Elizabeth Banks to Produce New Show in The CW’s DC Universe

We're hoping it'll be a pitch-perfect inclusion to the network's superhero line-up.

We’re hoping it’ll be a pitch-perfect inclusion to the network’s superhero line-up.

Elizabeth Banks has found her latest project with the DC Comics property, Project 13. The Pitch Perfect 2 director will be developing a series based on characters from the comics, Variety has learned.

Project 13, to be written by Daegan Fryklind (Bitten), will focus on 20-something-year-old Traci Thirteen and her estranged father, Dr. Terrence Thirteen. In a kind of Fringe-meets-The X-Files set-up — plus a good obvious dash of superpowered heroism — Traci is a forensic scientist and believer in the paranormal. She soon discovers extra-sensory capabilities of her own. Eventually, Traci has to team up with her skeptic of a father to solve mysterious cases of unsolved phenomena and paranormal activity.

Given The CW’s long lineage of comic book adaptations in the last few years, it’s not tough to imagine that they would readily move forward with Project 13. Having covered superhero ground with Arrow, The Flash, Supergirl (picking up where CBS left off) and Legends of Tomorrow, The CW has a history with DC Comics. Traci and her father have appeared in comics such as “Flashpoint” and “Batman”, and would fit nicely into The CW’s own contained DC universe.

The CW is also expanding its Archie Comics universe, with an announcement last month that Sabrina the Teenage Witch would be getting a grimdark makeover at the network to join Archie’s adventures in Riverdale. And let’s not leave out iZombie. Maybe I just love the supernatural too much, but it’s my favorite of the bunch for its slightly offbeat concept — it’s actually a fun show about zombies! Project 13 sounds like it could have the potential to be equally lovably weird, but only if the adaptation’s inherent connection to the DC universe might trouble those waters. At least in TV land, extended universes have more opportunities to branch out within their own contained storylines, as opposed to 2-hour movie packages that have to hype up the follow-up coming a few months down the pipeline. If Project 13 manages to be anywhere near as original, funny and individual as iZombie is I’m 100% for it.

While many would know Banks from her onscreen work in The Hunger Games and obviously the Pitch Perfect series, her contributions behind the scenes have been some of her most valuable. Banks is hard at work putting out new stories for women at various networks, including ordering a Laverne Cox-starrer at ABC and a step-sibling comedy at Fox. All these shows will importantly have women showrunners as well, all of them acting as little steps forward towards a more inclusive workspace in front of and behind the camera.

Sheryl Oh: Sheryl Oh often finds herself fascinated (and let's be real, a little obsessed) with actors and their onscreen accomplishments, developing Film School Rejects' Filmographies column as a passion project. She's not very good at Twitter but find her at @sherhorowitz anyway. (She/Her)