The CW is doubling down on sci-fi and fantasy for 2016. The network has ordered six new pilots, and most are big-concept genre shows. The list includes Mars thriller, a Translyvania-set monster mash-up and a present-day, live-action take on the Archie Comics.
One title to watch out for in particular is the one with the least amount of description — Kevin Williamson’s untitled and vaguely described paranormal project. The script snagged director David “the pilot whisperer” Nutter, who has a terrific track record for making pilots that get greenlit to series.
Here’s the list:
Pitch: “Set in present day and based on the iconic Archie Comics characters, Riverdale is a surprising and subversive take on Archie, Betty, Veronica, and their friends, exploring the surrealism of small town life — the darkness and weirdness bubbling beneath Riverdale’s wholesome façade.”
EP/W: Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa (Supergirl, Glee, Big Love) EP: Greg Berlanti (Arrow, The Flash, Supergirl, DC’s Legends of Tomorrow) EP: Sarah Schechter (Arrow, The Flash, Supergirl, DC’s Legends of Tomorrow) EP: Jon Goldwater (Archie Comics). (Warner Bros. Television / Berlanti Productions / Based on the characters from Archie Comics)
UNTITLED MARS PROJECT
The pitch: “A team of explorers arrive on Mars to join the first human colony on the planet, only to discover that their predecessors have vanished. Led by a woman whose husband is among the missing, the colonists are forced to change their mission from exploration and settlement to investigation and survival, while navigating the hostile planet and their own personal demons.”
Executive Producer/Writer: Doris Egan (Reign, House MD, Tru Calling) Executive Producers: Frank Marshall, Robert Zotnowski Auspices: CBS Television Studios in association with The Kennedy-Marshall Company
The pitch: “In 1880, a headstrong young woman in search of her missing father ventures from NYC to Transylvania where she teams up with a wrongfully disgraced Scotland Yard Detective, and together they witness the births of the most famous monsters and villains in history.”
Executive Producer/Writer: Hugh Sterbakov Executive Producers: Jeff Pinkner, Andre Nemec, Josh Applebaum, Scott Rosenberg Auspices: CBS Television Studios in association with Midnight Radio
UNT. PARANORMAL PROJECT
The pitch: “A young woman seeks help from a parapsychologist when she begins to experience paranormal phenomena.” EP/W: Kevin Williamson (The Vampire Diaries, The Following, Scream features) EP (pilot)/D: David Nutter (Arrow, The Flash, Game of Thrones, Supernatural) P: Lauren Wagner. (Warner Bros. Television / Outerbanks Entertainment)
The pitch: “In this reimagining of the New Line Cinema film, a female police detective in 2016 discovers she is able to speak via a ham radio with her estranged father (also a detective) who died in 1996. They forge a new relationship while working together on an unresolved murder case, but unintended consequences of the ‘butterfly effect’ wreak havoc in the present day.”
EP/W: Jeremy Carver (Supernatural, Being Human) EP: Toby Emmerich (writer/producer of original film; President and COO, New Line Cinema) EP: John Rickard (features: Horrible Bosses, A Nightmare On Elm Street 2010 reboot) EP: Dan Lin (Forever, features: The Lego Movie, Sherlock Holmes) EP: Jennifer Gwartz (Forever, Veronica Mars) (Warner Bros. Television / Lin Pictures / Based on the New Line Cinema feature film).
Pitch: “When a risk-averse, straight-arrow, female procurement manager at an Amazon-like distribution center falls in love with a freewheeling man who lives life to the fullest because he believes the apocalypse is imminent, to comedic and poignant results they embark on a quest together to fulfill their individual bucket lists.”
Executive Producer/Writer: Corinne Brinkerhoff (American Gothic, Jane The Virgin, The Good Wife) and Scott McCabe & Tory Stanton Executive Producer: Ben Silverman (Jane The Virgin,The Office, Ugly Betty). Auspices: CBS Television Studios in association with Electus