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 Mar 22 - 28, 2007 
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Idiot Box

TV News

Tiny tidbits about proposed pilots

By Devin D. O’Leary

Drop Dead Funny--Have you ever thought to yourself, “What this here TV show needs is more zombies!” Lord knows I have. It would certainly spice things up on Wisteria Lane for “Desperate Housewives” and might actually cut down on all the whining over at “Grey’s Anatomy.” CBS apparently agrees with us and has just cast former “Picket Fences” star Kathy Baker for one of the lead roles in the network’s new comedy/drama “Babylon Fields.” The show focuses on the trials and tribulations of a small town dealing with a persistent outbreak of the living dead. According to industry trade publications, Baker and Amber Tamblyn (“Joan of Arcadia”) will play a mother and daughter who have to deal with the abusive husband/father they recently dispatched with an ax.

Bite or No Bite?--CBS, not one to generate a lot of original ideas, apparently, is also developing “Twilight,” a drama series about a vampire-turned- ... wait for it ... you guessed it: detective. Newbie nobody Alex O’Laughlin will play the bloodsucking investigator. Rade Serbedzija (currently suitcase bombing his way across America in “24”) will play the vampiric villain.

CSI: Mars--If you’re a fan of “Veronica Mars,” there may or may not be some bad news in store for you. Two of the show’s costars are filming new pilots for next season, leaving the series’ future somewhat in doubt. Chris Lowell will be showing up in the new “Grey’s Anatomy” spin-off, while Julie Gonzalo has signed on to appear in a sitcom about a TV news team in Phoenix for creator Ric Swartzlander (“The Ellen Show”). So far, The CW has not commented on the show’s life or death, but the departures don’t bode well. Rumors say that, if the show does return next year, it will dump the current “teen detective” premise and fast-forward a couple years to a time when Veronica is no longer in college and is working for the FBI.

Maybe Saaatan?--Ray Wise, who famously played creepy daughter killer Leland Palmer on “Twin Peaks,” recently took a high-profile stint as Vice President Hal Gardner on last season’s “24.” Now, the actor will be playing the Prince of Darkness himself in the newly announced CW pilot “The Reaper.” The show apparently concerns a slacker dude (Bret Harrison from “The Loop”) who finds himself working as Satan’s bounty hunter.

Lost for Good--Actress Cynthia Watros, continuing to stymie any chance of finding out what the hell her character was doing in Hurley’s loony bin over on “Lost,” has agreed to play Marisa Tomei’s best friend in the upcoming CBS comedy “The Rich Inner Life of Penelope Cloud.” Watros’ character Libby bit the bullet last season on “Lost.” If her CBS sitcom is picked up, that might make it difficult for Watros to shoot any more flashbacks for the ABC drama. Of course, one of the reasons Watros was dumped from “Lost” was because she went to shoot a pilot called “The Ex-Life” for CBS. That show never made it onto the air. ... Ya never know in showbiz.

 
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