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7 TV pilot pickups that will film in Vancouver

A selection of 2022-23 Vancouver-filmed pilots has been picked up by various networks. Here's what's moving forward for ABC, NBC, CBS, HBO Max and Netflix.
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Networks like ABC and CBS are moving forward with new pilots.

What is a TV pilot?

A pilot is the first episode of a hopeful TV series. It is used to sell the network and audience on the show, with the goal being an order for a series (which is called a “pickup”). Spring/summer is pilot season for network TV and when networks decide to order more episodes or pass on it. Pilots are a test (so not set in stone) and it’s not unusual for changes to be made after a pilot, from the cast to the show name.

Alaska

Two-time Oscar winner Hilary Swank is a down-and-out journalist who moves to Anchorage and takes over the local paper, digging deep into missing women’s stories. The show is reportedly getting a plum Thursday night spot on ABC’s schedule.

So Help Me Todd

This series has already gone through a few changes (the title was previously Mom & Son and Geena Davis exited the series, replaced by Marcia Gay Harden). The changes must have worked because it has received an order from CBS, with Skylar Astin as an aimless private eye who goes to work with his mother at her successful law firm.

Fire Country

Set in Northern California (and filmed in B.C. and previously called Cal Fire), Bode Donavan is a prisoner who takes part in a work-release program that has him training as a firefighter and assigned to work in his troublesome hometown. Will air Fridays on CBS this fall.

Quantum Leap

Quantum Leap shook up Vancouver this spring with its elaborate film sets. This is the first show NBC picked up for the fall season. Starring Raymond Lee, it is a reboot of the popular 1990s series and according to Deadline, may get a prime spot in the NBC calendar, airing after The Voice. 

Blockbuster

This straight-to-order workplace comedy will be 10 episodes and stars Randall Park and Melissa Fumero. As it’s a Netflix production and streaming platforms don’t adhere to traditional network schedules, a release date is to be determined. The series wrapped in early May after filming in Kitsilano.

The Irrational

The Irrational star Jesse L. Martin has spent a lot of time in Vancouver thanks to his time as Captain Joe West on The Flash. He’s continuing to work on the West Coast with this adaptation of the novel, “Predictably Irrational.” Williams plays a behavioural scientist who works on high-profile criminal cases and is challenged by a domestic terrorist. (The Flash fans fear not, as he will still make multiple episodes, per The Wrap.) Airs on NBC this fall.

Dead Boy Detective

Based on the DC Comics series by Neil Gaiman and Matt Wagner, two boys decide to not enter the afterlife and instead investigate supernatural crimes with their living friend. There are no details yet on a Canadian release date.

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