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Sci Fi Pairs With Burnett, Obst for Projects

Sci Fi Channel has paired with talent including Mark Burnett and How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days’ Lynda Obst for new projects in development. The network aims to program seven weekly original scripted drama series by the end of next year, executive VP and General Manager Dave Howe told critics at the TCA Tour in Pasadena, Calif.

Burnett and Dreamworks Television are working on hour-long conspiracy thriller Devil’s Advocate, a scripted series about a theology professor hired by a global corporation to investigate bizarre cases.

Elsewhere in scripted-series development, Sci Fi has Witch Doctor, a dramedy about a man who takes over a secret medical clinic for the world of magic, and Stoner, about a fake superhero in L.A.

From Obst comes adventure miniseries Outpost, about a futuristic group of private explorers who take over an abandoned NASA research base.

Sci Fi also announced development of several late-night shows. George Noory will feature the overnight radio talk show host; Alien Invasion is a computer-animated comedy from the executive producer/showrunner of 3rd Rock From the Sun; and Prove It is a panel-discussion aiming to debunk sci-fi based theories and hosted by Curb Your Enthusiasm's Mark DeCarlo.

Further along for Sci Fi’s original slate is the hour-long drama Painkiller Jane, which the network has greenlighted for production 22 episodes. The female-superhero series will debut on Sci Fi in January 2007, followed by a domestic broadcast weekly syndication window in fall 2007.

Finally, Sci Fi signed Six Feet Under alum Peter Krause to star in its 2006 limited series The Lost Room, which goes into production this week and is scheduled to run in December. The six-hour thriller co-stars Elle Fanning (Dakota’s sister).