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FOX Orders Rainn Wilson Cop Drama ‘Backstrom’ After CBS Passes

CBS Backstrom Rainn Wilson FOX Series Order
David Livingston, Getty Images

Unexpected, but okay! We were a bit disappointed to learn that ‘The Office‘ star Rainn Wilson wouldn’t return to TV as soon as we’d hoped, given that CBS declined to pick up the comic actor’s buzzworthy police procedural ‘Backstrom,’ but it seems FOX has taken a big shot on Wilson with a full series order for the discarded drama.

Following a pass from CBS during the previous pilot season, the newly-minted FOX series sees Wilson as the title character, an “overweight, offensive and irascible” police detective who tries and more-often fails to make a change to his pattern of self-destructive behavior. Ordered for 13 episodes and adapted by ‘Bones‘ Hart Hanson, the new drama is based on a Swedish book series by Leif G.W. Persson, and features a cast that includes ‘24‘s Dennis Haysbert, Kristoffer Polaha and Beatrice Rosen. Despite being present for the pilot, ‘Emily Owens, M.D.‘ star Mamie Gummer will not reprise her role for the FOX iteration.

“Hart Hanson and Rainn Wilson are the perfect combination of creative vision and on-screen talent to bring this one-of-a-kind character and story like Backstrom to Fox,” said Fox president Kevin Reilly of the pickup. “I’ve been in business with Hart for a long time, and not only does he have a rare gift for infusing darker themes with relatable humor, he’s one of the best showrunners out there today. Together with Rainn – who absolutely nails this role and makes it a classic Fox character – I think we’ve got something really special here.”

We’ll do our best not to mistake ‘Backstrom’s irritable and offbeat detective for ‘Rake‘s irritable and offbeat lawyer (or ‘House”s irritable and offbeat doctor), but what say you? Are you happy FOX saved Rainn Wilson’s new series from the scrap heap? Watch a sizzle reel below, and give us your thoughts in the comments!

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