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Unit Zero & Salamander - Dramas Receive Pilot Orders at ABC

ABC has given a green light to Unit Zero, an action dramedy starring Toni Collette from the Black-ish duo of exec producer Barris and supervising producer Lindsey Shockley.

The Disney-owned network has handed out a pilot order to a drama from Barris and starring Toni Collette. Also scoring a pickup is drama Salamander from the team behind CBS' Zoo.

Barris' Unit Zero is a spy drama that follows Jackie Fink (Collette), a brilliant but unassuming CIA engineer and single mom as she leads a team of desk jockeys into the field as secret agents. Overlooked in the workplace, their invisibility makes them perfect for the CIA's most covert missions.

The drama is based on an original idea from Black-ish supervising producer Lindsey Shockley, who will pen the script and exec produce alongside Barris, David Gordon Green and Collette. Green is on board to direct the pilot. The drama hails from ABC Studios, where Barris is under an overall deal. The project marks Golden Globe winner Collette's return to series television following Showtime's United States of Tara. Unit Zero becomes the latest project with talent attached to score an official pilot order as networks continue to get a jump on the competitive casting crunch by packaging talent during the development stage.

Salamander, meanwhile, is based on the 2012 Belgian series and revolves around a brilliant but misanthropic engineer who recruits a skeptical homeland security agent to help him track a mysterious bank robber whose theft of 66 specific safety deposit boxes, belonging to the elite and powerful. That sets in motion a series of blackmails that may be linked to a greater conspiracy.

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