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Created by Luis Novalez (Chicago Police officer) and written by Donnalyn Vojta (attorney, screenwriter)
LOGLINE - Once a Chicago police sergeant convinces his superiors that his “gifted” informants are reliable even though one’s gone missing, having left a stack of sketches behind, and the other one’s facing a shocking life event, the sergeant must peg the time and place of impending disasters with only the informants’ partial drawings.
INTRODUCTION - This is a series for adults, but it allows us to relive, in a sense, the exciting moments of solving Highlights Hidden Picture puzzles and Pictionary sketches. The tone is serious and suspenseful as it deals with solving violent crimes, but it also offers some humor and levity, especially from two brothers’ quirky, somewhat tense, relationship. My husband, a Chicago police officer, created the story, and I, a former attorney, wrote the pilot episode. I am a script writer and published novelist. Due to our professions, we’re able to make the lawyers, cops and criminals quite realistic. The reason we wrote a supernatural crime drama is because we and many others are intrigued by the possibility of a modern-day Nostradamus. When a psychic prediction isn’t entirely clear, it’s always exhilarating to figure out what’s missing in order to see what may be coming!
The “fresh” concept: Unlike the other crime dramas with eccentric genius consultants who typically help police solve previous crimes and are usually respected citizens, our mysterious consultant sees and draws the future, but because he’s a homeless drunk, no one believes him until one staunch non-believer witnesses one of depictions come to pass. Not totally convinced the drunken war vet could possibly have this power, he employs reputable experts to check the authenticity of the dates on the drawings—they are legit! Now what? The skeptic-turned-believer is Chicago Police Sgt. Richards (36, sexy, rugged, nice) who can’t just ignore such a valuable resource. He has double trouble. The future-seeing beggar, Jack Nelly (40, good man), has gone missing and left many sketches behind. They contain images ranging from natural disasters and terrorist attacks to smaller crimes and grim incidents. Luckily, another man, having no idea at first that he is the twin brother of Jack, also has the foreseeing gift, but his visions and sketches throw Jack’s into question. The police must reconcile the brothers’ pairs of drawings quickly enough to fend off various types of impending violence before it’s too late.
SYNOPSIS: When Chicago’s Navy Pier is bombed by terrorists on 2018’s 4th of July, Sergeant Richards is beside himself with anger that he couldn’t prevent it. He had knowledge of the attack on a pencil sketch beforehand but he still failed to stop it because the sketch was missing necessary details. One of the other illustrations Jack left behind shows smoke and fire rising from a busy gate at Chicago’s O’Hare Intern’l Airport. Sgt. Richards, via flashbacks and dialogue, remembers why he came to believe Jack who suffers from PTSD and alcoholism since fighting in the Iraq War. Richards is sure an attack on O’Hare is imminent, but knows now that Jack’s sketch may be incomplete.
Richards heads of a team of city detectives and must focus daily on local crimes as well. In the pilot episode, there’s a serial killer at large, but Richards’ diverse team of detectives figures out the motive and identity of the madman, quickly leading to his arrest. The keen group of detectives consists of a Caucasian male (45, jolly, gets his car washed almost daily), a Japanese-American woman (26, pretty, can talk her way out of anything), and a Hispanic male (29, attractive, Motown fan). A female Homeland Security agent (35) will also have a role with the team.
Each episode will have a local crime to be solved and some movement toward discovering the details of the next large-scale event. In the pilot, the audience learns Jack has a younger brother who does not have the psychic gift. Ben Nelly (37, quirky, laughs when things aren’t funny) is a friend of the police. Ben discovers through some reliable documents, that one Nolan Reynolds (40, clean-cut, caring), a prominent successful attorney, is his other older brother. Ben ventures to find Nolan and tell him of Nolan’s brothers, but Nolan is pre-occupied with the attempted murder of his own wife by the serial killer who leaves her in a coma. It is this shock to Nolan’s life that prompts him to forego his prestigious reputation in exchange for sharing his long-hidden powers and sketches. Nolan is key to solving the serial killer case due to his change of heart and decision to tell authorities what he can see. Excitingly, Nolan’s stored sketches can help Sgt. Richards make sense of Jack’s drawings!
Throughout the series, Jack’s life-saving pictures will propel the desire to find Jack, a hero of sorts.