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Movie Stars Invade TV: A Look at Pilot Season 2010

by Chris Harnick, posted Mar 24th 2010 2:00PM
Sissy SpacekTelevision fans, look out: Oscar-winning actors are taking over! And not just for a special cameo or a three-episode guest star stint, either. Movie stars are coming to TV in a big way ... as series regulars.

Why? Well, for a few reasons. Portraying a character on a weekly basis can present a new challenge to these veteran silver screen stars, but let's not forget that young Hollywood actors in tween-targeted films are dominating the box office. These Oscar-winning actors aren't giving up films, but their star power and names alone are big enough to attract an audience to a TV show.

Many Oscar-winners and nominees have left their mark on both screens -- just look at Sally Field. She's won an Oscar for 'Norma Rae' and Emmys for 'Sybil,' 'ER' and 'Brothers & Sisters.'

Maybe the Oscars of these latest stars got lonely on the mantle and the next logical thought would be: Why not add an Emmy sister?

Check out the list of actors who are coming to TV -- including Sissy Spacek and Dustin Hoffman -- after the jump.Sissy SpacekTelevision fans, look out: Oscar-winning actors are taking over! And not just for a special cameo or a three-episode guest star stint, either. Movie stars are coming to TV in a big way ... as series regulars.

Why? Well, for a few reasons. Portraying a character on a weekly basis can present a new challenge to these veteran silver screen stars, but let's not forget that young Hollywood actors in tween-targeted films are dominating the box office. These Oscar-winning actors aren't giving up films, but their star power and names alone are big enough to attract an audience to a TV show.

Many Oscar-winners and nominees have left their mark on both screens -- just look at Sally Field. She's won an Oscar for 'Norma Rae' and Emmys for 'Sybil,' 'ER' and 'Brothers & Sisters.'

Maybe the Oscars of these latest stars got lonely on the mantle and the next logical thought would be: Why not add an Emmy sister?

Sissy Spacek has signed on for her first series regular role in CBS' untitled medical drama from John Wells.

The actress will play the head of a mobile team of doctors that travel around the world to help those in need. According to the Hollywood Reporter, the part was originally envisioned as a man, but when somebody with Spacek's acting chops turns up, gender really doesn't matter. As if the medical problems of others weren't enough, Spacek's character has been diagnosed with cancer and must undergo chemotherapy treatments. Rachelle LeFevre will play Spacek's physician daughter.

Spacek won an Academy Award for her portrayal of country music star Loretta Lynn in 'Coal Miner's Daughter.' She has been nominated six other times, including one for 'Carrie,' the film that made her a household name.

The actress is fresh off a role on HBO's 'Big Love.'

Dustin Hoffman• Two-time Oscar-winner Dustin Hoffman is hoping to get lucky with his new series regular role. Hoffman has joined the cast of HBO's horse racing and gambling drama 'Luck' from Michael Mann and David Milch.

According to the Hollywood Reporter, Hoffman will play a man with a history of gambling problems who teams up with his chauffeur (Dennis Farina) for some suspicious activities involving the horse track.

Hoffman has received seven Oscar nominations and won for 'Kramer vs. Kramer' and 'Rain Man.' His other classic film roles include 'The Graduate,' 'Midnight Cowboy' and 'Tootsie.' The actor won an Emmy for the TV version of 'Death of a Salesman.'

Kathy Bates is going from busting Michael Scott's chops on 'The Office' to managing a group of misfit associates on David E. Kelley's law pilot, 'Kindreds.' According to the Hollywood Reporter, 'Kindreds' follows a bitter former patent lawyer and her underlings. Similarly to Spacek's role, the character was written as a man, but is being reworked for Bates.

Kathy BatesBates won an Oscar for her role in 'Misery,' was nominated another two times and has received seven Emmy nominations. The actress is no stranger to the world of TV, she's directed a number of episodes for hit shows such as 'Everwood,' 'Oz' and 'Six Feet Under.'

Forest Whitaker, who won an Academy Award for his role as Idi Amin in 'The Last King of Scotland,' has signed on for CBS' 'Criminal Minds' spinoff. According to the Hollywood Reporter, Whitaker will play Cooper, the leader of a new squad of profilers who work outside the FBI bureaucracy. The character has been described as father figure to the profilers, who is both mysterious and charming.

Whitaker had lengthy guest arcs on 'The Shield' and 'ER.'

Jon Voight has signed on to Fox's 'Midland,' a drama about Bob (Jimmy Wolk), a con man who has dual lives and girlfriends in two Texas cities. In his first full-time TV role, Voight will play the father of one Bob's girlfriends.

According to the Hollywood Reporter, Voight's character is described as a Texan legend.

Voight has been nominated for four Oscars and won one in 1978 for 'Coming Home.' He recently played Jonas Hodges, the villain on season seven of '24.'

Kevin Kline, known universally for being very picky when it comes to film and TV projects, is heading to HBO. According to the Hollywood Reporter, Kline will portray a doctor who has just gotten out of prison for murdering his mistress.

The project is written by Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright David Auburn ('Proof'). Kline, Gavin Polone and Kline's manager, Judy Hofflund, will serve as executive producers.

Kline won an Academy Award for his role in 'A Fish Called Wanda.'

Sound off: Which movie stars are you looking forward to seeing on a weekly basis?
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