Fans "24" awaiting confirmation of a feature film moving into production may have to wait a little longer as series star Kiefer Sutherland has now signed on for a leading role in Fox's newest grounded science-fiction offering.
From "Heroes" creator Tim Kring, "Touch" focuses on the life of Sutherland's character who discovers that his autistic son can predict events before they happen. This will be Kring's first pilot script since "Heroes" in 2006.
Shooting on the pilot is expected to begin at the end of May and if the project goes to series then a first season is expected to air in the fall. Networks are already scoping out new projects for the fall schedule with several pilots already in the works, including "Wonder Woman" for NBC. The pilot for "Touch" will have a much later production date due to Sutherland's commitment to "That Championship Season" on Broadway.
"Touched" is expected to appeal to a broader audience by taking a science-fiction idea and presenting it in a very down-to-earth and natural way. However, that is something that has not helped shows this year.
The 2010-11 season has been a tough one for genre-based shows, even for those boasting grounded set-ups (like "Touched") that attract a more varied audience. Fox's "Fringe" has seen a massive fall in viewership and recently hit a series low. Although the network insists it supports the series, the move to Friday nights has cost the series further.
Meanwhile on NBC, the return of "The Event" has been delayed so that "The Cape" can wrap up its shortened first season. No decision has been made on the future of either show but at this stage it looks like "The Cape" will not return for a second season and the upcoming episodes of "The Event" will help the Peacock decide if the series is worth another shot.
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