Bill Pullman hasn't been drawn to the small screen too regularly, but his televised ventures have been quite enjoyable, if extremely short. Hopefully that will change in the future, as the actor has signed on for a series regular role for the crime drama The Sinner, which is being developed as a pilot for USA. The Sinner is also the TV return of 7th Heaven star Jessica Biel.

bill pullman 1600 penn

Everything about this project sounds solid in the early stages. Bill Pullman will take on the role of Harry Ambrose, a detective who gets embroiled in a densely layered case that, for him, begins with Cora Tanner (Jessica Biel), a housewife who commits a serious and violent crime but has no idea why she did it, and offers up no further explanation about any of the details involved. There are all kinds of ways for that kind of story to go, and Harry will undoubtedly head down many of them as he finds himself sucked in by his fascination with Cora's psychological damage. Understandably, he is also disturbed by how intrigued he is, according to TVLine.

With Mr. Robot currently getting a lot of attention at USA, both from awards circuits and from the fan community, the network understandably wants to expand on that with more programming that skews darker than their normal programming. (Not that Suits is all bowls of cherries, but you know.) And The Sinner can only be helped by adding an actor of Pullman's caliber for this kind of role. I always enjoy him in thrillers, but those thrillers aren't always enjoyable as a whole, so The Sinner has my optimistic interest.

Bill Pullman will forever be known to everyone everywhere as Independence Day's President Whitmore (although not so much for the sequel), and he also happened to live in the White House the last time he was on primetime TV for the comedy 1600 Penn. Before that, he was in Torchwood for a bit and was a lead in the 2005 miniseries Revelations, and he also had a notable appearance on Law & Order: SVU some years back. (There are also some failed pilots in there, but we're not going to talk about those now.) On the feature side, he's currently got the biopic LBJ coming.

Based on the popular novel by German author Petra Hammesfahr, The Sinner was created by up-and-comer Derek Simonds, who wrote the pilot and will executive produce alongside Jessica Biel. There's no telling at this point just how far this drama could go, but with big name talent like this already on board, I'm betting USA has high hopes for its future. Stay tuned.

But while you're staying tuned into that, don't forget about everything else coming to the small screen, which you can find in our fall TV schedule.

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