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tv news

Wiseguy headed back to network television

Posted by Patrick Sauriol on Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Back in the 1980s one of the smartest cop shows you could watch was Wiseguy. Ken Wahl played Vinny Terranova, an undercover cop who went deep undercover by doing real time in prison to establish his street cred. After Terranova was released, he began to get in with various criminal organizations to provide intel about their make-up, and to gather enough evidence to take down the perps.

Wiseguy was unusual for a couple of reasons. First, the stories on Wiseguy were different from most hour-long dramas on television at the time because the show employed story arcs spread out across a season. In a way, Wiseguy pioneered the way for shows like Lost or The Sopranos.

The second important way that Wiseguy stood out was the actors hired to play the big villains throughout the series. Kevin Spacey found one of his early roles here on Wiseguy, and Tim Curry and Jerry Lewis also had memorable parts.

NBC is now becoming the new home for a reboot of Wiseguy for the 2010s. Homeland's Alex Cary will be writing and developing the pilot for the network, which is being developed by 20th Century Fox Television and Chernin Entertainment.

Casting hasn't happened yet, and details on Cary's vision for the new Wiseguy haven't leaked either, so no one is sure how close the new premise will follow the older one. The original Wiseguy was created by Stephen J. Cannell, the man behind The A-Team and many other TV shows that earned a note in TV history, and Frank Lupo.

-Deadline.

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