Fox is in the middle of building its 2021-2022 broadcast season and their original program selection process has been a public one. The latest shows to get the network go-ahead are The Cleaning Lady, an English-language adaptation of the Argentinian series of the same, and the country music-themed drama Monarch, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Among the shows not moving forward at Fox is Blood Relative, a crime drama that would have starred Academy Award winner Melissa Leo (The Fighter) and Emmy Award winner Tate Donovan (Disney’s Hercules), as reported by Variety.
At the center of Blood Relative was Leo’s character, the eccentric genealogist and forensics expert Louise Kelly: “She’s the smartest person in the room with no time to explain her methods to average folks. Except her little brother, John (Donovan). It’s through working with her brother to solve the toughest of cases that secrets from their past will… bubble to the surface, [thereby] threatening their relationship and their father’s legacy,” via Deadline. The pilot was written and executive produced by Chris Levinson (Charmed) and James Renner (Catching Salinger) and directed by Philip Noyce (Dead Calm), Variety reports. Renner actually penned the original article in The Cleveland Scene that initially spawned the series, “Beyond the Jungle of Bad,” about two crime-solving genealogists from California.
The worlds of medical science and crime also intersect in The Cleaning Lady, albeit in an entirely different fashion. The hour-long drama is based on La Chica Que Limpia, which aired in Argentina in 2017. Fox’s take on the property incorporates themes related to the everyday struggles of immigrants: “A Cambodian doctor named Thony (Élodie Yung, Daredevil)… comes to the United States to get her son a life-saving medical treatment. However, things go horribly wrong and she ends up taking a cleaning position for the local mafia [but]… Thony has some dangerous tricks up her sleeve,” via Collider.
The Cleaning Lady is executive produced by Rose Marie Vega (Isabel), Paola Suárez (Atlántida), Shay Mitchell (Dollface), Melissa Carter (Stargirl) and Miranda Kwok (The 100), according to The Hollywood Reporter. Kwok posted on her Twitter to detail the long, hard journey the show has taken to arrive at its pickup.
Between writing drafts through a typhoon in the Philippines, having the entire production shut down last year, then finally filming during a global pandemic, somehow this little project endured. THANK YOU @FOXTV & @warnerbrostv for believing in our show! https://t.co/WdTE7hmJE2
— Miranda Kwok (@MirandaKwok88) May 7, 2021
Monarch, meanwhile, is the latest Fox-owned program to benefit from the network’s recently adopted script-to-series model, via The Hollywood Reporter. This strategy prioritizes the script development phase and eliminates the pilot production period, which allegedly expedites pickup procedures and encourages a year-round development cycle, as reported by Deadline. Fox’s other upcoming live-action shows that have been developed via this model include Paul Feig’s (Freaks and Geeks) half-hour mockumentary series This Country and the New England-set drama Our Kind of People from Lee Daniels (Precious) and Karen Gist (House of Lies), according to The Hollywood Reporter.