EXCLUSIVE: Tia Napolitano (Cruel Summer) has joined CBS’ newly picked up drama series Fire Country as executive producer and showrunner. Her hire was already in the works when the network yesterday gave an official series order to the buzzy pilot, executive produced by and starring Max Thieriot.
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The project, from Jerry Bruckheimer Television and CBS Studios, is inspired by Thieriot’s experiences growing up in Northern California fire country and stems from an original idea by the actor, who also co-penned the story for the pilot with its writers, Tony Phelan and Joan Rater.
I hear there were no plans for Phelan and Rater, who are experienced showrunners, to stay on after the pilot in a hands-on capacity. The duo and JBTV hand picked Napolitano who got her start as a writer under Phelan and Rater on Grey’s Anatomy and later worked on NBC’s Council of Dads, which Rater and Phelan created, executive produced ran and JBTV produced.
In Fire Country, seeking redemption and a shortened prison sentence, young convict Bode Donovan (Thieriot) joins a firefighting program that returns him to his small Northern California hometown, where he and other inmates work alongside elite firefighters to extinguish massive blazes across the region.
Billy Burke, Kevin Alejandro, Diane Farr, Jordan Calloway, Stephanie Arcila and Jules Latimer also star.
Thieriot, Phelan and Rater executive produce alongside Jerry Bruckheimer, Jonathan Littman and KristieAnne Reed for Jerry Bruckheimer Television. CBS Studios is the studio.
Napolitano, who recently served as executive producer and showrunner on Freeform’s Cruel Summer, is repped by CAA and Michael Auerbach at Jackoway.