Fall TV: Fox Is First Out of the Gate with Orders for Bones Spinoff, J.J. Abrams' Alcatraz

And they’re off! Fox popped the cork on the annual upfronts season by placing orders for four new series for the 2011-12 TV season.

Among Fox’s orders are the Bones spinoff The Finder, starring Geoff Stults and based on a “planted pilot” episode that aired last month, and Alcatraz, a time travel-flavored drama from Lost/Fringe VIP J.J. Abrams.

Also on Fox’s shopping list … READ MORE

Exclusive: Fringe On Fridays Will Be A Fringe 'Unhinged,' Says J.J. Abrams

Fringe‘s move to Fridays, which takes hold on January 21, is looking more and more like a really terrific thing.

Not only has Fox been promoting the heck out of the time-slot change, but Fringe‘s new “under the radar” home apparently has opened the door for even freakier storytelling.

Noting that Fox “has always been pretty cool” about letting Fringe push the envelope, series creator J.J. Abrams tells TVLine that … READ MORE

Lost's Jorge Garcia Cast In J.J. Abrams' Alcatraz Pilot

Big news for Lost fans: series co-star Jorge Garcia has joined another J.J. Abrams drama about an island. Garcia is set to play a lead on the Fox pilot Alcatraz, which is executive produced by Lost co-creator/executive producer Abrams.

The project, described to be “about secrets and the most infamous prison of all time,” centers on a group of missing Alcatraz prisoners and guards who reappear in the present day. It chronicles the efforts of a team of FBI agents to track them down and unravel the mystery behind their disappearance 30 years prior.

Garcia will play the hippy geek Dr. Diego Soto, the world’s foremost expert on Alcatraz. Garcia, who landed his first TV series role on the CBS comedy Becker, rose to fame as one of the key cast members on ABC’s hit drama Lost. He was the first actor cast in the Lost pilot, just like he is now on Alcatraz. The role of Hugo “Hurley” Reyes on Lost was tailor-made for him. Similarly, he was the first and only actor the producers of Alcatraz approached for the role of Dr. Soto.

Garcia, repped by APA and KLWG Entertainment, guest-starred on the Thanksgiving episode of CBS’ comedy How I Met Your Mother, and will also appear in an episode of ABC’s midseason comedy Mr. Sunshine. He is the third Lost cast member eyeing return to primetime this season in a new drama series executive produced by Abrams. Michael Emerson and Terry O’Quinn star as former special ops agents in the project Odd Jobs, which landed at NBC with a put pilot commitment.

Alcatraz was written on spec by Elizabeth Sarnoff, who penned the final version, and Steven Lilien and Bryan Wynbrandt, who wrote earlier incarnations. The project, from Abrams’ Bad Robot Prods. and Warner Bros. TV, was bought by Fox with a pilot commitment in mid-September, and greenlighted to pilot a week later. Sarnoff serves as showrunner and executive produces with Abrams and Bryan Burk. Lilien and Wynbrandt will co-executive produce and Danny Cannon will direct the pilot, which is slated to begin in January in San Francisco and Vancouver.

This story was originally published by Nellie Andreeva for Deadline.com.