NBC to Air One-Hour 'Mockingbird Lane' Pilot On A Night of Halloween-Themed Programming Friday, October 26

Categories: Network TV Press Releases

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October 11th, 2012

via press release:

October 11, 2012




UNIVERSAL CITY, Calif. – October 11, 2012 – As Halloween nears, NBC turns Friday, October 26 into Fright Night when it premieres the pilot of the much-anticipated “Mockingbird Lane” (8-9 p.m. ET) -- based on executive producer Bryan Fuller’s (“Pushing Daisies,” “Heroes”) script and directed by executive producer Bryan Singer (“X-Men” film series, “House”). The special program leads into a haunting “La Llorona” Halloween episode of “Grimm” (9-10 p.m. ET), which will also enjoy special airings on NBCUniversal’s Telemundo and mun2.

“Mockingbird Lane” is a new reimagined version of the classic 1960s comedy “The Munsters,” now as a visually spectacular one-hour drama with a darker edge and tone. The cast includes Jerry O’Connell (“The Defenders”) as Herman Munster, Portia de Rossi (“Arrested Development”) as his wife Lily, Eddie Izzard (“United States of Tara,” “The Riches”) as Grandpa, Mason Cook (‘Spy Kids: All the Time in the World in 4D”) as Eddie and Charity Wakefield (“The Raven”) as Marilyn.

“This exciting new take on a memorable series will definitely blow out conventional wisdom and create its own legacy,” said Jennifer Salke, President, NBC Entertainment. “Teaming this new show with a terrifying episode of ‘Grimm’ makes the perfect pre-Halloween fright-fest.”

In the original 1964-66 series “The Munsters,” the odd but lovable family lived on 1313 Mockingbird Lane.

In “Mockingbird Lane,” sweet little Eddie Munster (Cook) is a normal kid about to enter the horrors of puberty. Truth is, he’s about to discover that for him becoming a teenager means growing hair in truly unexpected places -- as in all over his body -- every time the moon is full! Eddie’s got it pretty good though. His loving, supportive, run-of-the-mill family includes his mom Lily (de Rossi), the daughter of Dracula; his dad Herman (O’Connell), who brings new meaning to “Frankenstein”; and Grandpa (Izzard), who would give Dracula a run for his money if he weren’t actually Dracula! Of course then there’s creepy cousin Marilyn (Wakefield), who’s really the odd one because she’s so completely normal.

Buying a house these days is a nightmare, so Herman and Lily are shocked that no one scooped up the rambling Victorian mansion at 1313 Mockingbird Lane that was the site of a series of grisly hobo murders. Settling into their new place, they’re quickly onto the mission at hand: to gently ease Eddie into the reality of his werewolf adolescence. But it’s not always so easy to accept that your child is a little “different” from the rest of the kids. Meanwhile, Herman, who works as a funeral director, is suffering from a heart condition. Since he’s made up mostly of spare parts, he knew his makeshift heart would eventually give out. No worries though, because Grandpa, who is pretty good at procuring body parts, is on the case. All Herman cares about is finding a new heart with the same capacity to love Lily as much as he has for so many decades.

“Mockingbird Lane” is from Bad Hat Harry Productions and Universal Television. Executive producers include Fuller, Singer and Sara Colleton (“Dexter”). Singer also directed the pilot.

NBC’s acclaimed drama series “Grimm” will join with Telemundo, mun2 and Universal Studios Hollywood’s “Halloween Horror Nights” in an unprecedented NBCUniversal cross-divisional event when its Halloween episode “La Llorona” is broadcast on October 26/27. The episode, featuring Kate del Castillo (Telemundo’s “La Reina del Sur”), is inspired by the haunting Latin American legend of the same name and will be broadcast in Spanish on Telemundo from 12-1 a.m. (ET) and English on mun2 at 1-2 a.m. (ET). These airings will follow the episode’s debut on NBC at 9-10 p.m. (ET) on October 26.

The legend of La Llorona (“The Weeping Woman”) is an enduring tale from Latin American folklore that tells of a distraught mother who drowned her children and then herself. The ghost of the mother emerges from water and is forced to return to haunt and terrorize the living. In addition to the telecasts of the “Grimm” episode, Universal Studios Hollywood is currently featuring La Llorona: Cazadora de Niños (Weeping Woman: The Child Hunter) maze, as part of its popular Halloween Horror Nights event.

In the episode of “Grimm,” detectives Nick Burkhardt (David Giuntoli) and Hank Griffin (Russell Hornsby) take on the other worldly predator, believed to be “La Llorona,” which has abducted some of Portland’s children on Halloween. Kate del Castillo -- star of Telemundo’s hit miniseries “La Reina del Sur” and the upcoming films “K11” and “No Good Deeds” -- guest-stars as Valentina Espinosa, a mysterious detective from New Mexico on an obsessive mission to uncover the truth behind the bizarre disappearances and joins forces with Burkhardt and Griffin to intervene before it’s too late.

"Grimm" is a drama series inspired by the classic Grimm Brother’s Fairy Tales. After Portland homicide detective Nick Burkhardt (David Giuntoli, “Turn the Beat Around”) discovers he’s descended from an elite line of criminal profilers known as ‘Grimms,’ he increasingly finds his responsibilities as a detective at odds with his new responsibilities as a Grimm. The series also stars Russell Hornsby (“Lincoln Heights”) as Hank, Bitsie Tulloch (“The Artist”) as Juliette, Silas Weir Mitchell (“My Name Is Earl”) as Monroe, Sasha Roiz (“Caprica”) as Captain Renard, Reggie Lee (“The Dark Knight Rises”) as Sgt. Wu and Bree Turner (“The Ugly Truth”) as Rosalee.

“Grimm” is a Universal Television and Hazy Mills production. The series was created by Stephen Carpenter and David Greenwalt & Jim Kouf. Sean Hayes, Todd Milliner (“Hot in Cleveland”) and Norberto Barba (“Law & Order: Criminal Intent”) also serve as executive producers along with Greenwalt and Kouf. Marc Buckland (NBC’s “My Name Is Earl”) directed the pilot.

  • a p garcia

    I think this is a brillant move by NBC, but Munsters as a Drama!!!!!!!!!!!!
    I think the executive who came up with this idea should be fired ASAP!!!!!!

  • xwiseguyx

    I do recall way back when .. before most of you young whippersnappers were born when Networks routinely aired their failed pilots.. I am glad to see this happen – at least for this one.. I would have loved to have checked out Downwardly Mobile and a few other rejects from last year and I bet others would have too..

  • joel

    It’s anything but a burnoff. It’s a perfect fit for a Friday and for a pairing with Grimm.

  • Joel

    a $10mil pilot an they are burning it off on friday for halloween? i dont get it

  • Oliver

    Presumably it’s a comedy-drama along the lines of Pushing Daisies and Wonderfalls.

    My theory is that NBC originally started working on after the announcement of the Dark Shadows movie. Of course, Dark Shadows flopped, which scared the network execs off the project.

  • Dan S

    This reboot sounds awful. I think I’ll pass & watch the knitting channel instead.

  • a_lex89


    Yeah, I get it, but they will have to re-air all those episodes from Revolution, The New Normal and Go On so why not use, at least this one time, a good lead-in for something they put a lot of money in? Same goes on Wednesday @ 8 for Animal Practice and Guys with Kids, they are this CLOSE to being canceled… I just don’t get it. That being said, it’s an interesting idea to match Mockingbird Lane and Grimm, just maybe not for its pilot.

  • Jared

    What happens when Mockingbird Lane turns out to be a ratings hit?..can NBC still turn it into a series?..or has that ship sailed?

  • RJ


    I don’t see why they can’t, unless the sets have been destroyed. If it did a 3.5 on a Friday night though, NBC would have to bring it back. Of course that 3.5 demo won’t happen, so its a small possibility.

  • Sean

    In the unlikely event this did gangbusters, I could see it becoming another special or something. But this pilot (which when Bryan Fuller was involved they should have known) was too expensive NOT to air. ABC considered doing something similar to the Lost pilot when it wasn’t clear if they were going to pick it up for series or not.

  • TVDude

    I think it’s a good idea. They already spent the money, might as well make some of it back. I think it’s unlikely to become a series, but if it did extremely well, you never know. It’s a good use of a unseen pilot. Even if it rates low, they have little to lose. With the Halloween promotion, it might do OK and disappoint viewers.

    Didn’t Bryan Fuller also do the upcoming Hannibal show? I’m surprised they didn’t launch that in October.

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