ABC's partnership with Marvel is continuing at a good pace.
On Friday's Television Critics Association winter TV previews, ABC entertainment head Paul Lee announced that the character of Lady Sif from the Thor films will cross over to Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Jaimie Alexander will reprise her role as Sif, an Asgardian warrior, in Episode 15.
Although it took a while for the freshman series to find its sea legs, "creatively, we're loving what we're seeing in the back nine [episodes]," Lee said. By the end of the season, viewers will learn the identity of The Clairvoyant. "You'll enjoy what happens with The Clairvoyant," he promised.
In other Marvel universe news, Agent Carter is looking good. "It's a really good script," Lee said. "It certainly has a chance to get on the network." Marvel declined to comment, but Lee confirmed Hayley Atwell has signed on to star in Agent Carter, reprising the role of Peggy Carter, the British officer who was a love interest in Captain America: The First Avenger. Reaper creators Michele Fazekas and Tara Butters will act as series showrunners, and Captain America 2 and Thor 2 scribes Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely are writing.
Check out what else was discussed in the ABC executive session:
New midseason shows The debut of Mind Games, the drama starring Christian Slater and Steven Zahn, has been bumped up and will premiere on Feb. 25 at 10/9c after a double episode of The Bachelor. This will shorten Killer Women's run. New series The Black Box will finish Thursday nights at 10/9c after a new episode of Grey's Anatomy. So far, Lee hasn't seen any final cuts, only dailies. Also, a new Toy Story special will launch for the Christmas season.
Press Tour: Get all the Fox news
Overall schedule Although Lee felt that ABC had strong building blocks each night, he admitted that the network needed to focus improving Tuesdays at 10/9c, Thursdays at 8/7c and Sundays at 10/9c.
Dancing with the Stars
The reality show will return on March 17, and so far, ABC is pleased with how the one-night format opened up the schedule. Former pro Maksim Chmerkovskiy returned as a judge last season. "Maks did a fabulous job with that," Lee said. "We will continue working with him."
Rising Star ABC showed a sneak peek of their new reality singing competition show Rising Star. The big twist is that viewers vote live to determine a singer's fate. While a contestant sings, he/she is stuck behind a large screen of monitors. As each viewer votes, their photo shows up on the screen. If the singer garners enough votes (as illustrated by a percentage bar), the screen lifts and reveals the singer to the live audience. Lee said that the network was still working out how West Coast viewers would be included in the live voting. Two options include voting during a live stream of the singer (with results held until the West Coast airing) or reserving some singers to be chosen solely by the West Coast. Lee calls it a "21st century reality show" that is a "risk worth taking." The show is expected to launch in June.
Dan Fogelman's musical comedy pilot "Galavant is up and running," Lee confirmed about the project, from the creator of The Neighbors. Monty Python-esque castles in Wales were found, and the pilot will be shot in England. The pilot is almost fully cast.
Press Tour: Get all The CW news
Secrets and Lies ABC sent this show straight to series, but Lee said he still believes in doing the traditional pilot season. The original Australian version of the show was "haunting," according to Lee. There's no timetable for the show's launch yet.
Lucky 7Alas, the lottery drama that was yanked so early just "did not resonate," and Lee's not entirely certain why. He thinks it may have done better at 8/7c.
The Assets Those who were invested in The Assets before its early demise will get to see the rest of the episodes, but the network has not yet decided where or when.
Once Upon a Time in Wonderland Lee said that in retrospect, ABC probably should have not rushed production on the Once spin-off and held it to air between the flagship's segmented schedule. He admitted to playing more offense than defense on Thursday. No decision has been made to bring back Wonderland yet, but Lee noted that showrunners Edward Kitsis and Adam Horowitz could weave storylines across both shows.
Although Lee likes the new comedy, "it's got to raise its game to be back," he said. "It has a good chance."
RevengeHow long can this run? Lee was optimistic, calling the series a "self-starter" that's not reliant on lead-ins for an audience to find it. He loved the back nine episodes for the season and noted that the return to the 10/9c timeslot meant that, creatively, the show's producers wouldn't have to "pull their punches."