News Briefs: Hayden Panettiere Has a New Show in the Works

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I figured this was a better picture than another Awake photo.

RATINGS REPORT

... It's not good or bad news for NBC's new drama Awake. The new series, which most people loved, debuted last night to okay ratings. But given that some people thought it would bomb in a major way, that could be considered a victory. Approximately 6.24 million people watched the debut, good for a 2.0 rating in the 18-49 demo. That's actually an improvement in the time period, and given that almost all word-of-mouth has been positive and the pilot was available online and on-demand two weeks ago, there might not be the dramatic drop-off that's typical in a series' second episode. However, Awake was up against repeats last night. Next week will be very interesting. [TV By the Numbers]


TAKING A BREAK NEWS

... Alex O''Loughlin, star of CBS's Hawaii Five-0, will miss at least one upcoming episode as he goes to rehab. According to his rep, "Alex is taking a short break from Hawaii Five-0 to receive supervised treatment for prescription pain medication due to a recent shoulder injury." [Deadline Hollywood]


CASTING NEWS

... Heroes hottie Hayden Panettiere has a new job lined up. She'll star in the ABC drama pilot Nashville, a soapy look at the Nashville music scene. Panettiere will play a teen singing sensation. Hey, anything to keep her from REALLY singing. Have you seen her newest video? No thank you! Click at your own risk, because I can't provide any spoons to scoop out the damage done to your ears. [Deadline Hollywood]

... Panettiere's fellow Heroes star Zachary Quinto is following up his guest role on FX's American Horror Story with a regular gig on American Horror Story. Wait, what? Yep, Quinto has joined Season 2 as the show shifts its settings and characters, but not its cast. Quinto joins fellow AHS returnee Jessica Lange, who will also be back as a new character as well. [Deadline Hollywood]

... Hey you Browncoats out there, get ready to put a little brown in your pants, too, because I have some awesome jeans-crapping Firefly-related news. Castle is recruiting Adam Baldwin for a guest role, setting up a Firefly reunion with Nathan Fillion. Baldwin will play a tough-guy cop who shows Castle how things are done. [TV Guide]

... Pan Am's Karine Vanasse, who was like a first-class seat compared to the rest of the cast's overhead compartments, is joining ABC's drama pilot Scruples. This is the series that is produced by Natalie Portman about the world of fashion. Oh-so-adorable Vanasse will be play an oh-so-adorable fashion designer. Also, Judd Hirsch got cast in something. [Deadline Hollywood]

... Justin Hartley is stuck in The CW black hole that actors never escape from. The man who played The Green Arrow on Smallville will stay at the network in the lighthearted medical drama pilot First Cut. He'll play a sexy doctor, duh. [Deadline Hollywood]

... Leah Remini (King of Queens) will star in ABC's comedy pilot White Man Van. She'll play the van. Oh I'm just kidding. She'll be the sister of a man who is forced to hand over his business to his son because of bad health. [THR]

... Minnie Driver (she's tall) will star opposite Andrea Anders in the NBC comedy pilot Lady Friends, about two chick amigas who are very different. Driver will play the friend who's a bit of a trainwreck. [Deadline Hollywood]


GET IN LINE NEWS

... The Big Bang Theory's Kaley Cuoco is no longer engaged! Go get 'er! [ET Online]


Follow TV.com writer Tim Surette on Twitter: @TimAtTVDotCom

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