ABC has made a range of decisions on its remaining pilots this season, which were all shutdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Firstly, the network is scrapping its pilots for the dramas “The Brides” and “Thirtysomething(else)” and the comedy “Valley Trash.” The news is surprising for “The Brides” — a female-led vampire soap opera with “Riverdale’s” Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa writing — and “Thirtysometing(else) — a sequel series to the classic dramedy “Thirtysomething” with the original creators and multiple original cast members returnin. Both shows were pegged as early frontrunners for series pickups prior to the pandemic. According to sources, both shows were on the pricier side to produce, which may have contributed to ABC cutting them loose.
Elsewhere on the slate, ABC will be picking up actor options with intent to shoot the following pilots once production can safely begin: drama “Rebel” starring Katey Sagal and based on the life of Erin Brockovich; “Harlem’s Kitchen,” an ensemble drama featuring Delroy Lindo and inspired by chef Marcus Samuelsson; comedy “Bossy” (formely “Kids Matter Now”) from Shana Goldberg-Meehan; comedy “Home Economics” starring Topher Grace; and comedy “Work Wife,” based on the relationship between Kelly Ripa and Ryan Seacrest.
The comedy “Adopted” and dramas “Triage” and “National Parks Service” (formerly “ISB”) will be rolled off cycle into what ABC now calls second cycle. Decisions will be made at a later time on the dramas “Prospect,” “Wreckage,” and the untitled comedy from Emily Kapnek and Dean Holland formerly known as “Wild Child.”
To date, ABC has ordered just two shows out of its development slate for the 2020-2021 season. Those are the drama “Big Sky” from David E. Kelley and the comedy “Call Your Mother” starring Kyra Sedgwick and written by Kari Lizer.
The decisions come as broadcast networks are still grappling with what their fall schedules will look like as the pandemic continues to stymie physical production. NBC made a similar announcement last week regarding its own slate, announcing plans to still shoot multiple pilots this year once production can resume.
ABC is still planning on having most of its scripted lineup ready to go come fall, with the network’s fall schedule indicating so when it was released earlier this month.
(Pictured: The original cast of “Thirtysomething”)