Thursday, May 20, 2010

CW Picks Up Toronto's "Nikita"

According to the CW Network, the Toronto-lensed TV pilot, rebooting "Nikita" has been picked up as a series to air Thursdays from 9:00-10:00 PM. Producers of the pilot are Warner Bros. TV and McG's Wonderland label, with McG and Wonderland's Peter Johnson as executive producers.

Actress Maggie Q played the title character in the pilot, directed by Danny Cannon ("CSI").

The new show is a fresh take on "La Femme Nikita", the 1990 French feature by writer/director Luc Besson, following a new 'Nikita', trained to replace the original Nikita government agent after she goes 'rogue'.

Maggie Q , a well-known Hong Kong action-movie star, also appeared in "Mission: Impossible III" and "Live Free or Die Hard."

Besson's "Nikita" followed 'Nikita Taylor' (Anne Parillaud), a teenage delinquent and heroin addict who tries to rob a pharmacy, owned by the parents of a fellow junkie.

When things go bad during a police shoot-out and her cohorts are killed, Nikita shoots a policeman, is arrested, tried, convicted of murder and imprisoned for life, with no parole for thirty years.

In prison, Nikita is drugged to simulate death, then awakens in a room where a man (Tchéky Karyo) reveals that although officially dead as a 'suicide by overdose', Nikita is actually in the custody of the 'DGSE', a French intelligence agency. She is then given the choice, to either work as a DGSE government assassin or be killed.

After some resistance, Nikita joins the agency, with one of her trainers, 'Amande' (Jeanne Moreau), transforming her from a degenerate drug addict into a degenerate 'sleeper agent'.

In 1993, Warner Bros. remade "Nikita" in English as "Point of No Return" (aka "The Assassin"), directed by John Badham, starring Bridget Fonda.

Besson's premise was again adapted in 1997 for the Toronto-lensed US/Canadian co-pro "La Femme Nikita," adapted for TV by Joel Surnow, starring Peta Wilson.

Click the images to enlarge and Sneak Peek "Nikita", "Point Of No Return" and