Having noted—along with some of its rivals—the current trend toward water-cooler-friendly true crime storytelling, NBC has picked up its own pilot about the often-convoluted hunt for justice. But while ABC’s Conviction is taking a dramatic look at the plights of the possibly wrongly accused, NBC is viewing it through the lens of comedy: the peacock network has ordered a pilot for The Trail, in which John Lithgow will play a Robert Durst-esque figure accused of being a cold-blooded murderer.
Given that Lithgow’s past roles evenly split the difference between “bumbling sitcom dad” and “guy who collects people’s skins,” it seems like a pretty perfect role; he’ll be playing poetry professor Larry Henderson, who think it’s absurd that he’s been accused of murdering his wife. Lithgow will be joined by former The View host Sherri Shepherd, playing a member of Henderson’s legal team, whose affliction with a number of psychological issues—including the inability to differentiate people’s faces—only serve to hinder the case.
The single-camera series is being developed by Angie Tribeca producer Jeff Astrof and Forever creator Matt Miller; The Trail represents Miller’s second pilot order this season, coming after Fox already ordered one for his planned Lethal Weapon TV series.