ABC Puts Field on The Bench

Boosted by a well-received guest stint on ER, Sally Field is making a bid to return to TV full time.

The two-time Oscar winner, who got her start playing a flying nun on TV, will play a liberal U.S. Supreme Court justice in the ABC/Touchstone TV drama pilot The Bench.

[Like ABC, Mr. Showbiz is owned by the Walt Disney Company.]

If the pilot turns into a series, The Hollywood Reporter notes that Field may be pulling in an impressive $150,000 per episode.

"We're incredibly excited to have an actress of Sally's caliber in a piece like this," Touchstone Executive Vice President Steven McPherson tells the Reporter. "We're proud to be a part of it."

Alicia Witt, from the films Urban Legend and Cecil B. Demented, will play a law clerk. Rounding out the cast of The Bench are Adam Scott (Josh on Party of Five) and vets of ABC dramas past Billy Burke (Wonderland) and D.B. Woodside (Murder One).

For her recent six-episode turn as a manic-depressive mother on ER, Field received a Screen Actors Guild award nomination. The perky former star of TV's Gidget began earning the respect of her peers with her 1977 Emmy-winning performance in Sybil, in which she played an abuse victim with 16 personalities.

Field made her directorial debut last year with Beautiful, which starred Minnie Driver. Her next film is the Farrelly brothers comedy Say It Isn't So!

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