Pilot News: Minka Kelly books J.J. Abrams robo-drama, Christian Slater joins ‘Influence’

Minka Kelly and Christian Slater may be heading back to the small screen in a pair of new pilots.

Kelly, formerly of “Friday Night Lights” and ABC’s short-lived “Charlie’s Angels” reboot, has booked a role in the untitled J.J. Abrams-produced sci-fi pilot for Fox, set in a near-future Los Angeles where cops are paired with android partners. Kelly will play the role of Valerie Stahl, a morally-grounded police officer who believes in the essential goodness of people. The potential sci-fi series (f.k.a. “Inhuman”), which comes from former “Fringe” showrunner J.H. Wyman, is also set to star Michael Ealy and Lili Taylor. Brad Anderson (“The Call,” “Session 9”) is on board to direct the pilot. [Deadline]

Slater, meanwhile, has joined Steve Zahn in ABC’s “Influence,” a drama pilot centered on two brothers who head an agency that uses the science of “human motivation and manipulation” to solve their clients’ problems. Slater (last seen in the ill-fated Fox sitcom “Breaking In”) will play Ross, the brother of Zahn’s character who is described as a brilliant strategist, “ladies’ man” (shocker) and ex-prison inmate who recently finished a two-year sentence for fraud. Megalyn Echikunwoke, Cedric Sanders and Gregory Marcel are also set to star in the pilot, which comes from “Awake” creator Kyle Killen. [TVLine]
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