and director David Semel. Universal Television and CBS Television Studios are producing.
The series follows a young Silicon Valley tech titan (Augustus Prew) who enlists a veteran surgeon with a controversial past in starting a hospital with a cutting edge, “new school” approach to medicine. Dermot Mulroney, Brenda Song, Reshma Shetty, Ward Horton, Aaron Jennings and Odette Annable also star.
“Man With A Plan,” formerly titled “I’m Not Your Friend,” is the Matt LeBlanc comedy vehicle The “Friends” star toplines the multi-camera sitcom, playing a contractor whose wife goes back to work starts spending more time with his kids and discovers the truth every parent eventually realizes: his little angels are maniacs.
LeBlanc is also an exec producer, along with Jeff and Jackie Filgo, Michael Rotenberg and Troy Zien. Comedy vet James Burrows, who directed many “Friends” episodes, directed the pilot. “Man With A Plan” hails from CBS Television Studios.
“The Office’s” Jenna Fischer was originally cast as LeBlanc’s wife, but she has since exited the project, and that role will be re-cast. Jessica Chaffin, Matt Cook, Grace Kaufman, Hala Finley and Matthew McCann also co-star.
“The Great Indoors” stars “Community” fan-favorite Joel McHale. Hailing from Mike Gibbons, the multi-camera comedy is about an adventure reporter (McHale) who must adapt to the times when he becomes the boss to a group of millennials in the digital department of the magazine.
Stephen Fry, Chris Williams, Shaun Brown, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Christine Ko and Susannah Fielding round out the ensemble. Gibbons will exec produce with Chris Harris and Andy Ackerman, who directed the pilot. CBS Television Studios is producing.
Both comedies are on the slate with another new series, “Kevin Can Wait,” starring another television comedy staple, Kevin James. The project was officially ordered yesterday.
A few pilots remain in contention with insiders telling Variety that the Nancy Drew project “Drew,” starring Sarah Shahi, is still alive, along with legal drama “Doubt.”
As for returning series, some still remain on the bubble at CBS, including Matthew Perry’s comedy “The Odd Couple,” which sources say will likely return for a third season. Should that be picked up, the “Friends” alum would reunite with LeBlanc on the same network. As for LeBlanc’s newly-greenlit comedy, had it not been picked up, the star would have been paid for the season in full, as “Man With A Plan” landed a hefty series commitment early on, making in nearly a shoo-in for CBS’s 2016-17 slate.
“The Great Indoors” was also a frontrunner through all of pilot season, as was “Bull,” especially considering Weatherly’s involvement as he’s a favorite of the network — and it’s audience. With the brand recognition, “Training Day” and “MacGyver” were both in high contention, but neither were a sure thing and “Training Day” had the upper hand over the two, according to sources. Katims’ medical drama was also expected to be picked up, as Variety previously reported.