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‘The Nine’ gets red-carpet treatment

It’s a new TV series, but ABC’s ‘The Nine’ was given a red-carpet big-screen worthy premiere.
/ Source: The Associated Press

It’s a new TV series, but ABC’s “The Nine” was given a red-carpet big-screen worthy premiere.

Actor Jessica Collins gave a snapshot of the show at the Monday-night event: “‘The Nine’ is about nine people and their lives before and their lives after a crisis, a sort of life-altering event.”

To be specific, a bank robbery that snowballs into a 52-hour hostage crisis, one that forevermore changes each participant’s life.

The hour-long continuing drama, which debuts after “Lost” Oct. 4 on ABC, is the brainchild of TV vets, and brother and sister, Hank Steinberg (“Without a Trace”) and K.J. Steinberg (“Judging Amy”).

K.J. Steinberg told AP Television that inspiration for the show came from “a friend of mine who was held at gunpoint with a girl. He was on a very bad date, probably going to break up with (her), when a gunman pulled the gun out in their faces, got in the car and pulled away. They were standing there and their hearts beating furiously, and the first question I was about to ask was, ‘Are you still seeing her?’ And the idea for the show sprang out of that.”

The show has drawn some strong early reviews, with USA Today and TV Guide placing it atop their rankings of new fall series. “Well, it’s fantastic, I love it,” actor Tim Daly (“Wings”) said of the reviews. But, he added, “actually, the show that I did a year and a half ago, ‘Eyes,’ got similar critical response and, as you may have noticed, it’s no longer on the air.”

One of the hostages told of her untimely end. “Yes, yes, we can reveal that I die,” said actor Lourdes Benedicto (“NYPD Blue”), who plays a bank teller, and Daly’s literally short-lived love interest. “I meet my demise in the pilot,” Benedicto continued, playfully. “I’m the only one. I think. Maybe.”

And just where does a hostage-based series go after the crisis ends? “This is a character study of how this event, or an event like this, reshapes a group of lives,” answered actor Scott Wolf (“Party of Five”). “Anyone who thinks that the show is limited to the exploration of what happened inside of the bank during the hostage crisis, will be, hopefully, pleasantly surprised by how much more there is.”

Which might even include a happy ending. The couple whose story inspired the show’s concept, “They’re getting married,” said K.J. Steinberg.