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New FBI Show Stars Richmond 

Touchstone Pictures publicist Sharon Liggins describes the show as a drama series about a regional FBI office investigating organized crime. The series, tentatively called "The Line of Fire," is under consideration for airing in the fall of 2003, and its fate should be decided by May.

Rod Lurie, who also filmed the movie "The Contender" in Richmond, is the show's writer, director and executive producer. An on-set source says the buzz was that the plot was originally set in a different city but then rewritten because Lurie wanted the Richmond atmosphere. "He does like shooting there," Liggins confirms, but, she adds, she hadn't heard anything about the script being revised.

Former Richmonder Leslie Bibb, best known for her role in the WB show "Popular," stars as a rookie agent pursuing an organized-crime family. Anson Mount plays the head of the family. The cast also includes Leslie Hope from "24," David Paymer, Jeffrey Sams, Brian Goodman, Julie Ann Emery and Michael Irby.

In the wake of the filming of HBO movie "Iron Jawed Angels," few have noticed the new production crews scurrying around town. Filming began in early December, just before it snowed, at Davis & Main restaurant in the Fan. Owner Mark Brandon watched as the crew painted the upstairs bathroom blue, turned a meeting area into a bedroom, and replaced all the restaurant tables with new ones. "I'm serving my customers on their tables," he says incredulously.

Being a "crusty New Yorker," Brandon just looked on, resignedly. "I'm not impressed by celebrity one way or the other."

— Melissa Scott Sinclair
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