Judy Smith
Judy Smith

After setting up a new legal drama at Fox last fall (titled “Justice”, and is loosely inspired by her life), real-life “fixer” Judy Smith adds to her growing slate of projects, with another scripted drama also sold to Fox, from writer Sheldon Turner, via his (and Jennifer Klein’s) Vendetta Productions, which will tackle what is certainly a timely and hot-button topic: rape on college campuses.

Fox has given a pilot order to “Controversy,” as the project is titled, which follows the Junior Counsel of a prestigious Illinois university who takes on an immense scandal when a young co-ed accuses several star football players of sexual assault – a high profile case that brings the university under siege.

“Controversy” is scripted by Sheldon Turner, with Judy Smith executive producing alongside John Requa and Glenn Ficarra.

By the way, Smith, a real-life top crisis-management consultant (and the inspiration for Shonda Rhimes’ “Scandal” on ABC), has worked with a number of high-profile clients, including universities.

Smith also executive produced “BrainDead” on CBS.  Its central plot about alien bugs taking over the brains of American politicians is also certainly fitting for the times.


The pilot join Fox’s slate of dramas in contention for the 2017-2018 season. No word on casting at this time.