'Big Sky' Premiere: David E. Kelley thriller debuts on ABC

A new ABC primetime TV series called "Big Sky" is set in a small town in Montana at a time when young women have been disappearing at local truck stops.

The show is from producer David E. Kelley, who has a long history with ABC going back to "The Practice" and "Doogie Howser, M.D." before that.

The set-up is simple: Two sisters are in peril due to a big rig truck driver who is pursuing them. He abducts them, and to try and save them, another pair of women must overcome their differences.

"It sets up a lot of tension between these two women," says Kylie Bunbury, who plays Cassie Dewell, the partner of Ryan Phillippe's character in a local detective agency. "They are complete opposites, and they have to come together to find these girls."

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That's not easy considering Cassie and Jenny Hoyt, played by Katheryn Winnick, find themselves in a love triangle with Phillippe's character, Cody Hoyt.

"There are going to be a lot of twists and turns," said Winnick, whose character is an ex-cop and Hoyt's estranged wife.

"Big Sky" is based on a novel adapted by Kelley.

"After reading the pilot, I wanted to know more about every single one of these characters, and David's obviously brilliant at that," Bunbury said. "It's exciting to have to watch these two women, who are at odds, come together and kick ass."

Kelley is known for writing strong roles for women like "Ally McBeal," or more recently, the women in HBO's "Big Little Lies."

"It's also behind the camera," Winnick said. "We've got a woman producer. We got women directors on the show."

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Kelley has a progressive history of doing that, and in fact, half a dozen directors for the first season's episodes are female.

Kelley was studying to become a lawyer at Princeton University, went to law school and joined a firm. He was asked to help make "LA Law" more accurate and took a leave of absence from his firm, and he's never looked back.
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