According to Variety, two projects scored a pickup for the holidays Wednesday as NBC greenlit the comedic drama Heist while ABC gave a cast-contingent "si" to a domestic version of smash hit telenovela "Betty la fea."
Production will start after the new year on Heist, a caper tale about a group of thieves who spend the season executing a scheme to rob three Rodeo Drive jewelry stores during Oscar week. Dougray Scott, Steve Harris, Seymour Cassel, Reno Wilson, Marika Dominczyk, David Walton, Michele Hicks and Billy Gardell star.
Robb and Mark Cullen are writing the project, while Doug Liman is aboard to direct. Heist is a co-production of NBC Universal TV and Sony Pictures TV, while Hypnotic is aboard as well. The Cullens, Liman, Dave Bartis, Bernie Brillstein and Peter Safran will exec produce.
Production wrapped just 10 days ago on the Heist pilot, but the Peacock is said to be high enough on it that they hope to have the show ready by spring. NBC declined comment.
Heist has been in the works for some time, having originally been put into development in 2004.
"Betty la fea" (Ugly Betty), which has also been on the development boards since 2004, was revived earlier this year by Ben Silverman and Salma Hayek, who recruited Silvio Horta to adapt the Colombian telenovela for U.S. auds (Daily Variety, Oct. 12). Horta will exec produce for Touchstone and Reveille, along with Silverman, Hayek and Jose Tamez. Hayek and Tamez's shingle, Ventanarosa, is also involved. As reimagined by Horta, Silverman and Hayek, the ABC "Betty la fea" will follow an unattractive girl who's hired by a Vogue-like fashion magazine -- because her boss's dad, who owns the mag, wants to stop his habit of sleeping with attractive assistants.