Tradecraft: Lifetime Tries Spies
Deadline reports that Lifetime (a network I can't blog about without declaring that Mondo was grievously wronged!) has greenlit a telefilim in the spy genre. Like everything on that network, Close Quarters will be geared toward female viewers. Catherine Bell (JAG), who stars on Lifetime's Army Wives series, will star. According to the trade blog, she'll play Abby, "a happy suburban wife and mother who has been concealing her dark past as a military-trained special-ops agent. But when her husband is mysteriously kidnapped, Abby's past returns to haunt her and she must risk everything to protect her daughter and save the man she loves." (So, kind of like Salt, but for basic cable.) Anthony Michael Hall and Mekhi Phifer co-star. I'm actually enthusiastic about this. I love it when spies pop up in unlikely places. When gay-interest network Here! ventured into spy territory a few years ago with Kiss Me Deadly: A Jacob Keane Assignment (review here), I was a fan. (I know I'm not the only one who's still waiting for another Jacob Keane assignment...) I'm curious to see what Lifetime cooks up.
This isn't Lifetime's first flirtation with the espionage genre of late. Last month, the network ordered a pilot called Meet Jane from writer Andi Bushell and producer Mark Pedowitz. That's another one I'm rooting for, because the premise sounds potentially cool. (A bored DC housewife trapped in a bad marriage finds her life suddenly re-energized when the FBI enlists her to spy on her husband, who is suspected of selling top-secret information to Russia.) I haven't heard any casting information on that yet, but I'd love to see Lauren Stamile in a role like that. She's worked for Lifetime before, in the TV movie Midnight Bayou, but is better known for her recurring roles on Community and Grey's Anatomy. In the interest of full disclosure, she's also my friend, but I'm convinced she'd make a great housewife-turned-spy! Think about it, Lifetime.