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'Breaking Bad' creator Vince Gilligan brings detective show to CBS

September 26, 2013|By Meredith Blake
  • Producer Vince Gilligan attends the Governor's Ball after the Emmys.
Producer Vince Gilligan attends the Governor's Ball after the Emmys. (Kevork Djansezian / Getty…)

With his soon-to-conclude AMC series, "Breaking Bad," Vince Gilligan helped usher in cable television's Golden Age.  Now he's bringing his talents to broadcast television -- and not just any network, either, but CBS.

As first reported by the New York Times, the network has made a series production order for the 2014-15 season for 13 episodes of the Gilligan-created "Battle Creek," a detective drama set in Michigan. "House" creator David Shore will serve as show-runner and executive producer. Gilligan will also executive produce and has expressed interest in directing some episodes, schedule permitting.

The series will be produced by CBS and Sony Pictures Television, the studio that also produced "Breaking Bad."

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The series logline, according to CBS: "When two detectives with very different world views are teamed up, they must answer the question: is cynicism, guile and deception enough to clean up the semi-mean streets of Battle Creek, Michigan in the face of a complete lack of resources; or is the exact opposite true -- it takes naivete, trust and a boatload of resources?"

In some ways, CBS, known for its highly successful if rote procedurals like "CSI," might seem like an odd fit for Gilligan, creator of the mostly highly serialized shows around. But the writer has also been vocal about his respect for network series, including CBS' own "The Good Wife."

Gilligan first developed the project for CBS back in 2002, after a stint on "The X Files" but before "Breaking Bad" made him one of the most sought-after talents in the TV biz. "Battle Creek" never made it to pilot, but CBS Entertainment President Nina Tassler had remained enthusiastic about the project.

Gilligan is on a hot streak of late. On Sunday night, "Breaking Bad" was named outstanding drama series for the first time, and the series continues to earn record ratings as it heads into its finale this Sunday night. He is also expected to be involved creatively with the "Breaking Bad" spinoff, "Better Call Saul," announced this month by AMC and Sony Pictures Television.

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Twitter: @MeredithBlake

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