ABC has given pilot orders to two action dramas, TheWrap has learned.
The first, “Unit Zero,” comes from “Black-ish” producers Kenya Barris and Lindsay Shockley. Toni Collette is attached to star in the hour-long pilot, described as an action-dramedy.
Hailing from ABC Studios, “Unit Zero” follows Jackie Fink (Collette), a brilliant but unassuming CIA engineer and single mom, as she leads a team of desk jockeys into the field as secret agents. Overlooked in the workplace, their invisibility makes them perfect for the CIA’s most covert missions.
Shockley will serve as writer, and will executive produce alongside Barris. David Gordon Green will direct.
The network has also ordered the bank-heist drama “Salamander” from the four executive producers behind the CBS summer drama “Zoo,” Jeff Pinkner, Andre Nemec, Josh Applebaum and Scott Rosenberg.
“Salamander” centers on a brilliant but misanthropic engineer recruits a skeptical Homeland Security agent to help him track a mysterious bank robber whose theft of 66 specific safety deposit boxes, belonging to the elite and powerful, sets in motion a series of blackmails that may be linked to a greater conspiracy.
Based on a Belgian format, the pilot is produced by ABC Studios with Midnight Radio, Keshet and Beta Film.
The two dramas join the network’s other hour-long pilot pickups, which include “The Gospel of Kevin,” from the producers of “Agent Carter;” the time travel refugee drama “The Crossing;” the magician crime drama “Deception;” an untitled Shondaland legal drama; and a Reba McEntire-led dramedy from “Desperate Housewives” and “Devious Maids” creator Marc Cherry.
“Unit Zero” marks Barris’ second pilot pickup at ABC this season. The network has previously given a pilot order to the comedy “Libby & Malcolm,” on which Barris serves as an executive producer.
ABC’s other comedy pilots so far include “Start Up” from star/director/executive producer Zach Braff, an untitled project about a rapper-turned-mayor from Daveed Diggs of “Hamilton” and “Raised by Wolves,” from “One Mississippi” and “United States of Tara” creator Diablo Cody.