Fox has ordered its first new pilots to series for the 2012-13 TV season, and it's a talent-packed crop so far.
Their first big pickup features a psychological thriller and three new sitcoms, including the much-anticipated project from "The Office" star/writer/producer Mindy Kaling, a single-camera comedy now titled "The Mindy Project" (formerly "Mindy," then briefly "It's Messy"). Kaling will write, executive produce and star as a young doctor with "Bridget Jones"-like tendencies who's trying to get her life in order, personally and professionally. Chris Messina, Anna Camp, Ed Weeks, Zoe Jarmon and Dana DeLorenzo are set to co-star; Bill Hader, Ed Helms and Richard Schiff will guest star in the pilot. The show's pickup means that Kaling's Kelly Kapoor will be saying goodbye to Scranton this season.
Upon receiving the news, Kaling tweeted her thanks to Fox Entertainment president Kevin Reilly:
"Ben & Kate," formerly "Ned Fox Is My Manny," is another single-camera comedy about an uptight single mom (Dakota Johnson) who gets help raising her baby from her free-wheeling brother, Ned (Nat Faxon). Lucy Punch, Maggie Jones and Echo Kellum so-star in the series, which is based on the life of writer/executive producer Dana Fox's brother.
And from "How I Met Your Mother" executive producers Carter Bays, Craig Thomas and Chris Harris comes "The Goodwin Games," a single-camera family comedy starring Becki Newton, Scott Foley and Jake Lacy as siblings who must agree to certain terms in order to inherit a fortune from their late father. The "HIMYM" guys created the show with Newton in mind after her stint romancing Barney (Neil Patrick Harris) on their CBS hit.
On the other end of the spectrum is serial killer drama "The Following" (formerly "Mastermind") from "The Vampire Diaries" executive producer Kevin Williamson. The show, which received a 15-episode order, stars Kevin Bacon as an FBI agent and James Purefoy as the serial killer he put away. When the killer escapes years later, it's not just the one man to hunt down -- he's spawned a cult-like following of serial killer disciples, all ready to do his killing. Natalie Zea and Maggie Grace also star.