Friday, May 11, 2012

“Perception” Episode Synopses, Cast Bios, Series Overview

Here are all the details on the new TNT series “Perception” which will premiere on Monday, July 9, 2012. (Source: TNT)

TNT Introduces Unusual Crime Solver in the New Summer Drama Series "Perception", Starring Eric McCormack

This summer, it’s mind-over-murder as TNT introduces a unique view of crime-solving when Emmy and Screen Actors Guild Award winner Eric McCormack (Will & Grace, Who Is Clark Rockefeller?) stars in the all-new drama series Perception. This fascinating series also stars Rachael Leigh Cook (She’s All That), Arjay Smith (The Day After Tomorrow) and Kelly Rowan (The O.C.).

Perception is slated to premiere Monday, July 9, at 10 p.m. (ET/PT), exclusively on TNT. Viewers can keep up to date on all the news about the series by following @PerceptionTNT or searching for hashtag #PerceptionTNT on Twitter.

In Perception, McCormack plays Dr. Daniel Pierce, an eccentric neuroscience professor with paranoid schizophrenia who is recruited by the FBI to help solve complex cases. Pierce has an intimate knowledge of human behavior and a masterful understanding of the way the mind works. He also has an uncanny ability to see patterns and look past people's conscious emotions to see what lies beneath.

Pierce's mind may be brilliant, but it's also damaged. He struggles with hallucinations and paranoid delusions brought on by his schizophrenia. Oddly, Daniel considers some of his hallucinations to be a gift. They occasionally allow him to make connections that his conscious mind can’t yet process. At other times, the hallucinations become Daniel's greatest curse, leading him to behave in irrational, potentially dangerous ways.

Daniel's mental condition and offbeat manner make it difficult for him to achieve the close friendships and intimate relationships he craves. He’s in his element when solving an intricate puzzle or a coded message. But in unfamiliar situations, he can quickly become overwhelmed, and only his favorite music and a crossword puzzle have the power to make things right again.

Cook co-stars as FBI agent Kate Moretti, Pierce’s former student who asks him to consult on certain cases. Unlike her colleagues, Kate is willing to look past Daniel's peculiarities. Also in Daniel's life is Max Lewicki (Smith), who serves as his teaching assistant. His primary job is to keep Pierce in line and on task, whether that means grading midterms or laying out Pierce's wardrobe for the day. And Natalie Vincent (Rowan) is Daniel's best friend and every bit his intellectual equal. In addition, award-winning actor LeVar Burton (Roots, Star Trek: The Next Generation) will play a recurring role as Paul Haley, a dean at the university and Pierce’s friend.

Perception, which comes to TNT from ABC Studios, was created by executive producer Ken Biller (Star Trek: Voyager, Smallville) and co-executive producer Mike Sussman (Star Trek: Enterprise), with McCormack serving as producer. Alan Poul (Six Feet Under) directed and served as executive producer for the pilot.

About ABC Studios
ABC Studios, part of ABC Entertainment Group, develops and produces compelling programming for both broadcast network and cable television as well as digital platforms. ABC Studios has delivered some of the most successful, talked-about and evolutionary series on television such as Desperate Housewives, Grey's Anatomy, Lost, Criminal Minds, Army Wives and Brothers & Sisters.

About TNT
TNT, one of cable’s top-rated networks, is television’s destination for drama. Seen in 99 million households, the network is home to such original series as The Closer, starring Emmy® winner Kyra Sedgwick; Rizzoli & Isles, starring Angie Harmon and Sasha Alexander; Falling Skies, starring Noah Wyle; Franklin & Bash, with Mark-Paul Gosselaar and Breckin Meyer; Leverage, starring Timothy Hutton; and Southland, from Emmy-winning producer John Wells, as well as the upcoming series Major Crimes, Dallas, Perception and The Great Escape. TNT also is the cable home to powerful dramas like The Mentalist, Bones, Supernatural, Las Vegas, Law & Order, CSI: NY, Cold Case and, starting this year, Castle; primetime specials, such as the Screen Actors Guild Awards®; blockbuster movies; and championship sports coverage, including NASCAR, the NBA and the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Championship. TNT is available in high-definition.

Turner Broadcasting System, Inc., a Time Warner company, creates and programs branded news; entertainment; animation and young adult; and sports media environments on television and other platforms for consumers around the world.

Episode Synopses Season 1

Series Premiere: "Pilot" – Monday, July 9, at 10 p.m. (ET/PT) – TV-14-DLV
Neuroscience professor Daniel Pierce (Eric McCormack) is recruited by a former student, FBI Agent Kate Moretti (Rachael Leigh Cook), to help out on a case involving the death of a pharmaceutical executive. But Daniel's schizophrenic hallucinations could potentially derail the investigation. LeVar Burton guest-stars.

Directed by Alan Poul
Written by Ken Biller & Mike Sussman
Created by Ken Biller & Mike Sussman

“Faces” – Monday, July 16, at 10 p.m. (ET/PT) – TV-14-DLSV
Moretti enlists Pierce’s help to solve a murder that looks to be a man who killed his mail-order bride. The case takes an interesting twist when they find out he has a condition that makes him unable to recognize faces. Meanwhile, a handsome new professor (guest star Jamie Bamber) catches Moretti’s eye. LeVar Burton also guest-stars.

Directed by Greg Beeman
Written by Ken Biller & Mike Sussman
Created by Ken Biller & Mike Sussman

“86’d" – Monday, July 23, at 10 p.m. (ET/PT) – TV-14-DLV
Pierce and Moretti race to find clues when a serial killer from 1986 begins killing again. They catch a break when they learn that one of the victims (guest star Sheryl Lee) is actually alive. Moretti’s dad (guest star Dan Lauria), one of the investigators on the original case, offers his daughter advice. Pamela Reed also guest-stars as the mother of the surviving victim, while Armin Shimerman is the victim’s psychologist.

Directed by Deran Serafian
Written by Stephen Tolkin
Created by Ken Biller & Mike Sussman

“Cipher” – Monday, July 30, at 10 p.m. (ET/PT) – TV-14-LV
Pierce tries to crack a coded message left in a newspaper by someone who may be connected to a murder. But time isn’t on his side as another victim’s life could be in danger. Neal McDonough and Cary Elwes guest-star.

Directed by Deran Sarafian
Written by Jerry Shandy
Created by Ken Biller & Mike Sussman

“The Messenger” – Monday, Aug. 6, at 10 p.m. (ET/PT) – TV-14-DLSV
When a young man in a cult claims to be hearing the word of God, Pierce must determine if it’s actually the word of God or a life-threatening neurological condition. Pierce and Moretti must also figure out if his murder is linked to his drug past or his new life with an organization that may be scamming people out of their life savings. Roger Bart guest-stars as Ethan Kendrick, a high-powered IRS agent looking into the finances of the organization. Meanwhile, the university gives Pierce an award for his research.

Directed by Christopher Misiano
Written by Stephen Tolkin & Jason Ning
Created by Ken Biller & Mike Sussman

“Lovesick” – Monday, Aug. 20, at 10 p.m. (ET/PT) – TV-14-DLV
Pierce is called upon to help the FBI investigate the murder of a therapist. Moretti spends more time with Professor Hathaway (guest star Jamie Bamber). And Dean Haley (guest star LeVar Burton) uses Pierce as bait to get a wealthy alumni’s widow (guest star Krista Allen) to fund a new building.

Directed by Greg Beeman
Written by Jason Ning
Created by Ken Biller & Mike Sussman

“Nemesis” – Monday, Aug. 27, at 10 p.m. (ET/PT) – TV-14-LV
Pierce must take a deep look into his own life when he is brought into a case involving a schizophrenic. Meanwhile, Moretti stops at nothing to impress her new boss at the FBI. Guest star Tom Sizemore plays a top-level Irish mobster, while guest star Edward Furlong plays a would-be tough guy who may have played a crucial role in the crime.

Directed by Christopher Misiano
Written by Amanda Green
Created by Ken Biller & Mike Sussman

“Kilimanjaro” – Monday, Sept. 3, at 10 p.m. (ET/PT) – TV-14-DLV
Moretti and Pierce are called upon to solve a crime in their own backyard when a college student is killed in her dorm room. Pierce is forced into the uncomfortable situation of interacting on a personal level with more than one of his students, which forces him to confront difficult truths about his own past. The case comes just as Moretti is beginning to re-evaluate her relationship with Dr. Hathaway (guest star Jamie Bamber).
Directed by Tawnia McKiernan
Written by Amanda Green
Created by Ken Biller and Mike Sussman

Cast Bios

Eric McCormack
Dr. Daniel Pierce
Eric McCormack was born in Toronto and spent his 20s in theatres across Canada, including five seasons with the Stratford Festival. He made his Broadway debut in the title role of The Music Man, headlined the American premiere of Neil LaBute’s Some Girl(s) and this spring returns to New York to star opposite James Earl Jones and Angela Lansbury in Gore Vidal's The Best Man.

McCormack’s film work includes Alien Trespass; the cult film Free Enterprise; My One and Only, opposite Rene Zellweger; and The Sisters, for which he and Maria Bello won Best Actor and Actress at the Atlanta Film Festival. His upcoming films include Barricade and Knife Fight, opposite Rob Lowe.

On television, McCormack has starred in countless series, miniseries and movies over the last 20 years. Highlights include The Andromeda Strain, Borrowed Hearts, TNT’s Trust Me, the title role in Who Is Clark Rockefeller?, The New Adventures of Old Christine and two seasons as Col. Clay Mosby on Lonesome Dove: The Outlaw Years. But it was his eight seasons as Will Truman on NBC’s Emmy-winning sitcom Will & Grace that earned him a Screen Actor’s Guild Award, five Golden Globe nominations and the Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series. Prior to starring and co-producing Perception, McCormack co-produced the series Lovespring International and the TNT pilot Imperfect Union.

McCormack has hosted Saturday Night Live and the VH-1 Music Awards and sang both national anthems at the NHL All-Star Game. In 2010, he received a star on Canada’s Walk of Fame. He currently splits his time between Los Angeles and Vancouver with Janet, his wife of 14 years, and their son, Finnigan.

Rachael Leigh Cook
Kate Moretti
Rachael Leigh Cook’s memorable and riveting performance in the 1998 anti-heroin “kitchen smashing” public service announcement (“This is your brain...”) led to her first starring role in Miramax’s breakout hit She’s All That, the enchanting teen comedy co-starring Freddie Prinze Jr. Cook next put her comedic ability to work in the title role of aspiring rock star Josie McCoy in Josie and the Pussycats, alongside Parker Posey and Rosario Dawson.

Cook starred with Hilary Swank and Colin Hanks in New Line’s dark comedy 11:14 and with Sylvester Stallone in Get Carter. She also starred in The Big Empty, opposite John Favreau, and the romantic comedy Blow Dry, with Josh Hartnett. In Living Out Loud, Cook played the younger version of Holly Hunter's character. And in The House of Yes, she played a younger version of Parker Posey's Jackie-O character. More recently, Cook starred in the Warner Bros. feature film Nancy Drew, in which her character, Jane Brighton, is the subject of Nancy Drew’s most pressing case.

On television, Cook co-starred as Clara Wheeler in TNT’s award-winning miniseries Into the West. She has also played a recurring role on the hit series Psych. Cook resides in Los Angeles with her husband, actor Daniel Gillies, as well as their three dogs and two cats.

Arjay Smith
Max Lewicki
Arjay Smith is known to moviegoers for his performance in the blockbuster movie The Day After Tomorrow and to TV fans for his recurring role as Cadet Finley on the award-winning sitcom Malcolm in the Middle. He has also appeared in the films First Sunday and Be Kind Rewind, and guest-starred on such series as 24 and TNT’s Saving Grace.

Smith began his career starring as the adorable alien in the series The Journey of Allen Strange. Among his memorable commercial work, he played the driver in the Snickers commercial featuring Aretha Franklin and Liza Minnelli. And in January 2011, he was the house-sitter in the Doritos ad that premiered during the Super Bowl.

Kelly Rowan
Natalie Vincent
Kelly Rowan became a familiar face to television fans with her performance as Kirsten Cohen in the hit television series The O.C., which earned her a Prism Award for Best Actress. More recently, she starred in the television movie Cyberbully. Her other television credits include Flashpoint, CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, CSI: Miami and Boomtown.

On the television movie front, Rowan won critical acclaim and the Gemini Award for Best Actress for her performance in Adrift, opposite Bruce Greenwood. After winning a CTV International Achievement Award in 2005, she went on to produce and star in the television films Eight Days to Live and In God’s Country. Rowan’s other television movie credits include The Good Times are Killing Me, The Man Who Saved Christmas, It’s a Girl Thing, The Truth about Jane, Shattered Trust and Anya’s Bell.

Rowan’s big-screen credits include starring opposite Samuel L. Jackson in the thriller 187. She has also appeared in the movies Jack and Will vs. the World, Assassins, Hook and the gripping drama Mount Pleasant.

When not on screen, Rowan is an active executive producer with her producing partner, Graham Ludlow. In 2007, they won a CFTPA Indie Award for Outstanding Independent Producers for their work on In God’s Country. They have also produced She Drives Me Crazy and are currently developing numerous television and feature film projects.

Rowan has studied theater as such noted schools as the British American Drama Academy and the Neighborhood Playhouse. She currently resides in Los Angeles.

Production Bios

Ken Biller
Creator/Executive Producer

Ken Biller has written, produced, and/or directed more than 300 hours of television for most of the major networks and studios. His many credits include serving as executive producer and head writer for E-Ring, starring Benjamin Bratt and Dennis Hopper; Six Degrees, starring Hope Davis and Campbell Scott; and Star Trek: Voyager, starring Kate Mulgrew. Biller also served as co-executive producer of the series North Shore, Smallville and Dark Angel. More recently he has most recently served as executive producer and head writer for the action-fantasy series, Legend of the Seeker, which he developed for television. Legend of the Seeker has been broadcast in more than 120 countries around the world. Biller also has future projects in development at ABC. He is a graduate of the American School in Switzerland and Brown University.

Mike Sussman
Creator/Co-Executive Producer

Mike Sussman's career in scripted drama took off when he was hired as a story editor on the Paramount television series Star Trek: Voyager. He stayed with the popular science-fiction franchise for five seasons and was promoted to producer on the most recent spin-off, Star Trek: Enterprise. Sussman's other television credits include Threshold for CBS/Paramount and the syndicated Legend of the Seeker for executive producer Sam Raimi and ABC Studios.

Born in Philadelphia, Sussman started writing at an early age, winning an award from Columbia University for the op-ed column he wrote for his high school newspaper. Years later, after moving to Hollywood, he served as a writer and producer for KCAL’s Emmy®-winning Prime Nine News, and shared the award for best newscast at the New York Festivals Television & Film Awards.

Sussman is a 2011 graduate of the Writers Guild of America's Showrunner Training Program.

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