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After Katherine Heigl left Grey’s Anatomy in 2010, the actress really worked to stay in the limelight in the movies business. Her career had picked up after starring in Knocked Up way back in 2007, but by 2014, she wasn’t getting as many offers on the big screen. This led her to sign on with State of Affairs, an NBC series that starred the actress for one season before getting the axe. It doesn’t look, however, as if Heigl was deterred by that cancellation. She’s now signed on for a brand new TV role in Doubt, a legal drama pilot that has been picked up by CBS. The series will also star Do No Harm’s Steven Pasquale and Orange is the New Black’s Laverne Cox.
CBS is currently in the middle of firming up its lineup for the 2016-2017 TV season, and recently we learned Doubt is definitely going to be a part of that schedule. We don’t know a ton of details about the new series, but it won’t be like the 2008 movie of the same name. Instead, it will be a legal drama, following a sharp defense lawyer who works at a boutique firm. That defense lawyer will be played by Katherine Heigl. She’ll start to fall for one of her clients, which is already not a great look. Complicating matters is the fact that he may be guilty of a major crime. Laverne Cox will play a transgender attorney with an Ivy League education. Steven Pasquale will play a doctor who may or may not have killed a 15-year-old girl some years in the past.
Doubt’s premise makes it sound like the series will only have enough material to stretch across its first season, but what I’ve learned from shows like Suits and How To Get Away With Murder is that a good hook at the beginning of a legal series can be enough to entice viewers to sit down and watch. Then, if the characters are good, they will stick with the show over the long haul. With The Good Wife ending, CBS doesn’t have a legal drama in its lineup, so Doubt could be a good fit for the network. Deadline notes the project has been in development over at the network for some time and the pilot was filmed back in January.
The only thing that is making me a little wary is the cast. While Laverne Cox has a loyal following thanks to Orange is the New Black, Katherine Heigl hasn’t had a real winner in a while. Plus, while Steven Pasquale has bounced back from the failure that was Do No Harm and has appeared in Bloodline, The Good Wife and American Crime Story: The People v. O.J. Simpson in the time since, he wasn’t the lead in any of those projects.
Interestingly, Doubt isn’t the only legal drama being picked up by the major networks this season. Last week, we learned NBC had signed on for yet another Dick Wolf Chicago-set drama Chicago Justice. That legal drama had its characters introduced during an episode of Chicago P.D. earlier this year, and seemed to be well-received by fans. It’s not part of the network’s fall schedule, but should be premiering some time during the 2016-1027 TV season. We’ll let you know what else the networks have in the works for fall. In the meantime, check out our summer TV premiere schedule, which conveniently features Laverne Cox’s other series Orange is the New Black.