•• Virginia Madsen’s career will continue its own success (following recent appearances in shows like Witches Of East End) in Babylon Fields, a new undead-themed NBC pilot. According to TV Club editor Todd VanDerWerff, Babylon Fields is actually based on an unsold 2007 pilot for CBS, in which “The dead return to earth in an attempt to restore old wounds” (plot as listed on IMDB).
The current resurgence in zombie interest, kicked off in 2010 with AMC’s The Walking Dead, has brought new life to this pilot as well. Writer of the 2007 film, Gerald Cuesta, is back on board to expand his original effort, as is his brother Michael (Homeland, Dexter) to direct. (According to IMDB, Picket Fences star Kathy Baker was the biggest name in the 2007 pilot, which also lists such roles as “Dead Woman,” “Living Dead Man,” and “Lead Zombie.”)
Madsen plays the mother of a Center For Disease Control scientist that she tries to lure back to Babylon, N.Y., the place where zombies actually heal themselves (and their family issues, presumably), foretelling what might be the next step in human evolution.
The show will also feature Skeet Ulrich (familiar with small-town troubles from his turn in Jericho), in the dual role of a minister and his twin brother, a junkie who returns from the dead. Kyle Schmid will appear in the series as the CDC scientist, along with Deception’s Meagan Good, Luck’s Ritchie Coster, and Magic City’s Yul Vazquez, but they, like Madsen, only get to play one part.
•• Virginia Madsen is set to co-star opposite Meagan Good and Kyle Schmid in NBC drama pilot Babylon Fields, from Michael Cuesta, Gerald Cuesta and Michael Atkinson. The 20th TV-produced project, originally developed and piloted at CBS seven years ago, is about a town’s residents coming back from the dead.
The drama, from Gerald Cuesta, centers on the dead rising again in Babylon, N.Y., where lives are regained, old wounds are reopened and families are restored for better or worse. The newly regenerated bodies are healing faster and growing stronger, prompting discussion that this might be the next step in human evolution. Deception’s Good stars as Janine Beltran, a doctor.
Virginia Madsen will play Rhonda Wunch, the mother to CDC scientist Thomas (Kyle Schmid), who is close to her son and wants him to stay home in Babylon. Coster will play Ernie Wunch, Thomas’ father and Rhonda’s husband, a former cop who most people thought ran away to Daytona. Vazquez will portray Matt Conte, the chief of police, who has a history with Ernie. Their casting completes series regular roles on the pilot. Skeet Ulrich co-stars in the dual role of Father Harries and his twin brother Graham.