David E. Kelley’s Mystery Drama ‘Avalon’ Ordered to Series by ABC

Based on a short story by Michael Connelly, the series is produced by A+E Studios and 20th Television

David E. Kelley (Getty Images)
David E. Kelley (Getty Images)

ABC has picked up David E. Kelley mystery drama “Avalon” straight-to-series for the upcoming 2022-2023 TV season.

Based on a short story by “The Lincoln Lawyer” author Michael Connelly, the show takes place in the city of Avalon on Catalina Island, where LA County Sheriff’s Department detective Nicole “Nic” Searcy leads a tiny office. Though the Southern California island’s population is small, it serves more than 1 million tourists a year. Daily ferries bring people and the possibility of hundreds of new stories to the island, per ABC’s logline. Det. Searcy is “pulled into a career-defining mystery that will challenge everything she knows about herself and the island,” according to the network.

Kelley (“Big Little Lies,” “Big Sky”) will pen the pilot.

“Excited to reunite with Michael Connelly,” Kelley said in a statement. “He’s written a fantastic short story, a great protagonist. Can’t wait to get started.”

“Being on a project with David E. Kelley again is amazing,” Connelly said in a statement. “This whole team of David, A+E and Ross Fineman has been wonderful to work with previously; and now joining up with ABC, well, I can’t wait to start. Catalina is full of mystery and good storytelling. We’re going to put it on the screen.”

Kelley and Connelly are both creators and executive producers of the project.

“David E. Kelley is one of the great storytellers of our time and we are excited to continue our successful relationship with him on what we believe will be his next epic series on ABC,” Craig Erwich, president, Hulu Originals and ABC Entertainment, said in a statement. “Michael Connelly’s short story is ripe with mystery and intrigue, and we can’t wait for David and Michael to bring this eerie and captivating world to life.”

Ross Fineman (Fineman Entertainment) and Barry Jossen & Tana Jamieson (A+E Studios) are also EPs. A+E Studios and 20th Television produce the show.

“I read Michael Connelly’s short story, moments after it was sent to me by Ross Fineman. The knowledge that David E. Kelley would be working with Michael to create ‘Avalon’ the series convinced me it would be a huge success,” Barry Jossen, president and head of A+E Studios, said in a statement. “‘Avalon’ will be an exciting collaboration for A+E Studios, Fineman, ABC, 20th Television and two great generational talents — Kelley and Connelly.”