Practice' May Get ABC Spinoff

LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) - A remark by a top ABC executive at the end of the network's February sweep conference call Tuesday set the town abuzz about a possible offshoot from its veteran legal drama "The Practice."

"We are in active discussions with (series creator) David E. Kelley about another show that will share some of the same blood with 'The Practice,"' said Lloyd Braun, chairman of ABC Entertainment Television Group, who declined to elaborate.

There has been speculation that the new show might feature some of the more recent additions to the cast of the series or James Spader (news)'s character in a different line of work. But sources stressed that the plans for a new series are not contingent on Spader, who came aboard this season as an ethically challenged lawyer after Kelley dumped many of the cast members in order to stave off cancellation.

Another piece of ABC development news that came out of the network's sweep call is that ABC has given the go-ahead to the pilot "64 Grand Slam," a reality project from "Super Millionaire" executive producer Michael Davies. The project, based on Channel 4's "Grand Slam," pits 16 contestants who will face off in such areas as math, linguistics and contemporary knowledge for the 64 Grand Slam champion title and a prize of $512,000.

"It's a quiz show done as a sporting event," Davies said. "It's a very, very tense confrontational game that is in tournament form."

© Reuters/Hollywood Reporter (Thank you, Sulena!)