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Believe Gets A New Showrunner, Goes On Early Hiatus

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believeScience fiction directors Alfonso Cuarón and J.J. Abrams both had banner years in 2013. Cuarón’s Gravity is slated to be a big awards movie early next year, while Abrams’ Star Trek Into Darkness was one of the biggest sci-fi movies of the year. The two directors also have a joint collaboration on the small screen with the upcoming TV series Believe on NBC. But here’s the bad news: although the series has yet to premiere on the broadcast network, the new series has just lost another showrunner.

According to Deadline, former executive producer and showrunner Dave Erickson (Sons of Anarchy) recently left Believe. While it’s unclear why Erickson departed the TV series, Believe‘s co-executive producer and director Jonas Pate is expected to fill in as the series’ new showrunner. This is one of those very rare instances where a show’s director is named the show’s showrunner, rather than its head writer or a staff writer. Pate will join Alfonso Cuarón, J.J. Abrams, Bryan Burk (Star Trek Into Darkness), and Hans Tobeason (Saving Grace, V), as the one of the show’s executive producers, while Alfonso Cuarón directed Believe’s pilot episode.

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Alfonso Cuarón And J.J. Abrams’ Believe Just Became Your Most Anticipated New TV Show

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Most of us are excited for Alfonso Cuarón’s upcoming space adventure Gravity, and for good reason, the film looks incredible. Sure, it may require some of us to take a tab of Dramamine before going to the theater, but the George Clooney, Sandra Bullock vehicle looks fantastic. But that’s not all he’s working on, and not all we need to put on our must-see lists. The Mexican-born director has teamed with Star Trek Into Darkness helmer J.J. Abrams for a his first TV series, Believe. At San Diego Comic-Con he made a surprise appearance and gave the audience a first look at this great new trailer.

We’ve been keeping a close eye on Believe, which was picked up by NBC, mostly because of the people involved. After viewing this trailer, however, we’re watching because the show looks really damn good. Cuarón co-created the show with Mark Friedman, who recently departed the show, and he also directed the pilot episode. His style and aesthetic sensibilities are on full display in this video. Watch that first shot and try not to think of the car scene from Cuarón’s Children of Men.

Believe is the story of a young girl, Bo (Johnny Sequoyah), who has special powers. In seven years these will manifest and she will be able to defeat the evil forces in the world. Until then, a death row inmate named Tate (Jake McLaughlin), a man with a violent history, is tasked with protecting her. A mysterious network, led by a man called Winter (Delroy Lindo) and his assistant Channing (Jamie Chung), aid in their quest. They step in when Bo and Tate need a helping hand.

While this video doesn’t show us much of the shadowy forces that hunt them, we do know that the conspiracy involves an assassin played by Sienna Guillory, who reportedly has some serious mommy issues. It’ll be interesting to see how this manifests. Kyle MacLachlan is also in the cast, and he’s the kind of actor that could go either way, good or bad, and we’re not sure which end of spectrum he’s on in Believe. We do see that the villains have a far-reaching grasp, and that they’re willing to use it with violent results.

We also get to see some of the magical things that happen around Bo, as well as get a glimpse of what her life with Tate may look like. It’s easy to imagine that they’re constantly on the move, from one place to another, just getting settled into a routine and a life before they’re forced to move on.

This doesn’t feel like your typical television fare, balancing action, drama, and the strange. At least the pilot is cinematic in scope and style, and after watching this trailer, this has climbed to near the top of my most anticipated new shows for the 2013-2014 TV season. Unfortunately we won’t get to see Believe for a while longer, as NBC has it scheduled as a midseason replacement in 2014.

Believe

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J.J. Abrams And Alfonso Cuaron’s Believe Loses Its Showrunner

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BelieveWith a big name creative team that includes the like of Star Trek Into Darkness’s J.J. Abrams and Children of Men’s Alfonso Cuaron, you’d think a television show would have a fairly smooth ride in front of it. That, however, is not the case with NBC’s new sci-fi themed drama Believe. Now the series from Warner Bros. Television and Bad Robot Productions has lost co-creator and showrunner Mark Friedman.

According to Deadline, Friedman made his exit from the series of his own volition, and has parted ways with the others on pleasant enough terms. No matter how agreeable and amicable a split like this is, it must sting at least a little to put your time and energy into creating, casting, and nurturing a show through the process, only to have to leave just before it really comes to fruition. Then again, maybe Friedman thinks Believe sucks and doesn’t want to be associated with it anymore, maybe it doesn’t live up to his vision.

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J.J. Abrams And Alfonso Cuaron’s Pilot Believe Picked Up At NBC

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BelieveBetween Star Trek Into Darkness, Star Wars: Episode VII, and Gravity, J.J. Abrams and Alfonso Cuaron have been busy little bees in recent days. While a workload like that might crush mere mortals such as ourselves, that didn’t stop the two from teaming up to produce a new pilot for a series called Believe. With a creative team like this pushing it forward, it should come as no surprise that NBC picked up the show for the upcoming fall season. Check out the first picture from the series up above.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, the cast of Believe includes Jake McLaughlin (Warrior), Kyle MacLachlan (Twin Peaks), Delroy Lindo (Romeo Must Die), Sienna Guillory (Resident Evil: Retribution), Jamie Chung (Sucker Punch), Arian Moayad (The Following), and newcomer Johnny Sequoyah.

In Believe, “an unlikely relationship develops between a young girl [Sequoyah] with a gift and a man sprung from prison [McLaughlin] who has been tasked with protecting her from the evil elements that hunt her power.” In seven years powers will manifest within the girl, named Bo, and she’ll be able to defeat evil, or something like that. But before she can take care of herself, Tate (McLaughlin), and a mysterious support network, must keep her safe.

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Believe In The New Pilot From J.J. Abrams And Alfonso Cuaron

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jamie_chung_slice_01Given all the attention surrounding J.J. Abrams’ upcoming forays into both the Star Wars and Star Trek worlds, and Alfonso Cuaron’s Gravity, the fact that the two are working together on a sci-fi pilot for NBC has been pushed towards the periphery. The potential series, titled Believe, is putting together a cast full of familiar names and faces.

THR reports that Sienna Guillory (three installments of the Resident Evil franchise), Jamie Chung (Sucker Punch), and newcomer Johnny Sequoyah have joined a list of actors that already included Jake McLaughlin (Safe House) and Delroy Lindo (Romeo Must Die).

Believe follows the adventures of a young girl named Bo, who will be played by Sequoyah. In seven years the great powers hanging out deep inside her will manifest. Before she can take care of herself, a man named Tate (McLaughlin), recently escaped from prison, protects her from mysterious forces that are in hot pursuit.

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