Four TV pilots so far shooting in Atlanta: 'Valor,' 'The Resident,' 'Insatiable,' 'Bluegrass Blood Red'

This was posted on Monday, February 27, 2017 by Rodney Ho on his AJC Radio & TV Talk blog

So far, four shows are being shot in pilot form in Atlanta from broadcast networks. More may come.

Of the seven shows that were being piloted at this time in February 2016, only a BET show "The Yard" (re-named "The Quad") stayed in Atlanta. Two moved elsewhere (Fox's "Making History," which debuts this week, and ABC's "Notorious," which is probably dead in the water after poor ratings last fall). Four never made the light of day.

This year, the four are:

Bluegrass Blood Red (ABC)

Marc Cherry, the creator of ABC's "Desperate Housewives" and Lifetime's "Devious Maids," returns to Atlanta with a pilot drama starring Reba McEntire.

Cherry had shot the "Devious Maids" pilot but ABC didn't pick it up. When Lifetime did so, he had to move it to Atlanta to save money although the show was technically based in Beverly Hills. That drama lasted four seasons, ending last year.

According to ABC, "the new drama centers on Ruby Adair (McEntire), the sheriff of colorful small town Oxblood, KY, who finds her red state outlook challenged when a young FBI agent of Middle Eastern descent is sent to help her solve a horrific crime. Together they form an uneasy alliance as Ruby takes the agent behind the lace curtains of this Southern Gothic community to meet an assortment of bizarre characters, each with a secret of their own."

Cherry, in the release, calls it a "Southern Gothic soap opera." His biggest show was "Desperate Housewives" from 2004 to 2012.

Both shows featured Cherry's trademark snappy dialogue and quick- moving plotlines.

McEntire had a successful sitcom on ABC from 2001 to 2007. She also was in a short-lived CMT series "Malibu Country" in 2012-13.

Valor (the CW)

Matt Barr is starring in "Valor," a serialized military drama/conspiracy thriller pilot.

The descrpition: "The boundaries between military discipline and human desire are tested on a U.S. Army base that houses an elite unit of helicopter pilots trained to perform clandestine international and domestic missions. It centers on chopper pilots Nora and Gallo (Barr) who, after a botched mission in Somalia leaves a pair of American servicemen in enemy hands, train for a rescue operation and only they share a very large secret from the initial operation — a secret that must never come to the attention of the Army.

Barr’s scruffy Gallo is described as “an aging hipster meets flyboy.” Barr has appeared several TV series such as "Sleepy Hollow," "Hatfield & McCoys" and USA's "Necessary Roughness," shot here in Atlanta from 2011 to 2013. He was a series regular for CW's "Hellcats," which lasted one season in 2010.

The Resident (Fox)

Matt Czuchry, fresh off a seven season run on CBS's "The Good Wife," will co-lead in a Fox medical drama pilot called "The Resident."

The potential series focuses on Devon Pravesh (Manish Dayal), an idealistic young doctor who begins his first day under the supervision of a tough, brilliant and cocky senior resident, Conrad Hawkins (Czuchry) who pulls the curtain back on all of the good and evil in modern day medicine. Lives may be saved or lost, but expectations will always be shattered.

Czuchry also recently reprised his role as Logan in "Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life" on Netflix.

Insatiable (the CW)

Former Disney Channel star Debby Ryan will be the female lead in the CW drama pilot Insatiable.

The pilot was inspired by real-life Southern lawyer and top beauty pageant coach Bill Alverson. The male lead is a disgraced, dissatisfied civil lawyer-turned-beauty pageant coach who takes on Patty (Ryan), a vengeful, bullied teenager as his client, and has no idea what he’s about to unleash upon the world.

In the descriptive, the drama says "Patty used to be a fat girl who found solace through eating, but after she has her jaw broken, she loses about 70 pounds and turns out to be gorgeous. The daughter of a beautiful alcoholic who’s just gotten her 60 day AA chip, Patty finds her life taking an unexpected turn when her lawyer, Bob, who’s also a beauty pageant coach, offers to help her become a professional beauty queen."

Ryan Seacrest's production company is involved.


In addition, Amazon is shooting in Atlanta a 10-episode anthology called "Lore," which explores real-life origins of horror-genre staples such as vampires, zombies, werewolves, ghosts, serial killers, and witches. This appears to be set up where experts will discuss these subjects and include some scripted scenes. Gale Anne Hurd of "The Walking Dead" is involved as an executive producer.


And Syfy has ordered a straight-to-series drama called "Superstition" created by Mario Van Peebles shooting in Atlanta. Since the initial announcement in early December, there has been no fresh details.

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About the Author

Rodney Ho
Rodney Ho
Rodney Ho covers radio and television for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.