Exclusive Pilot Season Preview: The 36 Most Wanted Actors and Actresses

blog_combo_10.10.12_v2As busy as Santa is right about now, he ain’t got nothing on TV execs! They’re working 24/7 these days in anticipation of their most hectic time of the year: pilot season!

You see, as soon as the networks finish deciding which potential series they’ll be trying out (shortly after the ball drops), a casting frenzy will get underway the likes of which hasn’t been seen since… well, since the 2012 casting frenzy! As you’d imagine, the casting directors’ wish lists include everyone from hot shots (Kyle Chandler, anyone?) to long shots (Katie Holmes). Who’ll actually get around to starring in a pilot?

PHOTOS | 20 Actors You Want Back on TV Immediately

Consider the red-hot candidates in our gallery, then hit the comments with the names of the actors that you want on the small screen in a big way!

PHOTOS | 20 Actresses You Want Back on TV Right Now

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. Karen says:

    Tom Welling!

  2. George says:

    Although the show itself was uneven, the cast of Private Practice was excellent. I would add just about any one of them to this list.

  3. lamb says:

    What about JASON DOHRING????????????!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  4. keja says:

    Yes, I’d love to see all of these folks back on my TV. Especially Kyle Chandler (I certainly don’t begrudge him his film career, I just love the Coach)

    Paget Brewster should be in there, though.

  5. Azerty says:

    They definitely should make a tv movie about the pre-apocalypse of the Walking dead. I mean what happened when Rick was in coma and led to the formation of the first group…bring back Sarah Waynes Callies,John Bernthal (Shane) and other dead characters (Dale, Amy, Carol”s husband,…). and maybe Wentworth Miller as a military officer (who get caught by the zombies in the end) for a prison break reunion. would be perfect!

    • Britta Unfiltered says:

      I think you’re on to something there, but maybe it would better as a prequel mini-series for the show? I don’t think the time frame between the outbreak starting and Rick waking up from the coma was all that far apart? I always thought it was only a few days in between Rick’s coma machines losing power while Shane gave that impassioned speech and then Rick waking up. I could be wrong.

    • Teag says:

      No. That’s not in the spirit of The Walking Dead. Even the comics haven’t revealed what happened.

  6. Liney says:

    Michael B. Jordan please!!

  7. Britta Unfiltered says:

    I like Kelsey Grammer, I hope he can find something meaty that will fulfill him creatively. He seems to like to be challenged with his roles. Hopefully that Boss mini-series wrap-up comes through for him. And I would love to see Justin Long on a comedy. And *should* Brody happen to be killed off of Homeland this Sunday (please, God, don’t let that really happen), well, we’ve got to get Damian Lewis into something right away if that happens. Hopefully the entire Community cast can just transition into Dan Harmon’s new pilots that are in development. A girl can dream…

  8. omabin says:

    Awesome list! Some of these people I really want back right now! Sarah Wayne Callies! I am missing a lot of Losties in there though (Henry Ian Cusick, Matthew Fox, Evangeline Lilly, Josh Holloway) and Battlestar alumnies in there (Jamie Bamber, Tahim Penicket, Michael Trucco)

  9. Patrick Maloney says:

    As long Zachary Levi’s hair isn’t blonde, I’ll watch him in anything

  10. Diversity much? There are plenty of actors in Hollywood that represent the landscape of America unfortunately it appears the main networks just want more of the same. where is Omar epps from House? Why is he not pictured in the photos?

  11. Lev says:

    Yvonne Strahovski should be the lead on some show.

  12. liliane says:

    Abbie Cobb !! She was awesome in 90210 . And under used in Suburgatory imo

  13. Richard says:

    Michael Urie, Wentworth Miller, Luke Mcfarlane, Sarah Shahi, T.R. Knight, Katherine Moennig, Constance Zimmer, Kelly Rutherford, Toni Colette, Hunter Parrish, Indina Manzel, Vanessa Williams, Portia De Rossi, Madeline Zima, Lee Pace, Megan Mullally, Felicity Huffman

  14. Andre Braugher deserves a show that will last longer than 1 season. He is a superb actor. I would also lik eto see Cuddy from house in another series

  15. Linderella says:

    I’m ready to program my DVR right now for Hugh Laurie, Katherine Heigl, Marisa Tomei, Jason Isaacs, Tea Leoni, and Kate Hudson. Also add the entire cast of Private Practice and next season will be awesome!

  16. Dani says:

    Somebody really needs to find something for Jason Isaacs that actually lasts. The man is ridiculously underrated.

  17. Josh says:

    Really? Is Community that DOA :(

  18. Danielle Hamilton says:

    Exciting list. ! Can’t wait and hope 2013 has a strong crop of newbies because this year has been a bit flat.

  19. GC says:

    Anna Camp NEEDS a good pilot with an actual meaty role!!! She’s been extremely wasted on Mindy Project and she’s been fantastic in so many supporting parts, I’d love for her to get the chance to actually lead something worthwhile!!!

    Oh and Anna Faris needs a good show too, and any appearance from James Marsden on a show would be great! And though I’d love to see Uma Thurman and Marisa Tomei on a show… I think they would probably be suited to a cable pilot more.

    Also throwing in an extra name… Missi Pyle!!! Though I love seeing her pop up everywhere in film and tv… she needs a great comedy show to finally get a more high profile big break!!!

  20. Katrin says:

    I miss Wentworth Miller on my weekly tv… haven’t seen him since Prison Break… only in small roles… and please give Michael Ealy and Warren Kole something to do… preferably something together XD Or something I would watch, since I’m not that much interested in Warren’s upcoming show… XD that’s all!

  21. Templar says:

    Yes to:
    Tea Leoni, Kate and Katie, Carla G., Jane K., Justin L., and Maris T.. Please add David Sutcliffe, Mark Valley, Jackie Earle Haley and Chi McBride [in fact just bring back Human Target minus that Pucci witch].

  22. Anna Camp needs her own show! She’s amazing in everything she’s starred so far

  23. Sarajh moss says:

    must return to Tom Welling, television needs of young actors and new. I miss Tom WELLING !!!!!

  24. Eliza says:

    I love Bradley James from Merlin. With that series ending can some network keep him in mind for something amazing? Please and thank you.

    I also want more Santiago Cabrera on my tv. Wish he was on Dexter longer.

  25. Bob says:

    SUMMER GLAU you knobs.

  26. Amy says:

    Why haven’t I seen Sawyer from Lost anywhere?

  27. dude says:

    Sophia Bush! She needs her own show ASAP! Would love for her to either star in a television version of Stephanie Plum or as another ass-kicking chick. She likes to do her own stunts.

  28. Margot says:

    I want Tom Welling on my TV! Tom W. is ‘very good in the role of villain.

  29. Steve says:

    My list: Josh Holloway, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Jason Dohring!

  30. Tara says:

    I’m confused. Did Zachary Levi’s new pilot ever air?

    • gary says:

      no Fox(i think) passed. He dyed his hair blonde for Thor 2

    • John W. says:

      It did not get picked up. I know it will sound trivial to most of you, but the show has to be extra special to get picked up if the lead guy has a beard – from pictures he had a beard in the pilot.

      He should try to get a supporting role or be in an ensemble in a really strong show instead of trying to be the lead in something. I actually didn’t mind the script for his pilot but they picked a cast that was bland.

  31. Laura says:

    Where is Tom WELLING …….I love TW!!!!

  32. Birdie says:

    Paget Brewster. Paget Brewster. Paget Brewster.

  33. Julio P says:


  34. Ri says:

    Um, we just need to bring the entire Pushing Daisies family back to television. But otherwise ALLISON JANNEY. I’d also pay super big bugs to see Jessica Chastain and Anna Camp do a high powered drama together. Maybe they should just join Homeland for season 3.

  35. Kendall says:

    Paget Brewster!!!!!

  36. Andy says:

    I want Matt Dallas back on TV! (And not just guest starring on Baby Daddy)

  37. irene A says:

    Where is Lisa Edelstein on that list, man? She is missed.

  38. Vero says:

    My wish list: HUGH LAURIE (I miss [H]ouse MD), Jennifer Beals, Linda Cardellini, Gillian Anderson and Janel Moloney.

  39. Mike says:

    I miss Zachary Levi on my TV

  40. Eric says:

    Zach Levi, as you mentioned, NEEDS to come back.

    Him, Josh Holloway, Lee Pace and someone from Community (maybe Danny Pudi! Or Donald Glover! Or both!) would make for an awesome ensemble cast. Like, I would honestly lose my mind.

    • Eric says:

      And throw Jason Segel in there, since he’s leaving HIMYM after this season. Even though he said that was so at he could pursue his film career…

  41. Patricia says:

    Bridget Reagan and Craig Horner need their own shows bonus if they are both in the same show. That would make me very happy.

  42. StupidPeopleShutUp says:

    Why isn’t Terry O’Quinn on a hit show????

  43. Mandy says:

    Jewel Staite please!

  44. Missing my guys says:

    (without bothering to check and see if these people already HAVE gigs planned, or even how to spell their names, because I’m lazy like that): Jason Dohring, Taye Diggs, Seth Gabel, James Marsters, Lee Pace, Julian McMahon, Ben Browder, (I’ll stop there, though I should probably include some females shouldn’t I? Oh well. )

    • Deena says:

      Julian McMahon DEFINITELY! I don’t know why the pilot he did last year (I think with Angela Bassett) did not get picked up but I need him back on TV now.

  45. A says:

    Caterina Scorsone needs to stay on my TV. Her intervention and scenes with Addison and her baby last season were absolutely one of the finest pieces of television and acting I have ever seen. I hope she recurs on GA after PP. Also here’s to hoping that Martha Plimpton and Lisa Edelstein head back to The Good Wife soon!

  46. Cocacola says:

    Tom Welling¡¡¡ I miss him on the TV¡¡¡¡¡¡

  47. princess says:

    Adam Baldwin (I’ll be in my bunk)

  48. Tim says:

    Sophia Bush defffff. One of the best.

  49. Hannah says:

    Dear Santa……please bring me back Tom Welling¡¡¡ I miss him on the TV¡¡¡¡¡¡