ABC has issued a put pilot commitment to a new TV series that will serve as a sequel to the 1998 action-thriller Enemy of the State. Jerry Bruckheimer, who produced the original movie which starred Will Smith and Gene Hackman, will return to produce the TV series. A put pilot commitment generally leads to a series order, since the network will be forced to pay the producers a penalty if the pilot doesn't air.
Deadline reports that the series will be set 20 years after the original movie, following an NSA spy charged with leaking classified information. The spy teams up with an "idealistic female attorney" and a "hawkish FBI agent" to shut down a massive global conspiracy, while personal mysteries connect all three of their lives together. The pilot script will be penned by Blackhat screenwriter Morgan Davis Foehl.
Enemy Of the State marks the first major TV sale for Jerry Bruckheimer Productions, since the company ended its 15-year partnership with Warner Bros. Television. This new series does not mark a new deal between Jerry Bruckheimer Productions and ABC Studios, but stems from the original movie being produced by ABC Studios' parent company, Disney. Since leaving Warner Bros. Television in May, Jerry Bruckheimer Television has been meeting with investors for a possible re-launch as an independent studio, but the company is also exploring an alliance with a traditional TV studio as well.
The original Enemy of the State movie, which was directed by the late Tony Scott and written by David Marconi, followed attorney Robert Clayton Dean (Will Smith), whose life is upended when he is framed for murder by a corrupt intelligence official. As an administrator on loan from the State Department to the National Security Agency, Thomas Brian Reynolds (Jon Voight) appropriates the vast resources of his department to commit the perfect crime and conceal a political cover up of immense proportions. Dean's only hope to reclaim his life and prove his innocence is a man he's never met, a mysterious underground information broker and ex-intelligence operative known only as Brill (Gene Hackman). The movie, which was produced for $90 million, earned $111.5 million domestically and $250.6 million worldwide during its theatrical run in 1998.
Enemy of the State marks Jerry Bruckheimer's return to ABC Studios, where he was originally based until 2000, when the studio pulled out of the original CSI TV series, just after receiving a series order on CBS. The producer also serves as an executive producer on ABC Studios' hit reality series, The Amazing Race, which was developed an sold before Jerry Bruckheimer left the studio. Morgan Davis Foehl made his screenwriting debut with Blackhat, but he previously served as an assistant editor on the FX TV series Rescue Me and movies such as Click and I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry. He is currently adapting Escape from Davao for producer Tripp Vinson and is developing The Asset at 20th Century Fox for producer Ridley Scott. His screenplay for Whatever Gets You Through The Night landed on The Black List back in 2009.