Taking a small break from his proposed “Hercules” film with wrestler Dwayne Johnson, Brett Ratner is trying his hand at science-fiction television again, this time working on a new project for ABC that could get a series order without even making a pilot.
ABC has agreed to a script-to-series deal for “Tomorrow,” about a time-traveling FBI agent in a project created by Katherine Lindberg and Ted Cyr.
Ratner’s most recent television directorial work was with the short-lived “Chaos” for CBS last year. He also directed the pilot for Fox’s “Prison Break.” He is, of course, probably best known for his Rush Hour movies with Jackie Chan, as well as directing the not-so-popular “X-Men: The Last Stand” in 2006.
He created some controversy in 2011 when he was set to produce the Oscars in 2012, but had to resign after stating that “rehearsal is for fags.”
Both Lindberg and Cyr are relative newcomers to television, but will both be included as writers and executive producers of the project. If a series is ordered, Ratner is set to direct the premiere episode.
If “Tomorrow” does become a series, it won’t be because ABC spent any money on a pilot. Instead, its deal with Georgeville Television is that ABC has to make a 13-episode commitment based solely on Lindberg’s and Cyr’s script. Once that decision is made, ABC will be committed to creating at least a half-season of the show.
That is similar to other deals Georgeville has made in its young life, including upcoming commitments already for “Crossbones” at NBC as well as a remake of “Blake’s 7” for Syfy.
Joining Ratner on the series is Barry Schindel, a writer and producer behind shows like “Law & Order,” “Numbers” and the broken pilot starring former “Doctor Who” actor David Tennant, “Rex is Not Your Lawyer,” which NBC passed on in 2010.
ABC could make a final decision about a pickup as early as Spring, and could likely join other genre shows already on the network schedule, the drama “Once Upon a Time” and the comedy “Neighbors.” Another high-concept genre series, “666 Park Avenue,” failed to capture audiences on ABC, and was quickly cancelled.