A new Chicago-set TV drama from longtime collaborators Caitlin Parrish and Erica Weiss has been ordered to pilot by CBS, according to reports from The Hollywood Reporter, Deadline and Variety. Red Line spins indirectly out of Parrish’s play A Twist of Water, which was first produced by Chicago’s Route 66 Theatre Company in 2011, where it was directed by Weiss.
The play, which centers on a gay man and his adopted teenage daughter grieving the loss of her other dad, wove Chicago’s own history into its narrative. Red Line, the trade papers say, will follow the ripple effects on three Chicago families after a black doctor is shot and killed by a white police officer. The show’s executive producers include Ava DuVernay and Greg Berlanti.
Parrish and Weiss’s other projects together include The Downpour, which also premiered at Route 66, and The Burials, a Steppenwolf for Young Adults commission. The pair co-directed the independent film The View from Tall, also adapted from a play by Parrish; it was shot in Chicago with local actors including Amanda Drinkall and Michael Patrick Thornton, and played the Chicago International Film Festival in 2016 after premiering at the Los Angeles Film Festival.
Parrish now resides in Los Angeles, where she’s a writer and producer on the CW’s Supergirl (also executive produced by Berlanti); Weiss, an ensemble member with the Gift Theatre in Jefferson Park, has remained Chicago-based up to now.