ABC Picks Up Marc Cherry Soap Opera, Three Other Drama Pilots

Melissa Rosenberg, Paul Scheuring and Michael Green projects also acquired by network

Last Updated: January 31, 2012 @ 8:58 PM

With "Desperate Housewives" winding to a close, Marc Cherry is tackling another group of dramatic women for ABC in a new project.

ABC picked up four drama pilots on Tuesday, including "Devious Maids," from "Housewives" honcho Cherry.

Also read: Marc Cherry: Grilled

Based on a Mexican program, "Devious Maids" is described as a soap that follows "four maids with ambition and dreams of their own while they work for the rich and famous in Beverly Hills." Cherry will write and executive-produce the one-hour ABC Studios project. "Desperate Housewives" executive producer Sabrina Wind is also attached to executive-produce the project.

Also read: ABC Redeveloping "Hallelujah," Working on "Jessica Jones," "Hulk"

Also among ABC's acquisitions on Tuesday: "Gotham," from "Green Lantern" producer Michael Green. The one-hour drama revolves around a female cop who "discovers a magical world that exists within New York City" while pursuing a seemingly unsolvable case. The world "goes unseen by normal humans, and takes all of the familiar NY landmarks and reinvents them in a magical otherworldly manner."

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Green will write and executive-produce the 20th Century Fox Television project, with Erwin Stoff ("The Matrix") also executive-producing.

"Zero Hour," meanwhile, will be written and executive-produced by "Prison Break" creator Paul Scheuring, with Lorenzo DiBonaventura and Dan McDermott also attached to executive produce. The one-hour ABC Studios drama focuses on a longtime editor of a skeptics magazine who's pulled into "one of the most compelling conspiracies in human history" by a bizarre twist of fate.

Finally, "Penoza" — from "Twilight Saga" screenwriter and "Dexter" executive producer Melissa Rosenberg — "centers on the widow of an assassinated criminal who is forced to adopt her husband’s role in a crime syndicate in order to protect her family," according to a description. Based on a Dutch program, the ABC Studios series is written and executive-produced by Rosenberg, with Endemol Studios, Alon Aranya and Howard Klein also executive-producing.

ABC is also redeveloping Cherry's pilot "Hallelujah" — about a Tennessee town torn between good and evil — after initially passing on it.