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ABC Reportedly Passes on Reba McEntire’s New TV Drama

Reba McEntire TV Show
Rick Diamond, Getty Images

That new “Southern Gothic soap opera” starring Reba McEntire might not be airing on ABC after all. The network has reportedly passed on the show, Red Blooded — but that doesn’t mean the TV drama is dead in the water.

According to Deadline, while ABC didn’t pick up Red Blooded after seeing its pilot episode, the show is allegedly being shopped around to other networks by ABC Studios. Desperate Housewives creator Marc Cherry is at the helm of Red Blooded; previously, Cherry’s Devious Maids pilot got picked up by the Lifetime network, kicking off a successful four-year run, after ABC passed on that series.

McEntire, Cherry and the rest of the Red Blooded cast and crew filmed the show’s pilot episode earlier this spring. The series stars McEntire as a Ruby Adair, a sheriff in Oxblood, Ky., who is joined by a young FBI agent of Middle Eastern descent to solve a mystery after a suspected terrorist attack upsets the Fourth of July celebration in her town.

“I’m a dark character,” McEntire says. “I’ve got a lot of flaws and demons, and I’m having a lot of problems in my personal life. My town is being disrupted, and I’m having to deal with it all. I’m under a lot of stress.”

Red Blooded is being written and executive produced by Cherry; he’ll also act as showrunner, along with longtime producing partner Sabrina Wind. The show, if picked up, will be the first time that McEntire has returned to the screen since her show Malibu Country was cancelled after its first season. McEntire’s role in Red Blooded would also be her first lead role in a TV drama; both Malibu Country and her show Reba were comedies.

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