EastEnders Star Locks Onto Bionic Woman Update

Following what was undoubtedly an exhaustive search, NBC has found its Bionic Woman.

Brit actress Michelle Ryan, best known for her role as Zoe Slater on the long-running primetime soap EastEnders, has been cast in NBC's drama pilot The Bionic Woman, an update on that classic 1970s action series starring Lindsay Wagner.

The update of Bionic Woman is more of a reconceptualization of the entire series than a strict update and comes from writer/executive producer Laeta Kalogridis (Birds of Prey) and exec producers David Eick (Battlestar Galactica) and Bruno Heller (Rome).

Ryan will play Jaime Sommers, an everyday woman transformed into a marvel of biomechanical craftsmanship with $50 million worth of bionics implanted inside her body. (Including, yes, both legs, one arm, an eye, and an ear, natch.) Unlike the original, Sommers will not be a tennis pro but will instead be more of a decidedly down-and-out bionic woman, struggling to make ends meet.

The move to cast a virtual unknown in the States was a deliberate move on NBC and studio NBC Universal's part as they are said to have wanted to introduce a new face to US television, despite being thisclose to casting some well known American actresses in the role.

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Jace is an LA-based television development and acquisitions junior exec who watches way too much television for his own good and would love a TiVo for every room in the house. (He’s halfway there.) His blog, Televisionary, can be found at televisionary.blogspot.com.