After Fox passed on the pilot, Mixtape has received a straight-to-series order at Netflix.
The music drama is from former Quantico showrunner Josh Safran and Annapurna Pictures’ Megan Ellison. It is a “romantic musical drama that looks at a disparate group of interconnected people in contemporary Los Angeles through the lens of the music that defines who they are. Mixtape captures the different stages of love, exploring if time can heal a broken heart and if love can withstand life’s tragedies.”
It was reported continuously in the trades as one of the pilot season favorites, with 20th Century Fox head Sharon Klein praising actress Callie Hernandez as a star. But despite it being an “internal favorite” and having “support among network executives,” Fox is moving toward more multi-cam comedies and procedurals (sans current music dramas Empire and Star), and the network passed with 20th Century Fox, Fox 21 and Annapurna shopping it at streamers. A deal was struck at Netflix just as the options for the cast were set to expire.
Most of the cast is set to return, including leads Hernandez, Jenna Dewan, Campbell Scott and Madeline Stowe. The principal male lead role, which was portrayed by Raul Castillo, will have to be recast as he landed a recurring role on Netflix’s One Day at a Time.
Two black actors are in key series regular roles: former Degrassi star Jahmil French and Marianne Jean-Baptiste. Christina Milian was a series regular for the original pilot but is not listed as a returning actor for the Netflix version.
French received critical acclaim for his role in the 2017 Canadian film Boost, and he was nominated for a Canadian Screen Award. Veteran actress and Oscar nominee Jean-Baptiste recently had series regular roles on CBS’ Traning Day and NBC’s Blindspot.
Mixtape is the second pilot of the season to be picked up outside of its original network, with Sony Pictures TV landing L.A.’s Finest at Charter Communications/Spectrum after NBC passed. Netflix also took All About The Washingtons from ABC’s ABC Signature Studios after its parent network passed. It will debut next month.
Overall, in the new landscape of #PeakTV, shows network-hopping has become an increasing occurrence with Netflix reviving Lucifer from Fox (and still in talks for Designated Survivor), NBC taking on Brooklyn Nine-Nine from Fox and Fox taking on Last Man Standing from ABC, to name a few.