FOX has given a seven-episode commitment to "Dollhouse," a new sci-fi drama to reunite Joss Whedon with his "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" co-star Eliza Dushku.
This will be the first TV project for Whedon since FOX all-too-swiftly cancelled his 2002 space western "Firefly," which spawned "Serenity," Whedon's most recent big screen effort.
According to the industry trade papers, "Dollhouse" will feature Dushku as Echo, part of a group of young people programmed with different personalities and skills for different assignments (the trades are a little fuzzy on what these "assignments" consist of or who's sending the people on said assignments). In between gigs, their minds are wiped clean and they return to live in a lab/dorm known as the Dollhouse. Things go a wee bit pear-shaped when Echo begins having actual memories and she tries to seek information about her past.
The show sprung from a casual lunch conversation between the writer-director-producer and his young star. Whedon has reportedly pitched the network on an arc for the first seven "Dollhouse" episodes, which could go into production as soon as the spring (strike pending), but the series wouldn't be expected to hit FOX's schedule until next fall.
Dushku signed a talent deal with 20th Century Fox back in August after starring in the studio's FOX dramedy pilot "Nurses" this past development season.
The studio was also home to Whedon's complete television output, including "Firefly," "Buffy" and "Angel." Dushku played occasionally rogue slayer Faith on the latter two shows.
The possibility of a Faith spinoff was bandied about after the end of the "Buffy" and "Angel" runs, but Dushku went off to do "Tru Calling" for FOX, while Whedon concentrated his attention on features.