As part of the network’s promise to increase its original programming slate, ABC Family—soon-to-be Freeform—announced on Thursday that it’s picked up two new hour-long, scripted dramas.
The first, Guilt, is evidently inspired by the Amanda Knox case. The network’s official announcement describes it as a “soapy drama about a young American woman in London who becomes the prime suspect in the savage murder of her roommate.”
The Game Plan’s Kathryn Price and Nichole Millard are the series’ co-writers and co-creators, and will also executive produce alongside Stephen McPherson.
The second project, Beyond, which comes from creator, writer, and executive producer Adam Nussdorf (Once Upon a Time in Wonderland), is “about a young man who wakes up from a coma after 12 years and discovers new supernatural abilities that propel him into the middle of a dangerous conspiracy.”
Heroes’ Tim Kring will also executive produce Beyond, along with Zak Kadison, Justin Levy, and Brian Kavanaugh-Jones. The pilot was directed by Age of Adaline helmer Lee Toland Krieger.
“These two shows are an exciting part of our evolution into Freeform,” Karey Burke, the network’s Executive Vice President of Programming and Development, said in the press release. “Guilt is a sexy, sophisticated event series whose European location feels bigger than anything we have ever done. Beyond introduces our audience to a new hero and takes them into a complex supernatural universe with great suspense and deep emotion.”
ABC Family also recently announced a new pilot, an adaptation of Rebecca Serle’s YA novel Famous in Love starring Bella Thorne, from Pretty Little Liars executive producer I. Marlene King. The network also found a new collaborator in Nicki Minaj, who will executive produce and appear in a half-hour comedy inspired by her own childhood; an online casting call to find a young actress to play the preteen Minaj is open now.
As the network rebrands, dropping its “Family” label, and picks up sexier, edgier programs like Guilt and Beyond, it hopes to attract more “Becomers,” as it calls its target audience — viewers from ages 14 to 34. ABC Family officially becomes Freeform in January.