The new pilots, all hailing from Universal Cable Productions, include Treadstone, an action-packed original that delves into the CIA black ops program known as Operation Treadstone; Briarpatch, a unique blend of crime, thriller, mystery, and pulp fiction, marking Mr. Robot creator Sam Esmail’s second project for; Dare Me, a drama set within the cutthroat world of competitive high school cheerleading; and Erase, a crime thriller-with-a-twist starring and executive produced by Denis Leary.
“As the #1 cable entertainment network for a record 12 years in a row, USA Network delivers unmatched scale and momentum with a broad, diverse slate of programming,” said Chris McCumber, President, Entertainment Networks for NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment. “These new pilots add to our dynamic scripted pipeline with the big auspices, top creative talent and bold characters that have become USA’s signature.”
The new pilots include:
From a producer of the “Bourne” franchise, Treadstone explores the origin story and present-day actions of a CIA black ops program known as “Treadstone” — a covert operation that uses behavior modification protocol to turn its agents into nearly unstoppable superhuman assassins. The series follows sleeper agents across the globe as they’re mysteriously “awakened” to resume their deadly missions. From Universal Cable Productions, Treadstone is written and executive produced by Tim Kring. Ramin Bahrani, who will direct the pilot, will also serve as an executive producer. Ben Smith and Jeffrey Weiner will executive produce on behalf of Captivate; Justin Levy will executive produce alongside Bradley Thomas on behalf of Imperative Entertainment.
Based on the Ross Thomas novel of the same name, Briarpatch follows Allegra Dill, a dogged investigator returning to her border-town Texas home after her sister is murdered by a car bomb. What begins as a search for a killer turns into an all-consuming fight to bring the corrupt hometown Allegra thought she left behind to its knees. Written for television by Andy Greenwald who will executive produce along with Mr. Robot creator Sam Esmail through his production company Esmail Corp and Anonymous Content’s Chad Hamilton, the series celebrates the beloved genre that Thomas’ book represents — a unique blend of crime, thriller, mystery, and pulp fiction — while updating his electrifying sense of fun, danger, and place for a new generation. Yann Demange will direct and serve as executive producer. Briarpatch is a co-production of Universal Cable Productions and Paramount Television.
Dare Me — based on the acclaimed novel by Megan Abbott, who serves as writer and executive producer along with Gina Fattore — is an unflinching exploration of volatile female friendships, jealousy, loyalty, and the dynamics of power in a small Midwestern town. Peering behind the all-American façade, the series dives into the cutthroat world of competitive high school cheerleading, following the fraught relationship between two best friends after a new coach arrives to bring their team to prominence. Part coming-of-age story, part small-town drama, part murder mystery, Dare Me exposes the physical and psychological extremes that some young women are willing to endure in order to get ahead. Dare Me is from Universal Cable Productions in association with Film 44. Peter Berg and Michael Lombardo of Film 44 executive produce along with Sarah Condon and Karen Rosenfelt.
Created by Denis Leary and Alex Cary and starring Leary, Erase is the story of Donal O’Neal, a dirty ex-cop who decides to do the right thing and bring down his complicit superior officers. But his best weapon in this battle — a photographic memory — is suddenly compromised by symptoms of early-onset Alzheimer’s. In this gritty crime thriller, laced with elements of black comedy, Donal races against time to repair the damage he’s done to his estranged family while trying to avoid being killed by his enemies. From Universal Cable Productions, Erase will be executive produced Leary and Cary, along with Apostle Pictures’ Jim Serpico.
FOUNDER & CHIEF CONTENT OFFICER | Founder and COO of Seat42F, a leading source of entertainment news, information, television and movie resources.