Dual ‘Beauty and the Beast’ Pilots ordered by ABC and CW

With the recent resurgence of fairy tale themed shows such as NBC’s Grimm and ABC’s own Once Upon a Time, the Disney-owned company is now prepared to launch their second fabled show in the form of a live-action retelling of the children’s classic Beauty and the Beast, originally written by Gabrielle-Suzanne Barbot de Villeneuve.

The pilot will be written by Jonathan E. Steinberg (Human Target, Jericho with Steinberg acting as executive producer with Gary Fleder and Mary Beth Basile. It is also speculated that the series, if picked up, will air after the networks already highly successful Once Upon A Time. This version of the tale is intended as a period piece and will feature a hardboiled princess who develops a connection with a wild beast. No word yet on casting.

As if one Beauty and the Beast show wasn’t enough, the CW has also ordered a reboot of the CBS-produced version which ran on the network from 1987-1989. It starred Ron Pearlman (Hellboy, Sons of Anarchy) as Vincent, a lion-faced creature who wanders the New York sewers and occasionally quotes Shakespeare.

The original series also co-starred Linda Hamilton (Terminator) in the role of District Attorney Catherine Chandler and who also happened to be Vincent’s love interest.

This new adaptation will reportedly be targeted towards a younger audience, much the same way as the networks other signature shows The Vampire Diaries and Gossip Girl. The new series will be written by Jennifer Levin (Felicity) and Sherri Cooper (Brothers and Sisters). They will also executive produce with Paul Witt, C. Anthony Thomas, Ron Koslow and Bill Haber.

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